The Baghdad Pact: Anglo-American Defence Policies in the Middle East, 1950-1959

The Baghdad Pact: Anglo-American Defence Policies in the Middle East, 1950-1959

The Baghdad Pact: Anglo-American Defence Policies in the Middle East, 1950-1959

The Baghdad Pact: Anglo-American Defence Policies in the Middle East, 1950-1959

Synopsis

This study explores the formation of the Baghdad Pact and Anglo-American defence policies in the Middle East, 1955-59. It is based on a variety of sources, primarily the British and American Archives.

Excerpt

This book seeks to explore the formation of the Baghdad Pact and Anglo-American defence policies in the Middle East, 1950-1959. The history of the Baghdad Pact has not so far been extensively researched and, as a result, the formation of the pact and its overall aims are still surrounded by controversy.

There are no comprehensive studies on the subject, though general information is given in a number of scholarly works, articles and memoirs. It is the present author's opinion that archival sources have not been sufficiently examined. There are some studies of the pact based on British and American documents, such as Richard L. Jasse's The Baghdad Pact: Cold War or Colonialism?, Ayesha Jalal's Towards the Baghdad Pact: South Asia and Middle East Defence in the Cold War, 1947-1955, Brian Holden Reid's The Northern Tier and the Baghdad Pact, Nigel John Ashton's The Hijacking of a Pact: The Formation of the Baghdad Pact and Anglo-American Tensions in the Middle East, 1955-1958, and Magnus Persson's Great Britain, the United States, and the Security of the Middle East: The Formation of the Baghdad Pact, but they look into the origins of the pact either from the British or American perspective, and generally consider the formation of the pact as part of the Western powers' strategy of containment of the Soviet Union.

Although this book is constrained by the limits on the availability of sources to follow a similar approach, it also tries to explore the policies of the local members of the pact, and to examine the pact's internal structure. It seeks to determine the aims with which the pact was established, the failings of the pact and the struggle that was undertaken against it by hostile Middle Eastern states, and what the pact achieved in its three-and-a-half-year lifespan. It does not attempt to offer a comprehensive history of British and American policies in the Middle East, but rather seeks to explore those policies with particular regard to the problems of Middle East defence. It poses the questions of how the members of the pact and the United States perceived the question of Middle East defence, what their basic aims were and what problems they faced while trying to achieve these aims and implementing their chosen solutions.

This book is based upon a range of primary and secondary sources. The primary sources used are found for the most part in the British Public Record

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