Skip to content
Register Sign in Wishlist

Glubb Pasha and the Arab Legion
Britain, Jordan and the End of Empire in the Middle East


  • Date Published: May 2019
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781316629239

£ 25.99

Add to cart Add to wishlist

Other available formats:
Hardback, eBook

Looking for an inspection copy?

This title is not currently available on inspection

Product filter button
About the Authors
  • During the 1950s, John Glubb and the Arab Legion became the 'cornerstone' of Britain's imperial presence in the Middle East. Based on unprecedented access to the unofficial archive of the Arab Legion, including a major accession of Glubb's private papers, Graham Jevon examines and revises Britain's post-1945 retreat from empire in the Middle East. Jevon details how Glubb's command of the Arab Legion secured British and Jordanian interests during the 1948 Arab-Israeli war, answering questions that have dogged historians of this conflict for decades. He reveals how the Arab Legion was transformed, by Cold War concerns, from an internal Jordanian security force to a quasi-division within the British Army. Jevon also sheds new light on the succession crisis following King Abdullah's assassination, and uses previously unseen documents to challenge accepted contentions concerning King Hussein's dismissal of Glubb, the 1956 Suez Crisis, and the nature of Britain's imperial decline.

    • Provides unprecedented access to the unofficial archives of the Arab Legion, including Glubb's private papers and the Arab Legion's London office
    • Uses Glubb and the Arab Legion to guide the reader through the intersection of decolonisation, the Cold War and the Arab-Israeli conflict, thus synchronizing the major historical phenomena of the twentieth century
    • New research provides a fresh insight into the partition of Palestine and the 1948 Arab-Israeli war, and a major revision of the 1956 Suez debate
    Read more

    Reviews & endorsements

    'In Britain's imperial history in the Middle East, Glubb Pasha falls somewhere between Lord Cromer and Lawrence of Arabia. In this ground-breaking new study, Glubb is placed at the crossroads between the making of modern Jordan, the birth of the Arab-Israeli conflict, and the end of Britain's moment in the Middle East. An outstanding work of history of contemporary relevance.' Eugene Rogan, St Antony's College, University of Oxford

    'The dismissal of General Glubb - Glubb Pasha - by King Hussein of Jordan in March 1956 has always been regarded as a key event leading to the Suez crisis. In an extraordinarily perceptive assessment of both Glubb and Hussein, Graham Jevon places Jordan and other countries of the Middle East in historical context, above all, Egypt and Israel. He writes with sustained clarity and breadth of vision while paying exemplary attention to archival sources and specialized studies. A milestone in our knowledge of the Middle East in the 1950s.' Wm Roger Louis, University of Texas, Austin

    'Jordan was a major pillar of Britain's informal empire in the Middle East and Glubb Pasha was an outstanding practitioner of the techniques of informal empire and indirect rule. This is by far the best study we have of the complex soldier-politician who was often referred to as a 'second Lawrence of Arabia'. Graham Jevon's book is based on a significant range of new archival sources and, above all, on the Glubb papers. The book covers the subject in considerable detail and great depth. It throws a great deal of new light on Glubb, on the Arab Legion he commanded, on the politics of his 'little army', and on Anglo-Jordanian relations during an eventful decade in what Elizabeth Monroe famously called 'Britain's moment in the Middle East'.' Avi Shlaim, author of The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World

    'Jevon's ground-breaking study of Glubb and Jordan's Arab Legion is a fascinating insight into the military and political life of this British-officered army that also sheds new light on the international history of the Middle East in the 1940s and 1950s as the Legion contended with rising Arab nationalism, the Arab-Israeli conflict and the fading might of the British empire.' Matthew Hughes, Brunel Law School

    'Using Glubb and the Arab Legion as his focus, Jevon has produced a stimulating reassessment of Britain's imperial relationship with Jordan in the immediate post-war period. By using newly released official documents, as well as underused private papers, not least those deriving from Glubb himself, Jevon has succeeded in challenging the existing historiography of Anglo-Jordanian relations in innovative and thought-provoking ways.' Simon C. Smith, The English Historical Review

    'Jevon is to be congratulated for a scholarly, readable, and valuable study of the life and times of Glubb 'Pasha' from 1945 to 1956. Jevon's work proves the value of how new source material can add substantially to our under- standing of a key period of history.' Bustan

    See more reviews

    Customer reviews

    Not yet reviewed

    Be the first to review

    Review was not posted due to profanity


    , create a review

    (If you're not , sign out)

    Please enter the right captcha value
    Please enter a star rating.
    Your review must be a minimum of 12 words.

    How do you rate this item?


    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2019
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781316629239
    • length: 336 pages
    • dimensions: 230 x 153 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.51kg
    • contains: 1 b/w illus. 5 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. The 1946 Treaty, Palestine, and the preclusion of the Arab Legion's planned post-war disbandment
    2. The Partition of Palestine, the Greater Transjordan solution, and the new-found significance of Glubb Pasha and the Arab Legion
    3. The 1948 war and Glubb's management of the Greater Transjordan scheme
    4. Bringing the 1948 war to an end: the ad hoc consolidation of Greater Transjordan
    5. Beyond 1948: the Arab Legion, Arab nationalism and the Cold War
    6. A puppeteer in search of a puppet: the royal succession and Britain's policy of selective non-intervention
    7. The Glubb paradox and King Hussein's quest for control of the Arab Legion
    8. Behind the veil of Suez: Glubbless Jordan and the termination of the Treaty

  • Author

    Graham Jevon, University of Oxford
    Previously a Tutor on the Stanford Program in Oxford, teaching third year undergraduates visiting Oxford from Stanford University, Connecticut, Graham Jevon gained his D.Phil. from the University of Oxford. His research interests centre on twentieth-century British imperialism and decolonisation. Currently, he is working on a new project analysing Britain's construction and use of armies throughout the Arab world after the First World War.

Sorry, this resource is locked

Please register or sign in to request access. If you are having problems accessing these resources please email

Register Sign in
Please note that this file is password protected. You will be asked to input your password on the next screen.

» Proceed

You are now leaving the Cambridge University Press website. Your eBook purchase and download will be completed by our partner Please see the permission section of the catalogue page for details of the print & copy limits on our eBooks.

Continue ×

Continue ×

Continue ×
warning icon

Turn stock notifications on?

You must be signed in to your Cambridge account to turn product stock notifications on or off.

Sign in Create a Cambridge account arrow icon

Find content that relates to you

Join us online

This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Read more Close

Are you sure you want to delete your account?

This cannot be undone.


Thank you for your feedback which will help us improve our service.

If you requested a response, we will make sure to get back to you shortly.

Please fill in the required fields in your feedback submission.