Date of Award

Spring 1990

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)





Committee Director

Lorraine Lees

Committee Member

Willard C. Frank, Jr.

Committee Member

James R. Sweeney


This thesis examines United States policy towards Israel from 1948 to 1952 to determine the extent to which the support given to Israel during the Truman administration reflected the major United States policy goal in the Middle East, the containment of the Soviet Union.

Sources used in this thesis include: archival material; printed collections of documents; memoirs; and secondary sources.

The Truman administration pursued containment in the Middle East by cooperating with Great Britain to improve the economic and military well-being of the Arab states so they could resist any Soviet attempts to dominate the region. However, domestic political pressure persuaded the Truman administration to also become the major international supporter of Israel; the sworn enemy of the Arab states. Therefore, Truman's decision to support Israel undermined United States attempts to strengthen the Arab states and weakened the United States containment policy in the region.


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