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    British Involvement In The Suez Crisis

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    Please answer the following question with great detail. This analysis will assist me greatly in understanding the circumstances surrounding British involvement in the Suez canal and crisis. A detailed analysis of the question below is requested.

    What were British vital "interests" and "objectives" in the Suez Crisis?

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    Here's some good resources for your further research - not all of which is about Britain's role, but also Israel and France.

    Mordechai Bar-On, The Gates of Gaza (London, 1995).

    Paul Gaujac, "France and the Crisis of Suez: An Appraisal, Forty Years On," pp. 47-
    63 in David Tal, ed., The 1956 War (London, 2001).

    Dianne. B. Kunz, The Economic Diplomacy of the Suez Crisis (Chapel
    Hill, NC, 1991).

    Keith Kyle, "Britain's Slow March to Suez," pp. 95-118 in David Tal, ed., The 1956
    War (London, 2001).

    Keith Kyle, Suez (London, 1991).

    W. Scott Lucas, "Redefining the Suez 'Collusion,'" Middle Eastern Studies, Vol. 26,
    No. 1 (1990), pp. 88-112.

    Avi Shlaim, "The Protocol of Sèvres, 1956: Anatomy of a War Plot," pp. 119-143 in
    David Tal, ed., The 1956 War (London, 2001).

    David Tal, "Israel's Road to the 1956 War," International Journal of
    Middle East Studies, Vol. 28 (1996), pp. 59-81.

    David Tal, "Introduction: A New Look at the 1956 Suez War," pp. 1-17 in Tal, ed.,
    The 1956 War (London, 2001).


    What were British vital "interests" and "objectives" in the Suez Crisis?

    First some background:

    In 1954, Gamal Abdel-Nasser rose to power in Egypt and soon solidified his position as the chief proponent of Arab nationalism throughout the Middle East (a role that precludes peaceful relations with Israel). His efforts to build-up the strength of the Egyptian army only added to the ever-present tensions between Egypt and Israel. And following the negotiated withdrawal of British troops from the Suez Canal Zone in October 1954, (forces that were seen in Jerusalem as a buffer against potential Egyptian aggression) Egypt increased its military presence in the Sinai Peninsula. Then on September 27, 1955, Nasser announced the existence of a major arms agreement with Czechoslovakia. These armaments would eventually have provided a decisive quantitative and qualitative advantage over the Israeli Defence Force (IDF) and news of the deal led to widespread public anxiety throughout the country. Israeli leaders themselves were predicting an impending Egyptian attack sometime during the summer of 1956. Thus, the Czech-Egyptian arms deal would lead to a fundamental change in Israeli defense policy. It was this impending change in the regional balance of power, not the continued violence along the contested borders, which represented the major threat to Israel and necessitated a determined response.

    At first, this response was to match the Egyptian arms build-up and for this, Israel already had a willing partner. Starting in 1952, Israel and France had begun to develop closer ties and by 1955 France was Israel's leading arms supplier. Obviously, this relationship became much more important for Israel following the Egyptian-Czech arms deal. In June 1956, France agreed to provide her ally with over 70 advanced fighter aircraft, 40 modern tanks and a host of other military equipment and ammunition. And in the following months, French armament supplies would only increase. Along with the sale of military equipment came increased political and military ties. As France had its own problems in the Middle East, specifically concerning its ongoing war in Algeria, military and intelligence liaison officers were soon exchanged. This budding relationship was destined to take on added significance in the coming months.
    On July 26, 1956, Nasser announced the nationalization of the Suez Canal Company, an action directly contrary to the commercial and imperial interests of both France and the United Kingdom. The two European powers soon became resolved to the use of force as suitable diplomatic solutions eluded them. To the French, ...

    Solution Summary

    The expert examines British involvement in The Suez Crisis.