domingo, 21 de janeiro de 2007

O roubo de antiguidades no Iraque continua

Um bom artigo sobre o roubo de antiguidades no Iraque: Lost: The Looting of Iraq’s Antiquities.

Para se perceber a gravidade da situação, um trecho do artigo: The only real comparison is to the surface of the moon. Craters as deep as 16 feet cover multi-acre sites that are remnants of what is widely considered the cradle of civilization. The craggy, arid earth, all but barren of vegetation, lies in mounds alongside the deep pits where thousands of Iraqi antiquities—cuneiform tablets, ancient scrolls and kings commemorated in stone that might give clues to how civilization began—have been ripped from their resting places and sold to nefarious (or unsuspecting) dealers and collectors. Some sites have been so ravaged that the top 10 feet of earth and all of the irreplaceable artifacts buried there for centuries are gone. Amid the catastrophe of the war in Iraq—the violence, bloodshed and loss of human life—is the loss of the world’s cultural heritage in the form of hoards of antiquities. It is an ongoing, silent tragedy for which there seems to be no viable solution. Sources say this is not the work of renegades with shovels. It is planned and executed by organized bands—200 to 300 per site—with heavy machinery at many of the 12,000 sites. And the payout is big. The average Iraqi makes the equivalent of $1,000 per year, yet a cache of looted antiquities can sell for $20,000. And looters can sell two or three such caches every week.

Publicado pela American Association of Museums em o número de Janeiro/Fevereiro de 2007 de Museum News. Artigo de Susan Breitkopf.

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