Syria as a Linchpin

Prof. Elie Podeh December 2012

In 1965, the eminent British journalist Patrick Seale published an important book titled “The Struggle for Syria.” Its main thesis was that anyone who wants to acquire dominant status in the Middle East must control Syria or have friendly relations with it. The primary reason for Syria’s importance in the regional system stemmed, in his opinion, from its geostrategic location in the heart of the Middle East. This status led, in the 1950s and ’60s, until Hafez Assad’s ascent to power in 1970, to the fact that Syria became a focus of both the struggles between Egypt and Iraq for hegemony in the Arab world, and between the United States and the Soviet Union.

Read the full article at Haaretz

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