Hectored by Zionist wannabe archaeologists, ‘NYT’ recasts article on Jewish temples

US Politics
on 200 Comments

This is wild. The New York Times ran an article two days ago raising an archaeological question: Were the first and second Jewish temples really on the Jerusalem plateau where the Muslim holy sites are today in the occupied Old City?

Zionist writers soon jumped on the question. Jeffrey Goldberg, formerly an Israeli soldier, revealed himself as an archaeologist in this tweet directed at the New York Times reporter Rick Gladstone:

@rickgladstone Is there any doubt in your mind that the 2nd Temple stood on the Temple Mount?

He said that the article’s premise was “troubling.” And was soon joined by Liel Leibovitz at Tablet, in a rant that began:

Was the White House ever in Washington, D.C.? Can we ever really know for sure?

And that castigated Gladstone for “ignorance and malice” and “repulsive bad faith” in his line of questioning sources.

Leibovitz labelled Gladstone a “truther” on the issue; and Jeffrey Goldberg echoed Leibovitz’s mockery:

“Denying that a Jewish temple stood on the Temple Mount is akin to denying that the earth is not flat.”

Jeremy Burton of Boston’s Jewish Community Relations Council joined in:

Waiting for the NYT piece finding that there is no definitive archeological proof that Jesus was in Jerusalem.

Yigal Palmor, the spokesperson for the Jewish Agency, wrote:

Temple Mount denial upgraded from islamist propaganda to NY Times respectability.

And added this bizarre line:

Denying evidence will make u famous. Guess it’s better than shooting a President or a rock star.

The New York Times reporter bowed to the pressure. Late in the day Friday, Rick Gladstone directly informed Leibovitz and Goldberg on twitter:

@JeffreyGoldberg @liel I have corrected this article online, with a correction appended to the article.

The critical 2nd paragraph of the piece has now been changed to say the issue is not whether the temples were on the Temple Mount but where they were on the Temple Mount. As the correction at the end states:

An earlier version of this article misstated the question that many books and scholarly treatises have never definitively answered concerning the two ancient Jewish temples. The question is where precisely on the 37-acre Temple Mount site the temples had once stood, not whether the temples had ever existed there.

But the crazy part– as many of Gladstone’s Zionist critics are also pointing out on twitter– is that the original question is the only one the article really deals with:

Many Palestinians, suspicious of Israel’s intentions for the site, have increasingly expressed doubt that the temples ever existed — at least in that location. Many Israelis regard such a challenge as false and inflammatory denialism.

“This is a very politically loaded subject,” said Matthew J. Adams, Dorot director of the W. F. Albright Institute of Archaeological Research in Jerusalem. “It’s also an academically complex question.”

Gladstone then cites several other authorities, questioning whether the temples were even on the site:

Although the biblical text does not specify the exact site of Mount Moriah, the Israeli scholar Rivka Gonen, in her book “Contested Holiness: Jewish, Muslim and Christian Perspectives on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem,” says the reference has been widely interpreted to mean the high point on the hill above the City of David — the rock now under the Dome of the Rock.

Many historians have said independent scientific verification of such a reference is problematic.

“The sources for the first temple are solely biblical, and no substantial archaeological remains have been verified,” said Wendy Pullan, senior lecturer in the history and philosophy of architecture at the University of Cambridge, in the book “The Struggle for Jerusalem’s Holy Places.”

Mr. Adams said, “We just don’t have enough primary source data, textual or archaeological, to say where it was with any confidence.”…

Jane Cahill, an expert on Jerusalem’s early history who was a senior staff archaeologist for Hebrew University’s City of David Archaeological Project, said “nobody knows exactly” where the temples once stood, although “pretty powerful circumstantial evidence” suggests they were on the site.

“Because there have been no organized excavations there, and not likely to be, circumstantial evidence is probably all we’re going to have,” she said.

Archaeologists agree that far more information is known that corroborates the existence of the second temple at the site than the first.

Too bad the Times didn’t stick to its guns on the question. The appearance that it folded under pressure is confirmed by the fact that Gladstone tweeted his changes out to his assailants, Leibovitz and Goldberg. They are just performing a traditional Zionist role, in the tradition of Yigael Yadin and Moshe Dayan– archaeologists.

I have no idea where the temples stood; the issue is why the NYT would raise a question, presumably based on reporting, and then withdraw it under pressure from Zionists who hector you as a “truther.” And if it was really wrong, why not take down the whole article?

Goldberg also made this tweet:

Proof of no progress in the Middle East: The never-ending contention that no Jewish Temple stood on the Temple Mount

As if that’s the heart of the problem: the Arabs will not recognize Jewish historical claims to the land. When the real issues in the conflict are right before your eyes, ongoing land confiscation, and rule based on religion and ethnicity.

Thanks to Scott Roth.

 

 

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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200 Responses

  1. Marshall
    October 11, 2015, 2:48 pm

    God, could Liel Liebowitz be any more of a tool? First he proclaims Steve Salaita professionally unqualified for an appointment in Indigenous Studies, and now he joke-peer-reviews credentialed archaeologists regarding the location of the temple. He’s a shame to the profession of journalism. My sympathy to those whose reputations are worsened by sharing that profession with him.

    • Krauss
      October 11, 2015, 3:50 pm

      He can only get employment in Tablet. Speaking of which, what happened to the Jewish press? The Times of Israel is often good with news, but I’ve tried reading their analysis and it’s mostly very shallow or just re-packaging conventional wisdom. Their in-depth reporting is dead. Tablet is clickbait with a racist tinge. Forward does well on the reporting beat, especially for being so poor, when was the last time that newspaper was cited in any media for anything?

  2. Maximus Decimus Meridius
    October 11, 2015, 3:14 pm

    This kind of reminds me of the furore created a few years back when the BBC was due to run a documentary questinging the myth of the ‘exile from Jerusalem. Suddenly, at the last minute, they cancelled the programme, citing “editorial” reasons, but the general consensus was that they caved into pressure due to the ‘sensitivity’ of the issues (even though the research had been done by an Israeli archeologist).

    A few months later, they did in fact air the documentary – but on the little watched BBC4, and late on a Sunday night. I watched it, and was struck by how bland and uncontroversial it was – at least to those of us with any sort of knowledge on the subject. And yet, the way the BBC approaced it, you’d swear it was Holocaust denial or something. Then, after the documentary they had a ’round table discussion’ – every single of the participants was Israeli and/or Zionist. Not a single Palestinian was asked to contribute. That would have been too ‘controversial’, I suppose.

    • benedict
      October 11, 2015, 3:46 pm

      Exile is not a myth. It is the plain and simple understanding of what happened in Israel following the destruction of Jerusalem based on all available sources. I have a pretty good knowledge of ancient jewish sources and non of the, says otherwise.

      • Keith
        October 11, 2015, 4:14 pm

        BENEDICT- “Exile is not a myth.”

        Of course it is, the Romans never exiled an entire population. Even Ben-Gurion believed that the Palestinians were Jews who had converted to Islam.

        “Israel’s first Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion evidently agreed that most Palestinians have Jewish roots, according to Arutz Sheva: “If we investigate the origins of the Felahim, there is no doubt that much Jewish blood runs in their veins.” (Rachel Avraham) http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/analysis/most-palestinians-in-judea-samaria-were-formerly-jews/2015/01/06/0/

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        October 11, 2015, 4:18 pm

        There is NO evidence of mass exile from ”Israel”. None. Jews were exiled from Jerusalem after they were defeated by the Romans, but only to the neighbouring areas. They were never exiled beyond the Levant. In the first instance, the Romans simply didn’t have the means to transport entire populations over long distances – there were no trains or large passenger ships. Secondly, even if they could exile the population, why would they? Who would pay taxes and farm the land if it was empty?

        The Romans had no history of exiling populations en masse, and there is no evidence that they did so with the Jews. All of the ‘experts’ interviewed in the discussion I mentioned above – every single one of them, as I said, a Zionist – agreed that ‘exile’ is a myth. No serious historian accepts it these days, yet still it’s lazily peddled by Zionists.

      • Mooser
        October 11, 2015, 4:51 pm

        “I have a pretty good knowledge of ancient jewish sources….”

        Now he goes into the Mel Brooks “2000 year old man” schtik.

      • Citizen
        October 11, 2015, 5:37 pm

        The Romans never had a policy of exiling any conquered people; what they did was tax them.

      • benedict
        October 11, 2015, 7:27 pm

        Keith, MDM-
        You are simply quoting shlomo Sand, but sand got his history wrong neither did he carefully think thru his argument.
        1. The argument that “Romans never exiled people” is simply wrong. In fact Romans occasionally did much worse than merely exiling people. Massacre was an acceptable method of Rome in its wars against enemies in general and against rebels in particular. Despite its drawbacks massacre has advantages: (a) achieving military superiority if not possible by other means; (b) deterrence; (c) establishing absolute control over areas of strategic importance` (d) political necessity. In the case of provincia iudea all four factors were present. The Romans did not bother to distinguish between combatants and civilians. The history of Rome is full of wars ending with the massacre of entire populations even without any “operational justification”.
        I recommend the book by Benjamin Isaac “The invention of racism in classic antiquity”. Two examples will suffice. Augustus , founder of the Roman Empire, writes on a monument erected at Rome: “I preferred not to destroy foreign nations when I could forgive them without fear”. Obviously there was no fundamental prohibition on the destruction of foreign population’s. That was the fate of people’s that the rulers of Rome could not “forgive without fear”.
        The philosopher Seneca (committed suicide in 65 AD, a year before the outbreak of the Great Jewish Revolt) writes: “We complain about killings of individuals – but boast of wars in which we butcher entire people “.
        Slaughter and massacre where an integral part of the history of Rome and as history shows, there is no example of genocide that is not accompanied by a phenomenon called nowadays “forced displacement” or “forced migration”.
        2. Nobody knows whether there was a roman formal edict of exile. No official documentation survived from that period. Nevertheless Exile can be the outcome of a brutal struggle whether it is declared policy or not.
        The loss of political self-rule, the utter annihilation of the largest and most important city in which where trapped many tens of thousands of visitors who came for Passover, the economic havoc created as a result in the surrounding countryside, the massive land confiscations in Judea, hundreds of thousands dead and sold to slavery. in any context, modern or ancient, these conditions will inevitably lead to mass exile of refugees similar to what we see in Syria today.
        Indeed the crushing of the great rebellion (and the Qitos war and Bar kosba war that followed) was the beginning of a prolonged but consistent process that ultimately reduced the Jewish majority in all parts of Israel to a tiny minority.
        3. The argument that the Romans “didn’t have the means to move large populations” is really silly. It seems that Sand never heard about the flourishing slave trade in the roman times in which huge populations where moved all over the Mediterranean. In fact the center of slave trade was the tiny Aegean island of Delos.

      • Laurent Weppe
        October 11, 2015, 8:02 pm

        I’m certain that the great many Jews oppressed by the Byzantines as well as the thousands of Jews slaughtered or raped by the crusaders would love it if they knew that their distant heirs decided out of self-serving political expediency to deny the very existence of their many torments.

      • echinococcus
        October 11, 2015, 8:50 pm

        “Benedict”
        “The argument that “Romans never exiled people” is simply wrong. In fact Romans occasionally did much worse than merely exiling people. Massacre…”

        You could have avoided the long travail of writing, and of course the embarrassment, if you had tried to answer the question. It was about documentary proof of mass exile; not massacres, which were as bad in those days with the Romans as today with the Zionists –but without the modern Zionist-US weapons.
        Your response: no proof at all, only some extrapolation from AD 2015 Syria and reference to the shipping of slaves.

      • Sibiriak
        October 11, 2015, 9:12 pm

        benedict: Exile is not a myth.
        ————————-
        Yes, it is.

        And it is not just Sand making that argument. The myth of exile is widely rejected by historians of all stripes, Zionist and anti-Zionist.

        For example, the eminent historian Israel Bartal, a strong critic of Sand on many points, writes:

        Although the myth of an exile from the Jewish homeland (Palestine) does exist in popular Israeli culture, it is negligible in serious Jewish historical discussions. Important groups in the Jewish national movement expressed reservations regarding this myth or denied it completely.” (Haaretz, 7/2008) (emphasis added)

        [Bartal Israel is Avraham Harman Professor of Jewish History, and the former Dean of the Faculty of Humanities at Hebrew University (2006–2010). Since 2006 he is the chair of the Historical Society of Israel. He served as director of the Center for Research on the History and Culture of Polish Jewry, and the academic chairman of the Project of Jewish Studies in Russian at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. –Wikipedia]
        ——————-

        Israel Jacob Yuval, a professor of Jewish History and the Academic Head of Scholion-Interdisciplinary Research Center in Jewish Studies at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem has written a very detailed historical study of the myth of exile:

        “The Myth of the Jewish Exile from the Land of Israel”
        https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B-5-JeCa2Z7hV2szWm1VYmVlckE/edit?pli=1
        http://muse.jhu.edu/login?auth=0&type=summary&url=/journals/ckn/v012/12.1yuval.html

        The myth I will examine is that of the exile of the Jews from their land as a result of the destruction of the Second Temple, and I will trace its vicissitudes and history. This myth is very common not only in Israel but also in the West.

        […]It is impossible to ignore the parallel between the myth of Jews driven from their historical homeland and the opposing myth: the abandonment of the land by the Palestinians. The common Zionist view presents the flight of the Palestinians from their settlements in the years 1947–48 as “leaving.” That word has moral and political consequences.

        In an article published in Haaretz (“On a Sin that We Did Not Commit,” September 17, 1998), the journalist Dan Margalit wrote: “If the Arabs left their homes—mainly on the initiative of their leaders, sometimes also urged by Israeli soldiers—the responsibility for the refugee problem lies first of all upon the Arab world and the Palestinian leadership.”

        Leaving is a voluntary act, indirectly implying that the land was forfeited; whereas exile is coercion and apparently does not infringe upon the exiles’ connection with the land or on their rights of ownership to it. The description of the flight of the Palestinians as “leaving” is meant to deprive them of the status of victim, to place the responsibility for their fate upon them or upon their leadership, and to justify refusal to allow them a right of return.

        In contrast, the description of the Jews’ departure as “exile” retains the image of victim, frees Jews of the responsibility for leaving the land for so long a time, and justifies their right to return to it today. The difference between leaving and being exiled is the difference between denying the Palestinian right to return and granting the law of return to Jews.

        ——————-

        See also:

        “The Jews Weren’t Driven into Exile by the Romans “
        http://www.jeremiahhaber.com/2007/07/no-rivkele-there-wasnt-roman-exile-of.html

        (Haber is an orthodox Jewish studies and philosophy professor)

        And:

        “Israel and Exile: a Nation in Need of a Founding Myth”

        http://www.richardsilverstein.com/2013/11/07/israel-and-exile-a-nation-in-need-of-a-founding-myth/

        Despite the double destruction of Jerusalem in the first and second wars, there was no forced exile. Rome did not expel all Jews from the province. They allowed any Jew who had not rebelled to remain. After the second war, no Jews were permitted to reside in Jerusalem or its environs. This, in turn, led to these survivors fleeing north and taking up residence in the flourishing Jewish towns of the Galilee.

        They were joined by rabbis who moved their religious academies there and created a form of Jewish continuity with what had previously existed. They in turn created new rituals like the Passover haggadah and seder, which affirmed that despite the Temple’s destruction, Jews maintained a direct connection to the revelation of the Torah on Mount Sinai.

        This was a radical concept because in Judaism, before the Temple’s loss, religious worship meant offering sacrifices and making pilgrimage three times a year during the major holidays to the site of the Temple in Jerusalem. These new traditions comforted Jews by showing them they could maintain their religion despite this traumatic loss.

        The assumption that if Jerusalem died, then Jewish life in Israel died with it falsifies the reality for Jews on the ground. Thus, a fundamental premise of Zionist history–exile and the centrality of Jerusalem to Jewish survival–is proven to be a myth. Jews couldn’t return from exile after 2,000 years because they never left.

        But the modern Zionist narrative has Rome exiling the entire population of Judea as punishment for the revolt. This, in turn, leads to the far-flung Jewish Diaspora and the yearning of these Jews over the centuries to return to their ancient homeland.

      • tree
        October 11, 2015, 11:15 pm

        Sibiriak and echinococcus,

        If you look at the comments section of Sibiriak’s link to richardsilverstein.com you’ll notice that either “benedict” is richard’s commenter “eli” and he cut and pasted his own comment from November , 2013 in the comments here, or else they both cut and pasted it from some other source, maybe the hasbara manual.

        From that link I also found a link to what seems to be the BBC documentary MDM is talking about. For anyone interested its here

        http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x16r9hy_searching-for-exile-truth-or-myth-couchtripper_news

        Warning: it has the irritating propensity to abruptly shove a commercial in here and there.

