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The Middle East: Understanding The Legacies of The Past. February 2012. Overview. T he Birth Of Islam and its implications The Cold War and Pan-Arabism The 1967 War The 1973 War and Camp David The Oil Revolution and Gulf Politics in the 1970’s

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The Middle East: Understanding The Legacies of The Past

February 2012


Overview

  • The Birth Of Islam and its implications

  • The Cold War and Pan-Arabism

  • The 1967 War

  • The 1973 War and Camp David

  • The Oil Revolution and Gulf Politics in the 1970’s

  • The Iranian Revolution and the “Return” of Islam

  • The Gulf War, 1990-91

  • The Peace Process: 1990-2001

  • Usama Bin Laden and the Origins of al-Qaeda


Islam: Perfect fusion of religious and political authority

  • The Prophet Mohamed: 570-birth;610 – first revelation; 622 – hijra to Medina;630-conquest of Mecca; 632-death.

    • Leadership Struggle:AbuBakr – 632-34(Rida Wars); Umar – 634-44; Uthman – 644-56 (old Meccan elite); Ali – 656-661(Battle of Siffin – 657 Ali v. Mu’awiya); Umayyad Dynasty – 661-750(Battle of Karbala, Death of Hussein – 680).

    • Sunni and Shia: Sunni – sunna (way, tradition) of the Prophet-Leadership: most competent (male) member of the umma (Muslim community); Shia – shi’at Ali (the party of Ali)-Leadership: most able and deserving descendant of the Prophet Muhammad.

      Saudi Arabia Imam Ali and Imam Hussein Ashura procession 2007, Imam Hussein Mosque, Karbala


  • Expansion and Fragmentation of Islam

  • Expansion of Islam: 635: Damascus;637: Battle of Qadasiyya – defeat of Sassanids; 638: Jerusalem; 641: Egypt; 732: All of North Africa and Spain, entrance into Indian subcontinent; 732: Battle of Poitiers

Expansion of Islam

Umayyad Mosque Damascus

Dome of the Rock, Jerusalem 687-691

Political expansion was very fast, but

conversion was a slow process

Political Fragmentation of Islam

Abbasid Dynasty(750-1258)-Baghdad-by the end, authority very localized and fragmented;Umayyad caliphate in Spain (750);Fatimid Dynasty(900-1170)- North Africa, Egypt, Shia; Crusades-1099 to 1244; Mongol Connquests-1200’s to 1300’s,followed by extreme fragmentation


The Rise and Fall Of Empires in The Middle East

  • The Ottoman model of single regional State: Beginnings in eastern Anatolia ; 1453-Conquest of Constantinople; 1520-1566 – Suleiman the Magnificent; Sunni Turkish dynasty; Millet system

  • Rise of the Safavid Empire: Turkic sufi order; 1501: Shah Ismail establishes state with capture of Tabriz; In ten years, all of modern Iran and beyond under dynasty’s control; Shah Abbas the Great (1588-1629): conversion of Iran to Shi’ism

    • The European Era – Ottomans: Ottoman Decline: Wars with Safavids; Loss of control of trade with East Asia; Spread of gunpowder technology. Military Defeat: Carlowitz (Habsburgs) – 1699; KujukKainardji (Russia) – 1774; French invasion of Egypt – 1798

    • The European Era – Iran: Safavid Decline: Various Ottoman wars; Revolts from Afghanistan; Military pressure from Russia (Caucasus, Caspian, Central Asia); Internal infighting. 1720’s: Collapse of Safavid Dynasty; Late 1700’s: Qajar Dynasty – weak and decentralized

    • The Eastern Question:Management of Ottoman decline: Russians and Austrians pushing for territory; French and British supporting Ottomans against Russia, but taking Middle East territory; Independence of Balkan states (Greece 1829, other Balkan states subsequently); European financial control by end of 1800’s. British acquisitions: Aden: 1829; Gulf protectorates: 1830’s: Cyprus: 1878; Egypt: 1882. French Acquisitions: Algeria: 1830;Tunisia: 1881; 1860 military expedition to Lebanon

    • Europe and Persia: Dynamic of Russian-British rivalry; Qajars play the two sides off(Russian military advice , British oil concession in 1901) ; 1907 Anglo-Russian Entente – spheres of influence


  • The Cold War and Pan-Arabism: The 1950’s and 1960’s

    • Entrance of US and USSR into the region: The Cold War in the Middle East: WW II – Soviets and Americans in Iran; centrality of oil/US-Saudi relationship : WWII: oil as strategic commodity, Lend-Lease, Dhahran airbase, ARAMCO expansion, 50-50 Deal; Involvement in Arab-Israeli conflict (1947-49); First Cold War crises:Azerbaijan crisis (1946);Turkish crisis/Greek civil war (1947); Mossadegh coup (1953)

    • Arab Nationalism and the Challenge to the Status Quo: New generation of politicians: Rejection of cooperation with Britain and France; Emerged from defeat of Arab armies in 1948-49; Not tied to economic status-quo (nationalizations); Arab nationalist in ideology. End of British/French power opens up possibility of regional change.

