Challenges for America in the Middle East offers a comprehensive and contemporary analysis of the foreign policy challenges the United States faces in the Middle East. It takes a close look at the critical policy dilemmas posed by radical Islam, the Arab Spring, the Shia Crescent, and Israel–#x2013;Palestine relations. Authors Richard W. Mansbach and Kirsten L. Taylor examine the issues from a historical perspective and in the context of the current state of affairs, and analyze options for future action. Throughout the text, they emphasize the interplay of foreign and domestic issues in the United States and overseas, and show how that interplay shapes American policy towards the region.
Chapter 1: Sources of American Foreign Policy
The Middle East often seems like a “special case” to students of foreign policy in the United States: especially troubled, especially hard to understand, especially enmeshed in a set of seemingly unique and intractable political, social, and economic issues. While that is in some ways true, it is also possible—and we think quite useful—to approach policy toward the region and the issues it faces the same way we would begin to understand policy toward any other region or set of issues. Such an approach allows us to view challenges in the region as normal problems of foreign policy. Even the ...