Rebuilding an Injured Past

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Science  02 Apr 2004:
Vol. 304, Issue 5667, pp. 45
DOI: 10.1126/science.304.5667.45a
CREDIT: JAMES DI LORETO/SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION

A U.S.-trained delegation of Iraqi archaeologists and curators returns home next week to begin the daunting job of restoring the country's shattered museums. “We have a deep wound in our hearts,” says Hayat Jar-Allah (left), director of the Diyala Museum northeast of Baghdad, about the thousands of artifacts still missing. “You can't console a child missing its mother with a toy.”

The program, funded by the State Department, enabled 22 Iraqis to study at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., and to tour museums and historic sites in Philadelphia, New York, Santa Fe, and Colonial Williamsburg. “None of them has had an opportunity for training or professional development,” says Ellen Herscher of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, which organized the 5-week trip.

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