Rivers of Fire: The Conflict Over Water in the Middle East

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Rowman & Littlefield, 1999 - History - 303 pages
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In a never-ending battle to match population growth with food and energy production, the countries of the Middle East have been frenziedly developing water resources, including international rivers and groundwate, without considering their neighbors' needs. The inevitable result has been more frequent and increasingly bitter conflicts. At the same time, a halting Arab-Israeli peace process spurred by the collapse of the Soviet Union continues. Are we indeed entering a new era in a new Middle East? Do the region's leaders understand that reality has changed and that a transition is inevitable? Focusing on international rivers and ground water in the region, this timely study provides thoughtful_if pessimistic_answers to these questions. Encompassing all water sources in the Middle East, Arnon Soffer thoroughly explores the Nile, Tigris, Euphrates, Jordan, Orontes, and Litani Rivers, as well as international groundwater. He also weighs the implications of going to war over water and such unconventional solutions to the water shortage as desalination and importation.
  

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Contents

Introduction
1
International Rivers
7
The Nile Basin
17
Geopolitics of the Euphrates and Tigris Drainage Basin
73
The JordanYarmuk Basin Conflict over Little Water
119
The Orontes River as a Geopolitical Problem
205
Internationalized Water Sources The Litani River
213
International Groundwater Conflicts in the Making
225
Nonconventional Solutions to the Problem of Water Shortages in the Middle East
235
Conclusion
261
Metric Conversion Table
273
References
275
Index
293
About the Author
303
Copyright

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About the author (1999)

Arnon Soffer is professor of geography at the University of Haifa, Israel.

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