Results for Category: Specials

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Sykes-Picot Agreement

Representatives from France and Great Britain negotiated what came to be known as the Sykes-Picot Agreement, a tentative agreement on the division of spheres of influence in the territories of the disintegrating Ottoman Empire. The agreement was eventually concluded on 19 May 1916. However, The British gained control of Palestine in 1920 and ruled it from 1923 until 1948. They also ruled Mandatory Iraq from 1920 until 1932. The French Mandate for Syria and the Lebanon lasted from 1923 to 1946.

Russia in the Middle East: The Empire Strikes Back

Today, Russia has a presence in almost all of the Soviet Union’s former zones of influence, namely Syria, Egypt, Iraq, Yemen, Libya and Algeria. Furthermore, it is getting closer to the other non-Arab hegemon apart from Iran; Turkey. The Middle East therefore represented the best forum for a show of force by Russian President Vladimir Putin. Ironically, it is the Arab Spring – which Russian media outlets criticize continuously – that has allowed Putin to achieve his goal.

Strategic Ties Extend Russia’s Influence in the Middle East and Mediterranean

President Putin may feel justified in permitting himself a smile when reflecting on his foreign policy achievements in West Asia. Egypt has now moved closer to Russia and is prepared to further enhance its economic, military and political ties with Moscow. Turkey, a NATO member, appears to feel it could benefit from warmer relations with the Kremlin. And Syria, whatever shape or form a solution to the conflict there may take, has afforded Russia a direct military presence, and a firm foothold, in the eastern Mediterranean.