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As Iraq Goes Communist:
Days of Decision in Baghdad

- Abstract

COMPARED with the turmoil engendered in the Middle East by the Iraqi revolution, the Berlin crisis is a largely artificial contrivance. A summit meeting on Berlin may have some practical results, but it seems doubtful that the status quo in Europe will be seriously affected. Furthermore, the Soviet government can call off the crisis at any point if it so desires, as the Quemoy battle was called off. Such is hardly the case in the Middle East, in the throes of a deep internal crisis which is largely outside the control of the great powers involved in it. Unlike Europe, furthermore, new political facts are emerging in the Middle East which decisively alter the world power balance. This contrast between the main subject of diplomatic negotiation and the most important center of political change is reminiscent of the winter of 1948-49, when the first Berlin blockade diverted Western attention from the Communist triumph in China; and of the summer of 1955, when the Geneva summit conference drew attention away from the Soviet-Egyptian arms deal which marked the first Soviet breakthrough in the Middle East.



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