Problematical & Controversial
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1932 - Americal Tropical, Italian Hall, Olvera Street, Los Angeles, California (USA). By David Alfaro Siqueiros [1896-1974]. "According to the text on a plaque on Main Street, Siqueiros was invited to paint a mural on the second floor exterior wall of the building. The mural (featuring an Indian bound to a double cross, surmounted by an imperialist eagle, and surrounded by pre-Columbian symbols and revolutionary figures) was considered hightly controversial." "The mural was partially whitewashed shortly after its completion, and then fully painted over within its first year on public view, beginning a legacy of censorship that still haunts Los Angeles. In the 1970's, 40 years after it was painted over, the image began to reemerge from the whitewash."
1934 - Mojave Memorial Cross, Sunrise Rock, Mojave National Preserve, California (USA). "Erected to honor Americans who died in World War I. Maintained by volunteers and was reconstructed after being destroyed. A park visitor sued in 2001. Boarded up [as shown in right image] after a federal judge ruled that it violated the First Amendment’s establishment clause because it conveyed “a message of endorsement of religion.” Congress passed a law that transferred the land under it to the Veterans of Foreign Wars, who would maintain it. The same park visitor challenged the land transfer. A trial court ruled that it was invalid because it was simply an attempt by the government to keep the cross. The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in San Francisco, agreed. But, on April 28, 2010, the US Supreme Court voted 5-4 (and issued six separate opinons) overturning the lower court and permitting the cross to remain.
1955 - “The Singing Mural,” Ballroom, University Center, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee (USA). By muralist Marion Greenwood [1909-1970]. Depicting the music, dance, and folklore of Tennessee from the Mississippi on the left to the Appalachians on the right. Minority students complained that the Black cotton picker is a slave. Mural vandalized on May 18, 1970. Has been covered since May 1972. Uncovered briefly March 15-17, 2006, when these photos were taken by the Knoxville News Sentinel.
March 22, 1980 - Georgia Guidestones, Elberton, Georgia (USA). aka "The American Stonehenge." Four giant granite stones engraved with 10 "Guides" or commandments in 8 different languages setting forth the basic principles of the establishment of the governance of a one world order with a unified world court of law where populations and reproduction are controlled, a unified "living new" language, whose philosophical foundation is built on "spirituality" & man’s environmental responsibility to live in harmony with nature. Built by "R.C. Christian" whose true identity remains unknown.
January 14, 1990 - "Maailman Rauha / World Peace," Hakaniemi Square, Helsinki (Finland). "Total socialist realism" /// "A reminder of cold war in Helsinki. It was 'given' by the city of Moscow just before the collapse of Soviet Union. If Helsinki would have refused the 'gift,' relations with the big neighbour would have suffered." /// "The artist's name is Oleg Kirjuhin. The statue is actually a copy. Similar copies have been placed in cities around the former Soviet Union. Helsinki might be the only city outside the former Soviet Union that has it's own." /// "The World Peace sculpture at Hakaniemi Square has been a focus of controversy. 'It is a passionate, clear & concrete appeal on behalf of peace & friendship,' declared Mayor Raimo Ilaskivi as he unveiled the statue in 1990, when two months had passed from the fall of the Berlin Wall, and as the Soviet Union was coming to an end. Later Ilaskivi said that the City of Moscow had offered Helsinki a statue of Lenin; in that respect, World Peace was a 'defensive victory.'"
1996-2003 - Parliament Building, Abu Dis (Occupied West Bank). "Empty - a massive relic & a testimony to the failure of political negotiations." /// "Abu Dis was captured by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War. Since the signing in 1995 of the Interim Agreement on the West Bank & the Gaza Strip (also known as Oslo 2), Abu Dis has been part of Area B, which is under the civil jurisdiction of the Palestinian National Authority (PA) but subject to Israeli security control. Due to its geographic proximity to Jerusalem, as well as its position overlooking the Temple Mount from a position near the Mount of Olives, as a substitute for East Jerusalem, the Palestinians' claimed capital, Abu Dis has been mentioned by the Israeli government as a possible capital for a Palestinian state. Most of the PA's offices responsible for Jerusalem affairs are located in the town. The PA built a Parliament Building to possibly house the Palestinian Legislative Council (aka Parliament)... The council has been unable to meet & govern since 2007 due to the Israeli imprisonment of some members, the Fatah–Hamas conflict & the indefinite postponing of elections by the Fatah leadership." /// "Mistakenly or intentionally, the building was not built beside the border, but rather the border runs right through the building."
