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Old 04-19-2003, 01:06 AM   #76
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Originally posted by Screaming Flower
now i remember why i quit posting in here.

After reading a few other notes in this thread, I think we should start a club, the Burned Out Ex-FYM Club. Screw politics. I'm going to Turkey to check out Silk Road antiquities before it's too late.
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Old 04-19-2003, 05:56 AM   #77
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Originally posted by Dreadsox
That said, the Oil/Field Ministry may very well bring food for the Iraqi people in the long run. So yes, indeed I do find its protection more valuable to the survival of the Iraqi people. That artifact is not their future while the oil industry is.
But there is more to a society than simply its economic potential, and I think the history of a society is valuable to its members. I always remember one of the people who worked at a museum saying to a tv camera "this is destroying our history. What is a country without its history? This was not liberation: it was humiliation."

Also, the artifacts which were destroyed in Iraq aren't only valuable to Iraq: they've valuable to the entire world as they represent the history of the world's first civilisation. Surely that would bring some economic benefits to Iraq, as people would wish to see their museums and would travel to Iraq to do so.

To be honest, I think that the reason many people are so concerned about the oil in Iraq is that it's valued by many people outside of Iraq. Iraq has the second largest oil reserves in the world and the United States dependence on oil reserves is increasing - it's in their interests (and that of many other western countries) to have access to the oil.
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Old 04-19-2003, 07:37 AM   #78
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Originally posted by verte76
I wasn't particularly thinking about someone giving their life to guard an artifact. I'm just upset about this horrible loss. It's like a death in the family. I'm sorry, I can't help it. Someone would have to kill me to get their hands on that artifact. Ordinarily security at a museum is by the police, not the military, and I understand that this is not the military's function. They're not trained for it. Dread, I don't mean to slam the U.S. The looters were Iraqis. Most Iraqis were nowhere near that museum; most troops were not. There could have been some plan to have police presence at the museum. This stuff was part of the country's economy because these museums used to be quite a tourist attraction. Now that's gone. Bush's own cultural advisers resigned to protest the situation after the looting. I would have done the same thing, resign. This has been extraordinary stressful and upsetting for me. I'm not going to talk about it anymore. It's too upsetting. It's like cutting my own damn throat.
I have taught Ancient Civ to 4th graders now for 6 years. I studies history in college, and I too am saddened by the loss. Verte, I have noissue with you or your emotions over this loss. I think your posts on this topic have been excellent.

I do think that people can express their feelings without using the situation as a political ploy to point fingers at the US.

It appears that they did not expect so little resistance against the forces moving in, and yes, they apparently were unprepared. I am not happy with the fact that the hospital was looted as well. This is even more troubling to me that it was not a place that was immediately protected.

I think back to the number of times I saw soldiers in which the soldier said, "We did not train for this, " and it really bothers me. All the training in the world we provide soldiers, and these soldiers still were not prepared.

It is interesting that someone had keys for some of the thefts. I wonder when some of these items were stolen if they had the keys.

Peace
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Old 04-19-2003, 09:44 AM   #79
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Originally posted by deep


An office building in downtown Baghdad housing the Ministry of Oil was a priority, and a tank or two was dispatched post-haste to secure that hugely valuable site -- even as those sporadic combat operations were still underway around town. But an art museum?

One question Diamond...
What does the US military protecting a building that houses the Ministry of Oil have to do with the military protecting the environment?
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Old 04-19-2003, 10:58 AM   #80
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My honest opinion is still that many doves were just waiting for something to go wrong, and when the looting started they jumped on it. If American soldiers had immediately started policing the area without Iraqi involvement, the doves would be saying things like "Oh look, they're arresting the people they're supposedly "liberating". Look folks, unfortunately there is violence involved in policing, as we have already seen. What I don't get is that the doves didn't want the Coalition to use violence against the oppressive Saddam regime, but they're quite okay with using violence to stop people from stealing things. I just don't get it.
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Old 04-19-2003, 11:52 AM   #81
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80's, personally, if I was looking for something to go wrong so I could jump on it, well, I can name many other issues related to the politics, planning and execution of this war that I would be spending a lot of time jumping on.

I think the biggest gripe many have with respect to the Iraqi National Museum looting is that the U.S. military did not anticipate said destruction. That is not my biggest gripe, though.

