- Ceremonies are being staged around the world to mark one year since more than 200 girls were abducted by Nigerian militant Islamist group Boko Haram.
ጨካን ጉጅለ ስርዓት ህ.ግ.ደ.ፍ. ነቲ ኣብ ዝሓለፉ ኣዋርሕ ዝጀመሮ ዋኒን ናይ ምፍራስን ምዕናውን ኣባይቲ ደቂ ሃገር ገና ይቕጽሎ ምህላዉ ትከታተልዎ ኣለኹም። ኣረሜናዊ ግፍዓዊ ጉጅለ ህ.ግ.ደ.ፍ. ነታ እንኮ መዕቈቢትን መጽለሊትን ናይ ዜጋታትና ዝዀነት ገዛ ንምፍራስ ዝሃቀኖ ውዲት ምስቲ ብመሰረቱ ካብ ነዊሕ እዋን ዝወጠኖ መደብ ህዝብን ሃገርን ምጽናት ተኣሳሲሩ ዝኸይድ ዕላምዩ። መንእሰያት እናጽነተ ሃገር እናዕነወ ገዛውቲ ምፍራስ ንዑኡ ቀሊል’ዩ፤ ህዝቢ ብቝርን ኣሳሕይታን ክግረፍ ኣደዳ ዓጸቦ ኵይኑ ካብ ሃገሩ ሃጽ ኢሉ ክጠፍእ ብመደብ ዝገብሮ ዘሎ ወፍሪ’ዩ። ሃገርና በጺሕዎ ዘሎ ሓደገኛ ኩነታት ሎሚ ንመብዛሕትኡ ህዝብና ስዉር ኣይኮነን፣ ናይ ኣፈርክቡ ነጋሪት ይውቃዕ’ዩ ዘሎ። ህዝብን ሃገርን እበርስ ኣሎ። ባህሪያት ህ.ግ.ደ.ፍ ሎሚ ግደፍዶ ወዲ ሃገር ዓልምናውን ብረቂቕን ብቐረባን ዝፈልጦ ዘስካሕክሕ ግፍዒ’ዩ። መፍትሒኡ ግን ንሱ ኣብ ዘካይዶን ዝፍጽሞን ግፍዕታት ምብካይን ምስትንታንን ዘይኰነስ ሓደ ኰንካ ተሓባቢርካ ዘይመሰረታዊ ዝዀኑ ፍልልያትካ ኣወንዚፍካ ህዝብኻ ሃገርካ ምድሓን እዩ። ካብ ዝዅነ ኣካል ንጽበዮ ዋኒን ኣይኮነን። ኣብ ገዛኻን ቅርዓትካን ተሓቢእካ እዋይ ምባል፣ ብውልቃዊ ይኹን ጉጅላዊ ረብሓታት ተገዚእካ ተዓዛቢ ምዃን ጽባሕ ዘታሓታትት እዩ። ኣብ ሰላምን ቅሳነትን ፍትሕን ዘለዎ ሃገር እናነበርካ ኩሉ ሰብኣውን ደሞክራሲያውን መሰላትካ ተሓልዩ ደቅኻ ብዘይ-ፍርሕን ራዕድን ነጻ ኮይኖም ክዓብዩ እናገበርካ፣ ናይ ህዝብኻ ሕሰመ መከራ ፡ ናይ መንእሰያት ሃገርካ ጥፍኣት እናተዓዘብካ ትም ምባል ቅኑዕ ኣይኰነን ጥራይ ዘይኰነስ ገበን’ዩ ። ከም ህዝቢ ካብዚ ዝኸፍእ ጥፍኣትን ዕንወትን ክመጸና ኣይክእልንዩ ፣ እዋኑ ሕጂኸ ናበይ ክንብል ዘገድደና ሓደገኛ ኩነታት’ዩ። ጽባሕ ንግሆ ህ.ግ.ደ.ፍ. ጥራይ ኣይኰነን ተሓታቲ። ብቐዳምነት እቶም ብቐጥታ ይኹን ብተዘዋዋሪ ናቱ ተሓባበርቲ፣ እቶም እናረኣዩ ከምዘይ-ራኣዩ፣ እናሰምዑ ከምዘይ ሰምዑ ዘጽቀጡ ተሓተቲ እዮም። ብዝያዳ ከኣ እቶም ንግሆ ንግሆ ኣብ ክንዲ ምጥርናፍ ምብትታን፣ ከም ቀንጥሻ ዓሶ በዝን በትን እናበቘልካ ተቓዋሚ እየ እናበልካ በብውልቅኻ ምውፋር፣ ኣብ ክንዲ ህዝብን ሃገርን ምድሓን በበይንኻ ኰንካ ሕድሕድ ምብልላዕ። ንዝጠራነፉ ኣካላት ፋሕ-ብትን ንምእታው ከይደቀስካ ምሕዳር፣ ኣብ ዘይመሰረታዊ ፍልልያት ዕንኪሊል እናበልካ ዕድመ ጨካን ጉጅለ ህ.ግ.ደ.