used to describe the era after the events of September 11th (Bush, 2002). What made this period different from others was the nature of the enemy; new threats did not arise from rival countries, but from weak states and groups that were not able to confront the United States directly. The September 11th events showed that weak states could become as dangerous as stronger states (NSS 2002), and that geographic and military strengths of the US could no longer guarantee its security against these enemies and threats (QDR 2001).
Although George W. Bush insisted on realist strategies of preventive war and pre-emptive action rather than soft power but relying on soft power (Nye 2004) was a pillar of perception management to provide security. The main ideas of the soft power was that “promoting democracy and the rule of law is the responsibility of the United States because it will facilitate the flow of correct information and in so doing, educate and inform people throughout the world on how to make correct decisions” (NSS 2006). Therefore, the only way was to change their perceptions towards the United States.
Bush administration used a combination of both positive and negative interpretations on the concept of security: The presence of a threat such as terrorists and rogue states were interpreted according to the negative approach to national security, while the positive approach was employed in democratizing the potential states that harbor terrorism. Therefore, a combination of negative and positive approaches to national security has been followed by the United States in order to deal with threats since September 11th 2001 and Bush administration emphasized the importance of military strength in the United States, while simultaneously focusing on democratic values to create a more secure environment. The events of September 11th 2011 showed that none of the mentioned approaches is enough to be the basis for providing security (Yusoff & Soltani, 2012).
On the other hand, September 11 incident, as a terrorist act was to legitimatize the American hegemonic actions out of the international rules. George W. Bush and American foreign policy makers sought to stabilize their regional domination based on hegemonic model (direct interference) after September 11 in the Middle East and Persian Gulf region. “Fighting with terrorism” and promoting the democracy was the main strategy of the Unites state after September 11 for the Middle East region and its main aftermaths were “attacking to Afghanistan” and “invasion to Iraq”. The main interest of George W. Bush administration in the region include: 1 – energy security for the US in the coming decades 2 – supporting Israeli peace process 3 – Promoting democracy among radicalism (Abolfathi, Moradi, & Rezai, 2012).
As a conclusion it should be said that the United States during the Bush administration was faced with the social, political and cultural realities of the region that caused increasing of instability in Iraq as well as Israel and Hezbollah war in the Middle East. Therefore the direct intervention policy of George W. Bush in the region such as occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan after September 11 could not bring peace and security to the region. On the other hand, the U.S. according to its old approach (balance of power) is supporting conservative Arab southern states of the Persian Gulf among Iran, because rivalries between the local states of the Persian Gulf will caused the penetration of U.S. in the region.
۲.۴ Alternative Security Frameworks for the Persian Gulf
Michael Kraig, a well-known scholar suggested three primary, competing schools of thought in security practice today: the traditional model of competitive Realpolitik and the evolving, conflicting models of hegemony, and cooperative security (Kraig, 2003). Realpolitik or realist school is diplomacy based on implicit and explicit military threats, but these threats are not meant to deny another sovereign actor its core national interests and security concerns. Rather, relative advantage is sought around the margins, with a multipolar mix of states joining in fluid, dynamic relationships based on tactical gains and losses over time. Traditional balance-of-power methods of conflict management seem to work best under these circumstances (Kraig, 2004).
The hegemonic or counter-proliferation strategy is based on the victory of the interests of one set of states over those of others and the operational use of military and economic instruments for compellance as well as deterrence. In sum, the hegemonic approach views diplomatic relations largely in terms of bilateral and selectively multilateral relationships. The central idea of the cooperative-security school is that all nation states will find greater relative security through mutual obligations to limit their military capabilities rather than through unilateral or allied attempts to gain dominance. Under the cooperative-security approach, security is increasingly defined as a collective good that cannot be divided, due largely to the globalization of social and economic trends, the diffusion of new technologies with dual-use applications, and the specter of mass destruction (Kraig, 2004).
Kraig believes that comprehensive multilateral coalition’s strategy offers the best prospect for building a peaceful and stable future in the Persian Gulf, if leaders are concerned with long-term value rather than short-term gains. Kraig concludes that there are two major contending approaches to Persian Gulf security: U.S. hegemony and principled multilateralism. If the hegemony approach is going to be carried out, Persian Gulf relations would lead to big conflicts. But In contrast to the approach of hegemony, a principled multilateral approach to Persian Gulf security would be successful for this region (Kraig, 2004).
Michael Kraig believes that a new security order should be created in the Persian Gulf by building additional layers to the current security system with greater emphasis on multilateral cooperation. U.S.-Persian Gulf-state bilateral cooperation and the GCC would serve as the base layer. The second layer would involve setting up a new security organization that could notionally be called the “[Persian] Gulf Regional Security Forum (GRSF).” Southern and northern Persian Gulf States, without exceptions, would be the core members, together with extra-regional states and organizations with vested interests in the Persian Gulf (M. R. Kraig, 2006).
The critique to the Kraig’s approach is that Kraig believes involving extra-regional states – most notably the United States – in a peaceful and stable Persian Gulf will be important for achieving long-term stability (M. R. Kraig, 2006) but the experiences of recent years in the Persian gulf have shown that his idea cannot be true, because in spite of the presence of external powers especially Americans, many disturbances and conflicts have occurred in this important region.
Joseph McMillan, Richard Sokolsky and Andrew C. Winner (2003) provide another view and believe that the Persian Gulf region lacks a systematic way for Iran, Iraq and Saudi Arabia to interact with the rest of the Persian Gulf states. There is therefore a need to establish a new multilateral element to the region’s security architecture (Winner, 2003). However, they believe this new arrangement could entail certain risks for the United States. The principal limitation from a U.S. perspective is that a regional security structure could never substitute for the ability of the United States to project military power to the region to protect its own interests in extremis. The principal risk is that any security institution that embraces all the Persian Gulf countries could become an anti-U.S. or anti-Israeli bloc.
McMillan, Sokolsky and Winner (2001) believe any security architecture for the Persian Gulf must be able to accomplish three objectives: 1) Provide a collective self-defense capability for the weaker states; 2) promote an environment of cooperation on security issues that will reduce the probability and consequences of conflict among all the Persian Gulf states and enable them to cooperate on transnational threats; 3) enable the region to play an effective and constructive role in strengthening peace and stability beyond the Persian Gulf (Winner, 2003).
McMillan, Sokolsky and Winner (2003) believe a more inclusive multilateral security dialogue may be able to: 1) Increase the ability of regional states to deal with limited threats to peace and stability without requiring the major involvement of outside powers; 2) provide a mechanism for peaceful resolution of specific areas of contention that could otherwise cause the rivalries to flare up into open conflict; 3) identify a modest body of shared interests, toward which regional