May 22, 2002 - Monument to the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet, across from the Potala Palace, Lhasa (Tibet). "Celebrates the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet by the People's Liberation Army. The US$1.7 million, 37-meter-high spire-like concrete structure was designed by Professor Qikang of the South-East University of China. It is shaped as an abstract Mount Quomolangma (aka Mount Everest). An inscription refers to the expelling of 'imperialist' forces from Tibet in 1951... When apprized of the plans to build the memorial, the Tibetan government in exile claimed that 'the monument would serve as a daily reminder of the humiliation of the Tibetan people.' For Kate Saunders, spokeswoman for International Campaign for Tibet, the construction in this sensitive spot is a political message to Tibetans about Chinese rule over the region."
Date? - Bnai Zion Library of Peace, Ma'aleh Adummim, east of Jerusalem (Occupied West Bank). A gift of the Bnai Zion Foundation of New York City (USA) -- "The American Fraternal Zionist Organization" -- which "has been supporting humanitarian projects in Israel since 1908." Ma'aleh Adummim is a huge Israeli settlement -- illegal under international law -- which helps extend Jerusalem almost halfway to Jericho & the Dead Sea, thus dividing the West Bank. (Enlarge the map to see Ma'aleh Adummin & other illegal settlements in the West Bank.) Asked if she'd ever visited this library, Angela Godfrey-Goldstein said no -- for the same reason that she'd never visited the Ma'aleh Adummim shopping center.
Date? - Peace Monument, Ma'aleh Adummim, east of Jerusalem (Occupied West Bank). Opposite the Ma'aleh Adummin shopping center. Large white dove with world globe (not shown in image) between its wings. No information on-line. /// Lower image shows a transplanted olive tree (symbol of peace) in a Ma'aleh Adummim traffic circle (one of several). This olive tree is ancient & therefore had to have been moved here from somewhere else, doubtessly robbed from a Palestinian farm. Martin Luther King, Jr., Bouevard in nearby Jerusalem is lined with such trees. Somewhere it's documented that representatives of the King family were invited to its dedication but refused to attend when they heard about the trees.
2004 - Peace Monument, Town Square, Ma'aleh Adummim, east of Jerusalem (Occupied West Bank). Opposite the Ma'aleh Adummin mall ("Canion Adumim") which was opened in 1999. Large white dove with world globe between its wings. Ma'aleh Adummin is an illegal Israeil setttlement according to international law. Left image by EWL. Right image by Avishai Teicher via the PikiWiki - Israel free image collection project which says [Google translation] "The sculpture is Moses hatchet. (2004) sculpture called 'Keno the wake eagle chicks float' (Deuteronomy)." Date? -Peace Dove, Faqua, Jenin District (Occupied West Bank). "The dove sculpture abandoned in a field in the village of Faqua stands for the abandonment of the peace negotiations between Palestine & Israel." /// "A village of about 5,000 residents, Faqua is blighted by a security barrier set up by Israel that separates it from Ma'ale Gilboa, a religious kibbutz that is home to 400 Israeli settlers. The village is not connected to any piped supply. Instead, Faqua has to rely on exorbitantly expensive water brought in by tankers. This water still does not meet the village's needs."
2007 - "History of Labor in the State of Maine," Maine State Museum, Augusta, Maine (USA). 11 panel mural measuring 36 feet in length & nearly 8 feet tall. Names of the 11 panels: The Apprentice, Lost Childhood, The Textile Workers, The Secret Ballot, First Labor's Day, The Woods Workers, The 1937 [Shoe Workers] Strike, Frances Perkins, Rosie the Riveter, The [Paper Mill] Strike of 1986, and The Future of Labor in Maine. "In the summer of 2007, I...was selected to do the commission [for the Department of Labor reception area]. Along the way, I met some wonderful, and dedicated people. I also got an excellent education in Maine History." // "On March 23, 2011, Governor LePage sparked protests when he announced that he planned to remove the mural... The artist, Judy Taylor, stated, "There was never any intention to be pro-labor or anti-labor, it was a pure depiction of the facts." LePage also announced that he plans to rename conference rooms that have carried the names of historic leaders of American labor, as well as former Secretary of Labor Frances Perkins, the first woman cabinet member in American history & whose parents were natives of Maine. The governor's spokesman explained that the mural and the conference-room names were 'not in keeping with the department's pro-business goals.' Despite protests, on March 28 it was disclosed that the murals had been removed over the weekend."
