ZENDA is a Weekly Assyrian Online Magazine
T H I S W E E K I N Z E N D A
A Unity More Than the Church Unity
Good Morning Bet-Nahrain............ Turkish Troops Invade Northern Iraq
Human Rights Group Report on Iran's Assyrians
Surfs Up...................................... "unworthy and poisenous statements
Surfers Corner.............................. UCLA in Search of Assyrian Magazines
Happy 80th to AAA of Chicago
An Invitation to Motva Meeting in San Jose
Albright Heralds New US Policy to Lebanon
News Digest.................................. Iraq's Opposition to Meet in London
Babylon Festival Begins Today, 10th Anniv
Roger Tamraz Testifies Before U.S. Congress
ASA of Hamilton Elects New Officers
Saudi Arabia: Worship at Home Only
Calendar of Events........................ No New Entries
Khudra......................................... October-December 1997
Entracte........................................ AAA of Chicago's 80th Anniversary Party
Intelligentsia.................................. Meetings & Classes
Abzu............................................ Assyrian Radio & TV Programs
Assyrian Surfing Posts................... Babylonian Jewry Heritage Center
Pump up the Volume..................... Evil and Compassion
Back to the Future......................... Mesopotamia under Greeks and Persians
AAA of Chicago
This Week in History.................... Dr. Peera Sarmas
Bravo.......................................... Anwar Oshana's Record of Victories
The Directory.............................. ZENDA News Sources
Bshena........................................ Michigan and Los Angeles
Salute.......................................... Ashur, Esha, & Hannibal
-------------THE L I G H T H O U S E----------------
Dear Editorial Staff of ZENDA:
Per your request, I am attaching with this short note the decree that was recently signed by the Assyrian Church of the East and the Chaldean Catholic Church. Thank you for your interest in this very important matter. Please let me know if I could be of further assistance to you.
Mar Bawai Soro
Bishop of Seattle
General Secretary of Inter-Church Relations
Assyrian Church of the East
A UNITY MORE THAN THE CHURCH UNITY
Years of friendly, but sometimes private, dialogue have recently culminated in what is expected to be one of the most significant agreements in 500 years between the Assyrian Church of the East and the Chaldean Catholic Church. For the first time after their separation in 1552, the two religious groups have committed themselves to a process of dialogue through which they will, by all means available to them, aim at restoring a full and complete church unity between their two jurisdictions - the two branches of the historically ONE Church of the East.
Nine months after last year's "Statement of Detroit" issued on 29 November 1996, the Catholicos-Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East, His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, and the Catholicos-Patriarch of the Chaldean Catholic Church, His Holiness Raphael I Bidawid, signed a "Joint Synodal Decree for Promoting Unity" when they met together in Roselle, Illinois, to consecrate jointly a new Assyrian parish church (Mart Maryam) on August 15, 1997.
Just before signing the decree, both Church have appointed a "Joint Commission for Unity" to carry out the day-to-day administration of this process. A number of local and international committees from both sides are being formed at present to handle the needs of this new collaboration in almost every country the two communities co-exist. The main area of focus which the commission for unity will focus upon are: (1) Religious formation of priests and deacons for both churches; (2) the development of religious educational material "catechism"; and the training of teachers "catechists"; (3) Joint Liturgical Projects and Celebration; (4) Pastoral Collaboration between Chaldean and Assyrian Parishes throughout the world; (5) Collaboration and Cooperation between the faithful laity of the two Churches. All these programs are solely aimed at promoting understanding, charity and collaboration among Assyrians and Chaldeans until such a day that unity becomes an inescapable reality.
The text of the decree, which was also signed by 27 additional (Metropolitans and Bishops) members of the Chaldean and the Assyrian Holy Synods, is the following:
"Joint Synodal Decree for Promoting Unity "
between the Assyrian Church of the East and the Chaldean Catholic Church
1. In the service of our Lord and the People of God, we, the bishops of the two branches of the ancient "Church of the East," declare that the noble quest for restoring Christian unity remains, for us and for our Churches, a profound Christian obligation. Our Lord's prayer for the unity of His followers prompts in us, today, a deep desire to reach peacefully and fraternally the full communion with all other Christians in the one holy Church of Christ. Seeking to implement the will of our Lord Jesus Christ, according to the scope of our responsibility, we, in our respective Churches, realize that the actual meaning of Jesus' prayer "that all may be one" (Jn. 17:21-23) can be fulfilled factually as we strive to restore the unity of the Church of the East, as known by our common forefathers.
2. The basic theological agreement between the Catholic Church and the Assyrian Church of the East, as articulated in the "Common Christological Declaration," signed at the Vatican, on 11 November 1994, by Their Holinesses Pope John Paul II and Patriarch Mar Dinkha IV, has cleared the way for the Chaldean and the Assyrian Churches to initiate a process of dialogue and collaboration toward the goal of unity.
3. With the same spirit and purpose in mind, the two heads of our Churches, Their Holinesses Mar Dinkha IV and Mar Raphael I Bidawid met, with their respective delegations, in Southfield, Michigan (USA), on 29 November 1996, inaugurating officially the process of dialogue and collaboration; and, in a "Joint Patriarchal Statement", they called upon their churches to rally behind them for the success of this noble purpose, and for their Holy Synods to formulate concrete plans toward the realization of the goal of unity.
