Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Why Mordecai Didn't Bow to Haman in Ancient Iran

Queen Esther with Uncle, Mordechai, from the tribe of Benjamin
Mordechai, the Jew 
The Babylonians aka Land of Shinar or of the Kasdim )Chaldees, led by their leader, Nebuchadnezzar, attacked Judah (southern part of Israel) in 597 BCE and again in 586 BCE, when they carried away captives as slaves and destroyed the Temple of Solomon. The slaves later became the property of the Persians-aka Iran, and finally became semi-free there.  Abraham was born in Ur of the Chaldeans, so you might say that the Babylonians took the Jews back to their origins.   The irony is that Abraham had left here and had migrated to Canaan where he later fought Amrahel, king of Shinar as told in Genesis 14 over Lot, his nephew.  In those days all the kings fought each other.  Nebuchadnezzar, a Babylonian, had inherited the Assyrian Empire, and after his conquest of Judah in 597 BCE  and 586 BCE, had exiled many Jews to Babylon.
Queen Esther
Later, we find Mordecai in the 5th century BCE, a Benjamite serving as a palace official at Shushan in the reign of Ahasuerus aka King Xerxes I.  His niece, Esther aka Hadassah, was married to this king.  Ahasuerus learned through Mordecai about an assassination plot against him.   Since most historians have identified Ahasuerus as king Xerxes I, his known wife had been Amestris.

    Amestris  or Ésther
    Rashi thought that Ahasuerus was the successor to Cyrus, near the end of the 70 years of the Babylonian exile.  
    Amestris was the wife of Xerxes I of Persia, mother of Achaemenid,  King of Kings Artaxerxes I of Persia. She was known to have been poorly regarded by ancient Greek historians. Wikipedia
    Here are the ancestors of Esther showing she is the niece of Mordechai
    Descendants of Judge Jair
    1   Judge Jair b: in Gilead
    . 2   Mordechai b: in Shushan, Persia
    . 2   Abihail
    ..... 3   Esther-Hadassah b: in Shushan, Persia
    ......... +Ahasuerus-XerxesI, KingI b: in Shushan, Persia

    Xerxes I (ruled 486-465 BCE), also known as Xerxes the Great, was the king of the Persian Achaemenid Empire. His official title was Shahanshah which, though usually translated as `emperor’, actually means `king of kings’. He is identified as the Ahasuerus of Persia in the biblical Book of Esther (although his son, Artaxerxes I, is also a possibility as is Artaxerxes II).  
Mordecai refused to bow to the vizier, Haman, aka Memucan, Chief minister of Ahasuerus,  which made Haman very angry, so that Haman instigated a plan of vengeance on all the Jews of  Persia, but his scheme was found out by Queen Esther.  In the end, Haman and his 10 sons were hung by King Ahasuerus and his position as chief minister was filled by Mordecai.  Wikipedia said: " Haman is hanged from the gallows that had originally been built to hang Mordecai. The dead bodies of his ten sons Parshandatha, Dalphon, Aspatha, Poratha, Adalia, Aridatha, Parmashta, Arisai, Aridai and Vaizatha (or Vajezatha), are also hanged after they die in battle trying to kill the Jews." I had always thought the extermination attempt had not yet begun when Esther saved them all by getting the courage to tell the king about the plot.  
Haman speaking with King Ahasuerus
       Haman's resentment of the independent attitude of Mordecai led him to detest all Jews and this is why it is believed that he planned their annihilation, which he had set to happen on the 13th of the month of Adar.

Haman's history was that he was descended from Agag, king of Amalek and was called "the Agagite."  He was the son of Hammedatha, the Agagite.  His wife was Zeresh.  His seat in the palace was above all the officers who were with him.  All the servants at the king's gate would bow down and prostrate themselves before Haman as the king had so ordered.

Who were the Amaleks?  They were a people almost always hostile to Israel.  They were nomads wandering around between Southern Canaan and nearby areas that later became part of Palestine.  They were the ones who attacked the Israelites in the desert near Rephidim shortly after the Exodus and annihilated the weak and weary.  They were defeated by the Israelite army under Joshua.  From then on, the Israelites regarded Amaleks as an eternal foe, the extermination of which was a national mission.  Saul couldn't kill their king.  During the period of the Judges, the Amaleks penetrated Western lands at various points and their presence was a standing threat to the peace of the country.  They acted like the Hamas led Palestinians of today.