ፍ ምንዋሕ ስቓይ ህዝብኻ ቀዳምነት ዘይምስራዕ ገበንን ዘሕትትን’ዩ። እዋኑ ታሪኻዊ ህጹጽ ጻዊዕት ህዝብን ሃገርን ካብዚ ኣትይዎ ዘሎ ሓደጋ ብርሰትን ጥፍኣትን ምድሓን እዩ። ናይ ስልጣን ሕቶ ንህዝቢ ዝምልከት ሕቶ’ዩ፣ካብ ሕሉፍ ታሪኽና ንመሃር ይኣክል ንበል። ሓንቲ ኣገዳሲት ጥቕሲ ምስ ኩውንነት ሃገርና ትኸይድ ብሓደ ግዱስ ሓውና ኣብ ናይ ጀርመን ጽሑፍ ተቒስዋ ሪኤያ ብእንግሊዝ እያ፣ Albert Ainstein ዝበላ”A country is threatened not by the evil person, but by those who permit evil to happen” ስለዚ ክፉእ በደልን ሕሰምን ኣብ ልዕሊ ህዝብናን ሃገርናን እናወረደ ሎሚ ክንበራበር ይግባኣና፣ እሂን ምሂን ንበል፣ ንተኣከብ ንጠራነፍ ኣንፈት ብርሰትና መኣዝኑ ንቐይሮ። ሓንሳብን ንሓዋሩን ነዚ ጨካንን በላዕ ሰብን ዝዀነ ጉጅለ ህ.ግ.ደ.ፍ. ጸሪግና ዘላቒ ሰላምን ቅሳነትን ዝሰፈና ምዕብልቲ ሃገር ክንሃንጽ። እንተዘየሎ ከምቲ ተጠቒሱ ዘሎ ኣብ ላዕሊ ንሕናውን ተሓባበርቲ ናይቲ ጥፍኣት ኵና ከይንተርፍ።
ነቲ ጨካን ግፍዒ ወፍሪ ኣባይቲ ምፍራስ ህ.ግ.ደ.ፍ ኣብ ኩሉ ኩርናዓት ዓለም ኣትሪርና ንዀንኖ ፣
ጽባሕ ተሓተቲ ኢና
ዕንወት ንህ.ግ.ደ.ፍን ተሓባበርቱን ጸላእትና
ክብርን ሞጎስን ንጀጋኑ ስውኣትና
ደላይ ፍትሒ ተስፋይ ክፍለ( ካናዳ)
ገዲም ተጋዳላይ ተስፋማርያም ወልደማርያም ክፍሉ፡ ብ 27 መጋቢት (March 27) 2015 ኣብ ሕቡራት መንግስታት ኣመሪካ ግዝኣት ጆርጅያ-ኣትላንታ ድሕሪ ምዕራፉ፡ ብ 08 ሚያዝያ (April 08) 2015 ኣብ ዓዲ-ኳላ፡ ስድራቤቱ፡ ቤተሰቡን ፈተውቱን ኣብ ዝተረኸብዎ ሓመድ ኣዳም ለቢሱ።
ስውእ ተስፋማርያም ወልደማርያም፡ ንዝሓደሮ ሕማም ሕክምናዊ ምክትታል ኣብ ዝገብረሉ ዝነበረ እዋን፡ ብኣካል ካብ ርሑቕን ቀረባን ብምምጻእ፡ ከምኡ`ውን ስልኪ ብምድዋል ሞራላዊ ደገፍ ንዝገበርክሙሉን፡ ምስ ዓረፈ ድማ፡ ሓዘን ኣብ ዝተገብረሉ ቦታ ብኣካል ብምምልላስ፡ ስልኪ ብምድዋል፡ ኢመይል ብምልኣኽን ኣብ ናይ ኤርትራውያን መርበብ ሓበሬታ ብምጽሓፍን፡ ዘጸናናዕኩሙናን: ዕረፍቲ ተስፋማርያም ንዘቃላሕኩሙልና ናይ ኤርትራውያን መርበብ ሓበሬታን፡ ተኻፈልቲ ሓዘንና ንዝኾንኩም ብሙሉእኩምን ሕሰም ኣይትርከቡ እናበልና ልባዊ ምስጋናና ነቕርብ። ብተወሳኺ፡ ኣብ ናይ መፋነዊ ናይ ቀብሪ ስነ-ስርዓት (Funeral Ceremony) ብኣካል ተረኺብኩም ሬሳ ወላዲናን ሓውናን ዘፋነኹም ነበርቲ ኣትላንታን ከባቢኣን፡ ከምኡ`ውን ካብ ካልኦት ግዝኣታት ናይ ኣመሪካ ዝመጻእኩም፡ መቓልስቱ፡ መማህርቱ፡ መታዓብይቱን ፈተውቱን፡ ንተስፋማርያም ክብሪ ብምሃብኩምን ንዓና ድማ ተኻፈልቲ ሓዘንና ስለዝኾንኩምን ደጊምና ልባዊ ምስጋናና እናቕረብና ሕሰም ኣይትርከቡ ንብል። ኣብ ሓመድ ድበ ናይ ተስፋማርያም ወልደማርያም ክፍሉ ዝተረኽብኩም ብምሉእኩም ምስጋናና እናቕረብና፡ ሕሰም ኣይትርከቡ እንዳበልና ሓዘንና ከምጽዓጸና ብኣኽብሮት ክንገልጽ ንፈቱ።
Former Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi this morning urged all EU member states to show real solidarity on the issue of migration, helping countries like Malta and Italy, which are facing the brunt of this phenomenon.
Speaking at a meeting of the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee, Dr Gonzi said Malta has constantly argued that this issue challenges the very core of our values both as Europeans and more importantly as a community that respects the dignity and the value of every single human being.
“It is for this very reason that Malta continues to insist that the challenges posed by irregular migration are not challenges that pertain exclusively to those countries that find themselves on the frontline of this humanitarian crisis.
“Malta, Italy and some other Mediterranean Member States share between them the harsh and terrible reality of having to provide the first support for thousands of human beings who land on our shores. But this inevitability – derived from the fact that our countries are strategically located in the middle of the major human trafficking routes – does not and should not exonerate those other member states who are physically distant from the human tragedies that we have to witness practically every day of the week.
“My first point to you, therefore, is intended to emphasise the fact that the irregular migration challenge must be owned by all member states without any exception – which means that everyone must shoulder and share the responsibility to provide adequate and fair solutions. This is a position that I know has been shared by the European Parliament and to a certain extent the European Commission. Unfortunately, however, this position has not been shared by all Member States, some of whom continue to retain a very rigid negative position. Designing a coherent, effective and holistic EU approach on migration will only be possible if this first hurdle is overcome.”
