US Hierarchy in the Middle East
Anne Mariel Peters
Sean L. Yom
affiliation not provided to SSRN
APSA 2011 Annual Meeting Paper
The second paper in an ongoing project on international hierarchy, this paper explores the character of US relations in the Middle East. It establishes the theoretical relevance of modern hierarchical arrangements, distinguishing this modern interstate relationship from past forms of historical domination. We orient hierarchy around the notion of mutually beneficial exchange, in which a subordinate state concedes authority over its effective sovereignty to a dominant state in return for the provision of economic and political order. Turning to the Middle East, we operationalize US hierarchical relations by unpacking the different provisions of order provided to local states, as well as the dimensions of effective sovereignty ceded in return. We next organize and present an exhaustive list of indicators in an initial effort to measure the intensity of hierarchies witnessed in US-Middle East dyads. We code the cases and discuss the early results, accentuating revealing patterns in the data. We find that Egypt, Jordan, Oman, and Bahrain present the most intense cases of American hierarchy, while four additional cases do not qualify as hierarchy — Iran, Syria, Libya, and the Palestinian Authority. The US has provided far more provisions of order than subordinate states in the region have furnished provisions of effective sovereignty.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 35
Keywords: hierarchy, Middle East, sovereigntyworking papers series
Date posted: August 1, 2011 ; Last revised: August 30, 2011
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