A New Excavation Reveals the City of Goliath

July 26 2019

In the 1990s, a team of archaeologists discovered the ruins of a city from the late Bronze Age and Early Iron Age at the village of Tel Tsafit, some twenty miles southwest of Jerusalem, which they subsequently identified as the biblical city of Gath. More recent exploration has shed new light on the lifetime of its most famous inhabitant, as Sonia Epstein writes:

Archaeologists have discovered remains more ancient and impressive than those previously discovered at the Philistine city of Gath, where, [according to the Bible], the giant Philistine warrior Goliath was born and once lived. Previous excavations at the site . . . uncovered ruins dating to the 9th and 10th centuries BCE, but the new discovery suggests that the city of Gath was at its height in the 11th century BCE, during the time Goliath would have lived.

Goliath was the Philistine whom the young David, the eventual second king of Israel and Judah, famously defeated in single combat, according to 1Samuel 17. Together with Gaza, Ashkelon, Ashdod, and Ekron, Gath was one of the five Philistine cities until its fall around 830 BCE at the hands of the Aramean king Hazael.

[T[he recent discovery beneath a pre-existing site reveals that [Goliath’s] native city was a place of even greater architectural grandeur than the Gath of a century later. [But, says] Aren Maeir of Bar-Ilan University’s archaeology department, who directed the discovery at Tel Tsafit, “There are no skeletons of people who are taller than NBA centers.”

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Read more at Jerusalem Post

More about: Archaeology, Goliath, Hebrew Bible, King David, Philistines

The Evidence of BDS Anti-Semitism Speaks for Itself

Oct. 18 2019

Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs recently released a lengthy report titled Behind the Mask, documenting the varieties of naked anti-Semitic rhetoric and imagery employed by the movement to boycott, divest from, and sanction the Jewish state (BDS). Drawn largely but not exclusively from Internet sources, its examples range from a tweet by a member of Students for Justice in Palestine (the “world would be soooo much better without jews man”), to an enormous inflated pig bearing a star of David and floating behind the stage as the rock musician Roger Waters performs, to accusations by an influential anti-Israel blogger that Israel is poisoning Palestinian wells. Cary Nelson sums up the report’s conclusions and their implications, all of which give the lie to the disingenuous claim that critics of BDS are trying to brand “legitimate criticism of Israel” as anti-Semitic.

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Read more at Fathom

More about: Anti-Semitism, BDS, Roger Waters, Social media