Soon afterward the minions of the self-appointed caliph of the freshly self-declared Islamic State, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, paid a visit to the Mosul Museum. It has been closed for years for restoration, ever since it was looted along with many of Iraq’s other institutions in the wake of the culturally oblivious American-led invasion of 2003. But the Mosul Museum was on the verge of reopening, at last, and the full collection had been stored there.
“These groups of terrorists—their arrival was a brutal shock, with no warning,” Iraqi National Museum Director Qais Hussein Rashid told me when he visited Paris last week with a mission pleading for international help. “We were not able to take preventive measures.”
Indeed, museum curators and staff were no better prepared than any other part of the Iraqi government. They could have learned from al-Baghdadi’s operations in neighboring Syria that a major source of revenue for his insurgency has been the sale of looted antiquities on the black market. As reported in The Guardian, a windfall of intelligence just before Mosul fell revealed that al-Baghdadi had accumulated a $2 billion war chest, in part by selling off ancient artifacts from captured Syrian sites. But the Iraqi officials concerned with antiquities said the Iraqi intelligence officers privy to that information have not shared it with them.
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Al-Chalabi added that “there is almost certain information stating the fact that the elements of ISIL dug up the grave of the Prophet Younis.”
In just one day, ISIL members committed a series of horrific crimes which illustrate their hostile nature, said Iraqi police in Ninawa spokesman Maj. Ahmed al-Obaidi.
“They torched 11 churches and monasteries out of 35 scattered across the city of Mosul, and hours later destroyed statues of poets, literary and historical figures of which Mosul has long been proud,” he said.
Three Sunni clerics were killed at the hands of ISIL gunmen in different parts of Mosul, he added.
The clerics, named Khattab Hassan, 43, Riyadh al-Wandi, 39, and Abdul Ghafoor Salman, 48, had called on local residents to reject the ISIL and had refused to leave the city, al-Obaidi said.
The gunmen then demolished the historic grave of the prophet Yunus (Jonah) and the shrine of prophet Shayth (Seth), revered by Muslims and Christians alike, which are located inside centuries-old mosques, he said.
originally posted by: FlyersFan
Okay ... I've got a question. I doubt anyone can answer it but I'll toss it out there anyways. These nutters are going around destroying tombs and mosques and churches. If they get into Mecca, would they smash up Muhammads tomb and that Kaaba etc etc as well? Is that the kind of thing that would be on their hit list?
originally posted by: Stormdancer777
I don't know but I am shocked they are destroying mosques.