looking for an article about the formation of israel


Jedi Master
i'm looking for an article that describes the history and development of the state of israel and the various wars it has fought to keep a foothold/beachhead in the area.
what was the deal with Theodor Herzl (founder of zionism)?

i was talking to a friend recently about the history of israel and we both had to realize that we know next to nothing about it.
decades of media-spin and daily reports about violence in the area have made most people here oblivious to what's going on there. (plus any jewish-themed subject is somewhat taboo here)

naturally i'm not looking for anything with a racial bias - unfortunately one always has to add stuff like this in order not to be attacked as anti-semite. :(

anyone got a link handy?

hm, so you're implying because my avatar features a mask that an actor wore in a movie and because that actor also played an agent of the control system in a different movie, that i myself am part of the control system and therefore can not be provided with a link?

and i thought *i* was paranoid...

i still don't know what to make of your dog impersonating a jedi knight, but i'm sure it has some significance.
From the 2nd Edition of 911: The Ultimate Truth:

The current nation of Israel is a completely artificial and arbitrary construction that came about as the result of political maneuvering leading to the Balfour Declaration in the early part of the 20th century.

The Balfour Declaration was a letter from British Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour, to Lord Rothschild (Walter Rothschild, 2nd Baron Rothschild), a leader of the British Jewish community, for transmission to the Zionist Federation, a private Zionist organization.

Foreign Office
November 2nd, 1917

Dear Lord Rothschild,

I have much pleasure in conveying to you, on behalf of His Majesty's Government, the following declaration of sympathy with Jewish Zionist aspirations which has been submitted to, and approved by, the Cabinet.

"His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country."

I should be grateful if you would bring this declaration to the knowledge of the Zionist Federation.
Yours sincerely,

Arthur James Balfour

At the time, most of the area of Palestine was still under the control of the Ottoman Empire, and the borders of what would become Palestine had been outlined as part of the May 16, 1916 Sykes-Picot Agreement between Britain and France.

(The Sykes-Picot Agreement of May 16, 1916 was a secret understanding between the governments of Britain and France defining their respective spheres of post-World War I influence and control in the Middle East. The boundaries of this agreement still remain in much of the common border between Syria and Iraq. The agreement was negotiated in November 1915 by the French diplomat Fran�ois Georges-Picot and British Mark Sykes. Britain was allocated control of areas roughly comprising Jordan, Iraq and a small area around Haifa. France was allocated control of South-eastern Turkey, Northern Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. The controlling powers were left free to decide on state boundaries within these areas. The area which subsequently came to be called Palestine was for international administration pending consultations with Russia and other powers.

This agreement is viewed by many as conflicting with the Hussein-McMahon Correspondence of 1915-1916. The conflicting agreements are the result of changing progress during the war, switching in the earlier correspondence from needing Arab help to subsequently trying to enlist the help of Jews in the United States in getting the US to join the First World War, in conjunction with the Balfour Declaration, 1917. The agreement had been made in secret.

The agreement was later expanded to include Italy and Russia. Russia was to receive Armenia and parts of Kurdistan while the Italians would get certain Aegean islands and a sphere of influence around Izmir in southwest Anatolia. The Italian presence in Anatolia as well as the division of the Arab lands was later formalized in the Treaty of S�vres in 1920.

The Russian Revolution of 1917 led to Russia being denied its claims in the Ottoman Empire. At the same time Lenin released a copy of the confidential Sykes-Picot Agreement as well as other treaties causing great embarrassment among the allies and growing distrust among the Arabs.

The agreement is seen by many as a turning point in Western/Arab relations, as it negated the promises made to Arabs through T.E. Lawrence for a national homeland in the Syrian territory in exchange for their siding with British forces against the Ottoman Empire. )

One of the main Jewish figures who negotiated the granting of the declaration was Dr. Chaim Weizmann, the leading spokesman for organized Zionism in Britain. During the first meeting between Chaim Weizmann and Balfour, in 1906, the Unionist leader was impressed by Weizman's personality. Balfour asked Weizmann why Palestine-and Palestine alone-could be the basis for Zionism. "Anything else would be idolatry", Weizmann protested, adding: "Mr. Balfour, supposing I were to offer you Paris instead of London, would you take it?" "But Dr. Weizmann", Balfour retorted, "we have London", to which Weizmann rejoined, "That is true, but we had Jerusalem when London was a marsh."

Weizmann was a chemist who managed to synthesize acetone via fermentation. Acetone is needed in the production of cordite, a powerful propellant explosive needed to fire ammunition without generating tell-tale smoke. Germany had cornered supplies of a major source of acetone, calcium acetate and other pre-war processes in Britain were inadequate to meet the increased demand in the Great War. A shortage of cordite would have severely hampered Britain's war effort. The Minister for Munitions David Lloyd-George, who became Prime Minister shortly after, was grateful to Weizmann and also supported him. Balfour asked what payment he would in return for the use of his process, Weizmann responded, "There is only one thing I want. A national home for my people." He eventually received both payment for his discovery and a role in the history of the origins of the state of Israel.

In his November, 2002 interview with the New Statesman magazine, the UK Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw, has blamed Britain's imperial past for many of the modern political problems, including the Arab-Israeli conflict.

"The Balfour declaration and the contradictory assurances which were being given to Palestinians in private at the same time as they were being given to the Israelis-again, an interesting history for us, but not an honourable one," he said.

Let's take a closer look at what Weizmann said: Balfour asked Weizmann why Palestine-and Palestine alone-could be the basis for Zionism. "Anything else would be idolatry"... "Mr. Balfour, supposing I were to offer you Paris instead of London, would you take it?" "But Dr. Weizmann", Balfour retorted, "we have London", to which Weizmann rejoined, "That is true, but we had Jerusalem when London was a marsh."

As it happens, that is not the truth. But also, as it happens, that fiction of the great land of Israel that was given to the Jews by God Almighty himself is a widespread belief among the three main monotheistic religions that dominate the world today.

In my book, The Secret History of the World, I examine the question of the so-called "history of the Jews" in some detail. This material is also published on our website.

And here I would like to point out the interesting fact that the three major monotheistic religions extant in the world today are all based, essentially, on a single religion, Judaism.

Think about that for a moment.

When researching religious matters, one always comes across prophecy and miracles. It seems that those who are to be kept in fear of the Lord need an unequivocal sign from time to time. Miracles and visions can sway whole armies. We can think of the battle cry "Great is Allah!" and the claim of the salvific blood of Christ that was held up as a shield against the Saracens. We should also be reminded of the mandate of Yahweh to "utterly destroy" just about everybody who wasn't hanging out with Joshua and his gang. Such "visions" go back into our primeval past. Around 5,000 BC, the divine Ishtar was said to have appeared to Enme-Kar, the ruler of Uruk, telling him to overthrow the city of Aratta. But, at the moment, we are mostly concerned with visions in the context of the Bible since it is the Bible that underpins the beliefs of a staggering number of human beings on planet earth at the present time, including their "revised forms" in the New Age and Human Potential movement.

Hans Conzelmann, Professor of New Testament Studies at Tottingen admitted that the Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them. ...

The "original texts" that are so often referred to in theological hairsplitting do not exist. What do exist are transcripts that originated between the fourth and tenth centuries. And these are transcripts of transcripts, some fifteen hundred of them, and not one of them agrees with another. More than eighty thousand variations have been counted. There does not exist a single page of the "original texts" without contradictions. The most prominent of them, the Codex Sinaiticus, has been found to contain sixteen thousand corrections, which can be traced back to seven correctors. These correctors made their "corrections" because each one understood the verses differently, and they transformed the functions according to what they perceived to be the needs of the time.

Father Jean Schorer, for many years spiritual adviser to the Cathedral of Saint-Pierre, Geneva, concluded that the theory of the divine inspiration of the Bible is in such contradiction with the most basic, elementary knowledge base of normal human reason, and is so obviously refuted by the Bible itself, that only ignorant persons would defend it, while only people completely devoid of any kind of culture would believe it.

The fact is, in examining this matter, we find nothing of "God Almighty" or the "Holy Ghost" in the Bible at all. That's the plain fact, and a lot of people in the "business" of religion know it.

Nevertheless, our institutions of higher learning generally have a special faculty allotment for the teaching of theology, financed by the taxpayer, whether Christian or Jew. One assumes that the students who study this theology are also given exposure to other studies, such as math, languages, science, and so forth. The question then becomes: what kind of strange distortion, what incomprehensible corruption takes place in the minds of human beings, so that they so completely separate their academic knowledge from what they hear preached at them from the pulpit?

What kind of brainwashing can so effectively cause the simplest of facts to be forgotten?

How does this happen?

It is literally staggering to a logical, intelligent human being that the fairy tale of the Bible - as God's word - has endured so long. There is nothing to which we can compare this in the entire seven thousand years of human history of which we are aware. Calling it all a "pack of lies" seems rather harsh, but it is increasingly evident that it is certainly intentionally misleading, and, in that case, what shall we call it?

Christian theologians claim that the teachings of Jesus (which is the established religious dogma) are unconditionally valid. Rudolf Augstein asks:

"...With what right do the Christian churches refer to a Jesus who did not exist in the form they claim, to doctrines which he did not teach, to an absolute authority which he did not confer, and to a filiation with God which he never laid claim to?"

Naturally, all of these problems have led to many interesting theological solutions. It is amazing how creative true believers can be when faced with facts that this or that idea they have held for a long time is no longer tenable. ...

The reality seems to be that Judaism, Christianity and Islam were specifically designed and created just to produce a particular situation that is desirable to someone at a certain point in time, and again, we see the same operation being run on humanity in the present day as the New Age - Human Potential movement.

When we step back from the situation, the one thing that we see is that prophecy is at the center of the Judeo-Christian-Islamic tradition. The prophets of these religions claimed to be in direct contact with the Creator of the Universe, and this creator seems to have been singularly "personal" in the sense of having personal traits, whims, likes and dislikes. His prophets are, naturally, privileged messengers, receiving his divine revelations, and these revelations divide mankind into those who believe them and those who don't. Naturally, those who don't are damned.

Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and their New Age offshoots, are the chief proponents of the many End of the World scenarios with which we are most familiar. Scenarios about the end times originate mostly in the body of apocalyptic, eschatological writings of the New and Old Testaments. It is in the final book, Revelation, that most striking and symbolic representations about the end of the world are said by many to be depicted.

It is a difficult work to comprehend. Probably no other piece of writing in history has been examined more thoroughly and interpreted more widely. It is the end-of-the world legend, a doomsday tale on moldy bread with virtual reality special effects in abundance. It is the inspirational fountainhead for mad prophets, spittle spewing pulpit-pounders, apocalyptic Enochian magicians, fanatical true believers, grade-B moviemakers, and knaves and snake-oil salesmen of every form and sort.

It is also, as it happens, at the root of the present global crises with Israel at the center.

So, turning our attention once again to Israel, we notice that the claim to Israel is based on the claim that God Almighty gave the land to the Jews via Moses.

Here, it is important to have read the series linked above "Who Wrote The Bible."

All of the above would seem to be just "old history" and not relevant to us now except for an extraordinary incident that has received very little attention and which may very well bear strongly on the conditions prevailing over the world today.

In November 1922, a momentous discovery - unlike any other before or since - was to change our understanding of the ancient world: the intact tomb of the 18th dynasty pharaoh, Tutankhamum was discovered by Howard Carter. It is in the context of this discovery that the above mentioned extraordinary - but little noted - incident occurred; an incident that conceals a secret that could literally change the face of our history and our present world view.

Let [the reader] imagine how they appeared to us as we looked down upon them from our spy-hole in the blocked doorway, casting the beam of light from our torch - the first light that had pierced the darkness of the chamber for three thousand years - from one group of objects to another, in a vain attempt to interpret the treasure that lay before us. [Carter and Mace, The Tomb of Tut.Ankh.Amen, I, p. 98]

These are Howard Carter's thoughts after he first set eyes on Tutankhamun's final resting place, sometime around two o'clock on Sunday 26 November 1922. [Carter, Lett's No. 46 Indian and Colonial Rough Diary 1922, entry for Sunday, 26 November, the Griffith Institute, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.]
Yet what the British Egyptologist fails to disclose in his written testimony is that he went on to enlarge the spy hole and climb inside, without waiting for official permission to do so. This fact is recorded in a draft article on the events leading up to the great discovery by Lord Carnarvon dated Sunday 10 December 1922, which was in fact a variation of an article that appeared in The Times of London on Monday, 11 December. It provides a more realistic spin on what transpired that all-important day in the Valley of the Kings when he, Carter, Pecky Callender and Lady Evelyn Herbert reached the sealed doorway between the entrance passageway and the Antechamber. [...]

So why the apparent deception? Why did Carter claim to have entered the Antechamber for the first time a day later than he actually did? The answer would appear to be petty politics. Article 3 of the digging concession officially issued to Lord Carnarvon in 1915 (and renewed annually) made it clear that the 'Permittee', i.e. Howard Carter on behalf of Carnarvon, should 'give notice at once' to the chief inspector of the Antiquities Service for Upper Egypt at Luxor of the discovery of any tomb or monument. At the time the position of chief inspector was held by the British Egyptologist Reginald 'Rex' Engelbach, who had been kept informed of all developments at the tomb, and only two days beforehand, on Friday, the 24th, had 'witnessed part of the final clearing of rubbish from the [first] doorway.

Yet on this day Engelbach had been the bringer of bad tidings, for he informed Carter and Carnarvon that Pierre Lacau, the director-general of the Antiquities Service, wished them to know that he, Engelbach, or one of his colleagues should be present at the opening of any chamber found. This was despite the fact that Article 4 of the digging concession asserted that 'the Permittee himself shall be reserved the privilege of opening the tomb or monument discovered, and of being the first to enter therein.' [...]

In the end, and, as we shall see, Carnarvon, Lady Evelyn and Callender, pressed ahead and entered the tomb. Yet, since their actions would have been seen as a breach of Article 3 of the digging concession, there was no way that they could admit to entering the tomb without having first notified Engelbach. [...]

Aside from Lord Carnarvon's typewritten draft article on the events leading to the discovery of the tomb, as well as an earlier handwritten version of the same article and a few careless whispers by the British aristocrat, the group's unofficial entry into the Antechamber managed to escape public notice for more than seventy years. It was finally brought to the attention of the world with the publication in 1978 of a sensational book entitled Tutankhamun - The Untold Story, written by Thomas Hoving, a former head of New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art. [...]

Yet the group's indiscretions went far beyond simply entering the Antechamber without official permission, for there is now indisputable evidence to show that sometime between Tuesday 28 November and Thursday 30 November 1922, the four of them breached the sealed doorway in the north wall of the Antechamber and explored the king's inner sanctum. This, it must be stressed, was almost three months before the official opening of the Burial Chamber when Carter and Callender broke down the doorway in front of a distinguished group of invited guests on Friday 16 February 1923 (not Friday 17 February, as is recorded incorrectly by Carter and Mace in their book - an error repeated again and again in modern accounts of the discovery of the tomb).

The first inklings of this greater transgression on the parts of Carter and Carnarvon came to light with the publication in 1972 of a book entitled Behind the Mask of Tutankhamen, penned by the historical writer Barry Wynne. Having gained the trust and respect of the sixth Earl of Carnarvon (1898-1987), who wrote a testimonial for the book, Wynne was able to draw from the slowly fading memories of the ageing aristocrat for a more personal account of his father's life and times. In addition to this, Wynne examined the diaries of the fifth earl's half-brother, the Hon. Mervyn Herbert (1881-1929), who was present at the official opening of the Burial Chamber. [Andrew Collins, Chris Ogilvie-Herald (2002) Tutankhamun and the Exodus Conspiracy ;Virgin Books, London.]
Mervyn's diary and the testimony of other individuals in a position to know the facts (and conceal them) indicate that Carter and Carnarvon did, indeed, enter the tomb long before the "official" opening. As the story goes and as most people know it, when the tomb was officially opened it was a sensation, and some weeks afterward, Lord Carnarvon died supposedly from blood poisoning after he had nicked a mosquito bite while shaving leading to the "legend of the Curse of King Tut." There may be more to this than meets the eye as we are about to learn.

The discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamen and all its details are not what concern us here. We are more interested in the fact that this discovery led eventually to a legal battle between Howard Carter and the Egyptian government. This dispute was so bizarre and aroused so much emotion that it deserves a bit of scrutiny considering the fact that the extraordinary incident occurred in response to this litigation. [...]

Upon the discovery of the fabulous treasures of King Tut, it appears that many old disputes between Howard Carter and the bureaucracy, as well as old enemies came to a head. The Egyptian government - apparently motivated by extreme paranoia that will only be understandable further on - insisted that the pharaoh's treasures should remain in the care of Egyptian curators. The press was employed by both sides as guns to fire off their broadsides against one another. As a result of the press coverage, ordinary Egyptians thought Tutankhamen's treasures should be used to pay off the national debt while Howard Carter kept saying that he just wanted to handle the artifacts in the most scientific way possible. Everybody had a different agenda for the remains of King Tut. But through it all, there was a most evident current of a breakdown in trust between Carter and officialdom.

The battle began when, after months of handling the dig, at one point, Carter had invited quite a number of visitors to the excavation site, even though prior agreements with the Egyptian government stipulated that only those persons associated with the dig could be present. Carter had asked Sa'ad Zaghloul, Under-Secretary of State to the Ministry of Public Works, to grant entrance permits to the English and American wives of his assistants. Zaghloul refused the request. Carter insisted that the ladies be admitted to join their husbands, at which point they were prevented from entering by Egyptian authorities. Insulted, Carter closed down and locked up the excavation site. Zaghloul responded by stationing an armed guard at the tomb to prevent even Carter from entering.
In retrospect, it seems quite obvious that this little contretemps was engineered specifically to get Carter out of the way. Certainly, the request was an innocuous one that should have readily been granted and certainly, Carter's character was well known to Zaghloul who must have predicted what Carter would do in response.

Carter proceeded to Luxor, where he published a notice in the local hotels that said:
Owing to impossible restrictions and discourtesies on the part of the Public Works Department and its Antiquity Service, all my collaborators, in protest, have refused to work any further upon the scientific investigations of the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamen. I, therefore, am obliged to make known to the public that immediately after the Press view of the tomb this morning between 10 a.m. and noon, the tomb will be closed and no further work carried out.

The press went wild and after some scathing reviews of the actions of the Egyptian officials, negotiations between Carter and the Egyptian government opened but soon collapsed. Carter was not a happy camper saying,

This was only the culminating point of a series of acts of unwarrantable interference on the part of the government since work was resumed in October, which, in their cumulative effect, have tended to render scientific work at the tomb increasingly difficult.

The Times of London reported Carter's criticism of the Antiquities Department:

The exclusive right of your Department to the tomb does not commence until I have had sufficient time to examine the tomb and take such notes as I judge necessary. As you are doubtless aware, I so far have had time to examine but a small part of the contents of the tomb, and the opportunity to examine and make notes on the rest is a fundamental right, which I will not give up.
The pro-British press in Egypt naturally supported Carter's claims against the Egyptian government. The Egyptian Gazette opined that the real issue for Carter was not the question over sequestration rights but the Egyptian government's constant interference to the detriment of science and history.
The Egyptian Gazette further argued that the Egyptian government had previously transferred the license at the death of Lord Carnarvon to his wife Almina, which required the government to be responsible for protecting the archaeologists from any unnecessary interruptions; however, the Ministry of Public Works had only managed to hinder Carter and his team.

Le Journal du Caire, the pro-French newspaper, described Carter as "obstinate" and "incomprehensible" and said further that Carter was only "pretending" that he was a victim being persecuted by tyrants.
Al-Siyasa, a local Egyptian paper declared that the government should have avoided a confrontation over the visitation of workers' wives to the tomb:

The incident makes us laugh indeed, because the arrangements made in regard to it have been unworthy of these who made them. Why did the Minister of Public Works refuse Mr. Carter's demand to permit the wives of his collaborators to visit the Tomb several days before other people? It is not natural for the wives of the Ministers to hear the important news of the Ministry before they become known to the public? And even if it is natural would it not be an act of courtesy to agree to the ladies' visit. What patriotic interests and national dignity required the refusal of the request? To tell the truth, the Minister of Public Works was too strict where strictness was not required.

Egyptian Prime Minister Sa'ad Zaghloul Pasha issued a statement in response that was supposed to 1) clarify the government's position in regards to Carter's nationality; 2) assuage nationalist sentiment as well as 3) placate foreign public opinion:

Not at any moment has our action been influenced by Mr. Carter's nationality. On the contrary, because of that nationality and our sincere desire that nothing should happen to trouble the friendly relations between the two countries, the Egyptian Government has never ceased to display much consideration and quite special sympathy for Mr. Carter, and I can assure you that if the concession-holder had been an Egyptian we would not have treated him with as much consideration.

In the middle of all these accusations and counter claims, the Egyptian Gazette reminded its readers that the granite lid to Tutankhamen's sarcophagus was still hanging precariously above the tomb and mummified remains of the late pharaoh. Should the ropes holding the lid in place give way under the strain, it would come crashing down and destroy the most valuable treasure of all. The same paper then reported that the deadlock between the Egyptian government and Howard Carter had forced the Egyptian government's decision to procure the services of other, more amicable, archaeologists, said experts within the archaeological community having already been contacted. This report also urged the Egyptian government to remove the danger of the dangling lid post-haste, after which they could train their own Egyptian archaeologists in Europe who could then return to manage the excavation without worrying that Carter was going to be absconding with any of the artifacts.

Again, it seems obvious that the minor dispute over the wives' attendance at the tomb was merely a diversion.

On 14 February 1924, when Carter arrived at the tomb to inspect the condition of the locks, he encountered Habeeb Affandi, the local inspector for the Antiquities Department, who denied him access to the tomb. Habeeb Affandi explained that he was under direct orders from Cairo to forbid anyone from visiting the tomb.

The French journal, Le Temps, explained that after careful deliberation, it had been decision of the Director of the Antiquities Department, M. Pierre Lacau, to place a guard at the tomb and bar Carter's entry. It was disturbing to many in the archaeological community that Carter who, after thirty years of hard work and dedication, finally realized his ambition of uncovering the lost tomb, and was now prohibited from entering the tomb.

Since the negotiations had broken down between the Egyptian government and Carter, rumors in Egypt predicted that a settlement could only be achieved in the court. In the meantime, it was predicted that the government would reopen the tomb to finish the job originally begun by Carter. At the same time, the Egyptian Gazette opined that the Egyptian government was incapable of properly supervising the excavation:

It seems obvious that were such a course attempted Mr. Carter would immediately apply to the Courts for an injunction to restrain the Government, but, apart from that, the task would be an impossible one for the Government, which has not in its employ a single official competent to undertake the work.

On 18 February 1924, the Times of London reported that the Ministry of Public Works was interested in resolving the dispute with Carter; however, should the negotiations falter it had no compunction in appropriating the tomb and continuing the work of its own volition.

In retrospect, it almost seems as though the press was scripting and directing the events for the participants. It is therefore not a surprise that the next day, Howard Carter filed suit against the Egyptian government. In his legal action, Carter affirmed:

I have initiated proceedings in the Mixed Courts for the protection of the objects contained in the tomb. If the director of the Antiquities Department will express regret for having insulted the ladies who had been invited by the Countess of Carnarvon to visit the tomb on Wednesday, after the visit of journalists, and if he undertakes to make no opposition of such kind as might provoke an incident, I will open the tomb a second time for a period of ten days in conformity with the agreement of February 8, Article 8 of which has been contravened by you.
In Britain, a Member of Parliament, Ormsby Gore, in the House of Commons, proposed that the British government contact the American government in order to jointly protest the poor treatment of British and American archaeologists by the Egyptian Minister of Public Works. Member of Parliament MacDonald blocked this proposal because he believed that the British government should avoid such involvement at that time.

On 20 February, M. Pierre Lacau, Director General of Antiquities, revoked Carter's excavation permit and Egypt dispatched guards to Luxor. Lacau argued that Carter had voluntarily abandoned his work at the site and was averse to reopen it, in violation of Article 13 from their contract dating to 1915. In response to this maneuver, Carter initiated a second lawsuit in the civil chamber of Cairo's Mixed Courts without delay, requesting admittance to the tomb. He wanted to work, but another motivation was that the executors to Lord Carnarvon's estate were also seeking ownership of half the artifacts discovered, in accordance with Article 11 of the same contract. In the same court proceeding, Carter demanded a writ prohibiting the Egyptian government from entering the tomb. His claim was that the Egyptians would do irreversible damage to the tomb and its contents.

That same day, the Egyptian government published a ministerial arr�t�, canceling the concession to Lady Carnarvon. This action incensed Carter, as it was obviously designed to do. He requested permission to return to the tomb for the sole purpose of securing the relics and protecting them from any damage, stating, "I should be given the opportunity of taking measures to protect the contents of the tomb and the laboratory during the suspension of work."

On 21 February 1924, M. Pierre Lacau, the director general of the Antiquities Department, in an obvious effort grandstand for the press, departed Cairo for Luxor, ostentatiously inviting Carter to join him at the tomb the next day. Lacau declared to the press that his intention was to "guarantee the safety of the sarcophagus since Carter was unable to properly secure it" before locking up the tomb; another obvious attempt to send Carter over the edge.

Carter - not surprisingly - refused to assist Lacau, declaring that it would be "improper for him to participate in such a venture with court action beginning the following day".

On 22 February 1924, without Carter present, Lacau had Egyptian workmen saw off the padlocks which Carter had placed on the tomb's entrance and replaced them with his own locks. He then entered the tomb and successfully lowered the granite lid without damaging it.

Meanwhile, the Egyptian government was ready to issue a new digging concession to Almina, the Countess of Carnarvon. The stated reason was that Egypt believed that the concession had operated well under Lord Carnarvon but had deteriorated under Carter, and it granted the license to Lady Carnarvon rather than Carter. This was another obvious poke at Carter's whose fuse was known to be short. Almina, the Countess of Carnarvon, defended Carter - or ridiculed him - depending on your point of view:

The discovery of the tomb has been dogged by bad luck and bad temper ... Howard Carter stands before the archaeological world as a partly wronged, partly foolish figure. He has done all the hard work and done it well, but the government of Egypt handed him a rope and persuaded him to hang himself.

Legal proceedings began in Cairo on 23 February 1924. The writ served on Morcos Bey Hanna, Minister for Public Works, maintained that both Lord Carnarvon and Howard Carter held the concession to excavate the Valley of the Kings. This license from the Egyptian government provided for the excavation of the valley and preservation of artifacts. Carter requested that the Court designate him as the sequestrator of the tomb of Tutankhamen and the relics held within.

The Egyptian Gazette described the scene in the courtroom as something reminiscent of a performance at the Royal Opera House. Egyptians - mainly university students - packed the courtroom on the first day of the trial. Most of them came to demonstrate against Howard Carter and throughout the proceedings, the Judge had to bang his gavel repeatedly and admonish the crowd in order to have enough quiet in the courtroom to continue the proceedings. There were other gangs of students protesting outside of the court, showing their support for the Egyptian government. Judge Crabit�s finally had to request a police detachment in order to continue the proceedings. Certainly, Crabit�s aggravated the already tense situation by creating a disturbance himself by visiting the tomb and Egyptian nationalists called for him to recuse himself because he was a friend of Carter's.

Carter withdrew his case against the Egyptian government on 29 February 1924 believing that he had no chance of winning. In early March, both parties consented to external arbitration in lieu of a lengthy civil trial. Shortly afterward, the incident took place that concerns us intensely.

It was the spring of 1924, and all was lost to Carter. ... The concession issued to Almina, Countess of Carnarvon, had been revoked and a fierce court battle to reverse this decision had ended in mayhem. [...]

Carter came to believe that there was only one recourse left open to him: to seek the assistance of the British Consulate at the Residency in Cairo. He considered that the High Consul and the other British diplomats posted there were in a position to apply pressure on the Zaghlul regime in order to get the Antiquities Service to issue a new [digging] concession. Previously, Egypt's High Commissioner, General Allenby, had offered his support for Carter's cause and had even given the impression that he backed in full his struggle against governmental interference.

Yet now Allenby was conveniently unobtainable , and so, before his departure for England via Venice on 21 March, Carter decided that he would pay the British Consulate a visit in order to determine exactly what the position was with regard to his claims of unfair dismissal. With his temper frayed, Carter was in no mood for quiet discussions: he wanted the consulate's full support forthwith and nothing less would do.

