The American 'Committee for Cultural Policy' go on about what they call 'Pandora's great disappointment' (anonymous article, January 23, 2016). This attempts to show that the joint police 'Operation Pandora' was some kind of a failure...because it 'has had very small results', they only arrested 75 people. And the artefacts? The artefacts these collectors describe dismissively:
many heavily encrusted coins, a variety of ceramic shards, a common Islamic period ring, and 500 items stolen earlier from a Spanish museum in Murcia, mostly medieval Spanish coins. Greek police have found a fragment of a marble Ottoman tombstone and an eighteenth century painting of St. George and two other saints and “two objects from the Byzantine era,” hardly noteworthy objects, since similar items are found in many EU antique stores.oh. Oh yes, 'many such objects are found on the market'. So that means that the [A]CCP does not feel they are worth dealing with. By the way, the coins in the photo are not that 'heavily' encrusted, many of them will clean up to look nice in a dealer's tray. Yes, there are many such coins with no legitimising papers in those dealers' trays. So far there have been 75 arrests, let us hope the [A]CCP get their wish to see more arrests as the result of 'such a massive operation'.
As for the claim that the police should not be announcing as a success their capture of the sellers of such small artefacts, hardly worth bothering about, a parallel argument might be a certain interest group urging the police not to arrest people who molest very small children, but only those who (with their small orange hands) grope adult women.
They perhaps think it's enough to 'build a wall' around all the 18 countries involved and post armed guards on every single archaeological site across the whole of Europe and the MENA region, which they imagine would somehow be a 'better way to spend' the money spent on the police operation to investigate the dodgy antiquities market cost. I cannot see 'the Mexicans' paying for that... This so-called 'committee' should be ashamed of their embarrassingly naive so-called 'cultural policy' suggestions.
The way to deal with a dodgy market is either to police it or shut it down.The [A]CCP seems to think the cost of policing it is too high.
Anyway, I guess if Europeans want some 'advice' about how we should police our borders, I guess we'll ask the [A]CCP, but until then, perhaps the collectors and lawyers of Tumbleweed Town could just worry about their own.