When Ancient Artifacts Become Political Pawns | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


When Ancient Artifacts Become Political Pawns

Egypt’s chief archaeologist, Zahi Hawass, announced that his country wanted its queen handed back forthwith, unless Germany could prove that the 3,500-year-old bust of Akhenaten’s wife wasn’t spirited illegally out of Egypt nearly a century ago.
Mr. Hawass also recently fired a shot at France, demanding the Louvre return five fresco fragments it purchased in 2000 and 2003 from a gallery and at auction. They belonged to a 3,200-year-old tomb near Luxor and had been in storage at the museum.
But Jewish groups and prominent French and German intellectuals (not the Israeli government, though) campaigned against Mr. Hosny. When asked in Egypt’s Parliament last year about the presence of Israeli books in Alexandria’s library, Mr. Hosny said: “Let’s burn these books. If there are any, I will burn them myself before you.”

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