Inside the Residency, Carter was led into the office of an official, where he began sounding off his grievances, fully expecting him to sympathise with his predicament and offer some means of resolving the problem. Although the British official did indeed sympathise with Mr. Carter, he also made it clear that the consulate could do nothing to influence the decisions of the Egyptian government and the Antiquities Service. It was simply beyond British jurisdiction.

Carter, never the best tempered of men, was incensed by this attitude and flew into a rage. Heated words were exchanged. Carter spoke of the total inadequacy of the department and the imbecility of its staff before exclaiming that:

...unless he received complete satisfaction and justice, he would publish for the whole world to read the documents that he found in the tomb giving the true account according to the Egyptian Government of the exodus of the Jews from Egypt.

Realising the potential damage that such revelations might have on the delicate situation existing between Britain and Egypt, and being aware also of the growing Arab hostility towards the establishment of a Jewish homeland in Palestine, the British official lost his temper. Without thinking, he forsook his code of diplomacy and let fly at Carter a half-full inkwell that stood on his desk. Carter ducked just in the nick of time to avoid injury, leaving the projectile to bounce wildly off the wall - the resulting mess making it necessary for the whole room to be redecorated. Eventually, both men calmed down 'and an adjustment was made so that Carter was silenced and the threat never materialised.'
From Collins' and Ogilvie's notes on the above account:

Carter's confrontation with a British official in Cairo has come down to us through the memoirs of Lee Keedick, president of the Keedick Lecture Bureau and Carter's lecture agent in the US, yet the identity of the official is not at all clear. Keedick records Carter as having said that he confronted the 'British Vice Royal of Egypt', but after Egypt's independence in 1922 that office no longer existed. This fact seems to have been acknowledged by Thomas Hoving, for, in his book Tutankhamun - The Untold Story, he draws upon Keedick's memoirs but states that the official with whom Carter had his row was the vice-consul. Quite how Hoving reaches this conclusion seems unclear. While on the other hand TGH James in his book Howard Carter: The Path to Tutankhamun says it was General Sir Edmund Allenby, who served as Egypt's High Commissioner from 1919 until his retirement in 1925. Yet there is nothing in Keedick's notes to indicate that this was indeed the case.

According to the 'Foreign Office List and Diplomatic and Consular Year Book' for 1924, the vice-consul during the spring of 1924 was a Captain TC Rapp. The authors have identified him as Sir Thomas Cecil Rapp (1893-19840, who spent most of his life as a diplomat in various postings around the world. Rapp's own memoirs, from 1920-52, are located in the Private Papers Collection of the Middle East Centre at St. Antony's College, Oxford. The authors could find no reference in them to the reported meeting with Howard Carter during this period. However, Rapp's memoirs relating to his term in Cairo amount to no more that seventeen or so pages and one would not expect, in so short an account, for the confrontation to have been recorded. Although not in the above context, Rapp does mention meeting Carter shortly after Carnarvon's death when he was attending to the 'formalities' for the transfer of his body to England' It is possible that Keedick, not being a man of politics, misunderstood the intricacies of the British forms of political office, but until further research can shed more light on with whom exactly Carter had his confrontation, the official's identity remains a mystery.

Carter's diary notes that on 3 March 1924 he had an appointment at 08:30 at 'The Residency' in Cairo, where the offices of the High Commissioner and the High Consul were located. Plausibly it was during this meeting that the exchange occurred, since no other appointment at the Residency is recorded in his diary between January 1924 and 21 March 1924 when Carter left for England via Venice to prepare for his spring tour of North America.

Finally, on 12 March 1924, Judge Crabit�s handed down his verdict in the case for the appointment of Carter as the sequestrator for Tutankhamen's tomb, ruling in favor of Howard Carter and the trustees of Lord Carnarvon on all points. In rendering his decision, Judge Crabit�s said that the judgment was one for all of mankind, not in opposition to Egypt or in favor of Howard Carter.

A few days later, the Egyptian government filed an appeal in the court at Alexandria. A Judge Eeman presided over the case. The Egyptian government vituperatively attacked Carter, Sir John Maxwell, and the Countess Carnarvon, claiming that they were exploiters who commercialized their discovery. The government argued that the tomb was within the state's domain and that revocation of their license and taking control of the tomb were administrative actions, beyond of the jurisdiction of the Mixed Courts.
The Court of Appeals adjourned long enough for the Procurator General M. van der Bosch, to compose a decision. When parties returned to court on 30 March, the procurator general explained that Egypt's protests concerning the legitimacy of Howard Carter's attorney did not even apply to the case since Howard Carter and the trustees of Lord Carnarvon relinquished their claim to property within the tomb, there was no argument over the second claim in the case, possession of the objects; therefore, there was no cause to appoint a sequestrator for the tomb!

Judge Eeman then overturned Judge Crabit�s's earlier conclusion in support of Howard Carter and the trustees of Lord Carnarvon and ruled in favor of the Egyptian government, ruling that the Mixed Courts lacked jurisdiction in the affair and said it was one for the Egyptian government to resolve.
End of subject, discussion, case and story.


Just what the heck really happened here?

It's as obvious as the nose on an elephant that Howard Carter was a lamb being thrown to the wolves.
Did Carter's threats to expose the truth about the Exodus have anything to do with the attitudes of the various players throughout the proceedings recounted above? Can those attitudes reveal anything to us?

Andrew Collins and Chris Ogilvie examine the issue of whether or not it was possible that items were removed from the tomb of Tut and hidden away, including written documents - papyri - and it seems that the circumstantial evidence - including conflicting descriptions of what did or did not happen, when and how, made by the concerned parties - does, indeed, point in that direction. Further to that, the find of a cache papyri was openly discussed when the tomb was first opened!

Ever since the opening of the tomb in November 1922, Tutankhamun's 'missing' papyri have been the subject of both rumour and speculation by newspapermen and historical writers.... On Tuesday 28 November 1922, Lord Carnarvon dispatched a letter to his friend and colleague the philologist Alan H. Gardiner describing the contents of the tomb. If we look at what it said, we can see that it refers quite specifically to the discovery of papyri:

The find is extraordinary. It is a cache and has been plundered to a certain extent but even the ancients could not completely destroy it. After some slight plundering the inspectors shut it again. So far it is Tutankhamon - beds, boxes and every conceivable thing. There is a box with a few papyri in - the throne of the King the most marvellous inlaid chair you ever saw

The discovery of papyri is alluded to in another letter written by Carnarvon in connection with the opening of the tomb, this time to Sir Edgar A Wallis Budge, the Keeper of Egyptian and Assyrian Antiquities at the British Museum. On Friday 1 December 1922, he wrote:

One line just to tell you that we have found the most remarkable 'find' that has ever been made, I expect, in Egypt or elsewhere. I have only so far got into two chambers [a little short of the truth here], but there is enough in them to fill most of your rooms at the B.M. (upstairs); and there is a sealed door where goodness knows what there is. I have not opened the [innumerable] boxes, and don't know what is in them; but there are some papyrus letters, faience, jewellery, bouquets, candles on ankh candlesticks. All this is in [the] front chamber, besides lots of stuff you can't see.

The issue of the papyri also received media attention. Arthur Merton, the official Times of London correspondent dispatched bulletins from Luxor every day and on 30 November 1922, while listing many of the treasures of the tomb, he stated

...one of the boxes contained rolls of papyri which are expected to render a mass of information.
As late as Sunday, December 17 of 1922 Carnarvon was still saying that they had discovered papyri in the tomb. On a trip back to England, he was interviewed by the London Times and quoted as saying:

One of the boxes contains rolls of papyri which may be expected to shed much light on the history of the period, and other papyri may be discovered in other of the boxes which have yet to be examined.
So, for at least two weeks, the subject of the papyri and the potential for finally having some light shed on the history of the period was bandied about quite openly and undoubtedly, many people were waiting breathlessly for these revelations, including the Egyptian government.

Collins and Ogilvie suggest that Carnarvon discussed the papyri with Gardiner on his return to England. A telegram from Carnarvon to Gardiner from early December of 1922, though the specific day is not stated, was quoted by Vandenberg in The Forgotten Pharaoh on page 125. Apparently, it was a request for Gardiner to "undertake the philological work in connection with the papyrus find in the antechamber to the tomb."

Based on the fact that no papyri have ever been produced, it may be assumed that Carnarvon took the papyri back to England with him. Gardiner did later join the team until things began to go South vis a vis the Egyptian government, but by this time, the public face of it was that his duties only included making translations of inscriptions found on the walls and artefacts. We also note that it was only after Carnarvon's untimely and unusual death that Carter claimed that the find of papyri was a "misidentification."

Collins and Ogilvie have collected the evidence and testimony and make a quite convincing case that a significant cache of papyri was indeed found in Tut's tomb. British Egyptologist, Nicholas Reeves was so fascinated by the idea that papyri might have been found in the tomb that he wrote a paper on the subject. In the end, he concluded that inscriptional materials that should have been there were conspicuous by their absence.

Reviewing the events, we notice that it was only after Carnarvon's trip back to England where he undoubtedly met with Gardiner that, suddenly, the whole idea of papyri disappeared, was covered up, shushed, explained away, denied and forgotten.

Judging by the attitude of the Egyptian government toward Carter as evidenced in the legal issues, rumors that important items had been - or were being - removed from the tomb may have circulated widely; how could they not after the subject of the missing papyri had been discussed in major newspapers? Carter later addressed the issue by saying that anything that was thought to have been papyri actually turned out to be rolls of linen. One wonders how experienced Egyptologists such as Carter and Carnarvon could have made such an error? It's clear that the Egyptian government wasn't buying it either.

All in all it was a very bizarre and confusing series of events that suggests many things going on behind the scenes and putting the clues together, it all seems to focus on the papyri that were claimed to have been found, then were disavowed after Carnarvon traveled to England. This leads to a most interesting story recounted by Collins and Ogilvie which we include for the purpose of giving some background on the type of man the Earl was and just what he may or may not have done regarding said alleged papyri. [...]

The Fifth Earl of Carnarvon died on 5 April 1923. Eleven months later, Howard Carter was threatening the British government with the revelation of the truth about the Exodus and the origin of the Jews.

As the reader probably noticed, the players in the above story are members of the same circles involved with the Balfour Declaration. This document was the ultimate achievement of very intense negotiations between prominent Jews and British politicians (formerly known as statesmen). The deal was revolting at its most basic level: in exchange for Jewish help in getting the U.S. to enter World War I, the Jews were promised Palestine. But more than that, the Jews claim on Palestine was based on their whole religion shtick, Moses and the Exodus and that it was all a great miracle and God Almighty gave the land to them.

But what if the real story, the papyri in the tomb of King Tut, said something that would blow that whole claim out of the water? That seems to be the only reason for suppression of what Howard Carter referred to as "the true account according to the Egyptian Government of the exodus of the Jews from Egypt.

To be continued...
Part Deux of excerpts of the True History of the Jews.

Collins and Ogilvie's theory is that Carnarvon, once he knew what he had, tried to "sell" the documents to the Zionists in order to get more money to continue his dig. He points out that before the commencement of the 1922-23 digging season, Carnarvon was experiencing financial troubles already, and after the discovery of the tomb, realized he was facing at least another 5 years of work that needed a great deal of money. Collins also establishes the fact that Carnarvon's wife was the illegitimate daughter of Alfred de Rothschild (apparently a well known "secret" and openly admitted by the family) and that she had inherited a great deal of money on the death of Alfred in 1918, but was rapidly spending it on her own projects which did not include archaeology (or, apparently, psychic s�ances!). And so, Collins suggests something akin to "blackmail" on the part of Carnarvon:

Faced with such a daunting prospect [5 more years of digging], and aggrieved by the vast fortune that Almina and his children had been left by her father, is it possible that Carnarvon's financial frustration led him to concoct some kind of plan? Did it involve the papyrus documents found in the tomb? From Carter's outburst in the offices of the British High Consul in Cairo we know that the contents of the supposed papyri found in the tomb exploded the accepted version of the Exodus story, and thus would have been of extreme embarrassment to Zionists worldwide. Is it possible therefore that the Earl of Carnarvon intended to try to persuade certain leading Zionist Jews that he had at his disposal ancient Egyptian documents that, owing to their highly sensitive nature, were best kept private? Thus in order to ensure that they never reached the public domain, and to compensate for the archaeological irregularities on the parts of himself and Howard Carter, did he suggest some kind of financial remuneration? The plan could have been as simple as that, and if this was the case then to whom might it have been directed?

At this point we need to remember that the Balfour Declaration was addressed to Lionel Walter de Rothschild, a cousin of Carnarvon's wife. Walter had worked closely with Chaim Weizmann for the cause of Zionism and at the celebration of this great event at the Covent Garden Opera House on 2 December 1917, Walter told the audience that the Balfour Declaration was the greatest event that had occurred in Jewish history for the last 1800 years.

Collins and Ogilvie then speculate that Carter, perplexed by the British government's refusal to put pressure on the Egyptian government, stormed into the offices of the British High Consul and made his threat.

Well, we agree that Carter might have been frustrated and might have thought that his government could do something, but we don't really think it was quite that simple considering all the evidence. Carnarvon and Carter trying to sell the secret to the Zionists on their own initiative and then just covering it up all by themselves by saying "oops, sorry, there were no documents" doesn't fly. It is clear from examining the history of the legal fight between Egypt and Carter that the Egyptian government had a major burr under its saddle and some intense pressures were being brought to bear on various entities from various directions and Carter's wants in the matter were of minimal importance whether he fully understood that or not.

Let's look again at what Carter is reported to have said that undoubtedly relates to the alleged missing papyri:

...unless he received complete satisfaction and justice, he would publish for the whole world to read the documents that he found in the tomb giving the true account according to the Egyptian Government of the exodus of the Jews from Egypt.

What exactly did Carter mean and why did he think that this threat would persuade the official in question to support him? The fact that he was able to say this to a British official - a very particular one at that, no doubt - and that the official would know what he was talking about, and would then be able to persuade him to calm down and keep quiet, even in the face of possibly losing his access to the tomb of King Tut - his life's work - suggests some tremendous political clout behing the suppression. It's hard to imagine Carter being persuaded to suppress such information and go away quietly otherwise. One even wonders if the sudden and mysterious death of Carnarvon, might not have been part of the "persuasion" to silence? We don't think for a minute that there was any "Curse of Tutankhamun," but if Carnarvon wanted to reveal the information to the world and could not be trusted not to do so at some point, that would surely be sufficient reason to get rid of him. Then, all the nonsense about the "Curse of King Tut" that circulated in the press so wildly would make even more sense.

Except for confiding in Lee Keedick on his lecture tour in America which followed his loss of the court case (at which point, the highly emotional Carter was still undoubtedly feeling quite angry and resentful), he apparently didn't talk about it again. But that makes one wonder why Carter himself didn't meet with some untimely accident? Is a clue to be found in the fact that he claimed to the British official that he would "publish" the documents as though he still had access to them, or copies? If that is the case, perhaps those copies still exist somewhere.

In any event, we don't think that Carnarvon and Carter were involved in some kind of cheap blackmail against the Zionists. It is far more likely that the cover-up was instituted and carried out by the British government because they had plans for the Jews and getting them back in Israel was important either for imperialist reasons, or "religious" reasons, or both.

What one has to ask is this: what kind of human beings, knowing that an entire civilization is being controlled by a particular relgion and its offshoots, i.e. Judaism, Christianity and Islam, and that those systems of belief were at the root of most of the conflict on the planet, would cover up a document that might put to rest millennia old questions about the founding events of said religion?

It is clear from Carter's reported outburst to the British Government official that the content of the papyri was information that would put the entire Biblical story of the origins of the Jews and the "gift of the land" by God Almighty into question. The cover-up suggests that this information would also have put into question the justification of the establishment of a modern Jewish state. At that particular moment in time, when the world's media was focused on Howard Carter, he could certainly have carried out this threat and it would have been an explosion heard around the world.

But somehow, that British official was able to calm him down and convince him to suppress what he knew.

One thing that this little episode does tell us is that the "real story of the Exodus" occurred around the Amarna age.

In all likelihood it began during the co-regency between Amenhotep III and Akhenaten, when the deposed priesthoods and the Egyptian people as a whole became scared that in abandoning the old gods there would be a terrible price to pay....

Thus when a plague began sweeping across Egypt's northern empire towards the end of Akhenaten's reigh it was deemed just punishment for Egypt having not supplicated the gods for some thirteen years. Yet nothing was done until after control of the country had been transferred from Akhenaten's city at Tell el-Amarna to either Memphis or Thebes, which did not occur until the reign of the boy-king Tutankhamun... [By this time, numerous members of the royal family had succumbed to the plague, Akhenaten and Nefertiti had disappeared, and other mysterious events that are still not explained took place.]

Under Tutankahmu, control of the empire was placed in the hands of Aye, the priest and vizier, and Horemheb, the king's Deputy and Regent, who was in charge of all military affaires. Through the influence of the latter some effort would appear to have been made to convince the king that the only way to rid the land of the plague was to round up those responsible and expel them from the Two Lands. This meant the 'polluted' priests and followers of the Aten.
The plague mentioned, and the other troubling events of the time are strong evidence for these events being tied to the eruption of Thera. This would upset a lot of archaeologists.

During the Late Bronze Age, the Aegean volcanic island of Thera erupted violently, spreading pumice and ash across the eastern Mediterranean and triggering frosts as far away as what is now California. The Theran town of Akrotiri was completely buried. Tsunamis up to 12 meters high crashed onto th shores of Crete, 110 kilometers to the south, and the cataclysm may ultimately have sped the demise of Crete's famed Minoan civilization. For nearly 30 years, archaeologists have fought over when the eruption took place. Those who rely on dates from pottery styles and Egyptian inscriptions put the event at roughly 1500 B.C., whereas radiocarbon experts have consistently dated it between 100 and 150 years earlier.

Now, two new radiocarbon studies claim to provide strong support for the earlier dates.

I would like to insert here an excerpt from my book The Secret History of the World which discusses the problem of the Exodus and the identities of the individuals involved.

Let My Wife - er, People - Go!

As it happens, there is one significant story in the Bible that is claimed as "history" that does have external verification in the records of Egypt in the form of the "rest of the story." This story is that of Abram and Sarai in Egypt. In fact, this story is one of the very problematical "triplets." The story goes:

Genesis 12:10 And there was a famine in the land: and Abram went down into Egypt to sojourn there; for the famine was grievous in the land.

12:11 And it came to pass, when he was come near to enter into Egypt, that he said unto Sarai his wife, Behold now, I know that thou art a fair woman to look upon:

12:12 Therefore it shall come to pass, when the Egyptians shall see thee, that they shall say, This is his wife: and they will kill me, but they will save thee alive.

12:13 Say, I pray thee, thou art my sister: that it may be well with me for thy sake; and my soul shall live because of thee.

12:14 And it came to pass, that, when Abram was come into Egypt, the Egyptians beheld the woman that she was very fair.

12:15 The princes also of Pharaoh saw her, and commended her before Pharaoh: and the woman was taken into Pharaoh's house.

12:16 And he entreated Abram well for her sake: and he had sheep, and oxen, and he -bootays-, and menservants, and maidservants, and she -bootays-, and camels.

12:17 And the LORD plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai Abram's wife.

12:18 And Pharaoh called Abram and said, What is this that thou hast done unto me? why didst thou not tell me that she was thy wife?

12:19 Why saidst thou, She is my sister? so I might have taken her to me to wife: now therefore behold thy wife, take her, and go thy way.

12:20 And Pharaoh commanded his men concerning him: and they sent him away, and his wife, and all that he had.

13:1 And Abram went up out of Egypt, he, and his wife, and all that he had, and Lot with him, into the south.

13:2 And Abram was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold.
In all of Egyptian history, nothing is as mysterious as the strange life of Akhenaten and the odd appearance and equally mysterious disappearance of his queen, Nefertiti, whose name means: "a beautiful woman has come." We notice in the above account that the "the Lord plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai." This reminds us of the plagues at the time of the Exodus. We also notice that the pharaoh told Abraham, "take your wife and go." This strangely mirrors the demand of Moses: "Let my people go."

The timing of this event is also important, and I think that we can nail it down to the time of the eruption of Thera on the island of Santorini around 1600 BC, which happens to be the time that the entire Earth experienced a disruption recorded in ice cores, and brought the Bronze Age world to an end. It was very likely also the time when many refugees from many areas of the Mediterranean all showed up in Palestine - including Danaan Greeks - to form the mixed ethnic groups from which the later Jewish peoples evolved.

There is evidence that the eruption of Thera coincided generally with the ejection of the Hyksos from the Nile Delta. There is also evidence that many of the king list segments that are currently arranged in a linear way may have represented different dynasties in different locations, some of which ruled simultaneously exactly as Manetho has told us. In particular, there is evidence that the 18th dynasty overlapped the Hyksos kings to some considerable extent. This is important to us at present because of the fact that the story of Abraham and Sarai in Egypt is mirrored by the story of Akhenaten and his Queen, Nefertiti. The earliest document that describes the time of the Hyksos is from the Temple of Hatshepsut at Speos Artemidos which says:

Hear ye, all people and the folk as many as they may be, I have done these things through the counsel of my heart. I have not slept forgetfully, (but) I have restored that which had been ruined. I have raised up that which had gone to pieces formerly, since the Asiatics were in the midst of Avaris of the Northland, and vagabonds were in the midst of them, overthrowing that which had been made. They ruled without Re, and he did not act by divine command down to (the reign of) my majesty.

The expulsion of the Hyksos was a series of campaigns which supposedly started with Kamose who was king in Thebes. He unsuccessfully rebelled against the Hyksos. His son Ahmose was finally successful in pushing the Hyksos out. An army commander named Ah-mose records in his tomb the victory over the Hyksos. He says:

When the town of Avaris was besieged, then I showed valor on foot in the presence of his majesty. Thereupon I was appointed to the ship, 'Appearing in Memphis.' Then there was fighting on the water in the canal Pa-Djedku of Avaris. Thereupon I made a capture, and I carried away a hand. It was reported to the king's herald. Then the Gold of Valor was given to me. Thereupon there was fighting again in this place....Then Avaris was despoiled. Then I carried off spoil from there: one man, three woman, a total of four persons. Then his majesty gave them to me to be slaves. Then Sharuhen was besieged for three years. Then his majesty despoiled it.

Note that Avaris was besieged, there is no mention of how Avaris was taken, and there is no burning of Avaris claimed. What is more, the archaeological evidence shows that Avaris was not destroyed in a military engagement. The likelihood is that, after years of unstable relations with the Southern Egyptian dynasty, Avaris was abandoned due to the eruption of Thera.

This exodus from Egypt by the Hyksos, many of whom fled to Canaan, was part of their history. In fact, there were probably many refugees arriving in the Levant from many places affected by the eruption and the following famine. When the descendants of the refugees were later incorporated into a tribal confederation known as Israel, the story became one of the single events they all agreed upon. In this respect, they all did, indeed, share a history.

The fact is, other than the expulsion of the Hyksos [and the expulsion of the adherents of the Aten] there is no other record of any mass exit from Egypt. Avaris was on the coast, and thus closer to the effects of the volcano. Naturally, the Egyptians of Thebes saw the expulsion of the Hyksos as a great military victory, while the Hyksos themselves, in the retelling of the story, viewed their survival as a great salvation victory. This seems similar to other events recorded in ancient history where both sides claim a great victory. Nevertheless, that there was something very unusual going on during this times comes down to us from the Rhind Mathematical Papyrus. There is a little diary preserved on the reverse of this work that records the events leading up to the fall of Avaris.

Regnal year 11, second month of shomu - Heliopolis was entered. First month of akhet, day 23 - the Bull of the South gores his way as far as Tjaru. Day 25 - it was heard tell that Tjaru had been entered. Regnal year 11, first month of akhet, the birthday of Seth - a roar was emitted by the Majesty of this god. The birthday of Isis - the sky poured rain.
Recorded on a stela of King Ahmose from the same period:

The sky came on with a torrent of rain, and [dark]ness covered the western heavens while the storm raged without cessation...[the rain thundered] on the mountains (louder) than the noise at the Cavern that is in Abydos. Then every house and barn where they might have sought refuge [was swept away ... and they] were drenched with water like reed canoes ... and for a period of [...] days no light shone in the Two Lands.

The Rhind Mathematical Papyrus is named after the Scottish Egyptologist Henry Rhind, who purchased it in Luxor in 1858. The papyrus, a scroll about 6 metres long and 1/3 of a metre wide, includes certain information about who wrote it and when it was written. The scribe identifies himself as Ahmes, and says that he is copying the scroll for the Hyksos king Apophis, in the year 33 of his reign. Ahmes then tells us that he is copying the text from an older version. It is here that we find some disagreement. Some experts think that the original of the mathematical problems, which is what the papyrus consists of, was written during the reign of Amenemht III, from the 12th dynasty. Egyptologist Anthony Spalinger does not, however, entirely agree. In a lengthy, detailed analysis of the papyrus, the mathematics, the arrangement of the problems, and every observable detail about it, he asks:

One might query at this point the source or sources of Rhind. Did the original exemplar contain the opening table as well as the subsequent problems, or, to complicate the case further, was that treatise itself derived from various unknown works now lost? That this is not idle speculation can be seen by [Egyptologist] Griffith's remarks concerning the grain measures employed. He stressed the presence of the quadruple hekat in this papyrus, a measure which was unknown to him as a standard in the Middle Kingdom. [...]

In Rhind the quadruple hekat occurs in Books II and III but not in Book I, in which only the single hekat occurs. [...] In the Middle Kingdom (Dynasty 12), only the single and double hekat have been found; one has to wait for Rhind to note the presence of its four-fold companion. [...]

Can we therefore assume that Book I represents the copy mentioned at the beginning, and Book II (as well as the problems on the verso) another source or sources? [...]

I am of the belief that the sources of Book II (and III, but this needs more clarification) was either different from that of Book I or else a reworked series of problems having their origins in the copy that Scribe Ahmose employed.[...]

Significantly, the relationship of one deben of weight to 12 "pieces" can also be found at the end of the 18th dynasty, a point that Gardiner stressed in his important breakthrough of the Kahun Papyri.[...]

After the papyrus had been completed, and undoubtedly after some use as a teaching manual, later remarks were written on the verso in the great blank following problem 84. [...] Upside down, in a different (and thicker) hand than that of the original scribe, it presents an early case of cryptographic writing. Gunn, in his review of Peet, was the first to attempt a concise evaluation of the meaning, and he observed the presence of such writing from Dynasty 19 on, citing examples from Theban tombs, as well as other monuments from that capital. [...]

Following Gunn, I feel that the presence of cryptography at this point ought to predicate a date within Dynasty 18, and the eventual location of Rhind at Thebes just may supply some support for this supposition. After all, it is from that city that we know the most about this so-called enigmatic writing, and such texts are dated to the New Kingdom and not earlier.

With no 87, located [...] roughly in the center, Rhind presents the famous and highly-debated jottings concerning the taking of Avaris by Ahmose. I feel that it was added to the middle of the verso, and right side up, so to speak, soon before the entire roll was transported to Thebes from the north. [...]

The brief remarks provide not merely a terminus a quo for the presence of Rhind later than year 33 of the Hyksos ruler Apophis, they also indicated that a major historical event was purposively written down on a mathematical tractate, itself being of high importance and value.

Soon after, Rhind was, I believe, transported back by someone in the victorious Theban army to the new capital and later used there as a treatise, only to have a further addition entered (no. 87). [...]

I feel that the regnal dates do not refer to the reign of Ahmose but rather to that of the last Hyksos ruler in Egypt, a position that I am well aware is open to question; however, the historical event is at least clear: the end of Hyksos control in the eastern delta (Heliopolis and Sile are noted as having fallen). If we follow Moller, then the possessor of Rhind at that time felt these major events worthy of a remark on one of his prized treasures. [...] The scribe was identical to the copyist of Rhind itself.[ Spalinger, Anthony, (1990), The Rhind Mathematical Papyrus As A Historical Document, Studien zur altagyptischen Kultur; 17, p. 295-338. ]

I hope that the reader caught the term "cryptographic writing" in reference to the account of the events leading to the fall of Avaris. It actually took me awhile to realize what these guys were talking about when I read these references to "cryptographic writing" in the 18th and 19th dynasties. Finally, I understood that they were not suggesting that something was being written in a secret code for military purposes. What this term actually means to Egyptologists is that, "since we cannot possibly give up our chronology to allow these matters to coincide with a certifiable cataclysm going on in the region, we must therefore say that the writers do not mean what they say, but rather they are using metaphors. What's more, we will call it 'cryptographic writing'."