In King David's time, the Amaleks invaded southern Judea and burned the town of Ziklag.  David fought and defeated them heavily, so that only 400 escaped from him.  In the reign of Hezekiah in 720-690 BCE, the tribe of Simeon overwhelmed the Amalekites and settled in their territory.  They are a symbol of everlasting enmity to Israel along with Haman, the Agagite.  who was a descendant of Agag, the king of the Amaleks.

So who was Mordecai and why wouldn't he show this respect of bowing?  Mordecai was descended from Benjamin, so was a Benjaminite.   Benjamin had been the 2nd son of Jacob through Rachel, his first love who had died during childbirth.  Benjamin had an older brother, Joseph.  Now, when land was doled out to the 12 sons of Jacob through Moses and Joshua, Joseph did not receive any as he had already been 2nd in command to the Pharaoh of Egypt and did not need any more land, so his parcel went to his 2 sons, Manassah and Ephraim which is important in seeing who Mordecai, born in Shushan, Persia,  was.

Mordecai's father was Jair, who had been a judge.  He was the son of Shimei, son of Kish, son of Bela, son of BENJAMIN!. Benjamin was the uncle of Manassah   Descendants of Joseph

1   Joseph b: in Canaan, 18th-16th centuries BCE? Hyksos period (2500-1587 BCE)
.. +Asenath b: in Egypt
. 2   Manasseh
. 2   Ephraim

  Of course, Benjamin was the youngest son of Jacob, father of the 12 sons whose descendants were then tribal members of that son.  This makes 6 generations away from Manassah, son of Joseph.
Malala Yousafzai, Pashto woman-winner of Nobel Prize in 2014
 Joseph's line held many important people including the Pashtuns that claim descent from the 10 Lost tribes of Israel from the invasion of Assyrians into Israel that occurred in 722 and 721   BCE-well before the Babylonians who had taken over the Assyrian holdings.  King Saul was from this family.  His father had been Kish, and brother, therefore, was Shimei. Pashtos claim descendency from Joseph.

It was Jair who had been carried into captivity together with King Jeconiah /Jehoiachin (son of Jehoiakim) of Judah who only reigned in 597 BCE for only 3 months and 10 days, having become king at age 18 during the Babylonian siege of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar, who was then also king of Babylon in 605-562 BCE.   Young King Jehoiachin had to remain in detention until the accession of Evil-Merodach in 561 BCE when he was released.  Official Babylonian records relating to his captivity have been recovered.
Nebuchadnezzar  had conquered all the lands from the Euphrates to the Egyptian frontier, including Judah.  He captured Jerusalem after Judah had revolted, and had replaced the young king Jehoiachin with his own nominee, Zedekiah, and had exiled 8,000 of the local aristocracy to Babylon.  8 years later, even Zedekiah had to rebel from the treatment. Zedekiah remained king of Judah from 597 to 586 BCE and was the son of Josiah.  His name was really Mattaniah, and took this aka of Zedekiah when he was appointed king by Nebuchadnezzar.  He was 21 when he was selected to be king and had to swear allegiance to Nebuchadnezzar.

In Zedekiah's  9th year of reigning, he conspired with Egypt after having refused such offers before by others.  Because of this conspiracy, Judah was invaded again by the Babylonians and had then captured Jerusalem.  He was brought to trial and it was horrible.  His sons were killed before his eyes, and then his eyes were put out and he was put in prison till his death.   This history is preserved in the British Museum.  The forces of Nebuchadnezzar under Nebuz-Aradan again invaded Judah and captured Jerusalem in 586 BCE.  This is when they destroyed the first Temple of Solomon, laid waste the cities and exiled masses of the population.  the king was taken to Riblah, where Nebuchadnezzar had him killed.
Esther with her son, King Darius of Persia
Mordecai had also served as a palace official at Shushan during the reign of King Ahasuerus. He had this position before King Ahasuerus found Esther.   Mordecai was the grandnephew of King Saul!  Saul's father had been Kish.  He himself was of royalty.  His 6th great grandfather had been Abraham.  His niece was Queen Esther, though they had to keep this a secret because the King did not know she was Jewish!    Ahasuerus had selected her as his queen because of her beauty, without knowing her background and who she was related to.
Mordecai didn't bow down to Haman, and Haman was frustrated because he knew of Mordecai's position and who he was, and so he plotted to kill all Jews to get even with Mordecai.  Mordecai in turn, knew that Haman was a descendant of Agag, the Amalekite king who was conquered by King Saul, his own ancestor. He wasn't about to start bowing to the evil Agag's descendant now.   Normally, Mordechai would have bowed in accordance with the king's instructions, for bowing to a king or his official is not forbidden by Torah law.  In Mordecai's mind, it also could have been because Haman had either declared himself to be divine, or because his robes were decorated with idols, and then bowing to him would be an act of idolatry.  He had used the religious grounds reasoning when questioned as to why he didn't bow, and so by doing so, caused Haman to want to kill all Jews.  This is the explanation of our sages, Ibn Ezra and Rashi.
Purim Carnival in Ashkelon, Israel
We have the book, The Book of Esther (Megillat Ester) near the end of our Tanach (Bible).  A celebration is also held every year to remember this extermination plot that Esther put an end to.  Purim falls on the 14th of Adar each year.  It is a very happy holiday.  A favorite is the making of a filled cookie called Hamentaschen, filled with many choices, such as raisins, nuts, etc.

