A man whose career over some years has made him an authority in the field presents a study of an area of increasing importance, lays stress on the political and strategic factors as they relate to Western security, and grounds his points in pertinent historical analysis. Mr. Hoskins states his purpose:- to study the problems involved in bringing the Middle East into ""the sphere of influence of the western alignment of powers"". The complex background of rivalries, West and East, are amplified, situation by situation. Turkey in the Cold War has been won over as a shield against Russia. If the Suez is to be an effective international highway and Egypt mishandles it, the U.S.A. may have to intervene, as the problem has its roots as far afield as the Sudan, where the economic and political future bear on NATO. Israel's disequilibrium, in his view, was favorable to Russia, and must be handled so that common ground can be found with the Arabs, for Russia has had the wisdom to recognize their nationalism as a tool. Free flow of oil; free operation of Point 5 must go on. Though often evasive as to his personal position and interpretation, even to the point of negative approach, Mr. Hoskins has given us a study which rounds out the ironies of conflict.