Beyond the Cusp

December 25, 2016

Israel; Whose Land is it Anyways?

 

This will be a short piece, or so is our intent. We have been watching another argument as to whether a piece of Judea and Samaria where parts of Amona are situated is Jewish land or Arab land. Without demanding deeds or other proof, the leftist Israeli Supreme Court decided that since if an Arab is monetarily for real estate they own they will be put to death by their semiautonomous governance under, you will love this, former Jordanian law which makes selling land to a Jew a capital offense. Thus if an Arab claims land on which Jews reside, the Jewish homes must be destroyed as the land may not be purchased. Jordanian law when they were removed from their illegal occupation over half a century ago? Who does such insanity? The Palestinian Authority and the Israeli left are mostly fanatics who are definitively anti-Zionist and fully a subsidiary of European governments, the European Union and European NGOs who masquerade as human rights groups watching out for Palestinian Arab rights but not their betterment. They have no regard or care that the Arab Palestinian has no right as to how to profit or dispense their land and never want to either as they prefer being able to dismantle their homeland piece by piece. By their standards we should bring a Palestinian Arab’s claim from, oh, say Beverly Hills, who claims to have owned the lands under their leadership’s home and see what the Supreme Court, and they as well, would do. If they did not order a demolition in Tel Aviv then we would reveal a sad case of hypocrisy. But let us look for a moment on land and who really owns it.

 

Who owns land which had been occupied and lived on as long as the State of Israel as defined as from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea all depends on the when. That is, to what period of time are we referring? Remember the Canaanites? Well, during the time of Abraham they were ruled by several kingships so no one entity ruled the lands we will define as Israel for this exercise and as a form of simplicity. The Canaanite lands were, at times, conquered, and thus owned, by the Hittites. So perhaps we should reference Hittite law. Then often the Hittites were pushed out and replaced by the Egyptians (not the same people as the Egyptians of today) so perhaps we should be applying the appropriate law of Pharaohs. After the Exodus the Israelites were ruled by individual Tribal leaders and overall by the Prophets and Judges who applied Torah law and their own Hashem directed judgements which would require some extremely special people who are likely rarer than hens teeth. Then Israelite Kings Saul, David, Solomon etc. also owned the lands so perhaps a return to their laws, Torah laws. The Babylonians occupied these lands so perhaps we need apply Babylonian law. Then Israel was a semiautonomous province of the Persians which would demand a mix of Torah and Persian laws of Cyrus the Great through a series of successive kingships. Then there were the Greeks, the Polemic Greeks, the Assyrian Greeks, the Romans, Byzantines then finally the first Arabs of the Caliphate, then a series of Arab and Kurdish rulers, then the Ottoman Turks, then the British. Apparently about the only world powers not to ever have possessed these lands are the French, the Spanish, the Portuguese, the Netherlands, the United States and the Duchy of Grand Fenwick. Obviously, when it comes to whose laws under which Israeli society, even in the territories, should be ruled, there could be many differing views depending which governance you prefer over the past almost five millennia.

 

Grand Seal of the Duchy of Grand Fenwick

While we are talking about such things as what rules, should all of Lebanon south of the Litani River be ruled under the laws of the Israelites when the Twelve Tribes were ruled separate placing much of that land under the Tribes of Asher, Naphtali and Dan? Then there is the question of what rules for Syria. While much of Syrian history had a similar set of rulers by kingdoms similar to those which ruled over the lands of Israel with the biggest differences being the French instead of the British and the Assyrians and some of the Kurdish and Arab rulers using Damascus as their capital city making them a kind of home body, there was a period under the rules of King David and Solomon when Syria was conquered largely by the Israelites. Egypt has had outside rulers. Iran used to be Persia until recent history and was at one time ruled by the Mongols. The United States consisted of a great number of Native American nations, parts were ruled by the French, the Spanish and the Russians and both Texas and Hawaii were at one time nations of their own (the Republic of Texas and the Kingdom of Hawaii). The Kingdom of Hawaii was established in 1795 and in 1810 the entirety of the archipelago was unified when Kauaʻi and Niʻihau joined the kingdom willingly and without bloodshed or war. Absolute power was vested in the King by a Constitution drafted in 1887. The succeeding Queen attempted to return to the “old ways” but she was overthrown in 1893 largely at the hands of the American plantation owners and American society. Hawaii remained a Republic until annexed by the United States in 1898 and was finally made a state on August 21, 1959. Descendants of the monarchy are alive today but who would be the rightful heir to the throne is debatable with many likely to claim that lineage, but the need is unlikely to arise except maybe to marshal a parade. Many, if not every, nations have had multiple claims to sovereignty over their soil. The British, Spanish and Arabs are three of the largest colonial powers with only the Arabs continuing to hold rule over most of the lands they conquered between 622 and 750 (see map below). One could easily claim that the Arab expansive empire has been the longest enduring of empires with the longest history of colonialism. But when your religion claims that the entirety of the world was made simply to be placed under your rule, perhaps such explains why in their minds they have been denied their rightful ownership of everything.

