Un ensayo de Syed Badrul Ahsan, editor en The Daily Star, donde reflexiona sobre la reedición del best seller A Universal history of the destruction of books
Aqui parte del texto:
Books, writers and their enemies
by Syed Badrul Ahsan
The Dayly Star
Books have been burned and writers have been persecuted through the ages. And yet you would expect that in these present times, which are often described in glowing terms as post-modernity, the savagery which in earlier phases of human existence sought to destroy all the good that man could bring forth would have drawn to a close. Not so. Think of the brutality visited upon Baghdad through the Anglo-American invasion of Iraq in 2003. In the days immediately following the fall of Baghdad, for yet one more time in history, all the libraries and all the museums in the city were systematically looted. Vandals and thieves simply walked away with the books or put them to the torch. It was but the beginning, for over the next few days and weeks, books all over Iraq would go missing even as American and British soldiers stood by, their job ostensibly to ensure security in a soon to be 'democratic' Iraq.
The figures that speak to us of that bibliocaust are staggering. On 14 April 2003, a million books were burned in Baghdad's National Library. If you have some idea of the cultural affluence Baghdad has always epitomised in civilisation, you will have reason to comprehend the invaluable heritage the city and indeed Iraq has consistently upheld. But all of that was destroyed in the blitzkrieg that Tony Blair and George W. Bush launched in April 2003 against Saddam Hussein and his country. It was on the basis of a lie that these men cheerfully went into destroying a country and the culture of sublimity it had systematically maintained for centuries. April 2003 was Iraq's cruellest month. That is the lesson you draw from a remembrance of the trauma the country was put into. It is a lesson which now comes to us from a clearly worried Fernando Baez. The exhaustive efforts he has put into A Universal History of the Destruction of Books: From Ancient Sumer to Modern Iraq are a necessary reminder of the gross philistinism men can personify and have personified since the rise of the human species as the ultimate preserver and destroyer, in equal measure, of the earth's bounties. And note the irony here: books were first destroyed in ancient Sumer, which today is part of southern Iraq, and they were destroyed again in Iraq, which has had the history of Sumer coursing through its veins.