In this lecture, Laleh Khalili draws on her recent experience of travelling on a container ship from Malta to Jabal Ali, and the research she has thus far conducted on her project on the formation and transformation of ports and transport infrastructure in the Arabian Peninsula to give her lecture. The lecture, which is preceded by an "Introduction" and concluded with a "Vote of Thanks," follows the format of such lectures at the SOAS, University of London. The lecture itself is about war and trade as the mainstays of global power relations. But beyond the visible circuits of capital, goods and the bodies of workers and soldiers, and upstaged by the sanguinary violence of war, are the invisible sinews that make both commerce and war-fighting possible. In this lecture,Khalili reflects on the foundational role of maritime transportation and logistics in the transformation of the Middle East into a global node of war and trade.