Creating the Arabian Gulf

The British Raj and the Invasions of the Gulf

By (author) Paul J. Rich

Publication date:

16 August 2009

Length of book:

360 pages


Lexington Books

ISBN-13: 9780739127049

Even whether to call the Gulf "Arabian" or "Persian" is an unending argument. Regardless of its name, the Gulf is one of the most politically important regions of the world. Despite its constant presence in the headlines, the fact that it was part of the British Indian empire for many years has gone unappreciated. The long period of British control and the connections with India are, in fact, necessary in understanding the contemporary Middle East. With more than ten years of experience as a government advisor in Saudi Arabia and Qatar, Paul Rich draws on previously closed archives to document the actual heritage of the area and dispel the myths. Rich shows that the influences of Britain and India are far deeper than commonly acknowledged, and that the sheikhs are actually the creation of the British Raj. He explains that they owe their thrones to a small group of British political agents—the "Heaven Born"—who created the satraps and then proceeded to rule from behind the scenes by a clever use of stagecraft and ritual that was heavily flavored by their experiences at English public schools and in Masonic lodges. In its attempt to make sense of the complexity of Arab sheikhdoms in the Gulf, Creating the Arabian Gulf is an ideal book for students and scholars interested in Middle East studies and international relations.
Clearly the whole book is a work of industry and extensive research...much careful research.