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Zahi Hawass Talks 'Discovering Tutankhamun'

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Discovery of an Intact Tomb at Saqqara
Zahi Hawass Talks 'Discovering Tutankhamun'
Zahi Hawass Talks ‘Discovering Tutankhamun’ GUESTS:Zahi Hawass, Egyptologist, scholar and author Michael Hager, president and CEO, San Diego Natural History Museum

THIS IS KPBS MIDDAY EDITION I MAUREEN CAVANAUGH. THERE ARE SOME THINGS YOU CAN RELY ON WHEN YOU ARE WATCHING A DOCUMENTARY ABOUT AGE IN EGYPT. YOU WILL SEE IMAGES OF THE PERMITS, SHOTS OF THE BEAUTIFUL DRAWINGS AND HIEROGLYPHS INSIDE AGENT EGYPTIAN TOMBS AND YOU WILL PROBABLY ALSO SEE THE FAMILIAR FACE AND THE DOOR OF MY NEXT GUESS. DR. ZAHI HAWASS IS AN EGYPTOLOGIST. FORMER MINISTER, STATE FOR ANTIQUITIES AFFAIRS IN EGYPT AND ENERGETIC PROMOTER OF THE WONDERS OF EGYPT'S AGENT PAT. RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DISCOVERY OF THE TOMBS OF THE GIZA PYRAMID BUILDERS AND THE VALLEY OF THE GOLDEN MUMMIES. DR. ZAHI HAWASS IS IN SAN DIEGO TO SPEAK AT THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM IN BALBOA PARK, HOSTING THE EXHIBIT. THE DISCOVERY OF KING TUT. TRAN12'S NEW BOOK IS CALLED DISCOVERING TO A COMMENT FROM HOWARD CARTER TO DNA. DR. ZAHI HAWASS WELCOME TO THE SHOW. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. ALSO JOINING IS MICHAEL HAGER, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF THE SAN DIEGO NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM. DR. HAGER, WELCOME. THANK YOU. DR. ZAHI HAWASS , EVEN THOUGH SO MUCH IS KNOWN ABOUT KING TUTANKHAMEN. THE PUBLIC CAN'T GET ENOUGH OF HIM. WHAT YOU THINK THE WORLD HAS THIS ENDURING INTEREST ? BECAUSE ALWAYS, ACTUALLY EVERY YEAR WE HAVE SOMETHING NEW ABOUT THIS CANE. EVEN THE TOMB FOUND NOVEMBER 4, 1922. INSIDE HE FOUND 5000 -- 5398 OBJECTS. THE BEST OF THEM CAN BE SEEN AT THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM IN SAN DIEGO. THE EXHIBIT FOR THE FIRST TIME SHOWS THE DISCOVERY. HOW THE TOMB WAS FOUND. THE VERY -- THE ROOM, THE THRONE, THE MASS, OFFICE, GOLD, ALL OF THESE ARE AMAZING THINGS THAT WAS FOUND. BUT I REALLY WAS INTERESTED IN PERMITS MY WHOLE LIFE. WHEN I RECEIVED THE SCANNED FROM THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC AS THE GIFT. I BEGAN I SHOULD -- THINK I SHOULD KNOW MORE ABOUT KING TUT. WE FOUND OUT FIRST I DISCOVERED HIS FAMILY. IT WAS A BIG PROBLEM. WHO WAS THE FATHER OF KING TUT? WE DIDN'T KNOW. IS HE -- WHO IS THE MOTHER? ISSUE NEFERTITI? SHE --? WE DON'T KNOW. THEREFORE, WITH DNA AND CT SCAN FOR THE FIRST TIME, I WAS ABLE TO DISCOVER ALL THE MEMBERS OF THE FAMILY OF KING CUT, EXCEPT QUEEN NEFERTITI. THIS IS A MOMMY THAT I'M LOOKING FOR NOW. AND HOW HE FOUND OUT FOR THE FIRST