4. We, the Fathers of both Holy Synods, wholeheartedly respond to the call of our Patriarchs, which is ultimately the call of the Lord himself, and declare that we join them in this course toward our common destiny, totally endorsing their proposals as formulated in their joint statement. Consequently, we adopt the following measures in the quest for unity:
a. Close collaboration in the area of catechesis, particularly in training of catechists and in the development of related teaching material.
b. Collaboration in the preparation and printing of liturgical books.
c. The establishment of an ecclesial education institute in the Chicago-Detroit region, and possibly wherever members of both communities exist, for the purpose of training future priests, deacons and catechists from both Churches. This institute shall also offer continuing religious education to the active clergy of both Churches. For the fulfillment of the general theological program--in addition to in-house formation program--the institute shall reach a suitable arrangement with appropriate Catholic universities and/or institutions in the locality where the institute exists.
d. The formulation of a joint and common attitude emphasizing the usage of the Aramaic mother tongue, in both of its classic and vernacular forms, in liturgical ceremonies as well as in cultural endeavors of both Churches.
e. The development of pastoral programs and educational projects as expressions of ecclesial and cultural collaboration between the two churches.
f. The development of a wide range of other activities and programs through which the faithful of both the Assyrian and the Chaldean Churches will become prepared to accept, as a common enrichment of their "Church of the East", the variety of particular practices that have been developed in both Churches during the period of separation. The characteristics of the authentic heritage of the ancient "Church of the East" shall be a basis for evaluation and a point of reference in such endeavor. Nevertheless, we shall consider diversity, within agreed and recognized limits, as an enrichment benefiting all the children of this Church.
5. To implement the above approved plan, we hereby decree that a "Joint Commission for Unity" (JCU) shall be constituted, according to a special statute approved by both patriarchs, to be composed of twelve members selected from both Churches--six from each side. Since the "Common Christological declaration" (CCD) is the basic foundation for the collaboration between our two churches, all questions related to the areas of dogmatic and fundamental theology shall be reserved to the "Mixed Committee for Theological Dialogue" (MCTD) that has been formed accordingly between the Catholic Church and the Assyrian Church of the East.
6. Looking with fraternal understanding to our past and directing our hearts with trust and hope to the future, we commit ourselves and offer public testimony of the shared love and respect between our Churches at the present. Thus, we, mutually and reciprocally, declare that we recognize in each other, as living today in our Churches, the same apostolic succession, sacramentality and Christian witness. Therefore, we call upon our clergy and faithful everywhere to interact as brothers and sisters, founding their relationship upon Christian charity and employing evangelical principles of fraternal equality and social justice, in and throughout the testimony of their individual and communal lives.
7. Recognizing in both of our Churches the binding unity of faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, that we share, as well as our common liturgical and theological heritage, taking pride in the same Fathers, Doctors of the Church, acknowledging the same shared ancestry and culture, we nevertheless recognize the existence of actual differences between our churches that have been formed during the period of separation. Therefore, for the sake of being truthful with each other and toward our people, we respectively declare our basic intents and together formulate the following principles for dialogue:
a. Whereas the Assyrian Church of the East sees that
i. the preservation of her ecclesial identity as expressed in her liturgical, theological, spiritual and disciplinary patrimony as well as her Mesopotamian-Aramaic culture and
ii. the recognition of her freedom and self-governance
are principles that must be preserved continuously throughout the process
of dialogue and in any achieved model of unity; and
b. Whereas, in like manner, the Chaldean Catholic Church sees that
i. while the preservation of the same above-mentioned ecclesial identity as expressed in her liturgical, theological, spiritual and disciplinary patrimony as well as her Mesopotamian-Aramaic culture must be maintained, the adaptation of that patrimony to existing regional and cultural conditions and
ii. the preservation of her full communion with the Roman
See must be basic principles continuously maintained throughout the process
of dialogue and in any achieved model of unity.
c. Therefore, since some of our basic stands are distinct, both Holy Synods ratify the need for further dialogue and more involved collaboration between the Assyrian Church of the East and the Chaldean Catholic Church, and, in due time and manner, between them jointly and the Roman See, in order to bring about unity between the Assyrian and the Chaldean Churches.
8. We sincerely hope that the "Church of the East", restored to its historic fullness in faithfulness to the Lord, shall be an instrument for spiritual renewal, social harmony and cultural renaissance among her faithful, prompting them, once again, to bring the Good News of the Gospel to the four corners of the world for the glory of God's name.
9. Therefore, we call upon all of our sons and daughters to raise fervent prayers for the purpose of achieving our full ecclesiastical unity, through the patronage of the Virgin Mary, Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ and our own blessed mother and the intercessions of the Apostles of the East, Mar Toma, Mar Addai and Mar Mari.
10. By the authority granted to us by the Holy Spirit, we declare that this "Joint Synodal Decree for Promoting Unity" effective for both Churches from this date, the fifteenth day of August 1997, the Feast of the Blessed Virgin. As a confirmation to this historic occurrence, we list our names under the names and signatures of our two venerable Patriarchs.