 

Islamic Expansion

Islamic Expansion

 

Back to Israel and which rules should be followed. If one were to ask which legal system has ruled Israel the longest, that answer would surprise most other than students of ancient history and Torah. The area of Israel was ruled by the Israelite people (incorrectly referred to as Jews because Jews was a shortening for Judeans which were those of the Kingdom of Judah which was the southern kingdom when the Israelites split into the northern kingdom of Israel which contained ten tribes and the southern kingdom of Judah with two tribes, see map below) were ruled by Torah. The strictness of its application has wavered during those times but it was the basis of rule from the time of Joshua through the times of Prophets and Judges and through the Kingdoms ruled by Saul, David and Solomon and a presumably beyond though many of the observances grew lax at times causing misery and troubles for the Israelite people. Even after the Kingdom split into northern and southern kingdoms, both presumably remained ruled by Torah though again exactitude was not maintained. Jewish history blames the eventual conquest of Israel and Judah and all other conquests on the lack of observance by the people as a whole, something which does have a ring of truth about it. Under such history, perhaps Israel as a whole should be following the Torah and we are not ones who would argue with such.

 

Kingdoms of Israel and Judah and Surrounding States

Kingdoms of Israel and Judah and Surrounding States

 

Israel becoming a Torah observant nation where Torah rules would be the source for the laws of the land would present many a difficulty. The first item is the applicable laws for the society would be the Oral Law. In ancient Israel (and Judah) the Oral Law was exactly that, oral. As such the Oral Law could be adapted to different societal needs. As the situations and the civilization changed, some might say advanced, we will call it transitioning to new discoveries and realities, the Oral Law was flexible enough to adapt to the changes. These alterations in the law would be gradual and likely not overtly evident as time passed. The Prophets and learned Rabbis, pending on the period, would advise on Torah and the level of stringency demanded to keep the Oral Law within the guidelines of Torah which while not changing the revelations within the Torah would come out as understanding of the world around us progressed. When the Romans spread the remainder of the Judeans to the far corners of the Roman Empire the Rabbinate decided that as the people were now dispersed there needed to be a more defined and stringent Oral Law and this situation necessitated writing the Oral Law into codified texts. This resulted in a work over many generations where the Talmud was written. None of us are Talmud scholars so we will not even attempt to describe the discussions and how conclusions were reached or any of the other particulars and leave that to individual interests to spur any further research. Warning, understanding Talmud can take a lifetime of intense study and where a formal education cycle averages seven years.

 

The Talmud is defined as having two components: the Mishnah (Hebrew: משנה, c. 200 CE), a written compendium of Rabbinic Judaism’s Oral Torah, and the Gomorrah (c. 500 CE), an elucidation of the Mishnah and related Tannaitic writings that often ventures onto other subjects and expounds broadly on the Hebrew Bible. Whatever the definition, the important item are the dates when it was debated generally and compiled. While more commentaries have followed, one would not find corporate law or other required rules for a modern society in its pages. Yes, much of it might apply but too much of modern life is outside the strict definitions and other sections have been relegated unnecessary by modern conveniences. Much of the writings deal with day to day living as a Jew and observances and other religious determinations as it was composed as a religious guide as the Jews were living under sets of secular laws other than Torah or Jewish law and the Talmud simply was the guide to maintain a Jewish compliant life. Israel requires a complete set of laws if the nation of Israel were to come under Torah law. This would require a whole new and different Oral Law which would be partially written codes and social laws which would hopefully largely remain oral and flexible. As stated above, it was an Oral Law for a reason but the life and society were quite a bit more simple two to four thousand years ago and the laws were largely interpersonal relations and simple property rules. The laws were few enough that they did not require being written though we can be assured that records were kept and laws governing taxes and the like were written though they were subject to change at a moment’s notice. When it comes to fees and taxes, at least that has not changed as anyone attempting to understand IRS codes fully understands. So, before Israel can even consider becoming a nation once again ruled by Torah, the Rabbinate need get very busy composing a new Oral Code of Law which is complete enough to justify trusting Israeli society to Torah judges. Just for the record, these Torah judges should be appointed by some combination of the Rabbinate and the people in each community where the communities have the greater say in who will stand in judgement of their lives. This will take quite a while and we would bet that by the time the new laws are ready and approved that Israel will have evolved to a point where such a change will be welcomed.

 

One last note, for those waiting for the reaction to the Security Council vote, tomorrow, hopefully tomorrow.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

October 5, 2016

Too Many Leaves Have Fallen

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In these days between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, Jewish New Year and the Day of Atonement, Jews spend much of their free time, and some of the not so free time, reflecting on their actions and shortcomings of the last year and also their entire lives where less than golden practices became habit. In this time I have too often strayed beyond my shortcomings and looked beyond to the shortcomings of my people and the entirety of the human race. Slavery has to be a practice which was carried on far too long nearly into modern times and even now exists in some measure. We were slaves and know its hardships which we recount every year at our Seders. Passover is one of the singular observances where traditions are pretty much set in stone. The odd thing is there are different stones for Jews of different backgrounds. I should know as my father was as Ashkenazi as one can be and my mother was equally Sephardim. Perhaps this was why we only got a half serving of rice at Passover and never enough for a meal. The Seder service which is said in the home in privacy closes with an important and universal hope of all Jews, “Next year in Yerushalayim (Jerusalem). The Seder is far from the only set of prayers which end with this overriding and continual desire amongst all Jews no matter their individual customs, Jerusalem, as the Song of Babylon states, “If I forget thee may my right hand lose its cunning (strength) and my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth.” That is the seriousness a Jew or any Israelite feels for their eternal Capital City and why the Arabs so demand they control the Old City, the part of which that pleading relates for they know that is the Jewish heart.

