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In 1956, when President Nasser announced the nationalisation of the Suez Canal from the balcony of the Cotton Exchange in Alexandria, the people immediately toppled the statue of Ferdinand de Lesseps, the French master-mind behind the colonial project of the canal.

The plinth on which the statue stood at the entrance of the canal in Port Said remained empty until 2011, when, after the spring uprising an Egyptian Flag was planted on it, a sign for the marriage of nationalism and revolution.

Over time, the flag became torn and delapidated.

Meanwhile a restaurant nearby continues to celebrate and revel in the nostalgia of de Lesseps and the lost statue.

In 1869, when the Suez Canal opened, a waterbridge was created; linking, for the first time, the Red Sea and the Mediterranean. Attracted by warmer and more salty waters, marine species began to migrate northwards into the Mediterranean. Zoologists who became aware of the phenomenon talked of an influx of foreign species in the Eastren Mediterranean, threatening the locals.

Works

© Uriel Orlow 2017