Christians Of Iraq

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Translation from English



Museum Aims to Piece Together Iraq's Plundered Past

Baghdad Museum

It had stood forlorn since 2003, looted, gutted and doors bolted shut, a testament to Iraq's slide into the anarchy of the post-invasion years.

But on Monday Iraq took another step towards shaking off its plundered past when its leaders reopened the National Museum in Baghdad.

The museum is now again home to about 5500 artefacts pilfered since the fall of Baghdad in April 2003 and recovered in the five years since through a mix of painstaking work and rising numbers of guilty consciences.

Museum directors and the Government estimate about 15,000 more priceless items are still being traded in the art underworld or private collections across Europe and the US.

"We want to make our museum a place which will be at the forefront of international museums," said Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki as he presided over the opening, flanked by giant slabs of carved, ancient rock spanning the Babylonian, Sumerian and Islamic eras.

"There's a long road ahead of us. There are a lot of discoveries still being made at archaeological sites," he said, referring to the "dark age that Iraq passed through".

The country's fragile security gains have left some Iraqis feeling that the museum's reinauguration is a half-measure tailored to boost confidence in the Government.

But since the start of the year, Iraqis have been returning in droves to other public sites, book markets, coffee shops and even football stadiums and riverside parks.

"If they want to reopen this museum, then as Iraqis we should all go to see it," said a shopkeeper, Omar al-Najafi.

"Even under Saddam, this was one of Iraq's most important sites. If it was considered so important back then, it should be restored to its ancient glory now."

Iraq is deemed by many historians and archaeologists to be a cradle of civilisation. The looting of the museum ran alongside Iraq's human tragedy, a brazen symbol of the anarchy that followed the US occupation. Smugglers and gangs swept into Baghdad in the security vacuum and targeted specific pieces. Asked why US forces did not stop the looting, then defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld famously said: "Stuff happens … and it's untidy and freedom's untidy, and free people are free to make mistakes and commit crimes and do bad things."

US soldiers were even accused of joining in the pilfering, although according to museum director Amira Eidan, some soldiers have sent back their loot. "There were soldiers leaving the airport with priceless items tucked into their backpacks," she said.

So far, only the museum's ground floor -- about a third of the site -- is to reopen. School groups will be invited back first, followed by paying visitors. "Who knows, we may soon have tourists here," Dr Eidan said.

The Guardian





Views and opinions expressed in these articles do not necessarily reflect that of the or its staff .





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Addar = March

Museum Aims to Piece Together Iraq's Plundered Past
March 20, 2009

Iraqi Christians Caught in Crossfire
March 17, 2009

New Book Accuses Iraqi Kurds of Assassinating Assyrian Leader March 17, 2009

Mr. Ninos Khoshaba the first Assyrian elected to the New South Wales Parliament. March 16, 2009

Iraq War not Worth the Sacrifice
March 15, 2009

The Myth of Kurdistan
March 15, 2009

Plight of Christians Assyrians in Iraq described to Madison church March 15, 2009

International Research Network on Christians in the Middle East Launched March 15, 2009

The Iranians are Coming!
March 11, 2009

Aishu Auraay: A Missing Seven-Year-Old Assyrian Boy
March 11, 2009

US Lawmakers Send Letter on Plight of Iraq's Assyrians to The US secretary of State; Clinton March 11, 2009

Celebration of the Assyrian New Year March 11, 2009

A New Assyrian Web site March 11, 2009

Iraq's 2009 Elections: Assyrians once again prevented from voting March 10, 2009

Egyptian Muslim Sets Fire to Christian Man, Murders His Father March 8, 2009

Battle Over a Christian Monastery Tests Turkey's Tolerance of Minorities March 7, 2009

Marathon in Holland to Draw Attention to Assyrian Monastery in Turkey March 6, 2009

