Iraq in Minnesota

CONTEXT ON DEADLINE

An Information Resource
for Journalists & Citizens

The Iraqi Community in Minnesota
A background essay.

Minnesota Resources on Iraq
      Iraqis Living in Minnesota
      Iraq Experts for Interview
      International Associations in Minnesota
      Mosques in Minnesota

National Resources on Iraq
      Iraq Background
            Culture and Society
            Books
            Documents,
            Articles
            Maps
      
Postwar Iraq
            The Major Iraqi Opposition Groups
            Iraqi Exile Independence Groups
            Reconstruction
            Humanitarian Aid
            Humanitarian News Services
            United Nations
            Human Rights
       Experts for Interview
            Reconstruction & Democratization
            Iraqi Politics
            Humanitarian Issues
            Military Affairs
            Terrorism
            Islam
            Oil
            U.S.-Arab Relations
       Institutional Interview Lists


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THE IRAQI COMMUNITY IN MINNESOTA

Iraqis have been immigrating to the United States at the rate of several thousand a year for the past two decades. The latest peak period was in 1993 and 1994, when more than 10,000 Iraqis immigrated to the United States after the first Gulf War. Today there are about 90,000 U.S. residents who were born in Iraq, according to the 2000 Census.

It’s a difficult number to pin down, however, as three minority groups that have historically been oppressed in Iraq – the Chaldeans, the Assyrians, and the Kurds – make up a disproportionately large number of Iraqi refugees in the United States. Many of them don't consider themselves as Iraqis as such and for that reason, among several others, would be unlikely to identify themselves that way on the census forms.

The Chaldeans, from northern Iraq, are Catholics and have settled in the U.S. largely in and around Dearborn, Michigan. The Assyrians, named after the ancient Mesopotamian empire that ruled from 2400 BC to 612 B.C., are mostly Christian, speak Assyrian, and are also from northern Iraq. They have settled mostly in Los Angeles and Chicago.

The Chaldeans and Assyrians are among the most vocal Iraqi immigrants in the United States, yet in Iraq together make up less than 3% of Iraq’s 24 million population.

The Kurds, the largest of the three Iraqi immigrant groups in the U.S., is also a large ethnic group in Iraq, where about 20% of Iraqis are Kurds. A stateless people who live in southern Turkey and northern Iraq, the chemical bombing of a Kurdish village in northern Iraq, Halabja, which killed 5,000 in 1988, was cited by the U.S. government as one reason it attacked Iraq to unseat Saddam Hussein. About 500 Kurdish refugees from Iraq have settled in Fargo and West Fargo, North Dakota.

There are sprinklings of all three groups in Minnesota, where 468 Iraqis were counted in the 2000 Census. That number is widely considered an undercount, however, because refugees who don’t speak English often don’t fill out the census forms. In addition, many Chaldeans, Assyrians, and Kurdish Iraqis probably did not count themselves as Iraqis.

Deborah Pierce, a Special Agent of the FBI’s Minneapolis office, which interviewed Minnesota Iraqis for homeland security purposes in late 2002 and early 2003, says about 1,000 Iraqis live in the metropolitan area alone. There are concentrations of Iraqi-born Americans and permanent residents in Fridley, Coon Rapids, and Brooklyn Park.

The most prominent Iraqi exile in Minnesota is Abbas Mehdi, a professor of sociology at St. Cloud State University and the founder of the Union of Independent Iraqis, an opposition group to Saddam Hussein. Now a U.S. citizen, Mehdi immigrated in 1982 after being warned his life was in danger in Iraq for criticizing Saddam’s regime. An outspoken opponent of Saddam, Mehdi has also been critical of the U.S. for its sanctions program against Iraq, and also for invading Iraq without wide international support.

