Download Arab Nationalism in the Twentieth Century: From Triumph to by Adeed Dawisha PDF

By Adeed Dawisha

Like a superb dynasty that falls to spoil and is finally remembered extra for its faults than its feats, Arab nationalism is remembered typically for its humiliating rout within the 1967 Six Day battle, for inter-Arab divisions, and for phrases and activities amazing by means of their meagerness. yet humans are likely to disregard the majesty that Arab nationalism as soon as was once. during this elegantly narrated and richly documented publication, Adeed Dawisha brings this majesty to lifestyles via a sweeping ancient account of its dramatic upward push and fall.

Dawisha argues that Arab nationalism--which, he says, was once encouraged by means of nineteenth-century German Romantic nationalism--really took root after global conflict I and never within the 19th century, as many think, and that it blossomed simply within the Nineteen Fifties and Sixties lower than the charismatic management of Egypt's Gamal 'Abd al-Nasir. He strains the ideology's passage from the cave in of the Ottoman Empire via its effective ascendancy within the past due Fifties with the team spirit of Egypt and Syria and with the nationalist revolution of Iraq, to the mortal blow it

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Additional info for Arab Nationalism in the Twentieth Century: From Triumph to Despair

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Peoples’ loyalties were particularistic, primarily “regional and sectarian, according to the district, clan or creed to which they belonged. . 51 Given the opposition of Great Britain and the formidable cultural obstacles it encountered, it was no wonder that the first real efforts to construct an Arab nation and give it a political manifestation came to very little. Antonius insists, however, that the failure was not total. The seeds had been sown. The new ideas encouraged by Ibrahim Pasha in Syria, in addition to his relatively tolerant rule which opened the country to Western education through missionary schools, contributed to the growth of nationalist sentiment in the generations that followed.

Told and retold, the tale gained in myth and heroic proportions to become the nationalist staple for Syrian youth. Yet here again, as with the circumstances relating to the 1916 “Great Arab Revolt,” the Arab nationalist character of the Syrian state had been exaggerated in nationalist discourse. It is thus important not to overstate the inroads that Arab nationalism had made into the political consciousness of the Syrian people under 44 CHAPTER TWO Faysal’s government. While the Syrian population on the whole welcomed the use of Arabic as opposed to Turkish or French, and while many seemed to accept the notion of linguistic and religious proximity with other Arabic-speaking peoples, they were still intellectually very distant from Faysal and his nationalist cadres in their understanding of, and susceptibility to, the Arab nationalist project.

111 A promise to Faysal of 10,000 fully armed men by a tribal leader never materialized. Bands of men from various Syrian clans fought with the French, attacking the right and left flanks of the Arab army, as well as its rear, which allowed the French army to concentrate on the middle core. A number of al-A‘yan from Damascus cut the telegraph lines between Maisalun and the capital, leaving the nationalist circles in Damascus without news of the battle. 112 Moreover, even among the nationalist circles, the concept of nationalism was perhaps more likely to refer to “Syrian” rather than “Arab” nationalism.

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