bombshell: ny da’s response to raphael golb’s motion to dismiss charges and suppress evidence reveals norman golb’s knowledge of the campaign

Raphael and Norman Golb

Raphael Golb and his father, University of Chicago historian Dr. Norman Golb. Raphael Golb is charged with multiple felony and misdemeanor counts of forgery, identity theft, impersonation, and aggravated harassment of several Dead Sea Scrolls scholars.

court docs allege:
norman golb knew about the smear campaign!

court docs also allege:
norman golb participated in the smear campaign against other scholars.

in fact, according to email transcripts contained in the january 19, 2010 new york district attorney’s response to raphael golb’s motion to dismiss all charges and suppress evidence, norman golb actively participated in the smear campaign against fellow dead sea scrolls scholars by providing phone call and email talking points.

court documents show that norman golb’s other son, joel, was involved as well.

in fact, according to court docs, norman golb’s wife, ruth, was involved too. norman golb went so far as to use his wife ruth’s email account to disguise his involvement in the event that his email was ever compromised.

the smear campaign was a golb family affair! (based upon evidence in court docs)

for those interested in this seemingly never-ending scandal, the new york district attorney prosecuting the case against raphael golb has responded to golb’s motions to dismiss. it is now posted online. (these docs are publicly available.) raphael golb, son of university of chicago oriental institute historian norman golb, stands accused of 51 counts of criminal impersonation, identity theft, forgery, aggravated harassment, and unauthorized use of a computer. a full account of the scandal can be found at http://www.who-is-charles-gadda.com.

below are excerpts from the:

AFFIRMATION IN RESPONSE TO THE DEFENDANT’S MOTIONS TO DISMISS, MOTION TO SUPPRESS EVIDENCE RECOVERED VIA SEARCH WARRANT, AND REQUEST FOR AN ADVISORY OPINION

note in particular, exhibit c (transcribed below), which gives only some of the email evidence the new york district attorney’s office used to bring charges against raphael golb.

key lines to watch for:

“By the way, if Dad has some comment on the latest Charles Gadda exchange, he can send it through your email, that way there would be no trace of it in his account.” – Raphael Golb

“…they know Gadda is Golb’s son, meaning they are faced with a dedicated, in-the-know adversary who is out to get them, and there’s simply nothing they can do about it.” – Raphael Golb

“we can’t send via Dad’s email so we’ll send via mine” – Ruth Golb (Norman Golb’s Wife, Raphael Golb’s Mother)

“Dad thinks that if Crawford was invited it’s because she’s Frank Cross’s student and someone must have been in back of it since she’s the least competent of all of them.” – Ruth Golb

“… Mom and I also found of interest the latest item you sent us, i.e. the one from the writer living in Raleigh (or thereabouts). The recent blogs by Dworkin et al. are obviously having effect,” – Norman Golb

“Schiffman is such a sleaze and behaves as though he has nothing to fear -this makes sense to me. Love, Mom” – Ruth Golb

“Would you like me to inform them using an alias, or do you prefer to contact them yourself?” – Raphael Golb to Norman Golb

“your contribution was posted 2 minutes after my own posting–wouldn’t it have been better to wait a while to avoid the impression that we are collaborating or are indeed one and the same person?” – Joel Golb to Raphael Golb

“I really don’t think I ruined anything by coming on — the tone of my thing was quite different from yours, along with links. It’s part of Gadda’s persona to always come on late at night with jabs at these people, quoting the New York Times and similar sources. Why shouldn’t he have picked up on Ignorant Gnostic’s statement?” – Raphael Golb in response to Joel Golb

…. So I think Dworkin should be extremely careful to make sure the mail is totally untraceable–even going so far as to mail from an internet cafe–and it might actually be time in the next few weeks to simply throw out his old computer and replace it with one of those extremely inexpensive PCs one can now get… – Joel Golb to Raphael Golb alias “Robert Dworkin”


EXHIBIT C

Summary of, and Excerpts of,
Certain Email Communications

These emails are provided to help demonstrate defendant’s intent and motive.

EMAILS BETWEEN THE GOLBS CONCERNING THE UPCOMING JEWISH MUSEUM EXHIBIT, THAT ASSIST IN DEMONSTRATING DEFENDANT’S INTENT AND MOTIVE REGARDING HIS SUBSEQUENT IMPERSONATION OF DR. SCHIFFMAN

On July 24, 2008 at 11:57 PM Raphael Golb (raphael.g@mindspring.com) wrote to Ruth Golb (ruthgolb@gmail.com), his mother:

… I saw Dan F. today. Unfortunately, he’s probably not going to be able to accomplish anything [at the Jewish Museum]… Thus, he has no influence over them. He does, however, know the curator (Susan Braunstein), and will speak to her about it (but she might be on vacation). She will probably resist, however, and then he will be able to do nothing.

This makes it all the more important that Dad try and do something about this via Benny Kedar. There is no shame in asking to see the list of lecturers (“Look, I don’t want to tell you who to invite and not to invite, but I would be curious to see who you have invited”) and pointing out that they could have had the courtesy to invite him, after everything he has done to help them improve the exhibits.

By the way, if Dad has some comment on the latest Charles Gadda exchange, he can send it through your email, that way there would be no trace of it in his account. [emphasis added]

Raph

On July 26, 2008, Raphael Golb (raphael.g@mindspring.com) wrote:

… what must be truly maddening to them is that they know Gadda is Golb’s son, meaning they are faced with a dedicated, in-the-know adversary who is out to get them, and there’s simply nothing they can do about it. I believe the blogging campaign has put pressure on them and possibly contributed to what we are seeing now with the Jewish Museum. [emphasis added]

On July 28, 2008, at 9:32am, Raphael Golb (raphael.g@mindspring.com) emailed Dr. Norman Golb (n-golb@uchicago.edu) a link to a Nowpublic blog by Gadda concerning the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit at the Jewish Museum, with subject “new nowpublic item on new york exhibit” and text “Dad — there’s a new article out by Gadda — http://www.nowpublic.com/culture/dead-sea-scrolls-coming-new-york”

On July 28, 2008, at 2:56pm, Ruth Golb emailed Raphael Golb and indicated “we can’t send via Dad’s email so we’ll send via mine”

On July 30, 2008, at 2:08pm, Raphael Golb emailed his family with a proposed email to be sent to Susan Braunstein, curator of the Jewish Museum.

On Wed, Jul 30, 2008 at 2:08 PM, wrote:
Mom, Dad, Joel,
how about this:
Dear Ms. Braunstein,
I am the son of Norman Golb (author of Who Wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls?).
I live in New York, and I have heard that an exhibit of the scrolls will soon be opening at the Jewish Museum. If you can spare a moment one afternoon, I would greatly appreciate having the opportunity to meet you; I have some information on recent developments that could be of interest to you.
Raphael Golb, Ph.D.

On July 30,2008, at 3:16pm, Ruth Golb responded:

“No, no, no for a few reasons. But let Dad write to B. K. tomorrow. ” [indicating Benny Kedar]

On July 30, 2008, at 3:46pm, Raphael Golb responded:

Okay, but we are very quickly running out of time on this one. [emphasis added] New York is far away from Jerusalem and I suspect it is not a primary concern of Benny Kedar’s. Incidentally, is Dad on good terms with anyone at the Jewish Theological Seminary?

In Dad’s letter, he should perhaps point out that the Jewish Museum is one of Judaism’s most prominent cultural institutions (hinting that its reputation is at stake), and ask if Katz will be taking steps to ensure that the decisions taken at the meeting will be concretely applied to the exhibit there.

On July 30, 2008, at 4:07pm, Raphael Golb wrote to Ruth Golb:[,]

I just called Dan about this and he immediately said there was no way Braunstein would ever meet with me, because she’s a “big shot.” He insisted that she must indeed be “au courant” because she is very clever, and that nothing he tells her will make any difference anyway because she will simply do what she wants. (Meanwhile, she has not returned his calls, because she must be busy setting up the exhibit and she probably assumes that he is just calling her for social reasons.)

My conclusion: the only way of getting through to her would be to directly inform her of the meeting. Ideally, Benny Kedar would call her himself, but again, I can understand Dad’s reluctance to be pushy. The only realistic possibility is for Kedar to instruct Katz to call Braunstein with a request that the additional information be added to the exhibit.

On July 30, 2008, at 6:18pm, Raphael Golb wrote to Ruth Golb:

I just spoke with Dan R; I could tell that basically he didn’t have the courage to ask Braunstein to invite Dad; he kept suggesting that I come to the lectures and ask questions afterwards to rebut the speakers; when I explained why that wouldn’t work, he suggested that Dad himself show up at Schiffman’s lecture (at Dan F.’s expense, hotel and everything); when I explained why Dad wouldn’t do that, he suggested that Dad write to Braunstein, pointing out that the speakers are not balanced and that he would be willing to give a talk at his own expense to rebut them…

On July 30, 2008, at 9:04pm, Ruth Golb wrote Raphael Golb:

Dad thinks that if Crawford was invited it’s because she’s Frank Cross’s student and someone must have been in back of it since she’s the least competent of all of them.

Now, if Dad is to use the Schiffman thing, he needs the exact quote of Schiffman’s and page number. Dad doesn’t have a copy of the book here.

The following email thread indicates the Golbs’ interest in who was speaking at the Jewish Museum, and refers to the fact that Dr. Schuller and Dr. Crawford were both students of Dr. Frank Cross.