      • echinococcus
        October 11, 2015, 11:56 pm

        Tree – If every propaganda stipendiate had to write his own texts, especially if it had to be relevant, then it would come too expensive to the American taxpayer. “Benedict” has already made known a marked propensity for pre-digested stuff.

      • Sibiriak
        October 12, 2015, 1:31 am

        Here’s another angle on the Myth of Jewish Exile , a topic which I believe is of great importance in understanding and combating Zionist ideology.

        ———————–
        “Exile, History, and the Nationalization of Jewish Memory: Some Reflections on the Zionist Notion of History and Return”

        Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev

        http://www.levantine-journal.org//NetisUtils/srvrutil_getPDF.aspx/1apzin/JLS%203.2_Amnon%20Raz-Krakotzkin.pdf

        Zionist interpretation created a periodization of Jewish history in which the term “exile” was used, as an exclusively political term, to describe the period when there was no Jewish sovereignty in Palestine. The historians concerned with the matter sought to detach the idea of exile from its theological framework and from the destruction of the Temple and to present it as identical to the “Middle Ages” in the conventional understanding of the term in European historiography.

        This was not considered a different category but the exclusive interpretation of the term. Thus, the concept of exile was reduced to the absence of political independence, and the European historical model was adopted as the framework for the interpretation of the Jewish concept of redemption and for the reinterpretation of the Jewish concept of time.

        The need to distinguish the writing of Jewish history from the traditional consciousness was clearly indicated by the Zionist historian (and later, minister of education) Ben-Zion Dinur when he claimed that the Arab conquest of Palestine in the seventh century marked the beginning of a new period in Jewish history. Dinur distinguished between what he called the “popular conception” of exile, whose core was the destruction of the Temple, and the “historical conception.”

        He moved the beginning of the historical exile forward to the time of the Arab conquest and what he called the “capture” of the country by “foreigners, which was perfectly in accord with the way he treated the Palestinians of his time.

        Dinur claimed that only after the Islamic conquest did the Jewish community in Palestine cease being a central factor in the life of the Jewish people and one that gave the country its particular character.

        He denied the “popular” (namely, the traditional Jewish) interpretation that was specifically linked to the destruction of the Temple: “Tradition and the popular view do not distinguish between the end of our people’s rule over the country and not having its soil under their feet. For them, the two things are the same, but from the historical point of view, one must distinguish between these two situations.”

        The nationalization of the theological concepts was based on their dissociation from the destruction of the Temple, which Dinur regarded as “the end of our people’s rule,” and on the denial of the traditional concept of Jewish consciousness, including that of the pre-Zionist Jewish community in Palestine. Accordingly, nationalization helped to distance “Jewish history” from the Jewish-Christian polemic and to establish a common Jewish-Christian context—one that included the Jews as part of the West and part of history—and direct it against Islam.

        The collection of medieval historical documents compiled and edited by Dinur, Israel in Exile, begins with the Muslim conquest and ends with Sabbatianism, the messianic upheaval of the seventeenth century, which was considered to be the “awakening” of the Jewish people from its “exilic passivity.” He did not title the multivolume collection “Israel in the Middle Ages” but rather Israel in Exile.

        The ambivalent identification of exile with the Middle Ages paralleled the relationship between modern times, or the “new era” (which implied a dialectical progress toward Zionism), and “redemption,” in which Zionism was seen as the complete fulfillment of the historical-redemptive process. It also enabled the (obviously distorted) perception of Zionist colonization as a war of liberation against the “Muslim conquerors.

        The act of shifting the historical turning point away from the destruction of the Temple, as all the Zionist historians did in one way or another, was perceived as overcoming the religious aspect of the collective definition (though not necessarily of Jewish practice). But the narrative remained within the boundaries of the religious myth of redemption, in both its Jewish and Christian forms, constituting
        an interpretation of this myth. [emphasis added]

        —————————

        Raz-Krakotzkin’s idea that the “nationalization of the theological concepts was based on their dissociation from the destruction of the Temple” suggests an interesting interpretation of recent events: the increasing focus on the destruction of the Temple and its rebuilding represents an increasing theologizing of secular national concepts”, marking the religious turn in Israeli politics and society.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        October 12, 2015, 5:10 am

        “You are simply quoting shlomo Sand,”

        No I’m not. Like I said, no serious historian buys the ‘exile’ myth anymore.

        “The argument that “Romans never exiled people” is simply wrong.”

        I suppose that’s why you haven’t been able to give a single example of when the Romans exiled an entire population.

        “Nobody knows whether there was a roman formal edict of exile. No official documentation survived from that period.”

        And yet you are certain that it happened all the same? The exile of an entire population would leave behind records of its own. Where were the ships used to exile them? Where were the commands to the many, many Roman soldies who would have to manage the logistics of it all? Are you seriously saying that hundreds of thousands of men, women and children could just be moved thousands of kilometres, and there would be no record of it?

        “”It seems that Sand never heard about the flourishing slave trade in the roman times in which huge populations where moved all over the Mediterranean.”

        This just emphasises your inability to come up with a single example of an entire population being exiled. The slave trade was an entirely different thing. Slaves ere moved all the time, like merchandise, but the number of one ‘shipment’ would come nowhere near that of the entire poulation of Palestine. Plus, as you’ve said, the slave trade was well documented. Where is the documentation, or any other kind of evidence, for the exile of the entire population of Palestine?

      • bryan
        October 12, 2015, 5:35 pm

        Why do we have to keep fighting these stupid battles that were settled long ago? It is like Flanders is still a battlefield, as it was in my grandfather’s day – well no – actually Germany, Britain and France are now allies and economic partners. Move on!

    • JWalters
      October 11, 2015, 6:47 pm

      That reminds me of an excellent article on the myths of Zionism –

      “When right-wing Israeli Rabbis speak of driving non-Jews out of the land that God supposedly gave to the Israelites and their descendants, these Rabbis may be speaking with full faith, but faith is by definition an unshakable belief in something that taken by itself cannot be proven.”
      https://consortiumnews.com/2015/01/03/israeli-scholar-disputes-founding-myth-4/

      The United States of America, Constitutionally dedicated to the abolition of official government religion, is at war to protect some other country’s official government religion, and the many crimes and injustices that flow from that. These crimes and injustices exemplify the very reason America’s founders separated church from state. This situation can only mean that America is being subverted by nefarious forces.

      And financing the fanatical rock worshipers are the fanatical gold worshipers, who are also selling the ammunition. Where have you gone, Mike Wallace?

      • miriam6
        October 11, 2015, 7:58 pm

        @benedict ( October 11, 2015, 7:27 pm )

        The Jews were banned from entering Jerusalem after the Roman destruction of the Temple. That alone would have surely been considered an exile by the Jews.

      • Mooser
        October 11, 2015, 8:52 pm

        And what’s the going rate for a 2000 year old exile? How much do the Gentiles owe us? What’s my cut? Really, I don’t mind if it’s less than your’s.

      • Sibiriak
        October 11, 2015, 9:31 pm

        miriam6 : The Jews were banned from entering Jerusalem after the Roman destruction of the Temple. That alone would have surely been considered an exile by the Jews.
        —————

        A ban from entering Jerusalem is not at all equivalent to a national exile from “the land of Israel”.

        “The first point to make is that well before the revolt against Rome in 66-70 c.e., there were Jewish communities outside Palestine, most notably in Babylonia and in Egypt, but elsewhere as well. References to the dispersal of the Jewish people throughout the civilized world are found in the book of Esther, Josephus, and Philo. There is no indication that these communities were small, satellite communities.

        Second, there is no contemporary evidence – i.e., 1st and 2nd centuries c.e. – that anything like an exile took place. The Romans put down two Jewish revolts in 66-70 c.e. and in 132-135 c.e. According to Josephus, the rebels were killed, and many of the Jews died of hunger. Some prisoners were sent to Rome, and others were sold in Libya. But nowhere does Josephus speak of Jews being taken into exile. As we shall see below, there is much evidence to the contrary. There was always Jewish emigration from the Land of Israel, as the quote above from Baron indicates.

        The first mention of the exile of the Jews occurs in remarks attributed to the third century Palestinian rabbi, R. Yohanan that are found in the Babylonian Talmud, a work that received its final recension several centuries later (c. 500 c.e.): “Our House has been destroyed, our Temple burnt, and we ourselves exiled from our land” (Gittin, 56a). The editor/s of the Talmud referred this statement to the Roman exile.

        Similar statements can be found elsewhere in the Babylonian Talmud attributing to rabbis living in the Land of Israel the view that the Romans were responsible for the destruction of the House, the burning of the temple, and the exile from the land.

        But if one examines other Babylonian sources, and most sources from the Land of Israel, the statements most likely refer to the First Temple, and the exile by the Babylonians. There is, after all, something odd in having rabbis living in the Land of Israel bemoaning an exile from the Land of Israel. Yuval summarizes the sources as follows:

        “In other words, it seems that the triple expression—destruction of the House, burning of the Temple, exile from the land—originally (in the sources from the Land of Israel) referred to the First Temple and were applied to the Second Temple only in Babylonia.10

        In the Tannaitic and early Amoraic sources, Rome is accused only of destroying the Temple, not of exiling the people from their land. A broad historical and national outlook, one that viewed the “Exile of Edom” (Rome being identified with the biblical Edom) as a political result of forced expulsion, did not survive from this period. Nor would such a view have been appropriate to the political reality and the conditions of Jewish settlement in the Land of Israel, which were certainly very well known to the members of that generation.”

        In fact, Chaim Milikowsky, professor and past chairman of the Talmud department at Bar Ilan university, has argued that in 2nd and 3rd century tannaitic sources, the Hebrew term rendered as “exile” has the meaning of political subjugation rather than physically being driven from the land (cited in Yuval, p. 19, n.1) ” (emphasis added)

        http://www.jeremiahhaber.com/2007/07/no-rivkele-there-wasnt-roman-exile-of.html

      • Kris
        October 11, 2015, 9:54 pm

        @miriam6: “The Jews were banned from entering Jerusalem after the Roman destruction of the Temple. That alone would have surely been considered an exile by the Jews.”

        Such suffering, miriam6! No wonder Jews are still upset 2000 years later!!!!!!!!!!!

        If being banned from entering Jerusalem still hurts Jews after a few millenia, I guess the Muslims who have had their access to Al-Aqsa Mosque disrupted this year have every right to be furious at the Israeli Jews who have done this.

      • YoniFalic
        October 12, 2015, 9:24 am

        The Hellenistic Greek-speaking Judaic population, which was the largest component of the Judaic population within the Roman Empire, seems to have been almost completely uninterested in the Jerusalem Temple. The foremost intellectual of Hellenistic Judaism, Philo of Alexandria, never mentioned making pilgrimage to the Jerusalem Temple and quite possiby never made a pilgrimage.

        The situation in Mesopotamia, the cradle of Rabbinic Judaism, seems to have been the same. The convert Queen Helena of Adiabene and her two sons that all moved to Jerusalem seem to have been exceptions.

        Even before the destruction of the Temple, Judean Temple religion was a minority or minor intellectual current within ancient Judaism.

        When Julian the Apostate offered to rebuild the Temple the Talmudic sages living in Judea and Galilee showed little interest and could be considered hostile. They were probably reluctant to support a new Temple because a Temple priesthood would compete with the authority of the Talmudic sages.

        BTW, Josephus, who was actually present in Palestine at the time, blames the Judean rebels for the destruction of the Temple although he says a Roman soldier started the fire. The Romans, who equated El Yahweh with Saturnus/Kronos, whose face was also hidden, were aghast at the blasphemy that the Judeans committed and took over the worship and sacrifices at the site of the Temple in an effort to propitiate El for the desecration that the Judeans had committed.

    • Veni Vidi Vici
      October 13, 2015, 11:40 pm

      First off exile isn’t a myth, just as the location of the temple mount is an established fact, corroborated by all chroniclers and commentators of ancient times be they roman, Jewish, arab, or Pagan. Just as contemporary sources unanimously agree on the location of the temple mount. See the responses of the experts quoted by the NYT: http://www.tabletmag.com/scroll/194129/scholars-debunk-times-article-on-temple-mount?utm_source=tabletmagazinelist&utm_campaign=7d7764aadd-Tuesday_October_13_201510_13_2015&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c308bf8edb-7d7764aadd-207107613

  3. traintosiberia
    October 11, 2015, 3:21 pm

    This explains the silence and blackout on the discussion of the book
    – The Incention of the Jewish People , by Shlomo Sand.
    It lso says a lot about the pressure on the gatekeeper.
    Two days back NPR was showcasing Mr Ross and his book – Dommed to Succeed . But never any invitation to those who spoke about the Israeli chokehold on US Middle East policy .

    • JWalters
      October 11, 2015, 7:17 pm

      Speaking of gatekeepers, since AOL took over HuffPost they have been scrubbing history from its archives. The articles and blogs are documents that future historians will comb through to understand today’s events. I recently discovered an analysis had been deleted at HuffPost. This analyis, by Sharmine Narwani, showed how Israel repeatedly provoked conflict with the Palestinians when things had calmed down, and people were starting to think about peace talks again.

      Doing some searching, I found a newer article by Sharmine Narwani describing how her blogs started being rejected after AOL took over. Eventually that included also scrubbing her past posts. This is like the Soviet Politburo deleting people from historical photographs!

      The sub-head for her article is –
      “The battle for narratives is the frontline of this war, and it is a dirty one.”
      http://www.veteranstoday.com/2012/03/07/syria-censorship-at-aol-huffington-post/

    • miriam6
      October 12, 2015, 8:05 am

      @Kris

      I really see no reason for your snotty and childish response to my comment.

      In the context of my comment I was clearly talking about how Jews at the time would have felt at being barred from visiting Jerusalem by the Romans.

      In any case with your reference to Muslims being prevented access to THEIR Holy places in Jerusalem by modern day Zionists it seems to me you are accepting my point that the ancient Jews would have taken the Roman imposed ban refusing Jews access to Jerusalem as a form of exile imposed on them by an outside imperialist power.

      • Kris
        October 12, 2015, 11:25 am

        Mrm6, if you click on the first “reply” link that is directly above whatever you are commenting on, your comments will appear in the correct place. For example, if you had clicked on “reply” following the comment by “JWalters October 11, 2015, 6:47 pm,” your comment would have appeared in the appropriate place.

        I don’t think my response was “snotty and childish,” but maybe you found it unclear. I think it is pointless to care about what people felt about anything 2000 years ago, unless you are a scholar who studies the period, and insane to nurture grievances for thousands of years.

    • miriam6
      October 12, 2015, 8:12 am

      @Sibiriak

      That there was an already established Jewish diaspora outside Palestine and Jerusalem makes no difference to my argument
      The ban on visiting Jerusalem imposed by the Romans would have affected those Jews too.
      If Palestinians choose to describe the restrictions on their freedom of movement to Jerusalem and their holy sites as a form of exile imposed by colonialists / an imperial power I doubt you would disagree.
      Palestinians would ascribe these restrictions as part of an attempt to ethnically and culturally cleanse Jerusalem of a significant Muslim presence and heritage.

      There is no doubt that in ancient times with the destruction of the Temple that the Romans had embarked on a clear policy of imperialistic de – Judaizing Jerusalem

      • Sibiriak
        October 12, 2015, 9:26 am

        miriam6: The ban on visiting Jerusalem imposed by the Romans would have affected those Jews too.
        ————–

        A ban on visiting Jerusalem in no way constitutes the Exile of the Jewish People from the Land of Israel. A ban on visiting Jerusalem would not expel the Jewish population en masse and turn them into a nation Wandering Jews wandering across Europe, as the Myth of Exile tells us.

        ————–

        “If Palestinians choose to describe the restrictions on their freedom of movement to Jerusalem and their holy sites as a form of exile imposed by colonialists / an imperial power I doubt you would disagree.”

        Wrong. I would disagree strongly. Restrictions on their freedom of movement to Jerusalem I would call “restrictions on freedom of movement within Occupied Palestinian Territory.” In no way would I say that such restrictions, by themselves, were tantamount to the exile of the Palestinian people from Palestine. That’s would be absurd.
        ——————

        “there is no doubt that in ancient times with the destruction of the Temple that the Romans had embarked on a clear policy of imperialistic de – Judaizing Jerusalem

        And there is zero doubt that the “de-Judaizing Jerusalem” does NOT constitute an Exile of the Jewish People from the Land of Israel.

        And that’s why the eminent Jewish historian Israel Bartel wrote: “Although the myth of an exile from the Jewish homeland (Palestine) does exist in popular Israeli culture, it is negligible in serious Jewish historical discussions.”

  4. traintosiberia
    October 11, 2015, 3:28 pm

    Evangelicals and End Timers will throw a fit on main thoroughfare leading to Congress if the connections were doubted . Their own survival are threatened by this sort of subtle academic game changing findings

  5. Krauss
    October 11, 2015, 3:51 pm

    The moment I read the article I knew they were going to change it. The NYT has shown itself over and over again to be subject to pressure from Zionists, as they silence Palestinian voices. It’s a clear pattern.

