4. Assyrians: From Bedr Khan to Saddam Hussein - Second Edition
Throughout the Christian Era, the Assyrians have faced an immense tragedy through persecution, oppression, and massacres. The Assyrian tragedy in Mesopotamia continued intermittently during the Sassanid Persians (A.D. 226 - 637), Seljuk Turks invasion of the eleventh century, Mongols invasion in 1258, Tamerlane's destruction that began in 1394, the Saffavid Persians in early sixteenth century and during the rule of the Ottoman Turks since the middle of the sixteenth century. Throughout the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Turks and Kurds committed numerous massacres against the Assyrian Christians in their secluded mountains of northern Mesopotamia and in Tur Abdin region in modern southeastern Turkey. As the Ottoman Empire entered WWI, it declared jihad (holy war) against its Christian subjects.
Backed by Kurds, the Turkish army invaded northwestern Persia (Iran) and committed further atrocities against the Assyrian refugees who fled the Ottoman territories and against Assyrians of Persia as well. The jihad transformed into an ethnic genocide against the Assyrians that was perpetrated by the Turkish state and Kurdish warlords. This genocide continues to this very day due to the policies of the Kurds in northern Iraq, southeastern Turkey, and northeastern Syria. The Assyrians lost two-thirds of their population and most of their homelands in northern Mesopotamia during WWI alone. Since the creation of the modern Middle Eastern states after the partition of the Ottoman Empire post WWI, the Assyrians have faced and continue to face a systematic Arabization, Turkification, and Kurdification policies by Pan-Arab governments, Pan-Turkish governments, and by Kurdish political parties. Hundreds of thousands of Assyrians have fled their homelands seeking shelter in Europe, United States, and Australia. Furthermore, the rise of fundamentalism in the Middle East is posing another serious threat to the survival of the remaining Assyrians and to other Christian communities in the Middle East.
The second edition of "Assyrians: From Bedr Khan to Saddam Hussein" is now available. It was published by Pearlida Publishings. This second edition includes more photos, including those of an Assyrian family in Baquba (1918) and Mindan (1920) refugee camps. It includes as well a copy of the 1919 map that was submitted to Paris Peace Conference (1919) for the Assyrian homeland. The newspaper clips at the end of the book are enlarged, thus easier to read. The font of the entire book is a touch larger and easier on the eyes. The photos in general are clearer and better. The mispellings reported by couple of readers are corrected. The chapter on Kurds is better organized. The first chapter on Bedr Khan has more references and is better organized as well. Additional footnotes are added.