Ezra Menachem Daniel Sports Club at Baghdad, Iraq


Formerly a sports club and social center for Jewish students, the club was one of the most modern sports fields in Baghdad. It included a large stadium, tennis courts, basketball and volleyball areas, and a food stall. The government took it over in 1967, following the Six-Day War.1 Since then, it has been used as an army club.2


Ezra Menachem Daniel The sports club was named for its founder, philanthropist Ezra Menachem Daniel. Born in Baghdad in 1874, Daniel was an Iraqi senator and member of the Administrative Council of the vilayet of Baghdad. He was also an active member of the Red Crescent society, the Iraqi Aviation Society, and the Society to Fight Tuberculosis.3 In addition to establishing the club, Daniel’s philanthropic works included opening a hospital in his family home and working to introduce new farming techniques. As a senator, he opposed expanding the monarchy’s powers, and condemned the government’s requirement for Jews who left the country to give up their citizenship. He died in 1951.4


[1] Wien, Peter. Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World. “Daniel, Ezra Menahem.” Brill Online, 2014. Accessed June 25, 2014. http://0-referenceworks.brillonline.com.luna.wellesley.edu/entries/encyclopedia-of-jews-in-the-islamic-world/daniel-ezra-menahem-SIM_0006190

[2] Wikimapia. "Baghdad - نادي الجيش." Last modified 2010. Accessed June 24, 2014. http://wikimapia.org/3544503/The-Army-sports-club-ex-The-jewish-students-sports-club

[3] Wien. "Daniel, Ezra Menahem." 

[4] Ibid.

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