By :

Hasan Johar – Department of Political Science – Kuwait University

Gawdat Bahgat – Department of Political Science – Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Published in:

Journal of South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies Vol. XIX, No. 1, Fall 1995 (pp. 57-71)


The American Dilemma in the Gulf Region



For the last several decades, oil has been the primary source of energy almost all over the world. In 1990, oil represented 39 percent of the total energy consumption worldwide and is projected to decline slightly to 37 percent by the year 2010.1 In fact, oil has shaped both economic growth and modern life. The low oil prices in the decades following the Second World War provided the world economy with the essential level of stability and made the world deepen its dependency on oil. The following table shows the pattern of oil prices during the period from 1946 to 1992.


Table I

Oil Prices in U.S. dollars per barrel (1946-1992)




Source: Oil & Gas Journal, Energy Statistics Sourcebook. Tulsa, OK: Penn

Well Publishing Company 1993, p. 382.


The above table reveals an important characteristic of oil. In addition of being subject to supply and demand, like all other economic commodities; oil prices are also determined by political forces. The price hikes of 1974, 1980, and 1990 correspond respectively to the Arab-Israeli War, the Iranian Revolution and the Iraq-Iran War, and the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. On the other side, the 1986 plunge occurred when Saudi Arabia deliberately decided to glut the market in response to overproduction by other oil producers, thus, leading to an ever declining Saudi Production.

In response to these political developments and in an attempt to ensure safe and adequate energy supplies that might permit uninterrupted economic growth, the United States led the members of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and development (OECD) to establish the International Energy Agency (IEA) in 1974-1975. In addition, the United States created strategic petroleum reserves at a minimum of 500 million and a maximum of 1 billion barrels. The main objective behind these efforts has been to reduce American vulnerability to imported oil, particularly from the Gulf region. Oil vulnerability and Washington’s increasing dependency on the Gulf can be illustrated by the widening gap between consumption and production in the United States on one hand and on the other hand, by the huge reserves in the Gulf states as tables II and III show.


Table II

American Vulnerability to Oil from the Gulf (million barrels per day)


OECD Europe04.5804.8105.0806.4005.3004.80
Former USSR11.4010.4108.9108.5009.7011.00
Eastern Europe00.3400.2900.2500.4000.4000.40
O P E C24.8124.9326.3835.5040.9044.00


Source: Energy Information Administration, International Energy Outlook

1994, Pittsburgh, PA: US. Government Printing Office, July 1994, p. 13.


Table III

Estimated Crude Oil Reserves in 1994 (billion barrels)


CountryBillion BarrelsCountryBillion Barrels
United States23.70Egypt006.30
United Kingdom04.60Iraq100.00
Former USSR57.00Qatar003.70
China24. 00UAE098.1 0
Indonesia05.80Saudi Arabia261.20
Nigeria17.90World Total999.10


Source: Oil & Gas Journal, Vol. 91, No. 52, December 27, 1993: pp. 44-45.


As tables II and III show OPEC, with its six Gulf states, is the only region in the world with a steady solid increase of production. Moreover, oil reserves in these states (Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates) represent 65.3 percent, or almost two-thirds, of world reserves.

Based on the above realities, no wonder United States felt the need to draw a policy to ensure its oil security. The bottom line of this policy is the avoidance of a sudden, substantial, and potentially prolonged interruption of oil supplies with its ultimate consequences of rising prices.

Such an interruption seems unlikely in the mid 19903. But the continuity of this security depends, to a great extent, on the stability of the Gulf states which are already facing economic as well as political challenges.



The term “rent” refers to any income not originating from the productive activity of the local population. In addition, it describes a condition in which a government derives a substantial part of its revenue from selling goods or services at prices well above their production costs.2 Considering the fact that oil accounts for almost 90 percent of revenues in almost all Gulf states, it is fair to describe the majority of them as rentier economies.

High oil prices in most of the 1970s and the early 198os permitted these governments to provide their citizens with free health, education, and welfare services without collecting any taxes. This huge wealth in the hands of the governments helped to reduce and silence most of the political oppositions. However, since the mid-19805 two developments have weakened the ability of Gulf states to keep performing this role. The first one has been the steady decline of oil prices as table I above shows. Moreover, the future does not look any brighter. As a recent report by the Middle East Economic Digest puts it: “No more oil market windfalls are in prospect this side of the new millennium.”3 Another recent study predicts that the prices of oil will not experience any dramatic change over the next several years”.4

The second significant development has been the military situation in the region. Since the early 1980s, most of the Gulf states have collected substantial portion of their national income to defense purposes as table IV illustrates.