Egyptologist R. Weill was the first to insist on this distortion being a type of literary fiction. It then became the convention for interpreting Egyptian historical writing. In this way, a period of desolation and anarchy would be described in exaggeratedly lurid terms of catastrophe and climatological cataclysm, usually for the glorification of a monarch to whom the salvation of the country is ascribed.

Well, that's pretty bizarre! Handy, too. A bunch of guys spend their lives trying to validate the history and chronology of these people, and when it doesn't agree with what they want to believe about it, it can be consigned to "literary fiction." And of course, this means that what is or is not "literary fiction" can be completely arbitrary according to the needs of the Egyptologist!

Based on this "cryptographic" interpretation, Sturt Manning contends that the text on the verso of the Rhind papyrus is not about a "real storm" or climatological event, but that it is about "the restoration of the Egyptian state to the order and station of the Middle Kingdom - after the dislocation (all-wrecking storm) of the Hyksos era, and the destruction of Middle Kingdom shrines...One might even argue that the whole Theban text is a symbolic encoding of Ahmose's defeat of the Hyksos..."[ Manning, Sturt, A Test of Time (Oxbow: Oxford) p. 1999.]

I must say that I was rather astonished to read such a remark.

Part of Manning's (and others') arguments have to do with keeping the 18th dynasty cleanly separated from the time of the Hyksos. No overlapping is to be allowed here despite the fact that Manetho clearly said that the Hyksos dynasties were concurrent with the Theban dynasties. We can't have Ahmose experiencing something that has been dated by the experts to well before Ahmose was born! Let's have a look at how famed Egyptologist Gardiner has described the problem of the dynasties in question.

Since the passage of Time shows no break in continuity, nothing but some momentous event or sequence of events can justify a particular reign being regarded as inaugurating an era. What caused Sobeknofru, or Sobeknofrure' as later sources call her, to be taken as closing Dyn. XII will doubtless never be known. But the Turin Canon, the Saqqara king-list, and Manetho are unanimous on the point.

The Abydos list jumps straight from Ammenemes IV to the first king of Dyn.XVIII. The date of Amosis I, the founder of Dyn. XVIII, being fixed with some accuracy, the interval from 1786 to 1575 BC must be accepted as the duration of the Second Intermediate Period. This is an age the problems of which are even more intractable than those of the First. Before entering upon details, it will be well to note that the general pattern of these two dark periods is roughly the same. Both begin with a chaotic series of insignificant native rulers. In both, intruders from Palestine cast their shadow over the Delta and even into the Valley. Also in both, relief comes at last from a hardy race of Theban princes, who after quelling internal dissension expel the foreigner and usher in a new epoch of immense power and prosperity.

Some account has already been given of the formidable difficulties here confronting us, but these must now be discussed at length. As usual we start with Manetho. The Thirteenth Dynasty according to him, was Diospolite (Theban) and consisted of sixty kings who reigned for 453 years. The Fourteenth Dynasty counted seventy-six kings from Xois, the modern Sakha in the central Delta, with a total of 184 or, as an alternative reading, 484 years. For Dyns. XV to XVII there is divergence between Africanus and Eusebius, while a much simpler account is preserved by the Jewish historian Josephus in what purports to be a verbatim extract from Manetho's own writing.

For our present purpose the data supplied by Africanus must suffice. His Fifteenth Dynasty consists of six foreign so-called 'Shepherd' or Hyksos kings, whose domination lasted 284 years. The Sixteenth Dynasty consisted of Shepherd kings again, thirty-two in number totaling 518 years. Lastly, in the Seventeenth Dynasty Shepherd kings and Theban kings reigned concurrently, forty-three of each line altogether 151 years. Adding these figures, but adopting the lower number of years given for Dyn. XIV, we obtain 217 kings covering a stretch of 1590 years, over seven times the duration to which acceptance of the Sothic date in the El-Lahun papyrus has committed us.

To abandon 1786 BC as the year when Dyn. XII ended would be to cast adrift from our only firm anchor, a course that would have serious consequences for the history, not of Egypt alone, but of the entire Middle East. [Gardiner, Sir Alan, Egypt of the Pharaohs ]
Gardiner's problem, as he states it above, is that the numbers of kings and years of reign given by the sources of Manetho result in "a stretch of 1590 years, over seven times the duration to which acceptance of the Sothic date in the El-Lahun papyrus has committed us."...

It strikes me that Gardiner didn't even notice the clues to the solution of the problem: the two "intermediate periods" in question, being almost identical in so many respects, might very well be the same, single period! That would mean that the Abydos list was, essentially, correct when it "jumps straight from Ammenemes IV to the first king of Dyn.XVIII."[...]

The editors of the Bible created their history by inserting segments of the Book of Generations, so that retellings of stories that occurred during the same time period suddenly looked like they'd happened over many hundreds or even thousands of years. In other words, the stories "horizontal" arrangement in time became a vertical arrangement. What happened to many peoples suddenly happened to the "chosen" people. What is more, the stories that were passed from group to group about a single individual and series of activities were often "personalized" to that specific group according to the idea of mythicization we have already discussed.

The way we need to think about these matters is to consider first the facts as we can discover them, and then see if any of the stories of the Bible fit to those facts in any way, disregarding entirely the manufactured genealogies and "historical timeline" of the Bible as it is presented in the Bible.

The Bible is supposed to be the history of a long series of eponymous founders. The different versions of the stories, assembled from the different tribes, were arranged in a vertical timeline across centuries, with the insertion of genealogies, most of which were uncertain and repetitious if not actually invented for the purpose. Even so, I have suggested, there is one story of a series of interactions situated in one frame of time reference that can be extracted from these stories that IS recorded in both Egyptian history and the Bible so accurately that the two sides of the story fit together like a hand in a glove. What is more, as I have suggested, understanding this event, this connection of a real historical event that is reported both in the Bible, and in Egyptian records, is the key to unlocking the entire puzzle ...


And so it is that we can speculate that Abraham and Moses were one and the same person and the event had nothing to do with the "enslavement" of the Israelites, but rather the enslavement of the Egyptians by the bringers of a strange new god - the Aten - by a couple of mysterious visitors: Abram and Sarai, one of whom was taken to be the wife of the Pharaoh Akhenaten, while her brother/lover lurked in the background making himself rich by manipulating the gullible pharaoh. No doubt it was a great con-job while it lasted, but when the volcano erupted and the plague spread, the Middle Eastern grifters saw that their gig was up and they flew the coop; incestuous Nefertiti did the midnight flit with Abraham/Moses and the rest is history - or at least was fraudulently represented as history.

In any event, it seems that the papyri giving the true story of the Exodus - and many other matters - have a high probability of actually having been found in the tomb of King Tut. It seems that these papyri were spirited away to England and that philologist and Egyptologist Alan H. Gardiner was involved in translating the documents. It's clear that, at first, Carnarvon and Carter intended to record the existence of the documents for the Egyptian government, and the evidences for this are the numerous mentions of them in letters and newspaper accounts of the time.

Yet it was after Carnarvon's trip back to England and his meeting with Gardiner when the translation was undoubtedly accomplished, that everything changed. The highly explosive nature of the content of the documents made it impossible to record them officially and the Egyptian government took note and then took steps.

Gardiner and Carnarvon moved in circles that made them aware of the highly controversial nature of the revelations and it is likely that they immediately took the matter to the highest levels of the British government.

Perhaps Carnarvon had scruples about the suppression of the information and his silence could not be guaranteed and that may have led to his convenient removal at an early stage. Carter may have noted this and had his own suspicions about it. Certainly Carnarvon must have told him something. This could very well have contributed to his extremely emotional and erratic behavior throughout the entire episode. He may have concocted his "insurance plan" and claimed that he had copies of the documents when, in fact, he did not. Or maybe he did. We don't know.

The end result of this maneuver is the existence of the State of Israel based on lies, deception and fraud that took place 3,600 years ago and was then covered up again in the present day. A truly bizarre state of affairs if it is true (as it seems highly probable to be).

Though the illegal giving of Palestine to the Zionists is often presented as an "imperialist gesture," that Britain wanted friendly Jews in Palestine to further their political goals, it also seems to be true that the obsession of certain powerful individuals with Biblical prophecy was influential as well.
To be continued...
Part Trois: The Origins of Israel:

Christians and Zion

By Donald Wagner, professor of religion and Middle Eastern studies at North Park University in Chicago and executive director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies. He wrote this commentary, the second in a series of five on Christian Zionism, for THE DAILY STAR

The British have had a long-term fascination with the idea of Israel and its central role in biblical prophecy that dates back to their earliest recorded literature. The Epistle of Gildas (circa. 6th century AD) and the Venerable Bede's Ecclesiastical History (735 AD) both saw the British as "the new Israel," God's chosen people, who were destined to play a strategic role despite repeated invasions by their Nordic neighbors. In the British perception of being an elect, these battles were understood in the context of Israel's battles against the Philistines, Babylonians and others.

A clear resurgence of such themes was evident in the 16th century, perhaps influenced by the Protestant Reformation and its emphasis on the Bible and varied interpretations of its texts, now that Rome had lost its control over the new clergy and theologians. One of the early expressions of fascination with the idea of Israel was the monograph Apocalypsis Apocalypseos, written by Anglican clergyman Thomas Brightman in 1585. Brightman urged the British people to support the return of the Jews to Palestine in order to hasten a series of prophetic events that would culminate in the return of Jesus.

In 1621, a prominent member of the British Parliament, attorney Henry Finch, advanced a similar perspective when he wrote: "The (Jews) shall repair to their own country, shall inherit all of the land as before, shall live in safety, and shall continue in it forever." Finch argued that based on his interpretation of Genesis 12:3, God would bless those nations that supported the Jews' return. However, his idea did not find support from fellow legislators.

While these writers cannot be classified as Christian Zionists, they might be viewed as proto-Christian Zionists, as they prepared the way for those who would follow. Gradually their views receded, but the turbulence following the American and French revolutions provoked significant feelings of insecurity across Europe. As the anxiety rose in the run-up to the centennial year at the beginning of the 19th century, prophetic speculation concerning Jesus' return and related events was in the air.

During the decade that followed the year 1800, several Christian writers and preachers began to reflect on the events leading to Jesus' would-be imminent return, among them Louis Way, an Anglican clergyman. Way taught that it was necessary for the Jews to return to Palestine as the first stage prior to the Messianic Age, and he offered speculation as to the timing of Jesus' second coming. Within a short period of time, Way gained a wide readership through his journal The Jewish Expositor, and counted many clergymen, academics and the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge as subscribers.

A number of influential proto-Christian Zionists emerged in the generation that followed Way. John Nelson Darby (1800-81), a renegade Irish Anglican priest, added several unique features to Way's teachings, including the doctrine of "the Rapture," whereby "born again Christians" would be literally removed from history and transferred to heaven prior to Jesus' return. Darby also placed a restored Israel at the center of his theology, claiming that an actual Jewish state called Israel would become the central instrument for God to fulfill His plans during the last days of history. Only true ("born again") Christians would be removed from history prior to the final battle of Armageddon through the Rapture - based on his literal interpretation of 1 Thessalonians 4:16.

Darby's extensive writings and 60-year career as a missionary consolidated a form of fundamentalism called "premillennialism" (Jesus would return prior to the Battle of Armageddon and his millennial rule on earth). Darby made six missionary journeys to North America, where he became a popular teacher and preacher. The premillennial theology and its influence on Christian fundamentalism and the emerging evangelical movement in the United States can be directly traced to Darby's influence.

Christian Zionism is the direct product of this unusual and recent Western form of Protestant theology. Found primarily in North America and England, it is now exported around the globe via satellite television, the internet, best-selling novels such as the Left Behind series, films and a new breed of missionaries. These unique doctrines were found among fringe movements in Christianity throughout the ages, which most Catholic, Eastern Orthodox and Protestant churches regarded as extreme and marginal, if not heretical.

One of the influential British social reformers to be influenced by premillennial theology was Lord Shaftesbury, a conservative evangelical Christian who was intimately linked to leading members of the British Parliament. In 1839, Shaftesbury published an essay in the distinguished literary journal the Quarterly Review, titled "The State and Restoration of the Jews," where he argued: "(T)he Jews must be encouraged to return (to Palestine) in yet greater numbers and become once more the husbandman of Judea and Galilee." Writing 57 years before Zionist thinkers Max Nordau, Israel Zangwill and Theodor Herzl popularized the phrase, Shaftesbury called the Jews "a people with no country for a country with no people." The saying was curiously similar to that of the early Zionists, who described Palestine as "a land of no people for a people with no land." Gradually, Shaftesbury's views gained acceptance among British journalists, clergy and politicians.

One of the most important figures in the development of Christian Zionism was the Anglican chaplain in Vienna during the 1880s, William Hechler, who became an acquaintance of Herzl. Hechler saw Herzl and the Zionist project as ordained by God in order to fulfill the prophetic scriptures. He used his extensive political connections to assist the Zionist leader in his quest for an international sponsor of the Zionist project. Hechler arranged meetings with the Ottoman sultan and the German kaiser, but it was his indirect contacts with the British elite that led to a meeting with the politician Arthur Balfour. That meeting in 1905 would eventually lead to Balfour's November 1917 declaration on a Jewish homeland, which brought the Zionists their initial international legitimacy. Balfour's keen interest in Zionism was prepared at least in part by his Sunday school faith, a case put forth by Balfour's biographer and niece, Blanch Dugdale.

Then-British Prime Minister David Lloyd-George was perhaps even more predisposed to the Zionist ideology than Balfour. Journalist Christopher Sykes (son of Mark Sykes, co-author of the Sykes-Picot Agreement of 1916), noted in his volume Two Studies in Virtue that Lloyd-George's political advisers were unable to train his mind on the map of Palestine during negotiations prior to the Treaty of Versailles, due to his training by fundamentalist Christian parents and churches on the geography of ancient Israel. Lloyd-George admitted that he was far more familiar with the cities and regions of Biblical Israel than with the geography of his native Wales - or of England itself.

British imperial designs were undoubtedly the primary political motivation in drawing influential British politicians to support the Zionist project. However, it is clear that the latter were predisposed to Zionism and to enthusiastically supporting the proposals of Herzl and leading Zionist officials such as Chaim Weizmann due to their Christian Zionist backgrounds. Balfour's famous speech of 1919 makes the point:

"For in Palestine we do not propose even to go through the form of consulting the wishes of the present inhabitants of the country...The four great powers are committed to Zionism, and Zionism, be it right or wrong, good or bad, is rooted in age-long traditions, in present needs, in future hopes, of far profounder import than the desires and prejudices of 700,000 Arabs who now inhabit that ancient land."

The phrases "rooted in age-long traditions" and "future hopes" were perhaps grounded in Balfour's British imperial vision, but they were also buttressed by his understanding of Bible prophecy, which undergirded his bias toward the Zionist project as well as his grand designs for Britain's colonialist policy.
Bible and sword: US Christian Zionists discover Israel

By Donald Wagner, professor of religion and Middle Eastern studies at North Park University in Chicago and executive director of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies. He wrote this text, the third in a series of five on Christian Zionism, for THE DAILY STAR

The first lobbying effort on behalf of a Jewish state in Palestine was not organized or initiated by Jews. It occurred in 1891, when a popular fundamentalist Christian writer and lay-preacher, William E. Blackstone, organized a national campaign to appeal to the then-president of the United States, Benjamin Harrison, to support the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine.

Blackstone gained notoriety through his 1882 national bestseller Jesus is Coming, his summary of end-of-time premillennial doctrines. He saw a need to politically support the Jewish people after hearing horrifying stories of the pogroms in Russia. Blackstone appealed to multimillionaire friends such as oil magnate John D. Rockefeller, publisher Charles B. Scribner and industrialist JP Morgan to finance advertisements and a petition campaign that were carried in major newspapers from Boston to the Mississippi. Aside from wealthy financiers, Blackstone also received support from most members of the US Senate and House of Representatives and the chief justice of the Supreme Court. Despite powerful backing, his appeal went nowhere.

There is little record of significant political backing for the Zionist cause after Blackstone's initiative, as fundamentalists began to withdraw from political activity following the Scopes trial and battles over evolution. However, after a 50-year hiatus, gradual change began occurring after World War II. Two post-war developments galvanized conservative Christians - the establishment of Israel in 1948 and the Cold War. A previously small and marginalized school of Biblical interpretation called "premillennialism" began to assert itself within the larger evangelical Protestant community. Israel and the Cold War were usually linked by premillennial preachers and authors who interpreted them using selected prophecy texts. According to their prophetic timetable, as the end of history approached an evil global empire would emerge under the leadership of a mysterious world leader called the "Antichrist" and attack Israel, leading to the climactic Battle of Armageddon. Israel was understood by conservative Christians to be at the center of these Biblical events, and thus commanded unconditional financial and spiritual support.

When Israel captured Jerusalem and the West Bank (not to mention Gaza, Sinai and the Golan Heights) in the June 1967 Arab-Israeli war, conservative Christians sensed that history had entered the latter days. L. Nelson Bell, the father-in-law of evangelist Billy Graham and editor of the influential journal Christianity Today, wrote in July 1967:

That for the first time in more than 2,000 years Jerusalem is now in the hands of the Jews gives the students of the Bible a thrill and a renewed faith in the accuracy and validity of the Bible.

Premillennialism gained popularity through a flurry of books and the activities of radio evangelists and television preachers. For example, Hal Lindsay's The Late, Great Planet Earth, which became one of the best selling books in history. Lindsay's message popularized the premillennialist narrative for a generation of Americans, placing Israel at its historical center. Lindsay also developed a consulting business that included several members of the US Congress, the CIA, Israeli generals, the Pentagon and the then-governor of California, Ronald Reagan.

With the American bicentennial in 1976, several trends converged in America's religious and political landscape, all pointing toward increased US support for Israel and a higher political profile for the religious right. First, fundamentalist and evangelical churches became the fastest growing sector of American Christianity, as mainline Protestant and Roman Catholic branches saw a decline in their members, budgets and missions.

Second, Jimmy Carter, an evangelical from the "Bible Belt," was elected president of the United States, giving increased legitimacy to evangelicals as Time magazine confirmed when it named 1976 "the year of the evangelical."

Third, following the 1967 war, Israel gained an increased share of US foreign and military budgets, becoming the "western pillar" of the US strategic alliance against a Soviet incursion into the Middle East, particularly after the revolution in Iran took the country out of the US orbit. It is during this period that AIPAC and other pro-Israel organizations started shaping US foreign policy.

Fourth, the Roman Catholic Church and mainstream Protestant denominations began to develop a more balanced approach to the Middle East, bringing them closer to the international consensus on the Palestine question. Pro-Israel organizations interpreted this shift as being anti-Israeli and, in turn, began to court conservative Christians. Marc Tannenbaum of the American Jewish Committee captured this sentiment well when he told the Washington Post: "The evangelical community is the largest and fastest-growing bloc of pro-Jewish sentiment in this country."

The fifth development was the victory of Menachem Begin and the right-wing Likud coalition in the Israeli election of 1977. Begin's Revisionist Zionist ideology that mandated establishing an "iron wall" of Israeli domination, and his policy of annexing Arab land, accelerating construction of Jewish settlements in the Occupied Territories and militarizing the conflict with the Arab world, all found ready support within the American Christian right. Likud's tactic of employing Biblical names for the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) and Biblical arguments to defend its policies ("God gave us this land") found resonance with fundamentalist Christians.

A surprising development, and arguably the lynchpin in forging the fundamentalist Christian-Zionist alliance, occurred in March 1977, when Carter inserted the clause "Palestinians deserve a right to their homeland" into a policy address. Immediately, the pro-Israel lobby and the Christian right responded with full-page ads in major US newspapers. Their text stated: "The time has come for evangelical Christians to affirm their belief in biblical prophecy and Israel's divine right to the land." The text concluded with a line that took direct aim at Carter's statement: "We affirm as evangelicals our belief in the promised land to the Jewish people ... We would view with grave concern any effort to carve out of the Jewish homeland another nation or political entity."

The advertising campaign was one of the first significant signs of the Likud's and the pro-Israel lobby's alliance with the Christian right. It redirected conservative Christian support from Carter, a Democrat, to the Republican right. Jerry Strober, a former employee of the American Jewish Committee, coordinated the campaign and told Newsweek magazine: "The evangelicals are Carter's constituency and he (had) better listen to them ... The real source of strength the Jews have in this country is from the evangelicals."

By the 1980 elections the political landscape had shifted, both in the Middle East and in the US. The Iranian hostage crisis helped ensure Carter's defeat against his Republican rival, Ronald Reagan. However, it was not the only factor: An estimated 20 million fundamentalist and evangelical Christians voted for Reagan and against Carter's brand of evangelical Christianity that failed the test of unconditional support for Israel.

The power of the pro-Israel Republicans became a prominent feature during the Reagan years, with the president leading the way. On at least seven public occasions Reagan expressed belief in a final Battle of Armageddon. During one of his private conversations with AIPAC director Tom Dine, Reagan said: "You know, I turn back to your ancient prophets in the Old Testament and the signs foretelling Armageddon, and I find myself wondering if - if we're the generation that is going to see that come about." The conversation was leaked to the Jerusalem Post and picked up across the US on the AP wire. This stunning openness displayed by an American president with the chief lobbyist for a foreign government indicated the close cooperation that had developed between the administration and Israel.

A little-known feature of the Reagan White House was the series of seminars organized by the administration and the Christian right with assistance from the pro-Israel lobby. These sessions were designed to firm up support for the Republican Party, and, in turn, encourage AIPAC and Christian Zionist organizations to advance their respective agendas. Participation by the Christian right in gala dinner briefings at the White House reads like a Who's Who of the movement, including author Hal Lindsay, Jerry Falwell, the head of the Moral Majority, and evangelist Pat Robertson, as well as Tim LeHaye (co-author of the influential Left Behind series) and Moral Majority strategist Ed McAteer. State Department official Robert McFarlane, one of those implicated in the Iran-Contra scandal, led several briefings. Quietly working in the background was another Christian fundamentalist, Marine Colonel Oliver North.

Begin developed a close relationship with leading fundamentalists, such as Falwell, who later received a Learjet from the Israeli government for his personal travel and in 1981 was honored with the Jabotinsky Award in an elaborate ceremony in New York. When Israel bombed Iraq's Osirak nuclear reactor in 1981, Begin made his first telephone call to Falwell, asking him to "explain to the Christian public the reasons for the bombing." Only later did he call Reagan. Falwell also converted former Senator Jesse Helms from a critic of Israel into one of its staunchest allies in the US Senate, where he chaired the influential Foreign Relations Committee.

Late in the Reagan administration, a number of scandals in the Christian right began to erode its public support. Pat Robertson's ineffective run for the presidency in 1988 led to a decline in fundamentalist political fortunes. Resilient as ever, the pro-Israel lobby was able to somewhat reassert itself with the election of another Bible-toting Southern Baptist president, Bill Clinton, despite his liberal social agenda. However, Christian Zionist influence did decline after the Reagan presidency, though it would return with renewed vigor after the tragedy of Sept. 11, 2001.
Rapturing Red Heifers and Rivers of Blood

Of course, Zionism and Christian Zionism make little sense if the entire foundation of Judaism is based on a lie and that lie has been covered up by those with Imperialist agendas. The problem is, even those without imperialist agendas can be so attached to their belief system that no matter how much evidence is provided that it is based on lies, they will cling to it desperately and declare that all the "proofs" are just being provided to "test their faith." A closed mind that is chained and locked is a terrible thing to see.

The reader may want to pick up copies of Gershom Gorenberg's book, The End of Days: Fundamentalism and the Struggle for the Temple Mount , and Forcing God's Hand: Why Millions Pray for a Quick Rapture and Destruction of Planet Earth , by Grace Halsell.

Gershom Gorenberg is an associate editor and columnist for The Jerusalem Report, a regular contributor to The New Republic, and an associate of the Center for Millennial Studies at Boston University. He lives in Jerusalem, where he has spent years covering the dangerous mix of religion and politics.

Grace Halsell served President Lyndon Johnson as his speech writer for three years. She covered both Korea and Vietnam as a journalist. She was the author of 14 books, including, "Prophecy and Politics: Militant Evangelists on the Road to Nuclear War".

The facts that these two authors, one Christian and one Jewish, bring forward, are that the Armageddon theology of the New Christian Right is being propagated by numerous TV evangelists, including Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell, along with Hal Lindsey's widely read The Late Great Planet Earth, and Tim LaHayes' "Left Behind" series. This theology is influencing millions of human beings worldwide to not only believe that the world is going to end soon, but that it is their duty to hasten the event in any way they can. It is in this context that we gain greater understanding of the politics of George W. Bush, though both of these books were written long before Bush effected his first coup d'etat in 2000.

Halsell interviewed fundamentalists, all of whom believed that it is their duty to fulfil the biblical prophecy of fighting World War III, preparatory to Christ's Second Coming. Most disquieting is her discussion of an alliance of the New Christian Right and militant Zionists who share a common belief and enthusiasm for a global holocaust. Alarming, too, is the extent of the political influence of the above mentioned tele-evangelists, the Israeli lobby and the fact that the policies of George W. Bush are largely subject to his alleged belief in the inevitability of a God-willed nuclear war. We suspect that Bush, behind the scenes, is not truly Christian, even in his own mind, but rather follows the ideas of Machiavelli which posit that a leader must appear to be religious in order to induce the masses who are believers to follow him. On the other hand, Bush and much of Congress may very well believe in this Armageddon Theology.

Both Gorenberg and Halsell detail and document the history of the alliance between militant Zionism and Christian fundamentalism and expose the purpose of the alliance which is the return to Israeli control of all of Palestine and the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem, on the site where the Al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock now stand. For the religious Zionist, these actions are the prerequisite to the Messiah's first coming. For the Christian fundamentalists, it is prerequisite to Armageddon and Messiah's second coming. Reclamation of Israel from the Palestinians who have lived there for over 5000 years, and establishing Jewish hegemony, including the use of nuclear weapons (Armageddon) are seen as events to be earnestly desired and supported.

Armageddon is seen by Christian fundamentalists as "nuclear and imminent", waiting only for proper orchestration from American political leaders. We should note that there are somewhere between 40 and 50 million such Christian fundamentalists in the U.S. (Some estimates go as high as 75 million.) The Zionists, naturally, do NOT include Armageddon in their messianic aspirations. This conflict of interests at a higher level is exposed in Gorenberg's book.

Gorenberg's book was written before 9/11 and, in this sense, was extremely prescient. The reader who wishes to understand what is at the root of the current conflict that threatens to engulf our planet will find his history of those 35 disputed acres of the Temple Mount to be crucial. Gorenberg makes clear what is at the root of the volatile relationships between Arabs, Jews and Christians in Israel. He pays special attention to carefully documenting and analyzing the actions and beliefs of fundamentalist groups in all three religions.

Jewish messianists and Christian millennialists both believe that building the Third Temple on the site where both Solomon's and Herod's temples are alleged to have stood is essential for their respective prophetic scenarios to take place, (never mind that they seem to both be using each other and each believe that the other is just a dumb tool). The Muslim believers fear that efforts to destroy Al-Aqsa mosque, to make way for the Third Temple, will prevent fulfilment of the prophecy about Islam's Meccan shrine migrating to Jerusalem at the end of time. Gorenberg calls the Temple Mount, "a sacred blasting cap".

As far-fetched and delusional as this may sound to the average fair-weather Church, Synagogue or Mosque goer, it would be a mistake to underestimate the hypnotic effects that the idea of a personal 'savior' have on those people who seem to be 'tailor made' to fall prey to such manipulative honeyed promises of 'eternal happiness'. Did any of us really think that among the 6 billion + people on the planet, none would take the prophecies of manufactured religion at face value and clamour for their fulfilment at the 'appointed time'?

The problem is that, based on the best scholarly research, the facts are that there probably never was a first "Temple of Solomon", and the Old Testament is not a true "history of the Jews". So, the question is: if Islam is predicated on two previously "manufactured" religions, what does that say about the faith of the Islamic fundamentalists?

