In order to fully understand the significance of the formation of the GCC, one must appreciate the history of feudal elite rule and British colonization which resulted in the very existence of the sheikdoms which make up the GCC.
A history of single-family rule in these Persian Gulf States made these emirates ripe for the imposition of an oil-for-arms security pact like the one formed in 1981. As Qatar’s Oil Minister stated bluntly in a recently, “The industrial world will protect the oil. We believe this is a proper exchange of interests and benefits”. 
In 1776 the British East India Company set up a headquarters at what is now Kuwait. When Kuwaiti members of the Hashemite al-Sabah clan, who share their surname with Assassin founder Hasan bin Sabah, helped the Ottoman Turks quell uprisings in southern Iraq, the Shiek of the Muntafiq tribe gave the al-Sabahs date groves near Fao and Sufiyeh in southern Iraq.
Kuwait was seen as highly strategic by the British in its role as protector of Indian Ocean sea lanes. By 1900 the British cut a deal with Mubarek al-Sabah which carved Kuwait out of Iraq and made it a British protectorate. The vast majority of people who lived in what was now declared Kuwait opposed the British plan and wanted to remain part of Iraq. 
In 1914, in the midst of WWI, the British resident in the Gulf promised Sheik Mubarek al-Sabah Crown recognition of his new country in exchange for al-Sabah’s turning on and attacking Ottoman Empire troops at Safwan, Mesopotamia in what is now Iraq. The al-Sabah clan earned their Union Jack stripes. The Hashemite monarchy single-handedly rules Kuwait to this day.
In 1917 the British made a client out of Ibn Saud, who was also told to encourage Arab tribesman to repel the Ottoman Turks from the Gulf Region at the onset of WWI. That same year the British House of Rothschild pushed through the Balfour Declaration, lending Crown support for a Jewish homeland in Palestine. Rothschild was less concerned about the Jewish people than he was about establishing a Middle East outpost from where he and his lackeys could keep watch over the center of their global oil monopoly. A year later the Ottomans were defeated. 
Iraq, Jordan and Saudi Arabia were carved out of the Ottoman Empire and fell under British rule, with Ibn Saud taking control of his namesake Saudi Arabia. His progeny form the modern-day House of Saud. Palestine became part of Transjordania and was run by an emir hand-picked by the British. The Trucial States of Oman (now United Arab Emirates) and the Oman Coast (now Oman) were also given British protectorate status. As Winston Churchill commented three decades later, “The emir is in Transjordania, where I put him one Sunday afternoon in Jerusalem”.
In 1922 the Treaty of Jeddah gave Saudi Arabia independence from Britain, though the Crown still exerted considerable influence.  During the 1920’s, with help from British troops, Ibn Saud grabbed more territory from the Ottomans when he annexed Riyadh. He also seized the holy cities of Mecca and Medina from the Hashemites.
Britain and France signed the San Remo Agreement which split Middle East oil concessions between the two countries. Within two weeks the US responded with the Open Door Policy, which cut the US Horsemen into the Middle East oil game. Small US independent producers like Sinclair opposed the policy, complaining that it favored the Rockefeller oil interests. US oil majors Exxon, Mobil, Chevron, Texaco and Gulf- the first three progeny of the John D. Rockefeller Standard Oil Trust- joined with British Petroleum, Royal Dutch/Shell- owned largely by Holland’s royal House of Orange and the Rothschild family- and the French Compaignie de Petroles in dividing up the Middle East oil patch.
The Iraqi Petroleum Company (IPC) and the Iranian Consortium would be dominated by the European companies, while Saudi ARAMCO would be owned by the American Horsemen. The British protectorates would be exploited through various combinations of the Four Horsemen.
An IPC subsidiary, Petroleum Development Trucial Coast, began drilling in what is now the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in 1935. Today in the UAE oil industry ADCO is 24%-owned by BP Amoco, 9.5% by Royal Dutch/Shell and 9.5% by Exxon Mobil. ADMA is owned 14.67% by BP Amoco and 13.33% by the old French Compaignie de Petroles, which has now consolidated into Total. Esso Trading Company/Abu Dhabi is 100% owned by Exxon Mobil. Dubai Petroleum is 55% owned by Conoco, which also owns 35% of Dubai Marine Areas, of which BP Amoco holds a 33.33% share. The majority of the UAE’s oil goes to Japan. BP and Total hold long-term shipping contracts with the UAE. 
Chevron and Texaco, already joined through ARAMCO and their Caltex marketing arm, formed the Bahrain Petroleum Company (BPC) in that protectorate. The new Chevron Texaco now runs BPC. In Qatar, Exxon Mobil dominates the rich natural gas sector. It owns a large chunk of Qatargas, which currently provides Japan with 6 million tons of natural gas per year. It is also a 30% partner in the giant Ras Luffan gas field which produces 10 million tons of natural gas per year. 
BP joined with Gulf in starting the Kuwait Oil Company, which today sells discount crude to ex-proprietors BP Amoco and Chevron Texaco (Chevron bought Gulf in 1981). By 1949 the US Horsemen controlled 42% of Middle Eastern oil reserves, while the Anglo-Dutch Horsemen had 52%.  The remaining 8% was owned by Elf Total Fina and other smaller companies.
The British began granting independence to its Gulf State protectorates beginning in 1961 with Kuwait and ending in 1971 when the United Arab Emirates were formed out of seven sheikdoms, the most important of which are Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah. British influence did not wane. Oman remains particularly close to the Crown. British mercenaries constitute the royal guards which protect the ruling families in all six GCC states. 
These emirates are ruled by single family monarchies selected by British colonialists to carry out their plan for dominating Middle East oil and shipping lanes in the late 18th century. The six GCC ruling families are inter-related with one another, just as are the royal families of Europe. 
Dean Henderson is the author of five books:Big Oil & Their Bankers in the Persian Gulf: Four Horsemen, Eight Families & Their Global Intelligence, Narcotics & Terror Network, The Grateful Unrich: Revolution in 50 Countries, Das Kartell der Federal Reserve, Stickin’ it to the Matrix & The Federal Reserve Cartel. You can subscribe free to his weekly Left Hook column @www.hendersonlefthook.wordpress.com