MINNESOTA RESOURCES ON IRAQ

IRAQ & MIDDLE EAST EXPERTS IN MINNESOTA

RAQUI ASSAAD
Arab-American Cultural Institute, Board Member
Associate Professor, Hubert Humphrey Institute
Phone: (612) 625-4856
Email: rassaad@hhh.umn.edu
Interviewed on MPR “Word of Mouth” Friday, April 11
Arab-American Cultural Institute: www.aaci-us.org

J. BRIAN ATWOOD
Dean, Hubert Humphrey Institute
Former administrator for USAID and coordinator of the Kosovo
humanitarian relief effort during the Clinton administration
Member, Council of Foreign Relations Project on Rebuilding Iraq
Phone: (612) 625-0669
Email: jbatwood@hhh.umn.edu

SHAHZAD BASHIR
Assistant Professor of Religion, Carleton College
Specialty is Islam and Middle East history and culture
Phone: 507-646-4227
E-mail: sbashir@carleton.edu

ADEEB KHALID
Associate Professor of History, Carleton College
Specialty is Middle East history, Iran and Iraq
Phone: 507-646-4214
E-mail: akhalid@carleton.edu

MICHAEL BARNETT
Professor of Political Science, University of Wisconsin
Director of International Relations program
Specialty is Middle East politics 
Phone: 608-263-2036
Fax: 608-265-2663
E-mail: mbarnett@polisci.wisc.edu

PAUL SHARP
Director, Alworth Institute of International Studies, U of M Duluth
E-mail: alworth@d.umn.edu

RONALD KREBS
Assistant Professor, Political Science, University of Minnesota
Speciality is international relations
E-mail: rkrebs@polisci.umn.edu

SHAZAD BASHIR
Assistant Professor of Religion, Carleton College
Speciality is Islam and Sufism
Phone: 507-646-4227
Fax: 507-646-4223
E-mail: sbashir@carleton.edu
Home Page

ETHAN KAPSTEIN
Harold Stassen Professor in International Peace
Director, Stassen Center in International Peace and Security
Specializes in international economic relations and national security
Phone: 612-626-9546
E-mail: ekapstein@hhh.umn.edu

JAMES W. LAINE
Professor of Religious Studies, Macalester College
Specializes in Islam and Catholicism
Phone: 651-696-6789
E-mail: laine@macalester.edu 

ANDREW LATHAM
Assistant Professor of Political Science, Macalester College
Speciality is conventional weapons and nuclear proliferation
Phone: 651-696-6549
E-mail: latham@macalester.edu

AHMED SAMATAR
Dean of International Studies, Macalester College
Phone: 651-696-6564
E-mail: samatar@macalester.edu

ROBERT FLATEN
Ambassador in Residence, St. Olaf University
Former U.S. Ambassador to Rwanda with experience in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Israel, etc.
E-mail: flater@stolaf.edu

LORAMY GERSTBAUER
Professor of Political Science, St. Olaf University
Speciality is international relations and NGOs
Phone: 507-933-7421
E-mail: mgerstba@gustavus.edu

CAESAR E. FARAH
Professor of Arabic, University of Minnesota
Phone: 612-624-0580
Fax: 612-624-9383
E-mail: farah001@maroon.tc.umn.edu

CHARLES A PIKE
Assistant Professor of Arabic, University of Minnesota
Phone: 612-624-9847

INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS IN MINNESOTA
        Minnesota International Center
        International Institute of Minnesota
        Center for Victims of Torture (Serves 12 Iraqis out of 240 refugees)
        Peace Resource Center (University of Minnesota)
        Stassen Center on International Peace (HHH Institute)
        Carleton College -- Conversation on Iraq
        Kessel Institute for the Study of Peace and Change

         MOSQUES IN MINNESOTA

NATIONAL RESOURCES ON IRAQ

BACKGROUND INFORMATION
      Iraqi Culture and Society
            Iraq Country ReportIraq Country Report (CIA)
            Iraq Country Briefing (U.S. Department of Energy)
            Iraq Consular Information Sheet (U.S. State Department)
            Future of Iraq Project (U.S. State Department)
            Iraq Country Profile (Reuters)
            Iraq: The Country (Council on Foreign Relations)
            Resources on Iraq (Brookings Institution)
      Books on Iraq
            Republic of Fear: The Politics of Modern Iraq, by Kanan Makiya
            The Reckoning: Iraq and the Legacy of Saddam Hussein, by Sandra Mackey
            The New Iraq: Rebuilding the Country for its People, the Middle East, and the World,
                   by Joseph Braude
            The Threatening Storm: The Case for Invading Iraq, by Kenneth Pollack
            A History of Iraq, by Charles Tripp
      Documents
            U.S.-Iraq Policy Documents
            Iraq's WMD -- CIA 2002 Report
            Apparatus of Lies -- White House Report 2002
            Transition to Democracy in Iraq
            Claims and Evaluations of Iraq's WMDs
            Center for Non-Proliferation Studies: Iraq's Weapons
      Articles
            Iraqi International Debt
            Iraq: The Day After
            U.S. Policy on Iraq -- Public Documents
            Iraq: The Fifty-First State?
            War in Iraq: Political Challenges After the Conflict
      Maps
            Perry-Castaneda Map Collection
            Christian Science Monitor
            Iraq War Map (Strategypage.com)
            Baghdad War Map (Strategypage.com)
            BBC Interactive Maps
            The Guardian of London
            New York Times Interactive Maps
            National Geographic Maps of Iraq
            CASI Map