The fact remains: There is an alliance between America and Israel in the war on Islam. They are both determined to establish Israeli control over Jerusalem and rebuild the Temple where the Dome of the Rock now stands, and the Palestinians are in the way. This is the core issue behind the current "War on Islam", disguised as a "War on Islamic Terrorists" or as it was later called, "War on those who hate our freedoms and Western civilization". And just as Christians and Jews are quite willing to sacrifice their own people for this monstrous agenda, so are Muslims undoubtedly raising up terrorists to do as much damage to the "infidels" as possible so as to save their holy site. But to really get a grip on the explosive situation, we have to lay the major share of the blame for Islamic terrorism in the current day, where the power has resided for a very long time: in the West, the Christian West:

"There's a new religious cult in America. It's not composed of so-called "crazies" so much as mainstream, middle to upper-middle class Americans. They listen - and give millions of dollars each week - to the TV evangelists who expound the fundamentals of the cult. They read Hal Lindsey and Tim LaHaye. They have one goal: to facilitate God's hand to waft them up to heaven free from all trouble, from where they will watch Armageddon and the destruction of Planet Earth. This doctrine pervades Assemblies of God, Pentecostal, and other charismatic churches, as well as Southern Baptist, independent Baptist, and countless so-called Bible churches and mega-churches. At least one out of every 10 Americans is a devotee of this cult. It is the fastest growing religious movement in Christianity today." -- Dale Crowley Jr., religious broadcaster, Washington D.C.

The "Rapture of the Church" is an idea popularized by John Darby, a nineteenth-century British preacher. The word "Rapture" describes the joy of the believers while the rest of humanity is facing apocalyptic terror, seven years' worth, before God's kingdom on earth is established.

Tim LaHaye - with his ghost-writer Jerry B. Jenkins - has produced a series of books that seek to make that terror real, to depict the "Rapture" in the world of jumbo jets and IMacs.

LaHaye's books are real to people living in frightening times. For the true believer, LaHaye's books are not just accurate descriptions of how it is all going to actually happen, they provide satisfyingly delicious scenarios of being proven right. The non-believers are treated to long and drawn-out descriptions of what is going to happen to them on earth after the Rapture.

One of the key elements of the "Rapture" theory is the Antichrist. This individual signs a seven-year peace treaty with Israel - which includes rebuilding the Temple. Jews are expected to unanimously support this project and Muslims also will agree to move the Dome of the Rock to "New Babylon".

The rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem is required in the scenario because the Antichrist must desecrate it half way through the Tribulation which is supposed to include war, earthquakes, and locusts. All of this is to be hoped for as a necessary preliminary to establishing God's kingdom on Earth.

The theory demands something else: that Jews will convert to Christianity in masses so that they can then become "witnesses" or converters of more gentiles. Darby's theory insists that God's promises to the people of Israel must be read literally as applying to literal Jews. Therefore, the Jews will convert (because it is in the eschatological screenplay).

"At the "End of the World", the believers of three faiths will watch the same drama, but with different programs in their hands. In one, Jesus is Son of God; in another he is Muslim prophet. The Jews messiah is cast in the Muslim script as the dajjal - another name for the Antichrist, the deceiver predicted by Christian tradition. The infidels in one script are the true believers of another. If your neighbor announces that the End has come, you can believe him, even if he utterly misunderstands what is happening.

It makes sense: Christianity's scriptwriters reworked Judaism and Islam rewrote both. David Cook notes that from the start, apocalyptic ideas moved back and forth between the faiths; the global village is older than we realize. Some of the early spokesmen of Islamic apocalyptic thinking were converted Jews and Christians; they arrived with histories of the future in their saddlebags.

What's more, a story's end is when the truth comes out, the deceived realize their mistake. The deep grievance at the start of both Christianity and Islam is that the Jews refused the new faith - so the Jews must appear in both religions' drama of the End, to be punished or recognize their error.

And the setting of the End is also shared. The crucial events take place in or near Jerusalem. After all, the script began with the Hebrew prophets, for whom Jerusalem was the center not only of their world but of God's, and everyone else worked from their material. Isaiah's announcement of the End of Days comes directly after he laments that the 'faithful city [has] become a harlot'. That sets up the contrast: In the perfected age, 'the mountain of the Lord's house shall be established as the top of the mountains' and 'out of Zion shall go forth the law'. The messiah's task is to end the Jews' exile and reestablish David's kingdom - in his capital.

Christianity reworked that vision. Jesus, says the New Testament, was not only crucified and resurrected in the city, he ascended to heaven from the Mount of Olives - and promised to return there. Without the Jews' national tie to the actual Jerusalem, Christians could allegorize such verses. The Jerusalem of the end could be built on other shores, and countless millennial movements have arisen elsewhere. But the literal meaning is there to be reclaimed, particularly in a time of literalism, such as our own.

Most striking of all is Islam's adoption of the same setting. For Muslim apocalyptic believers, Jerusalem is the capital in the messianic age. At the end of time, say Muslim traditions, the Ka'ba - Islam's central shrine in Mecca - will come to Jerusalem. The implication is that in Islam, speaking of the apocalypse at least hints at Jerusalem - and a struggle over Jerusalem alludes to the last battle.

Curiously, academic experts often say that Islam assigns scant space to apocalypse. In the religion's early centuries, believers attributed a vast body of contradictory traditions to the Prophet. Early Islamic scholars winnowed the sayings, establishing which were most reliable. Meanwhile, Islam became the faith of an empire, and it was time to talk softly of overthrowing the given order. So the authors of books containing the "most accurate" traditions, the pinnacle of the canon, said little of the End. 'High' Islam appears un-apocalyptic." [Gorenberg]

Thus, we see that, for those Christians who believe in Armageddon Theology, the only thing to do is to promote the well-being of Israel with money, arms, and other kinds of support, so that the Temple can be rebuilt; never mind that it is going to be desecrated and that Israel is supposed, in the scenario, to be utterly destroyed in the process of establishing God's kingdom!

What a double-cross!

"I've listened to Muslim sheikhs explain how verses in the Koran foretell Israel's destruction, and to American evangelical ministers who insist on their deep love for Israel and nevertheless eagerly await apocalyptic battles on Israel's soil so terrible that the dry river beds will, they predict, fill with rivers of blood. I also came to realize that the center of my story had to be the Temple Mount. What happens at that one spot, more than anywhere else, quickens expectations of the End in three religions. And at that spot, the danger of provoking catastrophe is greatest. [...]

Melody, the cow that could have brought God's kingdom on earth, or set the entire Middle East ablaze, or both, depending on who you ask, has her head stuck between the gray bars of the cowshed and is munching hay and corncobs. [...]

Melody's birth in August 1996 seemed to defy nature: Her mother was a black and white Holstein. In fact, [Gilad Jubi, dairyman of the Kfar Hasidim agricultural school] says he'd had trouble breeding the dairy cow, and finally imported semen, from Switzerland, he thinks, from a red breed of beef cattle. But 'red' cows are normally splotched. An entirely crimson one is extraordinary: The Mishneh Torah, Moses Maimonides twelfth-century code of Jewish law, records that just nine cows in history have fit the Book of Numbers' requirements for sacrificing as a 'red heifer'. Yet the rare offering was essential to maintaining worship in the Temple in Jerusalem. The tenth cow, Maimonides asserts, will arrive in the time of the messiah. That's when Jewish tradition foresees the Third Temple being built on the Temple Mount. [...]

Finding a red heifer is one precondition to building the Temple. Another, it's generally assumed, is removing the Dome of the Rock from the Temple Mount. [...]

The next day, a newspaper broke the story. [Adir Zik, an announcer on the settler's pirate radio station known for his fiery rhetoric] spoke about the red heifer on his radio show. The madness about Melody had begun. [...] Press photographers arrived. The rabbi, sans calf, appeared on national TV. The Boston Globe's man did a story, and other American correspondents followed. ... A CNN crew made a pilgrimage to the red heifer, as did crews from ABC and CBS, and from Japan, Holland, France.

If much of the world's media reported on Melody in a bemused tone, as a story about the strange things people believe, not everyone saw the cow as a joke. On the opinion page of the influential Israeli daily Ha'aretz, columnist David Landau argued that the security services should see the red heifer as a 'four-legged bomb' potentially more dangerous than any terrorist. Landau... understood the expectations of building the Temple that the cow could inspire among Jewish religious nationalists, and its potential for inciting war with the Muslim world. 'A bullet in the head', he wrote, 'is, according to the best traditions, the solution of security services in such cases...'.

Too shrill? As Landau alluded, the nameless agents of Israel's Shin Bet domestic security force, caught off guard by the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in November 1995, had underestimated the power of faith in the past. At Kfar Hasidim, Melody was moved from the cowshed to 'solitary confinement' in the school's petting zoo, where she could be kept slightly safer from the visitors arriving daily. A dog was posted to guard her. It couldn't guard against sprouting white hairs. [Which Melody did, disqualifying her and saving her from being turned into cow toast.]

Unquestionably, the reactions to Melody seem bizarre. But there are three very solid reasons for the fears and hopes she engendered: the past, the present, and most of all the future.

Numbers 19 is one of the most opaque sections in scripture. A red heifer, 'faultless, wherein is no blemish, and upon which never came a yoke', is to be slaughtered, and its body burned entirely to ash. Paradoxically, this sacrifice must be performed outside the Temple, yet the heifer's ash becomes the key to the sanctuary: It alone can cleanse a man or woman tainted by contact with human death.

For, says the biblical text, anyone who touches a corpse, or bone, or grave, anyone who even enters the same room as a dead body, is rendered impure, and must not enter the Temple. Yet proximity to death is an unavoidable part of life, and sacrifice was how Israelites served God. So to free a person of impurity, says Numbers, mix the heifer's cinder with water, and sprinkle the mixture on him. As Jewish tradition read those verses, the heifer really had to be faultless. Two white hairs would disqualify it. The rarest possible beast was essential to purify a priest who'd attended his own father's burial, or to allow any Israelite who'd been in the presence of a corpse to share in the sacrificial cult. [...]

The last ashes of the last red heifer ran out sometime after the Romans razed the Temple in Jerusalem in the year 70. Every Jew became impure by reason of presumed contact with death which, practically speaking, didn't matter much because there was no sanctuary to enter and sacrifice had ceased being the center of Judaism. The tenth heifer logically belonged to the imagined time of the messiah because a rebuilt temple also did.

Except that today, the absent ashes of the red heifer have a new function. They are a crucial factor in the political and strategic balance of the Middle East.

Over nineteen hundred years have passed since the Temple's destruction, but its location - give or take a few crucial meters - is still a hard physical reality. [...] In principle, Temple Mount remains the most sacred site in Judaism. [...]

But the Mount itself isn't in ruins. As Al-Haram al-Sharif, the Noble Sanctuary, it is the third-holiest site in Islam. [...] A glance at the Mount testifies that any effort to build the Temple where it once stood - the one place where Jewish tradition says it can be built again - would mean removing shrines sacred to hundreds of millions of Muslims, from Morocco to Indonesia. An attempt to dedicate even a piece of the enclosure to Jewish prayer would mean slicing that piece out of the Islamic precincts.

On June 7, 1967, the third day of the Six-Day War, Israeli troops took East Jerusalem, bringing the Temple Mount under Jewish rule for the first time in almost 2,000 years. Israel's leaders decided to leave the Mount, Al-Haram al-Sharif, in Muslim hands. The decision kept the ingredients for holy war apart, just barely. [...]

Yet a separation made by the civil government would not have worked without a hand from Jewish religious authorities. From the Six-Day War on, Israel's leading rabbis have overwhelmingly ruled that Jews should not enter the gates of the Mount. One of the most commonly cited reasons ... is that under religious law, every Jew is presumed to have had contact with the dead. For lack of a red heifer's ashes, there is simply nothing to be done about it: no way for Jews to purify themselves to enter the sacred square, no way for Judaism to reclaim the Mount, no way to rebuild the Temple. Government officials and military leaders could only regard the requirement for the missing heifer as a stroke of sheer good fortune preventing conflict over the Mount. [...]

In 1984, the Shin Bet stumbled onto the Jewish settler underground's plot to blow up the Dome of the Rock. One of the group's leaders explained that among the "spiritual difficulties" that kept them from carrying out the attack was that it is forbidden to enter the Temple Mount because of impurity caused by contact with the dead - that is, they lacked the ash of a red heifer. In a verdict in the case, one judge wrote that if the plan had been carried out, it would have 'exposed the State of Israel and the entire Jewish people to a new Holocaust'.

The danger hasn't gone away: The Temple Mount is potentially a detonator of full-scale war, and a few people trying to rush the End could set it off." [Gorenberg]
According to Gorenberg, between a fifth and a quarter of all Americans are evangelicals (up to 75 million people). In Latin America, the number of Protestants subscribing to these beliefs has climbed from 5 million in the late sixties to 40 million in the mid-nineties. "One reason for the rise [was] the campaign of John Paul II against the leftist faith of liberation theology. Denied a tie between religion and hope for a better world, Latin American Catholics have been more open to the catastrophic hopes of premillennialism."

South Korea's apocalyptically oriented Protestants have gone from 15 percent of the total population to 40 percent during the seventies and eighties.

The old stereotypical image of the apocalyptic believers as tramps on street corners carrying signs saying, "The End is Nigh" no longer stands. Today's adherents of the Rapture theory wear suits in boardrooms and stride the corridors of power.

"Reverend Irvin Baxter, a Pentecostal minister from Richmond, Indiana, made Melody the cover story in his "Endtime" magazine, which provides 'World Events from a Biblical Perspective', then published a follow-up article when he was able to come and visit himself. To his 40,000 Christian subscribers, he explained Maimonides' view that the tenth red heifer would be offered in the messiah's time - and then noted that under the diplomatic schedule then in effect for the Oslo accords, 'the final status of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount is to be settled by May of 1999. It's in 1999 that Melody will be three years of age...'

In other words, the calf, the medieval Jewish sage, and the Israel-PLO peace agreement all proved that the Temple would be in place for the End Times to begin by the millennium's end.

Televangelist Jack Van Impe likewise noted that, 'scripture requires the red heifer be sacrificed at the age of three', and asked breathlessly, 'Could Melody's ashes be used for Temple purification ceremonies as early as 2000?'[...]

[In] 1999, I [Gorenberg] dropped in at the offices of the Al-Aqsa Association... to see Ahmad Agbariay [who] is in charge of the association's efforts to develop the mosques at Al-Haram al-Sharif. [...] The Jews, he told me, 'intend to build the Third Temple'.

Was there a target date? I asked.

'All I know is that three years ago they said a red heifer had been born... and that in three years they'd start building. Three years will be up in August 1999'.[...]

The folks with the cow have a star role on the stage of the End. [...]

[Rabbi Chaim Richman, a proponent of Religious Zionism] ... asserts that human beings are acting to bring the world's final redemption. Jews returning to their land and building a state is a piece of that. [...]

Reverend Clyde Lott knows cows... Knowledge of what rabbis want in a cow has come more recently. [...] At the end of the 1980s, Lott recalls, 'there was a wave of prophecy preaching going through Mississippi, and the question was when is Israel going to build the Temple'. For that, Lott knew, a red heifer was needed. [...] The question weighed on him for months. Until one day, when he was working in the field and a piece of equipment broke down and Lott got in his car to head for town, the car took him instead to the state capital of Jackson, where he strode uninvited into the office of Ray Manning, international trade director for the State of Mississippi. ... The bizarre meeting eventually produced a letter to the agriculture attach� at the U.S. embassy in Athens, responsible in his specialty for the entire Middle East.

Manning explained that he'd been approached by a cattle producer who'd made this offer: "Red Angus cattle suitable for Old Testament Biblical sacrifices, will have no blemish or off color hair, genetically red... also excellent beef quality."

What Lott did has a logic. Cattle-raising today is biotech. It was his life's work. But did it mean anything? Lott isn't the only technical person pulled to the vision of Temple-building because it promises that a technical skill is essential to the world's salvation. Nor is he the only one in our technological age to read the Bible itself as a tech manual, installation instruction for the final, fantastic upgrade of the universe. [...]

Lott's name was getting out, people who'd never met him were inspired by his plan, in one significant swath of American society he was not nuts but cold sane. [...]

The 'restoration of Israel' - the term Christians concerned with the End have used for generations to refer to the prophesied return of the Jews to their land - must also, he decided, be the 'restoration' of Israel's livestock industry." [Gorenberg]

In 1994, Rabbi Richman visited Lott in Mississippi where he was shown four heifers. One caught his attention and he examined it for fifteen minutes or so. Then he declared, "You see that heifer. That heifer is going to change the world". It was the first cow in 2000 years to satisfy Numbers 19. Lott had "proved he could deliver". However, Richman wanted a heifer born in Israel to insure that it was "legally unblemished".

"Lott gave up his family farm. At a Nebraska ranch, he began raising Red Angus bred to the highest standards, which means, he explains, 'marbling in the meat, white flakes through the flesh... easy calving, hardiness... longevity'. To further the effort, the Association of Beef Cattle Breeders in Israel set up a professional board whose members included Lott, Richaman, and several Israeli Agriculture Ministry officials. [...]

In the spring of 1998, Canaan Land Restoration of Israel, Inc., a nonprofit body dedicated to bringing cattle to Israel, was established, with pastors scattered from California to Pennsylvania as officers and advisory board members. Lott appeared at churches, raising funds, and on Christian TV. Donation cards, adorned with sepia photos of grazing cows, allowed supporters to sponsor the purchase of '1 red heifer - $1,000.00', a half-heifer or quarter, or 1 air fare (1 cow) at $341. A fundraising letter exhorted, 'Remember, Gen 12:2-3: 'I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you, I will curse', a verse often cited by evangelicals as a reason to support Israel. [...]

Guy Garner ... pastor of the Apostolic Pentecostal Church of Porterdale, Georgia [gave up his tire sales business] to commute to Israel to handle Canaan Land's affairs. [...] The cows, Guy stresses, are 'a giveaway to the Jewish people'. The growers get them and the calves they produce free of charge, with just two obligations: After a number of years they must provide Canaan Land with the same number of young cows as they received originally. And, along the way, Canaan Land has the right to examine every newborn calf, and to take any it judges to be "special" - likely to qualify as a red heifer and speed establishment of the Temple. [...]

Yet who is supposed to reap the real benefit of bringing red heifers to Israel? Garner's certainty he is helping Israel is sincere. But he has humbly cast himself as a bit character in an Endtime drama whose script is somewhat rougher on Jews than on born-again Christians. In fact, the Christians will safely exit to the wings, while on stage, the Jews will find themselves at the center of the apocalypse.... 'It's not a pleasant thing to think about', Garner says glumly, 'but God's going to do what He's going to do'. [...]

[Lott says] 'God has been waiting for six thousand years to share with mankind to prove to the world who He is. And he's chosen people just like us to be a part of the greatest Endtime plan that mankind could ever have experienced'." [Gorenberg]

In 1998, Rabbi Richman broke his connections to Canaan Land after learning that Lott had been filmed at a Florida church talking about converting the Jews to Christianity. Gorenberg notes that this was symbolic of the state of the much wider alliance between the Christian Right and Israel. It is "an alliance in which each side assumes that the other is playing a role it doesn't understand itself, in which each often regards the other as an unknowing instrument for reaching a higher goal".

"Richman speaks astringently of the 'doormat theology' of Christians who see Israel as a stepping-stone to an apocalypse from whose horrors only Christians will be saved. ... On the Christian side are those who want to 'bless' Israel, and provide it with what they believe is the fuse for Armageddon. And perhaps also to convert the Israelis, another "blessing" since only the converted will make it through the Last Days. [..]

In letters after the breakup [of Richman and Lott] Richman said that, 'the Temple Institute has its own plans with regard to red heifers.' [...]

Prophecy, Guy Garner explains, is 'history written in advance'. He's not unusual in thinking so." [Gorenberg]

The question we need to ask is: Why does faith look for a finale? What power does this idea hold over humanity? Why can't modern people put the religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam in the museum of religious concepts alongside Zeus and Ishtar?

Gorenberg proposes a partial answer: A true believer in God (be he Jew, Christian or Muslim), is highly invested in both the power and goodness of his god. God must be good. And for an individual raised in a particular faith, who had no choice about his social, cultural and religious conditioning, this necessity for god to be good has very deep roots in his or her psyche. Being convinced that the "faith of our fathers" is good, is natural and powerful.

But, here is the rub: bad things happen in this world that do not fit with the concept of a good and All-Powerful god. Therefore, to be a believer means to exist in a state of dissonance that must be resolved.

Human beings struggle with this problem daily; trying to find answers that will solve the issues of death, disease and destruction; trying to fit their experiences with their faith in a good God. Gorenberg gives an example of a clergyman who preaches endless sermons about men whose lives were saved because they gave to charity, when the fact in the background was that his own daughter died at the age of twenty of cancer.

And so, the most daring idea of all is to assert that the world is broken and needs to be fixed. Of course, God - being omnipotent and omnipresent - must know that the world is broken, and being good, he plans to fix it someday. And so, the answer of the millennialist is "desperately honest": there IS something wrong with the creation of the Good and All-Powerful God, and in the same moment, the despair about the situation, the cognitive dissonance of the Good God who lets bad things happen - is rejected because God is going to make everything alright.

"Naturally, your vision of the repair will depend on what you think is broken. [...]

The picture of God's kingdom follows accordingly, but there is also the matter of how badly broken things are, of whether God acting through men and women is already fixing the world, or whether there is no choice but to wait for the Repairman to come to smash and break down and rebuild the world the way He always meant it to be." [Gorenberg]

Throughout their growing up years, people are told that when something good happens, that is god acting, and when something bad happens, that is Satan who got in the door because the person's faith wasn't strong enough. With that kind of conditioning, it's no wonder that people are powerfully invested in maintaining the "goodness" of their god. To insist that a messiah or saviour is "yet to come" is, essentially, a rejection of now, of response-ability. The Millennialists hang on to their beliefs for dear life because the alternatives are to either accept the world as it is, and reject the "good god hypothesis", or to abandon the world completely, both of which would bankrupt their faith.

The power of Millennialism is enormous! The problem that the religions face, however, is how to keep that hope burning, keep dangling that carrot, without letting it explode in their faces. Because, when people give signs to know when the Time has come, and others discover that the signs have been fulfilled and that the day is near, and others say the day is here, the irresistible force of enthusiasm inevitably smashes into immovable reality: The world doesn't end.

And it's nothing but rivers of blood everywhere. Every time.

"God does not look on all of His children the same way", said Dr. John Walvoord, President of Dallas Theological Seminary, mentor to Hal Lindsey.

God, he tells me, had plans for Jews and Christians, but not for the others - unless they became Christians. God, he said, had a heavenly plan for Christians, and an earthly plan for Jews.

And, I ask, the earthly plan for Jews?

"To re-create Israel." [Halsell]

What is not widely reported, but is well known among these fundamentalists circles is that, once Israel has done what the Christians want it to do: re-create itself and re-build the Temple, then they are finished. Those that do not convert will be destroyed. It's that simple. Christians can love and support Jews now, encouraging them and praising them and sending them money and everything they need to "get the job done". However, once that is accomplished, do not think for a minute that this love and support will continue as long as the Jews remain Jews.

"In early 1999, members of a Denver, Colorado dispensationalist group called Concerned Christians were arrested by Israeli police, handcuffed, jailed as common criminals and deported back to the States. Israeli police accused them of planning a 'bloody apocalypse' to hasten the Second Coming of Christ. It was suggested that they plotted the destruction of Jerusalem's most holy Islamic shrine.

In a fervent wish to replace the mosque with a Jewish temple, the Denver cult members are no different from other dispensationalists who believe God wants this done. As I learned from Christians on a Falwell-sponsored tour, they hold this idea quite sacred. A retired Army major named Owen, who lives in northern Nebraska, seems typical.

I spent much time with Owen, a widower, who is slightly built and about five feet, five inches tall. He stands erect and has a pleasant smile. Well dressed and with a full head of sandy hair, he looks younger than his age. He had served in Europe during World War II and later for a number of years in Japan. One day, as I am walking alongside Owen, our group moves toward the old walled city. As we enter Damascus Gate and pass along cobblestone corridors, I easily imagine Jesus having walked a similar route. In the midst of a rapidly changing environment, the old walled city, guarding layer-upon layer of history and conflict, provides the stellar attraction for tourists and remains home for 25,000 people. As the Palestinian Muslim Mahmud had told me earlier, throughout its long history, Jerusalem has been predominantly and overwhelmingly Arab.

We approach Haram al-Sharif, or Noble Sanctuary, which encloses the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque - sites which I had visited earlier with Mahmud. Both these edifices, on raised platform grounds, generally are called simply 'the mosque' and represent Jerusalem's most holy Islamic shrine.

We stand on lower ground below the mosque and face the Western Wall, a 200-foot-high and 1,600-foot-long block of huge white stones, believed to be the only remnant of the second Jewish temple.

'There' our guide said, pointing upward toward the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa mosque - 'we will build our Third Temple. We have all the plans drawn for the temple. Even the building materials are ready. They are hidden in a secret place. There are several shops where Israelis work, making the artifacts we will use in the new temple. One Israeli is weaving the pure linen that will be used for garments of the priests of the temple.' He pauses, then adds:

'In a religious school called Yeshiva Ateret Cohanim �the Crown of the Priests - located near where we are standing, rabbis are teaching young men how to make animal sacrifice.'

A woman in our group, Mary Lou, a computer specialist, seems startled to hear the Israelis want to return to the rites of the old Solomonic sacrificial altar of the temple.

'You are going back to animal sacrifice?' she asks. 'Why?'

"'It was done in the First and Second Temples,' our Israeli guide says. 'And we do not wish to change the practices. Our sages teach that neglecting to study the details of temple service is a sin.'

Leaving the site, I remark to Owen that our Israeli guide had said a temple must be rebuilt on the Dome of the Rock site. But he said nothing about the Muslim shrines.

'They will be destroyed,' Owen tells me. 'You know it's in the Bible that the temple must be rebuilt. And there's no other place for it except on that one area. You find that in the law of Moses.'

Did it seem possible, I ask Owen, that the Scripture about building a temple would relate to the time in which it was written - rather than to events in the current era?

'No, it is related to our era', Owen says. 'The Bible tells us that in the End Times the Jews will have renewed their animal sacrifice.'

In other words, I repeat, a temple must be built so that the Jews can resume their animal sacrifice?

'Yes', said Owen, quoting Ezekiel 44:29 to prove his point.

Is Owen convinced that Jews, aided by Christians, should destroy the mosque, build a temple and reinstate the killing of animals in the temple - all in order to please God?

'Yes', he replies. 'That's the way it has to be. It's in the Bible'.

And does the building of the temple, I ask, fit into any time sequence?

"'Yes. We think it will be the next step in the events leading to the return of our Lord. As far as its being a large temple, the Bible doesn't tell us that. All it tells us is that there will be a renewal of sacrifices. And Jews can do that in a relatively small building.'

Isn't it atavistic, I ask, to go back to animal sacrifice? And what about a multitude concerned with animal rights in our modern age?

'But we don't care what they say. It's what the Bible says that's important', Owen stresses. 'The Bible predicts a rebuilding of a temple. Now the people who are going to do it are not Christians but Orthodox Jews. Of course the Old Testament made out a very specific formula for what the Jews must follow regarding animal sacrifice. They can't carry it out without a temple. They were observing animal sacrifice until 70 A.D. and when they have a temple they will have some Orthodox Jews who will kill the sheep or oxen in the temple, as a sacrifice to God.'

As Owen talks of reinstating animal sacrifice - a step he feels necessary for his own spiritual maturity - he seems to block from his awareness the fact that Muslim shrines stand on the site where he says God demands a temple be built.

That evening, after dinner, Owen and I take a long walk. Again, I voice my concerns about the dangers inherent in a plot to destroy Islam's holy shrines.

"'Christians need not do it' , "Owen says, repeating what he told me earlier. 'But I am sure the shrines will be destroyed'.

But, I insist, this can well trigger World War III.

"'Yes, that's right. We are near the End Times, as I have said. Orthodox Jews will blow up the mosque and this will provoke the Muslim world. It will be a cataclysmic holy war with Israel. This will force the Messiah to intervene.' Owen speaks as calmly, as softly as if telling me there'd be rain tomorrow.

'Yes', he adds, as we return to our hotel. 'There definitely must be a third temple.'

Back home in Washington, D.C.... I talked with Terry Reisenhoover, a native of Oklahoma, who told me he raised money to help Jewish terrorists destroy the Muslim shrines.

Reisenhoover - short, rotund, balding and a Born Again Christian blessed with a fine tenor voice - told me he frequently was invited during the Reagan administration to White House gatherings of dispensationalists, where he was a featured soloist.

