Editor: A. Burdett
Author:N/A ISBN: (10) 1-85207-795-6 Published: 1995 Paper: Printed on acid free paper Binding: Library binding with gilt finish See sample pages:
The discovery and development of local water resources is an important theme in the history of the Arab states. These volumes draw together, for the benefit of scholars, surviving historical records on the water resources of Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, the Trucial States and Oman, including the evaluation and management of water supplies; surveys and exploration, and water divining. Material has also been included on the Jeddah water scheme in Saudi Arabia.
This small collection does not cover the Tigris-Euphrates basin, for which abundant historical material on local irrigation schemes is available [see, for example, Iraq Administration Reports 1914-1932, Archive Editions, 1992], nor the Jordan Valley, where a separate study of the complex political issues is required.
The first volume of the present work provides a range of early material on Bahrain, from the 1920s to the 1940s, dealing with the evaluation and management of Bahrain´s relatively adequate ground-water supply. The documents show concern with wastage and contamination. The first volume also reflects the intense period of prospecting for water in the 1950s, particularly in the Trucial States, but also in Doha and Muscat. Interesting accounts of surveys and exploration are given, including use of water divining. A section on the Jeddah water scheme concludes the volume.
The second volume brings together historical papers on the problems of water supply in Kuwait. Most of the volume is given over to the political issues in the 1950s of deriving water from the Shatt al-´Arab and the question of dependence on Iraq. A pipeline is discussed, but a proposed agreement fails on Kuwaiti concern over security and sovereignty. There is also material on the evaluation of domestic supplies and the search for new sources.
"As was indicated in the discussions on the project of developing a new port for Iraq at the head of the Persian Gulf, the War Office would regard as undesirable any increase of Iraqi influence in Koweit which might tend to draw the Shaikh into a position of dependence on the King of Iraq."
[Extract from final report on the Shatt El Arab scheme, September 1954, prepared on the instructions of HH The Ruler of Kuwait by Sir Alexander Gibb & Partners, London.] : "It is not impossible that, in war, it might be necessary to send a small force to Koweit to assist in the protection of the State; this would be the more likely to arise if oil supplies were discovered and developed in the State."