  6. lysias
    October 11, 2015, 4:17 pm

    I have no idea where exactly the first temple (if it existed) was. But isn’t the location of Herod’s second temple well established?

    • Abuadam
      October 11, 2015, 4:40 pm

      The Arab, whose people were forced to covert to Judaism, Herod?

    • RoHa
      October 11, 2015, 7:10 pm

      No.

    • Veni Vidi Vici
      October 13, 2015, 11:42 pm

      The location of both temples are well established with universal acceptance among experts both contemporary and ancient. As a matter of fact the reason the Umayyad Dynasty built the dome of the rock on the temple mount was because it was the holiest site in the world to Jews.

      • bryan
        October 15, 2015, 6:18 am

        @Veni Vidi Vici (by the way a well-chosen moniker – I probably don’t need to ask which land you conquered, or perhaps you simply admire Roman imperialism!?)

        You need to clarify what you are saying. You variously assert (1) “The location of both temples are well established with universal acceptance among experts both contemporary and ancient”; (2) “the location of the [T]emple [M]ount is an established fact, corroborated by all chroniclers and commentators of ancient times be they [R]oman, Jewish, [A]rab, or Pagan”; (3) “There actually is an archaeological consensus”; (4) “the location of the [T]emple [M]ount is undisputed among the archaeological community”

        Surely “consensus”, “well-established”, “undisputed”, and “established fact” are not synonyms, so at least some of your statements are wrong. For instance, I can say that there is a “well-established international consensus” that refugees have a right of return and that the conquest of territory by war is illegitimate, but I would stop short of saying these are “undisputed established facts”.

        I assume you have a little understanding of archaeology so I am sure you will concede that archaeology is a very imprecise, interpretive science (if science it be) which operates by locating artifacts and making deductions based on their relative location, compares styles of architecture or pottery or inscriptions or whatever, to establish chronological sequences sometimes aided by imprecise chemical dating methods like C14. Please offer us a full list of all the artifacts that have been discovered that demonstrate conclusively either the existence or the location of the various temples. (Would this include Ron Wyatt’s discovery of the Ark of the Covenant in his excavations below Temple Mount?: http://wyattmuseum.com/arkofthecovenant.htm)

        There is another factor to consider when either religion or politics intrude into the arena of archaeology. Dealers in artifacts are frequently forgers and archaeologists (especially Biblical, Talmudic, or Islamic) can be fraudulent, and even if not, come with such closed minds that they often find what they were searching for. The archaeology of Jerusalem is especially afflicted with this disease, and indeed many of the leading soldiers of Zion (e.g. Yigal Yadin and Moshe Dayan) deliberately sought to dig from the ground “ancient truths” that would confirm their ideology. (see this account, for instance, for the ease with which archaeologists “sacrifice myth for truth” : http://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/biblianazar/esp_biblianazar_56.htm) I need scarcely mention the Shroud of Turin, the “remains” of Noah’s Ark unearthed on Ararat or the remains of Pharaoh’s Chariots located under the Red Sea.

        You will not need reminding of how many discoveries that have “revolutionized” our understanding of the past have in the end proved to be highly difficult to interprete. The Cyrus cylinder was interpreted as corroborating that king’s efforts to repatriate the Jews from Babylon (confirming Ezra’s account) even though it makes no reference to Jews, Judea or Jerusalem. The James Ossuary provided direct evidence of the life of Jesus, until the Israel Antiquities Authority found it to be a forgery. The Jehoash Inscription confirmed biblical accounts of the rebuilding of Solomon’s Temple until the IAA also declared this a modern forgery. After much expert testimony the authenticity of these artifacts is still unclear – the case for them being genuine or fraudulent is still not agreed. If leading experts in the field struggle to determine whether the JI is a genuine original item, a later copy or a modern forgery then we must conclude that very little in archaeology is “indisputable”.

        The recent NYT article controversy clearly demonstrates the ease with which blind religious faith and fanatical political agendas can so easily overpower the ambiguities and uncertainties that are inherent in archaeology. You seem to belong to one of the former schools, but wild assertions, without concrete evidence, rarely fare well on a site which boasts a readership better informed and more inclined to weigh evidence and consider alternatives than your average polemical website.

        As to my own take on the matter. It would be interesting to know more about the temples, but whatever emerged would be irrelevant to the current status. The Third Temple advocates are clearly dangerous lunatics. I am familiar enough with the elaborate myths and downright lies developed in this part of the world to be suspicious of all claims of absolute certainty. A city of David location certainly seems very plausible on the basis of ancient eye-witness accounts claiming the temple was lower than the Roman fortress, and adjacent to the Pool of Siloam would make eminent sense assuming the need for copious supplies of water for ritual bathing and washing away the entrails of butchered livestock. See the numerous links that Roha offered – can you provide a categorical refutation of such claims rather than just a smug assurance that you and every chronicler and commentator, whether Roman, Jewish, Arab or Pagan (rather sweeping don’t you think) contradicts the idea.

      • Veni Vidi Vici
        October 15, 2015, 1:13 pm

        First, my username refers not to imperialism, but rather a prediction of how I will fare in debates taking place on forum’s such as these.
        And to share with you some of the basis of my claims about the temple mount, let me give you a quote from Jodi Magness, one of the scholars quoted in the New York Time’s Article:

        “Literary/historical sources leave little doubt that there were two successive ancient temples in Jerusalem dedicated to the God of Israel, the first destroyed in 586 B.C.E. and the second destroyed in 70 C.E. These same sources, as well as archaeological remains (e.g., the Temple Mount platform as it exists today, which is a product of Herod’s reconstruction), indicate that these temples stood somewhere on the Temple Mount. The only real question, then, is where exactly the temple(s) stood on the Temple Mount…I do not know of any legitimate or credible scholars who doubt the existence of the two temples or who deny that they stood somewhere on the Temple Mount.”. Furthermore if you ever visit Jerusalem, you can see the physical evidence, such as the Western Wall, Ir David, or the Tunnels beneath the Temple Mount. And yes there have been an excavation, now it was an illegal excavation on behalf of the waqf, but they did excavate the temple mount, and insure that they ground all the excavated material into rubble, the remainder of which however still indicates the existence of the temple, with artifacts such as the Hebraic seal which is still largely intact. Topographically, Archaeologically, Historically, and Architecturally it is quite certain the Temple Stood on/beneath the temple mount, read classical accounts, or the writings of archaeologists or even the oft mis-represented Architect Tuvia Sagiv

      • lysias
        October 15, 2015, 1:55 pm

        The passage you quote from Dr. Magness mentions no archaeological evidence for the existence of the First Temple, still less of its location. And indeed such archaelogical evidence as has been claimed for it is very indecisive.

      • Mooser
        October 15, 2015, 4:10 pm

        “First, my username refers not to imperialism, but rather a prediction of how I will fare in debates taking place on forum’s such as these.”

        I believe it was Mark Twain who coined the expression “a consummate ass”.

  7. Keith
    October 11, 2015, 4:37 pm

    Folks, I think we are missing an important point here. I really haven’t been paying much attention to this Third Temple issue, figuring that it was merely a flimsy excuse to destroy the Mosques. I assumed that the “temple” would be a glorified synogogue with a big shot rabbi. Wrong! When they say temple they mean temple! As in High Priest and animal sacrifices! A High Priest who hasn’t existed for two millennia. Animal sacrifices in the 21st century! Are we talking common values or what? The misuse of medieval physician, philosopher and rabbi Moses Maimonides was bad enough, but a return to Roman times barbarity is beyond the pale. On a previous thread, Froggy linked to a video well worth watching. I provide a link to her comment.
    http://mondoweiss.net/2015/10/replace-israeli-extremism#comment-801992

    • Kris
      October 11, 2015, 6:09 pm

      High Priest and animal sacrifices.

      Nothing about these Jewish religious fanatics surprises me any more. I just hope that they will start out by sacrificing dogs and cats on their altar, since that would catch the attention of the ordinary U.S. citizen.

      People don’t care when Jewish Israelis slaughter Palestinian babies and children, but most Americans would draw the line at harming cats or dogs.

      We are talking about Israel/Palestine here, but the topic of antisemitism is always lurking. I wonder if Zionist Jews will ever begin to understand the depth of the revulsion that is caused by their own behavior.

      My newest grandson was genitally mutilated last week, in a ritual that reportedly “went very well.” Probably much like this joyful celebration, “The Bris of Joey Babs,” in which a baby is screaming in pain and terror while the adults talk and laugh. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6mqEyQaChI .

      It is so helpful to me, a non-Jew, to remind myself that people like this wonderful grandmother, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YI7cRGBsrZA are Jewish, too. And that many Jews now refuse to allow their babies to be genitally mutilated. And that many Jews work tirelessly on behalf of justice for the Palestinians.

      • Mooser
        October 11, 2015, 8:57 pm

        “The Oral Torah like most of the concepts of Rabbinic Judaism almost certainly comes from Mesopotamia.”

        Darn it, am I to be stripped of all my Jewish exceptionalism? I always thought the Oral Torah was sort of a Jewish Kama Sutra.

      • jon s
        October 12, 2015, 4:59 pm

        Kris,
        Mazel tov for your new grandson. The circumcision ritual (“bris”)is, indeed, a joyous occasion, a welcoming celebration of a new life.

      • bryan
        October 12, 2015, 5:16 pm

        Perhaps splashing a bit of water on him, not that I would recommend such a procedure, would be less traumatic. Why don’t girls suffer these indignities?

      • amigo
        October 12, 2015, 5:18 pm

        Jon S,

        “Kris,
        Mazel tov for your new grandson. The circumcision ritual (“bris”)is, indeed, a joyous occasion, a welcoming celebration of a new life. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/10/hectored-archaeologists-location#comment-155238“.

        Putting words in the babies mouth already.

      • Mooser
        October 12, 2015, 7:43 pm

        ,
        “Mazel tov for your new grandson. The circumcision ritual (“bris”)is, indeed, a joyous occasion, a welcoming celebration of a new life.”

        Let me get this straight, “Jon s” you “welcome” “a new life” by mutilating his penis?
        Why, are we born deformed? Did God make us faulty?

        That’s great, you “welcome new life” by cutting a piece off the kid. Not that of course, he needs it for anything. Nope, evolution probably put it there, on every male mammal, to do us harm.

      • Kris
        October 12, 2015, 8:09 pm

        Congratulations are hardly in order. That my daughter allowed the medically unnecessary amputation of a normal, functioning part of her newborn’s body is the most bitter disappointment of my life.

        Anyone making decisions for a person incapable of giving informed consent is morally required to put that person’s interests ahead of his/her own. Unnecessary trauma, risk, and irreversible mutilation are not in any baby’s best interests.

        The morally correct thing to do would have been to let the baby decide about genital mutilation for himself, once he was capable of giving informed consent to this gruesome ritual.

        One day, all genital mutilation will be illegal because it is morally and ethically wrong, just like slavery and stoning adulterers. But that day will come too late for this boy. I am grieving now, and he will no doubt grieve when he is old enough to realize what has been taken from him: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YI7cRGBsrZA

      • Mooser
        October 12, 2015, 8:16 pm

        “Unnecessary trauma, risk, and irreversible mutilation are not in any baby’s best interests.”

        Yes, and the little thing has a function. It does something. Something it is supposed to do.
        Or is every male mammal on the planet born faulty?

      • Mooser
        October 12, 2015, 8:43 pm

        “Kris,
        Mazel tov for your new grandson. The circumcision ritual (“bris”)is, indeed, a joyous occasion, a welcoming celebration of a new life”

        “Jon s” please stop doing the Tevye… ‘and who is the man who wields the little izmel, cuts the nasty foreskin, and then sips through a straw? The Mohel! The Mohel!…’

      • eljay
        October 12, 2015, 8:56 pm

        || jon s: The circumcision ritual (“bris”)is, indeed, a joyous occasion, a welcoming celebration of a new life. ||

        There’s something disturbing about the notion that in order for an infant male’s new life to be welcome and celebrated joyously, skin must be snipped off his penis.

        (If his penis is not mutilated, does his new life become an occasion of sorrow and rejection?)

      • Mooser
        October 12, 2015, 10:23 pm

        “skin must be snipped off his penis.”

        It’s much more than that “skin snipped off”. That would probably grow back. It is a basic alteration of the organ.
        I do not know for what purpose people decided to start doing that to their kids, and they must have known how little protection they had against infection. But the result, the change brought by the modification of the organ must have been very valuable to them. I wonder what it was? Can’t believe they did it ‘just cause’ it was fun to go to a bris

        The morally correct thing to do would have been to let the baby decide about genital mutilation for himself, once he was capable of giving informed consent to this gruesome ritual.”

        Plus, being an adult, and properly instructed in Jewish prayer, and tradition, he will be able to fully understand and enjoy the ritual. Gosh, it would be a gas! The only thing better would be attending your own funeral!

      • Sibiriak
        October 12, 2015, 10:23 pm

        Kris: … the most bitter disappointment of my life.
        ————

        I envy you.

      • Mooser
        October 12, 2015, 11:16 pm

        “It’s much more than that “skin snipped off”. That would probably grow back.”

        In fact, I personally know that it will, although it takes a while. But after that episode I went back to the button-fly 501s Levis and didn’t injure myself again. Those damn “Dockers” are dangerous!

      • YoniFalic
        October 13, 2015, 12:47 am

        @kris @mooser I don’t know if you are aware, but Biblical circumcision as practiced by Karaite Jews, Samaritans, and Muslims only removes the tip of the foreskin.

        http://www.karaites.org/uploads/7/4/1/3/7413835/mikdash_meat_section_19_circumcision__conversion.pdf

        Brit priah (ברית פריעה), which is Talmudic (Talmud Bavli Tractate Yebamoth 71b) and not Biblical, removes as much inner layer of the foreskin as possible and prevents the movement of the shaft skin, what creates a final look of what is known as “low and tight” circumcision style.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brit_milah#Uncovering.2C_priah

        I have wondered whether the split between Karaite and Rabbinic Judaism relates to the acceptance or non-acceptance of brit priah.

        Also, brit priah might have been the reason why talmudization of Ashkenazi Jews takes place later than it did among Jews in Mesopotamia, N. Africa, and Spain.

      • bryan
        October 13, 2015, 4:15 am

        Mooser: “evolution probably put it there, on every male mammal”

        That’s only “a theory”. The good book says “God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” (Genesis 1:27). This of course raises all sorts of questions: Does God have a foreskin? Does He have a consort? If not why does he need a penis, and why did he think Adam needed a companion? On second thoughts I agree with you: evolution is a much simpler explanation.

      • eljay
        October 13, 2015, 7:29 am

        || Mooser: … the change brought by the modification of the organ must have been very valuable to them. I wonder what it was? … ||

        It transformed them from men into “Captain Israel(ite)” supermen?

      • Mooser
        October 13, 2015, 1:29 pm

        “@kris @mooser I don’t know if you are aware, but Biblical circumcision as practiced by Karaite Jews, Samaritans, and Muslims only removes the tip of the foreskin.
        link to karaites.org
        Brit priah (ברית פריעה), which is Talmudic (Talmud Bavli Tractate Yebamoth 71b) and not Biblical, removes as much inner layer of the foreskin as possible and prevents the movement of the shaft skin, what creates a final look of what is known as “low and tight” circumcision style.”

        No, I was blissfully unaware of that, and sorry you told me. I thought it had to do with how much the Mohel drank, or maybe what the insurance covered, or how long since the izmel was sharpened. Common sense told me there could be many degrees of it.

      • Mooser
        October 13, 2015, 2:22 pm

        “On second thoughts I agree with you: evolution is a much simpler explanation.”

        The whole thing is crazy. After all, a foreskin only does for you what any reasonably flexible dog can do for itself, but nobody ever wants to give a puppy a bris! Instead, they give them the operation which might benefit a lot of us! I’ll never understand it.

      • RoHa
        October 13, 2015, 10:54 pm

        “If it did not make a difference, the E. European Jewish invaders would not spend so much effort asserting descent from Greco-Roman Judeans and earlier Israelite populations”

        Let me re-phrase my question. If the E. European Jews really were descended from from Greco-Roman Judeans and earlier Israelite populations, would that give them any greater moral right to Palestine?

        What moral principle is being invoked?

        Modern Bretons are descended from Welshmen, and Welshmen are, it seems, descended from Celts who lived somewhere around the Austria-Czech Republic area. Would that same principle give Bretons a right to Rhosllannerchrugog, and Welshmen a right to Vienna and Prague?

      • YoniFalic
        October 14, 2015, 8:32 am

        It’s not a matter of moral principle. It’s marketing — coming up with an attractive story to enmesh potential supporters in an evil enterprise. “White man’s burden” or “taming the wild whatever” no longer inspire white European invaders and their supporters. The Zionist leaders developed a nonsense narrative about the return of the Jews to their homeland after 2000 years of forced and oppressive exile. […] It is all untrue, and those of us that support the Palestinian struggle must be sure to show the world that the settler colonists are complete, utter liars.

