ISIS has yet again outraged many with its antics.
The group known as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria posted a propaganda video that purports to show its terrorists smashing artifacts at Nimrud, a 3,000-year-old site in northern Iraq. They then are seen setting explosives and detonating them at the site, creating a large, dusty explosion.
“Whenever we are able in a piece of land to remove the signs of idolatry and spread monotheism, we will do it,” one of the extremists says in the video.
With its famed statues and frescoes, UNESCO has placed Nimrud on its list of world heritage sites.
ISIS, according to a U.K. professor, has caused “catastrophic” to the world’s cultural heritage.
“(They have) been systematically destroying ancient relics and cultural artefacts both in Iraq and Syria,” Middle East expert Professor Fawaz Gerges, from the London School of Economics, told Sky News.
“The United Nations has called what IS are trying to do ‘war crimes’.
“They have a puritanical sense of an ideology that believes in cultural cleansing – not just people, but even art and culture. They want to purify the land – to establish a totalitarian ideology.”
ISIS using the videos as propaganda or recruitment tools.
“These antiquities and idols behind me were from people in past centuries and were worshiped instead of God. When God Almighty orders us to destroy these statues, idols and antiquities, we must do it, even if they’re worth billions of dollars,” the extremist says in the video, according to CNN.
So, what’s the significance of Nimrud?
The city, located about 20 miles from Mosul, was the capital of the Assyrian empire, which existed from 900 BC to 612 BC. The city and some of its kings were referenced in the Bible.
Known as Calah, the city was mostly abandoned after 612 BC, when Assyria was destroyed by invaders.