come all of these onto its soil? Again, itnis strange how a history of good deeds,nmuch more than bad ones, is perceivednin the end to create still further obligationnon the part of the benefactor.nJackson argues that the refugees notnonly should, but ought to be, repatriatednas soon as democracy is restored tonHaiti. When will that be? The yearn3004? And who will make them gonthere if they do not wish to do so?nSurely not the Reverend Jackson. Norndoes recent history suggest this eventuality.nThe Nicaraguan “political” refugeesndid not return home following thendefeat at the polls of Daniel Ortega;nthe Salvadoran “politicals” show nonsign of wanting to leave the UnitednStates, although the political situationnhas improved markedly in El Salvadornsince their coming here; and it is a safenbet that only the most upper classnamong the Cuban refugees will saynfarewell to Miami when Castro’s day isndone. Cranting asylum in this countrynto everyone who demands it will resultnprincipally in making the United Statesnan asylum in quite another sense of thenword.nAs the racist demagoguery of thenReverend Jackson and RepresentativenRangel perhaps adumbrates, it used tonbe the American Jews who were accusednof harboring “divided loyalties.”nToday, racial and ethnic groups all overnthe United States are constantly haranguednby self-appointed “leaders” tonidentify themselves with African tribes,nMexican paisanos, Muslim fellahin,nIranian terrorists, and to act accordingly—nwith violence if necessary. Sonmuch for the promised benefits of an”multicultural” America. For now,nhowever, what I want to know is this: ifnthe Haitian immigrants in Miami andnNew York City are such great patriotsnand lovers of the democratic homeland,nwhy aren’t they back there fightingnthe junta that has killed theirndemocracy, instead of up here riotingnfor U.S. soldiers to do the job fornthem?n— Chilton Williamson, Jr.nTHE DEAD SEA SCROLLS controversynis not — as some have arguedn— about Christianity fearing for its lifenin the face of new and dreadful facts.nThe claim that the Scrolls containninformation that calls into questionnChristian verities is pure poppycock.nSo is the spurious charge of somenBritish mountebanks that the Vaticanntried to suppress the Scrolls. Vaticanbashingncarries remarkably slight conviction,nwhich is surprising when onenconsiders that Roman Catholic scholarsndid more to publish the Scrolls thannany other religious group. No, thensuppression of the Dead Sea Scrollsnhad nothing to do with protectingnChristianity.nChristianity, like every other greatnreligion, rests not on historical facts butnsupernatural revelation, and those whonbelieve the Scrolls constitute a missingnlink between Judaism and Christianityn(post facto categories) that calls intonquestion the originality of Christianitynprofoundly misunderstand the characternof religion in general, Christianitynin particular. Christianity was born onnthe first Easter; it arose from the gravenof Jesus Christ, rewriting the entirenpast of Israel and humanity alike. Nonfragment from a long-lost cave has anynbearing at all on that simple fact ofnfaith — or ever will.nThe suppression of the Scrolls hadneverything to do with the pretensionsnof a self-important cabal of arrogantnnonentities. The scandal involving thensuppression of the Scrolls until thennoble decision of the Huntington Librarynboard and director — heroes ofnacademic freedom in our time —nderives from the self-importance ofnsome not-very-accomplished scholarsnwho were determined to “set standards”nand to dictate who was worthynand who was unworthy of publishingnthe evidence. That’s all there was to it:nus against them. And the “us” was verynfew, and the “them” was nearly thenwhole scholarly world.nTo understand the venality to which,nfor close to a half-century, the academicnworld has been exposed, it is necessarynto know that to “publish” annancient document means anythingnfrom simply printing a photograph of itnto supplying a full account of its contents,nsetting, meaning, relationship tonother documents, and all the rest—nscholarship. Now, when a vast troventurns up, there are two ways to go.nOne, as taken by the honorable scholarsnresponsible for the Christian Cnosticnlibrary discovered in Egypt at NagnHammadi, is to publish the facsimilesnof the documents and to encouragennntranslations, which in this specific casencame about in a decade or so. Thenother way was taken by those entrustednwith the Dead Sea Scrolls. As everyonennow knows, from the late 1940’snto 1967, the Scrolls were controlled inn”Jerusalem, Jordan”; no Jews werenallowed to work on them, and many ofnthose who dictated access to the Scrollsnwere notorious anti-Semites, chiefnamong them the head of the project fornthe past several decades, Harvard DivinitynSchool Professor John Strugnell.nEven when the Israelis unified Jerusalemnand regained access to the Judaicnholy places in 1967, the Scrolls continuednunder the same anti-Semitic auspicesnas before. So we had the spectaclenof a virulently anti-Semitic outfitncontrolling access to the spiritual treasuresnof Judaism — and no Jews neednapply-nWell, not exactly. As time passed, anfew Israelis gained admission to thencharmed circle. Under Strugnell’snchairmanship, the controlling bodyncontinued the established policy ofnrestricting access to the Scrolls to itsnown members and their students. Onlynthey were “competent.”nIf you are going to tell the world younalone are qualified to do the work, younwould be wise to do the work. But notnmuch work was done, and the worknthat was done was not particularlynimpressive. Scraps of information camenout, with broad hints of what was toncome, but the I-can-see-it-and-youcan’tnschool of scholarly discourse continuednto rule. For lesser folk, ofncourse, might ruin these priceless documentsnby making mistakes in publishingnthem. Included in the lesser folknwere most of the first-rate and productivenscholars in the study of ancientnJudaism and Christianity. Rarely havenwe seen so comic a parody of academicnegoism.nNo one who has dealt with Jerusalem-basednscholarship in ancient Judaismnand Christianity — Jewish andnChristian alike — was surprised thatnthese unabashed allegations of selfimportancencame from what were, innthe aggregate, remarkably .lazy andnunproductive scholars. It is an oldnstory. In the study of ancient Judaismneverybody in the business knows thatnJerusalem is a wasteland, an intellectualndesert. The ideas that dictate termsnof debate and engage scholars through-nAPRIL 1992/9n