arabian pen-insula

Cultural Dictionary

Arabia definition


Peninsula in southwest Asia, bordered on the north by Jordan and Iraq, on the east by the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, on the south by the Gulf of Aden, and on the west by the Red Sea. This historical region in the Middle East consists of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Yemen.

Note: Strategically important because it is situated at the crossroads of Europe, Asia, and Africa, Arabia has been coveted and controlled by many empires throughout history. The area's importance is all the greater today because of its fabulous oil reserves. The United States and the Soviet Union both competed for influence in Arabia after the British presence ended in the late 1960s. Arabian states joined the coalition against Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in 1990. (See also Persian Gulf War.)
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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