Back in, back out

Arabe / arabischen is back again. Oh and removed again. A complete insert carved in stone doesn’t happen that often: since I follow the interventions on this sculpture, it is only the second time. Two VB guys posted on F*c*book: “This morning xx and me have symbolically restored the Congo monument in the Cinquantenaire park. (…) Stop the culture of apologies, stop the thought police. Protect our heritage”

I am not sure why they are proud to be associated with a bloody colonial past, but hey, let’s not police their thoughts.

Two days later, message appeared in local newspaper Bruzz that the “Word ‘Arabischen’ is again removed from the Congomonument”.

“The Regie der Gebouwen” has had the word ‘Arab’ removed again from the sculpture, after two Vlooms Behang guys had inserted it. The word ‘arab’ on the congomonument is a point of discussion since decades. In 1989 it was chisseled away on request of the imam of the neighboring mosque and the Jordan and Saoudic ambassadors. By contributing the slavetrade that is mentioned in the sentence to arabs, the party is feeding the discussion. The Regie der Gebouwen has however decided not to press charges.

“Usually we only charge when there is real serious damage” according to Cardoso Nunes, spokesperson of the Regie to the RTBF. “In case of a tag or graffiti this is more difficult. In such a case we can clean up the monument. A complaint would not deliver much, especially if you know that sometimes it is very difficult to find the perpetrators.”
Well that should not be difficult in this case, the clearly and publicly out themselves as such.