Archive for the ‘Koran’ Category
December 9, 2010: Jeanna Bryner (Managing Editor) / Live Science – December 9, 2010
Veiled beneath the Persian Gulf, a once-fertile landmass may have supported some of the earliest humans outside Africa some 75,000 to 100,000 years ago, a new review of research suggests.
At its peak, the floodplain now below the Gulf would have been about the size of Great Britain, and then shrank as water began to flood the area.
Then, about 8,000 years ago, the land would have been swallowed up by the Indian Ocean, the review scientist said.
The study, which is detailed in the December issue of the journal Current Anthropology, has broad implications for aspects of human history. For instance, scientists have debated over when early modern humans exited Africa, with dates as early as 125,000 years ago and as recent as 60,000 years ago, the more recent date is the currently accepted paradigm, according to study researcher Jeffrey Rose, an archaeologist at the University of Birmingham in the UK.
“I think Jeff’s theory is bold and imaginative, and hopefully will shake things up,” said Robert Carter of Oxford Brookes University in the UK. in an e-mail to LiveScience. “It would completely rewrite our understanding of the out-of-Africa migration. It is far from proven, but Jeff and others will be developing research programs to test the theory.”
Viktor Cerny of the Archaeogenetics Laboratory, the Institute of Archaeology, in Prague, called Rose’s finding an “excellent theory,” in an e-mail to LiveScience, though he also points out the need for more research to confirm it.
The findings have sparked discussion about who exactly the humans were who occupied the Gulf basin among researchers, including Carter and Cerny, who were allowed to provide comments within the research paper.
“Given the presence of Neanderthal communities in the upper reaches of the Tigris and Euphrates River, as well as in the eastern Mediterranean region, this may very well have been the contact zone between moderns and Neanderthals,” Rose told LiveScience. In fact, recent evidence from the sequencing of the Neanderthal genome suggests interbreeding, meaning we are part caveman.
The Gulf Oasis would have been a shallow inland basin exposed from about 75,000 years ago until 8,000 years ago, forming the southern tip of the Fertile Crescent, according to historical sea-level records.
And it would have been an ideal refuge from the harsh deserts surrounding it, with fresh water supplied by the Tigris, Euphrates, Karun and Wadi Baton Rivers, as well as by upwelling springs, Rose said. And during the last ice age when conditions were at their driest, this basin would’ve been at its largest.
In fact, in recent years, archaeologists have turned up evidence of a wave of human settlements along the shores of the Gulf dating to about 7,500 years ago.
“Where before there had been but a handful of scattered hunting camps, suddenly, over 60 new archaeological sites appear virtually overnight,” Rose said. “These settlements boast well-built, permanent stone houses, long-distance trade networks, elaborately decorated pottery, domesticated animals, and even evidence for one of the oldest boats in the world.”
Rather than quickly evolving settlements, Rose thinks precursor populations did exist but have remained hidden beneath the Gulf. [History's Most Overlooked Mysteries]
“Perhaps it is no coincidence that the founding of such remarkably well developed communities along the shoreline corresponds with the flooding of the Persian Gulf basin around 8,000 years ago,” Rose said. “These new colonists may have come from the heart of the Gulf, displaced by rising water levels that plunged the once fertile landscape beneath the waters of the Indian Ocean.”
The most definitive evidence of these human camps in the Gulf comes from a new archaeological site called Jebel Faya 1 within the Gulf basin that was discovered four years ago. There, Hans-Peter Uerpmann of the University of Tubingen in Germany found three different Paleolithic settlements occurring from about 125,000 to 25,000 years ago. That and other archaeological sites, Rose said, indicate “that early human groups were living around the Gulf basin throughout the Late Pleistocene.”
To make an ironclad case for such human occupation during the Paleolithic, or early Stone Age, of the now-submerged landmass, Rose said scientists would need to find any evidence of stone tools scattered under the Gulf. “As for the Neolithic, it would be wonderful to find some evidence for human-built structures,” dated to that time period in the Gulf, Rose said.
Carter said in order to make for a solid case, “we would need to find a submerged site, and excavate it underwater. This would likely only happen as the culmination of years of survey in carefully selected areas.”
Cerny said a sealed-tight case could be made with “some fossils of the anatomically modern humans some 100,000 years old found in South Arabia.”
And there’s a hint of mythology here, too, Rose pointed out. “Nearly every civilization living in southern Mesopotamia has told some form of the flood myth. While the names might change, the content and structure are consistent from 2,500 B.C. to the Genesis account to the Qur’anic version,” Rose said.
Perhaps evidence beneath the Gulf? “If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird of the family Anatidae on our hands,” said Rose, quoting Douglas Adams.
Ur: Ancient Native City Of Abraham (Part 1)
Ur: Ancient Native City Of Abraham (Part 2)
The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: The unmarked landmass to the right and above the Gulf is Iran… - SJH
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Robert Parry / Consortium News – July 9, 2009
The rationale for formally designating Israel a Jewish state – as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu now demands – rests on three religious-political pillars: God’s purported covenant with Moses instructing the ancient Israelites to conquer the land, the injustice of the Roman-era Diaspora that supposedly removed them centuries later, and the brutal persecution of European Jews in the Holocaust.
Yet, two of these pillars – Moses conveying God’s covenant to the Israelites and the Roman Diaspora – appear based on almost no historical reality, the stuff of legend and possibly even lies that crumble under any serious scrutiny.
Normally, such ancient stories might be regarded as harmless tales that some people treasure as part of their Judeo-Christian faiths, except that Netanyahu’s new demand means that these myths now threaten peace in the Middle East and conceivably could push the modern world into more bloody warfare. Therefore, they must be given fresh examination.
Ironically, it was the Nazis’ drive to exterminate European Jews during World War II that is the one pillar founded on historical reality, although some extreme enemies of Israel insist on making Holocaust denial a central feature of their attacks.
Also, some adversaries, like Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, have argued that it is unfair to make the Palestinians pay for a crime against humanity committed by the Germans.
Yet, the Holocaust is not in historical dispute. That horrible reality – an industrial-style extermination campaign that also targeted Gypsies, homosexuals and Communists – was proven after the World War II from a multitude of Nazi records, photographs and eyewitness accounts.
It is the tales of Moses from the Torah (or the first five books of the Old Testament) and the legend of the Roman Diaspora that lack serious historical underpinnings.
The Diaspora myth has been addressed in a new book by Israeli historian Shlomo Sand, When and How Was the Jewish People Invented? It debunks the notion that Rome removed the Jewish people en masse from the Holy Land in the First and Second Centuries A.D. and scattered them across Europe.
Instead, most East European Jews appear to be descendents of converts, principally from the Kingdom of the Khazars in eastern Russia, who embraced Judaism in the Eighth Century, A.D. The descendants of the Khazars then were driven from their native lands by invasions and – through migration – created the Jewish populations of Eastern Europe.
Thus, Sand argues, many of today’s Israelis who emigrated from Europe after World War II have little or no genealogical connection to the land. According to Sand, a bitter irony of Israel’s founding may be that it displaced Palestinians who could be the actual descendants of the ancient Israelites, who stayed on the land and eventually converted to Islam.
Other descendants of those ancient Israelites maintained Judaism as a strong presence in the Middle East, both in Palestine and in successful communities from Egypt to Iraq and Iran. These Jews faced few religious pressures until after Israel was founded in 1948, when this new European intrusion into Islamic lands was viewed in the context of the Crusades a millennium ago. [More on Sand's book below.]
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