Controversial Statue of Ancient Philosopher Confucius Vanishes from Tiananmen Square


BEIJING (REUTERS).- A large statue of ancient Chinese philosopher Confucius, controversially erected outside a Communist Party museum in central Beijing, has quietly been removed from its plinth following an online uproar about its location. The 9.5-meter (30 foot), 17-tonne statue had pride of place in front of the north gate of the recently renovated National Museum Of China, just off Tiananmen Square and not far from the gaze of Chairman Mao’s famous portrait over the Forbidden City. Some Chinese had complained that it was insulting of the Communist Party to so honor Confucius, having vilified him during the turmoil of the Cultural Revolution in the 1960s and 1970s and never apologized for it. Others said the Party had no right to appropriate Confucius and his ideals. Some even