The heart of the ancient world -- An ideology of destruction -- Destruction in Iraq -- Destruction in Syria -- The destruction of cities -- Preserving history -- Glossary -- Chapter notes -- Further reading.
When Muhammed swept victorious into the city of Mecca in 630 C.E., one of his first acts was to destroy all of the idols at the Kabbah, one of the holiest sites in the Islamic world. ISIS is taking the prophet's idea to the extreme, attempting to raze art and architecture they deem un-Islamic from their domain. Ancient cities have fallen beneath bulldozers and clouds of dust, while priceless artifacts have been looted from museums and destroyed. Students will be challenged to ask why ISIS is so bent on destroying artifacts of the past and what power the preservation of these objects gives those fighting against the Islamic State.