+ Mar Raphael I Bidawid
+ Mar Dinkha IV
Catholicos Patriarch Catholicos Patriarch
Chaldean Catholic Church Assyrian Church of the East
Members of both Holy Synods
1. Mar Emmanuel Delly, Patriarchal
2. Mar Andre Sana, Archbishop of Kerkuk
3. Mar Abdulahad Sana, Bishop of Alqosh
4. Mar Youhanna Issaye, Retired Archbishop of Tehran
5. Mar Stephane Babaca, Retired Archbishop of Arbil
6. Mar Hanna Kello, Bishop of Amadia & Zakho
7. Mar Paul Karatas, Archbisop of Diarbakir
8. Mar Hanna Zora, Archbishop of Ahwaz
9. Mar Abdulahad Rabban, Bishop of 'Aqra
10. Mar George Garmo, Archbishop of Mosul
11. Mar Ibrahim Ibrahim, Bishop of the USA
12. Mar Yousif Sarraf, Bishop of Cairo
13. Mar Youssif Thomas, Archbishop, Bishop of Beirut
14. Mar Thomas Meram, Archbishop of Urmia and Salmas
15. Mar Antoine Audo, Bishop of Aleppo
16. Mar Ramzi Garmo, Archbishop of Tehran
17. Mar Gabriel Kassab, Archbishop of Basra
1. Mar Narsai Debaz, Archbishop of Lebanon,
Syria & Europe and Patriarchal Vicar
2. Mar Timotheos, Partriarchal Representative in India
3. Mar Aprem, Archbishop of India
4. Mar Gewargis Sliwa, Archbishop of Iraq & Russia
5. Poulose Mar Poulose, Bishop of Trichur
6. Mar Aprim Khamis, Bishop of Eastern USA
7. Mar Bawai Soro, Bishop of Seattle, General Secretary of CIRED
8. Mar Meelis Zaia, Bishop of Australia & New Zeland, Secretary of Holy Synod
9. Mar Emmanuel Emmanuel, Bishop of Canada
10. Mar Odisho Oraham, Bishop of Europe
---G O O D M O R N I N G B E T - N A H R A I N---
TURKICH TROOPS CROSS INTO NORTHERN IRAQ
(ZNAF: ANKARA) Last Tuesday, more than 20,000 Turkish troops, backed by 100 tanks, crossed into northern Iraq's Zakho region to hunt down Turkish Kurdish separatists. Turkish forces advanced on Iraq's border area with Syria, south of the Hayirsiz mountain, where separatists from the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) are based, the sources in Diyarbakir said. The Turkish army was actively supported by Barzani's troops, and sources in Diyarbakir said his fighters could again be called into action for this latest onslaught. Turkish army losses were put at 113 dead and 325 wounded. Between mid May and the end of June, the Turkish army carried out a large-scale operation against PKK bases in northern Iraq. During the offensive, a total of 1912 PKK rebels were killed, Turkish army chief-of-staff said.
Iraq, Iran, and Russia condemned the Turkish incursion into northern Iraq and called for the troops to be withdrawn immediately. The Arab League in Cairo also called for an immediate Turkish withdrawal. Tehran and Ankara are yet to recover from the latest crisis in diplomatic ties, prompted by a public speech by Iran's former ambassador in Ankara, where he reportedly expressed support for efforts to bring Islamic law to Turkey. Turkey later asked Iran to recall its ambassador and another diplomat, prompting Tehran to take the same measures.
On Friday, military officials in Turkey said that at least 44 separatist Turkish Kurds had been killed in four days of fighting and 6 Turkish army members had also died in the clashes. The PKK has been fighting since 1984 to create an independent Kurdish homeland in eastern and southeastern Turkey. An estimated 26,000 people have been killed in fighting between the rebels and government forces.
HUMAN RIGHTS GROUP CONDEMNS PERSECUTION OF MINORITIES IN IRAN
(ZNAF: Brussels) The New York-based Human Rights
Watch organization said in a 38-page report published last Wednesday that
Iran's Islamic government is engaged in flagrant persecution of the country's
religious and ethnic minorities especially evangelical Christians and Baha'is,
and non-Persian minorities. Human Rights Watch called on the new
government of President Mohammed Khatami, who is considered relatively
western observers, to guarantee the same protection to all citizens and remove from the Iranian constitutions clauses which were in violation of international law.
The report said persecution of Christians had increased in recent years, and four evangelical sect leaders had died in circumstances which suggested the government was involved. Analysts say evangelical Christians are pressured by Iranian authorities because of the group's activities in converting Moslem Iranians. Christian minorities, such as Armenians and Assyrians, limit their religious activities to their own ethnic groups. Many senior government and army positions in Iran are limited to Iran's official religion which is Shi'ite Islam. "Iran's constitution provides only qualified commitments to the principle of non-discrimination on the basis of religion or ethnic identity," Hanny Megally, executive director of Human Rights Watch (HRW) Middle East, said in the statement.
Iran denies discrimination against ethnic groups and recognized religious minorities -- Christians, Zoroastrians and Jews -- but Tehran does not recognize the Baha'i faith as a religion and considers it "a misleading and wayward sect." Iran rejects international human rights groups' criticism of its human rights record as politically motivated. Visit Human Rights Watch at http://www.hrw.org/home.html .
--------------------S U R F S U P !---------------------
"Thank you for this week's ZENDA. I love reading
short Assyrian history
articles. I enjoyed your article on SEX AND SEXUALITY IN ANCIENT
MESOPOTAMIA very much. Continue your excellent work. I need to know of any source that would list Assyrian male and female names from ancient Assyria or Bet-Nahrin."
[We recommend Georg Olms Hildesheim & K.L. Tallqvist's "Assyrian Personal Names" written in 1915. Check with Nabu Books or the Ashurbanipal Library in Chicago for availability.]
"I'm more than certain that you guys got hell from your
the article you included in last week's issue (ZENDA Vol. III, #29).
