The Coordination of Anglo-American Policy toward Egypt in Early 1947

In early 1947, American policy toward the Anglo-Egyptian deadlock pursued the conflicting objectives of mollifying Egyptian nationalism while preserving vital Western strategic interests in Egypt. Expecting Egypt to appeal to the Security Council to order them to evacuate Egypt and Sudan, British officials sought full American support of their efforts to meet this challenge to their strategic and political interests. Take into account, you can buy Dissertation Writing Service and obtain your drafted dissertation written by dissertation writers! American strategists agreed that Britain must maintain its presence in Egypt, but some American officials wanted Britain to compromise with Egyptian national aspirations. AngloAmerican differences of opinion also surfaced regarding the best means to respond to the Egyptian challenge and the American role in the Security Council debates. The American pursuit of irreconcilable objectives created discord with Britain, failed to improve relations with Egypt, and diminished the United States's ability to settle the Anglo-Egyptian controversy.

Renewed strategic interest in the Canal Zone base strongly determined the British position toward the Egyptian appeal to the Security Council. For financial and ideological reasons, Prime Minister Clement Attlee announced plans in January and February 1947 to grant independence to India, to end economic and military assistance to Greece and Turkey, and to surrender the British mandate over Palestine. Having eyed Palestine as a potential replacement base site when they agreed in May 1946 to evacuate Egypt, Foreign office and War Office planners thus became determined to retain base rights in Egypt and urged Attlee to exclude evacuation of that country from his plans to retract the boundaries of empire. Departure from the Canal Zone would draw Soviet influence into the area, the Foreign Office argued, and "heighten the probability of world war in which we would be massacred."

Military strategists elaborated the reasons why Western security depended on base rights in the Canal Zone. "Egypt is the key to the whole position of the Middle East in its relation to the defence of the Commonwealth," the COS specified. The Canal Zone was the only spot from which Western forces could counter Soviet aggression with "an active and immediate defence . . . in the form of limiting the aggressors' weight of attack." Unless Britain retained base rights in Egypt, hostilities against the Soviet Union would "entail long, arduous and costly operations before we could even start hitting back at the enemy; in fact, the United Kingdom would begin the war by fighting in the last ditch, and it is open to serious doubt whether she could survive so long." Moreover, "if we took a weak line in Egypt, we should lose prestige in the Arab World. . . . The Arabs would be more likely to respect us for making a show of firmness and strength" in Egypt. Moreover, you can order Admission essay writing service and get your perfect admission essay! "Under the present circumstances," Pierson Dixon of the Foreign Office concluded, "the continued presence of British forces in the Canal Zone" was "increasingly important."

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