FOOD AND WATER AS POLITICAL WEAPONS IN ANCIENT AND CONTEMPORARY CONTEXTS
AbstractThis paper examines a series of Ancient texts with a view to prove that necessities, such as food and water, were used as political weapons in the ancient world. This trend has been adopted consciously or unconsciously by various entities in contemporary contexts. In order to prove clearly the extent that food and water were used as political weapons in the ancient world, the author chooses to focus on extreme cases of need such as hunger, famine, and war scenarios. Thus, texts such as Genesis 25-27, 2 Kings 6-7, 2 Kings 18 and the Book of Lamentations form the backdrop of the argument that food and water were used as political weapons. Transitioning into the contemporary context, the article considers Zimbabwe where political parties (i.e. ZANU PF or MDC) use food and water as political weapons to win the people’s vote. The article shows that trend of politicizing these basic necessities may not be limited to Zimbabwe, but extends beyond Zimbabwe’s borders to a global level. Therefore, the failure to provide necessities (such as food and water) remains a weapon that is used in manipulating policies and decisions in different eras.
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