An in-depth view of the Oriental Institute Museum’s collection of ancient Iraqi artifacts, renowned for its scope and quality, and also the legal, ethical, and scholarly way in which it was assembled.
Former Director General of the Iraqi Museums and Chairman of the State Board of Antiquities and Heritage, Dr. Donny George was a central figure during the looting of the Iraq Museum. He witnessed firsthand the looting and destruction that followed the collapse of the Saddam Hussein regime, and has worked tirelessly to try to recover the thousands of priceless antiquities that have gone missing. Dr. George left Iraq in 2006 and was a Visiting Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Stony Brook University in New York.
This personal tour offered a unique, in-depth view of the Oriental Institute Museum’s remarkable collection of ancient Iraqi artifacts. This collection is renowned not just for its scope and quality, but for the legal, ethical, and scholarly way in which almost all of it was assembled. Not only did the Oriental Institute lead many pioneering excavations in the region, from which these items came, but the Institute also took action after the devastating looting of the Iraq Museum, by using the Internet to distribute photos of the artifacts from Baghdad, to help identify them if they had been stolen.
It’s something that is lost and can never be bought again…it’s the memory of the Iraqi people and the memories of all mankind that are lost, forever.Donny George Youkhanna on the looting of the Iraq Museum
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