General Abizaid

Koontz John E John.Koontz at
Thu Mar 9 00:35:51 UTC 2006

On Wed, 8 Mar 2006, Anthony Grant wrote:
> As far as I know, he's just a Christian Arab.  I've never heard Lakota
> ancestry claimed for him in the British press, who would be sure to pick
> up on such a thing for its 'novelty' value.  (I recall that much was
> made in the UK press of George Mitchell's largely Lebanese ancestry
> during the Ulster peace talks, and again because it was a 'novelty'.)
> Most Brits know nothing of the historical demographics of the 'Rustbelt'
> and are completely unaware that there are any Arab Americans apart from
> Jamie Farr.

Probably today it would be Paula Abdul.  However, Americans themselves are
always a bit surprised at the number of Arab Americans.  My favorite
example (Lebanese) is Richard "Dick Dale" Mansour.

Bruce Ingham (shokoohbanou at 03/08/06 7:46 pm
> I was told these names went back to "Syrian"  forefathers who had
> married into the tribe.  'Syrian' at that period, I suppose 19th
> Century, would probably mean Lebanese and probably Arab Christians who
> had come maybe via the French in Canada.

I could be wrong, but I think Syrian in American ethnic parlance (if not
referring to someone recently arrived from modern Syria) is usually a
variant (shading into a reduction) of Assyrian and refers to theoretically
Aramaic-speaking Nestorian Christians from the Near East, or perhaps to
anybody of Near Eastern origin who claims to be Semitic, but not
Arab or Jewish.

It's a bit like trying to figure out the subdivisions of the Dakota, only
much harder.

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