Cradle of Civilization

A Blog about the Birth of Our Civilisation and Development

The real battle – be prepared!

Posted by Fredsvenn on June 3, 2014

Ying

Erebuni (Yerevan) fortErebuni Fortress

ArmenianHistoryImage KhorVirap Eternity.jpg

The Norse Goddess Hel

Januar (Hel) – the beginning or the end?

The roots of the Zodiac

Orion, the bull and the three kings

The Taurus Mountains – The place of the thunder gods

Lucifer’s rebellion

Manu – The First Man

Samarra and Armi

The cycle of life – The Baal Cycle

From Gobekli Tepe to the Armenians of today

Origins, Homelands and Migrations: Situating the Kura-Araxes Early Transcaucasian ‘Culture’ within the History of Bronze Age Eurasia

Armenia – In the Center of Civilization

The Uruk period

Gobeklitepe – The World’s First Temple

Goddesses and their dying-and-rising gods up through the history

The Beginning of the Worship of the Woman and the Bull

Inanna – Atar – the God of the Covenant (treaty, agreement, promise)

The relation between Egypt and Southwest Asia

The Hyksos in Egypt, Creta, Alalakh and Ugarit

The Aryans (Armenians) on their way to India

Aten, Akhenaten and Monotheism, and the relation between Egypt and Mitanni

Nomadic pastoralism

The Semites

Amorites

Semitic people and haplogroup J1

The emergence of Y-chromosome haplogroup J1e (J-P58) among Arabic-speaking populations

The Eurasian Steppes

The Indo-Iranians and the Dravides in Central and South Asia

The archaeogenetics of the Near East

Ilan Pappe on “The Nakba of Palestine”

No war but a class war!

Jews, and their history

Jewish ethocenrism

Pope Francis calls for Middle East peace

Water Wars: Land snatched from Syria supplies third of Israel’s H2O

Understand the Israeli – Palestinian Apartheid In 11 Images

Apartheid is a crime against humanity. Israel has deprived millions of Palestinians of their liberty and property. It has perpetuated a system of gross racial discrimination and inequality. It has systematically incarcerated and tortured thousands of Palestinians, contrary to the rules of international law. It has, in particular, waged a war against a civilian population, in particular children.

Nelson Mandela in a letter to Thomas Friedman

If you want peace and democracy, I will support you. If you want formal Apartheid, we will not support you. If you want to support racial discrimination and ethnic cleansing, we will oppose you.

Nelson Mandela, concluding the same letter to Thomas Friedman

This Land is Mine

Neo Conservative

Latin America

https://i1.wp.com/www.soaw.org/presente/images/stories/artists/usbases.jpg

Syria

https://i2.wp.com/www.outsidethebeltway.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Syria-Civil-War.jpg

Syria’s Christians face new threat — “convert, submit to Islam or face sword”

The wasteland: Horrifying aerial pictures show full scale of destruction of Syrian city of Homs

Climate

Shocking parallels between ancient mass extinction and climate change

File:Air-pollution-taiwan.JPG

USA

Armenia

folkemord

The Armenian highland

Armenia (coming from Ar, which means sun, light, create, produce etc.) must surely be the Armenian land (Eden, Ekur, the garden of the gods), but still it is many different cultures, which all have their roots by the Armenian Higland – the place where our civilization, including agriculture, pastoralism, knowledge about metal were developed. From there it spread all across the world.

Armenia, situated between the Black and Caspian Seas, lies at the junction of Turkey, Iran, Georgia, Azerbaijan and former Mesopotamia. This geographic position made it a potential contact zone between Eastern and Western civilizations.

From here all the cultures in Eurasia and Northern Africa, not at least Egypt, developed, not at least the ones connected to the Semitic and the Indoeuropean languages etc., but also cultures which is connected with other languages, as the Minoaen and Etruscan, and cultures which is developed by cultural diffusian, as the Chinese.

Haplogroup J2

Haplogroup J2 is thought to have appeared somewhere in the Middle East towards the end of the last glaciation, between 15,000 and 22,000 years ago. Its present geographic distribution argue in favour of a Neolithic expansion from the Fertile Crescent.

This expansion probably correlated with the diffusion of domesticated of cattle and goats (starting c. 8000-9000 BCE) from the Zagros mountains and northern Mesopotamia, rather than with the development of cereal agriculture in the Levant (which appears to be linked rather to haplogroups G2 and E1b1b).

A second expansion of J2 could have occured with the advent of metallurgy, notably copper working (from the Lower Danube valley, central Anatolia and northern Mesopotamia), and the rise of some of the oldest civilisations.

Quite a few ancient Mediterranean and Middle Eastern civilisations flourished in territories where J2 lineages were preponderant. This is the case of the Hattians, the Hurrians, the Etruscans, the Minoans, the Greeks, the Phoenicians (and their Carthaginian offshoot), the Israelites, and to a lower extent also the Romans, the Assyrians and the Persians. All the great seafaring civilisations from the middle Bronze Age to the Iron Age were dominated by J2 men.

There is a distinct association of ancient J2 civilisations with bull worship. The oldest evidence of a cult of the bull can be traced back to Neolithic central Anatolia, notably at the sites of Çatalhöyük and Alaca Höyük.

Bull depictions are omnipresent in Minoan frescos and ceramics in Crete. Bull-masked terracotta figurines and bull-horned stone altars have been found in Cyprus (dating back as far as the Neolithic, the first presumed expansion of J2 from West Asia). The Hattians, Sumerians, Babylonians, Canaaites, and Carthaginians all had bull deities (in contrast with Indo-European or East Asian religions).

The sacred bull of Hinduism, Nandi, present in all temples dedicated to Shiva or Parvati, does not have an Indo-European origin, but can be traced back to Indus Valley civilisation. Minoan Crete, Hittite Anatolia, the Levant, Bactria and the Indus Valley also shared a tradition of bull leaping, the ritual of dodging the charge of a bull. It survives today in the traditional bullfighting of Andalusia in Spain and Provence in France, two regions with a high percentage of J2 lineages.

Haplogroup G

Haplogroup G is believed to have originated around the Middle East during the late Paleolithic, possibly as early as 30,000 years ago. At that time humans would all have been hunter-gatherers, and in most cases living in small nomadic or semi-nomadic tribes. Members of this haplogroup appear to have been closely linked to the development of early agriculture in the Levant part of the Fertile Crescent, starting 11,500 years before present.

There has so far been ancient Y-DNA analysis from only four Neolithic cultures (LBK in Germany, Remedello in Italy and Cardium Pottery in south-west France and Spain), and all sites yielded G2a individuals, which is the strongest evidence at present that farming originated with and was disseminated by members of haplogroup G (although probably in collaboration with other haplogroups such as E1b1b, J, R1b and T).

So far, the only G2a people negative for subclades downstream of P15 or L149.1 have all been found in the South Caucasus region. The highest genetic diversity within haplogroup G is found between the Levant and the Caucasus, in the Fertile Crescent, which is another good indicator of its region of origin.

It is thought that early Neolithic farmers expanded from the Levant and Mesopotamia westwards to Anatolia and Europe, eastwards to South Asia, and southwards to the Arabian peninsula and North and East Africa. The domestication of goats and cows first took place in the mountainous region of eastern Anatolia, including the Caucasus and Zagros. This is probably where the roots of haplogroup G2a (and perhaps of all haplogroup G) are to be found.

Haplogroup R1b

The Paleolithic origins of R1b are not entirely clear to this day. Some of the oldest forms of R1b are found around the Caucasus, in Iran and in southern Central Asia, a vast region where could have roamed the nomadic R1b hunter-gatherers during the Ice Age. Haplogroup R1* and R2* might have originated in southern Central Asia (between the Caspian depression and the Hindu Kush).

A branch of R1 would have developed into R1b then R1b1 and R1b1a in the northern part of the Middle East around the time of the Last Glacial Maximum (circa 20,000 years ago), while R1a migrated north to Siberia. R1b1a presumptively moved to northern Anatolia and across the Caucasus during the Neolithic, where it split into R1b1a1 (M73) and R1b1a2 (M269). The Near Eastern leftovers evolved into R1b1c (V88), now found at low frequencies among the Lebanese, the Druze, and the Jews. The Phoenicians (who came from modern day Lebanon) spread this R1b1c to their colonies, notably Sardinia and the Maghreb.

R1b1a2 (the most common form in Europe) and R1b1a1 is closely associated with the diffusion of Indo-European languages, as attested by its presence in all regions of the world where Indo-European languages were spoken in ancient times, from the Atlantic coast of Europe to the Indian subcontinent, including almost all Europe (except Finland and Bosnia-Herzegovina), Anatolia, Armenia, European Russia, southern Siberia, many pockets around Central Asia (notably Xinjiang, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and Afghanistan), without forgetting Iran, Pakistan, India and Nepal. The history of R1b and R1a are intricately connected to each others.

R1b is the most common haplogroup in Western Europe, reaching over 80% of the population in Ireland, the Scottish Highlands, western Wales, the Atlantic fringe of France, the Basque country and Catalonia. It is also common in Anatolia and around the Caucasus, in parts of Russia and in Central and South Asia.

Besides the Atlantic and North Sea coast of Europe, hotspots include the Po valley in north-central Italy (over 70%), Armenia (35%), the Bashkirs of the Urals region of Russia (50%), Turkmenistan (over 35%), the Hazara people of Afghanistan (35%), the Uyghurs of North-West China (20%) and the Newars of Nepal (11%). R1b-V88, a subclade specific to sub-Saharan Africa, is found in 60 to 95% of men in northern Cameroon.

Armenoid

Carleton Coon (1962), for example, considered the Skhul IV specimen as a proto-Caucasoid. He further argued that the Caucasoid race is of dual origin, consisting of Upper Paleolithic types (mixture of Homo sapiens and Neanderthals) and Mediterranean types (purely Homo sapiens).

The Armenoid in physical anthropology is a subtype of the Caucasian race. “The countries of the northern part of Western Asia, namely Anatolia (Turkey), the Caucasus, Iran, and the Levant are the center of distribution” of the Armenoid Race. Armenoids, also known as the “true” Caucasians, were said to be found throughout Eurasia. However, the largest concentrations occurred within Anatolia, Transcaucasia and Mesopotamia.

According to the Italian geographer and anthropologist Renato Biasutti (1878-1965) “It has long been believed by physical anthropologists that the quintessence of Near Eastern brachycephaly is to be found in the Armenians; the racial term Armenoid being named for them.

Nakh

The Èr people, also known as Èrsh or (in Georgian works) the Hers, are a little-known ancient people inhabiting Northern modern Armenia, and to an extent, small areas of Northeast Turkey, Southern Georgia, and Northwest Azerbaijan. Their relation to the main Urartians (who were probably ethnically separate from them, judging from place names) is unknown. Linguistically, based on placenames, they are thought to have been a Nakh people.

Their language was a Nakh language. The Urartian fortress Erebuni was named after them. Buni is a Nakh root, meaning shelter or home, the same root which gave rise to the modern Chechen word bun (pronounced /bʊn/), meaning a cabin, or small house. Hence, Erebuni meant “the home of the Èrs”. It corresponds to modern Yerevan (van is a common Armenian rendering for the root /bun/).

The Nakh languages are a small family of languages spoken chiefly by the Nakh peoples, in Russia (Chechnya and Ingushetia), in Georgia, and in the Chechen diaspora (mainly in Europe, Middle East and Central Asia). They were historically classified as an independent North-Central Caucasian family, but are now recognized as a branch of the Northeast Caucasian family. They are believed to have split off some 5,000–6,000 years ago.

Northeast Caucasian

The Proto-Northeast Caucasian language had many terms for agriculture, and Johanna Nichols has suggested that its speakers may have been involved in the development of agriculture in the Fertile Crescent. They had words for concepts such as yoke, as well as fruit trees such as apple and pear that suggest agriculture was already well developed when the proto-language broke up.

Nakhchivan

Nakhchivan is a landlocked exclave of the Republic of Azerbaijan. Armenian tradition says that Nakhchivan was founded by Noah. The oldest material culture artifacts found in the region date back to the Neolithic Age. The region was part of the states of Mannae, Urartu and Media.

According to the 19th-century language scholar, Johann Heinrich Hübschmann, the name Nakhichavan in Armenian literally means “the place of descent”, a Biblical reference to the descent of Noah’s Ark on the adjacent Mount Ararat.

First century Jewish historian Flavius Josephus also writes about Nakhichevan, saying that its original name Place of Descent is the proper rendering of the Armenian name of this very city.

Hübschmann notes, however, that it was not known by that name in antiquity. Instead, he states the present-day name evolved to “Nakhchivan” from “Naxčavan”. The prefix “Naxč” was a name and “avan” is Armenian for “town”.

Nakhchivan was also mentioned in Ptolemy’s Geography and by other classical writers as Naxuana. Modern historian Suren Yeremyan disputes this assertion, arguing that ancient Armenian tradition placed Nakhichevan’s founding to the year 3669 BC and, in ascribing its establishment to Noah, that it took its present name after the Armenian phrase “Nakhnakan Ichevan” (Նախնական Իջևան), or “first landing.”

North Caucasian

Some linguists such as Sergei Starosin think that the Northeast and Northwest Caucasian languages should be joined into a putative North Caucasian family, citing shared vocabulary and typological features as evidence. This proposed family does not usually include the neighboring Kartvelian languages. This hypothesis is not well demonstrated.

Alarodian

Some linguists — notably I. M. Diakonoff and S. Starostin — also see similarities between the Northeast Caucasian family and the extinct languages Hurrian and Urartian. The two extinct languages have been grouped into the Hurro-Urartian family. Diakonoff proposed the name Alarodian for the union of Hurro-Urartian and Northeast Caucasian.

Uratri (Hurrian/Armenian), Aratta (Sumerian), Urashtu (Babylonian), Urartu/Ararat (Assyrian), Ayrarat (Armenian)
and Armenia is different names of the same country. Ar, Har, Er, Her, Yer, Hor, Khar, Khor, Ur, Hur, Khur have the same meaning. The vocal can change, just the consonant keeps on. Ar, Ur, Er, Ir etc – and that word are made by one consonant and one or two vocals, which can change their place on either side of the consonant.

Hurrian was spoken in various parts of the Fertile Crescent in the 3rd and 2nd millennia BC., while Urartian was the language of Urartu, a powerful state that existed between 1000 BC or earlier and 585 BC in the area centered on Lake Van in current Turkey.

Urartian is closely related to Hurrian, a somewhat better documented language attested for an earlier, non-overlapping period, approximately from 2000 BCE to 1200 BCE (written by native speakers until about 1350 BCE). The two languages must have developed quite independently from approximately 2000 BCE onwards.

Although Urartian is not a direct continuation of any of the attested dialects of Hurrian, many of its features are best explained as innovative developments with respect to Hurrian as we know it from the preceding millennium. The closeness holds especially true of the so-called Old Hurrian dialect, known above all from Hurro-Hittite bilingual texts.

Armenian language

The earliest testimony of the Armenian language dates to the 5th century AD (the Bible translation of Mesrob Mashtots). The earlier history of the language is unclear and the subject of much speculation. It is clear that Armenian is an Indo-European language, but its development is opaque. In any case, Armenian has many layers of loanwords and shows traces of long language contact with Hurro-Urartian, Greek and Indo-Iranian.

In his paper, “Hurro-Urartian Borrowings in Old Armenian”, Soviet linguist Igor Mikhailovich Diakonov notes the presence in Old Armenian of what he calls a Caucasian substratum, identified by earlier scholars, consisting of loans from the Kartvelian and Northeast Caucasian languages such as Udi.

Noting that the Hurro-Urartian peoples inhabited the Armenian homeland in the second millennium BC, Diakonov identifies in Armenian a Hurro-Urartian substratum of social, cultural, and zoological and biological terms such as ałaxin (‘slavegirl’) and xnjor (‘apple(tree)’).

Some of the terms he gives admittedly have an Akkadian or Sumerian provenance, but he suggests they were borrowed through Hurrian or Urartu. Given that these borrowings do not undergo sound changes characteristic of the development of Armenian from Proto-Indo-European, he dates their borrowing to a time before the written record but after the Proto-Armenian language stage. But it can, however, be that it was the other way around, that the Armenian language got mixed with and influenced the other surrounding languages.

Name of Armenia

The armenians call them selves today for Hay, while the chechenians call them selves for nakh. Hayr means father in armenian, and heir means a person who inherits or has a right of inheritance in the property of another following the latter’s death.

In other words we are talking about Noah (Noak), and heir of Noah. we are talking about the birth of our civilization. You can also say we are talking about the birth of the aryans (the sun-people), which includes both caucasian, semittic and indoeuropean peoples. This is also mentioned in our oldest epic story, the story about Gilgamesh.

Akkadian inscriptions from as early as 2400 BC mention the ‘Armani’ (aka Armani-Subartu or Arme-Shubria) near Lake Van. The Armenian hypothesis of Indo-European origins seeks to establish an ethnic Armenian identity for the Armani mentioned by Naram-Sin, for “Armani-Subari connections” and “Armani-Subari-Sumer relations”. Old Persian name ‘Armin’ meant “dweller of the garden of Eden” (Persians also used this form ‘Armin(a)’ for Armenia).

It has been suggested by early 20th century Armenologists that Old Persian Armina and the Greek Armenoi are continuations of an Assyrian toponym Armânum or Armanî. There are certain Bronze Age records identified with the toponym in both Mesopotamian and Egyptian sources.

The earliest is from an inscription which mentions Armânum together with Ibla (Ebla) as territories conquered by Naram-Sin of Akkad in ca. 2250 BC identified with an Akkadian colony in the Diarbekr region. However, many historians, such as Wayne Horowitz, identify Armanî which was conquered by Naram-Sin of Akkad, with the Syrian city of Aleppo and not with the Armenian Highland.

Swastika

Mezine is a place in the Ukraine having the most artifacts from the Paleolithic culture. The epigravettian site is located on a bank of the Desna river. The settlement is best known for an archaeological small find of a set of bracelets, engraved with marks considered as being possibly calendar lunar-cycles. Near to Mezine was found the earliest known example of a swastika-like form, as part of a decorative object, found on an artifact dated to 10,000 BC.

It has been suggested this swastika is a stylized picture of a stork in flight. In Armenian mythology Aragil, or Stork, is considered as the messenger of Ara the Beautiful, their main god, as well as the defender of fields. According to ancient mythological conceptions, two stork symbolize the sun. Ara the Beautiful is the god of spring, flora, agriculture, sowing and water. He is associated with Osiris, Vishnu and Dionysus, as the symbol of new life.

According to a number of scholars Ar was a shorter version of Ara or Arar(ich), which means the creator. The worship of Ar was wide spread amongst early Armenians who worshipped this deity and simply called him the Creator (Ara or Ararich). Aralez, or Aralezner, the oldest gods in the Armenian pantheon, are dog-like creatures with powers to resuscitate fallen warriors and resurrect the dead by licking wounds clean.

