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Egypt's Oldest Pyramid Is Being Destroyed By Its Own Restoration Team 246

Taffykay writes The oldest pyramid in Egypt, the Pyramid of Djoserat Saqqara, is being destroyed by the very company the Egyptian government has hired to restore it. The roughly 4,600-year-old structure has been in trouble since an earthquake hit the region in 1992, but in a difficult political and economic climate for the country, those now tasked with preserving the pyramid are said to be doing more harm than good.
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Egypt's Oldest Pyramid Is Being Destroyed By Its Own Restoration Team

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 05, 2014 @06:16AM (#47833091)

    Except that's exactly what a few of them want.

  • by AC-x ( 735297 ) on Friday September 05, 2014 @06:22AM (#47833105)

    What makes you think that they do not want to destroy the pyramids, for the same reason?

    How about all those tourism dollars? Egypt isn't some moneyless failed backwater state, their tourism industry generates around $13 billion a year, more than the entire GDP of Afghanistan in 2002.

  • Re:a shame but... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by CxDoo ( 918501 ) on Friday September 05, 2014 @07:03AM (#47833247)

    Looking out through airplane window and realizing a dark patch between city lights of Cairo was actually a pyramid was a mystical experience for me. Having to stand at least a kilometer away to comfortably grasp the whole too.

    Size does matter, or as comrade Stalin would say, quantity in itself is a quality. And it was anything but easy, otherwise structures of such size would be built more often in 4000 years since. They truly are a marvel.

    Sphinx, though, is overrated.

  • by AC-x ( 735297 ) on Friday September 05, 2014 @07:22AM (#47833303)

    According to Wikipedia ISIS has around 100,000 people fighting for it. The world's Muslim population is around 1.6 billion. Therefore ISIS contains 0.006% of the world's Muslims fighting for it.

    Interestingly that's around the same percentage of the US population (0.006%) who were convicted of murder in 1994 (source []), so is Islam really any more broken than, for example, 1994 America?

  • by LordLimecat ( 1103839 ) on Friday September 05, 2014 @07:27AM (#47833327)

    Where do you think the casing stones of the Great Pyramid ended up?

    IIRC, they were taken by looters and builders because they were marble and gold.

  • Mayan temples too (Score:5, Interesting)

    by tomhath ( 637240 ) on Friday September 05, 2014 @08:16AM (#47833497)
    Many of the early Mayan and Aztec structures in Latin America have been "restored" in the name of tourism to make them more comfortable. Nicer steps, higher doorways, etc. They're not as well known as the Egyptian pyramids but every bit as historically significant.
  • by hyades1 ( 1149581 ) <> on Friday September 05, 2014 @01:31PM (#47835943)

    This reminds me of a documentary I saw at least 20 years ago. It was about how Egypt was throwing out Western restoration experts and putting its own people in to work on some mummies that had been returned from various museums around the word.

    One expert was being interviewed while she worked on a sarcophagus. In the middle of her comment about how she and her colleagues were every bit as competent as the "foreigners" who'd been sent packing, she managed to accidentally pry off a big chunk of it, which fell on the floor and broke. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry.

    I see nothing's changed.

  • by david_thornley ( 598059 ) on Friday September 05, 2014 @05:39PM (#47837979)

    In my limited observations, democracy doesn't work when a people first try it. They have to get used to it. I also think that a thriving middle class is necessary for a democracy. It needs a large number of people who get some sort of education, have some free time to pay attention to politics, and have something to lose. The upper classes are never enough for a democracy, and people in an oppressed lower class are going to be easily controlled, and may as well vote extremist as they really have little to lose.

An elephant is a mouse with an operating system.