Tags: isis | iraq | hatra | destroying | past

ISIS in Ancient Iraq City of Hatra Is Destroying the Past (Video)

Image: ISIS in Ancient Iraq City of Hatra Is Destroying the Past (Video)
This file photo from 2008 shows part of Hatra, an ancient city in Iraq. (wikimedia/commons)

By    |   Monday, 06 Apr 2015 12:44 PM

ISIS is running roughshod though the ancient Iraqi city of Hatra, destroying ruins that date back more than two centuries. The militants even released a video bragging of the damage.



United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization head Irina Bokova condemned the destruction, saying the Islamic State is showing "contempt" for the Arab people and its history and culture, according to the BBC News.

"The destruction of Hatra marks a turning point in the appalling strategy of cultural cleansing under way in Iraq," Bokova said in a UNESCO statement.

According to UNESCO's website, Hatra was a historic fortified city under the influence of the Parthian Empire and capital of the first Arab kingdom that overcame invasions by the Romans in A.D. 116 and 198 thanks to its high, thick walls reinforced by towers.

"The remains of the city, particularly its temples where Hellenistic and Roman architecture blend with Eastern decorative features, attest to the greatness of its civilization," said UNESCO.

Hatra is in a historic area about 65 miles southwest of Mosul.

According to the Fiscal Times, in February ISIS burned more than 8,000 rare books and manuscripts at the Mosul Public Library before using improvised explosive devised to bomb the building. Eyewitnesses also charged that ISIS loyalists destroyed an old church and burned down the Mosul University Theater the same day.

Amr Al-Azm, an Ohio-based Syrian anthropologist, told The New York Times that ISIS has been attacking such historic and cultural shrines around Iraq and Syria to wipe away cultural influences and because they know they will not be challenged.

"ISIS is doing it because they can," said Al-Azm. "They are striking at things the international community holds dear, but is impotent to do anything about."

The country's tourism and antiquities ministry has blamed the international community in the past for failing to stop ISIS early on in protecting Iraq's ancient monuments, noted BBC News.

"The delay in international support for Iraq has encouraged terrorists to commit another crime of stealing and demolishing the remains of the city of Hatra," the ministry said.

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ISIS is running roughshod though the ancient Iraqi city of Hatra, destroying ruins that date back more than two centuries. The militants even released a video bragging of the damage.
isis, iraq, hatra, destroying, past
369
2015-44-06
Monday, 06 Apr 2015 12:44 PM
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