The Swastika is our oldest symbols, also known from the Tell Halaf culture in Syria and the Samarra culture in Iraq. The word means balance and harmony, or well being, and many symbols, like the taoist Ying and Yang, can be said to be related. The swas – ti – ka is much used in Armenia, the first Christian state, even today, just like the goodess of love, Anahit, is. Anahata is the chak – ra of love in Hinduism.

The Halaf culture, which existed just before and during the Ubaid period at around the same time, had Swastikas on their pottery and other items. These people eventually gave rise to the ancient Samarra culture and the Sumerians, who also used the Swastika symbol. The ancient Vinca culture (5500 BC) was the first appearance of the swastika in history, not what you’re reading above. The Tartaria culture of Romainia (4000 BC) had similar symbols.

Then later the Merhgarh Culture, which later became the Harappan culture of the Great Indus Valley Civilization (which is where “The Vedas” came from) also exhibited the Swastika symbolism. Then even later the legendary Xia Dynasty held the swastika symbol in high regard. Even ancient Native American Indians knew this symbol. If you’ve noticed all these cultures were exactly 1000 years apart, bringing the Swastika symbol west to east from the Balkans to China and even beyond. Look it up, do the research.

It seems that there is a connection between the similar sounding places of ‘Samarra’ and ‘Sumeru’, and that early travellers bring the Swastika to India and settle on mount Sumeru – naming the new place after their place of origination. Over-time, ‘Samarra’ could have changed in pronounciation to ‘Sumeru’.

 The Skygood

Dingir is a cuneiform sign, most commonly the determinative for “deity” although it has related meanings as well. As a determinative, it is not pronounced, and is conventionally transliterated as a superscript “D” as in e.g. Inanna. Generically, dingir can be translated as “god” or “goddess”.

The sign in Sumerian cuneiform (DIĜIR) by itself represents the Sumerian word an (“sky” or “heaven”), the ideogram for An or the word diĝir (“god”), the supreme deity of the Sumerian pantheon. In Assyrian cuneiform, it (AN, DIĜIR) could be either an ideogram for “deity” (ilum) or a syllabogram for an, or ìl-. In Hittite orthography, the syllabic value of the sign was again an.

The concept of “divinity” in Sumerian is closely associated with the heavens, as is evident from the fact that the cuneiform sign doubles as the ideogram for “sky”, and that its original shape is the picture of a star.

The original association of “divinity” is thus with “bright” or “shining” hierophanies in the sky. A possible loan relation of Sumerian dingir with Turkic Tengri “sky, sky god” has been suggested.

The Sumerian sign DIĜIR originated as a star-shaped ideogram indicating a god in general, or the Sumerian god An, the supreme father of the gods. Dingir also meant sky or heaven in contrast with ki which meant earth.

Tengri is one of the names for the primary chief deity since the early Turkic (Xiongnu, Hunnic, Bulgar) and Mongolic (Xianbei) peoples. Worship of Tengri is Tengrism. The core beings in Tengrism are Sky-Father (Tengri/Tenger Etseg) and Earth Mother (Eje/Gazar Eej). It involves shamanism, animism, totemism and ancestor worship.

Tengri was the main god of the Turkic pantheon, controlling the celestial sphere. The oldest form of the name is recorded in Chinese annals from the 4th century BC, describing the beliefs of the Xiongnu.

Tengri was the chief deity worshipped by the ruling class of the Central Asian steppe peoples in 6th to 9th centuries (Turkic peoples, Mongols and Hungarians). It lost its importance when the Uighuric kagans proclaimed Manichaeism the state religion in the 8th century.

Tengri is been seen as strikingly similar to the Indo-European sky god, Dyeus, and the structure of the reconstructed Proto-Indo-European religion is closer to that of the early Turks than to the religion of any people of Near Eastern or Mediterranean antiquity.

The word “deity” derives from the Latin deus (“god”), which is related through a common Indo-European origin to Sanskrit deva (“god”), devi (“goddess”), divya (“transcendental”, “spiritual”). The root is related to words for “sky”, such as Latin dies (“day”), and the Sanskrit div, diu (“sky”, “day”, “shine”).

Dyēus (also Dyēus phter, alternatively spelled dyēws) is believed to have been chief deity in the religious traditions of the prehistoric Proto-Indo-European societies. The term for “a god” was deiwos, reflected in Hittite, sius; Latin, deus, Sanskrit deva; Avestan, daeva (later, Persian, divs); Welsh duw; Irish dia, Lithuanian, Dievas; Latvian, Dievs.

He was the god of the daylight sky, and his position may have mirrored the position of the patriarch or monarch in society. This deity is not directly attested; rather scholars have reconstructed this deity from the languages and cultures of later Indo-European nations.

Rooted in the related but distinct Indo-European word deiwos is the Latin word for deity, deus. The Latin word is also continued in English divine, “deity”, and the original Germanic word remains visible in “Tuesday” (“Day of Tīwaz”) and Old Norse tívar, which may be continued in the toponym Tiveden (“Wood of the Gods”, or of Týr).

Týr is a god associated with law and heroic glory in Norse mythology, portrayed as one-handed. Corresponding names in other Germanic languages are Gothic Teiws, Old English Tīw and Old High German Ziu and Cyo, all from Proto-Germanic Tīwaz. The Latinised name is Tius or Tio.

Dyēus Phtēr is the god of the day-lit sky and the chief god of the Indo-European pantheon. The name survives in Greek Zeus with a vocative form Zeu pater; Latin Jūpiter (from the archaic Latin Iovis pater; Diēspiter), Sanskrit Dyáus Pitā, and Illyrian Dei-pátrous.

Zeus is the “Father of Gods and men” who rules the Olympians of Mount Olympus as a father rules the family according to the ancient Greek religion. He is the god of sky and thunder in Greek mythology. Zeus is etymologically cognate with and, under Hellenic influence, became particularly closely identified with Roman Jupiter.

Zeus is the child of Cronus and Rhea, and the youngest of his siblings. In most traditions he is married to Hera, although, at the oracle of Dodona, his consort is Dione: according to the Iliad, he is the father of Aphrodite by Dione.

He is known for his erotic escapades. These resulted in many godly and heroic offspring, including Athena, Apollo and Artemis, Hermes, Persephone (by Demeter), Dionysus, Perseus, Heracles, Helen of Troy, Minos, and the Muses (by Mnemosyne); by Hera, he is usually said to have fathered Ares, Hebe and Hephaestus.

As Walter Burkert points out in his book, Greek Religion, “Even the gods who are not his natural children address him as Father, and all the gods rise in his presence.” For the Greeks, he was the King of the Gods, who oversaw the universe.

As Pausanias observed, “That Zeus is king in heaven is a saying common to all men”. In Hesiod’s Theogony Zeus assigns the various gods their roles. In the Homeric Hymns he is referred to as the chieftain of the gods.

Zeus is frequently depicted by Greek artists in one of two poses: standing, striding forward, with a thunderbolt leveled in his raised right hand, or seated in majesty. His symbols are the thunderbolt, eagle, bull, and oak. In addition to his Indo-European inheritance, the classical “cloud-gatherer” also derives certain iconographic traits from the cultures of the Ancient Near East, such as the scepter.

Finnish taivas Estonian taevas, Livonian tōvaz etc. (from Proto-Finnic taivas), meaning “heaven” or “sky,” are likely rooted in the Indo-European word. The neighboring Baltic Dievas or Germanic Tiwaz are possible sources, but the Indo-Iranian daivas accords better in both form and meaning. Similar origin has been proposed for the word family represented by Finnish toivoa “to hope” (originally “to pray from gods”).

Pre Pottery

Vinca, Tryptillian & Hamangia cultures are all intertwined with each other and in my opinion, it would be better to unite them into one culture because all three share a common element … They would purposely burn their houses down for some reason that is still unknown.

The Pre-Pottery Neolithic A (PPNA) and the following Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (PPNB) were originally defined by Kathleen Kenyon in the type site of Jericho (Palestine). During this time, pottery was not in use yet. They precede the ceramic Neolithic (Yarmukian). PPNA succeeds the Natufian culture of the Epipaleolithic (Mesolithic).

PPNA denotes the first stages in early Levantine Neolithic culture, dating around 8000 to 7000 BC. Archaeological remains are located in the Levantine and upper Mesopotamian region of the Fertile Crescent.

The time period is characterized by tiny circular mud brick dwellings, the cultivation of crops, the hunting of wild game, and unique burial customs in which bodies were buried below the floors of dwellings.

PPNB is a division of the Neolithic developed by Kathleen Kenyon during her archaeological excavations at Jericho in the southern Levant region. Like the earlier PPNA people, the PPNB culture developed from the Earlier Natufian but shows evidence of a northerly origin, possibly indicating an influx from the region of north eastern Anatolia.

Cultural tendencies of this period differ from that of the earlier PPNA period in that people living during this period began to depend heavily upon domesticated animals to supplement their earlier mixed agrarian and hunter-gatherer diet. In addition the flint tool kit of the period is new and quite disparate from that of the earlier period. One of its major elements is the naviform core.

This is the first period in which architectural styles of the southern Levant became primarily rectilinear; earlier typical dwellings were circular, elliptical and occasionally even octagonal. Pyrotechnology was highly developed in this period.

During this period, one of the main features of houses is evidenced by a thick layer of white clay plaster floors highly polished and made of lime produced from limestone. It is believed that the use of clay plaster for floor and wall coverings during PPNB led to the discovery of pottery.

The earliest proto-pottery was White Ware vessels, made from lime and gray ash, built up around baskets before firing, for several centuries around 7000 BC at sites such as Tell Neba’a Faour (Beqaa Valley).

Sites from this period found in the Levant utilizing rectangular floor plans and plastered floor techniques were found at Ain Ghazal, Yiftahel (western Galilee), and Abu Hureyra (Upper Euphrates). The period is dated to between ca. 10,700 and ca. 8,000 BP or 7000 – 6000 BCE.

Danielle Stordeur’s recent work at Tell Aswad, a large agricultural village between Mount Hermon and Damascus could not validate Henri de Contenson’s earlier suggestion of a PPNA Aswadian culture. Instead, they found evidence of a fully established PPNB culture at 8700 BC at Aswad, pushing back the period’s generally accepted start date by 1,200 years. Similar sites to Tell Aswad in the Damascus Basin of the same age were found at Tell Ramad and Tell Ghoraifé.

How a PPNB culture could spring up in this location, practicing domesticated farming from 8700 BC has been the subject of speculation. Whether it created its own culture or imported traditions from the North East or Southern Levant has been considered an important question for a site that poses a problem for the scientific community.

Portasar is an archaeological site at the top of a mountain ridge in the Southeastern Anatolia Region of Turkey, northeast of the town of Şanlıurfa. The tell has a height of 15 m (49 ft) and is about 300 m (984 ft) in diameter. It is approximately 760 m (2,493 ft) above sea level. It has been excavated by a German archaeological team that has been under the direction of Klaus Schmidt since 1996.

The Tell includes two phases of ritual use dating back to the 10th-8th millennium BC. During the first phase PPNA, circles of massive T-shaped stone pillars were erected. More than 200 pillars in about 20 circles are currently known through geophysical surveys. Each pillar has a height of up to 6 m (20 ft) and a weight of up to 20 tons. They are fitted into sockets that were hewn out of the bedrock.

In the second phase PPNB, the erected pillars are smaller and stood in rectangular rooms with floors of polished lime. The site was abandoned after the PPNB-period. Younger structures date to classical times.

Portasar

The region of Upper-Mesopotamia provides a lot of sites that have the greatest importance for the understanding of the archaeology of this region. Especially the area of Southeast Anatolia within this region turns out to have an eminent position that has been revealed by the excavations and researches during the last decade.

At present, Portasar (Göbekli Tepe) raises more questions for archaeology and prehistory than it answers. We do not know how a force large enough to construct, augment, and maintain such a substantial complex was mobilized and paid or fed in the conditions of pre-Neolithic society. This is the site of the worlds currently known oldest shrine or temple complex in the world, and the planet’s oldest known example of monumental architecture. It has also produced the oldest known life-size figure of a human.

Some historians, such as Jean Bottéro, have made the claim that Mesopotamian religion is the world’s oldest religion, although there are several other claims to that title, including Portasar. However, as writing was invented in Mesopotamia it is certainly the oldest in written history.

Portasar is situated in the South of the Armenian Highlands, 15 km south-east from the old city Urha/Edessa, Urfa/ of Armenian Mesopatamia. The discovery of the cultural layers/three layers/ of Portasar shows that it was a religious-ritual centre for sedentary people for several millenniums. The territory is in Armenian cultural area.

The marvelous Gobekli tepe culture dispersed for around 9.000 years ago, and spread the agriculture into Europe, as the old european cultures, to the south and into Egypt, as the Semittes (which appears for around 8.000 years ago), to the south-east, as Tell halaf culture and the Sumerians, to the east, where they constructed the Indus civilization, and to the north, where they constructed the trans-cucasian Shulaveri Shumo and Kura Araxes cultures.

Çatal höyük

Çatalhöyük (çatal is Turkish for “fork”, höyük for “mound”) was a very large Neolithic and Chalcolithic proto-city settlement in southern Anatolia, which existed from approximately 7500 BC to 5700 BC, and flourished around 7000BC. It is the largest and best-preserved Neolithic site found to date. In July 2012, it was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

In Greece, we find the earliest Neolithic culture in Europe, called the Sesklo culture. This culture probably derived from similar ancient cultures in Anatolia, and in turn influencing the Balkan cultures and, possibly, the Cardium Pottery culture, which probably originated in the eastern Mediterranean, but skips over Crete and Greece and leaves the rest of the Balkans untouched. The Sesklo people probably spoke an “Aegean” language, none of which survive, but which may have included Minoan and Eteocretan.

When exactly the westward movement of Neolithic communities into Greece and the Balkans began is still not clear. However, Neolithic communities were established as far west as the Aegean coastal strip of western Turkey by 7000 BC, as indicated by sites such as Ulucak, Ege Gübre and Keçi Çayırı, reached possibly by following the alluvial valley of the Büyük Menderes stream.

As the timing of this expansion coincided with the so-called “Neolithic collapse” of the Pre-Pottery to Pottery Neolithic transition in southeastern Turkey and the Levant generally, it seems possible to surmise that this initial wave of migration westwards was triggered by ecological problems.

This is further confirmed by the mixed presence of central Anatolian and Levantine elements in the areas of initial expansion in western Turkey. Whether or not this wave extended to the Balkans in its initial phase is not clear; what is evident is that the westward movement of Neolithic communities was not an instan-taneous event, but lasted with an increasing pace until about 6400 bce.

The parallels between central Anatolia and western Anatolian sites such as Ulucak and Yeşilova suggests that there was a continuous migration westwards, especially since the pottery sequence from dark-colored fine-burnished wares to red or cream slipped wares in central Anatolia is paralleled in the same chronological order in the newly inhabited areas.

By the final phases, migrant farmers seem to have expanded into the Marmara region following the valley of the Sakarya River, and also into the northern Balkans, reaching the Danube, as indicated by sites such as Koprivets. In places where there were local Mesolithic communities, both groups seem to has merged. In this regard, sites of the Fikirtepe culture around Istanbul display a clear mixture of local and introduced elements.

At around 6200 BC, there seems to have been another more intensive migratory movement that originated in the eastern regions of central Anatolia. Possibly, unstable climatic conditions related to the so-called Labrador/Hudson Bay Climatic Event had a triggering effect in this movement (Berger & Guillaine 2008).

The sites of this new wave are rarely in the same locations as before (Özdogˇan 2008), yet many maintained their locations over subsequent millennia, in time developing as major archaeological mounds. To this new group belong the Karanovo I, Sesklo, and Starčevo cultures in the Balkans, all associated with new Neolithic elements. The uniform composition of this secondary Neolithic package over a vast territory implies that the expansion was rather rapid.

The Vinča symbols, sometimes called the Vinča signs, Vinča script, Vinča-Turdaș script, Old European script, etc, are a set of symbols found on Neolithic era (6th to 5th millennia BC) artifacts from the Vinča culture of southeastern Europe. The symbols are mostly considered as constituting the oldest excavated example of “proto-writing” in the world; that is, they probably conveyed a message but did not encode language, predating the development of writing proper by more than a millennium.

Old Europe

In Greece, we find the earliest Neolithic culture in Europe, called the Sesklo culture. This culture probably derived from similar ancient cultures in Anatolia, and in turn influencing the Balkan cultures and, possibly, the Cardium Pottery culture, which probably originated in the eastern Mediterranean, but skips over Crete and Greece and leaves the rest of the Balkans untouched. The Sesklo people probably spoke an “Aegean” language, none of which survive, but which may have included Minoan and Eteocretan.

When exactly the westward movement of Neolithic communities into Greece and the Balkans began is still not clear. However, Neolithic communities were established as far west as the Aegean coastal strip of western Turkey by 7000 BC, as indicated by sites such as Ulucak, Ege Gübre and Keçi Çayırı, reached possibly by following the alluvial valley of the Büyük Menderes stream.

As the timing of this expansion coincided with the so-called “Neolithic collapse” of the Pre-Pottery to Pottery Neolithic transition in southeastern Turkey and the Levant generally, it seems possible to surmise that this initial wave of migration westwards was triggered by ecological problems.

This is further confirmed by the mixed presence of central Anatolian and Levantine elements in the areas of initial expansion in western Turkey. Whether or not this wave extended to the Balkans in its initial phase is not clear; what is evident is that the westward movement of Neolithic communities was not an instan-taneous event, but lasted with an increasing pace until about 6400 BC.

Older Neolithic cultures existed already at this time in eastern Greece and Crete, apparently having arrived from the Levant, but they appear distinct from the Cardial or Impressed Ware culture. The ceramic tradition in the central Balkans also remained distinct from that along the Adriatic coastline in both style and manufacturing techniques for almost 1,000 years from the 6th millennium BC.

Early Neolithic impressed pottery is found in the Levant, and certain parts of Anatolia, including Mezraa-Teleilat, and in North Africa at Tunus-Redeyef, Tunisia. So the first Cardial settlers in the Adriatic may have come directly from the Levant. Of course it might equally well have come directly from North Africa, and impressed-pottery also appears in Egypt. Along the East Mediterranean coast Impressed Ware has been found in North Syria, Palestine and Lebanon.

The culture of Sesklo is crucial in the expansion of the Neolithic into Europe. Dating and research points to the influence of this culture to other Balcanic cultures (Karanovo I-II and Starčevo-Körös) which seem to originate here, and will be these which will stimulate the birth of the important Danubian Neolithic current.

Also, it is thought that the differentiated settlements of pre-Sesklo can be, at least partly, responsible for the origin of the Mediterranean Neolithic (Cardium pottery). So it can be said that, with some geographically isolated exceptions, European Neolithic seem to originate here: in the Thessalia of Sesklo.

The parallels between central Anatolia and western Anatolian sites such as Ulucak and Yeşilova suggests that there was a continuous migration westwards, especially since the pottery sequence from dark-colored fine-burnished wares to red or cream slipped wares in central Anatolia is paralleled in the same chronological order in the newly inhabited areas.

