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Gulf Security and the U.S. MilitaryRegime Survival and the Politics of Basing$
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Geoffrey F. Gresh

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780804794206

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804794206.001.0001

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A Saudi Sandstorm

A Saudi Sandstorm

Revolution, Rivalry, and Terrorism

(p.143) 6 A Saudi Sandstorm
Gulf Security and the U.S. Military

Geoffrey F. Gresh

Stanford University Press

This chapter studies the process that led to the Saudi decision to reestablish a U.S. military basing presence in 1990. Though Saudi Arabia maintained its partnership with the U.S. military throughout the 1970s and 1980s, the U.S. was not given control of local bases after 1962 until the First Gulf War. The external threat posed by Iraq was the main driver behind convincing the Saud monarchy to allow a U.S. military basing presence. From 1990 to 2003, the kingdom confronted major domestic security challenges, including several terrorist attacks motivated by the U.S. military basing presence, but it was not until Saddam Hussein was finally removed in 2003 that the U.S. military was asked to terminate its basing presence. Iran also posed less of a threat to the kingdom since U.S. military bases surrounded Iran on both its eastern and western borders, including in Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, Afghanistan, and Kyrgyzstan.

Keywords:   Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, First Gulf War, Second Gulf War, Osama Bin Laden, Al-Qaeda, terrorism, base politics, Khobar Towers

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