Is Egypt Secretly Planning a Proxy War on Ethiopia?

Author’s Note: In this commentary, I shall argue the Egyptian Government is in the first phase of its PROXY WAR against Ethiopia with the short-term strategic objective of sabotaging the scheduled July initial filling of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). To successfully wage a proxy war on Ethiopia, I believe Egypt will seek to: 1) exploit the division in Sudan’s transitional military-civilian government between hard line military officers sympathetic to Egypt and the technocrats led by Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok; 2) recruit key Sudanese military and intelligence leaders to whip up Sudanese nationalism against an “Ethiopian invasion” in the recent border conflict; 3) destabilize the fragile Sudanese military-civilian coalition and pave  the way for a military coup that will bring to power leaders who will support Egypt’s opposition to the GERD, and 4) make  arrangements with the Sudanese military for the establishment of a forward operating base in Egypt for a strike on the GERD and invasion of Ethiopia.

In supporting my analysis, I offer historical facts on centuries-long Egyptian ambitions to totally control the Nile River and paralyze Ethiopia from using any Nile River waters for its development.

Egypt _ GERD _ Ethiopia

Al-Mariam
June 6, 2020

“Letting loose the dogs of war” on Ethiopia?

For decades, Egypt has threatened to go to war with Ethiopia over use of Nile waters.

In September 2019,  President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi told the U.N. General Assembly, “The Nile is a question of life, a matter of existence to Egypt.”  In other words, the “Nile question” is a matter of life and death for Egypt.

In 2013, Egyptian president Mohammad Morsi declared, “As president of the republic, I confirm to you that all options are open. If Egypt is the Nile’s gift, then the Nile is a gift to Egypt… If it diminishes by one drop, then our blood is the alternative.” In other words, the Nile River will be a river of blood and obviously not Egyptian.

In 1979, Egyptian president Anwar Sadat threatened to go to war with Ethiopia  dramatically declaring, “We are not going to wait to die of thirst in Egypt, we’ll go to Ethiopia and die there.” History supports Sadat’s prophesy. Tens of thousands of Egyptian soldiers (see references below) invaded Ethiopia in the 1870s and were “totally annihilated”.

On May 12, 2020, Ethiopia reiterated its long declared policy that it will start filling the GERD in July, 2020.

In response, on May 19, 2020, El-Sisi directed Egyptian armed forces to be on the “highest state of alert”.

If Egypt were to be foolish enough to invade Ethiopia, it would not be the first time; nor would the outcome of such an invasion be much in doubt.

Egypt has had imperial designs on Ethiopia at least beginning in the 1820s when Mohammad Ali Pasha sought to expand his empire throughout sub-Sahara Africa by defeating Sudan, dominating the Red Sea and controlling the port city of Massawa which was part of Ethiopia. Ali Pasha’s passion was control of the Nile and indeed the principal reason for his invasion of the Sudan. He wanted to make sure there was no interference in the flow of the Nile through the Sudan. But he was unable to reach Ethiopia, the source of the Blue Nile.

In 1875-76, Egypt was determined to militarily subjugate Ethiopia and control the Blue Nile once and for all. Egypt deployed a large army well-equipped and trained army led by European and American officers.

In the Battle of Gundet (1875) and Battle of Gura (1876), Ethiopian forces “completely annihilated an Egyptian expeditionary force”. According to one historian:

The Battle of Gura abolished any practical opportunity for Egypt to gain control over Ethiopia. The heavy Egyptian losses (almost 14,000 men died in three months), the economic damage to the Egyptian economy and, above all, the Egyptian depiction of the Ethiopian warriors as having a demonic character, prevented any future Egyptian invasion of Ethiopia.

I am not terribly worried about an Egyptian land or air war in Ethiopia.

With all due respect to the Egyptian military, its record of military success leaves much to be desired. The 1948 Arab–Israeli War, the Suez Crisis, and the Six-Day War proved disastrous for Egypt.

The 1973 Arab-Israeli War also ended up in an Egyptian defeat, and only through the Camp David Accords was Egypt able to reclaim the Sinai.

Since 2013, Egypt has been involved in its largest military campaign in the Sinai peninsula since its 1973 war with Israel. Egypt deployed 88 battalions with 42,000 soldiers to defeat an ISIS-affiliated insurgency.