By the final phases, migrant farmers seem to have expanded into the Marmara region following the valley of the Sakarya River, and also into the northern Balkans, reaching the Danube, as indicated by sites such as Koprivets. In places where there were local Mesolithic communities, both groups seem to has merged. In this regard, sites of the Fikirtepe culture around Istanbul display a clear mixture of local and introduced elements.

At around 6200 BC, there seems to have been another more intensive migratory movement that originated in the eastern regions of central Anatolia. Possibly, unstable climatic conditions related to the so-called Labrador/Hudson Bay Climatic Event had a triggering effect in this movement (Berger & Guillaine 2008).

The sites of this new wave are rarely in the same locations as before (Özdogˇan 2008), yet many maintained their locations over subsequent millennia, in time developing as major archaeological mounds. To this new group belong the Karanovo I, Sesklo, and Starčevo cultures in the Balkans, all associated with new Neolithic elements. The uniform composition of this secondary Neolithic package over a vast territory implies that the expansion was rather rapid.

The Vinča symbols, sometimes called the Vinča signs, Vinča script, Vinča-Turdaș script, Old European script, etc, are a set of symbols found on Neolithic era (6th to 5th millennia BC) artifacts from the Vinča culture of southeastern Europe. The symbols are mostly considered as constituting the oldest excavated example of “proto-writing” in the world; that is, they probably conveyed a message but did not encode language, predating the development of writing proper by more than a millennium.

Cardium Pottery culture

Cardium Pottery or Cardial Ware, a Neolithic decorative style that gets its name from the imprinting of the clay with the shell of the cockle, an edible marine mollusk, formerly Cardium edulis, now Cerastoderma edule, define the Neolithic culture which produced and spread them, mostly commonly called the “Cardial Culture”.

The alternative name Impressed Ware is given by some archaeologists to define this culture, because impressions can be with sharp objects other than cockle shell, such as a nail or comb. Impressed pottery is much more widespread than the Cardial.

This pottery style gives its name to the main culture of the Mediterranean Neolithic: Cardium Pottery Culture or Cardial Culture, or Impressed Ware Culture, which eventually extended from the Adriatic sea to the Atlantic coasts of Portugal and south to Morocco.

Khabur

Hurrian names occur sporadically in northwestern Mesopotamia and the area of Kirkuk in modern Iraq. Their presence was attested at Nuzi, Urkesh and other sites. They occupied a broad arc of fertile farmland stretching from the Khabur River valley in the west to the foothills of the Zagros Mountains in the east.

The Khabur River valley was the heart of the Hurrian lands. This region hosted rich cultures like Tell Halaf and Tell Brak.I. J. Gelb and E. A. Speiser believed Semitic Subarians had been the linguistic and ethnic substratum of northern Mesopotamia since earliest times, while Hurrians were merely late arrivals. However, it now seems that the Subarians was Hurrians.

Tell Halaf

In the period 6500–5500 B.C., a farming society emerged in northern Mesopotamia and Syria which shared a common culture and produced pottery that is among the finest ever made in the Near East. This culture is known as Halaf, after the site of Tell Halaf in northeastern Syria where it was first identified.

The Halaf culture is a prehistoric period which lasted between about 6100 and 5500 BC. The period is a continuous development out of the earlier Pottery Neolithic and is located primarily in the Euphrates valley in south-eastern Turkey, the Balikh valley and the Khabur in Syria, and the Upper Tigris area in Iraq, although Halaf-influenced material is found throughout Greater Mesopotamia.

The term «Proto-Halaf period» refers to the gradual emergence of the Halaf culture. It reformulates the «Halafcultural package» as this has been traditionally understood, and it shows that the Halaf emerged rapidly, but gradually, at the end of 7000 BC.

The term refers to a distinct ceramic assemblage characterised by the introduction of painted Fine Ware within the later Pre-Halafceramic assemblage. Although these new wares represent changes in ceramic technology and production, other cultural aspects continue without abrupt change.

The recent discoveries at various Late Neolithic sites in Syrian and elsewhere that have been reviews here are really changing the old, traditional schemes, which often presupposed abrupt transitions from one culture-historical entity to another. At present, there is growing evidence for considerable continuity during 7000-6000 BC.

At the northern Syrian sites, where theProto-Halaf stage was first defined,there is no perceptible break and at several sites (Tell Sabi Abyad, Tell Halula) the Proto-Halaf ceramic assemblage appears tobe closely linked to the preceding late Pre-Halaf.

The key evidence for the Proto-Halaf period is the appearance of new ceramic categories that did not existed before, manufactured according to high technological standards and complexly decorated.

The similarities of these new painted wares from one Proto-Halafsiteto another points to strong relationships between different communities. On the other hand, the evidence oflocal variety in ceramic production would indicate acertain level of independence of local groups.

Although this new stage deservesto be studied much more, it appears to be the case that apart from the ceramicsmost other aspects of the material culture show a gradual, not abrupt evolution from the precedent stage, such as the production of lithic tools, property markers such as stamp seals, the architecture and burial practices.

The discovery of Proto-Halaf layers at Tell Halula, Tell Sabi Abyad and Tell Chagar Bazar has added much insight into the origins of the Halaf and its initial development, and shows that the Halaf resulted from a gradual, continuous process of cultural change. It also seems to be clear that the origins of the Halaf  were regionally heterogeneous.

The Halaf culture as it is traditionally understood appears to have evolved over a very large area, which comprises the Euphrates valley (until recently considered to be a peripheral area), the Balikh valley and the Khabur in Syria but also northern Iraq, southern Turkey and the Upper Tigris area.

The Halaf potters used different sources of clay from their neighbors and achieved outstanding elaboration and elegance of design with their superior quality ware. Some of the most beautifully painted polychrome ceramics were produced toward the end of the Halaf period. This distinctive pottery has been found from southeastern Turkey to Iran, but may have its origins in the region of the River Khabur (modern Syria).

How and why it spread so widely is a matter of continuing debate, although analysis of the clay indicates the existence of production centers and regional copying. It is possible that such high-quality pottery was exchanged as a prestige item between local elites.

The Halaf culture also produced a great variety of amulets and stamp seals of geometric design, as well as a range of largely female terracotta figurines that often emphasize the sexual features.

Tell Arpachiyah

The best known, most characteristic pottery of Tell Halaf, called Halaf ware, produced by specialist potters, has been found in other parts of northern Mesopotamia, such as at Nineveh and Tepe Gawra, Chagar Bazar and at many sites in Anatolia (Turkey) suggesting that it was widely used in the region.

Among the best-known Halaf sites are Arpachiyah, Sabi Abyad, and Yarim Tepe, small agricultural villages with distinctive buildings known as tholoi. These rounded domed structures, with or without antechambers, were made of different materials depending on what was available locally: limestone boulders or mud and straw.

The most important site for the Halaf tradition was the site of Tell Arpachiyah located about 4 miles from Nineveh, now located in the suburbs of Mosul, Iraq. The site was occupied in the Halaf and the following Ubaid periods. It appears to have been heavily involved in the manufacture of pottery. The pottery recovered there formed the basis of the internal chronology of the Halaf period.

Early in the chalcolithic period the potters of Arpachiyah in the Khabur Valley carried on the Tell Halaf tradition with a technical ability and with a sense of artistry far superior to that attained by the earlier masters; their polychrome designs, executed in rous paint, show a richness of invention and a painstaking skill in draughtsmanship which is unrivaled in the ancient world.

Arpachiyah and Tepe Gawra have produced typical Eastern Halaf ware while a rather different Western Halaf version is known from such Syrian sites as Carchemish and Halaf itself.

Tell Hassuna

Hassuna or Tell Hassuna is an ancient Mesopotamian site situated in what was to become ancient Assyria, and is now in the Ninawa Governorate of Iraq west of the Tigris river, south of Mosul and about 35 km southwest of the ancient Assyrian city of Nineveh.

By around 6000 BC people had moved into the foothills (piedmont) of northernmost Mesopotamia where there was enough rainfall to allow for “dry” agriculture in some places. These were the first farmers in northernmost Mesopotamia. They made Hassuna style pottery (cream slip with reddish paint in linear designs). Hassuna people lived in small villages or hamlets ranging from 2 to 8 acres (32,000 m2).

At Tell Hassuna, adobe dwellings built around open central courts with fine painted pottery replace earlier levels with crude pottery. Hand axes, sickles, grinding stones, bins, baking ovens and numerous bones of domesticated animals reflect settled agricultural life. Female figurines have been related to worship and jar burials within which food was placed related to belief in afterlife. The relationship of Hassuna pottery to that of Jericho suggests that village culture was becoming widespread.

Shulaveri-Shomu culture

Shulaveri-Shomu culture is a Late Neolithic/Eneolithic culture that existed on the territory of present-day Georgia, Azerbaijan and the Armenian Highlands. The culture is dated to mid-6th or early-5th millennia BC and is thought to be one of the earliest known Neolithic cultures.

The Shulaveri-Shomu culture begins after the 8.2 kiloyear event which was a sudden decrease in global temperatures starting ca. 6200 BC and which lasted for about two to four centuries.

Shulaveri culture predates the Kura-Araxes culture and surrounding areas, which is assigned to the period of ca. 4000 – 2200 BC, and had close relation with the middle Bronze Age culture called Trialeti culture (ca. 3000 – 1500 BC). Sioni culture of Eastern Georgia possibly represents a transition from the Shulaveri to the Kura-Arax cultural complex.

Shulaveri-Shomu and other Neolithic/Chalcolithic cultures of the Southern Caucasus started to use local obsidian for tools, raise animals such as cattle and pigs, and grow crops, including grapes around 6000–4200 BC.

Many of the characteristic traits of the Shulaverian material culture (circular mudbrick architecture, pottery decorated by plastic design, anthropomorphic female figurines, obsidian industry with an emphasis on production of long prismatic blades) are believed to have their origin in the Near Eastern Neolithic cultures, like Tell Halaf and Tell Hassuna.

The Halaf-Ubaid Transitional period

The Halaf period was succeeded by the Halaf-Ubaid Transitional period (ca. 5500/5400 to 5200/5000 BC) and then by the Ubaid period (~5200 – 4000 cal. BC). The Halaf-Ubaid Transitional period lies chronologically between the Halaf period and the Ubaid period.

It is a very poorly understood period and was created to explain the gradual change from Halaf style pottery to Ubaid style pottery in North Mesopotamia. ArchaeologyArchaeologically the period is defined more by absence then data as the Halaf appears to have ended before 5500/5400 cal. BC and the Ubaid begins after 5200 cal. BC.

There are only two sites that run from the Halaf until the Ubaid. The first of these, Tepe Gawra, was excavated in the 1930s when stratigraphic controls were lacking and it is difficult to re-create the sequence. The second, Tell Aqab remains largely unpublished.

This makes definitive statements about the period difficult and with the present state of archaeological knowledge nothing certain can be claimed about the Halaf-Ubaid transitional except that it is a couple of hundred years long and pottery styles changed over the period.

Hadji Muhammed-Choga Mami-Samarra

Hadji Muhammed was a small village in Southern Iraq which gives its name to a style of painted pottery and the early phase of what is the Ubaid culture. Sandwiched between the earliest settlement of Eridu and the later “classical” Ubaid style, the culture is found as far north as Ras Al-Amiya. The Hadji Muhammed period saw the development of extensive canal networks from major settlements.

Irrigation agriculture, which seem to have developed first at Choga Mami (4700–4600 BC), a Samarra ware archaeological site of Southern Iraq in the Mandali region which shows the first canal irrigation in operation at about 6000 BCE, and rapidly spread elsewhere, from the first required collective effort and centralised coordination of labour. Buildings were of wattle and daub or mud brick.

The Samarran Culture, the precursor to the Mesopotamian culture of the Ubaid period, is primarily known for its finely-made pottery decorated against dark-fired backgrounds with stylized figures of animals and birds and geometric designs. This widely-exported type of pottery, one of the first widespread, relatively uniform pottery styles in the Ancient Near East, was first recognized at Samarra.

The pottery is painted in dark brown, black or purple in an attractive geometric style. Joan Oates has suggested on the basis of continuity in configurations of certain vessels, despite differences in thickness of others that it is just a difference in style, rather than a new cultural tradition.

Tell Ubaid

The Halaf culture was eventually absorbed into the so-called Ubaid culture (ca. 6500 to 3800 BC), a prehistoric period of Mesopotamia with changes in pottery and building styles. The Ubaid period is marked by a distinctive style of fine quality painted pottery which spread throughoutMesopotamia and the Persian Gulf.

The Ubaid period derive it’s name from the tell (mound) of al-Ubaid west of nearby Ur in southern Iraq’s Dhi Qar Governorate where the earliest large excavation of Ubaid period material was conducted initially by Henry Hall and later by Leonard Woolley.

In South Mesopotamia the period is the earliest known period on the alluvium although it is likely earlier periods exist obscured under the alluvium. In the south it has a very long duration between about 6500 and 3800 BC when it is replaced by the Uruk period.

The Ubaidians were the first civilizing force in Sumer, draining the marshes for agriculture, developing trade, and establishing industries, including weaving, leatherwork, metalwork, masonry, and pottery. It is not known whether or not these were the actual Sumerians who are identified with the later Uruk culture.

During this time, the first settlement in southern Mesopotamia was established at Eridu (Cuneiform: NUN.KI), ca. 5300 BC, by farmers who brought with them the Hadji Muhammed culture, which first pioneered irrigation agriculture. It appears this culture was derived from the Samarran culture from northern Mesopotamia.

Eridu remained an important religious center when it was gradually surpassed in size by the nearby city of Uruk. The story of the passing of the me (gifts of civilisation) to Inanna, goddess of Uruk and of love and war, by Enki, god of wisdom and chief god of Eridu, may reflect this shift in hegemony.

In North Mesopotamia the period runs only between about 5300 and 4300 BC. It is preceded by the Halaf period and the Halaf-Ubaid Transitional period and succeeded by the Late Chalcolithic period.

The Sumerians

Sumer (from Akkadian Šumeru; Sumerian ki-en-ĝir, approximately “land of the civilized kings” or “native land”) was an ancient civilization and historical region in southern Mesopotamia, modern Iraq, during the Chalcolithic and Early Bronze Age. The Sumerian civilization took form in the Uruk period (4th millennium BC), continuing into the Jemdat Nasr and Early Dynastic periods.

Although the earliest historical records in the region do not go back much further than ca. 2900 BC, modern historians have asserted that Sumer was first settled between ca. 4500 and 4000 BC by a non-Semitic people who may or may not have spoken the Sumerian language (pointing to the names of cities, rivers, basic occupations, etc. as evidence).

These conjectured, prehistoric people are now called Ubaidians, and are theorized to have evolved from the Chalcolithic Samarra culture (ca 5500–4800 BC) of northern Mesopotamia (Assyria) identified at the rich site of Tell Sawwan, where evidence of irrigation—including flax—establishes the presence of a prosperous settled culture with a highly organized social structure.

It appears that this early culture was an amalgam of three distinct cultural influences: peasant farmers, living in wattle and daub or clay brick houses and practicing irrigation agriculture; hunter-fishermen living in woven reed houses and living on floating islands in the marshes (Proto-Sumerians); and Proto-Akkadian nomadic pastoralists, living in black tents.

The area west and north of the plains of the Euphrates and Tigris also saw the emergence of early complex societies in the much later Bronze Age (about 4000 BC). There is evidence of written culture and early state formation in this northern steppe area, although the written formation of the states relatively quickly shifted its center of gravity into the Mesopotamian valley and developed there. The area is therefore in very many writers been named “The Cradle of Civilization.”

The Ghassulian culture

Ghassulian refers to a culture and an archaeological stage dating to the Middle Chalcolithic Period in the Southern Levant. The Ghassulians were a Chalcolithic culture as they also smelted copper.

Considered to correspond to the Halafian culture, Tell Hassuna and Tell Ubaid of North Syria and Mesopotamia, its type-site, Tulaylat al-Ghassul, is located in the Jordan Valley near the Dead Sea in modern Jordan and was excavated in the 1930s.

The dates for Ghassulian are dependent upon 14C (radiocarbon) determinations, which suggest that the typical later Ghassulian began sometime around the mid-5th millennium and ended ca. 3800 BC. The transition from Late Ghassulian to EB I seems to have been 3800-3500 BC.

Funerary customs show evidence that they buried their dead in stone dolmens, a type of single-chamber megalithic tomb, usually consisting of three or more upright stones supporting a large flat horizontal capstone (table), although there are also more complex variants. Most date from the early Neolithic period (4000 to 3000 BC).

The Ghassulian culture, that has been identified at numerous other places in what is today southern Israel, especially in the region of Beersheba, correlates closely with the Amratian (Naqada I) and Gerzeh (Naqada II) cultures, which brought a number of technological improvements, of Egypt and may have had trading affinities (e.g., the distinctive churns, or “bird vases”) with early Minoan culture in Crete.

Egypt

The Amratian Culture was a cultural period in the history of predynastic Upper Egypt, which lasted approximately from 4000 to 3500 BC. It is named after the site of El-Amra, about 120 km (75 mi) south of Badari, Upper Egypt.

El-Amra was the first site where this culture group was found without being mingled with the later Gerzean culture group. However, this period is better attested at the Naqada site, thus it also is referred to as the Naqada I culture.

The Naqada culture manufactured a diverse selection of material goods, reflective of the increasing power and wealth of the elite, as well as societal personal-use items, which included combs, small statuary, painted pottery, high quality decorative stone vases, cosmeti palettes, and jewelry made of gold, lapis, and ivory.

They also developed a ceramic glaze known as faience, which was used well into the Roman Period to decorate cups, amulets, and figurines. During the last predynastic phase, the Naqada culture began using written symbols that eventually were developed into a full system of hieroglyphs for writing the ancient Egyptian language.

In Naqada II times, early evidence exists of contact with the Near East, particularly Canaan and the Byblos coast. Over a period of about 1,000 years, the Naqada culture developed from a few small farming communities into a powerful civilization whose leaders were in complete control of the people and resources of the Nile valley.

Gerzeh, also Girza or Jirzah, is the second of three phases of the Naqada Culture, and so is called Naqada II. It is preceded by the Amratian (Naqada I) and followed by the Protodynastic or Semainian (Naqada III). The end of the Gerzean period is generally regarded as coinciding with the unification of Egypt.

It was a predynastic Egyptian cemetery located along the west bank of the Nile and today named after al-Girza, the nearby present day town in Egypt. Gerzeh is situated only several miles due east of the lake of the Al Fayyum.

Establishing a power center at Hierakonpolis, and later at Abydos, Naqada III leaders expanded their control of Egypt northwards along the Nile. There is also strong archaeological evidence of Egyptian settlements in southern Canaan during the Protodynastic Period, which are regarded as colonies or trading entrepôts.

By about 3600 BC, neolithic Egyptian societies along the Nile River had based their culture on the raising of crops and the domestication of animals. The Mesopotamian process of sun-dried bricks, and architectural building principles—including the use of the arch and recessed walls for decorative effect—became popular during this time.

Shortly after 3600 BC Egyptian society began to grow and advance rapidly toward refined civilization. A new and distinctive pottery, which was related to the pottery of the Southern Levant, appeared during this time. Extensive use of copper became common during this time.

