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The Pharaoh’s General, and Mubarak’s The Pharaoh’s General, and Mubarak’s
Monday, February 7, 2011 by Alex Joffe | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

The general was a commoner. He rose through the ranks as a career soldier, attracting attention for his prowess and dedication. Becoming a soldier-diplomat, he fought Egypt's battles, negotiated with troublesome neighbors, and served several kings in succession.
Cyrus, Ahmadinejad, and the Politics of Purim Cyrus, Ahmadinejad, and the Politics of Purim
Tuesday, February 1, 2011 by Alex Joffe | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Anyone who deplores the politicization of the past should have been apoplectic in September 2010 at the sight of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad receiving the loan of the "Cyrus Cylinder" from officials of the British Museum.
The Iraqi Jewish Archive The Iraqi Jewish Archive
Monday, January 24, 2011 by Alex Joffe | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

To whom do antiquities belong?  For Jews, the question took on flesh in 2003 in the flooded basement of a building belonging to the Iraqi secret police.
Science, Faith, and Biblical Archeology Science, Faith, and Biblical Archeology
Monday, January 17, 2011 by Alex Joffe | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Biblical archeology was born out of twinned desires: to "illuminate" the world of the Bible and, ultimately, to prove the truth of the Word.
The Continuing War for Safed The Continuing War for Safed
Thursday, December 16, 2010 by Aryeh Tepper | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Safed (Hebrew: Tsfat) is a picturesque town of 32,000 souls nestled in the hills of Galilee.  It is also home to a hardline branch of the Islamic Movement looking for ways to undermine Jewish sovereignty.
Why Rachel’s Tomb Matters Why Rachel’s Tomb Matters
Friday, November 19, 2010 by Alex Joffe | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

All cultures build on what came before them. But how they treat the past is a measure of cultures in the present. The treatment by Muslims of Rachel's tomb, lately much in the news, is a case in point.
Cemetery Politics Cemetery Politics
Wednesday, September 1, 2010 by Allan Nadler | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Among the many bones its various enemies pick with the Jewish state, one has been much in the news lately: bones, very dry bones, residing in cemeteries both real and imagined all across the country.  
Digging King Herod Digging King Herod
Friday, August 20, 2010 by Aryeh Tepper | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

King Herod was a Jew of doubtful origin who ruled Israel in the years 40-4 B.C.E. During this same period, the Roman republic was being replaced by the Roman Empire with its vast expansionist aims. Relying on Roman support for his power, Herod was, in effect, Israel's little Roman emperor. And he played the part, bringing administrative order and economic prosperity to the country and creating hugely ambitious architectural projects. In the Roman way, he was also cruel, paranoid, and thorough, killing his wife, three sons, and an assortment of other relatives and confidants.
The New Israel Museum The New Israel Museum
Friday, August 13, 2010 by Aryeh Tepper | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

An expanded and revamped Israel Museum re-opened to the public in late July after three years of renovations. While the modest architecture remains as it was, the modernist cubes rolling with the Jerusalem landscape, the jumble of buildings has been streamlined: 25,000 square feet of exhibition space have been added, but the number of items on display has been reduced by a third. Overall, the design is significantly more user-friendly, with a spacious new entrance hall leading to the museum's remarkable collections, including its three most significant wings: archeology, Jewish art and life, and fine art.
A Dead Issue? A Dead Issue?
Monday, February 15, 2010 by Elli Fischer | Jewish Ideas Daily » Daily Features

Since the electrifying discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls at Qumran in the late 1940's, the scholarly consensus has been that they were produced by the Essenes, a small Second Temple-era Jewish sect known to us from Josephus. Last year, a book by Rachel Elior, Memory and Oblivion: The Secret of the Dead Sea Scrolls (Hebrew), upended this seemingly settled issue by contending that, in fact, the Essenes never existed. Elior's revolutionary thesis, argued with force and stridency, has been discussed in major mainstream publications from Israeli newspapers to Time magazine. But the controversy, and clashing assessments of her achievement as a historian, have...
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Editors' Picks
The Scrolls Go Digital , Telegraph. Thanks to a two-year collaboration between the Israel Antiquities Authority and Google, the Dead Sea Scrolls are now online.
Akko's Shipwrecks , The sea around the city of Akko is full of preserved shipwrecks, from the Hellenistic period through the Egyptian-Ottoman War.  And excavations have just begun.
David's Tomb , Bible History Daily. Archeologists have long dismissed Raymond Weill's century-old hypothesis that tunnels in the City of David were the necropolis of the ancient kings.  But could Weill have been right?
Judaism's Golden Plate Lawrence Schiffman, For a committed Jew to hold this item in his hands concretizes millennia of Jewish faith.  But it also raises questions about the history of monotheism and the permeability of culture. 
Archeology Under Attack Christopher Torchia, Times of Israel. After a 90-year closure, the Turks have allowed archeological excavations near the Syrian border at Karkemish, site of a major biblical battle.  But now another battle threatens the site. 
Under A Tax Shaye J. D. Cohen, Bible History Daily. Vespasian's fiscus judaicus not only undermined the Temple by diverting tithes to the Temple of Jupiter Capitolinus, but may also have accelerated the break between Judaism and Christianity. 
Michal of Makhpelah Tamara Zieve, Jerusalem Post. On October 9th, 1968, 13-year-old Michal Arbel, daughter of the head of the Shin Bet, became the first Jew to enter the Cave of the Patriarchs in 700 years.
The Only Ancient Jewish Male Hair Ever Found James Tabor, Taborblog. “Lice-free, and trimmed or cut evenly . . . The length of the hair was medium to short, averaging 3-4 inches. The color was reddish.”
Prehistoric Palestine , Israel Antiquities Authority. An archeological excavation at Ein Zippori in northern Israel has uncovered ornate luxury bowls from the Stone Age—testifying not only to settlement but also to trade.
Jesus Married? No Surprise Bernard Starr, Huffington Post. Avowed celibacy would be a more shocking discovery about Jesus and his Jewish followers than marriage.