From Baghdad to Israel to Canada to the United States — that is the capsulized version of the life of Daniel Khazzoom, the youngest son of a prominent Baghdad attorney who now lives in Sacramento.
Khazzoom will discuss his published memoir, “No Way Back: The Journey of a Jew From Baghdad,” at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 2, at The Avid Reader, 617 Second St. in downtown Davis.
His talk will concentrate on the book chapter, “A History of Violence,” which describes the growing anti-Semitic hatred that swept Iraq from World War II through later years, despite more than 2,000 years of Jewish life in the land of Babylon, which for many centuries was the center of world Judaism. The terror reached a high point in 1941 when Khazzoom and his family survived the Nazi-led massacre of Iraqi Jews.
In 1951 at the age of 18, he left Iraq for Israel, part of the massive exodus of 900,000 Jews from Arab lands (125,000 from Iraq) in the aftermath of Israel’s creation. Khazzoom became the first Israeli in 1957 to attend Harvard, earning a Ph.D. in economics. In later years he taught at McGill, Cornell, NYU, San Jose State, Stanford and UC Berkeley. He became well-known for his breakthrough research in quantitative energy modeling — a field he co-founded.