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Saturday, May 29, 2004

What was a 1568 Venetian chumash (Jewish bible)
doing in Iraqi secret police headquarters?

Iraqi Jewish treasures in Limbo (sic; they're in the US)
JTA: Rare Jewish artifacts unearthed during the Iraq war remain in limbo. A centuries-old Bible from 1568 Venice and other Jewish books, pamphlets and scrolls discovered by U.S. officials in the bombed-out headquarters of the Iraqi secret police face questions of ownership and who will pay to save them, the Associated Press reported. The documents, many water-logged and later dried and packed into 27 trunks, are now housed in a National Archives laboratory after being freeze-dried to prevent further deterioration. The papers remain of great interest in part because they could tell much about Baghdad’s Jews, who numbered 100,000 after World War II but have dwindled to a handful today.
More on this at The Art Newspaper .com,

and photos here.