Due to an ongoing health crisis in the family, blogging will be 'on and off' as time and circumstances permit for the foreseeable future. I also beg your indulgence if I am slow in responding to emails. New posts will appear below this notice.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The Iraqi Jewish archive: Should the U.S. send it back?

WASHINGTON (RNS) Acting on a tip, 16 U.S. troops stormed the flooded basement of Saddam Hussein’s Baghdad intelligence headquarters in 2003 and found a stash of Torah scrolls, prayer books and Hebrew calendars.

The trove was moldy and ripped, some of it of little value, much of it priceless — 2,700 books and tens of thousands of documents, all stolen from the Jews of Iraq.

Ten years later, 24 of the artifacts form a rare exhibit at the National Archives on the Mall, just steps away from rooms where tourists stand in line to see the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. The exhibit has raised thorny questions about the ultimate disposition of the artifacts.
Read the rest here.