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Louvre Museum Joined the

"History-Distortion Business Club"


17 December 2006



Edited by S. Suren-Pahlav


A government which corrupts its colleges and universities by making political fronts of them . . . has betrayed academic freedom and compromised all who teach. When colleges and universities are made conduits of deceit and when faculty members are paid to lie, there is an end to the common good of higher education.

-- Professor William Van Alstyne, former president of the American Association of University Professors (Academe, June 1976, p. 54)



LONDON, (CAIS) -- The curator of the National Museum of Iran (NMI) said in a news conference that the distortion of the name of the Persian Gulf in the Louvre’s catalogue is the result of the Arab financial influence in Europe.


“The distortion of the Persian Gulf’s name in the Louvre’s catalogue is not something new. It has occurred due to the Arabs’ economic influence over the museum during the 1990s,” Mohammadreza Kargar told the Persian service of CHN.


Kargar noted that French archaeologists became pioneers of excavations in Iran after reaching an agreement with the Qajar dynasty. However, after 1979 revolution, Iran has put an end to their activities and they began working in Iran’s neighbouring countries, particularly newly formed Arab states, which provided appropriate financial opportunities, he added.  


The money the Arabs spent to pay the archaeological mercenaries created some expectations, one of them being the alteration of the name of the Persian Gulf, he explained.


“Most important research centres in the heart of Paris is run by France and Saudi Arabia. Several months ago, Paris played host to an exhibition of Arab civilization, which was opened by Jacques Chirac and Kind Abdullah of Jordan,” he explained. 


Contradictory but not so surprisingly despite the fact that the exhibition was called "Arab civilization", majority of artefacts on show were Iranians.


In addition, the deputy director of the Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization said that if the Louvre does not correct the displayed maps, Iranian cultural body will revise its relations with the museum.


“The Louvre is very eager to expand cultural ties with Iran, so this policy will make them correct the maps,” Alireza Sajjadpur told the recently-established Persian daily Tehran-e Emruz on December 05.


However, Kargar believes that the ICHTO and NMI cannot solve the problem by educating and through talks with the Louvre, adding, “Unfortunately, many French maps published during the 1990s are tainted with the falsification, and this distortion should be dealt with based on UN documents on the issue. “Thus, I think the Louvre’s curator will have a free hand for correction.”


According to Kargar, there were not many relations between NMI and the Louvre before NMI, the ICHTO, and the Louvre signed a memorandum of understanding about three years ago. Afterwards, the Louvre promised to amend the documents.


“In talks, we have always emphasized that the name of the Persian Gulf must be used instead of any other false name and Mr. (Henri) Loyrette (Louvre President and Director) has accepted, but it seems that there are some obstacles in the way, i.e. he, as curator, he is not able to implement his idea to change the catalogues,” Kargar said.


He expressed his disappointment that such an important museum would distort historical facts and ruin its international reputation due to economic problems.


The Cernuschi Museum of Paris, which held an exhibition of Sassanid artworks loaned from the National Museum of Iran and the Reza Abbasi Museum in Tehran last September, corrected its catalogue by removing the false name for the Persian Gulf.


Unfortunately other European countries have also been involved in the revision of historic events.


In 1990s a number of fictitious-archaeological books were published such as "The Arabian Gulf in Antiquity" and "The Archaeology of Arabian Gulf", which have brought disgrace to the British archaeological community, as they learnt that two of their members are involved in the falsification of the history for an Arab state, in exchange for remuneration.


Although the number of these reprobate individuals are limited, but they have caused enough damage to the "true" history of the region, which could take years to resuscitate.


Since the 1979 revolution in Iran and the Islamic regime's collision with West, has left Iran and the Iranian nation in isolation with the rest of the international research communities, particularly in the field of history and archaeology. As the result, many of Iran's cultural achievements, historical figures and ancient monuments that are located outside her modern geographical boundaries are left unprotected, and now is being claimed by her neighbours as one of their own.


The newly created Arab mini-states in the Persian Gulf, in the former Iranian territories, despite their wealth that have been generated from oil, they are lacking the historical identity and legitimacy in the region - subsequently they have employed some corrupt and unethical archaeologists and historians to fashion and tailor a bogus history and a historical identity for them.


Louvre's swindle and iniquitous conduct in distorting the name of the historical body of water that is known as the “Persian Gulf” since the beginning of the history, quite sadly demonstrates that the museum has lost its' authority as an intellectual and educational centre, and has joined the "History-Distortion Business Club" which is willing to distort, falsify, and fabricate the historical facts for anyone, so long as the price is right.




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