Your book has a unique tool, visual elements that are quite
different from other traditional books. Could you enlighten us
about this wonderful approach and display?
- As a visual artist and as a historian, I worked
hard to come up with a new way of offering education and basic
information in the field of Mesopotamian history, taking into
consideration the desire to make it remembered and appreciated.
The best way to do so is by creating illustrations using my long
experience as a visual artist and graphic designer, whose
illustrations, and art works both handmade and digitals were
appreciated and used by many museums and art galleries
worldwide, as well as the Directorate of Antiquities and the
Tourism Administration in Baghdad since 1978.
Can you give us examples about this exclusive field of artwork?
- With pleasure, in fact, there are four kinds of
images in my book:
1- Traditional Mesopotamian images of antiquities
and historic sites. These were either published separately or as
part of other antiquities and historic sites to avoid any
2- A couple of illustrational images mixed with
additional texts and cuneiform inscriptions that were not part
of the original element. These kinds of images are meant to give
the readers a specific view without having issues with the
copyrights of these images and without referring to them as an
antiquity; i.e., the image on P. 22 the Terracotta plaque of a
dragon with the word Kal Du in cuneiform. By the way, the
Latin-Cuneiform writing system that was used to write the word
Kal Du is also my design. In another case, I just added the
cuneiform text to a modern sketch, see P. 238 “En khe du anna/Enheduanna’s
disk and her name in cuneiform”, while the original disk does
not have her name in cuneiform on that side. Also, see P. 314
“mixing between modern illustrations and ancient tablets”.
3- Grouping images of antiquities and historic
sites as well as between both antiquities and historic sites in
one image, to give the reader a better understanding of the
covered subject in that section. This educational montage
technique also puts the publisher on the safe side and avoids
any copyright issues.
4- The most important and unique images are the
illustrations that I have researched for years and created as
digital illustrations, including section II of Part IV,
Illustrations and maps PP. 506-517, which you cannot find in any
Your long study and work in this field, as well as your book
reviews and approval by prominent scholars are from my viewpoint
unmatched, yet why do you think, this latest personal campaign
against you and this genuine book is occurring?
- Simply viewing who is making these impropriate
attempts against my book and me could allow you to easily reach
a solid conclusion that there is not even one historian or
academic scholar in this field among those who are waging this
immoral campaign. The other fact is all those unhappy with my
book are members of the so-called Assyrian cult, which also
tells a lot.
The second part of my book covers the 14
misconceptions that were created by the so-called Assyrians'
political parties to discredit Chaldeans, who are the only
legitimate indigenous people of Iraq.
What is making them so angry is that for the
first time in modern history a 550-page academic book exposes
their somewhat well made propaganda. Furthermore, they are upset
because the basis of my book does not match the lies that they
have been fed and have been living with for years. One may also
take into consideration their constant exposure to lies and the
daily false propaganda by the so-called Assyrian political
parties and their well-financed media outlets, which can fool
and deceive many educated people, nonetheless those who were
told these lies since they were children.
Does that not bring to your attention the Hitler
Youth program, where the Nazis used to brainwash those innocent
German children in order to manipulate them, and convert them
into monsters and war machines, capable of carrying out the Nazi
It is common among such mixed religious-political
cults that have an identity struggle and divergence to realize
that they are unable to convince the elders, in this case the
Nestorians who lived through the 1914-1920 tragedy, running from
one country to another, knowing the truth about their real home
and non-Mesopotamian identity. The latest example is the
assassination of their Patriarch, Eshai
Shimun XXIII on November 6,
1975, who by the way, was the last Patriarch
carrying the seal of the Shimun dynasty, that states: The
humbled Shimun, Patriarch of the Chaldeans. This impression of
this seal was used in 1975, not thousands of years ago!!
That is why the only demand that they had after
importing them to Iraq in 1918 was to allow them to go back to
their home-countries, Turkey and Iran, as well as their other
alternative, Brazil, not Nineveh Plain which they are claiming
is their “ancestors' land” nowadays!
Nevertheless, it is another matter with the new
generations because they are a clean slate, which is much more
vulnerable to ideological manipulation. Such a practice will
create unhesitant recruits capable of assaulting others and
specific targets, including denying their own history as an
imported group from outside Iraq, as well as turning their backs
to their real identity as imported Nestorians.
As you know, this group’s media is so effective because of the
funds they are receiving in the name of all Iraqi Christians.