The former Prime Minister said Malta, like most of its Mediterranean neighbours, has faced and continues to face a predominantly humanitarian migration challenge. “I emphasise the word “humanitarian” because I have always felt very strongly that any national or EU policy dealing with migration should differentiate between irregular migrants fleeing from torture as against irregular migrants who are seeking a better economic future for themselves and their families. Of course, both are “irregular migrants” but both present us with very different challenges and therefore require different solutions. I raise this point because I have consistently faced this convenient political response to our pleas for burden sharing. For those who want to argue that burden sharing is politically unacceptable, it is so convenient to quote statistics which do not distinguish between the genuine humanitarian “refugee” on the one hand and the economic migrant (also genuine) who enters into a country illegally to seek work and send money to his family back home.
“I emphasise that both categories require adequate policy solutions. But from my perspective the impact of irregular migration within a strictly humanitarian context is much more demanding and a lot more urgent.
“Malta is one of the Member States with the highest rate of asylum applicants per inhabitant and also with one of the highest rates of approved applications for full refugee status. The reason is simple : the vast majority of those landing on our shores (nearly 90%) come from Eritrea and Somalia.
“In this past decade we have received 18,000 irregular migrants. Considering the fact that our island’s population is 400,000 this would mean the equivalent of 2.5 million people arriving in Britain.”
Dr Gonzi said all of the migrants were victims of horrific events taking place in their own countries, some were victims of war, others were victims of extreme poverty, – in all cases it was a humanitarian crisis which demanded a European and not just a Maltese response. “This is why throughout my tenure as Prime Minister I have argued and I continue to argue that a fair sharing of responsibility and solidarity with Member States like Malta must be a central pillar of an effective, humane and realistic migration policy. Without this aspect any new migration policy will not work.
Having a holistic approach to migration necessarily includes tackling a number of specific issues including the root causes and the situation in crisis areas, the fight against human trafficking, the development and implementation of effective integration policies, the availability of legal migration options, the EU return policies, the availability of adequate resources for the EU Agencies such as EASO, EUROPOL and FRONTEX.”
The former PM said he personally placed a lot of importance on two specific aspects.
“The first deals with how best to save lives in the Mediterranean. Saving lives at sea is something that Malta has become somewhat of an expert on. But it is never enough. People are still drowning on our doorstep notwithstanding all the efforts that we have put into this humanitarian task. Allow me therefore to reaffirm the importance of FRONTEX as the life-saving arm of the European Union within the Mediterranean Sea. As such this agency should be able to receive all the necessary financial and logistical support for it to carry out its mission.
“Additionally further options need to be considered in order to boost the Search and Rescue operations capacity especially in those areas of the Mediterranean Sea which cover the main routes used by transnational organised criminal networks involved in human trafficking. I would personally suggest the possibility of redeploying EU funded military operations such as EUNAVFOR to the Mediterranean as well as looking into the possibility of having a CSDP mission to the Mediterranean.
“Of course, clear rules of engagement and operational guidelines are an absolute necessity. I hope I will never again have to witness bickering about operational rules that make life more difficult for those saved at sea because the Master of the vessel that saved them is forced to go to a port of call which is hundreds of nautical miles away, instead of going to the closest safe port of call as common sense dictates.
“The second and final aspect which I would like to share with you deals with the mechanisms for repatriation of failed asylum seekers – in other words those who have no claim to remain in the EU. In these cases it is necessary to quickly process and return irregular migrants claiming from safe third countries, while always ensuring full respect for the principle of non-refoulement.
“For most of you, this might sound obvious and possibly uncontentious. You will surely be surprised to know that this has also been a challenge throughout my tenure as Prime Minister. For some strange and unfathomable reason even this simple solution has been difficult to implement. Returning individuals to a safe third country requires valid travel documents especially when having to travel via an international airport. I assure you that this is not as easy as one is led to believe.
“I have always believed that a coordinated effort at EU level could allow for the sharing of resources such as the use of military planes to repatriate individuals to safe third countries when a country such as Malta lacks the resources to do so itself.
“Of course, some of these efforts hit a brick wall when such safe third countries refuse to cooperate.
