Analysis of the current attitudes of the superpowers toward the Middle East. In view of the Vietnamese war, the United States is less likely than at any time in the past 30 years to become involved in military activities overseas. Despite considerable private investments and income from Middle Eastern oil, the United States may be unwilling to resort to military force to preserve those investments. Turkey probably will remain important as the Eastern anchor of NATO, but the Middle East as a whole may appear to become less critical to U.S. defense. With regard to Israel, however, the United States appears unwilling to let Israel be overwhelmed by her Arab neighbors, and this may continue to be true through the seventies. The USSR, by contrast, seems more interested and deeply involved in the Middle East. Although their initial objective may have been only to decrease American influence in the area, they have undoubtedly gone beyond that by now and see their own influence growing both in the United Arab Republic and in the Mediterranean. 35 pp.