American Politics and the Middle East

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Introduction Unlike most Europeans countries, the United States of America enjoyed a rather healthy relationship with Middle East nations during the 19th and beginning of the 20th century. Possibly, this was due to the fact that the US had little or no interest in colonizing countries in the region. On the contrary, it largely participated in philanthropic and educational activities therefore attracting positive perception among the Middle East people. However, after the world war II the situation begun to change. The US, after fully appreciating the strategic value of the region, opted to increase its interest there. Particular to ensure it does not lose control of the region’s natural resources (chiefly oil), protecting Israel (which was a newly established state and possibly are strategic America ally), and finally, prevent the Soviet Union from dominating the nation (Russel & Ghabra 2003). Background of Middle East-America Resentment America’s role in the establishing of Israel marked the beginning of resentment among many Arabs and Muslims communities (Evara, Stratmann & Natta 2007). With this political stand, the US was forced to adopt policies that conflicted with major political movements in the region, namely secular pan-Arabism and Islamic fundamentalism. Egypt was on the forefront pushing for the first movement; it described its position on the Middle East and the rest of the world. Both the movements called for unity among the Muslim and Arabic community. Consequently they alienated the western countries, to an extent of advocating for violence. In 1991 the relationship was complicated further when the US led the gulf war against Iraq. However the more recent September 11, 2001 terrorist attack on America soil hig... ... middle of paper ... ...erican Politicians’ Global Politics, vol. 7, no. 3, pp. 212-43. Hansen, K 2010, Obama Administration and the Middle East, Alfred Knopf, N.Y. Levit, M 2009, ‘Cause, and Effects of the Negative Middle East Attitude towards the US’, Journal of Politics and Economics, vol. 2, no. 7, pp. 440-64. Maoz, K , & Lenore, J 2010, ‘The Power of Middle East Public Opinion on US Interests’ American Prospect Review, vol. 4, no. 4, pp. 210-43. Russel, N, & Ghabra, L 2003, ‘American Progressive Participation in Middle East Region: Merits and Demerits’, Foreign Policy Review, vol. 11. no. 8, pp. 329-52. Schmitt, N, & Cordesman, L 2009, ‘Changing America Strategy on the Middle East; Proposed Foreign Policy Change’ Journal of International Politics, vol. 9. no. 4, pp. 300-32. Trice, M 2008, The Middle East: A gigantic Task for the New Administration. Wiley, N.Y.
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