Bishops: Middle East May Soon Be Empty of Christians
March 5, 2009

Urban Sprawl, Not Looting, Threatens Nineveh Antiquities March 4, 2009

Eshwatt = February

Iraq: the city of Ur; cradle of the written word
February 28, 2009

AUA delegation meets with Australian MPs
February 25, 2009

A Taste of Assyria’ at the British Museum
February 25, 2009

Catholic Volunteers in Iraq Part of a Growing Network
February 24, 2009

Chaldean Assyrian intellectual: “The National Museum is the heritage of all Iraq” February 24, 2009

How US Promotes anti Americanism in the Middle East
February 22, 2009

Minority Languages in Turkey Dying Out
February 22, 2009

A brief window opens into rarely seen Iraq Museum
February 22, 2009

German Foreign Minister Visits Northern Iraq Amidst Criticism February 20, 2009

Assyrians in North Iraq Fired for Not Voting for Pro-Kurdish Slate February 20, 2009

Iraqi Church Leaders Call for a Role in Rebuilding Peace
February 17, 2009

Iraq’s Assyrian Christians; More of the same old
February 17, 2009

Sunnis New Power Holders in Nineveh Province, Iraq
February 16, 2009

Assyrian girl abducted, raped and killed before every one’s eyes February 14, 2009

Iraq: No haven for ancient world's landmarks
February 12, 2009

The Bride of Peace an Iraqi play that seeks Christians unity
February 12, 2009

Little Miracles; the mission of the Assyrian Medical Society
February 12, 2009

Assyrian Monastery Land Dispute a New Test on Turkey's Path to EU February 12, 2009

Report Highlights Election Violations Against Assyrians in North Iraq February 11, 2009

Assyrian Leaders Have a History of 'Disappearing' in North Iraq February 10, 2009

Surge of refugees finds new home in Stanislaus
February 10, 2009

Iraqi bishop’s upbeat response to Iraqi election result
February 10, 2009

Many Election Violations Against Assyrians in North Iraq
February 10, 2009

Assyrian International Tennis player from Iran-Oromeyeh
February 08, 2009

Lobby for the minorities of Iraq and Turkey
February 08, 2009

Syriac Bible Found In Cyprus Causing Debate Over Age
February 06, 2009

A New Milestone for the 'Sorry' Campaign in Turkey
February 06, 2009

Assyrians / Syrians situation in Upper Mesopotamia
February 04, 2009

Turkistan or Kurdistan -- Does it Matter to Us?
February 04, 2009

Open Letter From 19,000 Assyrians to Turkey: Do Not Touch St. Gabriel Monastery

Mystery Surrounds Disappearance of Assyrian Finance Minister February 04, 2009

Archbishop Mar Melis was awarded Australia's 2009 Citizen Award February 04, 2009

Low Voter Turnout for Iraq's Assyrian Population
February 04, 2009

We are Iraqis too, Christian Assyrian voters insist
February 01, 2009

Excommunication of Ex-Bishop Ashur Bawai Soro
February 01, 2009

Iraq's Christian Assyrians Caught in Middle of Mosul Vote
February 01, 2009

Kanoon II = January

Saudi Arabia Arrests Christian Blogger Jan. 31 - 2009

In Iraq’s North, Ethnic Strife Flares as Vote Draws Closer Jan. 28 - 2009

US Lawmakers Send Letter to Clinton on Behalf of Iraq's Assyrians Jan. 28 - 2009

Assyrians in North Iraq Fear Ballot Rigging in January 31 Elections Jan. 28 - 2009

Iraq Militants Kill Assyrian; Pope Urges Authorities To Intervene Jan. 24 - 2009

Assyrian and Armenian Rally in front of The Turkish Embassy in London Jan. 24 - 2009

The upcoming rally in Berlin Jan. 23 - 2009

Iraqi Bishops Launch Appeal to Pope to Stop Christians Fleeing Jan. 23 - 2009

Anatolia Festival 2009 - Assyrian Concert Jan. 22 - 2009

Barzani vows to work for “a more tolerant Ninewa”
Jan. 22 - 2009

Assyrian You Tube 3 Jan. 21 - 2009

Art exhibit in Baghdad Jan. 21 - 2009

Demonstration in Berlin: “Save the Syrian Orthodox monastery Mor Gabriel! Save Christianity in Turkey!” Jan. 20 - 2009