Reisenhoover spoke freely to me of his plans to move tax-free dollars from American donors to Israel. In 1985 he served as chairman of the American Forum for Jewish-Christian Cooperation, being assisted by Douglas Krieger as executive director, and an American rabbi, David Ben-Ami, closely linked with Ariel Sharon.

Additionally, Reisenhoover served as chairman of the board for the Jerusalem Temple Foundation, which has as its sole purpose the rebuilding of a temple on the site of the present Muslim shrine. Reisenhoover chose as the foundation's international secretary Stanley Goldfoot. Goldfoot emigrated in the 1930s from South Africa to Palestine and became a member of the notorious Stern gang, which shocked the world with its massacres of Arab men, women and children. Such figures as David Ben-Gurion denounced the gang as Nazis and outlawed them.

Goldfoot, according to the Israeli newspaper Davar, placed a bomb on July 22, 1946, in Jerusalem's King David Hotel that destroyed a wing of the hotel housing the British Mandate secretariat and part of the military headquarters. The operation killed some 100 British and other officials and, as the Jewish militants planned, hastened the day the British left Palestine.

'He's a very solid, legitimate terrorist', Reisenhoover said admiringly of Goldfoot. 'He has the qualifications for clearing a site for the temple.'

Reisenhoover also said that while Christian militants are acting on religious fervor, their cohort Goldfoot does not believe in God or sacred aspects of the Old Testament. For Goldfoot, it's a matter of Israeli control over all of Palestine.

'It is all a matter of sovereignty', Goldfoot deputy Yisrael Meida, a member of the ultra right-wing Tehiya party, explained. 'He who controls the Temple Mount, controls Jerusalem. And he who controls Jerusalem, controls the land of Israel.'

Reisenhoover told me he had sponsored Goldfoot on several trips to the United States, where Goldfoot spoke on religious radio and TV stations and to church congregations. Reisenhoover helped me secure a tape cassette of a talk Goldfoot made in Chuck Smith's Calvary Chapel in Costa Mesa, California. In soliciting donations for a temple, Goldfoot did not tell the Christians about plans to destroy the mosque.

Reisenhoover had given me several names of persons who knew Stanley Goldfoot, among them George Giacumakis, who for many years headed the Institute for Holy Land Studies, a long established American-run evangelical school for studies in archaeology and theology. On one of my visits to Jerusalem, I made an appointment with Giacumakis, a Greek American with dark eyes and cultivated charm.

Might he, I asked, after we had visited casually over coffee, help me arrange an interview with Goldfoot?

'Oh, no', Giacumakis responded, dropping his head into both hands, as one does on hearing a disaster. 'You don't want to meet him. He goes back to the Irgun terrorist group!' Raising his head and waving an arm toward the King David Hotel, he added, 'Stanley Goldfoot was in charge of that operation. He will not stop at anything. His idea is to rebuild the temple, and if that means violence, then he will not hesitate to use violence.'

Giacumakis paused, then assured me that while he himself did not believe in violence, 'If they do destroy the mosque and the temple is there, that does not mean I will not support it'.

It was also Terry Reisenhoover who helped me get acquainted with the Reverend James E. DeLoach, a leading figure in the huge Second Baptist Church of Houston. After we had talked a few times on the telephone, DeLoach volunteered he would be in Washington, D.C. He came by my apartment, at my invitation, and I set my tape recording running - with his permission.

'I know Stanley very, very well. We're good friends', he said. 'He's a very strong person.'

Of Reisenhoover, DeLoach said, 'He's very talented - at raising money. He's raising $100 million. A lot of this has gone to paying lawyers who gained freedom for 29 Israelis who attempted to destroy the mosque. It cost us quite a lot of money to get their freedom.'

And how, I ask, did he and the others funnel the money from U.S. donors to the aid of the Jewish terrorists?

'We've provided support for the Ateret Cohanim Yeshiva.'

The Jewish school, I asked, that prepares students to make animal sacrifice?

'Yes,' he agreed.

And Christian donors are paying for that?

'It takes a lot of training,' he said. Then, quite proudly: 'I've just hosted in my Houston home two fine young Israelis who study how to do the animal sacrifice in the temple to be built'." [Grace Halsell]

Indeed, the Torah devotes a lot of words to animal sacrifice, yet Judaism has survived without such barbarity for nearly two thousand years.

"Sometime during the Roman siege of Jerusalem, Yohanan ben Zakkai escaped the city and established a new center of Jewish learning in the town of Yavneh. Ben Zakkai was a revolutionary posing as protector of tradition. Before, the ram's horn had been blown on Rosh Hashanah only in the Temple; he ruled that it could be blown elsewhere. He did not say the same of sacrifices. His successors instituted prayers that took the place of burnt offerings, in part by praying for the Temple's restoration. [...]

In nostalgia, Jews idealized the Temple; it stood for a lost utopia where God and human beings enjoyed a perfect relationship, a lost childhood. Its destruction symbolized loss of innocence. Judaism became a religion of the intellect, with study as the central religious act. It superseded sacrifices by remembering them. The modern denominations of Reform and Conservative Judaism altered their liturgy to diminish that memory. Except that sometimes a culture's old memory can come suddenly back to life, like a recessive gene that has waited generations.

For its part, Christianity regarded the razing of the Temple as proof that God had moved his covenant from the old Israel who'd rejected Jesus to the new Israel of the Church. Second-century Christian philosopher Justin Martyr lumped sacrifices together with the Sabbath, circumcision, and all the other commandments that, he said, were irrelevant after Jesus. Besides, Christians argued, Jesus' crucifixion was the last atonement by blood - a thesis that both accepted the idea of sacrifice (even human sacrifice) and rejected it." [Gorenberg]

A pamphlet for tourists tells us:

"The beauty and tranquility of Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem attracts thousands of visitors every year. Some believe it was the site of the Temple of Solomon, peace be upon him ... or the site of the Second Temple ... although no documented historical or archaeological evidence exists to support this."

There is something to be said for this as the reader will know from reading my series "Who Wrote the Bible". Archaeologists have been digging up the "Holy Land" since the nineteenth century and, so far, there has been not a shred of evidence to support the "Temple of Solomon" story, nor much of anything else in the Bible "as history".

Nevertheless, Temple Mount is standing there, taking up nearly a sixth of the walled Old City of Jerusalem. It is certainly true that Herod built a Temple in the vicinity that replaced the earlier temple built by Jews returning from exile in the fifth century B.C.. Those, in turn, claimed that they were building the Temple on the spot where the former "Temple of Solomon" had stood. As we discover in Who Wrote the Bible, the so-called "Temple of Solomon" was very likely a pagan Temple that had existed for some time in Jerusalem and had fallen into disrepair and was restored by King Hezekiah as part of his religious reform project.

But, even the Temple Mount is a matter of stories and not facts. Medieval philosopher, Moses Maimonides says that not only was Adam born where the altar stood, but Cain and Able made their sacrifices there and Noah did the same after the flood, (never mind that he supposedly landed on Mt. Ararat in Turkey). Abraham was told to go to "Mount Moriah" to sacrifice his son Isaac, and Mount Moriah is where the Second Book of Chronicles informs us Solomon built the Temple. As noted in Who Wrote the Bible, Second Chronicles is a late rewrite of Jewish royal history and it is altogether likely that the redactor took the name "Moriah" and assigned it to where the Temple that was refurbished stood in order to affirm its sanctity.

Another curious point that Gorenberg makes is the fact that the word "Jerusalem" occurs hundreds of times in the Bible, but not in the Torah. The closest is "Salem", possibly an early, pagan name for the city. Archaeologists tell us that Jerusalem was a sacred center long before the alleged time of David and Solomon. The Temple was supposedly built on a "threshing floor", which may indicate that the religion practiced in the region, and the temple that actually stood there already, was devoted to fertility gods and goddesses.

To be continued...
In our own more recent history, Christian Spaniards who conquered Cordoba turned its Great Mosque into a cathedral and the Ottoman sultan who vanquished Constantinople in 1453 converted the church of Hagia Sophia to a mosque. Central Asia's oldest standing mosque in Bukhara, north of Afghanistan, stands on layers that archaeologists have shown reveal the prior existence of both a Zoroastrian temple and a Buddhist temple.

The temple that was in Jerusalem - which was not Solomon's - was destroyed in 586 B.C. by the Babylonians. Seventy years later, the returning exiles were tasked with building a new Temple "on the site" of the old one. The big question is: after so many years, did they actually build on the right spot? Did they even know what was the place where the former temple in Jerusalem stood? For that matter, is what is now known as Jerusalem really the place that was known as Jerusalem before the exile? Gorenberg points out that it's hard to understand why any city stood there at all. "It's on the edge of a desert; the soil is rocky; the sole spring is grade C; the trade routes cross to the north."

It seems that the "temple" built by the returning exiles from Babylon was little more than a human-built platform on top of the mountain, achieved by moving a lot of earth to accommodate the crowds that came to witness the sacrifices. It was on this earthwork platform that Herod built the temple that remains in the memory of the Jews.

Josephus described Herod as, "brutish and a stranger to all humanity. He married the last princess of the Hasmonean dynasty and murdered her and her sons and another of his sons by a different wife. But he certainly did build the most magnificent temple that Jerusalem had ever seen - probably the only "Jewish" temple that ever existed. The purpose of the temple, according to various sources, was to make money. The building project attracted pilgrims by the thousands - "customers for faith, the only product Jerusalem has ever had to sell".

Herod's temple didn't last long. It was razed in the summer of 70 AD by Titus and sixty years later, the emperor Hadrian rebuilt the city as "Aelia Capitolina, dedicated to Jupiter, Juno, and Minerva". It is very likely that the "Wailing Wall" so revered by Jews as the last remnant of Herod's Temple, is actually part of the Temple of Jupiter built by Hadrian.

Nevertheless, the troops of the caliph Umar, second commander of the faithful after Mohammed, conquered Aelia Capitolina in 638. At that time, the city's Christian patriarch, Sophronius was asked to show him where the Temple had formerly stood. A Byzantine account tells us that, when the patriarch saw Umar there, he knew the world was ending (but remember, at that time the idea of rebuilding the temple was not part of the Christian theology), and so he pointed out the mount which had become a heap of rubbish.

Umar cleared away the rubbish and built a mosque that was the forerunner of the Dome of the Rock which was built by Caliph Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan in 691, and stands nearby. The problem is, historians can't really explain why the Caliph wanted to create a "holy site" there since Mecca was already "The Holy Site" of Islam. Gorenberg suggests that the Byzantine building indicates strong Christian influence in its design. It does, in fact, somewhat resembles the later Templar style of church and one might be justified in thinking that there was a strong Islamic influence on the Templars both in terms of architecture as well as esotericism. A clue to this esoteric stream is revealed inside where a mosaic inscription from the Koran addresses "The People of the Book", an Islamic designation for Christians, saying:

"Do not say things about God but the truth! The messiah Jesus, son of Mary, is indeed a messenger of God ... So believe in God and all the messengers, and stop talking about a trinity... Verily God is the God of unity. Lord Almighty! That God would beget a child? Either in the Heavens or on the Earth?"
And, for the Jews, there was also a message in the structure itself: The Dome stands where everyone knew the Temple did, and therefore, it can be seen that Islam is the culmination of Judaism and Christianity.

Many of the popular ideas about the location of the Temple in Jerusalem are due to the work of Sir Charles Warren.

"Lieut.-General Sir Charles Warren was born at Bangor, North Wales, on 7th February 1840. His early education took place at the Grammar Schools of Bridgnorth and Wem, and at Cheltenham College. He then entered the Royal Military College at Sandhurst, and from that passed through the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich and received a commission as lieutenant in the Royal Engineers on 23rd December 1857. After the usual course of professional instruction at Chatham, Warren went to Gibraltar, where he spent seven years, and, in addition to the ordinary duties of an Engineer subaltern-looking after his men and constructing or improving fortifications and barrack buildings -he was employed on a trigonometrical survey of the Rock, which he completed on a large scale. He constructed two models of the famous fortress, one of which is now at the Rotunda at Woolwich, and the other at Gibraltar. He was also engaged for some months in rendering the eastern face of the Rock inaccessible by scarping or building up any places that might lend a foothold to an enemy.

On the completion of his term of service at Gibraltar he returned to England in 1865, was appointed Assistant Instructor in Surveying at the School of Military Engineering at Chatham, and a year later his services were lent by the War Office to the Palestine Exploration Fund.

The object of the Palestine Exploration Fund was the illustration of the Bible, and it originated mainly through the exertions of Sir George Grove, who formed an influential committee, of which for a long time Sir Walter Besant was secretary. Captain (afterwards Sir) Charles Wilson and Lieut. Anderson, R.E., had already been at work on the survey of Palestine, and, in 1867, it was decided to undertake excavations at Jerusalem to elucidate, if possible, many doubtful questions of Biblical archaeology, such as the site of the Holy Sepulchre, the true direction of the second wall and the course of the first, second, and third walls, involving the sites of the towers of Hippicus, Phaselus, Mariamne, and Psephinus, and many other points of great interest to the Biblical student.[...]

'It was Warren who restored the ancient city to the world ; he it was who stripped the rubbish from the rocks and showed the glorious temple standing within its walls 1,000 feet long, and 200 feet high, of mighty masonry : he it was who laid open the valleys now covered up and hidden; he who opened the secret passages, the ancient aqueducts, the bridge connecting the temple and the town. Whatever else may be done in the future, his name will always be associated with the Holy City which he first recovered.' [...]

It was on his way to Kimberley from Cape Town via Port Elizabeth ... that he had the late Mr. Cecil Rhodes as his traveling companion. As they were driving over the brown veldt from Dordrecht to Jamestown, Warren noticed that Mr. Rhodes, who sat opposite to him, was evidently engaged in learning something by heart, and offered to hear him. It turned out to be the Thirty-nine Articles of the Church of England. In the diary of this journey, also published in 'Good Words' of 1900, Warren relates, 'We got on very well until we arrived at the article on predestination, and there we stuck. He had his views and I had mine, and our fellow-passengers were greatly amused at the topic of our conversation -for several hours-being on one subject. Rhodes is going in for his degree at home, and works out here during the vacation.'

Sir Charles Warren was later appointed Metropolitan Police Commissioner in London, a post he held at the time of the famous Jack the Ripper murders. Warren never made any statements about who he thought the killer might be but in a report to the Home Office on Oct 17 1888 he wrote, 'I look upon this series of murders as unique in the history of our country'."
Michael Hoffman wrote in 1996:

"The most recent Palestinian uprising, this past September, began in the wake of the opening of Jerusalem's 'Hasmonean Tunnel', which runs adjacent to the Haram al-Sharif, Islam's Third Holiest Shrine, is the former site of the Temple of Herod, destroyed in A.D. 70 by Roman legions commanded by Titus.

Though the media repeatedly discounted it at the time, the Palestinians were enraged due to their fear that the opening of the Tunnel was the beginning of the end for the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the start of the rebuilding of the Third Temple, which is the fabled goal to which most of the esoteric secret societies of the West and most especially the orders of Freemasonry, are oriented (indeed, Masonic iconography is obsessed with a rebuilt Temple).

The establishment media, in a remarkable demonstration of the uniformity and power of their monopoly control of large scale communications, were able to stifle any substantial reporting in September, providing evidence that Palestinian fears on this subject had some justification.

In what James Shelby Downard terms a "cryonic process" (after the method by which Walt Disney's mortal remains are supposedly preserved)--the freeze-wait-thaw operation--the truth about the intense concentration of the resources of both esoteric Zionism and esoteric Freemasonry on this "Temple Mount" complex, was frozen while the riots raged. When they subsided, a waiting period ensued as the crisis left the front pages and moved slightly to the rear of the consciousness of the group mind of the masses. After the waiting period, came the thaw, when the truth was taken out of the deep freeze and presented to the public. [...]

The opening of the tunnel in September, 1996, with its ritual bloodshed, a precursor of the sacrificial blood ordained to flow if the Temple is rebuilt, was orchestrated in 1867. It was then that the future General Sir Charles Warren, England's Commissioner of Police and co-conspirator in the occult ritual murder known to history as "Jack the Ripper", had been dispatched on yet another Masonic mission, to lay the groundwork for the rebuilding of the Temple of Jerusalem. And so it was that in 1867, one of England's most important Freemasons, a member of its "research lodge" (Ars Quator Coronatorum), "rediscovered" the claustrophobic, 500-yard tunnel.

The "implements" of the old Temple, according to the Talmud, were hidden on the Temple Mount before the destruction of the Second Temple. With Warren's Tunnel now open, the "treasure hunt" begins, as the establishment media admitted, between the lines, during its mid-October "thaw".

In the second week in October, Zionist zealots, involved in crimes of terrorism linked to the hoped-for destruction of Al-Aqsa mosque, suddenly entered stage center from their establishment-imposed positions of obscurity. In the processing of the group mind, chronology is everything. Hence, mid October was the time designated for slowly pulling the curtain back and revealing the actual game afoot. At this juncture the establishment media unveiled Mr. Yehuda Etzion, head of Hai Vekayam, spearhead of the drive to rebuild Herod's Temple upon the ruins of Islam's revered Al-Aqsa mosque. As if on cue, seven Hai Vekayam 'activists' were arrested by Israeli police when they tried to force their way onto the Dome of the Rock in October.

Also on cue, a petition was presented to the Israelis in October, dotting every "i" and crossing every "t" of every Palestinian fear about what the Zionists intend with their "tunnel". The petition, put forth by the Temple Mount Faithful organization, a group financed by deep-pockets Judeo-Churchian fundamentalists in the U.S. and shadowy, international Zionist and Masonic moneybags, calls for the removal of the mosque from the Temple Mount. James Shelby Downard and I have a term for that call: Truth or Consequences via Revelation of the Method. For more on that, interested persons may consult my Truth or Consequences lecture, available on audio-cassette." [Michael Hoffman]
With all the things that have happened since 1996, with all that Halsell and Gorenberg have uncovered, Hoffman doesn't sound so nutty, now does he? Fact is, after his expedition, Warren wrote a book entitled "The Land of Promise", a book arguing that Britain's East India Company should colonize Palestine with Jews. The idea was quite popular in England for two reasons: 1) it promoted British imperial interests and 2) it fit Bible prophecy. These two factors would motivate the Balfour Declaration of 1917 in favor of a Jewish Homeland.

Certainly, the British had territorial interests in Palestine, but one cannot ignore the issue of religion and millennialist aspirations about the British. Yes, Imperial logic would say that Britain should take Palestine because it was the gateway to the Ottoman Empire and to Africa as well, but notice what Gorenberg writes:

On November 2, 1917, two days after General Edmund Allenby's Egyptian Expeditionary Force took Beersheba from the Ottoman Turks and prepared to march north toward Jerusalem, the British government announced an entirely different rationale for the campaign: Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour sent a letter to British Zionist leader Lord Rothschild, informing him that the cabinet had approved 'a declaration of sympathy with Jewish Zionist aspirations: His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people...'.

Five weeks later, Allenby's army took Jerusalem. For two days after the actual conquest, the general's arrival was meticulously planned. ... Christian armies were returning to the city for the first time since the Crusades. Allenby arrived at Jaffa Gate riding a white horse, with the pomp of a king. Then, before he entered the Old City, he dismounted and walked. A standard account of the general's reason: His Savior had entered this city on foot, and so would he.

Allenby's action makes sense of the Balfour Declaration: Conquering Jerusalem had to not only be considered strategically, it had to be accomplished "according to prophecy". The British logic was rooted in their fervor for the Old Testament and the hope for the millennium. That logic was derived from the cultic teachings of the Christadelphians and John Darby's premillennialist Plymouth Brethren, as well as the hopes of mainstream Anglicans. It was their desire to convert the Jews and return them to their homeland. Barbara Tuchman writes of these passions about the influential Earl of Shaftesbury, that 'despite all his zeal on the Jews' behalf, it is doubtful if Lord Shaftesbury ever thought of them as a people with their own language and traditions... To him, as to all the 'Israel-for-prophecy's sake school', the Jews were simply the instrument through which Biblical prophecy could be fulfilled. They were not a people, but a mass Error that must be brought to Christ in order that the whole chain reaction leading to the Second Coming ... could be set in motion'.

Neither Balfour nor Lloyd George was a millennialist, but they were products of an England suffused with such belief, and of the ardor it produced for the Old Testament. Balfour defended his declaration to Parliament by arguing that Christendom must not be 'unmindful of the service [the Jews] have rendered to the great religions of the world'. Lloyd George commented that when he discussed Palestine with Weizmann, Zionism's apostle to the British government, Weizmann, 'kept bringing up place names that were more familiar to me than those of the Western front'. The two statesmen could regard restoring the Jews to their land as a British task because English millennialism had made this a reasonable project, even for those who weren't thinking about the millennium. Except that once England actually ruled Palestine, the simple commitment of the Balfour Declaration slammed into the real world." [Gorenberg]
August 16, 1929 was the day that the Palestine Mandate burst into flames, predictably, as Gorenberg notes. The day before, on the anniversary of the destruction of the Temple, hundreds of Jews had demonstrated along the Western Wall, demanding rights to the spot. A surviving photograph of the demonstrators is interesting because it shows some of them in shorts and regular shoes. Why is this interesting? Because as a sign of mourning on such days, religious Jews do not wear leather shoes on a fast day. This means that the protesters were not demanding rights to the Western Wall for religious reasons, but for nationalistic and territorial reasons. They raised the Zionist flag and sang the Zionist anthem.

So, the next day, Muslim protestors came and beat up the pious Jewish worshippers who had nothing to do with the demonstration of the day before. The following Friday, tensions had increased to such an extent that Arabs began assaulting Jews in the old city, armed with clubs and knives. Within an hour, the attacks had spread to other areas of the city and the British police force was so undermanned it could do nothing.

The violence spread and on the second day (24 August), in Hebron, rioters moved from house to house murdering and looting. Sixty-seven Jews were killed, including a dozen women and three children. Most of the town's Jews were saved by their Arab neighbors.

One historian records that Jews went well beyond self defense. In one instance, in retaliation, Jews broke into a Mosque and destroyed holy books. A Palestinian version of the events tells us that the people of Palestine reacted to the provocation of Jewish religious extremists at the holy site, which seems to be what actually happened.

In a week and a half of terror, 133 Jews and 116 Arabs were killed. From any point of view, the event was a turning point in the struggle for control of Palestine. The fact is that there was, at this early stage, a great opposition of Palestinians to the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine, and it's easy to understand. Palestine was basically "given to the Jews" by Britain. But, many in Britain began to think that the Balfour Declaration's promise of a "national home" for the Jews had been a mistake.

The facts are: two national groups were struggling for one piece of land. One of the groups had been there for a very, very long time, and the other group intended to come and take over what they were convinced was theirs either by right of the British mandate, or by right of their god. The British plan to settle the Jews in Palestine was a disaster and they ran with their tails between their legs, leaving the Palestinians and the Jews to duke it out on their own.

But the fight was not equal. The desire among the Christian West for the Jews to remain in Palestine, to re-create Israel, to re-build the Temple, and to fulfil prophecy was behind the Jewish presence. The Palestinians didn't have a chance from the beginning.

"Avraham Stern was a rebel even among rebels, too extreme for the average extremist. A Polish-born Jew who admired Mussolini, he'd been a member of the Irgun Tzva'i Le'umi (National Military Organization), the right-wing Jewish underground in Palestine. In the late '30s, Palestine's Arabs revolted against British rule; attacks on Jews were common. The Irgun rejected the mainstream Haganah policy of restraint and launched revenge attacks on Arabs: gunfire at a bus here, a bomb in a market there, the murder of innocents as payment for the murder of innocents. From there it went on to battling the British, who sought to satisfy the Arabs by restricting immigration even as desperate Jews were trying to get out of Europe. But when World War II broke out, the Irgun declared a truce: Fighting Germany was more important than driving out the British. Such zigzagging wasn't for Stern: In spring 1940, he and his followers left the Irgun to create a more radical group that would keep fighting the British. They robbed banks, tried to assassinate mandatory officials. In Hebrew the group was called Lehi... the English called it the Stern Gang, even after police ferreted Stern out in a Tel Aviv apartment in 1942 and shot him dead. The group's new leaders included Yitzhak Yezernitzky, who later changed his name to Yitzhak Shamir and decades later became Israel's prime minister. [...]

In a newspaper called The Underground, Lehi published its eighteen principles of Jewish national renaissance. Number 18 read: "Building the Third Temple, as symbol of the era of the Third Kingdom." After Israeli independence, the group's veterans republished the principles, with an emendation. Now number 18 said: 'Building the Third Temple as a symbol of the era of total redemption'. Historian Joseph Heller explains that "Third Kingdom" sounded too close to 'Third Reich' - a sensitive point since Lehi was stained by having unsuccessfully offered its services to the Axis against Britain in 1941.

The emendation make the point clearer: 'They were a messianic movement, especially under Stern', says Heller." [Gorenberg]
Gorenberg tells the story of David Shaltiel who was commander of the Haganah, the Jewish militia-turned army. Shaltiel had been raised in an Orthodox home in Hamburg. He claimed that, "at the age of thirteen he walked out of the synagogue on Yom Kippur and ate pork and waited for God to strike him down". When nothing happened, he was finished with religion. Shaltiel went on to join the French Foreign Legion and later became an arms buyer for Haganah in Europe. In 1936, the Gestapo arrested him in Aachen. He is said to have been Dachau and Buchenwald and "another sixteen prisons". Somehow, he was released before World War II began and returned to Palestine where he became a Haganah officer.

In November of 1947, after WW II (which must certainly have profoundly affected Shaltiel), the United Nations (which also was profoundly affected by WW II, as was the entire world) voted to partition Palestine between a Jewish and an Arab state. You might even say that this vote was a direct result of the events of WW II and many people have suggested that there was Zionist complicity in the murder of millions of Jews for the express purpose of generating guilt and sympathy for the Jewish people, to put them in a position of unassailable "moral right" to Palestine. Indeed, readers may want to pick up a copy of Lenni Brenner's book, 51 Documents: Zionist collaboration with the Nazis to view a wealth of factual historical evidence that certain 'Zionists' were indeed instrumental in aiding and abetting the Jewish Holocaust as a means to provide justification for a Jewish 'homeland' in Palestine.

In any event, the Arabs were opposed to partition (not a surprise) and were battling Jews even as the British pulled out leaving Palestine in a shambles.

On May 28, 1948, two weeks after the Zionist leadership proclaimed the establishment of the State of Israel, the Jewish quarter of Jerusalem fell to Jordanian forces.

At dawn on July 17, a U.N. cease-fire was due to go into force. Shaltiel, the guy who had ceremonially eaten pork on Yom Kippur so many years ago, now decided that - before he had to stop fighting upon the execution of the cease-fire - he was going to be a hero and re-take the Old City as his last Hurrah. The Old City didn't have any strategic value, but apparently, its symbolic significance was enormous to the Jews. Shaltiel had the help of the Irgun and Lehi forces, as well as a special explosive charge designed by a physicist.

So confident of victory was Shaltiel that he had a lamb ready to sacrifice on Temple Mount.

Shaltiel died in 1969 and no one knows if he expected the resumption of animal sacrifice as a regular practice, but it is certain that he thought that sacrificing a lamb was the proper way to celebrate the re-taking of Jerusalem. Shaltiel probably would not have contravened David Ben-Gurion's orders not to damage any of the Muslim shrines, had he been successful in his bid to re-take the mount, but the same cannot be said for the commander of the Lehi forces, Yehoshua Zetler. If the attack was successful, he had definite plans to raze the Muslim shrines on the Mount and he equipped his men with the explosives to do it.

As it happened, the offensive failed. The special bomb made a black mark on the four hundred year old Muslim walls, but didn't even crack them. At 5:00, the cease-fire went into effect.

Yisrael Eldad wrote pornographically of his feelings about that night, later published in a memoir:

"And the heart imagines: Perhaps it will break out tonight...

If only they had a sense of history. Oh, if only! And precisely on this night, the night of the first destruction, the night of the second destruction, precisely on this night if only they burst through and got there - for they are capable of bursting through and getting there... There are enough arms, and there are young men, and there is Jerusalem, all of her desiring it, ready for a dread night like this, if only they would burst through, if only they would get there.

To the Wall, to the mourning, to what has been abandoned.

To break through and set it all aflame. In fire it fell and in fire it will rise again. To raze it all there, all the sanctified lies and hypocrisy. To purify, purify, purify."
(Speaking of sanctified lies and hypocrisy, the Old Testament has to be the mother of them all.)

