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Paper: Anatolian genetic ancestry in North Lebanese populations

Lebanon’s rich history as a cultural crossroad spanning millennia has significantly impacted the genetic composition of its population through successive waves of migration and conquests from surrounding regions. Within modern-day Lebanon, the Koura district stands out with its unique cultural foundations, primarily characterized by a notably high concentration of Greek Orthodox Christians compared to the rest of the country. This study investigates whether the prevalence of Greek Orthodoxy in Koura can be attributed to modern Greek heritage or continuous blending resulting from the ongoing influx of refugees and trade interactions with Greece and Anatolia. We analyzed both ancient and modern DNA data from various populations in the region which could have played a role in shaping the current population of Koura using our own and published data. Our findings indicate that the genetic influence stemming directly from modern Greek immigration into the area appears to be limited. While the historical presence of Greek colonies has left its mark on the region’s past, the distinctive character of Koura seems to have been primarily shaped by cultural and political factors, displaying a stronger genetic connection mostly with Anatolia, with affinity to ancient but not modern Greeks.

Link to paper – www.nature.com/articles/s41598-024-66191-x.epdf

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Nassim Nicholas Taleb recently shared his thoughts on the potential risks associated with President Joe Biden’s age and cognitive health on X (formerly Twitter).

[Medium] A Few Things We Don’t Quite Get About the Levant

(First Draft of the Foreword to Pierre Zalloua’s forthcoming book. For comments.)

Some people believe that the Levant is the end of the East and a portal to the West; others describe it as the end of the West and a portal to the East. Those in the first group tend to belong to the main branches of the Islamic faith, while those in the second belong to various Christian Levantine churches. Now, one might think that the two descriptions are equivalent: an intersection, after all, is an intersection. However, by the same mechanism that generates the so-called ‘narcissism of small differences,’ not only are these two statements not equivalent, but they are, in practice, contradictory. It even took a civil war for the Lebanese to understand this fallacy.

Continue reading on Medium: medium.com/incerto/a-few-things-we-dont-quite-get-about-the-levant-da6ff702974f