The Gerzean culture, from about 3500 to 3200 BC, is named after the site of Gerzeh. It was the next stage in Egyptian cultural development, and it was during this time that the foundation of Dynastic Egypt was laid.

Gerzean culture is largely an unbroken development out of Amratian Culture, starting in the delta and moving south through upper Egypt, but failing to dislodge Amratian culture in Nubia.

Gerzean pottery is distinctly different from Amratian white cross-lined wares or black-topped ware. Gerzean pottery was painted mostly in dark red with pictures of animals, people, and ships, as well as geometric symbols that appear derived from animals. Also, “wavy” handles, rare before this period became more common and more elaborate until they were almost completely ornamental.

Although the Gerzean Culture is now clearly identified as being the continuation of the Amratian period, significant amounts of Mesopotamian influences worked their way into Egypt during the Gerzean which were interpreted in previous years as evidence of a Mesopotamian ruling class, the so-called Dynastic Race, coming to power over Upper Egypt. This idea no longer attracts academic support.

Distinctly foreign objects and art forms entered Egypt during this period, indicating contacts with several parts of Asia. Objects such as the Gebel el-Arak knife handle, which has patently Mesopotamian relief carvings on it, have been found inEgypt, and the silver which appears in this period can only have been obtained from Asia Minor.

In addition, Egyptian objects are created which clearly mimic Mesopotamian forms, although not slavishly. Cylinder seals appear in Egypt, as well as recessed paneling architecture, the Egyptian reliefs on cosmetic palettes are clearly made in the same style as the contemporary Mesopotamian Uruk culture, and the ceremonial mace heads which turn up from the late Gerzean and early Semainean are crafted in the Mesopotamian “pear-shaped” style, instead of the Egyptian native style.

The route of this trade is difficult to determine, but contact with Canaan does not predate the early dynastic, so it is usually assumed to have been by water. During the time when the Dynastic Race Theory was still popular, it was theorized that Uruk sailors circumnavigated Arabia, but a Mediterranean route, probably by middlemen through Byblos is more likely, as evidenced by the presence of Byblian objects in Egypt.

The fact that so many Gerzean sites are at the mouths of wadis which lead to the Red Sea may indicate some amount of trade via the Red Sea (though Byblian trade potentially could have crossed the Sinai and then taken to the Red Sea).

Also, it is considered unlikely that something as complicated as recessed panel architecture could have worked its way into Egypt by proxy, and at least a small contingent of migrants is often suspected.

Concurrent with these cultural advances, a process of unification of the societies and towns of the upper Nile River, or Upper Egypt, occurred. At the same time the societies of the Nile Delta, or Lower Egypt also underwent a unification process. Warfare between Upper and Lower Egypt occurred often.

Hamoukar

Hamoukar is a large archaeological site located in the Jazira region of northeastern Syria near the Iraqi border (Al Hasakah Governorate) and Turkey. The Excavations have shown that this site houses the remains of one of the world’s oldest known cities, leading scholars to believe that cities in this part of the world emerged much earlier than previously thought.

Traditionally, the origins of urban developments in this part of the world have been sought in the riverine societies of southern Mesopotamia (in what is now southern Iraq). This is the area of ancient Sumer, where around 4000 BC many of the famous Mesopotamian cities such as Ur and Uruk emerged, giving this region the attributes of “Cradle of Civilization” and “Heartland of Cities.”

Following the discoveries at Hamoukar, this definition may have to extended further up the Tigris River to include that part of northern Syria where Hamoukar is located.

This archaeological discovery suggests that civilizations advanced enough to reach the size and organizational structure that was necessary to be considered a city could have actually emerged before the advent of a written language.

Previously it was believed that a system of written language was a necessary predecessor of that type of complex city. Most importantly, archaeologists believe this apparent city was thriving as far back as 4000 BC and independently from Sumer.
Until now, the oldest cities with developed seals and writing were thought to be Sumerian Uruk and Ubaid in Mesopotamia, which would be in the southern one-third of Iraq today.

The discovery at Hamoukar indicates that some of the fundamental ideas behind cities—including specialization of labor, a system of laws and government, and artistic development – may have begun earlier than was previously believed.

The fact that this discovery is such a large city is what is most exciting to archaeologists. While they have found small villages and individual pieces that date much farther back than Hamoukar, nothing can quite compare to the discovery of this size and magnitude. Discoveries have been made here that have never been seen before, including materials from Hellenistic and Islamic civilizations.

Shengavit Settlement

The Shengavit Settlement is an archaeological site in present day Yerevan, Armenia located on a hill south-east of Lake Yerevan. It was inhabited during a series of settlement phases from approximately 3200 BC cal to 2500 BC cal in the Kura Araxes (Shengavitian) Period of the Early Bronze Age and irregularly re-used in the Middle Bronze Age until 2200 BC cal. Its pottery makes it a type site of the Kura-Araxes or Early Transcaucasian Period and the Shengavitian culture area.

The town occupied an area of six hectares. It appears that Shengavit was a societal center for the areas surrounding the town due to its unusual size, evidence of surplus production of grains, and metallurgy, as well as its monumental 4 meter wide stone wall.

Four smaller village sites of Moukhannat, Tepe, Khorumbulagh, and Tairov have been identified and were located outside the walls of Shengavit. Its pottery makes it a type site of the Kura-Araxes or Early Transcaucasian Period and the Shengavitian culture area.

Archaeologists so far have uncovered large cyclopean walls with towers that surrounded the settlement. Within these walls were circular and square multi-dwelling buildings constructed of stone and mud-brick. Inside some of the residential structures were ritual hearths and household pits, while large silos located nearby stored wheat and barley for the residents of the town. There was also an underground passage that led to the river from the town.

Earlier excavations had uncovered burial mounds outside the settlement walls towards the south-east and south-west. More ancient graves still remain in the same vicinity.

A large stone obelisk was discovered in one of the structures during earlier excavations. A similar obelisk was uncovered at the site of Mokhrablur four km south of Ejmiatsin. It is thought that this, and the numerous statuettes made of clay that have been found are part of a central ritualistic practice in Shengavit.

Pottery found at the town typically has a characteristic black burnished exterior and reddish interior with either incised or raised designs. This style defines the period, and is found across the mountainous Early Transcaucasian territories. One of the larger styles of pottery has been identified as a wine vat but residue tests will confirm this notion.

A popular press source unfortunately has been cited misstating information from a 2010 press conference in Yerevan. In that conference Rothman described the Uruk Expansion trading network, and the likelihood that raw materials and technologies from the South Caucasus had reached the Mesopotamian homeland, which somehow was misinterpreted to say that Armenian culture was a source of Mesopototamian culture. The Kura Araxes (Shengavitian) cultures and societies are a unique mountain phenomenon, evolved parallel to but not the same as Mesopotamian cultures.

Indo-Europeans

The Bronze Age in the ancient Near East began in the 4th millennium BC. Cultures in the ancient Near East (often called, “the cradle of civilization”) practised intensive year-round agriculture, developed a writing system, invented the potter’s wheel, created a centralized government, law codes, and empires, and introduced social stratification, slavery, and organized warfare. Societies in the region laid the foundations for astronomy and mathematics.

The Hurrians had a reputation in metallurgy. The Sumerians borrowed their copper terminology from the Hurrian vocabulary. Copper was traded south to Mesopotamia from the highlands of Anatolia. The Khabur Valley had a central position in the metal trade, and copper, silver and even tin were accessible from the Hurrian-dominated countries Kizzuwatna and Ishuwa situated in the Armenian highland.

Gold was in short supply, and the Amarna letters inform us that it was acquired from Egypt. Not many examples of Hurrian metal work have survived, except from the later Urartu. Some small fine bronze lion figurines were discovered at Urkesh.

The Armenian hypothesis of the Proto-Indo-European Urheimat, based on the Glottalic theory suggests that the Proto-Indo-European language was spoken during the 4th millennium BC in the Armenian Highland. It is an Indo-Hittite model and does not include the Anatolian languages in its scenario.

The Tocharians, which consists of the haplogroups J2, R1b and G, went to the east (Siberia etc), and are very closely connected culturally with the Celts. Both the Celts and the Tocharians, which doesn’t any longer exists, share together with all other Indo-europeans the same roots from Caucasus for about 6.000 years ago.

While the Anatolians was the first Indo-european group who left from the Indo-european urheimat in the Caucasus, the Tocharians was the next. Armenian, it self an Paleo-balcanic language closely related to Phrygian, and to a lesser extent to Greek and Sanskrit, is maybe the first Indo-european language.

The Maykop culture

The Maykop culture (also spelled Maikop), ca. 3700-3000 BC, was a major Bronze Age archaeological culture in the Western Caucasus region of Southern Russia. It extends along the area from the Taman Peninsula at the Kerch Strait to near the modern border of Dagestan and southwards to the Kura River. The culture takes its name from a royal burial found in Maykop in the Kuban River valley.

In the south it borders the approximately contemporaneous Kura-Araxes culture (3500-2200 BC), which extends into eastern Anatolia and apparently influenced it. To the north is the Yamna culture, including the Novotitorovka culture (3300-2700), which it overlaps in territorial extent. It is contemporaneous with the late Uruk period in Mesopotamia.

The Kuban River is navigable for much of its length and provides an easy water-passage via the Sea of Azov to the territory of the Yamna culture, along the Don and Donets River systems. The Maykop culture was thus well-situated to exploit the trading possibilities with the central Ukraine area.

After the discovery of the Leyla-Tepe culture in the 1980s it was suggested that elements of the Maykop culture migrated to the south-eastern slopes of the Caucasus in modern Azerbaijan.

New data revealed the similarity of artifacts from the Maykop culture with those found recently in the course of excavations of the ancient city of Tell Khazneh in northern Syria, the construction of which dates back to 4000 BC.

The new high dating of the Maikop culture essentially signifies that there is no chronological hiatus separating the collapse of the Chalcolithic Balkan centre of metallurgical production and the appearance of Maikop and the sudden explosion of  Caucasian metallurgical production and use of arsenical copper/bronzes.

More than  forty calibrated radiocarbon dates on Maikop and related materials now support this high  chronology; and the revised dating for the Maikop culture means that the earliest kurgans  occur in the northwestern and southern Caucasus and precede by several centuries those of the Pit-Grave (Yamnaya) cultures of the western Eurasian steppes (cf. Chernykh and Orlovskaya 2004a and b).

The calibrated radiocarbon dates suggest that the Maikop ‘culture’ seems to have had a formative influence on steppe kurgan burial rituals and what now appears to be the later development of the Pit-Grave (Yamnaya) culture on the Eurasian steppes (Chernykh and Orlovskaya 2004a: 97).

In other words, sometime around the middle of the 4th millennium BCE or slightly subsequent to the initial appearance of the Maikop culture of the NW Caucasus, settlements containing proto-Kura-Araxes or early Kura-Araxes materials first appear across a broad area that stretches from the Caspian littoral of the northeastern Caucasus in the north to the Erzurum region of the Anatolian Plateau in the west.

For simplicity’s sake these roughly simultaneous developments across this broad area will be considered as representing the beginnings of the Early Bronze Age or the initial stages of development of the KuraAraxes/Early Transcaucasian culture.

The archaeological record seems to document a movement of peoples north to south across a very extensive part of the Ancient Near East from the end of the 4th to the first half of the 3rd millennium BCE. Although migrations are notoriously difficult to document on archaeological evidence, these materials constitute one of the best examples of prehistoric movements of peoples available for the Early Bronze Age.

The inhumation practices of the Maikop culture were characteristically Indo-European, typically in a pit, sometimes stone-lined, topped with a kurgan (or tumulus). Stone cairns replace kurgans in later interments. The Maykop kurgan was extremely rich in gold and silver artifacts; unusual for the time. The Maykop culture is believed to be one of the first to use the wheel.

The Maykop nobility enjoyed horse riding and probably used horses in warfare. It should be noted that the Maykop people lived sedentary lives, and horses formed a very low percentage of their livestock, which mostly consisted of pigs and cattle.

Archaeologists have discovered a unique form of bronze cheek-pieces, which consists of a bronze rod with a twisted loop in the middle and a thread through her nodes that connects with bridle, halter strap and headband. Notches and bumps on the edges of the cheek-pieces were, apparently, to fix nose and under-lip belts.

The culture has been described as, at the very least, a “kurganized” local culture with strong ethnic and linguistic links to the descendants of the Proto-Indo-Europeans. It has been linked to the Lower Mikhaylovka group and Kemi Oba culture, and more distantly, to the Globular Amphora and Corded Ware cultures, if only in an economic sense.

Gamkrelidze and Ivanov, whose views are somewhat controversial, suggest that the Maykop culture (or its ancestor) may have been a way-station for Indo-Europeans migrating from the South Caucasus and/or eastern Anatolia to a secondary Urheimat on the steppe. This would essentially place the Anatolian stock in Anatolia from the beginning, and at least in this instance, agrees with Colin Renfrew’s Anatolian hypothesis.

Considering that some attempt has been made to unite Indo-European with the Northwest Caucasian languages, an earlier Caucasian pre-Urheimat is not out of the question. However, most linguists and archaeologists consider this hypothesis highly unlikely, and prefer the Eurasian steppes as the genuine IE Urheimat.

In the early 20th century, researchers established the existence of a local Maykop animal style in the found artifacts. This style was seen as the prototype for animal styles of later archaeological cultures: the Maykop animal style is more than a thousand years older than the Scythian, Sarmatian and Celtic animal styles. Attributed to the Maykop culture are petroglyphs which have yet to be deciphered.

The construction of artificial terrace complexes in the mountains is evidence of their sedentary living, high population density, and high levels of agricultural and technical skills. The terraces were built around the fourth millennium BC. They are among the most ancient in the world, but they are little studied. The longevity of the terraces (more than 5000 years) allows us to consider their builders unsurpassed engineers and craftsmen.

Aleppo

Aleppo, earlier Armi, is named after the sun, which in Armenian is called Arev. Ara is the sun god. Little of Aleppo has been excavated by archaeologists, since Aleppo was never abandoned during its long history and the modern city is situated above the ancient site. Therefore, most of the knowledge about Yamhad comes from tablets discovered at Alalakh and Mari. The site has been occupied from around 5000 BC, as excavations in Tallet Alsauda show.

Aleppo appears in historical records as an important city much earlier than Damascus. The first record of Aleppo comes from the third millennium BC, in the Ebla tablets, a collection of as many as 1800 complete clay tablets, 4700 fragments and many thousand minor chips found in the palace archives of the ancient city of Ebla, Syria, when Aleppo was the capital of an independent kingdom closely related to Ebla, known as Armi.

Two languages appeared in the writing on the tablets: Sumerian, and a previously unknown language that used the Sumerian cuneiform script (Sumerian logograms or “Sumerograms”) as a phonetic representation of the locally spoken Ebla language.

The latter script was initially identified as proto-Canaanite by professor Giovanni Pettinato, who first deciphered the tablets, because it predated the Semitic languages of Canaan, like Ugaritic and Hebrew. Pettinato later retracted the designation and decided to call it simply “Eblaite”, the name by which it is known today.

Eblaite is an extinct Semitic language which was used in the 23rd century BC in the ancient city of Ebla. Eblaite has been described as an East Semitic language which may be very close to pre-Sargonic Akkadian.

For example, Manfred Krebernik says that Eblaite “is so closely related to Akkadian that it may be classified as an early Akkadian dialect”, although some of the names that appear in the tablets are Northwest Semitic.

According to Cyrus H. Gordon, although scribes might have spoken it sometimes, Eblaite was probably not spoken much, being rather a written lingua franca with East and West Semitic features.

Armani, Arman or Armanum, was an important Bronze Age city-kingdom during the late third millennium BC located in northern Syria, identified with the city of Aleppo. Aleppo was the capital of the independent kingdom closely related to Ebla, Naram-Sin of Akkad mentions Arman or Armani as a city that he sacked along with Ebla, this Armani was identified by some scholars with Armi.

It has been suggested by early 20th century Armenologists that Old Persian Armina and the Greek Armenoi are continuations of an Assyrian toponym Armânum or Armanî. There are certain Bronze Age records identified with the toponym in both Mesopotamian and Egyptian sources. The earliest is from an inscription which mentions Armânum together with Ibla (Ebla) as territories conquered by Naram-Sin of Akkad in ca. 2250 BC.

Naram-Sin of Akkad mention his destruction of Ebla and Armani/Armanum, in the 23rd century BC. Naram-Sin mentions that he captured the king of Arman when he sacked the city. Naram-Sin gives a long description about his siege of armani, his destruction of its walls and the capturing of its king Rid-Adad.

The identification of Armani in the inscription of Naram-Sim as Armi in the Eblaite tablets is heavily debated, however, its confirmed that the whole of northern Syria including Ebla and Armi was part of the Akkadian empire during the reign of Naram-Sin.

PPNC

The PPNB culture disappeared during the 8.2 kiloyear event, a term that climatologists have adopted for a sudden decrease in global temperatures that occurred approximately 8,200 years before the present, or c. 6200 BC, and which lasted for the next two to four centuries.

In the following Munhatta and Yarmukian post-pottery Neolithic cultures that succeeded it, rapid cultural development continues, although PPNB culture continued in the Amuq valley, where it influenced the later development of Ghassulian culture.

Work at the site of ‘Ain Ghazal in Jordan has indicated a later Pre-Pottery Neolithic C period. Juris Zarins has proposed that pastoral nomadism, or a Circum Arabian Nomadic Pastoral Complex, began as a cultural lifestyle in the wake of the climatic crisis of 6200 BC, and spreading Proto-Semitic languages.

This partly as a result of an increasing emphasis in PPNB cultures upon domesticated animals, and a fusion with Harifian hunter gatherers in the Southern Levant, with affiliate connections with the cultures of Fayyum and the Eastern Desert of Egypt. Cultures practicing pastoral nomadism spread down the Red Sea shoreline and moved east from Syria into southern Iraq.

Nomadic pastoralism is a form of pastoralism where livestock are herded in order to find fresh pastures on which to graze following an irregular pattern of movement. This is in contrast with transhumance where seasonal pastures are fixed.

The nomadic pastoralism was a result of the Neolithic revolution. During the revolution, humans began domesticating animals and plants for food and started forming cities. Nomadism generally has existed in symbiosis with such settled cultures trading animal products (meat, hides, wool, cheeses and other animal products) for manufactured items not produced by the nomadic herders. Henri Fleisch tentatively suggested the Shepherd Neolithic industry of Lebanon may date to the Epipaleolithic and that it may have been used by one of the first cultures of nomadic shepherds in the Beqaa valley.

Andrew Sherratt demonstrates that “early farming populations used livestock mainly for meat, and that other applications were explored as agriculturalists adapted to new conditions, especially in the semi‐arid zone.”

Historically nomadic herder lifestyles have led to warrior-based cultures that have made them fearsome enemies of settled people. Tribal confederations built by charismatic nomadic leaders have sometimes held sway over huge areas as incipient state structures whose stability is dependent upon the distribution of taxes, tribute and plunder taken from settled populations.

