Trump suggests Egypt may ‘blow up’ Ethiopia dam

Washington (AFP)

US President Donald Trump on Friday voiced anger at Ethiopia over its construction of a huge dam on the Nile River and appeared to suggest that Egypt may destroy it.

Trump made the remarks as he announced a breakthrough normalization deal between US ally Israel and Sudan, which like Egypt fears that Ethiopia will use up scarce water resources.

“It’s a very dangerous situation because Egypt is not going to be able to live that way,” Trump told reporters in the Oval Office with leaders of Sudan and Israel on speakerphone.

“They’ll end up blowing up the dam. And I said it and I say it loud and clear — they’ll blow up that dam. And they have to do something,” Trump said.

“They should have stopped it long before it started,” Trump said, regretting that Egypt was in domestic tumult when the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam project began in 2011.

Trump — a close ally of Egypt’s general turned president, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi — had agreed to Cairo’s pleas to mediate over the dam, with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin leading talks.

Read Aloud:   Ethiopia: Washington Update - December 4, 2020

The State Department in September said it was cutting off aid to Ethiopia due to its decision to begin filling the dam despite not reaching an agreement with the downstream nations.

“I had a deal done for them and then unfortunately Ethiopia broke the deal, which they should not have done. That was a big mistake,” Trump said.

“They will never see that money unless they adhere to that agreement,” he said.

Ethiopia says that the $4 billion project is indispensible for its electrification and development needs and has voiced hope of beginning operations in early 2021.

Egypt depends on the Nile for about 97 percent of its irrigation and drinking water.

Sudan’s Prime Minister Abdulla Hamdok, asked by Trump on speakerphone about the dam, voiced appreciation for US diplomacy and said his government wanted an “amicable solution soon” among the three countries.

13 Comments

  1. Well, well, well!!! Egyptian leaders are smart enough to know that inflicting any direct harm to this dam using their military they may end up losing it all forever. Blue Nile may not remain to be the Blue Nile we know it today. That said we should never lose the sight that for Egypt as of now the water from the Blue Nile is its main and only lifeline. On the other hand the old country has to bring electricity to its citizens at every home just like Egypt by all means available and affordable including by harnessing its natural resources. So the leaders of the three nations, Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt, can argue until their mouths go dry at the negotiation table but must be smart enough not to war. They should be encouraged to continue negotiating keeping their citizens in mind. This is not personality contest among the leaders of those countries. This involves the fate of a combined population of more than 250 million innocent citizens. Let’s hope that the leaders of Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt will have their senses functioning properly and reach at amicable agreement soon. Let’s hope for peaceful conclusion.

  2. In ELEVEN DAYS, the world may be relived to see sane world leader and adjustment of the road to sanity for the benefit of Mankind. What A RELIEF THAT WOULD BE!!! .

  3. I just watched the video on Tadias Magazine website and it left me bewildered. Here is my take. As I have said before the current Egyptian leaders are smart enough not to take this irresponsible whistle blowing seriously and follow the lead. Who told the president that the dam has stopped the flow of water from the Blue Nile? Didn’t Egypt itself confirmed that the initial filling of the dam last July did not and will after the flow of water for the next twelve months? So where is this claim that the dam has stopped the flow of the river come from? Ethiopia has had an excellent relationship with Israel and all its neighbors. Ethiopia has been an extremely valuable ally on the war against international terrorism. Was the president just bluffing or what when he mentioned that Ethiopia will not see any money from The USA where in reality hundreds of financial aid has already been dispensed? Ok folks, you decide yourself. Eritrea has now seems to be coming to the fold in favor of the dam. Kenya, Djibouti, Somalia, South Sudan, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and DRC have nothing against the dam. It will be interesting how words will come out of Al-Qahirah in reaction to this outlandish comment.

