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Chaldean Hardware Store Owner Committed to Detroit Neighborhood
By Paul Gori :: 16757 Views :: Business & Finance

Michigan, USA – Back in September 2008 Chaldean businessman Sal Yono received devastating news that his Pro-Hardware business on Davison near Dexter was burnt to the ground.  The fire completely destroyed the 60 year old hardware store and left a dilapidated neighborhood in even worse condition. 

Many of the Detroit residents relied on the business to purchase needed hardware supplies.  “We don’t have much in the city and the hardware store was the only place we could get to fix up something in the house,” says customer Gary Harris. “He was an angel.  If we didn’t have the money to buy some needed tools he would loan the tools to us for free.  We were all upset when we heard the store burned to the ground.”

People in the neighborhood were shocked to learn Yono would rebuild as more and more residents and businesses were fleeing the city.  Residents cheered when the hardware store re-opened with a million dollar investment by the owner.  Many of the people who work at the hardware store can walk to work. The $1 million investment raised more than a few eyebrows in an area where abandoned and boarded up homes dot the landscape.

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Killing of Chaldeans Continue Despite Promises of Added Security
By Amer Hedow :: 43165 Views :: Law & Order, Government & Society, World News & Odds 'N' Ends, Chaldean Justice League

Chaldeans grip the cross bars as the roller coaster of their existence takes another steep and deadly plummet.

Baghdad, IRAQ – Yet another targeted religious execution of Iraqi Christians takes place in northern Iraq.   An armed commando storms the neighborhood of al Saa, near the monastery of the Domincan fathers on a killing rampage killing 55 year old Chaldean businessman, Sabah Yacoub Gurgis.  The well known entrepreneur owned an eyeglass factory, employing many Arabs and minorities in the city near the Tigris River. 

Neighboring Christians are terrified that the killings will continue.   The shooting is just the latest in a long trail of blood that has forced hundreds of Chaldean families to flee the city toward the plain of Nineveh or abroad. A spiral of violence that grew in the months preceding the parliamentary elections of  March 7, so much so that Msgr. Emil Shimoun Nona, Chaldean archbishop of Mosul, spoke of an "Endless Via Crucis".

Iraqi Christians continue to escape the country as killings and religious persecutions intensify.  “The election and Easter season has given the crazy killers motivation to wipe out all the Christians in Iraq,” says Husam Ashaki, who barely managed to survive the rampage killing in the city.  “We are all trying to figure out how we can leave.  We are not even safe in north.  They follow us here and are very thirsty for Christian blood.  No mater if it is a man, woman, or child.  They kill even small children and babies if they know they are Christian.”

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Former Politico Makes Community Impact in New Ways
By Guest Reporter :: 19698 Views :: Chaldean American Professionals

California, USA - From his sixth floor executive office window, Sam Attisha has an unobstructed view of the action on the Padres home field at Petco Park, which, by the way, is 7,713 miles from where Attisha was born 42 years ago — in the fabled, now troubled, capital of Iraq, Baghdad.

Attisha is vice president of business development and external affairs for Cox Communications San Diego.

He was recently named one of San Diego’s Top Influentials by The Daily Transcript newspaper, a plaudit he appreciates, but had to laugh, “It still doesn’t get me much influence over my three boys and my wife.”

Attisha is a combination of outgoing (“You have to be in this job”) and laid-back (enjoying hanging out with his three young sons). He’s tall, 6-foot-2, 220 pounds, with brown eyes, olive complexion, and a bald, neatly shaved head.

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Iraqi Minority Remain Targets Despite Government Claims of Safety
By Sam Yousif :: 44587 Views :: Law & Order, Government & Society, World News & Odds 'N' Ends, Chaldean Justice League

Baghdad, IRAQ – Iraqi Christians march in Mosul and Baghdad and hold prayer vigils in Kirkuk to draw attention to unending murders of minorities in Iraq.   In recent weeks alone, minority men, women, and children have been abducted, killed, raped, harrased, and tortured.  Those surviving have returned with ominous messages that Christians are no longer allowed to be in Iraq. 

Mgr Emil Shimoun Nona of Mosul confirmed that hundreds of families have left Mosul in the last few days, about 600 in a community of some 4,000 people, according to a United Nations report.  The prelate said, “about 400 families have escaped.”

Chaldean Catholic Archbishop Basile Georges Casmoussa of Mosul led over 1,000 Iraqi Catholics in a silent protest on February 28 to demand that the government act to put a stop to violence against Christians there.

