At the turn of the 20th century, agricultural experts in several countries assembled a new agro-scientific field: dryland farming. Their agricultural research practices concomitantly fashioned a new agro-ecological zone—the drylands—as the site of agronomic intervention. As part of this effort, American scientists worked in concert with colleagues in the emerging Zionist movement to investigate agricultural practices and crops in Palestine and neighboring regions, where nonirrigated or rainfed agriculture had long been practiced. In my larger manuscript project, I consider how the reorganization of rainfed farming as dryfarming is central to the history of both the Middle East and North America, where it was closely related to modern forms of power, sovereignty, and territoriality. I suggest that American interest in dryfarming science emerged out of a practical need to propel and sustain colonization of the Great Plains, but later became a joint effort of researchers from several emerging settler enterprises, including Australia, Canada, and the Zionist movement. In contrast to a naturally ocurring bioregion, I argue that the drylands spatiality was engineered through, rather than outside, the territorialization of modern power.
Federbush, Marjorie S. and Jerome C. Muys. “Israel and Water-(What’s Next for the) ‘Turn around Nation’: How Israel’s Leadership in Advanced Water Technologies Can Enhance Global Economic Growth and Diplomatic Relations.” American Foreign Policy Interests 34.6 (2012): 309-21.
In less than a decade, Israel has turned around from a perennially water-stressed society, facing serious challenges from climate change, drought, and depletion of water resources, to a technologically savvy innovator of advanced water technologies and management techniques. Having developed the systems, strategies, and technologies to successfully address its own water shortages, Israel now has moved aggressively to engage with other countries as they struggle with their own water deficits. Not only are developing economies seeking access to Israel’s technological know-how in the areas of water technology and management, but policy makers and the business community in developed countries have also taken note. In short, Israel has become a model of economic growth under adverse circumstances. In the process, Israel is increasingly welcomed as a member of the community of nations because of its efforts to promote technology transfer and offer humanitarian assistance to countries facing similar problems. By reaching out to the international community on water-related issues, Israel is creating mechanisms for both global economic growth and diplomatic gains.