    • Nasser and Height of Arab Nationalism – the 1950’s:Baghdad Pact fight – 1954-55; Czech arms deal – 1955; Suez War – 1956; United Arab Republic – 1958; Iraqi coup/Lebanese civil war – 1958.

    • The Decline of Nasserist Pan-Arabism – the 1960’s: US and British interventions (1958); Challenge of Abd al-KarimQasim; Syrian secession from UAR (1961); Yemen civil war; Failure of 1963 Syrian-Iraqi-Egyptian unity talks; King Faysal’s (Feisal) “Islamic Conference” proposal (1966).

    • Why did the Nasserist project fail? Realist reasons : balance of power dynamics in the region (overcoming ideological similarity – Iraq 1958, Ba’th); Israel as a physical block to Egyptian military power in the Arab East, then 1967 defeat; US and USSR opposition at key points. Ideological competition: Among “progressives,” from Islamist sources. Domestic politics: beginning of strengthening of state structures (particularly domestic security).


  • The Cold War and Pan-Arabism: Take-Aways

  • Power of identity/ideas/ideology to mobilize support across borders – foreign policy as an issue of domestic regime security

  • Balance of power logics at state level, even within similar ideological movements

  • Outside power role in frustrating regional hegemons

  • Difficulty in directing domestic politics for outsiders:US (Syria coup), Egypt (UAR break-up, Yemen)


  • The 1967 War

  • Why did Nasser escalate the crisis?Syrian connection(narrow social/political; base of regime; close relations with USSR; confrontational policy toward Israel) ; Soviet “message”; Lack of early response from Israel; Success in rallying Arab opinion

  • Time-Line of The Conflict:Feb. 1966 – Jadid takes power in Syria; Nov. 1966 – Egyptian-Syrian treaty; April 1967 – Israeli air attacks on Syria; May 13: Soviet “warning” to Egypt; May 14: Egyptian military mobilization; May 18: Egypt demands withdrawal of UNEF; May 22: Egyptian troops in Sharm al-Shaykh, closing of Strait of Tiran; May 23: Israel sends FM Eban to US; May 27: Israeli military tells Eshkol that delay costs lives, pressure in cabinet to appoint Dayan Defense Minister; May 28: USSR tells Nasser it will “neutralize” any American involvement; May 29: Nasser says stakes of crisis are “rights of the Palestinian people – complete.”; May 30: Jordanian-Egyptian joint command, Meir Amit visit to Washington, Egypt agrees to send VP to Washington for Talks; June 1: Dayan becomes Defense Minister; June 5: Israel attacks Egypt, Jordan, later Syria; June 10: fighting ends.

    • The Wartime Policy: Egypt went on the offensive despite May 27 direct warning from Soviets to Nasser not to initiate the hositilies, and the Belief that Egyptians could withstand a first strike from Israel. Israel hesitate at the outset of the crisis due to Cabinet split and American caution, then switched to offensive due to a push from the military, a Rebellion in cabinet and party, and American signals in late May.

    • Consequences of the War:Change in the map: Israel takes Sinai, Gaza, West Bank and Golan Heights; territories has become as major political issue in Israel; End to Nasserist Pan-Arab appeal in region and rise of Islamism and Palestinian nationalism; Strengthening US-Israeli relationship, Soviet-Egyptian and Syrian relationships.


The 1973 War, Camp David and Lebanon War of 1982

  • 1973 War: how is 1973 different from 1967? :Different Context : Inter-Arab politics(Cairo-Damascus-Riyadh); US-Israel not open to Sadat’s diplomatic feelers. Why Fight an Unwinnable War? : Domestic pressures on Sadat and Asad; Saudi commitment to use “oil weapon”; Different strategy than 1967 (Not seeking total victory against Israel; tactical gains and political process; Left out Jordan -fear that Hussein would tell Israelis; Left out PLO: state interests, not Palestinian cause).