 

Remembering our past no matter where your ancestry originates there were pogroms, purifications, jihad, and just simple hatreds which drove our ancestors from their homes with what they could carry. All too often the older children had to carry the younger while father and mother carried what meager belongings they could, the Shabbat table cloth, candle holders, challah plate and cover were mother’s load in addition to what kitchen utensils she could manage while father carried his Tallits, Tefillin, Prayerbooks, Siddurim, Haggadah, necessities for his trade (which may include leading a cow or two or sewing machine, threads, cloth, butchery knives, or whatever and the Rabbi and sons carried the Torah, as many as possible and a few more as leaving even one behind was unthinkable), and whatever other items mother or children could not continue without (his was the burden of family). These fleeing Jews were often the fortunate ones as behind them were those Jews who joined the too lengthy list of fallen leaves. Every Pogrom, Purification, Jihad, forced conversions, Crusades, conquest for Allah, blame for every calamity, blame for disease in the community, and all too often just because we were Jews the leaves fell. People ask how humans could treat their neighbor so cruelly. Well, look to Europe or the past hundred years in the Arab and Muslim worlds or to Russia and remember Nazi Germany and the reasons abound.

 

One need understand the enormity of the history of the Israelite people. Abraham, Isaac and Jacob came from the time when agriculture and herding were just coming into their own and the city states were forming. At this point the first Jews were but a family and believe it or not we are largely still that very same family plus those we have married and the few converts over the ages, often these converts also married into the family and converted in order to do so. There are the claims that the Exodus from Egypt we brought numerous non-Jews with us and if one reads Torah they will see we know of this and these people were kept in a separate camp and were partially responsible for the sin of the golden calf. These others were sent on their separate way with many sailing to Greece with even some Jews who found our ways too difficult and desired a more earthy and pleasure seeking existence which was all the rage in those primitive times. Egypt saw us build a city to a Pharaoh who fashioned himself to be a god. The story of our exit from Egypt is chronicled in the best-selling book in history and one of, if not the, first books ever printed by the printing press. Our travels and travails of forty years in the desert are well chronicled and many youth learn of it early in their educations. The reason why is not so well noted. Put simply, we lacked faith in the promise from Hashem that the land would be granted us by His hand. Instead ten of twelve spies told of giants living in cities behind great and unbreakable walls. The illogic of giants needing walled cities never occurred to the Israelites who reacted to these recounting with great timidity and fear. The two who told of peoples in fear of the coming of the chosen of Hashem and a land flowing with goodness went unheeded as the Jewish people who had lived a life under slavery had not the bravery or independent spirit to conquer a land even with Hashem. For forty years we gave birth to a new people free of the yoke of slavery and filled with the miracles of Hashem such as the manna which fed them in the parched desert of the wastelands they traveled through.

 

Israelite Sin Worshiping of the Golden Calf

Israelite Sin Worshiping of the Golden Calf

 

Jericho put to rest the fears of the former generation as its great walls were no match for the formulae given by Hashem which brought them down. The following victory of Ai and then of the combined armies of the Kings of Canaan proved Hashem truly would grant us the land. What is often passed over is that the Torah gives the Jews the exact method we are to pursue when coming into our promised land with any tribes of people who reside within and it is a very simple method for selecting how one treats those tribes. We are to make them a simple offer. They have three choices of varying ease for their people. The most easy is to remain within the lands on the lands they hold and simply obey the Seven Laws of Noah, the Noahic Code and we will both live and prosper in peace. They can leave the lands and we will not pursue them and wish them well. The least favorable choice is they can choose to war with us at which time we will endeavor to kill every last inhabitant and member of their tribe and burn their crops, slaughter and leave for the buzzards their cattle and remove any and all record that they ever existed from the story of mankind. That was then and we no longer live in those times. What is not well known is that some of the Canaanites chose the first two options and were granted what was promised.

 

History passed and we had an expository period under King David and King Solomon who conquered lands until they reached the Euphrates River, the farthest we have ever reached and we desire far less today, only what was promised which is well documented and for the sake of my regular readers we will not go over this again. You’re welcome. The life went well until we had strayed from Torah and had practiced even idolatry and thus lost the guardianship of Hashem so we fell before the Babylonian sword. This was not our best of times but this exile ended when the Persians conquered Babylon and knowing of Hashem from their recounting of history beseeched that we return and rebuild our Temple and worship Hashem as we desired and simply pay our tribute to the Persians and we would be left in peace. Rather nice of them had that continued forward but there came an overachiever named Haman the Agagite and descendant of Agag, the king of the Amalekites and our saving grace in the form of the Persian Queen Esther. We built the Second Temple and in human history soon thereafter came such luminaries as Confucius, Buddha, Tao, and others who all founded various ancient religions of which a few continue into the modern era. The namedropping was more as making note in history when much of what we call a more modern age came into being and where much of Eastern philosophy had its roots. Eventually we once again gained our freedom, but wait, there’s more.

