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Dr Guy Laron, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Generals at the Helm: A Global History of the Six Day War

A global crisis that enveloped the developing world in the 1960s shifted the balance of power between civilians and generals in Israel, Egypt, and Syria during the years 1963-1967. It also caused the Soviet Union and the U.S. to militarize their relations with the Middle East. These changes exacerbated existing tensions in the region and created an inflammable environment in which war more probable. The combination of weak civilian leaderships, powerful generals, and interlocking alliances which typified the Middle East in the 1960s is not unique. There is at least one similar instance: namely, World War I. Both the Six-Day war and World War I are examples to how regional wars might start: global shifts causing domestic instability, which, in turn, aggravates regional tensions.

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Institute of Arabic and Islamic Studies