Thursday, April 17, 2003

A Sunday Herald article (link via Michael) indirectly accuses US of plans to loot Iraqi antiques. While the article doesn't say anything outright, it implies that because the US administration met with a group of wealthy art dealers before the war so that the group could "offer its assistance in preserving the country's invaluable archaeological collections". Note that this is inconsistent with the other accusations being made that the US military is negligently not protecting certain sites, thus allowing random looters (locals/Iraqis) to grab these antiques. If there was some pre-war plan approved by the administration to benefit from Iraq's antiques, why would that looting have been allowed?

Update: Michael thinks these aren't inconsistent, that the US administration did not approve a plan to formally loot the antiques but may have hinted to these art dealers that the valuables would be unprotected, thus allowing these dealers to send in their agents. Still seems unlikely to me:

On Tuesday, Secretary of State Colin Powell vowed that the United States will aid in "recovering" and "restoring" the lost treasures. (ref)

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