More than a doctrine : the Eisenhower era in the Middle East, a study of presidential foreign policy rhetoric


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Announced on January 5, 1957, Eisenhower Doctrine represented a major shift in American rhetoric and policy toward the Middle East. This study performs a unique task by analyzing the specifically rhetorical significance of the Eisenhower Doctrine as it pertained to defining the relationship between the United States and the Middle East. Before Eisenhower, the Middle East was depicted in presidential rhetoric as existing outside the realm of American political or military responsibility, a precedent the Eisenhower Doctrine Address clearly broke. Eisenhower initially embraced the rhetorical strategy of his predecessors, as illuminated by his rhetoric of misdirection employed alongside Operation Ajax in Iran. Confronted by the Suez Crisis, however, Ike positioned America as an impartial and necessary arbiter in the region, anticipating the Eisenhower Doctrine. Finally, Ike’s rhetorical redefinition of America’s role in the Middle East was enacted to material effect during the occupation of Lebanon in 1958, cementing this shift.



Eisenhower. Middle East.