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The Iranian Revolution and the US Policy of Dual Containment: A Presentation


By Sasan Fayazmanesh, Professor of Economics, California State University, Fresno

2009 marks the 30th anniversary of the Iranian Revolution. The Revolution ended a symbiotic relation between the US and the Shah, whereby the latter helped to sustain the economic and political interests of the US in the Persian Gulf region and the former helped to preserve the rule of the Shah. Since the end of this mutually beneficial relation the US government has tried to contain Iran by imposing numerous sanctions against her and threatening her with military action. The following PowerPoint presentation provides, even without my usual lecture which accompanies the slides, an outline of the US policy toward Iran since the revolution of 1979. To the extent that this policy must be understood in its historical context, the presentation also provides the historical background for the formation of the containment policy.

The Iranian Revolution and the US Policy of Dual Containment
Power Point version (6.87 MB)
pdf version (3.89 MB)

Sasan Fayazmanesh is the author of The United States and Iran: Sanctions, Wars and the Policy of Dual Containment - Routledge Studies in Middle Eastern Politics, 2008

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When and why did the United States policy of containment of Iran come about? How did it evolve? Where is it going? Much has been said about the US policy of dual containment, particularly as it pertains to Iraq. However, there has been little in-depth analysis of this policy when it comes to Iran. Sasan Fayazmanesh explores this often neglected subject by analyzing the history of this policy. The analysis includes the role that the Carter and Reagan Administrations played in the Iran-Iraq war, the numerous sanctions imposed on Iran by the Clinton Administration and the aggressive and confrontational policy toward Iran adopted by the George W. Bush Administration after the events of September 11, 2001. This topical read synthesises a range of primary sources, including firsthand reports, newspaper articles and electronic media, and presents a coherent analysis of the ebbs and flows in the US thinking on Iran and Iraq.

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