Since I do not agree with President Bush's reasons for going to war and, indeed, since I believe he and his administration used deceit (in the form of fearmongering) in making his case to go to war, it follows that I am aggravated by the museum looting because it is my belief this war shouldn't have happened in the first place, hence, there never should have been an opportunity for looting.




------------------------------------
http://www.cnn.com/2003/WORLD/meast/...ing/index.html

U.S.: We didn't anticipate looting

Tuesday, April 15, 2003 Posted: 11:59 AM EDT (1559 GMT)



DOHA, Qatar (CNN) -- Senior U.S. military officials have admitted Iraqi museums were plundered during a "void in security" and that they failed to anticipate Iraq's cultural riches would be looted by its own people.

Brig. Gen. Vincent Brooks said Tuesday that forces entering Baghdad were involved in "very intense combat," and in removing the regime and conducting military operations, a "vacuum" was created.

"I don't think anyone anticipated that the riches of Iraq would be looted by the Iraqi people. And indeed it happened in some places" including the National Museum of Iraq in Baghdad, he told reporters at U.S. Central Command in Doha, Qatar.

He said that while "it may be after the fact" it remained important to restore institutions and retrieve as many items as possible.

*snip*
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Old 04-19-2003, 12:19 PM   #82
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I agree, Pub Crawler. For me it's not some sort of vendetta or whatever against the Bush Administration or the U.S. It's just a policy disagreement. We may have won the war from a military standpoint, but we haven't from a political standpoint. Sure, Saddam is gone. That doesn't mean the Iraqis have a democratic state. They haven't had elections. It's hard for me to see how you're going to have real democracy without elections. I think the Iraqi people might want a Moslem cleric for a leader. I was afraid things like the anti-U.S. demonstration were going to happen. Both Shi'ite and Sunni Moslems were in the demonstration. On a happier note about 20 artifacts were returned to the National Museum. Moslem clerics are encouraging looters to return anything they might have stolen to the museum. I think the looters were allowed to return the objects without any questions. Who knows, the Moslems clerics may be just what the doctor ordered. If they elect one of these President or whatever inaugurate him dammit!
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Old 04-19-2003, 02:43 PM   #83
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Hello everyone....

Yesterday, when I made my post, I was in a hurry to get out the door (yes, diamond, as a matter of fact I WAS on my way to a dance recital!), and that, combined with my emotional upset at this entire topic, led me to not write as calmly or as much as I would have liked.

And I'm still upset, but I just wanted to clarify my view.....which is very much like verte, pub crawler and fizzing's views, so I won't elaborate too much except to say:

I have always had mixed views on this war. On the one hand, I think getting rid of Saddam is great, yet I also think that could have been accomplished without going to war at all, thus avoiding this entire mess with the looting. Maybe a war was necessary, but I think it went ahead too early, and I'd still like to see where the hell these famous WMDs are, which are supposed to be the reason this war was started in the first place (they have been conveniently "spirited away" to Syria now). But that's another topic entirely.

That said, YES I am glad that it has gone quickly and with a minimum of loss of human life, all things considered. OK? Here I am, admitting to that. But I should hope so considering this was a preemptive war, and with all the fancy equipment the US has, I would have been surprised and appalled if it had gone any differently. But yes, again, I concede it has gone pretty smoothly...

And I am not criticizing the US army per se for the looters. There are destrictive, ignorant, mob mentality idiots everywhere. And if these people got clobbered by soldiers who were protecting the museum I would totally approve of that, contrary to what some people have said in this thread.

I just agree, that whether these were professionals, or rabble looters, there should have been some contingency planning. Maybe a special police force, or even civilians if not the army then.

Dreadsox, people lose their lives to protect things all the time. Police guard jewelry stores for that matter, and get shot by robbers. This is part of the risk of the job. I would think that guarding the museum would be a less risky job than being engaged in combat anyway...but I admit I don't know enough about this stuff to comment with any authority.

It was just the arrogance of your tone that upset me....that these artifacts, so immeasurably important to the history and heritage of the Iraqi people (It's their oil so everyone keeps saying, well it's also their artifacts, as well as the world's) aren't even worth "one scratch" or "one drop" of American blood.

