Wednesday 27 August 2014

Gimme-Gimme Collectors With no Conscience?

integrity, responsibility

ISIS Militant holds out hand
for collectors' cash
In today's media offerings we find two recent texts: Hyperallergic's  '' and SAFE's 'UK adopts resolution to ban the import of antiquities from Syria' (with the question "will the massive market of the US follow suit?). We also find over on the blog of a lobbyist working for the International Association of Professional Numismatists and the Professional Numismatists Guild  an attack on the idea of the enforcement of trade sanctions relating to Syrian cultural property. Let me remind "professional (sic) numismatists" what is involved:

It shall be prohibited to import, export, transfer, or provide brokering services related to the import, export or transfer of, Syrian cultural property goods and other goods of archaeological, historical, cultural, rare scientific or religious importance [...] where there are reasonable grounds to suspect that the goods have been removed from Syria without the consent of their legitimate owner or have been removed in breach of Syrian law or international law, in particular if the goods form an integral part of either the public collections listed in the inventories of the conservation collections of Syrian museums, archives or libraries, or the inventories of Syrian religious institutions.
The ANS has yet to make their position clear, but since many ANS affiliated dealers sell numismatic material potentially of Syran origin, it would surprise nobody to see them siding too with the lobbyist representing the IAPN and PNG. At a time when the US is putting resources into stopping the post-2003 human rights tragedy unfolding in northern Syria and Iraq, it seems downright un-American for US collectors, dealers and international trade associations to be attempting to hold out for their 'right' to put money blindly into the hands of those responsible for it.

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