 

Eventually there was the inevitable family squabble and the Tribes of Israel chose sides with the ten northern tribes taking the name Israel and the southern two tribes being called after the far larger tribe, Judah and the Priestly tribe remained spread amongst the people and largely in Jerusalem under Judah. After the ten northern tribes were carried away as slaves by the Assyrians there were just the priests in Jerusalem and the tribes of Benyamin (a smaller tribe) and Judah the lion, the defenders of the southern borders, remained where most belonged to the tribe of Judah so we became Judeans and eventually simply Jews. The Assyrian Greeks eventually defeated Judah as well and then the Polemic Greeks and one more the Assyrian Greeks followed by the Romans. The Romans got a little put out after the Jews, the name had cemented by them, did which no other people managed, threw off the Roman yoke twice. They dispersed the Jews to the far reaches of their kingdoms and everywhere inbetween such that we would never again challenge Roman rule. That worked rather well and as the Roman Empire slowly crumbled the Jews spread even further but we had a secret weapon through which we remained attached to Jerusalem and our lands always hoping for the Messiah to return us to Eretz Yisroel, and that weapon is Torah. Torah is our history, our rules for life, our traditions, and our defining center which keeps us in touch with Hashem and our covenant and the promises Hashem gave to us. The Torah has kept us a family despite great distances and the stories abound of Jews traveling to a strange place often not by their choosing and upon arrival finding family there, finding Jews who greeted them as only family greets one they have never even known existed. This too was one of the many strands of string that when twined together make the rope which will eventually be spun in Israel, in Jerusalem.

 

Now, as we gather slowly from the far corners of the globe from America to Europe to Japan and the Philippines and India or Ethiopia as well as South Africa, Australia, even the outback and places even stranger and more remote, the time has come to stop believing we are Jews as we no longer are. Jew was the name we were given in captivity by the Greeks and Romans who shortened Judean to Judian to Juw which became spelled Jew. The actual spellings and pronunciations are not important but what Jew came to mean to the gentiles is important. The Jew was the reason for famine, for plague, for war they were always siding with the enemy on both sides as both sides saw Jews fighting for their enemy but were blind to the Jews fighting with them in their armies. The Jew was accused of every ill and even potential harm and the fact that the Jews lived in their own small area, ghetto, and practiced a different religion, often the parent religion to the one the others practiced, they had to be the reason as they were the other wherever they found themselves. When the time came to clean the lands of the disbeliever, the Jew too was cast out or burned at the stake, hung, crucified or whatever punishment was dealt the disbeliever. Often they were simply driven from the land and forced to travel through place after place before finding one which allowed them to settle and reside for the time being. The Jew always kept a number of suitcases packed and one special suitcase in which all their religious items were kept. They would be removed when required to observe the Sabbat or to do morning prayers or observe a holiday and then carefully and respectfully repacked in case they had to leave with little notice. This suitcase was the first one grabbed by the mobs of the pogrom, Crusade or whatever reason was for killing the Jews as this suitcase must have precious jewels to be so carefully guarded. Imagine the look when all they found were some candlesticks, candles, a special tablecloth and few other religious items and books but no jewels or gold or silver other than the few religious items, often only the Shabbat candlesticks. The main thing is the Jew was a temporary guest to be bullied and thrown away when hatreds overwhelmed the people and a frenzied mob sought a target.

 

We are now coming home and we are not going to be bullied or thrown from our lands. We may not be granted easy access to all our lands, even our most precious Biblical Lands in Judea and Samaria. Jerusalem will hopefully not allow to be divided and we again forbidden from visiting our Temple Mount which we built during the times of the Second Temple before Christianity and long before Islam came into this world. Allowing the Synagogues we so meticulously restored or even rebuilt to once again be defiled and destroyed would be a sin of great magnitude. Where we need to try and be accommodating and live with our neighbors on this little sphere orbiting an insignificant star in a moderately large galaxy soon to be merged with an even larger galaxy, we also must remain true to ourselves, our history and, most of all, to Hashem which means that Jerusalem’s old city must remain with the Temple Mount as an intricate and vital part of Israel. The Islamics know the importance of these areas which is the sole reason they demand them to be separated from the Jews. This is the same story which was the reason there were so many wars between Christian and Muslim over Jerusalem and only Jerusalem as that was the reason behind the Crusades and the Islamic conquests, they both wanted to hold the City of the Jewish holiest of places as that is the home of Hashem which both claim to worship (the validity of such claims cannot be covered in brief even in this article). But Jerusalem must remain a part of what is Israel and that should not ever be placed in doubt and slowly the Israelis are realizing this fact.

 

As for the name Jew, that needs change. Those of us residing here in the Holy Lands of Israel are no longer merely Jews even if we are of the seed of Judah, we are Israelites once again. With the airlift of Ethiopians and the Bnei Menashe community from India home to Israel we are once again to be known as the tribes of Israel. There is a group in southwestern India who call themselves the Tribe of Ephraim who were found when a Chabad couple shared a Passover Seder with them. With these tribes of the ten lost tribes of Israel reappearing, the people of Israel are not all but universally of the tribe of Judah, we are once again in transition and should recognize such and refer to ourselves as what we are, Israelites, the Tribes of Israel reuniting in our ancient and holy homelands.