Persia changed their name to Iran in 1935,  In 1935 the Iranian government requested those countries which it had diplomatic relations with, to call Persia "Iran," which is the name of the country in Persian. The suggestion for the change is said to have come from the Iranian ambassador to Germany, who came under the influence of the Nazis.  They felt this would also signify  " the Aryan race of its population, as "Iran" is a cognate of "Aryan" and derived from it. They are not Arabs.

Reference:  Esther-3-9.
Amaleks: Exodus 7: 8-13, Deuteronomy 25: 17-19, Exodus 17: 13-16, I Samuel 15;
Tanach, The Stone Edition of ArtScroll Series page 1752-1773

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Egypt-A Country of Our Ancient History of Dealing With a Pharaoh: MOSES-The 1st Deal Closer

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                
Pharaoh Rameses II, played by Yul Brynner in THE TEN COMMANDMENTS of 1956
Lived from 1300-1234 BCE-  or some say Reigned from 1279 to 1213 BCE-
Moses lived from 1391-1271 BCE
It is believed Rameses II  had 50 sons and 50 daughters.  

Our Biblical Jewish history involving Egypt takes place in Egypt's Middle Kingdom in the 18th-16th century BCE.  Some commentators have said it was from the 11th to 17 dynasty of rulers from 2500 to 1587 BCE.   Joseph, 11th son son of Jacob  and Rachel's 1st,. was bought  by Potiphar, chief of Pharaoh's household as the Chief of Pharaoh's bodyguard, . in Egypt as a slave.  .
Buying Joseph from brothers
 Joseph had been  sold to an Ishmaelite camel train heading for Egypt from his jealous older brothers, and so he arrived there earlier than the rest of his family.  He wound up serving one of the Hyksos kings who were invaders or "princes" of the desert, as they called themselves, Bedouins from the Arabian desert.  Their dominion was later described as terrible, but they had restored and enlarged the temples, encouraged learning and could not have destroyed any of the previous Egyptian monuments since we have been able to view them ourselves.
Joseph must have been 2nd in command.  The Hyksos ruled Egypt, then were expelled by the founder of the 18th dynasty in 1587 BCE.  It happened not long after the death of Joseph when the Hyksos were driven back into Asia.  The Egyptian throne was regained by a native ruler who was the founder of the 18th Dynasty.
Egypt's Old Kingdom had been made up of the 1st 10 dynasties of pyramid builders, ending in 2500 BCE

Egypt's 3rd period was called the New Kingdom which continued to the end of the 20th dynasty in 1100 BCE.  After that, it came under Lybian, Persian (Iran), Macedonian (Greek) and Roman rule.                                                                
 Cleopatra was queen of Egypt during the Macedonian period. and Roman rule.    "She was the last of the Macedonian Greek dynasty that ruled Egypt from the time of Alexander the Great's death in 323 BCE to about 30 BCE. "
The Pharaoh Moses came in contact with has been identified by the majority of scholars as the tyrannical Rameses II who lived between 1300-1234 BCE or 1347-1280 BCE.  Rameses was a vain and boastful character who wished to dazzle posterity by covering the land with constructions so that his name was engraved thousands of times on them.  He prided himself in his inscriptions upon great conquests which he never made.
Prince Khaemwase, a son of Rameses II
The EXODUS is thought to have taken place under his son, Menremptah, who began the decline of Egypt.  Menremptah/Menephtah was an obstinate and vain despot.  He also had the habit of claiming as his own the achievements of others.  He was one of the most unconscionable usurpers and defacers of the monuments of his predecessors, including those of his own father, who had set him the example.  This all comes from the insane desire to perpetuate their own memory.
Parting of Sea with Egyptian soldiers chasing after them
Again, some scholars disagree with this selection of Pharaohs.  They say the EXODUS happened in the century preceding Rameses II and connect it with the religious revolution of Amenophis IV, or Ikhnaton in 1383-1365 BCE.  This man abolished the many deities of the Egyptian Pantheon and devoted himself to just the worship of the Sun.
Pharaoh Ikhnaton
He was called the Heretic King.  He moved his capital from Thebes to the modern Tell-el-Amarna in Middle Egypt.  His reformation was a failure and he died in about 1350 BCE amidst curses from his subjects.  The capital was returned to Thebes, and the place where he had lived was abandoned because it was regarded as haunted by evil demons.  As a result of this belief, the complete royal archives, his own and his father's diplomatic correspondence were preserved in the ruins of Tell-el-Amarna, where they were found 3,200 years later in 1887.

