The United States and the Middle East: A Search for New Perspectives

By Hooshang Amirahmadi | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 11
Middle East Studies and
U.S. Foreign Policy

Richard B. Parker

The American foreign policy process suffers from an essential irrationality. This realization is not new. Graham Allison, in his classic Essence of Decision, described John F. Kennedy's decision to impose a selective blockade against Soviet shipping to Cuba in 1962 as follows: "part choice and part result, a melange of misperception, miscommunication, misinformation, bargaining, pulling, hauling, and spurring as well as a mixture of national security interests, objectives, and governmental calculations recounted in more conventional accounts." 1

When such disparate factors as Allison lists result either in a policy success or a policy with which we agree (and the two may not coincide), we tend to think of it as an act of brilliance or high principle by the chief of the state and his close advisors. When it miscarries or we disagree with it, we see it as irrational, stupid, or even malevolent on the part of the same people.

Miscalculation is not peculiar to the Americans or to the Middle East. It is endemic to human condition. Everyone does it—the Americans, the Soviets, the Israelis, the Egyptians, the Iraqis, the Iranians, indeed, any people you care to name. I am currently writing a series of essays on miscalculation in the Middle East, looking at the mistakes made by the Soviets and Egyptians in 1967, by the Israelis and Americans in the so-called Canal War in 1970, and by the American in Lebanon in 1982-83. A common thread that runs through all of these cases is that people hear what

-311-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The United States and the Middle East: A Search for New Perspectives
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 491

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.