  • Course of the War: Oct. 6: Egyptian and Syrian attacks; Oct. 8-10: unsuccessful Israeli counter-attacks; Oct. 12: US airlift (Israeli nuclear warnings?); unsuccessful Egyptian push to Sinai passes; Oct. 15: Israelis cross canal, cut off Egyptian forces in Sinai; Oct. 18: Sadat authorizes Soviets to seek cease-fire; Oct. 20: Saudis announce oil embargo; Kissinger arrives in Moscow; Oct. 22: UNSC 338; Oct. 24: Sadat invites Soviet forces; US nuclear alert; cease-fire.

  • Post-War Diplomacy: Nov. 11: Egyptian-Israeli “Kilometer 101” deal; Dec. 21: Geneva Conference; Jan. 1974: First Egyptian-Israeli disengagement; May 1974: Syrian-Israeli disengagement; Oct. 1974: Arab League recognizes PLO as “sole legitimate representative of Palestinian people”; June 1975: Suez Canal reopens; September 1975: Second Egyptian-Israeli disengagement.

  • Outcomes of 1973 War:New US commitment to Arab-Israeli peace (oil connection); Reduced Soviet role (losing Egypt); New strategic dynamic in Arab-Israeli negotiations: land, Arab credibility; Stability of Arab regimes that fought the war; End of Labor Party dominance of Israeli politics – Likud-led government in 1977; New regional role for Saudi Arabia(oil revolution).


  • Camp David

    • Why Did Sadat Go to Jerusalem? Diplomatic stalemate-US Geneva proposal; Outflank Likud government; Sadat’s love for the dramatic gesture; Sadat’s political economy Strategy.

    • Camp David: Two agreements: Egyptian-Israeli peace; Framework for Palestinian autonomy. No relationship between the two. Why no Arab Support? Syria: no Golan; weakened bargaining position; no Palestinian state; Other options: Iraq, USSR. PLO: No role; Jordan as West Bank interlocutor. Saudi Arabia and Jordan: Changed geopolitical picture (Iranian Revolution, Syrian-Iraqi “unity”) and Domestic political implications.

  • Consequences of Camp David: Changed Arab-Israeli strategic picture: No credible Arab state war option; Greater Israeli freedom of maneuver (West Bank settlements; Lebanon War of 1982); Easier later for other Arab states. Egyptian-US strategic alliance:Aid (about $2.5 billion per year); Egyptian isolation from Arab world (briefly); What did NOT happen: comprehensive peace.


  • Lebanon War of 1982

    • Lebanese civil war from 1975: Lebanese Forces (most of Maronite militias); PLO, Druze (Kamal Jumblatt), ideological parties (SSNP, Communists), some Sunni and Shi’a sectarian groups.

    • Syrian intervention in 1976 to protect Maronites from defeat: Long-term Syrian presence; LF shifts to Israeli alliance; Syria to supporting Muslim groups.

    • American Presence:American, British, French and Italian troops sent to Beirut to supervise PLO withdrawal(Return after Sabra/Shatilla massacre); American forces support Gemayel government, come under fire from opposition; US embassy bombing April 1983; Marine barracks suicide attack in Oct. 1983; US withdrawal from Lebanon in Feb. 1984.

    • Consequences of The War: Israelis retreat to south, eventually leave even the “security zone” in 2000; Syria regains dominant position, which it holds until Cedar Revolution of 2005; Hizballah founded by Iran in Shi’a community, takes leading role in fighting Israelis; Lebanon remains a relatively weak state with a political system based on sectarian identity.

    • ,

    • Marine barracks bombing, October 1983


  • The Oil Revolution and Gulf Politics in the 1970’s

  • The Oil Revolution – Round 1 (early 1970’s)

  • Crude oil prices 1861 – 2008

Oil measured in millions of barrels per day


  • Oil Revolution 1970-1974

  • Qaddafi “coup” of 1970

  • The “ratchet”

  • Gulf committee meeting of Oct. 1973

  • Arab-Israeli War, production cuts and embargo

  • Oil Production – 1973 Crisis

  • Oil Revolution – 1978-1981: Dec. 1978: Iranian oil strikes; Feb. 1979: Khomeini returns to Iran; Nov. 1979: Hostage crisis; Sept. 1980: Iran-Iraq War

  • Crude oil prices 1861 – 2008


  • The Oil Revolution and Gulf Politics in the 1970’s(cont)

  • Gulf Regional Politics: Post-British Order: Saudi-Iranian understanding; Bahrain independent; Qatar independent; UAE formed from 7 emirates; Abu Musa and Tunbs issue; US Gulf Policy underpinned by the Twin Pillars of Iran and Saudi Arabia.