How could an unaware individual recognize what is fact and what
is fiction when it comes to this cult’s member claiming that
they are the Assyrians of the past, the majority of Iraqi
Christians, and that they are an ethnic group, rather than
individuals who have no certainty about their identity?
- This is not an issue among most historians who
are quite familiar with the ancient people of Mesopotamia.
However, it is quite a different issue when it comes to the
mainstream westerners. The reason for such confusion is, because
most westerners know only very little information about
Mesopotamian history, which does not allow them to understand
Chaldeans are the majority of Iraqi Christians,
around 80%, and if we add to that their brothers and sisters the
Iraqi Syriacs, then their percentage will jump to 93%, while the
so-called Assyrian percentage is around 4%.
Mesopotamian civilization was never created or
improved by the Asiatic-Anatolian Assyrians, “the mountain nomad
tribes known as Subartu/Shubaru” from Bitlis a natural stretch
of Taurus mountains south of Ardhrum “Turkey’, but by our local
Mesopotamian ancestors, the “proto-Kaldi” (5300 BC).
It is also well known that the politically
motivated AINA, Ishtar TV, Ashur TV, and other so-called
Assyrians' media outlets are very successful in spreading the
Assyrian hate and bias against the indigenous people of Iraq,
“Chaldeans”, including our proto-Kaldi brothers and sisters in
Christ, the Iraqi Syriacs.
Yet we have never heard from any so-called
Assyrian a single complaint against these extremist and bias
A one-time visit to a media outlet, such as AINA,
is more than enough for those who are quite familiar with Iraq’s
ethno-religious diversity to figure out that AINA’s deception is
with no doubt the cornerstone to twist and manipulate the truth.
Once again, the same old tactic was used during WWII by Paul
Joseph Goebbels, who was the Minister of Propaganda in Nazi
One example of the unbelievable bias of the
so-called Assyrian media outlets, their ongoing false propaganda
and continuous deception to impose a false identity on the
indigenous people of Iraq, “Chaldeans”, can be found at the link
below, which designates Ankawa and two Syriac girls as
Westerners do not know that Ankawa is a
completely, 100% Chaldean town. They also do not know that the
little girls, Mariam Behnam and Sandra from my father’s town,
Pakhdiad (Qarahqosh), are Syriac Catholics who have no ties
whatsoever with the so-called Assyrian cult, who were imported
by the British occupation forces in 1918 from Iran and Turkey.
The other example is that St.
George's Monastery (Mar Gurguis, as it is known in Mosul) is
part of the Chaldean Catholic Church and it is congregated by
Chaldeans, yet see how the so-called 1976 modern Assyrians'
political media outlets refer to it in their "news":
Honestly, I do not care if those so-called
Assyrians called themselves Martians or they claim that they are
alien-visitors from a parallel universe. However, it is
disgusting and immoral to strip the native Iraqis of their
ethnic identity and falsely call these little girls Assyrians,
the coined name that was created by the British in 1884 and was
adopted officially by the Nestorian churches in 1976.
A non-Chaldean may say, what is wrong with calling these little
- Aside from the fact that there was no such
ethnicity in the ancient history called Assyrians; it is not
only the improper name, but also part of the foul agenda behind
using such inappropriate made-up name to designate all Iraqi
Christians. The entire political motivation behind discrediting
Chaldeans was planned and orchestrated to use the Chaldeans’
large numbers inside Iraq and abroad to implant the so-called
Assyrian agenda, “having a state of their own on a foreign land,
in this case Iraq”.
It is also shameful of those who dare to call our
Chaldeans by the 1884-coined name, Assyrians, because we are the
native Mesopotamians, “Chaldeans”, and not some
Asiatic-Anatolian foreigners as the real proto-Assyrians were.
Here, I would like to take this opportunity to
correct these shallow-minded youth, especially refuting the
common misconceptions that are swamping the internet by the
so-called Assyrian politicians and their one-sided thinking
pawns, since they labeled their Nestorian churches in 1976 as
the Assyrian Church of the East. In reality, that does not go
back more than four decades, let alone thousands of years as
they falsely claim!
I heard that some of the unhappy individuals with your letter
that was mailed to the Honorable John Kerry, are approaching
your friends and associates in Michigan claiming that they are
boycotting the Chaldean Educational Center of America (CECA) and
whoever might associate with you, because you have offended them
by stating "designating Chaldeans as Assyrians is an insult".
What is your take on that?
