Volume IV, Issue 22

Tdabaakh 31, 6748                   August 31, 1998

T H I S   W E E K   I N   Z E N D A

The Lighthouse Your Rosy Promises
Good Morning Bet-Nahrain  Latest Developments in Kurdish Relations
News Digest Armenian President to Visit Turkey
Surfs Up "Please be advised that the Assyrian language is not extinct."
Surfers Corner Assyrian Human Rights in the Middle East Conference
Issa Benyamin in San Jose
The Forgotten Martyr
Saddam Wins
Calendar of Events St. Mary's Party
Calligraphy Exhibition
Assyrian Surfing Posts Assyrian Culture For Public School Teachers
Khudra Cycles & Observances of the Eastern Assyrian Liturgical Calendars
Pump up the Volume Ring & Orbit
Back to the Future Solar Eclipse of 763 B.C. & the 1896 Killing of Assyrian Priests
Literatus Mar Eshai Shimmun's Historic Visit to Iran
This Week in History Mar Eshai Shimmun's Historic Visit to Iran
Bravo Benita Tamrazi

All blue links throughout this issue are hyperlinks to other sections on this page or featured websites.

ZENDA Says...

In the Assyrian Star magazine's August 1963 issue a simple and honest "Letter to the Editor" appeared, entitled "Federation Doing Nothing."  Twenty five years later, as the Assyrian Americans gather at this weekend's 1998 Assyrian National Convention in Waterbury, Connecticut we continue to ponder the role of the Assyrian American National Federation in the preservation of Assyrian identity in America and the West.  This week's feature article is a re-print of Mr. Yonan Constantine's "Letter to the Editor" which we hope to be read by the presidential candidates ahead of this weekend's AANF elections.

On Sunday, September 6th,  the delegates from 30 Assyrian affiliate organizations of the Assyrian American National Federation will elect the next AANF president, vice-president, secretary, and treasurer.  The key to the outcome of this election is neither the candidates' skill to lead this powerful organization into the next century nor their acumen in adequately representing the Assyrians in the United States. As usual, the bi-annual game of the musical chairs with all its pageantry will be played out during the last meeting day of the AANF and the delegates will let their emotions and unruly acts of favoritism dictate their choices.

In fact the key to winning the AANF elections is the candidate's allegiance to the wishes of the Assyrian Universal Alliance's lobbyists who will be holding secret meetings in one or more of the convention hotel rooms and work assiduously to persuade the undecided delegates to elect the AUA's choice for president.  This year's "lucky" candidate is apparently the incumbent Sargon Lewie.  Mr. Lewie's leadership (or lack thereof) does not jeopardize the warm and fuzzy status held by the AUA devotees in the Federation.  When AUA talks, Sargon listens.   However, another two years of Sargon Lewie cannot possibly be worse than the political recession that could emerge from the leadership of another candidate, Ashur Adad-Sin of Chicago.  Mr. Adad-Sin is a former AANF vice-president who failed to win in the last election due to health reasons.   His lack of popularity in California and in East Coast forces the AUA lobbyists to believe that his presidency may become as surprisingly anti-AUA as Lewie's predecessor, Yatroum Zia.

Interestingly, the most viable candidate in this year's elections is running for a different office.  Carlo Ganjeh from California is expected to run for another two-year term as vice-president which must come as a relief to both Sargon Lewie and Ashur Adad-Sin.  Nevertheless, the AANF elections are as unpredictable as Boris Yeltsin's next choice for prime minister.  Simply said, between Friday and Sunday afternoon of the Convention in Connecticut, anything may happen.  We should hope so.  At least one thing is certain:  there will be plenty of singing and Sheikhani for the rest of us to enjoy.



I have dozens of proofs that the Assyrian American Federation has done nothing towards the improvement of the social and educational conditions of the Assyrians in the Middle East, yet many rosy articles have appeared in the Assyrian Star magazine stating that how much you have done in enhancing the lives and education of the Assyrians in the Middle East.  I challenge them to name the dates and the names of the helps they have granted to the schools or to the individuals here.