On July 31,2008 Raphael Golb wrote Ruth Golb and wrote:

I doubt if this has anything to do with Cross — it could easily have come from the usual Katz recommended list, and simply result from the fact that Braunstein is a woman and that the idea of the lecture (“Women at Qumran”) seemed interesting and different to her — something that would interest the audience.

On July 31, 2008, Ruth Golb wrote to Raphael Golb:

Poor Dan. He means well, but the politics of this is beyond him. His suggestions would not be appropriate, of course.
Dad thinks that if Crawford was invited it’s because she’s Frank Cross’s student and someone must have been in back of it since she’s the least competent of all of them. Now, if Dad is to use the Schiffman thing, he needs the exact quote of Schiffman’s and page number. Dad doesn’t have a copy of the book here.
Mom

On August 05, 2008, 12:39am, Raphael Golb Wrote to Norman Golb under subject “schuller — harvard”:

Ph.d. Harvard, student of Cross just like the other one.

On August 06, 2008, 7:06pm, Raphael Golb wrote to Norman Golb:

Dad —
You will be amused to learn that the announcement of Schuller’s lecture has disappeared from the Jewish Museum website, at least for now. I have a feeling they have decided to try and keep it a secret for as long as possible…
Raph

On August 10,2008, at 1:10am, Norman Golb wrote to Raphael Golb:

… Mom and I also found of interest the latest item you sent us, i.e. the one from the writer living in Raleigh (or thereabouts). The recent blogs by Dworkin et al. are obviously having effect,

On August 10, 2008, 1:32am, Raphael Golb wrote to Norman Golb:


Would you like me to inform them using an alias, or do you prefer to contact them yourself? I’m sure they will ignore this anyway (perhaps not Orion, but the others certainly will).

On August 4, 2008, Raphael Golb wrote (apparently to Ruth Golb):

I was wrong in my assumption about the woman lecturer — it is Eileen Marie Schuller, Professor, Department of Religious Studies, McMaster University — no doubt just as bad as the other one, but nonetheless not the same.

Raph

On Mon, Aug 11,2008 Ruth Golb wrote to Raphael Golb:

Hi Raph,
Dad is still sleeping but I think you’re on to something here. Schiffman is such a sleaze and behaves as though he has nothing to fear -this makes sense to me.
Love,
Mom

On August 14, 2008, Raphael Golb wrote to Ruth Golb:

Okay — we absolutely need to speak on the phone before Dad gives his lecture. Weston Fields responded to Friedman with a “thank you very much for this information!” note. I have a hunch Fields and Broshi might try and set him up, with people here and there in the audience shouting out things like “why don’t you write a Nowpublic article on that, or will you have your son do it for you?” to try and rattle him. He needs to be very seriously prepared for that sort of thing — he should write down a few notes on what to say if that should happen, and bring them along with the text of the lecture so that he doesn’t feel caught off guard. (Possible responses: “you think I care about internet junk? I don’t know which of my sons you’re referring to, but they both have jobs, and if they chat on-line, they’re entitled to their opinion. now are you going to keep interrupting my talk, or can we go on?”) He must also prepare himself for a more “scientific” set up, people here and there in the audience attempting to point out every little weakness they can find.

EMAILS AMONG THE GOLBS THAT DEMONSTRATE COORDINATION OF DEFENDANT’S SOCK PUPPET ACTIVITIES AND MAINTAINING ANONYMITY, WHICH ASSIST IN DEMONSTRATING DEFENDANT’S INTENT AND MOTIVE

On July 2, 2008, Golb/Gadda alias Jesse Friedman wrote to Joel Golb (j.golb@snafu.de)

I am sorry — I forgot to “activate” the phillipcoleman@yahoo.com account yesterday — mea culpa. Try again on the site, I think it will work now. Phillip_Coleman.

Where they ask you for your city and phone number, try Philadelphia, 19134 is zipcode and invent a phone number — area code is 215. You can always be on vacation if they inquire (but so far none of my aliases have received the slightest hint of attention).

http://www.newsobserver.com/news/story/1123440.html

You should also try posting on the other site again. The woman has returned from vacation, and look how she has updated her original posting! — with a quote from the latest comment by “Dead Sea Scrolls student”…

http ://blog.news-record.com/staff/frontpew/archives/2008/06/dead_sea_scroll.shtml

On August 3, 2007, defendant (using personal email account raphael.g@mindspring.com) emailed Joel Golb and wrote:

I see you called–was at the library all day–Gadda has now published a definitive attack against these people–please let me know if you see any typos, etc., I will pass the info on to him if I see him–

http://www.nowpublic.com/christian_fundamentalism_and_dead_sea_scrolls_san_diego

On Jul 25, 2008, 5:54am, Joel Golb wrote to Raphael Golb:

your contribution was posted 2 minutes after my own posting–wouldn’t it have been better to wait a while to avoid the impression that we are collaborating or are indeed one and the same person? You want me to help on this–then please preserve Gnostic’s outward integrity as an independent contributor

On July 25, 2008, 11:27am, Raphael Golb wrote to Joel Golb:

Relax — it would have been unusual if I hadn’t posted anything — they would have started insinuating I was using another alias.

2 minutes — actually it was more like an hour or two, but if it says 2 minutes that’s good — how can I be in two places at the same time?

On July 25, 2008, 4:58pm, Raphael Golb wrote to Joel Golb:

I’m just getting home from stuff. From your exchange with Dad, I see that he apparently didn’t get my other emails which would explain why he never got back to me.

I really don’t think I ruined anything by coming on — the tone of my thing was quite different from yours, along with links. It’s part of Gadda’s persona to always come on late at night with jabs at these people, quoting the New York Times and similar sources. Why shouldn’t he have picked up on Ignorant Gnostic’s statement?

The following emails further demonstrate the coordination between Raphael and Joel Golb, and confusion about the volume of anonymous blogs:

On September 17, 2008, 12:55pm, Joel Golb emailed Raphael Golb:

there has been a new comment added to the Now Public site….

Raphael Golb responded with:

which article, the plagiarism thing? let them fight it out, whether someone plagiarized dad isn’t my concern, i am focused on the institutional problem, i’m around now if you can call.

On Sep 18, 2008, at 2:43am, Joel Golb wrote to Raphael Golb:

the Now Public article

On September 18, 2008, 2:45am, Raphael Golb responded to Joel Golb and stated:

look, i don’t know which article you’re talking about, there are nine of them — just give me a call, i need to tell you something anyway

A June 17, 2008 email from j.friedman47@gmail.com (a Golb/Gadda alias) to j.golb@snafu.de (the email account of Joel Golb in Germany) indicates discussion about the use of proxies, and discusses a Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit that was opening in North Carolina. The use of an internet proxy is a method of disguising one’s internet protocol address, the identifier that indicates which computer is accessing a computer at a given place and time.

“they are clearly accepting messages submitted through proxies, it must be some kind of glitch in their system — we are now up to 17 comments (see latest by sandy greenberg and martin elderling)…”

A November 4, 2007 email between robertdworkin@gmail.com (a Golb/Gadda alias) and j.golb@snafu.de (the email account of Joel Golb) contains discussion about an outline to use concerning the Dead Sea Scrolls, with the subject “scrap last outline–use this instead (dad phoned with some suggestions)”. This email implies that Norman Golb called Joel Golb, gave suggestions to the outline, which Joel Golb passed on to Raphael Golb in this email. This also implies that both Joel Golb and Norman Golb know that Raphael Golb is using at least some internet aliases.

A January 18, 2008 email between robertdworkin@gmail.com (an alias of Raphael Golb) and j.golb@snafu.de (the email account of Joel Golb) discusses keeping emails anonymous and untraceable, and some confusion about which alias will be used to send emails from NYU computers.

Subject: Re: revised version
Date: Sat, 19 Jan 2008 05:38:23 +0100
From: Joel Golb <j.golb@snafu.de>
To: robert dworkin <robertdworkin@gmail.com>

…. So I think Dworkin should be extremely careful to make sure the mail is totally untraceable–even going so far as to mail from an internet cafe–and it might actually be time in the next few weeks to simply throw out his old computer and replace it with one of those extremely inexpensive PCs one can now get…

There is email correspondence between Raphael Golb’s alias accounts and Dr. Golb, however it never overtly acknowledges a partnership. However Raphael Golb alias accounts have forwarded to Dr. Norman Golb email exchanges that the alias account (or another alias account) had with third parties. For example:

On August 15, 2007, email account robert.dwokin@gmail.com (a Golb/Gadda alias) sent email account n-golb@uchicago.edu (email account of Dr. Norman Golb) an email that forwarded a communication between robertdworkin@gmail.com and an employee at the LA Times concerning the Dead Sea Scrolls.

On March 31, 2008, email account joshua.reznick@yahoo.com (a Golb/Gadda alias) sent three successive emails to email account n-golb@uchicago.edu (email account of Dr. Norman Golb). These three successive emails appear to be revisions of the prior emails, and while formal in tone, the successive emails do not reference the preceding emails. In other words, if they did not know each other well, one would expect some sort of acknowledgment or apology for sending successive similar emails. These March 31, 2008 emails invite Dr. Norman Golb to correspond with the individual that email account joshua.reznick@yahoo.com had been corresponding with, and includes a copy of the prior correspondence. It is reasonable to infer that the successive emails represent successive revisions, with the final version being what Dr. Norman Golb would show to the person that the Golb/Gadda had been corresponding with.

