How did the role of the superpowers change in the Middle East in the years 1945-93

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One way in which the superpowers played an part in the Arab-Israeli conflict was through the support of the foundation of Israel in 1948. Golda Meir’s fundraising efforts were very successful, as she was able to procure $50 million in private donations from the US, showing the initial stages of US support for the Israelis. These donations proved useful for the purchase of armaments by the Israelis. Both the Soviets and the Americans immediately accepted the formation of the new state of Israel, but it was the Americans who were more overwhelmingly supportive.

This links to way in which the Soviet Union was also increasingly supportive of states in the Middle East, namely the Arab states. After the UK and the US refused to aid Nasser in his Aswan Dam project, the Soviet Union made large monetary donations to the Egyptian government, as well as making donations of armaments, leading to the Soviet Union becoming one of the major allies to Egypt, as well as other Arab states. This shows how the superpowers played an increasing role in that the Middle East became more involved in Cold war tensions between the US and the USSR.

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This links to another way in which the superpowers were increasingly involved in the conflict in the Middle East, which is through the support of the Arabs and the Israelis during the conflict in the 1960s. It is estimated that the US donated $2bn to Israel and the USSR donated $2.5bm to the Arab states during the Six Day War of 1967, and this is not excluding the tanks and MiG fighter planes loaned out to Egypt by the USSR before the war. After the Six Day War, Israel became the primary ally for the Americans in the Middle ...

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