LAMASU'S FOR THE THIRD PHASE
Last week we discussed the imminent need for the edification of a framework towards a stable economic and political infrastucture. This, we said, was the Third Phase of our existence following the traumatic experiences of the last century (i.e. Seyfo and the Mass Immigrations since 1970's).
We also agreed that at this juncture we ought to be prepared to adeptly sort out our priorities and implement a national plan - a long-term financial and political undertaking.
It is said that the Lamasus (Assyrian winged-bulls) were installed at the entrance to the Assyrian palaces to protect the royal family and the people against evil spirits. The head of the man signified wisdom, the body of the bull - strength, and the wings of the eagle- speed. Even in business today, it is universally accepted that the three important prelates to success are knowledge (information), power (capitalization), and speed (access). Any company possessing the Lamasus in their execution cadre having the skills to maneuver the three attributes is expected to lock in a competitive advantage. This is also true with nation-states and people in general.
Bottom-line: We barely possess any one of the above.
For so long we have numbed ourselves with the revelries of the glorious past. When our "cultural antidepressants" are taken away from us, we resort to the stories of atrocities, genocides and massacres.
Truth is that to re-build, after such a long-stretch of living as "second-class everything", requires a very complicated solution. To date we have been consuming our precious time with the causes of our gloomy current conditions. Instead let us take this challenge head-on and enter the Third Phase.
A simple question: Had we millions of dollars and an opportunity to "re-build" ourselves, where would we start?
A better question: Who among us is qualified in terms of financial and political wisdom (modern-day Lamasus) to offer a long-term plan of action which would include our people in the Middle East and the Diaspora?
The answer is simple: we may not have one!
Where do we begin then?
Two options: we either hire our modern-day Lamasus or we breed them. We know they're out there. They're your children, long-lost relatives, and friends from days-gone-by. And they're working for the "competition" (evil spirits). Unless we have a concrete plan of action and a vision, we may never be able to recruit these wise men and women.
In the meantime we must begin producing our leaders of tomorrow by promoting higher education through financing the education of our children, building schools, publishing text books and research material, sponsoring educational programs, and funding university trusts and lectureships.
Let's review: a long-term strategy requires able commanders, consultants, and implementers. All this, in turn, requires money and plenty of it too.
As was explained last week, one-time contributions and "generous" donations do not exist in the realm of the Third Phase. The education of thousands of Assyrian high school and university students in the Middle East and over fifty other countries around the world requires a more complex arrangement of monetary supply and disbursement of funds. But more on that next week.
With the right "commanders" in place, the soldiers of the Third
Phase can quickly begin the implementation of a long-term national plan.
Unless current leadership or guardians of the status quo offer a skill
to enhance the competitive advantage of the commanders of the Third Phase,
they cannot not be considered for the execution of the plan. Hence, our
ineffective "Federations", "Alliances", and "Congresses"
will continue their unsuccessful ventures until they too, not withstanding
the competitive edge of the Third Phase, self-destruct.
GARDENS OF BABYLON DIDN'T HANG!
The portal also scales down some of the claims of the historians regarding the city in the lower Euphrates River area, what is now central Iraq.
Herodotus claimed that the outer walls of the city of Babylon (built during Nebuchadnezzar's 43-year reign) were 90.16km in length, 73.15m thick and 292.59m high, according to the portal.
The walls were "wide enough to allow a four-horse chariot to turn" while the "inner walls were not so thick as the first, but hardly less strong", said the historian.
"Inside the walls were fortresses and temples containing immense statues of solid gold. Rising above the city was the famous Tower of Babel, a temple to the god Marduk, that seemed to reach to the heavens."
The site goes on to say that "while archaeological examination has disputed some of Herodotus' claims (the outer walls seem to be only 16.1km long and not nearly as high) his narrative does give us a sense of how awesome the features of the city appeared to those that visited it".
But strangely, "one of the city's most spectacular sites is not even mentioned by Herodotus: The Hanging Gardens of Babylon, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World".
The UnMuseum site says that apparently "the gardens were built to cheer up Nebuchadnezzar's homesick wife, Amyitis".
Amyitis, says the portal, was the daughter of the king of the Medes and was married to Nebuchadnezzar to create an alliance between the nations.
"The land she (Amyitis) came from, though, was green, rugged and mountainous, and she found the flat, sun-baked terrain of Mesopotamia depressing."
The portal says "the king decided to recreate his homeland by building an artificial mountain with rooftop gardens".
But if you vision the Hanging Gardens as being suspended, well that idea is incorrect it seems. The gardens "did not really hang in the sense of being suspended from cables or ropes".
"The name comes from an inexact translation of the Greek word kremastos or the Latin word pensilis, which mean not just 'hanging', but 'overhanging' as in the case of a terrace or balcony."
Another Greek, the geographer Strabo, described the gardens in first century BC as consisting "of vaulted terraces raised one above another, and resting upon cube-shaped pillars".
"These are hollow and filled with earth to allow trees of the largest size to be planted. The pillars, the vaults, and terraces are constructed of baked brick and asphalt," according to Strabo.
"The ascent to the highest story is by stairs, and at their side are water engines, by means of which persons, appointed expressly for the purpose, are continually employed in raising water from the Euphrates into the garden."
