World War I

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Turkey entered the First World War on 29 October 1914. They inevitably sided with Germany, who lost the war, and as a result Turkey was stripped of all its Arab possessions. These territories became Syria, Iraq, Jordan and Palestine. Turkey as we know it today, only just managed to escape being divided up. It was merely the intervention of the Turkish leader, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, in 1919, was able to really save Turkey from disintegration by rallying the Turkish people together and showing the victorious allies that Turkey would resist division at any level . Turkey retained the territory that became the modern Turkish state. The old Arab provinces were however divided into the other Arab countries we know today.

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World War II

2nd world war

The Second World War, which began in September 1939, certainly spread towards the Middle East. When Germany overpowered Britain, in 1940, the British still held tight to Egypt, the defense of which was vital. At the battle of El Alamein on 23 October 1942 the British army prohibited the Germans from entering Egypt from the side of Libya. This was the most important and memorable date of the war in the Middle East, as a result that later the tide of war began to turn and become in favor of Britain.

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The Gulf War

Gulf War

On 2 August 1990, President Saddam Hussein of Iraq sent troops to invade Kuwait, which was essentially the beginning the Gulf crises and therefore the Gulf War. The Gulf crisis held the attention of the world until the allied troops drove Iraq’s forces out of Kuwait in February and March of 1991. Iraq had objections against Kuwait. For numerous years, Iraq had claimed part, or even all, of Kuwait’s oil producing capacity. Although some kind of Iraq action to annex part of Northern Kuwait had seemed impossible, nobody predicted Saddam Hussein to direct in his army and seize the entire country. The world was absolutely stunned. For one state to attempt to annex the whole of another seemed almost unthinkable.

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Vietnam War

The Vietnam War

The Vietnam War took place in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 till 30 April 1975. The war lasted 19 years, 5 months, 4 weeks, and 1 day.  It was fought between North Vietnam, and the government of South Vietnam, who were supported by the United States. The United States government viewed its contribution in the war as a way to prevent a communist takeover of South Vietnam as part of their widespread strategy of containment. The North Vietnamese however regarded the conflict as a colonial war. The Paris Peace Accords on “Ending the war and Restoring Peace in Vietnam” were signed on 27 January 1973, ending direct US military involvement.  United States military however, only completely ended its contribution on 15 August 1973 and the capture of Saigon by the Vietnam People’s Army in April 1975, which marked the end of the war.

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