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  You are in: Home > Middle East Studies > The Superpowers, Israel and the Future of Jordan, 1960–1963  

The Superpowers, Israel and the Future of Jordan, 1960–1963
The Perils of the Pro-Nasser Policy

Zaki Shalom

Zaki Shalom is a senior researcher at the Ben-Gurion Research Institute at Ben-Gurion University. He is also member of the research staff at the Institute for National Security Studies. He has published extensively on various facets of Israel’s defense policy, the Arab–Israeli conflict, and the role of the superpowers in the Middle East, and Israel’s struggle against Islamic terror. He is the author of Israel’s Nuclear Option.


The book uses recently released papers – from Israeli, British and US State Department archives – which demonstrate the thinking behind the diplomatic moves relating to the western powers’ commitment to Jordan and the pro-Nasser policy of the Kennedy administration.

The book examines Israeli efforts to preserve the stability of the Jordanian monarchy under king Hussein, as well as the territorial status quo between Israel and Jordan, in terms of the maneuverings of powerful factions in Israel to take advantage of the crisis so as to make territorial gains.

Foreword by Professor Avi Shlaim
Preface and Acknowledgments


1 Development of the “Pro-Nasser” Policy

American Policy in the Middle East
Justifying Policy Decisions
The Arab-Israeli Conflict

2 Major Characteristics of Nasser’s Regime

Egypt and the Arab-Israeli Conflict
Egypt between East and West
Egypt’s Inter-Arab Policy
Strategic-Political-Economic Importance of Egypt to the Western Bloc

3 The Western Powers and Jordan

4 The April–May 1963 Crisis

Background of the Crisis
Wasfi Tell Premiership
The Civil War in Yemen

5 Development of the Crisis

Deteriorating Position of the Government
The Samir Rifa’i Premiership
The Sheriff Hussein Premiership

6 Diplomatic Activity of the Ambassadors
The Initial Stages
Egypt’s Role in the Crisis
The “Plot” Against Hussein
Deliberations on Military Involvement
The French Connection

7 Israel and the April-May 1963 Crisis

Israeli Dialogue with Western Powers
Israel’s Dialogue with the United States
Western Assessments of Israeli Motives
Western Attitudes towards Israel

8 Israel and Jordan – From Crisis to Peace

Israeli Policy towards Jordan
Concealed Israeli Territorial Aspirations
The Beginning of the Israeli–Jordanian Strategic Dialogue


“It is sure to become the standard work on the April–May 1963 Jordanian crisis.”Israel Affairs

“Shalom provides ample evidence that there was hope of winning Nasser overto the West – the price of which was alienating the Hashemites.” The International History Review

“Explores the real motives that dictated the behaviour of the various actors… it conveys the full richness of the sources that are now available in British, American, and Israeli archives.” From the Foreword by Avi Shlaim, St Antony’s College, Oxford


Publication Details

Hardback ISBN:
Page Extent / Format:
160 pp. / 229 x 152 mm
Release Date:
June 1999
  Illustrated:   No
Hardback Price:
£39.95 / $60.00

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