MUSCAT & OMAN: Sultan's Salute

For more than 150 years, Britain has been on stout-fellow terms with the Sultans of Muscat and Oman, a stretch of mountain and desert that the British Navy admired for its excellent harbors conveniently located near the entrance to the Persian Gulf. The great Nelson spent two months there as a midshipman in 1775; an early 19th century Sultan presented the Admiralty with a ship of the line in gratitude for British protection.

Few Britons could point to Muscat and Oman on a map. It was no wonder, then, that, totting up...

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