An essay on the history and present western and american intervention in the middle east.

Essay by bu-shhabHigh School, 11th gradeA-, April 2004

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Since the Second World War, the United States has been the dominant world power in the Middle East. Every political campaign or military intervention has been carried out to ensure the control of the world's most valuable energy source. Despite new discoveries of oil reserves in Central Asia, the Middle East still has two-thirds of the world's oil reserves, and its oil is still the cheapest to pump and produce. The U.S. has relied on repressive regimes such as Iran under the Shah, Saudi Arabia, and Israel to do its work. When necessary, it has intervened directly to punish regimes that have challenged its dominance in the region as it did to Iraq in 1991. To this day, the U.S. spends billions annually to maintain a large military presence in the region. It provides billions of dollars in military equipment to Israel, which the U.S. carefully regards as the region's most influential military power.

The U.S. has done what it has done to preserve one thing, to secure its control over what came to be called "black gold."

After the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, Britain and France drew the boundaries of the new states in the Middle East with absolutely no say from the people of the regions. All promises of Arab independence the British had made to various local leaders during the First World War were ignored. For example, the call for a single united Arab state was ignored, for they saw that it would be easier to negotiate with a group of rival Arab states lacking any sense of unity, than with a powerful independent Arab state in the Middle East. (Richman) Britain took the areas that became Iraq, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia and France took Syria and Lebanon. Each state was then handed to local kings...