The Origins of the US War on Terror

Lebanon, Libya and American Intervention in the Middle East

By Mattia Toaldo

© 2011 – Routledge

214 pages | 3 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9781138851382
pub: 2015-04-26
US Dollars$44.95
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Hardback: 9780415685016
pub: 2012-10-28
US Dollars$140.00
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About the Book

The war on terror did not start after 9/11, rather its origins must be traced back much further to the Reagan administration and the 1980s. Utilizing recently declassified archival resources, Toaldo offers an in-depth analysis of how ideas and threat perceptions were shaped both by traditional US policy in the Middle East during the Cold War and by the cooperation with the Israeli right. The book examines two case studies of American intervention in the region and of its reactions to terrorism: Lebanon between 1982 and 1984 and Libya from 1981 to 1986. The first encounter with Hizbullah and the ‘pre-emptive strike’ against Qadhafi are analyzed in light of the recently released sources.

Tracing foreign policy thinking developed by Reagan officials and Israeli intellectuals and leaders, the work demonstrates the significant impact this thinking had on US foreign policy after 9-11: ideas such as pre-emptive strikes, regime change and state-sponsorship were elaborated in the Reagan years and would later influence Bush’s Global War on Terror. The book will be of great interest to scholars of US Foreign Policy, Middle East studies and American history.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Revolutions 1. Crucial Relations 2. Lebanon, Attack and Withdrawal 3. Defining the Fight Against Terrorism 4. Libya:Pre-emptive Strikes and Regime Change 5. Conclusions: Between the Cold war and the GWOT

About the Author

Mattia Toaldo is currently a fellow for the British School at Rome and the Society for Libyan Studies.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in US Foreign Policy

This new series sets out to publish high quality works by leading and emerging scholars critically engaging with United States Foreign Policy. The series welcomes a variety of approaches to the subject and draws on scholarship from international relations, security studies, international political economy, foreign policy analysis and contemporary international history.

Subjects covered include the role of administrations and institutions, the media, think tanks, ideologues and intellectuals, elites, transnational corporations, public opinion, and pressure groups in shaping foreign policy, US relations with individual nations, with global regions and global institutions and America’s evolving strategic and military policies.

The series aims to provide a range of books – from individual research monographs and edited collections to textbooks and supplemental reading for scholars, researchers, policy analysts, and students.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POL000000
POLITICAL SCIENCE / General