The Arab Gulf States Domestic Stability

The above quote, while lengthy, is pertinent to the focus of this study. It very accurately explains the degree to which the security and political structure of the Arabian Gulf is changing and draws attention to the potential for further change. The Gulf states, as indicated, are living a volatile period wherein changes tend towards the revolutionary, as opposed to the evolutionary. If anything, this highlights the vulnerabilities to which these states are currently exposed and underscores the imperatives of adopting measures which are designed to minimize the threats emanating from these vulnerabilities or, at least, manage their potential for inducing domestic stability within Gulf states and across the Gulf regime.
Instability within the Arabian Gulf has far-reaching consequences. …
Besides oil, the Gulf region also has sizeable reserves (2,509 trillion cubic feet – Tcf) of natural gas, accounting for 41 percent of total proven world gas reserves".4 Ensuring the free and stable flow of the oil from the region to the world at large is the primary goal of the western states. Instability in the region or the collapse of any of the Gulf regimes would detrimentally impact upon the global economy and the consequences would not, under any circumstances, be confined to the region. Instead, western economies would totter on the brink of disaster and governments would flounder. The security of the Gulf, therefore, is of primary concern to Western nations and, indeed, as former U.S. President Jimmy Carter once said, is integral to the national security of Western nations, chief amongst which is the United States.5 For the Gulf states, however, having a healthy relationship without any mistrust among regional states, is the primary objective.
Mistrust
"Trust means to believe that someone is honest and will not harm you, cheat you etc."6 Unfortunately, however, mistrust was injected into the relationship between the Arab Gulf States members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)7 and Iran, after the Islamic Revolution of 1979. The said mistrust significantly increased in the wake of the Iran-Iraq War of the 1980s. While the majority of GCC member states stood with Iraq against Iran in that war, it is believed that this stance contributed to the generation of mistrust between both sides until today. The aforementioned, alongside Iran’s historic regional ambitions, combined with the improvement in the relationship between the Arabs and the West, especially the United States of America, only compounded the mistrust. The fact that