War for land and resources

War for land and resources

Decision problems Near and Middle East can only be after the cessation of confrontation between Iran and Israel and Saudi Arabia
Eugene Satanovskiy

The processes taking place in the Middle East (BSV) in the political, military, political and religious spheres, almost everything depends on demography and ecology of the region. Thus, uncontrolled population growth in Somalia, Sudan, Yemen and Afghanistan relating to the poorest countries is not only in the region and the world as a whole, automatically leads to lower levels and impaired quality of life, the growth of domestic violence in the struggle for the terrain and natural resources, mass movement beyond the boundaries of the region.

The highest level of youth unemployment in the transformed BSV perfect springboard for the revolutionary events of the «Arab Spring» of forming a secular youth strike force, using outdoor sponsors and organizers of this process and their local allies to overthrow authoritarian regimes gerontocratic. Specifically, extensive spread in the region of information technology and higher education, the emergence of a significant number of middle-class dissatisfied with their abilities and claiming the role of government, provided the basis for the formation of the Middle Eastern countries in numerous Islamist parties and terrorist organizations of all types and directions.

Competition for water

A significant part of the region’s problems in the sphere of nature is also explained in a human factor. This large-scale uncontrolled urbanization, destruction of biodiversity of the natural environment, soil degradation, pollution of aquatic arteries (including naikrupneyshim) and groundwater, siltation of reservoirs, deforestation, reduction of vegetation cover and its inevitable natural outcome — irreversible desertification. Consequence of the expansion of the Sahara, namely, is the conflict pastoralists and sedentary population in the Sahel, especially acute in the Sudan, which in addition to other specific circumstances of the country triggered the genocide in Darfur.

» Terrorism, regional and international — the corresponding part of the military-political culture the Near and Middle East «
Problem of shortage of resources includes arable land and pastures, grazing vserasprostranennogo destroyed in the region of small unproductive cattle, but first it is linked with the issue of water. Contamination by industrial, domestic and agricultural effluents, salinization of coastal zones typically even for large rivers such as the Nile and the Euphrates. Represent an unusual problem of hydro on transboundary rivers, significantly worsening the situation of the states located in the lower reaches.

Conflicts between Turkey, Syria and Iraq over the division of the Tigris and Euphrates drains or Egypt and Sudan and Upper Nile states, first Ethiopia represent a traditional example of the difficulty that has no solutions. Cascade «Revival», which Addis Ababa began to build on the Blue Nile in 2013 and graduated in 2017, for 6 years filling chetyrehurovnego Ethiopian lower reservoir drain on the Nile in Egypt and the third part of the volume of electricity generated by 40 percent.

For Cairo it means the inevitable collapse of the Egyptian economy and an acute shortage of drinking water. This involves only the first large dam outside the Arab Republic of Egypt (ARE). Rest of the headwaters of the Nile River are preparing for more ambitious projects. Military or political solution to this problem has not.

Storage dam Egyptian aviation except for political and economic consequences, including the inevitable isolation of Egypt in Africa and a sharp deterioration in relations with the international community in Cairo, including the West, it means war with unpredictable results with 2 between African member countries of the huge number of the mainland. At the final stage of the project is the implementation of the Ethiopian generate a tsunami that will wash away all the settlements of the Sudan and Egypt, located in the valley of the Nile, directly to the delta of the river. In other words actually kill both of these countries.

Abandon the construction of waterworks on the Nile or Ethiopia, or the rest of its headwaters can not: it will perpetuate their economic backwardness. Redistribution Photo Nile in their favor gives them unique in their own way the chance to decide their own energy challenges and ensure its water area. Same impact on China, which at the beginning of 2014 is the main contractor for the construction, is virtually impossible. This country is becoming uniformly naikrupneyshim external economic player in Africa, though resistant to the effects of what the outside. So Makar ‘war for water’ Ethiopia played Egypt before it began, although Sudan Egyptian water problems affect not so much.

In Mesopotamia, the situation is not as heavy as in the valley of the Nile. Classic prepyadstviya Syria and Iraq in the relationship between themselves and with Turkey, which controls the headwaters of the Tigris and Euphrates, against civilian war in Syria and confrontation with the Arabs, Kurds and Turkomans — on the one hand and the Shiites and Sunnis — the other in Iraq several smoothed current neuvvyazkami. At the same time, Jordan, which took on its territory hundreds of thousands of refugees from the two adjacent states, is on the verge of breaking down water systems. Her only chance is to stabilize cooperation with Israel in the construction of the sea on the coast Reddish desalination plants.

Israel’s conflict with the Palestinians because of pollution and excessive exploitation of aquatic sources at the theoretical level can be solved using modern Israeli technology, although only under strict external control, which no one except Israel de facto unable to provide. The current status quo between this state and the Palestinian state administration (PNA) is unstable and could collapse at any moment, that is not conducive to a constructive solution or aqua or all other problems, existing between them.