These scholars see a connection between the faith of the Israelites and the solar monotheism of Ikhnaton, and that Israelite influence was partly responsible for this assault on the idolatry of Egypt, which was highly disliked by the multitude.  Ikhnaton was hated by the people as a heretic king.  His son-in-law, Tut-ankhamen, abandoned his idea of a single god who they said was the Sun.
  Tut succeeded him as Pharaoh.  The Sun god ideal was uprooted by Haremrab, the last Pharaoh of the 18th Dynasty.  The native religion of many gods was restored and that's when the Israelites suffered from persecution and degradation.
Other Egyptologists go back to another century to Thotmes III (1503-1449 BCE) and think he was the Pharaoh.  This is on the basis of the movements of the Israelites from Egypt with the movements of the Habiri people in the Amarna age and believe that the recently discovered inscriptions on the Sinai Peninsula favor this theory.  The Habiri were a nomad people mentioned in the Tell-el-Amarna Tablets as making war upon the Canaanite towns and population.

The name "ISRAEL" is alleged to occur on an inscription of Menremptah, discovered in 1896, and is a song of triumph of Menremptah, describing in grandiloquent language his victories in Canaan; and among other conquests, he boasts that "Canaan is seized with every evil; Ashkelon is carried away;  Gezer is taken;  Yenoam is annihilated;  Ysiraal is desolated, its seed is not."   From this the scholars thought that the Israelites must in those days have been in possession of Canaan; that that, the EXODUS must have taken place long before the time of Menremptah.  The question came up about the  name-Ysiraal and if it meant-Israel.  A Professor Jampel  said that if it meant Israel, then it referred to the settlements in Canaan by Israelites from Egypt before the Exodus.  In Chronicles I, we see that during the generations preceding the 400 years spent as slaves in Egypt , known as THE OPPRESSION,  the Israelites didn't stay confined to Goshen or even to Egypt proper, but spread into the southern Canaan territory, then under Egyptian control, and that they even engaged in skirmishes with the Philistines.

When the 600,000 Israelites had left Egypt and were wandering in the Wilderness, these Israelite settlers had thrown off their Egyptian allegiance.  It is these settlements which Menremptah boasts of having devastated during his Canaantie campaign.  There is no reason for thinking that the Pharaoh of the Oppression was not Rameses II, with his son Menremptah as the Pharaoh of the Exodus.  

Update:  Jacob and his family settled in the city of Rameses or Raamses in the Nile Delta as told in Genesis 47:11, 27.  Their descendants were compelled to build storehouses for the Egyptian king.  Rameses was the point of departure for the Exodus as told in Exodus 12:37 "The Children of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth."  There were 600,000 adult males-which, allowing for women, children and elderly men, indicates a total population of about 3 million.  .  It was formerly thought to be the city of Pelusion on the Delta border, but now modern scholars identify it with another site further south.  

Resource: Pentateuch and Haftorahs Volume I, edited by Dr. J.H. Hertz, Chief Rabbi of the British Empire, published by Oxford University Press, 1929-1936.  , signed march 29, 1941pages 394-395.
The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Science Phylums and Kosher Law of Mammals and Fish

        Nadene Goldfoot                                                                      
Today,  Israel has by far the most productive dairy cows in the world,” writes Bloomberg.Israeli technology has made the country’s “Super Cows” world famous, as they produce much more milk than other countries’ cows, up to 10.5 tons a year, 10% more than in the U.S. and almost 50% more than in Germany, Bloomberg News reported in March 2014.  
Science places Mammals in the subclass of Eutheria-Placental mammals.  "Placental mammals (subclass Eutheria) are advanced mammals whose young are born at a relatively advanced stage (more advanced than the young of other mammals, the monotremes and marsupials). Before birth, the young are nourished through a placenta. The placenta is a specialized embryonic organ that is attached the mother's uterus and delivers oxygen and nutrients to the young.
There are almost 4,000 known species of placental mammals. There are more rodents and bats than other types of placental mammals. Scientifically, placental mammals are called eutherians. "
Sheep are kosher, and of course, lamb
The order is Artiodactyla, which means:  even-toed ungulates:   a hoofed mammal of an order that includes the ruminants, camels, pigs, and hippopotamuses. Mammals of this group have either two or four toes on each foot.

