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ISIS Poses a Threat to the Middle East's Cultural Heritage

News over the past week has brought saddening news of ISIS's advance over parts of Iraq and Syria and in the historical city of Palmyra. Though the front lines of this continuing conflict have been waxing and waning, the larger story of ISIS presence in the Middle East is how ISIS has been changing the operational culture of the region they are occupying. By changing the political, economic, and social order, they are seeking to alter the cultural landscape of the region to fit with their goals.

In Iraq and Syria, one such dimension of this is is the degradation and destruction of pre-Islamic and UNESCO world heritage sites in the Middle East. ISIS recent advance in Palmyra presents further concern by the international community of the fate of this storied world heritage site and its continued importance to the regions history and culture.

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