    • Algiers Accord to Iranian Revolution: Algiers Accord : March 1975; Iran ends support for Iraqi Kurds; Iraq concedes Shatt al-Arab border dispute

    • Why no Gulf War in the 1970’s? Favorable distribution of power for status-quo states (Iran and Saudi Arabia); Acceptance of regime legitimacy by all parties after 1975


  • The Iranian Revolution and the “Return” of Islam

  • Islam and Regional Politics:

  • Sunni-Shi’a Distribution in Middle East

  • Regional Consequences of Iranian Revolution: Wave of Shi’a unrest in 1979-80: Iraq, Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia; Iran-Hizballah link from 1983; more general involvement of Iran in Arab-Israeli affairs; End of Iranian-American alliance and Twin Pillar policy; more direct US involvement; Soviet invasion of Afghanistan (Dec. 1979); Second Oil Shock (1979-80)

    • Iran-Iraq War: Revolution as a cause of Iran-Iraq War: Offensive incentives for Saddam: Iran appears weaker; Threat posed by revolution: transnational appeal of Iran to Iraqi Shi’a. Failure of Iraqi offensive: Militarily inept; No local support among Arabs in Iran; Strengthens revolutionary government.

    • International Alignments: Superpowers: US not particularly involved at first, after 1982 leans toward Iraq (with caveat of Iran-contra); USSR leans a bit toward Iran at outset, but after 1982 back to support for Iraq. Region: Pro-Iraq: Saudi/GCC, Jordan, Egypt; Pro-Iran: Syria, Israel to some extent


  • Iran-Iraq War

  • Course of the War:

  • Phase I:Sept. 1980-April 1982 – Iraq in Iran

  • Phase II: summer 1982-1986 – Iran on the offensive

    • Phase III: 1987-summer 1988 – Iraq on offensive, US involvement: Failure of Basra offensive in early 1987; March 1987: US reflagging; July 1987: UNSC 598; Fall 1987: US-Iranian naval engagements; March 1988: Iraqi missile attacks on Tehran; April 1988: Iraq recaptures Faw Peninsula; US attacks on Iran in Gulf; July 1988: US shoots down Iran Air flight; August 1988: cease-fire

    • American Policy: Why did the US stay out for so long?

    • Iran-contra:Geopolitical element: line to Iran; Covert element: support for contras; Personal element: Reagan’s desire to get US hostages out of Lebanon.

    • Oil Issues during Iran-Iraq War:

    • Why no “third oil shock” at beginning of Iran-Iraq War?

    • Increased Saudi production; demand decrease

    • Long-term trend of 1980’s: falling prices

    • 1985 Saudi decision to end swing-producer role

    • 1986 price crash (US reaction)

    • Some OPEC and non-OPEC cooperation in late 1980’s

    • Helps explain why it took US so long to intervene directly


  • The Gulf War, 1990-91

  • Saddam’s decision-making:

    • Saddam’s Decision to Invade: Realist Interpretation: Easy target; Increase Iraqi power, wealth; Help Saddam over domestic economic problems. Questions: Timing – Why then? Why not wait for nuclear program?; Why not just take money when offered?; Why not withdraw in face of superior forces?. Regime Security Interpretation: Saddam’s own understanding of the situation; Internal problems: economic problems, coup attempts; External changes: collapse of Soviet empire, regional distancing from Saddam, U.S. steps toward Iraq. Problems: Were domestic threats real? Constructivist element – transnational ideologies: Saddam thought other Arab states could not survive if they cooperated with US against him; Used both Arabism and Islam to try to destabilize Arab states in the coalition; No success: Arab members of coalition able to maintain stability. Glaspie Interview: Too much attention paid to it in literature on war; Good indications that is was bluff on Saddam’s part. Why Not Withdraw?: To January 1991, thought he could hold out; From mid-January 1991, did not believe withdrawal would end efforts to unseat him; Comparison to 1975 Algiers Agreement: accepted international retreat to strengthen domestic position.

