Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Are Palestinians Canaanites?

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                        

Remember Noah and his Ark landing on Mt. Ararat?  He saved his family in the gigantic flood and landed on a new piece of land.  One of Noah's sons was Ham..  He also had Shem and Japheth.  All three were born after the flood..  Ham treated his father terribly.  Because of this, Ham's descendants, the Canaanites, were cursed and condemned to servitude.  (Gen. 9:20)  From these three sons came the first seventy from which humanity was derived after the flood had wiped out everyone but Noah's group. The story was also found in the Babylonian Gilgamesh epic.  It is in the Torah in Genesis.

What happened was that Noah debased himself and planted a vineyard after they left the ark.  He drank the wine and became drunk.  In this drunken state he took off his clothes inside his tent in order to sleep but must not have covered himself.  Ham, the father of Canaan, saw his father's nakedness and told his two brothers outside, "Dad's naked!  Come see! Ha, Ha!"  Brothers Shem and Japheth reacted differently to this news.  They took a garment and laid it on both their shoulders, as they were little and it was heavy and large, walked into the tent backwards so they couldn't look at their father, and covered Noah but didn't look at him.

Noah woke up, most likely with a hangover and realized what his small son had done to him.  It must have been Canaan who was always in trouble for him to immediately realize that it took two children to cover him with this big cloak because one had caused them to do so.  He said, Cursed is Canaan; a slave of slaves shall he be to his brothers. Blessed is HaShem (G-d, which here means the Name); and let Canaan be a slave to them.  May G-d extend Japheth, but he will dwell in the tents of Shem;  may Canaan be a slave to them."

Ham was in turn the father of Cush, from which Nubia and Ethiopia came from; Put, from which Libya and Morocco came from; Mizraim, from which Egypt came from; and Canaan,who was the youngest,  from which Syria and Eretz Israel (later called Palestine after 135 CE) came from.  Canaan was cursed before he was even born when it was his father who had done wrong.  Was that prophesying what would happen with the DNA?   He could have been thinking, This son Ham of mine is a little devil.  I imagine that at least one of his children is going to grow up to be a trouble-maker just like  he is."

"Canaan's sons were Zidon and Heth.  and they propagated into the Jebusite, the Amorite, the Gingashite, the Hivite, the Arkite, the Sinite, the Arvadite, the Zemarite, and the Hamathite.  Afterwards, the families of the Canaanites branched out.  The Canaanite boundary went from Zidon going toward Gerar, as far as Gaza; going toward Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboiim, as far as Lasha.  These are the descendants of Ham, by their families, by their languages, in their lands, in their nations. "

It was the land of Canaan that G-d told Moses to take the children of Israel for their home.  The Israelites had to fight their way in as they were not greeted with a welcome.  The 12 spies that Moses sent out thought they were too big to fight against, but Joshua thought they could handle the situation.  Scientists of today think they were a mixture of Horites, Hittites and Hebrews, dating back to the Hyksos period of the 17th Century BCE.  The Canaanites were almost entirely obliterated or assimilated by the Israelites who had arrived in the 13th Century.  There were Philistines along the coast in the 12th Century, and the Arameans in the north in the 11th Century.  The remnants of people were absorbed into the community and  ruled under King David and Solomon.  Much later we see the name, Canaanites preserved only among the Sidonians and Phoenicians.

The land had been cultured for the past 500 years before the Israelites had arrived.  They were growing huge grapes and other agricultural products.  They believed in many gods called Baalim (lords) and Baalot (ladies).  One was a Baal.  This was something Moses was getting away from as that's what was going on in Ur when Abraham entered Canaan.long ago and of course Egypt was also a land of multiple gods of all descriptions. "The Canaanites were "disobedient" (Heb. 11:31) which is from the Christian New Testament, a term indicating a moral awareness of wrongdoing but a refusal to turn from it."

The land of Canaan was the name for Syria in the 15th to 13th centuries BCE, usually applied to the coast of Eretz Israel.  Before the Israelite conquest, the land was divided into small city-states like Greece.  The Israelites named the land "Eretz Israel" and the northern part which today is Syria,  "Aram."  Arabs traversing the land on camels when Jews made aliyah from Russia in the late 1800's CE called themselves Syrians.

Eretz Israel was attacked many times.  In 722 BCE the Assyrians attacked and carted off people from 10 of the 12 tribes of Israel, who then were lost to Judah and Levi tribes.  Later the Babylonians did the same thing.  Sometimes people were brought into the land and replaced by the attackers which is what happened with the Samaritans.  Originally they were of the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh but also included a mixture of non-Israelite colonists.   Only the Jews remained as a people who were the remnants of the 12 tribes of Israel.  On the 40 year march, Moses had told his people that they should not reject an Edomite, because he is your brother, and you should not reject an Egyptian, for you were a traveler in their land.  Children who are born to them in the 3rd generation may enter the congregation of HaShem (G-d).  Deuteronomy 33: 7-24:4.
Are the Palestinians today the actual Canaanite people?  Hardly!  However, some of those who were assimilated have planted themselves in the genes of Jews and non-Jews who lived there and are with us today in our chromosomes, no doubt.   We all carry 23 pairs of chromosomes; one of a pair from our mother (mt dna) and one from our father (Ydna).

A few years ago I had a DNA test through a company called "23&Me."  I matched genes with another lady tested there and we found we shared 67cM  found on 6 of our chromosomes which were # 1,6,8,9, and 2 spots on #10, and 12. A cM (centi Morgan) is a measurement of dna on a chromosome and is a very short segment.   This means we are related but that relation goes back quite far, farther than the knowledge I have on  my family tree.  We did share a heritage of being Eastern European Jewish women.  The least I share with someone so far is 6cM on #7 chromosome.  I had about 1,000 hits of sharing these wee amounts with others that must connect us so far back in history.

Bryan Sykes wrote the book "the Seven Daughters of Eve," which are Ursula, Xenia, Helena, Velda, Tara, Katrine and Jasmine.  He showed that 98% of all people of Western Europe descended from 7 women who lived in Europe within the last 50,000 years. A few have been added to this list, such as the newer discovered "W"  for Wilma, which my paternal grandmother happens to be.  Women's DNA (MTdna) can go back very far.  That's why they can only check for this in DNA testing on Egyptian mummies.  Ydna of men can't go back as far, unfortunately at this time.  The women 50,000 years ago or clan mothers descended from a common ancestor  the scientists call "Mitochondrial Eve" who lived in Africa about 100,000 to 200,000 years ago.

Jasmine was found to have originated in Syria, with the home about a mile from the Euphrates River when the Great Ice Age was at an end.  Jasmine's descendants are not evenly distributed evenly throughout Europe which contains about 17%..  One branch follows the Mediterranean coast to Spain and Portugal and goes into Cornwall, Wales and west of Scotland.  People did get scattered around..

As for Ydna originating in Canaan, the E and E3a, E3b haplogroup,  very common with Jews originating in Africa 50,000 years ago, contains a number of groups in Africa and the Middle East. J, J2,   J1 arose 10,00-15,000 years ago in the fertile crescent and includes Jews, Arabs, Armenians and Kurds with the highest in Iran and Iraq.  The Cohen gene is from J1.  The majority of Jewish men tested fall into J.

So far I find through another company where my brother was tested for both Ydna and MTdna, that his male line Y is finding matches with Arabians and Afghanis  That's a pretty big surprise for a Jewish man today.  They are not close matches like first cousins, but again, way back in history, we may have had a common ancestor because we're sharing the same line of Ydna, showing mutations of the distance of time.

Recently, scientists said that all Jewish women descended from 4 original Jewish women.  We don't know the dates of those women or who they were, but it's interesting because we have the history  of 4 very important Jewish women or mothers; our matriarchs Sarah, wife of Abraham and mother of Isaac, Rebekah, wife of Isaac and mother of Jacob, Rachel and Leah., sisters, both married to Jacob and mothers of the 12 tribes of Israel.   However, I don't think the scientists meant these women.    Leach and Rachel were sisters and would have had the same MTdna.  In fact, Sarah was related to Abraham.

What was the Ydna of Canaanites?  Nobody can know.  The same people of yesterday are not alive in order to test.  There are no mummies of Canaanites.  All that can be done is test people who think they may have some Canaanite heritage and see what it produces of what we do know today.