POSTWAR IRAQ      

      The Major Iraqi Opposition Groups
            Iraqi National Congress
            Iraqi National Accord
            Kurdistan Democratic Party
            Patriotic Union of Kurdistan
            Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq
            Constitutional Monarcy Movement
            Iraq's Possible Successors (CBC) (CBC)
            Who's Who in Iraqi Opposition (BBC) (BBC)
            Iraqi Opposition Groups (Council on Foreign Relations)

      Iraqi Independence Groups
            Iraqi Democratic Union
            Iraqi Forum for Democracy
            Iraqi Prospect Organization
            Women for a Free Iraq
            Iraqi-American Council
            Iraq Research and Documention Report
            Education for Peace in Iraq
            The Iraq Foundation
            Iraq Action Coalition
            INDICT
     

      Reconstruction
            U.S. Government -- Reconstruction Response in Iraq
            The Commission on Post-Conflict Resolution
            UnderSec-Def Douglas Feith's Postwar Iraq Blueprint
            Condoleeza Rice Press Statement on Iraq Reconstruction
            USAID, Office of Transition Initiatives
            USAID -- RFPs & Awards for Iraq Reconstruction
      

      Humanitarian Aid Efforts
            International Rescue Committee Iraq Emergency Assistance Effort
            International Committee of the Red Cross
            World Health Organization
            Mercy Corps
            Oxfam
            Catholid Relief Services -- Iraq Humanitarian Response
            CARE -- Iraq Regional Crisis Response
            Save the Children -- Enters Iraq
            Amnesty International -- Crisis in Iraq
      

      Humanitarian News Services & Studies
            ReliefWeb Headlines
            AlertNet Headlines (Reuters)
            Amnesty International -- Civilians Under Fire in Iraq
            Human Rights Watch -- Background on the War in Iraq
            International Crisis Group -- Managing Humanitarian Relief in Iraq
      

      United Nations
            UNDP -- Humanitarian Action Plan for Iraq
            UNOHCI -- Humanitarian Situation Report in Iraq
            UNICEF -- The Situation of Women and Children
            Humanitarian Information Center for Iraq
      

      Human Rights
            Human Rights Watch: Report on Iraq
            Amnesty Internationa: Report on Iraq


EXPERTS FOR INTERVIEW

Iraq Reconstruction & Democratization

            REND RAHIM FRANCKE
            Iraq Foundation
            Phone: 202-347-4662
            Fax: (202) 347-7897 & 7898

            KANAN MAKIYA
            Author of Republic of Fear (see “Books” above)
           
c/o Harvard University, Center of Middle Eastern Studies
            Phone: (617) 495-4055 (
            E-Mail: mideast@fas.harvard.ed
            c/o Eleana Benador
            E-Mail eb@benadorassociates.com


            SHIBLEY TELHAMI
            Anwar Sadat Professor of Peace, University of Maryland
            Phone: 301-405-6734
            E-mail: stelhami@umd.edu
            E-mail: STELHAMI@GVPT.UMD.EDU
            Website
          

            FEISAL ISTRABANDI
            Vice-president and co-founder of the Iraqi Forum for Democracy
            Phone: 714-939-6154
            Fax: 714-939-6391
            E-mail: info@iraqfd.org

            ROBERT JOHANSEN
            Senior Fellow, Kroc Institute for Peace Studies
            Professor of Political Science, Notre Dame University
            Specializes in issues of international ethics and global governance.
            Phone: 574-631-6971
            Fax: 574-631-6973
            E-mail: Johansen.2@nd.edu
           
