Miners accused of destroying part of Great Wall of China

It was built to keep out foreign invaders, but apparently the Great Wall of China can’t protect itself from the greed of Chinese corporations.

The Hohhot Kekao Mining Co. is accused of destroying 330 ft (100 m) of China’s most famous structure while prospecting for gold. The damage occurred in Inner Mongolia, where the company is prospecting. This stretch of the wall is one of the oldest, dating to the Qin Dynasty (221-207 B.C.).

This isn’t the first time the Wall has been damaged. Local farmers often steal stones for building materials, much like what happened to parts of Hadrian’s Wall in England, and last year five miners were sentenced to up to three years in jail for damaging the Wall while operating heavy machinery nearby. Officials said those responsible for the new damage could face up to ten years because of the greater amount of destruction.

As China goes through its Industrial Revolution, its cultural heritage faces greater threats. The Industrial Revolution in England destroyed many of that country’s ancient buildings and stone circles, and the expansion of St. Louis, Missouri, in the nineteenth century destroyed virtually all trace of a prehistoric Native American town. St. Louis used to be called “Mound City” because of the numerous prehistoric earthen mounds there, but now only one survives. it would be nice if China could learn from other countries’ mistakes.


Mr. Hu: Do NOT Tear That Wall Down!

Interesting news keeps flowing out of China, so we’ll keep relaying it. It turns out that a private contractor was building a new road, which destroyed a section of the Great Wall of China, as well as a large beacon tower.

The fine on the contractor, from the Cultural Relics Bureau of Inner Mongolia, was a tiny 500,000 yuan ($63,000 USD), for the destruction.

This took place in the Inner Mongolian village of Longsheng, near Fengzhen, north-west of Beijing.

I guess they figured they still have 4500 more miles of the Wall left.