The United Nations estimated that 683 Christians fled Mosul between February 20 and February 27. Chaldean Catholic Bishop Emil Shimoun Nona of Mosul estimated that "about 400 families" had left the city's community of 4,000 Christians.

“The daily massacre suffered by the Christian community … is met with indifference from the authorities,” said Archbishop Casmoussa on the eve of the march. “We will be fasting and praying for peace and for the survival of Christians.”

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Baoutha Begins for Chaldeans - 3 Days of Fasting
By Rita Abro :: 50187 Views :: Religion & Spirituality, Chaldean Churches

The English word breakfast, in fact, means the meal that breaks the fast.  Fasting is on the mind of many Chaldeans as they enter their second day of a three day Baoutha fast.  Fasting is the voluntary avoidance of something that is good. When Chaldean Catholics talk about fasting, they normally mean restricting the food that they eat. Depending on the fast, Chaldeans will abstain between meals and the more disciplined and spiritual Chaldeans will fast from mostly all food.

While fasting takes the form of refraining from eating, it is primarily a spiritual discipline designed to tame the body so that the faithful can concentrate on higher things.

Annually Chaldeans fast for three days in observance of Baoutha; a community promise made to God centuries ago. (Click here to learn more about Baoutha)

This year Community leaders are asking Chaldeans to turn their prayers and alms towards the needy of Iraq.  Death tolls continue to skyrocket in Iraq over unsafe conditions and lack of security.  “To put it in perspective it is like ten Haiti in Iraq,” says Andrew Ishaya of Turlock, California.  “It sure would be nice for to have a $60 million telethon for the war causalities.  Until that time, I will use my Baoutha Fast as an appeal for mercy to the innocent men, women, and children of Iraq.  And whatever money I can save from my fast I will donate to an Iraqi orphanage my church is helping to support.”
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Iraq’s Holy Innocents
By Guest Reporter :: 36471 Views :: Government & Society, Opinion and Editorials, World News & Odds 'N' Ends

Iraq, Baghdad – National Review Online’s author, John F. Cullinan, calls into light the sorrowful predicament Chaldeans and other Iraqi Christian minorities have been forced to face.  In his compelling article Cullinan highlights how Chaldeans continue to remain a casualty of American foreign policy - both by and under the leadership of then President Bush and equally now by current American President Obama. 

Cullinan writes about how this small faithful group of Iraqi pacifist has greatly contributed to the tapestry of Iraq’s once great success in tolerance, understanding, and diplomacy is facing near extinction. 

The American-led war in Iraq has savaged the native Iraqis.  A group known for centuries as a root of hope for Iraq is being squashed with little or no sympathy or concern by America. 

Iraq’s Holy Innocents  by John F. Cullinan

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Dog Gone: Florida Health Dept. Tosses Cody Onto The Unemployment Line
By Britney Hermiz :: 37279 Views :: Health & Fitness, Business & Finance, Government & Society

Florida, USA - If you ask the Clearwater BP gas station owner Karim Mansour, he will say they had a bone to pick with Cody and they won.  Florida’s health department inspector says the dog will no longer be able to join his owner to work. 

“Successful Chaldean business owners are known to fight for their employees.  It is perhaps one of the biggest reasons as to why they are successful.  You treat your workers great, they are loyal and work hard to make the business a success,” says Angela Yousif, a member of Clearwater areas Chamber of Commerce. 

Mansour, received a warning from the Florida Department of Health on Thursday, informing him that Cody would have to go or all of the store's food - mostly bottled soda, candy and other snacks - would be declared unfit for consumption.

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Store Owners Faced Civil Lawsuit After Beating Store Robber
By Paul Gori :: 39556 Views :: Law & Order, Business & Finance, Government & Society

Michigan, USA – “It is hard enough to make a living in Michigan. Now we have to give up the right to protect ourselves when our lives are being threatened.  This state is getting way out of control,” says Andrew Gabara, of Clinton Township. 

Gabara’s comments are in light of the ongoing frustration Chaldeans in Clinton Township are feeling regarding the Nick’s Party Stop robbery.  “This state is backward.  They were protecting themselves form being robbed and now they are being sued.  Where is the justice?”