 Only the Jewish people have survived the 3,000 years of being part of the 12 Tribes of Israel, created by religion.  Other people were only given names such as "Amorite" because that was the name of their leader or king.  That's all that held them together, whereas Jews were followers of a monotheistic religion, in fact the only one in existence till Jesus came along.  Their leader was secondary, their religion being first.  It took 600 years after his appearance before Islam was created by Mohammed from which Palestinians find identification. For the 400 years prior to WWI the Ottoman Empire held title to Palestine, and they were Muslims.

Therefore, when a Palestinian exclaims that this land of Israel belongs to them and they were there first, it's not quite true.  We may all have the same segment of chromosome, whether we be Jew or Muslim from the Canaanites, or we may not have any part of it. In fact, it's more possible that Jews have more cM's being it was the Jewish people who entered the land of the Canaanites.  The admixture would be of these two, not humans farther away.  There weren't that many Canaanites left alive in the first place.

Resource: Tanach (the Torah/Prophets/Writings) Stone Edition Genesis 9:18-10:26
The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia
DNA & Genealogy by Colleen Fitzpatrick & Andrew Yeiser What Haplogroup We Be?
The Seven Daughters of Eve by Bryan Sykes
Abraham's Children, race, identity, and the DNA of the Chosen People by Jon Entine

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Gideon's 300 Fighters for Israel and the Spartan's 300 Fighters

Nadene Goldfoot
Moses lived in the period between 1391-1271 BCE.  Way before 722 BCE, which is when the Assyrians attacked Israel and took ten of the 12 tribes into exile,  and certainly  after the Israelites entered Canaan they still had problems with other people living in  the land.  When Israelis farmed and  sowed the land, the Midianites would come and destroy their crops and kill their sheep, oxen and donkeys along with the Amaleks, who had become fierce enemies when the Israelites were on their 40 year trek. These people would come like locusts on their camels and came into the land to destroy it.

 Midian was the son of Abraham and Keturah. Abraham's first wife, Sarah died and then he married Keturah and had 6 more sons who became the Arabian tribes living south and east of Canaan.   Their descendants made up the Midianites who lived in the East or the Sinaitic Peninsusla.  Some lived on the way to Egypt.  They were invading the Israelites who wanted to live in peace.
                                                         Gideon with his 300 men
In those days the 12 tribes were divided into groups of 1,000 men which in today's terms would be called a Regiment which in turn is 2 or more battalions .  The leader today is a Colonel.

The Midianites had an army of 135,000 which today would be led by a Field Marshall or General,   Amaleks and the people of the East gathered together and crossed the Jordan River and then camped in the Valley of Jezreel, ready for a big attack.  Gideon, son of Joash, was a member of the tribe of Manasseh. He called out for help to the other tribes of his own and Asher, Zebulun and Naphtali and they came to his aid.

 Now the Israelites were not all following Moses' Commandment of believing in one G-d as yet.  Some were still holding on to their belief in Baal and still maintained altars to such idols and Gideon had destroyed their altars.  Gideon's father even gave him the new name of Jerubaal, which must have had some meaning, perhaps like "instigator" or "fighter" or "idol crusher."

Getting back to the story, Gideon is encamped with all of these men fairly near the Midianite's camp.  G-d said that Gideon had too many men with him.  To reduce the ranks, Gideon told the men that whoever felt fear could leave him and 22,000 departed.  That left 10,000 with him.  G-d told Gideon that he still had too many soldiers, so was told to bring them all down to the water.

A test was about to begin.  Those men that lapped up the water with his tongue was to stand to one side.  Those who knelt on his knees to drink were to stand on another side.  The number of those who lapped with their hands to their mouths was only 300 men as all the rest had knelt on their knees to drink the water.  It was these special 300 men that were selected to be the fighters with Gideon.  This test showed Gideon that the 300 had no tendency toward believing in idols.  Less than 1% of the original army were worthy.  Some had laid prostrate on the ground to lap like dogs or knelt to reach the water and to Gideon this showed they were in the habit of making obeisance to idols. (Rashi).  I think it was also like an IQ test seeing who had evolved to a higher level of thought.

Gideon took his 300 men and divided them into 3 Companies  which in the USA would each be led by a Captain or Major and Gideon took charge of one of them.  He sent word to Ephriam with their thousands  to come help block the waterway and so all of Ephriam came to do this, but they were put out because they were not asked to fight.  They thought he felt that they were inferior warriors and were insulted.

Gideon and the 300 crossed the Jordan River They captured the two Midianite kings, Zebah and Zalmunna and terrified their whole camp.

Gideon and his 300 men won the battle which was indeed a miracle.  They had peace for 40 years.  After Gideon died, his people started in with idol worship again.  It takes a strong leader to show the way as people forget so quickly their history.  

Ishmael and Midian were brothers.  Sometimes the Midianites were referred to as Ishmaelites.  One interesting fact mentioned was that these Ishmaelites wore gold nose rings, and now each gave one to Gideon.  The total weight of all these rings was 1,700 gold dinars.

Sparta, a city state in Greece which was an enemy of Athens fought a battle of Thermopylae during the 2nd Persian War (Iran today) which was led by King Xerxes, son of Darius I.  Darius supposedly is the son of Queen Esther and Ahashuerus.  They were defeated by the Athenians in either August or September 480 BCE which was a much later period than Gideon in Israel.

Sparta's contingent of 300 of the finest soldiers were led by King Leonidas.  They led a Greek allied force of 2,700-5, 500 Spartan slaves  to a mountain pass to stall the Persian advance. The Persians had an elite force of 10,000 of their best soldiers and called them The Immortals.   The problem turned out that the Spartans didn't receive reinforcements because of the Greek religious belief of not being able to send troops during the festival of Karnea.  Though the Persians had 200,00 to 300,000 men, the Greeks had better tactics. They lasted for 3 days.   Their 300 were all killed.

There have been made several movies of the Spartan 300 in 2007.  One was Last Stand of the 300 starring Gerard Butler by Warner Bros.  and the other was The 300 Spartans starring Richard Egan by Century Fox.  They do not follow history accurately, according to reviews.  Best is to read Herodotus's account first.

Tanach, The Stone Edition: Judges 6: 15 Story about Gideon

Monday, January 28, 2013

Waging War, Jewish Style and Dealing with Suicide and PTSD

Nadene Goldfoot
The United States is having a problem of its soldiers coming home and committing suicide.  Why seems to be the conflict that is irreconcilable after being taught  the Biblical commandment "Thous shalt not kill," thinks Ttimothy Kudo.  They come home from the war front where killing is not only accepted but "is a metric of success."  It is an incongruity that has devastating effects.  After more then 10 years of war, the USA military has lost more active-duty members last year to suicide than to enemy fire.  

Judaism accepts the fact that there will be wars in which young men age 20 and up might have to fight and kill people under these circumstances.   Morality had to be upheld before, after and during wartime but it is not a blanket statement that one should never under any circumstances such as war have to kill.   Thus came about 613 laws which covered just about everything man should know to be moral.   "It is true that the pursuit of peace is one of the highest Jewish values. It is also true that Judaism abhors wars. However, Judaism does not forbid war. Some wars are legitimate, according to Judaism." from the Jewish Way to Wage War.

I am reminded of reading in the Torah  in Numbers 30:2-36:13 Matot-Masei;  about rules that were laid down for soldiers returning from battle.  They were to go through a process of cleansing to let them readjust from the experiences they had been through. so that they could more easily enter back into society.

Numbers 31:  The Israelites  had tangled with the Midianites and there was a battle.  Afterwards, Moses said that they were told to stay outside their camp for 7 days,  Everyone who killed someone or even touched a corpse had to purify himself.   on the 3rd day and on the 7th day.  That went for any captives they might have had with them.  Every piece of clothing, everything made of hide or that came from goats and everything made of wood had to be purified.  Then they had to kosher anything they had made of gold, silver, copper, iron, tin and lead; things that had come in contact with fire in order to be made had to pass through fire and also purified with water.  Clothing had to washed in water on the 7th day and become purified.  After all they they were allowed back in the camp.

"When we are that close to death, it is as if our individual universes return to that tohu v’vohu (chaos) that existed before the world was created. Just as it took seven days for creation, the parasha asserts that a week is necessary to re-create one who has experienced the trauma of the combat soldier."

I think that this cooling off period of 7 days with their comrades allowed them to calm down and feel that they were cleansed of the killing they had committed.  The group doing this together helped.  They felt cleansed.  