In Yemen, the question devilish lowering supplies of water resources, especially in comparison with the adjacent Saudi Arabia, operating significant groundwater supplies, worth more than seriously. If the Palestinian territories aqua theme — disputed with Israel and Jordan aqua crisis only threatens, it develops in Yemen for quite a while. Because of this, it may be specifically between Riyadh and Sanaa soon happen first in the Middle East war over water. Much less that the relationship between KSA and Yemen historically complicated territorial (captured Salafi Saudi Arabia Asher Zaidi) and border conflicts. Further complicates relations between them by Iran’s support Howes tribes in northern Yemen, on the one hand, and the active intervention of Riyadh in the internal politics of Sana’a — other.

Drugs and terrorism

Another two major Middle Eastern prepyadstviya — drugs and terrorism. Problem drug production and distribution and export of Islamist terrorism in the region are of global significance. BSV supplies to world markets virtually all heroin consumed them, significant volumes of other opiates, cannabis also. Feeding zone in the region of natural narcotic-containing raw materials, the production site of drugs, pathways and markets quite well known. But less than 5 percent of exports from the region manage to confiscate drugs on the Russian border. About 10 percent of them — on the border of Iran and Afghanistan.

Annual turnover of the Afghan drug trade alone is approaching a trillion dollars. The main consumers of drugs are of Middle Eastern countries in Europe, Our homeland and other former Soviet republics, as Asian and Middle Eastern countries actually. This defines a passive attitude to drug producers Afghanistan, Turkey, Morocco and other countries BSV from the United States to refrain from conducting active operations in the region, in contrast to Latin America, which is the drug cartels products mainly in the States.

A significant part of the political elite, tribes and Islamist militias BSV has a stake in the drug business, and in some areas of the region and in countries such as Afghanistan, it is the backbone of the economy. Power eradicate drug production there asks of hostilities in vast areas with the use of defoliants, which world society is not ready. Samples refocus manufacturers on voluntary substitution of opium poppy and cannabis ordinary crops are without the economic base and the beginning doomed. UN reports devoted to this issue, regardless of their defiantly affirming character, a thorough analysis is not allowed in this nor the smallest doubt: there given the number they say for themselves.

Terrorism, regional and international — the corresponding part of the military-political culture BSV. Terrorist groups across the region, claiming to be the realization of his own ambitions beyond its borders, reach their goals, fight enemies and rivals, not engaging in large-scale war. They are trying to influence the world and to encourage them to order or other actions of the country, very powerful in order to respond to the other tools available in their arsenal, and very rich to buy them.

Question about the first Gulf monarchies, Iran, Pakistan and Turkey, which from the beginning of civilian war in Syria de facto joined the sponsors of Islamist terrorism. Specifically terrorist groups and military-terrorist movements they used in order to low-risk itself affect the West and Russia, India and China, Israel and secular authoritarian regimes in the Arab world. How, in general, as required, and to each other (that show Iran and Saudi Arabia, as Saudi Arabia and Qatar on the ground of third countries).

Top military and political groups involved in terrorist activities in Middle East, divided into Shiite and Sunni. Sunni — on Salafi close to «Al Qaeda» and «moderate», which include Hamas and other groups «Muslim Brotherhood.»

Shiite movement, more well-known of which are Lebanese «Hezbollah» and the Iraqi «Mahdi Army», supported by Iran and friction, more precisely, the control of the Revolutionary Guards who manages directly, but coordinates their activities, including in Syria, Lebanon and Iraq.

Salafi groups, including applicable in Russia and Central Asia, supplied, friction and coordinated by the Office of the General Intelligence Service of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), headed by a prince Bandar bin Sultan (in February 2014 his upcoming tenure was called into question), mainly motor Syrian civilian war, with the participation of «field» Saudi special forces officers. Note that this practice in the 80 years of the twentieth century, during the war in Afghanistan was launched in-law of Prince Bandar, the curator of «al-Qaeda» prince Turki bin Faisal.

Division «Muslim Brotherhood» patron of Qatar, with the participation of Qatari special forces involved, namely in Libya during the overthrow Gaddafi, and Turkey on the ground — its intelligence agency MIT. Specificity mutual confrontation Qatar and Saudi Arabia, including in Libya, Tunisia and Egypt, first this year was the introduction of each other «agents of influence» opponent: Saudi Arabia from Qatar has bought a number of groups that are close to the «Muslim Brotherhood» and Qatar used some Salafi groups.

Major battlefield Shiite and Salafi groups at the beginning of 2014 was Syria. Once there, as in Libya, Tunisia and Iraq were large-scale military actions between rival Sunni groups. In Syria, it indirectly assist the central government, the military and religious conflict between Sunnis and Shiites has spread from this country to Lebanon, and Iraq, threatening to grow into a huge regional war Saudi Arabia and Iran.