On July 15, 2008, email account j.friedman47@gmail.com (a Golb/Gadda alias) sent email account n-golb@uchicago.edu (email account of Dr. Norman Golb) an email that forwarded a communication between jerome.cooper2@gmail.com (another alias of Raphael Golb) and a professor at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill regarding the Dead Sea Scrolls.

On December 16,2008, defendant (using email address raphael.g@mindspring.com) emailed Dr. Golb (at n-golb@uchicago.edu) under the subject line “Canadian Jewish academic site links museum controversy”

http://www.cijr.com/Israzine/israzine_Home.htm

You will see that they make a mistake (referring to you several times as “Norman Golb and Ludwig Rosenberger”) to which I believe someone has alerted them in case they can (or desire) to change it. Nonetheless, this arguably puts greater pressure on the museum. Notice that they have also linked one of Gadda’s articles

=== END TRANSCRIPT ===


the evidence is compelling.

but given this new evidence, we must also ask:

  • has the university of chicago opened an ethics investigation into the behavior of norman golb?
  • is this the kind of professional behavior encouraged and endorsed by the university of chicago?
  • if it can be shown that letters were sent to university of chicago administrators bringing this matter of golb’s actions to their attention, and they did not act and failed to investigate golb, is the university complicit, either via negligence or tacit endorsement, in golb’s activity?
  • given this new evidence, will the university of chicago open an ethics investigation into the activities of norman golb?

more to follow soon…

the guardians of the dead sea scrolls

Robert Cargill and Pnina Shor view a mounted Dead Sea Scrolls being prepared for exhibition in the Israel Antiquities Authority's Artifacts Treatment and Conservation lab in Jerusalem.

Robert Cargill and Pnina Shor holding a photographic reproduction of the Deuteronomy scroll containing the 10 Commandments, in the Dead Sea Scrolls Conservation Lab of the Israel Antiquities Authority in Jerusalem.

there is a great new article in ha’aretz by nir hassan that talks about the guardians of the dead sea scrolls: four tireless women who restore and preserve the dead sea scrolls for future generations. lead by pnina shor, these scientists – tania treiger, asia vexler, tanya bitler, and lena libman – painstakingly work on the scrolls and scroll fragments to make sure they do not succumb to the elements. as the article states:

But without the work of the four women in the conservation laboratory, Israel and Jordan would have nothing left to squabble over a few years from now. Innocent mistakes made in storing the scrolls led to their deterioration and disintegration over the years. Treiger and her colleagues are constantly fighting every source of damage to these 2,000-year-old treasures, including light, chemicals and heat.

Overseeing the efforts is Pnina Shor, head of Artifacts Treatment and Conservation at the authority. Shor is soon to be the first director of a special unit that will handle all the work on the Dead Sea Scrolls. “There is no other collection like this in the world, with such problems and such importance,” she says.

i had the honor of meeting many of them in their lab just last week. the article goes on to clarify:

Treiger, whose tools include Q-tips, tweezers and lots of patience, is one of four “guardians” of the Dead Sea Scrolls. These four women, all from the former Soviet Union, are the only people in the world permitted to touch the scrolls.

i repeat: they are the only ones permitted to touch the scrolls (and they do a very effective job of policing that policy!)

below are some of the pictures i took in the lab.

Robert Cargill and Pnina Shor

Robert Cargill and Pnina Shor at the Dead Sea Scrolls Conservation Lab of the Israel Antiquities Authority in Jerusalem.

Not a Dead Sea Scroll, but a Bar-Kokhba Letter presently in the IAA Conservation lab in Jerusalem.

Not a Dead Sea Scroll, but a Bar-Kokhba Letter presently in the IAA Conservation lab in Jerusalem.

IAA Conservation Lab

Lena Libman, Head of the DSS Conservation lab of the IAA.

IAA Conservation Lab

Asia Vexler, DSS Conservator, treats the phylacteries.

Tefillin or phylacteries being restored in the IAA Conservation lab in Jerusalem. Photo by Robert R. Cargill.

Tefillin or phylacteries being restored in the Dead Sea Scrolls Conservation Lab of the Israel Antiquities Authority in Jerusalem. Photo by Robert R. Cargill.

Tefillin or phylacteries being restored in the IAA Conservation lab in Jerusalem. Photo by Robert R. Cargill.

Tefillin or phylacteries being restored in the Dead Sea Scrolls Conservation Lab of the Israel Antiquities Authority in Jerusalem. Photo by Robert R. Cargill.

Dr. Robert Cargill and Dr. Pnina Shor read a section of a mounted Dead Sea Scroll in the IAA Conservation lab in Jerusalem.

Robert Cargill and Pnina Shor read a section of a photographic reproduction of the Deuteronomy scroll containing the 10 Commandments, in the IAA DSS Conservation lab in Jerusalem.

Dr. Robert Cargill and Dr. Pnina Shor read a section of a mounted Dead Sea Scroll in the IAA Conservation lab in Jerusalem.

Robert Cargill and Pnina Shor read a section of a photographic reproduction of the Deuteronomy scroll containing the 10 Commandments, in the IAA DSS Conservation lab in Jerusalem.

Dr. Robert Cargill and Dr. Pnina Shor read a section of a mounted Dead Sea Scroll in the IAA Conservation lab in Jerusalem.

Robert Cargill and Pnina Shor, Head of the Department for the Treatment and Conservation of Artifacts, in the IAA Conservation lab in Jerusalem.

Tefillin Fragment. Photo by Robert R. Cargill.

Tefillin Fragment. Photo by Robert R. Cargill.

congrats to the iaa conservation lab team on their work. and thanx to ha’aretz for highlighting their work!!

devry university, itt tech, and university of phoenix announce acquisition of dead sea scrolls

Dead Sea Scroll Fragment

A fragment (4Q51) of a Dead Sea Scroll

in a stunning development just one day after southwestern baptist theological seminary announced (blog) it had acquired three fragments of dead sea scrolls, the assassinated press is reporting that three more prominent american universities have acquired fragments of the dead sea scrolls and other well-known jewish cultural heritage objects from unnamed antiquities dealers.

in what has become a race of archaeological one-upsmanship, several universities have begun purchasing fragments of the famed dead sea scrolls and other jewish antiquities that have previously been in private collections. prior to last year, princeton theological seminary and the university of chicago were the only american universities to have portions of the dead sea scrolls in their private museum holdings. then late last year, southern california academic powerhouse azusa pacific university surprised the world by announcing (blog) they had purchased fragments of the dead sea scrolls from a southern california antiquities dealer. then just yesterday, southwestern baptist theological seminary announced it had also acquired fragments of the scrolls from an undisclosed antiquities dealer for an undisclosed amount of money.

the desire for christian universities and seminaries to boost their academic reputations by purchasing fragments of the enigmatic scrolls has apparently started a trend among other institutions of higher learning also seeking to gain overnight credibility by purchasing classical jewish inscriptions. this morning, online education powerhouse devry university announced that it has acquired a fragment of the great isaiah scroll discovered in cave 1 near qumran. the fragment is a .5 cm x .3 cm wide and contains a single letter: aleph. despite the fragmentary nature of the fragment, professor roger smoak, who holds a joint appointment in accounting and northwest semitic palaeography, assured devry’s board of regents that the fragment was authentic and worth every bit of the 2.3 million dollars it paid for the single letter.

This fragment of the Dead Sea Scrolls, although small, shows DeVry’s commitment to being a leader in the online university/alternative education market. Big things come in small packages, and this single aleph is the ‘A’ for effort that will make DeVry a major player in the world of higher education. Look out Harvard! DeVry knows a little about the Bible too. In fact, we now own a part of it.

immediately after devry’s announcement, online technical school itt tech announced that it had acquired an inscribed piece of pottery, or ostracon, from an antiquities dealer in jerusalem for an undisclosed sum. the dealer claims the ostracon is from the famed ‘samaria ostraca‘ collection, which comprises a number of ancient tax receipts for items brought to an israelite palace in samaria. the sherd acquired by itt tech contains three hebrew letters: bet, yod, and taw. while most scholars agree that this fragmentary ostracon simply contains the hebrew word bayit, or ‘house,’ itt tech associate professor of information systems security and hebrew bible, jeremy suriano, said:

While most scholars believe this ostracon says ‘house’ or ‘house of,’ I believe it is the earliest known reference to the computer term ‘bit,’ the foundational building block of bytes, kilobytes, megabytes, and gigabytes. In this sense, this simple ‘byt’ inscription must be considered a prophecy of the technology boom we are now experiencing today. And now we own this piece of prophecy!

A purported silver sliver of the backside of the Ketef Hinnom inscription shown next to a penny for scale.

not to be outdone, the university of phoenix has announced that it has acquired a fragment of the ketef hinnom inscription from a pawn shop in the silwan valley. matthew nam, professor of international trade and systematic theology, believes the silver sliver of text could be the centerpiece of the online university’s new masters program in international business and theology.