In the past it was asserted that pastoral nomads left no presence archaeologically but this has now been challenged. Pastoral nomadic sites are identified based on their location outside the zone of agriculture, the absence of grains or grain-processing equipment, limited and characteristic architecture, a predominance of sheep and goat bones, and by ethnographic analogy to modern pastoral nomadic peoples.

Juris Zahrins has proposed that pastoral nomadism began as a cultural lifestyle in the wake of the 6200 BC climatic crisis when Harifian hunter-gatherers fused with Pre-Pottery Neolithic B agriculturalists to produce a nomadic lifestyle based on animal domestication, developing a circum-Arabian nomadic pastoral complex, and spreading Proto-Semitic languages.

The relationship and dividing line between the related Heavy Neolithic zone of the south Beqaa Valley could also not be clearly defined but was suggested to be in the area around Douris and Qalaat Tannour. Not enough exploration had been carried out to conclude whether the bands of Neolithic surface sites continues south into the areas around Zahle and Rayak.

Along with Maqne I, a town and municipality in the Baalbek District of the Beqaa Governorate, Lebanon, Qaa is a type site of the Shepherd Neolithic industry. The site is located 5 miles (8.0 km) north west of the town, north of a path leading from Qaa to Hermel. It was discovered by M. Billaux and the materials recovered were documented by Henri Fleisch in 1966.

The area was lightly cultivated with a thin soil covering the conglomerates. The flints were divided into three groups of a reddish brown, light brown and one that was mostly chocolate and grey colored with a radiant “desert shine”.

It was one of the most important Phoenician cities, and may have been the oldest. From here, and other ports, a great Mediterranean commercial empire was founded.

Semites

The word “Semitic” (from the Biblical “Shem”) is an adjective derived from Shem, one of the three sons of Noah in the Bible (Genesis 5.32, 6.10, 10.21). In Genesis 10:21–31, Shem is described as the father of Aram, Ashur, and Arpachshad: the Biblical ancestors of the Semites, of whom the languages are closely related; the language family containing them was therefore named “Semitic” by linguists.

The concept of “Semitic” peoples is derived from Biblical accounts of the origins of the cultures known to the ancient Hebrews. Those closest to them in culture and language were generally deemed to be descended from their forefather Shem. Enemies were often said to be descendants of his cursed nephew, Canaan (even though Hebrew in reality, is itself a Canaanite language).

As language studies are interwoven with cultural studies, the term also came to describe the extended cultures and ethnicities, as well as the history of these varied peoples as associated by close geographic and linguistic distribution.

In linguistics and ethnology, Semitic was first used to refer to a language family of West Asian origin, now called the Semitic languages. The term Semite means a member of any of various ancient and modern Semitic-speaking peoples originating in the Near East, including;

Akkadians (Assyrians and Babylonians), Eblaites, Ugarites, Canaanites, Phoenicians (including Carthaginians), Hebrews (Israelites, Judeans and Samaritans), Ahlamu, Amalekites, Amhari, Amorites, Arabs, Arameans, Bahranis, Canaanites, Chaldeans, Dilmunites, Eblaites, Edomites, Ethiopian Semites, Ge’ez, Hebrews, Hyksos, Nabateans, Maganites, Malteses, Mandeans, Moabites, Phoenicians, Shebans, Sutu, Maltese, Mandaeans, Mhallami, Palmyrans Sabians, Syriacs, Tigres, Tigrinyans, Ugarits, and Ubarites.

The Canaanites and Amorites also spoke languages very closely related to Hebrew and attested in writing earlier, and are therefore termed Semitic in linguistics, despite being described in Genesis as sons of Ham. Shem is also described in Genesis as the father of Elam and Lud, however the Elamites were not Semitic, they spoke a language isolate, and the equally non Semitic Lydians spoke an Indo-European language. Equally, the Hittites are described as sons of Ham, but in actuality they spoke an Indo-European language.

The reconstructed Proto-Semitic language, ancestral to historical Semitic languages in the Middle East, is thought to have been originally from either the Arabian Peninsula (particularly around Yemen), the Levant, Mesopotamia or even the Ethiopian Highlands. However, its region of origin is still uncertain and much debated, with, for example, a recent Bayesian analysis identifying an origin for Semitic languages in the Levant around 3,750 BC. with a later single introduction from what is now southern Arabia into north Africa around 800 BC.

The Semitic language family is also considered a component of the larger Afroasiatic macro-family of languages. Identification of the hypothetical proto-Semitic region of origin is therefore dependent on the larger geographic distributions of the other language families within Afroasiatic.

The earliest historical attestation of any Semitic people comes from Mesopotamia, with the East Semitic Akkadian-speaking peoples entering the region dominated by the non-Semitic Sumerians, whom Sumerologist Samuel Noah Kramer asserts “No people has contributed more to the culture of mankind than the Sumerians” and yet it is only comparatively recently that we have built up a knowledge of the existence of this ancient culture.

The Sumerian city of Eridu, on the coast of the Persian Gulf, was the world’s first city, where three separate cultures fused – that of peasant Ubaidian farmers, living in mud-brick huts and practicing irrigation; that of mobile nomadic Semitic pastoralists living in black tents and following herds of sheep and goats; and that of fisher folk, living in reed huts in the marshlands, who may have been the ancestors of the Sumerians.

The earliest known Akkadian inscription was found on a bowl at Ur, addressed to the very early pre-Sargonic king Meskiang-nuna of Ur by his queen Gan-saman, who is thought to have been from Akkad. However, some of the names appearing on the Sumerian king list as prehistoric rulers of Kish have been held to indicate a Semitic presence even before this, as early as the 30th or 29th century BC.

Sumerian civilization took form in the Uruk period (4th millennium BC), continuing into the Jemdat Nasr and Early Dynastic periods. During the 3rd millennium BC, a close cultural symbiosis developed between the Sumerians (who spoke a Language Isolate) and the Semitic Akkadian speakers, which included widespread bilingualism.

The influence of Sumerian on Akkadian (and vice versa) is evident in all areas, from lexical borrowing on a massive scale, to syntactic, morphological, and phonological convergence. This has prompted scholars to refer to Sumerian and Akkadian in the 3rd millennium BC as a sprachbund.

The surplus of storable food created by this economy allowed the population of this region to settle in one place, instead of migrating as hunter gatherers. It also allowed for a much greater population density, and in turn required an extensive labour force and division of labour with many specialised arts and crafts.

At the same time, over use of the irrigated soils led to progressive salinisation, and a Malthusian crisis which led to depopulation of the Sumerian region over time, leading to its progressive eclipse by the Akkadians of middle Mesopotamia.

Sumer was conquered by the Semitic-speaking kings of the Akkadian Empire around 2270 BC (short chronology), but Sumerian continued as a sacred language. By the mid 3rd millennium BC, many states and cities in Mesopotamia had come to be ruled or dominated by Akkadian speaking Semites, including Assyria, Eshnunna, Akkad, Kish, Isin, Ur, Uruk, Adab, Nippur, Ekallatum, Nuzi, Akshak, Eridu and Larsa.

The Akkadian Empire (2335 BC – 2193 BC) enabled the Mesopotamian Semites to unite all of Mesopotamia under one rule, and further spread their dominance and cultural and technological influence over much of the Near East, Asia Minor (Anatolia) and Ancient Iran.

The East Semitic Mesopotamian states of Akkad, Assyria and Babylonia proved to be not only the oldest, but the most advanced in the Near East and its surrounds, between the mid 24th and late 6th centuries BC, often asserting dominance over the West, Northwest and South Semitic speaking peoples, as well as the Non-Semitic peoples of the region.

A number of non-Semitic peoples were eventually absorbed by Semites; The Sumerians were absorbed into the Akkadian speaking Assyro-Babylonian population of Mesopotamia by around 2000 BC, and the Kassites who ruled Babylonia for almost five centuries from the early 16th century BC, eventually blended into the native population.

Similarly, the Philistines eventually disappeared into the native Israelite-Canaanite population, and in northern Aram (Syria) and south central Asia Minor, there was a synthesis between the Semitic Arameans and Indo-European Neo-Hittites, with the founding of a number of small Syro-Hittite states fro the 12th century BC until their destruction by Assyria in the 8th and 7th centuries BC.

Ararat

The name Urartu comes from Assyrian sources: the Assyrian King Shalmaneser I (1263–1234 BC) recorded a campaign in which he subdued the entire territory of “Uruatri.” The Shalmaneser text uses the name Urartu to refer to a geographical region, not a kingdom, and names eight “lands” contained within Urartu (which at the time of the campaign were still disunited).

“Urartu” is cognate with the Biblical “Ararat,” Akkadian “Urashtu,” and Armenian “Ayrarat.” The name used by the local population as a toponym was Biainili (or Biaineli), which forms the root of the Armenian Վան (“Van”), hence the names “Kingdom of Van (Bianili)” or “Vannic Kingdom”.

Scholars believe that Urartu is an Akkadian variation of Ararat of the Old Testament. Indeed, Mount Ararat is located in ancient Urartian territory, approximately 120 km north of its former capital. In addition to referring to the famous Biblical mountain, Ararat also appears as the name of a kingdom in Jeremiah 51:27, mentioned together with Minni and Ashkenaz.

Boris Piotrovsky wrote that “the Urartians first appear in history in the 13th century BC. as a league of tribes or countries which did not yet constitute a unitary state. Scholars such as Carl Friedrich Lehmann-Haupt (1910) believed that the people of Urartu called themselves Khaldini after their god Khaldi.

In the Assyrian annals the term Uruatri (Urartu) as a name for this league was superseded during a considerable period of years by the term “land of Nairi” (KUR.KUR Na-i-ri, also Na-‘i-ru), the Assyrian name for a Proto-Armenian (Hurrian-speaking) region in the Armenian Highlands, roughly corresponding to the modern Van and Hakkâri provinces of modern Turkey.

Shubria or Arme-Shupria (Armenian: Շուպրիա; Akkadian: Armani-Subartu from the 3rd millennium BC) was a Hurrian-speaking kingdom, known from Assyrian sources beginning in the 13th century BC, located in the Armenian Highland, to the southwest of Lake Van, bordering on Ararat proper. It was part of the Urartu confederation. Later, there is reference to a district in the area called Arme or Urme, which scholars have linked to the name Armenia.

Together with Armani-Subartu (Hurri-Mitanni), Hayasa-Azzi and other populations of the region such as the Nairi fell under Urartian (Kingdom of Ararat) rule in the 9th century BC, and their descendants, according to most scholars, later contributed to the ethnogenesis of the early Armenians.

In the early 6th century BC, the Urartian Kingdom was replaced by the Armenian Orontid dynasty. In the trilingual Behistun inscription, carved in 521 or 520 BC by the order of Darius the Great of Persia, the country referred to as Urartu in Assyrian is called Arminiya in Old Persian and Harminuia in Elamite.

Khaldi

Haik, Khaldi, Cael, Kali, Kel and Hel (“the Hidden” from the word hel, “to conceal”) is different names of the same good – Asha (aša) (corresponding to Vedic language ṛta) and druj, Maat and Isfet, Ying and Yang – two sides of the coin. Armenia, the nation of Khaldi/Haik, is nr one, the starter and the creator.

The Sumerian god Haya is known both as a “door-keeper” and associated with the scribal arts. His functions are two-fold: he appears to have served as a door-keeper, but was also associated with the scribal arts, and may have had an association with grain.

In the early periods Haya was mainly worshipped in southern Mesopotamia (Umma, Ur, and Ku’ara). His shrine in Ur may have been located in the Ekišnugal, temple of Nanna, the moon-god.

The first attestation of this divine name in writing occurs at Fara (ancient Šuruppak, southern Iraq) in a “school tablet” from the 26th century BCE. The context is unclear. The god is most frequently attested in the Ur III period, when he had cults attested in Umma, Ur and Ku’ara.

The cult of haià either falls out of use in Babylonia after the Old Babylonian period, if not before, or is not attested. It was revitalised during the Neo-Assyrian period when king Sennacherib (r. 704-681 BCE) planned to build him a temple according to a draught of a foundation document from his reign. He is still characterised as a scribal god.

Haya had a shrine in the temple of the god Aššur in Assur. Two fragmentary inscriptions from Nineveh mention the planned construction of a temple to Haya by the Neo-Assyrian king Sennacherib (r. 704-681 BCE), although it is not clear where this was going to be located, or whether it was built. Presumably in this role he presides over a procession of the “gods of Subartu” at a festival in Assur. He also participates in the New Year’s Festival at Assur.

In the god-list preserved on manuscripts of the first millennium he is mentioned as a divinity associated with door-keepers. Already in the Ur III period Haya had received offerings together with offerings to the “gate”. This was presumably because of the location of one of his shrines.

He is characterized as an “agrig”-official of the god Enlil, but while there is plenty of evidence to connect Haya with scribes, the evidence connecting him with grain is mainly restricted to etymological considerations, which are unreliable and suspect.

There is also a divine name Haia in a bilingual Hattic-Hittite text from Anatolia which is used as an equivalent for the Hattic grain-goddess Kait in an invocation to the Hittite grain-god Halki, although it is unclear whether this can be related to Haià. Attempts have also been made to connect the remote origins of haià with those of the god Ea (Ebla Ḥayya), although there remain serious doubts concerning this hypothesis. How, or whether, both are related to a further western deity called Ḥayya is also unclear.

At least from the Old Babylonian period on he is known as the spouse of the grain-goddess Nidaba/Nissaba, the Sumerian goddess of grain and writing, and the patron deity of the city Ereš. The god-list designates him as “the Nissaba of wealth”, as opposed to his wife, who is the “Nissaba of Wisdom”.

In ancient Roman religion and myth, Janus (Latin: Ianus) is the god of beginnings and transitions, thence also of gates, doors, passages, endings and time. He frequently symbolized change and transitions such as the progress of future to past, from one condition to another, from one vision to another, and young people’s growth to adulthood. The Romans named the month of January (Ianuarius) in his honor.

Subartu

The land of Subartu (Akkadian Šubartum/Subartum/ina Šú-ba-ri, Assyrian mât Šubarri) or Subar (Sumerian Su-bir/Subar/Šubur) is mentioned in Bronze Age literature from the time of the earliest Mesopotamian records from the mid 3rd millennium BC. The name also appears as Subari in the Amarna letters, and, in the form Šbr in Ugarit, and came to be known as the Hurrians or Subarians and their country was known as Subir, Subartu or Shubar.

It was a Hurrian-speaking kingdom, known from Assyrian sources beginning in the 13th century BC, located in the Armenian Highland, to the southwest of Lake Van, bordering on Ararat proper. Scholars have linked the district in the area called Arme or Armani, to the name Armenia.

Subartu was apparently a polity in Northern Mesopotamia, at the upper Tigris. Most scholars accept Subartu as an early name for Assyria proper on the Tigris, although there are various other theories placing it sometimes a little farther to the east, north or west of there. Its precise location has not been identified.

The Sumerian mythological epic Enmerkar and the Lord of Aratta lists the countries where the “languages are confused” as Subartu, Hamazi, Sumer, Uri-ki, and the Martu land. From the point of view of the Akkadian Empire, Subartu marked the northern geographical horizon, just as Martu, Elam and Sumer marked “west”, “east” and “south”, respectively.

Similarly, the earliest references to the “four quarters” by the kings of Akkad name Subartu as one of these quarters around Akkad, along with Martu, Elam, and Sumer. Subartu may have been in the general sphere of influence of the Hurrians. There are various alternate theories associating the ancient Subartu with one or more modern cultures found in the region, including Armenian tribes.

Weidner interpreted textual evidence to indicate that after the Hurrian king Shattuara of Mitanni was defeated by Adad-nirari I of Assyria in the early 13th century BC, he then became ruler of a reduced vassal state known as Shubria or Subartu.

Together with Armani-Subartu, Hayasa-Azzi and other populations of the region such as the Nairi fell under Urartian (Kingdom of Ararat) rule in the 9th century BC, and their descendants, according to most scholars, later contributed to the ethnogenesis of the early Armenians.

By the Early Iron Age, the Hurrians had been assimilated with other peoples, except perhaps in the kingdom of Urartu, corresponding to the biblical Kingdom of Ararat or Kingdom of Van (Urartian: Biai, Biainili;), was an Iron Age kingdom centred around Lake Van in the Armenian Highlands. According to a hypothesis by I.M.

The Iron Age Urartian language is closely related to or a direct descendant of Hurrian. Several notable Russian linguists, such as S. A. Starostin and V. V. Ivanov, have claimed that Hurrian and Hattic were related to the Northeast Caucasian languages.

In the early 6th century BC, the Urartian Kingdom was replaced by the Armenian Orontid dynasty. In the trilingual Behistun inscription, carved in 521 or 520 BC by the order of Darius the Great of Persia, the country referred to as Urartu in Assyrian is called Arminiya in Old Persian and Harminuia in Elamite.

Shubria was part of the Urartu confederation. Later, there is reference to a district in the area called Arme or Urme, which some scholars have linked to the name Armenia. Some scholars, such as Harvard Professor Mehrdad Izady, claim to have identified Subartu with the current Kurdish tribe of Zibaris inhabiting the northern ring around Mosul up to Hakkari in Turkey.

Hayastan

Hayasa-Azzi or Azzi-Hayasa was a Late Bronze Age confederation formed between two kingdoms of Armenian Highlands, Hayasa located South of Trabzon and Azzi, located north of the Euphrates and to the south of Hayasa. The Hayasa-Azzi confederation was in conflict with the Hittite Empire in the 14th century BC, leading up to the collapse of Hatti around 1190 BC.

The similarity of the name Hayasa to the endonym of the Armenians, Hayk or Hay and the Armenian name for Armenia, Hayastan has prompted the suggestion that the Hayasa-Azzi confereration was involved in the Armenian ethnogenesis.

The term Hayastan bears resemblance to the ancient Mesopotamian god Haya (ha-ià) and another western deity called Ebla Hayya, related to the god Ea (Enki or Enkil in Sumerian, Ea in Akkadian and Babylonian). Thus, the Great Soviet Encyclopedia of 1962 posited that the Armenians derive from a migration of Hayasa into Shupria in the 12th century BC.

This is open to objection due to the possibility of a mere coincidental similarity between the two names and the lack of geographic overlap, although Hayasa (the region) became known as Lesser Armenia (Pokr Hayastan in modern Armenian) in coming centuries.

The mentioning of the name Armenian can only be securely dated to the 6th century BC with the Orontid kings and very little is known specifically about the people of Azzi-Hayasa per se.

The most recent edition of Encyclopædia Britannica does not include any articles on Hayasa or Azzi-Hayasa likely due to the paucity of historical documentation about this kingdom’s people. Britannica’s article on the Armenians confirms that they were descendents of a branch of the Indo-European peoples but makes no assertion that they formed any portion of the population of Azzi-Hayasa.

Some historians find it sound to theorize that after the Phrygian invasion of Hittites, the theoretically named Armeno-Phrygians would have settled in Hayasa-Azzi, and merged with the local people, who were possibly already spread within the western regions of Urartu.

