Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Gen. Dempsey willing to "consider" acting to stop ISIS attacks on archaeological sites

 Gen. Dempsey opens the door a crack to possible action.

Protecting archaeological sites will always come low on the priority list, unless either the military is told it must act (hello, Obama, hello?) or there is a good military reason. In most instances there won't be a good military reason. In the case of ISIS riding gangs of zealots out far into the deserts on bulldozers and excavators that we are shooting at elsewhere, however, there is clearly a military benefit to be gained. It would be like shooting fish in a barrel. So it is hard to see why Gen. Dempsey is only willing to consider the idea of going after them, instead of doing so.

But generals will do what they are told. So one can only conclude that Obama and Kerry (who gave a fine speech at the Metropolitan Museum on the topic, empty words it seems) haven't put the pressure on. Which is disgraceful.

1 comment:

Cultural Property Observer said...

I'm no expert, but what about asking the military to consider spreading anti-personnel/anti-tank mines by air onto archaeological sites? Modern ones can have timers on them so they go inactive after a certain time. It should be a disincentive at least, though I suppose ISIS might still order local "undesirables" to tackle the "job" of trashing archaeological sites, as dangerous as it might be. Anyway, this seems to be a better solution than bombing. Even given the accuracy of current munitions, a near miss could do a lot of damage to what you are trying to "save."