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Friday, May 30, 2008

The minority Christians of Iraq vs. the Indigenous Assyrians of Iraq

By: Ramiz G. Mirza

In today’s Iraq we frequently hear Assyrians (ChaldoAsssyrians, Chaldeans, and Syriacs) be referred to as “the minority Christians of Iraq”. This term causes problems for the Assyrians in more than one way. Let’s start from the beginning. First of all, Assyrians, when being termed as minorities, lose leverage in a political manner. Being the indigenous people from Iraq , they should be identified as indigenous and not minorities. This would give them a better chance at reaching their goals in the political realm, and would also show the Assyrians that the world respects their identity. Another problem with being called minorities is that this results in little attention when crimes are committed against the Assyrians. This is because the media usually focuses on problems that the public can familiarize with. Next, being labeled as Christians is not a national identity. True that is the faith of the Assyrians, but towards getting some type of recognition as a nation, Christians of Iraq will never do. The world needs to stand for what is right in defending Assyrians at this critical moment in history, and give Assyrians the recognition they deserve. With the help of the world powers, Assyrians can fulfill their goal of regaining their identity in Mesopotamia , present day Iraq , and live in harmony with the rest of their neighbors.

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