I DO happen to think that these artifacts (which have been around a lot longer than the oil and should be around for thousands of years to come), will provide Iraq with a source of income in tourism as well as with the pride of their own heritage and that they ARE worth protecting. Of course I wouldn't want anyone to die saving them. But a scratch? I should hope so!

I work in the arts, and am constantly bombarded with these messages that arts and culture are "frills" and that the only thing that matters in life is hospitals and education. Yes, those things are important, but arts and culture are what we are all about...are what make life worth living and separates us from animals. They are expressions of our human spirit and should be protected.

Obviously I suck at political discussions, and I think I might join the FYM exodus....


As for YOU diamond, I think YOU are the one who should stay out of political discussions!
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Old 04-19-2003, 04:06 PM   #84
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Originally posted by Mrs. Edge
Dreadsox, people lose their lives to protect things all the time. Police guard jewelry stores for that matter, and get shot by robbers. This is part of the risk of the job. I would think that guarding the museum would be a less risky job than being engaged in combat anyway...but I admit I don't know enough about this stuff to comment with any authority.

It was just the arrogance of your tone that upset me....that these artifacts, so immeasurably important to the history and heritage of the Iraqi people (It's their oil so everyone keeps saying, well it's also their artifacts, as well as the world's) aren't even worth "one scratch" or "one drop" of American blood.

I expressed my opinion. You implied that I was saying an American life is worth more than someone elses. Never in my statement did I say that. You respond that my words are "arrogant".

Fine...I am arrogant now....Oh wait, you said tone.....I get it...as long as we do not call me arrogant, it's ok?

I stand by my statement. I made it clear I too am saddened by the loss of the artifacts. I also made it clear that in a WAR there are other things going on that you and I are not privy to. It is easy to criticize when we are not there wearing the uniform, going through what the soldiers over there are going through. I would love to see any of you say to a soldier that their life should be put at risk to protect a piece of cuneoform.

Never mind that, if one of our soldiers lost and arm, a leg, or their life, I would really love to see how people here would have explained that the Museum of Natural History was cruicial to the success of the mission. Never mind knocking on a parents door to say that their child had died for the good of the museum of natural history.

My opinion is different than yours on this, yes. Having worn the uniform, and trained with people who have sacraficed for their country. If this makes me arrogant so be it.

Quote:
Originally posted by Mrs. Edge


Obviously I suck at political discussions, and I think I might join the FYM exodus....

That would be sad to see you go.
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Old 04-19-2003, 04:30 PM   #85
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mrs. Edge
I work in the arts, and am constantly bombarded with these messages that arts and culture are "frills" and that the only thing that matters in life is hospitals and education. Yes, those things are important, but arts and culture are what we are all about...are what make life worth living and separates us from animals. They are expressions of our human spirit and should be protected.
I agree with pretty much your whole post, but especially this part. I study an arts/social science subject at college and I'm forever hearing people make comments like "well, it's sciences that really matter" or "people studying pharmacology/engineering/other science-y subject could do something wonderful in their career" - it's like arts subjects are totally worthless. Well, while I recognise that science and medicine etc are important, I think learning about history, or literature is important to - as you said, arts and culture are what humans are all about.

Anyway, I liked your post, and I also hope you won't leave FYM - it'd be sad if all these great posters really do leave.
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Old 04-19-2003, 04:36 PM   #86
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Jordanian customs seize dozens of works stolen from Iraq

By News Agencies



AMMAN - Jordanian customs officials have seized 42 paintings believed to have been looted from Iraq's national museum, government officials said Saturday.

The paintings were taken earlier in the week at al-Karameh border post from unidentified journalists entering Jordan from Iraq and were sent to the main Customs Department in Amman, said the officials, well-informed on the confiscated items.

The paintings were being verified for authenticity but that preliminary checks led to them to believe the material had been looted from Iraq, the officials said on condition of anonymity. They declined to provide other details.

Officials at the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, usually responsible for investigating such matters, were not immediately available for comment.

Ad-Dustour, Jordan's second-largest daily newspaper, broke the news Saturday in a short article quoting Mahmoud Qteishat, the director general of the Jordanian Customs Department.

