18/12/2006 Issue 203 Past Issues

Red Sea Newsletter

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History of Egypt...




The 1st Intermediate Period came to an end in 2040 when 11th Dynasty king Mentuhotep II finally succeeded in overthrowing the Heracleopolitan kings of the 9th/10th Dynasty, thus reuniting Egypt after almost a century of chaos and civil war. Later generations would come to see Mentuhotep as the second founder of Egypt.

He and his successors launched a new building campaign throughout the country to build impressive monuments. Egypt once again became a prospering nation. There are, however, indications of dynastic problems. The last king of the 11th dynasty, Mentuhotep IV, was omitted from later king lists, which might indicate that he was considered a usurper.

His vizier, a man named Amenemhat, probably became the first king of the 12th Dynasty. It is not known with certainty how this Amenemhat came to power: maybe he ceased it, maybe he was named Mentuhotep IV’s successor, or maybe he just rose to the occasion. A stone plate found at el-Lisht shows the names of the two kings next to each other, hinting at the possibility of a co-regency. If indeed there was such a co-regency between Mentuhotep IV and Amenemhat I, then Amenemhat was intended as Mentuhotep's successor and the co-regency was meant to make sure that the transition of power would go uncontested. This principle would be continued throughout most of the 12th Dynasty as well.

Amenemhat I moved the administrative centre of the country from Thebes to a new city, Itj-tawi ("the one that takes the Two Lands"), located somewhere in or near the Fayum-oasis, while Memphis became the official capital again. Thebes would however gain in importance, as it became the centre of the cult of Amun, a god of obscure origins to whom the kings of the 12th Dynasty felt some special allegiance.

Amenemhat I and his successors continued the building policy of the kings of the late 11th Dynasty. This building activity was financed with the spoils coming from military campaigns in Nubia, where Amenemhat and his son Sesostris I regained control of the region South of the first cataract. Along the Eastern frontier and in Nubia fortresses were built to prevent nomad tribes from entering the country uncontrolled.

Sesostris III brought the 12th Dynasty to its political, economical and cultural climax. He too directed campaigns against Nubia, advancing the Southern border to the second cataract or beyond, where he would later be venerated as a god. Although Egypt did not show an interest in that region for a long time after Sesostris III, he waged the first military campaign against Syria-Palestine, most likely to punish some nomad raiders who had tried to enter the country.

He also made some very important changes in the administration of the country, thus eliminating the local governors who had still retained much of their power since the 1st Intermediate Period.

After the long and properous reign of Amenemhat III, the power of the dynasty started to decline. There may have been some tension regarding the succession of Amenemhat III, as his immediate successor, Amenemhat IV,may not have been of royal blood.

Perhaps taking advantage of the central government's weakened influence, a local potentate of foreign origin, founded the 14th Dynasty that ruled the eastern Nile Delta.

With the country divided, the Middle Kingdom came to an end.









Red Sea Might Save Dead Sea

SOUTHERN SHUNEH, Jordan (AP) — Officials from Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian Authority met along the shores of the Dead Sea to settle details of a study to save the shrinking body of water, agreeing to proceed with plans to draw water from the Red Sea.

The surface level of the Dead Sea — the saltiest water in the world at the lowest point on Earth that is estimated at 1,200 feet below sea level — has fallen about three feet a year in the past 20 years because of evaporation and allegedly the diversion of rivers by Syria and Israel.

The Dead Sea and its surrounding has been the source of much human social history and it is linked to the three monotheistic religions — Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

In 2005, the three concerned parties appealed to the World Bank to coordinate financing the feasibility study. The World Bank have agreed and appealed to the donor countries.

Four donor countries — France, Japan, the United States and the Netherlands — have committed themselves to participate in financing the $15 million study. The study will look at the environmental and social consequences of transferring water from the Red Sea to the Dead Sea, Jordan's Minister of Water and Irrigation Mohammed Thafer al-Alem said Sunday.

Geological experts warned that the drop in the water level would increase the earthquake possibilities. They also warn the Dead Sea will disappear in 50 years if current trends persist.

The Israeli Minister of National Infrastructure, Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, said the “study is an excellent example for cooperation, peace and conflict reduction.''

The Red-Dead Sea canal project, which is expected to cost more than $1 billion, would exploit the 1,320-foot difference in altitude between both areas.

If implemented, the 248-mile desert area between the two seas would benefit from the fresh water to turn the region into an agricultural hub for the benefit of the three countries. A desalination project is also envisaged to provide drinking water for Amman. Israel and the Palestinian territories would also benefit from the drinking water.

Mubarak congratulates Al-Ahly on winning bronze in 2006 FIFA

President Hosni Mubarak on Sunday 17/12/2006 congratulated Al-Ahly soccer team on winning the bronze medal in the 2006 FIFA Club World Cup (CWC) in Japan.

Egypt's Al-Ahly beat Mexico's Club America 2-1, grabbing the bronze medal in the 2006 FIFA Club World Cup (CWC) in Japan.

Playmaker and striker Mohamed Aboutrika scored the two goals for his team in the match that was held in Tokyo's National Stadium.






