I can't remember how long haven't I been here. Old Summer Palace, or Yuan Ming Yuan, used to be one of the most brilliant and spectacular royal palaces for the Chinese emperor more than 100 years ago. It was big, filled with architecture styles from all over the world,and tons of books and treasures. Some time in late 1800s, however, European invaders robbed it, and destroyed it.
Looking at this piece of history, which is all pretty much a few broken walls and bricks, it is very hard to imagine how grand it looked like in its days. One question comes to mind: why did those Europeans burnt down all of these? That is a weird logic. It's understandable that they wanted to robbed it, and take home all the gold and silvers and treasures that is worth lots of money. But why burnt the whole thing down?
One way the officials put it is that, if something that can't take away, they have to break it. It's like, if I can't have it, you can't have it either. That makes sense.But then again, these people were really mean.
Then I watched a documentary there. It revealed that the psychology behind it was kind of a complex one, at least according to the documentary. The Europeans have heard so much about this palace, and admired this place for a long time, and the Chinese culture and history too. But then, when they were here, they had no idea that Chinese government then was so weak, that their weapons for the military were 200 years behind the Western standard. Therefore, the Europeans conquered this city of Beijing without much effort, an event even to their own surprise. Then they decided that, because the old summer palace is the Emperor's favorite place, in order to defeat him psychologically and show that the Westerners are great despite China's history and reputation, they have to destroy the most brilliant garden of China.
Well that makes sense for the logic. But as far as history goes, there is no use to moan of the loss any more; the only thing we should take from this is that, the world is tough and competitive; if you don't want your ass to be kicked, you have to to have the ability to kick ass.