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The articles in this issue have been divided upinto the following categories







The Third International Congress for Babylonian Jewry Research

The Third International Congress for Babylonian Jewry was held on June 2002 in Israel.
The Opening Ceremony in Tel- Aviv at Beth Hahayal, featured a greeting by Mordechai Ben-Porat, a speech by Israeli Minister of Education, Mrs Limor Livnat and performances by Babylonian descendant Israeli musicians and comedians.
The actors Arueh Elias & Ishaq Battat in comic passages; Yehezkel Abu Zweely tales of Yamen Abu Alkhair; Musical band: Albert Elias, Yair Dallal, Victor Ida, Yaacob Shemtob, Shimon Agasi, Elias Zbaida, Meir Levi, Menashe Muallem.
The Kurdish Folklore group, and the singer Aziz Jalal in Israeli & Iraqi songs.

The following lectures were given: “Between the Babylonian Jews & Eretz Yisrael“ by Professor Yitzhak Avishur and “The Jews of Iraq by Dr. Zvi Yehuda.
In the course of four days, almost 40 lectures and discussions were held in Or-Yehuda, at the Babylonian Jewry Heritage Centre. The lectures span topics from politics, literature and even modern medicine and were held by Professors and students alike from institutes in Israel and other parts of the world.


Monday, 10 June 2002
At the Babylonian Jewry Centre, Or - Yehuda

09:00 – 10:30 First Session
The Jews of Babylonia during the Assyrian,
Bablylonia and Persian periods
Chaired by: Prof. Yitzhak Avishur (University of Haifa)

Prof. Ran Zadok (Tel Aviv University):
Dispersion of Israel & Judea Exiles in the Eastern Part of the Assyrian Empire
Prof. Bustanai Oded (University of Haifa):
Judea Exile in Babylonia: Survival Strategy of an Alien Minority
prof. Michael Heltzer (University of Haifa):
Status of Jewish Community Leaders in Babylonia and its Environs under Persian Rule

11:00 - 12:30 Second Session
Immigration from Iraq
Chaired by: Knesset Member, Mr Yigal Bibi

Prof. Moshe Gat (Bar- Ilan University):
Mass Immigration of Iraqi Jews as Reflected in the Literary Works of Iraqi Writers in Israel.
Dr Shaul Sehayik (Babylonian Jewry Heritage Centre):
Iraqi Jew’s Refugee Camp in the Cemetery in Teheran (1949 – 1950)
Dr. Nissim Kazzaz (Ben Gurion University):
Departure of Jews from Iraq after the Mass Immigration

12:30- 14:00 Interval

14:00 – 15:45 Third Session
Babylonian Jewry Research Students
Chaired by: Knesset Member Mr. Ran Cohen

Mr. Tamir Cohen:
Purchase of Lands in Erez Israel by Jews from Baghdad (1920- 1935)
Mr. Uri David:
The Lost Property – Israeli Policy Towards the Property of the Iraqi Jewish Community
Mrs. Rachel Silko:
Arbil’s Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Barazani’s Attitude Towards Zionism
Mrs. Nilly Gabbay:
The Social Status of the Jewish Women in Baghdad during the First Half of the 20th Century.
Mrs. Bracha Cohen:
Similarity and Divergence in the Jewish Education of Aden and Baghdad Communities

16:00 - 17:30 Fourth Session
Babylonian Jewry Research Students
Chaired by: Mr. Ovadia Soffer (Former Ambassador of Israel to France)

Mrs Dorit Shmueli:
Autobiographic Literature of Iraqi Immigrant Jews Written in Arabic.
Miss Shoshi Banit:
Changes in the Life of the Jewish Women in Baghdad and the Diaspora
Mrs. Mazal Yitzhaki:
Liturgic Praise of Saints in the Poetry of Rabbi Yosef Hayim.
Miss Orly Baher:
The “Amama” (Turban) of the Jews of Baghdad
Mrs. Ayala Shashua- Miron:
Films made by Second Generation Iraqi Jewish Immigrants.

17:45 – 19:30 Fifth Session
The Literature of Iraqi Jews
Chaired by: Dr Zvi Yehuda (Research Institute Director)

Prof. Sassoon Somekh (Tel Aviv University):
Autobiographic Writings on the Last Generation of Iraqi Jews
Prof. Shaul Regev (Bar- Ilan University):
Typology of Babylonian Rabbis Literature
Prof. Lev Hakak (UCLA):
“Entering the Gates of Jerusalem” – Eretz Israel in the Hebrew Secular Literature of the Jews of Iraq Prior to the Founding of the State of Israel
Dr. Lillian Dabby Jouri (Bar- Ilan University):
Studies in the Literary Work of Iraqi Jewish Writers in Israel

19:45 – 21:30 Sixth Session
The Literature of the Iraqi Jews – a Panel of Poets
Chaired by: Mr. Balfur Hakak

Participants: Mrs. Yaara Ben David, Mr. Yoav Hayek
Mr. Herzel Hakak, Mr Eliahoo Manzur, Mr Rony Somekh, Mrs Jacqueline Shashua

Tuesday, 11 June 2002
At the Babylonian Jewry Heritage Centre, Or - Yehuda

09:00 – 10:15 Seventh Session
The Jewish Communities in Iraqi Kurdistan
Chaired by: Mr. Yehezkel Zakkai (General Director of the World Sephardic Federation – Israel Executive)

