The Strategic Connection
The strategic connection of the special relationship involves the issue of Israel's strategic value to the United States, Israel's survival and security, and arms acquisition and the military balance.
In the superpower rivalry and competition that characterized the international system from the end of World War II until the end of the Cold War, the Middle East was a principal focus of national security and foreign policy attention and provided a framework for United States relations with the regional states.
As it planned for the organization of the international system after World War II, the United States did not see a significant role for itself in the Middle East. The prevailing assumption was that the region would continue to be of more consequence for its allies, particularly Great Britain and France, and there was no anticipation of a Soviet threat to the region that might engender a U.S. response. However, the rivalry for hegemony in the Middle East began soon after the end of World War II, with the Soviet-supported challenges to postwar regimes in Greece, Turkey, and Iran. Responding to Soviet political-military challenges and seeking to prevent Soviet hegemony or even spheres of influence in the region became a tenet of U.S. policy and encouraged the initial United States involvement in the northern tier states, the promulgation of the Truman Doctrine, and the U.S. aid program for Iran. When the Soviet