    • American Policy in the Crisis: Decision to Go to War(Over-determined): Oil Interest; International norms; No fear of superpower confrontation. Balancing Act – domestic and foreign audiences (“two-level game”): Reassure domestic audiences that there is no rush to war, while preparing public opinion for war; Work to keep coalition together internationally(Enough diplomacy to keep USSR and France on board; Not too much diplomacy, to make Arab allies think US was going to cut a deal; Keep Israel quiet but not alienate its American supporters). Israel:Prevent “linkage” to Palestinian issue, but give indications of willingness to deal with Arab-Israeli issues after the war; Keep Israel out of the war, even after missile attacks: military aid, financial aid, strong pressure to stay out. UNSC 678:November 1990; Authorizes use of force; Sets January 15, 1991 deadline.


  • The Gulf War, 1990-91(Cont)

  • Regional Alignments – Coalition

  • Egypt: over-determined (balancing, US tie, financial aid)

  • Saudi Arabia and GCC: over-determined (balancing, regime security)

  • Syria: regime security (intra-Ba’thist rivalry) and regional balancing

  • Turkey: U.S. tie, aid and trade (but significant domestic elite opposition

  • Jordan: domestic politics

  • Yemen: regional balancing (Saudi), domestic politics ambiguous

  • PLO: linkage issue, domestic politics

    • Iran: Neutrality, which benefits the coalition-Stronger Saddam more worrisome than a stronger U.S.

    • American Decision to Stop the War: Why not continue the war until the fall of Saddam? Belief that he would fall eventually; Fear of loss of international support; Powell Doctrine (exit strategy); Fear that popular uprisings would benefit Iran – most important factor

    • Post-War Situation: In Iraq: Kurdish autonomous zone under American, British, French protection (eventually just American); Crippling sanctions regime on Iraq – UNSC 687; No fly zone in the south, but no “autonomous zone” on model of north; American forces in GCC states – “Dual Containment”. Dual Containment and American Military in the Gulf:Shift in GCC attitudes about American military bases; New American basing structure:Kuwait: Camp Doha, Camp Arifjan, 5,000 troops, pre-positioning; Bahrain: Fifth Fleet, aircraft carrier group; Qatar: al-Udayd airbase, pre-positioning;UAE: access to Jebel Ali, airbases; Oman: access to Thamarit airbase, other facilities. American Military in Saudi Arabia:Southern Watch – Dhahran; June 1996: Khobar Towers bombing; Increasing criticism by Usama bin Laden of American forces in Saudi Arabia


  • The Peace Process: 1990-2001

    • Intifada and Madrid: Intifada: Emergence of Hamas; Revival of PLO fortunes internationally; Raising cost of occupation for Israel; End of “Jordanian option”. Madrid Conference: Big, symbolic opening (October 1991); Bilateral and multilateral talks:Regional: water, security, tourism, economics; Syria-Israel; Jordan-Israel; Palestinians-Israel.

    • Oslo Breakthrough: Israel: Failure of Likud strategy; Cost of intifada; 1992 election. PLO:

    • Weakness: end of USSR, Arab alignments, rise of Hamas, possibility of being sidelined in Madrid process; Intifada: new emphasis on territories rather than refugees; only international address to deal with.

    • Peace Process Timeline: Sept. 1993: Declaration of Principles; May 1994: Israeli withdrawal from Gaza and Jericho; Oct. 1994: Jordanian-Israeli treaty; Dec. 1995: further Israeli WB withdrawals; Jan. 1996: Palestinian elections; March/April 1996: suicide bombings, Grapes of Wrath; May 1996: Likud wins Israeli election; Oct. 1998: Wye Plantation; Feb. 1999: Death of King Hussein; May 1999: Labor wins Israeli election.

    • Syrian Track: Timeline: Dec. 1999: Shar’a-Barak White House meeting; Jan. 2000: Shepardstown; Jan. 2000: leak of draft agreement to Haaretz; March 2000: Clinton-Asad Geneva summit; May 2000: Israeli withdrawal from Lebanon, breakdown of SLA; June 2000: death of Hafez al-Asad. Syrian Track Failure: Border issue was the key(1923 international border; June 4, 1967 line; Water issues in Sea of Galilee).The domestic politics factor: Asad ready to move in Dec-Jan, but Barak not; Barak ready to move in March, but Asad not.

