Friday, December 31, 2010
In 1860, the Western powers, such the British and French, invaded Chinaand destroyed Yuanmingyuan, the Old Summer Palace. They were looting and smuggling the finest pieces of the Chinese collections out of China. Thanks to voices of the Chinese people in the internet, Beijing finally decided to send a team of experts to museums around the world to investigate a million cultural relics which were looted from Yuanmingyuan. According to the Chinese media the team will go to museums in the US, Britain, France, and Japan. “But based on our rough calculations, about 1.67 million relics are housed in more than 200 museums in 47 countries (CCTV).” As the Chinese media states, “A country’s history is of interest to its people before those of any other nation. Having artifacts in a single location that is convenient for tourists and historians, but not the people of the country from which they were taken (South China Morning Post).” Will the Western countries hand over these relics to Beijing?