'Sex and Sexuality in Ancient Mesopotamia' covers a topic that many
Assyrians do not discuss openly within the family. I'm glad to see that
you guys have chosen not to saturate your online magazine strictly with
politics and news. Instead, you have taken the time to include a wide
variety of themes. This particular bold step on your part is one way to
further open our minds up to what's around us (and what was our past)
regardless of how radical the material is. Great job folks, keep it
[Only for the second time in its history, last week ZENDA lost a few readers due to the subject matter of its Feature Article. One former subscriber complained that the words "sex, penis and Bet-Nahrain should never appear in the same paragraph." Another reader from Chicago calls for the creation of an "editing board to review such material before their wide distribution." Sigmund Freud once wrote, "Much of our most highly valued cultured heritage has been acquired at the cost of our sexuality."]
"I would like to present my resume to Mrs. Golani. I
was one of the
founders of the Assyrian Student Association in Chicago in 1973, along with many great individuals like Mark Thomas, Kivork Mkrdichian, Mar Bawai Soro (at that time Ashur Soro), Edward Danavi and 230 other college students. We ran an organization that shocked the Federation with our energy. I was one of the ASA's members who blocked and refused to allow our members to accept $250 and air travel to Washington DC to dance in welcoming the Shah of Iran, an event that was highly promoted by the AANF and some affiliates, despite the threats from key Assyrian individuals who held executive positions in the affiliate organizations. I refused to raise a banner in Washington DC under the Assyrian Student Association. I have held the position of the Chairman of the AANF Education Committee. Every blood cell in my body carries a gene of Assyrian nationalism. The Students Association was destroyed and I will be more than happy to discuss what we went through in the last 25 years - one on one. Mrs. Golani can invite me to the AANF's NEC meeting and I will be more than happy to stand up and talk to anyone at
any time (I am a very outspoken person). As for my education, where does Mrs. Golani want me to fax my credentials, BEE and in few months my MBA? I am not a loser. I learned to read and write the Assyrian language by attending the Academic Society's classes.
Mrs. Golani knows it and I know it that we are no experts in crowd controls. By the way my home town's Habbaniayh, Bet Nahrain. Unfortunately I live in Chicago and do not have the luxury and cannot afford Detroit. I hope some day I will be able to do so. Currently I am the Chairman of the Constitution and By-Laws Committee of the Assyrian Academic Society which I have been a member for ten years. If it makes her happy I will withdraw my comments. Maybe I was misinformed: the fire alarms and evacuations were perhaps the Church bells; the arrests were propaganda against AANF; and the fights and overcrowding were just false accusations. One thing was true that no one recognized the events that the Academic Society prepared in any of your functions- prove me wrong & I will withdraw this statement as well.
Finally, if Detroit were to hold the 65th Convention in Dearborn again, would Hyatt Regency Dearborn facilitate its request? This is the problem with us Assyrians- we do not accept criticism. We get offended as soon as we criticize. Facts are facts. I hope that Mrs. Golani's response will be a good success story."
Martin Y. Mirza
"In response to your comments regarding Mr. Mirza'a view of the Convention, here are my personal views: It is irrelevant if one is present at a convention or not, more important than one's attendance would be the overall view and echo of that particular convention. Unfortunately and to the dismay of many good Assyrians, Mr. Mirza's views were reflected all over the world, and it seems that there is no end to the deterioration of our moral values as a newly formed society in the west. And it is NOT just Assyrians who are talking anymore.
It appears to me that you were personally offended by
Mr. Mirza'a very honest and open remarks. Some of the problems he described
were also experienced in Chicago and California in previous conventions.
It is definitely getting commercial and obviously out of hand. Two years
ago I called for boycotting this "Sad Excuse of getting Together" and so
called annual convention, and I still stand by that, to send a clear
message to AANF that "We have had enough of this circus".
I don't know how much you have done for our people, but as for Mr. Mirza, I have yet to meet some one who can truly claim to be more Assyrian, not only by words but also by action and hard work. Calling him, or anybody else for that matter, names without truly understanding the point of conversation, only reflects the person's ignorance.
"I am not a regular reader of your online newsletter, my grandson prints a copy for me, sometimes. I was much saddened and angered when I read your comments in Zenda, Vol. III, #27 dated 9/8/1997, branding Assyrian Church of The East with indifference! You have gone off your limits. You do not love and care for the Assyrian People more than our church does. Every Assyrian who is faithful to and love his or her church, should rest assured that the best, and possible, is being done for our people; and every Assyrian should also be aware of the persons, who take the opportunity of any minor incident, to blame Church of The East (and a particular Assyrian political part), for happening and insolvency of the problem,; because these are the moments they think, will be able to sow disturbance among our people.
I would like to draw the attention of the Assyrian people, to the fact that this is not the first time Zenda has published unworthy and poisonous statements against our church, and has gone away with it, and not challenged by anyone.
A) Zenda, Dec. 16, 1996. 'Assyrian priest in Los Angeles released from pastoral duties'.......Amidst all controversy surrounding Rev.... ASSYRIAN CHURCH OF THE EAST HAS NOT COMMENTED ON ITS DECISION (Here Zenda expects that all church activities be sent to Zenda, and, allowing it to comment on the issue, as they wish. NONSENSE!)
