by: Rabbi Jeremy Rosen
When Moshe led the Children of Israel out of Egypt they headed due east. But after a few days travel they turned south. Initially the Torah tells us they turned away from the quick coastal route for fear of encountering the Amalekites before they would have had time to train militarily and to cope psychologically with warfare.
But then the Torah tells us that God led them back towards Egypt to give the Egyptians the impression that they were lost and confused. This was a ruse to lure Pharaoh and his army into the flooded marshland of the north part of the Red Sea where his chariots would get stuck in the soft ground. And of course it was a trap to destroy him and his army as they pursued the Children of Israel.
We know archaeologically that the lands of Canaan were part of the Egyptian empire. And had Pharaoh’s army been left intact he would certainly have pursued the fleeing slaves and brought them back. After all, his was the most powerful army of the time and his iron chariots were like tanks nowadays. Perhaps God responded with drones!