 

Some may ask what should become of the Arab Palestinians. Well, we can offer them three choices. They can live in their own area under their own leadership in a semiautonomous area within Israel where we promise them security and to live in peace and in return they obey the Noahic Code, or they can leave and settle elsewhere in the world and we will wish them safe travels and the best of luck and promise not to pursue them or do them harm as they leave, or they may choose to treat us with violence and hate and do injury to us as a form of war for which we will do as we can to destroy their existence and to erase the fact that they ever resided amongst us. That is what any other people would do and for those who doubt such we would like to point to items such as Northern Ireland and the British.

 

Continuing on, other examples abound such as the Spanish and the Tribes of the Basque and Spain and even France, the many different tribes which made up Yugoslavia until they each went their separate ways, the Czech Republic and Slovakia which separated from Czechoslovakia and the numerous nations which were formed by the victorious powers after World War I that make up much of the Arab Islamic world today and which are now breaking even further into tribal regions, and the conquered lands which now live under the fist of their conquerors such as Tibet or those threatened by nations claiming their right to regain control of these areas such as Taiwan and Mainland China (Red China if your old enough to remember that term) and also Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Belarus and the currently challenged Ukraine all of which are currently under direct or indirect challenge from Putin the Invader’s Russian bear. The changing tides of war and the formation and dissolution of nations has not ended as many wished to believe and world wars are no longer unimaginable. The claim that after the fall of the Soviet Union that history had ended and everything was now at peace and in equilibrium leading Francis Fukuyama to write a piece titled, “The End of History?” which has proven as much folly as the claim once made by the Commissioner of the United States Patent Office in 1899 who it is (attributed) claimed to have said, “Everything that can be invented has been invented.”

 

With all the turmoil in the world today, it is beyond reasonable but is yet true that the world considers what the Israelis do within the lands granted under international laws and treaties to them for their homeland dating from the early 1920’s and the numerous conferences, treaties and conventions which were signed by all the parties involved including the Arab League and King Farouk granting the lands west of the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea to be the area for the land of Israel to be formed. We, the Israeli people ask for no more than that which all powers, even to include the Arabs and Japan, British, French, German, Ottoman, Russian, and eventually the United States, League of Nations and United Nations all recognized and gave their blessings and agreement and yet to this day this is contested. The facts are not contested, just the realization, and there appears to be an undercurrent which is driven by the concept that by ridding the world of Israel, and with it the Jewish people once and for all, will end their ever considering having a real home anywhere on Earth. This is considered a desirable and possible eventuality by the leaders of the Western World to appease and pacify the Arab World. There is one answer for such people, and it is what we promised, “Never Again!”

 

Beyond the Cusp 

 

July 12, 2016

End the Charade and Keep Your Promises

 

For all too many people there exists so much confusion and misinformation about Israel and whose lands are whose and what are facts and what are fictions. We hear about facts on the ground and some very positive and definitive facts have been found in the grounds as well as on them throughout the lands between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. What might surprise some is that further facts similar to these have been unearthed but either destroyed or left buried once identified east of the Jordan River, throughout the Golan Heights, in Lebanon south of the Litani River and in a swath cutting across Syria all the way to the Euphrates River. These facts exist in a simple but nearly permanent form of artwork known to exist throughout history, mosaics, in particular, mosaic floors. These stones, unless intentionally shifted and scrambled, can be restored to near their former beauty simply through cleaning the stones and perhaps some restoration around the edges or along a seam where the earth itself cracked during an earthquake or similar disruption. These mosaics mostly date back well before the Persians or the Greeks and definitely the Romans conquered these lands and existed during the Biblical times and represent the historic events immediately after their happening and representing them exactly as told when these legends were the facts of their day.

 

Mosaic in Israel shows biblical Samson

Mosaic in Israel shows biblical Samson

 

Most of these mosaics represent Biblical stories which are familiar to virtually any person who attended religious school where the Old Testament was studied even in a cursory fashion as these were the stories that struck awe and let little imaginations run wild and these were the types of heroes that a child would remember throughout their lives.

 

The story of Samson, whose strength was in proportion to the length of his hair, who can forget such a story, would have resonated today. Here we have a single mother put down and in the lowest caste of society praying not for herself but for her son to be a great leader. She promises to obey Hashem and never cut his hair and Hashem will favor her son with strength as his hair is long. She desires her son do well by the family name and bring it honor and this single mother thus sacrifices of herself to help all Israel with her son becoming a success. Everything she could have ever dreamt would come to be the story of her son. Just as promised, Hashem would accept Samson as a servant and Samson would free the Jews from Philistine rule.

 

Hashem blessed Samson with inhuman strength which he used against the Philistines, that is when he was not chasing Philistine women and marrying them, a failing which was his downfall. After Dalila cut his hair and turned the weakened Samson over to the Philistines they gouged his eyes blinding him and they mocked him but somebody grew lax and his hair grew long again. Then there was his final command performance before the Philistine King and Queen and every important Philistine in a grand spectacle where they were to marvel over the captured Jew whose strength they had all so feared back when he could use the jaw bone of a donkey and it would be as effective as any sword in his hands and he slew Philistines with such a weapon. The ending is that Samson pulled the supporting pillars of the arena collapsing the viewing stands bringing the house down, what a performance, and he slew the entire Philistine leadership that day and gave his life to free Israel of Philistine rule. A mosaic with ancient Hebrew letters telling the story was found dating from immediately after the Israelites regained their lands from the attacking Philistines.

