1 February 2010

This book examines British policy in the Middle East, focusing on how Britain's response to 9/11 affected its role and relations in the region.


Rosemary Hollis


Britain's participation in the invasion of Iraq in 2003 marked a dramatic shift in the direction and focus of British relations with the Middle East. This book provides the first extensive examination of the impact of 9/11 on the UK's policy towards this critical region. It places Britain's involvement firmly within the rich historical context which is essential for understanding the legacy of empire and demonstrates how the New Labour leadership wilfully ignored the lessons to be learned from past experience. The book also argues that Britain not only set the scene for US engagement in the Middle East, but also became tainted by association with a US project for reforming the region that has foundered.



Historical Background: Stages in the Relationship

New Labour Worldview and the Middle East

New Labour: New Policy-Making Process

Britain's Role in the Peace Process: 1997 to 2001

The Road to War in Iraq

Reaping the Whirlwind: the Fallout from the Invasion of Iraq for British Relations across the Middle East

Realpolitik and the Peace Process after 9/11

Still Flying the Flag: Britain and the Arab Gulf States


About the Author

Dr Rosemary Hollis is Director of the Olive Tree Scholarship Programme at City University London, and was formerly Director of Research at Chatham House.


'Rosemary Hollis's account of the British role in the Middle East under New Labour is a well-written and significant contribution to our understanding of the modern Middle East. It not only sheds light on the Blair governments' involvement in Israel-Arab peacemaking and the post-9/11 War on Terror, but enhances our understanding of EU involvement and US leadership as well. Required reading for anyone seeking to understand how events have unfolded in the region in the past ten years.'
Yossi Alpher, former director, Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies

'Rosemary Hollis combines breath of vision with painstaking attention to detail in this comprehensive analysis of New Labour and the Middle East. Anyone who wishes to understand the complexities of the region and the impact on British foreign policy of our relationship with the United States need look no further.'
Sir Menzies Campbell MP, former leader, Liberal Democrats

'An invaluable and holistic account of Britain's place, in the morass created by 9/11. An absolute must for anyone wishing to understand the UK's role in the wider Middle East, placed foursquare in the historical context of our journey from Empire to conflicted trans-Atlantic European power.'
Jon Snow, Newscaster, Channel 4 News

'From her unique vantage point at the intersection of government, academia, civil society and London's diplomatic corps, Dr Hollis incisively dissects what New Labour has wrought in Britain's relations with the Middle East as well as Blair's path to war in Iraq. This is as close to a definitive account as we are going to get for some time.'
Tarak Barkawi, Senior Lecturer, Politics and International Studies, University of Cambridge


Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Pagination: 176 pages
Hardback price: £50.00, ISBN: 978-1-4051-0297-1
Paperback price: £19.99, ISBN: 978-1-4051-0298-8

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