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The Berlin-Baghdad Railway and the Ottoman Empire: Industrialization, Imperial Germany and the Middle East

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... But the end of World War I also meant the expropriation of the ARC and the BRC. Their railtracks were partly taken over by the new nationalist government in Turkey and partly by the French and British (Earle, 1924;McMurray, 2001;Ortyalı, 1984;Özyüksel, 2013;Özyüksel, 2016;Soy, 2004;Wolf, 1973). Between the 1930s and 1950s, Turkey, Syria and Iraq step by step nationalized the remaining foreign-owned parts of the Baghdad railway. ...
... Hamid was dethroned by the Neo-Turks in 1909, but the failure of the British to support the reformists is partly due to the continued ties between the Turks and Germany, after the fall of Hamid. Finally yet importantly, for Ozyuksel (2016), Professor of History and Political Sciences at the University of Istanbul, the expansion of the railways was the great industrial project of the late 19th century and the Great Powers gained increased commercial benefits. Using new Ottoman sources, Ozyuksel proves how Berlin-Baghdad railway became a symbol of both the rising European power and the declining Ottoman Empire. ...
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This study focuses on the geopolitical situation in the wider East Mediterranean Region at the dawn of the 20 th century, based on the analysis of a major infrastructure project, the Baghdad Railway. The process of its construction eventually led to the rivalry between “Politics” and “Economy”, towards increased relative gains for the superpowers of that period. The innovative side of the research extends to the hypothesis that modern economic crises are also related to power games similar to those prevailing almost a century ago. International Relations are linked with the Politics and Economy sectors, considering realistic lessons from the past in order to shape another better in terms of peace and stability future.
... Historically, Great Britain had various geo-strategic and political ambitions in the MENA region in order to strengthen its geo-strategic presence and influence (Ben-Bassat & Ben-Artzi, 2015;Ortega, 2012;Özyüksel, 2016;Raymond, 2003). For this reason, Britain began to cooperate with tribal Arab leaders to undermine the dominating Ottoman Empire during the initial stages of the twentieth century (Mather, 2014). ...
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Pondering the fragile outcomes of current Arab-West intergovernmental and inter-ambassadorial relations, it has become essential for Western diplomats and politicians to be well informed about the current framework of Western foreign policies and applicability towards Arab countries. The article suggests that the application of Jürgen Habermas's critical theory and the theory of communicative action presents a vital if not urgent mission for enhanced Western foreign policies towards Arab nations. It facilitates rational prospects to enlighten Western diplomats and politicians about vigorous Habermasian notions in the development of future Western foreign policies; to challenge the blind spots that exist at the centre of Western foreign policies; to form cooperative policies away from Eurocentric and prejudiced orientations of Western international relations theory; and to offer contemporary approaches that safeguard Arab-West intergovernmental and inter-ambassadorial relations. The paper concentrates on various Habermasian intuitions in order to constructively improve future Arab-West international relations and to enhance the interpretations that have captured the minds of non-Muslim spectators. Keywords: Arab-West international relations; Western foreign policies; Western public diplomacy; Western diplomats and politicians; and Jürgen Habermas.
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Existing work seeks explanations for state repression mainly in domestic factors such as ethnic/religious cleavages, poverty and inequality, struggle for power, regime type and quality of state institutions, lack of loyalty, demand for scapegoats, and cultural or psychological traits of perpetrators. How foreign influences shape state repression has been given less attention. Furthermore, the focus of the empirical literature has been largely cross-country, leaving much local variation unexplained. In this article, I examine how far foreign interests can explain the local (spatial) variation of deportations and massacres during the Armenian genocide. Between 1915 and 1917 the Ottoman Empire carried out a massive campaign of state repression (deportations and massacres) against its Armenian population. There was meaningful variation across Ottoman provinces in the intensity of this campaign, that is, some provinces experienced more repression than others. I investigate the determinants of this spatial variation. My empirical analysis is guided by a rationalist (economic) model where deportation is a tool to stifle Armenian calls for independence, but the benefit and cost of deportation vary spatially. For example, deportation is costlier (i.e. the risk of foreign intervention is greater) in locations where foreign economic and military interests are threatened by the departure of Armenians. In line with the model’s predictions, my empirical analysis indicates that there were fewer deportations in places where Armenians worked for the German-owned railway.
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Sultan Abdul Hamid II adalah seorang pedagang furniture dari kayu yang kemudian diangkat menjadi sultan Turki Utsmani karena kakak tirinya yang bernama Murad V yang sakit. Meskipun dirinya memerintah dengan sistem Monarki yang absolut, Abdul Hamid membuktikan jika dirinya sanggup bertahan selama 33 tahun dan memperbaiki kondisi negara yang sudah ada di ujung tanduk dengan banyak sekali kebijakan-kebijakan yang dibuatnya. Kami mengumpul data dengan metode historis, dengan mengambil interpretasi dari sumber dan keterangan secara kritis terhadap perkembangan di masanya dengan pertimbangan secara teliti. Sehingga ditemukannya Kebijakan Luar Negeri Sulta Abdul Hamid II.
Thesis
Monumental and magnificently decorated tents played a key role in Ottoman courtly life and ceremonies over the course of the dynasty’s six-century reign (circa 1299-1922), building on similar practices in other Islamic cultures before and contemporary with the Ottoman Empire. While their primacy remained steadfast, Ottoman imperial tents’ aesthetic properties, functions, and meanings shifted over time to suit new socio-political contexts as well as changing courtly tastes. Far from an unconscious vestige of their origins as a nomadic principality in late thirteenth-century Anatolia, Ottoman sultans strategically deployed the longstanding Islamic tradition of princely tentage in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, an era marked by transformation. This dissertation explores several themes related to the study of fabric architecture in the late Ottoman period through an analysis of written and visual sources, chief among them a corpus of rarely seen extant tents as well as illustrated manuscripts, photography, and printed commodities such as newspapers and postcards. These themes include the built environment and its mobility and temporality; the mediated experience of nature; royal ceremonies, rites, and rituals; as well as the construction of modernity through infrastructural building and the formation of national history and identity. In short, imperial tents functioned as vehicles for choreographing courtly spaces, facilitating mobilities, enhancing leisure activities, framing ceremonies, and crafting a modern imperial identity predicated on the Ottomans’ storied past.
