“What is not lost is the rich culture of the Syrian Jews that has endured the waves of persecution and exile and can still be found in resettled communities across the world. For example, the musical maqam, or melodic pattern, is still heard in prayers as well as Mizrahi songs played at Syrian Jewish weddings and celebrations; the traditional cuisines of kibbeh, yebra, borekas, and lahmagene are prepared at home and in local Syrian restaurants; distinct phrases embellish everyday language in communities such as Brooklyn’s Syrian neighborhoods, and traditional hymns (Pizmonim) and prayers are recited and remain intact.

Although any hopes for Syrian Jews of a return to Syria have been shattered by the current conflict, the recent evacuation symbolizes a long-awaited end to Syria’s original refugee crisis, one that extends far beyond the ongoing Syrian civil war.”

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