60th anniversary of the Suez Crisis

parentheses

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In 1956 relations between the western powers and EGypt were in a delicate phase. Egypt was negotiating to get a loan from the west to build a dam at Aswan on the Nile. In July that year, British troops withdrew from the Suez Canal Zone of Egypt. Later that month, America announced it would refuse the loan to Egypt. The Egyptian leader Nasser was outraged and some time later he announced the nationalisation of the Suez Canal. This caused consternation in Britain.

Negotiations proved ineffective and the British soon turned to the idea of a military invasion of Egypt. They entered a secret military agreement with France and Israel to attack Egypt. The Israelis wanted to conquer more territory. In late October 1956 the Israelis kicked things off with an invasion of Sinai. Days later, the British and French attacked the Suez Canal zone.

But the conspirators failed to secure American support. In fact America soon showed it was totaly opposed to the invasion. Huge diplomatic and economic pressure was applied on Britain by America. Days later, the British announced a halt in further attacks on Egypt. The failure of the operation was a huge blow to British leader Anthony Eden. He took off to Jamaica and weeks later, he announced his resignation.

The Suez crisis showed that America had become dominant among the western powers. The USSR also benefited from the Suez Crisis, not least because it took attention away from the military suppression of the Hungarian Uprising.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suez_Crisis
 


GDPR

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The Suez War is often portrayed as the last gasp of the British Empire, - an existential crisis for the old way of doing things - but that is to ignore what was happening globally.

Nasser (and earlier Mossadegh in Persia/Iran) were making very sympathetic noises to Russia. The US Secretary of State, John Foster Dulles, an old CIA man had already denied Nasser promised funding for the Aswan Dam to punish Egypt for its Soviet ties. This led Nasser to decide to nationalise the Canal and make up the shortfall by charging tolls on shipping.

In the meantime a very dodgy M16 "informant" code-named Lucky Break told Eden that Nasser was a Soviet stooge and was stock-piling Russian weapons. (Where have we heard this kind of thing recently ...)

Nasser was actually anti-Communist. He locked up Communists and didn tlet them out when relations thawed with the USSR. He was a pragmatist. And he didnt inform Krushchev when he nationalised Suez, because he knew the latter would have nixed the plan as too provocative.

Now when Britain and France invaded, believing they had got a quiet nod from Dulles, Kruschev upped the ante, saying "’Don’t be surprised if, as a consequence of your action, you see nuclear weapons fall on London and Paris,’.

President Eisenhower, running for election and realising another war would be extremely unpopular, especially one where nukes were being mentioned, told Eden he would get no support. He was furious that the British and French action had actually led to a nuclear stand-off. Kruschev also seized the moment to send a bloody message to the West that the Soviets were not to be trifled with by killing thousands of Hungarian protesters.

So Eden didnt just make Britain look silly or ineffectual, he was seen at the time as having brought the world to the brink of Armageddon. Thats why thousands of British people flooded the streets, calling him "too stupid to be PM" and demanding "he get out, get out, get out."
 

Zapped(CAPITALISMROTS)

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The last time the U.S.A acted somewhat responsibly in an International crisis.
 

PeaceGoalie

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Sudez and Iaraeli Criminality

Suez is yet another example of Israel, Britain and France always being up for pillage and looting.
 

Ardillaun

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The Suez crisis showed that America had become dominant among the western powers. The USSR also benefited from the Suez Crisis, not least because it took attention away from the military suppression of the Hungarian Uprising.
That was obvious before 1945, let alone after the war ended. 11 years later, the UK was definitely a second rank power. It's extraordinary that the British failed to confirm US support for Suez before launching the campaign.
 

GDPR

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The last time the U.S.A acted somewhat responsibly in an International crisis.
The President did. The background to this is that elements in US State Dept were indeed stirring the pot, which was misinterpreted by the British as all systems go.

Its impossible to understand the crisis without understanding the Cold War.
 

Ex celt

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I think that the sf/ira Border Campaign,which kicked off that year, had geopolitical consequences which were unforeseen by Same South of Garryowen and his merry band of cut throats.
 

Ex celt

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That was obvious before 1945, let alone after the war ended. 11 years later, the UK was definitely a second rank power. It's extraordinary that the British failed to confirm US support for Suez before launching the campaign.
The Falklands War,the defeat of sf/ira and the gold rush in Rio have proved that Britain is still a first rate power.
 

Telstar 62

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Eisenhower had seen what war was - and was, in fact,
very much a 'dove'.