After the fall of the latter, and the rise of the Kingdom of Armenia under the Artaxiad dynasty, Hayasan nobility (given they were truly Armenian) would have assumed control of the region and the people would have adopted their language to complete the amalgamation of the proto-Armenians, giving birth to the nation of Armenia as we know it today.

Hel

Hel in a reading can represent a time of simultaneous endings and beginnings, the point at which the circle is completed. She can also indicate integrity, as opposites unite to form a stronger whole. Kālī, also known as Kālikā, is the Hindu goddess associated with empowerment, shakti. The name Kali comes from kāla, which means black, time, death, lord of death: Shiva. Since Shiva is called Kāla – the eternal time — the name of Kālī, his consort, also means “Time” or “Death” (as in “time has come”). Hence, Kāli is the Goddess of Time and Change.

Hel (“the hidden” from the word hel, “to conceal”) is one of the most misunderstood and misinterpreted Goddess aspects in history. She is described as half white/half blue, or half living/half rotten.

She represents the nature cycle in its entirety, she represents the life and light of spring rising from the roots of the underworld and she represents the dying autumn nature summoning the cold winter, and from this dark times what will lay dead on the ground will be absorbed by the underground to feed a new fertile summer. She is a deep and mighty earth and ice energy who gives life from the darkness – life, death and reincarnation of nature and all living creatures. She is keeper of the underworld and keeper of the source of the origin.

While the other goddesses/giantess, like Freyja, Idunn and Skadi etc., represent specific aspect of life and nature, Hel represent the full cycle of life and death. Althought there is no evidence of a cult of she could have been the supreme Mother nature, and might never had a cult because there were other goddesses who all inherited some specific aspect of Hel and people would rather make a ceremony for different goddesses depending the time of the year or the occasion.

She must have meant something very special since the early Christian church used her name as a scare tactic to frighten the masses into “righteous” acts (instead of allowing free will to guide their actions to do what is right) and to say that all the people who have something to do with heathensim and all of them they chose to define as evil would go to hell.

It seems that Hel actually represents a very old mother earth cult, but that she has been greatly perverted through the years by patriarchal domination. She has fallen from her privileged position as guardian and ruler through years of being represented as an evil, ugly entity waiting to devour and torture lost souls.

To get the real story, we have to go back to the early Nordic people and look this death Goddess in the face. May we learn and dispel the slander of years by seeing her for the protector, judge, and guide that she originally represented.

The old Old Norse word Hel derives from Proto-Germanic *khalija, which means “one who covers up or hides something”, which itself derives from Proto-Indo-European *kel-, meaning “conceal”. The cognate in English is the word Hell which is from the Old English forms hel and helle. Related terms are Old Frisian, helle, German Hölle and Gothic halja. Other words more distantly related include hole, hollow, hall, helmet and cell, all from the aforementioned Indo-European root *kel-.

The word Hel is found in Norse words and phrases related to death such as Helför (“Hel-journey,” a funeral) and Helsótt (“Hel-sickness,” a fatal illness). The Norwegian word “heilag/hellig” which means “sacred” is directly related etymologically to the name “Hel”, and the same goes for the English word “holy”.

Lucifer

Lucifer is the King James Version rendering of the Hebrew word in Isaiah 14:12. This word, transliterated hêlêl or heylel, occurs only once in the Hebrew Bible and according to the KJV-influenced Strong’s Concordance means “shining one, morning star, Lucifer”.

As an adjective, the Latin word lucifer meant “light-bringing” and was applied to the moon. As a noun, it meant “morning star”, or, in Roman mythology, its divine personification as “the fabled son of Aurora and Cephalus, and father of Ceyx”, or (in poetry) “day”. The second of the meanings attached to the word when used as a noun corresponds to the image in Greek mythology of Eos, the goddess of dawn, giving birth to the morning star Phosphorus.

Hermann Gunkel’s reconstruction of the myth told of a mighty warrior called Hêlal, whose ambition it was to ascend higher than all the other stellar divinities, but who had to descend to the depths; it thus portrayed as a battle the process by which the bright morning star fails to reach the highest point in the sky before being faded out by the rising sun.

Similarities have been noted with the East Semitic story of Ishtar’s or Inanna’s descent into the underworld, Ishtar and Inanna being associated with the planet Venus. A connection has been seen also with the Babylonian myth of Etana.

Luciferianism is a belief system that venerates the essential characteristics that are affixed to Lucifer. The tradition, influenced by Gnosticism, usually reveres Lucifer not as the Devil, but as a liberator or guiding spirit or even the true god as opposed to Jehovah.

Although sometimes mistakenly associated with Satanism due to the Christian interpretation of the fallen angel, Luciferianism is a wholly different and unrelated belief system and does not revere the Devil figure or most characteristics typically affixed to Satan.

Rather, Lucifer in this context is seen as one of many Morning Star, a symbol of enlightenment, independence and human progression, and is often used interchangeably with similar figures from a range of ancient beliefs, such as the Greek titan Prometheus or the Jewish figure Lilith.

Attar

In ancient Canaanite mythology, the morning star is pictured as a god, Attar/ Ishtar, who attempted to occupy the throne of the dead god Ba’al and, finding he was unable to do so, descended and ruled the underworld. In semi-arid regions of Western Asia he was sometimes worshipped as a rain god. The original myth may have been about a lesser god Helel trying to dethrone the Canaanite high god El who lived on a mountain to the north.

Attar was worshipped in Southern Arabia in pre-Islamic times. A god of war, he was often referred to as “He who is Bold in Battle”. One of his symbols was the spear-point and the antelope was his sacred animal. He had power over Venus, the morning star, and was believed to provide humankind with water. His female counterpart is the Phoenician Astarte.

As head of the Southern Arabian pantheon, Athtar was a god of the thunderstorm, dispensing natural irrigation in the form of rain. Athtar also represented fertility and water as essential to fertility. When representing water he stood not just for the act of raining itself, but rather for the useful flow of the water after the rain, in the wadi, the Arabian watercourse which is dry except in the rainy season.

Astarte

Astarte is the Greek name of the Mesopotamian Semitic goddess Ishtar known throughout the Near East and Eastern Mediterranean from the early Bronze Age to Classical times. It is one of a number of names associated with the chief goddess or female divinity of those peoples.

She is found as Ugaritic ṯtrt, Aṯtart or Athtart in Phoenician as štrt, Ashtart; in Hebrew Ashtoret (singular), or Ashtarot (plural), the grammatically masculine name of the goddess Ishtar; the form Astartu is used to describe her age. The name appears also in Etruscan as Uni-Astre (Pyrgi Tablets), Ishtar or Ashtart.

Astarte was connected with fertility, sexuality, and war. Her symbols were the lion, the horse, the sphinx, the dove, and a star within a circle indicating the planet Venus. Pictorial representations often show her naked. She has been known as the deified evening star.

Astarte (Ishtar) was accepted by the Greeks under the name of Aphrodite or, alternatively, Artemis. The island of Cyprus, one of Astarte’s greatest faith centers, supplied the name Cypris as Aphrodite’s most common byname.

Me or Parşu

Asha (aša) is the Avestan language term (corresponding to Vedic language ṛta) for a concept of cardinal importance to Zoroastrian theology and doctrine. In the moral sphere, aša/arta represents what has been called “the decisive confessional concept of Zoroastrianism.”

A similar concept in Sumerian mythology is me or parşu, one of the decrees of the gods foundational to those social institutions, religious practices, technologies, behaviors, mores, and human conditions that make civilization, as the Sumerians understood it, possible. They are fundamental to the Sumerian understanding of the relationship between humanity and the gods.

Armeno-Phrygian is a term for a minority supported claim of hypothetical people who are thought to have lived in the Armenian Highland as a group and then have separated to form the Phrygians and the Mushki of Cappadocia. It is also used for the language they are assumed to have spoken. It can also be used for a language branch including these languages, a branch of the Indo-European family or a sub-branch of the proposed Graeco-Armeno-Aryan or Armeno-Aryan branch.

Classification is difficult because little is known of Phrygian and virtually nothing of Mushki, while Proto-Armenian forms a subgroup with Hurro-Urartian, Greek, and Indo-Iranian. These subgroups are all Indo-European, with the exception of Hurro-Urartian.

The Mushki were an Iron Age people of Anatolia, known from Assyrian sources. They do not appear in Hittite records. Two different groups are called Muški in the Assyrian sources (Diakonoff 1984:115), one from the 12th to 9th centuries, located near the confluence of the Arsanias and the Euphrates (“Eastern Mushki”), and the other in the 8th to 7th centuries, located in Cappadocia and Cilicia (“Western Mushki”). Assyrian sources identify the Western Mushki with the Phrygians, while Greek sources clearly distinguish between Phrygians and Moschoi.

Identification of the Eastern with the Western Mushki is uncertain, but it is of course possible to assume a migration of at least part of the Eastern Mushki to Cilicia in the course of the 10th to 8th centuries, and this possibility has been repeatedly suggested, variously identifying the Mushki as speakers of a Georgian, Armenian or Anatolian idiom.

The Encyclopedia of Indo-European Culture notes that “the Armenians according to Diakonoff, are then an amalgam of the Hurrian (and Urartians), Luvians and the Proto-Armenian Mushki (or Armeno-Phrygians) who carried their IE language eastwards across Anatolia.”

Phrygian cap

Accordingly, the Phrygian cap is sometimes called a liberty cap; in artistic representations it signifies freedom and the pursuit of liberty. We are strong, fighting for just, equality, freedom and peace, fighting to keep the balance between men and between men and nature, but faces today strong enemies, the encloser.

Mitanni

Mitanni (Hittite cuneiform KUR URUMi-ta-an-ni, also Mittani Mi-it-ta-ni) or Hanigalbat (Assyrian Hanigalbat, Khanigalbat cuneiform Ḫa-ni-gal-bat) or Naharin in ancient Egyptian texts was an Hurrian-speaking state in northern Syria and south-east Anatolia from ca. 1500 BC–1300 BC.

Founded by an Indo-Aryan ruling class governing a predominately Hurrian population, Mitanni came to be a regional power after the Hittite destruction of Amorite Babylon and a series of ineffectual Assyrian kings created a power vacuum in Mesopotamia.

A Hurrian passage in the Amarna letters – usually composed in Akkadian, the lingua franca of the day – indicates that the royal family of Mitanni was by then speaking Hurrian as well.

At the beginning of its history, Mitanni’s major rival was Egypt under the Thutmosids. Pharaoh Thutmose III of Egypt mentions in the 33rd year of his reign (1446 BC) the people of Ermenen, and says in their land “heaven rests upon its four pillars”. Their sphere of influence is shown in Hurrian place names, personal names and the spread through Syria and the Levant of a distinct pottery type.

However, with the ascent of the Hittite empire, Mitanni and Egypt made an alliance to protect their mutual interests from the threat of Hittite domination. At the height of its power, during the 14th century BC, Mitanni had outposts centered around its capital, Washukanni, whose location has been determined by archaeologists to be on the headwaters of the Khabur River.

The Mitanni kingdom was referred to as the Maryannu, Nahrin or Mitanni by the Egyptians, which also called Mitanni “nhrn”, which is usually pronounced as Naharin/Naharina from the Assyro-Akkadian word for “river”, cf. Aram-Naharaim.

The Hittites called Hurri (Ḫu-ur-ri), while the Assyrians called the Hanigalbat. The different names seem to have referred to the same kingdom and were used interchangeably, according to Michael C. Astour.

The name Mitanni is first found in the “memoirs” of the Syrian wars (ca. 1480 BC) of the official astronomer and clockmaker Amememhet, who returned from the “foreign country called Me-ta-ni” at the time of Thutmose I.

A treatise on the training of chariot horses by Kikkuli contains a number of Indo-Aryan glosses. Kammenhuber (1968) suggested that this vocabulary was derived from the still undivided Indo-Iranian language, but Mayrhofer (1974) has shown that specifically Indo-Aryan features are present.

The names of the Mitanni aristocracy frequently are of Indo-Aryan origin, but it is specifically their deities which show Indo-Aryan roots (Mitra, Varuna, Indra, Nasatya), though some think that they are more immediately related to the Kassites.

Maryannu

Maryannu is an ancient word for the caste of chariot-mounted hereditary warrior nobility which dominated many of the societies of the Middle East during the Bronze Age. The term is attested in the Amarna letters written by Haapi.

Robert Drews writes that the name ‘maryannu’ although plural takes the singular ‘marya’, which in Sanskrit means young warrior, and attaches a Hurrian suffix.(Drews:p. 59) He suggests that at the beginning of the Late Bronze Age most would have spoken either Hurrian or Aryan but by the end of the 14th century most of the Levant maryannu had Semitic names.

Arameans

The idea of seeing a Semitic origin in the names Arma, Aram, Arim, Arime, Arme, Armani, Armina, Armeni, and the like, had become such an obsession with some authors that it prevents them from seeing the essence of the interrelationships between the Armenian Highland and Northern Mesopotamia, and creates added difficulties for the clarification of certain obscure problems related to them.

The fact is that the very name Aram has no connection of origin with those Semites who were later called Aramaeans. A careful study of the cuneiform documents of the Near East shows that the Semitic nomadic tribes that were later called Aramaeans, were previously known by the names Sutu and Ahlame.

They had come to Northern Mesopotamia and settled in the territories of Mitanni ( Naharina), which was either destroyed or about to be destroyed at that time, and they were called Aramaeans after the ancient name Arma or Aram of the land on which they settled.

A similar example is the case of the Egyptians; the name Egypt did not belong to the Arabs, but they have come and settled in the land of Egypt, and by this ancient name of the land they were (and still are) called Egyptians.

The Chaldeans

Eventually, Mitanni succumbed to Hittite and later Assyrian attacks, and was reduced to the status of a province of the Middle Assyrian Empire. Chaldea was a nation extant between the 10th and 6th centuries BC, located in the marshy land of the far south eastern corner of Mesopotamia which came to rule Babylon briefly.

Unlike the Akkadian speaking Assyrians and Babylonians, the Chaldeans were certainly not a native Mesopotamian people, but were migrants to the region. They seem to have appeared there c. 1000 BC, not long after other new Semitic peoples, the Arameans and the Sutu appeared in Babylonia, c. 1100 BC. This was a period of weakness in Babylonia, and its ineffectual native kings were unable to prevent new waves of foreign peoples invading and settling in the land.

In the Hebrew Bible, the prophet Abraham is stated to have originally been from “Ur of the Chaldees” (Ur Kaśdim); if this city is to be identified with the Sumerian Ur, it would be within the original Chaldean homeland south of the Euphrates, although it must be pointed out that the Chaldeans certainly did not exist in Mesopotamia at the time of Abraham, which casts doubt on the historicity of the Abrahamic story.

On the other hand, the traditional identification with a site in Assyria would then imply the later sense of “Babylonia”, and a few interpreters have additionally tried to identify Abraham’s birthplace with Chaldia, a distinct region in Asia Minor on the Black Sea. According to the Book of Jubilees, Ur Kaśdim (and Chaldea) took their name from Ura and Kesed, descendants of Arpachshad.

Though conquerors, the Chaldeans were rapidly and completely assimilated into the dominant Semitic Akkadian Babylonian culture, as the Amorites, Kassites and Arameans before them had been, and after the fall of Babylon in 539 BC the term “Chaldean” was no longer used to describe a specific ethnicity, but rather a socio-economic class.

Assyrians

The Chaldeans originally spoke a West Semitic language, however they eventually adopted the Babylonian dialect of Akkadian, the same Semitic language, save for slight peculiarities in sound and in characters, as Assyrian Akkadian.

During the Assyrian Empire, the Assyrian king Tiglath-Pileser III introduced an Akkadian infused Eastern Aramaic as the lingua franca of his empire. In late periods both the Babylonian and Assyrian dialects of Akkadian ceased to be spoken, and Aramaic took its place across Mesopotamia.

Still the Akkadian influenced language remains the mother tongue of the Assyrian (also known as Chaldo-Assyrian) Christians of northern Iraq and its surrounds to this day. One form of this widespread language is used in Daniel and Ezra, but the use of the name “Chaldee” to describe it, first introduced by Jerome, is incorrect and a misnomer.

The term “Chaldean” is still sometimes used to describe those Assyrians who broke from the Assyrian Church of the East in the 16th and 17th centuries AD, and entered communion with the Roman Catholic Church, which then named the church as the Chaldean Catholic Church, after pointedly initially calling it “The Church of Assyria and Mosul”.

The term Chaldean Catholic should be taken as a denominational rather than an ethnic term, as the modern Chaldean Catholics are in fact Assyrian converts to Catholicism indigenous the north of Mesopotamia, rather than the long extinct Chaldeans who hailed from the far south east of Mesopotamia.

However, a minority of Chaldean Catholics have in recent times espoused a separate identity to their Assyrian brethren, despite there being no accepted historical evidence or mainstream academic study which supports this assertion.

Patriarchs-Abraham

A hundred years ago, many Bible critics claimed that stories of the patriarchs were nothing more than religious fiction. The “silence of history” concerning the patriarchs, upon which these critics based their claims, was shattered with the discovery of ancient tablets at Mari (in southeast Syria) and Nuzi (in modern-day Iraq).

These tablets, although not directly mentioning the patriarchs, still constituted such valuable testimony about their life-styles that the late Professor William F. Albright (the then-acknowledged “dean” of Palestinian archaeologists) concluded that “the narratives of Genesis dealing with Abram may now be integrated into the life and history of the time [the second millennium B.C.] in such surprisingly consistent ways that there can be little doubt about their substantial historicity” (Biblical Archaeologist, July 1973, p. 10).

Overall, the patriarchs’ way of life conforms so closely to the cultural world described by these tablets that there is no reason to doubt that they were real people.

Though the beginning of Israel’s history as a nation is usually placed at the time of her departure from Egypt, an account of her history must start with Abraham and the patriarchs. Only after Israel had moved across Egypt’s border did she have size and identity with which other nations would have to reckon with, but she already had a history that stretched back through the years to her fathers, Jacob and Abraham. To Jacob the twelve heads of the respective tribes had been born, and to Abraham God had given His promise of a nation.

Archaeological discoveries in the Middle East support and illuminate Scripture. Discoveries continue to fill in the picture of the ancient civilization in which the patriarchs lived. It may be that archaeology will never prove that Abraham really existed, but what we can prove is that his life and times, as reflected in the stories about him, fit perfectly within the early second millennium. Critics of the biblical account of the patriarchs are forced to accept the historicity of these accounts on the basis of finds at such places as Mari and Nuzi.

The Bible’s internal chronology places Abraham around 2000 BC, but the stories in Genesis cannot be definitively related to the known history of that time. Most historians think that, if Abraham actually existed, then this was probably when he lived – his tale can be interpreted as a classic case of migration by a group of desert pastoralists.

Abraham is confirmed from the archives of Nuzi in Yorgan Tepe, fifteen kilometres south west of Kirkuk. The written documents from this Hurrian city of the kingdom of Mitanni (c. 1500 BC.) cast a light not only on the ancient laws of the Hurrians, but also on the legal practices of the Biblical patriarchs which agree to an amazing degree with the Biblical texts.

