background research material of this research pertaining to the Persian Gulf area, the research aims are as follows:
1) The study aims to discuss the security policies of the United States in the Persian Gulf from 1979 until 2008.
2) It aims to evaluate the influence of the U.S. security policies on the regional peace and stability regarding Iran in the Persian Gulf.
3) It aims to examine Iranian’s policies toward the United State in the Persian Gulf region.
1.5 Research questions
This study used the descriptive qualitative approach and based on the statement of the problem, thereby seeks to address the following main research questions:
1) What were the evolutions of the U.S. regional security policies regarding Iran in the Persian Gulf from 1979 to 2008?
2) What were the effects of the U.S. regional security policies on the regional peace and stability regarding Iran in the Persian Gulf?
3) What were the Iranian policies toward the U.S. security policies in the Persian Gulf?
1.6 Significance of the study
This study could contribute to scientific knowledge and provide information about the policies of the U.S. toward Iran related to the Persian Gulf. Increased knowledge of the interaction between Iran and the United States in the Persian Gulf region and Regional Security Complex Theory and external interference of big powers in the region, could add to existing knowledge and provide a rationale for future research. This study’s findings could help the leaders of the United States and Iran to have a better understanding of themselves and their role in the peace and stability of the region.
The findings of this study are expected to contribute to U.S. – Iran literature and the body of knowledge on the U.S. security policies in the Persian Gulf and also regional security arrangements in the Persian Gulf area. Furthermore, the findings of this research may also be used as existing scientific evidence for academic researchers to assess, monitor and evaluate how successful have been the U.S. security policies toward Iran in the Persian Gulf region. The outcome of this investigation will also assist researchers in the field of International relations and foreign policy.
This research is important because it determines the theory of Regional Security Complex toward the Persian Gulf region as well as examines the relationship between regional rivalries and external interference in the sub-regions such as the Persian Gulf. The outcome of this study can be used as a guideline for policy makers dealing with foreign affairs and regional security in U.S. and Iran. The outcome of this study is also valuable to those seeking ways of improving the U.S. – Iran relationship.
The findings of this study could help U.S. and Iran’s leaders to improve their policies and activities in order to enhance their internet by arrangement of stable peace and security in the region. Moreover, the expected result could also help the GCC states to recognize the realities of the region and improve their policies toward Iran and Iraq. Furthermore, the study’s finding should help in providing knowledge regarding the U.S. policies toward Iran related to the Persian Gulf and undertaken approaches about security in the region.
This research also provides researchers and practitioners of Middle East studies with information regarding the theory and practice of U.S. policies toward Iran. This study also makes several important contributions to the literature pertaining to regional security and U.S. security policies toward the Persian Gulf.
Similarly, this study will show the importance and position of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the stability of the region. Since Iran has a vital role in the region, the result of the study will improve the position of Iran in U.S. policies toward Iran’s role in the region. If Iran participates in the security arrangements, the region can achieve more stability and peace.
Although there are sporadic studies on the issue of regional security in the Persian Gulf area, and a growing member of studies on the historical background of the Persian Gulf, the importance of this study rests upon the fact that there has been no serious attempt to conduct this type of study on the basis of internal (local) security arrangements in the Persian Gulf region that involve all 8 states in this area. The findings from this investigation, will serve as a foundation for further similar researches on regional security in the Persian Gulf area.
Security has been always at the core of political attentions for the countries because national interests of each country directly depend on its security position and definition of great powers such as U.S.A toward the concept of security affect security of many countries. So the purpose of this study is to understand the role of external powers such as U.S.A in the regional security arrangements in the Persian Gulf and to understand the success and failure of these approaches. On the other hand, the significance of such studies can lead some benefits for global peace process and war prevention for this region because it is easier to prevent than to end the conflicts by participation of all states in regional collective security in the Persian Gulf area.
This study will help students and political thinkers better understand the theoretical and crucial issues concerning security approaches and regional security. It is obvious that many studies have been conducted in this field but this study will show the importance of the collective security approach instead of balance of power approach that U.S. as an external power emphasizes.
The results of this research would also be relevant to the work of some policy makers in designing strategies, making plans and decisions and formulating policies for achieving the main objectives of the security projects. Additionally, the result of this study could also provide some keys to security researches in formulating specific approaches for further researches in the field of security approaches.
Both regional and external powers recognize the importance of Persian Gulf security for the continued growth of the global economic system because the Persian Gulf region is currently estimated to contain approximately 63.3percent of the world’s reserves of crude oil and 33.3percent of its natural gas.(Chapman & Khanna, 2004) The world is projected to grow more independent on oil supplies from the region. This dependence has been threatened by internal and external challenges to the Persian Gulf. Therefore, energy security in the Persian Gulf is important for the global economy and this study can help in the planning for a stable security for global energy and global economy.
1.7 Scope and limitation of the study
This study will focus on the United States security policies regarding Iran in the Persian Gulf. The focus of this study is on the period from 1979 to 2008. The reason for selection of this period of time is because Occurrence of the Islamic Revolution in Iran was in 1979 and it was a milestone in the Iran – US relationship. Also the reason for choosing 2008 was that it was the end of the Gorge W. Bush administration and beginning of president Obama’s presidency. For the purpose of analysis of the terms and conditions for creating a new and viable security structure for the Persian Gulf region, the benchmark moment is 1979. This is because the Persian Gulf and the broader Middle East had not provided any significant shocks to the system of regional security since the 1950s, the time of the early Arab Revolution and its manifestations in Egypt, Syria, and Iraq. Iran’s transformation, through its Islamic Revolution, from a country supportive of U.S. security objectives in the Persian Gulf region into an anti-US country both strategically and ideologically potentially had significant impact on the U.S. position and role in the region (Hunter, 2010, p. 42). This period was specifically chosen because the overthrow of the Monarchy in Iran in 1979 changed the balance of power in the Persian Gulf region and led to the collapse of the twin pillars policy of Nixon-Kissinger (Nixon’s Doctrine) and the emergence of a new regime in Iran that was at odds with the U.S. policies in the region.
In spite of the limitations of the subject of study on security in the Persian Gulf, which is one of the most important strategic regions in the world, the result of this research – the discovery and understanding of the reasons of insecurity in the Persian Gulf region after the Islamic Revolution in Iran – will provide the appropriate responses to some of the problems pertaining the peace and security of the Persian Gulf region.
This research is especially focused on the U.S. policies regarding Iran in the Persian Gulf area, and not other countries or regions because it is an extended subject and this thesis can not involve them. Although there will be related cross references made sometimes to other related countries (such as GCC states) and issues (such as GCC activities) in the course of this thesis.
1.8 Theoretical Framework
The relationships between the agency, process, and social structure in the social theories are the basis of all the theories in studying social and political phenomena. Generally, theories help to find the most fruitful set of questions and the ways of answering them and the strategies that researchers undertake to explain deep changes occurring in social and political phenomena. They specify the questions on the subjects of research and show the way the research should follow to answer those questions (Wendt, 1999).
The Regional Security Complex Theory (RSCT) that its founded by Professor Barry Buzan is aimed to provide a relationship between the penetration of the US in the region and rivalries of the local states. Barry Buzan (28 April 1946) is Emeritus Professor of International Relations at the LSE and honorary