One Country That Loves Jews? Kurdistan

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The Kurdish flag. (Jan Sefti/Creative Commons)
22 Jun 2015
Inspiration
The Kurdish flag. (Jan Sefti/Creative Commons)
The Kurdish flag. (Jan Sefti/Creative Commons)

Here’s some good news amidst all rising anti-Semitism across Europe and the Middle East. One place that likes Jews? Kurdistan. The autonomous region in Iraq seems to be quite fond of Jews and Israel, according to this interesting (but all too short) op-ed in the Forward by Seth Frantzman.

“Old peshmerga fighters cradling AK-47s reminisced about the 1960s, when Israel helped them in the war against Saddam Hussein.

“My uncle went to Israel through Iran in the 1960s to be trained. Israelis came here to the mountains to help us,” one told me. There is a warm affinity for Jews among many Kurds. “Did you know that in most Muslim countries Jews could not carry weapons and had to wear a distinctive ‘Jewish’ dress,” a Kurdish professor from Syria living in Erbil noted. “Jews in Kurdistan carried weapons and dressed like us and had the tribal names of our tribes.”

We’ll keep you posted as soon as they begin offering Kosher Tours.

The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.