 

Fish swallowing an Egyptian soldier in a mosaic scene depicting the splitting of the Red Sea from the Exodus story from the 5th-century synagogue at Huqoq, in northern Israel

Fish swallowing an Egyptian soldier in a mosaic scene
depicting the splitting of the Red Sea from the Exodus story
from the 5th-century synagogue at Huqoq, in northern Israel

 

This Mosaic was found in an area known as the Galilee which was very prevalent in ancient Israel and was the farmlands which supported the Israelite state. As important as were these lower relatively flat lands to the continued existence of the state of Israel as a people need to eat, the hills to the east were the tactical lands which also were used for shepherds as they tended their sheep. These hills were where the Israelites preferred to meet their enemies as the lands made infantry and chariots all but impossible to wield and heavy infantry would quickly tire chasing light infantry, slingers and archers up and down the slopes and across rocky terrain features. Further, the Israelite were very familiar with the lands and knew its hiding places, its tactically important ridges where one would be well above on a steep slope, and areas of concealment such as caves with small or hidden entrances. These were the lands where the Israelite light infantry was successful in repulsing enemies and dispatching even the Roman Legions on the uprisings which were successful in winning independence from Roman Rule, even if only temporarily as the Romans had far greater manpower and could send sufficient Legions such that the Roman men in arms outnumbered the Israelite population including women and children. Still, from time to time the Romans were chased from Israelite lands as the Israelite forces made it simply not economically prudent to continue the war. When the time came to retake the trade routes which passed through the lands and often through Jerusalem, the Israelite capital, the Romans, Greeks, Persians and others through history would arrive on the Israelite borders in numbers which put fear into the bravest of hearts.

 

This would include the Wars of 1948, 1967 and 1973 (War for Independence, Six Day War, and Yom Kippur War) which were all fought in response to acts of war and Israel defending her lands. In Israel’s War of Independence she faced a half dozen national armies which assaulted on her first day as a nation and in this war Israel lost territory including Gaza, and section of Judea and Samaria which Jordan renamed West Bank but their three thousand year old names cannot be erased thus the names of Judea and Samaria better define these lands than any invented name to conceal their natural histories. These same lands were liberated in the Six Day War as well as conquering the Golan Heights and Sinai Peninsula. Israel returned the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt who refused to resume their claims to Gaza returning these lands to Israeli rule. Likewise, Israel even offered to return the lands originally lost in 1948 and liberated in 1967 to Jordan as under Jordanian rule the Jews were expelled from their lands under threat of extermination and fled into Israel in the weeks after the Jordanians expelled them from their land and thus the area had become mostly Arab and many Jordanians but Jordan refused the land and the Arabs remain on the land as the Jews were not the Jordanians and did not expel the conquered people but permitted them remain and work their lands. These Arabs eventually were granted independent autonomy within Israel and thus led to the Palestinian Arabs demand for a homeland invented in 1964 and initially defined as Israel not claiming the West Bank then owned by Jordan but as soon as Jordan lost these lands then the entirety of the lands between the River and the Sea became their rallying demand, replace Israel, not share land with the Jews as the goal was to exterminate the Jews which was expounded by the Mufti of Jerusalem and has been the intent of the Palestinian Arab cause ever since. They do not want two lands for two people, they want simply one people and the Jews slaughtered.

 

The Huqoq synagogue mosaics from the 5th century depict this war elephant which surprised archeologists as there has been no reference in Biblical texts of elephants

The Huqoq synagogue mosaics from the 5th century
depict this war elephant which surprised archeologists
as there has been no reference in Biblical texts of elephants

 

Not every mosaic was of biblical events as told in the Jewish bible but then not every Renaissance painting depicted the Trinity, the Holy Mother or other New Testament stories. The war elephant was still somewhat of a surprise as there was no mention of their being utilized in Israel or Judea by the Greeks or Romans as such forces would have had the same difficulties as had cavalry and chariots in the Judean Hills in eastern Israel. Still such a mosaic was unearthed in the excavations at the site and simply adds to the wonder and gives new insights into the lives of the Israelite Jews who remained in their natural lands after the Roman Dispersals which were inflicted as punishment for their temporarily successful revolts against Roman rule. The First Jewish–Roman War took place starting with Judean Israelites gaining independence in 66 CE only to be overwhelmed by Two Roman Legions in 73 CE. The siege of Masada was the most memorable of the final events of this First Jewish–Roman War. The Bar Kokhba revolt removed Roman rule with successes beginning in 132 CE only to be put down by some research claimed was six Roman Legions with a similar number of supporting troops in 134 to 136 CE. This revolt once put down added one last horror as a lesson for the rebellious Jews with the torturous execution of the Ten Rabbis where some claim all ten at one spectacle while others claim two had been executed earlier but the Talmud tells of the martyrdom of the Ten Rabbis: Rabbi Shimon ben Gamliel and Rabbi Yishmael ben Elisha ha-Kohen Gadol who were reportedly executed earlier with the following eight who were Rabbi Akiva; Rabbi Hanania ben Teradion; the interpreter of the Sanhedrin, Rabbi Huspith; Rabbi Eliezer ben Shamua; Rabbi Hanina ben Hakinai; Rabbi Jeshbab the Scribe; Rabbi Yehuda ben Dama; and Rabbi Yehuda ben Baba comprising the Ten Rabbis martyred in total.

