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Babylon

Babylon -a wonder of the ancient world to be resurrected once more

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Babylon, the capital of Mesopotamia and the cradle of early civilization was known to be a magnificent city, especially because of its hanging gardens and walls. No wonder it is counted among the Seven Wonders of the ancient world.  But today Babylon is hardly what it was in the past, with its plunder of treasures, conflicts and its tyrant rulers.  However, all is not lost because the government of Iraq has now reopened Babylon to the world.

Visitors to the ancient site where Babylon once stood will now be able to see a showcase of its glorious past and its beautiful landscapes, decorated aurochs, a replica of Berlins pergamon Museum and the Ishtar gate.

Hai Katth Moussa of the Iraqi archaeological department revealed that Saddam Hussein began the reconstruction of the Nebuchadnezzar II palace and like him, Hussein inscribed his name to glorify Iraq and himself.

European archaeologists carried out excavation work in the early twentieth century and discovered the dragons and aurochs near the gate to be from 575 BC built by King Nebuchadnezzar II. After the infamous gulf war, Iraq’s dictator restarted his work on the palace for himself on the top of these ruins; but this palace, which was in close proximity to Nebuchadnezzar's palace overlooking the Euphrates River, was occupied by the American forces in 2003.

Today, concertina wire left behind by the military is used to prevent visitors from climbing over a 2,500-year-old lion statue – an ancient symbol of a glorious city that once lived.

By April Holloway

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