"In his book, “War and the Soul: Healing Our Nation’s Veterans From Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder,” psychotherapist Edward Tick speaks of the universal trauma of war. Tick writes that traditionally war was a rite of passage into adulthood, required of nearly all young men. The difference between ancient wars and those fought today is that in antiquity, the potential destructiveness of military service was not nearly as great as in today’s high-tech battleground. Tick writes that “the more destructive war has become, the more one of its original functions as a rite of passage [is] compromised ... a major factor in the prevalence of PTSD among vets today.” from ritual of Return by Rabbi Anne Brener.  

Resource:Oregonian newspaper, 1/28/13 page A8 Editorial, Military suicides, The Stump.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Abbas's Chance to Talk to New Centrist Knesset Members

Nadene Goldfoot
The Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, is now interested in speaking with the young member of the Knesset  who just won 19 seats in the latest election in Israel, Yair Lapid, leader of the moderate Yesh Atid (there is a future) party.  He also wants to talk with the other newly elected centrists to lay out his idea of peace.  Dov Lipman from Maryland, USA is also one of the new members of Yesh Atid.  He's been in Israel for 8 years, now and is a young Haredi activist from Beit Shemesh.  He's been teaching English.

Yair has let it be known, as Netanyahu always has, that he too is interested in peace.  I think Abbas feels he will be far easier to cope with then Netanyahu, being newer at the "shuk"*  and shorter on arguments.  In fact, he may be more inclined to go along with anything, so Abbas may be thinking.

It was only a few days ago that Abbas, whose organization has run out of money completely, was ready to hand over Judea and Samaria to Israel to deal with as he couldn't pay anyone their monthly checks.  He has been looking forward to Israel's elections, I'm sure.

Israel's results show that the right and religious parties won  61 seats while the center-left and Arab parties won 59 seats.   Netanyahu will put together a broad majority for stability.  Israel does have domestic issues, just like the USA does, so needs to get people in that can deal with those as well.  We in the USA have a lot of domestic issues, such as finances, medical care, etc, and don't have to spend that much time on protecting our country from bombs like Israel does, but these issues do arise.

The main problem for Abbas other than money is that he will not negotiate while Israel is building homes on land he wants for his state of Palestine.  He expects a freeze on construction.  I hope Yair remembers that only a few years ago Netanyahu did just that, had a freeze on construction and even continued it longer than originally planned for and nothing changed with the Palestinians.  They were just as contrary as before.  They had their chance and blew it.  That's why Netanyahu doesn't intend to do it again.

My feeling is that if Abbas doesn't want to see sections ABC or 1,2,3 covered with lovely homes for Israeli citizens, he'd better come to the table and recognize Israel first and promise to stop all this bombing and killing of Israelis.  Even at that, what about Gaza?  He has no control over that place.  His hot and cold partnership with them must be running cold right now.

Abbas cannot control Israel through one man.  Yair will eventually be able to report back and decide with the 120 seated Knesset as to how to proceed.  Peace has always been foremost in everyone's minds.

*Shuk: an outdoor market where you can argue the price down.  The seller starts off high, you go low, and meet somewhere in the middle before a deal is made.  

Resource: Oregonian newspaper page A8, Palestinian leader seeks meeting with Israeli centrists by Mohammed Daraghmeh and Karin Laub,  AP 

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Is There an Elephant in the Room? A Failing Palestine: What to do with a Palestine?

Nadene Goldfoot
There seems to be an elephant in the room and  nobody knows what to do with it.  It's the Palestinian Authority who faces a worse financial crisis than the USA has been.  They have 150,000 employees for their 2 million population!  That is a little less than the whole state of  Oregon which has 291,100!   State employees in Oregon are 18% of the work force in this 97,073 square mile  state of 3,871,859 people.    Palestinians have received only half of their November salaries and nothing since then.  They owe local banks more than $1.3 billion. Nobody works.  They're all getting financial aid from the UN.  What are they doing with the money?   They should be going over the fiscal cliff soon.

On top of that they owe hundreds of millions of dollars to private businesses like suppliers to hospitals.  Poverty rate is expected to double to 50% of the total Palestinian population in the territories (Judah, Samaria).  This may be why Abbas threatened to give the who shebang to Israel.

Perhaps they claimed their independence too soon in the UN.  It caused Israel to stop transferring about $100 million a month in collected taxes for the PA.  which brought an end to Palestinian piracy because for years the PA hadn't paid its bills to the Israel Electric Corporation.  Israel took it on the chin, but not now.  They can't say they weren't warned by Israel.  Israel told the UN and the PA they would collect.

The USA Congress withheld about $450 million in aid-all because of the UN bid.  The Arab states promised to cover the shortfall in case anything happened but have failed to do so.  Saudi Arabia pledged one month's salary but the money hasn't come.  They have a habit of defaulting on promises.

The PA themselves have mismanaged money they have had from billions of dollars.  Their habits are such that they have continued booking first-class tickets and five-star hotels for 22 Arab foreign ministers to attend its UN day in November and what happened?  Most never even showed up.

Not to mention, but the Palestinians have no economy going.  What skills do they have other than bomb making?  Israel had left businesses ready to run when they left Gaza in the name of peace, but Palestinians tore them down.

Ever since 1948 Israel has offered peace and statehood alongside Israel.  They could have had a good friend, but they refused.  Pride and hate have gone hand in hand and are getting the Palestinians very little.
It would help if the world would show them how peace with Israel is in their best interests instead of aiding and abetting them by agreeing that Israel is so bad.  Europe never has asked the PA to make any concessions.  They have just fed this appetite of all take and no give.

Judea and Samaria take up about 2,270 square miles and 350,000 Israeli Jews live there, as well who have some form of economy going on.

Resource:  The Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA) by Evelyn Gordon from Gerard Robins.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Who Was Mohammed and How Did He Differ From Moses?

Nadene Goldfoot
While Moses lived from 1391-1271 BCE, Mohammed lived from 570-632 CE.  Moses lived till age 120 and Mohammed died at age 62.  There is about a span of 2,000 years apart from these two prophets.  We know Moses had at least 2 sons, Gershom and Eliezer.  Mohammed had many children.  There are many Muslims who claim their heritage from him including the King of Jordan.

Moses was the great grandson of Levi, one of the 12 tribes of Israel.  Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were the forefathers of Judaism, and Jacob was the father of 12 sons who became the 12 tribes.  In fact, this father to son line lets us know that Jacob’s Y dna haplogroup should be what all the 12 sons carried, and Jacob, in turn, received this haplogroup from Abraham.  Since the Levites produced both Moses and Aaron, they should be the proginators of the Cohen gene, haplogroup J1, found recently by geneticists.

Moses was raised as a prince of Egypt  in the Pharoah’s house and was given the best education from birth .  He received information from G-d directly and wrote it down.

Mohammed, son of Abdullah and Amina, was born and  lived in Mecca, Arabia which was 766.37 miles away from Jerusalem. He was born into a Hashemite clan called the Banu Hashim  of the Quraysh tribe, which was a powerful merchant  tribe that controlled Mecca  Dr. Rafat Amari, a professor who has spent 20 years studying the history of Arabia, Islam and Mecca, has written a piece saying that Mohammed was not a descendant of Ishmael, Abraham's first son by his wife Sarah's handmaid.  

"Historians say that the family of Mohammed was a  family which lived in Saba-Yemen. In the 5th century A.D., Qusayy Bin Kilab, the 8th ancestor of Mohammed, gathered an alliance of many Yemeni families forming Quraish, the tribe from which Mohammed later came.  These families only came to occupy Mecca in the 5th century A.D. The city of Mecca was built by the tribe of Khuzaa'h in the 4th century A.D. Mohammed’s family is not connected to any Ishmaelite tribe because Mohammed’s family didn’t leave Yemen until the 5th  century A.D., and that’s about  1,100 years  after the Ishmaelites disappeared. Mohammed’s tribe could not have lived in the same locations as the Ishmaelite tribes at any time throughout history."

Mohammed was expelled from his own tribe  when he began preaching his Islam and monotheism.  After all, these people worshipped a large stone called the Kabba. It may actually be a meteorite.  It is said that he could neither read or write.  At the age of 40, his mind became strongly occupied by meditations on G-d, the hereafter and the Day of Judgement, which he thought was very close.   His background included meeting many Jews and Christians from the Meccan trade caravans who probably got him started with religious questions.  He was convinced that he was chosen as the Arab Prophet, and claimed having had revelations publicly.  He said he had these revelations through the intermediation of the angel Gabriel.  These came to make up the Koran.

