The Road to Tahrir Square: Egypt and the United States from the Rise of Nasser to the Fall of Mubarak

By Lloyd C. Gardner

When protesters in Egypt started to fill Cairo’s Tahrir sq. on January 25th—and refused to depart until eventually their call for that Hosni Mubarak step down was once met—the politics of the quarter replaced in a single day. And the us’ lengthy friendship with the fellow who had governed lower than Emergency legislations for thirty years got here starkly into question.

From Franklin D. Roosevelt’s short assembly with King Farouk close to the top of global battle II to Barack Obama’s Cairo Speech in 2009 and the new fall of Mubarak—the most vital turning aspect in American overseas coverage because the finish of the chilly War—this well timed new publication solutions the pressing query of why Egypt has mattered loads to the USA. The highway to Tahrir Square is the 1st ebook to attach previous and current, providing readers this day an knowing of the occasions and forces deciding upon American coverage during this very important region.

Making complete use of the to be had records—including the debatable Wikileaks archive—renowned historian Lloyd C. Gardner exhibits how the USA has sought to steer Egypt via financial relief, substantial army counsel, and CIA manipulations, an attempt that has fast implications for the way the present drawback will regulate the stability of strength within the center East. As thousands of usa citizens contemplate how the Egyptian revolution will switch the face of the quarter and the area, here's either a desirable tale of previous guidelines and a necessary advisor to attainable futures.

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Nasser had by no means been provided such a call for participation even to come back on his personal plane. The president used to be a section doubtful, even if, approximately going out to satisfy Saud on the airport; yet a choice from the Saudi ambassador to the nation division had educated Secretary Dulles that the king “would cancel his stopover at to U. S. if he [was] now not repeat no longer met at airport via the president. ” This was once the 1st time Eisenhower had performed something like that, and it marked the next move within the dating Roosevelt had initiated in 1945—but this time with a miles greater price ticket of $100 million.

If it didn't, the results for American coverage within the center East have been critical. The independence and survival of the Arab kingdom of Palestine, the king stated, used to be a question for the international locations of the quarter to figure out, no longer one for Americans—Jew or gentile—living 5 thousand miles away. Saud had now not acknowledged he may take retaliatory motion opposed to Aramco, the yankee oil corporation in his kingdom, if Washington went forward with plans to place Jewish refugees into Palestine, yet there have been different risks, in particular to the way forward for the deliberate Dhahran air base.

Every now and then the management seemed tongue-tied in dealing with threats to the very foundations of its effect during the quarter. “The mystique of America’s superpower prestige has been shattered,” acknowledged Steve Clemons, a director on the liberal imagine tank New the USA origin. Clemons had attended conferences of the nationwide protection Council the place Egypt have been mentioned, and his pessimism a few destiny the place the U.S. now not occupied that untouchable position appeared good warranted after Iraq, ten years of warfare in Afghanistan, and now the cascade of falling regimes around the zone.

Despite this “stimulus” package deal, there have been severe doubts approximately no matter if it'd be adequate. Moody’s monetary companies had issued a press release on may possibly 24, prior to Obama’s speech, that acknowledged, “Egypt suffers from deep-seated political, socio-economic challenges,” together with a “chronic excessive expense of unemployment, increased inflation, and common poverty. ”6 It remained to be visible, additionally, no matter if previous methods of facing Egyptian nationalism because the days of Nasser and his extra complaisant successors may nonetheless dominant policymakers’ pondering as Cairo struggled to discover a brand new stability internally and externally in kin with the skin international.

39 It used to be nonetheless assumed within the usa that he had little alternative, in spite of everything, yet to capitulate to Washington’s calls for, whilst the entire indicators pointed in a distinct path. British and American diplomats worked over the phrases of a reaction to Nasser’s problem and emerged with whatever they referred to as undertaking Alpha. they need to supply Nasser the effect, acknowledged the authors, that he was once being singled out because the key chief to convey peace to the center East. “We shall for that reason have to supply inducements to Egypt.

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