Thursday, May 08, 2003
# Posted 7:53 PM by Ariel David Adesnik
One of the most important points Jim tries to drive home is that much of the looting was done by high-ranking museum officials, rather than those who poured in from the street. Interestingly, there are also indications that some of the missing items were not stolen, but taken in order to protect them from looters and thieves.
(If you want to read all of Jim's posts, start here and work backwards.)
One question that still remains open is just how many items have, in fact, been lost. Yesterday, I posted the Chicago Tribune's suggestion that the number is 38. Today, the WaPo says that 38 "high value" items were missing and that over 700 artifacts have already been returned along with 39,400 manuscripts. That last number doesn't exactly make sense to me. Did someone return them in a truck?
Anyhow, KG aus Deutschland points out that the current list of missing items is far from complete, since so much of the Museum is covered in rubble. Or as DeutschlandRadio puts it,
Man hat noch keinen richtigen Überblick. Man war zwar im Keller des Magazins. Es gibt aber noch keinen Strom, so dass man nur mit Taschenlampen einen ersten Eindruck gewinnen konnte. Die genaue Zahl wird man erst nach einer exakten Inventur feststellen können, und das wird viele Monate dauern.What? Didn't I tell you that reading German is a prerequisite of visiting OxBlog?
Moving on, the BBC reports that
The looting has been described as "the crime of the century" and the US military has been accused of not doing enough to stop it.For a pretty good defense of the US military, see this post from Jim Miller, which I mentioned above. But how ironic is it that the BBC wants to speculate about this being the "crime of the century"? Surely one of the horrific tortures devised by Saddam & Sons is more worthy of that distinction.
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