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Caught in the Middle East : U.S. policy toward the Arab-Israeli conflict, 1945-1961 /
Peter L. Hahn.
imprint
Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, c2004.
description
xii, 398 p.
ISBN
0807828408 (cloth : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, c2004.
isbn
0807828408 (cloth : alk. paper)
catalogue key
5117396
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Peter L. Hahn is associate professor of history at The Ohio State University and executive director of the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations.
Excerpts
Flap Copy
By analyzing the policies of Presidents Truman and Eisenhower, Hahn examines the interplay between the U.S. rise to power in the Middle East and its involvement in the Arab-Israeli conflict. Hahn shows that while the U.S. promoted Arab-Israeli peace in principle, it privileged its Cold War interests over its quest for peace, thus missing opportunities to end the Arab-Israeli conflict.
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2004-11-01:
US policy toward the Arab-Israeli conflict has been the subject of numerous scholarly publications over the past 50 years. This volume, however, adds enormously to knowledge of the issues that affected the early years of US involvement in dealing with the Arab-Israeli dispute. Hahn (history, Ohio State) relies on an impressive array of primary US and Israeli archival documents to draw a complicated picture of the development of US foreign policy toward the Arab-Israeli conflict during the Truman and Eisenhower administrations. Hahn explains several important themes as he weaves through myriad developments during this period. He explains similarities and differences between Truman's and Eisenhower's approaches to the Arab-Israeli dispute and analyzes the constellation of domestic US players that influenced the contours of American policy. Furthermore, the author looks at the US-Israel "special relationship" and explains how, contrary to popular beliefs, this relationship has been marked by disagreements on security-related issues on numerous occasions. The book also examines the evolution of US policy toward the Arab-Israeli conflict in the context of intra-Arab relations. ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty. N. Entessar Spring Hill College
Reviews
Review Quotes
"A meticulous work of history that will prove useful to scholars." "Middle East Journal"
"A meticulous work of history that will prove useful to scholars." Middle East Journal
"[A] richly detailed study of America's policy toward the Arab-Istraeli conflict. . . . An impressive multi-archival and multidimensional account that can serve as a model for other practitioners of international history." _ American Historical Review
"[A] richly detailed study of America's policy toward the Arab-Istraeli conflict. . . . An impressive multi-archival and multidimensional account that can serve as a model for other practitioners of international history." -- American Historical Review
"[A] richly detailed study of America's policy toward the Arab-Istraeli conflict. . . . An impressive multi-archival and multidimensional account that can serve as a model for other practitioners of international history." --American Historical Review
"Caught in the Middle Eastis a very well-researched and thorough analysis of America's introduction to the Middle East as it emerged as [a] superpower." International Affairs
" Caught in the Middle East is a very well-researched and thorough analysis of America's introduction to the Middle East as it emerged as [a] superpower." International Affairs
"This fascinating work provides insight into a complicated sliver of history and diplomacy." Jewish Book World
"What emerges clearly from [Hahn's account] is how little Washington understood the consequences of foisting its cold war obsessions upon a region with other things on its mind." "The Nation"
"What emerges clearly from [Hahn's account] is how little Washington understood the consequences of foisting its cold war obsessions upon a region with other things on its mind." The Nation
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, November 2004
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Long Description
American postwar efforts to ameliorate Arab-Israeli relations entangled the United States in the Arab-Israeli conflict in complex ways. Peter L. Hahn explores the diplomatic and cultural factors that influenced the policies of Presidents Truman and Eisenhower as they faced the escalation of one of the modern world's most intractable disputes.Truman tended to make decisions in an ad hoc, reactive fashion. Eisenhower, in contrast, had a more proactive approach to the regional conflict, but strategic and domestic political factors prevented him from dramatically revising the basic tenets Truman had established. American officials desired--in principle--to promote Arab-Israeli peace in order to stabilize the region. Yet Hahn shows how that desire for peace was not always an American priority, as U.S. leaders consistently gave more weight to their determination to contain the Soviet Union than to their desire to make peace between Israel and its neighbors. During these critical years the United States began to supplant Britain as the dominant Western power in the Middle East, and U.S. leaders found themselves in two notable predicaments. They were unable to relinquish the responsibilities they had accepted with their new power--even as those responsibilities became increasingly difficult to fulfill. And they were caught in the middle of the Arab-Israeli conflict, unable to resolve a dispute that would continue to generate instability for years to come.
Main Description
American postwar efforts to ameliorate Arab-Israeli relations entangled the United States in the Arab-Israeli conflict in complex ways. Peter L. Hahn explores the diplomatic and cultural factors that influenced the policies of Presidents Truman and Eisenhower as they faced the escalation of one of the modern world's most intractable disputes. Truman tended to make decisions in an ad hoc, reactive fashion. Eisenhower, in contrast, had a more proactive approach to the regional conflict, but strategic and domestic political factors prevented him from dramatically revising the basic tenets Truman had established. American officials desired--in principle--to promote Arab-Israeli peace in order to stabilize the region. Yet Hahn shows how that desire for peace was not always an American priority, as U.S. leaders consistently gave more weight to their determination to contain the Soviet Union than to their desire to make peace between Israel and its neighbors. During these critical years the United States began to supplant Britain as the dominant Western power in the Middle East, and U.S. leaders found themselves in two notable predicaments. They were unable to relinquish the responsibilities they had accepted with their new power--even as those responsibilities became increasingly difficult to fulfill. And they were caught in the middle of the Arab-Israeli conflict, unable to resolve a dispute that would continue to generate instability for years to come.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Abbreviationsp. xiii
Introductionp. 1
Genesis: The Palestine Conflict to 1945p. 9
Security and Politics: The Context of U.S. Policy toward Palestine after 1945p. 20
Ambivalence: Truman's Policy toward Palestine, 1945-1947p. 32
Diplomacy and Conflict: The Creation of Israel and the Arab-Israeli War of 1948-1949p. 44
Security Commitments: U.S. Strategic Interests in the Middle East, 1949-1953p. 67
Presidential Passivity: Truman and the Peace Process, 1949-1953p. 86
Repatriation versus Resettlement: The Palestinian Refugee Crisis, 1949-1953p. 99
Holy Places: The Question of Jerusalem, 1949-1953p. 112
Tangled Web: The U.S. Failure to Solve Multiple Controversies, 1949-1953p. 123
The Impact of Conflict: U.S. Relations with Israel and the Arab States, 1949-1953p. 133
Cold War Framework: U.S. Perspectives on the Middle East, 1953-1957p. 147
Border Wars: Eisenhower, Dulles, and Arab-Israeli Frontiers, 1953-1955p. 158
Cornucopia of Conflict: Water, Jerusalem, Refugees, and Trade, 1953-1955p. 170
Stillborn: The U.S. Peace Process and the Resumption of War, 1955-1956p. 182
Desperation Diplomacy: U.S. Policy during the Suez-Sinai War of 1956p. 194
Persistent Conflict: The Aftermath of the Suez-Sinai Warp. 210
Security Affirmed: U.S. Regional Considerations in the Middle East after the Suez-Sinai Warp. 223
Containing Conflict: U.S. Efforts to Avert Arab-Israeli Clashes, 1957-1961p. 235
Selective Activism: U.S. Efforts to Solve Arab-Israeli Disputes, 1957-1961p. 248
Cost of Conflict: U.S. Relations with Israel and the Arab States, 1953-1961p. 261
Conclusion: Caught in the Middle Eastp. 276
Notesp. 295
Bibliographyp. 367
Indexp. 389
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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