By Aiyaz Husain
By the tip of global battle II, strategists in Washington and London regarded forward to a brand new period during which the us shouldered worldwide tasks and Britain focused its nearby pursuits extra narrowly. the 2 powers additionally seen the Muslim global via very various lenses. Mapping the tip of Empire finds how Anglo-American perceptions of geography formed postcolonial futures from the center East to South Asia.
Aiyaz Husain indicates that American and British postwar method drew on well known notions of geography in addition to educational and army wisdom. as soon as codified in maps and memoranda, those views grew to become foundations of international coverage. In South Asia, American officers anticipated an self sufficient Pakistan blocking off Soviet effect, an target that outweighed different concerns within the contested Kashmir zone. Shoring up Pakistan meshed completely with British hopes for a quiescent Indian subcontinent as soon as partition turned inevitable. yet severe transformations with Britain arose over America's help for the recent nation of Israel. Viewing the Mediterranean as a ecu lake of types, U.S. officials--even in components of the kingdom Department--linked Palestine with Europe, deeming it a wonderfully logical vacation spot for Jewish refugees. yet British strategists feared that the deploy of a Jewish nation in Palestine may perhaps incite Muslim ire from one nook of the Islamic global to the other.
As Husain makes transparent, those views additionally stimulated the Dumbarton Oaks convention and blueprints for the UN safety Council and formed French and Dutch colonial fortunes within the Levant and the East Indies.
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Extra info for Mapping the End of Empire: American and British Strategic Visions in the Postwar World
Some British officials believed at the outset that Palestine could not be partitioned, leading the Foreign Office to retreat from the Peel Commission’s findings almost upon their release. At the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939, Great Britain issued another White Paper on Palestine, a document that would profoundly affect the fate of displaced European Jews in the war and arouse the most vitriolic Zionist opposition Whitehall had yet faced. Its recommendations were threefold. 14 In stipulating that “political and psychological factors must be taken into consideration” in determining future immigration quotas, Zionists lashed 28 • Mapping the End of Empire out that the 1939 White Paper represented a complete British capitulation to Arab demands.
In assessing the strategic importance of Palestine, the resultant document cited the centrality of Palestine’s geographic importance for the linkage of the United Kingdom with the empire in the east and its co-location with one of the Eastern Mediterranean’s oil terminals. But unlike the independent states of the region with which the United Kingdom enjoyed sovereign treaty relationships, the loss of Britain’s predominant position in Palestine could likely not be recouped easily through a future treaty.
32 Similarly, though their exploration in depth exceeds the scope of this book, other (perhaps more contestable) bases of national identity drove revolts in both the Arab Levant and the East Indies, where French and Dutch colonial power lost control of prewar possessions suddenly in the turmoil of rapidly demobilizing British military occupation and succumbed to the influence of expansive American military basing, air transport, and commercial presences radiating outward into former colonial spheres of influence.
Mapping the End of Empire: American and British Strategic Visions in the Postwar World by Aiyaz Husain