The United States of America are by default a global hegemon. If there is someone not willing to believe or accept that, the Americans are always ready to prove their political, diplomatic, military and financial might. The country is always associated with some country or the other. Along with the United Kingdom and European Union, it often dominates globally significant organizations such as the United Nations Security Council, World Trade Organization, Bretton Woods Institution (IMF and World Bank), several Credit Rating Agencies and not to forget the Wall Street.
Furthermore, the US is called the “Great Satan” by some in the Middle-East of the world owing to their ruthless invasions, interference and belligerence. It is considered as the biggest reason for turmoil in Iraq, Syria, Iran and several other Muslim-populated nations. Nevertheless, there are few countries who flagrantly support the United States and have maintained healthy relations since long. One such nation is the super-wealthy United Arab Emirates.
Here is a list of reasons which prove that US and UAE have a history of robust friendship.
#1. UAE is a source of wealth and stability in the Arabian Gulf. When six independent states Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Sharjah and Umm Al Quwain were combined to form UAE in 1971 by President Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the US was the third country to have diplomatic ties with the country. Soon US-based Hilton chain of hotels started in UAE. Respective embassies were constructed and made functional in both countries.
#2. The capital of UAE, Abu Dhabi allows foreign investment in its oil industry where several US companies have involvement. In 1980, the then President of US, Jimmy Carter has unveiled a “Carter Doctrine” which said that, “an attempt by any outside force to gain control of the Persian Gulf region will be regarded as an assault on the vital interests of the United States of America, and such an assault will be repelled by any means necessary, including military force.”
#3. The Tanker War which was a part of Iran-Iraq war in September 22, 1980 – August 20, 1988. At that time, UAE had supported the presence of US naval ships in the Gulf region that guaranteed freedom to ships passage.
#4. When Iraq invaded Kuwait in 1990, the US mission of Operation Desert Storm was supported financially and logistically by UAE. Kuwait was the 4th largest oil exporter to the US. Besides, another ally Saudi Arabia was under the threat of Iraqi attack that could make Iraq(an ally of Soviet Union) a major oil controller in the Middle East. This had to be curtailed and hence US needed support from Arab nations which it did acquire after intense lobbying and skillful diplomacy. At this present day, US forces use Al Dhafra to conduct in-flight refueling missions.
#5. Moreover, the US has the biggest market of military equipments, technology and defence hardware in UAE, according to US Department of State in 2009. In 2010, the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA) and the U.S.-U.A.E. Business Council led representatives from 50 U.S. defense Original Equipment Manufacturing companies (OEMs), Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), and defense contractors had a trade mission in the defense sector to the U.A.E. to collect more information about the new federal U.A.E. offsets policy, understand the country’s commercial defense needs and form closer ties.
#6. Jebel De Ali Airport of Dubai is the only potential harbor in the Gulf that is deep enough to hold an aircraft carrier. In 1994, the US and UAE had signed a defence pact which allowed US troops to create a base within the federation border.
#7. UAE joined the World Trade Organization in 1995. A UAE-US Trade and Investment Framework Agreement is signed in 2004, the same year when the construction of Burj Khalifa began with designs by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill LLP of Chicago, Illinois.
#8. Kosovo Force (KFOR) in a NATO enabled peacekeeping force that helps establish peaceful environment in Kosovo. It prime motive was to to deter renewed hostility and intimidation against Kosovo by Yugoslav and Serb forces, thereby establishing a civil order, also providing humanitarian support. UAE was the only Arab country to provide support to it through its troops. Even after the US-led invasion of Iraq, huge support was granted to the US-backed government in Iraq by UAE. Soon in 2005 both countries had established joint military operations as well as Free Trade Agreement. There also exists a US-UAE Joint Terrorist Financing Coordinating Committee (JTFCC) as a form of counter-terrorism.
#9. Abu Dhabi and Houston, Texas, are Sister Cities. Dubai and Detroit, Michigan are Sister Cities. To extend commercial ties, the US-UAE Business Council was established by the US Chambers of Commerce. Dubai’s Jafza International has a warehouse and transportation hub in Orangeburg, South Carolina, which is a greenfield facility producing many jobs. UAE is the only country after USA that deploys a sophisticated $15 billion technology in defence as approved by the US Congress. Again, UAE is the only country in the Arabian Gulf that has an agreement with the US for the development of a civilian nuclear energy program.
10. Abu Dhabi will be headquarters for the Global Centre for Excellence in Countering Violent Extremism, as announced by the US and UAE in 2011. Through various educational, defence, commercial and airlines collaboration, both countries have established an unflinching friendly relationship that has a long way to go.