The animals in this order are: antelope, deer, camels, pigs, cows, sheep and hippos.
Cows and sheep belong to the Family of Bovidae which includes antelope, cattle, gazelles, goats, sheep and their relatives.  We eat only the tamed ones such as cattle, goats and sheep.  We kill them a special way without pain.  The others in this family must be hunted, and that we do not consider as a kosher act because it can bring on fear, worry and pain to the animal.  .

Kosher law allows us to eat only from cows, goats and sheep.  Why?  They are different in that they have a split hoof.                                              
                                      The donkey does not have split hooves. . These are the front and rear hooves.
 A camel's hoof is partially split, so we do not eat that animal, either.   The camel, for chewing the cud without its hooves being divided makes it not a kosher animal.  A camel is an even-toed ungulate within the genus Camelus, bearing distinctive fatty deposits known as "humps" on its back. Wikipedia

Another consideration that leaves out other orders, such as Carnivora in which cats and bears belong to, the Panda, Polar and Grizzly bears, and weasels, is the stomach.

 It must have a ruminant stomach made up of 4 stomachs.  Here, the food travels from the mouth to the 1st stomach or rumen.  From the 2nd stomach  or reticulum food goes back to the mouth, and they chew their cud.  From the mouth this cud goes to the 3rd stomach or omasum.  Then it goes to the 4th stomach or abomasum.  None of these animals gives us meat for our table.
We do not eat from the pig:  The pig, for having cloven hooves without chewing the cud
We do not eat from the hare or rabbits:  The hare, for chewing the cud without having cloven hooves. 
  They are from the order of Lagomorpha, and are not kosher.

 Unlike Leviticus 11:3-8, Deuteronomy 14:4-8 also explicitly names 10 animals considered ritually clean:
  • the ox
  • the sheep
  • the goat
  • the deer--but must be hunted, a no no.
  • the gazelle--must be hunted, a no no.  
Donkey-not kosher
Horse-not kosher
Poor people are tempted to eat horse meat because it's usually much cheaper than beef.  It belongs to the order of Perissodactyla along with the rhino and tapir, and is also not kosher.
So a kosher animal must have split hooves.  This is what is looked at.  They in turn should have a ruminant stomach.  Cows are perfect examples.

I'm so glad we don't eat camels, donkeys and horses.  They should be in a class by themselves that help people.  What would mankind have ever done without them?  Pigs are smelly but have a very high IQ, higher than the other animals.  Just keeping pigs in a pen is stinky business.  Today there is a very small breed used for pets such as the pot-bellied pigs.  China is creating a tiny pig to be used as pets, also.  .
Holstein Friesien Cow, a dairy cow, kosher laws include using a kosher animal for milk as well, so no camel milk.  
In June of 2015, Prime Minister Netanyahu commented that ‘The Jewish cow’ is udderly superior to all other cows in the world." He was boasting about miraculous Israeli innovations came in an award speech he made last week (for the actor Michael Douglas), which was published by the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs:  Israel is making the best of their limited kosher animal with their high-tech dairies.  They use the Holstein Friesien Cows which are among the world's best performers

Fish must have 2 things:  fins and scales to be kosher for eating.
Some of the fish I'm familiar with are: Albacore and Tuna, mackerel, herrings, anchovies, bass, carp, caviar, channel bass, chinook and coho salmon, trout, cod, flounder, haddock.  My great aunt said to use as many as possible together when making gefilta fish, a recipe we use during Passover.  My mother used salmon in hers along with a whitefish.

There is more to being kosher than just picking the animal.  Steps in the killing and preparation follow the kosher laws as well.

Gideon back in the 12th century BCE from the tribe of Manasseh used a type of phylum to select men to fight with him against Midian in Judges 7:5.  G-d told him that everyone who laps from the water with his tongue as a dog laps, he was to put them apart from the others, and so too everyone who knelt on his knees to drink.  300 men  lapped with their hands to their mouth, and all the rest knelt on their knees to drink water.  The 300 were kept and the others were told to go home.