B) Zenda Vol. III # 27, 9/8/1997. Three Assyrians arrested in June remain in custody................... THE LEADERSHIP OF BOTH ASSYRIAN CHURCH OF THE EAST AND SYRIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH REMAIN INDIFFERENT ON THIS ISSUE, AND HAVE NOT MADE ANY COMMENTS REGARDING THESE ARRESTS AND PLIGHT OF THE ASSYRIANS IN JEZIRA REGION. (You see here my dear people, again, as I pointed out regarding statement A, Zenda blames our Head of the Church, this time, for not contacting Zenda office, and informing them of what action has been taken in this regard. Poison ivy!)
I wrote this letter of what I personally judge you, and hope you, and hope others perceive, how much love of our church and Assyrianism you possess."
---------------S U R F E R S C O R N E R----------------
IN SEARCH OF ASSYRIAN MAGAZINES
Our university has many Assyrian students and Syriac is even taught here. We already receive Nineveh magazine, but we would be most grateful to receive any other books, magazines, newsletters, etc in Assyrian or in other languages about the Assyrians for our library.
David G. Hirsch
Middle East Bibliographer
University Research Library
University of California, Los Angeles
PO Box 951575
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
HAPPY 80TH TO AAA OF CHICAGO
The Assyrian American Association of Chicago is celebrating
ANNIVERSAY on Saturday October 4th, 1997 at the A.A.A 1618 W. Devon Ave, Chicago, with the presence of many Assyrian and non-Assyrian Guests and our great singer Lida Lawando.
THE ASSYRIAN NATIONAL COUNCIL OF THE BAY AREA (MOTVA)
Our community has recongized the need for creating an Assyrian Council (Motva) to be the mean to unify all Assyrians living in the Bay Area and further strengthen our social standing. For this, during the past few months an elected committee has been studying and reviewing the above issue and is now prepared to present its conclusions to you. At the same time the committee strongly believes that our future social structure should be based on the views and expectations of all Assyrians living in the area.
Therefore you are cordially invited to attend a gathering to be held on Sunday, October 5th, 1997 at 4:00 PM in the Assyrian Church of the East, Avana, located at 680 Minnesota Avenue, San Jose. The agenda for the meeting will be:
a) Views and beliefs of the organizing committee
b) Open forum for the audience to present their views and expectations
c) Decision concerning the next step of the process
In order to have a base of reference, if possible, we would appreciate if you may have your suggestion in writing along with your name and phone number. If you have your views prepared in advance or have questions concerning organizing our new "Motva" please mail these to us at the address shown below. This will give us the opportunity to be better prepared for the above meeting. These may be prepared in any language you desire.
Since the above meeting is open to all Assyrians and we do not have access to all the addresses, please help us by inviting other fellow Assyrians to join us in this important meeting.
Temporary Organizing Committee for Motva
P.O. Box 41311
San Jose, California 95160-1311
ALBRIGHT HERALDS A NEW US POLICY TO LEBANON
"The visit to Lebanon of the US secretary of state, Madeleine Albright, revealed that Washington has moved substantially away from [her predecessor Warren] Christopher's strategy towards the Lebanese-Israeli track. Where the former secretary was content to negotiate Lebanon's fate in Damascus, traveling to Lebanon only when compelled to do so, Albright showed that this was no longer the case. More importantly, she outlined a genuinely new framework for future Lebanese-Israeli talks."
The Daily Star
Sep 23, 1997
---------------N E W S D I G E S T-----------------
IRAQI OPPOSITION TO MEET BRITISH AND U.S. OFFICIALS IN LONDON
(ZNAF: Dubai) The Foreign Office in London is to host a meeting with Iraqi opposition groups today, in the first such contact since the Labour Party took power in Britain in May to discuss British and U.S. policy toward Iraq. Britain is to be represented by a Foreign Office official and a diplomat. "It will be the first contact at this level between the Iraqi opposition and the new Labour government which has made respect for human rights one of its foreign policy priorities," Mohammad Abdel Jabbar of the Iraqi National Congress (INC), an umbrella group, said by telephone from London. The Assyrian Democratic Movement (Zowaa) is a member of this organization. The meeting will also discuss the UN oil-for-food accord under which Iraq is allowed to export limited amounts of crude to finance humanitarian imports for its sanctions-hit population, the opposition said. Among the groups invited are the Kurdistan Democratic Party and its rival, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, the INC, the Amman-based Iraqi National Accord, a Shiite group, the Supreme Assembly of the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SAIRI), and a monarchist movement. Wafic Samarrai, a former head of military intelligence who defected to Syria in 1994, is also invited to the London talks. At presstime ZENDA was not informed of any Assyrian political parties' participation at this meeting.
BABYOLON FESTIVAL TURNS 10, SYRIA TAKES PART FOR FIRST TIME
(ZNAF: Baghdad) - The Babylon cultural festival opens today on its 10th anniversary with almost 1,200 artists taking part from 30 countries, including Syria. Syria, whose diplomatic relations with Iraq have been severed since 1980, is among the participants for the first time, following the reopening of their border in June. The festival at the ancient site of Babylon, some 90 kilometres (55 miles) south of Baghdad, was first staged in 1987. But it was called off in 1990 and 1991 because of the Gulf crisis after Iraq's invasion of Kuwait.
This year, the festival which has been curtailed to 10 days from the normal two weeks will feature folk dances, concerts and poetry readings, as well as a conference on the history of Babylon. Organizers said several Western countries are taking part, including Belgium, Britain, France and Italy. As in past years, the festival is being held under the banner, "From Nebuchadnezzar to Saddam Hussein." The Neo-Babylonian Empire reached its peak under Nebuchadnezzar II (604-562 B.C.) and covered Bet-Nahrain (Mesopotamia).
