Deconstructing the Walls of Jericho

What follows is a short account of the brief history of archaeology, with the emphasis on the crises and the big bang, so to speak, of the past decade. The critical question of this archaeological revolution has not yet trickled down into public consciousness, but it cannot be ignored. By Ze'ev Herzog.

Following 70 years of intensive excavations in the Land of Israel, archaeologists have found out:

· The patriarchs' acts are legendary,

· the Israelites did not sojourn in Egypt or make an exodus,

· they did not conquer the land.

· Neither is there any mention of the empire of David and Solomon,

· nor of the source of belief in the God of Israel.

These facts have been known for years, but Israel is a stubborn people and nobody wants to hear about it.

This is what archaeologists have learned from their excavations in the Land of Israel:

· the Israelites were never in Egypt,

· did not wander in the desert,

· did not conquer the land in a military campaign

· and did not pass it on to the 12 tribes of Israel.

· Perhaps even harder to swallow is the fact that the united monarchy of David and Solomon, which is described by the Bible as a regional power, was at most a small tribal kingdom.

· And it will come as an unpleasant shock to many that the God of Israel, Jehovah, had a female consort

· and that the early Israelite religion adopted monotheism only in the waning period of the monarchy and not at Mount Sinai.