Posted on December 17, 2021

Our Rulers Can Be as Barbaric as the Taliban

Jared Taylor, American Renaissance, December 17, 2021

Look what they do to heritage.

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Do you remember the giant Buddhas of Bamiyan? They were carved out of the stone of a cliffside in central Afghanistan more than 1,400 years ago. The Taliban blew them up in 2001. Here is the larger of the two, which was 156 feet tall. The person at its feet gives you an idea of its size.

This is a reconstruction of what it may have looked like when it was new. Here is the Buddha before and after the Taliban dynamited it. The Taliban called the statues heathen idols. Just about every country in the world condemned the destruction, calling it barbaric and criminal.

You may also remember when the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, wrecked Palmyra, a very important archeological site in Syria. This is the Temple of Bel or Baal, which the Romans built in 17 AD – that is, before ISIS got hold of it in 2015. Here you can see tubs of explosives attached to columns.

And, here is the temple going up with a bang, to happy shouts of Allahu Akbar.

This is all that was left of the more than 2,000-year-old temple.

Credit Image: © Sharifulin Valery/TASS via ZUMA Press

Here are ISIS boys knocking over statues inside the Palmyra Museum.

Once again, just about the entire world was furious.

This sort of thing isn’t new. Here is the entrance to the temple of Isis in Philae, in Egypt.

On the right side of what is called the pylon gate, we see Pharaoh offering a sacrifice to Horace, the falcon-headed god, and to the goddess Hathor.

Not too badly preserved for relief carvings that are 2,400 years old. But look over to the left.

Someone has chiseled out the figures – either early Christians or Muslims; both would have thought Egyptian gods were idols. Someone even built a scaffold and hammered off the smaller figures at the top.

Inside the temple, Christians carved Coptic Crosses to mark their territory.

But back to the Bamiyan Buddhas. Every single Muslim country pleaded with the Taliban not to destroy the giant statues. Japan and India offered to remove them and rebuild them in a safe country. After the dynamiting, even Saudi Arabia said the destruction was “savage.” The head of UNESCO, Koichiro Matsuura said, “It is abominable to witness the cold and calculated destruction of cultural properties.”

In 2016, “the world’s highest criminal court – the International Criminal Court in The Hague – ruled that destroying cultural antiquities is a war crime.”

Here in the United States, aren’t we doing something similar? During the George Floyd riots and ever since, there has been a vicious attack on our heritage in public art. At least 39 statues or memorials to Christopher Columbus came down. Explorers such as Juan de Oñateeven Kit Carson took a diveas did several statues of a canonized saint, Junipero Serra. Other victims were George Washington, Abe Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, Ulysses Grant, Teddy Roosevelt, Andrew Jackson, Francis Drake, Lewis and Clark, Francis Scott Key, Phillip Schuyler, John Mason – and scores of people you never hear of, such as Edward Carmack, and Clemente Spampinato. The total count is something over 230. Wikipedia keeps a list. Mobs tore down many monuments and the authorities carted off the rest before mobs got them.

About 60 percent of the destruction – 134 statues and memorials – were of Confederates. As you can see, some were quite beautiful. Needless to say, there are people who want to remove every trace of the Confederacy.

Credit Image: © Allison Bailey/NurPhoto via ZUMA Press

How is this any different from Muslims blowing up Buddhist statues? A different people comes along and obliterates the heritage of the people who were there before. And it is obliteration. The Lee statue from Charlottesville, Virginia will be melted down and a black group use the bronze to make what they call a social-justice sculpture.

Plenty of people wanted to save the statue. One man offered to pay $50,000 for it and move it himself. Nope. The city council voted unanimously to destroy it.

The famous Lee statue in Richmond got the same treatment. In 1890, when it was unveiled, 150,000 people came to honor General Lee.

Here is the statue in pristine condition. It was 21 feet hight and stood on a marble base 60 feet high. It was cast by the famous French sculptor, Antonin Mercié. It was on the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Landmarks Registry.

It was too tall to pull down, but this is what the mob did to it.

Every Confederate on Richmond’s famed Monument Avenue came down. Many people would have been happy to buy the Lee statue and protect it, but the city cut it in pieces instead.

Credit Image: © Jay Mather/ZUMA Press Wire Service

Lee was one of the most admired men in American history President Eisenhower, a Kansas boy and not a Southerner, had his portrait in the Oval Office. He called Lee “one of the supremely gifted men produced by our nation, noble as a leader and as a man.”

Even the men Lee and his armies were trying to kill respected the Confederates. Edward Ord was one of the Union generals who forced Lee to surrender at Appomattox.

One of his men wrote that he thought that after the surrender, the army would go wild with joy. It didn’t. That soldier wrote this:

I remember how we sat there and pitied and sympathized with these courageous Southern men who had fought for four long and dreary years all so stubbornly, so bravely and so well, and now, whipped, beaten, completely used up, were full at our mercy – it was pitiful, sad, hard, and seemed to us altogether too bad.

This was the spirit that led to reconciliation after a terrible war. Usually, animosities cool as time goes by, but people hate the Confederacy all the more as it recedes into the past.

The Washington Post reported that as the Lee statue in Richmond came down, a crowd gathered to jeer and taunt the general.

Credit Image: © Jay Mather/ZUMA Press Wire Service

It was the spirit of Mullah Mohammed Omar of the Taliban when his men blew up the Bamiyan statues.

“Muslims should be proud of smashing idols,” he said. “It has given praise to Allah that we have destroyed them.”

Why do people hate Confederates? I suppose it’s because they think the war was a battle of good whites who wanted to free blacks against bad whites who wanted slaves. But the North didn’t invade the South to fight slavery, but to keep it in the Union. Lincoln, the “great emancipator,” in a letter written in the summer of 1862, with the war raging, wrote, “What I do about slavery, and the colored race, I do because I believe it helps to save the Union.” He said he would free all, none, or even just some of the slaves if he thought it would help win the war.

The people who hate Robert E. Lee probably don’t know that Lincoln wanted to send freed slaves out of the country, and appointed people to find a place to send them. Once they figure that out, I suppose they will want to dynamite the Lincoln Memorial.

There is no public support for obliterating the Confederacy. In elections this year, six Virginia counties had ballot initiatives on whether to keep their Confederate monuments. In all six, big majorities voted to keep them standing. This one in front of the Warren County Courthouse got the support of 76 percent of voters. And it’s not just rural counties. This is a map of this year’s Virginia election results. That deep blue county in the circle that went by a 20-point margin for the Democrats is Fairfax County, home of Virginia’s most crazed liberals.

Naturally, it has a “Confederate Names Task Force” that wants to rename streets that were named for Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. The “task force” stupidly asked for opinions from residents. Only 40 percent wanted to change the names. What did the “task force” do? It decided to change the names anyway.

This is part of the current craze to put blacks and their supposed interests at the center of American history. That makes every man who fought for the Confederacy – no matter how noble – a demon. This adoration of blacks might as well be a crude religious cult, it is so irrational and bigoted. Whites who are conformist in every way, talk as if they would have been among the tiny handful of people who wanted complete racial equality in the 1860s.

The result is fury against the past that makes people destroy beautiful works of public art. They are just as primitive and barbaric as the leaders of the Taliban.