The British Museum is making headlines for launching an investigation over various items that were reported “missing, damaged [or] stolen.” However, considering the history behind how the London-based establishment acquired many of its treasures, the internet’s unbothered and calling out the irony of the matter!
The Museum Is Working Toward The “Recovery Of Objects”
According to BBC News, various items kept for research were recently reported missing.
Hartwig Fischer, director of the British Museum, acknowledged that the establishment will “throw [its] efforts into the recovery of objects.”
He also noted that they’ve upped security since the matter came to their attention, and they’re “working alongside outside experts to complete a definitive account of what is missing, damaged and stolen.”
“This is a highly unusual incident. I know I speak for all colleagues when I say that we take the safeguarding of all the items in our care extremely seriously. We have already tightened our security arrangements and we are working alongside outside experts to complete a definitive account of what is missing, damaged and stolen.”
One staff member was fired in the wake of the incident. The Economic Crime Command of the Metropolitan Police is investigating the matter, though no arrests have been made at this point.
People Savagely Let The British Museum Know The Tables Have Turned: “So Now It’s A Problem”
Once word of the British Museum matter began to spread, people chimed in with their thoughts online.
Before getting into the reactions, it’s important to call attention to the controversy surrounding the museum and its artifacts.
According to The Guardian, human rights lawyer Geoffrey Robertson said, “The trustees of the British Museum have become the world’s largest receivers of stolen property, and the great majority of their loot is not even on public display.”
Furthermore, comedian John Oliver highlighted how the British Museum has damaged and stolen various “antiquities.” On Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, he cheekily proclaimed, “If you’re ever looking for a missing artifact, nine times out of ten, it’s in the British Museum.” Oop!
Although the establishment acknowledges some of the controversies through its “contested objects” section, it’s so secret that the British Museum has a fair amount of scandal surrounding many of its exhibits.
Given the history behind how the museum acquired its artifacts, people pointed out the irony of the current situation.
Peep what Twitter users had to say down below.
British Museum concerned about items reported stolen https://t.co/5tuCJjvNgp pic.twitter.com/fVzgeZx7dv
— Samira Sawlani (@samirasawlani) August 16, 2023
oh so now its a problem https://t.co/hGiChcyYzs
— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) August 16, 2023
Waiting for clarification on which treasures at the British Museum are *not* missing, stolen or damaged… pic.twitter.com/d9nwOcIMiB
— Ian Higham (@highamian) August 16, 2023
This goes against the British museum’s policy of only holding treasures that are “pilfered, plundered, or robbed.” https://t.co/YLMiJh8iR4 pic.twitter.com/Knua5ZLXkL
— WILLI 📈 (@muenzenberg_w) August 16, 2023
The British Museum is concerned about stolen treasures? https://t.co/TMbAU1q1S5
— Aanu Adeoye (@aanuadeoye) August 16, 2023
Stole from the British Museum https://t.co/Wmvi0soBcq pic.twitter.com/nQtf7SgbYP
— Terry (@TeltheTrekkie) August 16, 2023
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