What might seem peculiar to us is the fact that to the people at the time "the most amazing part of the garden" was the ferrying of water supposedly by a chain pump as "Babylon rarely received rain and for the garden to survive it would have had to been irrigated by water from the nearby Euphrates River".
But what is a chain pump?
The site explains it as having "two large wheels, one above the other, connected by a chain".
"On the chain are buckets. Below the bottom wheel is a pool with the water source. As the wheel is turned, the buckets dip into the pool and pick up water. The chain then lifts them to the upper wheel, where the buckets are tipped and dumped into an upper pool. The chain then carries the empty ones back down to be refilled."
More details of the irrigation system are also provided.
"The pool at the top of the gardens could be released by gates into channels which acted as artificial streams to water the gardens. The pump wheel below was attached to a shaft and a handle."
And what is the handle for?
Well, slaves turned the handle, "to provide the power to run the contraption".
And what were the problems involved in ensuring the gardens had adequate moisture?
The portal says, "construction of the garden wasn't only complicated by getting the water up to the top" but also in preventing the liquid from ruining the foundation once it was released.
"Since stone was difficult to get on the Mesopotamian plain, most of the architecture in Babel utilised bricks."
However, as the "bricks were composed of clay mixed with chopped straw and baked in the sun" which were "then joined with bitumen (a slimy substance, which acted as a mortar" the bricks "quickly dissolved when soaked with water".
"For most buildings... this wasn't a problem because rain was so rare. However, the gardens were continually exposed to irrigation and the foundation had to be protected."
The UnMuseum site also gives several other details of the gardens, but a major detraction is that the site is visually "spartan". The sole visual is a 3D image, which although nice makes one wish there were others that one could feast one's eyes upon.
TWO CIVILIZATIONS ENTWINED IN HISTORY
Last weekend, before the bombing began, while the papers across Europe were still debating the resurgent argument about the clash of civilisations, I was wandering around Istanbul.
Passing along the Golden Horn in bright autumnal sunlight, I came across
a magnificent tomb complex. A shady garden gave on to the courtyard of
a mosque, behind which stood an octagonal tower, the mausoleum for the
Ottoman admiral Kilic Ali Pasha. The Pasha, it turned out, had fought
the combined navies of the West at the Battle of Lepanto in 1571 and was
one of the few Ottoman commanders to distinguish himself. After this he
was made Kaptan Pasha, or Lord High Admiral, and two years later helped
to seize Cyprus from the Venetians.
The links that bind Christianity and Islam are so deep and complex that the occasional confrontations should perhaps more properly be looked upon as a civil war between two different streams of the same tradition than any essential clash of civilisations. When the early Byzantines were first confronted by the Prophet's armies, they assumed that Islam was merely a variant form of Christianity, and in some ways they were not so far wrong; Islam, of course, accepts much of the Old and New Testaments, obeys the Mosaic laws about circumcision and ablutions and venerates both Jesus and the ancient Jewish prophets.
Indeed, the greatest theologian of the early church, St John of Damascus (d. 749), was convinced that Islam was at root not a new religion, but a variation on a Judaeo-Christian form. This perception is particularly remarkable as St John had grown up as a young Arab aristocrat in the Ummayad Arab court of Damascus - the hub of the young Islamic world - where his Orthodox Christian father was the Chancellor. St John himself was an intimate boyhood friend of the future Caliph al-Yazid, and the two boys' drinking bouts in the streets of Damascus were the subject of much gossip in the capital.
Later, in his old age, St John took the habit at the desert monastery of Mar Saba where he began work on his great masterpiece, The Fount of Knowledge. The book contains an extremely precise critique of Islam, the first ever written by a Christian, which, intriguingly, John regarded as a form of Christianity and closely related to the heterodox Christian doctrine of Arianism. (After all, this doctrine, like Islam, took as its starting point a similar position - that God could not become fully human without somehow compromising his divinity.)
This was a kinship that both the Muslims and the Christians were aware of. In 649 the Nestorian Christian Patriarch wrote: "These Arabs fight not against our Christian religion; nay, rather they defend our faith, they revere our priests and saints, and they make gifts to our churches and monasteries." This tradition continued and led to many surprising anomalies; Saladin's private secretary and the head of his war office were both Coptic Christians, as were the Egyptian commanders who defeated the Seventh Crusade in 1250.
Throughout the Middle Ages there were few, if any, conversions by the Sword, a myth much propagated in anti-Islamic literature and recently expounded on at length by Paul Johnson in an incredibly ignorant article in that flag-waver of the new bigoted Islamaphobia, The Spectator.
The longer you spend in the Christian communities of the Middle East, the more you become aware of the extent to which eastern Christian practice formed the template for the basic conventions of Islam: the Muslim form of prayer with its bowings and prostrations appears to derive from the older Syrian Orthodox tradition still practised in pewless churches across the Levant; the architecture of the earliest minarets, square rather than round, derive from the church towers of Byzantine Syria; and Ramadan, at first sight one of the most distinctive Islamic practices, is nothing more than an Islamicisation of Lent, which in eastern Christian churches still involves a gruelling all-day fast.
