How the U.S. Can Assist Middle-Eastern Cooperation

By Bob Gerecke

After World War II, wise European statesmen adopted a resource-sharing
agreement for coal and iron ore in order to reduce the odds of more
wars.  It gradually grew into the European Union. Nations of the Middle
East need something to induce peace and cooperation among them, too. 
Wars between Israel and Arabs, wars between Sunnis and Shias, now even a
mish-mash of alliances in the Libyan civil war, plus the uneven
distribution of water and oil resources, and the impacts of climate
change on farming (which led to the civil war in Syria) provide reasons
and motivation for peaceful cooperation by the countries there. That cooperation needs encouragement by world powers that become entangled in middle-eastern conflicts. 

Perhaps start with a water-sharing agreement.  It can have direct health
and economic benefits, which will lay the groundwork for further
cooperation on other issues.

Such an agreement was proposed by the Eisenhower administration in the
1950s.  Unfortunately, the time wasn't yet ripe: the countries weren't
motivated.  Also, the administration didn't invest much effort into
promoting the proposal.  The time may be ripe now, though.  Middle-eastern countries have already begun to cooperate in their battle against COVID-19.  A new United States administration which has credibility with all parties should initiate a process of persuasion and negotiation to achieve a better life for the people of the Middle East through peace and cooperation, starting with
better use of the region's limited water supplies.

(Author’s Note: in high school, I won an essay contest sponsored by the weekly newspaper "Current Events".  My essay made this proposal. Someone may have forwarded it to the government, because it then made the proposal. 
I was excited that my idea had been picked up, but disappointed that it had not been pursued and adopted. 
I submitted the same proposal to the Biden for President campaign, with fingers crossed.  I didn't see a link for Middle East policy on their Vision page, and the link to American world leadership didn't say much about the ME.  Maybe this will get them started thinking more about it.)