I am a 48-year-old man and have nothing against the Assyrian Americans, but I am annoyed to see some articles which are totally untrue.  First of all the Assyrians here are more prosperous, both economically and educationally, so there is no reason for you to help us.  Also there is no reason to pretend that you are helping us.  Yes from what I see you have been helping us only by your rosy publications and bombastic flowery comments and lectures but you should know that your help is only on paper.

We are tired of you.  For one generation you have been in that Great Country of Abraham Lincoln and George Washington, yet you have not learned the principles of those great people of your adopted country.  You are aware that we are now living in a world of progress, in a world of speed, in a world of fighting for truth and for real democracy.  But alas, we, the Assyrians who are living in this part of the world, are deprived of the facilities that you have been enjoying for over a century.  We are not asking you to obtain us an independence nor are we asking you to restore to us the old mighty and glorious Assyrian empire.  What we want from you is a nest somewhere so our coming generations will not know what fear is or what terror is or what it is to be a refugee.

Please don't mistranslate me; I am not dreaming nor am I trying to pose as a fanatic Assyrian nationalist.  As a human I have the right to ask that our coming generations should not be fed on rosy promises; we want education.  We want education right now; our enemy is ignorance.

Yonan Constantine
Beirut, Lebanon
Assyrian Star Magazine, Vol XII,7-8 (August 8, 1963)



(ZNAF:  Ankara)  Massud Barzani, leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) will visit Turkey this week to  talk with Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and other senior officials.  He is later to travel to Washington for talks with US State Department officials.  Barzani's KDP has been allied with the Turkish army since May 1997 in fighting against separatist Turkish Kurds in Iraqi territory.  During a July visit to northern Iraq, a US State Department official invited Barzani and Jalal Talabani, leader of the rival Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), to Washington this year.  The KDP and the PUK have controlled northern Iraq in defiance of Baghdad since the 1991 Gulf war.  But their partnership failed in 1994 due to rows on power-sharing and tax revenue, and more than 4,000 people have been killed in intermittent fighting since then.  Their latest round of fighting erupted in late 1996 when the KDP repulsed a PUK offensive with the help of Turkish troops. A fragile ceasefire has been in place since November that year.

Meanwhile, the Kurdish separatist rebel leader Abdullah Ocalan has declared a ceasefire to take effect this week.   Ocalan's Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) has in the past 14 years used armed-struggle for self-rule in southeast Turkey.  More than 28,000 people have been killed in the conflict between the
Turkish armed forces and the PKK.  The ceasefire does not apply to the group's conflict with the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP).  Ocalan is thought to live in the Syrian capital Damascus, but Syria
denies repeated Turkish charges that it backs the rebels.

In Ankara, Barzani is expected to discuss with Turkish officials further measures against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).  In Washington, US officials are expected to urge Barzani to sign
a peace deal with Talabani and resist efforts by Baghdad to resume its influence in northern Iraq, analysts said.  In other news, KDP and PUK will begin swapping prisoners-of-war and detainees on September 1.  This decision followed peace talks last week between PUK chief Jalal Talabani and a delegation from KDP chief Massud Barzani in Qala Cholan in northeastern Iraq.  The talks included the release of prisoners, the creation of a unified government and a split in customs duties.  The representatives of the Assyrian Democratic Movement from northern Iraq (Zowaa) reportedly completed their initial round of discussions with the State Department officials last week and the two ADM delegates are currently meeting with other Assyrian groups in North America.



