America and the Persian Gulf: The Third Party Dimension in World Politics examines the impact of the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan, the Iran-Iraq war and the 1990-91 Persian Gulf crisis on the U.S. strategic position in the Middle East. It develops a theoretical and methodological framework for understanding how conflicts impact actors other than the direct antagonists (the two initial actors in a conflict), a framework with applicability beyond the Middle East. Rather than assuming conventionally that the key issue in understanding conflict is how third parties affect conflict, the framework turns the tables and examines how conflict affects third parties. Empirically and theoretically, it shows that using this framework illuminates much better the real costs and benefits of foreign policy actions, because it takes into consideration their broader and longer term effects on third parties.
"Conflicts emerge from other conflicts, and Yetiv masterfully links several separated by many years and usually thought to be independent."
- Choice, January 1996
"Most interesting...an excellent book...What quickly becomes apparent to the reader is the benefit of his [third party] approach in the study of world affairs"
- The American Journal of Islamic Social Sciences
"What is most remarkable about his third party framework is his reversal of the way in which third parties are often viewed."
- Naval War College Review, Winter 1991
An original and unique analysis of the United States' position in the region....America and the Persian Gulf is thus an important study that should be read by all scholars of international relations and Middle Eastern politics.
-Digest of Middle East Studies
Graduate students should explore Yetiv's questions. Any policymaker living unipolarly or locked in a dydadic worldview should reflect on the advantages of being a responsible "third party."
- American political Science Review
One of the reason this book has special appeal is that it combines major theoretical perspectives with a full empirical study of the Persian Gulf. The author's research is well documented and includes extensive use of official government documents, as well as secondary source material. Reader will find this book a valuable contribution to the literatures on U.S. Foreign policy, strategic, interaction in the Persian Gulf, and international relations theory.
-Perspectives on Political Science