Certainly, if a monk from sixth-century Byzantium were to come back today, he would find much more that was familiar in the practices and beliefs of a modern Muslim Sufi than in, say, a contemporary American evangelical. Yet this simple truth has been lost by our tendency to think of Christianity as thoroughly Western, rather than the Oriental faith it actually is. We also forget that Islam inherited the same Greek and Roman foundations as our own culture; indeed the Muslims preserved the classics for us, before passing them back via the universities of Islamic Spain and Sicily.
The recent tendency to demonise Islam - and we have seen a great deal of that recently, especially from The Telegraph and The Times - has led to an atmosphere where few in either camp are aware of, or indeed wish to be aware of, the kinship of Christianity and Islam. Yet this essential kinship is something Muslim writers have been aware of for centuries. Jalal-ud Din Rumi, the 13th-century Sufi (d.1273), was perhaps the greatest of all the mystical writers of Islam, and lived in Konya, in Anatolia, at a time when its population was almost equally divided between Muslims, Christians and Jews.
When he was asked about the relationship between these three apparently incompatible religions, he told a story about a city of the blind:
One day the news came that an elephant was passing outside the city, so the townsfolk decided to send a delegation to report back as to what an elephant was. Three men left and stumbled forwards until they found the beast. They felt the animal and headed back to report. The first man said: "An elephant is like a vast snake!" The second man was indignant at hearing this: "What nonsense!" he said. "I felt the elephant and what it most resembles is a huge pillar." The third man shook his head and said: "Both these men are liars! I felt the elephant and it resembles a broad, flat fan." All three men stuck by their stories and for the rest of their lives refused to speak to each other. Each professed that they and only they knew the truth.
Of course all three blind men had a measure of insight. The first felt the trunk of the elephant, the second the leg, the third the ear, but not one had begun to grasp the totality or the greatness of the beast. If only they had listened to one another, they might have grasped the true nature of the beast. But they were too proud and preferred to keep to their own half-truths.
"So it is with us," said Jalal-ud Din. "We see the Almighty one way, the Jews have a slightly different conception and the Christians a third. To us, all our different visions are irreconcilable. But what we forget is that before God we are like blind men stumbling around in total darkness..."
KDP SHUTS DOWN TURKMEN STUDENT ORGANIZATION
(ZNDA: Arbil) According to Radio Free Europe reports from Prague on 1 October Kurdistan Democratic Party of Massoud Barazani's security forces closed down the offices of the newly established Turkmen Student Organization, according. Based on KurdishMedia reports, TSO was not licensed by the Kurdish Regional Government. Soon after, the Turkoman political leaders and student groups called this action "an attack on the freedom of Turkeman political parties."
Two days after the closing of the TSO offices in Arbil, the Al-Iraq
newspaper in Baghdad claimed that a Turkmen
A delegation of the Assyrian Democratic Movement reportedly greeted the Kurdish officials during a meeting with the leadership of the Turkoman Front. Details of this meeting were not expressed at press time.
RFE Report by David Nissman
ATTACK ON SYRIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH IN AUSTRALIA
Courtesy of Sydney Morning Herald (Oct 11), Story by Stephen Gibbs
(ZNDA: Sydney) The police commissioner in Sydney-Australia, Peter Ryan, describes the increased vandalism at Sydney's religious buildings as outrageous.
Slogans such as "Osama bin Laden is Great", "Muslims Rule" and "Kill Jews and Christians" were spray-painted on the walls of the Syrian Orthodox Church at Lidcombe, which is still under construction.
"We're monitoring this literally hourly and daily," Mr. Ryan told Radio 2UE.
"And we've asked all our patrols, all over the city, to be very, very conscious and to patrol in the vicinity of mosques, churches and institutions, and buildings owned by the allied coalition partners, America, Israel, and also businesses and institutions owned by Islamic groups."
BEITASHOUR VOTED OUT OF AUOC VP POSITION
(ZNDA: Modesto) Mr. Ninous Beitashour who held the position of the Vice President in the Assyrian United Organizations of California (AUOC) and a high-ranking member of the Assyrian Universal Alliance, was forced to vacate his position during a meeting of this organization in California last weekend.
In a phone interview with Zinda Magazine Mr. Beitashour explained that "the Kangaroo Trail" was more of a personal vendetta than a judicious act.
The executive members of the AUOC, an umbrella organization for the Assyrian associations in California and the sponsor of the annual State Convention in May, decided last week that Mr. Beitashour had misconduct himself at the DoubleTree Hotel by not properly registering as a guest of the Assyrian National Convention. Mr. Beitashour, apparently challenging the registration process, had entered the hotel area without a proper identification card carried by all registrants. He was soon discovered by the security officers and reported to Ms. Jacklin Bejan- chairwoman of the 2001 National Convention.
Mr. Beitashour explains that the registration process was not meant to be a source of income at the convention. It was initially planned out for the State Convention in Los Angeles (May 2001). "But some officers including Jacklin Bejan opposed the registration process which I had proposed then," says Mr. Beitashour. "The whole thing was supposed to be used to gather information and be included in the Federation's data bank. Mr. Bejan opposed this proposal so it was not implemented at the State Convention. Then a couple of months later she proposed it for her own convention in San Jose - this time with a fee attached to it."