(ZNAF:  Yeravan)  Armenia's President Robert Kocharian has accepted an invitation from President Suleyman Demirel to visit Turkey for celebrations in October marking the 75th anniversary of the modern state.  The visit, the first of its kind, would mark a new departure in relations between the two countries which have been embittered by accusations of genocide of the Armenian people under the Ottoman empire between 1915 and 1917.  Turkey will celebrate the founding of the modern state by Kemal Ataturk on October 29, 1923.  The festivities will take place over two days in Ankara and
Istanbul.  Turkey recognized the independence of Armenia, a former Soviet republic in the Caucasus, after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.  But it has never acknowledged as an act of policy the deaths of up to 1.3 million Armenians and Assyrians during forced deportations in World War I.  Turkish authorities admit that a quarter of a million Armenians may have perished, but say that large numbers of Turks also died at the time, and that the Armenians were deported because they collaborated with Russia during World War I.

Kocharian was elected president of Armenia in March on a platform of liberalizing the economy and opening it to foreign investment.  He is a hero of the war for Nagorno Karabakh, an Armenian
enclave which was wrested from neighbouring Azerbaijan after a successful military campaign but at the cost of a crippling economic blockade.  Azerbaijan has said it wants a pipeline to Turkey to carry crude
oil from its newly booming oil fields to western markets.


 "I would like to congratulate you on the fantastic job you are doing in providing this magazine to Assyrians nationwide.  You have truly accomplished a superb magazine.  Congratulations, and thank you for all the information you provide for us."

Melbourne, Australia

"On Saturday, August 15, 1998, The New York Times ran an article 'TOO LATE TO SAY EXTINCT IN UBYKH, EYAK OR ONA.' under the byline Paul Lewis. A few quotes as follows: 'As the legend goes, when the Turkish sultan first heard of Ubykh, the bizarre-sounding language spoken by Muslims who had emigrated from the northwestern Caucasus in the mid 19th century, he dispatched a servant...when the servant returned he described what a language with 83 consonants and one vowel sounded like by taking out a bag of pebbles and pouring them on the sultan's marble floor....many languages have already died out, including those of major civilizations, like Sumerian, Assyrian,
Babylonian and Latin."   I sent Paul Lewis the following letter on Aug.19, 1998:

This letter is written in response to your article in the NYT on Saturday, August 15, 1998 describing 'thousands of languages...endangered.' Please be advised that the Assyrian language is not extinct. Assyrians don't need to tumble a handful of stones to find remnants of the Assyrian civilization. In fact, we have a couple of web sites. ZENDA is a weekly on-line Assyrian magazine (your web address) and there is also ASSYRIA ONLINE(their web address) and in addition a couple of others. Try Nineveh. The Assyrians are having their annual Assyrian-American convention Labor Day Weekend in Waterbury (hotel listed). Perhaps you would like to attend and hear the language of that ancient civilization spoken by very civilized people.

My husband said I should have signed with my "Assyrian" surname but I want to confuse Mr. Paul Lewis."

Irene Kliszus
Belvidere, New Jersey

Three cheers for our reader from New Jersey!  Today, the modern Assyrian language, in all its colorful dialects and vocabulary, is the richest attribute of Assyrian culture and the most significant symbol of Assyrian identity.  To declare a language spoken or understood by well over one and half million people around the world is absurd and intolerable. 

"While we were reading Zenda we came across the name of Eamama, our newspaper.  Eamama newspaper staff would like to thank you for mentioning our newspaper this week and also would like to thank you for referring to this paper in Bravo column. We also publish many of your interesting and
important articles that we see in your paper so that many Assyrian will have access to it. We hope that in the near future we will continue our cooperation for a proud a truly free media for the best of our
people. God bless you."

Eamama's Staff

Thousands of Assyrians, without access to the Internet, continue to receive ZENDA's news and information through the efforts of such periodicals as Eamama in Canada, Nakosha in Australia, and Nsibin in Sweden.  Please support these fine Assyrian magazine with your subscription and encourage them to regularly include an Assyrian language section.  To find an Assyrian newspaper or magazine in your area or country contact ZENDA at zenda@ix.netcom.com.



