Tag: Middle East

On The Move

Filed in Articles by on 19th Jul 2017 5 Comments

Since the end of the Second World War, we have become accustomed to seeing the influence of the United States and Britain in the Middle East. In 1943 President Franklin Delano Roosevelt had already declared that « the defence of Saudi Arabia was vital to the defence of the United States. » (1) On his way home from the Yalta Conference in February 1945 after meeting with Stalin and Churchill, Roosevelt met with King Abdul Aziz Ibn Saud of Saudi Arabia on board the USS Quincy. Their agreement, the Quincy Pact, was not revealed for several years. It offered Saudi Arabia US protection from external enemies in exchange for secure access to future supplies of oil. Although there is some question as to whether they actually signed such an accord, the fact remains that the US has provided protection to the Saudi Kingdom, and received billions of barrels of oil since that time, echoing Roosevelt’s sentiments of 1943. Continue Reading »

Democracy in the Middle East

Filed in Case Studies by on 3rd Mar 2009

It is not feasible to apply the principles of democracy and capitalism as practiced in the United States to nation-building projects in the developing world. This is more an admonition against a naïve approach than a comment against an effort to accomplish a noble goal. State/Nation-building is a difficult process and no two developing countries, or their conflicts or post-conflict situations are the same. Apart from such similarities in countries in the developing world as poverty, and the frustration and inequality that lead to ethnic conflict, each situation presents its own particular problems that require a tailored approach. Continue Reading »