Recovered from the Wayback Machine.
There is so much to be concerned about with Iraq now. The people, and their continued survival. People being fed, given water, feeling secure. The end to fighting so that re-building can occur.
Unfortunately, when the re-building occurs, it will be too late to save one aspect or Iraqi culture that all of us share – our historic heritage.
In Beautiful Protest I talked about the Ziggerat or Ur, the site of the first known city. In Beautiful Protest Bridges of Brick, I talked about Iraq as the source of religion, of culture, of community. In this one country resides some of the most exquisite artifacts of our past. Steps still exist in Iraq that were once walked by Abraham, the father of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
At least, I think they still exist.
Catching up on my reading, I found this at ABC News:
So far, reports suggest U.S. troops have treaded over at least one site ancient Babylon. The Reuters news agency said that U.S. forces had moved through the location of the ancient King Nebuchadnezzar’s city on Wednesday. A tank from the 101st Airborne Division rumbled onto the main Babylon site, containing elaborate reconstructions of the city. A general rebuked the move.
“We just can’t have that,” the general said, according to Reuters
“If there is a time when you’re going to lose the collection it’s now during this volatile transition between Saddam Hussein’s regime and whatever comes next,” said Elizabeth Stone, an archaeologist at State University of New York in Stony Brook. “Even here when Hurricane Gloria came through, people were looting and doing outrageous things.
“And that was just a hurricane. This is a regime change.”
In the London Times:
In the capital mobs looted the country’s largest archeological museum, and US troops shot and killed a shopkeeper who was defending his premises with a Kalashnikov rifle against looters. In the southern city of Basra, Irish Guards shot dead five looters after the gang opened fire on them.
From the Times of Oman:
Mobs also looted Baghdad’s cultural and historic treasures, including Iraq’s largest archaeological museum, as shopkeepers resorted to arming themselves amid a collapse in authority after US troops routed Saddam Hussein’s regime.
A dozen looters helped themselves undisturbed in ground floor rooms at the National Museum of Iraq, where pottery artefacts and statues were seen broken or overturned and administrative offices were wrecked.
The museum housed a major collection of antiquities, including a 4,000-year-old silver harp from Ur.
I wonder if the harp will escape being melted down?
Reports coming out of Baghdad (and just confirmed by ABC News) indicate that mobs have looted Iraq’s largest acheological museum amid a breakdown in civil authority following the collapse of Saddam Hussein’s regime.
Lotters helped themselves to treasures in the National Museum of Iraq, which housed the remains of ancient civilizations, one of the richest archeological heritages in the world.
And there’s more.
Read the story? Watched the Movie? Now own a piece of your own.
Iraq: Coming soon to an eBay near you.