      • Veni Vidi Vici
        October 14, 2015, 12:18 pm

        Why am I not surprised Holocaust-denying anti-semites are joining in on this intellectual bull shit of denying the temple’s location.

      • Annie Robbins
        October 14, 2015, 4:06 pm

        what’s this whole “denying the temple’s location” lingo? is there some moral requirement to adopt the beliefs of others religions? is one also bound by some moral requirement to believe in god or that jesus is the only son of god, or that he ever walked the earth for that matter? if one respects others religious beliefs it doesn’t mean one is also required to adopt those beliefs. if there’s no definitive archeological evidence something ever existed it’s not, by definition,”denying” somethings existence. it’s merely not adhering to your (or others) common belief.

        and there’s no relation to adopting beliefs or ideas put forward in centuries old religious texts to denying a genocide that took place less than a hundred years ago where empirical evidence and witness exist in abundance. your attempt to conflate denial of that empirical evidence/witness with non recognition of an alleged specific geographical location of a temple is a false equivalence.

      • Veni Vidi Vici
        October 14, 2015, 8:04 pm

        There actually is an archaeological consensus, as there is a consensus among classical scholars and commentators (not only Jewish ones, but Greek, Roman , and Arab ones as well). There is actually an abundance of archaeological evidence of the temple’s existence in and around the temple mount, such as the Western Wall, the Tunnels beneath the temple mount, Ir David, or the remains from and illegal excavation. The Waqf (the Muslim administration of the Temple Mount) at one point illegally expanded the Dome of the Rock, by excavating a new underground room. It took priceless archaeological remains and ground them into gravel, one of the largest remaining pieces is an ancient seal with a Hebrew character on it.

        Also what genocide are you talking about? And how is the Temple Mount’s holy identity have anything to do with it?

      • Mooser
        October 14, 2015, 12:46 pm

        “Why am I not surprised Holocaust-denying anti-semites are joining in on this intellectual bull shit of denying the temple’s location.”

        Please don’t make us answer that. The answer doesn’t reflect very well on you. The most probable reason is that’s what you made your mind up to find.

        Oh BTW, which “Holocaust” are we denying? I saw very little mention of WW2? Did I miss something?

      • Veni Vidi Vici
        October 14, 2015, 7:56 pm

        I saw a comment, it may have been removed, or edited (if that’s possible, I’m pretty new to this format) which said something about how people ‘are taking the zionist narrative unquestioningly on things like the temple, the palestinians, and the holocaust’

      • Kris
        October 14, 2015, 6:04 pm

        @yonahfredmn: “Kris- Regarding bris or circumcision. I thought you believed in Jesus. Do you think he was circumcised? Do you accuse Joseph and Mary of genital mutilation?”

        Yonah, do you think an act is more or less heinous depending on who does it?

        Ritual circumcision is genital mutilation no matter who does it. Similarly, ethnic cleansing is a crime against humanity no matter who does it. There has been some progress in our ethical and moral understanding of the rights of human beings since Mary and Joseph had their baby circumcized 2000 years ago.

        For example, we no longer burn witches, kill homosexuals, keep slaves, allow spousal rape, or arrange marriages for our daughters when they are ten years old.

        Speaking of Jesus:

        John’s Gospel says that when people criticized Jesus for healing a man on the Sabbath day, Jesus responded:

        ‘Moses…gave unto you circumcision; (not because it is of Moses, but of the fathers;) and ye on the sabbath day circumcise a man. If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are ye angry at me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the sabbath day? Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.’ (John 7:22-24, King James Version)

        Jesus contrasts the circumcision of Moses and the fathers with his ‘making men whole’, as the Greeks put it. However, this phrase is sharpened. It says, ‘I have made a man ‘every whit whole’. (Whit means ‘particle, least possible amount’) In this context the phrase could hardly be more pointed and the point would not be lost on the largely Greek and uncircumcised readership. They could not help but see it as hostile to both circumcisers and to circumcision itself.

        The Jerusalem Bible made this point clearly:

        ‘why are you angry with me for making a man whole and complete on a sabbath?’7

        This is a striking thing for Jesus to say. However, a footnote argues that the Jews of that time saw circumcision as healing the penis, and Jesus was arguing for his big healing on the sabbath as well as their little healing.

        Such an argument has problems. If you argue that circumcision perfects the body, you argue against the perfection of God’s creation. Genesis 1:31 says that God pronounced his creation ‘very good’. As man was created with a foreskin, then the foreskin must also have been very good. The Jewish sage, Moses Maimonides, explained the reason for circumcision as follows.

        ‘It has been thought that circumcision perfects what is defective congenitally. This gave the possibility to everyone to raise an objection and to say: How can natural things be defective so that they need to be perfected from outside, all the more because we know how useful the foreskin is for that member? In fact this commandment has not been prescribed with a view to perfecting what is defective congenitally, but to perfecting what is defective morally.

        ‘The bodily pain caused to that member is the real purpose of circumcision. None of the activities necessary for the preservation of the individual is harmed thereby, nor is procreation rendered impossible, but violent concupiscence and lust that goes beyond what is needed are diminished. The fact that circumcision weakens the faculty of sexual excitement and sometimes perhaps diminishes the pleasure is indubitable. For if at birth this member has been made to bleed and has had its covering taken away from it, it must indubitably be weakened.’

        Moses Maimonides, who stated that a penis is indubitably weakened by circumcision, would have had little trouble in seeing the ironic note in Jesus’ statement. After all, Jesus contrasted his healing (making a man every bit whole) with the activities of the circumcisers (who chopped a bit off).

        But even if Jesus did mean that his healing was big whereas his critics’ healing was small this still does not account for two important points:

        Jesus said he made men ‘every whit (bit) whole’. ‘To make men whole’ in contrast to circumcision may have been an unintended irony. However, to say he made the man every bit whole is very pointed and an obvious dig at circumcision in this context.

        John’s Gospel was written in Greek. For most Greek speakers, circumcision was a mutilation, so a comment contrasting circumcision with making a man ‘every whit whole’ would be seen as an attack on circumcision. http://www.cirp.org/pages/cultural/glass1/

      • Kris
        October 14, 2015, 6:19 pm

        YonahFredman, here is a good resource for understanding circumcision, “Circumcision Information and Resource Pages.” http://www.cirp.org .

      • YoniFalic
        October 14, 2015, 6:25 pm

        For those that don’t know, here is Biblical circumcision on MIchelangelo’s David.

      • Mooser
        October 14, 2015, 9:35 pm

        “The bodily pain caused to that member is the real purpose of circumcision. None of the activities necessary for the preservation of the individual is harmed thereby, nor is procreation rendered impossible, but violent concupiscence and lust that goes beyond what is needed are diminished. The fact that circumcision weakens the faculty of sexual excitement and sometimes perhaps diminishes the pleasure is indubitable. For if at birth this member has been made to bleed and has had its covering taken away from it, it must indubitably be weakened.”

        Okay, they were trying to have an effect on sexuality. I had a feeling they knew what they were doing.

      • yonah fredman
        October 15, 2015, 7:46 am

        Kris- There are a number of trends in Christianity from the Gospels to our present day. One of the trends is against all the commandments. In fact there is a trend that wished to divorce Christianity entirely from the Old Testament (I call it Original Testament) and to deny any connection with the God of the Hebrews. There are those who value the fact that Jesus was born to Jewish parents and preached to Jews. There are those who only use the term Jews when referring to those who opposed Jesus.

        Paul spoke out against circumcision, but clearly the Jerusalem Christians led by Jesus’s brother were not against circumcision, they favored full conversion before being accepted in the group. Paul’s view predominated, but there are points of view that view the Jerusalem Christians with some sympathy.

        Not you obviously. Is it mere coincidence that your hatred for the Old Testament, for those Christians in Jerusalem who still circumcised after Jesus was dead, goes so well together with your antiZionism. There are many antizionists who have no antiJewish feelings mixed up in their weltanschaung. Not you, obviously.

      • Kris
        October 15, 2015, 10:41 am

        @yonahFredman: “There are many antizionists who have no antiJewish feelings mixed up in their weltanschaung. Not you, obviously.”

        It is “antiJewish” to oppose the genital mutilation of a person who is not yet capable of giving informed consent to this medically unnecessary amputation of a healthy, functioning part of his body?

      • yonah fredman
        October 15, 2015, 10:51 am

        Kris- No. it is not antisemitic to oppose circumcision, it reflects an anti Jewish bias to find opposition to circumcision in the words of Jesus.

      • bryan
        October 15, 2015, 11:12 am

        One of the great nineteenth century arguments for male circumcision was that it deterred masturbation, which was regarded as the source of many associated problems (“epilepsy, paralysis, impotence, gonorrhea, tuberculosis, feeblemindedness, and insanity” and blindness). See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circumcision#Modern_times

        The wheel has come full-circle now with many medical professionals advocating the benefits of masturbation (for combating diabetes, depression, insomnia, stress, prostate cancer and improving the immune system, on so on and so forth). See http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/love-sex/masturbation-the-health-benefits-10252487.html

        Given that the vast majority of men and women engage in the practice, isn’t that another great reason to rewrite the Bible, and exile the mohels. Besides, why do women always get a free pass? (See Leviticus, which apparently asserts that “God spoke to Moses, telling him to speak to the Israelites: When a woman conceives and gives birth to a boy … on the eighth day, the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised.” In an age when girls can and do play rugby, football and cricket (rather well as it happens) such a command is utterly anachronous.

      • Kris
        October 15, 2015, 11:18 am

        @yonahFrdmn: “Kris- No. it is not antisemitic to oppose circumcision, it reflects an anti Jewish bias to find opposition to circumcision in the words of Jesus.”

        Jesus was “anti Jewish?” Why did you bring Jesus into this conversation about genital mutilation in the first place if you didn’t want to know what he may have thought about genital mutilation? If you’ll remember, you asked me if Joseph and Mary were genital mutilators, and you asked about Jesus. Since you asked, I provided you with information.

        Is it similarly “anti Jewish,” or maybe “antisemitic,” to find opposition to Zionist Jewish behavior in these words of Jesus, too?

        “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’

        “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’ –Matthew 21: 42, 43.

        Or how about this:

        “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” –Matthew 7:12

      • Jon66
        October 15, 2015, 1:50 pm

        American Academy of Pediatrics Task Force on Circumcision – 2012
        “The Task Force made the following recommendations:Evaluation of current evidence indicates that the health benefits of newborn male circumcision outweigh the risks, and the benefits of newborn male circumcision justify access to this procedure for those families who choose it. Parents are entitled to factually correct, nonbiased information about circumcision that should be provided before conception and early in pregnancy, when parents are most likely to be weighing the option of circumcision of a male child. Physicians counseling families about elective male circumcision should assist parents by explaining, in a nonbiased manner, the potential benefits and risks and by ensuring that they understand the elective nature of the procedure. Parents should weigh the health benefits and risks in light of their own religious, cultural, and personal preferences, as the medical benefits alone may not outweigh these other considerations for individual families. ”

        Canadian Paediatric Society, Fetus and Newborn Committee, Infectious Diseases and Immunization Committee – 2015
        “The circumcision of newborn males in Canada has become a less frequent practice over the past few decades. This change has been significantly influenced by past recommendations from the Canadian Paediatric Society and the American Academy of Pediatrics, who both affirmed that the procedure was not medically indicated. Recent evidence suggesting the potential benefit of circumcision in preventing urinary tract infection and some sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, has prompted the Canadian Paediatric Society to review the current medical literature in this regard. While there may be a benefit for some boys in high-risk populations and circumstances where the procedure could be considered for disease reduction or treatment, the Canadian Paediatric Society does not recommend the routine circumcision of every newborn male. “

      • Mooser
        October 15, 2015, 3:43 pm

        ROTFLMSJAO! More great medical advice from Mr. Testosterone Bliss!

        First of all, “Jon 66” which type of circumcision are you referring to? Are you saying the benefits of brit priah circumcision outweigh the effects of the sexual mutilation?

        See, when you say “circumcision”, that’s an entire range of procedures. Which one are you talking about?

      • Jon66
        October 15, 2015, 5:05 pm

        Mooser,

        The panels define circumcision as the partial or complete removal of the foreskin.
        I have not made any claims about the benefits or risks of the procedure.
        I have provided the relevant medical reccomendations. They are both vague as to procedure details and contradictory in reccomendations.
        This is not my specialty, but I agree with the panels that it is a subject worthy of discussion between parents and their doctors

    • YoniFalic
      October 11, 2015, 7:42 pm

      We should be careful about the phrase “Jewish Temple”. Hebrew lacks nuance, but one could call the first Temple the Judahite Judaic Temple or the first Jerusalem Temple.

      If this Temple ever existed, the people that used it probably practiced some sort of polytheistic Judaism as was practiced at Elephantine.

      The second Temple should probably be described as the Judean Judaic Temple or the Second Jerusalem Temple. Judaic Temple religion really had little in common with Rabbinic Judaism, which only evolved after the destruction of the Temple.

      Philo, Josephus, and Jesus have no awareness of the Oral Torah as conceptualized by Rabbinic Judaism.

      The Oral Torah like most of the concepts of Rabbinic Judaism almost certainly comes from Mesopotamia.

      The Judean sages probably tried to introduce a Mesopotamian version of Judaism as a means to deal with the religious breakdown that started in Judea with the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple in 70 CE.

      Thus, Judah HaNasi redacted the Mishnah as a written version of the Oral Torah not because it was in danger of being forgotten but because it never had deep roots in Judea.

      Maybe the tractates of the Mishnah could have been disseminated in the form of codices and were meant in Palestine to compete with the codex religion par excellence — Christianity.

      It’s just a thought. Mishnaic Judaism was never a popular religion in the way Christianity was, and Greek-speaking Judaism seems to have had no interest in the Mishnah whatsoever.

      In any case, we should always keep in mind that the Temple in Jerusalem was the creation of the ancestors of modern Palestinians and not of the pagan ancestors of modern Jewish communities.

      • hophmi
        October 11, 2015, 10:25 pm

        The pagan ancestors of modern Jewish communities? Where do you get this crap?

      • echinococcus
        October 11, 2015, 10:50 pm

        What “crap”, hophmi? For the Chazars, it was probably some variant of Shamanism or Tengri cult; for the Berbers (later probably Sefardí) a mix of Phenician-Greek-African elements mixed with the Roman cults of Spain, and for each of the other communities a different earlier belief system.

      • Mooser
        October 11, 2015, 11:12 pm

        The pagan ancestors of modern Jewish communities? Where do you get this crap?”

        I know, Hophmi, that stuff is ridiculous! Why if there were “pagan ancestors of modern Jewish communities” that would mean that Adam and Eve weren’t Jewish! The very idea!

      • RoHa
        October 12, 2015, 12:42 am

        And that raises an interesting question. Was Adam created circumcised, or did God trim him at the same time a he took out the rib, or did he (wince) do it himself?

      • YoniFalic
        October 12, 2015, 12:55 am

        I previously argued less directly that all modern Jewish communities descend from ancestral pagan populations in the diaspora regions where those diaspora populations were found. (Note that the Spanish Ibero-Berber population unlike the Greco-Roman Judean population actually was subjected to an expulsion.)

        As Sand correctly points out, Renan stated this obvious fact in the 19th century.

        After all we have the example of the Greek Diaspora that maintained its language for over 2000 years because its founder population actually consisted of Greeks from ancient Greece. In contrast, Jewish Diaspora populations all developed their own Jewish languages and did not use Palestinian Hebrew Aramaic precisely because the founders were wholly non-Judean as TAU professor Paul Wexler noted decades ago.

        [The Spanish Ibero-Berber expellees maintained their Judeo-Spanish dialect for 500 years because the founders of Balkan, Dutch, and N. African Ibero-Berber communities really were descended from an originally Spanish-speaking population.]

        As I pointed out in the comment I linked above, Zionists used to claim large-scale conversion of Phoenicians to Judaic religion until the Zionist leadership realized that this assertion was incompatible with the logic of “returning” to the Land of Israel.

        The refusal to acknowledge that Judaism was a massively proselytizing religion in the Greco-Roman period distorts historical analysis. Botticini and Eckstein try to analyze in The Chose Few how and why the ancient Judaic population switches from a primarily agriculture population in Judea into a primarily mercantile population around the Mediterranean and in Mesopotamia without ever noting that the primary convert populations of the Greco-Roman period were the preeminent mercantile populations of the ancient world: Greeks and Phoenicians.

        By the 2nd century CE, the Judaic population descended from pagan converts vastly outnumbered the Judaic population descended from primarily agricultural Judeans, and the Judeans were gradually converting first to Christianity and then to Islam. Thus we see economic transformation as a result of a change in the ancestral component of the population that considered itself to be Judaic. Geary analyzes this sort of reuse of demonym in his book entitled The Myth of Nations.