Dr. Yaron Harel (Bar- Ilan University):
New sources on the History of Kurdistan Jews
Mr. Mordechai Zaken (the Hebrew University):
The Immigration of Jews from Kurdistan to Eretz Israel

10:45 – 12:45 Eighth Session
Babylonian Jews in the Far East
Chaired by Mr. Arie Shemesh (Deputy Chairman of the “Centre”)

Prof. Yosef Tobi (University of Haifa):
Relations Between the Iraqi and Jewish Communities in the Far East and the Jewish Community in Baghdad According to the Response of Rabbi Yosef Hayim

Prof. Yitzchak Kerem (Aristotle University, Thessaloniki, Greece):
The history of the Jewish Settlements in Burma
Prof.: Joan Bieder (University of California, Berkeley):
The Jewish Community of Singapore; Cohesion, Dispersion, Survival

12:45-14:15 interval

14:15 -15:15 Ninth Session
Iraqi Jews in Israel: Medicine Issues
With the participation of the “Centre for Jewish Medical Heritage”
Chaired by: Mrs. Shoshana Arbili- Almozlino
(Former Minister of Health)

Prof. Eitan Friedman (Ontogenetic Unit, Tel- Hashomer Hospital):
Typical Common Mutations of Iraqi and Ashkenazi Jews
Prof Mordechai Pras (Heller Institute for Medical research, Tel- Hashomer Hospital):
Familial Mediterranean Fever (FMF)- a Common Hereditary illness, Widely Spread Among Iraqi and North African Jews

15:30- 17:00 Tenth Session
Art and folklore
Chaired by: Mr. Eliyahu Nawi (Retired Judge)

Prof. Dov Noy (the Hebrew University):
The Folk Tales in Israel Folklore Archives (IFA) as told by Iraqi Jews the last years)
Prof. Olga Goldberg (the Hebrew University):
Jewellery and Amulets of Iraqi Jews – Form and Content

Prof. Shalom Sabar (The Hebrew University):
Illustrated Haggadda among Iraqi Jews Compared with other Communities in Islamic Lands.
Mrs. Idit Sharony- Pinhas (Curator of the Babylonian Jewry Museum):
The Jewish Woman in Baghdad and the Traditional Costume as it Appears in Description in Newspapers and by Travellers.

17:15 – 17:45 Memorial Service
To the Victims of the “Farhud” of June 1941

17:45- 19:00 Eleventh Session
A panel: Jews in the Underground Communist Movement in Iraq
Chaired by: Mr Yoseph Meir.
Participants: Dr Nissim Kazzaz, Dr. Yehuda Tager, Mr David Ivri, Mr Avral Barzilay and Iraqi Jewish Communist ex- Members.

19:15- 20:45 Twelfth Session
A Meeting of the Members of the “Hehlutz underground movement in Iraq”
Chaired by: Mr Shlomo Hillel (Former speaker of the Knesset)
Opening Speech:
Mr Zevulun Hareili - Chairman of the “Hehlutz Underground Movement ex-Members”
Symposium: The “Tenua’a” Activity as a Stimulation of the Mass Immigration of Iraqi Jews to Israel
Participants: Mr. Mordechai Ben Porat, Dr Esther Meir, Mr Yosef Meir, and Adv. Sammy Moriah

Wednesday 12 June 2002
The Iraqi Jews in Israeli Society and Economy

09:30 – 10:00 Opening speeches:
Mr. Matan Vilnai, Science Culture and Sport Minister
Prof. Jeshua Schwartz, Dean Faculty of Jewish Studies, Bar- Ilan University
Mr Mordechai Ben Porat, Chairman of the “Babylonian Jewry Heritage centre”
Prof. Yitzhak Avishur, Academic Director of the Babylonian Jewry Heritage Centre
Mr Shimon Ohayon, Director of the Dahan Centre Bar- Ilan University

10:00- 11:15 Thirteenth Session
The Iraqi Jews in the Israeli Society and Economy
Chaired by: Mr. Oved Ben Ozeir (chairman of Wojac)

Prof. Tiqvah Lecker Darwish (Bar- Ilan University):
Iraqi immigrants in Israel’s Economy- a Competitive Research
Dr. Naomi Gal (Ashkelon College):
Absorption of Iraqi Jews in Israel- Centre and Periphery

11:45 – 13:00 Fourteenth Session
The Immigration of the Jews from Iraq and their Absorption in Israel
Chaired by: Prof. Ernest Krausz (Bar- Ilan University)

Dr. Daphna Tsimhoni (The Truman Institute and the Technion Haifa):
The Mass Immigration of Iraqi Jews to Israel in Historical Perspective – Attitudes of Jews and Arabs
Prof. Dvora Hacohen (Bar- Ilan University):
The Ma’abaroth as a Critical Confluence Between Iraqi Immigrants and the Israeli Establishment
Dr Esther Meir (Ben- Gurion University):
Oriental Leadership in “Mapai”- Between Communal Segregation and Nationalism
13:00 – 15:00 Interval
15:00 - 16:30 Fifteenth Session
Symposium: Integration of Iraqi Jews in Israeli Society.
Chaired by: Dr. Baruch Levi (Chairman of the Nationality Counsel for Voluntarism in Israel)
Participants: Mrs Shoshana Arbili- Almozlino, Mr Mordechai Ben- Porat, Mr Shlomo Hillel, Mr Eli Amir, Mr. David Petel, Mrs Nuzhat Qassab

16:30 Closing






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