Water Wars

Topics: Water resources, Water, Human rights, Drinking water, Water crisis, Water treatment / Pages: 18 (4440 words) / Published: Jun 4th, 2012
Critical Literature Review:
Water Wars

The term War as violent as it is in its connotation, should be understood as an actual, intentional and widespread armed conflict between political communities, war is a violent way for determining who gets to say what goes on in a given territory (Orend). With this said, conflicts over water have been the source of dispute since humans began cultivating food; hence the word “rivalry” comes from the Latin word rivali, “one using the same river as another” ("The World Watch Institute"). The relation between water and violence has often been overlooked; until influential people like, Ismail Serageldin, Vice-President to the World Bank, in 1995 alleged that “if the wars of this century were fought for oil, the wars of the next century will be fought over water” (Shiva).
Water Wars are not like typical wars with a battlefield and battalions, however often may are used, it is more looked as a conflict over how we value and use water. Water Wars are known to erupt where there is a water crisis, such a water shortages, mismanagements, or environmental threats. First, a clash must occur over the culture of water (value and use of water), for example one side treasures and esteems water for its preservation of life, while the other sees water as a commodity. This conflict between two or more water cultures in a battle for the power of water resources are known as Water Wars, as best defined through the literature. Human rights have usually been used and related to for the prevention of water violence, in spite of this, as we enter the 21 Century universal access to basic water services has not been met, causing an increase in Water Wars (clash between those who have the power to claim resources and those who do not). There is no surprise why social conflicts regarding human rights to water have increased, especially with the support of advocacy groups and the ability of previously closed societies to organize

Bibliography: Chan, Amy, Victoria Kahn, Cherish Scott, and Peter Vetere. "Bolivian Water Wars: The Creation of Political Opportunity for Adaptive Governance." Bolivian Water Wars (2007): 1-12 China Water Resources Daily. 2002. “True record of the upper Zhang River water conflict resolution by Henan.” March 19, 2002 Gleick, Peter. "The Human Right to Water ." Water Policy. (1998): 487-503. Print. Gleick, Peter H, and Heather Cooley Freshwater Resources. Washington, DC: Island Press, 2009. Print. Grover, Velma I. Water: A Source of Conflict or Cooperation?Enfield, N.H: Science Publishers, 2007 Knight, Lindsay. "The Right to Water ." World Health Organization . (2003): 1-43. Print. Lohmar, Bryan T Conflicts, and Revising Incentives. Agriculture information bulletin, no. 782. Washington, DC: U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, 2003. Internet resource. Shiva, Vandana. Water Wars: Privatization, Pollution and Profit. Cambridge, MA: South End Press, 2002 "State of the World: Redefining Global Security." The World Watch Institute. The World Watch Institute, 2005 Swain, Ashok. Managing Water Conflict: Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. London: Routledge, 2004 Orend, Brian, "War", The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Fall 2008), Edward N. Zalta, <http://plato.stanford.edu/archives/fall2008/entries/war/>. Olivera, Oscar, and Tom Lewis. Cochabamba!: Water War in Bolivia. Cambridge, Mass: South End Press, 2004

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