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Thread: The Middle East – The Sykes-Picot Agreement 1916

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    The Middle East – The Sykes-Picot Agreement 1916

    Ex-PH2 | September 27, 2019 |




    When you first read this document, which was drawn up quickly and the map of the Middle East divided equally quickly by the use of a simple straight-edge ruler, it appears innocuous. But it is not.



    It specifies the division of what was, at the time, the Ottoman Turkish empire with the intent to give both France and the United Kingdom complete authority in the area, with Italy to have access to an area it had previously claimed.



    The full text of Sykes-Picot is here: https://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/sykes.asp



    The objective was to end the rule of the Ottoman Turks in the Middle East, and give all oil rights and access to Britain and France. Mechanized warfare had just begun with the development of the British armored tank and troop carriers, as well as the mounted mobile artillery that replaced outdated cannons on gun carriages. The new artillery was still hauled by horses; the horse cavalry was still employed by the armies; and troops still marched long distances carrying heavy loads and surviving on short shrift. But artillery had improved drastically as had rifles, and the munitions that were used by both of those war weapons, and the airplane as a war machine came into use in the field for the first time, with bombardiers dropping handheld bombs from the seat behind the pilot. The development of an aircraft-mounted machine gun, synchronizing firing the machine with the propeller blade rotation, came out of this war.



    It was not just the 1914 assassination of the Archduke Ferdinand and his wife by a Serbian-Bosnian extremist that caused World War I to come to life. That raised the grumbling in European and UK governments. In 1908, Bosnia-Herzegovina was annexed by the Austro-Hungary Empire. There were other influences besides that. In Germany, Kaiser Wilhelm, the grandson of England’s Queen Victoria, found himself at loose ends and decided to invade the rest of Europe. Apparently, he had to prove himself. At that time, Poland was part of the German demesne. To show how much things changed with the Treaty of Versailles, Poland separated from Germany, only to later become part of the USSR, and the Austro-Hungarian Empire ended. But the objective of both France and the UK was to take control of the Middle East and its oil-rich resources, and that was done through the Sykes-Picot Agreement of 1916.



    This is where T.E. Lawrence comes in. He was an officer in British Military Intelligence. The movie “Lawrence of Arabia” romanticizes and inflates what he did, but his job was to bring the Arab tribes together to revolt against the Turks, who held sway over what was then Mesopotamia, the Arabian Peninsula, Palestine, Armenia and Turkey. He most likely knew about Sykes-Picot, although the movie shows him as being surprised by that revelation when he brought Faisal to meet with Dryden and Allenby, when in fact, as an Intel officer, he’d already have known about Sykes-Picot. It was his “job”, if you will, to prod the Arabs into revolting against the Turks, but he was only one of many people involved in that.



    The outcome of World War I was the end of Ottoman Empire and the beginning of control of the Middle East by the Brits and French; the establishment of Palestine (later Israel) as a destination and home for the Jews, the end of the Austro-Hungarian Empire; the separation of Poland and Germany; the establishment of Iran, Iraq, Syria, Trans-Jordan (later Jordan), recognition for Georgia and Armenia; appropriation of management of Arabian petroleum by the British and French; and the opportunity that Stalin had waited for, the appropriation of Eastern Europe and Central Asia by the nascent Soviet Union, all through the Treaty of Versailles at Paris, in 1919.



    To be clear, Sykes-Picot was dismissed and replaced by the Treaty of Lausanne, which was subsequently replaced by the Treaty of Versailles. This is a quick edition of what happened. If you have a few weeks to spend on a long, involved history of this business that evolved into the things going on with Iran today, get a copy of Paris: 1919, and settle in for a very, very long ride.
    The saddest epitaph which can be carved in memory of a vanished liberty is that it was lost because its possessors failed to stretch forth a saving hand while yet there was time. — JUSTICE GEORGE SUTHERLAND (1938)

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    It was a giant pSyke job.

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    waitll iran takes another million barrel tanker through the suez, but this time sets it on fire.
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    or worse
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