ISIS Destruction of Ancient Sites Hits Mostly Muslim Targets
The world is witnessing one of the greatest systematic destructions of Islamic sites in modern times—at the hands of Muslim militants.
ISIS has reportedly placed improvised explosive devices (IEDs) around the ancient ruins of Palmyra, in Syria, after recently capturing the adjacent city of Tadmur. The jihadi group has released images of the destruction of two shrines near the site.
The strategy for seeding Palmyra with IEDs has been debated: Is ISIS going to destroy the monuments, which they consider the creations of pre-Islamic idolaters, or is it an act to deter increasing airstrikes and an attempt by the Syrian army—which is now just six miles (10 kilometers) from Tadmur—to retake the city? (Read how ISIS justifies destroying ancient sites).
Michael Danti, co-director of the Syrian Heritage Initiative at the American Schools of Oriental Research, which is