HAMILTON'S ASSYRIAN STUDENT ASSOCIATION ELECTS NEW PRESIDENT
(ZNDA: Toronto) On 24 September the Assyrian Student Association
of Hamilton, Canada held its general elections. Miss Evlien Yako
was elected as the new president and Miss Eleen Toma as the new vice-president
of this organization which is affiliated with Mohawk College in Ontario,
Canada. The purpose of this group is to present educational programs
related to the language, culture, history, music and mass media of the
Assyrian people, in order to preserve and perpetuate the rich
heritage of the Assyrians. Mohwak college provides financial funding, a full-page in the weekly school newspaper "The Satellite", a one-hour radio air time on Saturdays; a Board Room, an office, free legal services and free advertisements in all college media (i.e. TV, Radio, bulletin boards, etc.). ASA meets every Wednesday at noon in MSA Room, Fennell Campus in Hamilton and welcomes all Assyrian students from Mohawk and outside to join and participate.
MARONITE-AMERICAN FINANCIER TESTIFIES BEFORE U.S. CONGRESS
(ZNDA: Washington) The Lebanese-American financier,
Roger Tamraz, last week testified before a US congressional committee on
his donations to the Democratic Party. He confirmed that he had donated
$300,000 to the Democratic National Committee (DNC) in order to "have access"
to president Bill Clinton in support of his multi-billion dollar Caspian
Sea Oil Pipeline project. Tamraz is the son of a self-made Maronite
millionaire, and was raised in Egypt to be part of the cosmopolitan Middle
Eastern elite. He spent his childhood in Cairo's exclusive Zamalek district
and attended British grammar schools. He was twice convicted of embezzlement
and contacts with Israel by Lebanese courts, and has admitted to long-standing
links with the CIA. In 1995 Tamraz emerged as a political contributor
when he donated $50,000 to the Democratic National Committee. In the off-election
contacts at the DNC suggested the best use of his cash would be the tight race for control of the Virginia House of Delegates. On 25 August he gave $25,000 in his own name to the Democratic Party of Virginia, and followed on 19 October with $75,000 in the name of Tamoil, Inc. By the end of 1996, his state and national Democratic contributions totaled $177,000. After Tamraz opened his purse, White House doors opened to him. He attended four of Clinton's coffee tastings, making him one of the most frequent outside guests.
A sample of Roger Tamraz' Political Contributions:
6/17/96 $ 1,000.00 FRIENDS OF PATRICK J KENNEDY '96
6/17/96 $ 1,000.00 FRIENDS OF PATRICK J KENNEDY '96
9/27/95 $ 1,000.00 KENNEDY FOR SENATE (1994)
3/15/96 $ 1,000.00 FRIENDS OF LARRY PRESSLER
3/15/96 $ 1,000.00 FRIENDS OF LARRY PRESSLER
11/6/96 $ 5,000.00 IOWA DEMOCRATIC PARTY (FEDERAL DIVISION)
7/26/95 $20,000.00 DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL COMMITTEE
SAUDI ARABIA: "NON-MOSLEMS CAN PRACTICE FAITH, AT HOME
(ZNRUL Dubai) Saudi Arabia has no objection to non-Muslims practicing their faiths as long as it is in the privacy of their homes, Saudi Defense Minister Prince Sultan was quoted Wednesday as saying. Saudi Arabia does not allow non-Muslim faiths to have public places of worship. Western countries and some human rights groups have criticized the kingdom for what they call lack of religious freedoms. Prince Sultan was speaking in an interview with the Saudi-owned, London-based al-Hayat newspaper. Asked if the issue of religious freedom in the kingdom was raised during his meeting with the pope at the Vatican earlier this month, Prince Sultan said, "It is known that Islam is a tolerant religion and does not stand against believers in God practicing their religious rituals. The kingdom has no objection to them practicing their religion in their homes," he added. The conservative Muslim country is home to two of Islam's holiest shrines and is governed by Islamic law. The 12 million Saudi nationals are Muslims, but the country hosts a large number of Christian foreigners among the six million expatriates living in the oil-rich state.
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Dear Reader: ZENDA has learned that last week, Rabbie Issa Benyamin, the Assyrian calligraphy artist, underwent an open-heart surgery. Due to his physical condition his teaching and celebratory engagements in San Jose, California as outlined in the last issue of ZENDA have been canceled.
Oct 25 A Discussion
on "The Assyrians": The Second of Joan
Grande's Series of Gallery Talks on the Development of
British Museum, London
Coffee Bar (inside the museum)
Nov 22-24 Middle East Studies Association's
31st Annual Meeting
San Francisco, California
Hyatt Regency San Francisco
-Christian Persian Notables: Patrons and Leaders in East Syrian Christian Society
-Iraq and the Assyrians, 1925-1933
-Dawn at Tell Tamir: The Assyrian Christian Survival on the Khabur River
-The Future of Iraq
-Recognized Religious Minorities in Iran
-An Ethnic Perspective on State Formation in Iraq
-Lebanon's Culture and National Identity
-Sons of Noah in Eastern Christian Tradition
Dec 11-13 British Association for Near
1997 Annual Conference
University of Durham
Dec 20 Maestro
Nebu Issabey's Nineveh Choir
San Jose State University Music Hall
Through In the Presence of the Gods:
Art from Ancient Sumer
Mar 8,1998 The Smart Museum of Art
5550 South Greenwood Avenue
A presentation of 43 4,500-year-old Sumerian temple offerings, including statues from Tell Asmar, tablets, carved stone vessels, and relief panels showing banquet scenes.