In 2018 El-Sisi launched Operation Sinai  to “purge the country of terrorists”. However, “despite brutal methods and substantial military effort, the Egyptian government has little to show from the past five-plus years of counterinsurgency operations in the Sinai aside from hundreds of military and civilian casualties and an undeterred adversary.”

If Egypt cannot defeat a few thousand terrorists in 5 years, could it defeat Ethiopia by marching its army or flying its air force 2,300 miles?

But fools have rushed in where angels fear to tread.

In 1812, French Emperor Napoleon invaded Russia with an army of 680,000 men ending in total defeat for France. In 1942, Hitler attacked Stalingrad and ended up with his army of 330,000 men wiped out.

Most instructively, in 1896 Italy invaded Ethiopia with state of the art weapons and a large army and was wiped out in a battle that lasted NOT even a full day! In 1935, Italy returned to avenge its humiliating defeat and extensively used mustard gas against the civilian population. In 1941, Italy suffered another humiliating defeat.

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, the 2018 Nobel Peace Laureate, has cautioned the dispute with Egypt over Nile waters could be resolved only through negotiations. He warned if war is waged on Ethiopia by Egypt he “could ready millions of people”.

Egypt would be crossing the proverbial Rubicon River (might I say the Nile River) if it believes it can bring Ethiopia to knees on the use of the Nile waters by waging war. That will be a point of no return – no return to diplomacy, no return to peaceful resolution.

It would be a truly Shakespearean tragedy for Egypt if it were to “Cry “Havoc!” on the Nile and “let slip the dogs of war” on Ethiopia. The outcome is foretold in the words of Mark Antony in Julius Caesar:

And Caesar’s spirit, ranging for revenge,
With Ate by his side come hot from hell,
Shall in these confines with a monarch’s voice
Cry “Havoc!” and let slip the dogs of war,
That this foul deed shall smell above the earth
With carrion men, groaning for burial.

Egypt should heed the wisdom of an old African saying, “If you can’t resolve your problems in peace, you can’t solve them in war.”

“Egypt will defend its interest by all means available”

On February 28, 2020, the Egyptian Government was on social media saber-rattling and beating the psychological drums of war against Ethiopia:

All organs of the Egyptian State will continue to give this subject the great attention it deserves in the exercise of their national responsibilities in defending the interests, potential and future of the Egyptian people by all means available.

What did Egypt mean by its threat to “defend its interest in the Nile by all means available”?

As I explained in my March 1 commentary, Egypt intended to convey a number of  sinister and intimidating messages to Ethiopia:

I. Egypt will conduct war on Ethiopia — a war of arms, a war of words, diplomatic wars, a proxy war and psychological warfare.

Propaganda war

I must admit Egypt today has control of the commanding heights in the war of words (propaganda). Every single day there are articles in various legacy outlets and social media platforms (arranged by Egyptian government paid public relations firms, Egyptian officials and intellectuals, internet trolls, etc.) pleading the cause of Egypt victimized by Ethiopia’s insistence on using the Nile waters in violation of international law, agreements and principles of good neighborliness. Ethiopia is depicted in Egyptian disinformation campaigns as an evil country hellbent on destroying Egypt. gypt says Ethiopia wants to sell hydro-power and become rich while Egyptians starve and die of thirst.

Diplomatic war 

While Egypt has failed in its military campaigns against Ethiopia, the opposite has been true on the diplomatic front for well over a century.

In the Anglo Italian Protocol of 1891, Britain guaranteed to Egypt “undisturbed flow of the Nile by restricting Italy’s endeavour to control a water project over the Atbara River”, one of the tributaries of the Nile. “This protocol was signed by the colonial powers without taking into account the interest of third parties, most notably Ethiopia.”

In the Anglo-Ethiopian Treaty of 1902, the British tried to bamboozle Ethiopian Emperor Menelik II by claiming the English version of that treaty prohibited Ethiopia from initiating any projects on the Nile River without the permission of Britain and Sudan. The Amharic version of that treaty read, Emperor Menelik II “has entered into the commitment of not giving permission to any work that fully arrests the flow of the Blue Nile.”

In the Anglo- Egyptian Treaty of 1929, super-special rights were granted to Egypt including guarantees of 48cm Nile flow per year, the right to monitor the Nile flow in the upstream countries and the right to veto any construction projects that would affect her interests adversely, among other things.