Obviously, the acquisition of a piece of history this significant is no small thing. Despite the fact that it contains no actual writing, the 1.1 million dollars we spent on this sliver of the Ketef Hinnom amulet’s backside shows our dedication to establishing our new program in international business and theology and establishing ourselves as the world’s premier online business degree for those who also love the Bible. Because we have made this purchase of a mere fragment of an archaeological object, we must immediately be recognized as a legitimate and major player in online theological education.

still other institutions are rumored to be in the hunt for valuable jewish antiquities in an effort to improve their academic reputations overnight. in an effort to solidify its place atop the field of agribusiness education,  fresno city college is said to be near the completion of a deal to purchase a 2 cm x 2 cm portion of a bar kokhba letter that mentions a piece of fruit. thousand oaks high school has partnered with local temple etz chaim preschool to acquire a coin minted by herod the great. and, liberty university is in talks with the jordan archaeological museum to acquire one segment of the copper scroll, which liberty university will then trade to the istanbul archaeology museum in turkey in exchange for the siloam tunnel inscription, a purported piece of noah’s ark, an artifact to be named later, and cash considerations.


these recent acquisitions of archeological objects by universities all go to show that a lack of status in theological education within the academy can quickly be overcome with a few dollars and the purchase of sensational archaeological objects. while most top schools waste their time educating their students with literary critical techniques and objective assessments of history, bible-based colleges can circumvent the scientific method while maintaining their sectarian doctrinal stances by simply purchasing objects that the public revere but do not understand. in this rough economy, why hire more faculty to educate students when a school can use that same money to purchase antiquities and sell tickets to its museum? thus, it makes great business sense for bible colleges to buy publicity by purchasing artifacts rather than producing scholars who truly understand them.

(n.b. check the ‘filed under’ category below)

double checking the ‘research’ of jim barfield

a number of posts have been made regarding jimmy barfield and the copper scroll project:

Robert Cargill and Yuval Peleg

Robert Cargill and Yuval Peleg in the locus 138 miqveh (ritual bath) at Qumran.

however, i wanted to make sure that the criticism of barfield’s so-called expedition was not unwarranted. so, i got in a plane and flew to the west bank and visited qumran. there, i met up with yuval peleg, the district archaeologist in charge judea and samaria, who personally dug at qumran. yuval told me that jimmy barfield never even so much as touched a trowel. his group never dug a single spade of dirt. they were merely observers – that’s it. peleg said as soon as he saw jim barfield claiming to ‘lead an excavation’ for the copper scroll at qumran, he told them to stop making the claim.

mr. barfield never had a permit to dig. in fact, mr. barfield never dug at qumran. barfield simply claimed to have ‘cracked the code’ on the copper scroll. and once he was exposed raising thousands of dollars to lead a ‘copper scroll project’ to qumran, but never actually digging or finding anything, his excuse was that he was not allowed to ‘dig to the proper depth.’ i asked peleg about this claim. yuval showed me to a probe that he dug at a place where mr. barfield insisted there was buried treasure. peleg needed to dig a probe, so he used it as an opportunity to show barfield he was mistaken. the result was exactly as mr. peleg expected: there was nothing. and to prove it, mr. peleg showed me the probe he dug (right).

Jim Barfield's Hole in the Ground 1

Jim Barfield's Hole in the Ground

Jim Barfield's Hole in the Ground 2

Jim Barfield's Hole in the Ground

anyone who has even dug for a day knows what virgin soil looks like. we see to the right that there is nothing but virgin rock. mr. peleg probed along the wall for the presence of a lower water channel near the locus 138 miqveh. barfield assured peleg that he would find treasure there. yet, when peleg realized that there was nothing beneath the surface but untouched rock, he ended the probe and moved on. his question had been answered: no water channel beneath the wall.

however, barfield still claims that he wasn’t allowed to dig deep enough. this is, of course, the same claim a gambling addict makes when he’s trying to get his friends to lend him more money because this time he’s gonna win it big. there’s just nothing there. and just to make sure, i traveled to qumran, met yuval peleg, and saw for myself. nada.

barfield is presently petitioning the iaa and the israeli government via a letter writing campaign to let him dig deeper at qumran. but i applaud the iaa for not working with amateurs who make claims that are simply not true. i am assured that jim barfield will not be digging or observing an excavation at qumran again. and after meeting with several iaa employees, i am confident that they are doing their best to not only keep people from destroying their sites, but to combat sensationalism and religious zealousness that ultimately threaten archaeological sites.

so in the end, the criticisms of the copper scroll project are all justified and verified. there is no treasure. barfield never led an excavation. barfield never had a permit. barfield is not an archaeologist. the iaa does not work with or endorse barfield or his research. the copper scroll project never dug at qumran, they only observed and ongoing iaa excavation. those are the facts, and above are the photographs to prove it.

by the way, in the video below we can see evidence of the deceptive nature of the copper scroll project. barfield claims ‘we are digging’ at qumran in a ‘tunnel.’ this ‘tunnel’ is one of the places where  jimmy barfield claims treasure is buried. of course, this ‘tunnel’ is actually a part of qumran’s water channel system, which magen and peleg have been studying and excavating for the past 10 years. if you look closely, barfield is, in fact, not digging, but just observing with cameras. the iaa cleaned the channel and moved on. in later videos, barfield criticized the archaeologist digging there for not digging ‘to the proper depth’ so he could find the treasure. but this is merely a water channel, and the iaa was not about to dig beneath a water channel to look for some imaginary treasure. rather, they just excavated the water channel as they had planned to do. barfield and company, however, gave the impression that they were leading the excavation, and that the iaa was digging according to barfield’s ‘research’ when in fact, the iaa was simply cleaning and clearing out the qumran water system, which they had been doing for the past 10 years.

in the end, it is what it is: someone claiming to be doing something that he is not, and raising a lot of money from hard working people who are kind enough to believe him.

southwestern baptist theological seminary acquires dead sea scrolls fragments

A Fragment of the Dead Sea Scrollsaccording to an associated press article, southwestern baptist theological seminary has acquired fragments of the dead sea scrolls.

Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary is set to unveil three newly acquired biblical Dead Sea Scroll fragments.

Southwestern spokesman Thomas White says the fragments acquired Tuesday include Scriptures from the books of Exodus, Leviticus and Daniel.

first it was princeton theological seminary and the university of chicago who owned scroll fragments. then azusa pacific acquired some fragments. now it’s southwestern baptist who has some.

my question is: how many fragments are in private hands? and why didn’t southwestern baptist state from whom they purchased the scroll fragments?

Southwestern purchased its fragments from a private collector for an undisclosed amount and is in negotiation for future pieces.

azusa pacific university stated very clearly that they purchased their fragments from lee biondi of biondi rare books in venice beach, california. why is the seller’s name not being disclosed in southwestern baptist’s transaction? i can understand not wanting to state the amount paid (which helps combat looting and illegal sales of antiquities), but keeping the seller’s name anonymous??

congrats to southwestern baptist. who is next? fresno state? pasadena city college?

rom dead sea scrolls exhibition breaks record

in the midst of a global economic downturn, toronto has something about which to be very excited: the royal ontairo museum’s exhibition of the dead sea scrolls was a huge success. according to canada’s national post:

“Words that Changed the World,” is the most popular exhibition staged at the Royal Ontario Museum in the past nine years.

the numbers are quite impressive:

331,500 people visited the exhibit between its opening on June 27, 2009 and its January 3 closing earlier this year. That makes the exhibit the most successful since Egyptian Art in the Age of the Pyramids almost a decade ago.

according to the museum’s press release,

From the exhibition’s June 27, 2009 opening to its January 3, 2010 closing, an exceptional 331, 500 visitors responded to this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see one of the greatest archaeological finds of the 20th century. This attendance includes those viewing the Ten Commandments Scroll, on display at the ROM for only 80 hours from October 10 through October 18, 2009. The great appeal of these presentations led to the Royal Ontario Museum’s 2009 attendance reaching 1,024,964 visitors. This figure includes Dead Sea Scrolls’school visits of approximately 12,000 students and accompanying adults, as well as over 790 organized groups representing approximately 23,000 visitors.

it is encouraging to see that 12,000 students got to see the scrolls. i’m always encouraged when young minds get to see anything ancient.

according to the press release the distinguished lecture series was also highly successful:

Approximately 4,500 people attended the Anne Tanenbaum Lecture Series, making it the largest, most successful lecture series in the ROM’s history.

the fact that 4,500 people were willing to pay to come and hear professional nerds talk about the scrolls also speaks to the intelligence of the toronto residents and visitors. imho, the distinguished lecturer series was a perfect blend of dss scholars, and one of the best and most relevant programs ever assembled.

so, despite drummed up protests across from the entrance, the rom experienced record attendance. i’m trying to determine what was different about the toronto exhibition that was not present in san diego and raleigh/durham. why was the toronto exhibition so positive? can anyone think of anything?

anywho, congrats to the rom, its administration, all the participants, and the curator, dr. risa levitt kohn for all their hard work. your success is well deserved!

new smithsonian article by andrew lawler entitled: who wrote the dead sea scrolls?