He tried to tell the Jews that there was no difference between Judaism and Islam, but Jews could see that he borrowed much of their religion in the first place and stuck with their own religion.  Jews have always been warned not to follow other prophets as there would be false ones coming along.  For remaining faithful to Judaism, the Jews of Medina were slaughtered if they did not accept Islam.  Therefore, we think of Islam as converting by the sword.  Judaism was created to be a light upon the nations of the world and influenced by seeing their example of lifestyle.  The Jews were offered nothing that they didn't already possess.

According to the Koran and different  hadiths ( a saying or an act or tacit approval or disapproval ascribed either validly or invalidly to Mohammed), Jesus will set things right at the end of the world by returning to end the dhimmi status of non-Muslims in Islamic societies.  He will abolish Christianity and impose Islam upon everyone.  Another tradition says that he will break the cross, kill swine and abolish jizah, the poll tax put on non-Muslims.  Allah will perish all religions except Islam.  In another hadith Mohammed says, “How will you be when the son of Mary descends amongst you and he will judge people by the Law of the Koran (Aur’an) and not by the law of Gospel.”

Moses gave us a way in which to live. Moses did have a temper which kept him out of Canaan.  He was pictured as being very human with faults. He even stuttered, and called on his brother, Aaron to speak for him on his behalf.   Mohammed, on the other hand, is held up as a role model of human behavior.   Mohammed threatens us if we do not convert.  I myself have already received a threat.  Jews make it hard for others to convert.  Usually one has to press the issue three times in order for a rabbi to take someone seriously that they are that interested in Judaism.

The Truth about Muhammad by Robert Spencer
The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia Genealogy of Mohammed

How Moses Became the Author of the Torah and More Than You Asked About

Nadene Goldfoot                                    
Moses, the adopted son of the Egyptian princess, was biologically a Levite, son of Amram and Jochebed of the tribe of Levi.  The 12 sons of Jacob had entered Canaan and had gone into Egypt during a drought.  This was after Joseph, the 11th, son of Rachel and Jacob, had become an advisor to the Pharoah and had a very high position.  The tribe of Joseph begat Manasseh and Ephraim.  Ironically, Joseph's brother, Levi begat  Kohath, who begat Amram,  and his son was Moses.  So Moses was a great grand nephew  of Joseph.  Joseph lived during the Hyksos domination of Egypt (18th-16th century BCE).  The Hyksos, or foreign rulers, were thought to be Semitic chieftains from Syria and Canaan, which allowed Joseph to be in a high position.

The 12 tribes were feared as they grew in numbers and forced to become slaves for the government, used in building projects. The present curator of the Museum in Cairo has said that they weren't slaves, contradicting the ancient writing of Moses.  This is because they seem to have found evidence of bakeries and such near pyramids.  If a people are kept from leaving and must toil for someone, receiving no wages for it, they are deemed slaves.  The same thing happened to the Blacks in the USA.  Of course the owners profit more if the slaves are well fed.  If  Black slaves in the USA were not ever well fed, you can imagine that 4,000 years earlier  the 12 tribes of Jacob weren't either many a time.

 Moses must have realized when an adult that he looked like these Israelites by his features and skin coloring, though most everyone probably were of the same tanned skin from the hot sun.  Finally he found out the truth.  He alone was mortified and angered by an overseer's cruelty in whipping a slave as he, a Prince, had walked by.  Something within him stiffened at such a plight.  At the time he didn't know of his origins.  That he possessed a few different genes from the Royal House sets him apart both physically,  emotionally and mentally.  His own older brother Aaron, he found out, was one of the slaves.

The language of the slaves was Hebrew.  This along with Moabite and Phoenician languages all belong to the Canaanite branch of Semitic languages.  The Tel el Amarna Letters prove that Hebrew was spoken in our Holy Land before the Israelite conquest by Joshua.  Moses was an educated Prince and was capable of writing in Hebrew.  Biblical Hebrew was used before the exile by the Assyrians (922 BCE) and was a standardized literary language with distinct idioms for prose and poetry with a rich vocabulary.  It also borrowed many words from surrounding languages.

Hebrew letters went through some changes as time went by, so one can date something by the shape of the letters.  Writing was done on sheepskin or as with Moses, finding himself on top of a mountain, carved his 10 Commandments in stone.  After approaching his people when he came down the mountain and being angered by them, he threw down his tablets, which he had written as he was being dictated to by G-d and they broke.  He was able to rewrite them from memory and teach them to the awaiting people.  Of course we have never had a chance to view these tablets as they were later stolen.  After being kept in the Ark of the Covenant for so long, and then in the Temple that King Solomon had built, they were taken after one of the forays of our many enemies.  Many wanted them; even the Nazis who thought they would gain power with their ownership.

Besides the shapes of the letters, pre-exilic Hebrew writing was done with consonants only, having no vowels.  Later, the consonant yod was used to make the sound of i and sometimes e.  The consonant vav was used to make the sound of u and o.

Since Moses kept writing throughout the 40 years, it should be easy to date the writing attributed to him.  We find the 10 commandments first in Exodus 20: 2-14.  They are again repeated but with slight variations in Deuteronomy 5:6-18, which is the last book Moses wrote.  It's not surprising that a 40 year span and reaching the age of 120 would cause Moses to vary his essay on the commandments.  I myself have done the very same thing  within a span of 3 years.  I was researching a subject and found my own post on google.    The point of my writing was a little different, so I used information from the past with with a different emphasis in the latter.
Our Torah, or Pentateuch is known as the "Written Law."  Moses was at Sinai when he received it along with a detailed oral exposition of the Torah and its commandments.  The whole Pentateuch is read on Sabbaths in the synagogues  in one year with complies with an ancient Babylonian rite.  Naturally, some scrolls get very old and have to be given a burial.  New ones are written by a trained scribe called a Sopher who must follow carefully prescribed regulations.  If he makes one mistake, the whole thing is thrown away and he must start over.  Time may march on, but it's not going to change one letter of the Pentateuch.  We can rely on reading a copy of the original copy.

Scientist Isaac Newton (1642-1727) tried to find a code in the Bible, but at a time without computers, didn't get very far.  He wrote a book he believed unlocked the prophecies contained in Daniel and Revelation, two Bible books he viewed as intertwined.  He was a mathematician.  Newton discovered the binomial theorem, the method of fluxions (calculus), the law of gravitation and the composite nature of light—all before the age of 30. The foundations of modern astronomy and physics are still largely based on theories Newton first presented more than 300 years ago.  And he was a Christian believer  who studied the Bible daily and believed that God created everything, including the Bible. He believed that the Bible was true in every respect.

One amazing feature of the Pentateuch has been found by a mathematician in Israel, Dr. Eliyahu Rips .  He took the Pentateuch as written in Hebrew, and by using his mathematical theory,   put it in the computer.  Then he ran a format to try to see if it contained codes.  Many people have tried to do this, using the English translation before.  Rips found the Kennedy assassinations, the Oklahoma city bombing, the election of Bill Clinton, everything from WWII to Watergate, from the Holocaust to Hiroshima, and from the Moon landing to the collision of a comet with Jupiter.  The Code procedure predicted that Barack Obama would be President a year before his election, and it warns that he must prevent a nearly certain nuclear terror attack.  The bible Code reveals that Al Qaeda may already have nuclear weapons.  It even named Osama bin Laden's hide-out.  

Writer Michael Drosnin was so excited by Rips' finds that he wound up writing three books about it;  The Bible Code,  Bible Code II-the countdown, and Bible Code III-saving the world.  Rips believes in the teaching that Moses was directed by G-d to write the Pentateuch. In the late seventies, Rips began looking with the help of a computer for codes in the Torah. In 1994, Rips, together with Doron Witzum and Yoav Rosenberg, published a seminal article in the journal Statistical Science, "Equidistant Letter Sequences in the Book of Genesis", which claimed the discovery of encoded messages in the Hebrew text of Genesis. This, in turn, was the inspiration for the 1997 book The Bible Code by journalist Michael  Drosnin. While Rips originally claimed that he agreed with Drosnin's findings, he later distanced himself from his interpretations.

The 5 Books of Moses, written so long ago around 1200 BCE, nevertheless are awesome.  Written by a man who was inspired somehow, either by sound or some special vibrations emanating from G-d, have lasted in the original form for over 3,000 years.  Without the 10 Commandments he gave us, what a mess our world would be in; no doubt worse than now.  Possibly that's because it's still a challenge for many of us to follow 10 simple commandments.

The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia
Tanach-torah/prophets/writings: Stone Edition
Bible Codes I, II, and III.

What's So Special About the "Old Testament?" Who Believes G-d Dictated It?