But it didn't happen: the Jewish State was born without the Old City which remained in the hands of the Palestinians who had lived there for 2000 years. Many of them are probably descended from original Jews who converted.

In his 1996 book "Beginning of the End: The Assassination of Yitzhak Rabin and the Coming Antichrist", Texas pastor John Hagee recalls sitting with his father when news came over the radio that Israel was a new nation. His father told him, "We have just heard the most important prophetic message that will ever be delivered until Jesus Christ returns to earth". For the millennialists, the Balfour Declaration had been exciting, but Israel's "birth" produced absolute frenzies of apocalyptic ecstasy. The prophecies of the Last Days were 'coming true'!

"Except for stories I'd heard in my childhood Sunday School, I knew little or nothing about a Jerusalem where people live everyday lives - where they are born, got to school, get married, have children, at times laugh and celebrate, at other moments cry and mourn. Then, one day, moving to Jerusalem, I began to experience the realities of a people who have always lived there.

I walk the cobblestone streets with an Arab Muslim, Mahmud Ali Hassan, who was born in Jerusalem, bought his first pair of shoes, got his first shave from a barber, was fitted for his first suit of clothes, was married, saw all his children born and watched them grow up - all in the Old Walled City.

With Mahmud, I walk along narrow corridors within one of the few remaining examples in the world of a completely walled town. The walls stand partially on the foundations of Hadrian's Square, built in A.D. 135. they include remains of earlier walls, those of King Herod in 37 B.C, and Agrippa, A.D. 41, and Saladin, 1187. And finally the walls were rebuilt by the Turkish Muslim, Suleiman the Magnificent, in the sixteenth century.

'This Old Walled City throughout its long history has been predominantly inhabited by Arabs,' Mahmud tells me. 'And Arab markets, Arab homes, and Arab religious sites make up about ninety percent of the Old City.'

'As Arabs, we are descendants of an indigenous people, a people who never left Palestine, continually having lived within these old walls', Mahmud continues. 'I can trace my forebears back more than ten generations. And in the case of my father and his father and his father, our famili8es have lived in the same house for the past three hundred years'. [...]

'This is one of the oldest cities in the world', Mahmud reminds me. 'Arabs called Amorites came here four to five thousand years ago. They established this site as a religious foundation to honor their god. And these early Arab worshippers of a god they called Shalem gave us the name of our Holy City, Jerusalem. Then came others of our forebears, the Canaanites from Canaan. They made Jerusalem an early center of worship of the One God. The Canaanites had a king named Melchizedek, and it is written that he also was a priest of God Most High.'

'All this early history predates the arrival of the Hebrews by many centuries... And when a tribe of Hebrews, one of many tribes in the area, did arrive, they stayed for less than 400 years. And they, too, like many before and after, were defeated. And 2000 years ago, they were driven out.'

From Al-Aqsa, we walk a short distance toward the magnificent Dome of the Rock, one of the most beautiful shrines in all the world - often compared in its beauty with the Taj Mahal. [...]

'As Arabs, as Muslims, our quarrel has never been with Jews as Jews, or with the great religion of Judaism. The places that the Jews and Christians revere as holy, we revere as holy. The prophets the Jews and Christians revere as holy, we revere as holy. My point is that everyone in history has borrowed from what went before. No one or no one group has exclusive rights here. There were countless battles over Jerusalem. And the Hebrews were in power here only sixty years'." [Halsell]
A late 1998 Israeli newsletter posted on a "Voice of the Temple Mount" web site, says that its goal is "the liberation" of the Muslim shrines and the building on that site of a Jewish Temple. "Now the time is ripe for the Temple to be rebuilt", says the Israeli newsletter. The newsletter calls upon "the Israeli government to end the pagan Islamic occupation" of lands where the mosque stands. It adds, "The building of the Third Temple is near".

"There remains but one more event to completely set the stage for Israel's part in the last great act of her historical drama. This is to rebuild the ancient Temple of worship upon its old site. There is only one place that this Temple can be built, according to the law of Moses. This is upon Mt. Moriah. It is there that the two previous Temples were built. -- Hal Lindsey, The Late Great Plane Earth

An anti-Semite "is someone who hates Jews more than he's supposed to." - TV Evangelist James Robison.
The Christian Church, throughout most of its history, has been anti-Semitic. With the reformation, however, many Christians turned from anti-Semitism to a new kind of discrimination rampant in the world today: philo-Semitism. This is a stance which views the Jews as practically necessary as Jews, because they have a role to play in the salvation of Christians! This "love of Jews" includes within its parameters the complacent sureness that the Jews are different, and are destined for extinction once they have performed their assigned task.

Certainly, there are personal and political differences among Christians which make a generalization inaccurate and perhaps even dangerous, but the fact remains that many fundamentalists who are leading the "let's help Israel every way we can" and "let's go after the Muslims" charge of the present day have an established history of having taught their followers that Jews were behind all of the world's troubles.

It was after the full horrors of Nazi Germany had been revealed that Western Christianity realized that promoting anti-Semitism a la The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, could be seen as sympathizing with the Nazis. So, those fundamentalists who were blatantly anti-Semitic backed up and regrouped.

With the birth of Israel in 1948, the anti-Semitic Christians changed their tactics. They were still anti-Semitic (still are), but they acted differently on the outside; they became "loving" and "grateful", benign and patronizing toward Jews. Thank goodness the Jews were now doing what they were supposed to do: regather in Israel so Jesus could return and blast them all to smithereens!

As this new appreciation of the Jewish role merged with dispensationalist beliefs, Western Christians became fiercely supportive of the new Jewish state. Nothing must come between Israel and its destiny! Anybody could criticize any other nation in the world, but not Israel. Criticizing France, Germany or even the U.S. was just "political". Criticizing Israel was criticizing God Almighty.

At the same time that millennialists proclaim their love for Israel, they frequently reveal that they have no liking for Jews at all.

"Standing, overlooking the Megiddo valley, Clyde, a traveling companion, explained to me that this was the site where Christ would lead the forces of good against evil. 'Two-thirds of all the Jews will be killed', Clyde said, citing Zechariah 13:8-9. Pausing for some math, he comes up with nine million dead Jews. 'For two hundred miles, the blood will reach to the horses' bridles.'

When I express concern over this scenario, Clyde explains, 'God is doing it mainly for his ancient people, the Jews. He's devised a seven-year Tribulation period mainly to purge the Jews, to get them to see the light and recognize Christ as their savior'.

But why, I ask, would God have chosen a people = 'God's favorite' as Clyde says - only to exterminate most of them?

'As I said, God must purge them', Clyde says. 'He wants them to bow down before His only son, our Lord Jesus Christ.'

But a few will be left? To bury their dead?

'Yes', Clyde tells me. "There'll be 144,000 who are spared. Then they will convert to Christ'. [Halsell]
'Only 144,000 Jews will remain alive after the battle of Armageddon. These remaining Jews - every man, woman and child among them - will bow down to Jesus. As converted Christians, all the adults will at once begin preaching the gospel of Christ. Imagine! They will be like 144,000 Billy Grahams turned loose at once!'" - Hal Lindsey

"As long as they don't convert, Jews are 'spiritually blind.'" - Jerry Falwell
Traditionally, Jews have been liberal and supportive of liberal agendas. Having known discrimination and racism, they were allied with liberal agendas. However, in 1967, after Israel seized Arab lands that it did not want to relinquish, the Jewish state moved rapidly to the conservative right. American Jews, formerly liberal supporters of the rights of others were persuaded that their number one priority was to support Israel. Under this influence, they also moved rapidly to the right.

The Israeli Right and The Christian Right became strange bedfellows, each with a doctrine centered around Israel and a cult of land. Nathan Perlmutter of the ADL explained why American Jews support the Christian Right in America: First he says, he feels himself a somewhat typical American Jew in that he weighs every issue in life by one measure: "Is it good for the Jews? This question satisfied, I proceed to the secondary issues."

American Jews support Jerry Falwell because he supports the expansionist aims of Israel. Perlmutter knows that evangelical-fundamentalists interpret Scripture as saying all Jews eventually must accept Jesus or be killed. But, meanwhile, he says, "We need all the friends we have to support Israel... If the Messiah comes, on that day we'll consider our options. Meanwhile, let's praise the Lord and pass the ammunition".

Irving Kristol urges American Jews to support such as Falwell telling them that "in the real world" Jews are better off to back the Right, those that are strongly pro-Israel. To be sure, he adds, fundamentalist preachers will say that God does not hear the prayer of a Jew. But, "after all, why should Jews care about the theology of a fundamentalist preacher when they do not for a moment believe that he speaks with any authority on the question of God's attentiveness to human prayer? And what do such theological abstractions matter against the mundane fact that the same preacher is vigorously pro-Israel?"

"Douglas Krieger, an evangelical lay leader of Denver, Colorado, closely connected with Terry Reisenhoover in raising money to eradicate the Al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem, early on urged Israel to work with and totally embrace evangelical-fundamentalist issues in exchange for their support of Israel.

In a lengthy analysis paper prepared for Israeli and American Jewish leaders, Krieger points out that as a consequence of its wars of aggression, Israel faced two choices: to seek peace by withdrawing from 'territory acquired by war', or to continue reliance upon even greater military strength, i.e. the Christian Right controlled U.S.

If the Israelis took the second choice, which Krieger urged them to do (as a millennialist he very much wants them to re-take all of Palestine and re-build the Temple), then the Israelis and American Jews would face the danger of an outbreak of anti-Semitism.

Because of Israel's military seizure of Arab lands, 'a rise of anti-Semitism could possibly surge in the West'. This could be prevented, however, Krieger said, through its alliance with the New Christian Right. He pointed out that Israel could use the evangelical-fundamentalists to project through their (the Jews') vast radio and television networks an image of Israel that Americans would like, accept and support.

Moreover, Krieger said, 'The Religious Right could sell the Americans on the idea that God wanted a militant, militarized Israel. And that the more militant Israel became, the more supportive and ecstatic in its support the U.S. Right would become'." [Halsell]
Militant Zionist Jews and fundamentalist Christians have therefore formed an alliance that embraces the same dogma. This dogma has nothing to do with spiritual values or living a good life as either a Christian or a Jew. The alliance is about political power and worldly possessions. It's about one group of people physically taking sole possession of land holy to three faiths, occupied for two thousand years by a people that certainly resist their lands, their rights, and their lives being taken from them. It is a dogma centered on a small political entity - Israel. Both Israeli leaders and the Christian Right make ownership of land the highest priority in their lives, creating a cult religion - and each group is doing so cynically, for their own selfish reasons, expecting the other to be destroyed by their own hubris.

"Dispensational beliefs reduce the complex and diverse societies of Africa, Asia and the Middle East to walk-on roles as allies of Gog in God's great end-time drama... the consensus was clear: prophetic imperatives required the elimination of Arabs not only from (Jerusalem) but from most of the Middle East... They stood in the way of God's promises to the Jews." -- Paul Boyer, When Time Shall Be No More

"The Evangelical New Right ... systematically seized control of the leadership of the southern Baptist Convention, the largest Protestant denomination ... altering long-held theological positions for political advantage." -- Sidney Blumentahal in The New Republic

"I do not know how many future generations we can count on before the Lord returns." -- James Watt, U.S. secretary of the interior speaking before the House Interior Committee, in an apparent refutation to arguments for conserving natural resources.
President Reagan represented a dispensationalist view that since "Christ is at the door", spending on domestic issues should not be taken too seriously. "Most of Reagan's policy decisions", said James Mills, a former California state official, were based on his "literal interpretation of biblical prophecies". This led to Reagan's idea that there was "no reason to get wrought up about the national debt if God is soon going to foreclose on the whole world".

George W. Bush apparently has the same view.

Reagan's support of gung-ho neo-conservatives can only be understood in the light of the President's millennialist thinking. "Why waste time and money preserving things for the future? Why be concerned about conservation? It follows that all domestic programs, especially those that entail capital outlay, can and should be curtailed to free up money to wage the War of Armageddon."

The Dispensationalists who preach Armageddon Theology are a relatively new cult - less than 200 years old. There are four main aspects of their belief system:

1) "They are anti-Semitic, i.e. anti-Jewish, They profess a fervent love for Israel. Their support of Israel does not, however, arise out of a true love for the Jews and their sufferings. Rather, their 'love and support' is based on their wanting Israel 'in place' for the 'Second Coming of Christ', when they expect most Jews to be destroyed."

2) The Dispensationalists have a very narrow view of God and the six billion people on the planet. They worship a tribal god who is only concerned with two peoples: Jews and Christians, who said tribal God intends to pit against one another for His favor. The other five billion people on the planet are just not on this God's radar except to be killed in the final battle.

3) The Dispensationalists are certain right down to their bones that they understand the Mind of God. They provide a scenario, like a movie script, that unfolds with time sequences, epochs or "dispensations" all ending happily with an end-time escapism called the Rapture - for a chosen few like themselves. They appeal to those who want to feel that they are on the "inside" of a "special group" with secret, profound knowledge. This desire for certitude causes millions of the followers of Dispensationalism to trust their leaders to an extraordinary degree.

4) "Fatalism is the fourth aspect of Dispensationalists. The world, they say, is getting steadily worse and we can do nothing, so there is no point in doing anything. The teachers teach about the wrath of a vengeful god and declare that God does not want us to work for peace, that God demands that we wage a nuclear war: Armageddon that will destroy the planet." [Halsell]
The frightening by-product of these beliefs is that, since the Cult is in Power in the United States, it is so easy to create the very situations which are described, thus ensuring the fulfilment of the ideas of the Dispensationalists: the Cult that wants to Create Armageddon needs five billion people on the planet to go willingly to the sacrificial altar, and Muslims have been chosen to be first.

The nation of Israel, the Jewish people, have suffered so much and so long that they simply do not know who to trust anymore. And now we have individuals who are religious fanatics - Zionists - coming along and doing everything possible to stir up anti-Semitic feelings, calling on all their fellow Jews to unite and congregate in Israel - the Promised Land of their religion - in the same way it has happened over and over again throughout history. Seeing this self-destructive tendency is not only painful, but gives one a feeling of desperation. Not again!

It is very sad because we hear the rumble of revulsion building all around. It is at the root of the growing neo-Nazi thug movement; it is heard even at the supermarket in the checkout line. A current of anger and resentment threading its way into the subconscious minds of non-Jews - that will lay the groundwork for the arising of a new Hitler. Only this time, he won't be just a German dude with the force of the Allies there to stomp him in the dirt. He will raise that ugly cry again, the cry that will be seen as justified by the very actions of Jews themselves, who have walked right into the trap. All the problems will be presented as existing in Jews, in Israel... and he (or they) will present so simple a way to solve these problems: they will point out that the Jews are all gathered in one place (or at least they are all known because they all belong to clubs and synagogues because those kind Zionist folks have been going around gathering them back into the fold), so the 'Final Solution' will be resurrected again. And the whole rest of the human race will not realize that they have been had.
Modern Day Manipulations and mtDNA

During the summer of 2003, in all the hullabaloo over the death of Dr. David Kelly, we came across the term "Ethnic Specific Weapons" in an article we published on our News Page "Signs of the Times"[ http://www.signs-of-the-times.org/signs/signs_ethnic_supplement.htm ] that went as follows:

Microbiologists With Link to Race-Based Weapon Turning Up Dead

Exclusive to American Free Press
By Gordon Thomas

Dr. David Kelly-the biological warfare weapons specialist at the heart of the continuing political crisis for the British government-had links to three other top microbiologists whose deaths have left unanswered questions.

The 59-year-old British scientist was involved with ultra secret work at Israel's Institute for Biological Research. Israeli sources claim Kelly met institute scientists several times in London in the past two years. [...]

There have been persistent reports that the institute is also engaged in DNA sequencing research. One former member of the Knesset, Dedi Zucker, caused a storm in the Israeli Parliament when he claimed that the institute was "trying to create an ethnic specific weapon" in which Arabs could be targeted by Israeli weapons. [http://americanfreepress.net/08_09_03/Microbiologists_With/microbiologists_with.html]
We were actually so nonplussed by this article that we didn't quite know what to make of it. But something really bugged us, and the Signs Team decided to take this dangling thread and pull on it. The question was, of course, since all the genetic studies with which we were familiar pointed out the fact that Jews and Arabs are "brothers" (genetically speaking), what in the world were they talking about here? What kind of "Ethnic Specific Weapon" could target Arabs and not Jews?

For example, have a look at the graph of the genetic relationships between Jews and their neighbors below.


This graph from Michael Hammer's (Uni of Arizona) study. Jews are represented by triangles: Ashkenazim = Ash, Roman Jews = Rom, North African Jews = Naf; Near Eastern Jews = Nea; Kurdish Jews = Kur, Yemenite Jews = Yem; Ethiopian Jews = EtJ; non-Jewish Middle Easterners = Pal, non-Jewish Syrians = Syr, non-Jewish Lebanes = Leb, Israeli Druze = Dru, non-Jewish Saudi Arabians = Sar; Non-Jewish Europeans: Rus = Russians, Bri = British, Ger = Germans, Aus = Austrians, Ita = Italians, Spa = Spanish, Gre = Greeks, Tun = North Africans and Tunisians; Egy = Egyptians, Eth = Ethiopians, Gam = Gambians, Bia = Giaka, Bag = Bagandans, San = San, Zul = Zulu. Tur = non Jewish Turks, Lem = Lemba from south Africa.

Notice, in the above graph, that the lower right corner of the graph is where Near Eastern Jews are positioned. One might therefore theorize that the Near Eastern Jews are, more or less, the most "Jewish" of the Jews in terms of many generations of "Jews" in their family lines. Looking around this cluster, we notice that there are several "families" that are very close, including Yemenite Jews, Druze, North African Jews, and Palestinians. On the other hand, the Ashkenazi Jews are not only much closer to Turks, Syrians and Roman Jews, they are quite distant from both the Near Eastern Jews and the Palestinians. I also noted with some considerable interest that Saudi Arabians are much closer to Europeans and even Ashkenazi Jews than to Palestinians.

Again the question was: How could an Ethnic Specific Weapon work when we have the idea that just about everybody is related to everybody else to one extent or another, and most particularly, how could anybody have the idea that they could distinguish between Jews and Palestinians genetically?

In recent years, there have been a raft of genetic studies ostensibly focused on issues of "Jewishness". This work has been advanced, to a great extent, by Jewish scientists themselves, so it cannot be considered a venue for anti-Semitism. Nevertheless, in spite of the seeming attempts of Jews seeking to prove that they ARE different from everyone else, there are many voices raised against the issue of Jews as a separate genetic "line". For example:

Jews are not a race. Anyone can become a Jew - and members of every race, creed and color in the world have done so at one time or another. There is no distinguishing racial physical feature common only to Jews.

Being Jewish is not a race because Jews do not share one common ancestry or biological distinction. People of many different races have become Jewish people over the years.
Rabbi Harold M. Schulweis explains the nature of Judaism:

"One of the unique aspects of Judaism is its rejection of Judaism as a biological entity, an inherited spiritual DNA, racial or ethnic. The point is that being a Jew is not a matter of genes and chromosomes. To the contrary, Judaism is the first religion to recognize the 'ger', the stranger who chooses to identify himself with Judaism. Judaism is not rooted in race or clan or in a genetic matter but a religious tradition of choice."
The answer as to "Who is a Jew" that is most often given is that Jews are a religion and a civilization, but not a race or singular ethnic group. Rabbi Rami Shapiro said, "There is only one response to 'Who is a Jew?' that works: A Jew is one who takes Judaism seriously. One who takes Judaism seriously studies it, argues with it, and lives it".

This, of course, begs the question as to why so many genetic studies are being done by and about Jews, and how does this relate to Ethnic Specific Weapons? Clearly, Jews themselves do not agree on what defines being a Jew, but what confuses the issue even more is the disinformation.

In an article entitled The Mark of Doom, [http://www.gateway2russia.com/st/art_217290.php] we find the following comments:

"American scientists have declared that in ten years they will succeed in creating a radically new type of biological weapon. This weapon would be capable of infecting people according to a genetically predetermined marker such as skin color or eye shape. Infection could have a delayed effect or only begin once a certain type of medicine was taken. A recent closed seminar held by the CIA was devoted to the topic. The event took place as part of the Project for the New American Century. [...]

Yet the most terrifying new possibility is the hypothetical biological weapon that could infect people according to genetic markers. Not only would it allow for genocide; it would be created specifically for that purpose. A recent report by the British Medical Association stated that 'the rapid progress in genetics could become the basis for ethnic cleansing on an unheard of scale in the near future'. [...]

Three years ago, ideologues like US Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and PNAC Director William Crystal were already discussing genetic weapons. They recommended that the Pentagon consider the possibility for using this type of weapon not only to successfully wage war, but also to reconfigure world politics. According to a PNAC report, genetic weapons could completely change the politics of the entire planet: 'cutting-edge biological warfare targeting a certain genotype could turn the reign of terrorism into a politically useful tool'.

According to information from PNAC, Israel has also recently begun to work actively on mutagenic weapons. Israel geneticists confirm that Arabs carry a unique gene that no one else in the world has. This gene forms the basis for the Israeli research, believe American experts. [...]

Fortunately, it is not as easy to create a selective biological weapon as some scientists are claiming. Though it may be possible to create bacteria that multiply only when a person takes a specific medication, the creation of an effective genetic weapon that would not harm the developers themselves seems unrealistic in the foreseeable future." [...]
There is one more reason that is raised as to why this kind of biological weapon is unlikely to be as effective as the ideologues would wish. As Nazi doctor Josef Mengele put it, "Scratch a Frenchman and find an African". Humanity has existed for many millennia. In the context of all our past tribal and intertribal connections, it is not far from the truth to say that we are all brothers. "Over the many years of human existence, ethnics groups have intermingled to such an extent that the genetic structures determining ethnic identity have blurred and become difficult to recognize", notes Prozorov.

In the related article: Politically Desirable, Genetically Unviable, we find the following:

"You know, there are politicians who set goals for scientists. These goals are often never accomplished, but nonetheless, why not set goals and why not get money for research? Creating genetic weapons is a goal of this kind. In reality, it would be quite difficult to create this kind of weapon. A lot of currently published research is dedicated to the structure of the human genome and the difference between various races. It has been proven that the differences are very slight, and scientists have only begun to identify them. [...]

The overwhelming majority of countries, including the US and Russia, signed a convention that prohibits developing, testing, manufacturing, and storing biological weapons. If they begin conducting research and tests, they will be violating this convention and giving other countries an excuse to start this kind of research themselves. [...] Yet to create viruses that could target only a certain race or people is nearly impossible in my opinion, at least at the current stage of biology."
Contrast the above with the following from our Ethnic Specific Weapons Supplement: [ http://www.signs-of-the-times.org/signs/signs_ethnic_supplement.htm ]

Ethnic Weapons For Ethnic Cleansing

Greg Bishop
March 2000

[T]his "theoretical possibility" was recognized over 25 years ago, if not before. It was originally brought to the attention of potential customers with the publication of an article in the Military Review of November 1970.

This journal for command-level military personnel was published by the US Army Command and General Staff College in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. The feature, entitled "Ethnic Weapons", authored by Carl A. Larson, outlines the history, desirability, and possibilities of engineered biological pathogens which would affect only those races which historically have no natural defense against certain "enzyme inhibitors".

Larson is listed as head of the "Department of Human Genetics at the Institute of Genetics, Lund, Sweden", as well as a licensed physician. The Hippocratic oath was apparently not administered in Sweden when Larson received his accreditation. [...]

According to Charles Piller and Keith Yamamoto in their 1988 book Gene Wars, Larson's article was the first time that the subject of ethnically targeted CBWs was broached publicly, and that in "the military's private circles it was old news".

Comment: We learn that the work on such weapons was begun in Nazi Germany. The victims of these weapons were largely Jews. When Larson published his paper in 1970, in 'the military's private circles it was old news',which means it had been discussed for a long time by the US military, most likely with the Nazis brought into the US after World War II via Operation Paperclip. Tests were carried out as far back as 1951 on Blacks working at the Mechanicsburg, PA Naval Supply Depot.

Biowar and the Apartheid Legacy

By Salim Muwakkil, In These Times
June 6, 2003

A two-part story in the Washington Post on April 20 and 21 revealed that biological agents developed by the South African government during its apartheid days have fallen into private hands.

Written by Post reporters Joby Warrick and John Mintz, the piece noted that unique, race-specific strains of biotoxins were available on the world market - for the right price or the right ideology.

[...] The top-secret program that Basson directed was called Project Coast, and it lasted from 1981 to 1993. The South African National Defense Force created it at a time when the white-minority regime was under increasing threat by indigenous black South Africans. Daan Goosen, the former director of Project Coast's biological research division, told the Post he was ordered by Basson to develop ways "to suppress population growth among blacks" and to "search for a 'black bomb', a biological weapon that would select targets based on skin color."

[...] The Washington Post even noted, "Goosen says many scientists kept copies of organisms and documents in order to continue work on 'dual-use' projects with commercial as well as military applications."

A May 2002 story on Project Coast in the Wall Street Journal reported that Goosen said he has been 'visited by scores of people looking for 'stuff to kill the blacks.' Race-specific weapons naturally are in hot demand among racists, so it's no surprise that South Africa's race-specific research is highly coveted.

[...] Reported links between Israel's ethnic weapons and South Africa's Project Coast are tentative; some would say tenuous. But the possibility of such links is terrifying, and justifies as much scrutiny as was focused on Iraq's imaginary arsenal.
At this point, the reader may wish to peruse the entire Signs Supplement on Ethnic Specific Weapons so as to understand that the claim that no such weapons are currently available, nor could they even work, is complete disinformation. This work has been going on for a very long time and is, undoubtedly well advanced and may even be being used already!

Our research on this subject, inspired by the Dr. David Kelly affair, was published in August of 2003 and was met with basically dead silence. Nobody even wanted to touch this one. Now, all of a sudden, the issue is popping up here and there, mostly from the disinformation angle.

To continue with our little chronology, the question of what could be used as a "separator" between Jews and Palestinians led us to re-visit all the genetic research we could get our hands on. Our puzzlement grew as we pursued this line and then, slowly, as the pieces began to fit together, that puzzlement turned into horror. It became clear that Ethnic Specific Weapons was just a cover for something else that had nothing at all to do with ethnicity but definitely had everything to do with genetics.

At the present time, it is known that Eastern European Jews have a significant Eastern Mediterranean element which manifests itself in a close relationship with Kurdish, Armenian, Palestinian Arab, Lebanese, Syrian, and Anatolian Turkish peoples. At the same time, there are traces of European (including Western Slavic) and Khazar ancestry among European Jews. Ethiopian Jews mostly descend from Ethiopian Africans who converted to Judaism, but may also be related to a lesser extent to Yemenite Jews. Yemenite Jews descend from Arabs and Israelites. North African Jewish and Kurdish Jewish paternal lineages come from Israelites. The problem with all of these studies is that they fail to compare modern Jewish populations' DNA to ancient Judean DNA and medieval Khazarian DNA, and they focus on paternal ancestries.

I had a copy of the book The Seven Daughters of Eve on the shelf that I hadn't read yet, and decided that it might give me a few clues. It was then that I realized that the answer might lie in mtDNA. And so, I began the search for any genetic studies of Jewish mtDNA. Nicholas Wade writes in DNA, New Clues to Jewish Roots:

"The emerging genetic picture is based largely on two studies, one published two years ago and the other this month, that together show that the men and women who founded the Jewish communities had surprisingly different genetic histories.

The earlier study, led by Dr. Michael Hammer of University of Arizona, showed from an analysis of the male, or Y chromosome, that Jewish men from seven communities were related to one another and to present-day Palestinian and Syrian populations, but not to the men of their host communities.

The finding suggested that Jewish men who founded the communities traced their lineage back to the ancestral Mideastern population of 4,000 years ago from which Arabs, Jews and other people are descended. It pointed to the genetic unity of widespread Jewish populations and took issue with ideas that most Jewish communities were relatively recent converts like the Khazars, a medieval Turkish tribe that embraced Judaism."
A new study now shows that the women in nine Jewish communities from Georgia, the former Soviet republic, to Morocco have vastly different genetic histories from the men. In each community, the women carry very few genetic signatures on their mitochondrial DNA, a genetic element inherited only through the female line. This indicates that the community had just a small number of founding mothers and that after the founding event there was little, if any, interchange with the host population. The women's identities, however, are a mystery, because, unlike the case with the men, their genetic signatures are not related to one another or to those of present-day Middle Eastern populations.

