America's confrontation with revolutionary change in the by William Stivers

By William Stivers

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Extra resources for America's confrontation with revolutionary change in the Middle East, 1948-83

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Some officials felt that modest 'show of force' operations would be sufficient, to be augmented by attack carriers when need arose. 9 Ships thus assigned to Indian Ocean duty would be detached from the Pacific or Mediterranean. Others, however, saw need for a separate Indian Ocean fleet. Admiral Arleigh Burke, Chief of Naval Operations from 1955 to 1961, advocated the second course. His interest in an Indian Ocean fleet dated from the late 1940s, when he had already written the British off. Owing to the bureaucratic climate of the times, he could do little more than try to get his colleagues to start thinking about the future US role in the Indian Ocean.

The absence of continental bases and garrisons would place a premium on sea-going striking power - on amphibious assault capabilities, on the capacity to deploy forces rapidly from one trouble spot to another without having to ask permission to do so. 8 To be sure, there were ample disagreements over the scope and the nature of US Indian Ocean deployments. Some officials felt that modest 'show of force' operations would be sufficient, to be augmented by attack carriers when need arose. 9 Ships thus assigned to Indian Ocean duty would be detached from the Pacific or Mediterranean.

Thus, as of early 1956, Washington and Cairo were antagonists. Eisenhower had failed the most critical test of his ability to achieve a modus vivendi with Arab nationalism. EISENHOWER'S EFFECT ON FUTURE US POLICY None of Eisenhower's failures was costly in the short run. Indeed, in the short run, Eisenhower achieved what he desired. Pro-Western regimes in the area remained pro-Western and European oil supplies remained secure. These successes, however, were not all Eisenhower's doing. He was helped by the fact that 'radical' forces in the Middle East were divided and often at odds with each other.

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