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Sunday, September 17, 2017 

Iraqi Jewish archive should not be returned

A writer at Israel Hayom makes the case for not returning a Jewish archive of old writings and Torah pages to Iraq's government, although there's one part where he slips:
As part of the restoration process, the National Archives digitized the collection. Congressional representatives and the American administration faced heavy pressure, mainly from Jewish groups, not to return the archive to Iraq, but last week, a final decision was taken to hand the collection back to Iraq about a year from now.

This decision is both absurd and pathetic, like giving a thief back what he stole. The question being asked in Jewish circles is whether the U.S. is trying to make up for invading Iraq and its failure to find chemical weapons there. Why should the U.S. return the collection to a place that is no longer home to Jews? Returning the archive to the Iraqis is like returning the belongings of European Jews to the Nazis; it's stolen Jewish property.

Even though the Jews of Iraq lived in Babylon before the advent of Islam and before the Prophet Muhammad came along, there are no Jews there today. More than 150,000 Iraqi Jews left the country over the course of the 20th century, some motivated by Zionism, and others by fear for their lives. Iraq didn't know how to protect its Jews, and as early as 1941, hundreds of Iraqis were slaughtering Jews in the Farhud (pogrom).
Didn't know how to protect? I don't think they even wanted to; they allowed the modern pogrom to take place and were more or less run by Islamofascism at the time, so is this a shock? Not today.

That said, the archive most definitely must not be returned, and it's regrettable if they do.

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