Z E N D A  M A G A Z I N E
[renamed Zinda Magazine in 1999]

Ealool 16, 6746                   Volume II                       Issue 30                     September 16, 1996

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       A Weekly Online Publication of the ZENDA Assyrian Newsagency

                                    THE   L   I   G   H   T   H   O   U   S   E

                        RETURN FROM MADNESS

After spending 3 days and 2 nights in Modesto, California during the
Labor Day Weekend (Aug 31-Sept 2) I believe there is little basis for
optimism in the future of the Assyrians in diaspora.  There is even
more basis for optimism for our youth in general.  In the past, factors
such as economic decline, inadequate leadership skills, mistrust of
our local and national leadership, and the lack of our youth's desire
to educate oneself and others on the ever-changing Assyrian identity
have contributed greatly to our feeling of ill-will and hopelessness
for a better tomorrow.  In fact our National Conventions have done
nothing more than to elevate our self-pity and pessimism.  That is,
until now.

On Saturday, September 1, a group of over 70 Assyrian women gathered
to discuss the social and political character and composition of
today's Assyrian women.  An intriguing panel of expert- all women and
all Assyrian- expounded upon the socio-economic dynamics which have
shaped the status of the Assyrian women through the 20th century.
The meeting was followed by two informal gatherings to review action
items to be completed before the next National Convention.  A more
complete report on the outcome of these gatherings will be published
in our future issues.

The Internet Meeting, as it was informally called, brought the faces
behind the email addresses to a cozy cafe in downtown Modesto.  Assyrian
surfers from Australia, U.S., Austria, and Canada exchanged stories
and outlined the vision of a new Virtual Community of Assyrians.  No
topic has stimulated the minds of our youth as much as the Internet.
Every Java-drinker sitting around that rusty old tables at the Diva
Cafe knew that this was the beginning of a new cultural revolution.
One that the attendees of the AANF's National Executive Committee
meetings would neither have the courage nor the imagination to

To save the leadership of the Assyrian American National Federation
from an utter self-destruction there remains only one solution:
to infuse the varicose veins of our leaders with fresh "Assyrian"
blood.  With the election of a new administration, the caliber of
leadership skills remained the same- inadequate. The delegates from
California, however, were able to elect Marian Yonan to the post of
Executive Secretary.  Marian is currently a student at the University
of California, Davis and possibly the youngest officer ever elected
to a position in the Executive Committee of the AANF.  Only hours
later a group of Assyrian youth from California and Chicago outlined
the plans for joining the Executive Committee through elections and/or
presidential appointments.  The plan calls for the majority of the AANF
delegates to include the Assyrian youth and professionals before the
inception of the 70th National Convention (Year 2003).

The ASSYRIAN STAR magazine was moved to San Jose, California, where
it could be re-established as a primary source of information for
all 30 Assyrian affiliates of the Assyrian American National Federation.
A proposal was presented to the Assyrian Academic Society's members
in Chicago wherein during a 3-5 year project a series of Assyrian
history books would be published for readers between the ages of 8 and
15.  Assyrian history students in San Jose will coordinate this
project with the AAS members in Chicago in an effort to include all
available resources through the internet.  The news from ZENDA which
is broadcasted on the Assyrian TV show in San Jose will soon be
aired in Los Angeles and Connecticut where non-internet users can
be receive important news.  Finally, plans for a Leadership
Conference in California during the early parts of 1997 were discussed
in length.  Details of this important event will be included in our
November issues.