This program is sponsored by Center for Middle Eastern Studies at North Park University and the Assyrian Academic Society in Chicago.  "Unheard Voices" will be held on Saturday, 3 October 1998 at:
                                                      North Park University
                                                      Anderson Chapel
                                                      3225 West Foster Avenue

Registration Fee: $20 (includes lunch)         Registration Deadline: 09/19/98

Preliminary Schedule
10:00 - 11:00 Registration
11:00 - 11:10 Introduction
11:10 - 11:40 Historical Overview - Mr. Wilfred Alkhas, Publisher of ZENDA Magazine
11:40 - 12:00 International Human Rights Law - Dr. Don Wagner or Prof. Doug Castle
12:00 - 12:30 Human Rights in Iran and Iraq: Ms. Elahi Hicks - Human Rights Watch
12:30 - 12:45 Coffee Break
12:45 - 01:05 Human Rights in Iran: Assyrian Viewpoint - Ms. Adrin Takhsh
01:05 - 01:25 Human Rights in Northern Iraq: Assyrian Viewpoint - Dr. John Michael
01:25 - 01:45 Human Rights in Government Controlled Iraq: Assyrian Viewpoint -Dr. Sargon Dadesho
01:45 - 02:45 Lunch
02:45 - 03:15 Human Rights in Turkey & Syria: Ms. Elise Auerbach - Amnesty International
03:15 - 03:35 Human Rights in Turkey & Syria: Assyrian Viewpoint - Dr. Chris Aktas
03:35 - 03:55 Human Rights in Lebanon: General Overview - Prof. Walid Phares or Dr. Imad Shamoun
03:55 - 04:30 Assyrian Eyewitness Testimonies
04:30 - 05:00 Question & Answer Session
05:00 - 05:15 Break
05:15 - 05:30 Assyrian Human Rights at the Congressional Level - U.S. Congressman Rod Blagojevich
05:30 - 05:50 Assyrian Human Rights and Immigration: Cause and Effect - Mr. Robert Dekelaita
05:50 - 06:10 Assyrian Human Rights at the UN & UNPO - Senator John Nimrod
06:10 - 06:30 Minority Human Rights in the Middle East - Prof. Walid Phares
06:30 - 07:00 Question & Answer Session

For more information contact:
Assyrian Academic Society
P.O. Box 3541
Skokie, IL  60076
Phone: 773-461-6633
E-mail: webmaster@aas.net

Unheard Voices Website:  Click Here
Unheard Voices Registration Form:  Click Here


We thank you all for reading with great interest our fabulous and interesting Assyrian histology magazine, "His Holiness, The Assyrian Martyr, Mar Eshai Shimmun 23rd ", in which we have been unraveling the mystery behind the evil assassination of our last Assyrian King, His Holiness Mar Eshai Shimmun 23rd, and learning the Assyrian history.

The Assyrian history in 20th Century marked a black and shameful century after the Assyrian iron chain unity became rusty.  The links became scattered and humiliated by the successful work of conspirators.

A black century filled with massacres and tragedies of innocent Assyrian people in Assyria, a geographic region we call today Turkey, Iraq and Iran.  The massacres and tragedies were committed by Islamic
Turkish, Islamic Iraqi and Islamic Kurdish criminal forces.  A shameful century brought the death to many great Assyrian Kings, Lords, Leaders and nationalists by work of few "Assyrian conspirators". They are the few conspirators who gained tribal Assyrian leadership, mislead the public, learned H. H. Mar Eshai Shimmun's secret plans for establishing independent Assyria during many negotiations with the Assyrian tribal leaders during World War II, and created new conspirator recruitment to become the poison fruits in the Assyrian hearts, and the destroyers of one of the oldest cultures on earth- the Assyrian.

Assyrians are deeply hurt when they find few conspirators to be Assyrians.  The few conspirators that have been behind the killing of our Assyrian kings, lords, leaders and nationalists are
characterized as the self destructive, criminal minded individuals who sold their freedom and lost from their existence as a civilized people.  Conspirators are the drifters with the wind, the genetic disorder, the
mental disease that attack every healthy Assyrian home and organization.   The Assyrians called those conspirators "Simko one, Simko two.…".

