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Arts and Culture

Afghan Indiana Jones Hunts Giant Buddha

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Posted on Sep 10, 2009
Flickr / Carrie Hasselback

Where there is now just a hole was once one of the two largest standing Buddhas in the world.

Somewhere in Afghanistan there’s a statue of Buddha more than 1,000 feet long, according to the ancient journal of 7th century Chinese pilgrim Xuan Zang. Dr. Zemaryalai Tarzi, an Afghan archeologist with a sense of adventure, believes the legend.

He’s out to find the statue and make up for the Taliban’s disgraceful destruction of what were the world’s largest standing Buddhas.  —PS

BBC:

Try to imagine a stone statue reclining across the length of three football fields.

But it is more than a dream. Dr Tarzi is trying to make it a reality.

“At first, people told me I must be mad,” he recounted, barely concealing a smile, as we stood at his excavation in the midst of potato fields in the ancient Afghan city of Bamiyan.

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By Aarky, September 13, 2009 at 1:40 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Jeremiah, you do have your facts badly mixed up. The CIA can’t be behind every nefarious happening in the world

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By Andy B. A, September 11, 2009 at 5:09 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

haha.. my bad for my little mistake there:

But still, he doesn’t imply anything…
Afghanistan is made out of rocks, dirt and sand. As far as I can see from the pictures the rocks are made of sandstone.. so when the country are worn down, tons of sand pile up… The nature is rough and rugged, and also a region with lots of tectonic motion… and, it’s plausible that the region has suffered big earthquakes the last 1400 years.. or others over the same time-span has destroyed the laying Buddha. Or, they can be looking for a Buddha laying on flat ground… while the real one could be laying carved in the base of a mnt side.. now covered with rocks, sand… etc.

So many scenarios that could cause it to be “lost”. And he never says anything about recent history having anything to do with it, or am I mistaken?

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By JeremiahIII, September 11, 2009 at 3:16 pm Link to this comment

@Andy:

“Somewhere in Afghanistan there’s a statue of Buddha more than 1,000 feet long”...
“he’s out to find the statue”....Implies it’s not there…someone must have run off with it.

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By mmadden, September 11, 2009 at 11:45 am Link to this comment

If there were such a statue I am sure that the Taliban had it destroyed. They did destroy a statue that was carved into a mountain. They blew it up with dynamite.

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By Andy B. A, September 11, 2009 at 10:11 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

the destruction of the statue was a part of the Taliban “battle” towards “idols” (ref. to Sharia laws)...
- this “idol” was also the key figure of a “threat”, here represented by Buddhism.
In 2001, by orders from Mullah Mohammed Omar, Taliban simply blew up the statue, by the easiest means: loads of dynamite.

There has not been mentioned anything about “ran off with a huge statue” in the article Jeremiah..! Read properly. Then the article might regain some credibility?!

Taliban did brag on behalf of them selves about the destruction, and gave international press access to film taken from the destruction! If you are not sure about the facts, do a little research before turning to a simple choice! It was in the news world-wide.

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By Random Items, September 11, 2009 at 7:43 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

JeremiahIII The jokes on you. Check this BBC article.

http://tinyurl.com/mmh4mw
Do try to keep up.

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By Jim yell, September 11, 2009 at 7:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I should wish him luck in his quest, but as the political situation in Afganistan is still very iffy and the Taliban hovers around it its maliganat way, it might be best to wait for a future time of discovery.

We should not too readily forget the vandalism of the Taliban and the likelyhood they would do it again. It would be a shame to find the missing Budda just to facilitate another attack on a World Heritage artifact.

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By JeremiahIII, September 11, 2009 at 6:39 am Link to this comment

Well, This article lost all credibility with me when it blamed the Taliban for the destruction of the statue.  What a joke.  A small CIA/Pakistani created group ran off with a huge statue between 1971 and the present day?  Perhaps it was knocked down and quarried over the centuries (if it ever existed).

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