Construction: Monuments Round the World

For eight weeks in a row, torrential cloudbursts washed across Tanzania. Cattle, goats, chickens and a few humans were swept away in the resulting floods. Roads and bridges crumbled, and vehicles were trapped in a deepening ooze. But through most of the downpour, some 1,200 African tribesmen and Italian workers doggedly continued to lay down six miles of pipeline a day. If they manage to stick to their schedule, "the Great Snake," as the natives call the $45 million project, will be completed in June. Stretching 1,058 miles across mountains and marshes,...