1959 Nile Waters Agreement Between Egypt and the Sudan guaranteed Egypt 84 billion cubic meters of water measured at Aswan High Dam. It also granted Egypt the right to construct the Aswan High Dam that can store the entire annual Nile River flow of a year.

In 1983, Egypt formed the Ndugu Group Including a number of sub-Saharan countries excluding Ethiopia) with the aim of “creating a multi-good socio-economic solutions beyond consumptive water uses.” The idea was to buy off African countries into supporting Egypt’s claim of birthright to exclusive use of the Nile. The Group fizzled out.

In 2020, El-Sisi, using Donald Trump’s son in law Jared Kushner, managed to get Ethiopia to attend the so-called “Washington Talks” on the GERD. Egypt and the U.S. fabricated an agreement and tried to sweet talk, con and arm-twist Ethiopia into mortgaging its future.  Ethiopia told Egypt and the U.S. to shove their fake agreement up their keister.

Egypt has provided diplomatic and military support to invaders of Ethiopia. When Somalia’s Siad Barre invaded Ethiopia in 1977, he got his weapons daily from Egypt. The New York Times reported, “Egyptian plane has been sent almost every day recently with light weapons and ammunition for the hard-pressed Somalis.”

Psychological warfare

Egypt continues to wage psychological warfare against Ethiopia by threatening unspecified military action.  Egypt intimates it will undertake a surgical air strike of the GERD.

II. Egypt will actively work to destabilize Ethiopia, including the promotion of asymmetric wars and by meddling in Ethiopian internal matters.

Egypt’s involvement and meddling in Ethiopian affairs has longstanding roots. Egyptian intelligence has funneled money to extremist groups in Ethiopia for decades.  For more than one-half century, Egypt has provided financial support and weapons to rebel groups in northern and eastern Ethiopia. That effort continues today as Egypt provides safe haven for criminals and terrorists who have fled Ethiopia after committing crimes against humanity. It is an open secret that various extremists groups continue to receive support directly or indirectly from Egypt. No doubt, Egypt will continue to actively promote ethnic and religious tensions in Ethiopia by providing arms and money to any group who will work with them to destabilize the country. Of course, there is nothing Egypt will not do to undermine or otherwise weaken the government of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed!

III. Egypt will use diplomatic means to isolate Ethiopia in the region and throughout the continent and the world.

For decades, Egypt has campaigned to isolate Ethiopia politically and economically from the international community. It has succeeded in preventing the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund from extending loans for the GERD or other construction projects and other economic development efforts on the Nile. In March, Egypt got the Arab League to condemn Ethiopia for alleged “infringement of Egypt’s historical rights to Nile waters.” In May, Egypt sent a letter to the U.N. Security Council  “protesting Ethiopia’s plan to start filling the reservoir of the controversial Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam”. UN Secretary General António Guterres  responded by advising Ethiopia and Egypt to resolve their differences within the framework of the “2015 Declaration of Principles on the GERD, which emphasizes cooperation based on common understanding, mutual benefit, good faith, win-win, and the principles of international law.”

Egypt has sought to enlist support from the European Union, various European and African countries to isolate Ethiopia.

Is Egypt planning a proxy war on Ethiopia to stop the GERD?

In my March commentary trying to decipher the meaning of the phrase, “Egypt will defend its interest by all means available”, I argued Egypt will wage a proxy war on Ethiopia. In other words, Egypt will use a neighboring country to destabilize, distract and thwart Ethiopia’s effort to begin the initial filling of the GERD scheduled for July and otherwise prevent the completion of the Dam.

I have come to this conclusion studying open source intelligence materials readily available online and in the legacy media.

Egypt has always sought a forward operating base to launch an attack on Ethiopia.

Stratfor analysis, the American geopolitical intelligence platform, in 2012 concluded, “Sudanese president Umar al-Bashir has agreed to allow the Egyptians to build a small airbase in Kusti to accommodate Egyptian commandos who might be sent to Ethiopia to destroy water facilities on the Blue Nile… It will be their option if everything else fails.”

Does Egypt today believe “everything has failed” to stop Ethiopia from beginning to fill the Dam in July or complete it?

Al-Bashir is no longer in power but that does not mean Egypt has abandoned its plan to use the Sudan in any way it can to advance its military objectives. There are the Al-Bashir old guards still around ready to serve at Egypt’s beck and call.

