I’m a Navy brat, but I’ll readily admit I have no idea how to wage a war. Between writing this book and the next, I’ve learned an awful lot about late Bronze age weaponry and warfare.
There are two dates proposed for the Exodus, and therefore for Joshua’s conquest of Canaan. I have chosen the “late date” theory, which puts all my books at the very end of the Bronze Age into the beginning of the Iron Age. (The other option would put them a couple hundred years earlier, still in the late Bronze Age.)
Weapons of this age include those for hand-to-hand combat: swords, clubs, battle axes and daggers. Weapons for throwing included the sling and the bow and arrow. Swords and arrows were used the most. The Israelites were poorly armed compared to their Canaanite enemies. They had no armor, no helmets; at least none are mentioned in the Bible.
Some of the Canaanites had iron chariots, probably those closer to the coast where the land was flatter. (Remember Sisera’s 900 iron chariots?) With iron working so new, the chariot was the latest and greatest war invention. An iron chariot wasn’t completely iron; it probably only had iron reinforcing the wheels, or perhaps the carriage to protect the soldier. The Canaanites also had leather armor which was certainly worn by the top officers—considered most important and more valuable—and perhaps by some of the soldiers.
Arad would have been the first battle for the Israelites to try out any of their weapons, or tactics. If they destroyed the city, as Numbers 21 says they did, they could have picked up some more weapons at that time to take with them to Jericho.
Because remember, Jericho was not the first.