“In this regard Malta has often drawn the attention of its EU partners to what is known as the Cotonou Agreement which offers a certain level of leverage that can be used in order to persuade countries to cooperate. It seems, however, that there is some reluctance at EU levels to resort to this measure which could address one aspect of this challenge and that might persuade our citizens that those who are not entitled to protection and who are not in danger, are in fact returned to their country of origin.”
Dr Gonzi urged the committee to proceed with a sense of urgency. “The situation in the Mediterranean is becoming worse by the hour. The crisis in Lybia and the political instability in that country is proving to be a source of major concern for all of the southern European Member States. This is compounded by the horrific news we receive every day about what is happening in Syria, in Southern Iraq, in Yemen.
“The writing is on the wall. Already we are having to cope with an unprecedented increase in the number of refugees landing on our shores. Clearly, unless a coordinated approach is available placing this issue at the highest point of our political agenda, we face the danger of increased social unrest compounded by a disillusionment in what the Union is supposed to represent. “
ኣብ ዝሓለፈ ዓመታት ብዘይካ እቲ በብእዋኑ ሂወት ኤርትራውያን ዝበልዐ ሓደጋታት ባሕሪ :ኣብ ከባቢ ላምፐስዱሳ ወደብ ኢጣልያ 367 ቆልዓ ሰበይቲ ዝርከብዎም መንእሰያት ኣብ ሓደ እዋን ከም ዝጠሓሉን ሬሳታቶም ንቡር ስነስርዓት ቀብሪ ከይረከበ ስድራቤቶም ኣብ ሰንፈላል ከምዘለውን ይፍለጥ::
A procession is being held in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, with 219 girls taking part to represent each missing girl.
The abduction of the girls in Chibok in north-eastern Nigeria sparked global outrage, with nations such as the US and China promising to help find them.
There have been sightings of the girls reported, but none have been found.
The girls at the Abuja demonstration sang and waved placards as they marched. They wore red T-shirts with the words “#365DaysOn” and “#NeverToBeForgotten”.
Events marking the anniversary are also expected in Lagos, as well as France, the UK and US.
Boko Haram say the girls have converted to Islam and been married off. One witness told the BBC that she saw more than 50 of them alive three weeks ago in the north-eastern town of Gwoza.
Ahmed Salkida, a journalist with close links to Boko Haram, told the BBC he believed the girls were “well and healthy”.
“According to [the jihadists] the girls have converted to Islam, so they regard them as very important,” he said.
It has been a whole year of agony for the relatives of the missing 219 Chibok girls. There have been a few sightings of some of the abducted students but very little official information from a government that has long promised to rescue them from the clutches of Boko Haram.
One mother told the BBC she sometimes arranges her 19-year-old daughter’s clothes in the hope that she is about to return home.
The scale of this conflict is so grim that the Chibok girls represent just a fraction of those seized by the jihadists. Many have escaped partly thanks to a recent military offensive – but not the Chibok girls.
Since then, the activists who began that campaign have spoken of relatives’ anguish at still not knowing what happened to the girls, and have criticised the Nigerian government of outgoing President Goodluck Jonathan for not doing enough to find them.
“Our president has said the girls are alive. Our question is: ‘Where are our girls?'” Aisha Yesufu, a spokeswoman for the group, told the BBC.
Mr Jonathan told the BBC’s Newsday that political rivalries had hampered the federal government’s ability to grasp the scale of the Chibok attack and respond to it, as the government of Borno state, a Boko Haram stronghold, was run by an opposition party.
Nigeria’s incoming president, Muhammadu Buhari, said his government would “do everything in its power to bring them home” but said he “cannot promise that we can find them”.
The six-year Boko Haram insurgency in the north has left thousands dead.
Amnesty International say the militants have abducted 2,000 girls and women since the start of last year, using them as cooks, sex slaves and fighters.