We distributed hundreds of the first issue, for free, around many nations.  However, our financial resource is limited, and we count on your help of few dollars to continue our histology journey through the
20th Century.  To learn about the great sacrifices, and utmost devotion His Holiness Mar Eshai Shimmun, and the whole family of d’Mar Shimmun gave until their last breath, with deep love to God, our Lord Jesus, to Assyrian Church of the East institution, to the Assyrian people, and to the "Assyrian  national cause".

Yet, little historic facts are known especially about His Holiness Mar Eshai Shimmun's 56 years of sacrifices and devotion in protecting Assyrians and in regaining Assyria, and it seem little appreciation has been shown by the Assyrian media and institutions to our Assyrian King, the humble spiritual head of the Assyrian Church of The East and State, the forgotten hero, martyr , beloved Assyrian nationalist His Holiness Mar Eshai Shimmun.

In our opinion, His Holiness’ death was contributed by acts of conspirators who have been increasing in number in North America, and who the conspirators joined various Assyrian churches, clubs and
organizations by means of paid membership or creating their own so called Assyrian organization.  Out of this, they gained executive positions, hiding behind their true motives in order to continue their mission in
inflecting harm to Assyrian people, creating more Simkos, and their ultimate ambition have been in dissolving the Assyrian national rights at what ever cost.

We pray to our almighty God to cure and awaken those few global Assyrian conspirators, in bringing them back home to their Assyrian culture, their roots and to counter evil’s acts that have been bringing dissolution of our Assyrian unity since the Assyrians strived to regain their stolen homeland "Assyria".

Through our histology magazine, "His Holiness, The Assyrian Martyr, Mar Eshai Shimmun 23rd", we intended to bring out the Assyrian history in the 20th Century into print, in its truthful birth.  We welcome you to share with us your hidden treasure of Assyrian history.

Please, write to us and don't delay.  The evolution of truth be recorded and be shown by contributors like you, thank you.

God Bless You,

Committee of Assyrian Voice of Canada
Ontario, Canada

Simko was the Kurdish chief who assassinated an earlier Assyrian Patriarch of the Church of the East, Mar Benyamin Shimmun, in 1918.


The Cultural Committee of the Assyrian American Association of San Jose with great honor announces the arrival of the one and only known Assyrian calligrapher, Mr. Issa Benyamin, to San Jose, California on 6 September 1998.

Mr. Benyamin is known worldwide as the creator and founder of modern Assyrian calligraphy and the art of beautification of Assyrian alphabet.  In dedicating his life to this art he has created a collection of over 260 magnificent masterpieces of Assyrian calligraphies.

The programs that have been outlined and scheduled during his two week stay in San Jose will be of special interest to every Assyrian, and lovers of Syriac script, especially our youth to whom we trust our future.

The schedule is as follow:

Introduction to Correct Assyrian Writing Class:
Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday, September 8, 9, & 11
8:00 - 9:30 PM
BETA (20000 Almaden Road, San Jose)
Pre-requisites: must have basic familiarity with Assyrian alphabet.

Assyrian Art of Calligraphy Exhibition
Monday & Tuesday, September 14 & 15
Starlite Hall (680 Minnesota Avenue, San Jose "Assyrian Church of the East")
6:00-9:00 PM
A collection of over 100 pieces of Assyrian calligraphies, hand printed with ink on leather and paper. Each exquisite piece reflects upon fundamental concepts of our rich culture and demonstrates the mastery of Mr. Benyamin's talent.

