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Official translation
of Al-Zaman article on Chaldean political movements

Posted: Wednesday, May 31, 2000 at 08:03 PM CT

Declaration regarding the 'Chaldean intellectual coalition's call for the establishment of a Chaldean political party.

Yes, to political and national unity
No, to separatism, discrimination, and denominational isolation

Few initiatives have been reported recently which call for the establishment of a 'Chaldean political party' in our homeland and abroad. Various declarations have also been distributed as outcomes of such initiatives stressing the necessity and importance of the establishment of such a group. We feel that this surge in demand for formal activism comes at a time when national awareness and the search for a true identity, especially among the Chaldean communities, is at an all-time high. However, for such welcomed atavism to progress, a proper ideological path must be taken based on historical, cultural, as well as anthropological facts regarding our Chaldean/Assyrian/Syriac nation and not based on specific denominational affiliation which our people had often suffered from in the past.

For without a doubt, Chaldeans, Assyrians, and Syriacs belong to one nation well known for its historical contributions to culture, science, and philosophy starting with the civilization of Sumer to the Greatness of Babylon and Assyria. And although the political re-awakening of this great nation, during the 19th and 20th centuries, was brought forth under the Assyrian name, many of its founding fathers were members of the Chaldean Church, such as Bishop Toma Oudo, General Agha Petrus, Yousif Malik and the Syrian Orthodox Church, such as Ashur Yousif Bit'Kharput, Naom Faik, Farid Nazha, David Perley and many others. None of these legendary icons ever entertained the idea of establishing a political body limited to those of a particular church. Although many of our existing groups today comprise mostly members of the Church of the East, the future composition of these groups may not necessarily continue with this imbalance.

Given the above, we call upon our people to uphold our national ideals and to maintain working for our united nation regardless of personal designator preference. And if the need arises by some to establish a new political front with a title other than 'Assyrian', then we strongly encourage the use of a compound title comprising all of our major names which are: Assyrian, Chaldean, and Syrian. At the same time, we ask all existing organizations with an Assyrian title to consider adding our other major names to their title and by-laws for the sake of enhancing the cohesiveness of our people. By doing so, the remaining obstacle in our path to unity would be annihilated.

We would also like to take this opportunity to praise the historic decision made by the US census bureau to formally consider all members of various groups as one people under the title Assyrian/Chaldean/Syrian and to diligently work with the communities towards a single mutual-agreeable name for our people by year 2010. We see this effort as a great step in our path of progress worth of praise and support.

Therefore, we do not support the call of the 'Chaldean intellectual coalition' nor do we support any other similar establishments which we feel are hastily being initiated to fill the nationalistic vacuum present among the Chaldean portion of our nation. We ask our brothers involved in these 'Chaldean' initiatives to review our magnificent history in an objective manner, which clearly portrays the unity of our nations regardless of its given names. We also ask our Chaldean, Assyrian & Syriac communities to raise the level of trust and respect among each other in opposition to separatist movements.

We hope and trust that faithful, nationally aware members of the Chaldean communities will join us in the continuing efforts to further unite our nation and stop future movements geared toward division and isolation.

Signed by a group of Chaldean intellectuals

  • Sami Bihnam Al-Malih, Author and Engineer. Stockholm, Sweden
  • Dr. Saadi Almalih, Author, journalist, and scholar. Chief editor of 'Almiraa' and 'Ishtar' magazine, Montreal, Canada
  • Anan Bedawid, Author and national activist. Detroit, Michigan
  • Habib I. Hanon, President of Ur Cultural organization of Toronto
  • Ghassan Hanna, Senior Engineer and activist. Fremont, California, USA
  • Firas Jatou, Senior Design engineer and activist. Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • George Makhai, Entrepreneur and national activist. Detroit, Michigan, USA
  • Fouad Manna, Journalist. Chief Editor of Al-Muntada magazine. Detroit, Michigan, USA
  • George Mansur, Author & Journalist. President of the Iraqi Human Rights organization. Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • Nasir Yousif Mansour, Journalist and literary critic. Previous president of Adiab academic center and Akka athletic club of Ainkawa. Presently residing in Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • Fathil Pola, Author and Journalist. San Diego, USA
  • Afram Rayes, ex-secretary of the Assyrian Universal Alliance. Detroit, Michigan, USA
  • Kamal Esho Sanna, Owner and CEO of Eastern Palace Club. Detroit, Michigan, USA

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Official translation of Al-Zaman article on Chaldean political movements
The American Census Office Admits that the Assyrian/Chaldean/Syriac are One Nation
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