The Gulf is in a dead heat with the Korean peninsula for the title of most likely flashpoint in the world. No other region has the same volatile mixture of ethnic and religious enmity, under-developed political systems, modern weaponry, high levels of natural resources, and active great power interests. Every security analysis subject area—irregular warfare, weapons of mass destruction, weapons sales, military professionalization, military intervention, asymmetric warfare, missile defense—is present in the Gulf.
The study of security issues in the Gulf is thus rewarding to students and professionals alike. The field is constantly evolving as the Arab nations of the Gulf continue to top the list of arms importers and Iran continues to develop new weapons such as missiles, naval mines and possibly—probably—nuclear weapons.
The last year alone has seen major security developments in the Gulf.