Wednesday, March 2, 2016


The American Schools of Oriental Research have received over $2.1 million in grants from the US State Department and National Foundation for the Arts and Humanities, presumably to study ISIS and looting and cultural destruction in Syria and Iraq.

Meanwhile, credible estimates of the amount ISIS is making from illicit antiquities sales range from several hundred thousand to several million dollars.

What's wrong with this picture? 

1 comment:

John H said...

Hello Peter:

The UK's Daily Telegraph carried a piece on page 14 of it 3rd March edition, headlined:-

'Isil making £14m a month playing currency markets with looted bank cash.'

Written by Colin Freeman, the DT's Chief Foreign Correspondent, went on to report that:-

"Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant's (Isil) white collar crime is now a major source of income, along with oil smuggling and extortion from people living in Isil-controlled areas."

Oddly, Freeman makes no mention of the alleged vast sums of money Isil makes from selling looted antiquities that some on archaeology's anti-collecting cadre would have us all believe is Isil's financial mainstay.

Even an old cynic like me can't really believe archaeology's anti-collecting lobbyists would stoop to gilding the lily? Would they? Surely not, accuracy is their watchword.

Best regards

John Howland