On Friday, Hershel Shanks, the founder and long-time editor of the Biblical Archaeological Review, died at the age of ninety. A lawyer by training, Shanks since 1974 devoted himself to promoting the study of ancient Israel and making the latest scholarship accessible to the general public, earning the respect of many leading academics. His persistent efforts are largely responsible for freeing the Dead Sea Scrolls from the jealous guardianship of a small group of scholars, and their eventual publication. A moving tribute to Shanks by Christopher Rollston, an expert on ancient Hebrew inscriptions, can be found here.
Remembering the Man Who Liberated the Dead Sea Scrolls and Popularized Knowledge of Ancient Israel
To Deter Iran, America Should Give Israel a Big Bomb
Under the current circumstances, it seems unlikely, writes Dennis Ross, that Washington will succeed in negotiating a return to the 2015 nuclear agreement with Tehran—and even if it does, it is even more unlikely that the Biden administration will be able to make good on its promise to negotiate a “longer and stronger” version of the deal. Ross thus suggests a simple way to make clear to the Islamic Republic the risks of continuing to pursue a nuclear weapon: