In any case, I think that any serious researcher would agree that one has to be careful not to make too many assumptions in trying to find out the truth about man's ancient astronomy and history.
On the other hand, you do have to make some assumptions in order to arrive at workable hypotheses - subject to rigorous testing of course. If they don't work, well, then you throw out your old theories, check your assumptions and then try to formulate new hypotheses. You continue to move forward.
One thing that I do want to emphasize, however, is that my own research is definitely NOT political or religiously oriented - at least not consciously. I look on ALL of the world's religions and political doings with a great deal of distrust.
I myself am not Jewish, but I respect the Hebrew people, the Jewish tradition and the Christian heritage derived from the Judeo-Christian ethic which has played an integral part in the development of the modern Western world.
Already in ancient times the Hebrews were called "the People of the Book".
There are only about 14 million Jews on this planet - and yet they excel in nearly every field of modern human endeavor. We moderns know enough about genetics today to understand that this can not have occurred suddenly in our era - quite the contrary - those genes, and also the corresponding talents, will have been there a long time.
One of the most interesting pieces in this entire puzzle is the matter of genetic evidence.
We find the following written about Y-DNA Haplogroup J2 , the so-called "Phoenician gene", at the Wikipedia:
"Haplogroup J2 is widely believed to be associated with the spread of agriculture from the Mesopotamian regions of the Levant & Anatolia. The age of J2 has been estimated as 18,500 +/- 3,500 thousand years ago. Its distribution, centered in West Asia and Southeastern Europe, its association with the presence of Neolithic archaeological artifacts, such as figurines and painted pottery, and its association with annual precipitation have been interpreted as evidence that J2, and in particular its J2a-M410 subclade belonged to the agricultural innovators who followed the rainfall....
Haplogroup J2 is found mainly in the Fertile Crescent, the Mediterranean (including Southern Europe and North Africa), the Iranian plateau, and Central Asia. More specifically it is found in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Turkey, Israel, Palestine, Greece, Italy and the eastern coasts of the Iberian Peninsula, and more frequently in Iraqis 29.7% ..., Lebanese 30% ..., Palestinians 16.8% ..., Syrians 29%, Sephardic Jews 29% ....
According to Semino et al. and the National Geographic Genographic Project, the frequency of haplogroup J2 generally declines as one moves away from the Northern fertile crescent. Haplogroup J2 is carried by 6% of Europeans and its frequency drops dramatically as one moves northward away from the Mediterranean.
Another important fact about the distribution of Haplogroup J2 is that it appears to have dispersed from a Middle Eastern homeland to the west through a primarily maritime or littoral route, as it is found in high concentrations among the populations of the coasts of the Mediterranean Sea in both Eurasia and Africa, and particularly along the coasts of the eastern Mediterranean in Europe. This distribution may be more consonant with a Neolithic or post-Neolithic maritime dispersal from the Middle East, such as through Greek colonization or Phoenician commercial and colonial activities.
In Italy, J2 is found in about 19.3% of Italians . Turkey is one of the countries with major J2 population. Approximately 24% of Turkish men are J2 according to a recent study.... Haplogroup J2 is also common in neighboring Greece, with regional frequencies ranging between 11% and 46%.
It has been proposed that haplogroup J2a-M410 was linked to populations on ancient Crete by examining the relationship between Anatolian, Cretan, and Greek populations from around early Neolithic sites. Haplogroup J2b-M12 was associated with Neolithic Greece (ca. 8500 - 4300 BCE) and was reported to be found in modern Crete (3.1%) and mainland Greece (Macedonia 7.0%, Thessaly 8.8%, Argolis 1.8%).
Sephardic Jews have about 29% of haplogroup J2 and Ashkenazi Jews have 23%, or 19%. It has been reported that a sample of Italian Cohensbelong to Network 1.2, a group of Y chromosomes characterized by avalue of the DYS413 marker less or equal to 18. This deletion has beenplaced in the J2a-M410 clade. However, other Jewish Cohens belong to haplogroup J1 (see Cohen modal haplotype).
J2 subclades are also found in the South Caucasus (Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan), Iran, Central Asia, and South Asia.
Haplogroup J2 has been shown to have a more northern distribution inthe Middle East, although it exists in significant amounts in thesouthern middle-east regions, a lesser amount of it was found whencompared to its brother haplogroup, J1, which has a high frequencysoutherly distribution. This suggests that, if the occurrence ofHaplogroup J among modern populations of Europe, Central Asia, andSouth Asia does reflect Neolithic demic diffusion from the Middle East, the source population is more likely to have originated from Anatolia, the Levant or northern Mesopotamia than from regions further south.
Haplogroup J2a-M410 in India is largely confined to the upper casteswith little occurrence in the middle and lower castes and is completelyabsent from south Indian tribes and middle and lower castes.
J2b in most cases seems to be mostly limited to the Balkans/Eastern Europe and India."
At Cohen Modal Haplotype at the Wikipedia it is written:
"Y-chromosomal Aaron is the name given to the hypothesised most recent common ancestor of many of the patrilineal Jewish priestly caste known as KohanimKohane). In the Hebrew Bible this ancestor is identified as Aaron, the brother of Moses. Research published in 1997 and thereafter has indicated that some contemporary Jewish Kohanim share Y-chromosomal Haplogroup J1 (Y-DNA) with a set of genetic markers,known as the Cohen Modal Haplotype, which may well derive from a singlecommon ancestor. Later, in 2007, the same team announced that theyfound another common set of genetic marker related to present-day traditional Kohanim families in Haplogroup J2 (Y-DNA). (singular "Kohen", "Cohen", or
Although membership in the Jewish community has, since at least the second century CE, been passed maternally (see: Who is a Jew?), membership in the group that originally comprised the Jewish priesthood ("Cohen" or "Kohen"; plural: Kohanim), is patrilineal. Modern Kohens claim descent from a biblical person, Aaron, brother of Moses,in the direct lineage from Levi, the patriarch of the Tribe of Levi,greatgrandson of Abraham, according to the tradition codified in the Tanakh (שמות / Sh'mot/Exodus 6). DNAtesting is aiding scholars to trace the lineages found among modernJewish populations, including contemporary Cohen families, to decipherorigins of the people groups that were joined to the ancient Israelites and to identify genetic admixture and genetic drift."
Khazaria.com points out that genetic studies have helped to draw the following conclusions:
"Advanced genetic testing ... of modern Jewish communities around the world, has helped to determine which of the communities are likely to descend from the Israelites and which are not ....
The answer is that Jews are a religion and a civilization, but not a race or singular ethnic group (the latter two definitions marginalize proselytes). As Rabbi Rami Shapiro said: "There is only one response to Who is a Jew? that works: A Jew is one who takes Judaism seriously. One who takes Judaism seriously studies it, argues with it, and lives it."The proper name of the separate ethnic group that most Jews descend from is Israelite."