2008-2011 - Monument to Humanity, Kars (Turkey). "For Naif Alibeyoglu, the former mayor of Kars whose idea it was, supposed to represent the victory of peace over enmity, its flood-lighting visible from neighbouring Armenia, 40 kilometres away. In Kars, opposition was led by Oktay Aktas, local head of the Nationalist Action Party, or MHP. “Why is one figure standing with its head bowed, as if ashamed," Aktas asks. Today, it stands unfinished. Its three-metre high hand, supposed to join the two figures, was never attached. It lies fingers up in the gravel in front. /// Reuters 12Jan 11: " The row centres on the prime minister's right to demand the removal of an artwork on aesthetic grounds. His comments come at a time when rapprochement between Muslim Turkey and Christian Armenia is at a standstill. Erdogan's comments have been seized on by Turkish nationalists who condemn the monument's message of understanding. A bid to normalise ties between neighbouring Turkey and Armenia suffered a blow last April when Yerevan froze ratification of a US-brokered peace accord. /// Armenian Weekly, March 11, 2011: "The demolition began on April 26 while Armenians worldwide commemorated the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. In the presence of riot police, the heads of the statues were dismounted & trucked away. Thus, a conciliatory symbol has itself become a target of intolerance - a fate sculptor Mehmet Aksoy has likened to the destruction of Buddhist relics by the Taliban.""
September 7, 2009 - "In Sorrow and Shame" Plaque, Jewish Cemetery, Hebron (Occupied West Bank). "Points to a new trend among British Christians -- repentance for their country’s conduct during the Palestine Mandate. Close to the graves [left image] of Jews killed by an Arab mob in the 1929 Hebron Massacre, the plaque [right image] declares in Hebrew & English: "In sorrow and shame. We recognise that officers of the British administration neglected their duty to protect the Jewish citizens of Hebron during the Arab uprising in 1929. 'Father, Forgive us,' we pray. Love Never Fails Network of UK Christian ministries, September 7, 2009." Installed by an interdenominational Christian umbrella organization that represents 20 British ministries & has a total membership of 30,000 [Christian Friends of Israel]."
August 24, 2011 - Aqsa Parvez Memorial Grove, JNF Wall of Eternal Life, American Independence Park, near Bet Shemesh, Jerusalem District (Israel). Aqsa Parvez [1991-2007] was the victim of an honour killing in Mississauga, Ontario (Canada). Inscription on wall: "Grove. Atlas Shrugs Readers, New York, NY. In memory of Aqsa Parvez. 55909." Wording on certificate: "A grove of trees has been planted in Israel in loving memory of Aqsa Parvez and all victims of honor killings worldwide." /// Description from Atlas Shrugs (blog of Pamela Geller): "Honors killing victims worldwide. The first initiative of its kind. Dedicated to calling attention to this enforcement of the most savage elements of Islamic law against women: wives, daughters & sisters. One can't even begin to fathom the lost dreams & ideals & promises & hopes for a full life extinguished by the tyrannical, hatemongering macho culture of Islamic supremacism. Demand the world's condemnation of Islamic misogyny, gender apartheid & the dehumanization of women. Should be the first of tens of thousands of memorials, but the point of the memorials does not end simply with the memorials themselves. The memorials show that we have not forgotten & will not forget these girls. And the memorials are just a part of a larger determination to show the Islamic world that we simply will not allow this barbaric practice of Islamic honor killing to stand in the West. We will plant millions of groves." /// Click here for video of dedication speeches by Pamela Geller & Robert Spencer. /// Click here for blog opposing this memorial. /// FYI: American Independence Park is on land owned by the Jewish National Fund (JNF or KKL). "The JNF has established the Wall of Eternal Life...to provide people around the world with the opportunity to forever memorialize loved ones in Israel... Your $1,800 donation will include the permanent inscription, the planting of a garden of 360 trees in Israel & an attractive Garden Certificate of Jerusalem mounted on a striking beveled plaque, illustrated by artist and friend of Israel, Leif Nelson." Photos: Upper right is Pamela Geller during dedication with flags of Israel, USA & JNF. Middle right is Spencer, Geller & JNF representative fnu Liat.
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