It’s Not Just People That ISIS Beheads In Iraq

The ancient Babylonian city is at risk. ISIS has been wreaking havoc across Iraq and Syria, but the damage goes beyond human lives.


Iraq has an extremely rich cultural history that dates back centuries and has great historic as well as religious value.

In a recent interview, the director of Baghdad's Iraqi Museum, Qais Hussain Rashid, showed artifacts dating back to 3000 BC.

ISIS has its nasty hands on many such artifacts and is either destroying or selling them off in the black market.


They are not only beheading humans, but ancient statues as well.

"They cut these reliefs and sell them to criminals and antique dealers," said Qais Hussain Rashid. "Usually they cut off the head, leaving the rest, because the head is the expensive part." 

The ruins in Iraq, especially near Mosul, are in danger of being ruined by these barbaric terrorists. They have made many of these localities their home and Rashid fears they will leave them damaged for good as they have no respect for them.

“There are palaces, temples and statues there and ISIS is living among them,” he says. "I'm afraid they'll do something crazy."

It is true from all that the world is witnessing of them, the Islamic militants care for nothing and have destroyed tombs, statues, mosques and shrines of importance to Christians, Muslims and Jews.

Here are some of the places and artifacts at risk, if not already destroyed:

St. Elijah's Monastery

This is St. Elijah's Monastery, south of Mosul. It is Iraq's oldest Christian monastery, dating back to the 6th century.

Prophet Younis Mosque

The picture shows Prophet Younis Mosque, which is believed to be the tomb of the biblical prophet Jonah, in Mosul after it was destroyed in a bomb attack by militants of the Islamic State in July 2014.

Here’s a footage from inside the mosque:

Prophet Younis Mosque

 “We were crying when they detonated it,” said an eye witness. “We couldn’t believe that the history of Mosul has disappeared. I wanted to die.”

shallow white alabaster

This shallow white alabaster cup with rounded base, used for ceremonial purposes dates back to 5thmillennium, BC. 

terra-cotta plaque

This terra-cotta plaque showing protective figure of the winged bird headed human Nisroch, with a cone and bucket is from the Neo-Assyrian period, dating the first half of 1st millennium BC.

clay figurine

This piece is a clay figurine of a female from the Samarra period that dates back to 5000 BC.

ruins of Hatra

Located 290 miles off Baghdad, the famous ruins of Hatra have been recognized by UNESCO World Heritage. The ruins contain a number of temples that were dedicated to different deities as well as several excavation sites.

Cylinder Seal

This Cylinder Seal from Old Babylonian City, once the capital of ancient Mesopotamia and one of the most interesting historical sites in the world is also at risk. About 90 miles from Baghdad, is what this ancient city has access to what was considered crucial as the source of life of the ancient kingdoms, the Tigris and Euphrates. This is probably why the people of the ancient civilizations of Babylon referred to popularly as the “gate of God.”

But all these monuments, artifacts and precious world history mean nothing to the ISIS soldiers. The director of Baghdad's Iraqi Museum said, “They are people from another planet.”

"They take pride in nothing. Their mentality is completely petrified. They don't think of all this as the accomplishments of humanity.”

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