Qteishat reportedly said after border customs discovered the paintings, he instructed his officers to "take all necessary measures to confiscate any stolen items from the Iraqi national museum and library" - which were targeted by looters following the collapse of Saddam Hussein's regime last week.

Al-Karameh border post has been Iraq's lifeline since sweeping United Nations sanctions were imposed on Iraq in the wake of its 1990 invasion of Kuwait. The desert outpost was used for shipments of food, medicine and other humanitarian supplies to Iraq and for passengers embarking on a 12-hour overland trip to the Iraqi capital.

Al-Karameh is 420 kilometers (260 miles) northeast of the Jordanian capital Amman.
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Old 04-19-2003, 04:56 PM   #87
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Originally posted by Mrs. Edge

And I am not criticizing the US army per se for the looters. There are destrictive, ignorant, mob mentality idiots everywhere. And if these people got clobbered by soldiers who were protecting the museum I would totally approve of that, contrary to what some people have said in this thread.

I just agree, that whether these were professionals, or rabble looters, there should have been some contingency planning. Maybe a special police force, or even civilians if not the army then.
<snip>

I DO happen to think that these artifacts (which have been around a lot longer than the oil and should be around for thousands of years to come), will provide Iraq with a source of income in tourism as well as with the pride of their own heritage and that they ARE worth protecting. Of course I wouldn't want anyone to die saving them. But a scratch? I should hope so!

I work in the arts, and am constantly bombarded with these messages that arts and culture are "frills" and that the only thing that matters in life is hospitals and education. Yes, those things are important, but arts and culture are what we are all about...are what make life worth living and separates us from animals. They are expressions of our human spirit and should be protected.

I feel the same. We had jokes in school that our history degrees were about as "useful" as, well, nothing. My sisters joked that their BFA degrees (in sculpture and dance) weren't worth a . But we didn't really feel this way. We felt like there was some use for them that didn't translate into dollar signs or corporate perks. These antiquities absolutely translated into economic something in Baghdad because they used to attract alot of tourists. Furthermore the whole episode was really bad politically, because this sort of thing is not the way to win the political war. We may have won the military war; we have yet to win the political war. There was an anti-U.S. demonstration in Baghdad yesterday, attended by both Shi'ite and Sunni Moslems. The demonstrators were demanding an Islamic state. I'm not surprised. Winning the political war is all about emotions, not logic. That's what makes the damn things so hard to win. I'm afraid we've flubbed it politically. That's *really* bad news for the U.S. It's because Iraqi culture took a kick in the . Those antiquities were raison d'etre for Iraq, and now they're gone. It's painful as heck for me to imagine these weren't worth protecting. Ouch. Bush's own cultural advisers didn't agree with this. They resigned in protest. I think they did the right thing. I would have resigned too. I wish to heck this hadn't happened. It's a disaster, both culturally and politically.
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Old 04-19-2003, 05:42 PM   #88
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Originally posted by Dreadsox

Fine...I am arrogant now....Oh wait, you said tone.....I get it...as long as we do not call me arrogant, it's ok?
I have to agree with Mrs. Edge it is your tone. I wouldn't sat arrogant but extremely defensive. I have also replied to threads in a strident voice, sometimes without enough thought. Maybe you can't accept that mistakes happen.

Now I will admit that the war caused less civilian casualties than I thought (Bravo USA). However I wish they would admit that mistakes do happen like the market in Bagdad and as I read more report on the lack of forensic investigation at that restaurant, I'm starting to think it was really a big booboo. Also being against being there at this time it is hard to cheer the home team. And I don't think they thought everything out properly. Maybe this was due to Rumsfeld having too much input into the military execution, after all he doesn't have the true experience. I think he really thought they would be cheering immediatlely (and that lasted what 2 days).

Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox

I stand by my statement. I made it clear I too am saddened by the loss of the artifacts. ... I would love to see any of you say to a soldier that their life should be put at risk to protect a piece of cuneoform.
Again I disagree. As Mrs. Edge said Policemen are injured all the time to protect things, even paper (aka money).

Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox

Never mind that, if one of our soldiers lost and arm, a leg, or their life, I would really love to see how people here would have explained that the Museum of Natural History was cruicial to the success of the mission. Never mind knocking on a parents door to say that their child had died for the good of the museum of natural history.
Yet I have read you and others say that Iraqi civilians deaths are the necessary evil/means to the end - meaning Sadaam. So yes you are implying that US soldiers lives mean more.