It was not a foregone conclusion that the Turks would fight in World War I at all. Many leading political figures in Istanbul favored neutrality as the surest road to bringing about long-overdue administrative and economic modernization with the aid of investments from all the European powers. In the end, however, the triumvirate of pashas who ruled the Empire came to believe an alliance with an ascendant Germany, in which Berlin would pay for much of the war effort and military training, would be the surest path to re-conquest of lost provinces, the shoring up its faltering influence in the Middle East, and internal modernization. It was the Ottoman entrance into the war on the side of the Central Powers that transformed a European war into a truly global conflict.
For their part, the Germans gained the use of a large Ottoman army that could take the pressure off their inevitable battle against Russia in the East by launching a campaign in the Caucasus. More important, Germany hoped to exploit the Ottoman sultan’s role as caliph over the entire world community of Muslims. Of course, the British, Russian, and French empires contained millions of Muslims. The Germans wanted the Caliph to declare a jihad against their adversaries, hoping to bring about mass uprisings that would cripple the war efforts of the Triple Entente, and the Caliph was happy to oblige.
The initial Ottoman campaigns did not go well. Enver Pasha, the Ottoman minister of war, hoped to duplicate the Germans’ masterful envelopment at Tannenberg against the Russians, prompting the destruction of an entire Russian army. Geography, poor weather, and inadequate logistics, however, led to a crushing Ottoman defeat and the loss of 80,000 troops. Several divisions of Armenian Christians fought on the Russian side in the campaign, and in the wake of the loss, the large Armenian population within the Ottoman Empire found themselves victims of the 20th century’s first genocide. Rogan unpacks the complicated tragedy of the Armenian persecution deftly and sensitively, concluding that “the bitter irony is that the annihilation of the Armenians and other Christian communities in no way improved the security of the Ottoman Empire,” though that was its primary object.
Rogan unpacks the complicated tragedy of the Armenian persecution deftly and sensitively, concluding that “the bitter irony is that the annihilation of the Armenians and other Christian communities in no way improved the security of the Ottoman Empire,” though that was its primary object.
Next, the Ottoman 4th Army attacked the British defending the Suez Canal across the Sinai Desert, but the thrust was detected by aerial scouts and repulsed handily. The first two Ottoman campaigns, observes Rogan, “revealed Ottoman commanders to be unrealistic in their expectations and the average Ottoman soldier to be incredibly tenacious and disciplined even under the most extreme conditions.”
These early Allied victories lulled the Allies into a “false complacency about the limits of Ottoman effectiveness.” Prompted by a Russian plea to mount a diversionary campaign, Britain and France decided in spring 1915 to go for a knockout punch. They launched an ambitious amphibious attack through the heavily mined Dardanelles straits on the Gallipoli Peninsula. Such an attack would threaten Istanbul itself—if successful. Now it was the ordinary Allied soldiers’ turn, particularly the Australians and New Zealanders, to suffer at the hands of their commanders’ incompetence.
For eight months, the agony in the trenches at Gallipoli continued, with little substantial Allied progress. Here Colonel Mustafa Kemal—later called Ataturk, leader of Turkey in its successful war of independence of 1919-1923—first distinguished himself, as did the entire Ottoman army in their heroic defense of the Peninsula. Suffice it to say that in the years between the two world wars, the Gallipoli campaign was held up as proof by leading military strategists that the amphibious assault against a well-defended beach would never again succeed. The U.S. Marines, however, weren’t buying the message. They conducted an extensive study of Gallipoli, determining that the British and French had made a complete hash of the operation, and that, with proper training, specialized doctrine and equipment, heavily fortified beaches could indeed be taken. (In this they were correct, as World War II proved.)
Impending defeat at Gallipoli prompted London to order a British-Indian army to march on Baghdad to rekindle support for the war at home, and assuage suspected Muslim restiveness within their Empire. Once again, the tough Turks managed to repulse the British drive, capturing 13,000 Indians and Britons at the Siege of Kut.