        To put my point succinctly, the legitimization narrative that racist Eastern European Jews used to justify genocidal European colonialism in Palestine was complete fantasy that reasonably intelligent people should scorn as utter nonsense.

        I am disgusted that after the Holocaust Eastern European Jews founded a state in a post-Holocaust genocide.

      • Keith
        October 12, 2015, 1:14 am

        HOPHMI- “The pagan ancestors of modern Jewish communities? Where do you get this crap?”

        By “modern Jewish communities,” he is obviously referring to the European descendants of the Ashkenazi Jews who created Zionism. The “ancestors of modern Palestinians” are the Jews who were not exiled but remained in Palestine and eventually converted to Islam (for whatever reason). This is actual history, Hophmi, not the myth-history you Zionists have created to justify your retrograde rejection of the enlightenment and embrace of Zionism’s secular rendering of medieval Judaism and now, apparently, ancient Priestly Judaism. It amazes me of how little you secular Zionists know about actual historical Judaism and actual Jewish history. Seriously.

      • Kris
        October 12, 2015, 11:54 am

        Pagan: a person holding religious beliefs other than those of the main world religions.

        Zionists are pagans, obviously.

      • Mooser
        October 12, 2015, 12:13 pm

        “And that raises an interesting question. Was Adam created circumcised, or did God trim him at the same time a he took out the rib, or did he (wince) do it himself?”

        We discussed this extensively in Hebrew School. The answer to the question is “Better you shouldn’t ask.”

      • amigo
        October 12, 2015, 3:49 pm

        YoniFalic , would you mind checking this article on todays Irish times (provided by “The New York Times Service ) on the question of the location or even existence of the Jewish temple where the Noble Sanctuary now stands.It is about a five minute read.Can you give me your take , ie , is this an attempt by the NYT to influence Irish times readers ??.

        Headline!!


        Historical certainty elusive at Jerusalem’s holiest place
        Where precisely on the Temple Mount were ancient Jewish temples located?”

        http://www.irishtimes.com/news/world/middle-east/historical-certainty-elusive-at-jerusalem-s-holiest-place-1.2387473

        Anyone else who cares to is welcome to give their opinion.I am trying to enlighten myself.

      • amigo
        October 12, 2015, 4:25 pm

        Yoni ,et al . disregard my post on the Irish times article .It seems it is the same one as Phil linked to.Apologies to you and others .

      • jon s
        October 12, 2015, 5:06 pm

        So the Jews are really pagans, and the Palestinians are really Jews?
        Did I miss anything else in this week’s episode of “Bizarro History”?

      • echinococcus
        October 12, 2015, 6:27 pm

        Johnny S cracks me up. So he’s a teacher of “history”?
        Doesn’t seem to have even the foggiest on the old inhabitants of Palestine, their evolution, the invasions, the change in general religion, the conversions etc.
        Look, Johnny, in the normal world unlike in your planet, Palestinians 2,000 years ago and the present ones are not one and the same person. On Planet Zion it seems that the same guy survived 2,000 years, kept his religion and his land deed. We mortals cannot do that. So every few generations, upheavals come about. Different religions are en vogue or cool or compulsory, things change.
        As they change in the people who converted to the proselytizing Judaism of yore, in the Hellenistic empires, in Chazaria, in North Africa and Spain, Turkmenistan, Ethiopia, etc. Of course, these guys being religious as shown by their conversion, had some former religion. Never happened on your planet, I’m sure.

        You’re welcome, John S. Anytime you need an explanation.

      • YoniFalic
        October 12, 2015, 6:35 pm

        I am making a simple point, which I admit is hard to express in Hebrew.

        I have seen Hebrew academic papers refer to

        קהילות יהודיות מודרניות

        (modern Jewish communities)

        and to

        יהודים פלסטיניים ישנים.

        (old Palestinian Jews)

        Completely different groups can use the same name, and names are reused throughout history for all sorts of purposes including to establish rights that simply cannot be justified.

        https://books.google.com/books?id=A26s-v2eEwAC&pg=PA118&lpg=PA118&dq=geary+myth+of+nations+cniva+goths+conclusion&source=bl&ots=yKCz5kEUaY&sig=o2-J6J3Z8KKta4N_0G8UcfIj9CU&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CD0Q6AEwBGoVChMIlpXa4_69yAIVCTo-Ch0zhQgR#v=onepage&q=geary%20myth%20of%20nations%20cniva%20goths%20conclusion&f=false

        Eastern European Jewish communities have no ancestral connection to Greco-Roman Judeans.

        As I was working through the real history and not the nonsense with which I was indoctrinated in school, I concluded that my grandfather was a racist genocidal invader and thief living in a country to which he had no claim whatsoever.

        I did not and do not want to be that same person. Thus, I left and excoriate those ignorant, stupid, or mendacious people that continue to spew Zionist nonsense.

        We descendants of Eastern European Jewish communities simply do not belong in Palestine and should all leave.

      • Mooser
        October 12, 2015, 8:03 pm

        “So the Jews are really pagans, and the Palestinians are really Jews?”

        Now you are getting the idea, “Jon s”! You are seeing just how much the present can change the past.

        Of course, you’ve got that past all sewn up, and control the present with it.

      • RoHa
        October 12, 2015, 9:23 pm

        No, Jon. All Jews had pagan ancestors (just like everyone else) but modern Jews need not be pagans. However, if we accept Kris’ idea that Zionism excludes Judaism, the Zionists are pagans.

        Some Palestinians have Jewish ancestors, but they are not Jews themselves.

      • RoHa
        October 13, 2015, 2:24 am

        “Eastern European Jewish communities have no ancestral connection to Greco-Roman Judeans.”

        Would it make a difference if they did have such an ancestral connection?

      • YoniFalic
        October 13, 2015, 9:24 am

        @RoHa, If it did not make a difference, the E. European Jewish invaders would not spend so much effort asserting descent from Greco-Roman Judeans and earlier Israelite populations.

        Without the claim of return, the E. European invaders constitute just another racist European population perpetrating 19th century European genocidal colonialism in which European invaders destroy or drive out the natives and then move in European settlers.

        Every time someone claims the mythology of return is unimportant, I think here is someone that is missing some critical issues.

        The claim of return resonates with a whole class of ignorant and stupid Christians.

        The claim of return is an assertion of title to valuable cultural product — not just in Palestine.

        1) al-Ḥaram al-Šarīf

        2) Al-Haram Al-Ibrahimi

        3) Qubbet Rahil

        4) Dead Sea Scrolls,

        5) all the archaeological sites in Palestine

        6) the Cairo Geniza

        7) the Aleppo Codex

        I can’t understand why anyone thinks that descendants of E. European, Ukrainian, Scythian, Parthian, Armenian, and Pontic convert populations have any claims whatsoever to these valuable properties that bring in tremendous revenue to the invaders even though the revenue rightfully belongs to the natives.

        Then once we get passed the stolen cultural product, we can talk about the natural resources like Dead Sea minerals or natural gas to which the invaders have no legitimate claim.

        The nonsensical assertion of descent from Greco-Roman Judeans is in fact one of the most important ideas that must be debunked.

      • jon s
        October 13, 2015, 4:51 pm

        Kris,
        I’ve attended countless “brittot” (plural of “brit”, Jewish ritual circumcision) and they are always warm , happy occasions, with food and drink and music, with lots of hugs and kisses, welcoming the little guy into the tribe . The procedure itself is brief , harmless and non-traumatic. The baby cries for a while, then calms down and falls asleep. He’ll be fine.
        Of course I can’t tell you what to feel, but perhaps it would help if you wouldn’t think of it as “mutilation”. I had my son circumcised (I didn’t do it myself, but the mohel was acting on my behalf, so my wife and I are responsible) and I certainly don’t think of myself as a Genital Mutilator. Instead, I was honored to have the opportunity to continue an age-old tradition, that has been a sign of Jewish identity for thousands of years.

      • Mooser
        October 13, 2015, 5:26 pm

        Shorter “Jon s”: ‘ “I”, “I”, “I”! It’s all about me and the Jewish cred I get for doing it! Why should I even think seriously about whether or not it’s good for my kid? It’s good for me, and that’s what counts.’

        “Jon s” did you get all the “brit priah” you paid for?

      • Mooser
        October 13, 2015, 5:43 pm

        “Of course I can’t tell you what to feel, but perhaps it would help if you wouldn’t think of it as “mutilation”.

        I see. Is it a ‘customization’? Or does it remedy some defect we are heir to (a religious phimosis?)??
        And naturally, you think that every other male mammal on the planet is born with a similar defect, which should be remedied for best results?
        And, uh, given that living tissue which has a function is cut away and replaced by scar tissue, unable to function is, I would think, the very definition of mutilation.

      • Kris
        October 13, 2015, 6:46 pm

        @jon s: “I certainly don’t think of myself as a Genital Mutilator.”

        Bill Cosby certainly doesn’t think of himself as a rapist, either.

      • yonah fredman
        October 13, 2015, 8:19 pm

        Kris- Regarding bris or circumcision. I thought you believed in Jesus. Do you think he was circumcised? Do you accuse Joseph and Mary of genital mutilation?

      • oldgeezer
        October 13, 2015, 9:11 pm

        @yoonah

        I am pretty sure that Jesus supposedly existed quite a few years ago. The Romans ruled the area at the time so are you trying to erect an argument that they should rule now?

      • RoHa
        October 13, 2015, 11:04 pm

        “If it did not make a difference, the E. European Jewish invaders would not spend so much effort asserting descent from Greco-Roman Judeans and earlier Israelite populations”

        Let me re-phrase my question. If the E. European Jews really were descended from from Greco-Roman Judeans and earlier Israelite populations, would that give them any greater moral right to Palestine?

        What moral principle is being invoked?

        Modern Bretons are descended from Welshmen, and Welshmen are, it seems, descended from Celts who lived somewhere around the Austria-Czech Republic area. Would that same principle give Bretons a right to Rhosllannerchrugog, and Welshmen a right to Vienna and Prague?

      • bryan
        October 14, 2015, 4:09 am

        @jon s: “welcoming the little guy into the tribe”. Ancient peoples have used a wide range of techniques to maintain cultural differentiation. One thinks of cranial binding, foot binding, neck stretching, tongue-splitting, ear-shaping, scarification, labial elongation, tooth-filing and a variety of forms of tattooing and body piercing.

        Your form of mutilation may be less-dangerous and less disfiguring than many others but also is far less publicly visible. How does it work as a tribal identity marker? Is it useful when standing at a communal urinal to identify your neighbour’s culture, or even possibly religion, or less possibly ethnicity? Or is its sole value that a Jewish bride-to-be can inspect her proposed partner to ensure that she will not be out-marrying? Surely this would have worked for centuries in your ancient homelands, but has less efficacy in your newly-adopted settlements where the colonised have adopted similar practices. Or can the finely-tuned eye of a Jewish maiden distinguish a kosher missing foreskin from its Islamic equivalent? Hope I am not debasing the conversation, but trying to understand what underlies your rapturous joy on this happy occasion.

        Is there no equivalent method of “welcoming the little gal into the tribe” or do they not count?

      • Mooser
        October 14, 2015, 11:11 am

        ” Regarding bris or circumcision. I thought you believed in Jesus. Do you think he was circumcised? Do you accuse Joseph and Mary of genital mutilation?”

        Before taking any pilpul read the label. Do not exceed the recommended dosage. If side effects appear, call your medical provider.
        If you cannot read the label, ask somebody to read it for you.

      • Mooser
        October 14, 2015, 11:23 am

        “I am pretty sure that Jesus supposedly existed quite a few years ago.”

        “RoHa”, religion is a funny thing. Consider this: Although I am a Jew, I used to appeal to Jesus Christ quite frequently and emphatically. Than I married a Christian woman, and she made me stop!

      • YoniFalic
        October 14, 2015, 11:39 am

        @Yonah Fredman, Jesus almost certainly underwent Biblical and not Talmudic circumcision.

      • Mooser
        October 14, 2015, 11:58 am

        “Your form of mutilation may be less-dangerous and less disfiguring than many others”

        Did you see Yoni Falic’s comment, above. It is probably the reason “Jon s” did not reply in that thread:

        “@kris @mooser I don’t know if you are aware, but Biblical circumcision as practiced by Karaite Jews, Samaritans, and Muslims only removes the tip of the foreskin.

        link to karaites.org

        Brit priah (ברית פריעה), which is Talmudic (Talmud Bavli Tractate Yebamoth 71b) and not Biblical, removes as much inner layer of the foreskin as possible and prevents the movement of the shaft skin, what creates a final look of what is known as “low and tight” circumcision style.

        link to en.wikipedia.org
        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/10/hectored-archaeologists-location#comment-155238
        That does not strike as a good idea, unless it’s done for the benefit of doctors who treat certain male disorders.

        Seems pretty simple to me. Okay, you got the kid up on a decorated table, the lights go down (except for a spot on the kid) and into the room dances the Mohel, in a fantastic illuminated costume (black-light, LEDs, like Kimbra) and does “The Flaming Izmel Dance” whirling and leaping to wild Klezmer-jazz until at the penultimate moment he barely touches the izmel to the foreskin Okay, if you are really frum you do the “Werewolves of London” bit and draw a drop blood. The kid, naturally, sets up a howl, which is very gratifying (“Such lungs! Another Manilow!”) A prayer is said, which roughly translates to: “And may this bless you and teach you to keep it in your pants until it’s called for! And may G-d preserve you from getting it caught in your zipper, like a certain clutz!” Kid is whisked away with an antibiotic compress. All eat and drink party late into night, and most important the exotic yet harmless overtones of the ritual will prove strangely stimulating, and several more Jewish, (or fractions thereof) will be conceived late that night. Win-win for everybody. How hard was that?

    • Sibiriak
      October 11, 2015, 8:12 pm

      Keith: “Animal sacrifices in the 21st century!”
      —————————-

      Muslims sacrifice millions of animals during the holiday of Eid-ul-Adha.

      • tree
        October 11, 2015, 11:37 pm

        Muslims sacrifice millions of animals during the holiday of Eid-ul-Adha.

        I think you are confusing ritual slaughter with animal sacrifice. Ritual slaughter includes human consumption of the meat of the animal, animal sacrifice involves making the animal a sacrifice to God, not humans. Eid-ul-Adha, celebrating the sacrifice of Abraham, has the animal meat divided into 3 parts with a third going to the family, a third to friends and neighbors and a third to the needy.

        I don’t know if the contemplated “animal sacrifices” would include ritual slaughter or not, but all kosher meat must follow ritual slaughter techniques, and the same goes for halal .

      • Sibiriak
        October 12, 2015, 12:32 am

        tree: I think you are confusing ritual slaughter with animal sacrifice. Ritual slaughter includes human consumption of the meat of the animal, animal sacrifice involves making the animal a sacrifice to God, not humans.

        ——————

        I guess it’s a matter of semantics. The word “sacrifice” literally means “to make sacred.” Before I posted that comment, I did some “due diligence” and Googled the event.

        I based my comments on the explanation given at this site:

        http://www.irfi.org/articles4/articles_5001_6000/eid%20ul%20adha%20history%20and%20originhtml.htm

        To commemorate this outstanding act of sacrifice (qurbani) by Prophet Abraham, people sacrifice a lamb, goat, ram or any other animal on Eid-ul-Adha and give the meat to friends, neighbors, relatives and the needy. People who are away from the holy pilgrimage, Hajj, also carry out this traditional sacrifice. Hence Eid-ul-Adha is also known as the Feast of Sacrifice or the Day of Sacrifice. (emphasis added)

        In any case, in recent times it has become a practice to import millions of live animals into countries like Saudi Arabia for the “ritual slaughtering”. Animal welfare advocates have documented abusive, sometimes horrific, conditions leading to suffering, disease and death on the long journey.

        http://www.animals24-7.org/2015/06/02/did-botched-pre-ramadan-sheep-shipment-start-an-epidemic/

        Frankly, I don’t see how the religous “sacrifice” of a few animals is any more “barbaric” than the global shipping and “ritual slaughter” of millions of animals, let alone the horrendous abuse and torturing and of billions of animals in modern factory-style slaughterhouses.

      • Keith
        October 12, 2015, 11:36 am

        SIBIRIAK- “Muslims sacrifice millions of animals during the holiday of Eid-ul-Adha.”

        I think you miss my point. I am not discussing the mass slaughter of animals for meat consumption, nor am I concerned with the quantity of animals sacrificed or their suffering. Two points concern me. First, the degree to which modern folks, in this case Jews, project their experienced reality onto historical times resulting in vague and inaccurate fantasies. All of this talk about the sacred soil and Judaism’s holiest of holies concerning the second temple. What Judaism? The Judaic religious practices of the second temple period were quite different from current Reform Judaism. So if we cut through the vagueness, a recreation of the second temple with a Head Priest and animal sacrifices is, in fact, an abandonment of modern Judaism and a return to ancient practices abandoned long ago. And it occurred to me that the Zionists commenters don’t seem to be aware of this. Nor are they aware of the theological implications of all of this. There is nothing wrong with fantasies as long as they remain fantasies. Attempting to live out ones fantasies can have unexpected and unpleasant consequences.