TIME. HE WAS MURDERED. WE FOUND OUT HE WAS NOT MURDERED. WE FOUND OUT HE HAD SOME -- HE SUFFERED MALARIA. A DISEASE THAT CAN BE SEEN ONLY IN AFRICA. AND HE HAD AN ACCIDENT WHILE RIDING THE CHAIR IT AND FELL DOWN AND DIED. THE AGE OF 19. WHAT KINDS OF QUESTIONS TO USUALLY GET ABOUT THE BOY KING ? YOU KNOW, I WROTE TWO BOOKS FOR CHILDREN AND THE THIRD BOOK IS COMING IN ONE MONTH FROM NOW. ALL THE PEOPLE ASK ABOUT HOW OLD HE DIED, WHEN HE BECAME THE KING, HE WAS NINE YEARS OLD. THAT IS WHY THIS EXHIBIT IS PERFECT FOR CHILDREN TO TOUCH THE ARTIFACT AND TO KNOW MORE ABOUT THE KING BECAUSE EACH ARTIFACT MAKES THE STORY. I WROTE 12 BOOKS IN CONTACT. THERE IS A GREAT BOOK COMING FROM ME NEXT MONTH CALLED THE LEGION OF TUTANKHAMEN. IT IS A BIG COFFEE TABLE BOOK ABOUT 3 FEET LONG. THAT BOOK IN MY OPINION WILL BE THE BOOK THAT WE CAN USE TO CELEBRATE THE 100 YEARS IN 2024 OF THE DISCOVERY. THAT'S WONDERFUL. DR. HAGER, THE EXIT AT THE NIGHT WHICH WILL FIGURE SCIENTIFIC WORKSTATIONS OF THE OBJECTS IN KING TUT'S TOMB AS DR. HAWASS HAS SAID. IT HAS REACHED A MILESTONE ATTENDANCE. YES WE ARE RIGHT AT 100,000 VISITORS AND WE STILL HAVE UNTIL APRIL 26 AND I WILL TELL YOU THIS EXHIBITION WAS SEEN ALL OVER EUROPE BY MORE THAN 5 MILLION PEOPLE. IF PEOPLE HAVE NOT BEEN DOWN TO SEE IT YET, THEY NEED TO GET DOWN THERE BECAUSE IT IS A REALLY SPECIAL EXHIBITION. DOES THAT 100,000 FIGURE EXCEED YOUR EXPECTATIONS ? IT IS PRETTY CLOSE TO ON TARGET. BUT WE ARE DELIGHTED WITH IT. EVERYBODY HAS BEEN DELIGHTED WITH IT AND SPRING BREAK IS COMING. WHAT WILL YOU DO FOR THE 100,000 ? ON THE 100,000TH PERSON WE ARE CLOSE TO IT, BANK OF AMERICA WHO SPONSORED THE EXHIBITION IN SAN DIEGO WILL PRESENT THE PERSON WITH $100 BILL AND WE HAVE DR. COLOSSUS BOOK AND A NUMBER OF OTHER THINGS WE WILL GIVE TO THAT VISITOR. SO GET DOWN THERE. DR. HAWASS IS HELPING WITH THIS INTERVIEW. I LOVE IT. AS BEAUTIFUL AS THESE RECREATIONS ARE, DO THE REAL ARTIFACTS -- TRAVEL OUTSIDE OF EGYPT ? NOTE. THE LAST -- NO. THE LAST THING I SAID, 50 SMALL OBJECTS OF THE 5000 OBJECT OF KING TUT TO AMERICA IN 2005 STATE UNTIL 2010 AND BROUGHT TO EGYPT 140 MILLION $140 MILLION THAT ARE USED TO RECONSTRUCT THE GRAND MUSEUM, THE LARGEST MUSEUM IN THE WORLD WE'RE BUILDING NOW NEXT TO THE PYRAMIDS. WHEN I BROUGHT THIS KING TUT HERE, I SAID, THIS IS THE LAST TIME. THE LAST TIME YOU CAN SEE THE REAL THING. AND ALSO THERE IS NO FREE MEAL ANYMORE. WE GIVE MANY FREE MEALS, MANY FREE LUNCHES TO THE METROPOLITAN MUSEUM AND OTHER MUSEUMS IN AMERICA. NOW IT'S TIME EGYPT SHOULD MAKE MONEY. THE WORLD, DR. HAWASS WAS STUNNED TO HEAR THAT THE PHARAOHS GOLDEN DEATH MASK WAS DAMAGED IN CAIRO RECENTLY. THE BEARD OF THE MASK WAS BADLY GLUED BACK ON. WHAT HAPPENED ? THERE WAS A LADY IN THE CONSERVATION DEPARTMENT THAT DID