Volume V                Issue 29
Tishrin 26, 6749                                                                       October 26, 1999

T H I S  W E E K I N  Z E N D A

The Lighthouse An Open Letter to the Assyrian National Congress
Good Morning Bet-Nahrain KDP Blockades Assyrian Villages
News Digest AANF Urges Lifting of UN Sanctions Against Iraq
"Shiraz 13" Focus Attention on Minority Rights in Iran
Assyrian Wins Horse Race in Italy
Surfs Up "What on earth is going on at Zinda"?
Surfers Corner Syriac Universal Alliance Website
Assyrian Surfing Posts A New Illustrated Book on Tur-Abdin
Assyrian Chamber of Commerce
Assyrians for Christ Ministry
Pump up the Volume Way & Street
Back to the Future 8th Dynasty of Babylon & Isaac the Great
Literatus Epilogue
This Week in History Claudius James Rich
Bravo The Worlds Oldest Recipe
Calendar of Events Halloween Party in Chicago

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



The Assyrian National Congress
P. O. Box 4116
Modesto, CA 95352

Dear ANC members,

Regarding the press release issued by the information office of the Assyrian National Congress (ANC) entitled "A Glance at the Summit of the Assyrian Political Parties," we are grateful for the effort you have invested in informing the Assyrian people of your version of recent events concerning the Assyrian cause. The press release is indeed timely as there is a genuine and growing thirst amongst Assyrians for information about the ongoing proceedings that were covered. All involved Assyrian political organizations ought to be encouraged to similarly publish their own version of the events you have described.

Unfortunately, though, the press release lacked substantive information regarding any issues of real concern to Assyrians that may have been covered in the various deliberations cited. Instead, one is left with the impression that the designation of an Assyrian representative by six Assyrian political parties was the only aim and final endpoint of the three day long summit rather than such a selection simply being the means to the achievement of specific stated goals and principles on behalf of the persecuted Assyrians of Iraq.

Concerned Assyrians need to know whether certain issues were addressed within your own deliberations or in your discussions with the various opposition groups you have mentioned. For instance, why are Assyrians singularly limited to one representative while all of the other groups within the opposition are not? Does the opposition recognize Assyrians as the indigenous people of Iraq rather than as a religious minority? Do the "several Kurdish groups" mentioned still insultingly recognize Assyrians as Christian Kurds? Similarly, do the Arabs in the opposition like those in the Iraqi government still refer to Assyrians as Christian Arabs? With the various groups within the opposition such as the Kurds, Turkomans, and Shiites demanding enclaves and autonomous areas, are Assyrian political parties similarly pressing for an Assyrian autonomous area? Where would the borders of such an Assyrian autonomous area be? Would Assyrian schools, churches, social organizations, and media be allowed to freely operate? What of the over two hundred villages razed by the government, will there be an acknowledgment of that tragedy? Will the Kurds who subsequently resettled those areas and expropriated more that 50 other villages since the Gulf War return those lands or pay just compensation? Will the ongoing ethnic cleansing of Assyrians by both the Iraqi government and certain segments of the opposition be recognized and stopped? Will Assyrians driven from their homes and now residing within Iraq or in the Diaspora have the right of return to one day participate in the rebuilding and development of the country? Will the security of Assyrians, their lands, churches, schools, heritage and culture be guaranteed? Will the plundering of historic ancient Assyrian archeological sites be stopped? Will those who have committed crimes against humanity against the Assyrian people be prosecuted?

Such questions are merely a brief sampling of issues that need to be addressed by all of our political organizations during their own summits and in their discussions with the opposition. However, rather than addressing such issues, the ANC press release instead focused on personal attacks against the leaders of other Assyrian political organizations with whom the ANC disagrees. The deliberate respect for the convention of addressing the opposition figures by their rightful titles while addressing Assyrian leaders with whom the ANC disagrees either without title or by their first names will undoubtedly delight our detractors within both the opposition and the Iraqi government. Much to our dismay, such personal insults can never amount to anything constructive and will only serve to deepen our own internal divisions, again to the unending pleasure of our adversaries. Moreover, such personal attacks and innuendoes alleging a "sinister plan" by Assyrian leaders with whom the ANC disagrees is insulting to the intelligence of the Assyrian people and ultimately detracts from the ANC's own seriousness and credibility.