Egypt understands and wants to exploit the fragile political situation in the Sudan. Open source intelligence sources indicate that Sudan’s transitional military-civilian government is struggling not only to pave the way for free and fair elections in the coming two years but also address the severe economic and social problems facing the Sudanese people today. In much the same way as nearly every country in the world, Sudan is facing the scourge of COVID-19. Sudan is facing intense financial pressure on households, soaring inflation and budget deficits. While US sanctions against the Sudan were lifted in 2017, global commercial banks are not willing to extend loans and the Sudan is “effectively cut off from the global financial system.” In 2019, the World Bank threatened to deny any new loans until the Sudan paid off $16 billion in arrears to financial institutions and sovereign creditors. Sudan’s complex economic problems have been fully documented.

There have been recent border skirmishes on the Ethiopian-Sudan border.  The alleged attack occurred in the eastern Sudanese province of al-Qadarif by “an Ethiopian militia group penetrated Sudan’s border to fetch water at the Atbara river.” The Ethiopian Government has called for a joint investigation of the incident and offered its “deep sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims of the conflict along the Ethiopia and Sudan border.” Regardless, Ethiopia and the Sudan can deploy a joint force to patrol the border area to prevent any violence.

However, I believe Egypt will try to expand the border conflict in any way it can.

My analysis of the open source intelligence is:

1) There are military elements in the Sudanese military-civilian coalition who are supportive of Egypt’s position to thwart the completion of the GERD. Egypt wants to strengthen them and enable them to take a dominant role in the current coalition so that they can serve its interests in preventing the completion of the GERD.

2) Egypt is actively recruiting elements of the Sudanese military to make a move on the military-civilian coalition by drumming up nationalist sentiment against Ethiopia and possibly engineer a coup d’état. Special Note: On March 5, 2020, Sudan “expressed reservation” on “Arab League support for the water rights of Egypt.” On March 9, 2020, an assassination attempt was made on Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok.

3) Egypt sees an opportunity to expand the border conflict and plunge the two countries into an all-out war.

4) Egypt will engage mercenaries in the al-Qadarif area to stoke up the conflict so that an all-out war occurs between Ethiopia and the Sudan.

5) The current border conflict occurred between Ethiopia and the Sudan for the first time in 50 years even though the countries share a 1,600-mile-long border and have yet to have clearly demarcated borders.

So, what made the difference in getting the two countries to be tangled up in a border war?

The difference is EGYPT!

Egypt wants to use the Sudan as its pawn in its Game of Nile River Hegemony.

Egypt wants the Sudan to fight a proxy war for it against Ethiopia and in the process delay or prevent the completion of the GERD Dam.

I believe Egypt has a secret plan to get the Sudan and Ethiopia mired in a war of attrition which will deplete them both and give Egypt an opportunity to control them.

It is the classic divide and rule. Stoke up Sudanese nationalism and divide the military-civilian coalition. Divide Ethiopia and the Sudan by creating a border conflict and watch the two countries dissipate in a game of attrition and ultimately proclaim victory on both Ethiopia and the Sudan.

That has been the fundamental policy and strategy of  Egypt since the days of Muhammad Ali Pasha in the 1820s.

THE BOTTOM LINE: Egypt wants to use a weak Sudan to fight its dirty proxy war against Ethiopia to control the Nile.

EGYPT WILL FAIL!

The reports further alleged that the Sudanese transitional government has been divided over the dam, as the military component is backed by Egypt and the civilian component is led by Hamdok, who is considered close to Ethiopia.



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14 Responses to "Is Egypt Secretly Planning a Proxy War on Ethiopia?"

  1. Henok   June 6, 2020 at 6:43 am

    Egypt and Sudan and other Arab countries are the reason why Eritrea broke away from its motherland Ethiopia. Eritrea is a Product of weakning Ethiopia. I know 100% egypt trained groupes fighting Ethiopia. War injured also recieved medical treatment in egypt to fight again against their own People.
    Please analyze this and we will uncover alot of dirt in this topic. I am from Asmara and still belive and will always belive that we can survive as one People.

    Reply
  2. Ahmed Amin   June 6, 2020 at 3:09 pm

    This article is an excellent example of the “victim mentality” that Ethiopians suffer from; all of our problems (even actions) are somehow caused by an external “evil” agent. Scientists tell us that people demonize others to cope with stress. Authoritarian governments also use this technique to control the masses. Science also inform us that this dysfunctional mindset causes paranoia. I hope that rationality will win over fearmongering. God bless Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt.