Abraham’s clan came from Hurrian country, the region between Ur-kesh (the biblical Ur-kashdim, in north-east Syria on the present Turkish border) and Harran which is west of Ur-kesh. These migrating Hurrians were known to adopt the local languages of the lands they settled in, and so Abrahams clan adopted the Phoenician language as their own, now popularly known as Hebrew.

Cybele-Kabaa-Cube

Arabian mythology is the ancient, pre-Islamic beliefs of the Arab people. According to Quran and Islamic tradition the Kaaba, or The Cube, also known as the Sacred House and the Ancient House, was built by Ibrahim (Abraham). It is stated in the Qur’an that this was the first house that was built for humanity to worship Allah (God).

Prior to Islam the Kaaba of Mecca was covered in symbols representing the myriad demons, djinn, demigods, or simply tribal gods and other assorted deities which represented the polytheistic culture of pre-Islamic Arabia. The Kaaba was at some point dedicated to Hubal, a Nabatean deity, and contained 360 idols that probably represented the days of the year, or were effigies of the Arabian pantheon. But by Muhammad’s day, the Kaaba was venerated as the shrine of Allah, the High God.

The Black Stone is a Muslim relic, which according to Islamic tradition dates back to the time of Adam and Eve. Historical research claims that the Black Stone marked the Kaaba as a place of worship during pre-Islamic pagan times.

The Stone is a dark rock, polished smooth by the hands of millions of pilgrims that has been broken into a number of fragments cemented into a silver frame in the side of the Kaaba. It is the eastern cornerstone of the Kaaba, the ancient stone building towards which Muslims pray, in the center of the Grand Mosque in Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

The earliest reference we have to a goddess worshipped as a cube-shaped stone is from Neolithic Anatolia. Alternatively, ‘Kubaba’ may mean a hollow vessel or cave, which would still be a supreme image of the goddess. The ideograms for Kubaba in the Hittite alphabet are a lozenge or cube, a double-headed axe, a dove, a vase and a door or gate—all images of the goddess in Neolithic Europe.

Deities of other cultures known to have been associated with black stones include Aphrodite at Paphos, Cybele at Pessinus and later Rome, Astarte at Byblos and the famous Artemis/Diana of Ephesus. The latter’s most ancient sculpture was, it is said, carved from a black meteorite.

The earliest form of Cybele’s name may have been Kubaba or Kumbaba, which suggests Humbaba, who was the guardian of the forest in the Epic of Gilgamesh, the world’s oldest recorded myth from Assyria of circa 2500 BCE of the Sumerian literature and as scholars reveal more of the text as the source of most of the major mythological themes of later civilizations.

The origin of Kubaba may have been kube or kuba meaning ‘cube’. The earliest reference we have to a goddess worshipped as a cube-shaped stone is from Neolithic Anatolia.

Midas-Hubal

Midas is the name of at least three members of the royal house of Phrygia. The most famous King Midas is popularly remembered in Greek mythology for his ability to turn everything he touched with his hand into gold. This came to be called the Golden touch, or the Midas touch.

Hubal was a god worshipped in pre-Islamic Arabia, notably at the Kaaba in Mecca. His idol was a human figure, believed to control acts of divination, which was in the form of tossing arrows before the statue. The direction in which the arrows pointed answered questions asked of the idol.

The origins of the cult of Hubal are uncertain, but the name is found in inscriptions from Nabataea in northern Arabia (across the territory of modern Syria and Iraq). The specific powers and identity attributed to Hubal are equally unclear.

Hubal most prominently appears at Mecca, where an image of him was worshipped at the Kaaba. According to Karen Armstrong, the sanctuary was dedicated to Hubal, who was worshipped as the greatest of the 360 idols the Kaaba contained, which probably represented the days of the year.

Hisham Ibn Al-Kalbi’s Book of Idols describes the image as shaped like a human, with the right hand broken off and replaced with a golden hand. According to Ibn Al-Kalbi, the image was made of red agate, whereas Al-Azraqi, an early Islamic commentator, described it as of “cornelian pearl”.

Al-Azraqi also relates that it “had a vault for the sacrifice” and that the offering consisted of a hundred camels. Both authors speak of seven arrows, placed before the image, which were cast for divination, in cases of death, virginity and marriage.

Access to the idol was controlled by the Quraysh tribe. The god’s devotees fought against followers of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad during the Battle of Badr in 624 CE. After Muhammad entered Mecca in 630 CE, he removed the statue of Hubal from the Kaaba along with the idols of all the other pagan gods.

Jebusites-Jerusalem

According to classical rabbinical literature, the Jebusites derived their name from the city of Jebus, the ancient Jerusalem, which they inhabited. These rabbinical sources also argued that as part of the price of Abraham’s purchase of the Cave of Machpelah, which lay in the territory of the Jebusites, the Jebusites made Abraham grant them a covenant that his descendants would not take control of Jebus against the will of the Jebusites, and then the Jebusites engraved the covenant into bronze; the sources state that the presence of the bronze statues are why the Israelites were not able to conquer the city during Joshua’s campaign.

The classical era rabbis go on to state that King David was prevented from entering the city of Jebus for the same reason, and so he promised the reward of captaincy to anyone who destroyed the bronzes – Joab performing the task and so gaining the prize. The covenant is dismissed by the rabbis as having been invalidated due to the war the Jebusites fought against Joshua, but nevertheless David (according to the rabbis) paid the Jebusites the full value of the city, collecting the money from among all the Israelite tribes, so that the city became their common property.

In reference to a passage in the Books of Samuel which refers to a saying about the blind and the lame, Rashi quotes a midrash which argues that the Jebusites had two statues in their city, with their mouths containing the words of the covenant between Abraham and the Jebusites; one figure, depicting a blind person, represented Isaac, and the other, depicting a lame person, representing Jacob.

Yasir Arafat and Faisal Husseini have stated Palestinians may have a Jebusite background. The claim is used as an attempt to prove a connection between Palestinians and Jerusalem that predates the Muslim conquest. There is, however, no archaeological evidence linking the Arab-Palestinians of today with the Jebusites of the Canaanite period.

In the Amarna letters, mention is made of the contemporaneous king of Jerusalem was named Abdi-Heba, which is a theophoric name invoking a Hurrian goddess named Hebat; unless a different ethnic group occupied Jerusalem in this period, this implies that the Jebusites were Hurrians themselves, were heavily influenced by Hurrian culture, or were dominated by a Hurrian maryannu class.

Hebat, also transcribed Kheba or Khepat, was the mother goddess of the Hurrians, known as “the mother of all living”. She is also a Queen of the gods. The name can be transliterated in different versions – Khebat with the feminine ending -t is primarily the Syrian and Ugaritic version. In the Hurrian language Hepa is the most likely pronunciation of the name of the goddess.

The sound /h/ in cuneiform is in the modern literature sometimes transliterated as kh. In Aramaean times she appears to have become identified with the Goddess Hawwah. Eve (Hebrew: Ḥawwāh, Modern Israeli Hebrew: Khavah) was, according to Abrahamic religions, the first woman created by God.

In the Bible, Eve (Hawwa’; Ge’ez: Hiywan, “living one” or “source of life”, related to ḥāyâ, “to live”; Greek: Εὕα or heúā, ultimately from the Semitic root ḥyw;) is Adam’s wife. Her name occurs only four times; the first being Genesis 3:20: “And Adam called his wife’s name Ḥawwāh; because she was the mother of all living.” In Vulgate she appears as “Hava” in the Old Testament, but “Eva” in the New Testament.

The name may actually be derived from that of the Hurrian Goddess Kheba, who was shown in the Amarna Letters to be worshipped in Jerusalem during the Late Bronze Age. The mother goddess is likely to have had a later counterpart in the Phrygian goddess Cybele. Cybele (Phrygian: Matar Kubileya/Kubeleya “Kubeleyan Mother”, perhaps “Mountain Mother”) was an originally Anatolian mother goddess.

Cybele may have evolved from an Anatolian Mother Goddess of a type found at Çatal höyük, dated to the 6th millennium BCE. This corpulent, fertile Mother Goddess appears to be giving birth on her throne, which has two feline-headed hand rests.

Hyksos

The Hyksos (Egyptian heqa khaseshet, “foreign rulers”) were a mixed people from West Asia who took over the eastern Nile Delta, ending the thirteenth dynasty, and initiating the Second Intermediate Period of Ancient Egypt.

The Hyksos first appeared in Egypt c.1800 BC, during the eleventh dynasty, and began their climb to power in the thirteenth dynasty, coming out of the second intermediate period in control of Avaris and the Delta. By the fifteenth dynasty, they ruled Lower Egypt, and at the end of the seventeenth dynasty, they were expelled (c.1560 BC).

Contemporary with the Hyksos there was a widespread Indo-Aryan expansion in central and south Asia. The Hyksos used the same horsedrawn chariot as the Indo-Aryans and Egyptian sources mentions a rapid conquest.

The Hyksos practiced horse burials, and their chief deity, their native storm god, became associated with the Egyptian storm and desert god, Seth.[4] Although most Hyksos names seem Semitic, the Hyksos also included Hurrians, who, while speaking an isolated language, were under the rule and influence of Indo-Europeans.

The Hyksos brought several technical improvements to Egypt, as well as cultural impulses such as new musical instruments and foreign loan words. The changes introduced include new techniques of bronze working and pottery, new breeds of animals, and new crops. In warfare, they introduced the horse and chariot, the composite bow, improved battle axes, and advanced fortification techniques.

In his Against Apion, the 1st-century AD historian Josephus Flavius debates the synchronism between the Biblical account of the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt, and two Exodus-like events that the Egyptian historian Manetho apparently mentions.

It is difficult to distinguish between what Manetho himself recounted, and how Josephus or Apion interpret him. Josephus identifies the Israelite Exodus with the first exodus mentioned by Manetho, when some 480,000 Hyksos “shepherd kings” (also referred to as just ‘shepherds’, as ‘kings’ and as ‘captive shepherds’ in his discussion of Manetho) left Egypt for Jerusalem. The mention of “Hyksos” identifies this first exodus with the Hyksos period (16th century BC).

Josephus records the earliest account of the false but understandable etymology that the Greek phrase Hyksos stood for the Egyptian phrase Hekw Shasu meaning the Bedouin-like Shepherd Kings, which scholars have only recently shown means “rulers of foreign lands.”

Proto-Sinaitic

Proto-Sinaitic is a Middle Bronze Age script attested in a very small collection of inscriptions at Serabit el-Khadim in the Sinai Peninsula. Due to the extreme scarcity of Proto-Sinaitic signs, very little is known with certainty about the nature of the script. Because the script co-existed with Egyptian hieroglyphs, it is likely that it represented true writing, but this is by no means certain. It has been argued that Proto-Sinaitic was an alphabet and the ancestor of the Phoenician alphabet, from which nearly all modern alphabets descend.

The Canaanite languages are a subfamily of the Semitic languages, which were spoken by the ancient peoples of the Canaan region, including Canaanites, Israelites, Phoenicians, Amorites, Edomites and Moabites. All of them seem to have become extinct as native languages by the early 1st millennium CE (although it is uncertain how long Punic survived), although Hebrew remained in continuous literary and religious use among Jews, and was revived as an everyday spoken language in the 19th and 20th centuries in an effort spearheaded by Eliezer Ben Yehuda.

Hebrew is a West Semitic language of the Afroasiatic language family. Historically, it is regarded as the language of the Hebrews/Israelites and their ancestors. The earliest examples of written Hebrew date from the 10th century BCE.

Hebrew belongs to the Canaanite group of languages. In turn the Canaanite languages are a branch of the Northwest Semitic family of languages. In the Bible, the Hebrew language is called Yәhudit because Judah (Yәhuda) was the surviving kingdom at the time of the quotation, late 8th century BCE (Is 36, 2 Kings 18). In Isaiah 19:18, it is also called the “Language of Canaan”.

Hapiru

Habiru or Apiru or ˁpr.w (Egyptian) was the name given by various Sumerian, Egyptian, Akkadian, Hittite, Mitanni, and Ugaritic sources (dated, roughly, between 1800 BC and 1100 BC) to a group of people living as nomadic invaders in areas of the Fertile Crescent from Northeastern Mesopotamia and Iran to the borders of Egypt in Canaan. Their names are predominantly Hurrian; seven are perhaps Semitic. They come from a variety of settlements scattered around the region.

Depending on the source and epoch, these Habiru are variously described as nomadic or semi-nomadic, rebels, outlaws, raiders, mercenaries, and bowmen, servants, slaves, migrant laborers, etc.

Since the discovery of the 2nd millennium inscriptions mentioning the Habiru, there have been many theories linking these to the Hebrews. Some scholars argue that the name “Hebrew” is related to the name of the seminomadic Habiru people, who are recorded in Egyptian inscriptions of the 13th and 12th centuries BCE as having settled in Egypt.

An inscription on a statue found at Alalakh in southeastern Anatolia, the Mitanni prince Idrimi of Aleppo (who lived from about 1500 BC to 1450 BC), tells that, after his family had been forced to flee to Emar, he left them and joined the “Hapiru people” in “Ammija in the land of Canaan”.

The Hapiru recognized him as the “son of their overlord” and “gathered around him;” they are said to include “natives of Halab, of the country of Mushki, of the country Nihi and also warriors from the country Amae.” After living among them for seven years, he led his Habiru warriors in a successful attack by sea on the city-state of Alalakh, where he became king.

Yam

Yam was the Levantine god of the sea, popular in the Bronze and Early Iron Ages. Yam, from the Canaanite word Yam, (Hebrew ים) meaning “Sea”, also written “Yaw”, is one name of the Ugaritic god of Rivers and Sea. Also titled Judge Nahar (“Judge River”), he is also one of the ‘ilhm (Elohim) or sons of El, the name given to the Levantine pantheon.

“Yam, Judge Nahar” also has similarities with Mesopotamian Tiamat and Abzu and the battle between Yam and Baal (the Storm God) resembles the battle in Hurrian and Hittite mythology between the sky God Teshub (or Tarhunt) with the serpent Illuyanka.

In this respect the battle with Baal resembles the battle between Tiamat and Enlil and Babylonian Marduk. In the case of Yam, however, there is no indication that he was slain, as it appears from the texts that he was put to sleep through the intervention of Baal’s “sister” and wife, Anath.

Moreover, a comparison with the evil Jörmungandr (Norse world-serpent and deity of the sea) is accurate, given his description. Like Yam and Hadad, he and Thor (son of Odin) slay each other at the end of the world (Ragnarök or Twilight of the Gods).

There are also many similarities with the Egyptian chaos serpent, Apep and his animosity with the sun god Ra. They are described as eternally slaying each other. In addition, the serpent-Titan Typhon battled the god Zeus over Olympus and was cast into the pits of the Earth.

Yam shares many characteristics with Greco-Roman Ophion, the serpentine Titan of the sea whom Cronus cast out of the heavenly Mt. Olympus. The story is also analogus to the war between the serpent Vritra and the god Indra, son of the ‘Sky Father’ Dyaus Pita.

Others dispute the existence of the alternative names, claiming it is a mistranslation of a damaged tablet. Despite linguistic overlap, theologically this god is not a part of the later subregional monotheistic theology, but rather is part of a broader and archaic Levantine polytheism.

Yam is the deity of the primordial chaos and represents the power of the sea untamed and raging; he is seen as ruling storms and the disasters they wreak. The gods cast out Yam from the heavenly mountain Sappan (modern Jebel Aqra; “Sappan” is cognate to Tsephon.

The seven-headed dragon Lotan is associated closely with him and the serpent is frequently used to describe him. He is the Canaanite equivalent of the Sumerian Tiamat, the primordial mother goddess.

Yam is a deity of the sea and his palace is in the abyss associated with the depths, or Biblical tehwom, of the oceans. (This is not to be confused with the abode of Mot, the ruler of the netherworlds.)

Of all the gods, despite being the champion of El, Yam holds special hostility against the Canaanite god Baal, also known as Hadad the god of rain, storm and fertility, son of Dagon. Baal (Hadad) is regularly denominated “the son of Dagan,” although Dagan (biblical Dagon) does not appear as an actor in the mythological texts. Baal also bears the titles “Rider of the Clouds,” “Almighty,” and “Lord of the Earth.”

Baal is the god of the thunderstorm, the most vigorous and aggressive of the gods, the one on whom mortals most immediately depend. Baal resides on Mount Zaphon, north of Ugarit, and is usually depicted holding a thunderbolt. He is the protagonist of a cycle of myths from Ugarit. These tell of a challenge from Yamm (“Sea”), to which Baal responds.

In Ugaritic texts, Yam’s special enemy Hadad is also known as the “king of heaven” and the “first born son” of El, whom ancient Greeks identified with their god Cronus, just as Baal was identified with Zeus, Yam with Poseidon and Mot with Hades.

Yam wished to become the Lord god in his place. In turns the two beings kill each other, yet Hadad is resurrected and Yam also returns. Some authors have suggested that these tales reflect the experience of seasonal cycles in the Levant.

In the oldest biblical literature (12th–11th centuries BCE), Yahweh is a typical ancient Near Eastern “divine warrior” who leads the heavenly army against Israel’s enemies; he and Israel are bound by a covenant (a feature unique in ancient Near Eastern religion) under which Yahweh will protect Israel and, in turn, Israel will not worship other gods.

At a later period, Yahweh functioned as the dynastic cult (the god of the royal house), the royal courts promoting him as the supreme god over all others in the pantheon, notably Baal, El, and Asherah (the last of whom may have been his consort).

Over time, Yahwism became increasingly intolerant of rivals, and the royal court and temple promoted Yahweh as the god of the entire cosmos, possessing all the positive qualities previously attributed to the other gods and goddesses.

With the work of Second Isaiah (the theoretical author of the second part of the Book of Isaiah) towards the end of the Babylonian exile (6th century BCE), the very existence of foreign gods was denied, and Yahweh was proclaimed as the creator of the cosmos and the true god of all the world.

Yawhe (Yam), the sea creature, is attacking Baal Hadad, the thunder god. Israel, the nation of Medusa, boost its forces. It was created along with the First (Balfour declaration) and Second World War (at a meeting in the US in 1943). The British needed help (money) to rise war funds.

Armenia

In the study of ancient civilizations Armenia often remained on the sidelines, as if she had not been involved in major historical turnovers. The researchers’ interest was almost always confined to the territory of ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt. But, naturally the “factor” of Armenia could not be excluded in the formation of ancient civilizations. There is much evidence to prove it. Nevertheless, for one reason or another Armenia, yet, was left out from the list of possible leaders.

There are, of course, scholars who claim that cultural achievements on the Armenian Plateau in such fields as metallurgy, architecture, military science, and winemaking penetrated into Assyria, Palestine, Egypt and the North Caucasus. For example, according to British orientalist and archaeologist G. Childe, in its impressive antiquity and values the culture of the Armenian Plateau can compete with the ancient cultures of Mesopotamia and the Nile Valley.

