Monday, 29 February 2016


Courtroom sketch artist extraordinaire Atlas Obscura brings some excellent and thoughtful reporting on the proceedings of the International Criminal Tribunal, which for the first time—fueled by revulsion, terror and heartbreak of the cowardly and wanton deportment of the Cosplay Caliphate—is hearing a case against with cultural heritage is the plaintiff and victim.
Though there is sadly thousands of years of precedence regarding the wilful destruction of ancient artefacts and unexplored archaeological sites (not to mention pilfer and plunder), no case has been successfully lobbied before in this venue. It was not the recent tragic losses of our shared patrimony in Syria or the destruction of Slavic and French landmarks and monuments by the Nazis a few generations removed (although the beginnings of a legal framework came out of those events), but rather a lesser-known (and perhaps the greater loss for its lack of public attention) incident where an individual attempted to steamroll the cultural landscape of Mali, near Timbuktu. The world is trying the thugs of today’s headlines in absentia, of course, but with this docket the Court hopes to create laws and language sufficient to to deter future losses and craft the codex to throw at the current perpetrators.