Nadene Goldfoot
This is my G-d, and I will praise him;  The G-d of my father, and I will exalt him.  EXODUS 15:2, The Song of Moses

Actually we weren't Jews till about 933 BCE when  Israel was divided by the Israelites themselves into Israel and Judah.  The southern tribe of Judah was the largest of the 12 tribes and wanted to maintain Davidic royal lineage for their government.  King Solomon, King David's son,  had just died.  Rehoboam was next in line to be king.  In the division of tribes, most of Benjamin and the tribe of Simeon were  a part of Judah.  They  preserved the Mosaic monotheism in a purer form than did Israel.  Jeroboam became King over the larger Israel, or Samaria as it was often called  and remained so until 912 BCE.  Israel existed for 210 years with 19 kings from 9 dynasties.  Both followed the law of Moses, but Israel suffered from a low level of religious life compared to Judah, where Jerusalem and the Temple lie.  The prophets Elijah and Elisha worked hard to check idolatry and social injustice.

Israelites and other slaves were rescued after 400 years of slavery by the Egyptian, Moses,  who turned out to have been an Israelite baby that was saved from the death decree of all Israelite babies previously.  This lucky baby had been saved by the Pharaoh's daughter, a Princess.  He learned to read, write, mathematics and philosophy as well as the religion of the day in Egypt.  Egypt believed in all sorts of gods, and one Pharaoh even had the audacity to believe that there was only one god-the Sun.  His idea wasn't popular for very long.

Moses in the 2nd millennium felt the call of G-d at the age of 80 saying to return to Egypt and lead the Israelites out of Egypt.  He reluctantly returned.  How do we know G-d actually spoke to him?  Is this just a tale for children with the burning bush and the canes that turned into snakes?  Is there any way to prove that a one and only G-d was communicating with a man?  Who even believes there's a G-d, anyway?

Here is the universe, a place of orderly wonders where planets follow paths and in which there are black holes which seems to imply a Maker.  It has human life, full of sadness and disaster and DNA, ever so complicated a structure to which scientists are now awed about,  themselves.   Ever since the Stone Age, man has believed in some sort of  higher god.  Egypt in Moses's day was the greatest civilization of the day with students of the arts and sciences, and they were the best in war.  Artists were supreme in architecture and sculpture.  They believed in worshipping idols with obscene rites.  They believed in their childish myths, and their gods were weird half-human, half-bestial monsters.  The people had an obsession with death and magic ruled the land like science does in America.

So we all have the same situation of possibly being genetically implanted  to be awed by our universe so full of bright stars in a black sky, of having wonder within us, and a fear of death.  In fact, geneticists believe they have found the G-d gene, meaning that there's some basic instinct we have that causes us to want to believe in a G-d or G-ds.    There has never been any decisive proof either way about G-d's existence.  It's just that some of us have developed a faith in believing it is so.

Our views about G-d in Judaism differ completely from the G-d concept in Christianity, though there are some parallels.  But first, I find it so interesting that Nazis spent millions to portray Jews to the world as subhumans and attempted to destroy our people, every man, woman and child, and now the Muslims are doing the same thing.    What bothered them so much about a people who did believe in G-d, and that it was a one G-d only?  Muslims are monotheistic, but they were on the side of the Nazis in WWII and say now they intend to complete what Hitler started.

Eliezer Berkovits, Chairman of the department of Jewish Philosophy at Hebrew Theological College, which is Orthodox in Skokie, Illinois, stated this:  "I believe that G-d did indeed speak to Moses, as the bible says."  He goes on to say that he couldn't describe the event.  It says that G-d "spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaketh to his friend."  This is one of the cases where the Talmudic dictum applies:  dibbra Torah bil'shon b'nei Adam, or, the Torah speaks in the language of human beings, even when describing events that cannot be described in human language.  In other words, it's hard to describe how these thoughts got into Moses's head to be written down, though it happened.  In those days, Moses, with his limited knowledge, did his best.  What happened was a revelation, which happens to be a fundamental principle of Judaism.

A person can say that he believes in "verbal inspiration," with the result coming from the origin in G-d.  This doesn't make  Orthodox Jews fundamentalists. They believe every word of the Torah and that every commandment has its source in G-d, but the meaning of the revealed word or commandment is given in the oral tradition, the Torah she-be'al peh alone, or is elucidated by its method.  The oral tradition is protection against fundamentalism.  In this oral tradition, it happens to call for an explanation of why some words were important to be included and why we should be informed about it.  Man needs lessons and explanations.  We just can't accept all words without this because we are man and not G-d.  Yet we believe we are all sons of G-d.  We were made in his image. but we don't know what he looks like nor do we draw pictures of G-d.  

Bernard J. Bamberger is a Rabbi of Temple Shaaray Tefila, a Reform synagogue in NY City.  He said that Reform Jews do not, and need not agree on all matters of theology.  He appreciates the scientific method but feels that it does not help us in dealing with problems of life's ultimate meaning, aims, and values since these factors are eliminated in advance in the scientific method.  He sees that values and purposes are important things in human life.  We all start with the self.  He holds on to a faith-which he cannot prove, but which doesn't seem to be unreasonable, that there is a cosmic root out of which man's values grow.  Man's strivings, above all, his ethical strivings, are not irrelevant to the universe.  He does believe in G-d as a living power.

Dr. Francis Collins, author of"The Language of God"  is head of the Human Genome Project and is one of the world's leading scientists who is at the cutting edge of the study of DNA, the code of life.  He also is a man of unshakable faith in God and scripture.  He believes these can coexist within a person and be harmonious.  He went from being an atheist to a man of faith and can show that physics, chemistry, and biology can all fit together with belief in God and the Bible.  So if one wonders about why we are here, how we got here and what does life mean, his book holds some answers.

There have been other claims by other religions such as the Christians, Latter Day Saints and Islam to have received the word of G-d and they follow that path.  Are they right and only Judaism is wrong?  As I cannot prove that it was G-d dictating to  Moses what to write, I find the other religions are in the same fix that I am.  There is no scientific way to prove such a thing.  What I do is look at what has been dictated.  Moses was special and evidently most intelligent, and what he wrote was above the common man of that period.  It was profound; simple to our ears today but profound 3,000+ years ago to man.  Truly, he had help in his inspiration.

 He must have looked back after writing and said to himself, "I wrote THAT?  How did that come to me?  Wow! But he knew.  He heard.   He continued writing for 40 years until he brought these Israelites to Canaan and turned over the rest of the trek to Joshua.  We don't know where Moses is buried, as he certainly didn't want people to worship him.  The Torah says that he died at age 120, which seems to be quite a stretch of the imagination until you hear of today's black slaves who have died way past the age of 100.  I think that last old person to have died and was documented was 115.  Traditionally, the entire Pentateuch (Torah) was written by Moses.  The Midrash (explanation of Torah and late Aggadah (legends and ethics) tell many legends about him, and different writings were pseudepigraphically ascribed to him.

Little did Moses know that after 200 CE Jews would write two Talmuds; the Babylonian Talmud and the Palestinian Talmud where records of academic discussion and of judicial administration of Jewish Law would be kept.  These were written by generations of scholars and jurists in many academies and in more than one country over several centuries.  Each one consists of the Mishnah together with the Gemara which is both a commentary on and a supplement to the Mishnah.   The Mishnah is the legal codification containing the core of the Oral Law.  All these things are the subjects of study in a Yeshiva.

Jews, as those living in Judah came to be called, had their trials and tribulations in keeping to the rules set by Moses.  He not only wrote 2 sets of the 10 Commandments but managed to write out 613 more for them to follow.  Jews hold that Moses finished writing 5 books, and they are called the Torah, or the 5 books of Moses.  The order may be different than a Christian Old Testament.  In the Torah comes, Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.  That's it.  However, others wrote what makes up the  Tanach (Old Testament) which would be all the Prophets and writings such as Psalms, Proverbs, Job, The Songs of Songs, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther, Daniel, Ezra-Nehemiah and Chronicles.

The Israelites had been the first monotheists in a pagan idol-worshipping world ever since Abraham had his revelation that his father's idols which he manufactured were not worthy of being called gods, and that there really was only one power or G-d.  He moved his large family out of the city of Ur just to get them all into an environment where he could continue to teach them about this.  The books of Ezra and Nehemiah, which were written during the Babylonian exile show that the Jews were losing it. They were even more ignorant and closer to extinction than Jews of today outside of Israel.  Luckily, they had a revival of spirit and heart through study.  Their king had to read the Torah to the large audience.

