The Iraq War & Archaeology
Reviewed Articles Archive Forty-Nine: First 1/2 of April 2005





This is the forty-ninth archive of the reviewed articles of The Iraq War & Archaeology web site.


Francis Deblauwe, Ph.D.




The articles and other information are listed chronologically, most recent first.
Almost all are accessible for free (or after a free registration) on the internet.  Each time, I try to draw attention to the most relevant tidbits of information, esp. things that were not mentioned before; occasionally, I provide some comment.  The usual warning applies: many links become defective with time.  Inclusion in the list does not in any way mean that I necessarily agree with the opinions expressed in an article.  But for a few exceptions, the occasional photos and figures accompanying reviewed articles are just hotlinked images on other web sites, in other words: do not download them or request permission to publish them from me, for I do not own the copyright to them in any way!  Please do contact the rightful owners if you would like to use them for publication purposes. Finally, for the sake of convenience, all articles and so on are assumed to have been published on US web sites unless indicated otherwise.

  • On April 14, 2005, I received an e-mail from Andy Lowings about the status of the replica of the bull lyre of Ur project; on the photo to the right you can see the replica is getting close to being finished; "It was our first presentation at the Edinburgh International Harp Festival last week. The story of its recreation put alongside the archaeology of the original finding was 'enthralling from start to finish'. The BBC World Service came along to make a programme." [I am pretty sure Andy is the man standing 2nd from the right; see also EurekAlert! July 28, 2005 and The Peterborough Evening Telegraph January 13, 2005]

  • Photo: "AP -  Tue Apr 12,10:20 AM ET - Iraqi students demonstrate near the ancient spiral minaret in Samarra, Iraq Tuesday, April 12, 2005, against the U.S. military presence and the detainment of Iraqis. Emboldened by a newly elected government and the growing ranks of homegrown security forces, Iraqis are increasingly calling on American forces to leave their troubled nation, even though Iraqi leaders say it is too early for a U.S. pullout. (AP Photo/Hameed Rasheed)" (Yahoo! News)




  • Photo: "Sat Apr 2, 6:29 AM ET - The ninth century Malwiya minaret, one of Iraq's most important monuments, is damaged after an explosion in the Iraqi town of Samarra April 2, 2005. Part of the top section of the spiralling 52m (170 foot) tower was blown away in the blast, leaving crumbled brick and clay, according to witnesses in the town on Friday. It was not clear when the explosion occurred. REUTERS/Sabah Hamid" (Yahoo! News) [see also Blackanthem Military News April 4, 2005]

  • D. Smith, "Sunni leaders say it's OK to serve. New edict allows followers to join Iraqi army, police," in San Francisco Chronicle, April 2, 2005: "Samarra residents said they saw men climb the [Spiral Minaret] about 6:30 a.m. and leave before the explosion, but it was unclear who the bombers were."

    Photo: "Iraqis stand atop the damaged spiral minaret on the landmark ninth century mosque in Samarra that was bombed. Associated Press photo by Hameed Rasheed"

  • Photo: "Fri Apr 1,10:36 AM ET - An Iraqi pauses amid the rubble at the top of the damaged ninth-century spiral minaret, one of Iraq's most recognized landmarks, after it was damaged by an explosion in Samarra Friday, April 1, 2005. Witnesses said two men climbed the 170-foot-tall (50-meter-tall) minaret, then returned to the ground before the explosion occurred. The minaret is a symbol of Samarra's past glory, the only remains of a mosque dating back from the Abbasid Islamic dynasty. (AP Photo/Hameed Rasheed)" (Yahoo! News)

  • Photo: "Fri Apr 1,10:36 AM ET - Iraqis clear rubble near the top of the damaged ninth-century spiral minaret, one of Iraq's most recognized landmarks, after it was damaged by an explosion in Samarra Friday, April 1, 2005. Witnesses said two men climbed the 170-foot-tall (50-meter-tall) minaret, then returned to the ground before the explosion occurred. The minaret is a symbol of Samarra's past glory, the only remains of a mosque dating back from the Abbasid Islamic dynasty. (AP Photo/Hameed Rasheed)" (Yahoo! News)

  • Photo: "Fri Apr 1,10:33 AM ET - An Iraqi youth looks up at the damaged ninth-century spiral minaret, one of Iraq's most recognized landmarks, after it was damaged by an explosion in Samarra, Iraq, Friday, April 1, 2005. Witnesses said two men climbed the 170-foot-tall (50-meter-tall) minaret, then returned to the ground before the explosion occurred. The minaret is a symbol of Samarra's past glory, the only remains of a mosque dating back from the Abbasid Islamic dynasty. (AP Photo/Hameed Rasheed)" (Yahoo! News)

  • [A. Castaneda], "Sunni clerics tell Iraqis to join security forces; historic Samarra minaret damaged," in CJAD (Canada), online, April 1, 2005: "U.S. troops have used [the Spiral Minaret's] top as a sniper position, and last year, the Islamic extremist group linked to Jordanian terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi flew a flag from its peak. Sgt. Brian Thomas, a spokesman for the 42nd Infantry Division, said coalition forces no longer used the minaret. He said Iraqi police were investigating the explosion."

    Photo: "Iraqis stand atop the damaged ninth-century spiral minaret, one of Iraq's most recognized landmarks, after it was damaged by an explosion in Samarra, Iraq, Friday (AP Photo/Hameed Rasheed) "

  • "Ancient minaret damaged in Iraq," in BBC News (UK), online, April 1, 2005: "Iraq's antiquities officials had expressed concern that US soldiers had also caused significant damage to historic sites in Samarra, including the walls of an ancient palace." "A senior government official told the BBC the Americans should have ensured it was properly protected. Iraqi antiquities officials have asked for compensation after the walls of an ancient palace in Samarra occupied by the Americans were cracked."

    Photo: "The explosion left debris scattered on the minaret's external steps"
  • "Rebels blow up top of famed ancient minaret in Iraq," in Yahoo! News, online, April 1, 2005: "The top tier of the 52-metre (170-foot) Malwiya tower was blown off in the attack, said police Lieutenant Colonel Mahmoud Mohammed. The explosion left debris on the tower's winding ramps and a jagged hole on the top level, an AFP reporter said. The unique yellow sandstone tower in Samarra, an ancient city on the banks of the Tigris river, was completed in 850 AD by the Islamic Abbasid dynasty. US troops had been stationed in the tower until two weeks ago." "Famed British archeologist Sir Mortimer Wheeler once paid a lavish tribute to the Malwiya minaret. 'What matters most about the Samarra minaret is not its formal design, but its startling originality. Strikingly bold and simple in design, functional, elemental, finely proportioned, comfortable to the eye. Here we have in the ninth century many qualities which bridge the centuries. The Malwiya is truly a great and rather lonely masterpiece.'" [see also Harris February 25, 2005]

    Photo: "Fri Apr 1, 6:41 AM ET - A man looks at the top tier of the 52-metre (170-foot) Malwiya tower, a treasured national monument, which was blown off in an attack, said police Lieutenant Colonel Mahmoud Mohammed said, in the northern city of Samarra. The unique yellow sandstone tower in Samarra, an ancient city on the banks of the Tigris river north of Baghdad, was completed in 850 AD by the Islamic Abbasid dynasty. The mosque itself is largely in ruins, with only the outer walls standing.(AFP/Dia Hamid)" [the damage is fortunately limited to the very top]



This site is edited by Belgian archaeologist Francis Deblauwe, Ph.D., living in Streamwood, Illinois (USA), who is affiliated with Archaeos, Inc., and a research associate of the University of Vienna (Austria).