Operation Scroll, launched on November 14, has already made two significant discoveries in its search for more Dead Sea Scrolls in the Judean desert. In a cave overlooking Jericho, archaeologist and BAR author Hanan Eshel found a papyrus fragment dating from the Bar-Kokhba Revolt against Rome (132–135 B.C.). Written in Aramaic, the document deals with economic matters. In another cave, north of Jericho, searchers found the well-preserved skeleton of a Canaanite soldier, dated between 3000 and 1200 B.C. Wrapped in a straw mat, the 40-year-old warrior lay with his armor and bow and arrows.
The operation employs 46 archaeologists and 200 workers organized into 20 teams. So far, the teams have searched 350 caves in a 60-mile-long area extending from Wadi Daliyeh, north of Jericho, to Ein Gedi on the shore of Dead Sea.