BUFALE ARCHEOLOGICHE in Giornale dell’Arte November 2015 “ISIS and ISIAO”

BVFALE ARCHEOLOGICHE Novembre 2015ISIS advances and brutally murders the courageous “Guardian of Palmyra”, 81-year old archaeologist Khaled Asaad, who refused to reveal the hiding place of the artworks in the Antiquarium at Palmyra to the ISIS brutes. Equally atrocious was the killing of the cultural dialogue between East and West that Asaad promoted for years and that was also promoted for 80 years by ISMEO (the Italian Institute for the Middle and Far East founded in 1933 by Giuseppe Tucci and Giovanni Gentile), which then merged to become the ISIAO (Italian Institute for Africa and the East, 1995).
Good, now that ISIAO no longer exists..! It is the first and only “useless” institution to have been actually got rid of (under the supervision of the “useless” Ambassador Armellini at the Farnesina) as of 2011 and up to a few days ago when a Tuscan ‘scrap dealer’ agreed to disposing of the last piece of furniture in the head office in Via Aldrovandi 16 in Rome. What will happen to the extremely rare collections..? To the all-important Library and the Tucci Fund..?
If the ISIS advances so quickly and stupidly this is also due at the end of the dialogue between the West, Middle East and Africa. The ISIS leaders want to keep its militants in ignorance and in cultural isolation and has convinced them to destroy images of Palmyra and who protects these images, accusing them of pagan idolatry, not knowing that this idolatry was already stopped over 2,000 years ago and that it can no longer harm the “true” message of the Qur’an.
In 80 years of activity, ISMEO and ISIAO have brought western culture closer to the Middle East and East with cooperation, archaeological missions, conferences, exhibitions, important publications (it suffices to recall the Serie Orientale Roma) and agreements with over 100 countries, I would not say therefore that it is a “useless” organisation… from Giuseppe Tucci to Gherardo Gnoli, on the contrary, it was something for Italians to be proud of. Everything dissolved in a (political) operation of “compulsory administrative liquidation”, hardly administrative but certainly compulsory..!


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