  4. Proofed version:

    I just watched the video on Tadias Magazine website and it left me bewildered. Here is my take. As I have said before the current Egyptian leaders are smart enough not to take this irresponsible whistle blowing seriously and follow the lead. Who told the president that the dam has stopped the flow of water from the Blue Nile? Didn’t Egypt itself confirmed that the initial filling of the dam last July did not and will not alter the flow of water for the next twelve months? So where is this claim that the dam has stopped the flow of the river come from? Ethiopia has had an excellent relationship with Israel and all its neighbors. Ethiopia has been an extremely valuable ally on the war against international terrorism. Was the president just bluffing or what when he mentioned that Ethiopia will not see any money from The USA where in reality hundreds of millions dollars in financial aid has already been dispensed? Ok folks, you decide yourself. Eritrea has now seems to be coming to the fold in favor of the dam. Kenya, Djibouti, Somalia, South Sudan, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and DRC have nothing been against the dam. It will be interesting to see how words will come out of Al-Qahirah in reaction to this outlandish comment. I love the way PM Netanyahu responded to the comment about Biden. That was a masterpiece.

  5. What a silly & unwise suggestion by such big country leader, USA. This is a big failure for America foreign policy.
    Hoping senates will object for his ridiculous decision. This is a cut corner to gain political will by two comedy leaders (Trump & Al-sisi), it is a drama. This just closing the daily bread of 100 million Ethiopian people. So Ethiopia diplomats & diasporas around the world shall work hard on convincing UN countries & other country leaders to condemn his reckless suggestion. Ethiopian military forces have to keep his eyes day & night on safeguarding the dam.

    Long live to Ethiopia!!

  6. I INVITE H.E. PRESIDENT TRUMP TO VISIT RURAL ETHIOPIAN WOMEN HOUSEHOLD KITCHEN FULL OF SMOKE AND DIFFICULT TO BREATH BECAUSE THEY USE DUNG OF ANIMALS EVEN DIFFICULT TO GET WOOD LOGS. DURING ELECTION CAMPAIGN I HEARD YOU SAYING THAT “USA WOMEN LOVE ME” . WHAT ABOUT ETHIOPIAN WOMEN SUFFERING FROM LACK OF ELECTRICITY WHICH I MENTIONED ABOVE. PLEASE UNDERSTAND THAT 65 % OF ETHIOPIANS DO NOT HAVE ACCESS TO ELECTRICTY WHILE EGYPTIANS HAVE 100 % COVERAGE OF ELECTRICITY. I AM HOPEFUL THAT YOU WILL VISIT ETHIOPIAN RURAL WOMEN AFTER THE ELCTION AND AFTER THAT I AM SURE THAT YOU WILL ORDER NOT ONLY ONE GRAND DAM BUT 2 OR 3 OR 4 MORE GRAND DAMS LIKE NILE DAM TO BE BUILT FUNDED BY USA . WHEN YOU VISIT YOU WILL CRY , EVEN YOUR TEARS NOT STOPPABLE , IT WILL FLOW LIKE THE NILE . I WILL PREY TO YOUR HEALTH , AND PLEASE DO GOOD TO ETHIOPIA AND FOR YOUR LASTING LEGACY , PLEASE REMMBER ALSO THAT ETHIOPA IS GOD’s FIRST CHOICE BLESSED COUNTRY ,AMONG THE FIRST AFRICAN COUNTRY TO ACCEPT CHRISTANITY ,THE FIRST COUNTRY AFTER ISRAEL TO ACCEPT JUDAISM, THE FIRST COUNTRY TO OFFICIALLY RECOGNIZE ISLAM AND SHELTER MUSLIMS FROM SAUDI ARABIA ATTACKERS , SO OUR PREYERS ARE SO POWERFUL , REMEBER THAT ETHIOPIANS LIKE AND ADMIRE AMERICA .

    * * I AM WAITING FOR YOUR RESPONSE WITHIN 3 DAYS! VISIT ETHIOPIA ! VISIT ETHIOPIA !

    LONG LIVE ETHIOPIA AND USA

    • I appreciate your politeness and huble request. Please donot beg him . He will certainly be ex-president in few days time. We need to rely upon God and our people who gave all thier life in erecting the dam and protecting it so far.

  7. Trump has lost the 2020 election and is just trying to send a massage to Egypt that he did What he could to scare Ethiopia from continuing and completting the GERD. But Ethiopia did not back down and did not sign the stupid agreement that the devil has put together. Ethiopia is independent. Ethiopia is able. Ethiopia is not scared of neither the clown Trump nor the diktator El-sisi. Ethiopia Will continue the GERD and use it with out causing Any harm to neighbouring countries. Win-win solution is the only way. Dont ever force Ethiopia to Do anything That She does not want to or you Will end up Loosing mr Trump. Take that L. Your deal is a scam clown.