Judaism is not a dead religion.  It just didn't stop growing and improving to fit the people of each age.  An amazing fact is that as a people, we are over 3,000 years old.  We had been a nation and are once again.  We're a people with a special culture and have our own language of Hebrew and had an international language of Yiddish.  .Ladino is used by the Anusim, the Spanish and Portugese Jews.   Almost everyone on earth  have tried to wipe us out.  Yet we remain and flourish, grow and improve.  This is  how we differ from many other religions.

No, the Torah is not just a fairy tale book.  There's something very special and unique about what is written in it.  It has been revered by Jews for 3,000 years.  It's not something to callously be flippant about.  Jews have protected it with their lives.  It had the power to change the world as a light in the darkness.  We keep the faith, and Judaism keeps us.

1. Reference:  Herman Wouk, author;  This is My God
2. The Condition of Jewish Belief, a symposium compiled by the editors of Commentary Magazine; essays by 38 distinguished rabbis and theologians with their contemporary restatement of the basic concepts of Judaism and their relevance to the modern age.
3. The Language of God by Francis S. Collins, PhD-a Christian scientist presents evidence for belief
4. The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Rachel's Tomb Attacked

Nadene Goldfoot
In the beginning of the 2nd millennium BCE  lived Abraham, son of Terah and the Biblical patriarch of the Jewish people and many Arabs, his son Isaac and his grandson Jacob.  They  were the three very important men in the history of Jews.  Jacob was the father of 12 boys who in turn were the progenitors of the 12 tribes of Israel:  Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Zebulun, Joseph, Benjamin.  Gad, Asher, Dan, Naphtali, Manasseh and Ephraim. Dinah was Jacob's daughter.

Jacob had worked for his Uncle Laban, who was the brother of Rebekah, wife of Isaac and lived at Haran in Aram-Naharaim.  He had seen Laban's daughter, Rachel and had fallen in love with her.  Laban said that if he worked for 7 years he could marry her, so he did.  The day came of the wedding, and he discovered that his bride was Rachel's older sister, Leah.  The excuse was that the custom calls for the oldest daughter to be married first.  A deal was made and Jacob worked another 7 years for Rachel's hand.  In all, we know that Leah became the mother of 6 of the boys and Rachel had 2.  She  was the mother of Joseph and Benjamin.  Rachel's maid, Bilhah became the mother of Dan and Naphtali and Leah's maid, Zilpah became the mother of Gad and Asher.  

Rebekah and Rachel are two of the 4 matriarchs of the Jewish people.  Rachel  died near Bethlehem in giving birth to Benjamin. Now there is a tomb there, honoring her.  She is thought of as the compassionate mother who wept for her children when 10 of the tribes in Israel were driven into captivity in 722 BCE by the Assyrians, and again when Judah was attacked in the 597 and 586 BCE by the Babylonians.  In Jewish folklore, she is a favorite figure.

Bethlehem, now a Palestinian town,  is on the highway to Jerusalem, and I've gone through it many times. It's within 5.25 miles  south of Jerusalem and falls in Judah, which is a part of the contentious s"West Bank". Bethlehem was the birthplace of King David and the background of the Book of Ruth.  Christians consider Bethlehem the town of Jesus's birth.  In 1948 there were 10,000 people living here of which 7,500 were Christians and 2,500 were Muslims.  From 1948 to 1967 it was under Jordanian rule but captured by Israel in 1967 in the Six Day War.  Today, with a population of about 25,000 it is mostly all Muslim with only 15% being Christian. The city relies on tourism for its economy.  When riding a bus, it would stop here at a gift shop.

   I remember seeing IDF soldiers on the roofs guarding Bethlehem  when I lived in Israel from 1980-1985.  
Yesterday about 50 Arabs attacked the security forces guarding the compound at Rachel's Tomb, which is at the northern entrance.  They threw 9 pipe bombs, 18 fire bombs and rocks at the guards and injured one soldier.  One pipe bomb caused damage to the security wall around the complex.  The soldiers in turn were using riot dispersal gear against the attack.  The facility has been under increasingly repeated attacks recently as youths from the Palestinian Authority get close to the security fence and throw rocks and improvised explosive devices.

Soldiers have to prove that they are in a clear and present danger to their lives before they are allowed to open fire against attackers.  Who would expect that Rachel's Tomb would be a dangerous spot.  It's  a place where religious Jews go to pray and pay their respects. " Rachel's tomb is the third holiest site in Judaism.  Jews have made pilgrimage to the tomb since ancient times, and it has become one of the cornerstones of Jewish-Israeli identity.

Just in October  25th-28th  of 2012 there were 120,000 visitors expected to arrive at the tomb for the anniversary of her death.  We've had our state for 64 years and now in 2013 have to fight to see a tomb that lies 5 miles from Jerusalem.  .
Resource: from Arutz sheva: by Gil Ronen:  50 Arabs Attack Rachel's Tomb
The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Portrait of a Russian Shtetl; Kupel, Ukraine--1941

                                                                        The Pale of Settlement-of Russia      
Nadene Goldfoot
Why do we need an Israel?  Because of what happened to the shtetl named Kupel in the Ukraine which was part of Russia.  Do you remember seeing "Fiddler on the Roof?"  Those Jews were living in a shtetl.  A shtetl was something like a small settlement.  Many shtetls were where Jews lived. "Shtetl - Little city, small town, village - in particular, the Jewish communities of Eastern Europe, were where the remarkable culture of the Ashkenazim flourished before World War II."   Most all Jews were confined to the Pale of Settlement of Russia.  In order to get into Russia proper, one had to be very special and have a special pass.

Kupel, Ukraine  on the map was  49o 36' N   and 26o 331' E.  of Eastern Europe.
It was 300 km (186 miles) WSW of Kryyiv, the 8th largest city in Ukraine.  Kryyiv Rih or Dnipropetrovsk had 670,068 people.  In 1900 there were 2,727 Jews living in Kupel.  By 1910 there were 5.6 million Jews living in the entire Pale of Settlement.  The Ukraine was part of the Pale of Settlement.  So was Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, and Belarussia.  Catherine II decreed that all Jews had to be so confined on this 4% of Russian territory in 1791 which lasted until the end of WWI in 1917.   About 90% of Russian Jews lived here.   Even so, they gave birth and the population grew.  Just like in Fiddler on the Roof, "entire local populations could be abruptly "resettled," forced out of their homes, with no more legality then the arbitrary impulse of an often besotted governor."

Life in the Pale of Settlement was very similar to being treated like the Muslims treated Jews, the 2nd class citizen or dhimmis of the Middle East.  Jews had to pay double in taxes, couldn't lease land or own land, couldn't run a tavern or be able to receive higher education, even if they had the money to pay tuition.

In August of 1941, 50 Jews were taken as hostages and locked up in a tiny storage closet without any windows that was in a local market in Kupel.  The Jews were crowded in like sardines, stacked to the ceiling.  By morning all were found dead except those on top.  They were buried in shallow graves in the center of the shtetl, but the odor was so bad, they forced the living Jews to dig them up and bury them in the Jewish cemetery.

Itzhak Meer Glaser was the last rabbi of Kupel, and he was murdered in 1942.  So was his family, his neighbors and all others of the Jewish community by German invaders along with local Ukrainians.  Then they destroyed the Jewish homes.  This was done to keep others that were not home away so that the homes could be looted.  Rabbi Glaser was buried alive.

There were 2 million Jews who had immigrated to the USA from the Pale  from 1881 to 1914.  Jewish immigrants landed in New York, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and other places as well.  They were the lucky ones who missed being in the Holocaust.  Their friends and relatives were not so lucky and were part of the 6 million who were slaughtered.

Jews had been working on regaining their own homeland again from the middle 1800's and by November 2, 1917 were making inroads with the Balfour Doctrine.  Little did our leaders know that the more horrible event was yet to take place, the Holocaust.  Oh but to have already had their homeland, so many lives would have been saved.


The Bigots' March in Washington DC to Curb Aid to Israel

Nadene Goldfoot
The biggest problem Israel is always facing are lethal attacks such as rockets, mortars and missiles as well as suicide bombers and such.  The next biggest problem is anti-Semitism/anti-Israelism.

A march is planned to demonstrate such views of bigotry on January 19 in Washington DC.  It's bringing out all the malcontents who blame Israel while cheering on the people trying to destroy her.  Who leads the pack?  Why, some of our self-destructive Jews, of course, like the "The Jewish Voice for Peace", people that don't care to read or understand a thing about their own people.  One of the leaders is Noam Chomsky, a man I have spent many an hour arguing with via email about Israel.  He has taken a stand against Israel and G-d himself won't change him.  He may know  about linguistics, his PhD area.    No matter what proof   I came up with, he denied it all.  He should have stuck to Linguistics.  

