Part of the problem is that many countries have become very leery of letting their historical artifacts go abroad. There has been strong reaction from countries that have seen valuable archaeological finds turn up in private collectors' hands or in University museums in the West. For example, the Elgin Marbles are beautiful carvings in the British Museum that come from buildings on the the Acropolis in Athens including the Parthenon. They were taken by the British in the early part of the 19th century when Greece was part of the Ottoman Empire. Although a nominal "purchase" price was paid, there continues to be a great deal of controversy and resentment. Greeks feel these should be returned. The same thing goes for the Mayan and Incan artifacts taken from South American that turned up at Yale University. Even Native American tribes are wanting valuable historical artifacts housed in the Smithsonian returned. explain
As a world, we are a very materialistic society. The value we put upon objects that we think of as our own is high and when others take those articles and do not pay a fair price, cultures feel that they are owed those items back. Even Russia wants Alaska back ...
Even Native American tribes are wanting valuable historical artifacts housed in the Smithsonian returned. explain