Friday, 25 January 2013

The 1920s - An Unstable World

Most international problems in the 1920s and 1930s were on a small scale, but were nonetheless less violent and significant. In the Middle East the former provinces of the Turkish Empire were transferred to the League of Nations, but administrated by either Britain or France. In 1920 a serious rebellion broke out in Iraq, which led the British to appoint Prince Faisal to be King of Iraq though he had only limited powers until 1932. In 1922 a similar uprising in Egypt caused the British to grant effective self-government though a large British army remained to guard the crucial Suez Canal. The situation in Palaestine was more complicated as the British had earlier agreed to support Jewish settlement in the area, and this was opposed by the native Palestinians. Riots, rebellions and assassinations continued in Palestine throughout the 1920s and 1930s.

In North Africa the French faced rebellions in Morocco and Algeria from inland tribes who resented rule by the coastal peoples almost as much as they did French economic dominance. The French chose not to compromise, but instead opted for a large scale military occupation that was successful, but costly. In Libya the Italians faced similar, but less intense unrest. 

from "The Historical Atlas of the World at War" by Rupert Matthews


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