721 BCE

The Exile of Samaria. Ten northern tribes of Israel are exiled by the Assyrians.

597 BCE

The Exile of Jehoiachin. Ten thousand inhabitants of Jerusalem are brought to Babylonia by Nebuchadnezzar.

586 BCE

The Exile of Zidqiah. Forty thousand Jews are exiled to Babylonia following the destruction of King Solomon’s temple.

“By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat and wept, as we remembered Zion.”

331 BCE

Babylonia conquers by the Greeks under Alexander the Great.


Iraq becomes the center of Jewish scholarship and development for the next 500 years. Babylonian Talmud is created in leading Jewish academies of Nehardea, Pumbeditha, and Sura.


Arab Conquest, Islam is proclaimed the official religion of the newly named country, Iraq. Jews adopt Arabic.


Period of Jewish persecution, where no new synagogues are allowed to be erected. Rabbi’s flee Sura, an Iraqi Jewish center of learning.


Baghdad is conquered by Shiite Moslems

1058 – 1900

Succession of conquest’s in Iraq include: Turkish, Mongol, Turkish, and Persian. Jewish population ranges from 40,000-80,000.


British Mandate of Iraq begins. Jews play a central role.


Iraq gains independence from British. Prime Minister, Rasheed Ali welcomes Nazi propagandists’ and extremists into Iraq. Germans begin inciting hatred against Iraqi Jews.


June 1st -2nd. Mufti-inspired, pro-Nazi coup leads to the Farhood. Violent riots and a pogrom in Baghdad, during the Jewish holiday of Shavuot, leaving nearly 300 Jews killed and over 2,000 wounded.

1941- 1951

More than 15,000 Jews flee Iraq through Iran. Outbreaks of anti-Jewish rioting.


Iraqi Army participates in war against Israel. Headlines in Iraq read that “The fate of the Jews will be either the grave or the sea.” Jewish community of Iraq is composed of about 130,000 individuals.


Zionism is added to article 51 of the Criminal Code in Iraq with death as the punishment. 1,500 Jews are imprisoned, some of whom are tortured and killed. Homes are confiscated, Jews are forbidden to engage in foreign trade, and businesses are boycotted.


Jewish citizens are allowed to leave Iraq on the condition that they renounce their citizenship. The Jewish agency evacuates 104,000 Jews in Operation’s Ezra and Nechemia. Separately, some 20,000 Jews are smuggled out through Iran.


6,000 Jews remain in Iraq and the government once again bans Jews from emigrating.


3,000 remaining Jews are severely persecuted with arbitrary arrests and economic isolation. Saddam Hussean orders 9 Jewish men publicly hanged in Baghdad and Basra upon the discovery of an alleged local “spy ring,” others died of torture.


Remaining Jews are quietly allowed to leave.


Less than 10 Jews remain.