    Reply
    • Ahmed Abdelfattah   June 7, 2020 at 7:38 am

      Egyptian people have no interest in harming Ethiopians or causing any kind of unrest. All we want is to secure our water supply. The Nile is a shared resource among our countries. You don’t have the right to solely control it and monetize our flow. There are tons of methods to generate clean electricity, Egypt can offer its help and has already done that before. I urge you to think of a peaceful resolution that gurantees the benefits of both sides because we are not giving up on our water !

      Reply
  3. Tagesse   June 6, 2020 at 6:13 pm

    Thank You Professot Alemayehu exposing Egypt’s mallicious tactics to prevent Ethiopian development
    We Should strengthen Our effort to finish the dam and Enjoy the economic development
    We need you /Profesdor Al Mariam to contribute more articles about the Nile to expose Egypt’s consipiracy theory
    We need go fund me account to contribute fir the GERD

    Reply
  4. Hagos k.   June 7, 2020 at 6:18 am

    Professor why you failed to name YOHANNES 4 as an ethiopian hero who defeated the egyptian invasion twice hatred is one thing history is another thing.
    From ኣክሱም

    Reply
  5. Hagere Ethiopia   June 7, 2020 at 8:34 am

    What Egypt needs to understand is that Ethiopians will not take any interference in their domestic affairs lightly.

    Don’t they know that these tactics only make Ethiopian’s resolve stronger?

    I don’t think Egypt understands that Ethiopia has many ways that it can use The water in its boarders? And actually we should. Ethiopia’s agricultural strategy should be to massive irrigation project throughout the country. That is the only way we can feed 100m people.

    What international law can be cited by Egypt to dissuade Ethiopia from using the rivers and streams?

    The dam is a sure bet to maintain the flow of water to the dam and the Nile river but we should keep in mind we have a right and an obligation to our people and country to use every single source of water for our use.

    There should be plan B just in case.

    Reply
  6. Hagere Ethiopia   June 7, 2020 at 8:37 am

    What Egypt needs to understand is that Ethiopians will not take any interference in their domestic affairs lightly.

    Don’t they know that these tactics only make Ethiopia’s resolve stronger?

    I don’t think Egypt understands that Ethiopia has many ways that it can use the water within its boarders? And actually we should. Ethiopia’s agricultural strategy should be massive irrigational projects throughout the country. That is the only way we can feed 100m people.

    What international law can be cited by Egypt to dissuade Ethiopia from using its rivers and streams?

    The dam is a sure bet to maintain the flow of water to the Nile river, but Ethiopians should keep in mind they have the right to their people and country to use every single source of water for their use.

    There should be plan B just in case.

    Reply
  7. RAVINDRA   June 8, 2020 at 6:51 am

    what will be ethiopia’s response of an pre-emptive strike by egypt. does ethiopia have the capacity to retaliate and in what way can she do it. do ethiopians have long range misiles to hit the aswan dam if egypt strikes the GERD

    Reply
  8. Abay Merga   June 9, 2020 at 3:45 am

    The contemporary era needs common development endeavors of all riparian countries, unlike the need to monopolize the water resource with dreaming to launch proxy war which emanates from greedy interest of Egypt . The opinion of professor Alemayehu is fact on the ground from which evil act all stake holders should refrain and search African solution for African problem.
    Resort to Warfare solution is not preferable solution but in absence of all possible solution Ethiopian military power and readiness is not something easily undermined by any African country.

    Reply
  9. Eric M Tarlue   June 10, 2020 at 3:31 pm

    As a Liberian and African, I wish a peaceful outcome from the soaring Nile crisis.
    Let Egypt keenly enter talks with Ethiopia and not with threatening military invasion which might anger Addis Ababa to continue with the Dam project.

    Logically, Ethiopia or even every sovereign state has full right over any resources that are found with in its territory no matter how its usage might affect others.

    One good example of this is the Amazon basin in Brazil. Because the world consider that part of the country important to human health, Brazil has being supported financially not to destroy the forest for any purpose.

    Even in my native Liberia, the government has entered agreement with environmental groups to curtail the harvesting of logs and other forest products in other to preserve the nation’s forest which is constitute about 40% of West Africa’s remaining rainforest.

