No outrage from the "leaders" of the West, only a nervous silence that fails to conceal their fear:
The Institut was founded by Napoleon in 1798 during his campaign in Egypt and Syria. Its ranks have included scholars from all walks of life, dedicated to researching Egyptian culture from antiquity to the present. The building, near Tahrir Square — the center of the protests that have marked the Arab Spring in Egypt — was filled with some 200,000 rare books and manuscripts. Gone now, burned in a fire, set off by a mob, that raged for more than 12 hours.
Was it simply the mindlessness of the mob? The episode catalogue of The Simpsons is filled with painfully humorous examples of the town of Springfield coming together (usually as a mob) to destroy edifices of science and knowledge - from the sacking of their Museum of Natural History, to the defacing of classic art, to the declaration that the local observatory be destroyed so that the town is never again threatened by a wayward comet...
Are the Egyptian Islamists as stupid as the denizens of the mythical Springfield, USA?
Or is this a deliberate attempt to destroy a symbol of Western knowledge, even one whose primary purpose was the study and preservation of Egyptian culture, history, and lore? If so, what would be the purpose?
To eradicate any Western influence on Islamist Egypt?
Or to rewrite history itself? If past is prologue...Muslim assaults and occupations of India over the centuries have always involved a "cultural cleansing" of captured areas, where all traces of Hinduism were wiped out. In Afghanistan under Taliban rule, the beards worked furiously to destroy Buddhist works of antiquity, while today in Jerusalem, Islamic "archaeologists" are constantly accused of conducting digs at the Temple Mount that are actually intended to erase traces of the Jewish Temple's altar, and sever its entire connection to Judeo-Christian history.
Win the future by erasing the past? Use the sword and the torch to eliminate all traces of a historical record, and then claim your truth is the only truth, and it has ever been so?
If we don't fight - literally - to preserve our past, we will lose our future. Our leaders have chosen cowardice and accommodation over confrontation, and in their attempt to buy another 15 minutes of peace for themselves, may very well have handed the future over to Islam.
Let's see how that works out for our children.