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American Military History: Gulf War

Discuss America's role in the rising hostilities in the Middle East in the 1980s through the Gulf War.
Response should be a minimum of 300 words plus reference.

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From NPR:

Very good historical overview.

What's the purpose of US involvement in the area? This is the question. It has been constant since at least the end of World War II.

1. To block any Soviet advances into the area. As it turns out, Iraq and Syria had become major recipients of Soviet military aid for decades. Turkey and Israel were the American answer. The Gulf States (like Oman) were generally pro-US, anti-communist, but also anti-Israel. So they served as a wild-card. (The Saudis for example, assisted the US in their anti-Russian actions in Afghanistan in the late 1970s.)

2. To support Israel no matter what. Israel is the #1 recipient of US aid in the world, and this has been true for decades. The US built up and trained the Israeli military, making it (by far) the most formidable and technologically advanced in the area. The Israeli air force is the best in the region, flying all US planes and trained at the air base in Oklahoma. The problem is that Israel has treated its Arab populations very harshly, and this has outraged Islamic opinion worldwide. Since US support of Israel seems to have no conditions, the US is automatically to blame for anything Israel does.

3. To maintain a strong military presence in the area to ensure the free flow of oil to the US and western Europe. Gas is also important.

Israel defeated all-comers. She defeated Egypt Syria, and of course, her own local Arab population. ...

Solution Summary

The expert discusses American`s role in the rising hostilities in the Middle East in the 1980s through the Gulf War.