OVERRIDE

A World of Trouble

The White House and the Middle East--from the Cold War to the War on Terror

Patrick Tyler

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

In this gripping story of American misadventures in the Middle East, Patrick Tyler shows how U.S. presidents—even the best-intentioned—have repeatedly taken unsound, dangerously naïve actions in the region. Again and again, seemingly principled White House diplomatic efforts there have fallen to the pressures of domestic politics; foundered because of poor execution; or, worse, been undermined by duplicity, deceit, and outright foolishness.
 
Tyler dramatizes the troubled U.S. approach to the Middle East—from the Suez crisis to the Iran hostage debacle to the two wars against Iraq—in this sweeping, comprehensive narrative, revealing the big picture as never before. He tells a story of presidents being drawn into Middle East affairs against their will, being kept in the dark by local potentates, being left astray by grasping subordinates, and making decisions about the internal affairs of countries they hardly understand. Most tellingly, he shows how each president has managed to undo the policies of his predecessor, often fomenting both anger against America in the streets of the region and confusion at home. And in a new afterword, he considers the consequences of George W. Bush's presidency in the region and the challenges faced by President Obama.
 
A World of Trouble is the Middle East book we need now: compulsively readable, free of cant and ideology, and rich in insight about the complex passions Americans have about our country's approach to the region. 

REVIEWS

Praise for A World of Trouble

"An authoritative, richly detailed account of American policy in the Middle East . . . [Tyler] writes vividly, allowing the reader access to White House meetings, huddles in the corridors of power, seats at international summits."—Adam LeBor, The New York Times

"Patrick Tyler . . . has written an engaging but idiosyncratic account of U.S. interactions with the Middle East from 1956 onward."—Steven Simon, The Washington Post

"Tyler documents not the interest of Israel but the cost in treasure and blood that the United States and the Middle East peoples have paid during decades without a coherent US policy in the region. He shows vividly the damage done by Israeli and Arab leaders alike in persistently bringing too little, too late, to the peace process."—Charles A. Radin, The Boston Globe

"Tyler is forthright in a way American journalists usually are not. . . . [A World of Trouble]  completes a formidable charge sheet against the occupants of the White House over the last half century which is, in its page-by-page human detail, as gripping as it is depressing."—Martin Woollacott, The Guardian (UK)

"Rich in irony and incident, Patrick Tyler's history of the White House and the Middle East would make instructive reading for the latest occupant of the Oval Office. . . . A lucid and even-handed introduction to a deeply contentious subject."—Dominic Sandbrook, The Sunday Times (UK)

In the Press

Book Review - 'A World of Trouble,' by Patrick Tyl - Review - NYTimes.com
How presidents from Eisenhower to Bush II confronted the Middle East.
- The New York Times
Book of the week: A World of Trouble by Patrick Tyler | Books | The Guardian
Review: A World of Trouble by Patrick Tyler A catalogue of America's Middle East blunders is a must-read for Obama, says Martin Woollacott
- The Guardian
Review: History of Israel-Palestine conflict would make good presidential reading - St. Petersburg Times
Patrick Tyler illuminates the Israeli-Palestinian conflict's history. I hope copies of this book will be laid at once on the desks of President Obama and his special negotiator for peace in the Holy Land, George Mitchell. It tracks the efforts of every American president since Truman to settle the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and reviews the reasons why each one failed.
- St. Petersburg Times

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Patrick Tyler

  • PATRICK TYLER has reported extensively from both the Middle East and Washington for The New York Times and The Washington Post. A Texan, he lives in Washington, D.C.

  • Patrick Tyler
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    A World of Trouble

    The White House and the Middle East--from the Cold War to the War on Terror

    Patrick Tyler

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    FROM THE PUBLISHER

    Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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