Britain and radical movements in Arabia, February 1958

Report by the Joint Intelligence Commitee, “Nationalist and radical movements in the Arabian Peninsula”, 10 February 1958

“Arab nationalism, including the urge towards greater Arab unity and the removal of any foreign control, is already the most powerful emotional force in the area and it is beginning to penetrate even the most remote corners of the peninsula… The maintenance of our interests in the Persian Gulf states is dependent on continued stability in the area. At present only the Rulers can provide this. No alternative regimes are in sight, certainly not regimes which could provide the stability on which the maintenance of British interests depends. A failure to support any one of the Rulers would weaken the confidence of the others in our ability and willingness to protect them. It is on this confidence that our special position in the Gulf chiefly rests.”

Source: Public Record Office, CAB 158/31



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