Ms. Bejan tells Zinda Magazine that "the registration process was a proposal that was brought on the floor of the Assyrian American National Federation's National Executive Committee meeting during the 2000 National convention in Chicago by Mr. Mark Thomas - the AANF legal advisor. It passed with majority votes and it became a mandate that needed to be implemented during the next convention which was in San Jose."
Mr. Beitashour believes that any Assyrian should be allowed to attend the conventions without a formal fee-based registration process.
Mr. Bejan then explains that: "During the last AUOC meeting right before the Long Beach State convention, Mr. Beitashour proposed a similar process which he came up with based on what I had proposed and discussed. What I opposed was the thoughtless procedures, the lack of control and the eminent disaster that they failed to foresee. I have copies of all minutes and all e-mails exchanged on this issue, which I will be happy to produce."
Since Mr. Betashour is an officer of the Assyrian Association of San Francisco he will remain in the AUOC as its voting member.
The fate of the information gathered during the registration process last September and the continuation of this practice for the future conventions remains to be seen. If the comments heard during the San Jose convention or at the NEC meeting floor are any indication, the pre-Convention registration is here to stay.
NAKOSHA AND TREE OF LIFE MERGER, ZINDA APPLAUDS UNION
(ZNDA- Australia) The Assyrian Aid Society-Australia (AAS-Au) and the monthly Assyrian-Australian publication Nakosha Magazine (www.nakosha.org) have decided to merge their publications.
The 'Tree of Life' newsletter, which is currently published by the AAS-Au is distributed to over 200 AAS members throughout Australia, with its primary purpose being to provide feedback regarding projects that were being conducted by the AAS-Au branch in Northern Iraq, as well as attracting new members.
During a private meeting held in the AAS-Au's bookshop in Sydney, on Sunday 30th September, 2001, the committee members of both Nakosha Magazine and the AAS-Au, unanimously agreed to the merger.
Utilising the distribution capabilities of Nakosha Magazine, it is hoped that the new 'Tree of Life' section, which will also provide all readers with a Direct Debit Form (DDF) along with a free stamped and AAS-Au-addressed-envelope, will enable the AAS-Au to reach the majority of the Assyrian community, currently living throughout Australia, in a more efficient manner.
Nakosha's targeted distribution of 1,500 hard copies and 1,000 soft copies per month, by the end of 2001, mean that the merger will provide the AAS-Au with a strong established distribution network from which to reach prospective new members on a monthly basis.
Meanwhile Nakosha magazine also benefits from the merger. "We are finally able to provide a link between our homeland and our people living in the West", commented Fraydon Heskel, a reporter for Nakosha Magazine.
When asked to comment on the merger, Nakosha magazine's editor, Sennacherib Daniel shared his thoughts with us: "The AAS holds the same aims and beliefs as does Nakosha magazine, in that it is non-political, non-profit and non-religious. It was inevitable that we would join with them."
It is hoped that this merger will set an example for other Assyrian publications and Assyrian charities, throughout the world, in joining together and becoming more efficient and effective.
Zinda Magazine, the major financial contributor of Nakosha Magazine, has also agreed to increase its monetary support to sustain the additional costs as a result of this merger. "Zinda Magazine funds Nakosha because it is a magazine with high visual appeal, youthful energy and maturity. Its recent merger with Tree of Life in Australia will save money that can otherwise be used in Bet-Nahrain for other worthy causes. I hope other AAS chapters will soon consider utilizing the distribution powers of Nakosha and Zinda Magazine," said Wilfred Alkhas, editor of Zinda Magazine.
The merger is due to take place with Nakosha's upcoming November issue, and with an increase in quality, frequency and distribution capabilities, the merger will place the AAS-Au in a strong position to raise urgently needed funds in order to assist the Assyrian population currently living in Northern Iraq this coming winter.
ASSYRIAN MAN KILLS EX-GIRLFRIEND IN SYDNEY, BLAMES MOSLEMS
Courtesy of Sydney Morning Herald (Sept 28), article by Peter Gregory
(ZNDA: Sydney) Sargon Younan, an Assyrian from Sydney-Australia, who
last year beat his former girlfriend to death and left a note beside her
falsely blaming Muslims for the attack was jailed on September 28 for
19 years. He will serve a minimum term of 16 years. Justice Philip Cummins
in the Supreme Court said Sargon Younan, then 26, left the note beside
18-year-old Victoria Skidmore as she lay dying in the Doncaster Shopping
Town car park. On August 22 last year, Ms Skidmore was betrayed by an
old school friend, Mirielle Talj, now 20, who lured her to the car park
with the promise of sharing some heroin. Younan had earlier discussed
the beating with Talj after Ms Skidmore ended her relationship with him.
Younan's brother Michael, 19, was also present during the attack. Justice
Cummins said the Younans followed Talj and Ms Skidmore to the car park
in a separate vehicle.
To avoid detection, he left the note, which said: "This is payback for insulting the Muslim religion and holy Koran. Allah Akbar. Also for the drug money you owed us."
Ms Skidmore was hit at least 24 times and died later in hospital from head injuries.