Such a petty statement is just another “hit
below the belt” attempt to hurt my reputation. I intend
to answer this statement directly, loud and clear:
Those who are claiming that they do not associate
with CECA are dishonest about this matter. Such people did not
associate with CECA in the past and will not associate in the
future, because CECA is a stand-up organization that does not
trade principles with money or positions. Since I took over CECA
in 1996, our motto was and still is “to the best of our Chaldean
community”, which we interpreted to deeds. Boycotting us by
those losers will definitely help us concentrate on the main
picture and resume our path firmly.
When I stated that designating Chaldeans as
Assyrians is an insult, I meant it 100%. However, I was not
referring to those modern deceived and deceivers, who are
claiming nowadays that they are the Assyrians of the past, but
in fact I was referring to the real proto-Assyrians the
Asiatic-Anatolians “Shubaru”, who were aliens from ancient
Turkey, and have no ethnic ties with the nowadays cult who are
claiming those alien identities.
To be more specific on this issue, by calling us
Assyrians, they are alienating the indigenous people of Iraq,
“Chaldeans”, not to mention, designating us as Assyrians. They
unwisely equal our existence in Iraq to the imported and other
immigrant groups, besides the invaders who took over our
homeland after the Islamic invasion, while the main difference
is Chaldeans are the indigenous people of Iraq but those other
groups are not. The point is we are not aliens but natives, so
calling us Assyrians = aliens, is nothing but a direct insult. I
hope that they could understand my viewpoint and digest it,
although, I doubt it.
What word would you like to say to those who are
claiming that you are ignoring responding to numerous approaches
to clarify specific points about the book and yourself?
- A big smile, to those who do not know or
recognize the difference between nationality, ethnicity, and
religious-rite, I would like to state: read and learn, and
before approaching me with your naive questions, you have to ask
yourselves, "are you what you think you are and what tangible
evidence beyond any reasonable doubt you have to support your
My other question regarding those numerous
imaginary approaches is: by who was I approached and what are
their credentials that would allow them to question my research?
The final question is, do I have to answer every childish
My only answer is, definitely no. It is, once
again, a situation that raises many flags about why such a poor
approach was performed by one or two school-students, not
scholars, and why this insistence on shifting the attention from
the subject to shooting the messenger? … Such a poor approach is
entirely about the so-called Assyrian’s political game that I am
not concerned about, because I do not play games.
When the LORD's authority was challenged by some
brainwashed, blind, unbelievers, “…Mark: 11- 28 and began saying
to Him, "By what authority are You doing these things, or who
gave You this authority to do these things?" 29 And Jesus said
to them, "I will ask you one question, and you answer Me, and
then I will tell you by what authority I do these things. 30
"Was the baptism of John from heaven, or from men? Answer Me."…
Therefore, do I have to take such a poor approach
seriously, and do I have to answer these amateurs? … Absolutely
For those amateurs, who are claiming the
so-called Assyrian ethnicity, they need to understand that the
original proto-Assyrians “Shubaru / Subartu”, were not even
Semitic people, but Asiatic-Anatolians, which means they were
not even Mesopotamians.
Mixing the cards, feeding themselves lies, and
deceiving unaware people about this subject might work for a
while but not for long.
As stated before, the original Assyrians,
“Shubaru / Subartu”, have nothing to do with the proto-Kaldi/Babylonians
who started the local dynasties in the north “Nineveh Plain”,
from the first king of Assur, Shammshi Adad I (1813 BC), to
Sargon II (722BC).
It is shameful of those so-called modern Assyrian
leaders to campaign against the native Iraqis, “Chaldeans”, and
shame on those who are accepting living such a lowly lie.
Why do you think Chaldeans are falling behind,
whether in Iraq or in the Diaspora, to an imported, small cult
of Nestorian tribes of Qochanis?
- They are doing what we are not. They are
seizing any opportunity to market their lie while most of our
leaders (secular & sectarians) are hesitant and almost
intentionally missing every single opportunity to right the
wrong, by creating one excuse after another. It is an
unbelievable act, which avoids addressing the Chaldean facts and
rights. This is why they (the imported cult) are winning and we,
the indigenous people of Iraq, are losing.
I will give you an example how the imported cult
“Aṭurie of Hekkari and Urmia” is seizing ground and winning the
international community’s support. As you know, I have spent
over a quarter of a century researching the history of
Mesopotamia and the Middle Eastern region and have worked hard
for four years to finalize my book entitled “THE UNTOLD STORY
OF NATIVE IRAQIS”. Furthermore, I have allocated, for its
translation and publishing, a hefty budget that exceeds
$40,000. However, the most shocking fact is that despite nominal
support from a few friends, I did not receive a cent from
neither sectarian nor secular Chaldean institutions even though
I have been writing articles and posting calls to assist in
producing this compelling book for years!