Table IV shows how high the defense expenditures in the Gulf region are in comparison with other countries in a similar stage of development. These huge defense allocations have been curtailing the ability of Gulf governments to keep playing the role of rentier states (providing free and state of the art services to their citizens). Finally, the Gulf War made a bad situation even worse. There are no accurate estimates of the costs of the war, but it can be seen by its shocking economic impact. According to the International Monetary Fund GDP declined by 4 percent in 1991 and the current account shifted from a surplus of $10 billion to a deficit of $43 billion in the Middle East as a whole.5

These tragic developments have had a tremendous negative impact on the economic performance in the area as has been reflected in the average annual growth rate of GNP per capita from 1980 to 1992 in Bahrain (-3.8), Iran (-1.4), Qatar (-11.2), Saudi Arabia (-3.3), UAE (-4.3). The only state with positive growth rate was Oman (4.1).6

Thus, Saudi Arabia has recorded budget deficits annually for the last decade. In order to finance this deficit, in 1988 the government began direct borrowing through a domestic government development bond program. In the aftermath of the Gulf War, Saudi government signed loan syndications with international banks. By the end of 1992, total Saudi government debt was an estimated 66.89 billion dollars or 55 percent of its GDP.7 After being a significant creditor to the world economy in most of the 1980s, Kuwait recorded a budget deficit estimated at $70 billion in Fiscal Years 1990/91 and 1991/92. Like Saudi Arabia, Kuwait was forced to borrow in order to finance this deficit. Kuwait foreign and domestic debt in 1994 is estimated to be $58-40 billion.8


Table IV

Percentages of Central Government Expenditures Spent on Defense (ME/CGE) in the Gulf States


YearBahrainIranIraqKuwaitOmanQatarS. ArabiaUAEDeveloping


ME: military expenditure; CGE: central government expenditure.

Source: U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency. World Military Expenditures and Arms Transfers 1991-1992, March 1994, table 1, pp. 47-85.


The economic situation in Iran and Iraq has been much worse. Because of their eight-year long war, the two countries could not establish financial basis to promote economic development or even to sustain a reasonable standard of living for their citizens. Iran was able to come out of the war with almost no external debt. A year later, in 1989 when President Rafsanjani took office a sense of optimism had prevailed. The President gave higher priority to pragmatism over ideology. However, by the mid 1994, it looks that the pragmatic faction has been backed into a comer by resurgent hard-liners. Mr. Rafsanjani has been repeatedly blocked in his five year battle to control the bureaucracy, privatize the economy, unify the foreign exchange rate and promote economic development by obstructionist Parliament. Thus, in the late July 1994, a Parliamentary committee doubled the plan’s proposal for Subsidies for wheat, rice, sugar, cooking oil and cheese, despite the President’s call for a gradual ending of such subsidies. The chamber also ordered a halt to the sale of some state industries and voted down a bill to reduce the heavy subsidy for gasoline, which sells for about 8 cents a gallon at Iranian pumps.9

Iraq came out of its war with Iran with huge external debt which had been an important reason for its invasion of Kuwait. The almost complete destruction of Iraq’s infrastructure in the Gulf War and the sanctions which have been imposed by the United Nations in the aftermath of that war have brought the economy to its knees. According to a recent report issued by the US. State Department, UN sanctions have cut Iraq’s living standards to half the pre-war level.10 In short, the political turmoil in the two countries has undermined the developmental efforts and eroded their government’s ability to provide the basic commodities and social services to their citizens.

To sum up, the economic performance of most of the systems in the Gulf has been poor in most of the 19805 and the early1990s. This has prompted the political elites to relax the heavy hand of the government and to introduce liberalization in order to ease the tension.



The shrinking financial resources of the Gulf states since the mid 1980s due to the sharp decline in oil prices (table I) and the huge military expenditures (table IV) has reduced the ability of the rentier states to fulfill their welfare commitments. In addition, the presence of American and other foreign troops in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states during the Gulf War and thereafter raised questions among citizens about the ability of their governments to defend them, especially, after billions of dollars of oil wealth had been previously spent on defense (as table IV shows) without apparent success. Moreover, increasing populations, the rise of a middle class and a general improvement in the educational level of the masses have exerted pressure on the political elites and created the sense that politics can not go as usual indefinitely.