Finally, the ANC press release is a welcome recounting of the ANC's version of recent events. As concerned Assyrians, however, we are left longing and hoping for much more- more substantive attention to the relevant issues and much, much more civility.


Concerned Assyrians
October 18, 1998

Calo K. Ganjeh

Dr. Audishoo Khoshaba

Tony Khoshaba

Raman Michael

Tyara Songco

William Warda

Tawar M. Youkhana

Tanya Zaya



 (ZNAI:  Chicago)  According to a report by the Assyrian International News Agency, in late August the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) began imposing a food blockade against eight Assyrian villages in the Nahla area of Dohuk region in northern Iraq.  The villages of Merokeh, Belmat, Khalilaneh, Hizaneh, Jouleh, Chameh Chale, Rabatkeh, and Kash Kawa were liberated from the KDP with the assistance of the United Nations and the International Red Cross and some provisions from the UN "oil for food" Resolution 986 program were allowed into these Assyrian villages.  However, the siege continued only a few days later.

In Kash Kawa KDP's Bahdinani "indiscriminately fired automatic weapon rounds upon Assyrian homes."  Although no Assyrians were harmed, some livestock were killed and property was damaged.  Residents of the village were forced out of their homes and two Assyrian men, Samir Daniel and Yonadam Moshe, were severely beaten.

According to KDP's Sami Abdul-Rahman:  "most PKK fighters have long been based in northern Iraq."  The PKK rebels began arriving in northern Iraq from Turkey in August and already the power balance between the PUK and KDP factions has been threatened.  The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) is believed to have close ties with the PKK.  The KDP is, on the other hand, an ally of Turkey and Baghdad and thus considers PKK the enemy.  In the Washington Accord, signed by both KDP and PUK, it was agreed that the PKK would be kept out of northern Iraq.  Despite Assyrian residents and political groups' neutral stand amid the Kurdish-infighting and battles for domination of northern Iraq, the KDP has allegedly accused Assyrians of Nahla region and PUK in Suleimaniya of collaborating with the PKK rebels.  KDP leader Masoud Barzani has asked PUK's Jalal Talabani to declare the PKK a terrorist organization.

In July the Patriotic Revolutionary Organization of BethNahrin (PROB) carried two military attacks against the KDP encampments to avenge the death of the Assyrian woman, Helen A. Sawa.  39 KDP Pishmarge were killed and 20 injured.  At press time the KDP's blockade of the Assyrian villages in the Nahla region continues.



Assyrian American National Federation Press Release

To whom it may Concern:

The Delegates of the Assyrian American National Federation, Inc. during the 66th Annual National Convention from September 2 to September 6, 1999, in Los Angeles, California unanimously passed a motion in support of lifting the UN SANCTIONS in Iraq for the Humanitarian causes.

These sanctions have crippled the innocent people of Iraq and their economy. It is time to lift them so that the remaining population will have the chance to start over and preserve the dignity that is due.

The Assyrian American National Federation, Inc. has 30 Affiliates in the United States of America. It was established in reaction to the 1933 Semmeli Massacre in Iraq to support our people. Since then, we have been in support of Iraqi people and especially the well being of our Assyrian people who have been treated as second-class citizens by the present regime.

We are in support of a truly Democratic System of Government that is represented by the People of Iraq, and created in a form of Limited Republic with a permanent Constitution that guaranties and safeguards the right and security of the Citizens of Iraq regardless of their Ethnicity, Religion, and National Origin.


Sargon Lewie


(ZNRU:  Jerusalem)  The plight of the 13 Iranian-Jews accused of spying for Israel and arrested earlier this year in the city of Shiraz has raised worldwide concern for the Human Rights advocates that believe the Jewish-Iranians may not receive a fair hearing under Iran's system of Islamic justice.  "Iran, taking Islam and its constitution as its starting point, guarantees the freedom of all divine religions, and gives them complete freedom to organize their rites and practice their customs," foreign ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi said in a statement to the press.  "Religious minorities take part in all the country's social activities. The baseless and prejudiced accusation by the United States comes at a time when American society itself is suffering from injustice and inequality," he said.

The U.S. State Department this month published a list of five countries with poor record for religious tolerance -- China, Iran, Iraq, Myanmar and Sudan.  Under a new law, Congress requires the State Department to notify it of countries or groups that are major violators of religious freedom. This is the first time the law has been implemented.  Most of the countries on the list, including Iran, are already under US sanctions or have no ties with Washington.