After Kut, the war generally went quite badly for the Ottomans. A crucial factor in their misfortunes was Istanbul’s failure to win over the Arab tribes, loosely united under Sharif Husayn of Mecca, the great-great grandfather of Jordan’s current head of state, King Abdullah II, to fight for the Empire rather than against it. The Turks were badly outmaneuvered on the diplomatic front by the British, who concluded an alliance with Husayn in March 1916 in which false promises of postwar independence for the Arabs played no small role. The Arab Revolt was born. For the rest of the war, Husayn and his trusted adviser, T.E. Lawrence, effectively tied down Ottoman forces with guerrilla operations against (already thin) supply lines in Palestine, Syria, and the Arabian Peninsula.
Meanwhile, the Ottoman Sultan’s call to jihad utterly failed to strike a chord among the Muslims within the Allied empires, mainly because their clerics saw cynical German aspirations behind the call. In addition, as scholar Bernard Lewis has written, “The moral significance of an Arab army fighting the Turks, and still more, of the ruler of the holy places [Sharif Husayn] denouncing the Ottoman Sultan and his so-called jihad, was immense, and was of particular value to the British and incidentally to the French empires in maintaining their authority over their Muslim subjects.”
In fall 1917, a bold and very smart British general, Edmund Allenby, assumed command in the Middle East. He broke the main Ottoman defensive line in Palestine, centered on Gaza. The Turks retreated, surrendering Jerusalem without a shot. By this point, as Rogan points out, the Ottomans’ ambitions “had been narrowed from victory to survival.”
Setbacks on the Western front forestalled Allied operations in the Middle East until fall 1918. The Turks, badly in need of reinforcements and resupply that would never come, grimly held on. In a three-day operation in September around Megiddo in Palestine, Allenby used his cavalry to sweep around Ottoman forces, capturing tens of thousands before going on to completing his conquest of demoralized Ottoman forces in Syria.
With the final defeat of the Ottomans and Germany in 1918, European imperialism replaced Turkish rule throughout the Middle East. After four centuries united in a multinational empire under Ottoman Muslim rule, the Arabs found themselves divided into new states under the control of Britain and France. The 200-year retreat of Islamic power before the West had run its course. New boundaries were established to suit the expansionist designs of the conquerors, and, as Rogan points out in his excellent Conclusion:
The borders of the post-war settlement have proven remarkably resilient—as have the conflicts the post-war boundaries have engendered. The Kurdish people, divided between Turkey, Iran, Iraq, and Syria, have been embroiled in conflict with each of their host governments over the past century in pursuit of their cultural and political rights. Lebanon, created by France in 1920 as a Christian state, succumbed to a string of civil wars as its political institutions failed to keep pace with its demographic shifts and Muslims came to outnumber Christians. Syria, unreconciled to the creation of Lebanon from what many Syrian nationalists believed to be an integral part of their country, sent in its military to occupy Lebanon in 1976—and remained in occupation of that country for nearly thirty years. Despite its natural and human resources, Iraq has never known enduring peace and stability within its post-war boundaries, experiencing a coup and conflict with Britain in World War II, revolution in 1958, war with Iran between 1980 and 1988, and a seemingly unending cycle of war since Saddam Hussein’s 1991 invasion of Kuwait and the 2003 American invasion… to topple Hussein.
The Fall of the Ottomans: The Great War in the Middle East is a remarkably lucid and accessible work of history, involving a large cast of contradictory and complex characters. Rogan, who teaches the history of the modern Middle East at Oxford, seems equally at home explaining the parameters of Ottoman grand strategy and the tensions of the British-Arab alliance as he is at conjuring up the unique challenges of maneuver warfare in the Sinai and Palestine, or the brutal stalemate in the Gallipoli trenches. Telling quotations from diplomats, field commanders, and ordinary soldiers of all the combatants lend the narrative a powerful sense of immediacy.
Rogan wrote the book in part to challenge the conventional view that the Turkish campaigns against Britain and France in the Middle East and against the Russians in the Caucuses were strictly sideshows to the main events on the Western and Eastern fronts, and to convey to English speakers a flavor of the Muslim experiences of an event that did more than any other to give birth to the modern Middle East. Rogan certainly succeeds in demonstrating that “the sick man of Europe” proved to be a far more important player in the Great War than its opponents believed possible, in ways they never imagined.