11th century Jewish documents found in Afghan fox den

Two years ago, the chance discovery of a collection of documents in a cave in Afghanistan gave experts a first ever glimpse of 11th century "religious, cultural and commercial life of the Jewish community in a central location on the trade route between China and the West."

The Israeli National Library purchased 29 of the documents, including commentary by 10th century commentator Saadia Gaon on the book of Isaiah, and has recently made them public. "Until now, we had no documents testifying to the presence of Jews" in this part of the Persian cultural domain," said Academic director of the National Library of Israel professor Haggai Ben-Shammai. The library plans to make the documents available on the Internet.