What they are doing is not trusting in the Senators that Americans have elected democratically.  This fringe group thinks differently than the Senators who have explored the subject. At least they know that Israel needs a certain amount of dollars which have already been approved, even in this time of financial need ourselves in the states.  They know what the stakes are.

Arab nationalists are all against Israel, of course and will be in the demonstration.  The Muslim Public Affairs Council, Islamic Society of North America,  and Council on American-Islamic Relations will all be in on the act.

Religious Christian groups such as the Presbyterian Church and the United Methodist Church are also against Israel and will be marching.  There's even a Washington Interfaith Alliance for Middle East Peace and they're in the act, too.  They've been hard nosed for quite some time advocating such things as not buying from any Israeli company.  15 churches wrote letters in October supporting congressional investigations into US aid to Israel.  They are boasting that the stance of the church will decide the future of the US-Israeli relationship.

These anti-Israel people follow the lead of the American Arab Anti-discrimination Committee (ADC) who make out that prosecuting Muslims for terrorist deeds are acts of political persecution.  They honored columnist Helen Thomas with an award after she told Jews to "get the hell out of Palestine" and that "Congress, the White House,  Hollywood and Wall Street are owned by the Zionists."  So you can see just how they think.   Jews make up all of 0.02% of the world population.  We sure do "OWN" a lot that bothers the rest of the world. like Helen.  The USA contains about 2% Jews, most of which are liberal Democrats.  Helen, now 92 years old, with parents  from Christian Greek Orthodox church in Tripoli, Lebanon, is sure shook by us.  She must not have thought Major Hadad was doing right by siding with Israel in fighting the Palestinians.  She retired in June of 1910 after her nasty comments about Jews.

What do they profess to want?  They want US aid to Israel to stop.  Do I see complaints about US aid to Egypt who is now under Muslim Brotherhood control  who is threatening Israel and all Jews everywhere?  They're even a threat to the Egyptian Christians, for heaven's sake!  Oh no.  Aid to Egypt must be fine.  They certainly do need those updated F-16's.  And who are their potential enemies being they have so many Muslim neighbors?  Why, it must be Israel.  Israel is promised more aid dollars than Egypt, but then it has more enemies as well, and it is a very democratic state.  It's situations like Egypt's Arab Spring that causes Israel to need financial help from the USA.  Ironically, it was the USA's desire to create a democratic state without looking into the culture and religion that brought about the Arab Spring and Mubarak's downfall that has put Israel in jeopardy.  .

And as for the Jewish Voice of Peace, a San Francisco group including rabbis, I'd like to get ahold of them and give them a piece of my mind.  Then I'd like to expose them to some lessons on the history of Israel and what's been going on, especially on International law from International Law lawyers.    That should be followed up with a trip to Israel to actually see it, something I did and lived there for 5 1/2 years.  Put this together with our own Jewish history in the USA and the world and they just might learn something no matter how thick headed they are.

What they are doing is insisting that Israel get no money unless its on their terms and their concept of legality. Netanyahu, PrimeMinister of Israel would love to have a peaceful Palestine next door that Israel could be friends with, but until a special day comes along, it's not in the works of happening right now.  Right now Israel is in constant peril and needs to be prepared.  Taking away defense money from Israel is spelling out their doom.  Is that what they are aiming for?  It sure seems so to me.


Monday, January 14, 2013

Claiming to be One of Lost 10 Tribes? The Maasais, and How It Is Affecting Israel

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                  
                                                     Maasai Tribe
For the little state of Israel, being only 8,000 square miles big, and under constant threat of attack, there are a lot of people and tribes claiming to be one of the Lost Tribes of Israel.    Right now it could use the original boundaries as given to Moses from G-d as to just how big Israel should be.  Today's Israel missed out on the original size as decided by the mandate given to Britain to create the Jewish Homeland.   Jews only wound up with 20% of what was planned.

We have had the Beta Israel of  Ethiopia return and accepted as Jews.  Following them have come the Bene Israel of India and recently and still arriving are members of the Shinlung tribe from the Indian-Burmese border.  "Thousands more are desirous of coming.  Other claims waiting in line are the Ibos of Nigeria, the Berbers of North Africa, various Armenian, Afghan and Persian groups of the Black and Caspian Sea regions, the Chiang-Min of Tibet, Khazars and Karaites.  Now the Maasai of southeast Africa have claims and references as well as Yemenis, Abyssinians, Ganges Indians, Kareens of Burma, the Shindai tribe of Japan and Indian groups in the New World (America)."

The Maasais, monotheistic,  numbering 841,622 in 2009,  were recently visited by an Israeli who reports that they have long considered themselves as one of the Lost Ten Tribes, or Israelites. They are known as warriors and cattle rustlers as they raise and eat cattle. A Maasai religious belief relates that God gave them all the cattle on earth, leading to the belief that rustling cattle from other tribes is a matter of taking back what is rightfully theirs, a practice that has become much less common. They have adopted customs from their neighbors, a Cushitic group, such as circumcision.  Originally they came from the lower Nile Valley.    "Maasai" is found in Chronicles I, chapter 9, verse 12.  Adaiah son of Jeroham, the son of Pashhur, the son of Malkijah; and Maasai son of Adiel, the son of Jahzerah, the son of Meshullam, the son of Meshillemith, the son of Immer."  A custom they share with Jews is the use of the shofar (ram's horn blown on high holidays, wars and Jubilees).  .  The Maasai also do not mix milk and meat.   They have an aversion to eating game and birds.  They do not eat the sciatic nerve as according to Genesis 32,36-33, part of the laws of Kashrut (keeping kosher) They are Christians today, mostly Pentecostal but always have Israel in their daily prayers. DNA testing shows the DNA to be 50% of E1b1b of 26 men tested.  Also A3b2 and E1b1a (E-P1) was found.   My Israeli contact said she heard some ladies repeat in their morning prayers, "Yesu, Israel, Maasai" which was asking G-d to keep Israel and the Maasai safe and strong.

One thing that is not acceptable in orthodox Judaism is the eating of blood.  "Traditionally, the Maasai rely on meat, milk and blood from cattle for protein and caloric needs. People drink blood on special occasions. It is given to a circumcised person (o/esipolioi), a woman who has given birth (entomononi) and the sick (oltamueyiai). Also, on a regular basis drunk elders, ilamerak, use the blood to alleviate intoxication and hangovers. Blood is very rich in protein and is good for the immune system. However, its use in the traditional diet is waning due to the reduction of livestock numbers.  This would tell me that they are not from one of the Lost Tribes.  Also, they borrowed circumcision from their neighbors who were Cushites.  Can it be that some of Judaism's practices were carried over in intermarriage with others and only some things were remembered?  

This can also be a genealogist's and genetic dream.  Lots of American Jews have been taking DNA tests to find out their background.  The Cohen gene (directly presumed from Aaron and his brother, Moses,) has been discovered among Jews.  Personally, I know of a man who is a Cohen in the synagogue who tested and is a J1 Y haplogroup (Cohen gene).

Ethiopians have been tested and have not been found to have the Ydna or MT dna of known Jewish lines, but their culture and history is so conclusive, that before the discovering of DNA, Rabbis were convinced of their claims.  As DNA testing is advancing, and it already is past the usual Y and MT tracing, checking the individual 23 chromosomes for segments leading to Jewish connections might turn up facts.  They were being horribly mistreated in Ethiopia.  This is what Israel was created for; the return of Jews, especially those under duress. Also, the end of times has prophesied the return of the Lost Ten Tribes to Israel.  Those that have been accepted and have returned want to practice Judaism and some have been doing so as they understand it.  Some show traces of practices of long ago Judaism.

The group I believe to be one or more of the Lost 10 tribes are the Parthans or Pashtuns of Afghanistan, Pakistan and parts of India. I have heard reports claiming several of the tribes such as Benjamin, for one.   People I have corresponded with  and very proud of their heritage and origins but have no desire to leave Islam. It's like reading a DAR tree of claims to ancestors of the American Revolution.   They would like to visit Jerusalem, though, and even may have thoughts of taking it for their Islamic believers, as those I have heard from do not hide their hatred for Zionists.    Their culture and practices reflect much of Judaism, but they are most reluctant to do DNA testing.  They say they know the facts and that's it.  However, one such brave male has tested and is very close to my father's Q1b1a Ydna, which is most exciting for me.  It connects us somewhere on the timeline. " Scholars believe the 10 tribes were resettled in the region now embracing parts of Kurdistan, Afghanistan, northern Syria and Iran. But no one knows for sure where their descendants are today. “Can we really assume that in all these years they didn´t move?” rhetorically asks Shalva Weil, a Hebrew University anthropologist and one of the few recognized experts on the lost tribes."

