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Water Fights

by Morgan Clendaniel, Will Etling

July 15, 2009

Karl Marx argued that the underlying cause of all wars was competition for resources. Oil may have been the impetus of many Western forays into the Middle East, but could water become our next casus belli? It's unlikely that water will be the direct cause of any armed conflict in the near future-negotiating water rights has historically been found to bring countries together rather than tearing them apart-but that might not always be the case. Here are seven regions where growing demand for water could result in problems.

RELATED Through two wars and a half-century of suspicion and resentment, the Indus Waters Treaty has goverened the sharing of a strategic river between bitter nuclear rivals eager to control and profit from it. But will India and Pakistan's treaty survive the emerging water crisis? Read William Wheeler's feature, "The Water's Edge".


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Water Fights