This story has obvious religious and social implications, but the historical aspect of the tree is interesting to me. The story goes on to note the many ups and downs associated (correctly or incorrectly) with the tree as a symbol.
I try to stay out of the most bitter religious debates because nobody convinces anybody of anything, for the most part. But on an historical and
cultural level, I see the destruction of anything this old and storied -- from any culture -- to be a great tragedy.
(visit the link for the full news article)