Scott Zielinski, who was found guilty and sentenced to prison for the November 2007 robbing Nick’s Party Stop in Clinton Township sued the store owner and employees from prison for beating him up during the robbery.  John Acho, and three employees including Acho's nephew Justin Kallo, who shot Zielinski twice were named in the suit. 

Zielinski, 23, filed the lawsuit in April after he was shot while robbing the store on Cass Avenue, south of 19 Mile Road, near Chippewa Valley High School. Zielinski, wielding a knife and wearing a mask, entered the store about 7:30 p.m. Nov. 15, 2007, and demanded cash and cigarettes. As he fled out the front door carrying a bag of money and cigarettes, he was shot in the arm.

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Iraqi Police Unable or Unwilling to Stop Christian Attacks
By Amer Hedow :: 62600 Views :: Law & Order, Government & Society, World News & Odds 'N' Ends

Baghdad, IRAQ — Iraqi Chaldeans site that the Najaf local government are playing politics with their lives and livelihood.  “They are telling the people of Najaf that we are not worthy to live in the city, just to win votes,” says Dawood Abdel, a well known Chaldean political commentator in Iraq. 

Local Iraqi authorities have outlawed alcohol in the province of Najaf, home to the holiest Shiite city, saying it contradicts the principles of Islam.  The decision to ban the sale and consumption of alcohol highlights efforts by religious parties to win support with Shiite voters before crucial parliamentary elections this January are causing an alarming spike in attacks against Iraqi Christians.

Alcohol consumption is forbidden under Islam, and liquor stores have often been targeted by both Sunni and Shiite extremists in Iraq.  The stores are widely owned and operated by Iraqi Christians, and the move by the Najaf provincial council is seen as credible proof of the fears among the Christian minority and secular Muslims that religious extremism is growing in the country.

The Najaf provincial council's decision followed a similar measure taken in August by authorities in the southern port city of Basra.  Shortly after the measure in Basra, Christians were targeted and forced to leave the city. 

Khalid al-Jashaami, a Najaf provincial council member says, "In order to protect the holiness of the holy city of Najaf, the provincial council of Najaf decided unanimously to ban the selling and transit of all kinds of alcohol." Al-Jashaami adds that violators will face trial. 

The continual intimidation of Christians grow as Muslim extremist move into government roles, changing laws and justifying the seizure of Christian property.  “They do this slowly and try to hide what they are doing.  They attack any printing house that writes about the laws being written.  They have burned the warehouses and kidnapped the family members.  The police do nothing, but say we are investigating,” says Abdel.

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American Iraqi Business Group Reveals Successful Iraqi Oil Bids Awarded
By David Najor :: 21252 Views :: Business & Finance

Baghdad, IRAQ — Efforts by Western and Iraqi business leaders help secure a new chapter in Iraqi’s economic stability and growth.  A major breakthrough for Iraq’s oil industry is made after three international oil consortiums accept Iraq’s terms to develop two oil fields. 

American Iraqi Business Group (AIBG) chairman, Sam Yono shares that recent developments have changed; more companies have agreed to meet Iraq’s price requirements for oil.   

Yono leads the largest consortium of independent Western businesses seeking to conduct business in Iraq.  AIBG offers education and assistance to Iraqi and Western corporations on securing bids from Iraq and better understanding business opportunities.  The business group helps to form collaboration, consortiums, and build synergies to meet the needs of the reemerging Iraqi market. 

After a successful endeavor of a winning bid for BP-China’s CNPC consortium which bid $2 per barrel produced to develop the 17.8 billion barrel Rumaila field with a targeted production of 2.85 million barrels per day, up from its current nearly one million barrels a day, more oil consortium’s sought to bid more competitively. 

AIBG reports that they can now share that, that a total of three other consortiums also were awarded.  One led by Exxon Mobil and Royal Dutch Shell, another by ConocoPhilips, and a third by Russia’s Lukoil. 

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New York Playhouse Shares the Sufferings of Chaldean Mothers
By Mary Esho :: 18382 Views :: Sports, Art, and Entertainment

New York, USA –Basima is a Chaldean victim of an accident that kills almost her entire family, including her husband and her newborn baby; she takes off her head scarf, revealing the burns on her face.  She sits before an audience sharing her private hell and the suffering of the Iraqi people. 

On the stage of the New York Theater Workshop creators, Erik Jenson (co-writer) and Jessica Blank (writer and director) share the personal tragedies of Iraqi citizens during the war.  The play titled “Aftermath” in its final week of performance has earned impressive reviews as it depicts the private experiences of Iraqis.  Including the hardest hit and most vulnerable among Iraqi citizens, Chaldeans.   Leila Buck, plays a Chaldean dermatologist forced to treat the wounded against her will. 

