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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

More Threats to Egypt's Artifacts

There are more threats to Egypt's archaeological treasures as the situation in Cairo deteriorates. The Egyptian Museum is adjacent to Tahrir Square, the hot spot for the protests- it's the coral colored building you'll see in many news broadcasts.

I've also read reports that the museum might have been mistaken about the two destroyed mummies- the heads might actually have been skulls already separated from their skeletons.

I want this resolved- I love Egypt and it's getting more and more difficult to watch this unfold, both for the people currently living there and for the antiquities I don't want to see destroyed.

12 comments:

Svea ~Muse in the Fog said...

This is such a sad situation any way you look at it. I pray it is resolved soon... what a tragedy to have such history in peril.

VR Barkowski said...

Given the general volatility of the area, I can't believe the Museum didn't have a plan already in place to relocate and secure the antiquities in case of uncontrolled events, natural or otherwise. That's standard museum procedure. As soon as officials saw unrest in Tahrir Square, they should have begun moving the Museum's contents to safety. Now it's too late. Like you, it breaks my heart to see this happening. Worse, the violence is escalating.

Nicole MacDonald said...

It is a hard but necessary time for the country. I just hope not too many lives are lost.


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Mark Noce said...

It's definitely disheartening when a country threatens their own artifacts from their past and removes access to the internet for the present. Hope things get better soon.

Tere Kirkland said...

This really surprised me. For some reason, I thought at least Zahi Hawass would have come up with some kind of plan to protect, or move the most at-risk artifacts.

I know there are a lot larger problems that the people of Egypt are facing today than losing their history, but don't tourist (and scholar/researcher) dollars help their country thrive?

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I agree with VR and Tere. How could they NOT have a plan in place to protect such treasures in situations like this one?

Gary Corby said...

Moving large antiquities is unbelievably difficult, and while in transit they're in much greater danger of accidental damage than they are just staying in the museum.

The better strategy is to have a plan in place to go into total lockdown.

The stolen antiquities market is huge. I wouldn't be surprised if there were crooks hovering around the outside of the building right now. If it were me, I'd wait until a mob of amateurs broke in and then buy from them, which seems to be what happened in Baghdad.

Kathi Oram Peterson said...

Oh, Stephanie. Because of your blog, I did think of you as this horrible situation unfolded. I hope things settle down soon.

roxy said...

I certainly agree with you, Stephanie. Thanks for this post. I hadn't thought of the effect of the current strife on Egyptian antiquities.

Susan R. Mills said...

Very sad situation. I really hope it is resolved soon.

Natalie said...

It's always a tragedy when artifacts are destroyed. I hope it's all resolved soon.

Amalia T. said...

any new news on this? I haven't seen anything.