Australian spec ops.
Zapatistas armed with SKS’s
Mona Lisa Stolen,
On August 21st, 1911 a little known still life artist set up his easel to make a painting of the Renaissance gallery in the Louvre. In the midst of his painting the artist noticed something strange, the world famous Mona Lisa was missing from the gallery, leaving an empty space with four pegs. The artist thought little about it, it was not uncommon paintings to be removed for photographs, as cameras didn’t work well indoors back then. Then the artist asked a nearby security guard when the photographers would be finished and return the painting. The guard checked in with the photography department only to learn they didn’t have it. In fact it couldn’t be found anywhere. After a while only one conclusion could be made, the Mona Lisa had been stolen.
A nationwide investigation was made into the theft. Hundreds of witnesses were questioned. Even the soon to be famous artist Pablo Picasso was interrogated as a suspect. However the investigation found no conclusive evidence towards the identity of the thief. It seemed as though the Mona Lisa may go missing forever. Two years later, the painting was found, and an Italian nationalist named Vincenzo Perugia was arrested. Perugia was a handyman who had actually installed the protective glass over the Mona Lisa. On the day of the theft, he hid in a maintenance closet until the coast was clear, then simply removed it from the wall, walking out with the painting hidden under his jacket. No Ocean’s Eleven squad of master thieves and con artists, no cat burglars, no Mission Impossible moves, Perugia simply walked out of the museum with painting hidden under his jacket. He was noticed by nobody.
Perugia was an Italian patriot who stole the Mona Lisa not only to fatten his wallet, but for political reasons. Leonardo Da Vinci’s assistant had sold the painting to the King of France after Da Vinci’s death. From there it was passed down from king to king. After the French Revolution it spent some time in Napoleon Bonaparte’s bedroom until eventually it found a place in the Louvre. Despite centuries of French ownership, many Italians believed that because an Italian had painted it, it belonged back in Italy.
Perugia intended to sell the painting to an Italian museum or gallery. However, unloading stolen art can be a bit tricky. It’s best to have an unscrupulous buyer before the theft who doesn’t care that its stolen artwork. However, going into a gallery cold and announcing, “Hello, I have the Mona Lisa, would you like to buy it?”, is more than likely to raise suspicions. Perugia did just that. He tried to sell the painting to a gallery in Florence, but the gallery owner became suspicious, and immediately alerted the police.
Perugia was arrested and sentenced to eight months in prison. After his release Perugia was celebrated in Italy as a national hero. In the meantime the Mona Lisa was fastened in a much more secure display case. That was a good move, because since then the Mona Lisa has had acid, rocks, and cups thrown at it, been spray painted red, and survived the sticky hands of Nazi art looters. Needless to say the Mona Lisa is well protected from anything short of a tactical nuclear strike. It remains displayed at the Louvre to this day.
Long delayed post of my RPK-74M build. Started off as an unissued parts kit which I sent off to be assembled. It is not in the standard configuration of a normal RPK-74M.
Don’t mind the Magpul AFG; got it today for my Shrike just to see how it feels. Figured I’d see how it fits onto the railed Vepr 12 handguard. I’ll do a proper post on the build details and parts soon. (GRH)
A combat diver “Kampfschwimmer” of the German special naval forces pictured during a presentation by the German army in Eckernfoerde, Schleswig-Holstein, April 5, 2014.
how i feel everyday