Sunday, 18 February 2018

Diving Robbers Looting Underwater Treasure

4th century C.E. Roman shipwreck
Diving robbers looting underwater sites are the bane of marine archaeologists. The items stolen from the sea floor, ranging from coins to amphorae to scrap metal from World War II warships, are usually sold on the black market. Stopping the ravage of the ancient sites is all but impossible.

The problem of maritime looting is especially acute in Israel where the narrow Levantine coast has been inhabited throughout human history and traces of long-vanished civilizations remain on land and under water. Every storm exposes new artifacts on the seabed. It is often a matter of who gets there first – the authorities or thieves.

A bronze embolos - a ram used aboard ships of antiquity to smash holes in enemy vessels.
The sea is very shallow in Gaza, about 5 meters. The popular mentality says that the sea belongs to nobody.