Israeli Scholars Charge IAA Committee with Bias

Sidebar to: Lying Scholars?

A group of Israeli scholars has condemned the findings of the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) committee that concluded the so-called Jehoash Inscription, describing repairs to the Solomonic Temple, was a forgery. The IAA committee reached “hasty, premature conclusions,” the informal group of scholars wrote, in a letter to Israel Minister of Education and Culture, Limor Livnat, and made “professional mistakes ... in the course of their deliberations.” The IAA committee also declared the James ossuary inscription a fake.

The Israeli scholars also expressed “severe reservations” about the composition of the IAA committee, charging that it was “very one-sided.” The Israeli scholars claim that “scholars who had previously expressed a positive opinion regarding authenticity were disqualified because they had already expressed an opinion and could not be considered neutral, while scholars who had previously expressed a decidedly negative opinion regarding authenticity (i.e., in favor of forgery) were invited without any hesitation whatsoever.”

As a result, “Other expert opinions [other than those previously held by the IAA committee] and interpretations of the same physical data by scholars in Israel and abroad were not sufficiently taken into consideration.”

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