Britain and the Dhofar War in Oman, 1963-1976: A Covert War in Arabia

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This book explores Britain’s involvement in the Dhofar War of 1963-1976, focusing on the military aspects of the campaign in Southern Oman. This revolt against the Sultanate was defeated with significant external and clandestine military assistance by the UK. This study reveals how both the Conservative and Labour governments in office during this time waged war in Dhofar without parliamentary or press scrutiny. Based on archival material released over the past decade and witness accounts, as well as existing secondary source literature and memoirs, this book provides new insights into Britain’s clandestine embroilment in the Dhofar War, an often overlooked but historically significant intervention in the Middle East. It contributes to a growing body of scholarship that examines British policy towards the Arab world in the post-colonial context, with the Dhofar War taking place at the time of South Arabia’s independence struggle and then subsequently the ‘East of Suez’ withdrawals from the Persian Gulf. Despite the reduction of the UK’s economic and military power that accompanied ‘end of empire’, the book investigates how successive British governments have continued to conduct foreign and defence policy on the presumption of Britain’s global interests. It will be a valuable resource for scholars and students interested in the complex and often controversial history of Britain’s involvement in Middle Eastern politics in the post-colonial period.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan Ltd.
ISBN (Electronic)9783031494994
ISBN (Print)9783031494987, 9783031495014
Publication statusPublished - 28 Mar 2024

Publication series

NameSecurity, Conflict and Co-operation in the Contemporary World
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
ISSN (Print)2731-6807
ISSN (Electronic)2731-6815


  • insurgency
  • Oman
  • Special Air Service
  • Middle East
  • British Armed Forces


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