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Discovering the Iraqi Jewish Archive

The Iraqi Jewish Archive is a collection of over 2,700 books and tens of thousands of historical documents from Iraq's Jewish community, that were found in 2003 in the flooded basement of Saddam Hussein's intelligence headquarters by a special US army team. The collection includes a wide variety of books and rare documents, ranging from 500-year-old commentaries on the Talmud to personal letters sent during the 1950s. Dr. Harold Rhode, a former Middle Eastern analyst in the Office of the US Secretary of Defense, who was stationed in Iraq at the time, recognized that the collection of submerged documents, scrolls and books was a unique Jewish archive. In a special rescue operation, the materials were airlifted to the United States where the US National Archive restored, catalogued and digitized the materials. Rhode will tell the story of the discovery of the archive on August 29th, at the Babylonian Jewry Heritage Center in Or Yehuda. Ahead of the event, he spoke to KAN's Naomi Segal.

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