El Gouna, The Red Sea's Premier Leisure Destination

What's On...


Merry Christmas

& Happy New Year

Da Nanni ...non solo pizza

Reserve your Table for the Christmas Dinner

Info: 010 6633 162


Bordiehn's Restaurant

Please contact us

for your festive Christmas Dinner

or New Years Eve


Christmasconcert at 9pm

Children Choir of the St. Shenouda Church Hurghada, Khairy Hadad & Laurenz







Parents & Kids...

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Ornament

This is a great craft for kids of any age. Now you can have your very own Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer to hang on the tree.

This project is rated EASY to do.

What You Need

  • ¼ sheet of light brown craft foam
  • 2 glitter gold chenille stick
  • 2 medium wiggle eyes
  • 1 red glitter pom pom
  • 6-8 inches of ribbon
  • White craft glue or hot glue gun
  • Scissors

How To Make It:

  1. To make the head, cut 2 tear drop shapes from the craft foam.
  2. To make the ears, cut a small oval, then cut it in half lengthwise.
  3. Bend each chenille stick in half, then bend and twist them to form two antlers.
  4. Glue the ears toward the top of the round end of one of the tear drop shapes. Tip: Hot glue works much faster.
  5. Glue antlers to the top of the same oval shape.
  6. For the hanger, fold ribbon in half and glue the open ends together in between the two antlers.
  7. Glue the second oval shape to the back of the first oval to create the back of the reindeer’s head. This sandwiches the ears, antlers and hanger inside the two tear drop shapes and gives the ornament a more finished look.
  8. Glue on wiggle eyes.
  9. Glue on red pom pom for nose at the pointed end of the tear drop.
  10. Allow to dry completely.









Chicken Cordon Bleu & Mashed Potatoes

Preparation Time: 30 minutes or less
Cooking Time: 1 - 2 hours
Serves: 6


    • 6 chicken breasts
    • 1 lb Swiss cheese (cut into small pieces)
    • 1 16oz tub of sour cream
    • 1 can Cream of Mushroom soup
    • 1 small can of mushrooms (drained and chopped)
    • 1 medium onion (finely chopped)
    • 2 packages of chipped beef (cut into small pieces)

    9X13" baking dish


    1. First, cut the Swiss into small pieces - around 1cm cubes - and put the cubed cheese into a large bowl.
    2. Add the sour cream and Cream of Mushroom soup. Don't use low-fat sour cream. The extra water content will make the final product watery. It's recommended to use ever-so-slightly less than the full tub of sour cream, as well, to cut down on the water content.
    3. Drain the juice from the can of mushrooms and chop them into small pieces, then add them to the bowl. You can use an automatic chopper. It's basically a set of blades that chop into whatever's in the chamber when you press down on the handle, then rotate a few degrees on the upswing. Hammering on the handle will mince pretty much anything into mush. If you cook often, a gadget like this is a real timesaver.
    4. Chop the onion in a similar manner and add it to the bowl.
    5. Chop the beef into tiny pieces. If you freeze the beef first, it's much easier to cut without having it go all over the place.
    6. Add the chopped chipped beef to the bowl.
    7. Stir the contents of the bowl well. Make sure the cheese chunks are evenly distributed throughout the mixture.
    8. Next, we're going to prepare the chicken.
    9. You need to take the chicken, trim off as much of the fat as you can, then rinse it under running water and pat it dry with a paper towel. Place the breasts into the baking dish once they're dried. Also, wash anything that comes into contact with the raw chicken very well.
    10. Dump the sauce on top of the chicken.
    11. Spread the sauce out carefully. Make sure that it touches the edge of the pan. If you don't have a good seal around the edge, the chicken will dry out while it bakes. Put the chicken into an oven preheated to 350F. It will need to cook for at least an hour and a half. Check it occasionally, and if it looks like it's turning brown too quickly, put some aluminum foil over the dish.
    12. While the chicken is baking, we can start on the Mashed Potatoes.
    13. You'll need:
      8-10 medium potatoes - 3/4 stick of butter - 1/4 cup milk.
    14. First, peel the potatoes. Rinse each one carefully and put them in a pot. Fill the pot with water until the potatoes are just covered.
    15. Crank the stove up to high and boil the potatoes. The potatoes need to be boiled until they're soft - This can easily take 30-40 minutes, so plan accordingly. As a rule of thumb, if you stick a fork into a potato and it easily slides off when you try to lift it, they're done.
    16. Once the potatoes have been boiled soft, pour them into a colander.
    17. With the water drained off, put the potatoes into a mixer bowl. Chop the butter into pats and add it to the potatoes, along with the milk. Beat the potatoes at about 80% of your mixer's capacity (100% if you have a weak mixer). Add more milk or butter if you don't have enough liquid. You can also add salt and pepper at this stage.

Serving suggestion:

  • Fish out a chicken breast and cut it into bite-size pieces, then mix it into the mashed potatoes. Spoon the sauce over the top, and add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Once all the breasts have been eaten, there's usually some of the sauce left over. You can make up some rice, mix the leftover sauce in with it, and make another meal out of it







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