Friday, September 26, 2014

Syria's lost antiquities

So many priceless antiquities, historical monuments and edifices built by the ancient inhabitants of Syria have been destroyed during the last 3+ years.... first by the "moderate jihadis" who are armed and funded by the USA and now by the delightful "less moderate jihadis" of the wahhabi strain. Moreover, countless antiques have already been stolen just like how the looters took advantage of the upheaval in Egypt to lay waste to some museums in Cairo.  
Let's hope the effort underway to save at least a part of Syria's heritage from the cavemen will prove to be a success when peace is finally restored .... if ever.

From MiddleEastEye:
'The saddest museum director in the world': documenting Syria’s lost antiquities.
Historians and museum staff struggle to rescue 300,000 ancient treasures from Syria’s museums and 100,000 historic sites

The glass cases stand empty, their precious contents stripped and gone. Priceless artefacts that once graced the National Museum in Damascus from the dozens of cultures and religions that make Syria's heritage unique in the Middle East have vanished, leaving nothing but dusty shelves behind.

Yet, Professor Abdulkarim Maamoun, the General Director of antiquities and museums, counts this as a success and the fruit of one of the largest preservation projects in history. Staff began hiding the museum's treasures more than two years ago, when war first intensified in Syria. The same was done at almost every other museum up and down the country.

For obvious reasons, Professor Maamoun will not say where the museum's treasures have been taken, but he is confident they are secure from almost any threat. The National Archives in central Damascus have also been removed to a secret location..........

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