Commemoration & Tribute to 55 Years of Dedication to Creating Assyrian Calligraphy & Cultural Activities of Mr. Issa Benyamin
Sunday, September 20
6:30 PM
Starlite Hall (680 Minnesota Avenue, San Jose "Assyrian Church of the East")

Cultural Committee
Assyrian American Association
San Jose, California


The following editorial appeared in last Friday's Washington Post:

Twenty-two days have now passed without United Nations inspections of Saddam Hussein's weapons-making capabilities. That is 22 days during which he could work unimpeded to develop chemical, biological and nuclear arms. This is a dictator who has used chemical weapons, on his own people and on his enemies, and who would use them again. Yet his defiance of the United States and the United Nations goes unchallenged. On Tuesday one of the most tenacious U.N. inspectors, Scott Ritter, resigned rather than participate in what he called ``the illusion of arms control.'' And for most of a year, we now know, the Clinton administration has been working to rein in the inspectors.

The United States, in other words, has abandoned a policy, in place since the end of the Persian Gulf War, of insisting on aggressive arms inspections to deny Iraq's dictator his weapons of mass destruction. The new policy, although the Clinton administration will not openly acknowledge it as such, seems to be one of deterrence and containment.  In other words, as Defense Secretary William Cohen said, ``if he (Saddam Hussein) takes any action to reconstitute his weapons of mass destruction, or disrupts the stability or peace in the region,'' then the United States reserves the right to use force.

The search for a new policy, after last winter's standoff, is understandable. Few analysts inside or outside the government then were sanguine about the ability to achieve U.S. goals through the use of force. Allied support was minimal. But the new policy inevitably raises questions. Without inspections, can the United States know when Saddam Hussein is ``reconstituting his weapons of mass destruction''? The
record is highly discouraging in this regard. Does not Saddam Hussein's victory over the United Nations, and his ability now to rebuild his arsenal, send a message to neighbors and others that in itself ``disrupts the stability'' of the region? And if Saddam Hussein now manages to acquire nuclear weapons, would U.S. threats really serve to deter, for example, another invasion of Kuwait? Deterrence depends on

President Clinton himself provided answers to these questions last February. ``What if he fails to comply and we fail to act, or we take some ambiguous third route, which gives him yet more opportunities to
develop this program of weapons of mass destruction? ... Well, he will conclude that the international community has lost its will. He will then conclude that he can go right on and do more to rebuild an arsenal of devastating destruction. And some day, some way, I guarantee you he'll use the arsenal.''

Back those six long months ago, the Clinton administration insisted that Saddam Hussein could not wiggle out of an agreement that U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan personally negotiated. This time the
international community would certainly rise up in indignation if he tried. Yet today, the U.S. government is using international apathy as an excuse to do nothing, and Annan seems astonishingly sanguine about
Saddam Hussein's assault on his own authority.

What might the consequences be, in Iraq and around the world, of such appeasement? Back in February, Clinton had an answer to that question, too. ``In this century, we learned through harsh experience that the only answer to aggression and illegal behavior is firmness, determination and, when necessary, action. ...If we fail to respond today, Saddam, and all those who would follow in his footsteps, will be
emboldened tomorrow by the knowledge that they can act with impunity, even in the face of a clear message from the United Nations Security Council, and clear evidence of a weapons of mass destruction program.''


Aug 31

An Anhinga Productions by Fernando Arrabal 
Theatre of Yugen
2840 Mariposa Street 
Phone: (415)621-0507 
Tickets $10.50-$12.50 ($8.50 students & seniors) 
Call (415)621-7978 for advance tickets and information 

Theatre Of Yugen was founded in 1978 by Artistic Director Yuriko Doi to bring traditional Japanese aesthetics to American audiences. It is one of the few companies in the United States working with the 600 year old Japanese theater forms of Noh and Kyogen.
Web Page: Click Here

Sep 2-7

Sponsored by the Assyrian American National Federation 
3580 East Main Street 
(203) 573-1000;  (800) 541-0469 for Reservations- Outside CT 
Fax: (203) 573-1349

Sep 11-24

For more information see ZENDA:  JUNE 8: SURFERS CORNER

Sep 14-15
by Issa Benyamin

Starlite Hall (680 Minnesota Avenue, San Jose "Assyrian Church of the East")
6:00-9:00 PM
A collection of over 100 pieces of Assyrian calligraphies, hand printed with ink on leather and paper. Each exquisite piece reflects upon fundamental concepts of our rich culture and demonstrates the mastery of Mr. Benyamin's talent.