    Similarly, the Norwegian government offered Gabon US$40 millions to properly manage its forest.

    Why do you think the UN or other nations didn’t wage wars on those countries for using their resources anyhow which might possibly result in global health and climate crisis?

    Egypt should stop sorting any form of violent deterrence on the project in Ethiopia. Whether Ethiopia wants the make economic gains from the dam is not in anyway an offense to any external party.
    Economically, Egypt is far ahead of Ethiopia considering HDI and other factors.
    Electricity is one of the key elements Cairo used to achieve that.

    Without power, hospitals and clinics won’t work and serve people well. Medical and laboratory research would almost be non-existent.

    With only 38% of its people connected to the grid, the authorities hope that the dam will greatly improve the lives of many Ethiopians and rise the country’s influence in the region as countries reliant on its power supply might fall in sympathy with Ethiopian interests.

    Reply
  10. AREBU SEID   June 15, 2020 at 9:08 am

    I AM WORRIED FOR ASWAN AND CAIRO.IF EGYPT TRY TO ATTACK GERD,WE DID NOT NEED LAUNCH BALLISTIC MISSILE,ONLY POISED THE WATER!! THIS IS THE LAST ALTERNATIVE FOR WE ETHIOPIAN. THE ONLY SOLUTION IS NEGOTIATION. IF EGYPT STRIKE UNFILLED DAM,ETHIOPIAN LOST THEIR 4 BILLION DOLLAR BUT WE ETHIOPIAN RESPONSE ON FILLED ASWAN DAM ,……DESTROY,NO CAIRO AS WHOLE. SO EGYPTIAN GAIN FROM PEACE AND COOPERATION WITH ETHIOPIA NOT FROM WAR…FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLS EGYPT REFER YOUR WAR HISTORY WITH ETHIOPIA.

    Reply
  11. Gabisa Tate   June 20, 2020 at 4:35 pm

    Egypt will be doomed with water crisis with or without GERD.

    As the population growth starts to explode in the coming decades, water is the source of survival within Ethiopia or Egypt. Be ready for the water shortfall in all Nile basin countries with the population projections. One of the other factor will be the ENVIRONOMENTL factor, as the annual growth of Ethiopian poor population which lacks electricity and petroleum as a fuels resorts to cutting more trees for of its daily needs, this in turn destroys the rain forests. Egyptian should invest NOW in the reforestation of Ethiopian highlands to harness more water for their future use, or it is like long-term investment which brings lasting income and prosperity for both countries. However, buying expensive war machine does not bring Egypt any additional bucket of water.
    On the other hand weather there is GERD or not Ethiopians are drying up Abbay river by a bucket or water pumps.
    We have seen the above occurrences within Ethiopia that lakes are dying, yearlong rivers are turning into seasonal rivers. Look what is happening to lake Tana, or the source of Abbay river, it is shrinking in alarming rate the weed is drying up the lake, irrigation in the surrounding area as well. WHERE is EGYPT? are they contributing anything to mitigate this issue by working with Ethiopian people or still buying war toys? I am telling the Egyptian population to demand their government a peaceful and cooperative way of agreeing with Ethiopia. The coming decade will tell weather the war toys produce any water! or the price of one war toy money can plant a million trees and generate jobs and could benefit both countries.
    On the other hand, Ethiopia has a sovereign right to use the Abbay river for generating electricity or irrigation use to feed its own population without arresting the water downstream according to internal river rule states.
    Look how much water is diverted and wasted in the Sahara desert? you name it a stupid project like Toshka and similar ones which did not benefit anyone and wasted in a desert. How many golf fields are dotting Nile river? Did Egypt consult other upstream countries and get consents when they build all this? of course it is their sovereign right to do how it fits their country, which will work the same in the Ethiopian case and other upstream countries. Egypt needs to learn from Israel how to use a drip irrigation system, its farmers still use thousands years old flood irrigation. Instead of buying war toys invest on this systems. Egypt one of the largest user of solar system in the Meddle East needs to reduce for a few years hydro electric production and drain water into Mediterranean ocean, it is an option to cooperate filling the Ethiopian GERD. It is always give and take should work.
    What is the problem and creating a noise, look for history and study hard why Ethiopia never been colonized by any force before you show your war toys and miscalculate. There is an Ethiopian saying “ye kotun awerd bela yebebetwan talech” meaning ” by reaching for more on a higher shelf, she dropped what she have under her armpit” Egyptian government complains what they have today, we all see in ten years how much water reduction is projected reaching your land.

