Just days ago, on July 25, militants of ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) destroyed the traditional burial site of the biblical prophet Jonah, a holy site to both Christians and Muslims in the region.
The city of Mosul, where the shrine has stood for 800 years, is next to the remains of Nineveh, where the Bible records Jonah’s prophetic ministry after his whale-sized adventure. Unfortunately, many important religious and historical sites have been destroyed or defaced by Muslim extremists in adherence to strict traditions that cannot be found in the Koran, their holiest of books. Below are a few other examples of the destruction of Mideast sacred sites.
MADINA, SAUDI ARABIA:
destroyed for fear that such sites would tempt Muslims into a kind of idolatry of such buildings. Other related structures nearby continue to be removed as Saudi officials declare a need to make room for an increase in annual religious pilgrims.
In the summer and autumn of 2012 many centuries-old religious shrines of Sufism were intentionally destroyed by the Muslim extremist group Ansar Dine, which claimed the sites violated Muslim teachings. They also burned many ancient irreplaceable manuscripts. UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) is working with the Mali government to help restore the historic sites.
BAMWAM VALLEY, AFGHANISTAN:
were completely destroyed. The statues had stood for 1500 years and survived previous attacks, but in March of 2001 Taliban leadership declared them idols and blew them up. I recall learning about the event on radio news, and it was the first time I'd ever heard of the "Taliban" -- the radical Islamists of Afghanistan. Today, in a post-9/11 world, the destruction of the two giant Buddhas certainly seems a haunting foreshadow of the devastation of two other massive twin structures just six months later in New York City.
Huffington Post: "ISIS Destroys Shiite Mosques And Shrines In Iraq."