Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Exaggerated Nile Basin Posting

Michael Kelley and Robert Johnson posted on Business Insider on 13 October 2012 an article titled "STRATFOR: Egypt Is Prepared to Bomb All of Ethiopia's Nile Dams."

Business Insider is a U.S. business/entertainment news website based in New York. The information for the article comes from leaked internal emails written by STRATFOR, a reputable privately owned publisher of geopolitical analysis based in Austin, Texas.

The article quoted one alleged Egyptian dispatch dated 1 June 2010 that said a high-level Egyptian security/intel source, in regular contact with Mubarak and [then intelligence head Omar} Suleiman said: "The only country that is not cooperating is Ethiopia. We are continuing to talk to them, using the diplomatic approach. Yes, we are discussing military cooperation with Sudan. ... If it comes to a crisis, we will send a jet to bomb the dam and come back in one day, simple as that. Or we can send our special forces in to block/sabotage the dam."

Assuming these STRATFOR emails accurately reflect what the Egyptian officials wrote and there is no explanation how a private American company even had access to such messages, it is important to note that they are more than two years old and Egypt has not bombed any dams in Ethiopia. To the extent the dispatch is accurate, it comes from a deposed Egyptian government. At the end of the article, a representative of the current Morsi government in Egypt is quoted as saying that the STRATFOR emails are hearsay "designed to disturb Egyptian-Ethiopian relations."

While Egyptian officials have on occasion made threatening comments about Ethiopia's use of Nile River tributaries dating back to the Anwar Sadat government, the heading for this article is a case of gross exaggeration.

Click here to read the article.

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