Beyond Dual Containment

Author/s: Kenneth Katzman
1st Edition Year: 1996
Edition: Second impression
Current Edition Year: 2014
Language: English
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Description

This work analyzes the ‘dual containment’ policy of the United States in terms of classic balance-of-power theory and looks at how this approach represents an integral part of the American strategic thinking in the Gulf region. The thesis of the research is that while dual containment might offer some improvement on previous US policy in the Gulf, it also has severe limitations which cast doubt on its overall applicability.

The policy will likely be unable to significantly transform the security structure in the Gulf to the point that the Gulf is intrinsically stable and no longer on the edge of perpetual crisis. An option that needs to be considered is a US-led multilateral peace initiative involving the GCC states as well as Iran and Iraq. There are significant obstacles to such an initiative but the author believes its pros and cons need to be discussed openly and considered seriously if the Gulf region is to attain a permanent security balance.

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