Lights and Gravestones


The column of smoke of 9/11, which ghostly evoked the memory of the skyscrapers, was soon followed by the project to raise two towers of light – carried out with searchlights pointing skywards six months after the attack – without paying much attention to the dark historic echoes of the cathedral of light designed by Albert Speer in the Zeppelinfeld of Nuremberg. In spite of the wide historical distance between the two events, there is a clear connection between jingoism and aggressive impulses: if one can argue that the American destruction of the Palace of Kabul resembled the punishment inflicted in 1945 on the Berlin Reichstag, it is not easy to ignore the link between the Islamic ruins of Beirut, Sarajevo or Grozny and the terrorism that destroyed the Twin Towers; regardless of the fact that Lebanon suffered a civil war, in Bosnia the West intervened in defense of the Muslims and in Chechnya the devastation was caused by Russian artillery. Palestine first, and then Iraq, have created a split between Islam and the empire which spells a somber future. We can only hope, with Boticelli and Giacometti, that in the fields carved by bombs and turned into cemeteries, the removed gravestones may spell a promise of resurrection...[+]

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