1st Edition

The United States and Greek-Turkish Relations The Guardian’s Dilemma

By Spyros Katsoulas Copyright 2022
    230 Pages 4 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    230 Pages 4 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book examines the role of the United States in Greek–Turkish relations and fills an important gap in alliance theory regarding the guardian’s dilemma.

    The strategy of a great power involves not only tackling threats from enemies, but also dealing with problems that arise between allies. Every time Greece and Turkey threatened to go to war against each other, the United States had to effectively restrain its two strategic allies without straining relations with either one of them. This book explores how the United States responded to the guardian’s dilemma in six crises during the Cold War, pursuing a policy of dual restraint to prevent an intra-alliance conflict, mitigate the consequences of each crisis, and maintain effective control of the Rimland Bridge.

    From a neoclassical-realist standpoint, the book examines how the United States responded to each Greek–Turkish crisis, for what reasons, and with what results. It will be of interest to scholars of foreign policy, security studies, geopolitics, and international relations.


    Chapter 1 – The theoretical framework

    Chapter 2 – The geopolitical context

    Chapter 3 – The first crisis, 1955

    Chapter 4 – The long crisis, 1963-1964

    Chapter 5 – The short crisis, 1967

    Chapter 6 – The great crisis, 1974

    Chapter 7 – The first Aegean crisis, 1976

    Chapter 8 – The second Aegean crisis, 1987



    Spyros Katsoulas is a strategic historian with a special research interest in geopolitics, alliances, and diplomatic history. He studied international relations at Panteion University of Athens and holds a MA in War Studies from Kings College, London, and a Ph.D. in International Relations and Strategy from the University of Reading, UK. He has been awarded with scholarships by the Greek State Scholarship Foundation and the Fulbright Foundation in Greece. He is a research associate at the Institute of International Relations in Athens, adjunct lecturer at the Hellenic National Defence College, and translator of books in international relations.