Qumran Scrolls
Photo: GPO

Qumran scrolls view challenged

US expert gives alternative tour of Dead Sea Scrolls, says Judeans fleeing Romans wrote text

An American academic leading visitors around an exhibition of the Dead Sea Scrolls at the Natural History Museum in San Diego will challenge the consensus on the identity of the scrolls' authors, the Chicago Jewish News said on Friday.


Professor Norman Golb, of the Jewish History and Civilization department at the University of Chicago's Oriental Institute, does not believe that the scrolls were authored by the ancient Jewish Essene sect, a pacifist group, as most experts believe, arguing instead that the scrolls were authored by a variety of Jewish residents of Judea who fled the Roman Army in 70 C.E.


"In the last few years, the Chicago scholar's theory has been bolstered by the work of two leading Israeli archaeologists on the basis of 10 years of archaeological excavations at Qumran, where most of the scrolls were found and where the Essenes were said to have lived," the Chicago Jewish News said.


"Still, Golb's theories remain controversial, and the current exhibit in San Diego and others that visited several U.S. cities (Chicago not among them) in 2006 and early 2007 are sure to fan the flames," the article added.


The scrolls, discovered in 1947 by a Bedouin shepherd, are "written primarily in Hebrew and Aramaic, with a few in Greek, include texts from the Hebrew Bible, commentary on the texts, information about daily life in the Second Temple period, writings on theology, war, discipline, religious practices, membership requirements of a sect that some believe to be the Essenes, and lists of hidden caches of treasures and weapons."


Papal edict leads to 'confusion'

Jewish leaders were left confused after a new edict by the Pope sparked fears that Jewish-Catholic relations could once again be scarred by Christian anti-Semitism, the Jewish Week reported.


"The Latin Mass traditionally contained a prayer during the Good Friday service that called for the conversion of Jews. Permitting its recital again, the Anti-Defamation League said, is a 'body blow to Catholic-Jewish relations,' which were transformed by the reforms of Nostra Aetate, the landmark 1965 Vatican document issued at the Second Vatican Council that launched a positive dialogue between the Catholic Church and the Jewish people," the Jewish Week said .


The Catholic prayer contains a call to "lift the veil from the eyes" of the Jews and end "the blindness of that people so that they may acknowledge the light of your truth, which is Christ."


Another papal edict, describing other Christian sects such as Protestants as defective, has caused additional outrage among Christians.


Australian Jews commemorate Maccabiah disaster

"On the 10th anniversary of the Maccabiah Games bridge collapse, the families of the victims have told how their lives have been forever scarred by the tragedy," the Australian Jewish News (AJN) reported.


"Michael Licenblat, whose mother, Victorian bridge player Elizabeth Sawicki, died on July 26, 1997, from complications resulting from ingesting the polluted waters of the Yarkon River, is attending a ceremony at Springvale cemetery on Sunday with his wife Robyn and their children, as well as other members of the family. He said that although he has not received compensation for his mother's death, he has 'come to peace with a lot of what has happened,'" the AJN said.


Suzanne Small, who witnessed the death of her husband Greg, told the AJN: "If I wasn't there I would be a completely different person. I saw too much."


"Small said she can never forgive those responsible for the bridge collapse, including the five officials who were found guilty of negligence in 2000," the report said.


"(Compensation) wasn't the issue; it was the whole bridge collapse that is the issue. I will never forgive and I will never forget," she was quoted as saying.


פרסום ראשון: 07.15.07, 02:11
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