    Cooperation and mutual benefit should go first before Egyptians are dying of water thirst with or without GERD.

    Reply
  12. Gabisa Tate   June 20, 2020 at 4:46 pm

    Egypt will be doomed with water crisis with or without GERD.
    As the population growth starts to explode in the coming decades, water is the source of survival within Ethiopia or Egypt. Be ready for the water shortfall in all Nile basin countries with the population projections. One of the other factor will be the ENVIRONOMENTL factor, as the annual growth of Ethiopian poor population which lacks electricity and petroleum as a fuels resorts to cutting more trees for of its daily needs, this in turn destroys the rain forests. Egyptian should invest NOW in the reforestation of Ethiopian highlands to harness more water for their future use, or it is like long-term investment which brings lasting income and prosperity for both countries. However, buying expensive war machine does not bring Egypt any additional bucket of water.
    On the other hand weather there is GERD or not Ethiopians are drying up Abbay River by a bucket or water pumps.
    We have seen the above occurrences within Ethiopia that lakes are dying, yearlong rivers are turning into seasonal rivers. Look what is happening to Lake Tana, or the source of Abbay River, it is shrinking in alarming rate the weed is drying up the lake, irrigation in the surrounding area as well. WHERE is EGYPT? Are they contributing anything to mitigate this issue by working with Ethiopian people or still buying war toys? I am telling the Egyptian population to demand their government a peaceful and cooperative way of agreeing with Ethiopia. The coming decade will tell whether the war toys produce any water! Or the price of one war toy money can plant a million trees and generate jobs and could benefit both countries.
    On the other hand, Ethiopia has a sovereign right to use the Abbay River for generating electricity or irrigation use to feed its own population without arresting the water downstream according to internal river rule states.
    Look how much water is diverted and wasted in the Sahara desert? You name it a stupid project like Toshka and similar ones which did not benefit anyone and wasted in a desert. How many golf fields are dotting Nile river? Did Egypt consult other upstream countries and get consents when they build all this? Of course it is their sovereign right to do how it fits their country, which will work the same in the Ethiopian case and other upstream countries. Egypt needs to learn from Israel how to use a drip irrigation system, its farmers still use thousands years old flood irrigation. Instead of buying war toys invest on this systems. Egypt one of the largest user of solar system in the Middle East needs to reduce for a few years hydroelectric production and drain water into Mediterranean ocean, it is an option to cooperate filling the Ethiopian GERD. It is always give and take should work.
    What is the problem and creating a noise, look for history and study hard why Ethiopia never been colonized by any force before you show your war toys and miscalculate. There is an Ethiopian saying “ye kotun awerd bela yebebetwan talech” meaning ” by reaching for more on a higher shelf, she dropped what she have under her armpit” Egyptian government complains what they have today, we all see in ten years how much water reduction is projected reaching your land.
    Cooperation and mutual benefit should go first before Egyptians are dying of water thirst with or without GERD.

    Reply
  13. Dereje Melaku   October 20, 2020 at 6:40 pm

    Dear Author,
    I am happy in your analysis of the issue, by linking Egypt’s century old interest over the Nile, to the present day dived and rule strategy.
    Your analysis also arouse my curiosity of the role of Israel as a prize for Egypt’s commitment in the Camp David Accords? this has not been raised and linked to Ethiopia which I believe that both the USA and Israel committed the Nile issues to pay back for her role to hang in the loop Palestine in particular, and jeopardizing the ‘independence-aspirations’ of Arabs from USA and Israel. What is sad here is that most of Ethiopians believe that we have deep rooted fraternity with Israel and most of us do not happy to hear ‘bad omen’ against them. Their pay back, on the contrary has been hurting Ethiopia, specially in the last 60 years. Still it is an ending attack, if not heard or told oenly.

    Unfortunately, although there have been indications that proof this, both local and foreign scholars not dare to touch this.
    Even the current ethnic conflicts in Ethiopia, much of them have been instigated by the assets of Israel, as most of the Ethiopians correctly realizing. this is all without mentioning the role of USA, Egypt, and Israel in the secession of Eritrea, which was the dire interest of Egypt.

    Thank you for your in-depth analysis and insight. I wish I hear your view on the issue regarding this too.

    Reply

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