Intro to the Middle East

In the pursuit of peace, alliances and interests, Western policy-makers have tended to sacrifice the perplexing realities of the Middle East on the altar of oversimplification and wishful-thinking. Yet their attempts to implement unsubstantiated policies often have served to inflame rather than extinguish regional fires.

Lebanese-born professor Fouad Ajami, the distinguished historian and former director of Middle East Studies at John Hopkins University, asserted that realities in the region constitute “a chronicle of illusions and despair and of politics repeatedly degenerating into bloodletting (The Arab Predicament, Cambridge University Press, 1990).”

Western policy-makers and shapers of public-opinion would benefit from studying writings by some key historians and scientists, whose research reaffirms that fundamentals in the Middle East have remained largely intact for the last 14 centuries....

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