Qumran

The caves to the west of Qumran.

andrew lawler has written a new article for smithsonian magazine entitled, ‘who wrote the dead sea scrolls?’ it is a survey of the modern state of the qumran archaeological debate. it is fair, and represents everyone evenly, yet demonstrates how many different ways the site of qumran can be interpreted.

i’ve got a brief mention and quote towards the end, taking my usual place as one trying to make peace between the two sides. i am quoted as saying that qumran was a settlement, ‘that wanted to be self-reliant—the question is just how jewish and just how devout they were.’ the answer, of course, is that they were definitely jewish, and that their devotion was at least great enough to build a few miqva’ot (jewish ritual baths) at the site (and who knows, maybe copy a scroll or two…)

it’s a solid article, and i recommend it to everyone. kudos to andrew.

details of raphael golb’s impersonation of lawrence schiffman

Raphael Golb

Raphael Golb is accused of multiple felony and misdemeanor counts of forgery, identity theft, criminal impersonation, and aggravated harassment against New York University professor Dr. Lawrence Schiffman.

the following are the transcripts of two affidavits in support of search warrants to search the home of raphael golb, son of university of chicago oriental institute historian norman golb. golb was later arrested and charged with criminal impersonation, forgery, identity theft, and aggravated harassment in connection with an anonymous internet smear campaign involving scholars studying the dead sea scrolls.

in particular, golb was charged with the criminal impersonation of new york university’s dr. lawrence schiffman. below, the court filings will show evidence of forged emails purportedly sent by multiple aliases of raphael golb that attempt not only to accuse falsely dr. schiffman of plagiarizing golb’s father, norman golb, but admit to the plagiarism on dr. schiffman’s behalf, without his knowledge, using first person language, and signing the emails ‘lawrence schiffman.’


excerpt from the jan 12, 2009 affidavit in support of a search warrant § 12-28 (pp. 5-11)

IMPERSONATION AND HARASSMENT OF DR. LAWRENCE SCHIFFMAN

12. Dr. Lawrence Schiffman informs me that an individual has impersonated him via email, and that he has been the subject of an effort to discredit him via email and the internet. This effort to discredit Dr. Schiffman is related to his scholarship and work concerning the Dead Sea Scrolls. Dr. Schiffman informs me that the following emails were sent to NYU personnel, purporting to be from Dr. Schiffman. Dr. Scmffrnan did not send the below emails that were sent in his name, nor did he create that email account, nor did he give anyone permission or authority to use his name to open the email account or send the emails.

13. On or about August 4, 2008, the following email was sent to multiple NYU recipients:

Date Mon, 04 Aug 2008
From larry schiffman
To [Multiple NYU recipients, email addresses redacted]
Subject plagiarism charges

Miryam, Sara, Cory, Ariel,

Apparently, someone is intent on exposing a minor failing of mine that dates back almost fifteen years ago.

You are not to mention the name of the scholar in question to any of our students, and every effort must be made to prevent this article from coming to their attention. This is my career at stake. I hope you will all understand.

http://www.nowpublic.com/culture/plagiarism-and-dead-sea-scrolls-did-nyu-professor-snitch-chicago-historians-work

Lawrence Schiffman

14. On or about August 5, 2008, the following email was sent to multiple NYU recipients:

Date Tue, 05 Aug 2008
From larry schiffman
To Cory Peacock
Subject Re: plagiarism charges
Cc [Multiple NYU recipients, email addresses redacted]

Cory, thanks for your kind words.

This is definitely ruining my week. I don’t know if you can understand how I feel, but it is as if someone had set fire to my beard. The last thing I need now is to be investigated by the dean.

Best,

Lawrence Schiffman

15. On or about August 5, 2008, the following email was sent to multiple NYU recipients:

Date Tue, 05 Aug 2008
From larry schiffman
To [Multiple NYU recipients, email addresses redacted]

Dear colleagues,

Apparently, someone is intent on exposing a minor failing of mine that dates back almost fifteen years ago.

Every effort must be made to prevent this article from coming to students’ attention. This is my career at stake. I hope you will all understand.

http://www.nowpublic.com/culture/plagiarism-and-dead-sea-scrolls-did-nyu-department-chairman-pilfer-chicago-historian-s-work

Lawrence Schiffman

16. On or about August 5, 2008, the following email was sent to a dean at NYU:

From: larry schiffman [mailto:larry.schiffman@gmail.com]
Sent: Tuesday, August 05,2008
To: [Catharine Stimpson -email address redacted]
Subject: Plagiarism charges

Dear Dean Stimpson,

I would like to know what action I can take to counter charges of plagiarism that have been raised against me.

Apparently, someone is intent on exposing a failing of mine that dates back almost fifteen years ago. It is true that I should have cited Dr. Golb’s articles when using his arguments, and it is true that I misrepresented his ideas. But this is simply the politics of Dead Sea Scrolls studies. If I had given credit to this man I would have been banned from conferences around the world.

I am especially concerned that this affair may come to students’ attention. My career is at stake. I hope you will understand.

http://www.nowpublic.com/culture/plagiarism-and-dead-sea-scrolls-did-nyu-department-chairman-pilfer-chicago-historian-s-work

Lawrence Schiffman, professor

17. As indicated previously, Dr. Schiffman did not send the above emails, nor did he give anyone permission to do so. The above emails referred the recipient to a blog (short for “weblog”) with the internet address:

http://www.nowpublic.com/culmre/plagiarism-and-dead-sea-scrolls-did-nyu-department-chairman-pilfer-chicago-historian-s-work

I have viewed the above blog/webpage. It indicates it is authored by “Peter Kaufman”, created August 4, 2008 at 2:35 pm. Most blogging sites do not verify the identity of it’s bloggers. Therefore Peter Kaufman could merely be an alias. Essentially, this blog accuses Dr. Schiffman of plagiarizing the work of Dr. Norman Golb. This blog also links3 to blogs written by an individual using the name Charles Gadda. After the blog, there are comments by various individuals, including “Charles Gadda”, and “Raphael Joel”, who praise the writing of Peter Kaufman, praise Dr. Norman Golb, and criticize Dr. Schiffman.4
3 A “link”, or “hyperlink”, is computer code embedded within the text of a webpage that, when clicked on, directs the computer user to a particular webpage.
4 Assuming that “Peter Kaufman”, “Charles Gadda”, and “Raphael Joel” were the same person, this use of multiple internet aliases to conduct a discourse would be an example of internet “sockpuppetry”.

18. There are numerous other blogs on the internet that follow the above pattern. For example, blog page:

http://plagiarist-schiffman.blogspot.com/2008/08/succinct-summary-of-allegations-of.html

is a blog that indicates to the public that it is maintained by user “plagiarist-schiffman”, and which is also highly critical of Dr. Schiffman.

19. Records from Google (that runs blogspot) pertaining to this blog (plagiarist-schiffman.blogspot.com) indicate that the email address of the person maintaining this blog is steve.goranson@gmail.com, and that the blog was created on August 7, 2008 from IP address5 128.122.89.41, and has been modified from that IP address. As indicated later in this affidavit, the IP address 128.122.89.41 indicates that the person accessing this blog was using computers at the NYU Bobst Library. As indicated below, Steve Goranson is a real person who is a Dead Sea Scrolls scholar, who informs me that he did not open this email account, or give anyone permission to open the email account.
5An IP (Internet Protocol) address is the numeric address for a computer or device that is connected to the Internet.

20. Another blog that follows this pattern is

http://larryschiffman.blogspot.com/

This is a blog that indicates to the public that it was created and maintained by user “Larry Schiffman” and which is highly critical of Dr. Schiffman.

21. Records from Google (that runs blogspot) pertaining to this blog (larry.schiffman.blogspot.com) indicate that the email address of the person maintaining this blog is larry.schiffman@gmail.com, and that the blog was created on August 4, 2008 from IP address 128.122.89.193, and also modified from this IP address. As indicated later in this affidavit, the IP address 128.122.89.41 indicates that the person accessing-this blog was using computers at the NYU Bobst Library. Dr. Schiffman did not open this blog or email address, nor did he give anyone permission to use his name to open the site or email address.

22. Another blog that follows this pattern is

http://lawrence-schiffman-speaks.blogspot.com

This is a blog that indicates to the public that it was created and maintained by user “lawrence.schiffman.speaks” and which is highly critical of Dr. Schiffman.

23. Records from Google (that runs blogspot) pertaining to this blog (lawrence.schiffman.speaks.blogspot.com) indicate that the email address of the person maintaining this blog is Jewish.museum.schiffman@gmail.com, and that the blog was created on September 24, 2008 from IP address 128.122.89.194, and also modified from this IP address. As indicated later in this affidavit, the IP address 128.122.89.194 indicates that the person accessing this blog was using computers at the NYU Bobst Library. Dr. Schiffman did not open this blog or email address, nor did he give anyone permission to use his name to open the site or email address.

24. Another blog is:

http://timothyfishbane.wordpress.com/dead-sea-scrolls-distinguished-lecture-series-at-raleigh-museum

This blog indicates that it was created by “Timothy Fishbane” on or about August 4, 2008, and titled “Dead Sea Scrolls: “Distinguished Lecture Series” at Raleigh Museum” that attacked several speakers, including Dr. Schiffman and other scholars.

25. On October 31, 2008, the following email was sent to a dean of NYU (Richard Foley) that was critical of Dr. Schiffman.

Date: Fri, 31 Oct 2008
From: Simon Adler
To: [Email address of Richard Foley redacted]
Subject: Article on Jewish Museum lecture by Lawrence Schiffman

Dear Dean Foley,

I think you should see this. Among other things, the author seems to be saying that an NYU department chairman took legal action to keep him from publishing?

http://peter2kaufman.wordpress.com/

Best,
Simon Adler

26. On November 7, 2008, the following email was sent to a Dean at NYU (Catherine Stimpson)

Date: Fri, 07 Nov 2008
From: Media Watch
To: east.coast.faculty@gmail.com [and other email recipients]
Subject: Lecture review challenges NYU department chair’s Dead Sea
Scrolls
scholarship, professional conduct

Dear East Coast colleagues,

Some of you might wish to take a look at this article [embedded link to http://peter2kaufman.wordpress.com/2008/10/31/lawrence-schiffmans-dazzling-jewish-museum-lecture/%5D and the public exchange of letters that follows it; among other things, the suggestion is made that one of our colleagues at New York University has taken legal action in an effort to prevent the dissemination of allegations of misconduct that have recently aired on several news sites, including George Mason University’s History News Network.

