Shadow Wars: The Secret Struggle for the Middle East

Shadow Wars: The Secret Struggle for the Middle East

by Christopher Davidson

Paperback(Reprint)

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Overview

In this unparalleled investigation, Christopher Davidson exposes the true extent of Western interference in the Middle East over the past one hundred years. Drawing on the examination of hundreds of leaked and declassified documents, and interviews with former officials, academics, journalists and activists, he shows how the region’s most powerful actors have been manipulated by foreign players in a game that has given rise to dictators, sectarian wars, bloody counter-revolutions and the most brutal incarnation of extremism ever seen.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781786071927
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
Publication date: 12/05/2017
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 688
Sales rank: 1,164,617
Product dimensions: 5.75(w) x 8.85(h) x 1.70(d)

About the Author

Christopher Davidson is a Reader in Middle East Politics at Durham University.

Table of Contents

Introduction xi

1 Counter-revolution - A Pattern Emerges 1

Lessons from the past - nothing is new 1

Lessons from the past - the preventive counter-revolutions 6

Britain's hungry empire 9

The threat from Arab nationalism 13

Trouble on the Arabian Peninsula - revolution reaches Yemen 21

The contagion spreads - the Sultanate of Oman 26

The smaller sheikhdoms - preventive measures 31

2 Cold War, Oil War - America Takes Over 37

America's even hungrier empire 37

America's global counter-revolution 39

Americas Middle East - special treatment for a special case 48

Removing the rivals - Iranian democracy 51

Removing the rivals - taking on the Arabs 60

Strengthening the status quo - the arms trade 72

Strengthening the status quo - military bases 77

Strengthening the status quo - mercenaries 80

3 The Road to al-Qaeda - The CIA's Baby 85

Searching for an Islamic state - Britain's caliphate 85

Searching for an Islamic state - Wahhabism and the Muslim Brotherhood 90

Mobilizing jihad - the case of Afghanistan 97

Operation Cyclone - Anglo-American jihad 105

Foreign fighters, foreign cash 110

The Islamic Republic of Iran - a secret relationship 119

4 Allied to Jihad - Useful Idiots 127

The Taliban - America's new ally 127

Keeping bin Laden on board 130

The war against Serbia - Bosnian jihad 134

The war against Serbia - Kosovan jihad 140

The Libyan Islamic Fighting Group - Britain's new ally 147

The road to 9/11 - managing blowback 151

9/11 - saving Saudi Arabia 153

9/11 - protecting the funding networks 159

The fake 'War on Terror' - Afghanistan 167

The fake 'War on Terror' - Iraq 170

5 The Arab Spring - A System Threatened 177

A new challenge, a new hope 177

The road to 2011 - regimes in decay 178

Tunisia - the Jasmine Revolution 180

Egypt - the Republic of Tahrir 182

Yemen - revolution in Arabia 187

Breaking the fear barrier - a chance for cosmopolitanism 189

The economic storm - enter neo-liberalism 193

The economic storm - the rise of crony capitalism 200

The economic storm - the rise of Gulf capitalism 205

From modernizing Arabs to revolutionary Arabs 208

Cosmopolitan communications - from satellites to social media 210

6 Plan 'A' - Islamists Versus the Deep State 221

The need for counter-revolution 221

Egypt - back to the Brotherhood 225

Egypt - an uneasy alliance 231

Egypt - military dictatorship 235

Egypt - 'Sisi mania' 239

Egypt - the Qatar connection 242

Egypt - Saudi Arabia takes on the Brotherhood 245

Tunisia - under pressure 254

Tunisia - sleepwalking to counter-revolution 256

Yemen - outmanoeuvring the Arab Spring 261

Bahrain - the forgotten revolution 266

7 Plan 'B' - A Fake Arab Spring 273

Containable protests 273

Axis against axis - faking the Arab Spring 275

Libya - Gaddafi's strange regime 276

Libya - flirting with neo-liberalism 279

Libya - not so supplicant 282

Libya - the uprising 284

Libya - subverting the National Transitional Council 289

Libya - NATO takes action 293

Libya - an international crime 295

Libya - the scramble for assets 299

Libya - a role for al-Qaeda 301

Libya - searching for a Sisi 306

Syria - parallel plans 310

Syria - the uprising begins 313

Syria - preparing for intervention 316

Syria - enter the proxies 319

Syria - arming the rebels 322

Syria - searching for the 'red line' 327

Syria - back to the battlefield 333

Syria - the media war 344

Yemen - a painful intervention 348

Yemen - bringing back al-Qaeda 354

8 Enter the Islamic State - A Phantom Menace 361

Al-Qaeda's limits 361

The need for 'national jihadists' 363

Iraq - the incubation chamber 366

Iraq - the emerging Islamic State 368

Iraq - the proto-caliphate 372

The Islamic State - mysterious new leadership 373

The Islamic State - a persuasive ideology 378

Opportunities in Syria 380

Expansion in Iraq 384

The caliphate restored 387

The resurrection of Saddam Hussein 389

'Remaining and expanding' - services and recruitment 395

'Remaining and expanding' - masters of propaganda 399

9 The Islamic State - A Strategic Asset 405

Cui bono - to whose profit? 405

The manufacturing of evil - the new bogeyman 406

The business of evil - a history of cashing in 409

The business of evil - the arms industry bonanza 414

Surprise, surprise - the Islamic State came from nowhere 418

The strangest road to war 421

A campaign of contradictions 428

Explaining failure - the official line 433

Suspicions mount - challenging the narrative 437

Follow the money - the self-funding narrative 444

Follow the money - the Islamic State's funders 453

Funders need facilitators - the role of Turkey 461

10 The Islamic State - A Gift That Keeps Giving 469

The return of the 'War on Terror' 469

The Islamic State in Libya 471

The Islamic State in Yemen 475

The fight for Mali 477

Boko Haram - Nigeria under attack 481

Boko Haram - the shift to the Islamic State 485

Boko Haram - generous sponsors 490

Boko Haram - delivering results 494

Beyond Panetta - other pledges to the Islamic State 498

Russia and China - superpower implications 501

Epilogue - Keeping the Wheel Turning 505

Getting business back to usual 505

The exploitation of Egypt 509

Wild card number one - opening up Iran 511

A new Iran, a new sectarian war 514

Wild card number two - American oil 517

A new Saudi Arabia, a new chapter 521

Notes 529

Index 651

Acknowledgements 673

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