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109,141. So we’ll pick the most backward, the most barbaric, the most illiterate, the most superstitious, the most savage people we can find in the most stony area of the world. We won’t appear to the Chinese who can already read … No, we’ll appear to his brutal, slaved, hopeless, superstitious crowd and we’ll force them to cut their way through all of their neighbours with slaughter, genocide and racism and settle in the only part of the Middle East where there’s no oil. Christopher Hitchens
611. This is our God: this is the God who has made a covenant with our tribe. (God & Israel & Covenant) Christopher Hitchens v Tony Blair: Is Religion a Force for Good in the World? 2010
58,123. I went to interview some of these early Jewish colonial zealots – written off in those days as mere ‘fringe’ elements – and found that they called themselves Gush Emunim or – it sounded just as bad in English – ‘The Bloc of the Faithful’. Why not just say ‘Party of God’ and have done with it? At least they didn’t have the nerve to say that they stole other people's land because their own home in Poland or Belarus had been taken from them. They said they took the land because god had given it to them from time immemorial. In the noisome town of Hebron, where all of life is focused on a supposedly sacred boneyard in a dank local cave, one of the world's less pretty sights is that of supposed yeshivah students toting submachine guns and humbling the Arab inhabitants. When I asked one of these charmers where he got his legal authority to be a squatter, he flung his hand, index finger outstretched, toward the sky. Christopher Hitchens, Hitch-22: A Memoir
84,554. Actually – and this was where I began to feel seriously uncomfortable – some such divine claim underlay not just ‘the occupation’ but the whole idea of a separate state for Jews in Palestine. Take away the divine warrant for the Holy Land and where were you, and what were you? Just another land-thief like the Turks or the British, except that in this case you wanted the land without the people. And the original Zionist slogan – ‘a land without a people for a people without a land’ – disclosed its own negation when I saw the densely populated Arab towns dwelling sullenly under Jewish tutelage. You want irony? How about Jews becoming colonizers at just the moment when other Europeans had given up on the idea? (Palestine & Israel & Zion) ibid.
58,149. We’ll pick the most backward, the most barbaric, the most illiterate, the most superstitious, the most savage people we can find in the most stony area of the world. We won’t appear to the Chinese who can already read ... We’ll appear to this brutal, slaved, hopeless superstitious crowd, and we’ll force them to cut their way through all of their neighbours with slaughter, genocide and racism, and settle in the only part of the Middle East where there’s no oil. Christopher Hitchens v Tony Jones 6th October 2009
58,150. It hasn’t made Jews safer. It hasn’t made them more popular. It isn’t the alternative to the Diaspora. Christopher Hitchens, in conversation with Martin Amis
58,347. I am not one of those who believes – as Obama is said to believe – that a solution to the Palestinian statehood question would bring an end to Muslim resentment against the United States. (Incidentally, if he really does believe this, his lethargy and impotence in the face of Netanyahu’s consistent double-dealing is even more culpable.) The Islamist fanatics have their own agenda, and, as in the case of Hamas and its Iranian backers, they have already demonstrated that nothing but the destruction of Israel and the removal of American influence from the region will possibly satisfy them. No, it is more the case that justice – and a homeland for the Palestinians – is a good and necessary cause in its own right. It is also a special legal and moral responsibility of the United States, which has several times declared a dual-statehood outcome to be its objective. (Israel & Palestine & Obama) Christopher Hitchens
4,785. Such a woman was Deborah in the Book of Judges. She was a Judge, meaning not just one well versed in the law but a leader and one who is wise. Deborah is certainly a woman who commanded some respect. In the Bible she is identified as the fiery woman. She’s credited with turning around the fortunes of Israel by leading an army to take the land of Canaan. (Woman & Deborah & Israel & Old Testament & Bible) Bettany Hughes, The Bible
11,816. But dwarfed by the mighty temples and giant statues of Babylonian Gods, the Israelites must also confront the fundamental question – Why did their god – Yahweh – forsake them? (Bible & Old Testament & Israel) Professor Richard Dawkins, The Root of All Evil: The Virus of Faith
58,148. The state of Israel seems to owe its very existence to the American-Jewish vote. Professor Richard Dawkins, lecture An Atheist’s Call to Arms
11,823. There was no mass Exodus from Egypt. There was no violent conquest of Canaan. Most of the people who formed early Israel were local people - the same people whom we see in the highlands throughout the Bronze and Iron Ages. The early Israelites were – irony of ironies – themselves originally Canaanites!
The conquest of Canaan by Joshua could not have happened in the way described in the Bible. Most of the towns he is supposed to have conquered either weren’t inhabited, didn’t exist or were conquered at wildly different times.
Jerusalem, which was supposed to have become the capital of the great unified empire of King David (he of David and Goliath fame), appears to have been tiny and only sparsely inhabited in the relevant period. Many of the great monuments of ancient Israel attributed on the authority of the Old Testament to King Solomon were of a later date. (Bible & Old Testament & Israel & Joshua & David & Jerusalem) Finkelstein and Silberman, The Bible Unearthed
11,824. Whereas archaeology tells us something which is the opposite. According to the archaeology the rise of early Israel is an outcome of the collapse of Canaanite society, not the reason for that collapse. (Bible & Old Testament & Israel & Archaeology) Professor Israel Finkelstein, Tel Aviv University
11,825. Biblical archaeology doesn’t work. Is wrong. (Bible & Old Testament & Israel & Archaeology) Professor Israel Finkelstein
11,826. There’s no archaeological evidence for the simple reason that we cannot excavate on the Temple Mount. (Bible & Old Testament & Israel & Archaeology) Professor Israel Finkelstein
11,828. The Israelites were never in Egypt, did not wander in the desert, did not conquer the land [of Canaan] in a military campaign and did not pass it on to the twelve tribes of Israel. Perhaps even harder to swallow is the fact that the united kingdom of David and Solomon, described in the Bible as a regional power, was at most a small tribal kingdom. (Bible & Old Testament & Israel & David & Solomon) Professor Ze’ev Herzog
11,831. The Israelites did not like the Canaanite system. And they defined themselves in contrast to that system. By not using decorated pottery, by not using imported pottery, they developed an ideology of simplicity which marked the difference between them and the Egyptian Canaanite system. (Bible & Old Testament & Israel) Avraham Faust, Bar-Ilan University
58,186. In ancient Egypt the goddess Isis was the personification of wisdom. Pharaoh Akhenaten changed the worship to himself as he proclaimed himself Amen-Ra, the sun-god. The word Amen at the end of a prayer spawned from the praise given to Amen-Ra. From there the Hebrews left Egypt and travelled north to the Middle East where they encountered the Canaanites who worshipped the god of Saturn – El. The merging of these three gods became the name of the land today which is known – Isis – Ra – EL or Israel. 90% of Judaism is based around the worship of Saturn. (Israel & Isis & Hebrew) Ben Stewart, Esoteric Agenda