Tehran's Jewish community council has said most of the accused are well-known figures in Iran's Jewish community and devoted religious teachers.  Last week, South Africa's Mandela met with Iranian President Khatami and was assured that the 13 arrested Jewish-Iranians will receive a fair trial.  "It is quite clear to me that the investigations are being conducted on a fair basis, and that if there is sufficient evidence to put them on trial, they will be defended like in any other country,'' he told a joint news conference.

Iran's Christian community consists of 300,000 Armenians and 25,000 Assyrians (Church of the East, Chaldean Catholics, and Protestants).   It also has 27,000 Jews, and 50,000 Zoroastrians, who follow Iran's pre-Islamic religion.  The Armenians have two members of parliament, while the other three communities have one each.  The Assyrian population of Iran before the Islamic Revolution of 1979 was estimated at 250,000.


(ZNDA:  Chicago)  As reported in The Statesman, a horse named Assyrian has won Italy's Whiplash Cup.  Assyrian was a first-timer for his owner, Deepak Khaitan, said to be savoring "a moment of satisfaction."  During his run of the 1,800 meter race, Assyrian provided some traffic problems for the favored horse, Lana. Assyrian was trained by Bharath Singh and his jockey was C. Alford.

Results of the Whiplash Cup:

1.  Assyrian
2.  Lana
3.  Rheinheart
Won by: 1 1/2, 9 1/2, 5 1/2, (2:02.4), (W) Rs 45, (P) 15, 12, 16, (Q) 31, (T) 239


"Slama wkhubba min Masqo qablun.  Raba mukhnievakh minnokhun, minyana kharaya dmghaltokhun khabbivta iwa bsiqom 27 Ilul. Mudiy quwwimli? Qamu,aha midjid ili final issue? Hamminitun, ina ZENDA ila haw mabbua bush alssaya min mabbue d youdaa khrene qa maryazta dkhurza shabtaya d QALA ATOURAYA dili mttaya min Masqov lhal suriya,Iraq,Yurudnan, Lubnan wshr.

Saluewakh qa manteta ddiyokhun wdyartokhun lkislan bdjalduta/ Makhibbanokhun.  "

Roland Bet-Djammu (Bidjamov)

Mr. Bet-Djammu is the Editor of Qala Atouraya radio program in Moscow, Russia.

"...This is a wonderful publication and I look forward to receiving it every week.  Keep up the good work and please keep publishing!"

S.D. Kumbera

" What on earth is going on at Zinda?  Zenda was easy to read, pages were well constructed and easy to read ... one could download the entire issue at a crack and it had many other interesting pluses and features which seem to have disappeared.

If my comments show a lack of understanding as to your achievements and potential developments, that alone is a problem because a reader, such as myself, should not have to struggle to download the entire issues, much less not be able to see the whole issue.

Please accept my best wishes for your success, ZENDA was an excellent publication and its demise is hard to take.

...Thank you for your work on behalf of all our Assyrian people."

H.B. Quoyoon

To view the entire issue of Zinda Magazine please visit our PAST ISSUES section.  The most recent issue of Zinda Magazine is displayed on several sections, easily accessible from the home page.  To receive your personal copy of Zinda Magazine in text form please contact us at z_info@zindamagazine.com .

"I love the new Zinda magazine.  It's awesome!"

Ramin Daniels

"Assyriska the Dream Team - -  Assyriska played this Sunday against the Swedish Sundsvall the number one of the Swedish league, the results are 1-1. The race to "Allsvenskan"(the highest level) isn’t over yet, because they still have another chance this week.

For me they already accomplished something much more important during these crazy days of Football Fever in Sweden: Unity!

What kind of unity is this? Suryoye-Assyrians, Chaldoye-Assyrians and Nesturnoye Assyrians all were praying for Assyriska: Our Assyrian Dream Team! Before and during the game the unity was a fact, the Assyrians all over the world prayed to God and to all the Saints, from TurAbdin till Hakkari from Gozarto till Ninowa.... they prayed for the victory of our team they forgot the old quarrels between the Suryoye and Othuroye or west Assyrian or east Assyrian.

I remember a song of Juliana Jendo it is going like this `Hlayme du football...hatun u sabraydan ( Our boys of the football team... you are our hope ) I was always against these words, how can we call a football team our hope?! Impossible!! There are serious political parties with activities like hungerstrikes, demonstrations and diplomatical negociations with representatives of various countries... they should be our hope!

