353note5.txt January 23, 1997

(Summary of 353note3.txt used for transparencies)

Ottoman Empire, Turkish state, dominant power in the eastern

Mediterranean,16th-19th century

In the Mesopotamian Valley, meanwhile, British forces from India defeated

the Turks in several battles in 1914-15.

In Arabia in June 1916, Husein ibn Ali, grand sharif of Mecca, continued

the traditional conflict between Arabs and Turks by leading, with his son

Abdullah ibn Husein, a revolt of Al Hijaz (the Hejaz, now in Saudi Arabia)

against Turkish rule.

Husein had the help of the British, who recognized him as king of Al Hijaz

in December 1916. In 1917, Under General (later Field Marshal) Sir Edmund

Allenby, British broke through Turkish lines at Beersheba (November),

compelling the evacuation of Gaza; and on December 9, Allenby's troops

took Jerusalem.

In 1917, Arab troops fought under British Colonel T. E. Lawrence, Lawrence

of Arabia. He helped lead the Arab revolt against Turks. Arab troops led

by Lawrence took the Turkish-held port of Al `Aqabah in July, 1917, and

during the remainder of the year executed many forays against the

Turkish-held Al Hijaz (the Hejaz) Railway.

In September 1918, British forces broke through the Turkish lines at

Megiddo and routed the Turkish army and the German corps assisting it;

after being joined by Arab forces under Lawrence, British took Lebanon and

Syria.

Arabs revolted against Turks because the British had promised them,

(1915-1916), McMahon-Husein letters, independence of their countries after

the war. Britain made other, conflicting commitments. In secret

Sykes-Picot agreement with France and Russia (1916), UK promised to divide

and rule the region with its allies. In third agreement, Balfour

Declaration of 1917, Britain promised the Jews, whose help it needed in

the war effort, a Jewish "national home" in Palestine, incorporated by

League of Nations as Palestine Mandate in 1922.