--------------------------K H U D R A------------------------------
Oct 10 Dokhrana
'd Mar Elia (Elijah the Prophet)
Oct 17 Anniversary of Mar Dinkha IV's Consecration (1976)
Patriarch of the Church of the East
Oct 31 Dokhrana 'd Mar Elia (of Hirta or Khirata)
Nov 1 Dokhrana 'd Mar Mikha d'Alqosh
Nov 3 Dokhrana 'd Mar Gewargis, Sahda (The Martyr)
Nov 19 Commemoration of Mar Yacoub m' Pasqa
Nov 22 Dokhrana 'd Mar Odisho d'Urmi
Dec 7 Annunciation of the Virgin Mary (Soobara)
Dec 8 Immaculate Conception
Dec 13 Mar Yacub d'Nsiven (St. James of Nisibin)
Dec 20 King Abgar V
Dec 22 Mar Yousip (St. Joseph)
Dec 25 Christmas (Julian Calendar)
-------------------------E N T R A C T E-------------------------
Oct 4 Assyrian
American Association of Chicgo's 80th Anniversary
1618 West Devon Avenue
Entertainment: Lida Lawando
Dec 31 New Year's
Assyrian American Association of San Jose
Entertainers: Black Cats & Franco
Santa Clara, California
----------------------I N T E L L I G E N T S I A-----------------------
CHICAGO Introductory & Advanced
Room Numbers C13 & C33
Instructor: Rabbie Zaia Kanoon
Wednesdays, Thursdays, & Saturdays
Location: North Park University, Carlson Tower
firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-800-454-6979.
Club Soccer Development Program
Warren Park Gymnasium
Western Avenue & Devon Street
HARVARD 1997-98 Syriac Classes Taught by Dr. J.F. Coakley
UNIVERSITY Elementary Syriac
Instructor: J. F. Coakley
Basic Syriac grammar and syntax with selected readings from
the Syriac Bible and other early texts.
Readings in Syriac I
Historical and theological texts, and early poetry
Readings in Syriac II
Special attention to exegetical texts and to reading
NORTH Assyrian Boy Scouts
HOLLYWOOD Assyrian American Association of Southern California
5901 Cahuenga Blvd
North Hollywood, California
9:30am to 12:30pm
Contact Sargon Gewargis @ email@example.com
(818) 891-3705 after 7:30 PM
Assyrian Student Union
California State University, Northridge
Assyrian American Association of Southern California
5901 Cahuenga Blvd
North Hollywood, California
Contact Sargon Gewargis @ firstname.lastname@example.org
(818) 891-3705 after 7:30 PM
SAN JOSE English as a Second Language & Conversational English (Adults)
Instructor: Jacklin Bajan
AAA of San Jose BETA
Nisibin School for Children (Classes begin on 10/6/97)
AAA of San Jose BETA
Instructor: Jacklin Bajan
Mondays & Tuesdays
AAA of San Jose BETA
20000 Almaden Road
Maestro Nebu Issabey's Nineveh Choir Practice
AAA of San Jose BETA
ONTARIO Nisibis School
The Church of the East
12:00 pm (noon)
MSA Room, Fennell Campus
-----------------------------A B Z U---------------------------------
This week we introduce a regular section to provide information on the regular Assyrian radio and television programs around the world. ABZU was the subterranean freshwater ocean in the ancient Mesopotamian mythology where the god Enki dwelled. Through his magical powers he determined the destiny of humankind and was always seen as favorable to gods' creatures. Enki often sided with them against the will of other gods (See Epic of Gilgamesh). Contact us and inform us about your local radio/TV programming if not listed below.
Assyrian Voice of Canada Ontario-Canada
3:00 - 4:00 PM Cable 91.7 and 91.9
10:00 PM - 12:00 AM (midnight) AM 1430
Voice (905) 279-6206
Fax (905) 279-7347
AssyriaVision KBSV-TV 23
7:00 AM - 2:00 AM PST
Assyrian National Magazine San Jose/Bay Area, California
(with George Maragolof)
Live Show (Every first and third Tuesday)
6:00 PM - 7:00 PM "live show"
Weekly Show (Fridays)
Channel 15A (TCI Cablevision)
Atour TV (Assyrian American Association) San Jose, California
8:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Channel 15A (TCI Cablevision)
---A S S Y R I A N S U R F I N G P O S T S-----
The Babylonian Jewry Heritage Center
-------------------P U M P UP THE V O L U M E-------------------
English Modern Assyrian
Evil bish/ta [F]
F = Feminine M = Masculine P = Plural
-------------B A C K TO THE F U T U R E----------------
BC (539) This crucial date in the history of Bet-Nahrain, the year of the capture of Babylon by Cyrus (Koorosh), king of Persia, marks the first time Bet-Nahrain was ruled from outside its own borders. After Alexander the Great conquered Persia (Achamenids) in 331 B.C. his generals of the Seleucid Empire ruled over Bet-Nahrain. Persians (Parthians) once again controlled Bet-Nahrain from 274 B.C. until their defeat by another Persian group (Sassanians) in 227 A.D.