    • Palestinian Track:Timeline: July 2000:Camp David II; September 2000: Intifada II; January 2001:Taba negotiations,Clinton parameters; February 2001: Sharon defeats Barak in PM elections. Failure of the Palestinian Track: Borders(Fairly close at Taba: 94-96% of WB with compensating swaps);Security(3 year transition, international forces); Right of Return(Differences on principle and implementation).Jerusalem(Principle of unity and divided sovereignty, but differences on implementation


  • Usama bin Laden and the Origins of al-Qaeda

  • Bin Laden, salafijihadism and the origins of al-Qaeda:

  • Usama Bin Laden:Son of Muhammad bin Laden; Pious but not politically active as youth; Afghanistan experience changes his life and his outlook.

  • Origins of al-Qaeda: Irony of al-Qaeda: origins in the two great successes of Saudi-American relations:

    • Afghanistan: Saudi-American-Pakistani coordination of support for jihad against USSR

    • Gulf War of 1990-91: Saudi-American cooperation to reverse Iraqi invasion of Kuwait and restore regional status quo

    • Afghanistan and al-Qaeda: Bin Laden and AbdallahAzzam organizing Arab volunteers in Peshawar (مكتب الخدمات); Recruiting networks: internationalization of jihad (Arab, South Asian, Central Asian, South-East Asian); Fundraising networks.

    • Afghanistan and al-Qaeda:

    • Ideological Basis of al-Qaeda (salafijihadism) developed in Afghanistan conflict

    • Centrality of jihad as a Muslim obligation

    • SayyidQutb idea of “modern jahiliyya” and centrality of takfir (تكفير) as political concept

    • Social conservatism, intolerance and historical roots of takfir from Saudi Wahhabism

    • International nature of assault on Islam

    • This mix produces modern salafi jihadist ideology

  • The most important element of the Afghan experience for development of al-Qaeda:Victory


  • al-Qaeda After Afghanistan

    • After Afghanistan: United States: does not pay much attention to what is happening there; Saudi Arabia: networks of recruiting, funding and ideological legitimation are redirected to other areas – Chechnya, Bosnia, Kashmir, to a lesser extent Palestine; Saudi government chooses to not confront or monitor very well the movement.

    • Gulf War and al-Qaeda:American troops in Saudi Arabia just after Soviets leave Afghanistan;Bin Laden offer to Saudi leadership;Salafi opposition re-emerging in Saudi Arabia.

    • Bin Laden in the 1990’s:1989: begins to establish presence in Sudan; 1992-93: Somali involvement; 1994-95: breaks with Saudi rulers; 1996: returns to Afghanistan, issues Declaration of Jihad Against the Americans Occupying the Land of the Two Holy Mosques; 1998: formation of International Islamic Front for Jihad against Crusaders and Zionists.

    • The “near enemy” and the “far enemy”:

    • Immediate post-Afghanistan concentration on the “near enemy” – all failures: Algeria: civil war of 1990’s; Egypt: jihadist uprising of mid-1990’s;Saudi Arabia: mostly peaceful opposition, but 1995 attack on SANG office.

    • Idea that “far enemy” was the key to getting rid of the “near enemy”

    • Targeting the U.S.: 1998: Embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania; 2000: USS Cole bombed in Aden; September 11, 2001: bombings of World Trade Center and Pentagon.


  • The 9/11 attacks and its aftermath

  • American Diagnoses of 9/11:

  • Unintentional byproduct of US policy?

    • Difficult to make that argument in political atmosphere

    • A lucky shot by a fringe group?

    • Enormity of what happened on 9/11 does not seem to fit such a small-bore explanation

    • Product of profound pathologies in Middle East/Muslim world

    • “Muslim rage”; Wahhabism; political culture of dictatorship; social culture of jihad

    • Saudi-American Relations and 9/11:

    • Tensions in lead-up: Saudi anger at Bush Administration policy on Arab-Israeli issues; American anger at Saudi Arabia on Khobar Towers investigation, lack of cooperation on al-Qaeda

    • A relationship conducted by elites now thrust into the public eye, both publics negative about the other: Americans upset at Saudi denials; Saudis upset at American “campaign” against them

  • Saudi-American Relationship and 9/11: Both governments work to prevent a crisis: Increased Saudi oil production after 9/11; Saudi peace plan March 2002; Crawford summit April 2002; AQAP attacks in Saudi Arabia from May 2003 improve cooperation; Crawford summit of April 2005;In Saudi-American relationship, the more things change, the more they stay the same; U.S. needs Saudi Arabia, with Iran increasing its regional influence; U.S. needs Saudi Arabia with gyrations in world oil market; Saudi Arabia needs the U.S. with Iran increasing its regional role and future of Iraq uncertain


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