Sharrukin – an Assyrian Version of Braveheart

sharrukin_by_hanna_hajjar1.jpgBy Augin Kurt
ACSA — Those of us, who have seen the movie Braveheart, with Mel Gibson, or Gladiator with Russell Crowe, have reason to long for an Assyrian counterpart dealing with our several thousand years old rich history and our struggle for survival.

Hanna Hajjar, living in Los Angeles, has now initiated that job with his absolutely fresh and very interesting, action filled historical fiction novel titled SHARRUKIN – The True King. What remains is only for a movie producer to take on the wonderful story of how a young prince unites his people and reclaims his rightful throne. The story also bridges to today”s persecuted Assyrians in Iraq, who still live in their ancestral historical land – The heartland of Assyria.

The Story of Sharrukin, better known as Sargon the Great, who built the first great empire in history, is Hanna Hajjar’s debuting novel. Hajjar is an engineer who resides in California and has his family’s origins goes back to Urhoy/Edessu.

I have not had the chance to meet Hanna in person yet, but from our decade-long correspondence, I know that he has a genuine interest in Assyrian history and archeology. I also know that he is well-read and very familiar with what he says about our origins, with his logical and analytical views on how to interpret archaeological discoveries, and linguistic development. What adds value to his novel is the rich Appendix at the end of the book, with interesting names of Assyrian persons and places that permeate the book, explaining Assyrian names and terms used, listing Assyrian military ranks and royal titles, all Assyrian Kings’ names and geographic locations of importance to the story – from the Indus valley to the Mediterranean.

Hanna Hajjar writes in the foreword that he feared that the many pages of notes which he had accumulated over the years would remain a stack of paper in the drawer. So instead of waiting until his longer book is completed, he decided to release a shorter version, a handy and easy to read paperback, spiced with proverbs by the sage Ahiqar and the philosopher Bardaisan. The book is written with a rich language. Besides being an engineer, an artist and an inventor, Hanna Hajjar has a talent for narrative and an imagination that is not less than that of the script writers in Hollywood. He is a pioneer, in the past he produced the first Assyrian children’s coloring book, and educational video, and recently the first Assyrian word game on iPhone and iPad. Currently his goal is to turn his novel into a movie for the large screen, and maybe a 3D animated version for children.

Come along and enjoy a breathtaking story of love, adventure, and a struggle for liberating a homeland. But the story doesn’t stop there, it jumps to the 21st century where a new Sharrukin is prophesized about in the Bible; The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment… (Matthew, 12:41). Wishful thinking or truth, those who live will be able to witness!

A translation of the novel to other languages would be a great idea, but a film version would be of an even greater value to portray Assyrian struggle for survival in the 21st century