Discussion: King Apophis and Hippos?

King Sequenre’s Mummy from Deir el-Bahri Cache

I’ve been tearing through every book I have, pouring over websites, and I can’t seem to find a satisfactory explaination as to the meaning of King Apophis’ message to Pharaoh Seqenenre, wherein Apophis complains about the noise of the hippos in a canal in east Thebes. It has been suggested that the hippos are metaphorical, and Apophis was expressing concern that Thebes was agitating against Hyksos overrule. It’s been said they are literal. The hippos have been linked to Set, worshipped perhaps exclusively by Apophis.

The source text cuts off before the matter is resolved, but it notes that Pharaoh Seqenenre was only slightly less confused than I am about the meaning of the message. It has been suggested that the pharaoh’s response triggered the beginning of the War of Liberation, but of course his response is lost to us.

Hopefully I’ve missed something that another enthusiast could shed some light on?  Does anybody know more or can anybody help to interpret the nature of the hippos.

(Image public domian from Wikimedia Commons. Text based on an email by Stephanie Liaci, adapted for publication by Kate Phizackerley.)