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January 22, 2007

Picking Up The Pieces

As the slaughter of civilians continues in Iraq, it's easy to forget other losses taking place in that country--including the loss of artifacts from Iraq's ancient history. Since the war began, archeological sites have been pillaged, and half of the nation's antiquities are still missing. Now, organizations have increased global efforts to stop online auctions, black market dealers and illicit collectors of stolen Iraqi antiquities. 

Donny George was the director of the National Museum in Baghdad when it was looted in 2003. Donny believes that Iraq's antiquities are not only crucial to Iraq's heritage, but priceless records of world civilization as well.

I always describe my pain something like a long, long line of blood from my heart, from Baghdad, to Damascus, now to New York. But I had to protect my family. There was no way I could stay there with those people.
-Donny George

Donny talks with Dick about his decision to weld the museum doors shut and flee to the United States with his family after extremists threatened one of his sons with beheading. 



Dick recently spoke with Jabari Aali Shaw, who has spent much of his young life behind bars.  He’s now got a job stocking shelves and while he doesn’t like it, he knows he was lucky to find work as an ex-con. Cathrine Sneed has been helping young people like Jabari for years, by teaching them to garden.

When she began the Garden Project at the San Francisco County Jail, she never figured it would turn into a nationally recognized model for crime prevention and building self-esteem. Dick talks to Cathrine and one of her success stories, Anthony Travis. Anthony was a cocaine dealer when he joined Cathrine’s program.  Now he works for the city as a gardener. 

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