The  growing apprehesion  in Iraq about  Kurd's aspirations Jan. 20 - 2009

The Assyrian Monastery: an Opportunity For Turkey To Lead By Example Jan. 20 - 2009

Reasons behind attempts against the Assyrian Monastery in Turkey Jan. 19 - 2009

CIGI Report-Minorities in Iraq. Jan. 10 - 2009

Brief Assyrian Church History Jan. 9 - 2009

Turkish Man Returns Property of 1915 Assyrian Genocide Victims
Jan. 9 - 2009

Hrant Dink Day 2009 in London Jan. 8 - 2009

Assyrian Veteran Became State Senator Jan. 7 - 2009

Assyrian youtube update3 Jan. 3 - 2009

Greatest gift for Iraqi Christians — returning home Jan. 2 - 2009

Swedish Asylum Case Hiighlights Dangers for Iraq's Assyrians
Jan. 3 - 2009

Turkey Inches Toward Genocide Recognition January 3 -2009

Kanoon I = December

In Mosul, Iraqi Christians Brave the Violence to Celebrate Christmas
Dec. 25, 08

Turkmen Turkish ( and Assyrian) edorced as official languages in Kirkuk
Dec. 24, 08

Turkish Court Reschedules Hearings on Assyrian Monastery
Dec. 24, 08

Finnish Church Leaders Ask Turkey to Safeguard Assyrian Monastery
Dec. 23, 08

Iraq: Christmas hampers distributed to victims of persecution
Dec. 23, 08

A new book for Assyrians during Christmas Dec. 23, 08

Bishop’s fear for Iraqi Christians Dec. 23, 08

Baghdad celebrates first public Christmas amid hope, memories
Dec. 21, 08

Australia Assists Victims Of Sectarian Violence In North Iraq
Dec. 19, 08

Assyian er Nestorian christianity and the Roman Church Dec. 18, 08

Westminster Hall Debate of the House of Commons on: Christians in Iraq
Dec. 18, 08

US Turns 'Blind Eye' to Persecution of Christians in Iraq, Congressman Says Dec. 18, 08

Islamists Drive Christian Assyrians Out of Nineveh Dec. 16, 08

Thousands of Assyrians Rally in Sweden in Support of Besieged Monastery in Turkey Dec. 15, 08

Lost Christianity: Golden age of Church in Middle East and Africa
Dec. 15, 08

EU Lawmakers Raise Concerns Over Threats to Assyrian Monastery in TurkeyDec. 12, 08

Lobby for the Minorities of Iraq Dec. 12, 08

Jews, Assyrians share worship space Dec. 12, 08

Why Attacks on Iraq Christians Largely Under-reported? Dec. 10, 08

Assyrian Tube videos updated Dec. 9, 08 Dec. 09, 08

Turkey Disrespectful of Christianity and Assyrians: Swedish MPs
Dec. 09, 08

Iraqi Christians in Need; Christmas Charity Fair Dec. 05, 08

invitation to Seminars About Middle-East Minorities
Dec. 05, 08

Evangelical sects put Iraqi Christians in danger, Iraqi bishop says
Dec. 05, 08

Islam: Catholic - Islam Marriage 'Drama' Dec. 04, 08

Call for Investigation Into Egypt Church Attack Dec. 04, 08

EU MP Critical of Kurdish Treatment of Assyrians and Other Iraqi Minorities Dec. 04, 08

Assyrian Poetry At the British Museum Dec. 03, 08

Iraq bids to stop Christie's sale of ancient earrings Dec. 03, 08

Encouraging the Exodus of Iraqi Christians will decimate an ancient community Dec. 03, 08

Turkey Attempting to Confiscate Assyrian Monastery's Land Dec. 02, 08

Situation of Iraqi Assyrians Often Overlooked: EU MP Dec. 01, 08




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