when President Nasser of Egypt announced his intention to build a damn in the Suez to provide power and irrigation to Egypt, the United States offered its financial support, withdrawing it when Nasser spoke with the Communists on the subject. Nasser responded by nationalizing the Suez canal, which was previously owned by British and French stockholders. This hurt Europe by crippling their oil supply, most of which came from the Persian Gulf. The French and British retaliated by striking Egypt, confident that the United States would supply them with the oil they needed while they foughtwith the Middle East. President Eisenhower refused to do so, forcing the allies to withdraw their troops. As a result, U.N. troops acted for the first time to maintain peace and order in the world. Soviets tried to interfere. Eisenhown put the Strategic Air Command on alert.