Photo: Iraqi Jews flee to the reborn State of Israel in 1951, leaving behind over 2,500 years of history and heritage.
Iraq’s government bears responsibility for neglecting the Jewish heritage in the country and allowing it to be plundered under the guise of reconstruction, the head of Iraq’s Jewish community told Israel Today in an exclusive interview.
Antiquities and synagogues have been subjected to theft, looting, destruction and vandalism, especially following the US invasion of Iraq in 2003. During the rule of Saddam Hussein’s regime, many of them remained in excellent condition. Today, however, synagogues have become dumping grounds. What’s worse, the remaining Jews have been prevented from accessing these sites, and Jewish neighborhoods have been forcibly emptied and seized by Iranian intelligent.
Sherzad Mamsani, head of the Jewish community in the Kurdistan region, said all this has been done under the pretext of expansion and reconstruction, particularly in the governances (provinces) of Babylon and Najaf.
Fortunately, Mosul (ancient Nineveh) still has many Jewish structures and synagogues, and has suffered less theft and destruction. This...