Thus, since the beginning of this decade, a number of prominent citizens in the GCC states signed petitions requesting more participation in the political process, more accountability, and more freedom. The ruling families under this domestic pressure and, to a lesser extent, under international pressure inspired by the wave of democratization worldwide have had no other option but to respond in one way or another to these popular aspirations.

In March 1992, King Fahd of Saudi Arabia issued three royal decrees concerning a basic system of government, a system of regional government for the Kingdom’s fourteen provinces and the eventual creation of a consultative council. The council’s role was defined to debate policy decisions and offer advice on domestic and foreign issues. All the sixty-one members are chosen by the King and are allowed to retain their positions in the government. The council was officially inaugurated in December 1993 but by Virtue of its mandate and composition it is very doubtful that it will be able to play any significant role. In May 1993, a Committee to Defend Legitimate Rights (CDLR) was created by prominent Saudi jurists and university professors. It was the first, and only, non-governmental organization with interest in political rights. The government showed no tolerance; in just few days the CDRL’s founders were dismissed from their government jobs and a number of them were arrested. Finally, the government reached anagreement with its Shiite opponents by which they would suspend their activities abroad, including putting out publications that attack the Kingdom’s policy and its record on human rights. In return, the dissidents were allowed to return home, the government released a number of Shiite detainees and reissued passports to others.11

Kuwait went further than Saudi Arabia and other GCC states in responding to popular demands for political reform, partially, because the impact of the Gulf War has been the heaviest there, and partially because Kuwait has more experience with political liberization than other neighboring Arab states. The 1962 constitution vested executive power in the Emir who was supposed to rule through an appointed prime minister and a Council of Ministers. The National Assembly had the right to initiate and veto legislation and became a forum for diverse viewpoints.

The government shows no tolerance, the National Assembly was suspended from 1976 to 1981 and again from 1986 to 1990. Few months before the Iraqi invasion, political arrangements were reached between the government and some of the opposition groups by which elections where held for fifty seats of a seventy-five member interim National Council, which served until a new Assembly was elected in 1992. In this election the suffrage was limited to “first-class” males, defined as those who were over twenty-one and could prove that they or their ancestors had lived in Kuwait before 1920 and maintained a residence in the country until at least 1959. Thus only 81,400 first-class male citizens were eligible to vote which accounts for less than 11 percent of the native population.12 Seven political groups, not parties, contested the elections and more than thirty of their members and independents won the majority of the fifty seats. However, the new cabinet was dominated by the royal family who retained the posts of prime minister, first deputy, and key portfolios of defense, foreign affairs, information, and interior. Finally, since its election in October 1992, the Kuwaiti Parliament has shown a great deal of independence from the government and provided a sense of responsibility and participation to the political process.

Other members in the GCC have had similar limited experiments with liberalization. After crushing the insurrection in Dhofar in1975, Sultan Qabus of Oman has faced very little organized opposition. In 1981 he appointed a Consultative Assembly which was dominated by the government and had very little power. In the aftermath of the Gulf War, a new council was created to replace the old one. Each of the country’s fifty-nine provinces nominated three prominent citizens and the Sultan chose a member per province. The Council’s role was defined to comment on legislation, prepare development plants, and voice citizens’ concerns. Since its “establishment” in 1991, the Omani Parliament has enjoyed more power and independence than the previous one.

Sheik Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa, the Emir of Bahrain, dissolved the thirty-member popularly elected National Assembly in 1975 just two years after its inauguration. In a response to domestic, regional, and international pressure a new Council was established in late 1992. However, this new Assembly is appointed and lacks any real legislative power.

Iraq is the only Arab Gulf state with a republican political system. However, the Iraqi regime is a one-man political system. President Saddam Hussein has been the main figure since 1973 and became formally president in 1979. Iraq provides a universal suffrage but the one-party political system has been established and maintained by terrorizing its citizens. A National Assembly exists but has no power and is considered a rubber stamp.

Finally, Iran, the only non-Arab Gulf state, has a mixed record.13 President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani was elected in 1989 by a margin of 94.5 percent and again for another term in 1993 by 63.2 percent. According to the Iranian constitution he is limited to two terms, thus another president will be elected in 1997, a foreign practice in the other seven Gulf states. Moreover, the Islamic Republic has held parliamentary elections every four years since 1980; everyone, male or female, over 15 years of age is eligible to vote. However, many western observers believe that competition does exist only within the inner circle of the clerics and their supporters; but outside this small circle there is very little tolerance.

