ON-Lion Letter

IS and Cultural Genocide: Antiquities Trafficking in the Terrorist State details the necessity of protecting antiquities.

the writing team of Retired Brigadier General Russell Howard, Marc Elliott, and Jonathan Prohov offer compelling research that reminds government and military officials of the moral, legal, and ethical dimensions of protecting cultural antiquities from looting and illegal trafficking. Internationally, states generally agree on the importance of protecting antiquities, art, and cultural property not only for their historical and artistic importance, but also because such property holds economic, political, and social value for nations and their peoples. Protection is in the common interest because items or sites are linked to the common heritage of mankind. The authors make the point that a principle of international law asserts that cultural or natural elements of humanity’s common heritage should be protected from exploitation and held in trust for future generations. 

Brigadier General (retired) Russ Howard is a senior fellow at the Joint Special Operations University (JSOU) and a senior advisor to Singapore’s Home Team Academy. General Howard was a founding director of the Jebsen Center for Counter-Terrorism Studies at the The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, and head of the Department of Social Sciences at West Point, where he was also founding director of the Combating Terrorism Center.

General Howard’s work has been supported by Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation grants to the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, the U.S. Military Academy, and Tufts University.  

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