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International Actors in the Middle East Since 2000 - Assignment Example

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Changes in the international environment began in 1991, and it became increasingly evident that the world order no longer consisted of only two superpowers the Union of Socialist Republics (USSR) and the United States. Rather, other players were emerging and taking their place…
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International Actors in the Middle East Since 2000
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December 15, Week 8 Discussion International Actors in the Middle East since 2000 Changes in the international environment began in1991, and it became increasingly evident that the world order no longer consisted of only two superpowers the Union of Socialist Republics (USSR) and the United States. Rather, other players were emerging and taking their place on the field. Anderson et al. notes that “THESE PROFOUND CHANGES IN THE INTERNATIONAL SYSTEM HAVE RESONANT EFFECTS IN THE INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS OF THE MIDDLE EAST” . The terrorism attack of September 11, 2001 served to amplify the focus of the United States on the Middle East and the potential threats therein .
The United States invasion of Iraq is one example serves as an example of the attention that the United States has lavished on the Middle East, despite the fact that the reasons they originally gave for doing so no longer appear to be true. As Stephen Zunes explains, “WITH THE MAJOR JUSTIFICATIONS FOR THE U.S.-LED INVASION OF IRAQ … NOW DISCREDITED, AND CLAIMS OF WANTING TO CREATE A DEMOCRATIC IRAQ HIGHLY DUBIOUS, THIS RAISES THE QUESTION AS TO WHAT ACTUALLY MOTIVATED THE UNTED STATES” . Some theories suggest that economic factors played a role in this invasion, but another strong driving factor was to impose American interests on the country
The American occupation is not without its costs. “OVERALL, THE INSURGENCY VIOLENCE BEGAN AS, AND REMAINS, A REACTION TO THE OCCUPATION” . Such violence can be compared to that during the American Civil War or the Vietnam War, simply speaking; the inhabitants of the country are trying to get the invaders to leave. Some analysts predict that if the United States were to withdraw their troops, the violence within the Middle East would significantly decrease, as motivation against the United States military decreases. Indeed, when the United States pulled out of a similar situation in Vietnam, much of the hatred and violence dissipated .
Violence continues in Iraq among the various political factions, most prominent of which are the Sunni and the Shiite. The United States has primarily provided support for the Shiites, however this poses a potential problem as “THE SOUTHERN SHIITE REGION IS A POTENTIAL POWERFUL ALLY OF IRAN, WITH AT LEAST ONE MILITIA (MAHDI) FUNDED DIRECTLY BY IRAN” . Suggestions for the future outcome for Iraq include a proposal to divide Iraq into three distinct regions, which would function autonomously. However, it appears unlikely that any such decisions will be made soon .
As can be seen from the above examination, the allocation of power within the Middle East is a tense situation and one that appears to have no immediate solution. One suggestion for easing the worldwide tensions concerning the region would be the establishment of a Nuclear Free Middle East. Significant progress has been made towards this goal; however, as of May 2010, Israel had not yet signed the treaty agreeing to this. Furthermore, substantial concern exists as to whether Iran is fully disclosing its nuclear activities
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