WND‘s Climate Change Prophecy

Climate scientists are suddenly no longer the enemy at WorldNetDaily:

Confirming a rabbi’s reading of Bible prophecy, scientists reported yesterday that an analysis of rings on stalagmite from a cave near Jerusalem reveals the climate of the region got drier shortly after the Roman dispersion of the Jews in A.D. 70…Geologists John Valley and Ian Orland concluded the climate was drier in the eastern Mediterranean between 100 A.D. and A.D. 700, with steep drops in rainfall around 100 A.D. and A.D. 400 – a period of waning Roman and Byzantine power in the region.

…Researchers from the Geological Survey of Israel and Hebrew University in Jerusalem helped with the study, which was to appear in an upcoming issue of the journal Quaternary Research. The latest scientific study was tied to research into global warming.

A stalagmite found near Jerusalem which grew between 200 BCE and 1100 CE provided the evidence. Further details are available on Science Daily; however, the connection between climate change and the presence of Jews is purely WND‘s spin on the research.

The rabbi referred to is a certain Rabbi Menachem Kohen, of Brooklyn, who is the author of a book entitled Prophecies for the Era of Muslim Terror:

Rabbi Kohen points out the land suffered an unprecedented, severe and inexplicable (by anything other than supernatural explanations) drought that lasted from the first century until the 20th – a period of 1,800 years coinciding with the forced dispersion of the Jews.

WND, of course, wants us to believe that the drier climate post-100CE is some kind of supernatural sign from God about the continuing divine connection between Jews and the land of Israel. But how well has it been thought through? If the rainfall increased again after 700, does that mean God favoured the Muslim presence? And how is this linked to the supposed “unprecedented, severe and inexplicable” drought which Kook suggests lasted until 1900? And it should be remembered that the “Roman dispersion of the Jews in A.D. 70” was of very limited scope; Jews remained a significant presence in the Galilee for centuries afterwards. Indeed, their decline can perhaps in part be ascribed to the very climate change noted by Valley and Orland (incidentally, desertification in the eastern Mediterranean during this period has been long recognised).

Kohen’s book argues that the Torah predicted recent events such as 9/11 (“date & number of buildings”) and Saddam Hussein’s fall from power – which would perhaps have been impressive had the book been published before those events, rather than after. The book carries a foreword by Simcha Hacohen Kook, an Israeli Rabbi who has an intense distrust of Christian Zionism.

WND will doubtless find another aspect of Valley and Orland’s research less congenial; Science Daily reports:

The team is now applying the same techniques to older samples from the same cave. “One period of interest is the last glacial termination, around 19,000 years ago — the most recent period in Earth’s history when the whole globe experienced a warming of 4 to 5 degrees Celsius,” Orland says.

According to WND, the universe is 6,010 years old.

3 Responses

  1. I have often wondered why god would choose for his chosen people to live in the middle of the desert but, then again, the whole concept of “chosen people” never did make much sense to me.

  2. […] possiblity of some dispersion in the centuries after 70 CE, for various reasons. For instance, as I discussed just a few days ago, there was some adverse climate change between 100 and 700 […]

  3. […] The interesting questions, of course, are to what extent we can indeed “believe later Jewish traditions”, and to what extent the effects of the war and its aftermath really prompted Jewish inhabitants of Judea to go into exile, given that there was no decree actually expelling them. Certainly, a continuing presence in Galilee for centuries afterwards isn’t even a controversial prospect, as I noted here. […]

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