Statue of the taller of one of the two Bamiyan Buddhas in 1976 before being destroyed by the Taliban. Source Wikipedia. Image credit Marco Bonavoglia

The [5th century] statues were destroyed by dynamite over several weeks, starting on March 2, 2001 [and] carried out in different stages. Initially, the statues were fired at for several days using anti-aircraft guns and artillery. This caused severe damage, but did not obliterate them. During the destruction, Taliban Information Minister Qudratullah Jamal lamented that, “this work of destruction is not as simple as people might think. You can’t knock down the statues by shelling as both are carved into a cliff; they are firmly attached to the mountain.” Later, the Taliban placed anti-tank mines at the bottom of the niches, so that when fragments of rock broke off from artillery fire, the statues would receive additional destruction from particles that set off the mines.

Source Wikipedia.

 Image of the explosive destruction of the taller of the two Bamiyan Buddhas by the Taliban eleven years ago today. Source Wikipedia