Monthly Archives: June 2019

Middle Eastern Roots: Matching Genealogical Research with Our DNA

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By now, Americans are getting a sense of  Middle Eastern politics after Colonial powers created new nations in the early 1900s. Plenty of Americans, including this one, were opposed to the desert wars and still are. For good reasons. As are many Europeans. Enough with Colonialism. The answer to whether the desert people wanted to be like Europeans is found in their resistance both yesterday and today. There are many cultures, many different languages and religions and they did not and still don’t mix it up. They stayed within their own communities and to a good extent, still do. Although the movie, “Queen of the Desert,” starring Nicole Kidman, was a Hollywood style movie, her portrayal of Gertrude Bell and her exploration of the Middle East, allowed the viewer to see a hint of the diversity that existed before the first world war. That diversity still exists. Western civilization’s roots are in the Middle East. Those of us who love genealogy are having fun matching our research with the findings of our DNA tests. Especially Gedmatch and their “calculators.” Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret Genealogy VII – DNA, Jumping Into the Gene Pool. A High Tech Gathering of the Tribes. Available here:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B078X5F7YP

What’s A Gadfly? A Gossip? Someone of the Twelve Tribes of Israel?

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Gad was one of the Twelve Tribes of Israel. Gad was Jacob’s son. He went to Egypt with his father Jacob and his brothers. Another historical figure named Gad was a counselor to Jewish King David. Gad was a chronicler who wrote about David. Gad is also the name of an Asian idol who brought good fortune. Gad/God. Pretty close to God. “Eh gads.” Gad is a way for someone to say God without saying it. To gad means to wander idly. We all like to gadabout sometimes. That’s a real word. A gadby is a simpleton and gad means to goad. And if we rove about idly, we become a gadabout or a gadder. I think it may sometimes refer to someone who wanders about gossiping, a gadfly. An insect that bites cattle and horses (horse fly) is also called a gadfly. Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret GenealogyA How-to for Tracing Ancient Jewish Ancestry. Available here: http://www.amazon.com/Secret-Genealogy-Volume-Suellen-Ocean/dp/0965114082

OMG, Imagine Having a Neighbor Who Puts a Swastika On His Front Lawn

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Some people have a lot of nerve and maybe just hate. A man in California’s Bay Area has created a huge swastika on his front lawn and the neighbors are having a fit and the media is having a hay day. There are pictures taken from the air, YouTube videos and headline radio news. The guy says it’s an ancient Tibetan symbol, which it is. It’s also found on Native American baskets, woven long before Hitler co-opted it for his symbol of hate. Now, some guy has made it a part of his landscaping. The neighbors are sure to make it a part of the past. As of today, the swastika is covered up in blankets. There are plans to sit down with the man and show him the long list of people who signed a letter, protesting against it and demanding that he remove it.

Suellen Ocean is the author of The Steinberg Conspiracy Series. Available here:

Book One, Chimney Fire: https://www.amazon.com//dp/B00XDCPLEW

Book Two, Hot Snow: https://www.amazon.com//dp/B014XHUT1K

Book Three, Herr Boy: http://www.amazon.com//dp/B014XHUT1K

Have You Seen the Middle Eastern TV Series Fauda?

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The first time hubby and I watched episode one of Fauda, we were not impressed. It consisted of a violent Israeli attack on a Palestinian wedding. We shook our heads and in unison said, “No thanks, not watching that.” But we kept hearing good things about the show, so we broke down and gave it another try. We’re glad that we did. Fauda has an excellent cast. The actors do an outstanding job of helping us envision both Israeli and Palestinian lives, living on the edge of a never-ending war. Although it’s fiction, it’s based on the truth of the rough neighborhood that is Israel and the Palestinian Territories. The show tries to portray fairness to both sides. I have no idea of the show’s accuracy, but I’m told it’s a good portrayal. I hope the Middle East works its differences out and someday they live in peace. Suellen Ocean is the author of The Steinberg Conspiracy Series. Available here:

Book One, Chimney Fire: https://www.amazon.com//dp/B00XDCPLEW

Book Two, Hot Snow: https://www.amazon.com//dp/B014XHUT1K

Book Three, Herr Boy: http://www.amazon.com//dp/B014XHUT1K

 

 

Those Elusive Jewish Ancestors, Let the Iberian Truth Prevail

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Those of you who’ve read my books, know that I write about uncovering ancient Jewish ancestry. You’ve read about my researching my father-in-law’s Jewish ancestry and how I stumbled onto clues that my ancestors were also Jews. But I could not prove it. There were so many clues but nothing was concrete. Even though seeing their surname on a list of Jews asked to leave Spain during the Spanish Inquisition was more proof, it didn’t mean it was my ancestors. They could have shared the same name. But today, when I decided to look at my 23andMe composition chart and see what changes they’d made, I saw this:

“You most likely had a fourth-great-grandparent, fifth-great-grandparent, sixth-great-grandparent, or seventh-great- (or greater) grandparent who was 100% Spanish & Portuguese. This person was likely born between 1680 and 1770.”

The descendants of the former Jews of Spain and Portugal are called Sephardim. The DNA testing companies are getting better at finding not just Ashkenazic Jewish ancestry but Sephardic too. Finding Spanish & Portuguese ancestry does not prove 100% that my ancestors were Jews. But their surname, Bonte is on the list of Jews asked to leave Spain. Maybe the next time that I check, there will be more DNA discoveries. Keep digging away at those Iberian clues. Sooner or later, the truth will prevail.

Suellen Ocean is the author of Secret GenealogyA How-to for Tracing Ancient Jewish Ancestry, Secret Genealogy IIUncovering the Jewish Roots of Our Christian Ancestors, Secret Genealogy III From Jewish Anglo-Saxon Tribes to New France Acadians. Available here:

Secret Genealogy:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/0965114082

Secret Genealogy II:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/1484053222

Secret Genealogy III:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/148407579X