Posts tagged ‘Turkey’

March 9, 2016

A very brief and very remote review of recent damage and destruction of cultural property in south-eastern Turkey

This is a very brief and remote survey of English-language reports. It does not cover “collateral damage” and mass destruction of civilian property in a “scorched earth” policy in Cizre, Diyarbakir (in particular its Sur district), Silvan and elsewhere; it does not cover the lynching campaign against the homes of the Kurdish community and the offices of the “pro-Kurdish” (pro-human rights) People’s Democratic Party (HDP).

February 17, 2016

If Americans are scared of refugees in Europe, there is a very simple solution for them – to not come to Europe

While this post is somewhat off-topic for this blog, the material is too offensive not to comment. foreign(?) Assadist propagandists, pathologically anti-Obama Islamophobic American propagandists, even seeming Serbian nationalists are appropriating evidence of illicit arms trafficking between Turkey and Libya in order to incite hatred of refugees from Syria and Iraq.

January 23, 2016

Lebanese authorities suspend Ashkal Alwan founder-director Christine Tohme’s passport

The good, the bad and the inevitable

In November 2015, I was lucky enough to be invited to Home Works, an arts forum at the Lebanese Association for Plastic Arts (Ashkal Alwan) in Beirut, Lebanon. Ali Cherri and I discussed matters from the invention of ruins to the end of the national museum.

December 10, 2015

Is the “wine chalice” “from Palmyra Museum” a modern bucket from someone’s house?

Last week, Classical archaeologist and art historian Vladimir Stissi looked at the ‘pretty crude fakes’ “from Palmyra Museum”. Highlighting the importance of scales in photos, Stissi observed,

As far as I can judge from the photo, the bucket does not look like a fake in the strict sense, but rather like a 19th-20th century decorative household utensil, or kitsch for domestic display. The patina looks very un-ancient. The relief decoration seems to be freely based on famous Roman sculptures.

November 30, 2015

‘pretty crude fakes’ that were advertised as conflict antiquities from Palmyra Museum

I thought that the statue looked like a forgery, but I have no background in this material, so I didn’t want to judge. Plus, I didn’t think that Google would be able to translate “alleged antiquities, allegedly looted from Syria’s Palmyra Museum…”. I also feel like I’ve seen the wine chalice somewhere before, but I can’t think where, and I haven’t been able to find it. Perhaps it was on the illicit trading platform that was taken offline.

November 29, 2015

Antiquities, looted from Syria’s Palmyra Museum, seized while for sale in eastern Turkey? No.

Update (30th November 2015): the objects were ‘pretty crude fakes‘ that seem to have been advertised as conflict antiquities from Palmyra Museum.

July 31, 2015

‘The smuggler had been smoking a cigarette when he pulled into an ISIS checkpoint’

When the Islamic State conquered Palmyra, ‘the world recoiled in horror, fearing [its] destruction’. The week after, Buzzfeed’s Mike Giglio ‘sat in a sunlit living room near the border with a looter from Palmyra who had spent much of the last 15 years robbing grave sites there’, and secured evidence for the events and processes that influence the flow of antiquities from vulnerable communities in Syria and Iraq to exploitative markets in the West.

July 28, 2015

AKP-branded ‘plastic bullets’, ‘rubber bullets’ were planted election gimmicks

On Sunday, as the struggles of left-wingers, liberals and Kurdish confederalists versus right-wingers, conservatives and Turkish nationalists in Turkey grew ever more intertwined with the conflict of secularists and Kurdish confederalists versus Islamists in Syria, Fahrettin @kurekli_batur (now @yurekli_batur) tweeted a photo of: ‘Plastic bullets that have been shot in Gazi [neighbourhood, Istanbul]. I took the photo myself. It’s not photoshopped, etc. [Gazi’de attıkları plastik mermi. Fotoyu kendim çektim fotoşop filan değil.]’ Indeed, it was not photoshopped. But what was it?

July 17, 2015

Islamic State archaeology book club reading list – deliberately acquired and transported in conflict

Last month, Mehmet Nuri Ekinci reported that Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) had seized equipment from Turkish Islamic State fighters in Syria; @hasavrat noticed that they had confiscated a book that documented ancient coins; and I asked if anyone recognised it. Ute Wartenberg Kagan did – and it makes grim reading.

June 5, 2015

Well-read and well dead: the Islamic State archaeology book club – day one

Yesterday, after @hasavrat spotted it in Mehmet Nuri Ekinci’s report, I appealed for help in identifying an archaeology-related book, which Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) had confiscated from Turkish Islamic State fighters in Syria. Thanks to a lot of help from a lot of people – there’s a less incomplete list of all of the people who have contributed to this effort in the original post – we now know something about that book and more besides…

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