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库尔德族人在田纳西州的兴起给华人社区带来的思考
作者:Admin  来源:《田纳西新闻》  文字大小:【】【】【


                Touring a Kurdish capital in the US

               

                            2014年库尔德族新年聚会上

In Nashville, Kurdish immigrants have built a community to replace the home many were forced to flee. In a co-production with Tennessee Chinese News and the BBC, Public Radio International's programmer The World took a tour of the area.

Nolensville Pike is on Nashville's south side and is one of the city's most international strips. Stores and restaurants specialize in all things Mexican, Indian, Chinese - the usual suspects in a fast-changing city.

53 District (Nolensville Pike Area) State Representative Candidate John Wang talked to the reporter that he supported Kurdish community over 13 years and has a great relationship with Kurdish.  John Wang said that there's one area off the Pike, at Elysian Fields Road, that stands apart: Little Kurdistan.

          

              2014年7月18日在纳城举行的独立游行

         

             田纳西人报今年8月对库尔德族人的报道

         

         2014年开斋节前夕,John Wang在库尔德朋友家做客

    本报讯 2014年8月以来,英国的BBC和美国的诸多媒体对纳城库尔德族人的兴起进行了采访报道,也引起了田纳西州民众对纳城地区庞大的库尔德族人群的关切。

       库尔德族是中东人口仅次于阿拉伯、土耳其和波斯民族的第四大民族。库尔德人是中东地区最古老的民族之一,相传是圣经中古代米底亚人的后代,两千多年来一直都在库尔德斯坦的山区活动,过去都过著游牧式生活。库尔德族是一个生活于中东地区的游牧民族,总人口约3000万,主分布区位于土耳其、叙利亚、伊拉克、伊朗的交界地带,有少数分布在阿塞拜疆和亚美尼亚山区,居住在自称为“库尔德斯坦”地区,即扎格罗斯山脉和托罗斯山脉的一个面积四十万平方公里的狭长弧形地带。东起伊朗的克尔曼沙汉,西抵土耳其的幼发拉底河,北至苏联亚美尼亚的埃里温,南达伊拉克的基尔库克,远及叙利亚的阿勒颇。

    田纳西州的纳什维尔地区是北美最大的库尔德族人居住地,大约有20,000人,甚至更多。美国的库尔德人,多半来自伊拉克和伊朗,都是以难民的身份在80年代和90年代来到美国。他们多半从事蓝领工作,但是相当大的比例为小业主,从事的行业为车行、修车铺、餐馆、杂货店、加油站等。他们是非常勤劳勤奋的一族,这一点可以和北美华人媲美。

    和田纳西州库尔德族人有很多往来的John Wang 先生,常年支持库尔德族社区。《田纳西新闻》记者采访王先生时,王先生说:“我和库尔德族人第一次直接接触是2001年的912日,那天是911事件的第二天,凌晨我去纳城红十字会献血,结识了库尔德人Raziga Ahmed先生。在数小时的等待中,我们成了朋友,同时发现我们两人分别是各自民族中当天唯一的献血者。”于是,王先生和Ahmed成了好朋友,Ahmed家族成了王先生的保险公司永久的客户。王先生说,他没有想到Ahmed先生现在是北伊拉克库尔德人地区的最著名的领导人之一!

    可以说少许库尔德族语的王先生告诉记者,库尔德族人讲义气、热情,有感恩的心,能歌善舞,希望被尊重,重视家庭,特别喜欢有大家庭的氛围。但是,库尔德族人似乎显得不团结。他们似乎更在乎的是部落而不是民族,很多部落之间来往不多。如果来自相同的国家,例如伊朗的库尔德族,似乎更有认同感。在近期的选举中,纳城库尔德族裔候选人在争取共和党州参议员的候选人,在20多万人群中(大约有10万的选民),仅仅得到341票,可见得库尔德族人之间的离散,缺少凝聚力!