NOT FOLLOW THE RULES OF CONSERVATION. IF YOU TRIED TO RESTORE SOMETHING, YOU SHOULD TRY TO PROPOSE AND DO IT WITH A TEAM. BUT SHE WENT BY HER OWN, HAVING A MATERIAL CALLED EPOXY AND SHE USED IT TO CLEAN THE MASK. INSTEAD, SHE DID DAMAGE THE BEARD. THEREFORE, WHAT I WANT TO TELL THE AUDIENCE, DON'T WORRY BECAUSE RESTORATION AND CONSERVATION NOW IT'S REALLY -- CAN RETURN EVERYTHING BACK TO NORMAL. WE ARE HOPING THAT THIS WILL HAPPEN IN ONE MONTH FROM NOW. DR. HAWASS , I KNOW YOU ARE A STAUNCH ADVOCATE OF CLAIMING THE RIGHT OF EGYPT TO THESE ANCIENT EVICTIONS -- ANCIENT EGYPTIAN ARTIFACTS. BUT DOES THAT KIND OF INCIDENT WE CAN EGYPT ATTEMPT TO RETRIEVE ANTIQUITIES FROM THE MUSEUMS AROUND THE WORLD ? I DID RETURN MORE THAN 5000 ARTIFACTS. AND I DID HAVE A BIG FIGHT IN MUSEUMS TO ASK FOR THE RETURN OF NEFERTITI. I SAID THERE ARE FIVE UNIQUE OBJECTS. SHOULD NOT BE OUTSIDE OF EGYPT. ROSETTA STONE, THE BUST OF NEFERTITI IN BERLIN, THE STATUE OF THE ARCHITECT OF THE GREAT PYRAMID IN GERMANY AND THE STARCHES -- STATUTE AND MUSEUM OF FINE ARTS IN BOSTON. I BEGAN WITH NEFERTITI. I COLLECTED EVIDENCE THAT THE BUST OF NEFERTITI IN BERLIN LEFT EGYPT LEGALLY -- ILLEGALLY. AFTER THE REVOLUTION. THERE IS NO FIGHTERS LIKE I USED TO HAVE. PEOPLE BEGAN TO BE AFRAID. BUT I'M HOPING AFTER NOW WE HAVE AN ELECTED PRESIDENT, EGYPT IS STABLE AND I THINK ALL THE PEOPLE THAT EGYPT IS SAFE WILL NEED TOURIST TO COME BACK BECAUSE WITHOUT TOURS, WE WILL NOT BE ABLE TO RESTORE THE MONUMENTS. THEREFORE, I WANT TO TELL YOU THAT THIS YEAR, 2015, IT WILL BE THE YEAR THAT EGYPT IS GOING TO COME BACK ON EVERYTHING. AND SPEAKING WITH EGYPTOLOGIST DR. ZAHI HAWASS . DR. HAWASS , AS I MENTIONED IN THE INTRODUCTION, YOU ARE WELL KNOWN FOR YOUR DISTINCTIVE OUTFIT WHEN DOING FIELDWORK IN EGYPT. YOU'RE USUALLY WEARING AN INDIAN -- INDIANA JONES FEDORA. WHEN DID YOU ADOPT THAT WILL ? I HAVE TO TELL YOU, IT'S BY ACCIDENT. I USED TO HAVE A FARMER HAD -- HAT. BUT I DIDN'T LIKE IT. I WAS IN LOS ANGELES AND ENTERED A STORE AND FOUND THIS AUSTRALIAN HAT. I BOUGHT IT AND AFTER THAT, IT BECAME A PART OF ME. WHAT IS AMAZING THAT -- INDIANA JONES CAME TO EGYPT WITH HIS ADOPTED CHILDREN AND WE HAD DINNER AND ASKED ABOUT THE HAT. WHY MY HAT BECAME MORE FAMOUS THAN HARRISON FORD'S HAD. I TOLD THEM I HAD ISRAEL, GENUINE ARCHAEOLOGY HAD BUT HARRISON FORD HAD IS FAKE. [ LAUGHTER ] WE SOLD THEMAY $250,000. AND THIS MONEY WENT FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE CHILDREN MUSEUM IN CAIRO. YOU HAVE TAKEN A HIGH-PROFILE WHILE YOU WERE IN EGYPT SERVING AS A MINISTER. HE TOOK A HIGH PROFILE BY APPEARING IN DOCUMENTARIES ABOUT ANCIENT EGYPT. I'M WONDERING WAS THAT INTENTIONAL TO BRING AN EGYPTIAN PRESENCE TO THESE FILMS QUEST OFTEN RELYING ON FOREIGN SCHOLARS. YOU ARE