20. Operation: Iraqi Freedom
After the devastating attacks on September 11, 2001, the United States struggled to fight against the regime that Saddam Hussein had created. Two years later, in 2003, the United States along with the United Kingdom and other allies would march into Iraq and finally depose of its ruthless dictator.
It was during this operation, an artifact of great significance to the country was lost and it would be up to the American military to find it.
19. The Iraq War
The Iraq war began under President George H.W. Bush in 1991 as a direct response to Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait. It would take 12 years and an attack on American soil to finally unite the U.S. and its allies into an unstoppable force to take out Hussein and his regime, despite there being peace and stability in the region.
18. The Fall of a Regime
After the fall of Hussein, the country was sieged by violence in the streets as the people turned on one another. It was a time of chaos and terror, where the citizens began to loot local businesses and monuments. During this time, over 40 precious artifacts were stolen from the National Museum of Iraq. This also included the precious Mask of Warka.
17. An Incredible Discovery
Discovered in 1939 by German archaeologist Dr. A. Noldeke, the Mask of Warka (which is also known as Lady of Uruk) was a unique piece of masonry with a carving of woman’s face. It was located south of what would be modern-day Baghdad. At first Noldeke thought it was a piece of a much larger statue, but he would soon discover it was so much more than meets the eye.