It was in this last discovery that the skin on the back of my neck began to crawl. Obviously, if Jewish men are related to one another and to present-day Palestinian and Syrian populations, the means of producing a "death factor" of so-called "Ethnic Specific Weapons" - by either inclusion or exclusion - might lie in the mtDNA. It occurred to me that it was coincidentally odd that in ancient Israel, the Jewish priesthood was handed from father to son, but at some point, Jewish status came to be defined by maternal descent. Nicholas Wade tells us:

"The idea that most or all Jewish communities were founded by Jewish men and local women is somewhat at variance with the usual founding traditions. Most Jewish communities hold that they were formed by families who fled persecution or were invited to settle by local kings.

For instance, Iraqi Jews are said to be descended from those exiled to Babylon after the destruction of the First Temple in 586 B.C. Members of the Bene Israel community of Bombay say they are the children of Jews who fled the persecutions of Antiochus Epiphanus, who repressed the Maccabean revolt, around 150 B.C.

Most of those founding narratives do not have strong historical support. Dr. Lawrence H. Schiffman, professor of Hebrew and Judaic studies at New York University, said the new genetic data could well explain how certain far-flung Jewish communities were formed. [...]

Dr. Shaye Cohen, professor of Jewish literature and philosophy at Harvard, said the implication of the findings and the idea of Jewish communities' having been founded by traders, was 'by no means implausible.'

'The authors are correct in saying the historical origins of most Jewish communities are unknown', Dr. Cohen said. 'Not only the little ones like in India, but even the mainstream Ashkenazic culture from which most American Jews descend'.

In a recent book, 'The Beginnings of Jewishness,' Dr. Cohen argued that far-flung Jewish communities had adopted the rabbinic teaching of the matrilineal descent of Jewishness soon after the Islamic conquests in the seventh, eight and ninth centuries A.D.

One part of the Goldstein team's analysis, that matrilineal descent of Jewishness was practiced at or soon after the founding of each community, could fit in with this conclusion, Dr. Cohen said, if the communities were founded around this time."
The comments about the mtDNA research caught my attention. "A new study now shows that the women in nine Jewish communities from Georgia, the former Soviet republic, to Morocco have vastly different genetic histories from the men. In each community, the women carry very few genetic signatures on their mitochondrial DNA, a genetic element inherited only through the female line. [...] unlike the case with the men, their genetic signatures are not related to one another or to those of present-day Middle Eastern populations." I went to the original research and found the following:

"We have analyzed the maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA from each of nine geographically separated Jewish groups, eight non-Jewish host populations, and an Israeli Arab/Palestinian population, and we have compared the differences found in Jews and non-Jews with those found using Y-chromosome data that were obtained, in most cases, from the same population samples.

The results suggest that most Jewish communities were founded by relatively few women, that the founding process was independent in different geographic areas, and that subsequent genetic input from surrounding populations was limited on the female side.

In sharp contrast to this, the paternally inherited Y chromosome shows diversity similar to that of neighboring populations and shows no evidence of founder effects.

These sex-specific differences demonstrate an important role for culture in shaping patterns of genetic variation and are likely to have significant epidemiological implications for studies involving these populations. We illustrate this by presenting data from a panel of X-chromosome microsatellites, which indicates that, in the case of the Georgian Jews, the female-specific founder event appears to have resulted in elevated levels of linkage disequilibrium."
Naturally, I began to tug on this thread to find out exactly who, among Jews, were related to these Eight Founding Mothers. The above cited paper says further:

"Comparison of Y-chromosome and mtDNA patterns reveals a striking contrast between the maternal and paternal genetic heritage of Jewish populations.

On the Y chromosome, there is no consistent pattern of lower diversity in Jewish communities when compared with their non-Jewish host populations; in two cases, diversity is significantly lower in the Jewish groups; in one case, it is higher; and, in the rest, differences are not significant.

However, the pattern in the mtDNA is quite different. In each case, the Jewish community has a significantly lower mtDNA diversity than its paired host population. Indeed, every Jewish population has a lower mtDNA diversity than any non-Jewish population. This finding indicates that mistakes in associating particular host populations with Jewish populations would be very unlikely to affect our results. [...]

When ratios of mtDNA to Y-chromosome diversity were calculated, to standardize the mtDNA results in relation to the other genetic system, the ratio for the Jewish data sets ... was again found, in all but one case (the Ethiopian Jews), to be less than the ratio for the non-Jewish host. [...]

Even more striking than this, however, is the high frequency of particular mtDNA haplotypes in the Jewish populations. No host population in our sample has an mtDNA modal frequency greater than 12% (mean 7.7%). In contrast, seven of the Jewish populations have a modal frequency greater than 12% (mean 22.6%), and some of the Jewish groups have much higher frequencies.

In particular, Moroccan Jews, the Bene Israel, and Georgian Jews have modal frequencies of 27.0%, 41.3%, and 51.4%, respectively, which are all higher than those observed in any of the other populations. Again, this pattern is not seen on the Y chromosome, where the modal frequencies in Jewish populations (mean 15.2%; range 7.4% to 31.2%) are not significantly different from those seen in host populations (mean 13.6%; range 8.1% to 33.3%).

In most European and Near Eastern populations, the highest frequency mtDNA type is the HVS-1 Cambridge Reference Sequence (CRS). This type occurs at 16%, on average, in Europe, and at 6%, on average, in the Near East. This pattern is reflected in our data, in that all of the seven European and Near Eastern non-Jewish populations have the CRS as their modal haplotype.

However, only two of the nine Jewish populations have the CRS as their modal haplotype, while, among the other seven, each has a different modal haplotype.

Thus, among the nine Jewish groups there are eight different mtDNA types that are modal with an unusually high frequency.

Apart from the CRS, none of the other Jewish modal haplotypes are represented in the Israeli Arab/Palestinian data set, in contrast to the similarities between Ashkenazic Jews, Sephardic Jews, Israeli Arabs/Palestinian, and Lebanese populations reported for the Y chromosome. [...]

These results therefore suggest that an extreme founder effect has occurred in the maternal but not paternal genetic histories of most Jewish populations.

Greater geographic structuring of the mtDNA than the Y chromosome is an unusual pattern. To assess whether this is specific to the Jewish populations, we also compared mtDNA and Y-chromosome structuring among the host populations. Among the latter populations we found the more usual pattern of greater Y-chromosome differentiation. This demonstrates that the unusual pattern observed among the Jewish populations is not associated with the geographic areas from which they derive but rather with their unique demographic histories. [...]

It would appear that the founder effects on the maternal side have been so severe that mtDNA frequencies in the Jewish populations are very different from those found in any non-Jewish population. The non-CRS modal haplotypes in the Jewish populations are generally rare in the non-Jewish populations. The CRS, on the other hand, is too ubiquitous to allow it to be pinpointed to anything other than a general Eurasian origin. [...]

For example, the most extreme founder effect is seen in the Georgian Jews, of whom 51% possess the same haplotype. The Georgian Jewish modal type is matched by a single individual in the Georgian sample. However, a search of the mtDNA database shows that it also occurs in Syria (2/69 individuals) and Iraq (1/116). One directly derived type is present in two Georgians, but derived types are also found in the North Caucasus (2/208 individuals), Turkey (1/218), Armenia (1/191), and Sicily (1/90). For the Georgian modal haplotype, there is therefore no clear indication of provenance, although an indigenous origin is certainly possible, given the data. [...]

In two cases, however, comparison with the published data does provide some indication of the possible geographic origins of the modal types. The modal type in the Bene Israel is a one-step mutational neighbor of a haplotype present in the Indian sample, as well as being a one-step neighbor of a type previously identified in India. Similarly, the commonest type in the Ethiopian Jewish sample is also present in the non-Jewish Ethiopian sample and occurs in the worldwide mtDNA database only in Somalia. Other high-frequency haplotypes in the Ethiopian Jewish sample are also found almost entirely in Africa. The lack of an indication of a Middle Eastern origin for these haplotypes, on the basis of the Richards database, makes local recruitment a more reasonable explanation in these two cases. [...]

The greatly reduced mtDNA diversity in the Jewish populations in comparison with the host populations, together with the wide range of different modal haplotypes found in different communities, indicates female-specific founding events in the Jewish populations.

Although we cannot be certain whether this occurred immediately after the establishment of the communities or over a longer period of time, a simple explanation for the exceptional pattern of mtDNA variation across Jewish populations is that each of the different Jewish communities is composed of descendants of a small group of maternal founders. After the establishment of these communities, inward gene flow from the host populations must have been very limited. [...]

The differences among the Jewish populations in mtDNA haplogroup frequencies indicates that the Jewish groups formed independently around (at least) eight small, distinct nuclei of women. The severity of these demographic events was sufficiently great to drive an unusual pattern of geographic variation among the Jewish populations.

Although it has been commonly found that Y-chromosome variation shows greater geographic structure than the mtDNA, this pattern is reversed in the Jewish populations, which show greater differentiation for the mtDNA than for the Y chromosome.

Jewish populations therefore appear to represent an example in which cultural practice in this case, female-defined ethnicity has had a pronounced effect on patterns of genetic variation. [...]

The pattern in Ashkenazic Jews is of particular interest. Despite the common opinion that this population has undergone a strong founder event, it has a modal haplotype with a frequency similar to that of its host population (9.0% vs. 6.9%), providing little evidence of a strong founder event on the female side. The possibility remains, however, that present-day Ashkenazic Jews may represent a mosaic group that is descended on the maternal side from several independent founding events. [...]

These results demonstrate that demographic events restricted to only one of the sexes can be of considerable epidemiological significance."
Needless to say, this is an extremely interesting state of affairs, and my guess is that a lot more is known about this research than is currently available to the public. It is almost impossible to speculate about the origins of the "Founding Mothers" of a significant number of Jews, but I am reminded of an old saying that if your son marries, you lose him to his wife's family, and if your daughter marries, you gain a son. Perhaps this is naturally due to the special types of emotional bonds that are formed between women. But, of significant interest here is the issue of what it is that "bottle-necked" these groups of people.

After reading The Seven Daughters of Eve, and a host of technical papers on genetics, I finally had a look at Arthur Koestler's The Thirteenth Tribe. His theory is that the majority of modern Jews are Ashkenazim, descended from the Khazars, a Caucasian people who had converted to Judaism in the Middle Ages. For a time, Koestler's ideas were vigorously argued - even rejected - but in more recent times, his ideas have been partly vindicated. Ashkenazi Jews have a more significant admixture of Italian, Greek, and Turkish genes than of Spanish, German, or even Austrian ones as do the Separdim. This certainly connects them to the Khazars, but does not exclude mixing with the Western "real" Jews of Spain and elsewhere.

There was another issue that popped up during this period: Kevin MacDonald's work. MacDonald ascribes a genetic homogeneity to Jews postulating that Judaism is an "evolutionary group strategy". MacDonald has been generally accused of anti-Semitism and, indeed, anyone with eyes can see that Jews are like everyone else: they come in all colors, shapes and sizes. We realize now, of course, that there is a wide variation in the paternal ancestry, but that there is something truly strange about the maternal ancestry of a significant number of Jews is now quite evident.

The question then became: what is mtDNA and what, precisely, does it do?

To look further into this question, let us return to the death of Dr. David Kelly, the biological warfare weapons specialist who had links to three other top microbiologists who are on the startlingly long list of microbiologists who have died mysteriously in the past few years.

Regular readers of our web site already know that I make unusual connections between things and this item certainly has been working on me. What it reminded me of was the movie V, where the aliens began to target scientists for destruction because they were the only ones capable of figuring out the genetics of the invaders and what might be used as a weapon against them. I know that is a strange connection, but when you try to figure out a reason for the deaths of so many microbiologists in so short a period of time, considering what is happening on the global political stage, you have to start somewhere.

Of course, it wasn't until the death of David Kelly that the clue about Ethnic Specific Weapons turned up and then it all began to make a sick sort of sense.

The news bytes tell us that Kelly was involved with ultra secret work at Israel's Institute for Biological Research. We are also told that there have been "persistent reports" that the institute is engaged in DNA sequencing research. This last seems to be founded on the fact that a former member of the Knesset, Dedi Zucker, claimed in the Israeli Parliament that the institute was "trying to create an ethnic specific weapon" in which Arabs could be targeted by Israeli weapons.

What does not fit in this little scenario is the fact that it was Israeli sources making the claim that Kelly met Israeli institute scientists several times in London in the past two years, from which, it seems, the inference was made that Kelly was involved with ultra secret work for Israel.

As I have already written, the problem that captured my attention - assuming that Dedi Zucker was letting the cat out of the bag when he said that Israel was "trying to create an ethnic specific weapon in which Arabs could be targeted" - was what kind of "marker" would they use to include or exclude based on ethnicity?

There are two points to keep in mind here from our look at genetics. First, studies done from the perspective of the Y chromosome, or the male genetic line, show similarities between Ashkenazic Jews, Sephardic Jews, Israeli Arabs/Palestinian, and Lebanese populations as well as limited genetic connections to European populations.

Second, in most European and Near Eastern Jewish populations, the highest frequency mtDNA type is the HVS-1 Cambridge Reference Sequence (CRS). This type occurs at 16%, on average, in Europe, and at 6%, on average, in the Near East. All of the seven European and Near Eastern non-Jewish populations have the CRS as their modal haplotype.

At that point in time, what was revealed by the genetic studies available to me, suggested that any biochemical weapon specifically designed to take out Palestinians would also take out most of today's Jewry, and a large number of Europeans and their descendants, such as many Americans.

Looking at it from the point of view of mtDNA wasn't entirely satisfactory either. Remember the remark: two of the nine Jewish populations had the CRS as their modal haplotype, including the largest group of modern Jews, Ashkenazi:

"The pattern in Ashkenazic Jews is of particular interest. Despite the common opinion that this population has undergone a strong founder event, it has a modal haplotype with a frequency similar to that of its host population (9.0% vs. 6.9%), providing little evidence of a strong founder event on the female side."
That meant that the mtDNA as an "excluder" would only work for less than 30 percent of modern Jews - Separdic Jews - and the remaining 70 percent would be as susceptible to an Ethnic Specific agent as Palestinians. That didn't make a whole lot of sense. Since most of the Zionist Jews are Ashkenazi, why would they create a weapon that would guarantee their own destruction? I kept thinking about Larsen's explication of the possibility of "engineered biological pathogens which would affect only those races which historically have no natural defense against certain enzyme inhibitors.

Of course, I realized that there must surely be a lot more to this issue than was available to the public. Who knows what kind of research goes on in the Enclaves of the National Security State?

So there the problem rested as I continued to dig for clues.

Now, let's take a moment to answer the question: what is mtDNA and what, precisely, does it do?

Mitochondria are tiny structures that exist within every cell, though not in the cell nucleus along with the chromosomes. The mitochondria help the cell use oxygen to produce energy. The more active a cell is, the more energy it needs and the more mitochondria it contains. Active cells such as those that make up muscles and neurons can contain as many as a thousand mitochondria.

Each mitochondria is in a little membranous sac which also contains enzymes for aerobic metabolism, or the burning of fuel that we take in as food. This "burning" takes place in a "sea of oxygen" which neither produces "flame" nor gives off light, but most definitely produces heat.

The main output of this process is a high-energy molecule called ATP which is needed by the body to run everything from the beating of the heart, to thinking with the cells of the brain.

Right in the middle of each of these little power cells is a tiny piece of DNA that is only sixteen and a half thousand base pairs in length. To compare, the bases in the chromosomes of the nucleus number three thousand million.

Mitochondrial DNA is composed of genetic codes for the oxygen-capturing enzymes that do the work in the mitochondria. Interestingly, many of the genes that control the workings of the mitochondria are found within the nuclear chromosomes. This, of course, reminds us of Larsen's "enzyme inhibitors". An inhibitor that affects "oxygen capturing enzymes"?

There is also something very bizarre about the mtDNA: Mitochondrial DNA forms a circle. As it happens, bacteria and other micro-organisms also have circular chromosomes.

Some experts think that mitochondria were once free-living bacteria that invaded more advanced cells hundreds of millions of years ago. The cells got a boost from being able to use oxygen - a cell can create much more high-energy ATP from the same amount of fuel using oxygen than it can without it - and the mitochondria may have found life within the cell more "comfortable" than outside. Yes, I know this is a really wild explanation, but it gets better. The experts theorize that, very slowly, over millions of years, some of the mitochondrial genes were transferred to the nucleus where they remain. This means mitochondria are trapped within cells and cannot return to the outside even if they wanted to.

This idea is based on the fact that the nuclear chromosomes are littered with broken fragments of mitochondrial genes that can't do anything because they are not intact. Our mtDNA then is the powerhouse of the body, where oxygen capturing enzymes are coded. The mystery as to why parts of mtDNA are attached to nuclear DNA might be easily solved by theorizing that it was once part of the nuclear DNA.

I don't want to speculate too much further on the mtDNA at this point except to suggest that it might be the key to Ethnic Specific biochemical weapons when you consider that its configuration is similar to that of bacteria.

Now, as I mentioned, realizing that Ashkenazi Jews were different in some significant way from Separdic Jews, I decided to have a look at Koestler's book which presents the theory that Eastern European Jews are descended from the ancient Khazars. Look again at the chart above to note the position of Ashkenazi Jews relative to other groups according to the male lineage analysis.

Again we notice that the lower right corner of the graph is where Near Eastern Jews are positioned. One might therefore theorize that the Near Eastern Jews are, more or less, the most "Jewish" of the Jews in terms of many generations of "Jews" in their family lines. Looking around this cluster, we notice that there are several "families" that are very close, including Yemenite Jews, Druze, North African Jews, and Palestinians. On the other hand, the Ashkenazi Jews are not only much closer to Turks, Syrians and Roman Jews, they are quite distant from both the Near Eastern Jews and the Palestinians.

Naturally, Zionist Jews - most of them Ashkenazi - do not like Koestler's ideas - that the Eastern European Jews were originally Khazars, an Aryan tribe from Central Asia. Obviously, if they aren't "genetically linked" to the original Jews, they don't have a real claim on the land of Israel (as if they had a real claim anyway).
The short version of one of the theories held to by the Ashkenazi themselves is that the Roman Jews are descended from a group of Jews that fled Israel at the time of the diaspora and that some of them migrated up into Eastern Europe, then going even further East and mixing with Turks, forming the Ashkenazi Jews. Another theory is that the Khazars included remnants of original Jews who fled Israel at the time of the Babylonian captivity. When they adopted Judaism in the 9th century, they were just "coming home" so to say. With either of these theories, they retain their "birthright" to Israel upon which the present occupation of Palestine is based.

I can only say that I have read a lot of material on both sides of the question and I find Koestler's research to be original and credible. What is more, there is nothing about the gene flow of the Eastern European Jews that cannot be explained far more completely with his theory than with the "out of Israel at some point" hypothesis. Koestler's ideas explain the anomalies of the Khazar clans as well, when juxtaposed against the Sephardic Jews and their paternal kin, the Palestinians.

Hillel Halkin wrote in an article entitled: Wandering Jews and Their Genes:

Finally, published in last June's Proceedings of the National Academy of Science were the results of a study conducted by an international team of scientists led by Michael Hammer of the University of Arizona and Batsheva Bonn�-Tamir of Tel Aviv University...

Based on genetic samples from 1,371 males... its main conclusions are:

1. With the exception of Ethiopian Jews, all Jewish samples show a high genetic correlation...

3. In descending order after these Middle Easterners, Ashkenazi Jews correlate best with Greeks and Turks; then with Italians; then with Spaniards; then with Germans; then with Austrians; and least of all with Russians...

And on the other hand again: whereas the traditional explanation of East European Jewish origins was that most Ashkenazi Jews reached Poland and Russia from... the Rhineland; Rhineland from northern France... this version has come under increasing challenge in recent years on both demographic and linguistic grounds.

Most Jews, the challengers maintain, must have arrived in Eastern Europe not from the west and southwest but from the south and east - that is, via northern Italy and the Balkans; Asia Minor and the Greek Byzantine empire; the Volga kingdom of the Khazars... or a combination of all three.

Now comes the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science report, which appears to bear out this newer version of events. Ashkenazi Jews, it informs us, have a more significant admixture of Italian, Greek, and Turkish genes than of Spanish, German, or even Austrian ones.

In other words, for the Jews, to have traveled up through Italy to Eastern Europe, would have had to mix with Germans or Austrians - but that isn't the case.

Of course, things are not so simple. Even without questioning the study's highly technical procedures, different interpretations could be put on them. It could be argued, for example, that the resemblance of Jewish to Greek and Italian Y chromosomes is traceable to proselytization in the Mediterranean world during the period of the Roman Empire...

What must also be remembered is that Y chromosomes tell us only about males. But we know that in most societies, women are more likely to convert to their husband's religion than vice-versa... If true, this might also explain a number of differences between the Hammer/Bonn�-Tamir study and earlier research on the geographical distribution of specific Jewish diseases, blood types, enzymes, and mitochondrial DNA...
This issue is actually so contentious that, after the paper on the Eight Founding Mothers of Judaism was published, Michael Hammer, himself of Ashkenazi heritage, and others, went back to the lab and produced their own "Founding Mother Event of Ashkenazi Jews" paper.

Published on January 14, 2004, the paper, entitled MtDNA evidence for a genetic bottleneck in the early history of the Ashkenazi Jewish population tells us the following: (emphases, ours)

The term 'Ashkenazi' refers to Jewish people of recent European ancestry, with an historical separation from other major Jewish populations in North Africa and the Middle East. The contemporary Ashkenazi gene pool is thought to have originated from a founding deme that migrated from the Near East within the last two millennia. After moving through Italy and the Rhine Valley, the Ashkenazi population presumably experienced a complex demographic history characterized by numerous migrations and fluctuations in population size. During the past 500 years, there was a period of rapid growth culminating in an estimated population size of 8 million Ashkenazi Jews at the outbreak of the Second World War.

Notice that in this most recent research, Hammer is again trying to resurrect the "Up through Italy and the Rhine Valley" idea which is rather thoroughly contradicted by his own earlier research on the paternal ancestry as Hillel Halkin pointed out. One of the issues of Ashkenazi ancestry is the high frequency of more than 20 known recessive disease alleles. As any animal breeder knows, this often occurs with inbreeding. Koestler has pointed out that the Khazars - after their conversion - were more "Jewish than the Jews". As converts, they were more zealous in following the "rules" of not marrying outside of their group. After the destruction of the Khazar kingdom, the population of Khazarian Jews was undoubtedly greatly reduced and this accounts not only for a bottleneck, but also for the conditions in which inbreeding would occur, leading to the expression of recessive disease alleles in the gene pool.

Reading Hammer's new paper is almost painful as his efforts to "repatriate" the Ashkenazi Jews are quite transparent. He refers, at the very beginning, to the "Eight Founding Mothers paper" which pretty much left the Ashkenazi out in the cold, Jewishly speaking.

In a recent study based on mtDNA sequence variation ... the authors inferred separate maternal founding events for several Jewish populations, with limited subsequent gene flow from surrounding host populations. Interestingly, the Ashkenazi Jewish sample in this study appeared to be an exception to this pattern, showing no strong signal of a founding event ...

To address the question of whether mtDNA from Ashkenazi populations exhibit signs of a genetic bottleneck, we perform a more extensive analysis of mtDNA genetic variation ... in a sample of 565 Jews from 15 different Ashkenazi communities originating in western and Eastern Europe, and compare these patterns of variation with those of neighboring non-Jewish populations.

In our analysis, we take advantage of the ability to infer evidence for maternal population bottlenecks on the basis of comparative estimates of mtDNA sequence diversity.

This last paragraph just tells us in Sciencespeak that they intend to "interpret" the data according to their bias; you know, "cook the data".

The results presented here portray a pattern of highly reduced mtDNA diversity for the Ashkenazi population, an unusually large proportion of mtDNA haplotypes that are unique to the Ashkenazi gene pool, and a reduction in frequency of rare haplotypes and singleton sites compared with Near Eastern populations.

For example, the three most frequent Ashkenazi haplo- types account for 27.8% of total mtDNA repertoire in our Ashkenazi sample. These Ashkenazi mtDNA haplotypes are virtually absent from surrounding non-Jewish populations and therefore provide a genetic signature of the Ashkenazi maternal gene pool, and bear witness to the strong effects of genetic drift acting on this population.
What Hammer is not addressing is the fact that the maternal gene pool of the Ashkenazi is not related to the maternal gene pool of other Jews. As Koestler pointed out, the above also bears witness to the self-imposed isolation of Jewish groups among their host populations. They chose to live in walled Ghettos and keep their genes to themselves even if it meant extreme endogamy. In other words, what Hammer et al are describing is inbreeding. He acknowledges this below:

This contrasts with the situation in both Near Eastern and European non-Jewish populations, where only a single haplotype (CRS) was found at elevated frequencies (ie, above 5%).

There are several periods in the history of Jewish populations when bottlenecks may have occurred, for example: (1) in the Near East before the initial migration to Europe (e.g., 41,500 years ago), (2) during the migrations of Jews from the Near East to Italy after the 1st century A.D., (3) upon establishment of small communities in the Rhine Valley in the 8th century A.D., and (4) in the 12th century A.D., when migrations took place from western to eastern Europe.

In addition, endogamy in combination with 4100-fold population growth in the last 500 years undoubtedly played a role in shaping patterns of variation in the Ashkenazi gene pool.

While several authors posited that the high frequency of genetic conditions, such as Tay-Sachs disease, is the result of heterozygote advantage, 5,28 - 30 others have argued for an important role of genetic drift. For example, Risch et al. proposed that founder effects resulting from the dynamics of population growth in the 16 - 19th centuries, especially in the northern Jewish Pale of Settlement (Lithuania and Belarus), explain most, if not all of the genetic diseases observed at high frequency in the Ashkenazi population today. This hypothesis was supported by the inference of a recent age of the single founder mutation ( B350 years) that causes early-onset idiopathic torsion dystonia.

The much older estimated age of the factor XI type II mutation ( B3000 years), which has a high frequency in both Ashkenazi and Iraqi Jewish populations, implies that its frequency is largely independent of the recent demographic upheavals particular to the Ashkenazi population. [...]
All of the above - and more - is covered rationally and plausibly by Koestler in his book The Thirteenth Tribe. Nevertheless, Hammer et al continue to beat the dead horse of a Near East origin for the Ashkenazi mtDNA gene pool.

The observed mutational frequency peak for the Ashkenazi and Near Eastern non-Jewish populations is similar and consistent with the age of the Pleistocene expansion, which is older than that inferred from the mutational frequency peak for European non-Jews. This is consistent with a Near East origin for a major portion of the Ashkenazi Jewish mtDNA pool.

If the Jewish population bottleneck did begin in the Near East, other Jewish populations from around the world are predicted to harbor similar values of f 0 and f 1 in their mismatch distributions. To test this prediction, we examined the mismatch distributions resulting from the data of Thomas et al., which includes samples of the Bukharan, Georgian, Indian, Iranian, Iraqi, Moroccan, and Yemenite Jewish communities. All HVS-1 sequence datasets showed a significantly elevated f 0 (only Sephardic Jews showed an increase in f 1 ) relative to Near Eastern non-Jewish populations... This result implies that global Jewish communities suffered a common bottleneck in the Near East, or independent founder events during the Jewish Diaspora. [...]

Notice in the above that the Sephardic Jews, did not fulfil the prediction of the "mismatch theory" above. Also note that this prediction was not tested against anything other than Jewish populations. What if other populations show similar mismatch distributions? But Hammer presses on bravely in his attempt to explain away the fact that Ashkenazi aren't like other Jews in the maternal ancestry:

This suggests the possibility that contemporary Ashkenazi mtDNA diversity may derive, in part, from a small and subdivided ancestral mtDNA gene pool, and is consistent with the hypothesis that some high frequency disease alleles originated before the separation of Jewish communities in the Near East. Indeed, estimates of the age of mutations causing Ashkenazi genetic diseases range from recent times (ie, during demographic upheavals within Europe in the past 500 years), to times when ancestral Ashkenazi populations were first migrating to and within Europe, to times before Jewish populations migrated out of the Near East. [...]