To sum up, the creation of these consultative councils in the GCC states can be understood more as a tactical maneuver to release the public tension and less as a serious step toward democracy. Democracy is much more than just establishing democratic institutions, which most of the Gulf states lack. The US. State Department, Amnesty International, and Human Rights Watch all have documented a gross violation of basic human rights in most of Gulf countries. Basic human rights such as freedom of press and association are denied. Women, ethnic groups, and religious minorities. are subject to heavy persecution. The royal families, the Ba’ath Party, and the clerics enjoy tremendous power and dominate the political process and show no tolerance to any opposition. On the other side, the average citizens lack official channels to have their voices heard. This raises an important question: Can these economic and political circumstances create and sustain the right environment to protect American national interests in this vital region?



Recent developments (since the late 1980s) have created conditions or American foreign policy in the Gulf region. The end of the Cold War removed the Soviet threats to the oil sources and left the United States as the dominant superpower. Most of the radical regional powers were forced to alter their domestic and foreign policies to accommodate the new dynamics in the international system. The eight year Iran-Iraq War left Iran in shambles both economically and militarily. Eight years of fighting accompanied by almost complete worldwide isolation have taken their tools on the standard of living for the average citizens, interrupted its developmental efforts, and weakened its military power. The Gulf War and the subsequent United Nations sanctions have destroyed the Iraqi economic infrastructure, its military might and divided the country into three parts: two no-fly zones in the north and the south, and only the middle under Saddam Hussein’s authority. Moreover, the Gulf War made it easier for the GCC states to cooperate more openly with the United States with no fear of being described as American puppets. Finally, the vigorous Arab-Israeli peace process has improved Washington’s image and removed an important source of tension in Arab-American relations. Consequently, the probability of using oil as a political weapon, as it happened in the 1973 War, has been diminished or eliminated in the short term. For the long term, American efforts to secure oil resources in the Gulf since the early 1990s have had twodimensions: increasing military and economic cooperation with the GCC states; and weakening the other two regional powers, Iraq and Iran, or what is known as “dual containment”. The has been to re-establish a balance of power at a much lower level of military capability and keep the United States in a position to hold the balance and counter any challenges.

Under these guidelines, Washington reached bilateral military arrangements with a number of GCC states and increased its arms sales to the region as a whole. In 1993, nearly 80 percent of American arms sales came from two major deals involving advanced weapons. Saudi Arabia bought 72 F-15 fighter jets from the McDonnell Douglas Corporation for $9.5 billion. Kuwait bought 256 M1-A2 battle tanks from the General Dynamics Corporation for $2.2 billion.14 High-ranking American officials have not missed any opportunity to confirm their commitments to the defense of the GCC regimes. As US. Secretary of State Warren Christopher stated in February 1993, “President Clinton’s commitment to the security of friends in the Gulf, like that of every president since Franklin Roosevelt, is firm and constant.”15

Washington’s close alliance with the royal families in the Gulf bears a great deal of danger to American national interests in the long run. Regimes that rest on democratic procedures for eliciting the consent of their people are the best bets for long term stability. The Arab Gulf states, as the foregoing analysis proves, are far away from democracy. There are no agreed-on procedures to transfer power. The leaders do not leave office voluntarily. They either die or are removed by force. The heads of GCC states have been in office for very long as table V indicates. Moreover, in some of the these states it is not clear who would inherit the crown, or how smooth the succession process will be.

American administrations have had even harder times drawing and implementing a cohesive policy toward the other Arab Gulf state, Iraq. In response to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait President George Bush issued Executive Orders 12722 and 12724 which, respectively, froze Iraqi government assets within the United States or in the possession or control of US. persons, and barred virtually all unlicensed transactions between U.Spersons and Iraq.16 In addition, United Nations Security Council issued resolutions 661 (1990) and 670 (1990) which forbid member states companies and individuals from dealing with the Iraqi government or with the Iraqi private firms, except with regard to goods deemed by the UN sanctions have had devastating consequences on the Iraqi people. Thus, the Iraqi leaders were prompted to begin closer cooperation with the United Nations. In addition, a number of countries, such as Turkey, France, Russia, and China, are eager to resume trading with Iraq; The last quarter of 1994, the Clinton administration insisted on retaining the sanctions, but no doubt they will be lifted eventually. It is not clear what will happen then.


