NY/NJ hope for Ethiopia
June 30, 2021
In the twenty first century, about one hundred and thirty seven years after the scramble for Africa (referred to as the rape of Africa by western European powers), who would think a poor black nation in the continent, would be indirectly threatened by powerful rich nations to stay away from drinking its waters and using its resources?
That is exactly what is happening to Ethiopia, a historically significant and populous country in East Africa. A country that stood up for black freedom against a well-armed European force that came to colonize her twice (in 1896 and 1941).
Colonizers including Great Britain have perpetrated heinous crime on Africans. Besides massacring and enslaving millions, their demarcations have resulted in continuous border conflicts and instability. They also prepared and signed treaties that never had the best interests of African nations in mind. Among those unfair, unjust and racist treaties was the 1929 treaty on the Nile, a treaty between Egypt and Great Britain that allocated 48 billion cubic meters of Nile waters to Egypt, giving only 4 billion cubic meters to Sudan. In the 1955 treaty, the two neighboring countries followed in the footsteps of former colonizers, sharing the Nile among themselves (55.5 billion cubic meters for Egypt and 18.8 billion cubic meters to Sudan), disregarding source countries including Ethiopia, which contributes 85% of the Nile waters.
Electricity is a scarce commodity in Ethiopia (Only 45% of one hundred ten million citizens have access) and lack of electric power forces the majority of the population to rely on wood for cooking. In contrast, 100% of Egyptians have access to electricity, 36 percent of which comes from the Aswan dam (built on the Nile in 1974). When Egypt built the Aswan dam, Nile source countries were never consulted, and to this day, they never complained.
Besides generating electric energy, and using it for irrigation purposes, Egypt uses more than 15 billion cubic meters of Nile waters just to water its golf courses every year, and loses more than 10 billion cubic meters of the Nile to evaporation. After Egyptians use all the water they need, close to 13 billion cubic meters of the Nile waters flow into the Mediterranean Sea every year.
When Ethiopians started to build the GERD (Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam) in 2011, they never planned to stop the water from flowing to Egypt. However, just like their colonizers, Egyptians want to have control of everything on the Nile, and they lobbied hard against the GERD. The World Bank refused to lend a penny towards the project. The US and the EU did not want to have anything to do with the GERD, and China retracted its desire to spend billions on the Dam. Left on their own, Ethiopians took on the challenge, considered the project as a down payment to get out of poverty, supported the mega project costing five billion dollars. Thanks to their bravery, the project is almost complete.
Based on Egyptians and former US President Trump, a black nation should not be trusted and not be allowed to build a dam on its own waters without getting their approval. As they have done before, Egyptians have collaborated with terrorist groups like the TPLF (Tigray People Liberation Front) and Oneg Shenee (an extremist Oromo group) to destabilize the country and use Sudan to wage a proxy war claiming border areas. In one of his interviews about the Nile, President Yuri Museveni of Uganda described Egypt’s shameful and ungrateful actions, saying, “Egyptians want to drink the milk everyday but they also want to strangle the cow that has been supplying the milk to them for centuries.”
While Egypt has been involved in destabilizing Ethiopia for decades, the ugly truth now is that the EU and the US are encouraging that attitude. None of the congressional representatives or current administration members came out to condemn the reckless statement made by the former president suggesting Egypt should bomb the GERD, while the US is the major supplier of fighter jets and aid money to that nation. Does that mean the statement made by the former president was the official US policy towards the GERD?
Recently we heard Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey making a statement on the Nile. The chair of the Senate Foreign Affairs committee never came out to condemn the reckless statement by the former president. However, he was quick to reiterate his discussions with Egyptians about the red line they drew on the use of the Nile. Interestingly, the senator did not have any issue with a red line drawn based on colonial era sentiments. All these observations makes you question if the US has always been pursuing guarding and imposing suppressive colonial era treaties on African nations as a good policy.
The EU and US are clearly pressuring the Ethiopian government to work against the interests of its nation, US and EU policy on Ethiopia is based on more hearsay and TPLF propaganda than facts. Using aid money as a pretext to force a nation to work against its own national interest is only one example of a neocolonialist and racist attitude towards African nations. An attempt by Egypt, the US, and the EU to force Ethiopia to stay away from using its God given resources to get out of poverty is a crime against humanity.
Africans should not expect to see western nations rallying behind independent leaders like Abiy Ahmed of Ethiopia who are fighting for the best interests of their nations. It is time for Africans to stand shoulder to shoulder, say no to those who are exploiting their resources and stop supporting dictators that are in the pockets of western nations. At the same time, Africans should encourage and stand with visionary leaders determined to lift their fellow citizens out of poverty.
What is standing between Africans and progress in Africa are greedy leaders that sell their countries for pennies to rich nations and allow their continent to be treated like a shithole while their resources enrich fat nations who can never have enough of African resources and who never cared for Africans.
Africans Stand United against Neo-colonialism!
NY/NJ hope for Ethiopia