And this is my bow out to war.

"War is over we don't need your help, America is making war on itself"

P.S. CBC did a great report last week on the probable US companies to get contracts. Yesterday the top of their list "Bechtel" received the first contract awarded. They have ties to the Bush Admin.
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Old 04-19-2003, 06:58 PM   #89
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I don't like this "spoils" game either Scarletwine. It's disgusting, all of these people gathered around trying to make $$ from Iraq. Well this country doesn't belong to them. It belongs to the Iraqis. Why can't we let them choose who they are going to do business with? Do they really want a big shot U.S. company in there calling the shots? I doubt it. Even one of my Republican Senators is a little concerned about this as well. In all fairness it's not just the U.S. who's gathered around to try to make $$ from Iraq. That's why France and Germany are trying to fix their relationship with the U.S. If they're going to give the spoils to the countries who sent troops, why aren't any of the companies Polish? Poland sent troops. This doesn't seem fair.
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Old 04-19-2003, 07:11 PM   #90
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Originally posted by Scarletwine


I have to agree with Mrs. Edge it is your tone. I wouldn't sat arrogant but extremely defensive. I have also replied to threads in a strident voice, sometimes without enough thought. Maybe you can't accept that mistakes happen.
Interesting, so is it because you disagree with me that I sound defensive? When I have responded quickly in the past I have come back and responded with clarifications. Please note, that I waited days before responding to this thread. I actually spent quite a bit of time putting thought into what I had to say. It was neither defensive, nor was it arrogant. It was indeed my opinion. I made no mistake in my post.


Quote:
Originally posted by Scarletwine

Now I will admit that the war caused less civilian casualties than I thought (Bravo USA). However I wish they would admit that mistakes do happen like the market in Bagdad and as I read more report on the lack of forensic investigation at that restaurant, I'm starting to think it was really a big booboo. Also being against being there at this time it is hard to cheer the home team. And I don't think they thought everything out properly. Maybe this was due to Rumsfeld having too much input into the military execution, after all he doesn't have the true experience. I think he really thought they would be cheering immediatlely (and that lasted what 2 days).
Interesting, I think I have listened to General Brooks almost every morning since the war started. He has made it very clear that we have done everything to try and prevent civilian casualties. Never did he disrespect those people who died by calling it a "BOO BOO". Nor did he call it a "Boo Boo" which also would trivialize the fact for the soldier who has to live with those casualties for the rest of their lives. Sure, sarcasm, I recognize it, and I find it inappropriate.

AS to the ability to plan for everything, I think they were completely caught off guard as to the speed at which things collapsed. They were not prepared for it in my opinion either.


Quote:
Originally posted by Scarletwine

Again I disagree. As Mrs. Edge said Policemen are injured all the time to protect things, even paper (aka money).
Interesting, but not all soldiers are policemen. AS a matter of fact, most soldiers are not trained in that job. I fail to see how this argument applies here.


Quote:
Originally posted by Scarletwine

Yet I have read you and others say that Iraqi civilians deaths are the necessary evil/means to the end - meaning Sadaam. So yes you are implying that US soldiers lives mean more.
Nice try. I am sure Mrs. Edge was referring to past debates. Of course I could quote your words in other threads to show that the words demonstrate contempt for the people who wear the uniform, but that would have nothing to do with this thread.

However, in the grand scheme of things on a battlefield, I do believe that everything should be done to prevent the loss of lives. If that means fighting to win, yes, I am for it. As to civilian deaths, please, show me anywhere where I said they are necessary. Show me one quote where I have ever spoken of anything other than that the US is doing everything they can to spare civilian lives?

Twist... twist...twist...

But again, this is not a personal attack, it is you putting words into my mouth. Fine, I mean its not like you called anyone an asshole, just the words they type right? What is the difference?

Quote:
Originally posted by Scarletwine


P.S. CBC did a great report last week on the probable US companies to get contracts. Yesterday the top of their list "Bechtel" received the first contract awarded. They have ties to the Bush Admin.
ANd this has what to do with the thread?
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