The play tries to show the war’s continual effect on ordinary Iraqis widely ignored by media coverage since a new president was elected in the United States.  A voice-over during the play explains how over four million Iraqis remain refugees from their land. 

From the stage a young attractive woman softly murmurs, “Most Americans don’t know what a bomb sounds like. You don’t feel your eardrums, from the sound. We also don’t know what it smells like after the bomb has hit the target.”

“You don’t get that from TV,” the translator adds.

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Chaldean Leaders and ROTC Together See a Brighter Future for Chaldean Students
By CE&CC :: 44472 Views :: Career & Education

Michigan, USA - With the help of Chaldean leaders, a Michigan University adds a new home for the Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC).  “The committed support by the College and its patriotic effort to help the United States find the best and brightest is inspirational,” says Randy Zeer.  “I am glad they are here on my campus.  After talking to a professor friend of mine, I am thinking of joining ROTC myself.”

Wayne State's College of Engineering is host to the Army Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) program.  ROTC’s mission is to train students, build character and provide leadership experience, says Capt. Charles Caruana, assistant professor of military science, and recruiter and commander of the Wayne State unit.

Jonathan Yono joined the ROTC last January. He is a junior at Wayne State double-majoring in French and Arabic with a minor in Middle Eastern studies. He explains how his experience will be utilized later on. “Officers must have university education (at least a bachelor’s degree). What we study is up to us, but we bring different things to the Army. ROTC is designed to find people with different skills and train officers to use these skills to the benefit of the country.”

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American CIA Director Goes on Sales Pitch
By Sam Yousif :: 16764 Views :: Government & Society

Michigan, USA -  “Chaldeans remain unsure about the sincerity and commitment of the current U.S. administration policies,” says Mathew Qashat, 26, of Wayne State University.  The part-time law student rejected an invitation to join other Chaldean Christians, as well as Muslim Arabs, to hear CIA Director Leon Panetta speak.  The outspoken law student has studied Middle Eastern affairs and plans on practicing international law.  Qashat is fluent in three languages and stands to be the type of candidate the U.S. would want to appeal to as a new chapter in Middle Eastern diplomacy is being built. 

“To me, it is a dog and pony show.  What this administration needs to make clear is that they can be trusted.  With each new administration we have promises being broken and backs being stabbed.  Obama’s administration needs to show real tangible support, both in America and abroad in areas of security, economic recovery, and accountability.” 

Panetta visited Dearborn in an effort to boost CIA recruitment efforts in Arab and Muslim communities, where the agency hopes to attract more applicants with Middle Eastern language and cultural expertise.

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8 Free Business Growth Solutions
By CE&CC :: 31787 Views :: Business & Finance, Chaldean Education & Career Center

When sales slump due to a slow economy, a Chaldean business owner’s first inclination is often to cut the marketing budget. After all, one has fixed costs and cash flow can be irregular. But marketing should be the last activity Chaldeans eliminate or you risk an even faster downward spiral.

Advertising your business and attracting new customers must be an ongoing process, and there are many things Chaldean entrepreneurs can do that cost absolutely nothing.

Here are just a few suggestions.

Present

Professional event and meeting planners are always looking for presenters and workshop leaders for conferences. Chaldean entrepreneurs can research contact names in the Directory of Event Planners or partner with a local church, community center, or event planner to organize a community workshop related to your expertise.  When you do get the opportunity to make a presentation or speak to group of people, be sure to collect business cards for a drawing to win a book or other prize related to your business.

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The Softer Side of Caring for Chaldean Elders
By Latifa Seeba :: 29932 Views :: Living & Lifestyle, Community & Culture

Who are the elders in your family? The obvious answer is that they are your parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, and eldest cousins -- basically, any relative who's getting up in years. But that doesn't really answer the question, does it? In a Chaldean family, there is a big difference between being elderly and being an elder.

Chaldean Elders are the people we respect and turn to for answers and perspective, thanks to their many years of life. Most of all, they are the people who raised you and your loved ones and helped you grow into the people you are. For several decades, they carried the burden of caring for your family and leading it to better times. Now it's your turn to dote on them. Ensuring the welfare of our elders should come as naturally to us as raising our children.

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