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The real story behind the flooding at Machu Picchu

February 13th, 2010 1 comment

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During the recent extreme flooding in Peru, media attention centred almost wholly and shamefully on the 1,300 tourists stranded at Machu Picchu. 

Now that they have been airlifted out from their luxury hotels – one told the television cameras that the helicopter ride ‘made his holiday’ – it is worth considering the real impact of the flooding on the people who actually live there.

For the episode is just a waymark in a far more important story.  The Andes is being ripped apart by a series of recent climatic disasters that threaten to destroy the fragile peace established since the terrible period of the Sendero Luminoso when Maoist revolutionaries held Peru to ransom in the 1990s.

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