Sep 18

The Anniversary Party
The Fairmont Hotel (downtown San Jose)
Entertainer:  Juliana Jindo & a surprise
No Children under 12
Donation:  $25 in advance, $30 at the door
For Tickets Please Contacts:
  Church Office:         408-378-6212
  Ramil Eisho:            650-482-3913
  Khalid Elias:            408-927-5959
  David Gewargis:      408-617-1467


Hurrian settlements in Bet-Nahrain during mid-2nd millennium B.C.   Hurrians settled between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers during the mid-second millennium B.C.  The Pharaohs of Egypt sought marriage alliances with them and the Hittites feared them.  More than 100 objects excavated by Harvard between 1927 & 1931

Harvard University's Semitic Museum
-cuneiform tablets
-beaded jewelry
-lion statuettes from the temple of Ishtar at Nuzi

Links to Other Assyrian Websites

An Introduction to Modern Assyrian Culture
For Public School Teachers

 Moon's Orbit:  khoodra 'd saara
Wedding Ring:  halaqta d'gwara

Cycles & Observances of the Eastern Assyrian Liturgical Calendars

 Transfiguration of the Lord (Geelyaneh d'Maran)
 All Churches
 Assumption of Mary (Shoonaya d'Mart Maryam)
 All Churches
 Shmuni and Her Sons
 Rabban Yosep Busnaya (ACE), Mar Shimon Bar Sabbae

AAC = Ancient Assyrian Church of the East
ACE = Assyrian Church of the East

CCC = Chaldean Catholic Church
MCC= Maronite Catholic Church
MOC = Malankara Orthodox Church
SKC = Syrian Knanaya Church
SOC = Syrian Orthodox Church


BC (763)

A solar eclipse is referred to in the Eponym List in the Assyrian annals.  Based on this observation Assyrian history can be firmly dated with a margin of error no greater than a year as far back as 911 B.C.

Centuries of Darkness, James

AD (June 1896)

Mar Gabriel, Bishop of Urmiah, Qasha Dinkha, the Archdeacon of the Matran, two priests, three deacons, and seven other Assyrians are attacked and killed by Kurds in the mountains near the Turkish border.

The Foreign Doctor, Speer



The following article, dated 13 August 1968, appeared in the Iranian daily paper, Etella-at, and was translated from Farsi to English.

The religious leader of the Assyrian Church of the East arrived here in Tehran this morning at 8:30 AM August 13th, 1968.  He was received tumultuously by a large crowd of resident Assyrians.  His Excellency Mr. Jahanbani and Dr. Wilson Bet-Mansour were also at the airport as State Representatives to welcome the Patriarch to the capital.  His Holiness indicated his gratitude tot he populace at the field by waving his hand, and left the Mehrabad Airfield with a  heavy motorcade escort.  His Holiness will stay in Iran for about three weeks, and an audience with His Imperial Majesty, Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, Arya Mehr is contemplated.

Mar Eshai Shimmun is the 119th of the Assyrian Patriarchs.  He was born in February 1908 in Qochanis, a district in northern Bet-Nahrain, former Fatherland of the Assyrians.  From the 14th Century on the Patriarchate has descended down the line uninterrupted to the present day.  At the tender age of 13, Mar Eshai Shimmun was ordained to this holy office.  He went to England to pursue his higher education, and it was not until 1927 that he graduated from Cambridge University in Theology and State Administration.

His Holiness resided in Mosul, Iraq until 1933 when he chose to conduct his Patriarchal duties and responsibilities from the Mediterranean Island of Cyprus and go to England for some time, whence he finally decided to transfer to the United States of America for good.  The Patriarch is an eloquent speaker and an accomplished writer.  He has authored several books in the Assyrian language and has translated many ancient religious books from Aramaic or Assyrian into English.  His lectures on the history of the religions of the East in world universities have earned him universal fame.