        My second point is that ritual animal sacrifice would result in considerable negative PR and should be played up. Meat consumption and factory farms don’t alter the negative impact on Main Street of a High Priest performing ritual sacrifice to please some godhead. Their religious sensibilities would be offended, their conception of Judaism shaken. Once again, when you get past the vague generalities of a sacred location and get specific about what the construction of a new second temple would entail, the project would likely be viewed as a return to barbaric rituals and times. Not an easy thing to defend or justify to a modern audience, current examples of brutality notwithstanding.

      • bryan
        October 14, 2015, 4:36 am

        @Sibiriak – we are not talking about “the relig[i]ous “sacrifice” of a few animals”. If the bible is to be believed then the opening ceremony of the much smaller first temple saw King Solomon offer “to the Lord, twenty-two thousand bulls and one hundred and twenty thousand sheep” (1 Kings 8). And if the Bible is not to be believed then why are we even discussing the establishment of a third (?) temple and the reinstatement of animal sacrifice? Perhaps the Bible is part-true and part false (or even as some have absurdly argued the Pentateuch is,miraculously, the true word of God and the rest, assembled at the same time and by the same people, is a work of human fiction. Why doesn’t god who once so frequently and directly intervened for and communicated to his people, do a bit of communication in our troubled times?

      • jon s
        October 15, 2015, 5:37 am

        I’m worlds apart from Kris, politically, yet when I saw how distressed she was by her grandson’s circumcision, I wanted to reassure her that the kid wasn’t harmed or traumatized. Unless the mohel screwed up big time -and that doesn’t seem to be the case- he’ll be fine. No need for such bitterness.

      • Mooser
        October 15, 2015, 6:04 pm

        “Unless the mohel screwed up big time -and that doesn’t seem to be the case- he’ll be fine. -“

        And what if the Mohel did the job correctly? Like this:

        “Brit priah (ברית פריעה), which is Talmudic (Talmud Bavli Tractate Yebamoth 71b) and not Biblical, removes as much inner layer of the foreskin as possible and prevents the movement of the shaft skin, what creates a final look of what is known as “low and tight” circumcision style.” – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/10/hectored-archaeologists-location#comment-155238

        That seem like a good idea to you?

      • Annie Robbins
        October 15, 2015, 6:27 pm

        i’m not a fan of reading about foreskins. just letting you know in case anyone may be wondering why subsequent comments on the topic may not pass moderation on this thread. or at least not in a timely fashion as i may be scrolling over them.

      • Mooser
        October 15, 2015, 6:50 pm

        ” or at least not in a timely fashion”

        Oh, there’s no hurry now. And I learned a whole lot I really really wish I hadn’t on this thread.

    • Mooser
      October 11, 2015, 8:55 pm

      ” When they say temple they mean temple! As in High Priest and animal sacrifices!”

      Oh no! I do not, do not want to see little girls running screaming through suburban streets screaming “Mommy, call the police, the frummers got Fluffy!”

      • RoHa
        October 11, 2015, 11:22 pm

        But what’s the point? Haruspicy is a lost art.

      • Mooser
        October 12, 2015, 12:03 pm

        “But what’s the point? Haruspicy is a lost art.”

        Not here at Moosehall it isn’t! Since we are keeping the three cats indoors, I have to clean the litter box every day. I know exactly what is going on in their entrails.
        Got a very clear prediction from one the other day which said: “You will not feed me take-out sushi again, even if I seem to want it”

        (They have a large screened-in area on the deck, they get fresh air and sun)

      • RoHa
        October 12, 2015, 9:27 pm

        “You will not feed me take-out sushi again, even if I seem to want it”

        Feeding sushi to anyone is flat-out cruelty. I will inform the RSPCA about you.

      • Mooser
        October 12, 2015, 10:38 pm

        “Feeding sushi to anyone is flat-out cruelty. I will inform the RSPCA about you.”

        Believe you me, RoHa, I was thoroughly punished the next morning. I received a severe olfactory and sensory chastisement. (he got feline dyspepsia, and catarrhea. Even tho he was vaccinated) I’ll never give him the stuff again.

      • echinococcus
        October 13, 2015, 1:21 am

        Mooser,

        I have to commend you on the elegant use of “catarrhea”.

      • RoHa
        October 13, 2015, 5:33 am

        I hope you have learned an important lesson. Sushi is a sneaky trick the Japanese play on gullible Westerners. Have no truck with it, no matter what that sweet waitress says.

        (As a general principle, remember that the Japanese are crazy, not stupid. )

      • Mooser
        October 13, 2015, 2:08 pm

        “(As a general principle, remember that the Japanese are crazy, not stupid. )”

        Oh, I can easily disprove that. First of all, do you know how enthusiastic Japan is about playing Hammond Organ? Diasuke Kawai And I would eat anything, even if it squirms, this wonderful drummer tells me to.. Oh yeah, I believe that’s Sakura Yamabuki on the “clonewheel’ (Nord C2D).

      • Mooser
        October 14, 2015, 11:05 am

        As I thought, Kawai’s wonderful homage to Don Patterson’s original recording of “The Good Life” stopped you dead in your tracks. Me too, RoHa, me too.

      • RoHa
        October 14, 2015, 8:08 pm

        Umm … actually, I didn’t listen. But I’ll take your word for it, Mooser. I know you wouldn’t deliberately lie to me.

      • Mooser
        October 14, 2015, 11:07 pm

        “I know you wouldn’t deliberately lie to me.”

        If I did, I’m sure everybody would know.

    • Mooser
      October 13, 2015, 2:28 pm

      “The misuse of medieval physician, philosopher and rabbi Moses Maimonides was bad enough,”

      Ah, I’m glad you’re on better term with ol Mose Miamidese. He’s not so bad. And his life was, I hear, tumultuous.

    • Chu
      October 15, 2015, 2:25 pm

      I watched that documentary and that was the most interesting part
      – the foundation stone.

      These nutters will also tell you the messiah is coming, but that part of the hoax will keep the religion churning, look at Chabadnik search for the messiah. They should have picked the dicey Jacob Frank as the messiah. Many Warsaw and Prague families arose out of Frankism and the US Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter is reported to have had a portrait of Eva Frank from his mother [50 Jewish Messiahs; chapter 21]

  8. JLewisDickerson
    October 11, 2015, 6:20 pm

    RE: “I have no idea where the temples stood; the issue is why the NYT would raise a question, presumably based on reporting, and then withdraw it under pressure from Zionists who hector you as a ‘truther’.” ~ Weiss

    MY COMMENT: For some Jews, the Temple Mount has become “an exalted totem embodying the essence of sovereignty over the Land of Israel”! *

    * SEE: “Why rebuilding the Temple would be the end of Judaism as we know it”, By Tomer Persico, Haaretz.com, Nov. 13, 2014
    • The current drive of Jews, both Orthodox and secular, to ascend to the site of the Holy Temple and rebuild it, reflects a sea change in the Zionist camp.

    [EXCERPTS] There is one overriding question that accompanies the Zionist project, wrote Gershom Scholem, the scholar of Jewish mysticism – “Whether or not Jewish history will be able to endure this entry into the concrete realm without perishing in the crisis of the messianic claim, which has virtually been conjured up.” The entry into history to which Scholem refers is the establishment of the state and the ingathering of the exiles, borne, as they were – notwithstanding their secular fomenters and activists – on the wings of the ancient Jewish messianic myth of the return to Zion. However, when Scholem published the essay “Toward an Understanding of the Messianic Idea in Judaism,” in 1971, the adjunct to the question was the dramatic freight of Israel’s great victory in the Six-Day War, four years earlier. . .

    . . . It is not surprising, then, that the first group advocating a change in the Temple Mount status quo did not spring from the ranks of the religious-Zionist movement. The Temple Mount Faithful, a group that has been active since the end of the 1960s, was led by Gershon Salomon, a secular individual, who was supported – how could it be otherwise? – by former members of the Irgun and Lehi. It was not until the mid-1980s that a similar organization was formed under the leadership of a religious-Zionist rabbi (the Temple Institute, founded by Rabbi Yisrael Ariel) – and it too remained solitary within the religious-Zionist movement until the 1990s.

    Indeed, in January 1991, Rabbi Menachem Froman could still allay the fears of the Palestinians by informing them (in the form of an article he published in Haaretz, “To Wait in Silence for Grace”) that, “In the perception of the national-religious public [… there is] opposition to any ascent to the walls of the Temple Mount… The attitude of sanctity toward the Temple Mount is expressed not by bursting into it but by abstinence from it.”

    No longer. If in the past, yearning for the Temple Mount was the preserve of a marginal, ostracized minority within the religious-Zionist public, today it has become one of the most significant voices within that movement. In a survey conducted this past May among the religious-Zionist public, 75.4 percent said they favor “the ascent of Jews to the Temple Mount,” compared to only 24.6 percent against. In addition, 19.6 percent said they had already visited the site and 35.7 percent that they had not yet gone there, but intended to visit.

    The growing number of visits to the mount by the religious-Zionist public signifies not only a turning away from the state-oriented approach of Rabbi Kook, but also active rebellion against the tradition of the halakha. We are witnessing a tremendous transformation among sections of this public: Before our eyes they are becoming post-Kook-ist and post-Orthodox. Ethnic nationalism is supplanting not only mamlakhtiyut (state consciousness) but faithfulness to the halakha. Their identity is now based more on mythic ethnocentrism than on Torah study, and the Temple Mount serves them, just as it served Yair Stern and Uri Zvi Grinberg before them, as an exalted totem embodying the essence of sovereignty over the Land of Israel.

    Thus, in the survey, the group identifying with “classic religious Zionism” was asked, “What are the reasons on which to base oneself when it comes to Jews going up to the Temple Mount?” Fully 96.8 percent replied that visiting the site would constitute “a contribution to strengthening Israeli sovereignty in the holy place.” Only 54.4 percent averred that a visit should be made in order to carry out “a positive commandment [mitzvat aseh] and prayer at the site.” Patently, for the religious Zionists who took part in the survey, the national rationale was far more important than the halakhic grounds – and who better than Naftali Bennett, the leader of Habayit Hayehudi party, serves as a salient model for the shift of the center of gravity of the religious-Zionist movement from halakha to nationalism?

    How did the religious-Zionist public undergo such a radical transformation in its character? A hint is discernible at the point when the first significant halakhic ruling was issued allowing visits to the Temple Mount. This occurred at the beginning of 1996, when the Yesha (Judea, Samaria, Gaza) Rabbinical Council published an official letter containing a ruling that visiting the Temple Mount was permissible, accompanied by a call to every rabbi “to go up [to the site] himself and guide his congregation on how to make the ascent according to all the restrictions of the halakha.”

    Motti Inbari, in his book “Jewish Fundamentalism and the Temple Mount” (SUNY Press, 2009), draws a connection between the weakening of the Gush Emunim messianic paradigm, which was profoundly challenged by the Oslo process between Israel and the Palestinians, and the surge of interest in the mount. According to a widely accepted research model, disappointment stemming from difficulties on the road toward the realization of the messianic vision leads not to disillusionment but to radicalization of belief, within the framework of which an attempt is made to foist the redemptive thrust on recalcitrant reality.

    However, the final, crushing blow to the Kook-based messianic approach was probably delivered by the Israeli withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, in 2005, and the destruction of the Gush Katif settlements there. The Gush Emunin narrative, which talks about unbroken redemption and the impossibility of retreat, encountered an existential crisis, as did the perception of the secular state as “the Messiah’s donkey,” a reference to the parable about the manner in which the Messiah will make his appearance, meaning that full progress toward redemption can be made on the state’s secular, material back.

    In a symposium held about a year ago by Ir Amim, an NGO that focuses on Jerusalem within the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Haviva Pedaya, from the Jewish history department of Ben-Gurion University in Be’er Sheva, referred to the increasing occupation with the Temple Mount by the religious-Zionist movement after the Gaza pull-out.

    “For those who endured it, the disengagement was a type of sundering from the substantial, from some sort of point of connection,” she said. “For the expelled, it was a breaking point that created a rift between the illusion that the substantial – the land – would be compatible with the symbolic – the state, redemption.” With that connection shattered, Pedaya explains, messianic hope is shifted to an alternative symbolic focal point. The Temple Mount replaces settlement on the soil of the Land of Israel as the key to redemption.

    Many religious Zionists are thus turning toward the mount in place of the belief in step-by-step progress and in place of the conception of the sanctity of the state. The Temple Mount advocates are already now positing the final goal, and by visiting the site and praying there they are deviating from both the halakhic tradition and from Israeli law. State consciousness is abandoned, along with the patience needed for graduated progress toward redemption. In their place come partisan messianism and irreverent efforts to hasten the messianic era – for apocalypse now.

    And they are not alone. Just as was the case in the pre-state period, secular Jews are again joining, and in some cases leading, the movement toward the Temple Mount. Almost half of Likud’s MKs, some of them secular, are active in promoting Jewish visits there. MK Miri Regev, who chairs the Knesset’s Interior and Environment Committee, has already convened 15 meetings of the committee to deliberate on the subject. According to MK Gila Gamliel, “The Temple is the ID card of the people of Israel,” while MK Yariv Levin likens the site to the “heart” of the nation. Manifestly, the division is not between “secular” and “religious,” and the question was never about observing or not observing commandments. The question is an attempt to realize the myth in reality.

    Assuaging Ben-Gurion’s concerns, Israel remained without the Temple Mount at the end of the War of Independence in 1948. Not until the capture of East Jerusalem in 1967 did it become feasible to implement the call of Avraham Stern, and the ancient myth began to sprout within the collective unconscious. After almost 50 years of gestation, Israel is today closer than it has ever been to attempting to renew in practice its mythic past, to bring about by force what many see as redemption. Even if we ignore the fact that the top of the Temple Mount is, simply, currently not available – it must be clear that moving toward a new Temple means the end of both Judaism and Zionism as we know them.

    The question, then, to paraphrase Gershom Scholem’s remark, with which we began, is whether Zionism will be able to withstand the impulse to realize itself conclusively and become history.

    ENTIRE ARTICLE – http://www.haaretz.com/news/features/.premium-1.626327

  9. RoHa
    October 11, 2015, 7:30 pm

    “Waiting for the NYT piece finding that there is no definitive archeological proof that Jesus was in Jerusalem. ”

    There isn’t any.

    And those ancient streets that Jesus is reputed to have walked are actually Roman streets, laid down long after Jesus allegedly lived. The oldest parts of modern Jerusalem are actually parts of Aelia Capitolina. Jerusalem was destroyed, and Hadrian built a Roman city there. Jews were only allowed in on one day a year.

    • dalme
      October 12, 2015, 12:11 am

      They are Roman streets because they are the streets of the ancient Roman Citadel that housed the Roman military. Josephus records this citadel as being the size of 3 cities that included within its walls many temples of worship, baths, stores, housing for the soldiers, stalls to house the horses of the army, etc., etc., everything the Romans needed was all inclusive in this citadel the size of 3 cities. Josephus records that when the temple was destroyed, the entire city of Jerusalem utterly lay destroyed to the ground, the only structure that remained standing was the enormous Roman citadel and its walls. So yes, the Roman streets have been rebuilt and fortified many times over the years and thus you are correct, the current streets are not those of the 1st century, but newer ones that were laid down after many centuries of wars that occurred in the citadel of the Roman army.

      • RoHa
        October 12, 2015, 9:33 pm

        Do not confuse Fort Antonia (now Haram ash-Sharif) with the streets of Aelia Capitolina.

    • lysias
      October 13, 2015, 3:00 pm

      The earliest parts of the New Testament, including the Gospels, antedate Hadrian’s reign by decades.

      • RoHa
        October 13, 2015, 7:13 pm

        “The earliest parts of the New Testament, including the Gospels, antedate Hadrian’s reign by decades. ”

        If you could definitively prove that, lysias, you could get a full-time position at any university which has a Department of New Testament Studies.

        But, even if true, how is it relevant to the Roman city?

      • lysias
        October 14, 2015, 10:02 am

        Those earliest parts of the New Testament, notably the Gospels, testify to Jesus’s walking the streets of Jerusalem.

      • bryan
        October 14, 2015, 10:30 am

        “Those earliest parts of the New Testament” seem to have been written quite late – decades after he lived, by people who may not have known him, and by people who had an axe to grind. The Gospels do not “testify” to anything: a slightly more neutral word would be “assert”, but also it would be fair to say, based on substantial tracts that self-contradict each other, “invent” would be reasonable enough.