Table V

GCC Rulers


RulersStatesReign (since)
Sheikh Isa bin Salman Al KhalifaBahrain1961-
Sultan Qabus bin Sa’id A1 Sa’idOman1970-
Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al NuhayyanUAE1971-
Sheikh Jabir Al Ahmad A1 SabahKuwait1977-
King Fahd bin Abdul Aziz Al saud SaudiArabia1982-
Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al ThaniQatar1995-


In 1991, what has remained of the Iraqi army ruthlessly crushed two rebellions, the Kurdish in the north and the Shiite in the south. In response, United States and other countries established two no-fly zones for Iraqi warplanes one north of the 36th parallel and the other south of the 32nd parallel. The Kurds elected a parliament and created a government which began functioning almost as an autonomous state. However, since early May 1994 the top Kurdish leaders: Massoud Barzani, who heads the Kurdistan Democratic Party, and Jalal Talabani, leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, have been fighting each other.17 In addition, many countries have expressed their interest in keeping the territorial integrity of Iraq. Eventually, American and other allied troops will have to leave. Again, it is not clear what will happen then.

As long as he remains in power, Saddam Hussein will be a dictator and a troublesome neighbor. Washington has been supporting the Iraqi National Congress which is a multiparty opposition coalition composed of Shiite, Sunni, Kurds, and others. It is not clear how the United States can get rid of Saddam Hussein as Iraq has never known a bloodless transfer of power.

What can be said, with some confidence, is that Iran, having the longest border with Iraq of any regional state and having close relations with the Shiite (between 55 percent to 60 percent of the Iraqi population) will have some influence. Since its revolution in 1979, Iranian politics, both domestic and foreign have been shaped by the continuous struggle between the extremists and the moderates. To a great extent, American foreign policy in the Gulf failed to give support to the moderate camp. The hostage crisis, Iran-contra affairs, and other developments have not given Washington enough incentives to work, with good faith, with the Iranian. Thus, American diplomats have labeled Iran as an “international outlaw” and “rogue regime”. Iran was placed on the terrorist list by the States Department in 1984. This meant the mandatory imposition of stringent export controls on a broad range of dual-use technology. These controls were tightened in 1987, and again in 1989, to cover virtually all computers, machine-tools, large diesel engines, commercial aircraft, navigation equipment, electronic test equipment, and scientific instruments.18 Moreover, in October 1992, President Bush signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act which included a provision authored by Senator John McCain known as the Iran-Iraq Nonproliferation Act of 1992. This bill extended all sanctions then applicable to Iraq equally to Iran.

The State Department headed by secretary Warren Christopher, whose previous spell in government as Deputy Secretary of State had been marked by the hostage crisis in 1979, has pressured European allies and international financial institutions to isolate Iran and cut any commercial ties with Tehran. In response, Iran’s projected annual loan portfolio from the World Bank was cut to $350 million from $750 million and Iran was told to look elsewhere for financing.19

Clinton administration cites six areas of disagreements with Iran. These include, human rights, the acquisition of nuclear technology, support for terrorism abroad, pursuit of a military buildup, opposition to the Arab-Israeli peace talks, and the subversion of Arab governments friendly to the United States. However, many observers of Iranian policy disagree with the administration’s assumptions.20 Iranian record on human rights may be bad, they argue, but the other Gulf states’ records are not any better. Pentagon officials say Iran spent only about $800 million on foreign arms in 1993 and has made much less progress on its nuclear weapons program than expected.21 At a news conference on June 7, 1994 President Rafsanjani said Iran would take no action to disrupt the Arab-Israeli talks, “We do not wish to intervene in practice and physically disrupt the process.”22 Finally, the argument goes, “Iran is by no means innocent of all terrorist activities abroad.

At the same time, it is a serious distortion of reality to consider Tehran as the central capital of terrorism in the world.”23

It is also important to point out that Japan, Germany, Italy, and other European countries have extensive commercial and financial relations with Iran. In addition, American oil companies have emerged as major supporters of the Iranian economy. Under the Iranian constitution, President Rafsanjani cannot run again when his second term runs out in 1997. Washington policy toward Tehran will likely play a role in determining who would succeed him, a moderate or an extremist?