But I realized that Assyriska is also our hope! They reached a part of our people that has never been reached by one of the political parties. Yes ‘Hlayme du football hatun u sabraydan. You are truely a dream team.

A short history of Assyriska.

She is born in 1974 after three years of the establishment of the Assyrian Association in Sodertalje (this town was often called New Midyat by us the West-Assyrians, because of the large community from Midyat)where the biggest west Assyrian enclave lies. At the Assyriska website www.assyria.se you can learn more about our football club.

The impression on the youth is very clear from the mail I received from a young lady ,Izla, from Sodertalje " Today(Sunday) Í went to the Assyriska game, It was a very important one today. There were like 7 620 people but that is not including everyone so there must have been about 10 000 people, and I can guarantee to you that ONLY at the most 2 000 were Swedish...and the rest of course Assyrian. It was great to see sooo many Assyrians at the same place cheering. But the result of the game was 1-1 and Assyriska needed to win the game by at least one point to get into a higher level, but they still have one more chance left next week. I don't have a voice left because we were screaming so much."

The next day

" Today the newspapers came out for the football game and Assyriska was on practically EVERY front cover. I am sooo proud. You should have seen the pictures.....we are truly great people. I don't mean to sound too proud but I get this great feeling when I am around many Assyrians....."

Well, let's pray all for Assyriska! :-))

Kind regards,

Michael Gabriel



This is the voice of the Syriac People.

It is with great pleasure that we announce the Syriac Universal Alliance web site:


that will be binding together our people in news, projects, ideas, contacts all over the world.

Read us, write to us, give us information about what is happening in your clubs, churches, leagues
and associations.

Tell your friends to read us.  Spread the word.

We shall always be with you.

Habib Ephrem

Mr. Ephrem was elected as the president of the Syriac Universal Alliance in August 1999 in Sweden.


The Francophone Organization was founded in 1970, in order to bring together the countries where French is either spoken entirely or partially. The 08th summit was held this year in the city of Moncton (New-Brunswick-Canada) from 28/08/99 to 05/09/99.  The participating countries were handed folders which contained general information about each member country, and what was interesting to notice was that when speaking about Lebanon which has been a member in this organization since 1973, it was mentioned that the origins of the name go back to the Assyrian King Tiglat-Pileser, who officially called this land Lebanon.  Well who said that the Assyrians were not present at the Francophone summit?  Hopefully,  soon the Assyrian name would not only represent a proud nation but would be also the voice of the Assyrian cause every where.

Michael C.

Links to Other Assyrian Websites

A New Illustrated Book on Tur-Abdin
Assyrian Chamber of Commerce
Assyrians for Christ Ministry



BC (990)

The Eighth Dynasty of Babylon began.  It consisted of 22 kings who reigned about 258 years.  The founder of this dynasty was Nabu-Mukin-Apli who ruled for 35 years.  At this time the Aramean tribe of Sutu held all the rich lands around Babylon and were sufficiently powerful to prevent the priests from carrying the statue of the god Nabu (Nebu) from his temple across the Euphrates into Babylon during the Kha b'Neesan celebrations.

Babylonian Life and History, Budge

AD (310)

Isaac the Great, the successor of Gregory, gives the Armenian nation its own alphabet to take place of the Syriac (Assyrian) alphabet used by Armenians.  In Isaac's alphabet every sound has its letter and no letter more than one sound.  Gregory is credited with the conversion of the Armenian King to Christianity.

The Assyrians & Their Neighbors, Wigram


October 31, 1820:   Claudius James Rich, British representative of the East India Company, arrives in Mosul to begin excavations in Bet-Nahrain.