WONDERFUL. YOU SAID EXACTLY -- WHEN I WAS YOUNG, I WAS WATCHING TV SHOWS ABOUT EGYPT. I HAVE NEVER SEEN AN EGYPTIAN IN A TV SHOW. AND WHAT KILLED ME, THERE WAS AN AMERICAN EGYPTOLOGIST ENTERED THE TOMB OF NEFERTITI LEE -- FOR A FILM AND THE DIRECTOR WAS HOLDING A LAMP FOR HIM TO ENTER, OPENING HIS MOUTH LIKE STUPID PERSON WITHOUT TALKING AND THIS KILLED ME. WHEN I WENT TO THE UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA TO STUDY -- I TOOK MY DOCTORATE DEGREE AND BEGAN TO TEACH MYSELF ON WHAT IS CALLED SOUNDBITES. BECAUSE ON A TV YOU DON'T REALLY TALK. NO. AND THAT HELPED ME TO BE THE STAR FOR ARCHAEOLOGY AND ALL THE TVS AND STILL UNTIL I JUST CAME -- I FINISHED BEFORE COMING HERE, A BIG INTERVIEW FOR HBO. THEY ARE DOING SOMETHING ABOUT THE -- AFTER THE REVOLUTION BECAUSE WE LOST A LOT. I SHOWED MY LECTURE TONIGHT, THE SOLD-OUT LECTURE BECAUSE OF MIKE BEING AN ENERGETIC DIRECTOR AND I'M SHOWING SATELLITE HOW EGYPT LOOK LIKE PRIOR TO THE REVOLUTION AND WHAT KIND OF HOLES WERE DUG BY ILLEGAL EXCAVATIONS AND PEOPLE ATTACKING ANTIQUITIES. BUT THANK GOD, EVERYTHING IS BACK TO NORMAL NOW. I WANTED TO ASK YOU ABOUT THAT BECAUSE I KNOW, THE UPRISING IN CAIRO BACK IN 2011, THERE WERE SOME TREASURES DAMAGED OR LOST IN THE CAIRO MUSEUM. WE ALL WATCHED IN HORROR LAST WEEK WHEN ISIS RELEASED THAT VIDEO THAT ALLEGEDLY SHOWED THE ASSYRIAN STATUES BEING SMASHED IN THE CITY OF MOSUL. HOW CONCERNED ARE YOU ABOUT THE SAFETY OF AGENT EGYPT'S TREASURES ? ABOUT WHAT ISIS IS DOING. THIS DESTRUCTION OF THE MONUMENTS OF SYRIA AND LIBYA AND IRAQ, IT WILL MAKE THEIR END SOON. YOU CANNOT DISTRACT CULTURES. THEY ARE BLIND. AND THAT WILL SHOW THEM TO THE WORLD AS IDIOTS. BUT TO ASSURE YOU THAT THE EGYPTIAN MONUMENTS NOW ARE SAFE. BECAUSE WE HAVE A STRONG POLICE NOW AN ARMY AND THE EGYPTIAN FOUND OUT THAT NO ONE CAN TOUCH THEIR MONUMENTS. I'M CONFIDENT THAT EVERYTHING IS GOING TO BE SAFE BECAUSE I REALLY DO SAY IN ALL MY LECTURES THAT THE EGYPTIAN MONUMENTS DO NOT BELONG TO US ONLY BUT BELONG TO EVERYONE AROUND THE WORLD. MICHAEL HAGER, WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR THE NAT TO HAVE A WELL-KNOWN EGYPTOLOGIST SUCH AS DR. ZAHI HAWASS . IT'S REMARKABLE AND WONDERFUL AND HELPS CALL ATTENTION TO THE WONDERFUL EXHIBITIONS WE'RE BROUGHT TO THE NAT RECENTLY. I WANT TO SAY THAT THIS LECTURE TONIGHT IS SOLD OUT BUT DR. HAWASS IS FEATURED IN THE 3-D FILM THAT GOES ALONG WITH THE EXHIBITION CALLED MUMMIES, SECRETS OF THE PHARAOHS. AND HIS BOOK IS AT THE NAT AND IT IS A WONDERFUL EXHIBITION AND DESERVES SOMEONE OF THIS FAME AND PROMINENCE TO COME AND PARTICULARLY BECAUSE WE HAVE HAD SOME CONCERN THAT THESE ARE REPLICAS. BUT AS DR. HAWASS HAS EXPLAINED, IT'S MORE EDUCATIONAL THAN THE ORIGINAL EXHIBITION BECAUSE YOU SEE EVERYTHING AND TOM -- CONTEXT AND YOU SEE OVER 1000 ARTIFACTS RATHER THAN 50. DR. HAWASS YOU WERE TALKING A MOMENT AGO ABOUT THIS NEW MUSEUM THAT IS PLANNED ON GIZA PLATEAU NEAR THE PYRAMIDS. IS THAT RIGHT ? YES. YOU HAVE A TIMELINE ON THAT ? I WAS PLANNING TO OPEN THIS MUSEUM IN 2015. BUT BECAUSE OF THE REVOLUTION, I DO NOT KNOW WHEN THEY SHOULD OPEN IT AND I ASKED THE EGYPTIAN GOVERNMENT THAT THEY SHOULD HAVE IT -- A SPECIAL IDENTITY. NOT TO BE UNDER A GOVERNMENT DIRECTION. BECAUSE YOU NEED TO GIVE THE FREEDOM OF THE PEOPLE WHO ARE IN CHARGE TO HAVE FUNDRAISING AND THINGS LIKE THIS. I HOPE THE THINGS THE GOVERNMENT WILL DO THAT BUT THIS WILL BE THE LARGEST MUSEUM IN THE WORLD. YOU CAN IMAGINE IF YOU SEE THE GOLDEN MOSQUE IN ONE ROOM WITH LIGHT AND GREAT LABELS, DARK, THE MUSEUM NOW. EXACTLY. THAT WOULD BE FABULOUS. YOU HAVE SPENT SO MUCH TIME DEALING WITH THE TREASURES OF ANCIENT EGYPT, EXPLORING YOURSELF. WHAT KINDS OF TRAVERS -- TREASURES OF ANCIENT EGYPT DO THINK MY YET TO BE FOUND ? I WOULD SAY THAT IF YOU GO TO THE KINGS, FOR EXAMPLE, WE CAN STILL LOOK FOR THE TOMB OF TREATMENTS THE SECOND AND THE TOMB OF RAMSES EIGHT AND THE QUEENS OF DYNASTY 18 WERE BURIED IN THE VALLEY OF THE KINGS. LOOK AT MY WORK WHEN I SENT A ROBOT INSIDE THE GREAT PYRAMID TO LOOK FOR -- AND WE FOUND UNTIL NOW, THREE DOORS, WITH TWO HANDLES. WE NEED TO SEE WHAT'S BEHIND THEM. SOMETHING THAT LOOK FOR ALSO AT THE SAME TIME, I WANT TO CONTINUE MY SEARCH FOR THE TOMB OF MARK ANTHONY AND CLEOPATRA. EXCAVATING THAT RIGHT NOW, LOOKING ABOUT THEM IN THE TEMPLE LOCATED NEAR ALEXANDER CALLED TAPAS HERE IS MAGNA. WE THINK CLEOPATRA AND MARK ANTHONY WERE BURIED. CAN YOU BELIEVE IF THIS IS DISCOVERED? IT WOULD BE THE MOST AMAZING DISCOVERY OF THE 21st CENTURY. MY FINGERS ARE CROSSED. I HAVE BEEN SPEAKING WITH DR. ZAHI HAWASS . HIS NEW BOOK CALLED DISCOVERING TUTANKHAMEN FROM HOWARD CARTER TO DNA. AND THE DISCOVERY OF THE KING TUT EXPECT -- EXHIBIT ON DISPLAY AT THE NATURAL HISTORY IS A MEMBER OF OR PART TWO ABLE. THANK YOU MICHAEL HAGER AND DR. HAWASS VERY MUCH. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

The man responsible for the discovery of tombs of the Giza pyramid builders and the Valley of the Golden Mummies will be in San Diego on Tuesday.

Related: King Tut Exhibit Arrives In San Diego

Zahi Hawass — an Egyptologist, former Minister of State for Antiquities Affairs in Egypt and energetic promoter of the wonders of Egypt's ancient past — is the author of "Discovering Tutankhamun: From Howard Carter to DNA."

Hawass will give a lecture at 7 p.m. on Tuesday at the San Diego's Natural History Museum where the The Discovery of King Tut exhibition is currently on display. The museum is at 1788 El Prado in Balboa Park.

Zahi Hawass Talks 'Discovering Tutankhamun'