In a speech at the Iranian Parliament (Majlis), Dr. Wilson Bet-Mansour remarked emphatically, "Nowhere on earth and never in history have the Assyrians enjoyed so much comfort, freedom and safety as they do today in Iran, thanks to the wise and benevolent leadership of H.I.M. the Shahanshah, Arya Mehr.  The Assyrians everywhere in the world are well aware of these facts, and His Holiness has testified to these blessings everywhere he has gone.  And that is precisely why the Assyrians all over the world respect and admire H.I.M. and feel so close at heart to Iran and to its noble people."

It is estimated that the followers of this ancient Church number well-nigh to a million and a half.

Mar Shimmun, despite the report above, was exiled from Bet-Nahain to Cyprus by the government of Iraq.  In Tehran, he later had an audience with the late-Shah of Iran, accompanied by Dr. Bet-Mansour and bishop Mar Dinkha, the current Patriarch of the Church of the East.


May 2, 1979:  The first Assyrian radio broadcast antenna with a 30 kilowatt power begins operation in Ceres/Modesto area in California.  This early venture has now grown into a combined radio and television operation broadcasting daily programs in Assyrian language via Bet-Nahrain Inc.'s KBES radio and AssyriaVision television programs.



Benita Tamrazi, a graduating senior from Leland High School in San Jose, California, is the winner of the first San Jose State University's Davidson President's Scholar Award.  She plans to pursue a career in medicine.  While in high school, Tamrazi maintained a 3.91 GPA. She and her family came to the U.S. from Iran. "I am honored to receive the President's Scholar Award," Tamrazi said.  "I know that my years at SJSU will open many doors which I would not have an opportunity to enter without this scholarship."

Established by SJSU President Robert L. Caret, the scholarship provides payment for tuition and fees, room, board, and books.  The scholarship's funding was made possible by a generous contribution received from the estate of Laurie and Betty Davidson.

College of Science
San Jose State University
"The Scientist" Magazine, Vol 4, #4


 Hewitt Associates LLC

This Week's Contributors:
in alphabetical order

Albert Gabrial Turlock, California Assyrian Surfing Posts
Ashour Simon Malek Toronto, Canada Surfers Corner
Raman Michael Chicago, Illinois Surfers Corner

Thank You For Referring A Friend to ZENDA:

Nadia Joseph Chicago, Illinois

ZENDA Magazine is published every Monday. 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   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 be in 500 words or less and 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: zenda@ix.netcom.com.

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The Directory of ZENDA News Sources
ZNAA (Assyrian Academic Society-Chicago)
ZNAD (Assyrian Democratic Organization)
ZNAF (Agence France-Presse)
ZNAH (Al-Ahram Newspaper, London)
ZNAL (Al-Hayat, London)
ZNAI  (Assyrian International News Agency)
ZNAK (American Kurdish
ZNAM (Archeology Magazine)
ZNAP (Associated Press International)
ZNBN (Bet-Nahrain Inc/ KBSV-TV "AssyriaVision")
ZNCN (ClariNews)
ZNIF (Iraq Foundation)
ZNDA (Zenda: zenda@ix.netcom.com)
ZNIN (Iraqi National Congress)
ZNLT (Los Angeles Times)
ZNMN (San Jose Mercury News)
ZNMW (Mideast Newswire)
ZNNQ (Nabu Quarterly)
ZNNV (Nineveh Magazine)
ZNNY:  New York Times
ZNQA (Qala Atouraya- Moscow)
ZNRU (Reuters)
ZNSH (Shotapouta Newsletter)
ZNSJ (San Jose Mercury News)
ZNSM (Shufimafi Lebanese News)
ZNSO (Syrian Orthodox News "SOCNews")
ZNTM (Time Magazine)
ZNUP (United Press International)
ZNUS (US News & World Report)