The Iraq War & Archaeology
Reviewed Articles Archive Sixty-Eight: Second 1/2 of January 2006

This is the sixty-eighth 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.

  • B. Ospina, "Ancient Artifacts Hold High Value," in Blackanthem Military News, online, January 26, 2006: "Soldiers of the 451st Civil Affairs Battalion returned a collection of historical items found on Forward Operating Base (FOB) Warrior over the past few months, to the community of Kirkuk, Iraq.  The artifacts may appear to be just broken pieces of formed clay to some, but to Ayad T. Hussein, the Civil Engineer Director of the Kirkuk Museum, they hold great value in the history of the Iraqi culture. 'If we have all the pieces then we can carefully put them back together,' commented Hussein. 'We can send them to Baghdad to be fixed and further examined.' ... the most valuable item discovered is a child burial urn of which they believe dates back to 250 B.C. They explained that when children passed away, they would first be cremated and then their ashes would be placed inside the urn as part of a proper burial. ... According to Cpt. Cole Calloway, the Team Chief for the Civil Affairs Team A, the Kirkuk Museum suffered from looting by vandals after the first Gulf War and has not fully recovered yet. There are many display cases that sit empty gathering dust ... 'We are hoping that the artifacts we hand over will help the museum reestablish itself,' ... Calloway, who has a degree in anthropology, volunteered to be the cultural affairs officer upon arrival to Iraq. ... his goal is to hand over every artifact found on the base to the community. But it is not as simple as it sounds. Once the artifacts are discovered they must be taken to the 'relics room' under care of the Air Force Legal Office, where each individual piece, regardless of size, is logged to indicate when and where it was found before being put into storage. The artifacts are then slowly handed over to the Kirkuk Museum, ..." [how about the context in which these artifacts were found??? see also Glassford April 5, 2005 and Lee March 19, 2005]

    Photo 1: "Many ancient artifacts of the Iraqi Culture have been discovered on Forward Operating Base (FOB) Warrior and Soldiers of the 451st Civil Affairs Battalion are in the process of handing over all the collected historical items to the Kirkuk Museum, for all the citizens to see. The FOB is said to be a previous village site more than 5,000 years-old. (U.S. Army Photo By: Spc. Barbara Ospina, 1st BCT Public Affairs)"

    Photo 2: "A Civil Engineer and Director of the Kirkuk Museum, Ayad Hussein, and his assistant examine historical artifacts that were discovered on FOB Warrior. All of the artifacts are in the process of being handed over the museum to display for all Iraqis too see and learn from. (U.S. Army Photo By: Spc. Barbara Ospina, 1st BCT Public Affairs)"

  • Ch. Stratford, "Expert appeals to UAE over Iraqi artefacts," in Gulf News (UAE), January 20, 2006: "Speaking at a lecture at the Abu Dhabi Cultural Foundation on the destruction of Iraq's heritage, Iraqi archaeologist Dr Lamia Al Gailani-Werr said uncontrollable looting at thousands of archaeological sites across Iraq continues unabated ... 'The UAE Government like any other has to make sure its customs officials are trained to recognise artefacts from Iraq and to take the necessary measures to return them. Allied and Iraqi troops on the ground have no control over the situation." "'Collectors would die to get their hands on any of these objects. They are super rich and completely unscrupulous. It is individuals like them that are fuelling the illegal trade. They are more than partly responsible for the destruction of Iraq's heritage,' she said. Dr Walid Yasin, a Specialist Consultant and Advisor on Archaeology at Al Ain National Museum for the Abu Dhabi Authority on Cultural Heritage, said customs monitoring at UAE ports of entry continues but extra vigilance is needed ... In the past two years he says only two artefacts have been confiscated by Customs authorities in Abu Dhabi and one turned out to be fake."

    Photo: "Dr Lamia appealed to the UAE Government to train customs officials to identify the artefacts and take steps to return them to Iraq. Dr Yasin is also shown. Abdul Karim Kallouche/Gulf News"

  • D. Nebenzahl, "Tracking treasure. Matthew Bogdanos lives by a classical sense of honour. It has driven him on his own quest - to recover antiquities looted in Iraq," in The [Montreal] Gazette (Canada), January 16, 2006: "... Bogdanos remains disappointed that no country or organization has set up a commission to protect the stolen cultural heritage. 'Hello? I don't understand it,' he said. 'How come my investigation was the only one?' ... 'The people I'm talking about have wings of museums named after them,' the outspoken Bogdanos said. 'And they've got good lawyers.'"

    Photo: "An Iraqi man reads papers at the entrance to the vault of the National Museum in Baghdad after looters went on a rampage.  Photograph by : Jerome Delay, AP"

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).