Resource:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kosher_animals
Tanach, The Stone Edition, page 2041 The signs of kosher animals and Fish

Friday, February 5, 2016

Our Former 2 State Solution in 920 BCE

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                          
Israelites entering Egypt

In the days of Pharoahs and kings, there was an oppressed people who had been living in Egypt for 400 years as slaves after leaving their home in Canaan because of a drought.  They were freed by an Egyptian prince named Moses who had found out his birth parents had been Israelites, Amram and Jochebed of the tribe of Levi.  He led them back to Canaan and took it over under the guidance of the one and only G-d, and there they built their kingdom with kings Saul, David and Solomon (961-920 BCE), son of King David and the beautiful Bathsheba.
King Solomon and a wife
King Solomon was wise, known throughout the land for his wisdom. He is also the author of much of our Jewish thinking.   His reputation was far and wide, even reaching the ears in Africa of Queen Sheba who came and visited him.  He built the Temple to glorify G-d.  This was finished in the 11th year of Solomon's reign and ensured the central position of Jerusalem in his kingdom.  Solomon divided his land into 12 districts  for the 12 tribes of Jacob and constructed a series of fortresses, store-cities and chariot-cities such as Megiddo  and Hazor.  He then developed trade and commerce by building a harbor at Elat on the Red Sea and together with Hiram of Lebanon, sent a  great fleet of ships to the land of Opohir.

He received wealth from gifts from foreign monarchs such as Sheba.  Trade prospered with neighboring states.  They were producers of copper and iron with their large smelting furnaces in the southern areas. Of course, Solomon's royal house and court were built up with oriental magnificence and sumptuous building which housed the royal family and his harem, said to consist of 1,000 wives and concubines which he married to keep the peace between countries.

The one thing he did wrong that brought about a split in the country was demanding forced labor from his people.  This was so he could have his extensive building program, and he did this in order to save face and continue to be a strong country.  All the nations did it.  Egypt had its particular building programs going on of pryamids.  Others had gigantic temples to their gods.  Solomon's building projects were so vast that they impoverished the country, and there was no China to borrow money from.

People other than Israelites lived under his rule.  The Edomites and Arameans began to revolt.Even Israelites were malcontents.  In 933 BCE, Solomon died.  The tribe of Judah lived in the south and was the largest of the 12.  They decided to pull away from Israel and be their own state. It was Jeroboam, king of Israel (933-912 BCE)  who led the revolt against Rehoboam (933-917BCE) , King Solomon's son and successor who then became Judah's king . So Solomon's line stayed with the tribe of Judah.  Most of Benjamin joined Judah and they presumably absorbed the tribe of Simeon, which was isolated in the extreme South.  Judah had no access to the sea and had no great trade-route.  Their land was only no more than 1/3 of the area of what remained of Israel now.  Israel remained an important state, and Judah was a poor one.  However, it held Jerusalem, the center of their Jewish religion.

After they had divided, they fought each other.  It was not a peaceful divide, more like the American Civil War.  Israel existed for 210 years.  During that time they had 19 kings from 9 dynasties.  10 died from violence and 7 ruled for less than 2 years.  Before Israel was taken over by the Assyrians, they had reached their greatest power by conducting successful campaigns against neighboring states, had much luxury and at one time extended its presence as far as the gulf of Akaba.  On the other hand, Judah lasted from 933 BCE to 586 BCE, a total of 347 years.  By comparison, the USA, created in 1776, is now only 240 years old.
You can see that Judah was on the right and Israel went way over to the left, being less religious and more involved in international affairs.  Israel's strength had become sapped with being in a perpetual state of warfare with Damascus, Syria and both ultimately fell before the advancing power of Assyria.  Samaria had become Israel's capital and Sargon captured it in 721 BCE which was the end of Israel.

Seeing their chance, the Assyrians attacked in 721 BCE and led away the best of the men into captivity, never to be heard from again until lately when we find that it's most likely they were taken as far as today's Afghanistan and Pakistan and are the Pashtos, Muslims since at least 632 CE when Mohammad died and had his followers force people into their new religion.  Judah was not taken at this time.  Their last king was Hoshea (730-721 BCE)
King of Babylonia, Nebuchadnezzar (605-562 BCE) Conquered all lands from Euphrates to the Egyptian frontier, including Judah, captured Jerusalem and replaced king with his own pick-Zedekiah and exiled 8,000 of the local aristocracy to Babylon.  
Finally, the Babylonians, who had taken over the Assyrians' holdings, came along in 597 BCE and again in 586 BCE with Nebuchadnezzar at the helm and take most of the population to their capital of Babylon as captives.

