The author is making a case that if Egypt does not tackle the Grand Renaissance Dam head-on, as well as the appeal of upstream countries to change the current treaty stipulations, war is inevitable. War with Egypt. Okay, interesting idea, not original, but obviously bias and defended, in a way, in this article. I would suggest though, that the author is coming from a place of emotion and one dimensional consideration of reality - history and politics dominating rationale.
For years, Egypt has been the 2nd biggest recipient of US foreign aid, only topped by Israel - this has maybe changed due to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Maybe Egypt moved to the 4th position. I do not believe that even if there has been a new focus on Ethiopia, since it is so new, compared with years of capital gains in Egypt, we can see this as some sort of threat. This is not means for considering the insane idea of war between Egypt and Ethiopia. The casualties would be enormous. If you get on the ground and look at the infrastructure in Egypt and the infrastructure in Ethiopia you can understand what I mean. Do not be fooled.
Never mind American politics: there are key players in Washington DC who are much more focused on keeping a foothold in the Arab world than backing a very poor, but developing, Christian nation of Ethiopia. Ethiopia does pretty well on its own right. And the authors list of 6 possible advantages to Ethiopia can equally be viewed as disadvantage. I could take these one by one here, but I am more interested in the issue of framing water than framing politics.
Proposed ideas from the article about water:
4) To use the church to gain entree into Ethiopian society is an idea I have heard from other development workers. But in the case of water, I think it more appropriate to use the technical channels of water professionals. Both countries have Ministries of Water filled with engineers and hydrologists who already understand what issues they are contending with regarding the Nile River. A management plan is a great place to discuss how to share the water appropriately, not according to a treaty, but according to what common people need to survive.
Let's work to put a face back on the people in question - the article starts with an image of women from the White Nile, not the part of the Nile in question mind you, but at least this first idea - this image - is considering that in the end, this is people we are concerned with, that the governments of Egypt and Ethiopia are concerned with. That calls for interstate cooperation, not interstate conflict.
Egypt, Ethiopia Headed
By: Mustafa al-Labbad Translated from As-Safir (Lebanon).
About This Article
In the coming years, the biggest threat for Egypt is a lack of water, and Ethiopia's increasing extraction of water from the Nile may signal a possible "water war," writes Mustafa al-Labbad.Publisher: As-Safir (Lebanon)
Egypt Is Battling Ethiopia over the Nile Water
Author: Mustafa al-Labbad
First Published: March 18, 2013
Posted on: March 24 2013
Translated by: Rani Geha
Categories : Egypt
Read more: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/politics/2013/03/egypt-ethiopia-water-war.html#ixzz2UNjlKCuh