 

Ancient First Century Mosaic Depicting Menorah in the Center Flanked by Tree of Life and a Shofar with Ancient Hebrew Letters at Bottom

Ancient First Century Mosaic Depicting
Menorah in the Center Flanked by
Tree of Life and a Shofar with
Ancient Hebrew Letters at Bottom

 

Such Mosaics are found throughout the areas of ancient Israel often depicting Roman and Greek reliefs as these themes represented the time and place realistically. Other mosaics depicted Jewish religious and historical themes and some mosaics unearthed have been dated back to antiquity. These oldest mosaics universally depict scenes from Torah (Five Books of Moses) as well as other Biblical themes from the Jewish Bible (Old Testament) even including reliefs showing Noah’s ark receiving the animals with herds and numerous animals depicted throughout the scene, the Crossing of the Red Sea, Jonah being swallowed by a large fish (it was historically just a large fish as the depiction of whale was not relevant to early life at the eastern end of the Mediterranean Sea), the giving of the Ten Commandments by Moses at Mount Sinai, the Ten Plagues and other stories. The quality of the stones and resolutions varied often depicting the wealth of an individual or community as the use of smaller stones (the ancient form of pixels) was a sign of wealth and additional time and efforts invested in locating, cutting and sorting the stones before use and the care with which the stones were placed. These mosaics told much about the wealthier individuals and community efforts but surprisingly mosaics have been found in modest dwellings of various qualities, which were more often than not rendered by the owner of the dwelling done as a statement of their pride and anyway one did need a floor so why not take the time and tile it artistically. The one thing was that once you laid your floor it would likely remain with the building marking where the building had existed before the walls collapsed. Floors, as any archeologist will tell you, are the one remain of a dwelling which often is all they have to go by as nothing else remains but the floor with time and once covered that floor will remain to be discovered and dated by the level in which it is discovered, the deeper the earlier the floor and the represented dwelling. Indigenous peoples floors either was the bedrock or rested upon that bedrock.

 

The telling thing is as Jewish themed and Judean and Israelite themes have been found throughout all of history in these lands between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea; Christian themes arrived in the middle Roman times while the first mosaics depicting Arab themes were not found until after 700 CE. The arrival of such themes dates to when these cultures appeared just as mosaics depicting Greek scenes predated Roman and Persian predated Greek and Jewish themes predated everyone. The earliest mosaics were universally of Judaic origin with an influence from Egypt and an occasional Minoan influence. Hittite artwork as well as Assyrian and earliest Greek including Philistine artwork had a lesser if any effect on Israelite artwork as these other civilizations sculpted as they were idolaters so stone carving was a prized skill while the Israelites were forbidden from worshiping other gods than Hashem and idolatry was a most serious offense against Torah and Hashem thus stone carvings were less desirable while scenes of Biblical history and nature scenes were appreciated as artwork and were thus not in any manner seen as being idolatrous thus against Torah. This likely explains the Israelite preference for mosaics over other art forms such as sculpted stone.

 

Artwork from Antiquity top Minoan Bull Scene Diddle Depicts Hittite War Chariot and Infantry Judean Lion from comparable Israelite Period

Artwork from Antiquity top Minoan Bull Scene
Diddle Depicts Hittite War Chariot and Infantry
Judean Lion from comparable Israelite Period

 

The final piece of the puzzle can be easily shown by simply looking at a few maps. This first map is of the original twelve tribes of Israel, the lands the Israelites were instructed to conquer and carve out their homelands. These lands were not completely conquered until King David and were superseded with additional conquest by Kings David and Solomon but the additional lands were soon lost and the original Twelve Tribes were to be what was historically considered Israel existed from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea and from the Negev-Sinai (Egypt) border to the Litany River in the north.

 

Here is a map depicting the conquest of the Holy Lands by Joshua as recounted in the books of Joshua and Kings:

 

Cities Conquered by Joshua As Recounted in Kings In the Hebrew Bible The Old Testament

 

This map depicts the original Twelve Tribes of Israel as defined in the Jewish Bible, the Old Testament both in Torah (Five Books of Moses) and later in Kings and Judges.

 

Eretz Yisroel from back in the time immediately after Exodus and before the additional conquest by King David and King Solomon with the original division of the lands between the Tribes covering both sides of the Jordan River. The Israelis and Jews in general could attempt to demand that Eretz Yisroel, the Land of Israel be made whole as was First Apportioned by Hashem.

 

This map depicts the areas conquered by Kings David and Solomon and from which comes the reference to a Greater Israel which defines such as reaching from the Euphrates River to the Nile River. The Jewish State in any of its manifestations never reached the Nile River not even after the Six Day War and not after David and Solomon. The only time the Israelites had anything to do referencing the Nile River was the story of baby Moses and then the Ten Plagues where the plagues refer to the Nile River in numerous plagues of the Ten Plagues from Hashem upon Egypt because Pharaoh had a hard heart and believed not in the supreme powers of Hashem. The use of a Greater Israel as proof that the Jews desire to conquer the world is further nonsense as we would be very content to have exactly what was promised us in the results of the 1920 San Remo Conference plus the Golan Heights as they are required for having a secure border.

