I like and use Wikipedia for all kinds of things. The more I know about the subject, however, the poorer the quality of the articles. This morning I was going through some photos I took a few months ago, including some that I took of Har Nitai, across the Wadi Hammam from Arbel. This picturesque mountain is not easily accessible as there are no roads and no good footpaths (that I could find). The site has significant ruins on the surface, but as far as I could tell, no excavations have been carried out.
A quick search for the site on Google brought me to this Wikipedia entry, which is largely a page written by a single person (“Truthresearch”). That should be the first clue; anybody with a username like that is immediately suspect.
The entry gives a little information about the site, but quickly goes to a suggested identification of the site as Nazareth. The basis for this identification appears to rest solely on the location of a steep cliff here (fitting the story in Luke 4 where Jesus is nearly thrown off a cliff). If that’s the method for site identification, then we can rearrange the entire map of Galilee. The writer acknowledges that the present-day Nazareth has the evidence of tradition, but it tries to make that a negative, explaining that it is only about 300 A.D. when Nazareth is mentioned in ancient sources. He fails to note that most Christian traditions are not attested until that time because Christianity was persecuted until the end of the Roman empire (circa 300 A.D.). Nazareth’s insignificant status and size explain its lack of mention in non-Christian sources. None of this of course is any sort of an argument that Har Nitai is the real Nazareth. But there is a cliff; what more do you need?
The link at the bottom of the article to a geocities site (“The Real Nazareth?”) suggests that the author of the two is identical.
All of this does of course give me the excuse to share a photo of the Arbel cliffs taken from Har Nitai. No sign yet of the planned golf course on top of Arbel.