These allegations, involving the famous Dead Sea Scrolls, are to the effect that our colleague borrowed the published research of another American scholar without crediting him, and attempted to hide this misappropriation by publicly misrepresenting the views of that scholar; that these facts came to light in an interview with a well-known Israeli journalist; but that an investigation into the matter has been blocked at NYU.

With best post-election regards,

Steven Gibbs

27. On November 25, 2008, the following email was sent to a teaching assistant of Dr. Schiffman at NYU (Ariel Simon)

From: Simon Adler
Date: Tue, Nov 25, 2008
Subject: Dr. Schiffman’s talk
To: [email address of Ariel Simon redacted]

Ariel, I see that Larry has you forking out the Jodi Magness junk to your students, rather than Magen and Peleg — this strikes me as rather poor judgment on his part.

Incidentally, have you read this interesting review of his talk?

http://peter2kaufman.wordpress.com/2008/10/31/lawrence-schiffmans-dazzling-jewish-museum-lecture/

Best,

Simon Adler

28. Both of the above hyperlinks

http://peter2kaufman.wordpress.com/, and
http://peter2kaufman.wordpress.com/2008/10/31/lawrence-schiffmans-dazzling-jewish-museum-lecture/

point to the same blog, purportedly written by “Peter Kaufman”, who writes that he had attended a lecture given by Dr. Schiffman the night before, is highly critical of him, and accuses him of plagiarizing Dr. Golb.

==end of transcript==


excerpt from a mar 2, 2009 affidavit in support of an application for a search warrant § 19-33 (pp. 8-12)

IMPERSONATION AND HARASSMENT OF DR. LAWRENCE SCHIFFMAN

19. Dr. Schiffman informs me that an individual has impersonated him via email, and that he has been the subject of an effort to discredit him via email and the internet.3 As previously indicated, Dr. Lawrence Schiffman is a professor at NYU who specializes in the Dead Sea Scrolls. The effort to discredit Dr. Schiffman is related to his scholarship and work concerning the Dead Sea Scrolls. Dr. Schiffman informs me that emails were sent to NYU personnel, from an email account named “larry.schiffman@gmail.com”, purporting to be from Dr. Schiffman, and purporting to admit to plagiarism in the past. Some emails specifically allege that Dr. Golb was plagiarized. The emails point the recipient to view webpages/blogs that accuse Dr. Schiffman of plagiarizing the works of Dr. Norman Golb. The allegations of plagiarism are false.
3 As will be detailed later in this affidavit, investigation has revealed that the individual who impersonated Dr. Schiffman is Raphael Golb. This affidavit will also detail the dozens of internet aliases/email accounts used by Raphael Golb.

20. Dr. Schiffman did not create this email account, did not send these emails, and did not give anyone permission or authority to do so. NYU email recipients forwarded copies of the emails to Dr. Schiffman, and he was able to review them.

21. Records from Google/Gmail pertaining to this email account (“larry.schiffman@gmail.com”) indicate that the email account was created on August 3, 2008 from IP address (Internet Protocol Address)4 128.122.89.32. Publicly available information, as well as NYU personnel indicate that this IP address belongs to the NYU Bobst library. The email account was accessed from IP Address 28.122.89.193 (NYU Bobst5), and 216.165.95.64 (NYU NAT – a pool of internet access IP addresses). As will be detailed later in this affidavit, these IP addresses are generally for NYU’s computers that are available to the general NYU community, and that Raphael Golb had access to.
4 An IP (Internet Protocol) address is the numeric address for a computer or device that is connected to the Internet.
5 As indicated previously, the ultimate location of this IP address was determined based upon publicly available information as well as NYU personnel. For brevity and clarity, this phrase will be omitted in the future.

22. Gmail records of “larry.schiffman@gmail.com” indicate that it sent approximately eleven separate emails purporting to be from Dr. Schiffman, purporting to admit to plagiarism, directing the recipient to a blog accusing Dr. Schiffman of plagiarism, and requesting that the recipient not mention the allegations of plagiarism to anyone. Many of the emails were to multiple recipients. These emails were sent to NYU students, deans, the NYU Provost (the NYU senior academic administrator), and NYU newspapers. In each email, the recipient is pointed to a blog, and advised that past plagiarism conduct has been exposed, and requests that these allegations be kept secret. These records also indicate that the email account holder activated blog: larryschiffman.wordpress.com and larryschiffman.blogspot.com. These are blogs that accuse Dr. Schiffman of plagiarism.

23. For example, Gmail records indicate the following correspondence between email account “larry.schiffman@gmail.com” and other email accounts.

Date Tue, 05 Aug 2008
From larry schiffman
To [Multiple NYU recipients, email addresses redacted]

Dear colleagues,

Apparently, someone is intent on exposing a minor failing of mine that dates back almost fifteen years ago.

Every effort must be made to prevent this article from coming to students’ attention. This is my career at stake. I hope you will all understand.

http://www.nowpublic.com/culture/plagiarism-and-dead-sea-scrolls-did-nyu-department-chairman-pilfer-chicago-historian-s-work

Lawrence Schiffman

——————

From: larry schiffman [mailto:larry.schiffman@gmail.com]
Sent: Tuesday, August 05,2008
To: [Catharine Stimpson -email address redacted]
Subject: Plagiarism charges

Dear Dean Stimpson,

I would like to know what action I can take to counter charges of plagiarism that have been raised against me.

Apparently, someone is intent on exposing a failing of mine that dates back almost fifteen years ago. It is true that I should have cited Dr. Golb’s articles when using his arguments, and it is true that I misrepresented his ideas. But this is simply the politics of Dead Sea Scrolls studies. If I had given credit to this man I would have been banned from conferences around the world.

I am especially concerned that this affair may come to students’ attention. My career is at stake. I hope you will understand.

http://www.nowpublic.com/culture/plagiarism-and-dead-sea-scrolls-did-nyu-department-chairman-pilfer-chicago-historian-s-work

Lawrence Schiffman, professor

24. As indicated previously, Dr. Schiffman did not send the above emails, nor did he give anyone permission to do so. The above emails referred the recipient to a blog (short for “weblog”) with the internet address:

http://www.nowpublic.com/culture/plagiarism-and-dead-sea-scrolls-did-department-chairman-pilfer-chicago-historian-s-work

I have viewed the above blog/webpage. It indicates it is authored by “Peter Kaufman”, created August 4, 2008 at 2:35 pm. Most blogging sites do not verify the identity of their bloggers. Therefore, Peter Kaufman could merely be an alias. Essentially, this blog accuses Dr. Schiffman of plagiarizing the work of Dr. Norman Golb. This blog also links6 to blogs written by an individual using the name Charles Gadda. After the blog, there are comments by various individuals, including “Charles Gadda”, and “Raphael Joel”, who praise the writing of Peter Kaufman, praise Dr. Norman Golb, and criticize Dr. Schiffman.7
6 A “link”, or “hyperlink”, is computer code embedded within the text of a webpage that, when clicked on, directs the computer user to a particular webpage.
7 Assuming that “Peter Kaufman”, “Charles Gadda”, and “Raphael Joel” were the same person, this use of multiple internet aliases to conduct a discourse would be an example of internet “sockpuppetry”. This affidavit does not imply that use of such aliases, by itself, constitutes a criminal offense.

25. There are numerous other blogs on the internet that follow the above pattern. For example, blog page:

http://plagiarist-schiffman.blogspot.com/2008/08/succinct-summary-of-allegations-of.html

is a blog that indicates to the public that it is maintained by user “plagiarist-schiffman”, and which is also highly critical of Dr. Schiffman.

26. Records from Google (that runs blogspot) pertaining to this blog (plagiarist-schiffman.blogspot.com) indicate that the email address of the person maintaining this blog is steve.goranson@gmail.com, and that the blog was created on August 7, 2008 from IP address 128.122.89.41, and that the blog was modified from that IP address. As indicated later in this affidavit, the IP address 128.122.89.41 indicates that the person accessing this blog was using computers at the NYU Bobst Library. As described later, Steve Goranson is a real person who has researched the Dead Sea Scrolls. Mr. Goranson informs me that he did not open this email account, or give anyone permission to open the email account.

27. Another blog that follows this pattern is

http://larryschiffman.blogspot.com/

This is a blog that indicates to the public that it was created and maintained by user “Larry Schiffman” and which is highly critical of Dr. Schiffman.

28. Records from Google (that runs blogspot) pertaining to this blog (larry.schiffman.blogspot.com) indicate that the email address of the person maintaining this blog is larry.schiffman@gmail.com, and that the blog was created on August 4, 2008 from IP address 128.122.89.193, and was also modified from this IP address (an IP address at NYU Bobst library). Dr. Schiffman did not open this blog or email address, nor did he give anyone permission to use his name to open the site or email address.

29. Another blog that follows this partern is

http://lawrence-schiffman-speaks.blogspot.com

This is a blog that indicates to the public that it was created and maintained by user “lawrence.schiffman.speaks” and which is highly critical of Dr. Schiffman.