Experts on Indo-European languages agree that the Proto-Indo-European divisions took place 4000 years BC into separate branches that pursued independent paths of linguistic evolution. Similarly, around 3500 BC, the Proto-Armenian tribes — whether European in origin (the Thraco-Phyrigian theory firmly held by Western scholars,) or Asian (Aryan/Indigenous/Asian) — developed an economic structure in the geographical space that became to be known as the Armenian plateau, based on agriculture, metal working and animal husbandry.

Recent archeological evidence in Armenia confirms several agreements between this civilization and Indo-European culture. It is almost a certainty to presume that this led to the creation of a distinct identity and culture that was separate from the other human groupings in Asia Minor and Upper Mesopotamia.

Within this context, Armenian, with an uninterrupted evolution through time and geographical space, continued to evolve and be enriched by neighboring cultures, as attested by the loan words, and, after the alphabetization of the languages, to be further enhanced by exchanges with distant cultures. Consequently, it is safe to assume that the Armenian language in its current expression has a history of approximately 6000 years.

Perhaps an anecdotal linguistic detour is in order to better understand the nature of Armenian language. The Behistun inscriptions in central Iran of 520 BC are often cited as the first mention of the word Armenia. Subsequently, because of this designation, for many, historians included, the story of “Armenians” begins in the 6th century BC. Yet, this “beginning” is only a superficial and arbitrary conclusion.

The claim of Armenian “beginnings” at the 6th century BC overlooks or ignores the fact that the Behistun monument tells the same story, on the same fresco, in three different languages: Old Persian, Elamite and Akkadian. It is true that the oldest surviving record of the word “Armenia” is in the Cuneiform/Old Persian text of this monument, yet, the word “Urartu” in the Elamite (a much older language than Old Persian) text is used instead of “Armenia.”

Kurds and Armenians became increasingly distinct, both culturally and politically, as Armenians chose Christianity as their official religion while Kurds, later, chose Islam. Toward the 11th century the nomadic Turkic tribes from Central Asia moved towards the Middle East and Anatolia and further altered the ethnic mix at the expense of the local populations of Kurds, Armenians, and other natives.

Although most Armenians stayed Christians, some converted to Islam because of the favourable status given to Muslims under Turkish rule. The Armenians of Vaspurakan who converted to Islam, gradually assimilated into Kurdish culture over time.

This is likely to have occurred elsewhere as well, and probably accounts for the comparatively low census of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire at the beginning of the 20th century, as compared to the Middle Ages, alongside other factors, such as selective recording, extermination and migration.

Ayn Rand and the North American Indians

Ayn Rand, born Alisa Zinov’yevna Rosenbaum (February 1905 – March 1982) has been a significant influence among libertarians and American conservatives. The Objectivist movement attempts to spread her ideas, both to the public and in academic settings.

Ayn Rand’s Objectivism rejects an array of ideas and modes of living that it deems are primitive by nature and indicative of a primitive culture. Objectivism views primitive states of existence as being “savage” and marred in mysticism, fatalism, ignorance, superstition, poverty, passivity, and collectivism.

Accordint to Rand: “The Arabs are one of the least developed cultures. They are typically nomads. Their culture is primitive, and they resent Israel because it’s the sole beachhead of modern science and civilization on their continent. When you have civilized men fighting savages, you support the civilized men, no matter who they are.”

The cure to such a society Objectivism holds is Western civilization, capitalism and modernity, which in its view brings with it reason, individualism, science, industrialization, and ultimately wealth. Objectivists contend that Rousseauian romanticism of primitive life became the foundation for the 1960′s counterculture and New Left, which Rand vehemently opposed. Two specific groups that Rand controversially accused of being primitive “savages” were Native Americans and Arabs.

Rand also outlined her broader anti-primitive views in various speeches, interviews, and in her book Return of the Primitive: The Anti-Industrial Revolution. Those anti-primitive views and their relevance to Objectivism have since been expounded on by individuals such as Leonard Peikoff and Michael Berliner, newsletters like The Objectivist, and groups such as the Ayn Rand Institute and Atlas Society.

Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Rand developed and promoted her Objectivist philosophy through her nonfiction works and by giving talks to students at institutions such as Yale, Princeton, Columbia, Harvard, and MIT. She received an honorary doctorate from Lewis & Clark College in 1963. She also began delivering annual lectures at the Ford Hall Forum, responding afterward to questions from the audience.

During these speeches and Q&A sessions, she often took controversial stances on political and social issues of the day. These included supporting abortion rights, opposing the Vietnam War and the military draft (but condemning many draft dodgers as “bums”), supporting Israel in the Yom Kippur War of 1973 against a coalition of Arab nations as “civilized men fighting savages”, saying European colonists had the right to take land from American Indians, and calling homosexuality “immoral” and “disgusting”, while also advocating the repeal of all laws about it. She also endorsed several Republican candidates for President of the United States, most strongly Barry Goldwater in 1964, whose candidacy she promoted in several articles for The Objectivist Newsletter.

Alexander Lvovich Parvus

Alexander Lvovich Parvus, born Israel Lazarevich Gelfand (1867-1924), was born to an ethnic Jewish family on September 1867 in the shtetl of Berazino, now part of Belarus. Parvus moved to Istanbul in Turkey, where he lived for five years. There he set up an arms trading company which profited handsomely during the Balkan War. He became the financial and political advisor of the Young Turks.

In 1912 he was made editor of Turk Yurdu, their daily newspaper. He worked closely with the triumvirs known as the Three Pashas – Enver, Talat and Cemal – and Finance Minister Djavid Bey.

His firm dealt with the deliveries of foodstuffs for the Turkish army and he was a business partner of the Krupp concern, of Vickers Limited, and of the famous arms dealer Basil Zaharov. Arms dealings with Vickers Limited at war time gave basis to the theory that Alexander Parvus was also a British intelligence asset.

While in Turkey, Parvus became close with German ambassador Hans Freiherr von Wangenheim who was known to be partial to establishing revolutionary fifth columns among the allies.

Parvus offered his plan via Baron von Wangenheim to the German General Staff: the paralyzing of Russia via general strike, financed by the German government (which, at the time, was at war with Russia and its allies).

Von Wagenheim sent Parvus to Berlin where the latter arrived on the 6 March 1915 and presented a 20 page plan titled A preparation of massive political strikes in Russia to the German government.

Parvus’ detailed plan recommended the division of Russia by sponsoring the Bolshevik faction of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party, encouraging ethnic separatists in various Russian regions, and supporting various writers whose criticism of Tsarism continued during wartime. Basing himself on his 1905 experiences, Parvus theorised that the division of Russia and its loss in the First World War was the best way to bring about a socialist revolution.

During this time he developed the concept of using a foreign war to provoke an internal revolt within a country. It was at this time that Parvus revived, from Karl Marx, the concept-strategy of “permanent revolution”.

He communicated this philosophy to Trotsky who then further expanded and developed it. Through Trotsky, the method was eventually adopted by Vladimir Lenin and the Bolsheviks in Lenin’s April Theses in 1917.

In March 1917, in a plan strategized together with Parvus, German intelligence sent Vladimir Lenin and a group of 30 of his revolutionary associates from Switzerland through Germany in a train car under supervision of Swiss socialist Fritz Platten.

Herzl’s contempt for Armenians

Theodor Herzl (May 2, 1860 – July 3, 1904), born Benjamin Ze’ev Herzl, also known in Hebrew as, Khozeh HaMedinah, lit. “Visionary of the State”, was an Austro-Hungarian journalist, playwright, political activist and writer.

Herzl is considered to have been the father of modern political Zionism and in effect the founder of the State of Israel. Herzl formed the World Zionist Organization and promoted Jewish migration to Palestine in an effort to form a Jewish state.

Leaders of Hashomer (the Guardian) like David Ben- Gurion and Itzhak Ben-Zvi, the future Prime-Minister and President of Israel, sided with the Ottomans at the start of the war. In their view, the future of the Yishuv lay in a federated Ottoman Empire that would emerge following hostilities. Hence they supported the Ottoman side and hoped that the Yishuv would be rewarded for its loyalty.

Ben-Gurion’s and Ben-Tzvi’s silence concerning the Armenian Genocide may be explained by the constraints of their office as leaders of Hashomer and by their loyalty to the Ottoman side.

Later, after the Balfour Declaration, which placed the British squarely on the side of the Yishuv and a Jewish homeland in Palestine, Ben-Gurion and Ben-Tzvi supported the British and the Entente against the Germans and the Turks, but by then most of the Armenian Genocide had run its course and, presumably, they had little to add…

In 2008, Yosef Shagal, Azerbaijani Jew, and now retired Israeli parliamentarian from ‘Israel Our Home’ in an interview to Azerbaijan media stated:

“I find it deeply offensive, and even blasphemous to compare the Holocaust of European Jewry during the Second World War with the mass extermination of the Armenian people during the First World War. Jews were killed because they were Jews, but Armenians provoked Turkey and should blame themselves.”

Jacob Israël de Haan

One of the first target of the modern Zionism movement was Jacob Israël de Haan (December 31, 1881 – June 30, 1924), a Dutch Jewish literary writer and journalist who wanted to cooperate with the Palestinians/Arabs, but was assassinated in Jerusalem by the Jewish paramilitary organization Haganah for his anti-Zionist political activities and contacts with Arab leaders.

He is believed to be the first victim of Zionist political violence. De Haan is revered as a martyr among certain sections of the Haredi Jewish community, particularly the Neturei Karta and Edah HaChareidis.

Israel

Taking in consideration the world situation there seems to be something bad happening. The Armenians experenced a genocide in the beginning of the last century, just as the the other christian people of Anatolia ans Soth west Asia also did. The war against Iraq in 2003 was little else than a shame for humanity.

The genocide, organized by Israel Helphand and the three Pashas, and the wars of today, like them against Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria (Aram), is all connected. Russia, China and Iran is singled out as enemies, but they do nothing, but keeping their own interestes. They are not dangerous.

Israel, the US, the Sunnis Saudi Arabia and Qatar …) and the different terrorists now operating in Syria (the same who had earlier been working in Afghanistan, Chechenia, Kosovo/Serbia and Nagorno Karabakh) is a totally different story. The Great War continues (Kipling).

The Arab Revolt is all about the Arab Betrayal. The blowing up of Turkish trains, the capture of Aqaba, the camel charges and the slaughter on the Road to Damascus, and the mythistory of Lawrence of Arabia are the Cinemascope version of the First World War in the desert.

The British instead of cooperating with Sharif Hussain – the religious leader of Mecca and Medina whose Hashemite family had guarded the Islamic holy land since the 10th century – choose to cooperate with the Wahhabi movement, a radical religious movement or ofshoot branch of Islam variously described as “orthodox”, “ultraconservative”, “austere”, “fundamentalist”, “puritanical” (or “puritan”), an Islamic “reform movement” to restore “pure monotheistic worship”, or an “extremist pseudo-Sunni movement”. 

We need to spread information and knowledge about the transformation, the challenges we face and make unity between all people around the world. lf not the war will come. It looks like it is going to come, because all the forces is active, but we have to remember who we are and stand firm.

Today the US, Israel and the Saudis together with Turkey and Azerbaijan are teeming up against countries like Syria, Iran, Armenia etc. This war will develop into WW3, and must not happen.

Groups all over the world must now seek real knowledge, understanding, peace, solidarity and justice. Groups like the M15, Indignados, Occupy, Anonymous and Wikileaks try to this. We need to take the power from the elites, and again continue our way in the cycle of life. We need to stop the people working for Mammon and together with people everywhere make a better world for all of us!

The racist sympaties of the Zionists is clear – they decpised the red Indians in North America, Arabs and Armenians … They cooperated with both the Germans and the Ottomans until 1917. Crypto-Judaism is the secret adherence to Judaism while publicly professing to be of another faith; practitioners are referred to as “crypto-Jews” (origin from Greek kryptos – κρυπτός, ‘hidden’).

Some of the Jewish followers of Sabbatai Zevi (Sabbateans) formally converted to Islam, and later followers of Jacob Frank (“Frankists”) formally converted to Christianity, but maintained aspects of their versions of Messianic Judaism. They wanted to created Israel, which in the Bible is the same as creating the doomsday – that is way the Israeli flag is burned by orthodox Jews. 

Mostly Jews are living normal lives, but some are financial lords, and the same is the people who follow them. The golden bull at Wall Street is a symbol of this. The Jews could not own land in Europe, so they started the banking industry instead, and the modern capitalism is a result of this. The financial Jews go strong, and instead of monarchy we got monetarism – both is a form of mamon worship.

Russia has in part justified its invasion, annexation of, and subterfuge in Ukrainian territories by claiming it was necessary to protect Ukrainian Jews from the “anti-semitic” and “fascist” new government in Kiev. The government of Israeli prime minister Benyamin Netanyahu is backing the fascist-led putsch that ousted Ukraine’s elected pro-Russian president, Viktor Yanukovych.

Far from opposing anti-Semitism and defending Ukrainian Jews from the neo-Nazi parties that have joined the new coalition government, Israel is doing its best to deny that any such threat exists.

Israel now wants to attack Iran, Persia, the nation of Perseus. No one of them will win, cause the bids are to high. Armenia is under treat, and we have to face the challenge – because the dark forces have collided and continue to rise. We can’t sleep at this moment!

War in the Fertile Crescent

The Fertile Crescent is a term for an old fertile area north, east and west of the Arabian Desert in Southwest Asia. The Mesopotamian valley and the Nile valley fall under this term even though the mountain zone around Mesopotamia is the natural zone for the transition in a historical sense.

As a result of a number of unique geographical factors the Fertile Crescent have an impressive history of early human agricultural activity and culture. Besides the numerous archaeological sites with remains of skeletons and cultural relics the area is known primarily for its excavation sites linked to agricultural origins and development of the Neolithic era.

It was here, in the forested mountain slopes of the periphery of this area, that agriculture originated in an ecologically restricted environment. The western zone and areas around the upper Euphrates gave growth to the first known Neolithic farming communities with small, round houses , also referred to as Pre Pottery Neolithic A (PPNA) cultures, which dates to just after 10,000 BC and include areas such as Jericho, the world’s oldest city.

During the subsequent PPNB from 9000 BC these communities developed into larger villages with farming and animal husbandry as the main source of livelihood, with settlement in the two-story, rectangular house. Man now entered in symbiosis with grain and livestock species, with no opportunity to return to hunter – gatherer societies.

The area west and north of the plains of the Euphrates and Tigris also saw the emergence of early complex societies in the much later Bronze Age (about 4000 BC). There is evidence of written culture and early state formation in this northern steppe area, although the written formation of the states relatively quickly shifted its center of gravity into the Mesopotamian valley and developed there. The area is therefore in very many writers been named “The Cradle of Civilization.”

The area has experienced a series of upheavals and new formation of states. When Turkey was formed in the aftermath of the genocide against the Pontic Greeks, Armenians and Assyrians perpetrated by the Young Turks during the First World War it is estimated that two-thirds to three-quarters of all Armenians and Assyrians in the region died, and the Pontic Greeks was pushed to Greece.

Israel was created out of the Ottoman Empire and the conquering of the Palestinian terretories. The existence of large Arab nation states from the Maghreb to the Levant has since represented a potential threat to Israel which should be neutralised when opportunities arise.

This line of thinking was at the heart of David Ben Gurion’s policies in the 1950s which sought to exacerbate tensions between Christians and Muslims in the Lebanon for the fruits of acquiring regional influence by the dismembering the country and the possible acquisition of additional territory.

The Christians are now being systematically targeted for genocide in Syria according to Vatican and other sources with contacts on the ground among the besieged Christian community.

According to reports by the Vatican’s Fides News Agency collected by the Centre for the Study of Interventionism, the US-backed Free Syrian Army rebels and ever more radical spin-off factions are sacking Christian churches, shooting Christians dead in the street, broadcasting ultimatums that all Christians must be cleansed from the rebel-held villages, and even shooting priests.

It was certainly at the heart of the plan of policy drawn up by one Oded Yinon in the 1980s. The ‘Yinon Plan’ strategized a vision by which the ethnic-tribal rivalries and the economic maladies within larger Arab states should be exploited to the extent of creating the conditions by which the balkanization of such states could be achieved.

Thus the plan elaborated on designs for specific countries such as Iraq which would ideally be divided into three mini-states: one Kurdish and the other two Arab of which one would be Sunni and the other Shia. For Egypt, the most populous Arab nation, the best case scenario was that of a Coptic Christian state and numerous other Muslim states.

Addressing the potentially fractious state of affairs in its north eastern neighbour, Yinon’s essay noted that “Syria is fundamentally no different from Lebanon except in the strong military regime which rules it”.

A continuum of this thinking is apparent in ‘A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm’, a policy document produced by a team led by Richard Perle in 1996 for then serving prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Perle, it should be noted, was a contributor to Project for the New American Century (PNAC).

‘The Clean Break Report’ proposed that Israel give up on any objectives geared towards achieving a comprehensive peace with the Arab world and that it should instead work together with Turkey and Jordan to “contain, destabilize and roll-back” those states which pose as threats to all three.

”Israel can shape its strategic environment, in cooperation with Turkey and Jordan, by weakening, containing, and even rolling back Syria. This effort can focus on removing Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq — an important Israeli strategic objective in its own right — as a means of foiling Syria’s regional ambitions.”

Just as with the PNAC document, the strategy behind Israeli policy was to effect the “weakening, controlling and even rolling back” of Syria. The threat posed to Israel by Syria thus has until recently been that of an ostensibly united state in possession of a substantive mass of territory and relatively large population under a strong form of leadership.

The report explained a new approach to solving Israel’s security problems in the Middle East with an emphasis on “Western values”. It has since been criticized for advocating an aggressive new policy including the removal of Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq, and the containment of Syria by engaging in proxy warfare and highlighting their possession of “weapons of mass destruction”.

Brian Whitaker reported in a September 2002 article published in The Guardian that “With several of the Clean Break paper’s authors now holding key positions in Washington, the plan for Israel to transcend its foes by reshaping the Middle East looks a good deal more achievable today than it did in 1996. Americans may even be persuaded to give up their lives to achieve it.”

In March 2003 Patrick J. Buchanan, referring to the 2003 invasion of Iraq and the report, wrote that “Their plan, which urged Israel to re-establish ‘the principle of preemption,’ has now been imposed by Perle, Feith, Wurmser & Co. on the United States.”

The roots of a Washington push for a new war on Iran can be found in the 1992 Defense Planning Guidance, the 1996 paper called A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm, the 2000 Rebuilding America’s Defenses, and in a 2001 Pentagon memo described by Wesley Clark as listing these nations for attack: Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Lebanon, Syria, and Iran.

In 2010, Tony Blair included Iran on a similar list of countries that he said Dick Cheney had aimed to overthrow. The line among the powerful in Washington in 2003 was that Iraq would be a cakewalk but that real men go to Tehran.

The concerns here are those of dominating regions rich in resources, intimidating others, and establishing bases from which to maintain control of puppet governments.

It is now time that the genocide against the Pontic Greeks, Assyrians and Armenians is being recognized, that the Israeli occupation, settlements and violence against the Palestinians stop, and that the various minorities in the area start to live their lifes in peace – without violence and threats from majority populations, or from the West, and then specificially from the US.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: