Nile has been a free-lunch for Egypt, it will be super-duper free-lunch with Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam

Filed under: Opinion & Analysis,Scholarly Articles |

By Tekleab Shibru
Associate Professor of Geomatics, Chicago State University

In economics, “Free-Lunch” depicts a condition where goods and services are attained without any cost an individual. Normally, such investment or condition is none-existent and often the situation come to being when someone else is carrying the cost. It could also be that expenses are obscured or not clearly understood. Out of the total water budget of the Nile watershed, i.e., 84 billion cubic meters of water, Egypt uses 65.5 billion cubic meters of water, which is 78% of the watershed’s water resources. The Ethiopian highlands, also known as the water tower for the amount of precipitation traps from the prevailing airmass, generates approximately 85% this water resources. And yet Egypt, while having such monopoly over the watershed’s water use, has not contributed a dime for its management. It has been Ethiopia’s duty hitherto èFREE LUNCH AT BEST!!

Watershed management is a useful operation carried out on a geographical area that is contributing water to a river. It is to sustain and enhance a watershed’s both hydrological as well as ecological functions. Hydrologically, watershed provides critical functions of collecting precipitations, soaking or storing some fractions, while releasing excess water to a river in the form of runoff. It also has important ecological function in terms of communities of human, plants, animals and other biogeochemical interactions it supports. Well managed watershed delivers improved supply of quality and quantity water, and reduced frequency and unpredictability of flood events. It also enhances a more evenly distributed flow through the year, improved base flow and warranted river with lesser load of sediments and other chemicals and healthy ecosystem.

Watershed management is therefore a costly operation too. In united states, billions of dollars are spent on watershed managements of their major rivers. For instances, the state of Colorado alone, deploys various expensive best management practices to manage the rock mountains and plateaus. These landscapes are the starting point of Colorado River, and geomorphological structures through which the river flows, respectively. Colorado river flows in 6 southwestern states for 2,330 km before emptying in Gulf of California.  According to the Getches-Wilkinson center of Natural resources and environment, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado state is deploying more than 520 basin implementation projects to manage the watershed. The management projects, which aims at ensuring statewide quality water supply is at a cost of estimated $20 billion.

Similarly, in Ethiopian part of Upper Nile Basin, an integrated watershed management is practiced to sustain land’s agricultural productivity (See Figure 1). As part of this management, costly Soil and water conservation, is widely practices. For instances, Professor Hurni, a founding president of the Centre for Development and Environment (CDE), University of Bern, Switzerland’s, estimated that 3.5 million hectares of agricultural lands on Ethiopian highland has been treated by various types of soils and water conservation practices. However, this is only 18% of the cropland needing such treatment and some 12 million hectares of croplands still need similar treatment. A cost associated the soil and water conservation is approximated by a study conducted on Gedeb watershed in Upper Nile Basin, which covers around 100,000 hectares. The approximation, which is based on a labor cost of $0.80 USD per day revealed that conservation treatments on average cost $54 USD for a hectare of land and $5.4 million for the watershed.

Figure 1: Soil Water Conservation Treatment in Upper Nile Basin Ethiopian Highlands (Source: Photo taken by Hurni et at., 2016)

Egypt is perhaps the only country, on earth, that does not do or invest anything for management the watershed of a river, while using, approximately, 78% of its water resources. This is like drawing out the maximum dairy products from a cow, while investing nothing on the cow’s nutrition and health. It is unthinkable in dairy farming industry; since of-course there isn’t free lunch. We are witnessing a situation where Egypt is reaping the benefit while the upper Nile basin black African countries are doing the costly job. Egypt is not naive about this. She made a conscious and malicious scheme to harvest maximum possible rain water falling on the upper basin including Ethiopian highlands. Egypt knows that in an unmanaged watershed, precipitation water will rundown the highlands quickly, without soaking the soil, and go all the way to feed the Nile river discharging into Aswan Dam. The dam has enabled Egypt to mitigate flood damages, ration and ensure even distribution water resources among the months of the year.

However, the malicious and mean scheme is very shortsighted. Although the scheme has increased the peak-flow during the rainy season, it has reduced discharge for the reminder of the year (i.e., base flow). The rainy season is only for 3 – 4 months of the 12 months of the year. Besides, the Egyptian’s malicious scheme neglected the values of vegetation (land use land cover) and sub-surface (groundwater) in hydrological cycling, thereby risking sustained availability of water and recurrences of drought, for Egyptian, in the long run. No wonder, Egypt is more exposed to drought now than ever in the history of that country. Moreover, the scheme overlooked the wasteful loss of water through evaporation, as the Aswan dam force peak flow water inundate the desert land.

The Grand Ethiopia Renaissance Dam (GERD) will give Ethiopia an enormous incentive to mobilize unprecedented watershed management. The redoubled Watershed management on Ethiopian highlands will be necessitated by the need to reduce the river’s sediment load (i.e., soil erosion). Firstly, heavily loaded Blue Nile river can have a heightened the destructive power to reduce the life span of GERD and/or increase its recurrent maintenance cost. Secondly, siltation the sediment load can reduce the water holding capacity of the reservoir by filling spaces meant for water storage. Therefore, out of a necessity, Ethiopia will have to do Egypt super-duper free lunch and implement practices that may include activities such as, but not limited to, selecting suitable land use and land covers and/ or vigorously continue adopting appropriate soil and water conservation practices important for sustained quality water supply for downstream countries’ irrigation agriculture and population.

Ethiopia’s watershed management practices will also increase the time it takes for a rainfall, on Ethiopian highlands, to run into Blue Nile and leaves the country. A longer time it takes means that the rainfall will have more time to soak soils and percolate deep to recharge the groundwater system. The increased water-table, as a consequence of groundwater recharge, through surface and subsurface water interaction, will feed the Blue Nile river with greater amount of water particularly in the dry-season. The resultant change in the moisture regime of the watershed can also create a microclimate with increased precipitation and local cloud-cooling, which suppressed evaporation. This is beneficial to all basins’ population, especially in downstream countries such as Egypt and Sudan. It will help buffer the responses of watershed’s hydrology to changing climate, while also maximizing socio-economic and environmental benefits of the river to people in the watershed.

Moreover, if Ethiopia launch the plantation of multipurpose trees, as part of watershed management strategy, further benefit can be accrued. These trees can provide functions of conserving of soil and water as well as improving of soil condition; while also supplying products like foods, fruits, nuts and vegetables and bio-fuels. These products can be used domestically or exported to downstream countries thereby securing and/or ensuring regional food security and self-sufficiency. This must ring bell to Egypt, which is spending up to $4.5 billion, 16% of the country’s total export earnings, on food import.

In conclusion, contrary to the allegation that Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam will have deleterious impacts on the lives of and water supply to downstream countries, its will in fact has positive consequences. By necessitating appropriate and integrated watershed management, the dam may actually yield the benefit of improved microclimate, and increased water supply, especially during the dry seasons. The management can also boost regional food production and lessen the watershed’s hydrologic response to the impact of changing clime thereby sustaining quality water resources supply for current and future generations.

 

References

Shukla (2020) Watersheds—Functions and Management University of Florida IFAS extension retrieved from https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdffiles/AE/AE26500.pdf

Hurni, H., Berhe, W. A., Chadhokar, P., Daniel, D., Gete, Z., Grunder, M., & Kassaye, G. (2016). Soil and water conservation in Ethiopia: guidelines for development agents.

Watershed Planning and Management in Colorado Getches-Wilkinson Center Working Paper https://www.colorado.edu/law/sites/default/files/Watershed%20Planning%20and%20Management%20in%20Colorado.pdf

Tesfaye, A., Brouwer, R., van der Zaag, P., & Negatu, W. (2016). Assessing the costs and benefits of improved land management practices in three watershed areas in Ethiopia. International Soil and Water Conservation Research, 4(1), 20-29.

Maggie Fick, Shadi Bushra (July 9, 2014), More people, less water mean rising food imports for Egypt retrieved from https://www.reuters.com/article/us-egypt-water-analysis/more-people-less-water-mean-rising-food-imports-for-egypt-idUSKBN0F818120140709

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3 Responses to Nile has been a free-lunch for Egypt, it will be super-duper free-lunch with Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam

  1. Well written article with facts and I like it a lot.

    What the Egyptian side wants is not that mystery. They know that there is nothing to be done to stop the building of the dam thru completion. That is a dead giveaway. What Egypt needs is partially clear and includes several items. It wants to a managing party in running the dam when and after it is read, not from outside looking in but on site as a member of running the dam. That is not all. I guarantee you this wherein Egypt will claim a loss in its GDP amounting in billions because of the dam and will demand immediate and annual/periodic remuneration on its terms only. That means the old country will have to cough up billions no matter what. There a drought; I don’t give a damn, pay me!!! My economy is on a down side; I don’t care, pay me!!!! Egypt’s el-Sisi this dam is going to be a shot in the arm for the old country. The dam, if managed properly, will generate huge amount of cheap electricity that will unleash a booming industrialization. Sisi know that and may want to turn the old country into becoming a cash cow. Egypt has never sustained itself without handouts. Nile itself was and has been a handout. Cold war was a handout to Egypt more than any North and Sub-Saharan countries. Middle East crisis has been a feeder line to Egypt since 1948. Now the specter of terrorism is the ice on the ‘halawa’ for the rulers there. It has been getting all what it wants all along from the former Soviet Union and now from the West. Can someone explain to why does Egypt need F-16’s and the latest Mirage jets? It has signed an accord with its former adversary, Israel and there has virtual peace between the two. So why does Egypt have to have these and other advanced military hardware? Because its rulers say so. I want 50 F-16’s; you got it!! I want 50 Mirages and I want it now!!! You got it!!! I want to build this submarine and I need to have the technology, now!!! You got it!!! I want those tough cookie ‘abd’s’ niggers in Addis/Finfine in the grinder and I want your help and I need it now; you got it!! I think Egypt is now suffering from a serious bout of affluenza now.

    Ittu Aba Farda
    February 28, 2020 at 8:33 pm
    Reply

  2. Now everybody should vow that no more free lunch to Egypt as they are joking at the expense of poor Ethiopian people. By the way Egypt & downstream countries shall be liable for mismanagement of Nile basin as they are liable for soil degradation of Ethiopian fertile lands which lead to climate changes which in turn brings drought and catastrophic for generation forward.

    So American imposition to accept Ethiopia such an agreement is another way of modern colonization in which Ethiopia negotiator and government of Ethiopia must not agree and sign the contract. History repeats it elf by this February month in which Ethiopia fought for Italian invasion & made victory for its independence. History repeats now also and is happening now as America imposed their politics on Ethiopian independence of Nile basin (it is a neo-colonization of present century). February month is not good in Ethiopian history even if succeeded all the time.

    Hence all Ethiopians shall vow and raise their hands in Ethiopia for peaceful way of demonstration by opposing the America foreign policy as all Ethiopians fought for Italian invasion and made victory in Adawa. What is also the stand of opposition parties in Ethiopia, keeping silent & talking about other silly politics is not good as this is a big issue for people of Ethiopia.

    Victory in Nile dam & Long live to Ethiopia!!!!

    Yetesfa Chilanchele
    February 29, 2020 at 3:56 am
    Reply

  3. (A friend sent me a copy of a long historical narration covering centuries of Ethiopia’s rulers wish to build dam Abay river. It opens by the following introductory remark and puts forward the narration which is printed below. I’m sharing it with the ”free lunch” theorist who extends advise to Egypt to grab the windfall of buindong dam on Abay becaue it works to its advantage – as if Egypt ignorant and is not looking for something big. And there is this Itu guy who’s a doomsday pridictor of Ethiopia coughing billions evey year because it built a dam. In fact, the opposite will happen, ie Egypt will cough billions every year – once the amount it gets is fixed – it will have to pay for every extra drop of water. Wait and see how relations will completely change once Ethiopia fills the dam. If Egypt attacks (which some people believe it would to stop the operation of the dam), releasing the water from the dam is Ethiopia’s weapon. GOD given WEAPON at that a lot better than what Egypt has. And they can’t stop filling it. See below, the hundres of years of efforts on the Ethiopian side to reach the stage we find ourselves to day. Feels better.)

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    (Editor’s note: The following historical review might sound, at least in part, a fictionalized narrative or simply a superstitious story. The other way to look at it is as a national myth because it appears an inspiring narrative about our country’s past and the vision of its leaders that reigned over the centuries. Such myths collectively known as national mythos have often served nations as national symbols of unity to affirm a set of common shared values. A country like ours fractured by over-dramatization of ethnic differences needs recognition of such national mythos to reinvigorate and strengthen our unity. Most states in Africa who have no serious problem of conflict on ethnic lines threatening their unity have national folklore which includes a founding myth such as the struggle against colonialism or a war of independence. Some of our national myth is spiritual in tone and refer to the Bible, but we have more myths to discover and promote. Abay with our rulers’ desire to build dam on it was definitely a national myth we should accept and re-tale as widely and as frequently as possible.)

    _________________________________________________________

    By Entoto Foum for Social Justice staff writer

    በእውቁ የአፄ ምንሊክ ታሪክ ዘጋቢ ጸሐፊ ትዕዛዝ ገብረ ስላሴ (1) ተጽፈው ወደ ፈረንሣይኛ ተተርጉመው ከታተሙት ሶስት ቅጽ መጽሃፍት ውስጥ የመጀመሪያው ቅጽ ስለ አባይ ወንዝ ወደ ግብጽ ከመፍሰስ መገደብ በሚተርከው ክፍል የሚከተለው በመግቢያነት ሰፍራል።

    “የግብጽ ሙስሊሞች ክርስቲያኖችን በኃይል በማሳደዳቸው የኢትዩጵያ ንጉስ የነበረው ዳዊት እስከ ሴናር (2) ድረስ በመሄድ የግብፅ ክርስቲያኖችን ከመሳደድ አዳናቸው። ይህን በጎ ድጋፍ ለማመስገን ጌታችን መድሃኒታችን የተሰቀለበት ግማደ መስቀል ከእየሩሳለም ወደ ኢትዩጵያ ተላከ።”

    1. የዓለም ክርስቲያኖችና የግብጽ ሙስሊሞች ግጭት፤

    ከላይ የተጠቀሰው የጸሐፊ ትዕዛዝ ገብረ ስላሴ መግቢያ በዚያው በመጽሐፋቸው ውስጥ እንደሚከተለው ተስፋፍቶ ቀርቧል።

    በአረቦችና በበርበሮች ፍለሳ እንዲሁም የሃገሪቱ ነባር (Indigenous) ሕዝቦች በብዛት እስልምናን በመቀበላቸው ቁጥራቸው በጣም እየበረከተ የመጣው የግብጽ ሙስሊሞች ክርስቲያኖችን በሃይል ማሳደድ ያዙ። (3) በተለይም የኮንስታቲኖፕል (4) የእየሩሳለም እና የሶርያ ክርስቲያኖች ብዙ ተጎዱ። በዚህ የተከፉት የሮማ (5) እና የፈረንጅ አገር (የአውሮፓ) ክርስቲያኖች በአንድነት ከመከሩ በሗላ ለኢትዩጵያው ንጉስ ዳዊት መልዕክት ላኩ። ዳዊት በአስራ አራተኛው ክፍለ ዘመን መጨረሻና በአስራ አምስተኛው ክፍለ ዘመን መጀመሪያ ላይ የነገሰ መሪ ነው፡፡

    ክርስቲያኖቹ የላኩት መልዕክት የሚከተለው ነው።

    “ሙስሊሞች ወረውናል። የክርስቶስን ስም እንዳናመሰግን መስቀሉንም እንዳንሳለም አውከውናል። በትህትና የምናቀርበውን ልመናችንን ስምተህ በፍጥነት ደርሰህ አድነን። እንደምታውቀው በእመቤታችን ማርያም ፍቅር ከኢትዩጵያውያን ጋር አንድ ቤተሰብ ነን።”

    የንጉስ ዳዊት ልብ ግብጽ ውስጥ በደረሰው የክርስቲያኖች በሙስሊሞች መሳደድ በሃዘን ተነካ። በቁጣ “ክተት ሰራዊት፤ምታ ንጋሪት” አለ።

    2.የአባይ መገደብ፥ የዓለም ክርስቲያኖችና የግብጽ መስሊሞች እርቅ፤

    ንጉስ ዳዊት ከሸዋ (6) በመነሳት እስከ ሴናር ተጓዘ። ሴናር እንደደረሰም አባይ ወንዝ ወደ ግብጽ እንዳይፈስ ገደበ። ይህን ያደረገው ግብጾች በሃገራቸው ክረምት ስለሌለ እና የአባይ ወንዝ መፍሰስ ከተገታ እህል ዘርቶ ማብቀልም ሆን ማምረት አይችሉም በሚል ነበር። ንጉሱ አባይን ከገደበ በሗላ ለእየሩሳሌም፣ ለሶርያ፣ ለአርመን፣ ለሮማ (ለግሪክ ለማለት ነው) እና ለፈረንጅ ክርስቲያኖች የሚከተለውን መልዕክት ላከ። “ወገኖቼ፤ ደረስኩላችሁ። ለናንተ ስል አባይን ገድቤዋለሁ። ይህን ያደረግሁት ቀድሞ በንግርት ባለው መሰረት ነው። ደግሞ አባይን መገደቤ የመጀመረያ ቅጣት ሲሆን ቀጥዬ ወደ ጠላቶታችሁ ተሻግሬ ሃገራቸውን አጠፋዋለሁ።የሚሆነው ሁሉ በጌታ ፍላጎት ነው።”

    ይህ የንጉስ ዳዊት መልዕክት ሲደርሳቸው ክርስቲያኖች እጅግ ተደሰቱ። ለንጉሱ በጻፉት መልስ “አምላክ የኢትዩጵያን ንጉስ ይጠብቅ፤ ዘመቻውንም ይምራ” አሉ። ለንጉሱም ጸሎት ማድረስ ቀጠሉ። “ከጠላቶቻችን ካዳንከን መቶ ሺህ ወቄት ወርቅ ገጸ በረከት እናቀርብልሃለን” የሚል ቃልም ገቡ።

    የኢትዩጵያው ንጉስ ከባህር አሸዋ የበዛ ሰራዊት ይዞ ዘመተ። ሴናር ሲደርስ የግብጽ ሙስሊሞች ከፍተኛ ፍረሃት አደረባቸው። ልጅ አዋቂው ሳይቀር ከሩቅ ሃገር ጭምር ተሰብስበው መክረው የሚበጃቸውን መላ ካገኙ በሗላ ለእየሩሳሌም ክርስቲያኖች ይህን መልዕክት ላኩ።

    “በአምላክ ይዘናችሗል። በሠላም ተውን፤ እኛም እንተዋችሗለን። ካሁን በሗላ ጥቃት ልናደርስባችሁ አንመጣም። የምታመልኩትንም እንዳታመልኩ ችግር አንፈጥርባችሁም። አንጠላችሁም። ሃይማኖታችሁን አናዋርድም። ከአያት ቅድመ አያቶቻችሁ ከወረሳችሁት ሃይማኖች አንለያችሁም። በተራችሁ ከእኛ ጥቃት ሊጠብቃችሁ የመጣው የኢትዩጵያ ንጉስ ከምድረ ገጽ ሳያጠፋን ከእኛ ጋር ዕርቅ አድርጎ ወደ ሀገሩ እንዲመለስ መልዕክት ላኩበት።”

    ይህ መልዕክት የደረሳቸው የዓለም ክርስቲያኖች አምላክን በሙሉ ልብ አመሰገኑ። የገቡትን ቃል በማክበር ለንጉሱ ከመቶ ሺህ ወቄት ወርቅ ጋር እንዲህ ከሚል ከደብዳቤ ጋር ላኩ። “ሰላምታችን ይድረስህ፤ አምላካችን በአንተ አማካይነት ከጠላቶቻችን ጥቃት አድኖናል። እናመስግንሃለን።… አሁን ሙስሊሞችን በሰላም ተዋቸው፤የአባይን ውሃም ልቀቅላቸው።”

    ንጉስ ዳዊት ደብዳቤው ሲደርሰው ደስ አለው። ድርጊቱ የእርሱ ሳይሆን የአምላክ ሥራ መሆኑን ገልጾ መልሶ ጻፈላቸው። ቀጠሎም ለግብጽ ክርስቲያኖችና ሙስሊሞች የሚከተለውን መልዕክት በአምባሳደሮቹ አማካይነት ላከላቸው። “እናንት የግብጽ ሙስሊሞች፤ በተፈጥሮ ወንድሞቻችሁ ከሆኑት ክርስቲያኖች ጋር ዕርቅ ማድረጋችሁ ደግ አድርጋችሗል። ከአሁን በሗላ የዕርቅ ቃል ኪዳናችሁን ሳታፈርሱ በጨዋነት አብራችሁ ኑሩ።”

    ይህንኑ ምክር በመስማት ይመስላል የግብጽ ሙስሊሞች የዕርቅ ቃል ኪዳናችውን አክብርው ለብዙ መቶ ዓመታት ክርስቲያኖች ጋር የኖሩት።

    3. አባይ፥ የዝናብ መጥፋትና የደማቁ የመስቀል በዓል መወለድ፤

    ለሌሎቹን ክርስቲያኖች ደግሞ ይህን ፃፈ። “ከአናንተ የምፈልገው ወርቅና ገንዘብ ሳይሆን ወዳጅነታችሁን ስለሆነ የላካቸሁልኝ ስጦታዎች መልሼ ልኬላችሗለሁ። አምላካችን እኛን የገዛው በደሙ እንጂ በወርቅና በብር አይደለም። እኔ ለክርስቶስ ካለኝ የዕምነት ፅናት የተነሳ በዚህ ረዥም ጉዞ አልደከምኩም፤ … ይልቁንም … ለሃገሬ ተስፋ የሚስጥ ነገር አድርጉልኝ፡፡ ሃገሬ በተምች ተመትቷል። ረሃብ ገብቷል፡፡ ዝናብ ጠፍቷል። ጌታችን ተቸንክሮ የሞተበትን ግማደ መስቀል ላኩልኝ፡፡ የተቸገረን የረዳ አንደሚካስ ታውቃላችሁና፡፡”

    ፓትርያርኮቹ፣ ቀሳውስቱና ምዕመናኑ የመስቀሉን የቀኝ ግማድ ለንጉስ ዳዊት ላኩለት። ንጉሱ መልሶ የላከላቸውንም ወርቅ በአምላካችን ቤት አኖሩ፡፡ ግማደ መስቀሉ መስከረም 10 ቀን ተተከለ። በዚህ ቀን በመላ ኢትዩጵያ አንፀባራቂ ብርሃን ታየ። የሃገሪቱ ሕዝብም፥ ወንድ ሴት፣ ልጅ አዋቂ ሳይለይ ከንጉሱ ጭምር በደስታ ተሞሉ፥ ክብረ በዓልና ድል ያለ ግብዣ አደርጉ። በዓሉም የአፄ መስቀል በመባል ይጠራ ጀመር። ቀኑ ቀደም ብሎ በንጉስ ዓምደ ጽዩን ጊዜ ይከበር ከነበረው ከቅዱስ መስቀል በዓል ጋር ይገጣጠማል። የቅዱስ መስቀል በዓል በጥንቱ የከፋ ክርስቲያን ዙፋናዊ አገዛዝና በጋሎች (አሁን ኦሮሞዎች) ጭምር ይከበር ነበር። በዓሉ ዛሬ መስቀል በመባል የሚታወቀው ሲሆን በየዓመቱ መስከረም ላይ በደመቀ ሁኔታ ይከበራል።

    መስቀሉ ኢትዩጵያ ከደረሰ በኍላ ተምች ወደመ፣ ረሃብ ተወገደ፣ ዝናብ መጥፋት አቆመ። በጎ አድራጎትና ወንድማማችነት ሰፈነ። መስቀሉ ሙታንን በማስነሳትና ታማሚዎችን በመፈወስ ብዙ ተዓምራት ሰራ። በመስቀሉ ሃይል የንጉሱ ጠላት የነበሩ በሙሉ ተገዙለት።

    4. የአባይ አቅጣጫ መቀየር ወይም መገደብ ፍራቻ ታሪክ የግብጽና የቱርክ የመከላከል እርምጃዎች እንዲሁም የሕንድ ፍላጎት ፤

    እቅዱ ከወቅቱ ጋር ሲታይ እንደ ህልም የሚቆጠር ቢሆንም አባይ በኢትዩጵያ ሊገደብ ወይም አቅጣጫው ሊቀየር ይችላል የሚል ፍራቻ በግብጽ ሰፍኖ ኖሯል። አኤች ኤም ጀምስ የሚባል ጸሐፊ፥ “የአባይ ውሃ መጠን ግብጽ ላይ እጅግ ስለቀነሰ የግብጹ ከሊፍ ውሃው የቀነሰበትን እውነተኛ ምክንያት በመጠራጠር ፓትርያርኩን በ1093 ላይ ብዙ ሥጦታ አስይዞ ወደ ኢትዩጵያ ንጉስ እንደላከው በአሌክሳንድርያው ፓትርያርኮች ታሪክ ውስጥ ተመዝግቦ ይገኛል”(7) ብሏል። መልዕከቱ የደረሳቸው የኢትዩጵያ ንጉስና የኃይማኖት መሪዎች ፀሎት ካደረሱ በሗላ በአንድ ምሽት አባይ ሦሥት ክንድ ከፍታ ጨምሮ እንዳደረ ጽፏል።

    አኤች ኤም ጀምስ በመቀጠል በዛጉኤ ሥርወ መንግሰት በተለይ በአስራ ሦሥተኛው ክፍለ ዘመን አጋማሸ ከነገሱት ንጉሶች ከመጨረሻዎቹ አንዱ የኢ- አማንያን (Infidels) ሃገር ብሎ የጠራትን ግብጽን ሙሉ በሙሉ በርሃ ለማድረግ የአባይን የፍሰት አቅጣጫ ወደ ሕንድ ውቅያኖስ ለማዞር ሥራ የጀመረ ቢሆንም ሥራው ሳይጠናቀቅ ቀረ ይላል። ጀምስ ይህ የሆነው አንዳንዶች ንጉሱ ስለሞተ ነው ሲሉ የተቀሩት ደግሞ የንጉሱ አማካሪዎች ግብጽን በረሃ ማድረግ ከፈለገ አባይን በተመሳሳይ ሁኔታ ኢ – አማኒ ወደሆነችው ሶማልያ እንዲፈስ በማድረግ በረሃ የሆነውን ሃግራቸውን እንደሚያለማላቸውና ሃብታምና ጠንካራ የሆነ ጠላት ለኢትዩጵያ እንደሚተው ስላስጠነቀቁት ነው ሲል ደመድሟል።

    በ 1325 ደግሞ ንጉስ አምደ ጽዩን ግብጽን በርሃ አደርጋታለሁ በሚል ገዢዋን ሱልጣን ኢን ናዚርን በማስፈራራት ኮፕቶችን ከመሳድድ አድኗል። ይህ ከላይ ከቀረበው ከቀዳማዊ ዳዊት ታሪክ ጋር ይመሳሰላል።

    የኢትዩጵያ ንጉስ አባይን በመገደብ ወይም አቅጣጫ በመቀየር ግብጽን የማስራብም ሆነ የማጥፋት መላ እንዳለው በሰፊው እየታመበት የመጣው በአስራ ስድስተኛው ክፍለ ዘመን መጀመሪያ ላይ ነው።(8) ሉዶልፍ ነገሩ በሰፊው የታመነበት ለመሆኑ አንዱ ማረጋገጫ ቱርኮች ኢትዩጵያ አባይን ትገድብ ወይም አቅጣጫ ትቀይር ይሆናል በሚል ፍራቻ እንዳትሞክረው ማካካሻ ክፍያ ማድረጋቸው ነው ይላል። ብሩስ አባይን የመገደብ ወይም አቅጣጫ የመቀየር እቅድ በንጉስ ላሊበላ ዘመን ብዙ ታስቦበት በሗላ እንደተተወ ጽፏል።(9) ባሰት ደግሞ እቅዱ በድጋሚ በንጉስ አምደ ጽዩን ዘመን ተነስቶ ነበር ይላል።(10) በአስራ ስድስተኛ ክፍለ ዘመን መጀመሪያ የሕንድ ምከትል ንጉስ የነበረውን አልቡከርክ የኢትዩጵያ ንጉስ አሳምኖ አባይን በማድረቅ ግብጽን በረሃ ለማድረግ ፍላጎት እንደነበረው ተጽፏል።(11) የሕንዱ ንጉስ ፍላጎት በቬኒስ ቁጥጥር ስር ወድቋል ያለውን የሃገሩን ንግድ ለማላቀቅና በፓርቹጋል እጅ በነበረው በደቡብ አፍሪካ ጫፍ በኩል ንግዱን ማካሄድ ስለፈለገ ነበር።

    5. የግብጽ ያልተሳኩ የጦርነት ትንኮሳዎች፤

    ከታሪካቸው መጀመሪያ እስከ አሁን ሥልጣኔያቸውን፤ ብልጽግናቸውንና መላ ሕይወታቸውን በአባይ ወንዝ ላይ የገነቡት ግብጾች ለኢትዩጵያ ንጉሶች አማላጆችና ስጦታዎች መላክ እንዲሁም ትዕዛዞቻቸውን መፈጸም ሲያንገሸግሻቸው መውጫ መንገድ ፈለጉ።የግራኝ መሐመድ ወረራና የኦሮሞዎችን መስፋፋት ተከተሎ የመጣው የዘመነ መሳፍንት ጦርነት ኢትዩጵያን እንዳዳከማት ካዩ በሗላ ሃገሪቱን በሃይል በመያዝ የአባይን ያልተገታ ወደ ግብ ጽ ፍሰት ማረጋገጥ ፈለጉ።

    ጊዜው የኦቶማን (ቱርከ) ኢምፓየር እየደከመ ግብጽ ደግሞ ጠንካራና ሃይለኛ እየሆነች የመጣችበት ሲሆን ፍላጎቱ ወሰን የሌለው አዲሱ ከህዲፍሱዳንንና ኢትዩጵያን ጠቅልሎ ለመያዝ ፈለገ። ይህ የሆነው ከአስራ ዘጠነኛው ክፍለ ዘመን ሁለተኛ አጋማሽ ጀምሮ ሲሆን ወደ ኢትዩጵያ የዘመቱትም በዚህ ጊዜ ነበር። ነገር ግን አልቀናቸውም። በመጀመሪያ ጉንደት ላይ በ1874 እንዲሁም ላይ በ 1876 ከኢትዩጵያ ጋር በተደረጉ ጦርነቶች ተሸነፉ።ጉንደትና ጉራዕ ዛሬ ኤርትራ ውስጥ የሚገኙ ቢሆንም ሁለቱንም አልፈው ወደ መሃል ሃገር ዘልቀው እንደነበር ይታወቃል። በጦርነቶቹ በቅጡ ስለተደቆሱ ኢትዩጵያን በቀጥታ በሃይል የመያዝ ህልማቸውን እርግፍ አድርገው ትተዋል። በተዘዋዋሪ ጥቃት ከማድረስ ግን አላቆሙም።

    6. ታላቍ ብሪታንያ፤ የወደፊቱ የአባይ ሁነታ ገብቷት የነበረች ሃገር፤

    የአባይ በመገደብ ወይም አቅጣጫ በመቀየር ሥልጣኔም ጉልበትም አላቸው ከተባሉት ቅኝ ገዢዎች መካከል አውራ የምትባለውን እንግሊዝ ሳይቀር ያሳሰበ ጉዳይ ነበረ። ከዚህም የተነሳ በኢትዩጵያና በእንግሊዝ መካከል ጥር 16/ 1902 ስምምነት ተፈረመ። የስምምነቱ አንቅጽ 3 እንደሚከተለው ይነበባል።

    “የኢትዩጵያ ንጉሰ ነገስት ዳግማዊ ዓፄ ምንሊክ ከብሪታንያ መንግሰትና ከሱዳን መንግስት ጋር መግባባት ላይ ሳይደረስ በአባይ ወንዝ ላይ እንዲሁም በጣና ሃይቅ ላይ ወይም ሶባት ወደ አባይ በሚያደርግው ፍሰት ላይ ግንባታ ላለማካድ ወይም ለግንባታ ፍቃድ ላለመስጠት ከእንግሊዝ መንግስት ጋር ተስማምተዋል”(12)

    ዛሬ ግብጽ ይህ የስምምነት አንቀጽ ከእኔ ጋር መግባባት ሳይደረስ በአባይ ወንዝ ላይ ምንም ዓይነት ግንባታ እንዳይካሄድ ለማነሳው ክርክር ይደግፈኛል ትላለች። የቀድሞው ቅኝ ገዥ የብሪታንያ መንግስት ወራሽ ስለሆንኩ ያ መንግስት ከኢትዩጵያ ጋር ያደረገው ስምምነትም ወራሽና ተጠቃሚ ነኝ ባይ ናት። የኢትዩጵያ መንግስት ይህን ክርክር አይቀበልም።

    ማጠቃለያ

    ከላይ እንደቀረበው አባይ ኢትዩጵያንና ግብጽን በየተራ አንዱ የበላይ ሌላው የበታች እንዲሁም ተፎካካሪ ሲያደርጋቸው እስከ አሁን ዘልቋል። ከአሁን በሗላ ሁኔታው በበላይና የበታች እንዲሁም ተፎካካሪነት ሊካሄድ የማይችልበት ደረጃ ደርሷል። ድሮ ስልጣኔ እንዳሁን ባለተስፋፋበት እና ሳይንስና ቴክኖሎጂ ባልዳበረበት ወቅት የተፈጠሩ የስነልቦና ውጥረቶችና ፍራቻዎች ወደ ጦርነት እንዲለወጡ መፍቀድ ስህተት ነው። ዘመኑ ስለተለወጠ ኢትዩጵያ እንደጥንቱ ግብጽን ልታሽቆጠቁጣት አትችልም፤ አይገባትምም። ግብጽም በሃይል ተመክታ የኢትዩጵያን ልማት ልታሰናክል አይገባትም። በአሁን ወቅት የሚታየው አለመተማመንና መፍትሄ መጠፋት ከፊል ምክንያቶች ለዘመናት የቆዩ ውጥረቶችና ፍራቻዎች አካል ሲሆኑ ለመተማመን መንገድ እንዲለቁ ጥረት ማደረግ ያስፈልጋል። እስካሁን አባይ ለግብጽ ብቻ ነው። ለወደፊት የሁለታችንም መሆን አለበት። ኢትዩጵያውያን ሁላችን በአንድ ሆነን በዚህ አቅጣጫ ብንሄድ ይበጀናል።

    __________________________________

    (1) ከ1850 እሰከ1855 ባሉት ዓመታት ከጉራጌ እናትና ከኦሮሞ አባት የተወለዱት ጸሐፊ ትዕዛዝ ገብረ ስላሴ ትምህርታቸውን ሸዋ ውስጥ ከነበሩት ሁለት ወይም ሶስት የባህል ማዕከሎች አንዱ በሆነው አንኮበር ፈጽመው የመጀመሪያዋ የአፄ ምንልክ ሚስት የወይዘሮ ባፈና ፀሐፊ ሆኑ። አፄ ምንሊክ በ 1877 ወደ ጎንደርን ለማቅናት ሲሃዱ አብረው ሂዱ። በ 1880 የቢተመንግስት ታሪክ ፀሐፊነት ሃላፊነት ተሰጣቸው። አከታትሎም ፀሐፊ ትእዛዝነት እና የእንጦጦ ራጉኢል ቢተ ክርስቲያን አስተዳዳሪነት ተጨመረላቸው። በ 1908 በጽሕፈት ሚኒስትርነት ተሹመው በማገልገል ላይ እያሉ በ1912 አረፉ።

    (2) ከኢትዩጵያ የሚነሳው አባይ አቍዋርጦ ከሚያልፋችው የአንግሎ – ግብጽ ሱዳን ክፍለ ሃገራት አንዱ ሴናር ሲሆን በዚሁ ሥም የሚጠራ ከአባይ ቀኝ መዳረሻ ላይ የሚገኝ ከተማ ም ነበር። “የሴናር ንጉስ በከፊል በኢትዩጵያው ንጉስ አስተዳደራዊ ጥበቃ ስር ስለነበር የንጉሱ የሆነ ነገር ሁሉ ክፍለ ሃገሩን አቅዋርጦ የሚያልፈው ያለ ምንም ክፍያ ነበር። (Memoire de M. du Maillet, consul general de France en Egypte en date du 12 mai 1698, cite par De Caix de Saint- Aymour, Hist. Des relations de la France avec l’Abyssinie chretienne, p. 219, n.2).

    (3) እንደ ሙስሊም ታሪከ ጸሃፊዎች ከሆነ ይህ ክርስቲያኖችን በሃይል የማሳደድ ድርጊት የተጀመረው ከ 1352 ነው።

    (4)የኮንስታቲኖፕልእዚሀ መጨመር ስህተት ይመስላል። ምክንያቱም ቀዳማዊ ዳዊት ንጉስየነበረው ከ1380 አስከ 1409 ሲሆን ኮንስታቲኖፕል በሙስሊሞች አጅ የወደቀው በ1453 ስለሆነ ነው።

    (5) በስህተት ሮማ የተባለው ግሪክ ለማለት ነው።

    (6) በወቅቱ ሸዋ ኢትዩጵያ ውስጥ ከነበሩ ስርወ መንግስታት አንዱ ነበር። አጅግ ጥንታዊ በሆኑ የኢትዩጵያ ካርታዎች ላይ እንደሚታየው በምዕራብ ከአባይ ወንዝ፤ በደቡብ ምዕራብ የአባይ መጋቢ ከሆነው ሙገር ወንዝ፤ በደቡብ ከአዋሽ ወንዝ፤በምስራቅ ከአንኮበር የተራራ ሰንሰልቶች፤ በሰሚን ከአዳባይ ጋር ይገናኛል። በንጉስ ሳህለ ስላሰ ዘመን ከምዕራብ በስተቀር በሰሜን መንዝን፤ በምስራቅ ይፋትን አና በደቡብ ምንጃርን በማጠቃለል በየአቅጣጫው አደገ።(KRAPF, Reisen…, t. I, p. 62)

    (7) A.H.M. Jones, ”Historie de l’Abyssinie des origine à nos jours” (1935)

    (8) Perruchon, Vie de Lalibala, p. XXIII, note 2. Cf. D. De Rivoyre, Aux pays du Soudan, p. 236) Lud olf, Nouv. Hist. d’Abissini, ed. de 1684, p. 28.

    (9) Bruce, t. I, pp. 609 – 611

    (10) Basset, Etudes … , p.233.

    (11) Le Grand, dans Lobo, Voyage hist. d’Abissinie, pp. 215-219.
    (12) Trad. Donne e par Pierre – Alype dans L’Ethiopie et les convoitises allemandes, p. 154.

    Chaalaa Roobbaa
    March 1, 2020 at 3:56 pm
    Reply

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