A Golden Find in Iraq

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Just in case it's overlooked in the flood of accusations and allegedly bad news about the war, did you hear the latest on the looted Iraqi antiquities story?

You know the one... the sobbing Iraqi curator standing at the door of the museum looking over the wreckage of the 4,000-year-old pottery, wailing about the Americans destroying Iraq's history as well as Iraq's present?

Most of that stuff turned up either taken for safekeeping by the Iraqi museum people or stolen by them.

Now The Wall Street Journal is reporting that when Americans and Iraqis working on a flooded museum vault pumped the thing out, they discovered the treasures of Nimrud (search) — priceless gold jewelry from about 800 B.C.

The stuff had disappeared from public view at the time of the first Gulf War (search), and archaeologists were worried that one of Saddam Hussein's sons had ripped it off, or that someone had found it and melted it down.

Those 613 pieces — Iraq's crown jewels, so to speak — are safe. So breath easy, Americans. It turns out you didn't cause the end of civilization as Iraq knew it.

True, there are still some priceless antiquities missing — stolen, no doubt — but a bunch of it has been found and Iraq has its history back. At least, part of it.

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