The combined mtDNA and disease mutation data suggest that Ashkenazi Jewish populations experienced a long period of accentuated genetic drift marked by an early bottleneck, perhaps beginning in the Near East. Prolonged periods of low effective population size can lead to the accumulation of slightly deleterious mutations throughout the genome. Small founder populations derived from large ancestral populations are not always capable of purging these deleterious mutations. This may be the ultimate cause of the segregation of disease mutations in Ashkenazi Jews. However, this explanation does not preclude more proximal causes for the increase in frequency of disease mutations, such as those hypothesized by Risch et al., 7 unequal contribution of a particular segment of the Ashkenazi Jewish community to the explosive population growth occurring in the Pale of Settlement approximately 25 generations ago. Low effective size may have enabled deleterious mutations to become established in the Jewish population, while the recent growth of affected segments of the community amplified these mutations to frequencies sufficiently high to form homozygotes.

In other words, he has described the results of the exact scenario that Koestler has hypothesized - inbreeding of a small, surviving population of Khazars and ghetto-ization of fanatical converts - and still has not managed to provide a single convincing bit of evidence of the origin of the Ashkenazi in the Near East.

The short of it is that Koestler's theory, despite many attempts to deconstruct it, still provides the best answers for the origins of the Ashkenazi Jews: they were Khazars who, for political reasons, converted to Judaism. The interested reader is invited to read Koestler's book with its original research and clear exposition of the links between the Khazars and the Eastern European Jews.
The big question now is: If the Khazars aren't really of ancient Jewish origin and have no real rights to the "Divine Fiat" that gave Israel to the Jews (putting aside for the moment that this was a hoax to begin with), then who were the Khazars and what is behind this bizarre drive of theirs to own Palestine?

The Khazars flourished from the seventh to the eleventh century. This means that they emerged following the reign of the emperor Justinian discussed on our website. The issues surrounding the reign of Justinian, recorded by Procopius, indicate to us that something very strange was going on during that period of history. Procopius describes plagues and what must have been a rain of overhead cometary explosions that threw the Middle East into turmoil and decimated large segments of the population. Shades of the Exodus!

In August 17, 1999, the Knight Ridder's Washington Bureau published an article by Robert S. Boyd entitled: Comets may have caused Earth's great empires to fall which included the following: (emphases, mine)

"Recent scientific discoveries are shedding new light on why great empires such as Egypt, Babylon and Rome fell apart, giving way to the periodic "dark ages'' that punctuate human history. At least five times during the last 6,000 years, major environmental calamities undermined civilizations around the world.

Some researchers say these disasters appear to be linked to collisions with comets or fragments of comets such as the one that broke apart and smashed spectacularly into Jupiter five years ago.

The impacts, yielding many megatons of explosive energy, produced vast clouds of smoke and dust that circled the globe for years, dimming the sun, driving down temperatures and sowing hunger, disease and death. The last such global crisis occurred between AD 530 and 540-- at the beginning of the Dark Ages in Europe -- when Earth was pummeled by a swarm of cosmic debris.

In a forthcoming book, Catastrophe, the Day the Sun Went Out, British historian David Keys describes a 2-year-long winter that began in AD 535. Trees from California to Ireland to Siberia stopped growing. Crops failed. Plague and famine decimated Italy, China and the Middle East.

Keys quotes the writings of a 6th-century Syrian bishop, John of Ephesus:

"The sun became dark. ... Each day it shone for about four hours and still this light was only a feeble shadow.''
A contemporary Italian historian, Flavius Cassiodorus, wrote:

"We marvel to see no shadows of our bodies at noon. We have summer without heat."
And a contemporary Chinese chronicler reported, "yellow dust rained like snow."
Dendrochronologist, Mike Baillie, established that:

Analysis of tree rings shows that at in 540 AD in different parts of the world the climate changed. Temperatures dropped enough to hinder the growth of trees as widely dispersed as northern Europe, Siberia, western North America, and southern South America.

A search of historical records and mythical stories pointed to a disastrous visitation from the sky during the same period, it is claimed. There was one reference to a "comet in Gaul so vast that the whole sky seemed on fire" in 540-41.

According to legend, King Arthur died around this time, and Celtic myths associated with Arthur hinted at bright sky Gods and bolts of fire.

In the 530s, an unusual meteor shower was recorded by both Mediterranean and Chinese observers. Meteors are caused by the fine dust from comets burning up in the atmosphere. Furthermore, a team of astronomers from Armagh Observatory in Northern Ireland published research in 1990 which said the Earth would have been at risk from cometary bombardment between the years 400 and 600 AD. [...]

Famine followed the crop failures, and hard on its heels bubonic plague that swept across Europe in the mid-6th century. [...]

At this time, the Roman emperor Justinian was attempting to regenerate the decaying Roman Empire. But the plan failed in 540 and was followed by the Dark Ages and the rise of Islam.
Apparently, this disaster was also followed by the arrival of the Khazars. The question is: where did they come from?Well, hopefully, we'll be able to track them and find out.

The kingdom of the Khazars has vanished from the map of the world and today many people have never even heard of it. But, in its day the Khazar kingdom [Khazaria] was a major power.


The Byzantine Emperor and historian, Constantine Porphyrogenitus (913-959) recorded in a treatise on Court Protocol that letters addressed to the pope in Rome, and similarly those to the Emperor of the West, had a gold seal worth two solidi attached to them, whereas messages to the King of the Khazars required a seal worth three solidi.

In other words, it was clearly understood that the Khazars were more powerful than the Emperor of the West or the Pope. As Koestler commented, "This was not flattery, but Realpolitik". How can it be that we are taught about the Byzantine Empire and the rise of the power of the Popes of the Western Empire, and have so little knowledge of an empire that existed at the same time, that was obviously more powerful than either of them? A Jewish empire, in fact?

The country of the Khazars was strategically located at the gateway between the Black Sea and the Caspian, acting as a buffer protecting Byzantium against invasions by the barbarian Bulgars, Magyars, Pechenegs, and later the Vikings and Russians. More important than this was the fact that the Khazars also blocked the Arabs from Eastern Europe.

Within a few years of the death of Muhammad (AD 632) the armies of the Caliphate, sweeping northward through the wreckage of two empires and carrying all before them, reached the great mountain barrier of the Caucasus. This barrier once passed, the road lay open to the lands of Eastern Europe. As it was, on the line of the Caucasus the Arabs met the forces of an organized military power which effectively prevented them from extending their conquests in this direction. The wars of the Arabs and the Khazars, which lasted more than a hundred years, though little known, have thus considerable historical importance. [Professor Dunlop of Columbia University, authority on the Khazars, quoted by Koestler, p. 14]
Most people know that the Frankish army of Charles Martel turned back the Arabs on the field of Tours. Few people know that, at the same time, the Muslims were met and held by the forces of the Khazar kingdom.

In 732, the future emperor, Constantine V, married a Khazar princess and their son became Emperor Leo IV, known as Leo the Khazar.

A few years later, probably in AD 740, the King of the Khazars, his court and the military ruling class embraced the Jewish faith and Judaism became the state religion of the Khazars. This came about as a reaction against the political pressure of the other two Superpowers of the day - Byzantium and the Muslims - both of which had the advantage of a monotheistic State Religion which allowed them greater control over their subjects. Not wanting to be subject either to the Pope or the Byzantine Emperor, but seeing the political benefits of state religious controls, the King of the Khazars chose Judaism to be the new State Religion. He clearly saw its advantages as a control system.

The Khazar kingdom held its power and position for most of four centuries during which time they were transformed from a tribe of nomadic warriors into a nation of farmers, cattle-breeders, fishermen, viticulturists, traders and craftsmen. Soviet archaeologists have found evidence of an advanced civilization with houses built in a circular shape at the lower levels, later being replaced by rectangular buildings. This is explained as evidence of the transition from portable, dome shaped tents, to settled lifestyles.

At the peak of their power, the Khazars controlled and/or received tribute from thirty or so different nations and tribes spread across the territories between the Caucasus, the Aral Sea, the Ural Mountains, the town of Kiev, and the Ukrainian steppes. These peoples included the Bulgars, Burtas, Ghuzz, Magyars, the Gothic and Greek colonies of the Crimea, and the Slavonic tribes to the Northwest.

"Until the ninth century, the Khazars had no rivals to their supremacy in the regions north of the Black Sea and the adjoining steppe and the forest regions of the Dnieper. The Khazars were the supreme masters of the southern half of Eastern Europe for a century and a half. [...] During this whole period, they held back the onslaught of the nomadic tribes from the East".
In the timeline of history, the Khazar Empire existed between the Huns and the Mongols. The Arab chroniclers wrote that the Khazars were, "white, their eyes blue, their hair flowing and predominantly reddish, their bodies large, and their natures cold. Their general aspect is wild".

The Georgians and Armenians, having been repeatedly devastated by the Khazars, identified them as Gog and Magog. An Armenian writer described them as having, "insolent, broad, lashless faces and long falling hair, like women".

One of the earliest factual references to the Khazars occurs in a Syriac chronicle dating from the middle of the sixth century. It mentions the Khazars in a list of people who inhabit the region of the Caucasus. Koestler recounts that other sources indicate that the Khazars were intimately connected with the Huns.

An interesting connection considering the legend that the Huns were a tribe of peoples that descended from Scythian witches who, cast out of their tribes, "mated with devils in the desert."
Who Were the Huns?

So, let's look at the Huns for a moment.

In AD 448, the Byzantine Emperor Theodosius II sent an embassy to Attila which included a famed rhetorician by name of Priscus. He kept a minute account not only of the diplomatic negotiations, but also of the court intrigues and goings-on in Attila's sumptuous banqueting hall. He was, in fact, the perfect gossip columnist, and is still one of the main sources of information about Hun customs and habits. But Priscus also has anecdotes to tell about a people subject to the Huns whom he calls Akatzirs - that is, very likely, the Ak-Khazars, or "White" Khazars.

The Byzantine Emperor, Priscus tells us, tried to win this warrior race over to his side, but the greedy Khazar chieftain named Karidach, considered the bribe offered to him inadequate, and sided with the Huns. Attila defeated Karidach's rival chieftains, installed him as the sole ruler of the Akatzirs, and invited him to visit his court. Karidach thanked him profusely for the invitation and went on to say that "it would be too hard on a mortal man to look into the face of a god. For, as one cannot stare into the sun's disc, even less could one look into the face of the greatest god without suffering injury". Attila must have been pleased with this clever response because he then confirmed Karidach as ruler.

After the collapse of the Hun Empire, the Khazars raided and absorbed numerous tribes of nomadic hordes coming from the East. At this point, the West Turkish kingdom arose, a confederation of tribes ruled by a Kagan, or Khagan. The Khazars later adopted this title for their rulers as well. This "Turkish state" fell apart after a century, but it is important to note that it was only after this period that the word Turkish was used in reference to a specific nation, as opposed to its earlier use which simply meant a tribe speaking a Turkic language such as the Khazars and Bulgars. In short, Khazars and Bulgars are, using the older definition, Turks.

So it was that at the time of the cometary disasters that brought on the Dark Ages, the Khazars rose to power. By the first decades of the seventh century, there were three "Superpowers", two of whom had been fighting each other for a century and were seemingly on the verge of collapse. Persia was about to face its doom in the armies of the Khazars, but through its friendship with Khazaria, Byzantium survived.

In 627, the Roman Emperor Heraclius made an alliance with the Khazars so as to defeat his nemesis: Persia. The Khazars provided Heraclius with 40,000 horsemen under a commander named Ziebel and Heraclius promised him his daughter. The Persians were defeated, which was followed by a revolution and after ten years of anarchy and chaos, the first Arab armies delivered the coup de grace leading to the emergence of a new Superpower: the Islamic Caliphate.

In short order, the Muslims conquered Persia, Syria, Mesopotamia, Egypt and surrounded the Byzantine Empire in a half-circle from the Mediterranean to the Caucasus. Between 642 and 652, the Muslims repeatedly penetrated into Khazaria in an attempt to gain a foothold so as to continue their push into Eastern Europe. After a defeat in 652, the Muslims backed off for thirty or forty years and concentrated on Byzantium, laying siege to Constantinople on several occasions. Had they been able to get to the other side, to surround Byzantium from the Khazarian side, it would have been fatal for Europe.

Meanwhile, the Khazars consolidated their own power, expanding into Ukraine and the Crimea, incorporating the conquered people into their empire ruled by the Kagan. By the time of the 8th century, the Khazar Empire was stable enough to actually go on the offensive against the Muslims rather than just holding their position and driving them away repeatedly.

"From a distance of more than a thousand years, the period of intermittent warfare that followed looks like a series of tedious episodes on a local scale, following the same, repetitive pattern: the Khazar cavalry in their heavy armour breaking through the pass of Dariel or the Gate of Darband into the Caliph's domains to the south; followed by Arab counter-thrusts through the same pass or the defile, towards the Volga and back again. [...]

One is reminded of the old jingle about the noble Duke of York who had ten thousand men; "he marched them up to the top of the hill. And he marched them down again." In fact, the Arab sources speak of armies of 100,000, even of 300,000 men engaged on either side - probably outnumbering the armies which decided the fate of the Western world at the battle of Tours about the same time."

"The death-defying fanaticism which characterized these wars is illustrated by episodes such as the suicide by fire of a whole Khazar town as an alternative to surrender; the poisoning of the water supply of Bab al Abwab by an Arab general; or by the traditional exhortation which would halt the rout of a defeated Arab army and make it fight to the last man: "To the Garden Muslims, not the Fire" - the joys of Paradise being assured to every Muslim soldier killed in the Holy War."
The giant Islamic pincer movement across the Pyrenees in the west and across the Caucasus into Eastern Europe was halted at both ends at about the same time. As Charles Martel's Franks saved Gaul and Western Europe, so the Khazars saved the Eastern Roman Empire.

At the end of all this was the marriage of the Khazar princess to the heir of the Byzantine Empire in gratitude for defeat of the Muslims. Following this event, of course, was the politically expedient conversion of the Khazars to Judaism already mentioned.

Overnight an entire group of people, the warlike, fanatical Khazars, suddenly proclaimed themselves Jews. The Khazar kingdom began to be described as the "Kingdom of the Jews" by historians of the day. Succeeding Khazar rulers took Jewish names, sent for Jewish scholars from Spain to come and instruct them, settle with them and marry their daughters. During the late 9th Century the Khazar kingdom became a haven for Jews of other lands. But it seems that this process was almost exclusively a question of male Jews - including Kohanim - coming to Khazaria and marrying Khazar women. What does not seem to have happened - or happened only rarely - is the intermarriage of Khazars with Separdic Jewish women from other European communities of Jews.

Koestler quotes at length from ancient accounts of the Khazars and I highly recommend this book to the reader not only because it is well researched, but also because it can be quite entertaining reading!

At the height of the Khazar empire, the main source of royal income was foreign trade. There were enormous caravans that transported textiles, dried fruit, honey, wax, and spices following the Silk road to and from the East. Arts and crafts and haute couture flourished. Slaves and furs were traded by Rus merchants and Vikings coming down the Volga on a north/south trade axis. On all these goods, the Khazars levied a tax of ten per cent. This was added to the tribute paid by the Bulgars, Magyars, and others. Khazaria was cosmopolitan, open to all sorts of cultural and religious influences while, at the same time, using its State Religion to defend itself against the other two ecclesiastical powers in the world.

In short, Khazaria was an extremely prosperous country and this prosperity depended on its military power. Khazaria had a standing army with which it was able to maintain brutal domination over its subject tribes and peoples. Human sacrifice was also practiced by the earlier Khazars- including the ritual killing of the king at the end of his reign. Again, it is astonishing how little this great kingdom is known to our present society.

At the beginning of the ninth century, the Khazars had more or less a tacit "nonaggression pact" with the Caliphate, and relations with Byzantium were friendly. After all, they were family! But, a new cloud was on the horizon: Two centuries earlier, it had been the Arabs and their "Holy War". Now it was the Vikings and their "unholy war" of piracy and plunder.

"In neither case have historians been able to provide convincing explanations of the economical, ecological or ideological reasons which transformed these apparently quiescent regions of Arabia and Scandinavia quasi overnight into volcanoes of exuberant vitality and reckless enterprise. Both eruptions spent their force within a couple of centuries but left a permanent mark on the world. Both evolved in this time-span from savagery and destructiveness to splendid cultural achievement."
This is, indeed, a curious thing that Koestler has noted. Of course, we are reminded again of the article quoted above which said:

Recent scientific discoveries are shedding new light on why great empires such as Egypt, Babylon and Rome fell apart, giving way to the periodic "dark ages'' that punctuate human history. At least five times during the last 6,000 years, major environmental calamities undermined civilizations around the world.

Some researchers say these disasters appear to be linked to collisions with comets or fragments of comets such as the one that broke apart and smashed spectacularly into Jupiter five years ago.

The impacts, yielding many megatons of explosive energy, produced vast clouds of smoke and dust that circled the globe for years, dimming the sun, driving down temperatures and sowing hunger, disease and death. The last such global crisis occurred between AD 530 and 540-- at the beginning of the Dark Ages in Europe -- when Earth was pummeled by a swarm of cosmic debris.
That solves the problem of the eruptions in Arabia and the rise of Islam, and we already know that the eruption of Santorini - which may have been related to a swarm of cosmic debris as well - was connected to the "birth of Judaism," so we might also theorize that the "eruption" of the Vikings could have been related to some sort of crisis, localized or otherwise. After all, a Tunguska like event would be all that was needed.

Within a few decades, the Vikings had penetrated all the major waterways of Europe, conquered half of Ireland, colonized Iceland, conquered Normandy, sacked Paris, raided Germany, the Rhone delta, the gulf of Genoa, circumnavigated the Iberian peninsula and attacked Constantinople through the Mediterranean and the Dardanelles, coordinated with an attack down the Dnieper and across the Black Sea. A special prayer was formulated in Christendom: Lord deliver us from the fury of the Normans.

Again, Byzantium depended on Khazaria to block the advance of the Vikings.

This branch of norsemen who were called Rhos or Varangians, originated from eastern Sweden and were cousins to the Norwegians and Danes who raided Western Europe.

"These Varangian-Rus seem to have been a unique blend - unique even among their brother Vikings - combining the traits of pirates, robbers and meretricious merchants, who traded on their own terms, imposed by sword and battle-axe. They bartered furs, swords and amber in exchange for gold, but their principal merchandise were slaves."
For a century and a half, trade and diplomacy between the Byzantines and the Khazars and the Rus alternated with war. Slowly but surely, the Vikings built permanent settlements, becoming Slavonized by intermingling with their subjects and vassals - the Slavs along the Dnieper who were agricultural and more timid than the "Turks". This mixing of genes and cultures tamed the Rus and turned them into "Russians".

At first, the Rus were friendlier with the Khazars than with the Byzantines. The Rus even adopted the title "Kagan" for their ruler. However, all the while they were having "cultural exchanges" with the Khazars, the Rus were bringing the surrounding Slavs into their own fold. Considering the genetic data, this may be as much due to intermarriage between the Slavonic tribes, as due to conquest. Within a couple of decades, the Rus were receiving tribute from almost half of the former subjects of the Khazars!

When the town of Kiev, on the Dnieper river, passed into Rus hands, apparently without an armed struggle, it was the beginning of the end for Khazaria. There were still large communities of Khazar Jews in Kiev, and later, after the final destruction of Khazaria, they were joined by Khazar refugees.

A tribe called the Magyars now must come under our scrutiny. The Magyars seem to have originated in the forest regions of the northern Urals along with two other tribes, the Vogul and Ostyak. Probably at the time of the cometary bombardment that brought on the dark ages, these tribes were driven out of their forests and the Magyars, attached themselves as willing vassals to first the Huns and then the Khazars. There is no record of a single armed conflict between the Khazars and Magyars. Toynbee says that the Magyars "took tribute" on the Khazars' behalf from the Slav and Finn peoples.

At the time of the arrival of the Rus, the Magyars moved across the Don river to its West bank. One might assume, by the fact that they were allies of the Khazars, that they did this with the full permission of the Khazars and that it was intended to act as a check against the advancement of the Rus.

The Khazars compensated the Magyars for their loyalty by giving them a king, the founder of the first Magyar dynasty and then, they did something that they apparently had not done up to this point: intermarriage between the Magyar elite and several elite Khazar tribes took place. The Khazar Kagan gave a noble Khazar lady to the new king of the Magyars for his wife. There were no children of this union, but it is assumed that there were also marriages between her retainers and the members of the Magyar court.

At some point during this period, there also seems to have been a rebellion of three Khazar tribes, some of whom fled to the Magyars for refuge. As Koestler puts it: the Magyars received, metaphorically and literally, a blood transfusion from the Khazars. It could even be said that the Khazars became Magyars.

Until the middle of the tenth century, both the Magyar and Khazar languages were spoken in Hungary. The result of this double tongue is the mixed character of the modern Hungarian language. Though the Hungarians have ceased to be bilingual, there are still some two hundred loan-words from the Chuvash dialect of Turkish which the Khazars spoke.

There is some evidence to indicate that among the dissident Khazar tribes (the leading one was called Kabar), who de facto took over the leadership of the Magyar tribes, there were Jews, or adherents of a "judaizing religion". Some experts think that this rebellion was, in fact, connected with the religious reforms initiated by King Obadiah of the Khazars. Rabbinical law, strict rules, and other elements of Judaism would certainly have grated on a tribe of steppe warriors.

The alliance of the Magyars and Khazars came to an end when the Magyars crossed the Carpathian mountains and conquered the territory that was to become Hungary. In 862, they raided the East Frankish empire.

The Magyars seem to have acquired the raiding habit only in the second half of the ninth century - about the time when they received that critical blood-transfusion from the Khazars. The Kabars ... became the leading tribe, and infused their hosts with the spirit of adventure which was soon to turn them into the scourge of Europe, as the Huns had earlier been. They also taught the Magyars "those very peculiar and characteristic tactics employed since time immemorial by every Turkish nation - Huns, Avars, Turks, Pechenegs, Kumans - and by no other ... light cavalry using the old devices of simulated flight, of shooting while fleeing, of sudden charges with fearful, wolf-like howling."
In other words: "By way of deception, thou shalt do war..."

Thus, the Khazars were instrumental in establishing the Hungarian state, even in becoming the Hungarians. In the tenth century, the Hungarian Duke Taksony invited an unknown number of Khazars to settle in his domains. It is not unlikely that these Khazars were Jews.
Survival of the Fittest

Let's take a momentary break from the history and look at some present day observations. Steve Jones writes:

"Ashkenazim are quite distinct from their Mediterranean and Middle-Eastern co-religionists in the incidence of the disease and in the mutations responsible...

The genetic family tree of Jews from different parts of Europe shows that they are not a unique group, biologically distinct from other peoples around them. There is, though, evidence of common ancestry that gives Jews at least a partial identity of their own. In most places, there is overlap between the genes of the Jewish population and those of local non-Jews. There has been interchange; sometimes through recent marriage, but more often as a result of mating long ago....

The Y chromosomes of Jews are - unsurprisingly - not all the same; the idea of the sons of Abraham is a symbolic one. They do show that many males, some only distantly related to each other, have contributed to the genes of European Jewry. On the average, most Jewish populations contain more diversity for male lineages than for female (whose history is recorded in mitochondrial DNA). This means that there has been more invasion of the Jewish gene pool by the genes of non-Jewish men than of women. The Y chromosomes of Jewish men from the Balkans are rather unlike those of other European Jews, perhaps because there was more admixture in this unstable part of the world."

Judit Beres and C. R. Guglielmino write:

"Magyars, Jews, Gypsies, Germans, Slovaks, Kuns, Romanians, etc. In this very large study, Hungarian Jews were found to be highly distinct from all other groups residing in Hungary."

Bruce Schecter, a Hungarian physicist, paints the following picture of life in Hungary and Budapest at the beginning of the 20th century:

"At the turn of the century bankers, merchants, industrialists, artists, and intellectuals thronged the broad boulevards that ring [Budapest] or rode beneath them in Europe's first subway. Between 1890 and 1900 the population of Budapest had increased by more than 40 percent to over three-quarters of a million souls, making it the sixth largest city in Europe. Because of Budapest's lively cafes, boulevards, parks, and financial exchange, visitors called it the 'Little Paris on the Danube'. What would not become apparent for years was that while the cares were doing a booming business, the maternity wards of Budapest were churning out [Jewish] geniuses like a Ford assembly line.

Hungary's economic and intellectual flowering began with the Ausgleich of 1867, which established the dual monarchy with Austria. Under that agreement Hungary achieved something approaching independence from Austria; the Austrian Empire became the Austro-Hungarian Empire. With astonishing rapidity the engines of the industrial age and capitalism would transform Hungary. 'The operators of those mechanisms', writes historian Richard Rhodes, 'by virtue of their superior ambition and energy, but also by default, were Jews'.

Shortly after the establishment of the dual monarchy, discriminatory laws against Jews were repealed, opening to them all civic and political functions. The surge of Jewish immigration followed, paralleling the contemporaneous flood of Jewish immigrants from Russia to New York City.

Political power remained in the hands of the nobility, whose indifference to the gentile non-Hungarian minorities - nearly half the population - would keep a third of the gentiles illiterate as late as 1918, and most of them tied to the land. The Hungarian nobility, unwilling to dirty its hands on commerce, found allies in the Jews. By 1904 Hungarian Jews, who comprised about 5 percent of the population, accounted for about half of Hungary's lawyers and commercial businessmen, 60 percent of its doctors, and 80 percent of its financiers. Budapest Jews were also a dominant presence in the artistic, literary, musical, and scientific life of the country, which caused the growing anti-Semitic community to coin the derogatory label 'Judapest'.

The growing anti-Semitism would in later years cause many of the brightest members of the Hungarian Jewish community to flee their country. Some of the leading scientists and mathematicians, whose ideas and inventions would help form this century, were part of this tide of immigration. Among the better known were Leo Szilard, who was the first person to understand how chain reactions can unleash the power of the atom; John von Neumann, inventor of the electronic computer and game theory; and Edward Teller, the father of the hydrogen bomb. Less well known outside the world of science but equally influential were Theodor von Karman, the father of supersonic flight; George de Hevesy who received a Nobel Prize for his invention of the technique of using radioactive tracers that has had a revolutionary impact on virtually every field of science; and Eugene Wigner, whose exploration of the foundations of quantum mechanics earned him a Nobel Prize.

The list of the great Hungarian scientists could be extended almost indefinitely, but even outside the sciences the prominence of Hungarians is extraordinary. In music it would include the conductors Georg Solti, George Szell, Fritz Reiner, Antal Dorati, and Eugene Ormandy, and the composers Bela Bartok and Zoltan Kodaly. Hungarian visual arts in this century were dominated by Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, who founded the Chicago Institute of Design. Hollywood was even more influenced by the Magyar emigration. Movie moguls William Fox and Adolph Zukor were Budapest-born, as were Alexander Korda and his brothers, Vincent and Theodor, the director George Cukor, and the producer of Casablanca, Michael Curtisz. And of course, Zsa Zsa Gabor and her sisters were Hungarian, as were Paul Lukas and Erich Weiss, better known as Harry Houdini.

Trying to account for what the physicist Otto Frisch called the "galaxy of brilliant Hungarian expatriates", is a favorite activity in scientific circles. The leading theory, attributed to the theoretical physicist Fritz Houtermans, is that, "these people are really from Mars". Andrew Vazxonyi offers a particularly charming version of the extraterrestrial theory. "Well, at the beginning of the century", he says quite seriously, but with a twinkle in his eye, "some people from outer space landed on earth. They thought that the Hungarian women were the best-looking of all, and they took on the form of humans, and after a few years, they decided the Earth was not worth colonizing, so they left. Soon afterward this bunch of geniuses was born. That's the true story".

The actual explanation for Hungary's outpouring of genius is hard to find. Chance certainly played a role. But the strong intellectual values of the Jewish bourgeoisie, combined with the excellent Hungarian educational system, were the fertile field in which the random seeds of genetic chance could flourish."
Kevin MacDonald writes in The Culture of Critique: An Evolutionary Analysis of Jewish Involvement in Twentieth-Century Intellectual and Political Movements,

"Jews have indeed made positive contributions to Western culture in the last 200 years. But whatever one might think are the unique and irreplaceable Jewish contributions to the post-Enlightenment world, it is na�ve to suppose they were intended for the purpose of benefiting humanity solely or even primarily".

I would like to point out that the list of Jewish scientific achievements from the quote above includes atomic bombs and Game Theory. Science, strongly influenced by the important contributions of so many Jewish scientists, has indeed exploded - no pun intended - and it has brought mankind to the edge of self-destruction. Advances in mathematical, physical and computer sciences have brought about "applied game theory", where "wars" are called "games", and to "win the game" is to kill as many people as possible with as little cost as possible.
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