On July 26, 1956, Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nassar nationalized the Suez Canal, intending to take control of the canal’s operation and its revenue.
As one of the world’s most heavily used waterways, the Suez Canal holds an important role in the current and historical political climate. NMAD welcomed guest historian Dr. Tizoc Chavez to discuss the 1956 Suez Canal Crisis and its consequences for international relations.
Dr. Chavez helped us understand the situation’s complexity, highlighting the many different stakeholders, contexts, and constraints that played a role in the blockage of the Suez Canal and the resulting crisis. Then we learned that competing interests between the U.S, the Soviet Union, Egypt, Israel, France, and Britain over access to the Suez Canal led to military intervention in the Canal and greatly challenged American relations with France and Britain.
Finally, Dr. Chavez highlights that although the crisis was de-escalated through the efforts of many diplomats globally, the events of the Suez Canal Crisis held a significant and lasting impact on many international relationships and on the reputations of involved nations.