The judge said Michael Younan and Talj knew Ms Skidmore was to be assaulted, but did not know that Sargon Younan intended to kill her.
But Talj, who told police the truth about the attack, later said Ms Skidmore was a bitch who got what she deserved.
The judge said Ms Skidmore, who met Sargon Younan in April, ended the relationship in August because of Younan's jealousy. He killed her three weeks later after sending her a mobile phone text message saying: "If I can't have you, no one will."
"She made mistakes, as we all do - but tragically she made one fatal mistake, she chose the wrong boyfriend," Justice Cummins said.
He told Sargon Younan: "You killed her because she exercised her right to say no. Men who kill women for exercising their rights will be met with the full force of the law."
The judge fixed a 16-year minimum jail term for Sargon Younan, of Edington Way, Craigieburn, who pleaded guilty to murdering Ms Skidmore. Michael Younan, of the same address, and Talj, of Fyfe Drive, Lower Templestowe, each pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
Michael Younan was jailed for five years, with a three-year minimum. Talj was jailed for seven years, with a five-year minimum.
FOURTH ANNUAL ASSYRIAN FOOD FESTIVAL HELD IN CERES
of Modesto Bee (Sept 26), Report by Kerry McCray
Not everyone plans far enough ahead to soak rice overnight.
And the thought of chopping two or three bunches of fresh herbs -- then rolling them up along with meat in cabbage leaves -- can deter even the most dedicated home cooks.
No, preparing Assyrian food isn't easy. But buying it at this weekend's Assyrian Food Festival is.
Treats that take members of the Assyrian Cultural Center hours to prepare were available at the fourth annual festival Saturday and Sunday, September 29 and 30 in Ceres (between Modesto and Turlock).
The ticket price was $8 which included singing, dancing and a dinner of chicken kebab with rice and a rich sauce of onions, tomatoes and green beans flavored with traditional spices.
The rice alone was worth the price.
First, basmati or another long-grain rice is washed and soaked in saltwater for several hours, often overnight. Then, it's rinsed and boiled until the inside of the grains are just cooked. Finally, it's rinsed again, then steamed over low heat or baked in the oven with lots of butter or oil.
The result: perfectly separated grains with a rich, buttery flavor.
"Assyrian food is flavorful," said Janet Shummon, president of the Beth-Nahrain Cultural Center. "But it's very time-consuming to make."
Other Assyrian treats were sold. Kalecheh, pockets of dough filled with walnuts and dates, were available. So were dolma, cooked cabbage or grape leaves filled with a savory mixture of parsley, dill, green onions, rice and meat.
Food that takes extra-long to prepare could be ordered in advance. Dolma made with the cooked, peeled layers of onions is a popular choice.
Shummon and the rest of the cultural center members want everyone to know that Assyrian culture is more than food.
Some of the money raised this year went to the American Red Cross to help victims of the recent terrorist attacks.
Here are Assyrian dishes from "Recipes for the Assyrian Palette," a cookbook by Nineva Ishaya:
Bone and dice meat into very small pieces. Rinse with cold water, place in a saucepan and add water until meat is covered. Cover and allow to cook on medium-high heat until water comes to a boil and evaporates (about one hour). Set aside to cool.
Mince the green pepper, leek, dill, celery, parsley and mix with pepper, paprika, rice and cooked meat. Combine in a large mixing bowl with the melted butter.
Make a vertical cut that begins on the surface and extends to the center of each Spanish onion. In a large saucepan, boil water on medium-high heat and add the onions, completely submerging them. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes.
When the onions are cooked, remove them from the heat and rinse with cold water. Peel one layer of onion at a time. Scoop 2 tablespoons of the meat and vegetable mixture, placing it at one end of the onion peel then rolling it up. Place finished rolls in a large pot, forming layers, and pour the broth over them.
In a bowl, combine lemon juice, ketchup and water. Mix well.
Pour the mixture evenly over the stuffed onion layers, cover and cook for 30 minutes over low heat.
Using a hand mixer or food processor, blend the cottage and cream cheese until it is creamy. Add the salt and black pepper. Mix well.
Finely chop all the vegetables and herbs. Blend in the rest of the ingredients using a spoon, until well mixed. Cover and store in the refrigerator. Use as a spread on toast and other kinds of bread.
LEADER BUSY IN WAKE OF TERROR WAR
The council provides health care, counseling, English language skills and job training, the Detroit Free Press said Thursday.
Lately, her big job has been orchestrating the council's response to the terrorist attacks. It has been helping schools develop diversity training to address ignorance and bias toward Arabs and Muslims and fielding media calls.
On Thursday night, Fakhouri and Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer were scheduled to lead an interfaith service at the Hyatt Regency hotel in Dearborn for peace and the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks.
The event is sponsored by the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions, an international Catholic organization.
"This is a national tragedy of extraordinary proportions," the council says on its Web site. "As we all mourn with the rest of the nation, our members at the ACC extend our utmost sympathy and condolences to all those who suffered the loss of a loved ones at this terrible act of terrorism."
Those who know Fakhouri describe her as a woman who has devoted her life to humanitarian deeds among immigrant and refugee people.
"I don't think she has much time for anything else," says Jawad Marzook, director of the council's program development and research. "She calls me at night, at home, on my cell phone, saying, `What are you going to do (about a problem)?"'