Not everyone was of course as excited as the Pacific Grill group of
ZENDA readers on Monday evening... Yatroum Zia lost his bid for his
second term presidency to Sargon Lewie of Chicago.  Cyrus Amirfar of
Turlock, confident of a landslide victory, was shocked as Odisho
Dinkha of Chicago was being congratulated as the next vice-president.
Fred Babassi was cheered by all present and his election was guaranteed
by casting a symbolic vote.  The results of the election for the AANF
president indicated an interesting pattern of thought process:  Yatroum
Zia, supported by one faction of the Assyrian Universal Alliance and
the delegates who support the Assyrian Democratic Movement (Zowaa) was
being challenged by Adad Ashurseen of Chicago who in turn was supported
by the other faction of the Assyrian Universal Alliance and the
political group, Zowaa Khorara.  Mr Ashurseen suffered a heart attack
only days before the Convention and his name was removed from the
ballots.  Sargon Lewie who had hardly prepared for such a challenge was
nominated on the floor of the AANF meeting and won the election with
a difference of one vote (75 to 74).  It is still unclear as to what
the future holds for the AANF's membership in the Assyrian Universal
Alliance.  What is certain is that the ZOWAA contingency is clearly
in control of the internal affairs of this national organization.

No National Convention is complete without the Bazaar, long and
the unexciting speeches at the Sunday Night Banquet, food lines at
the Monday Picnic, and the Ladies' Luncheon.  In addition there were
the winners of this year's Youth Excellence Pageant and a discussion
on the business opportunities in Kuwait.  The Russian delegates were
eager to address the needs of the Assyrians in Kiev and Moscow.  The
Assyrian journalists from France were astonished at the number of
Assyrians present at any one night's dance parties.  The children
wearing traditional Assyrian customs looked precious and the teenagers
wearing gang-clothes appeared pathetic.  There were a couple of gang-
related fights and a few punches were thrown at the parties.  And yet
there was an unusual sense of gentle serenity about this year's
convention- much like the calm before a storm or a thunderous earth-
quake.  Let us hope that the new kids around the block are prepared
for the next hurricane to hit our communities.  I believe we are.

Wilfred Alkhas

 G  O  O  D    M  O  R  N  I  N  G    B  E  T - N  A  H  R  A  I  N


(ZNDA:  Northern Iraq- ab)  The social and cultural organization in Dohuk
known as "Shutasa Atranaya Athuraya" has established itself as a
political party (gabba) in northern Bet-Nahrain. The organization
consists of the Assyrian intellectuals and activists who have contributed
to the educational (school projects), charity and social efforts after
the Gulf War in 1991. Its members are also involved in rebuilding of
the destroyed Assyrian villages and homes. SAA receives funding from
various international sources (e.g. Christian Aid Program in Nohadra
and CAPNI) and partly also from the Assyrian organizations in Europe.
It was noted in a report submitted to ZENDA and no funding is received
from the Assyrian Aids Society chapters around the world.  The official
publication of this organization, "Tarfe men Athra" (Arabic:
"Awraq min Watan") has been in circulation for a number of years. It
features articles in Assyrian and Arabic on politics, history, culture
and language. The Shutasa is also re-printing  and distributing the
Assyrian magazine 'Hujada', originally published by the Assyrian
Federation in Sweden.
                  S   U   R   F   S     U   P   !
"Just surfing the net and came across your page.  Does the magazine
cost anything?  I am Assyrian but unfortunately I'm not in a position
to support your great work as much as I'd like.  Please let me know
via e-mail about anything I might be interested in."


"SHLAMA ELAEKHON:  I would like to read the "ZENDA". To know all about
my fellow ASSYRIAN'S around the world. THANKS."


[ZENDA is distributed freely & weekly to over 350 Assyrian email
 recipients in 15 countries around the world.  We hope that you will
 support our newsletter by submitting an article, or your community's
 events, or newsworthy information that pertain to Assryians...
 Welcome to the growing family of ZENDA readers!]


"Since you're recapping the federation election returns next week,
please include as much as possible not only the names of the new
officers, but also their addresses and phones. I've been asked by 3
different people how to get hold of Sargon Lewie.  This information is
useful to your readers."

Francis Sarguis
Santa Barbara, California


[Thanks for your suggestion.  We have included a comprehensive list
 at the end of this week's issue.]