 

Eretz Yisroel as formed after the conquests by the Kingdoms of King David and King Solomon; both of whom allowed the Principalities of Edom, Moab and Ammon to be semi-autonomous as long as they and their armies supported Eretz Yisroel

Eretz Yisroel as formed after the conquests by the Kingdoms of King David and King Solomon; both of whom allowed the Principalities of Edom, Moab and Ammon to be semi-autonomous as long as they and their armies supported Eretz Yisroel

 

Below is the promised borders for the State of Israel as determined by San Remo Conference of April 1920, almost twenty years before the holocaust putting to lie that false claim that Israel was established as compensation for the Holocaust as the idea of a Jewish homelands stretches back in modern eras to around 1850 leading to the formation of the Zionist Conference. After World War I as the empires of the Middle East and North Africa along with the Empires within eastern Europe were being broken into smaller and independent States was where Israel was denoted to be formed under the British supervision and presumably with British assistance, hindrance was the only assistance the Jews received from the British once the Mandate plans were placed into effect. Below is the Jewish desire for our homelands including the Golan Heights, Galilee, Negev, Judea, Samaria and we will magnanimously leave Gaza to Hamas and any other Arab Palestinian desiring a homeland in Gaza which was released to Arab Palestinian control where they elected Hamas, and Gaza was the test case for any state of Palestine living beside Israel in peace. We now have our answer from their actions and their words. Their only desire is our death and destruction and we will depart no additional lands to a people so ardently desiring our destruction and wholesale genocidal murders. This is what should be being discussed, how best to care for the interests of those claiming nationality other than Israeli, especially those known to be members of any of the Palestinian Authority (PA) or other terrorist groups sword to the destruction of the Jewish State once the world fulfills their promise to the Jewish People. Here is the map with final comments below.

 

Definitive Map of Israel

 

Definitive Map of Israel

 

The Arabs remaining in Judea and Samaria would necessarily be broken down into five main groups with residing sub-groups under the following criteria:

 

The first group would be known terrorists with blood on their hands whether they be incarcerated or not in restrictive containment facilities. These would be expelled and where they would go is not an Israeli problem. If they have any worthy properties they would receive compensation provided they never return and they should have made clear that any return within Israeli borders will lead to immediate rescinding of any probation and immediate incarceration.

 

The second group would be known ranking officers in the PA and members of any terrorist entity whether aligned with Hamas, Muslim Brotherhood, al-Qaeda, Fatah, PLO, Islamic State, al-Qaeda or any other known terror outfit would be permitted to transfer to Gaza or be expelled as those above with similar compensation for both groups.

 

The third group would be any Arab desiring to reside in Gaza or other nation be it Arab or other as long as that nation would be accepting of these refugees. They would be given transportation and be compensated fairly for any properties they would be unable to take with them.

 

The fourth group would be Arabs desiring to remain living even under Israeli rule but not work towards receiving citizenship at this time. At six months and one year they would be offered the opportunity to leave and seek a new life elsewhere including Gaza. If such decided to depart, they would receive compensation for what they leave behind.

 

The final group is those desiring Israeli citizenship. These individuals would receive free citizenship instructions and be required to pass a test centered on Biblical Israel and the complete history of the Jewish People in both European and Islamic rulers. Further, upon proving to have tested for acceptable level of deep understanding of Israeli and Jewish history, the fact that Jews prize Jerusalem above all else and understand Israeli laws, they would then be permitted to proceed to the rest of their path to citizenship. Such path could take as little as five years and as long as ten years. Failure to attain citizenship would place them in the fourth group and would not require their expulsion.

 

Finally, any act of terror would result in the perpetrator and all family members who were knowledgeable about the act of terror beforehand would be expelled treated as if they were in the first group. If implementing such a plan resulted in some form of migration which shocks the wider world, or simply defined as Israel even defining such a plan, we would like to remind everybody about the migrations of Muslims and Hindus and Buddhists who were massively forced either into Pakistan or leaving Pakistan and these people received little if any support from governments or humanitarian organizations by and large. There was the forced repatriation of Tibetan Buddhists including monks from Tibet to the far corners of China and the forced repopulation of Tibet with poor Chinese farmers without anybody even risking a papercut in order to protest that injustice. There was not even the slightest gasp as hundreds of thousands of Jews forced from their lands by their Arab leaders without even allowed but to carry a single small suitcase. Little was uttered when it was found that Jewish survivors of the death and work camps returned home they were thrust out of their own home city as all their belongings, stores, homes had long since given to others presumably in need making any surviving Jews doubly unwanted as the British were doing almost everything possible preventing Jews from returning to their ancestral homelands. Every day since 1920 and the recognition of a homeland for the Jewish People are established in their historical and documentable homelands the world has been evidently biased and could be said to have actively opposed any form of Jewish State. Fortunately for the Jewish People and people everywhere we have taken possession of our natural neighbors who have thus far proven to be just as approving and so very sweet and loveable as had been our ancient neighbors. The one closing idea all should take from all in this article, we are here and here we will remain as long as we have the breath with which to operate our daily lives. This will in turn assist all as we try to use our land and our gifts of the mind and provide miracles every day, even those that would normally be fatal as we bounce back as if we were professionals, which we are at so many things.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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