Sunday, April 6, 2014

Rare Paleolithic Site Filled with Animal Bones Uncovered at Israeli Quarry. By Eli Ashkenazi

The prehistoric pit near Ramle

Rare Paleolithic site filled with animal bones uncovered at Israeli quarry. By Eli Ashkenazi. Haaretz, March 31, 2014.

Prehistoric site in Israel offers menu for a Paleolithic Diet. By Robin Ngo. Bible History Daily, April 1, 2014.

A series of Mousterian occupations in a new type of site: The Nesher Ramla karst depression, Israel. By Yossi Zaidner et al. Journal of Human Evolution, Vol. 66 (January 2014).


Archaeologists have found a rare and large prehistoric site dating back around 170,000 years, a funnel-shaped pit, 30 meters deep and about 100 meters in diameter, containing an unusually large number of well-preserved animal bones, discovered accidentally in the course of quarrying in the center of the country.
It marks the second time in a decade that the Nesher quarry outside Ramle has yielded an exceptional archaeological discovery. The last time, in 2006, it was a cave with small prehistoric creatures unique to the site.
The newest finding is an enormous quantities of auroch bones – an extinct species of large wild cattle that is the ancestor of domestic cattle – which were found, together with the bones of other large mammals such as horse, rhinoceros and fallow deer, and of smaller animals including gazelles and land turtles. They were uncovered in 2010 and 2011 in rescue digs carried out by Yossi Zaidner of the University of Haifa’s Zinman Institute of Archaeology. Researchers believe the funnel-shaped pit was formed when the cave’s ceiling collapsed.
Zaidner presented his findings yesterday at his institute’s annual research conference, and published them in the January 2014 issue of the Journal of Human Evolution.
The findings at the site are associated with the Mousterian period, a hunter-gatherer culture from the Middle Paleolithic Period (from 250,000 to around 40,000 years ago). No human remains were found at the site.
The researchers concluded that the site was settled around 170,000 years ago and was an important gathering place for around 40,000 years after that.
“From our acquaintance with the Mousterian culture in the Mediterranean region, it appears to be the first time that remains from this culture have been found in such an unusual manner,” Zaidner said, adding that members of this culture generally lived in caves, into which they brought their stone tools, parts of animals they hunted and other resources.
The Nesher site is unique, Zaidner said, because it combines cave living with open-air settlement.
“The discovery was a complete surprise to us and we’re still not certain what the site was used for, perhaps for hunting, perhaps as a meeting place; another avenue of investigation is that the pit might have been used as a giant trap.”
According to Zaidner, a small number of sites that can be associated to the Mousterian period have been found, but they tend to contain small numbers of remains in a layer only a few centimeters deep. Such sites are assumed to be hunting sites or way stations rather than sites of long-term habitation, he said, noting that such a site was discovered in recent years on the banks of the Jordan River.

The Exodus from Egypt: A Lecture With Dr. James Hoffmeier.

The Exodus from Egypt: A Lecture with Dr. James Hoffmeier. Video. Lubbock Christian University, March 7, 2012. YouTube.

Ancient Israel in Sinai: The Evidence for the Authenticity of the Wilderness Tradition. By James K. Hoffmeier. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.

The Exodus in Biblical Memory. By Ronald Hendel. NJBR, January 11, 2014. With related articles and video.

God Is on Putin’s Side. By Patrick J. Buchanan.

God Is on Putin’s Side. By Patrick J. Buchanan. Real Clear Politics, April 4, 2014. Also at The American Conservative, Human Events.

Pat Buchanan Is Pretty Sure God Is on Putin’s Side. By Noah Rothman. Mediaite, April 4, 2014.

Honor Diaries: Silencing Speaks Volumes. By Qanta Ahmed

Honor Diaries: Silencing Speaks Volumes. By Qanta Ahmed. National Review Online, April 4, 2014.

The Honor Diaries Controversy. By Andrew C. McCarthy. National Review Online, April 4, 2014.

CAIR’s Jihad against Honor Diaries. By Andrew C. McCarthy. National Review Online, April 5, 2014.

The silence of Western feminists is deafening. By William A. Jacobson. Legal Insurrection, April 5, 2014.

Honor Diaries: Culture Is No Excuse For Abuse. Official website.

Honor Diaries: Official Trailer. Video. Honor Diaries, January 7, 2014. YouTube.

Honor Diaries: exclusive extended clip. Video Honor Diaries, January 16, 2014.

Film on violence against Muslim women attacked by critics. Video. The Kelly File. Fox News, March 31, 2014. YouTube. YouTube. YouTube.

Backlash Grows As US Universities Cancel or Postpone “Honor Diaries” Film. Video. The Kelly File. Fox Nation, April 2, 2014. YouTubeYouTube. Also at

Richard Haass: The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Is a Local Dispute.

Richard Haass: The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a local dispute. Video. CNN, April 4, 2014.

Why We Believe Conspiracy Theories. By Fareed Zakaria.

Why we believe conspiracy theories. By Fareed Zakaria. Fareed Zakaria GPS. CNN, April 5, 2014.

Bridget Firtle: Millennial Generation Rum Distiller and Entrepreneur.

Bridget Firtle at her distillery in East Williamsburg, Brooklyn, where she produces Owney’s NYC Rum, named after a New York bootlegger. Danny Ghitis for The New York Times.

Rum Distiller Bridget Firtle: Guided by Ghosts of the Speakeasy. By Robert Simonson. New York Times, February 27, 2013.

Bridget Firtle was interviewed on Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo, Fox News, April 6, 2014.

Bridget Firtle: Founder of The Noble Experiment. Video. Working Woman Report, June 10, 2013. YouTube.

Interview with Noble Experiment NYC Founder Bridget Firtle and Richard Lent. Video. General Assembly, July 25, 2013.

Turn’s Silent Revolution. By Tim Cavanaugh.

Turn’s Silent Revolution. By Tim Cavanaugh. National Review Online, April 5, 2014.

“Turn” star Heather Lind on women, war, and who writes history. By Alyssa Rosenberg. Washington Post, April 7, 2014. Also here.