The youngest of eight children in an Orthodox Christian family, Fakhouri, 55, came to the United States she was 21, to join many family members already living in Michigan.
In Jordan, her family ran a prosperous agricultural business outside of Amman. She holds a master's degree and doctorate in educational sociology from Wayne State University.
She took two leaves of absence from the council in the 1980s to work as a consultant to the United Nations, overseeing women's and children's programs in the Middle East.
"When you talk about culture, you find that differences quickly go away," said Fakhouri. She likes to introduce Americans to her culture with Arabic foods.
She calls herself a "concerned citizen," though photos of Republicans dominate her office. A picture of former Michigan Gov. James Blanchard, a friend and Democrat, is nearly out of sight next to a closet.
The council's largest fund-raiser is its annual gala dinner, planned for Dec. 1. The dinner annually raises some $200,000. The council's board will vote Tuesday whether to hold the event. Board members worry that if the military conflict in Afghanistan escalates to Arab nations, attendance might be affected and programs could suffer.
If the gala is held, Fakhouri wants to see to it that it has a patriotic theme, "United We Stand," down to table napkins and floral arrangements.
"The terrorists want to affect our morale, but we won't let them," she said. "I always say, `God bless America."'
[Speakers at the Interfaith event included the Rev. Piccolo; Dearborn Mayor Michael Guido; Rabbi Ernst Conrad of Temple Kol Ami, West Bloomfield; Bishop Kevin Britt, Archdiocese of Detroit; Eid Alawan, Islamic Center of America, Detroit; the Rev. Kenneth Flowers, Greater New Mt. Moriah Baptist Church, Detroit; the Rev. George Shalhoub, St. Mary's Antiochian Orthodox Church, Livonia; Imam Abdullah El-Amin, Muslim Center, Detroit; Rabbi Lauren Berkun, Jewish Theological Seminary, Bloomfield Hills; Sister Jacquie Wetherholt, Marygrove College, Detroit, and the Rev. Steven Baumbusch, a missionary.
Performers were the Mercyaires from Mercy High School, Farmington Hills; Plymouth United Church of Christ Gospel Singers, Detroit; Children's Choir of the International Institute, Detroit; pianist Marilyn Walilko of Queen of Peace Church, Harper Woods; Nathalie Conrad, composer and accompanist, and Susan Greener, soloist and cantor, both from Temple Kol Ami.]
AAS QUARTERLY REPORT : JULY-SEPTEMBER 2001
Submitted to Zinda Magazine on October 10, 2001
Hereby the Assyrian Aid Society-Iraq Report shows briefly our most important charity and humanitarian activities from 1st of July to 30th of September 2001.
With our best wishes and thanks to all (AAS) members and supporters in America, Australia, Canada, and Europe.
Copy to AAS-Australia, AAS-Europe, AAS-Canada
RECONSTRUCTION DEPARTMENT ACTIVITIES:
=====Nisibin Assyrian High School Dormitories Project====
[Funded by Assyrian Aid Society of America (AAS-A)]:
- Finishing from the basement casting stage, building the vault and ground floor structure, casting the roof by reinforced concrete. The work stopped after Sep.11th because of the unordinary up rise in building materials prices.
- The building consist of two floors with (28) bedrooms enough for (140) student.
- The ground floor area is (570)m2, includes (12) bedrooms, kitchen, two halls to be used as restaurant and reading room, bathrooms and two gardens the area of each one is(192)m2.
- The first floor area is (546)m2 includes, (16) bedrooms, and bathrooms. The building has a vault of (117)m2, to be used for storage.
[Funded by (AAS-A) Chicago chapter]:
- Finishing from implementing roofs casting project in Belejane village within Sapna area, on August 15th. The project included casting by reinforced concrete the roofs of nine houses in the village, average area of each house (120)m2. We also made some repair work to the village houses.
[Funded by Assyrian Aid Society of Australia (AAS-Australia)]:
- Finishing from implementing roofs casting project in Hazarjot village within Qasrok area, on Aug 1st. The project included casting by reinforced concrete the roofs of (32) house in the village, average area of each house (100)m2, The project was funded by (AAS-A).
- Finishing from implementing roofs casting project in Duri village within Barwari Bala area, on September 9th. The project included casting by reinforced concrete the roofs of (22) house in the village, and another house in the neighbor village, average area of each house (100)m2, in addition to this, we made some repairing works in the village.
[Funded by the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Stuttgart (ELCS)]:
- Start implementing Drinking water project in Rabatki, Meruki villages within Nahla area. The project includes, laying pipelines from water source (spring) to the two villages total amount of pipelines length (4)km , distributing the water to all the villages houses, after building water tanks in each village provided with water pumps.
EDUCATION & TEACHING DEPT. ACTIVITIES:
=======Assyrian Primary Schools=======
-Supporting Assyrian schools in Dohuk and Erbil area ,which includes paying salaries of the lecturers, helping needy teachers, and providing some basic needs for the schools.
-Covering the transportation costs of students and teachers in Dohuk and Erbil.
-Covering the costs of Translation Committee.