612 B.C. Capture of Nineveh by Medes
539 B.C. Capture of Babylon by Persians under Cyrus
331 B.C. Under Alexander the Great & later Seleucids
274 B.C. Under Parthian Rule (Persia)
227 A.D. Under Sassanian Rule (Persia)
<< Gods, Demons, & Symbols of Ancient Mesopotamia,
Black & Green >>
AD (1963) In a joint meeting of the Assyrian National Association and its Auxiliary on March 29th in Chicago, an official change-of-name was affected. Henceforth, this organization was to be known as the Assyrian American Association of Chicago.
[ZENDA is preparing a special article on the founding and history of the AAA of Chicago in celebration of its 80 years of existence and service to the Assyrian community of Chicago. In preparing this article we urge our readers, particularly those who have been or are associated with this organization, to submit pertinent information, personal memories & experiences, and articles of interest to email@example.com or P.O. Box 20278 San Jose, California, 95160 (U.S.) . The deadline to submit this information is October 24, 1997]
--------------L I T E R A T U S-----------------
Loud was the eruption of Mount Vesuvius
Louder was the scream from Pompeii
Loud was the sound of Simko's bullet
Louder was the mourning for the Patriarch
Louder was the thunder of the artificial sun
Louder was the cry of the vanished children
Loud was Ghandi's call for freedom
Louder was the Assassin's bullet
But the loudest of them all
Was the silence I heard
After I said I love you
<< Moments: Poetry & Fiction by An Assyrian, Peter Jasim >>
--------T H I S W E E K I N H I S T O R Y--------
Twenty Five Years Ago
October 2, 1972: dies, Dr. Peera Sarmas, author of "The History of Assyrian Literature" written in Assyrian (modern Syriac). Dr. Sarmas' book was published in Iran in 1962.
-----------------------B R A V O-------------------------
The Undefeated Assyrian Boxing Champion
The following is a list of Oshana's impressive record to date:
April 9, 1997: Won a 12 round
decision over Bruce Rumbolz.
February 8, 1997: Won a 10 round decision over Patrick Swann.
November 27, 1996: Stopped Rick Jester in the first round.
August 23, 1996: Knocked out Bernard Davis in the first round.
May 30, 1996: Stopped Eric Davis in the sixth round.
May 3, 1996: Knocked out Otis West in the first round.
February 17, 1996: Stopped George Taylor in the third round.
August 23, 1995: Won a 6 round decision over Bryan Blakely.
June 23, 1995: Knocked out Gary Smith in the third round.
April 26, 1995: Stopped Don Penelton in the third round.
April 11, 1995: Won a 4 round decision over Porter Mayberry.
February 25, 1995: Stopped Leslie Mixon in the second round.
January 26, 1995: Won a 6 round decision over Tony Golden.
November 23, 1994: Stopped Marris Virgil in the sixth round.
October 13, 1994: Won a 4 round decision over Reginald Strickland.
--------------------the D I R E C T O R Y----------------------
ZNAA (Assyrian Academic Society-Chicago)
ZNAD (Assyrian Democratic Organization)
ZNAF (Agence France-Presse)
ZNAM (Archeology Magazine)
ZNAP (Associated Press International)
ZNBN (Bet-Nahrain Inc/ KBSV-TV "AssyriaVision")
ZNIF (Iraq Foundation)
ZNDA (Zenda: firstname.lastname@example.org)
ZNIN (Iraqi National Congress)
ZNMN (San Jose Mercury News)
ZNNQ (Nabu Quarterly)
ZNNV (Nineveh Magazine)
ZNQA (Qala Atouraya- Moscow)
ZNSH (Shotapouta Newsletter)
ZNSJ (San Jose Mercury News)
ZNSM (Shufimafi Lebanese News)
ZNTM (Time Magazine)
ZNUP (United Press International)
ZNUS (US News & World Report)
---------W E L C O M E T O Z E N D A--------
Chald-Assyrian Refugee Aid Association
University of California, Los Angeles
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
-------------------S A L U T E----------------------
This Week's Writers & Reporters:
Ashur Simon Malek
Ontario, Canada News Digest
Esha Tamras San Jose, California Surfers Corner
Hannibal Joma San Jose, California News Digest
& We Thank The Following Individuals For Referring Us to New Readers:
Esha Tamras San Jose, California
In Our Upcoming Issues:
October 13 Yusuf
October 20 Babylonian Mathematics
October 27 ZENDA's Readers Survey
November 3 The Urmie Manifesto
November 10 The Assyrian American Association of Chicago
November 17 Of Dolma and Haseeda: Assyrian Chefs & Cookery
Would you like to know more about a particular topic on Assyrian culture, arts, history, language, politics, etc. Drop us a note!
Do you have old books and magazines on topics related
to the Assyrian culture sitting around at home eating dust? How about
sending them to ZENDA so we may share their information with our readers.
ZENDA will cover your cost of postage and handling.
ZENDA is a weekly online magazine distributed on Mondays. Views expressed in ZENDA do not necessarily represent those of the ZENDA editors, or any of our associated staff. This publication reserves the right, at its sole discretion, not to publish comments or articles previously printed in or submitted to other journals. ZENDA also reserves the right to publish and republish your submission in any form or medium. All letters and messages require the name(s) of sender and/or author. All messages published in the SURFS UP! section must bear the name of the author(s). Distribution of material featured in ZENDA is not restricted, but permission from ZENDA is required. This service is meant for the exchange of information, analyses and news. To subscribe, send e-mail to: email@example.com with the message body "subscribe ZENDA Firstname Lastname". To unsubscribe, send e-mail to the above address, with the message body "unsubscribe ZENDA".
P.O. Box 20278 San Jose, California 95160 U.S.A.