Islamist terrorism outside BSV is typical not only for its periphery, and for the leading regions of the world, the EU and the U.S. first. The presence in the midst of militants fighting in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria, a huge number of the Yankees and Europeans (to a thousand at the beginning of 2014) is a severe danger to Western security upon their return to the country, which they are citizens. It’s right in relation to Islamist movements Maghreb, the Sahel and the Horn of Africa, among them immigrants from EU countries and the U.S. are also quite a lot.

Vulnerable economy

Also the rest of the activities of the military-political and terrorist groups, and military conflicts in Middle East complicate the extraction and transportation of the region’s resources of relevant fundamental importance for the world economy. This hydrocarbons: oil and natural gas (LNG from Qatar), as required for nuclear power plants, first the French, uranium (from the states of the Sahel). The latter, namely, the Western bloc uncharacteristic for Paris willingness to participate in military peacekeeping operations in the areas of Western, Northern and Central Africa (Central African Republic, Niger, Mali, Chad, etc.).

Particularly vulnerable in this regard are the pipes — regional and cross-border, port terminals and facilities for the production of liquefied natural gas, petrochemical and oil refining factories, also of Hormuz and Bab el Mandeb and the Suez Canal. Strait of Gibraltar, which is also formally refers to BSV (on the Moroccan side) is not threatened territory due to the proximity to Europe and the presence in the area of ​​Gibraltar important NATO troops.

Terrorist groups in Middle East produced a number of successful operations for the capture or destruction of the fuel and energy complex (FEC) world level. This in-1-x, capturing the Algerian oil and gas industry «Amenas» and hostage-taking of its staff (first foreign). In-2, the repeated destruction of the Egyptian gas pipeline in the Sinai peninsula, stop the supply of natural gas from Egypt to Israel and Jordan. B-3, captures tanker off the coast of Somalia.

Last not specifically organized terrorists and Somali pirates, but they are tightly intertwined with constructive military-terrorist group «Al-Shabab.» The threat posed by Somali pirates navigation exists not only in the waters of the sea and Reddish Strait of Bab el Mandeb, and the entire space of the Indian Ocean, right up to the coast of Mozambique and India. This calls into question the safety of cargo, including watery hydrocarbons on long oceanic routes.

Examples of failed terrorist attacks in the Middle East have become the objects of FEC samples terrorist operations in Saudi Arabia. Seizure or destruction of oil port terminals, as oil refineries and petrochemical plants in the area of ​​the kingdom, which makes the sample more than once, was foiled by security forces CSA.

Development in areas of the Maghreb and Arabian Peninsula alternative energy projects, which theoretically may also be some enthusiasm for terrorist attacks for the European economy is not a significant factor. This applies to virtually all other areas of industry BSV, storm the Islamists have their meaning only in order to weaken the economy one way or the other countries in the region.

It must be emphasized that, apart from the export of natural gas and oil economies of most countries in the region has quite a rather weak impact on the global economy, despite all efforts to diversify it (produced in the main in the Arab monarchies of the Persian Gulf). Last for the advanced countries of the West — large consumers of the civilian industry and the defense industry, customers and market infrastructure projects a highly skilled workforce.

Specific place in the world economy occupy Industry and Agriculture of Turkey and Iran, as the tourism sector Morocco, Egypt and the Gulf monarchies. Significantly impact transit transport hub of global significance, performed by Turkey, Qatar and the UAE. Infrastructure projects in Dubai and Abu Dhabi are important for their contractors. In addition, the Gulf monarchies play the role of global investors and big money center. But on all these fronts country BSV can be simply changed.

The only exception in the region is Israel, with its diamond-cutting industry, the highest technology (second only to the United States in the world, the number of high-tech companies — start-ups) and the military-industrial complex. This country — supplier of technology to the world market, a modern industrial and ecologically of net agricultural products and highly skilled workforce. Israel is in constant possession of significant reserves of natural gas in the Mediterranean offshore and oil shale in the Negev, found relatively recently, it significantly increases the importance for the EU and the U.S..

Note that virtually all terrorist groups in the region and much of the ruling regimes there Israel announced its main adversary. But de facto they are fighting among themselves, and except Iran and its satellites, and the Palestinians do not exhibit noticeable against the Jewish state activity. With regard to control of the PNA and its opponents of Hamas, constantly declaring the need Palestinian unity, together they are a tough fight. As a consequence of the development of the Palestinian country for all, not counting the co-sponsors of so-called peace process in the current time ran out a practical way to theoretical constructs.

In any case, effective integration of BSV in the world economy and the solution of problems in the region are likely only after the cessation of Iran’s confrontation with Israel and Saudi Arabia. The religious nature of these conflicts makes it in the near future unlikely. The same can be said about the chances of victory over Islamist extremism and terrorism sponsored by the leading Islamic power in the region.

Yevgeny Satanovsky
President, Institute for Near East


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