-Covering the costs of Assyrian Teaching Committee in holding different types of educational activities, the most important were:
Honoring superior students in a special celebration in Ankawa at July 21st.
Course for Assyrian teachers in Shaqlawa, association of (23) teacher, at Aug, 20th.
=======Assyrian High Schools=======
-Nisibin high school in Dohuk city:
Covering the costs of housing, feeding (90) students. Paying monthly salaries to the teachers, lectures, dormitories supervisors, and workers. Covering transportation costs of all the school students inside and outside Dohuk.
-Covering part of school expenses.
-Orhai high school in Sarsink:
Covering the costs of housing, feeding (50) students coming from far villages, covering transportation costs of students coming from near surrounded villages, paying monthly salaries for teachers, lecturers, dormitories supervisors and workers, providing basic needs and furniture for the school.
Through Assyrian Student & Youth Union, our society cover the expenses of housing, feeding, and transporting (180) students from Erbil universities Institute, and (80) from Dohuk Universities Institutes. Covering transportation costs of high schools in Shaqlawa and Armota and helping needy students.
HEALTH & MEDICAL SERVICES DEPT. ACTIVITIES:
-Our charity pharmacies and clinic centers are continued in presenting their medical services in Duhok, Sarsink, and Ankawa.
-Covering treatment expenses of many cases and contributing to others.
-At the beginning of June, the Dept. made a special round in Barwari Bala villages (Doori, Dereshki, Mayeh, Beshmyay, Eiet, Jededy, Bequlky, Tashish) to treat the villagers and giving the needed medicines freely.
-At the end of July, the Dep. made another similar round in Sapna villages (Araden, Dawoodia, Dehe, Kondkosa).
HUMANITARIAN & AID DEPT. ACTIVITIES:
-Our society presents different types of aid to needy families in different areas, according to applications presented to our society.
-Supporting Social Societies:
=======Assyrian Women Union=======
-Continue on supporting the Day Care Center in Ankawa and providing special bus for kids' transportation.
-Supporting the Union in publishing his periodical newspaper (Nahreneta).
-Support the Union in his different activities.
=======Assyrian Student & Youth Union =======
- Support the union in publishing his monthly newspaper (Mezalta).
- Support the union in his different activities.
- Supporting Assyrian Cultural center, in achieving his deferent types of cultural and social activities.
- Supporting Sanharib and Akkad athletic clubs.
The Ministry of Education promised to bear with us a part of lecturers and transporting costs to the Dohuk area, till now we haven't received the final result, except that the Ministry now cover 30% of transporting costs of Nisibin high school only in coordination with UECIF, so we are doing our best as we did in previous years in supporting and managing this subject in Assyrian Teaching Process.
Adobe File in Assyrian Mekpta D'Gana.pdf (133 kb)
MY NAME IS JULIET
My name is Juliet. I was born in Tehran, Iran. Along with my family I migrated to America in 1963, and settled in Yonkers, New York. In sixth grade it was discovered that I had a natural talent for the arts. I needed to explore new horizons and so I returned to Iran to attend the High School For Arts in Tehran, but was never fully content there. I needed to explore new horizons and see more of the world.
In a trip back to New York I took courses at the Student's League and visited galleries; I wanted to soak up the culture of the city. Later I took courses at the French Beaux Art in Paris and some more courses in fashion design in London. Finally I attended the Academy of Arts at the University of Tehran where I felt I was absorbing the quintessence of Persian cuture and art along with modern art in Europe.
I moved to California in 1998 to be closer to the Assyrian community. Being half Assyrian, my goal has always been to work with my own people. I strived to convey the beauty as well as the suffering of the Assyrians, while maintaining a deep connection to my heritage.
I consider myself a true expressionist - a dadaist.
When it comes to the world of an artist, and all what the real artist has to deal with, I don't see much of a difference between the Assyrians and all other ethnic groups. There is a certain problem about the interaction with the real world as a true artist which is very universal. Indeed it is the struggle between the artist and craftsman that has made the history of the arts as colorful as it is. The true artist is subjective. Subjectivity is what drives the artist to creativity. Seeking individuality, the true artist would learn the rules and all the techniques to perfectionism, then breaks them to fit his or her own individual taste and state of mind.
This process is what differs the true artist from all the surroundings but not from him-herself.
Z-Crew welcomes Ms. Moradian to the pages of Zinda Magazine where her articles on Assyrians, the Arts, and the Artist will appear regularly under a separate column.
Nebuchadnezzer II, king of Babylon, erects the Ishtar Gate and the Processional Way in Babylon. The buildings he constructed were constructed of baked bricks, not sun-dried breaks.
The Ishtar Gate, Marzahn
(February 1985 A.D.)
Three Assyrians - Yousef Toma Zibari, Youkhana Esho Shlimon, and Youbert Benyamin - are executed by the Iraqi Government. The regime in Baghdad accused them of "creating a hostile environment...aimed at threatening the independence of Iraq."
Human Rights In Iraq, Middle East Watch
October 17, 1976
Anniversary of the Consecration of His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV
His Holiness was born on September 15, 1935, in the province of Arbil, Bet-Nahrain. He is the fourth in the line of succession to the Bishopric See of Urmia bearing the sanctimonious title of Mar Dinkha.
