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Imperial Crossroads: The Great Powers and the Persian Gulf

Monday, November 19, 2012

Editors: Jeffrey R. Macris & Saul Kelly

Hardcover: 272 pages
Publisher: Naval Institute Press (July 16, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1591144892
ISBN-13: 978-1591144892

Book Description

At the junction of three great continents and oceanic trade routes that link the cities of the world, the Persian Gulf, like a magnet, has pulled powerful nations into its waters and adjacent lands for centuries. This study examines the contested history for control of the Gulf and its resources, concentrating on Portugal, Holland, Britain, and the United States, and concludes with a look at possible future involvement by India and China. The contributors' thorough analysis reveals several consistent broad interests, including the fact that the great powers entered the region mostly to further trade, to maintain order there, and in the case of the Europeans, to establish a military presence that would protect colonial possessions farther east. Such a historical perspective of the West's involvement provides readers with a new understanding of this vital region.

Praise for Imperial Crossroads

“A fine addition to nautical history collections, highly recommended.”

— The Midwest Book Review, October 2012

“The timeliness and clarity of Imperial Crossroads: The Great Powers and the Persian Gulf, published by the US Naval Institute Press in July 2012, is remarkable, not just because the analysis by the book’s numerous authors is so good, but equally for the vivid image which was created by what was not said… The superb compendium of interlinking analyses in Imperial Crossroads goes a long way to helping provide a perspective on the Persian Gulf, not only to the new generation which must contend for influence in a region in play, but for the local players who must now find themselves.”

— Defense & Foreign Affairs Special Analysis, September 6, 2012

“Imperial Crossroads should be essential reading for any military and maritime practitioner in this strategically vital and complicated part of the world.  I wish it had been available when I first deployed to the Gulf in 1968.”

—Admiral Sir Jonathon Band GCB, First Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Staff UK (2006–2009)

"A superb collection explaining clearly why the world's great powers have consistently recognized their prosperity and security are tied directly to the Persian Gulf. Macris and Kelly have not only woven together past interests but have made the critical connection to South and East Asia, which must be understood by present and future policy makers."

—Admiral Thomas B Fargo, USN (Ret.), Former Commander U.S. Pacific Command and Naval Central Command and John M. Shalikashvili Chair in National Security Studies, The National Bureau of Asian Research (NBR)

"This volume is essential reading for those who are interested in going beyond the headlines and exploring the history of outside involvement in the Gulf.  It will be a valuable resources for scholars for years to come."

—Thomas G. Mahnken, Jerome E. Levy Chair in Economic Geography and National Security, U.S. Naval War College.

About the Authors

Jeffrey R. Macris, a resident of the Persian Gulf for several years, is a Permanent Military Professor at the U.S. Naval Academy, with a PhD from Johns Hopkins University. Saul Kelly holds a PhD from the London School of Economics and is now a Reader in International History at King's College, London.

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