As if Egyptian President Muhammed Morsi didn’t already have enough on his plate, now his cabinet is advising him to carry out sabotage on Ethiopia, the Associated Press reports.
It all leads back to Ethiopia’s building of a dam in the Nile river, something that would deprive Egypt of the Nile’s water. Just today, Morsi issued a statement saying that “not one drop” of water should be affected by Ethiopia’s dam project.
Morsi was in a meeting with his cabinet that they apparently had no idea was being broadcast on live TV.
Younis Makhyoun, leader of an ultraconservative Islamist party, said Egypt should back rebels in Ethiopia or, as a last resort, destroy the dam. Liberal politician Ayman Nour proposed spreading rumors about Egypt obtaining advanced warplanes to scare the Ethiopians.
Though they were caught red handed, the issue is nothing new.
We reported on leaked Stratfor emails last year that diagrammed an ongoing conversation among government executives about what to do if Ethiopia went ahead with its plans.
In 2010 Egypt discussed taking military action in cooperation with Sudan against Ethiopia to protect their stake in Nile River, according to internal emails from the U.S. private-security firm Stratfor.
Water wars in the Middle East and North Africa are not uncommon. Then-King Hussein bin Talel of the (normally docile) Jordan said in 1994 when he officially recognized Israel that “he would not go to war with Israel again except over water.”
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