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The Fall of Pharaoh Zahi
Two weeks ago, at the height of the Egyptian popular uprising, I asked whether it might spell the end for the controversial head of Egyptian antiquities, Dr. Zahi Hawass. Now with President Mubarek stepping aside, and the central protest in Tahrir Square winding down, smaller protests against particular 'regime personalities' have begun - and the Big Z appears to be well and truly in the cross-hairs.
Around 200 archaeologists have gathered outside the headquarters of the SCA (Supreme Council of Antiquities) with a list of demands, one of which is the prosecution of Dr Hawass "for corruption and accountability for the theft of 18 masterpieces from the Cairo Museum".
This Associated Press article makes clear that many professional archaeologists and students have had enough of the self-serving ego of the antiquities chief.
One would think that ZH is a canny enough operator to work his way out of this current mess though...despite the backlash, his monopolisation of Egyptian archaeology does give his CV enough 'oomph' for him to perhaps argue that only he is qualified enough to guide Egyptology forward in such uncertain times. However, according to this report he may already be packing his bags.