In response to these developments, in a January 5, 1957, address to Congress, President Dwight Eisenhower called for “joint action by the Congress and the Executive” in meeting the “increased danger from International Communism” in the Middle East. Specifically, he asked for authorization to begin new programs of economic and military cooperation with friendly nations in the region. He also requested authorization to use U.S. troops “to secure and protect the territorial integrity and political independence of such nations.”
Eisenhower did not ask for a specific appropriation of funds at the time; nevertheless, he indicated that he would seek $200 million for economic and military aid in each of the years 1958 and 1959. Only such action, he warned, would dissuade “power-hungry Communists” from interfering in the Middle East.
While some newspapers and critics were uneasy with the open-ended policy for American action in the Middle East (the Chicago Tribune called the doctrine “goofy”), the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate responded with overwhelming votes in favor of Eisenhower’s proposal.