As I finish this book today, forces backed by the United States have announced they are heading toward the erstwhile capital of the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. At the same time forces from Russia, the former Soviet Union, are also engaged in attempting to take what was once the second largest city in Syria from the various rebel factions in the country and Turkey is poised to invaded even further into the Syria.
Across the Middle East turmoil still rages from what was once touted as the Arab Spring. A time that was supposed to relive the people living in the region from despotism and bring democracy and self rule to this expanse of the world. Instead, uncertainty remains in most, terror and war in many more countries. I find it fitting to finish a history of Americas first fumbling steps in the region after taking up the mantle of the most powerful country in the world and the beacon of the free world.
The parallels from what is happening now to what occurred following World War 2 is remarkable. Hugh Wilford does a fine job of explaining the protagonist and antagonist at the heart of Americas attempt to relieve the Arab world of the oppression of colonialism and the new Cold War era. The good intentions and the mistakes made in pursuit of noble goals faulty carried out. While not quite as eloquent as Ben McIntyre and his histories of the World War 2 era, Wilford’s prose is strong and easy to read.