      • lysias
        October 14, 2015, 11:19 am

        Biblical scholars generally date almost all of the text of the Synoptic Gospels to the mid to late 1st century A.D. They may be as early as the 50’s. Scholars think all books of the New Testament well antedate Hadrian’s reign.

      • RoHa
        October 14, 2015, 8:43 pm

        “Those earliest parts of the New Testament, notably the Gospels, testify to Jesus’s walking the streets of Jerusalem.”

        And the streets he allegedly walked were destroyed and replaced by the streets of Aelia Capitolina. The old parts of Modern Jerusalem are streets of Aelia Capitolina.

        “Biblical scholars generally date almost all of the text of the Synoptic Gospels to the mid to late 1st century A.D. ”

        That is, more or less, the current majority view. There was a period when the tendendcy was to date them in the second century.

        (The later datings were influenced by the fact that no-one mentions the Gospels by name until Irenaeus. Well after Hadrian. Claims that the Gospels were quoted or referred to by earlier writers depend on the assumptions (a) that those writings are not forgeries, (b) include no later interpolations, (c) were not used as source material by the Gospeleers, and (d) were referring to the same things as Irenaeus was referring to. Since it seems that forgery and interpolation were major industries among early Christians, and there is reason to believe that some of those writings are, indeed, forged, those assumptions are wildly optimistic. Early Christians cared nothing for either contemporary or modern standards of intellectual honesty.

        And I’m assuming that the Irenaean reference is genuine.)

        As I said, if you could prove it, you would be a hero in the field.

        “They may be as early as the 50’s”

        Definitely not the majority view.

      • Mooser
        May 27, 2017, 6:24 pm

        “testify to Jesus’s walking the streets of Jerusalem.”

        “Oh Happy Day”.

    • dalme
      October 13, 2015, 11:56 pm

      I am not confusing the streets of an ancient city with the streets of Fort Antonia. It is modern history that has confused the ancient streets of Jerusalem/ City of David with a post 70AD city that was built much later. It is as Josephus said, the City of David a.k.a. Jerusalem, a walled city, was utterly destroyed in 70AD, not a stone was left because after the destruction, when what we know today as the “old city” was built, they took any stones that were left from the original city and used them in the building of what is known today as the “old city” that went through many periods of uprising and war and thus has been rebuilt many times over the past 2 millennia. Therefore, my response is correct in that there came to be a city called Jerusalem after the temple was destroyed, however, that city was not built in the location of the original city of Jerusalem, the City of David wherein the Gihon Spring and the shaft of Hezekiah has now been discovered and made known to the entire world.

      For the “old city” as it is offered today, there must be a natural spring arising in the midst of it and the fact is, it does not and so we know that this “old city”, while sacred to the Jews, it is not the location in which God placed His Name & His Temple because for there to be a Temple, there must be a natural spring with flowing water close to an ancient olive press for the purification of the Levitical priests. What we know today as the “old city of Jerusalem” does not meet these requirements and neither does the temple mount, however, the ancient City of David does, including the now discovered ancient olive press that is a mere 30 ft from the Gihon Spring. See “Bob (Robert) Cornuke and Eli Shukron, Director of excavations in the city of David) and the ongoing excavations in the City of David surrounding the Gihon Spring).

      And thus we read Lam 2:8 The LORD hath purposed to destroy the wall of the daughter of Zion; He hath stretched out the line, He hath not withdrawn His hand from destroying; but He hath made the rampart and wall to mourn, they languish together. 9 Her gates are sunk into the ground; He hath destroyed and broken her bars; her king and her princes are among the nations, instruction is no more; yea, her prophets find no vision from the LORD. [JPS]

      It is as Josephus records, the original city lay utterly destroyed, buried underground, even her gates. Shalom

  10. RoHa
    October 11, 2015, 7:35 pm

    ” Jewish historical claims to the land.”

    What exactly are these claims? What exactly are the arguments by which these claims provide a moral justification for Zionism?

  11. Qualtrough
    October 11, 2015, 11:05 pm

    Once we have settled this argument can we get on to something more important, such as how many angels can dance on the head of a pin?

    • RoHa
      October 12, 2015, 1:26 am

      The actual, interesting, question, is, “How many angels can dance on the point of a pin?”

      By “the point of a pin” we mean, of course, a point in space, and the question is whether incorporeal beings can occupy the same place at the same time.

      If they are not spatially extended, then it would seem, at first blush, that they can. They can all cluster at the point.

      If they are spatially extended, then, by virtue of being incorporeal, it seems the presence of one in a space would not prevent another from occupying the same space, but that space would not be a point.

      If they are extended throughout space (omnipresent) then, if there is more than one, they have to occupy the same space.

      Of course, they might not be spatially located at all. In that case, the question is meaningless.

    • Mooser
      October 12, 2015, 12:26 pm

      “The actual, interesting, question, is, “How many angels can dance on the point of a pin?”

      That used to be the question, RoHa, but nobody shares needles any more. So they changed it.

      • talknic
        October 12, 2015, 12:44 pm

        Damn! I was half way thru beginning to count.

        OK. What’s the question now?

  12. dalme
    October 11, 2015, 11:48 pm

    Yes, history proves that Jews were exiled for a time from Jerusalem, however, Rome never exiled them from the entire landscape of Judea, or greater Israel for that matter.

    It is subjects such as this that we must let the Hebrew bible, the historical book of the Judaism, tell us where the temple was. According to this historical book, the temple was in the city of David. Moriah was a name recorded much later after the Babylonian captivity that has no historical foundation in the Torah or the Prophets. The Torah calls Judea the region of Moriah in which Abraham was sent to the region of Moriah and then God would show Abraham which mountain/hill in that region to ascend. Then in the Prophets, the temple is built by Solomon in the city where the Gihon Spring flowed through the fortified (walled) city of David that has a constant supply of fresh running water within the walls protecting the city of David and the temple. This is where the temple was built and according to the historical book of Judaism, the Gihon springs supplied the water for the pool of Siloam that was connected to the temple. This is all verified in Josephus, Antiquities.

    There is a reason that the Palestinians are being driven out of the area of the original city of David where the Gihon spring has been uncovered along with some pretty strong evidence of the original temple that was there. The “temple mount” as it is proffered to the public today, is but a tool used to keep the tensions and protests at a level so to be able to use them to justify further removal of the Palestinians from their ancestral homes in the area of the true location of the city of David & Solomon’s temple so to set up that which is needed for the Jewish messiah to come. “Keep them looking at the left hand, so they do not see what the right hand is doing”

    So even the Torah of Moses and the Prophets do not support a temple of the God of Israel as being built anywhere but within the city of David near the Gihon Spring. Therefore, what is the real reason for the article by Gladstone and then its retraction. I would say, “Controlled Opposition” in order to further some upcoming agenda the Zionists have planned out, a tool in which the Zionist are extremely well versed in.

  13. yonah fredman
    October 12, 2015, 9:39 am

    the fact that a Herod’s Temple existed is not denied by any historian, is it? The location of Herod’s temple not being on the Temple Mount is farfetched, to put it mildly. The location of the first temple is impossible to establish by historical evidence, as in reports of humans who lived at the time, whereas Herod’s Temple was relatively contemporaneous: the Middle East in the time of the Roman Empire was widely traveled and reported upon.

    The forced deJudaization of Jerusalem was the true extent of the exile. It’s called ethnic cleansing: jerusalem was ethnically cleansed by the Romans.

    • Misterioso
      October 12, 2015, 11:03 am

      Bottom line:

      Foreign Jews had as much right to Palestine as Irish Catholics or Mexican atheists, i.e., none whatsoever.

    • Mooser
      October 12, 2015, 11:08 am

      “the fact that a Herod’s Temple existed is not denied by any historian, is it? The location of Herod’s temple not being…./…. jerusalem was ethnically cleansed by the Romans.”

      Okay! Anything you say, “Yonah” So what? Something happened a long time ago,in a place you couldn’t even stay in.
      Look, if you want to stay up late and cry over the “ethnic cleansing” of Jerusalem by the Romans. nobody will stop you. Go right ahead.

    • RoHa
      October 12, 2015, 9:50 pm

      “the fact that a Herod’s Temple existed is not denied by any historian, is it?”

      No.

      “The location of Herod’s temple not being on the Temple Mount is farfetched, to put it mildly. ”

      Why so? Exactly what evidence locates it in what is now Haram ash-Sharif? How does it compare with the evidence that suggests that Haram ash-Sharif was actually Fort Antonia?

      Here are few references. You do not need to accept the conclusions, or attempt to reconcile them. I merely ask you to note that there is reason to beleive that Fort Antonia is now the Haram ash-Sharif. It is not farfetched.

      http://www.wrmea.org/2011-august/misunderstandings-about-jerusalem-s-temple-mount.html
      http://www.centuryone.com/Jerusalem/temple.html
      http://askelm.com/temple/t980504.htm
      http://templemountlocation.com/fortAntonia.html
      http://www.bible.ca/archeology/bible-archeology-jerusalem-temple-mount-threshing-floor-fortress-of-antonia.htm

      The dreaded DM’s report on Roman coins found under the Wailing Wall.
      http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2065254/Coins-Jerusalems-Western-Wall-hints-sacred-site-older-Herod.html

      • RoHa
        October 12, 2015, 10:34 pm

        And I will add that I fervently beleive that Fort Antonia is now the Haram ash-Sharif.

        I am also inclined to believe it, but by no means fervently.

    • Marnie
      October 13, 2015, 7:11 am

      No it’s not – it’s called prophesy come true. The ancient prophets warned the Hebrews repeatedly to get their collective shit straight or they would be taken into captivity, killed, etc., for defying their God. Why the hell is that so hard to accept? They did things they were told not to do and they were also told they’d suffer for it by being thrown out of the land. You wanna call it ethnic cleansing? You give God no credit for anything Mr. Fredman.

    • Marnie
      October 13, 2015, 7:21 am

      “It’s called ethnic cleansing: jerusalem was ethnically cleased by the Romans”.

      You show no respect to God at all. The prophets warned the stiffnecked, backsliding Hebrews to repent and obey their God else they would be cast out of the land. They didn’t listen. They were driven out, killed or went into captivity because God wasn’t playing. Stop retelling the tale in a format to try to excuse the blood lust of the zionists in the present time. Ethnic cleansing is what the Jews have been doing to the indigenous people of Palestine since 1948.

    • dalme
      October 14, 2015, 12:23 am

      yonah, the Tanakh begs to differ with you. 1Chron 21 & 2Chron 3:1 The place of both temples was in the city of David, the former city of Ornan the Jebusite, where David was instructed to buy the site of Ornan the Jebuste’s threshing floor and then build an alter on the place of that threshing floor that David had bought from Ornan the Jebusite. Ornan sought to give it to David, however, according to the historical account in 1 Chron 21, David refused, insisting upon paying for that land as he was instructed to do. One must be careful to approach history as an agnostic who has no skin in the game if one wants to weed out the truth of history rather than seek only that which supports ones blind obedience to religious myths and legends.

    • bryan
      October 14, 2015, 4:57 am

      @yonah: ” farfetched, to put it mildly”. No it is utterly plausible that the first temple was built in the city of David, beside the Gihon Spring, that the second temple was built on the same site, and that the Third, when it comes, as it very likely will, will be built on an entirely different site. Such a shame, because maintaining the integrity and current status of the Noble Sanctuary, is central to the tiny remaining hopes that this conflict can ever be resolved.

  14. Froggy
    October 12, 2015, 10:21 am

    What is the NYT afraid of?

  15. jon s
    October 12, 2015, 4:44 pm

    The location of the temples on the Temple Mount is not really in dispute.
    Although conducting excavations on the mount itself is now impossible , extensive excavations have been conducted around the Western Wall, and the Southern Wall and there have been important discoveries such as Robinson’s Arch, Wilson’s Arch, the Temple Warning Inscription, and more. The archaeological record, along with historical sources ,especially Josephus, provide us with a pretty good picture of what the 2nd Temple looked like after it was reconstructed by Herod.
    As to the 1st Temple, it was also on the Temple Mount. The 2nd would not have been built there if the first hadn’t been in the same location.

    • YoniFalic
      October 12, 2015, 5:11 pm

      Unless the first Jerusalem Temple is a complete fabrication with no historical reality whatsoever.

      From the historical sources and from the little archaeological investigation that has been performed, it is hardly obvious where the second Jerusalem Temple actually stood on הַר הַבַּיִת/الحرم الشريف, but we can be certain that wherever it stood the Judean Temple Judaism, in which it was a shrine, was a religion extremely different from Rabbinic Judaism, and neither Rabbinic Jews nor completely bogus ethnic/secular Jews, both groups descended totally from pagan populations converted to Judaism, have any legitimate claim whatsoever to any of cultural product on הַר הַבַּיִת/الحرم الشريف.

      This cultural product belongs wholly to the native population, and the racist genocidal invaders trying to assert their perverted and false claims must keep their greedy rapacious hands off of it.

      http://www.jpost.com/Israel/Was-the-Aksa-Mosque-built-over-the-remains-of-a-Byzantine-church

      • zaid
        October 13, 2015, 1:49 am

        Yoni

        The whole discussion of what stood in the mount 2000 year ago is absurd since it really does not matter whether or not the temple existed and where.

        The right thing to say is:

        The history of an extinct structure has no bearing on the statue of an extant one.

        End of discussion.

      • YoniFalic
        October 13, 2015, 3:55 am

        @zaid

        The settler invaders achieve undeserved legitimacy via bogus historical claims — both among Jews and among non-Jews.

        It is important to attack and to destroy every stupid argument made by the settler invaders committing genocide right before our eyes.

        By leaving the discussion, you concede the argument to the racist invaders.

        I understand that most Palestinians, Arabs, and Muslims do not know the history as I do and that other battles may seem or be more important.

        Yet we must always keep in mind that not one single historical fact supports any claim of Eastern European, North African, Mesopotamian, or Yemeni Jewish invaders to Palestine.

        Any time the invaders make one of these moronic assertions about a religious site, they intend to steal it in an orgy of national chauvinist assertion. We have previously seen this nonsense at the Al-Haram Al-Ibrahimi and the Qubbet Rahil.

        These sites belonged to the ancestors of native Palestinians when they practiced whatever religion preceded ancient Judaism and when they practiced ancient Judaism. Now these sites belong to the native Palestinians whether they practice Christianity or whether they practice Islam.

        These sites certainly don’t belong to the faux Jewish invaders.

      • yonah fredman
        October 13, 2015, 7:27 am

        The primary fact regarding Har Habayit is political: it is in occupied territory, part of a settler occupation that has gone on for 48 years and which the ruling (Likud) party offers no strategy regarding the future.

        It is impossible to put the occupation aside, but the occupation aside: the edifices of the two mosques take up a fraction of the Temple Mount and it is not the edifices per se that are the essential barrier to Jewish wishes to view the mount as a place that is available to them as a site of prayers; it is the insistence that only Muslims have rights up on the Mount.

        The evolution of Judaism from the time of the Temple through the rabbinic period and even to the secular period is relevant in terms of how did the attitude of Jews towards the location evolve over time, but to dismiss Jewish attitudes and feelings towards the spot on the basis of: well that was a different Judaism and the Judaism of these Jews is totally detached from the Judaism of two thousand years ago. Well, that’s the word of dogmatists, who know the hearts of all humans and can judge valid emotions from invalid ones.

        Again, politics is the primary consideration, granted. But this dismissal of Jewish attachment to the Temple Mount is dogma (as in detached from the human species in all its varieties.)

      • Mooser
        October 13, 2015, 3:00 pm

        Shorter Yonah: ‘The correct and sacred interpretation of Jewish religion is the one which gets us something. And the more violent and extreme, the more religious.’

        BTW, I notice a wonderful tendency on the part of every Ziobot here: By now they reject claims the Judaism should involve any kind of sacrifice (not animal, the other kind) or renunciation as a result of Judaism as ridiculous in toto, not even worth considering. The aim, the purpose of the Jewish religion is to get what we are entitled to. And that’s what it’s good for. And anything which doesn’t support that is to be rejected.

    • Mooser
      October 12, 2015, 7:50 pm

      “The archaeological record, along with historical sources ,especially Josephus, provide us with a pretty good picture of what the 2nd Temple looked like after it was reconstructed by Herod.”

      And all you have to do is ‘hold your nose’ until you can have the ultimate religious experience, a trip to the rebuilt second Temple with the neighbor’s dog. Well, if it’s AKC, that is. We give God only their best.

    • dalme
      October 14, 2015, 12:26 am

      It is not in dispute in the mainstream, however, it is very much debated in the archeological arena, even in Jerusalem because the temple mount as the location for either temple is not supported by what is written in the Tanakh.

