Iraq Afghanistan Egypt (Bright Star) United States Department of Defense

Home Major Focus Areas Protecting Cultural Property Afghanistan Laws, Treaties & Enforcement Test Your Knowledge
Major Focus Areas
Protecting Cultural Property
Significant Sites in Afghanistan
Laws, Treaties & Enforcement
Test Your Knowledge


Question 1.

Which international treaty governs the protection of cultural property during armed conflict?

(Click the correct response)

A. The 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention

B. The 1970 UNESCO Convention

C. The 1954 Hague Convention

D. The 1995 UNIDROIT Convention

E. The 1986 Berne Convention

      Return to top


Question 2.

Consider the following situation:


A U.S. Army combat team in eastern Afghanistan engages a dozen Taliban, who retreat back across the border.

Local villagers emerge to celebrate.The village elder presents a gift to the combat team's OIC:

a silver tetradrachm minted during the reign of the Indo-Scythian king Azes I (reign: 57 BC to 35 BC).



The coin is worth more than $1,000.














What does General Order 1A require the OIC to do in this situation?

(Click the most correct response)

A. Accept the gift and take it home at the end of the tour.

B. Accept the gift and turn it over to the Battlefield Commander.

C. Politely decline the gift with all due respect.

D. Offer to make a "donation to the village" in exchange for the coin.



















      Return to top

























      Return to top

Question 3.

Which of the following is the international symbol used to identify cultural property subject to official protection during armed conflict?

(Click the correct response)

Is this the correct answer? Is this the correct answer? Is this the correct answer? Is this answer correct? Is this answer correct?
Is this the correcta answer? Is this answer correct? Is this answer correct? Is this answer correct? Is this answer correct?
Is this answer correct? Is this the correct answer? Is this answer correct? Is this the correct answer?










Question 4:

Consider this scenario:

  You are the OIC operating in a hostile urban environment.

Adversaries have been conducting hit-and-run attacks on your street patrols for weeks.
  Imperative military necessity justifies the placement of two-man sniper/spotter teams operating in shifts around the clock.

The sniper teams could work in various locations. Each location represents a feasible and logical alternative.

With an eye toward protecting cultural property and honoring international treaties:

One of the following locations is the preferred (least problemmatic) option.

the following locations should be avoided (if a feasible or logical alternative exists).

Which location would you select for your two-man sniper teams?


(Click the preferred location or most correct response)

  A. A rooftop or top-floor window in an unoccupied civilian or commercial building.
  B. A top-floor window of an ancient structure of less-than-universal importance.

[example: the Timurid period
Borg-e-Shar Aaraa built during the late 12th century AD in Kabul].

  C. The top of an internationally recognizable religious structure subject to official protection under the 1954 Hague Convention.

(example: the 9th century AD Spiral Minaret at the Great Mosque of Samarra, Iraq)








     Return to top





Question 5.

Are USCENTCOM personnel, contractors or civilian staff operating within the CENTCOM AOR permitted
to enter a mosque or madrassa without military necessity or prior approval?

(Click the correct response)  


A. Yes, at all times, without exception.
B. Yes, but only if the USCENTCOM soldier or staff member is a practicing Muslim.

C. No.











      Return to top

Question 6.

As the OIC or Battlefield Commander, which of the following activities will you warn your soldiers about?
And which activities will you permit or encourage or praise your troops for carrying out?


(Click the correct response)  

Flying helicopters directly over ancient monuments or archaeological sites or kicking up rotor wash at such sites.

Should you warn your pilots and soldiers
about this practice?

Or should you encourage them to "go ahead ... take a look. You may never be stationed in this region again."


Writing graffiti on walls and monuments.

Should you warn your soldiers not to do this?

Or should you assume that no soldier would
do such a thing?


Service personnel sometimes witness fellow soldiers or civilian contractors taking artifacts or smuggling such items out of the AOR.

Should you encourage your soldiers to speak up and report what they see confidentially?  

Or should you advise them to "encourage unit cohesion" by saying nothing?


Service personnel often uncover artifacts or fragments accidentally while digging trenches or filling sandbags near an archaeological site.

Should you remind your soldiers about this possibility and praise them when they stop digging and report the presence of artifacts?

Or should you say nothing because "we need to get the job done" and "such things just don't happen ... or don't matter"?




      Return to top


Question 7.

Which of the following is the official CENTCOM regulation that offers guidance to construction and engineering teams who encounter historical or cultural sites or monuments during the course of their work?

(Click the correct response)       

A. The U.S. Army Field Manual

B. General Order 1A

C. CENTCOM Contingency Environmental Guidance: Environmental Quality Regulation (*R 200-2)

D. There is no such CENTCOM regulation















Question 8.

Your four-vehicle Stryker Brigade Combat Team is pursuing adversaries who have taken refuge inside a protected cultural heritage site.

Your map confirms the site to be a 1st century AD fortress complex, 200 yards in diameter, with a ten-foot high perimeter wall (see aerial photo below).

      Return to top

A Blue Shield symbol appears at the entrance of the walled compound.

Another sign (in multiple languages) identifies this as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Your four Stryker vehicles take up positions around the perimeter wall to cut off all avenues of escape.

















      Return to top

A mortar round fired from inside the walled compound lands next to your Humvee ... a near-miss.

Your team is prepared to return fire as soon as you
give the order.


Do international treaty obligations and Rules of Engagement permit you to return fire on an adversary
that uses a World Heritage Site as a fighting position?

(Click the correct response)  

A. Yes.

B. No.













Question 9.

A steeply-sided hill or mound on an otherwise flat landscape in a region known to have
ancient sites and undiscovered archaeological remains should be recognized as:


(Click the correct response)    

A. Nothing more than a hill.

B. Probably the remains of an ancient structure or village (you should stay clear of the hill, as much as possible).

C. Suitable for target practice.













      Return to top

Question 10.


You are the OIC travelling with a 10-man Reconaissance Team in armored Humvees on a deserted highway.

One hundred yards from the edge of the road, you see a group of men with shovels, working in what appears to be an archaeological site.

These are not farmers tilling the soil. They are
standing on and enlarging freshly-dug craters.
And the surrounding landscape looks like the surface of the moon (craters as far as the eye can see).

Two of the diggers have AK-47s slung over their shoulders, but they do not open fire when they see your convoy pull up and roll to a stop.


















What is the recommended course of action?

(Click the most correct response)

A. Take no action. Proceed to your destination.

B. Make your presence known. Issue a verbal warning, if possible, using a bull horn. If the looters do not disperse, fire into the air. If the looters flee, do not chase them. Report the incident to Battlefield Command.

C. If you have sufficient manpower, and the looters not disperse in response to Option B, employ graduated use of force to apprehend, disarm and take looters who refused to disperse into custody. Order suppressive fire or return fire only to maintain force protection. Once the looters are disarmed and taken into custody, radio Battlefield Command for pickup.

D. Employ lethal force as the first option.










      Return to top

Final Question.

Respecting and protecting cultural property during armed conflict:


(Click the most correct response)        

A. upholds American values.

B. is an effective force multiplier.

C. is consistent with General Order 1A.

D. is required by international treaty.

E. all of the above.