Transnational Threats from the Middle East: Crying Wolf or Crying Havoc?

  • May 01, 1999
  • Prof Anthony H Cordesman

There is no doubt that the Middle East can present significant potential threats to the West. The author of this monograph examines these threats in order to put them into perspective--to distinguish between "crying wolf" and "crying havoc." After thorough analysis, he contends that the problems caused by narcotics and organized crime, immigration, terrorism, and weapons of mass destruction do not as yet require draconian action by the Western nations. However, he asserts that if the threats of Middle Eastern terrorism and proliferation were to be combined into super- terrorism, the result would create a new form of asymmetric warfare for which the West is singularly ill-prepared. Professor Anthony H. Cordesman, an internationally recognized expert of long-standing on these issues, has provided this comprehensive assessment. Presented originally at the U.S. Army War College--Pepperdine University cosponsored conference on Mediterranean Security into the Coming Millennium, held October 26-27,1998, in Florence, Italy, his appraisal is a valuable reference for analysts who are studying the potential consequences of these threats to U.S. security.