In Islamic thought, the pre-Islamic period of any Muslim nation’s history is known as jahiliya: the pre-Islamic time of ignorance. Nothing that was any part of it has any value. This has resulted in incalculable losses to mankind’s cultural heritage. From AFP, with thanks to Ali Dashti:
TEHRAN (AFP) — One of Iran’s main historical sites, the ancient Elamite capital of Susa, has been used for the secret nightly dumping of rubbish by the local municipality, a culture official in the area told AFP Tuesday.
“We have filed several complaints against the municipality, but it firmly denies its workers have ever done such a thing — even though they have been frequently spotted by our guards,” said the head of the Cultural Heritage Organization in Shush, the modern name for Susa.
But the official, Mahdi Qanbari, also complained that the municipality was also planning to build a bus depot near the string of historic sites — a further blow following years of illegal excavations.
“The 16 hectare site has not been fully excavated. There are still thousands of precious objects to be unearthed.” Qanbari complained, saying the planned bus depot would be situated near an ancient palace of the Persian king Darius the Great.
Susa was an important and flourishing city before the advent of Islam in Iran and the center of the Elamite Empire (around 2500-644 B.C.). It is situated in the far southwestern province of Khuzestan and adjacent to the border with Iraq.
The ancient city is also mentioned in Old Testament as the place where the prophet Daniel lived. He is also reputed to have been buried there.
Artifacts unearthed from the area include a plaque reputed to be the world’s first constitution, currently preserved at the Louvre Museum in Paris.
Well, I can see why the mullahs would not want that to come to light.