Trowel Tales: The AIA Blog

by C. Brian Rose
March 30, 2011
Early this morning we boarded a military helicopter and flew to Ghazni, nearly 150 km to the southwest of Kabul. The flight took us over the Hindu Kush mountains, which had been crossed by Alexander over 2,300 years ago. We're staying just outside of Ghazni at a PRC (Provincial Reconstruction Center), which contains a mix of Polish and American soldiers. Today's primary focus involved meetings with the governor of Ghazni province, and the plans for 2013 when Ghazni will be celebrated as the capital of Islamic Culture. Many of you will be unfamiliar with Ghazni (as was I, one month ago), but between the 10th and 12th centuries, Ghazni constituted the center of an empire that ruled northern India, Persia, and much of central... Read More
by C. Brian Rose
March 29, 2011
My second full day in Kabul featured two highlights: a visit to the Kabul Archaeological Museum and a lecture at Kabul University. We were guided through the museum by the director, Omara Khan Masoudi, whom I had met in Philadelphia in 2006 at the Archaeology in Afghanistan conference. The museum has been completely restored, and there were new cases supplied by Japan and the Netherlands as well as a functioning conservation laboratory. Among the new exhibits was one on Mes Aynak, the early Buddhist site near Kabul that occupies the same area as a Chinese copper mining operation. The objects uncovered in the recent excavations are extraordinary, including some unusual painted and gilded Buddha heads. The royal palace across the street... Read More
by C. Brian Rose
March 28, 2011
C. Brian Rose, former President of the Archaeological Institute of America, shares his observations about Afghanistan during his current trip: As many of you will remember, two years ago I had the good fortune of visiting Iraq at the invitation of the US Embassy in Baghdad, and I described my impressions of the country, and especially the condition of the archaeological sites, in a President's Letter in ARCHAEOLOGY magazine. When I was invited to visit Afghanistan this year, AIA President Elizabeth Bartman invited me to share my experiences with you in a daily blog, of which this is the first installment. I will be in Afghanistan for a week, with five days in Kabul and three in Ghazni, nearly 150 km to the southwest of Kabul. I... Read More
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