Civilizations, however, rarely died without leaving any trace and even we, men of the twentieth century, must acknowledge our debt towards the ancient inhabitants of Mesopotamia.  While we are harnessing the atom and exploring the planets, it is appropriate to remember that we owe the Babylonians the basic principles of our mathematics and astronomy, including our 'positional' numeration and the sexagesimal system by which we still divide our circle and our clocks.  We also owe them- though this is of more doubtful value - the bulk of an astrology which, judging from the number of modern publications devoted to this pseudo-science, has lost nothing of its appeal to the masses.  To this heritage must be added the rudiments of an efficient administration (undoubtedly a creation of the Assyrians), some institutions, such as the coronation of our kings, a number of symbols mainly used in religious art (the crescent, the Maltese cross, the 'tree of life', for instance), a few words that have come to us through the channels of Greek or Arabic - e.g. cane (Akkadian qanu), alcohol (guhlu), dragoman (targumanu), gypsum (gassu), myrrh (marru), saffron (azupiranu), naphta (naptu) in English, or corne (qarnu) and mesquin (mashkenu) in French -, and, last but not the least, the Mesopotamian elements detectable in the Bible.  All this may appear exceedingly light compared with the enormous weight of our Graeco-Roman heritage, but lists of this kind, even when they are exhaustive, fall short of doing full justice to the importance assumed by the Sumero-Akkadian civilization in the history of mankind.

Ancient Iraq:  Epilogue, Georges Roux

Dr Georges Roux was born at Salon-de-Provence in 1914.  The son of an officer in the French Army, at the age of nine he accompanied his parents to the Middle East where he lived for twelve years in Syria and Lebanon before returning to France in 1935.  He graduated in medicine at the University of Paris and practiced in that city for several years; but he had by then become so interested in Ancient Near Eastern History that in his spare time he read Assyriology at the Ecole du Louvre and the Ecole des Hautes Etudes, subsequently pursuing his oriental studies side by side with his medical career..  In 1950 he joined the Iraq Petroleum Company as a medical officer and served for two years in Qatar and seven years in Iraq.  His original research work in southern Mesopotamia and the articles he wrote for specialized periodicals such as Sumer and Venue d'Assyriologies won him admission to the restricted circle of professional archaeologists and Assyriologists.  Dr. Roux passed away in 1999.



In Norris McWhirter's Book of Millennium Records,  published by Virgin Publishing, the following highlight is noted:

* The world's oldest recipe was for a small (still unidentified) bird, called a tarru by the Assyrians in Iraq. It was cooked with garlic, milk and onion and a condiment called samidu.

Book of Millennium Records was widely released on 21 October 1999 and retailed at 20.00 (British Pounds).

Oct 30

Hosted by the Assyrian Athletic Club & Assyrian Media Communication

7:15 PM
White Eagle Banquet 
6839 North Milwaukee Avenue

Entertainers:  Walter Aziz, Amanouel Bet-Younan, & Fatin Shabo
Donation:  $ 15.00

Hanny Baba             (773) 465-9308
Ninif Michael           (847) 486-1845
Samir Younan          (773) 973-0977
Assyrian Social Club (773) 478-8808

Bring Your Customs for Prizes & Fun!

Please come & support our youth programs
Oct 30

A series of illustrated lectures on the history and archaeology of Syria
Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre, SOAS. 
Ticket 20 Pounds British Museum,
Great Russell St., London WC1.

Education Department 0207 7323 8511

Nov 3

An Andrew George Presentation
Illustrated lecture and book signing
6:30 PM
Kufa Gallery, 26 Westbourne Grove W2. 

Enquiries 0207 229 1928 

Nov 5

A Bet-Eil Assyrian Church Presentation
8:00 P.M.
Bethel Church of San Jose
1201 S. Winchester Blvd.

Donation: $2:00

Dec 31

The Assyrian American Association of San Jose proudly presents
"Year 2000 Dinner Dance" with Ogin & Martik
Westin Hotel, Santa Clara

Package includes complete dinner with appetizer and dessert, two complimentary Wine/Beer drinks or four soft drinks, Champagne toast , after mid-night coffee/tea service and the best Assyrian and international dance music
Ticket Information:
   Saturdays from   10:00 AM to  2:00 PM
   Wednesdays from 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM

Tickets will only be sold at the Assyrian American Association of San Jose

20000 Almaden Road, San Jose 
408-927-8100  or  408-927-9100

October 2nd to October 21           member $120   non-member $130
October 23rd to November 21      member $130    non-member $140 
November 24th to December 30   member $140    non-member $150 
          ***********Absolutely no refunds or exchanges***************

Jan 28,

Divine Liturgy in the Eastern Assyrian Rite (Chaldean and Malabarese)
Basilica of St Cecilia in Trastevere


ZINDA Magazine is published every Tuesday.  Views expressed in ZINDA do not necessarily represent those of the ZINDA 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. ZINDA   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 ZINDA is not restricted, but permission from ZINDA 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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