Egypt pocketed all the Soviet money and the
military/infrastructural investment - and later kicked them out,
as they pivoted towards the West and the Egyptian/Israeli peace
agreement.:lol:
 

Erudite Caveman

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The Falklands War,the defeat of sf/ira and the gold rush in Rio have proved that Britain is still a first rate power.
Jesus talk about setting the bar low. Obscure cycling disciplines and drugged up Somali emigrants; the Argentine navy; and going through on away goals against a bunch of farmers from Armagh. Queen Vic would really be impressed with that highlights reel of the past 50 years.
 

Dame_Enda

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Eisenhower was one of few US Presidents to stand up to Israel, forcing them put of the Sinai, though they returned in 1967 under an unprovoked attack on Egypt. Not sure why he defused loan to Egypt originally - possibly at the start he was influenced by the election year Jewish vote which could decide some states.
 

parentheses

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Eisenhower was one of few US Presidents to stand up to Israel, forcing them put of the Sinai, though they returned in 1967 under an unprovoked attack on Egypt. Not sure why he defused loan to Egypt originally - possibly at the start he was influenced by the election year Jewish vote which could decide some states.

That seems to have been a trigger for the whole debacle. If the Americans had approved the loan, it seems unlikely Nasser would have nationalised the Canal.


It looks like the British ended up being patsies for that American decision.
 

GDPR

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That seems to have been a trigger for the whole debacle. If the Americans had approved the loan, it seems unlikely Nasser would have nationalised the Canal.


It looks like the British ended up being patsies for that American decision.
Yes and no. The British had their own foolish reasons to get involved but they did think that Foster Dulles had signalled the US supported them because it was all about the USSR, ultimately.

So they thought they would be covered by the anti-Soviet feeling. They believed the false reports from Lucky Break that Nasser was a Soviet puppet.

They thought that meant the US had to support them.

What they didnt understand was that the US was not going to take on the USSR in any hot form, not after Korea.

Eden made a boo-boo of monstrous proportions.
 

Clanrickard

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This thread will become a festival of anti-American, anti-British and of course anti-Israeli bile.
 

Catalpast

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SAE threw everything he had away over this one

Hubris - or just plain stupidity?

Well clearly he was an intelligent man

- but pride got the better of him

According to my Dad one General Nasser was a very popular man in Ireland back in 1956

- he scorched the Lion's tail....:cool:
 

parentheses

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SAE threw everything he had away over this one

Hubris - or just plain stupidity?

Well clearly he was an intelligent man

- but pride got the better of him

According to my Dad one General Nasser was a very popular man in Ireland back in 1956

- he scorched the Lion's tail....:cool:

I remember a documentary about the crisis years ago. It claimed Eden was in chronic pain from a botched operation and was frequently very irascible. Maybe his judgement was impaired.
 

GDPR

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SAE threw everything he had away over this one

Hubris - or just plain stupidity?

Well clearly he was an intelligent man

- but pride got the better of him

According to my Dad one General Nasser was a very popular man in Ireland back in 1956

- he scorched the Lion's tail....:cool:

It wasnt pride.

Eden thought British interests would be supported by the Americans because the new great game wasnt the British Empire versus the Rest, but the US versus USSR.

What the British learned from that wasnt just the US is Top Dog now, not us, but we need to factor in that we arent Top Dog and that the US will drop us like a hot potato if it doesnt suit.

And they learned so fast, it was like the blinking of an eye. When Johnson tried to involve Wilson in the Vietnam War, the response, backed by all sectors of British politics, was Think we will sit this one out, old chum.

Blair broke with that policy - "we dont trust you for one minute".
 

The Field Marshal

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Yes and no. The British had their own foolish reasons to get involved but they did think that Foster Dulles had signalled the US supported them because it was all about the USSR, ultimately.

So they thought they would be covered by the anti-Soviet feeling. They believed the false reports from Lucky Break that Nasser was a Soviet puppet.

They thought that meant the US had to support them.

What they didnt understand was that the US was not going to take on the USSR in any hot form, not after Korea.

Eden made a boo-boo of monstrous proportions.
After starting two world wars to preserve her global empire Gt.Britain was exhausted militarily and economically.
If Suez was not the final nail in the coffin then it would have been something else in the 1950s.

To this day Gt.Britain believe they won both world wars, they did but they were Pyrrhic victories and the real outright winners were the USA [the country that suffered least].

[BTW why on earth would anybody wish to remember or celebrate the so called "Suez Crisis"?

I suppose it is something to talk about.
 

eoghanacht

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Only if you insist.

What exactly do you know about the period? :)

What he means to say is it's best not to talk about British or American foreign policy and how often it looks and smells like what any old tin pot dictator would do in his countries "best interests", y'know staging coups against democratically elected governments or invasions etc as it contradicts the black and white narrative of good versus evil he holds as unquestionable truth.

Plus they're were "reds under the bed"
 


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