In The Field

SAA: Stacking the deck to save world heritage

It’s a little hard to figure out how to think about last night’s session on ‘consideration for archaeological property during military conflict’. In essence, we heard Army archaeologist Laurie Rush talking about how she tries to train US soldiers not to destroy significant archaeological sites in Iraq and Afghanistan. This is of course a noble goal, but one cannot help but wonder whether, as her colleague James Zeidler of Colorado State University quoted the critics, this is too little, too late. The US invasion of Iraq in March 2003 led to the looting of innumerable artifacts from the Iraqi national museum and elsewhere, though many were later recovered under the guidance of Col. Matthew Bogdanos and others. 


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