January 9, 2010

50 years later…

Posted in English, Places, Reflections, Revolutionary and Politician at 10:03 am by Rou...

In January 2003 was my first time ever to visit Aswan… Aside from the amazing nature of Aswan, one specific experience during the trip rocked me from inside out; that was the High Dam visit… And no, am not talking about passing by the high dam and taking a couple of pictures there… I am talking about entering it from inside (we had entry permissions), and watching what kind of an achievement it was…

I remember that day, before entering the dam from inside, the man who was leading our visit had us standing infront of a huge foundation stone with words about the great success of building the dam, and the great achievements of Gamal Abd el Nasser who took the initiative of this huge project…etc… He asked us to read the words carefully before we enter, and then he said that when we are done with our visit, he will ask us to come and read them again… Reading it, I had a little smile on my face, mainly because it contained great words about achievements, and being used to reading great words that do not really reflect reality, I couldn’t resist being sarcastic about it… so anyway… we finally entered…

And what an amazement we witnessed that day…

We all studied in school the story the dam… Nasser’s proposal for building the High Dam, and the Western refusals to co-operate, the Suez Canal nationalization, the Tripartite Aggression, and even Halim’s famous song “قلنا هنبني وادي إحنا بانينا السد العالي”… but the truth is, that hearing is quite different from watching things yourself, and hearing stories from those who witnessed it… and the truth is that no matter what some people tend to say about this immense project, the High Dam had truly added a whole new aspect to Egypt, providing it with water and electricity and securing the country from the risk of the destructive inundation of the River Nile…

Did you ever ask yourself what does it take to control the world’s largest river…? Ever asked yourself how massive this dam is, and even how hard people worked for years to get everything perfectly done…?

Let me tell you some facts… The High Dam of Aswan is equivalent to the size of 17 Great Pyramids of Giza with 3,830 meters long, 980 meters wide at the base, 40 meters wide at the crest and 111 meters tall… It contains 43 million cubic meters of material… and it has a Hydro-electric plant, with 6 turbines, capable of producing 2.1 million kilowatts… From the top of the two Mile long High Dam you can gaze across Lake Nasser, the huge reservoir that was formed as a result of its construction, which is about 10 km wide in some places, and 500km long, making it the world’s largest man-made lake…

Working on this gigantic building and great project began on 9 January 1960 and was completed on 21 July 1970…

10 years of continuous hard work and enormous efforts for the sake of one goal…

That was 50 years ago… where are we now from all this…?

Somebody told me once that Egyptians need a national target to work for, and all their passion for their own homeland will come up… Today I was asking myself… if I got the chance to create one countrywide aim for all Egyptians to work for, what would that be… any ideas?

Anyways, one last thing I have to mention before I finish; I am not a Gamal Abdel Nasser fan… at all… But I must say that in that specific day I kind of accepted the fact that this great achievement of building the High Dam of Aswan probably would have never existed if it wasn’t for him… and when I returned to the foundation stone to read the words again that day, I had tears in my eyes…

Rou…

Jan 9, 2010
Alexandria, by the sea!

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2 Comments »

  1. gjoez said,

    I have watched a video on facebook suggesting we colorize the faces of buildings as a national projects..

    They had it all figured out in that ad..

    http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=1241166721530&ref=mf

    What do you think of that.. 🙂

  2. Rou... said,

    walahy it’s interesting ya gjoez… but this might not sound as a real national project for all categories of egyptians… the idea must be marketable le kol el fe2at… kollo yeshtaghal feeha… the poors ones as well as the rich ones… akeed fee 7aga yenfa3 negma3 elnas 3aleha….

    what do you think yourself? 🙂


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