Oil is the main source of energy, world economy runs on oil. Moreover, if the global economic recovery extends to Eastern Europe and Russia, world demand for oil will increase. Gulf states are the largest producers and have the biggest reserves of oil. United States as the only remaining superpower, the largest economy in the world and the biggest consumer of oil, has clear and definite interests in securing oil supplies from the Gulf. In the aftermath of the Gulf War, it looks that the threats of interruption have been minimized. However, the seeds for disruption are there. Security means not only maintaining defensible borders, but also providing economic prosperity and political legitimacy. Washington’s policy in the region has focused more on preserving the status quo and less on acting and shaping the socio-economic and political change.

In the aftermath of the Gulf War, the threats to oil supplies are political, not military. United States has shown the rest of the world and the regional powers that it would not tolerate any military challenge in the Gulf. Thus, the likelihood of a military confrontation has diminished. Instead, the challenge will focus on local elites, whom the United States depends on. Scenarios of popular uprising in any of the Gulf states with high degree of uncertainty cannot be ruled out. American support to a societal democratic infrastructure, such as civil society and human rights, will not just maintain economic prosperity and. political stability in the Gulf, but would also serve American national interests.



1 Energy Information Administration, International Energy Outlook 1994

(Pittsburgh PA: U.S. Government Printing Office, July 1994) p. 8.

2 For a thorough analysis see Hazem Beblawi and Giacomo Luciani, (Eds), The Rentier State (London: Croom Helm, 1987).

3 The Middle East Economic Digest, 38, 1 “In Search for New GrowthnStrategies,” (Ianuary 7, 1994) p. 2.

4 National Research Council, National Modeling System (Washington DC: National Academy Press, 1992).

5 International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook (Washington DC: Author, October 1991), p. 22.

6 World Bank, World Development Report 1994 (New York: Oxford University Press, June 1994) table 1, pp. 162-163.

7 Department of State, Country Reports on Economic Policy and Trade Practices (Washington DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, February 1994), pp. 479-481.

8 Department of State, Country Report on Economic Policy and Trade Practices (Washington DC: US. Government Printing Office, February 1994), p. 468.

9 Chris Hedges, “Islamic Hard-Liners Said to Gain Ground in Iran,” New York Times (August 3, 1994).

10 Department of State, Country Reports on Economic Policy and Trade Practices (Washington DC: US. Government Printing Office, February 1994), p. 455.

11 Youssef M. Ibrahim, “Saudi Officials Reporting Accord With Shiite Foes,” New York Times (October 29, 1993.

12 Human Rights Watch, Human Rights Watch Report 1994 (New York: Author, December, 1993), p. 316.

13 In a recent survey of Islam conducted by the Economist, Iran was one of seven Muslim states which “can in one degree or another even hesitantly by called democracies.” The other six are: Turkey, Malaysai, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Lebanon, and Jordan. See The Economist, Vol. 332, No. 7875, “A Survey of Islam,” (August 6, 1994), pp. 1-18.

14 Eric Schmitt, “U.S. Arms Merchants Patten Share of Sales to Third World,” New York Times (August 2, 1994).

15 Human Rights Watch, p. 318.

16 Department of State, Country Reports on Economic Policy and Trade Practices (Washington DC: US. Government Printing Office, February, 1994), pp. 454.

17 Chris Hedge, “Quarrels of Kurdish Leaders Sour Dreams of a Homeland,” New York Times (June 28, 1994).

18 Subcommittee on International Security, International Organizations and Human Rights of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, House of Representatives, One Hundred Third Congress, First Session, July 28 and September 14, 1993 (Washington DC: US. Government Printing Office), p. 52.

19 Vahe Petrossian, “Iran: U.S. victory on World Bank Lending,” Middle East Economic Digest, 38, 20 (May 20, 1994) p. 20.

20 For a good criticism see James A. Bill, “The United States and Iran: Mutual Mythologies,” Middle East Policy, 2, 3 (1993), pp. 98-106; and Gregory F. Gause, Oil Monarchies: Domestic and Security Challenges in the Arab Gulf States (New York: Council on Foreign Relations Press, 1994).

21 Elaine Sciolino, “Iran’s Problems Raising Doubts of Peril to US,” New York Times (July 5, 1994).

22 Ibid.

23 James A. Bill, “The United States and Iran: Mutual Mythologies,” Middle East Policy, 2, 3 (1993), pp. 102.