"Please let me know if there is an Assyrian word processor, or any
thing like that.  Thanks."


[If you are using a Macintosh computer we recommend MacBanipal
 software.  For PC users the new SyriacWriter is a sure bet. For more
 information contact:
        MacBanipal @    Ashur_Mansour@quickmail.apple.com
        SyriacWriter    rdekela@orion.it.luc.edu                ]


"my name is youel isho from american telcom in michigan i would love
to have my name added to your list of subscribers . it is such a
wonderful and informative newsletter."

Youel Isho

"Shlamalokhoon yalit Atur, I just want to commend you again on your
hard work.  You are appreciated by all who receive you work. I just
want to let you and your readers know that the "Learning Aramaic /
Neo-Aramaic Online" page is moving to:


I had files on three different servers, now they are on one.  GNN
offers me 20MB of space.  Oyet rraba baseema."

Robert Oshana
(Songs of Assyria, Learning Aramaic Page)


"I am leaving on a long (and much needed) vacation to my homeland of
Croatia. I will be gone for about 3 months. Unfortunately I will
not have access to the net, and I will not be able to read ZENDA :(
Can you please take me off the mailing list?  besim ras; Hal tapqakh
goo Atour!"

Mark Puljic


"This is an addendum to the last note I wrote about the inquiry by
Kym Tank of Australia about what language the Assyrians speak.
Anyone can find a host of on line materials relating to both types
(Aramaic & Akkadian) of the languages spoken by ancient and modern
Assyrians in the Oriental Institute's  ABZU PROJECT on the internet
The librarian who is involved with the ABZU PROJECT is Charles E.
Jones, Research Archivist - Biographer, The Oriental Institute,
University of Chicago, 1155 W. 58th Street, Chicago, IL. 60637-1569.
Raba shlamee."

Paul Newey
Chicago, Illinois

              S  U  R  F  E  R  S      C  O  R  N  E  R

Do you enjoy writing short stories?  DARK EYES was our first attempt
in bringing our readers quality writing on topics and issues related
to Assyrians.  We would like to include your short stories in our
future issues under the LITERATUS section.  No editing of your work
of course... pure and simple.  That's the way ZENDA readers like it.

              N   E   W   S       D   I   G   E   S   T


(ZNAD: Midyat-Turkey):  On Tuesday, September 17, The three Assyrians
arrested on June 25 in Turkey, Gebro Tokgoz, the Mayor of Midyat, Melek
Akyol and Adnan Kesenci will go on trial in Diyarbakir for aiding the
Kurdish terrorist group PKK.  The Assyrian Democratic Organization
(Mtakasta) claims that the accusations were systematically constructed
by a pro-government Kurdish Hezbollah group working closely with the
Turkish secret service (MIT).  ADO comments that "independent sources
report that Mr. Hasan Bas, who accused the Assyrians of crimes against
the state, was a secret service agent and not a PKK member. The purpose
of the whole action is to rattle the remaining Assyrians (Suryanis) and
dislodge them from their homeland." The defendants will be tried along
with  three other Kurdish prisoners whose defense has nothing in common
with the case in point.  ZENDA was informed that there are ongoing efforts
to have international observers present during the trial.  In the past
few weeks fundraising efforts were organized to raise enough funds to
assist the Assyrian defendants.


(ZNDA: San Jose)  The body of Mr. Victor Betbadal of San Jose,
California was found in his Saratoga home on Sunday, September 15.
Apparently Mr. Betbadal had died of a self-inflicted gun shot
wound.  No motifs behind the suicide were reported at press time.
Mr. Betbadal is survived by his wife and two children.

