"Questions remain. Were Abraham, Moses, and David real people? What happened to the Twelve Tribes? Can some modern Jews actually trace their ancestry as Jewish priests to Aaron? Did descendants of King Solomon and the queen of Sheba build the fabulous stone palace in the heart of Africa known as the Great Zimbabwe? Is Britain or the United States the "New Jerusalem" foretold in the Bible? Are the American Indians descendants of Abraham, as some Mormons believe? What happened to the Jews who converted to Christianity during the Spanish Inquisition? Who are the real "chosen people"-Arabs or Jews? Are the majority of today's Jews descendants of non-Jewish Eurasians and Europeans? If the maternal lineage of many modern Jews begins with gentiles, as history and DNA suggest, and they did not formally convert to Judaism, what determines "Jewishness"? If blood ties were paramount to our Israelite forebears, then our genes, protected against the ravages of time and passed on from generation to generation, must carry some record of the Israelites, the origins of Christianity and Islam, and the long and contentious travail of the Jews."
"The story contained in our DNA raises the taboo issues of race, disease, and intelligence. Genetic anthropology and genealogy are tightly bound to the worldwide effort to address many behavioral and medical problems, which is a key impetus behind the Human Genome Project. Genetic differences, and sometimes just one gene, can confer near-certain death sentences, while other people are mysteriously spared. There are thousands of genetic disorders, hundreds of which disproportionately affect one racial or ethnic group."
"Jews have unique advantages as candidates for genetic study. Since being expelled from biblical Palestine to the far corners of the globe, they have congregated in many tightly knit but intricately linked communities. For the most part, they were endogamous- they rarely married outside the religion, at least until the twentieth century. That fidelity has proved a gold mine for DNA researchers. "Jewish genetics," as it has been called, is at the center of a worldwide quest to solve the puzzle of disease and unlock the backstories of humanity. Archival vaults once thought buried in time are being pried open. "
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