    库尔德族人群的分裂和不团结的原因究竟是什么?这些问题也许值得华人社区的思考。库尔德人大多数都是伊斯兰教信徒,多属于逊尼派,讲库尔德语。记者在走访库尔德族家庭过程中,他们对伊斯兰教的信仰似乎只是一种家庭传统,多数人特别是年轻一代,他们对信仰其实很模糊。很多信徒对伊斯兰教中的其他不同教派持反对的态度,这也是从另外一个角度看到库尔德族人的分裂。

    库尔德族人有着庞大的群体,他们绝大多数是有投票权的公民,也是各位候选人和党派争取的对象,但是由于自身的分裂和不团结,让美国的政治人物和官员们对库尔德族社区不重视。John Wang认为,在北美的库尔德人是华人也是其他民族的一面镜子,如果需要提升我们自身的形象和认知度,华人社区需要团结一致,才能有我们的话语权。

    历史上库尔德国有过短暂存在,亡国已经有三千年之久,近年来库尔德族已有独立建国的声浪,但屡屡遭受土耳其、伊拉克、伊朗等国的压迫。他们有没有复国的可能性?孟菲斯资深圣经学者韦伯先生说:“几乎没有可能!”他说,历史上亡国500年的国家从来没有复国过,只有以色列例外,但是以色列复国是圣经(神)的应许!John Wang支持库尔德人复国,这绝非易事,王先生认为比较可行的是高度自治,但是要让四个国家做出一致决定非常困难,可能还是从伊拉克着手,西方特别是美国在伊拉克有相当大的话语权!王先生强调说,在纳城在美国的库尔德族人需要团结,让候选官员和官员们听到你的声音,一种音调一致的声音!让这些官员们对美国政府施压,做出对库尔德人有利的事情。(华牧、 华悦、阳光联合报道 阳光摄影

It looks like a drab strip mall. But it is far from that.

"You have the mosque here in the center, and to the right you have bakeries, shops and markets - and jewellery shops," says Remziya Suleyman, a 29-year-old community organizer who grew up in the area. "I remember when it was just the mosque and that was all we had."

Suleyman arrived here as a child in the late 1980s after her family fled the Kurdish region of Iraq to escape Saddam Hussein's genocide.

They were part of a wave of refugees from Kurdistan who resettled in Nashville, a relatively affordable place with entry-level jobs that didn't always require English and ties to non-profit organisations like Catholic Charities, which assisted Suleyman's family when they arrived.

The city's Kurdish community grew as the war in the Middle East caused more people to leave Kurdish regions, including those in Iran.

Now Nashville houses the largest Kurdish community in the US, totaling about 13,000 people or more.

Suleyman shows me the Azadi International Food Market. There's a gem tucked away in the back of the market: a bakery where one wall is lined with ovens, including a tandoor, a large, drum-shaped oven. Several workers are kneading dough into long flatbread.

It is tough work. Bakery shifts start at 04:00. One woman kneads for hours. She gestures to a large plastic bucket filled with dough.

"It's heavy," she says in Kurdish. She sticks a dough ball to the sides of the tandoor to bake. Once it begins to puff, she uses tongs to pull the bread off the sides of the oven.

Customers stream in and out, picking up the warm, soft bread.

Sabri Abdullah runs the bakery and market and talks to me while ringing up customers. He got here in 1993, and he tells me he spotted an opportunity in the community.

"I was the first one, and now we have several bakeries trying to do the same thing," he says.

He patrols Nashville's toughest neighborhood, where Yemenis and other Middle Easterners run many of the shops. He says it would be difficult to police his own neighbors.

"You then have to face your community saying, 'Why'd you arrest this young Kurdish guy? Or, why did you do this, why did you do that?'" he says.

Still, he gets calls from neighbors  asking for advice about everything from domestic disputes to parking tickets.

Kurdistan is never far from his thoughts. He visited recently and his ties to the region are strong - his uncle is a peshmerga commander and has faced off against both Saddam Hussein and the Islamic State.

Suleyman says he might have joined his uncle had his family not moved to Nashville.

But he's happy in the US, raising two young boys, and - just as he might have in Kurdistan - trying to keep his community safe.


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