Regional Fears of Western Primacy and the Future of U.S. Middle Eastern Basing Policy   [open pdf - 488KB]

'This monograph is an examination of other Middle Eastern (and especially Arab) views about Western military facilities in their region and foreign soldiers on their soil. Dr. Terrill traces the historical background of Western bases in the Middle East, noting how these facilities often were used by the Western powers to dominate local client states. Such policies of domination were especially conspicuous in the 1940s due to British (and later American) efforts to confront the Nazi menace in that part of the world. These policies, however necessary at the time, were greeted with a predictable backlash in the 1950s by populist Arab nationalists. The U.S. and British military presence in the region declined dramatically in the decades that followed, but the Western military involvement once again became prominent and noticeable in the 1990s, following changes in regional security arrangements inspired by Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait. New versions of old concerns about Western forces became prominent in contemporary times, and yet the idea of a Western withdrawal from the region is also of serious concern to a number of Arab leaders. Currently, the United States seeks to help defend its many allies in the region without doing so in a way that inadvertently encourages radicalism in the area or adds to the discomfort level of our regional supporters and allies. Dr. Terrill clearly believes that this can be done, but that such tasks must be approached with delicacy and a reasonable sensitivity to local concerns. States that appear to be treated like client governments inevitably will have to prove to their population and the world that they are not de-facto colonies.'

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