30. Records from Google (that runs blogspot) pertaining to this blog (lawrence.schiffman.speaks.blogspot.com) indicate that the email address of the person maintaining this blog is Jewish.museum.schiffman@gmail.com, and that the blog was created on September 24, 2008 from IP address 128.122.89.194, and also modified from this IP address (this IP address belongs to computers at the NYU Bobst Library). Dr. Schiffman did not open this blog or email address, nor did he give anyone permission to use his name to open the site or email address.

31. Another blog is:

http://timothyfishbane.wordpress.com/dead-sea-scrolls-distinguished-lecture-series-at-raleigh-museum

This blog indicates that it was created by “Timothy Fishbane” on or about August 4, 2008, and titled “Dead Sea Scrolls: “Distinguished Lecture Series” at Raleigh Museum” that attacked several speakers, including Dr. Schiffman and other scholars.

32. From August to November of 2008, multiple emails were sent to NYU personnel, and others, that were critical of Dr. Schiffman, accused him of plagiarism, and critical of other Dead Sea Scrolls scholars. For example, on August 4, 2008, the following email was sent to multiple recipients at NYU, and was critical of Dr. Schiffman:

Subject: NYU department chairman plagiarizes and misrepresents scholar’s work,
goes uninvestigated for 15 years
Date: Mon, 4 Aug 2008
From: Peter Kaufman
To: [NYU email addresses redacted]

Dear Mr. Roach,

I am writing to ask why it is that the outrageous misconduct of Dr. Lawrence Schiffman, chairman of the Skirball Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies at NYU, has never been investigated.

This man has in large measure based his career on the plagiarism and misrepresentation of another scholar’s work. For the basic facts, see:

http://larry.schiffman.wordpress.com/charges-of-impropriety-surface-against-new-york-university-professor-lawrence-schiffman/

With best wishes,

Peter Kaufman

33. On or about July 5, 2007, an article/blog appeared on the internet at webaddress: http://www.voieeofsandiego.org/articles/2007/07/05/letters/078deadsea070607.txt which was titled: Other Side of the Scrolls, By Charles Gadda, New York. The article is critical of a Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit, and the fact that Norman Golb is not properly referenced. In response to this blog, there is a comment by an individual using the name “Tuesday Kuykendall” who praises Dr. Golb’s book, “Who Wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls.” In response to this posting, there is a comment by an individual using the name “Larry Schiffman” declaring that the statement [who declares the comment] by Tuesday Kukendall is “revelatory” and criticizing Dead Sea Scrolls exhibits in general. Dr. Schiffman informs me that he did not post this comment, nor did he give anyone permission to use his name to post this comment.

==end transcript==

court documents say norman golb may have been involved in the raphael golb dead sea scrolls scandal

Raphael and Norman Golb

Raphael Golb (left) and his father, University of Chicago historian Dr. Norman Golb. Raphael Golb is charged with multiple felony and misdemeanor counts of forgery, identity theft, impersonation, and aggravated harassment of several Dead Sea Scrolls scholars. Court documents filed by the New York District Attorney's office offer email evidence that Norman Golb knew about the internet smear campaign, and offered assistance in the form of talking points to Raphael Golb.

according to the new york district attorney’s office, there is direct email evidence in the case against raphael golb to suggest that raphael golb’s father, university of chicago oriental institute historian norman golb, as well as raphael golb’s brother, joel, may have been involved in raphael golb’s campaign of deception and defamation. raphael golb stands accused of multiple misdemeanor and felony counts of identity theft, forgery, criminal impersonation, and aggravated harassment in a case involving the use of internet aliases to harass, impersonate, and steal the identity of new york university professor dr. lawrence schiffman and other dead sea scrolls scholars.

the publicly accessible ‘affidavit in support of an application for a search warrant,’ contains a section entitled ‘potential involvement of others’ (§72-81, p. 20-21) that offers hard evidence in the form of emails sent between father and son that show that norman golb and his sons discussed strategies to evade discovery of their identities, arguments to be made in online postings pertaining to the dead sea scrolls, and criticisms of dead sea scrolls exhibitions. there is also evidence suggesting that raphael golb’s online activities attracted media attention and inquiries by journalists, which were directed back to norman golb.

you may read the new york district attorney’s filing below:

(you may also view a catalog of the legal filings pertaining to the case of the people of the state of new york vs. raphael golb at who-is-charles-gadda.com. all font colors, bold facing, and other emphases below are mine. the original document is here.)


POTENTIAL INVOLVEMENT OF OTHERS

72. Because I request that the search warrant authorize the search for evidence involving potential accomplices or co-conspirators, I provide the following facts in support of this request.

73. As indicated previously, bank records indicate that Raphael Golb received payments from Dr. Norman Golb. It is not known what the payments were for. The father-son relationship means that there are many innocent explanations for these payments.

74. Email records of certain alias email accounts associated with Raphael Golb indicate communication with Joel Golb (his brother) and Norman Golb (his father).

75. For example, a June 17, 2008 email between j.friedman47@gmail.com (an alias of Raphael Golb) and j.golb@snafu.de (the Germany email account of Joel Golb) indicates discussion about the use of proxies,10 and discusses a Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit that was opening in North Carolina.
10 The use of an internet proxy is a method of disguising one’s IP address.

76. Another example is a November 4, 2007 email between robertdworkin@gmail.com (an alias of Raphael Golb) and j.golb@snafu.de (the Germany email account of Joel Golb) which contains discussion about an outline to use concerning the Dead Sea Scrolls, with the subject “scrap last outline—use this instead (dad phoned with some suggestions). Since Norman Golb is the father of both Joel Golb and Raphael Golb, this email implies that Norman Golb called Joel Golb, gave suggestions to the outline, which Joel Golb passed on to Raphael Golb in this email. This also implies that both Joel Golb and Norman Golb know that Raphael Golb is using at least some internet aliases.11
11 Again, this affidavit does not imply that the mere use of internet aliases constitutes a criminal offense.

77. Another example is a January 18, 2008 email between robertdworkin@gmail.com (an alias of Raphael Golb) and j.golb@snafu.de (the Germany email account of Joel Golb) which discusses keeping emails anonymous and untraceable, and some confusion about which alias will be used to send emails from NYU computers.

78. There is email correspondence between Raphael Golb’s alias accounts and Dr. Golb, however it never overtly acknowledges a partnership. However Raphael Golb alias accounts have forwarded to Dr. Norman Golb email exchanges that the alias account (or another alias account) had with third parties.

79. For example, on August 15, 2007, email account robert.dwokin@gmail.com (an alias of Raphael Golb) sent email account n-golb@uchicago.edu (email account of Dr. Norman Golb) an email that forwarded a communication between robertdworkin@gmail.com and an employee at the LA Times concerning the Dead Sea Scrolls. A search of the internet, including Dr. Norman Golb’s faculty webpage, indicates that n-golb@uchicago.edu is Dr. Norman Golb’s email account.

80. On March 31, 2008, email account joshua.reznick@yahoo.com (an alias of Raphael Golb) sent three successive emails to email account n-golb@uchicago.edu (email account of Dr. Norman Golb). These three successive emails appear to be revisions of the prior emails, and while formal in tone, the successive emails do not reference the preceding emails. In otherwords, if they did not know each other well, one would expect some sort of acknowledgment or apology for sending successive similar emails. These March 31, 2008 emails invite Dr. Norman Golb to correspond with the individual that email account joshua.reznick@yahoo.com had been corresponding with, and includes a copy of the prior correspondence.

81. On July 15, 2008, email account j.friedman47@gmail.com (an alias of Raphael Golb) sent email account n-golb@uchicago.edu (email account of Dr. Norman Golb) an email that forwarded a communication between jerome.cooper2@gmail.com (another alias of Raphael Golb) and a professor at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. This email pertained to the Dead Sea Scrolls.

==end of court document==

i really have no further commentary, other than to acknowledge that my worst fears are being realized. according to the court filings, norman golb apparently knew what raphael golb was doing, and was assisting him in doing it. i should point out that it was the joshua.reznick@yahoo.com (paragraph 80 above) that sent my ucla nelc department chair an email anonymously chastising me for my work on the ancient qumran: a virtual reality tour movie i created for the san diego natural history museum, and other emails questioning whether i should receive my ph.d. for my research, which did not agree with the theories of norman golb. if norman golb was sent copies of this email from raphael golb, this would mean that norman golb (an employee of the university of chicago) had knowledge of his son’s activities on the internet. when this hard email evidence collected by authorities is considered along with the similarity of many of the hand signed letters from norman golb to many of the emails sent by the aliases, the evidence appears to demonstrate that norman golb was involved with this smear campaign.

more to follow…

highlights from raphael golb’s initial police interview

Raphael and Norman Golb

Raphael Golb and his father, University of Chicago historian Dr. Norman Golb. Raphael Golb is charged with multiple felony and misdemeanor counts of forgery, identity theft, impersonation, and aggravated harassment of several Dead Sea Scrolls scholars.

the following are some of the more noteworthy statements made by raphael golb during his police interview immediately following his march 5, 2009 arrest.

I WON’T ANSWER WHETHER I HAVE POSTED ANY ARTICLES ON THE INTERNET ABOUT THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS. I WON’T ANSWER BECAUSE I THINK SCHIFFMAN IS OUT TO GET MY FATHER. HE MIGHT SUE ME.

so… you won’t answer, because if you do answer the question truthfully, you might get sued. got it.

