The New York Times reports on a major undertaking by the World Monument Fund and Iraq's State Board of Antiquities and Heritage, financed (at least for the assessment and preliminary management planning phase) by the State Department. The last paragraph raises obliquely a criticism of the way in which postwar funding for archaeological concerns may have skewed towards producing more archaeologists, to the neglect of beefing up other kinds of expertise also needed to do the dirty, unglamorous jobs of shoring up buildings, pumping out or diverting water -- and, one might add, securing, monitoring and patrolling sites against looters:
The site was returned to Iraqi control more than a year ago. Ms. Ackerman and Mr. Allen said the project had already surveyed the remains, building by building, and started the restoration of two museums. Although Iraq has a large corps of trained archaeologists, they said, an immediate need is to instruct others in the conservation of ruins and bring in structural engineers and hydrologists to handle the water problem.