  8. Another commentary is this issue of Zehabesha is “High Time for Amaras to Stop the Ongoing Genocide: Resist the Apartheid Rulers and Their Scrotum Lifters!”

    Think of it; cutting water on others, vengeance, tribalism, suggested bombing, genocide, apartheid.

    Conclusion: Humans are not nice!

  9. All the rhetoric aside, the current negotiation led by the African Union must continue. All three countries should be courageous enough to be willing and ready to compromise meaning they have to soften the politics they have attached to the dam. Something is better than nothing for Ethiopia and the current quoted established for Egypt long time ago is deemed not sustainable. It seems to me that all three countries are caught up in domestic ‘patriotic’ fervor regarding the dam. They need their leaders to be courageous enough to find the middle and a win-win way out of this conundrum. War will not be the option. It will be disastrous for all three countries. It will be a suicide for Egypt and this does not mean others should take advantage of this vulnerability. After all these are brotherly/sisterly peoples. Let’s hope and pray that everyone of them should come to their senses, throw the politics away from this issue and reach an amicable win-win agreement. The president should not have made the off-cuff remark that the dam has stopped the flow of water to Egypt.

    In the meantime, I would like to congratulate both Sudan and Israel on the peace agreement and to establish diplomatic relations. I hope more countries will follow soon. This is an example of being wise and the same time courageous by Brother Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok. The sanction that has strangulated its economy will now be lifted. That is nothing but good news for the people of Sudan who were the real victims of the sanction.

  10. This utterance by President Trump will garner him some benefit on November 3rd. He will clean up every vote from a section of our community in Minnesota. You can tell the euphoria from ‘republic’ dreamers already.

  11. I WISH!
    INVITATION TO H.E. PRESIDENT TRUMP TO VISIT RURAL ETHIOPIAN WOMEN TO WITNESS THEIR SUFFERINGS FROM SMOKE SUFFOCATION USING DUNG FOR COOKING LACK OF ELECTRICITY.
    RESPECTFULLY!!
    I invite H.E. president Trump USA to visit rural Ethiopian women’s household kitchen full of smoke, crying eyes and difficult to breathe because they use the dung of animals even difficult to get wood logs. During the election campaign, I heard you saying that “USA women love me”. What about Ethiopian women suffering from lack of electricity which I mentioned above. Please understand that 65 % of Ethiopians do not have access to electricity while Egyptians have 100 % coverage of electricity. Why a super power country president misses on the ground sufferings and miseries one of the poorest countries in the world?
    I am hopeful that you will visit Ethiopian rural women after the election and after that, I am sure that you will order not only one grand dam but 2 or 3 or 4 more grand dams like the Nile dam to be built funded by the USA. When you visit you will cry, even your tears not stoppable, it will flow like the Nile RENAISSANCE DAM. I will pray for your health, and please do good to Ethiopia and for your lasting legacy, please remember also that Ethiopia is god’s first choice blessed country, among the first African country to accept Christianity, one of the first countries after Israel to accept Judaism, the first country to officially recognize Islam and shelter Muslims from the then Saudi anti -Islam Arabia attackers, so our prayers are so powerful, and we will never surrender to any misjudgment influences, attacks and so on. Remember that Ethiopians like and admire USA America. The dam never harms Egyptians, Ethiopians will not harm Egyptians, they support their prosperity.

    * * WITH RESPECT, I AM LONGING AND BEGGING FOR YOUR RESPONSE WITHIN 3 DAYS! VISIT ETHIOPIA! VISIT ETHIOPIA!

    LONG LIVE ETHIOPIA, USA and EGYPT

  12. I think Trump is suffering from schizophrenia. If he losses this coming election he will do something terrible, even not accepting the election result that he losses big time which he will surely refuse leaving the white house and he will be the first rubbish president who will be forcefully escorted out of The whit House by DC police. and maybe taken to a government-run mental institution so he will still think he is a president. some times I wonder if he is in a crusade to make Egypt nonexistent. We all know how and why?

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