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Originally posted by sockmonkey at 2007-2-28 10:58
I think your analogy is a little flawed. Cultural relics are more than money; they are the embodiment of history, from which the entire world can learn new things. Let's say there is a great countr ...
Your logic is totally flawed. Are western countries less prone to destroying historical artifacts? Below are some examples of such destruction by westerners.
The discovery of the New World by European explorers sparked a fierce competition among European nations to obtain territories abroad. Colonialism was fueled by the desire to fill national coffers, through trade, agriculture, or plunder. In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, exaggerated rumors of indigenous wealth and stores of gold encouraged plunder of Indian villages. Almost immediately, the demand for exotic objects d'art from the Americas swelled, as wealthy aristocrats clamored for Incan jewelry and Mayan antiquities.
Even in times of warfare, such as the Napoleonic Wars and wars of colonial expansion, cultural resources were a prime consideration. Many western armies freely destroyed indigenous or ancient sites of cultural significance in the heat of battle—a practice that later devastated the many Medieval and Renaissance treasures in Europe itself during World War I.
Holocaust plunder, known as the Great Theft, was less extensively catalogued by German authorities. The plundered goods, formerly located in private collections, were not catalogued by museums. Thus, the total loss of priceless cultural resources during the Holocaust is immeasurable.
It emerged over the weekend that 170,000 ancient artifacts housed in the National Museum of Iraq in Baghdad have been destroyed or taken by looters. The New York Times reports the destruction of the museum is likely to be reckoned as one of the greatest cultural disasters in recent Middle Eastern history.
The National Museum recorded a history of civilizations that began to flourish in the fertile plains of Mesopotamia more than 7,000 years ago.
Museum officials are outraged at US troops for failing to protect the museum. For weeks before the war, archaeologists and scholars from around the world had warned the Pentagon about postwar looting. They reminded the Pentagon that after the 1991 Gulf War, 9 of Iraq's 13 regional museums were plundered.
I still think stealing is bad, but I tend to think on a more global scale--these things should be available to the world, not just to the country of origin
Very well said, then perhaps your country's historical artifacts can be loaned to China's Imperial Museum for say 200 years.
[ Last edited by greatwall_sg at 2007-2-28 11:46 AM ]