Of Zionism and Camels – Tom Wilson
Research from two scholars at Tel Aviv University is said to suggest that domesticated camels may not have existed in the Levant in the time of Genesis. Andrew Brown in the Guardian parades this as proof positive that the camels mentioned in Genesis must be a fiction. If the camels in Genesis are made up, then everything else in the Bible is made up, which means promises to Abraham and his descendants about the inheritance of the land were made up, which means the foundations of Zionism are made up and invalid, Brown asserts.
Yet the research cited only appears to concern specific copper smelting sites in the Negev’s Arava Valley, showing the date at which domesticated camels were probably introduced to work at that specific site, which is several centuries after the time at which the Patriarchs and their camels are believed to have been moving through the surrounding region.
Perhaps the Methodist Sunday school I attended was deficient, but I don’t seem to recall anything about the Patriarchs participating in the copper smelting industry. Indeed, it seems like a stretch to say that because there were no camels working at a specific copper site prior to a specific date, therefore no one kept domesticated camels in the entire region before that date. (Commentary)
(Click on the article’s title to see the whole article…Ed.)