          
            RUTH WEDGWOOD
            Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations
            Phone: (202) 663-5618
            Beeper (888)-319-6920
            E-mail: ruth.wedgwood@yale.edu
            Professor of International Law and Diplomacy, Johns Hopkins SAIS
            Phone: 663-5618

            PATRICK CLAWSON
            Deputy Director, Washington Institute for Near East Policy
            Specializes in post-Saddam Iraq and Middle East politics and policy
            Phone: 202-452-0650
            E-mail: patrickc@washingtoninstitute.org
            Website

            JONATHAN BRAUDE
            Author of The New Iraq (see “Books” above)
            Senior Analyst, Pyramid Corporation
            Phone: 617 494 1515, ext 344
            E-mail: jbraude@pyr.com

Iraqi Politics

            SANDRA MACKEY
            Author of The Reckoning (see “Books” above)
            Lives in Atlanta (unpublished phone number)
            Reachable through W.W. Norton Publicity Department
            Phone: 212-869-0856
            E-mail: publicity@wwnorton.com

            SIYAMEND OTHMAN
            Senior Vice President, UPI
            An Iraqi Kurd and an expert on Kurdish Iraq
            Phone: 202.898.8000

Humanitarian

            RICK MCDOWELL
            Relief worker in Jordan working on Iraq relief activities
            E-mail: rjpmcd@aol.com

            BITTA MOSTOFI and DANNY MULLER
            Coordinators, Iraq Peace Team
            E-mails: vitw@vitw.org, www.iraqpeaceteam.org


            ANDY SHALLAL
            Founder, Iraqi-Americans for Peaceful Alternatives
            E-mail: ashallal@cox.net

            CHARLES WILLIAMS MAYNES
            President, The Eurasia Foundation
            Phone: 202-234-7370
            Fax: 202-234-7377

Military Affairs

            WILLIAM NASH
            Director, Center for Preventive Action
            Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations
            Specialty is military affairs. He’s a retired general; served in Desert Storm.
            Tel: (202) 518-3423 or (202) 518-3456
            E-mail: wnash@cfr.org


            ANTHONY CORDESMAN
            Arleigh A. Burke Chair in Strategy, the Center for Strategic and
            International Studies
            Speciality is Middle East security, lessons of modern war
            Phone: (202) 775-3270
            E-mail: acordesman@aol.com


            MICHAEL O’HANLON
            Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy Studies, The Brookings Institution
            Specializes in Iraq policy, military technology, missile defense, peacekeeping             
            Phone: (202) 797-6176
            Fax: (202) 797-6003


Terrorism

           STEPHEN ZUNES
            Professor of politics, University of San Francisco
            Author of Tinderbox: U.S. Middle East Policy and the Roots of
            Terrorism
            Phone: 415-422-6981
            Cell: 831-234-9468
            E-mail: Stephen@coho.org

Islam

           BERNARD LEWIS
           Professor, Near Eastern Studies
           Princeton University
           Phone: 609-258-5489
           Fax: 609-258-1242

           SEYYED HOSSEIN NASR
           University Professor of Islamic Studies at George Washington
           University
           Author, Islam: Religion, History, and Civilization
           Office: 2130 H Street NW, Gelman, Room 709R
           Phone: 202-994-5704
           Email: zsirat@gwu.edu
           Website

Oil
            RAAD ALKADIRI
            Director, PFC Energy, Washington
             Phone: (202) 872-1199
            Fax: (202) 872-1219
            Website

            JAMES PAUL
            Executive director, Global Policy Forum
            Author of “Oil in Iraq: The Heart of the Crisis”
            Phone: 202 557-3161 or 212-724-1572
            E-mail: james.paul@globalpolicy.org
            Website

            PETER SCHWARTZ
            Global Business Network
            Specialty is scenario planning.
            Phone: 510-547-6822
            Fax: 510-547-8510
            Website

U.S.-Arab Relations  

            JACK SHAHEEN
            Professor at Southern Illinois University
            Author, Real Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People
            Specialty is stereotyping of Arabs in Wester media

            Phone: (843) 689-9214

            ROGER NORMAND
            Executive Director, Center for Economic and Social Rights
            Phone: 718-237-9145
            E-mail: rnormand@cesr.org
            Website

INTERVIEW LISTS OF IRAQ AND MIDDLE EAST EXPERTS