Getting Iraq’s Stolen Art Online

“Working to locate those treasures – which reach back 7,000 years to the advent of civilization – archaeologists are building a comprehensive, searchable image database of the tens of thousands of objects that are missing and presumed to be in the hands of professional art thieves. The Lost Iraqi Heritage project is a joint effort of over 80 universities, museums and individuals working to create a tool that law enforcement, customs officials and art dealers can use to prevent the sale and export of stolen objects. The group, which is coordinated by professors at the University of Chicago, includes the Archaeological Institute of America, University of California at Berkeley and the University of Michigan. Archaeologists say they are motivated by what they see as an unprecedented, incalculable loss.”