      • Veni Vidi Vici
        October 14, 2015, 12:00 pm

        No the location of the temple mount is undisputed among the archaeological community. The Tanakh, and records from commentators be they Pagan, Roman, Arab, Jew, or Christian. The reason the Dome of the Rock was built on that place WAS BECAUSE IT WAS JEWISH HOLY SITE!!!! The archaeologists quoted by the NYT have responded about how they were misquoted: http://www.tabletmag.com/scroll/194129/scholars-debunk-times-article-on-temple-mount furthermore I don’t know if you’ve seen the temple mount, or the tunnels beneath it, but there’s an abundance of archaelogical evidence in the tunnels beneath it, the wall next to it, the ruins besides the temple mount. Furthermore it has been excavated, the Dome of the Rock was illegally expanded by the Waqf, the excavation was ground up in to rubble and destroyed, the remaining gravel is being combed through, so far the largest remaining piece was a seal with hebrew characters on it.

      • YoniFalic
        October 14, 2015, 3:58 pm

        As far as I know, except for the Hebrew and Greek Bibles, which are certainly not historically trustworthy, there is no literary source that discloses the existence of the first Jerusalem Temple.

        Thus any expert assuming the existence of the first Jerusalem Temple is not an expert. He is either deluded, unscholarly, or repeating propaganda.

        In any case, Rabbinic Judaism has little similarity to Judean Temple Judaism, and Rabbinic Judaism, a religion that developed almost entirely in Mesopotamia, has much less connection to Judea/Palestine than Christianity.

  16. amigo
    October 12, 2015, 4:51 pm

    I may have missed it but did any of the complainers bitch about Gladstone,s reference to Israeli “Occupied East Jerusalem”.

    ” Fears of change

    In recent decades, after the 1967 Arab-Israeli war and the Israeli occupation of East Jerusalem, the site has been administered by a special Islamic religious authority called the Waqf, under Jordanian custodianship.”

    http://www.irishtimes.com/news/world/middle-east/historical-certainty-elusive-at-jerusalem-s-holiest-place-1.2387473

    I will call the Irish times tomorrow and let them know they are being used to serve up zionist propaganda.

  17. lysias
    October 13, 2015, 2:44 pm

    How can anyone doubt the historicity of the Second (Herod’s) Temp[e? If it didn’t exist, why would it figure so prominently in the Gospels?

    • RoHa
      October 13, 2015, 7:21 pm

      “How can anyone doubt the historicity of the Second (Herod’s) Temp[e? If it didn’t exist, why would it figure so prominently in the Gospels?”

      A character called Jesus occasionally pops up in the Gospels, but pretty good arguments can be made that he is a fiction, perhaps cooked up after Vespasian and Titus destroyed Jerusalem. The Temple could be another fiction. (I don’t think it is.)

      No-one knows when the Gospels were written.
      No-one knows who wrote them.
      No-one knows where they were written.
      No-one knows even why they were written.

      But they do look like a mass of fiction and forgery.

      NT scholars argue over them, but they have never come to any really indisputable conclusions.

  18. jon s
    October 13, 2015, 4:03 pm

    lysias,
    No serious historian doubts the historicity of the Temple.

    • Annie Robbins
      October 13, 2015, 4:20 pm

      what’s your definition of serious?

      • Mooser
        October 14, 2015, 10:59 am

        “what’s your definition of serious?”

        Here’ I’ll use it in a sentence:

        M: “But Dad, I’m serious about this! (whatever cockamamie idea I had at the time)”
        M’s Dad: “Great! You be serious, I’ll be Roebucks, we’ll start a store!”

        He got me every time with that one.

    • RoHa
      October 13, 2015, 7:08 pm

      It is the location, not the existence, that is at issue.

  19. MHughes976
    October 14, 2015, 4:12 pm

    The respected blog The Bible and Interpretation published in 2001 an article by Richley Crapo (all right, unfortunate name) which is the clearest I know about the probability of the Temple’s being located to the south of the present Muslim buildings. The author was then based at Utah State University, so the wild accusations that no one of academic standing endorses this view are unjustified. To me the simplest and most effective argument is the fact that Josephus informs us so clearly that the Temple was overlooked by the royal residence, which no one thinks was on the Mount. That’s in Antiquities 20, chapter 8.
    Maybe that’s not a conclusive but it is a serious point. There is a certain amount of semantics in play – where exactly do we draw boundaries for what we call Temple Mount or call Mount Moriah? These semantic niceties affect the remarks both of Mr. Gladstone and of the archaeologists who prompted his doubts. But those who attack his integrity,, use violent language against reasonable questions and use political means to suppress debate should be ashamed of themselves.
    Ths pre-Hasmonean Temples are surrounded by all manner of problems. Very few scholars would expect to find a magnificent structure reflecting the immense riches of Solomon”s mighty,,perhaps legendary, Kingdom. In any event we coukd not be certain that a new Temple would have shared the site of an old one so vigorously deemed to have become corrupt that Nebuchadnezzar, who is said to have closed it down, is the only character in the relevant part of the story to be called God’s servant. That’s in Jeremiah 43.

    • Veni Vidi Vici
      October 14, 2015, 8:29 pm

      The blog post you describe is actually mis-represented in your post. He claims that the first temple complex extended over the dome of the rock, and that the holy of holies was at the different end of the complex, but that the second temple incorporated that area into the physical temple itself. Furthermore the blog post says “I will present [Architect Tuvia Sagiv’s] basic arguments here along with my own, small additions…”. Sagiv himself however believes the temple did exist on the temple mount just “The Jewish Temple, or at least its remnants, exist between Al-Aksa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock in the area of Al Kas fountain” so he does believe it was beneath the temple mount, just not directly beneath the Dome of the Rock and the Al-Aksa Mosque. So the only other side of the “debate” you can find says, that the Jewish Temple was beneath the Temple Mount, so what debate is there, is there anyone in doubt of the scholarly consensus on the subject? Furthermore why are we discussing an established fact when all non-muslims are facing religious persecution at the hands of the Waqf by being denied the right to pray over the temple, or anywhere remotely near it?

      • Mooser
        October 14, 2015, 10:56 pm

        “Furthermore why are we discussing an established fact when all non-muslims are facing religious persecution at the hands of the Waqf by being denied the right to pray over the temple, or anywhere remotely near it?”

        Please don’t worry. My Rabbi told me God hears our prayers equally well from anywhere on earth.

      • Kris
        October 15, 2015, 11:49 am

        @Mooser: “Please don’t worry. My Rabbi told me God hears our prayers equally well from anywhere on earth. ”

        Well, sure, prayers. But what about bloody sacrifices? JeffB came back to explain this to us; maybe you missed this, it explains a lot:

        Zionism is a rejection of diaspora Judaism’s weakness. The soil of Judaea returns Jews to their roots. Of course blood sacrifice is “barbaric” that’s the point, blood shocks the senses. All animals have evolved to emotionally react to that copper scent and the thick red flow. Blood rites are associated with ecstatic rituals. The temple is Jerusalem’s were in ancient times impressive to observers even those used to Ptolemaic and Roman temple standards. Reform Judaism is associated with boring, tedious prayers in Hebrew followed by boring tedious sermons that Mr. Rogers might give before going to the Neighborhood of Make-Believe. There are good political reasons not to rebuild the Temple and if I were king of Israel I’d go for the old location and leave Al-Aqsa alone. But I and many other Zionists want to see a new Jewish temple even though I don’t believe in the god it is dedicated to. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jeffb#sthash.lFCjb4A2.dpuf

      • Mooser
        October 15, 2015, 3:53 pm

        Thanks, Kris! Yup, I saw that, and found the last line especially piquant. Ah, how sophisticated JeffB is in his Jewish-Atheist-Zionism! And all that stuff about blood and soil and rituals. A regular Aleister Crowleystein or something. I hope the folks around his neighborhood keep a close eye on their pets.

  20. MHughes976
    October 15, 2015, 6:32 am

    I think I correctly represented Crapo as, in own view, challenging a consensus and arguing for a ‘southern placement’ away from the Muslim buildings. I said that it was the clearest statement of the problem that I know.
    I think his example is enough to show that there is reasonable scope for argument about the location of the Temple but that it is subject to problems of semantics, with the question “Where in the area was it?’ eliding into ‘Was it in the area?’
    Beyond that, I think that the implications of Josephus’ mention of the overview from the royal dining room may be more radical than Crapo acknowledges. It does seem strange that the argument over this should be so passionate.
    If Crapo had any political agenda it may have been to argue that the area important to Islam and the area important to Judaism can be marked off clearly from each other, which may or may not be a useful approach.

  21. yonah fredman
    October 15, 2015, 7:30 am

    Herod’s Temple was where if it wasn’t on the Temple Mount? If you’ve never been to Jerusalem how can you comment relevantly regarding the topography. Is the Temple Mount not the highest part of the old city? is not the mount of olives across from the Temple mount? I have never heard anyone refer to the topography in a reasonable way to explain the temple’s presence elsewhere. the topography makes the entire discussion ridiculous. it really strikes me as a type of “truther” state of mind.

    • RoHa
      October 15, 2015, 8:38 am

      “Herod’s Temple was where if it wasn’t on the Temple Mount?”

      On the other hand, where was Fort Antonia if it wasn’t on the Temple Mount?

    • MHughes976
      October 15, 2015, 10:19 am

      I’d better begin by conceding to Yonah that I don’t expect a really plausible alternative site for the Temple to be found.
      However, the real Relocators would with almost to a man and woman reply to his ‘Where?’ question with ‘Over the Gihon Spring’. It is important to many of them to identify Living Water to cleanse the sacrificial blood.
      The real rousing Relocator was Ernest Martin, of non-mainstream evangelical background, whose qualifications were, I think, in metereology. His followers have a website which sports an interesting review or comment by James Tabor, a very high profile Bible scholar, which I think is genuine. Tabor refers with some kindness to Martin’s other project, relocating the crucifixion, in his current blog. Tabor’s view is that he doesn’t find himself convinced by Martin’s Temple arguments but thinks he made a case worth considering. I commend this attitude rather than the angry, thought-controlling, censorship-mongering alternative found in reaction to the much milder views (milder than Martin’s) canvassed by Rick Gladstone in the NYT. As I recall, Martin would ascribe the whole Mount space to the Antonia fortress, an idea which perhaps appeals at least tentatively to RoHa.
      For my part I’d currently put the chances of Relocationism’s being right at about 5%.

      • lysias
        October 15, 2015, 10:25 am

        5% chance of being right means 95% chance of being wrong. 95% of the traditional view being right approaches the legal level of proof beyond a reasonable doubt, and certainly exceeds the legal level of proof by clear and convincing evidence (the intermediate level American courts have established between beyond a reasonable doubt and preponderance of the evidence). Proof by clear and convincing evidence has been equated by scholars comparing legal and historical levels of proof with historical proof.

      • MHughes976
        October 15, 2015, 10:38 am

        Well, lysias, perhaps I was being a bit mean to the Relocators. I think Ernest Martin worked very doggedly on the matter and lived up to his first name. I don’t think they’re completely refuted but it’s pretty hard, reading Josephus and looking at the map, to believe what they say.

      • Sibiriak
        October 15, 2015, 10:58 am

        MHughes976: As I recall, Martin would ascribe the whole Mount space to the Antonia fortress, an idea which perhaps appeals at least tentatively to RoHa.
        ——————–

        The whole Mount space to the Antonia fortress! My God, how could that not appeal to RoHa?

      • RoHa
        October 15, 2015, 7:20 pm

        You are right, Siberiak. For someone who thinks that the Roman Empire was the best thing to happen to Ancient Palestine, the idea is irresistible.

        Roman soldiers were not incorporeal beings who could gather in legions at the point of a pilum. They needed a lot of space. A large, flat, hill like the Temple Mount would be ideal. They could build a camp in the rectangular form laid down in the military manuals. Since it was elevated, it could be defended, and they had an overview of the city, and could deploy quickly to deal with riots and bad grammar.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IIAdHEwiAy8

        If Fort Antonia wasn’t on the Temple Mount, where was it?
        If the Temple wasn’t on the Temple Mount, where was it?

        Given the obstacles to archaeology in the area, and the political pressure to fit the few archaeological findings into the propaganda, I doubt we’ll get a firm answer for some time.

    • talknic
      October 15, 2015, 1:05 pm

      yonah fredman ” If you’ve never been to Jerusalem how can you comment relevantly regarding the topography. Is the Temple Mount not the highest part of the old city? is not the mount of olives across from the Temple mount? I have never heard anyone refer to the topography in a reasonable way to explain the temple’s presence elsewhere. the topography makes the entire discussion ridiculous.”

      Indeed, ridiculous. I’ve never seen a spring on the top of a hill

  22. JeffB
    October 15, 2015, 7:50 am

    I’m not planning on returning to posting here because of the censorship … but this conversation I figured I’d weigh in on. I’m a Zionist, a Jew, and an atheist. I don’t think there was a first temple in Jerusalem though a proto-Jewish shrine on Mount Gerizim dating back before the 6th century BCE is likely. The second temple however one doesn’t need to believe in any historical religious books to understand what was there. You can quite literally see construction from the Hasmonean dynasty and Herodian Dynasty on the mount where the Al-Aqsa Mosque sits. This is not a question of religion nor one of history it is basic obviously observed archeology. Grouping denial of the location of the 2nd temple in with holocaust denial is quite inaccurate but in the other direction it is more like denying the existence of Australia or Zebras.

    As for Keith’s comments about the animal sacrifice… yep that’s right it is nothing like Reform Judaism. Zionism is a rejection of diaspora Judaism’s weakness. The soil of Judaea returns Jews to their roots. Of course blood sacrifice is “barbaric” that’s the point, blood shocks the senses. All animals have evolved to emotionally react to that copper scent and the thick red flow. Blood rites are associated with ecstatic rituals. The temple is Jerusalem’s were in ancient times impressive to observers even those used to Ptolemaic and Roman temple standards. Reform Judaism is associated with boring, tedious prayers in Hebrew followed by boring tedious sermons that Mr. Rogers might give before going to the Neighborhood of Make-Believe. There are good political reasons not to rebuild the Temple and if I were king of Israel I’d go for the old location and leave Al-Aqsa alone. But I and many other Zionists want to see a new Jewish temple even though I don’t believe in the god it is dedicated to.

    • bryan
      October 15, 2015, 11:44 am

      I am sure you are right Jeff (“Blood rites are associated with ecstatic rituals.”) We’ve seen recent videos of Isarelis dancing in the streets around pools of blood when alleged criminals (or simply people in the wrong place at the wrong time) have been ritually slaughtered, or extrajuducially executed, or whatever the current euphemism is.

    • eljay
      October 15, 2015, 12:35 pm

      || JeffB: … I’m a Zionist … Zionism is a rejection of diaspora Judaism’s weakness. … I and many other Zionists want to see a new Jewish temple even though I don’t believe in the god it is dedicated to. ||

      JeffB’s patented(?) formula: “Morality” = goal (atheist Zionist wants his golden calf) + methods (he’ll kill to get it, or he’ll “hold his nose” while others do the dirty work for him).

      Sure, people will get hurt, but he takes comfort in the fact that he won’t suffer the blowback alone because, according to his Zio-supremacist “logic”, “all Jews are responsible for the actions of some Jews”.

      • Mooser
        October 15, 2015, 4:05 pm

        “JeffB’s patented(?) formula: “Morality” = goal (atheist Zionist wants his golden calf) + methods (he’ll kill to get it, or he’ll “hold his nose” while others do the dirty work for him).”

        He nothing but a very, very bad joke, one which is in very poor taste, too.
        A Jewish Atheist Zionist, who goes after other Jews for their impiousness, and unwillingness to engage in Jewish ritual. But is a violent Zionist in the USA.

        “@Tony (Greenstein, ed.)
        You don’t keep shabbat, you don’t keep kosher, you don’t pray after meals and wear tefillin. You are a major anti-Jewish politician. What other than your name is Jewish about you? You tell me how are you a Jew and not an apostate?
        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jeffb?keyword=Tony#sthash.M1rRiDcq.dpuf

      • eljay
        October 15, 2015, 6:07 pm

        || Mooser: He nothing but a very, very bad joke, one which is in very poor taste, too. … ||

        This is beyond dispute.

    • talknic
      October 15, 2015, 1:01 pm

      @ JeffB “But I and many other Zionists want to see a new Jewish temple even though I don’t believe in the god it is dedicated to.”

      Fine go build it in Israel http://wp.me/pDB7k-Xk#googlemap

    • Kris
      October 15, 2015, 2:15 pm

      @JeffB: ” Blood rites are associated with ecstatic rituals.”

      That ain’t the way to have fun, son.

    • Mooser
      October 15, 2015, 3:05 pm

      “I’m not planning on returning to posting here because of the censorship”

      Well, that seems fair, since nobody plans on reading your nonsense due to the logorrhea and well, outright stupidity.

      “But I and many other Zionists want to see a new Jewish temple even though I don’t believe in the god it is dedicated to.”

      Oh, I can see how that makes you just the guy to talk about it.

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