Divided, neither Israel nor Judah had been strong enough to hold off the strongest of empires of the period.
Benjamin Netanyahu, twice Israel's Prime Minister

Netanyahu, today's Prime Minister of Israel, knows our history.  His decisions are so that he keeps Israel together, never to be divided again.  Israel remains a free democracy, with opinions running from the left to the right, and today the right is in the power seat because they offer the most security, and they need it badly.  The whole world has turned against Israel for wanting to be back in its native land after 2,000 years of being homeless and the objects of persecutions.  This, surprisingly, had all been foretold by our ancient prophets.  So it's something Israelis are living with, knowing they are doing their best to be a good people and to help the world that is against them.

Bernie Sanders' Actions About Israel and Voting Record

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                      

Bernie Sanders is a typical American Jew in that he is not a particularly religious.one.  His father immigrated from Poland in 1921 when the USA was about to close its doors on Jewish immigrants from Europe.  Somehow this Brooklyn-born son has picked up socialist values, as that is what he is touting though running on the Democratic ticket, though he is an Independent Senator.    He has been milk toast in regards to Israel as a senator, especially during the past 2 years.  .

Campaigning Bernie "Bernard" Sanders

Up to 2014, he has become highly critical of Israel.  Before that, he says he spent a few months working on a kibbutz in Israel in the 60's  but hasn't named it and no one could  find any records.  Finally, it has been discovered in the Haaretz Archives that he had been on Sha'ar Ha'amakeim in Northern Israel as a guest of the Hashomer Hatzair Youth Movement.   Located near Kiryat Tiv'on, it falls under the jurisdiction of Zevulun Regional Council.   In 2006, it had a population of 548. The Sha'ar HaAmakim kibbutz was founded in 1935 by immigrants from Romania and Yugoslavia. Its name was derived from the nearby confluence of the Jezreel and Zevulun valleys . Most of the kibbutz members work in the Chromogen solar water heater factory, whilst the remainder work in agriculture. No doubt volunteers such as Bernie was in agriculture and cows.   An article written before he became senator said that "after spending time on the kibbutz, he seems to have lost his connection to Israel, Zionism and Judaism, but fails to offer any further details, instead asking the then-hopeful senator why he chose to settle in Vermont."

He said as a senator that the situation between Israel and the Palestinians has gone on for 60 years and is depressing and a difficult issue.

My opinion is that he did not understand the situation that developed in 2014 in Israel's Operation Protective Edge  at all which caused his change of attitude towards Israel.  He did not understand what had been going on and why only 72 Israelis had died when 2,100 Palestinians died in the fight, and many of these were civilians, he thought.  He did not really look into why Israel had been blamed for bombing some UN facilities but just gave it all a blanket negative thumbs down as shown in his acts

As Wikipedia wrote about it,  following the IDF Operation Defensive Edge when  Hamas started rocket attacks, targeting Israeli cities and infrastructure, and resulted  in seven weeks of Israeli operations. The Israeli strikes, the Palestinian rocket attacks and the ground fighting resulted in the death of about 2,100  Gazan Arabs and 72 Israeli IDF.    Israel, as it always does, gave the Palestinians plenty of warning to stop their attacks, and to get out of the way when they were forced to retaliate, but this is something that the Palestinian leaders plan on, having a high death rate in order to cause Israel to be in a bad light.  They really don't care a hoot about the lives of their own people as long as they get their wanted results.  Did Bernie understand all this?  It doesn't look like he bothered to find out from his reaction.  
Democratic Ticket-Bernie and Hillary, running neck to neck in Iowa 
Because of this, he has not signed any AIPAC backed letters about Israel who try to explain issues.  "Sanders was one of 21 of 100 U.S. senators not to sign on as a co-sponsor to Senate Resolution 498, which expressed support for Israel “as it defends itself against unprovoked rocket attack from Hamas.”

He was not one of the Senators to attend Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech in February 2015 that he had made to the joint session of Congress as to why the Iran deal about nuclear energy was a bad one.  This is what we call a shunda (a sad state of affairs).  He is one of the few Jewish senators and should have bothered to investigate Israel's position better.  In fact, " when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that he would address Congress in March warning lawmakers on Iran’s nuclear program, Sanders was the first senator to boycott the speech because Netanyahu's speech was  “arranged without consultation with the White House.”   