On the other hand, in December 2012, a top-ranked
research and education institute (Uppsala University, Sweden)
published a book entitled The Assyrian Heritage, which
was edited by a Swedish scholar by the name Andreas Önver Cetrez,
a senior lecturer at the Department of Theology, “History of
Religions and The Social Sciences of Religion”!
Prof. Cetrez, was convinced to swallow the lies
of the so-called Assyrians which were presented to him by the
Nestorian politicians, two so-called Assyrian colleagues and
youth from his classes!!
The aforementioned book published by that Swedish
editor was executed with large support from a few Nestorian
university instructors in the US and Canada who provided him
with biased resources and twisted information. In fact, that
book was the fruit of unlimited financial support from the
so-called Assyrian organizations and leaders, which allowed them
to succeed in making this propaganda quite believable. According
to that book, all Iraqi Christians are considered Assyrians - a
term that has nothing to do with ethnicity in the first place.
However, the prior lie was swallowed and delivered through
top-ranking university leaders to other Europeans and worldwide
institutions such as the European Parliament and the UN Office -
Geneva. It was also delivered to the Australian Immigration
Office through the Assyrian Universal Alliance!
Yet not even one Chaldean political, cultural or
even social group has opposed such an immoral and insulting
Once again, I assure you that deeds not words are
what matter, and that is why we are losing and they are winning,
despite the fact that they are spreading lies while we are the
true indigenous people of Iraq.
Do you think that other Chaldean scholars will walk your
difficult path, especially when this group that is waging this
campaign against you is well financed by local powers inside
Iraq, regional, and international players?
- I strongly believe that other Chaldean scholars
are willing to do so, besides the ones who have already
published their studies, including my best friends and
colleagues. Among the notable authors are Dr. Habib Tomi, Dr.
Georges Mardo, and yourself in your recent Thesis “Chaldean
Achievements in the Cultural-religious fields 1800-2000”.
Enough is enough, so whoever is playing this
political game with Chaldeans, thinking that he/she is too wise
to deceive all the people all the time, is dead wrong. I would
appreciate passing their preaching and questioning of Chaldeans'
honesty and credibility to those corrupted, imported politicians
who are falsely claiming that they are the indigenous people of
I have been standing up against this disgusting
campaign against Chaldeans for years, and those amateurs will
not write or say to me what was not told before. Neither they
nor their scholars are capable of proving the claimed
misconceptions that they have been spreading about Chaldeans
since the 1990s. The same false claims that were academically
refuted in my latest book, Part II, unless they believe that
they are better than those who wrote to me before them, and by
the way, they were only good at using profanity.
Once again, I do not care if any so-called
Assyrian wants to fool him/herself into believing that they are
Assyrians or even Martians, which is their right and their
problem as well. However, it is crossing a
RED LINE, and it is
another issue, when the so-called Assyrian leaders, i.e.,
Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, the double agent, Younadim Kanna, the
Iranian pawn of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), Sarkis
Aghajan, and others, immorally and intentionally campaign to
strip Chaldeans of their ethnic identity. It is considered
offensive and a crime to shift the legitimacy of the indigenous
people of Iraq from Chaldeans to some imported cult (the
so-called Assyrians), using the ancient regional term Assyrians
to manipulate and convince Westerners and
the worldwide decision-makers.
Here is another wake-up-call for all so-called
Assyrians, so that they may awaken from their daydream fantasy.
While all the Christians worldwide have celebrated the
resurrection of our LORD and Savior recently, I would like to
inform you that JESUS was Chaldean; you do not need to be
a rocket scientist to figure that out, just read the Bible “The
family tree of JESUS CHRIST …Mathew 1”. You can also read
the book of the Genesis, about the origins and the family roots
and home of father Abraham before immigrating to the Promised
Land, if you consider yourself Christian.
Any last word about the book and its crucial message?
- The book has been out for the last three years,
yet there has not been a single criticism from a scholar in this
field. In fact, all those scholars who reviewed and wrote about
it were very satisfied with its contents and unique coverage of
the most controversial subjects.
We are very proud to be Christians, but we are
also very proud of being Chaldeans - the indigenous people of
Iraq. It is not right or fair to be hijacked of our ethnic
identity and to be slashed out of our rights and looked down
upon for years, and that my friend, is the main purpose of
writing this book.