Monday, March 29, 2010

The Dove Flyer

The first of Eli Amir's sort-of-biographical novels, Mafriach Hayonim, has finally been translated to English (available only at, with the title The Dove Flyer).

Amir, a prominent figure of the Left, was born in Baghdad and came to Israel in 1949. This is the fascinating story of the last years of a Jewish community which existed for 2,500 uninterrupted years. It spans the period of 1941-1948, between the Nazi-inspired mass pogrom of 1941 and the exodus-expulsion of some 200,000 Iraqi Jews after the creation of the State of Israel. It's the story of the diversity of Baghdad's Jews and the implacable hatred of the Iraqis towards them. It's a story of terror, of hope, and of mass uprooting. It's a story of Baghdad, a live city the author still sorely misses, though he hasn't been there for a lifetime. It's not the Baghdad you read about in the newspapers. It's a memorable story. If you can't read it in Hebrew, try the English.

1 comment:

bataween said...

I wouldn't say that the Iraqis felt 'implacable hatred' towards the Jews, in fact Amir's book is remarkable for showing a range of different Arab attitudes and emotions. But the Jews only survive under the protection and tutelage of the Muslims.
Book review here: