Kuwait, Vanguard of the Gulf

by Mansfield, Peter

This is a portrait of Kuwait and its people, bringing together the Western view and the Kuwaitis’ view of themselves. Kuwait is the first oil-city state. In 30 years, the desert kingdom has grown from a backward and impoverished society into a radical and progressive state. Kuwait has retained its neutrality despite the presence of neighbours such as Saudi Arabia, Iran and Iraq. It has used its new-found wealth to achieve a social transformation and a programme of investment in its future. Peter Mansfield has been visiting Kuwait for 30 years and observing its transformation – the creation of its health service, its emergence as a financial centre and its efforts towards a parliamentary democracy. His study shows how Kuwait has brought itself and its institutions into the 20th century while preserving its traditional Islamic traditions. Peter Mansfield was Middle East correspondent for “The Sunday Times” from 1961 to 1967. His books include “Nasser’s Egypt”,”The Arabs” and “The New Arabians”.