War update 2: looting is fun!

Everybody’s doing it! Journalists…

US Customs officials confiscated a large painting that a Boston Herald reporter, Jules Crittenden, brought back as a souvenir from the war in Iraq, but the artwork is not valuable enough to merit prosecution, a law enforcement official said yesterday.

Crittenden, who was embedded with the US Army’s Third Infantry Division to cover the war, arrived from Kuwait on Saturday at Logan International Airport. He declared several souvenirs to Customs officials, and was searched, according to a statement released by the newspaper.

Of interest to Customs agents was a 5-foot painting that was rolled up in a tube, according to a law enforcement official who spoke on the condition of anonymity. Ornamental kitchen items were also confiscated. Crittenden told the agents he got the painting from a building on the grounds of one of Saddam Hussein’s presidential palaces.

— snip —

”He didn’t think it was a big deal,” the official said of Crittenden. ”He said all the embedded reporters were doing it.”

…and soldiers:

FOUR sticky-fingered GIs have been arrested for trying to steal nearly $1 million of the $700 million in cold cash found hidden on the grounds of several estates in Baghdad, Army officials said yesterday.