Stealing has a long history, and it comes with a variety of reasons why. In Victor Hugo’s novel “Les Misérables,” Jean Valjean steals bread to feed his sister’s seven hungry children.

James Bruce is no Jean Valjean

In the non-fiction world, James Bruce, England’s 8th Earl of Elgin, stripped 253 sculptures from the Parthenon in 1801 and sold them to the British Museum for 35,000 pounds ($45,575.25) to pay for his nasty divorce.

This 222-year-old theft keeps popping up in the news because Greece’s pleas for the return of the sculptures continue to be rejected. The reason why is not hard to figure out.

These works are one of the museum’s biggest draws.

Now comes news about another art theft - antiquities from Israel - clay oil lamps (menorahs) – that were sent on short-term loan to the U.S. for a Hannukah celebration at the White House in 2019.

Israel’s Antiquities Authority says they’ve tried many times to get the works back but can’t. To hear Rolling Stone tell it, Trump is to blame. “The former president up and stole” them and took them to Mar-a-Lago” after he lost the election.

Why Trump took them is anybody’s guess. But it’s a good bet that he took them for the same reason he took the classified documents – to keep his self-delusion alive that he is still the U.S. president.

And if not the American president, the Prime Minister of Israel.

The New Yorker quotes Trump boasting that he could “easily” be Israel’s leader. Clearly, he sees himself as entitled no matter what.

Meanwhile, Haaretz, a daily newspaper in Israel, reports that officials of the Antiquities Authority are having a hard time figuring out how to get their property back.

The current director of the Antiquity Authority, Eli Eskozido, asked Trump’s ambassador to Israel to help out, but so far, he has not.

Rolling Stone says it’s no surprise that the ex-president took the artifacts: “Trump all but ransacked the White House on his way out of office,” alluding to his absconding with hundreds of classified documents.

What’s yours is mine

Trump feels so entitled to the documents that he instructed his lawyers to figure out how to get “my documents” back after the feds seized them.

I wish Trump’s stash of pilfered items would have included the Isamu Noguchi bronze sculpture that Melania installed in the White House Rose Garden. Titled "Floor Frame," it’s a sharply angled abstraction that bears a strong resemblance to scrap metal left over from a construction site.

I’m a longtime fan of Noguchi, but the White House garden is not the place for it. I’m not alone pointing my thumb down on this installation. An online petition racked up 80,00 signatures – people wishing for the return of Jackie Kennedy’s Rose Garden.

Everything in the garden used to be rosy

The chance for the Israeli Antiquities Authority to get their menorahs back is as slim as the return of the Jackie’s garden.

I’m just hoping Trump didn’t store the menorahs where he stashed some of the nation’s state secrets – in his bathroom.

But wait. A late bulletin from the Wall Street Journal says that Trump has agreed to return the relics he took after Israel “launched a public campaign to get them back.” Smart move by Israel – public shaming.