The Last Assyrians is a film on the survival of the Aramaic-speaking Christians (Assyrians, Chaldeans, Syriacs). The U.S. edition is the English version.
The Assyrians/Chaldeans/Syriacs are an Aramaic-speaking people, known in post-Saddam Iraq by the official name 'Chaldo-Assyrians'. They were among the first peoples to convert to Christianity. They still speak Aramaic, the language spoken by Jesus.
Members of the Chaldean Catholic Church, Assyrian Church of the East, Syriac Orthodox and Syriac Catholic Churches, these refugees from Iraq, Turkey, Syria and Iran claim to be descendants of the peoples of ancient Mesopotamia. They were the first to evangelize China and Mongolia during the Golden Age of the Arabic Empire. In 1915, together with the Armenians, they were victims of a genocide and many fled to Europe and the United States. Few of them are now remaining in Tur Abdin.
There are still more than 700,000 Assyrians/Chaldeans/Syriacs in Iraq today and the Assyrian Democratic Movement, one of their political organizations, is working to help to maintain their culture. Nowadays they are threatened by Islamic extremists, and in fleeing to Western countries they run the risk of losing the culture and traditions that they have managed to preserve until now. A knowledge of their past will help us to understand their situation in the Middle East of today and the position and responsibility of the Western bloc towards them.
This film is the result of 6 years of research, travels and shooting in Iraq (before and after March 2003), southeast Turkey, Syria, USA, and Europe. Patriarchs, archbishops, priests, and scholars join in relating this long and tragic history.
Length of film: 53 min.