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Ovaj rad bavi se studijom slučaja sjećanja na radnu akciju „Sava 74”., konkretnije gradnju savskog nasipa u blizini Karlovca. Istraživačka pitanja koja se postavljaju su kako je oblikovano to sjećanje, 45 godina nakon; čega se kazivač najviše sjeća te kako se njegovo sjećanje razlikuje od sjećanja u teorijskom i medijskom diskursu. Glavne metode rada su intervju i analiza naracije kazivača koji je u radnoj akciji „Sava 74.” sudjelovao kao dvadesetogodišnjak. Cilj je rada stoga donijeti etnografiju pojedinačnog u okviru antropologije društvenog sjećanja i antropologije postsocijalizma.
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Throughout history, socio-political experts in the Arab-Islamic and Western worlds have embraced the prospect of fruitful Arab-West inter-governmental and inter-ambassadorial relations. In the fields of international relations and education, there is substantial research conducted for reconciling the socio-political and religious dilemmas in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Nonetheless, pondering the intransigent deterioration of affairs and the rise of extremism and terrorism, the region has become a focal point of mainstream Western media without evidence of political resolutions or sensible Western foreign policies. Moreover, much of recent critical Western works on the interpretations of political Islam from ontological perspectives require further attention. Nevertheless, misapprehensions about both historical and contemporary Islamic thought are evident, particularly among prominent Western diplomats and politicians. Therefore, it has become vital to devise a contemporary diplomatic training program for future Western representatives to the MENA region, largely since the methods of Western international relations theory (IRT) have been labelled as Eurocentric, unaccommodating and insufficient. The main objectives of this dissertation are as follows: to provide elucidations on how political Islam is observed, especially when Jürgen Habermas’s descriptive, interpretive and critically self-reflective methods of analysis are applied to it; to provide a holistic analysis of the historical factors that influence political Islam among Arab Muslims; to explore how these factors diverge from existing assumptions about political Islam in the Western setting; and, to pinpoint and elaborate upon extant hindrances in Western inter-governmental and inter-ambassadorial discussions. The findings revealed numerous shortcomings in current approaches to political Islam and also highlighted the factors behind its popularity among Arab Muslims. The findings also identified apprehensions towards Islamic thought in the Western setting and pinpointed effective political and educational notions through the application of Habermas’s critical theory and theory of communicative action. Finally, the dissertation outlined the rationale for a diplomatic training program for future Western diplomats and politicians.
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The Berlin Mosque was the first permanent place of Muslim worship in Germany. Never a purely local affair, the construction of the Berlin Mosque depended on the legacies of imperialism and the shifting geopolitical contexts of the 1920s. International diplomats and former Wilhelmine and Ottoman agents living and working in Weimar Berlin made sense of the mosque project through categories and ideas forged in the decades before the First World War. They gradually recalibrated their ambitions when confronted, as they were, with radical transformations of the Muslim world, from the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire and the abolition of the caliphate to the emergence of new political leaders from Arabia to Afghanistan. This article demonstrates how the construction and uses of the Berlin Mosque closely followed how diplomats and other actors, both German and non-German, assessed the geopolitical potential of a German–Muslim alliance in the post-Ottoman, post-Wilhelmine moment.
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Alliances remain at the heart of history, since they serve states in achieving geopolitical needs and securing grand strategic necessities. Apart from strategic considerations, the article aspires to highlight the psychological motivation for conceiving and forming alliances. It argues alliances to be the basic instrument in ensuring survival and elaborates the psychological efficacy and utility in employing the same device in gaining and sustaining the status of a functional great power. This article addresses the most significant development in modern times, i.e. rising China and its pursuit to become a pro-active great power, whilst greatly drawing from its strategic history in such endeavours. It explores the ‘China Threat’, and argues that China is likely to enter into alliances based on its geopolitical necessities by engaging its armed forces regionally, most likely in its near abroad. The article interprets China’s Belt and Road Initiative as a soft alliance and predicts the precursors of a military alliance.
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If all states want to survive, why do some of them enter unpropitious alliances? International Relations (IR) theory’s conventional answer is that imperfect information and systemic complexity result in miscalculation. This explanation begs the question: any alliance that fails is a miscalculated one, so the puzzle is not whether but why such mistakes are made. This article imports from recent scholarship on network theory and interpersonal trust to offer an alternative explanation. Alliances are not entities ethereally formed out of strategic imperatives, but products of interactions within transnational social networks of political, military, and business elites in the prospective allies. Such interactions enable alliances because people who are connected to each other through mutual association or previous exchanges develop mutual trust and gain subjective certainty about each other’s intentions and capabilities, which points at a previously ignored mechanism in alliance behavior: brokerage. In a case study that combines theory-based archival research and social network analysis, this article uses historical evidence on the Turco-German alliance to empirically demonstrate the brokerage role Colmar von der Goltz, the head of the German military mission to the Ottoman Empire, played in the two countries’ relations at the turn of the century and their eventual alliance in the First World War. The analysis points at a potential means of bridging IR, history, and sociology while expanding our understanding of alliance behavior and providing policy-relevant insights on geo-economic competition and the weaponization of interdependence at a time of growing strategic rivalry on the world stage.
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