Sander's talking points in campaigning for President revolves around big money against the little man-Socialistic values and the state of the USA economy.  He wants much to be free for people, some of which are good ideas, such as Health.  He wants colleges and universities to also be free, probably run by the government.  In other words, he's all for bigger government.  It's too bad he has never investigated how teeny Israel manages their socialistic values of health along with being the leaders of start up businesses. Instead he only must have learned about how to milk a cow while on the kibbutz.   They are definitely a democratic country.  Even their health plans are varied and include insurance plans using the best of doctors, and free health care for those who need it.

He's all for a 2-State Solution for the 2 people but doesn't have any idea how to bring about peace.  Right now, even the left in Israel are not for this at this time.  They're busy fighting off Palestinians who are stabbing people or ramming them with their autos.  The Palestinians are not for peace with Israelis.  They haven't been since 1948, and they've been offered everything imaginable.  The fear is that no one wants a one state solution, either, as Israel must keep the 80%-20% balance in favor of Israel.  It's the only Jewish state in the world.  Muslims have 48 Muslim majority states without a Palestine already.

He thinks Obama did a great job with the Iran deal and so goes along with much of the Democrat's thinking.

Since 1991, we have had 13 Jewish Senators.  11 are Democrats, Sanders is the one Independent, and there is one Republican.  Altogether since 1845, we have had only 35 Jewish Senators.  After all, we Jews are only 2% of the USA population.  24 have been Democrats,  8 Republicans, and Joe Lieberman in 1989 was a Democrat-Independent.  One was even a Whig in 1853.

With the Arabs, he has high ratings of 2+.  Here's the reason why.

Rated +2 by American Arab Institute, indicating pro-Arab pro-Palestine voting record.

Sanders scores +2 by AAI on Arab-Israeli issues  Out of 10 issues, he voted yes for 5 of them in favor of the Arabs and 3 of them a no, which were in favor of Israel.   One evidently he skipped over.    See below which ones.
The Arab American Institute has compiled a Scorecard to catalogue the voting record of the 112th Congress (ran from January 3, 2011 until January 3, 2013) on issues of importance to the Arab American community. Though not comprehensive, we have attempted to provide a snapshot of legislation concerning many of the primary issues concerning Arab Americans. For the Senate, we have included 10 items: two bills on the Arab Spring, three on Palestine, one on Lebanon, one regarding civil liberties, and two for immigration reform.

On one scorecard Bernie had + on #6 about Lebanon and #10 on Immigration. On another as follows:
  1. S. Res. 44: (+) calls on former President Hosni Mubarak to immediately begin a peaceful transition to a democratic political system
  2. S. Res. 109: (+) honoring and supporting women in North Africa and the Middle East
  3. 2011, S. Res. 138: (-) calling on the United Nations to rescind (remove) the Goldstone report, formally known as the UN Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict, which accused the Israeli government of targeting Palestinian civilians.  He voted not to remove this.  Rubio and Levin were co-sponsors and voted for it. 
  4. May 2011, S. Res. 185: (-) reaffirming the commitment of the US to a negotiated settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and calling for a US veto of any UN resolution on Palestinian statehood without a settlement. Rubio and Wyden were 2 of 90 co-sponsors 45 Republicans, 44 Democrats, but not Sanders.  
  5. June 9, 2011, S. Con. Res. 23: (-) supporting Israel in maintaining defensible borders, and against Israel returning to the armistice lines that existed on June 4, 1967 by Orrin Hatch, States that: (1) it is U.S. policy to support Israel in maintaining secure, recognized, and defensible borders; and (2) it is contrary to U.S. policy and our national security to have Israel's borders return to the armistice lines that existed on June 4, 1967. Referred to foreign relations committee. 
  6. S. 558: (+) the Cluster Munitions Civilian Protection Act, to limit the use of cluster munitions in areas normally inhabited by civilians.
  7. S. 1125: (+) greater judicial review of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), and greater protections to individuals being monitored or gag-ordered by the FBI.
  8. S.1038, the PATRIOT Sunsets Extension Act, in opposition of PATRIOT Act extension.
  9. S. 723: (-) The Birthright Citizenship Act, limiting citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants born in the US.
  10. S. 952: (+) the DREAM Act, allowing undocumented minors to become US citizens, provided they meet certain conditions, including good moral character.  
Resource: http://forward.com/news/national/310087/is-bernie-sanders-a-lefty-except-for-israel/
http://jewishbubba.blogspot.com/2014/12/part-7-of-rebuttal-on-operation.html on Operation Defensive Edge
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2014_Israel%E2%80%93Gaza_conflict     2014