The history of Hasankeyf goes back 10,000 years. This is three times longer than the Giza pyraids, 10 times longer than Stonehenge, and makes the glorious civilizations of the Maya and Inca seem as if they were flourishing just yesterday. Hasankeyf is one of the oldest places in the world. But this 10,000 year run will soon meet its ending point: the city will soon be flooded by the Ilisu Dam.

This is regular news in Turkey, a country where the greatest and earliest examples of human civilization are often washed away in the flood tide of dams or otherwise demolished in the name of progress. But this has always been the case here. People have lived in the southeast of Turkey since the dawn of civilization, and one group of people simply built their wares upon those of the groups that came before them into infinitude. Each successive civilization destroyed the works of earlier civilizations in their own pursuits of progress.

Wade from Vagabond in Hasankeyf, Turkey- April 3, 2009

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