“In Somalia, a Muslim majority country of  9,558,666 population with 100% Sunni Islam, and Djibouti, 496,374 population  Muslim majority country of 94% Sunni Islam,  both in Eastern Africa, “there are 20,000 members of a group called `Ivru Adokeit,´ who see themselves as part of the Jewish people.” said Absorption Minister Yair Tsaban of Israel.

Jewish people today are from the southern kingdom of Judah (also referred to as Jerusalem).  Others living in Judah were  the Levites from Levi and some from Benjamin as Queen Esther and her Uncle Mordecai were from Benjamin, and they lived in Judah after the division of Israel.  The northern Ten Tribes of Israel (also referred to as Ephraim, Samaria or Joseph) that were taken away by force were "prophesied to be scattered through the nations and become like Gentiles ("not My people").  Hosea 1-3 puts this most clearly."  Knowing that this has happened and was prophesied gives me goose pimples of awe!  

In end times is the restoration of all Israel to the land which means the recovery of the Lost Ten Tribes to both their identity and their destiny as Israelites or as we say today, as Israelis.  This is found in "dozens of chapters in Hebrew Prophets, beginning with Jeremiah 30-31, Ezekiel 37; Hosea 1-3; and Isaiah 11."

Scandinavian, Celtic and England also have claims.  Research so far is lacking in high standards in academic circles.  Everyone wants to lay claim to the lost tribes but there are few who recognize Israel's rights to even exist.  Israel has been hit with mortars, missiles and rockets since 2001 without any country doing anything to stop Hamas.

As it is today, this present major problems for Israel because hundreds of 3rd World groups are already claiming Israelite ancestry.  Some may just want to get into the industrial world.  An estimate of Africans is at 100 million!  Most all Israelis today are living in small high rise apartments.  Space is limited.

Most people have thought of the Lost Ten Tribes of Israel as just legend or myth, which so many think of our Torah or (Old Testament) anyway.  The Jerusalem Report, Israel's major weekly news magazine had a cover story called "Return of the Lost Tribes" in their September 9, 1993 issue.  Discovery and acceptance has been happening, but must go through an exhaustive and reliable check.

1/17/13 Update: The 2,000th Bnei Menasha olah just arrived in Israel from Manipur, India.  She was from the tribe of Manasseh, son of Joseph whose mother was Rachel, 2nd wife of Jacob.  .  

10/18/13 Update:  Israel is allowing Shavei Israel to bring 899 Bnei Menashe from India to Israel.  This makes a 300% increase of Bnei Menashe who will come in the next 15 months beginning  in December this year.  They are of the tribe of Manasseh, exiled by Assyrian empire over 2,700 years ago.  This next group coming are from the Mizoram region of India.  It is costing Israel $2.7 million to bring them in.  Donations would be great to help with this expense.  

Resource: for the "Ten Lost Tribes of Israel!"  on What Haplogroup We Be?
Bat Zion Susskind-Sacks, report on Maasai Tribe of Kenya

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Genealogy of Moses, the Levite As Listed in Exodus VI, 14

Nadene Goldfoot
Genealogy of Levi's Sons Including  Moses  from Time of Exodus VI, 14
Moses was the lawgiver, prophet and founder of the Jewish religion.  

        Time of about 1445 BCE-Exodus From Egypt:  Moses is the 7th generation from Abraham (Abraham, Isaac, Jacob) (Levi, Kohath, Amram, Moses)
Jacob had 12 sons.  His first was Reuben, second was Simeon, and third was Levi.   Leah was their mother, and also mother of  Judah, Issachar, Zebulun, and Dinah.   When Jacob went into Egypt he had a family, including Zilpah and Bilhah, handmaids,  and Jochebed, who was born at the entrance to Egypt,  numbering 70 people.  The Exodus 400 years later most likely was in the time of Pharaoh Amenhotep II (1427-1392 BCE)  

1. Reuben      2 Simeon                                            3. Levi (d: age 137)
                                                                                        I.   Gershon
                                                                                                  1. Libni
                                                                                                  2. Shimei
                                                                                      II.  Kohath (d: age 133) and  sister Jochebed
                                                                                                  1. Amram(d: age 137)  m. Jochebed
                                                                                                        A. Aaron, m: Elishbeba
                                                                                                            1. Nadab
                                                                                                            2. Abihu
                                                                                                            3. Eleazar m. Putiel daughter
                                                                                                                 A. Phinehas
                                                                                                            4. Ithamar
                                                                                                        B. Moses b: 1518 BCE, (d: age 120) 
                                                                                                             m: Tzipporah, daughter of  
                                                                                                             Midianite priest, Jethro (Added)  
                                                                                                             1. Gershom
                                                                                                                 a. Shebuel
                                                                                                            2. Eliezer
                                                                                                                 a. Rehabiah               
                                                                                                  2. Izhar
                                                                                                        A. Korah
                                                                                                             1. Assir
                                                                                                             2. Elkanah
                                                                                                             3. Abiasaph
                                                                                                        B. Nepheg
                                                                                                        C. Zichri.
                                                                                                  3. Hebron
                                                                                                  4. Uzziel
                                                                                                        A. Mishael
                                                                                                        B. Elzaphan
                                                                                                        C. Sithri
                                                                                    III.  Merari
                                                                                                 1. Mahli
                                                                                                 2. Mushi

1. Reuben      2 Simeon                                                  
Hanoch           Jemuel                                                  
Pallu          Jamin                                                        
Hezron            Ohad                                                        
Carmi              Jachin
                        Shaul, mother a Canaanitish woman

Aaron married Elisheba, daughter of Amminadab, the sister of Nahshon.  Nadab and Abihu were killed when not following instructions with the ARK.  Elazar is listed later with 16 sons: Jehoiarib, Harim, Malchijah, Hakkoz, Jeshua, Eliashib, Huppah, Bilgah, Hezir, Hapizzez, Pethahiah, Jehezkel, Jachin, Gamul, Delaiah, and Maaziah.  Ithamar is listed with 8 sons:  Jedaiah, Seorim, Mijamin, Abijah, Sshecaniah, Jakim, Jeshebeab and Immer.  

Scientists have found the Ydna "J1) among Jewish men who have the privilege of being called the Cohen, who is the first to read from the Torah each Shabbat, one of his duties as a Cohen.  J1 is called the Cohen gene.  I know of a Cohen with a different surname who had his dna tested and he was indeed J1!  Imagine that every Cohen male has been told orally of his position and restrctions in being a Cohen for over 2,000 years.  That is quite a record.

Palestinian religious leaders are trying to say that Jews in Israel today are not real Jews, but even genetically, Jews can prove their father's existence in Israel quite well.  The fact that they had been isolated and that neighbors did not marry into their families but only rarely kept the line almost pure and easily traceable.  Both Ashkenazi and Sephardi Jews came from the same source; the 12 sons of Jacob.  Though 10 of the 12 tribes were taken away by force long ago, Levi, Judah and some of Benjamin still existed in Israel and Judah.  Probably some of the other tribes joined up with Judah and Levi as well.

As for the few converts into Judaism, we say that their souls stood with us at Mt. Sinai when Moses received the 10 Commandments.

Since the Israelites, including Abraham, came from the East, what is to say that my father's Q1b1a Y haplogroup which makes up 5% of Jewish men today wasn't part of that migrating band?  Being found in Telsiai, Lithuania and being Ashkenazi only gave him 2 choices of getting there:  (1) migrating with others from Judah to Rome to Germany and on up  Eastern Europe or (2) from Judah to Rome and on into Russia, maybe Khazaria, and into Eastern Europe.

When Moses was born, his mother hid him because the Egyptian Pharoah had decreed that all male baby Israelites  be killed in order to stem the growth of these people. That means the baby sons of the other 11 tribes would have been killed during that period.

Joshua was from the tribe of Ephriam, one of the 12 spies sent out to see Canaan and report back to Moses.
Key: Names, facts  added in italics are added after the Exodus 6:14.

Resource: Pentateuch and Haftorahs by Dr. J.H. Hertz, chief Rabbi of the British Empire
Tanach, ArtScroll Series, The Stone Edition