Art Pottery, Politics and Food
Tuesday, June 24, 2003
The Washington Post’s last word on the condition of the mysteriously returned Warka Vase is within the June 14th story by staff writer Sharon Waxman:

"It had been broken in half in antiquity, and had been repaired in the past . . . It was brought back in exactly the same condition it left the museum. It hadn't suffered any more damage," she said.
--Coalition spokeswoman Naheed Mehta

The Post’s last story on the Museum looting, by staff writer Guy Gugliotta in the June 21st edition, did not refer to the Museum’s most famous looted return but continued to obsess with some sort of definitive number to attach to a looting total.
Last week I posted about a June 17th USA Today report that described the vase:

It appears to have been seriously damaged. It is in pieces -- one large section and a half dozen or more smaller ones…

Body and Soul links to this photo of the vase as it currently exists from the site of the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago.

The Image on the left is the vase before the Iraq II war. On the right is an image of the damaged returned loot.

Regarding the press and blog hubbub over Howard Dean’s appearance on Meet the Press I’m not surprised by the pundit reaction but I am surprised that more blogs haven’t focused on Russert’s highly animated and often surreal attack. Russert’s rat-like fixation on knowledge of exact numbers of troops as a Commander in Chief criterion was laughable. His highly dramatic faux shock and disdain, to me as a regular Meet viewer, seemed theatrically planned. Any sensible viewer was chewing over Dean’s lingering contention that the Bushies really intend a return to the Social Security-less McKinley era. If there is a lesson for the Dean campaign from the Meet appearance it is that the candidate has to directly attack the misdirection and abject silliness of the mainstream media when necessary. Had Dean given Tim a bit of huffy how-dare-you ‘tude similar to that displayed at Saturday’s debate he may have faired better with a chattering class that always prefers the scent of blood with their wine spritzers.
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