National Archives and Records Administration ARC Identifier 2569614 / Local Identifier 111-TV-345 Big Picture: Focus on the Middle East Focus on the Middle East, latest "THE BIG PICTURE" telementary -- The exotic Middle East, from India to the eastern end of Africa, plays the featured role in this week's chapter of THE BIG PICTURE. Culled from over 15,000 feet of film made exclusively for THE BIG PICTURE, the program will describe how American Army Military Assistance Groups help train the soldiers of Ethiopia, Iraq, Iran and Pakistan. Military Missions, or Aid Groups, started in Latin America in 1926. Today's Military Missions (known as MAAGs -- short for, Military Assistance Advisory Group) have evolved from models established in Greece and Turkey in 1949. MAAGs are designed to provide a direct link between the United States and its friends abroad who are in need of American know-how and skill in training their own soldiers. The members of a U.S. Army MAAG not only help train other nation's troops but also extend technical advice on the use of modern equipment. The Middle East, in the headlines of the newspaper you read this morning, is particularly in need of American Army MAAGs. The Middle East is the crossroads of the world, linking Europe, Asia and Africa. Air routes depend on refueling bases in the Middle East. The oil reserves of the area are estimated to include 50% of the world's total. One hundred million people dwell in the Middle East. They must learn to protect themselves from Communist domination. THE BIG PICTURE's documentary, "Focus on the Middle East," was photographed where it happened, by Capt. Gaetano Faillace, famed World War II combat cameraman.
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