What is the history behind Australia's relations with the Muslim world in general, and the Middle East in particular, which have led Australia to the point where it is described as being in the frontline of the so-called 'War against Terror'? Australia's encounters with the Middle East have historically been defined initially through its membership of the British Empire, later as a key Commonwealth player and more recently through Australia's close strategic relationship with the US. "Australia and the Middle East" traces the nature of the Australia-Middle East relationship, from an insular 'White Australia' ideology through to the global impact of September 11, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and the new and menacing terror threat that has arrived on its own doorstep. A comprehensive analysis of this complex relationship provides an essential basis for understanding past encounters, evaluating present policies and developing a framework for future interactions. The book seeks to draw together the various dimensions and themes of this relationship - from trade and migration, to Australia's increasing strategic interest and current military involvement in the region.
Fethi Mansouri is Associate Professor in Middle Eastern Studies at Deakin University. He is the Project Group chair of the Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation and the founding Convenor of the Refugee Studies Group. He is co-author of Lives in Limbo.