He gained his elementary education under the wise tutorship of his grandfather, Rev. Benyamin Soro. In 1947, at the age of twelve, he was entrusted to the care of His Beatitude, the late Mar Yosip Khnanisho, Metropolitan and the Patriarchal representative for all of Iraq.
After two years of very strict study, he gathered the basic knowledge in theology to qualify him to undertake an active role in the service of the Church. Thus, on September 12, 1949, he was ordained deacon by the second highest ranking ecclesiastic of The Assyrian Church of the East. Eight years later, on August 15, 1957, deacon Khnania was ordained to priesthood, once again, by no other than his mentor and religious scholar Mar Yosip Khnanisho.
Due to the political upheavals during and after World War I, a large
number of the clergy lost their lives. The Church was on the threshold
of disintegrating for lack of viable Church organization or priesthood.
His Beatitudes Mar Yosip Khnanisho was aware of the dire circumstances
prevalent in that country. This deplorable situation was on his mind when
he carefully selected young priest Khnania and trained him for the difficult
task ahead as he was assigned as a priest in Teheran, Iran, in 1957. This
young priest in no time built a very viable, well organized and progressive
institution that attracted its strayed adherents by the thousands.
After the unexpected death of His Holiness, Mar Eshai Shimon, the Church of the East had an urgent need to restore the leadership. In 1976 the prelates of the church convened in London to elect a new Catholicos Patriarch. At this historic meeting, the consentaneous choice of all the prelates in session was His Holiness Mar Dinkha as the most qualified candidate to fill this sublime post. After his consecration, His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV became the 120th successor in this line to the Apostolic Sea of Seculia-Ctesiphon.
Due to the unfavorable circumstances prevailing in the Middle East currently, His Holiness has moved his headquarters to Chicago on a temporary basis. Since his arrival here in 1980, he has been actively engaged in the building of the Church in this country and at the same time, administering the affairs of the Church throughout the world.
From The East
-Photo of His Holiness on the cover by Edison Bet Yadegar
Share your local events with Zinda readers. Email us or send fax to: 408-918-9201
MELAMMU: THE ASSYRIAN AND BABYLONIAN INTELLECTUAL HERITAGE
Sponsored by the University of Bologne
LECTURE: DR. GABRIEL YONAN at SWEDISH PARLIAMENT
Dr. Yonan will be addressing the Swedish Parliament in Stockholm on the important events in the last 100 years of Assyrian history.
ST. MARY'S CATHOLIC CHURCH PARTY
6th Annual Anniversary Party
No Children under 12. Childcare provided at the hotel.
For more info and tickets contact:
BOYCOTT THIS EVENT
In protest to acquiring the services of a non-Assyrian singer at an event sponsored by an Assyrian church or association, Zinda Magazine urges its readers in the San Francisco Bay Area to boycott this event. Instead please offer your donation of $35.00 or more at the following Sunday’s weekly church collection so that no amount of your offering will be used to compensate a non-Assyrian entertainer and your contribution will be fully expended for the benefit of the Assyrian-Chaldean Church in San Jose.
HALLOWEEN 2001 PARTY WITH WALTER AZIZ
Presented by Assyrian Media Center
MIDDLE EAST STUDIES ASSOCIATION CONFERENCE
Middle East Studies Association of North America Panel
Hyatt Regency Hotel, San Francisco
Dr. Arian Ishaya - Urmia to Baquba: From the Cradle
of Water to Wilderness
FIRST UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO's CSSS SYMPOSIUM
Sponsored by Canadian Society for Syriac Studies (CSSS)
AFA ANNUAL DINNER & DANCE PARTY
His Lordship Restaurant
Entertainment: Edmond and His Band. (Ninef)
For reservations contact Flora Kingsbury at 925-672-4534.
AMERICAN ANTHROPOLIGICAL ASSOCIATION ANNUAL MEETING
Daniel Wolk, Univeristy of Chicago
For more info re AAA Meeting in Washington visit: http://www.aaanet.org/mtgs/mtgs.htm
BRITISH MUSEUM LECTURE SERIES
"Medicine vs. Magic in Babylonia"
Contact: Joan Porter MacIver, c/o British Academy
March 17, 2002
AGATHA CHRISTI & THE ORIENT
Revealing Agatha Christie the archaeologist and how her discoveries in the Near East influenced her detective writing.
The hitherto unknown interests and talents of the great crime writer are told through archaeological finds from the sites on which she worked with her husband Max Mallowan at Ur, Nineveh and Nimrud. Important objects from these sites in the Museum's collections are combined with archives, photographs, and films made by Agatha Christie herself.
Personal memorabilia and souvenirs of travel in a more leisurely age are only some of the exhibits which range from first editions of those novels inspired by her other life to a sleeping compartment from the Orient Express, from a lethal 1930s hypodermic syringe to a priceless first millennium ivory of a man being mauled to death
Admissions £7, Concessions £3.50
West Wing Exhibition Gallery Room 28
July 1-4, 2002
48TH RENCONTRE ASSYRIOLOGIQUE INTERNATIONALE
"Ethnicity in Ancient Mesopotamia"
Registration Form: http://www.let.leidenuniv.nl/rencontre/mailform.html
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