D I  R  E  C  T  O  R  Y  OF THE  N  E  W  S   S  O  U  R  C  E  S
ZNAD (Assyrian Democratic Organization)
ZNDA (Zenda: zenda@ix.netcom.com)

  C   A   L   E   N   D   A   R     OF     E   V   E   N   T   S

Thru April 6    The Ain Ghazal Exhibit
                Smithsonian Institute
                Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
                Washington D.C.
                    E N T E R T A I N M E N T
Sept 22         Shara d'Mar Zia
                Twin Pines Recreation Park
                Belmont, California
                3:00-9:00 pm
          R E G U L A R  C L A S S E S  &  M E E T I N G S

Fridays          Assyrian Educational & Cultural Club at
                 Modesto Junior College
                 1:00 pm
                 Founders Hall 108
                 Modesto, U.S.A.

Saturdays        Nisibis School
                 The Church of the East
                 Toronto, Canada

                 Nisibin School
                 10:00-12:00 pm
                 BETA of the Assyrian American Association of San Jose
                 San Jose, California

               P  U  M  P    UP THE   V O L U M E
                   ENGLISH                ASSYRIAN

                 For Example       ha/no/deen        [-]
                                           bsoo/ka/la        [-]
                                          qa/tdoo/sa:       [-]
F = Feminine     M = Masculine      P = Plural
             B  A  C  K     TO THE      F  U  T  U  R  E

B.C. (ca 6000) The use of decorated pottery becomes widespread in the
Middle East, enabling archaeologists to distinguish cultural groups on
the basis of different pottery styles

<< Cultural Atlas of Mesopotamia, Roaf >>

A.D. (1258) Although Hulaku Khan spares the Christians of Baghdad
when he sacks the city, he is later persuaded by certain Arabs that
the Assyrians of Tikrit, Iraq were disloyal.  Consequently, one in
every twenty Assyrian men were put to death and their children taken
as prisoners.

<< The Ashurbanipal Library Newsletter, Vol 3, #1 >>

              L    I    T    E    R    A    T    U    S

You great gods of the night,
whom Anu and Enlil have created,
you efface the evil signs that have arisen for me,
you remove from the man's house the ill-portending features that
  occurred in my extispicy,
remove from me the evil sign that occurred in my house,
let that evil bypass me,
and I will sing your praises as long as I live.

<< Astral Magic in Babylonia, Reiner >>

    T  H  I  S    W  E  E  K     I  N    H  I  S  T  O  R  Y
September 16, 1910:  dies Hormozd Rassam, Assyrian archeologist and
co-discoverer of many Assyrian ruins in Bet-Nahrain, in Brighton,

                      B     R    A     V     O

Hannibal Alkhas, Assyrian painter and poet, will in the next few
months display his artwork at various galleries in St. Louis, Los
Angeles, and San Jose.  Mr. Alkhas is a resident of Tehran, Iran and
teaches at a university in Tehran.  His students recently celebrated
Hannibal's 50 years of accomplishment in arts and literature.

      W   E   L   C   O   M   E     T O     Z   E   N   D   A
Zenda welcomes our new on-line subscribers from:

                        American Telcom
                        Chicago, Illinois
                        Ontario, Canada

  A   C   K   N   O   W   L   E   D   G   E   M   E   N   T   S
Zenda wishes to thank the following individuals & organizations
whose contributions appear in this issue:

Christoph Aktas         Sunnyvale, California
Goerge Mikael           Turlock, California

      Our Next Issue will appear on Monday, September 22, 1996.

    The New Officers of the Assyrian American National Federation

President                       Sargon Lewie
                                2044 West Roscoe
                                Chicago, IL  60618
                                (312) 327-7387

Vice President                  Odisho Dinkha
                                5950 North Bernard
                                Chicago, IL 60646
                                (312) 478-9555

Assistant to the President      Zuhair Bahjat
                                1118 Fienemann Road
                                Farmington, CT 06032

Executive Secretary             Marian Yonan
                                University of California, Davis

Treasurer                       Fred Babassi
                                7157 McKean Court
                                San Jose, CA 95120
                                (408) 997-1254

Assyrian Secretary              Avrahim Lazar, Chicago, IL

Assyrian Star Edit-in-Chief     Olphonse Odisho, San Jose, CA