THE CONFERENCES ABOUT THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS ARE USUALLY MONOPOLIZED BY PEOPLE WHO HAVE THE SAME VIEW AS SCHIFFMAN.

really? schiffman’s view of a zadokite/sadducean origin of the scrolls was/is commonly held by the majority?? methinks raphael is mistaken. for a long time, dr. schiffman’s view was very much a minority view. only recently has scholarship come to embrace his theories about the scrolls, but still many do not.

AM I ANGRY AT DR. SCHIFFMAN? I’M MY FATHER’S SON.

truer words have never been spoken.

I’M ESPECIALLY ANGRY WITH DR. SCHIFFMAN IF HE FILED THIS COMPLAINT AGAINST ME. I FIND THE GUY A BIT NAUSEATING TO TELL YOU THE TRUTH.

yeah, that’s not gonna help you with the whole ‘motive’ thing…

I THINK I MIGHT ONCE HAVE POSTED A REMARK ON THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS USING MY OWN NAME, A LITTLE REMARK ABOUT A MUSEUM EXHIBIT OR SOMETHING.

ya, maybe once. maybe just once.

THERE’S BEEN A WHOLE SERIES OF MUSEUM EXHIBITS ABOUT THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS WHERE THEY’VE BEEN EXCLUDING THE VIEWPOINT OF SOME. DR. SCHIFFMAN KEEPS APPEARING AT THESE MUSEUM EXHIBITS, SPEAKING AT THEM, GIVING LECTURES AT THEM. MY FATHER HAS ATTACKED THEM IN A SERIES OF ARTICLES ON THE ORIENTAL WEBSITE.

again, not gonna help you with the whole ‘motive’ thing, raphael. dr. schiffman keeps getting invited to speak as a distinguished lecturer, but your dad doesn’t. sounds like a retributive motive to me. at least you acknowledge that your own father is ‘attacking’ museum exhibitions. so thanx for that.

ALL OF THESE PEOPLE HAVE EXCLUDED MY FATHER FROM THESE MUSEUM EXHIBITS.

once again, thanx for openly declaring (apparently) at least part of your motive.

I’D RATHER NOT GET INTO WHETHER I HAVE POSTED BLOGS ABOUT THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS USING NAMES OTHER THAN MY OWN, FOR FEAR OF LAWSUITS.

at this point, i feel raphael golb does not realize that the answers he is giving aren’t helping him. he doesn’t want to answer because he’s afraid he’ll get sued. that’s why he used aliases – because he knew what he was doing was wrong and he would be sued for it. well, guess what raphael….

I NEVER PRETENDED TO BE LAWRENCE SCHIFFMAN, I NEVER OPENED AN EMAIL ACCOUNT IN HIS NAME, I NEVER SENT EMAILS PRETENDING TO BE HIM. I NEVER AUTHORED A BLOG ACCUSING DR. SCHIFFMAN OF PLAGIARISM. I READ IT, BUT DIDN’T WRITE IT.

um… yeah, about this statement: perhaps we can read the emails described here (see section 19-32 on p. 8-11). now, would you like to rethink your previous statement?

I DIDN’T OPEN AN EMAIL ACCOUNT IN THE NAME OF STEPHEN GORANSON. I THINK I KNOW WHO HE IS – SOMEBODY SMEARING MY FATHER. I THINK HE IS A VERY SAD CASE. I DON’T THINK HE HAS AN ACADEMIC POSITION.

ok. here’s a little constructive criticism, rapha. when under arrest for aggravated harassment against someone, it’s probably not a good idea – while in the midst of your denial – to make fun of the victim. just my two cents worth, but you can have that advice for free. seriously, do you really believe someone’s worth and value rests upon whether or not one holds an academic position like daddy?

for the record, i met stephen goranson this past march at duke. he is a wonderful, kind, and quite humble man, and an excellent scholar. likewise, he is well respected at duke by the faculty. golb’s attacks on goranson were part of the reason i went public with my data. the attacks were undeserved. yet, even while he was under arrest, raphael golb still found the time to rip his victim. unbelievable!

I’D RATHER NOT GET INTO WHETHER I HAVE EVER OPENED UP EMAIL ACCOUNTS IN NAMES OTHER THAN MY OWN. I’D RATHER NOT GET INTO MY NICKNAMES. I’D RATHER NOT GET INTO WHETHER I BLOGGED UNDER THE NAME CHARLES GADDA.

and why is that again?

FAMILY MEMBERS PROBABLY DON’T WANT PEOPLE MAKING FUN OF THEIR PARENTS, POSTING THINGS ON THE INTERNET.

i’m guessing the same goes for scholars, advisors, and colleagues.

ROBERT CARGILL COMPLAINED TO THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO TO GET MY FATHER’S ARTICLE ABOUT HIS FILM REMOVED FROM THE WEB SITE. HE WAS ATTACKED. I’D RATHER NOT GET INTO WHETHER I DID ANY BLOGS ABOUT ROBERT CARGILL.

oh goodness, where to begin? yes, i did write to the university of chicago. yes, they removed norman golb’s critique of my unpublished script. yes, the university’s legal counsel knew that despite golb’s claims, there was no way on earth citing the marginal notes of a grad student’s unpublished script would meet the criteria for ‘fair use,’ especially in the face of two separate warnings that no portion of the script may be reproduced. the university lawyers knew they were vulnerable and made norman golb remove his critique, which violated copyright. and again, you are probably right about getting sued if it’s proved that you spammed my ucla faculty to suggest that they not grant me my ph.d. because i didn’t agree with your father’s conclusions.

OBVIOUSLY I DON’T LIKE PEOPLE WHO SMEAR MY FATHER, WHO PLAGIARIZE MY FATHER, WHO MISREPRESENT HIS VIEWS. IT’S VERY FRUSTRATING.

again, this speaks to motive.

IF I HAD AN INTEREST IN THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS SCANDAL, IT WOULD BE MUSEUM EXHIBITS.

like this and this and this and this and this?

I DON’T WANT TO GET INTO HOW MUCH I KNOW ABOUT THE INTERNET. I DON’T KNOW WHAT AN INTERNET PROTOCOL ADDRESS IS.

let me answer for you. at the beginning, you didn’t know the difference between an ‘ip’ and a ‘teepee.’ you had no idea that yahoo emails stored the ip address in the header, while gmail (where you’d eventually migrate) did a better job of disguising the ips. at the beginning, you didn’t know about the ip address at your home, and you didn’t know about ip ranges at the bobst. you didn’t know that you could be tracked until some bloggers spelled it out for you. you’d respond with ridiculous comments about three friends sharing a computer around a table. remember that? i do. you didn’t know about vpn and dynamic ip addresses until it was too late and i already had your ip addresses.

there’s something to be said for non-retaliation and silence. you didn’t know what i was doing. ironically, for the first year of your attacks against me and others, all i did was ‘write it all down.’ non-engagement does not mean disinterest. non-retaliation does not mean ignorance, apathy, or impotence. there is tremendous power in non-retaliation. methinks you’re beginning to understand that now.

MY BROTHER IS JOEL GOLB. HE HAS A SNAFU EMAIL ACCOUNT.

well, this helps. again, we appreciate you bringing your brother joel into this, since i left him out.

I DON’T WANT TO GET INTO WHETHER I DID IT FOR MY FATHER. I DON’T WANT TO BE SUED BY LAWRENCE SCHIFFMAN.

um, i don’t want to say it again, but failing to answer for fear of a civil suit says much about your motives.

I HAVE COMMUNICATED WITH JOEL GOLB AND MY FATHER ABOUT THESE BLOGS.

uh oh. you mean like this? (see section 72-82 entitled ‘potential involvement of others’) are you really admitting that your father and brother knew about this? they were in on it?

I’M NOT GOING TO ANSWER WHETHER THE CHARLES GADDA ALIAS IS ME. IF IN THEORY I WERE CHARLES GADDA…

this is just rich. i’ll say nothing more.

THEY WOULD SAY THAT MY FATHER IS DOING IT OR ASKING ME TO DO IT. MY FATHER CERTAINLY NEVER ASKED ME TO DO ANYTHING OF THE KIND. NOR WOULD HE ENCOURAGE ME OR APPROVE OF ME DOING ANYTHING LIKE THAT.

um, i’m guessing this (see section 72-82 entitled ‘potential involvement of others’) is going to cast some doubt on this statement.

PETER KAUFMAN – IS THAT THE NAME OF THE PERSON WHO PUBLISHED THE ARTICLE ABOUT SCHIFFMAN ON THE NOW PUBLIC BLOGSITE? I’M NOT GOING TO GET INTO WHETHER I OPENED AN EMAIL ACCOUNT IN HIS NAME.

and probably for good reason.

UNDER THE SUPPOSITION THAT I PUBLISHED ARTICLES ABOUT CARGILL’S FILM, THAT WAS INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING ABOUT A SERIOUS MATTER INVOLVING MISCONDUCT IN THE MUSEUM BY A PROFESSOR AT UCLA.

yes, you’re a great ‘investigative reporter,’ raphael. how many ‘investigative reporters’ are arrested for forgery, identity theft, criminal impersonation, and aggravated harassment??

no wonder you’re seeking to dismiss this evidence. lol.

%d bloggers like this: