Talk:History of the Middle East

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Talk:History of the Middle East/Archive1

No weapons of mass destruction found[edit]

I think it is worth mentioning that the eleged reason for going to war against Iraq (Weapons of Mass Destruction) turned out to be untrue. There were no weapons found. I have added this to the article... It is a known fact that evidence has never been shown. Reference: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/7634313/ Mazenharake (talk) 10:46, 10 October 2008 (UTC)

First, it's alleged, not eleged...

I don't understand why, with the war now finally all but won, people are still so dedicated to supporting this false contention that no WMD were found in Iraq. And I remind you that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

Let's start here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WMD_in_Iraq.

Here is a quote from the above reference:

"According to reports from the previous U.N. inspection agency, UNSCOM, Iraq produced 600 metric tons of chemical agents, including mustard gas, VX and sarin, and nearly 25,000 rockets and 15,000 artillery shells, with chemical agents, that are still unaccounted for. In fact, in 1995, Iraq told the United Nations that it had produced at least 30,000 liters of biological agents, including anthrax and other toxins it could put on missiles, but that all of it had been destroyed."

If you want to believe the word of Iraq under Saddam Hussein, be my guest. I have ample reason not to do so.

This "no WMD were found in Iraq" is indeed a popular myth. There were clear signs of both the existience of the means of production and also the hasty disposal of WMD in Iraq as the recent war became inevitable, but efforts were not complete and WMD were in fact found. Much of the WMD infrastructure was intact, either mothballed or, in some cases, used in a dual civilian/military mode. MSNBC shows signficant bias in their reporting, although I'm sure the same complaint, accurate or not, will be levelled against this source: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2006/06/22/report-hundreds-wmds-iraq/. So perhaps we should discard both of those sources and go with this one: http://www.defenselink.mil/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=15918.

Indeed I suspect it will be at least 50 years beore the truth is known, but it's starting to come out: http://www.waranddecision.com/

It is well known that Iraq had a decade of practice at deception operations and also the invasion wasn't exactly a surprise. There were reports of a dedicated and large-scale effort to move signficant WMD and/or related assets into Lebannon in the weeks just prior to the US invasion. The fact is the truth will most likely not be known for many years due to classification of what is known. Furthermore, there were tons of materials found in 50 gallon drums that were hidden in and/or under places such as schools. When tested, naturally, the results were inconclusive as the agents which make up nerve and other WMD agents are quite similar to pesticides and other industrial chemicals. A plant the news media said was for civilian production of chlorine was completely hidden from view and run by military, not civilians. In every case the media bent over backwards to support the versions presented by the Iraqi information minister - you remember him. He's the guy who hastily rearranged the press conference on the roof of a building in Iraq so that the cameras would not be on him as he talked of how the Americans in their tanks were dying in the deserts even as, in the background of the spot where he would have been standing, those tanks were clearly visible rolling through Baghdad proper. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 66.75.8.208 (talk) 10:05, 2 February 2009 (UTC)

Why no geography?[edit]

Without an introductory sentence describing the geographical area covered, this article is close to useless for many readers. There is controversy about the terms "Near East" and "Middle East" anyway. Near what? East of what? Itsmejudith 08:19, 23 June 2006 (UTC)

This question is discussed at length at Middle East. Adam 09:20, 23 June 2006 (UTC)

Oh, thank you Adam. Yes, it is discussed at great length (probably too great length) there. I have added a sentence to direct back to it. I did find it initially very confusing. I still think there is a lot of clearing up to be done about the whole group of articles related to the history of this area. The story of the rise of Islam, establishment of the Ottoman Empire, etc. is told many times, each with variations.Itsmejudith 20:36, 23 June 2006 (UTC)

I agree. If you look at the archived Talk for this page, you will see that we had a long battle with a particularly annoying editor (a teenager who thought he knew everything) about this matter (and others), which led to a lot of unnecessary material being added both to this article and to Middle East. Now that he has either gone or grown up, both articles could use a clean-up. Adam 00:52, 24 June 2006 (UTC)

betrayed[edit]

"the Arabs found they had been betrayed, indeed doubly betrayed"
This needs to explained. I think that the British had always been open about their intention to distinguish between areas of the middle east that were clearly arab and other areas that were not. There may have been arabs who felt betrayed, but it is not clear that their expectations for post-WWI political boundaries were realistic. Can Wikipedia flatly say that they were betrayed? If so, the specifics need to be cited. --JWSchmidt 18:04, 14 July 2006 (UTC)

Ted Thornton website


I changed to "Arabs felt betrayed" and moved down the diputed neutrality sign. Dan Gluck 20:19, 20 August 2006 (UTC)


It clearly states why the Arabs felt betrayed, the British and the French signed secret treaties that went against what they had promised the Arabs and they also hadn’t disclosed their full intentions in creating a sovereign state of Israel. The West has to take some form of acknowledgement when it comes down to these conflicts in the Middle East, if they want to have any credibility.


Indeed, there is little neutrality in this article, like in the The Ancient Middle East section which stresses the Arabian control of the region and diminishes the other reigns. "the early Arabs, [...] appeared around 800 B.C and established powerful and influential civilizations that were the center of trade for centuries, in the heart of the desert" I hope you see my point. Nefzen 17:24, 27 July 2007 (UTC)

It seems that this article needs some serious updating, as I added below in my comment #11, but let me get into a few specifics. The British did make some general promises of Arab areas such as that currently occupied by Egypt,Syria, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, among others, as well perhaps as North Africa and Iraq. Indeed Arab/Islam control of a huge swath of territory is apparent when one views any honest maps of the regions involved. But the promises made to the Hashemites and King Hussein did not include the area west of the Jordan and Damascus. Rather than risking pasting in data that would not be appropriate, I'll refer you to paragraph 11 here: http://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/brwh1922.asp It discusses areas that were not to be considered part of the discussions contained in Sir Henry McMahon's letter of October 24, 1915. Unless I miss my guess, the area in question includes Israel and, for that matter, the West Bank and Gaza also.

Like many sources there seems to be a strong pro-Arab, anti-Israel bias in this article and I think it needs signficant revision by a proven neutral author as whoever has worked it to date is obviously incapable of presenting a fair and balanced view.

NPOV at risk[edit]

"The advent of a new western army of occupation in a Middle Eastern capital marked a turning point in the history of the region. If the U.S. succeeded in transforming Iraq into a prosperous and stable democratic state, the consequences for the region might be great. The consequences of failure would also be very far-reaching. Political progress in Iraq was slower than expected, and was complicated by an ongoing Iraq insurgency, but successful elections were held in January 2005 and power transferred to a Shia-dominated elected government."

This seem slightly POV/"if, if, if" to anyone?--WaltCip 00:48, 30 October 2006 (UTC)

It is also rather out of date and can probably be deleted. Adam 02:47, 30 October 2006 (UTC)

I've given it a really quick update. It's not a very optimistic picture, but it's factual and neutral. Clarke


Umm, why no mention of the Hussein-McMahon correspondence which is the basis for the "felt betrayed" line that was mentioned above?

In answer to the question just posed, because said correspondence proves there was no betrayal, no reason to feel betrayed. Their expectations were unrealistic. As usual, they didn't listen, they heard what they wanted to hear, not what was said. Or, for that matter, written.

Anyway, As for claims this is "factual and neutral" - guess again! By the way, new elections, this time with the Sunni involved. Looking good so far. Page needs a major rewrite and, I suggest, input by someone who's a little less personally biased.

Lebanon '06?[edit]

Shouldn't there be some mention of Israel's war in Lebanon against Hezbollah in 2006? The list of Arab-Israeli wars ends in 1982. The 2006 war was pretty big... longer than the others, also.

I have added a short paragraph about the 2006 conflict, but there is a separate larger article already existing 2006 Israel-Lebanon Conflict. Bencgibbins 14:56, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Too difficult?[edit]

I reverted a comment made by an anon who found the page too difficult. S/he may have a point. Itsmejudith 11:53, 21 April 2007 (UTC)


Update?[edit]

This page really needs to be updated. Either remove the last part about Iraq and the US and provide a link to the "War on Terror" article or update it with current events. The article makes it seem like the problems in the Middle East are atarting to resolve with lines like:

"Political progress in Iraq was slower than expected...but successful elections were held in January 2005 and power transferred to a Shia-dominated elected government"

convey that all is well in Iraq. Meanwhile the Iraqi parliament has petitioned for the US to leave Iraq and the US congress is doing the same. All is not well and this article is misleading. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 65.169.45.251 (talk) 19:18, 14 May 2007 (UTC).

Indeed, the entire article is rather misleading. Just look at this:
"in 642 after they defeated the Romans at the Battle of Yarmuk, which is considered by many historians to be the most important battle of all time." Nefzen 11:24, 7 August 2007 (UTC)

The Map[edit]

why doent the map have Iran as part of the Middle East. Last time i checked it was a middle Eastern country —Preceding unsigned comment added by 90.194.227.139 (talk) 17:17, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

  • Some people think of Iran as in Asia... WhisperToMe 22:05, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

I don't understand the answer, "Some people think of Iran as in Asia", as everything from Turkey (well, most of it) east is "as in Asia". From your answer it would seem you think, perhaps, that parts of Lebannon, Israel, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, etc. are part of... what? Europe? Africa?

Here's a hint: They're Southwest Asia... all of them!

Actually, the map, at least the one I see today, doesn't show political lines of control but, if you check one that does, you will find that yes, Iran is in fact included in the map that accompanies this article.

By the way, the first time in history there's ever actually a country called "palestine" rather than just that being the general name for a region which, for years, has been prevented, by ARABS, TURKS and a host of others, NOT ISRAEL, from forming a real country called "Palestine", I'll add it to the list of countries that I think of "as in Asia". For the record, Israel has negotiated FOR DECADES, against their best interests, to allow the creation of Palestine and, oddly enough, it's people like Yasir Arafat and now Hamas and Hizbollah who've been primary forces preventing that dream from becoming a reality. Go figure.

Definitelly the Turks, Arabs and all these other brown people (sarcasm) prevented Palestine from becoming a country, not hmmm Britain, France or the United States. What history have you been reading? Iraq, Iran, Israel, Syria, Jordan, all of these countries, they didn't exist before WW1, they were created. Just because there wasn't an official, modern state system doesn't mean that there weren't REAL PEOPLE living there, with their own system of governance and laws. In fact, the Palestinians are some of the oldest ethnic group in history.. Who takes on the right to say that every region in the world should be divided into modern states with set borders and a government? And fyi, Israel has been negotiating for the creation of an insanely small, extremely disatvantageous state just so they can GET RID OF the Palestinians living in camps in Israel for over 30 years now, not because they're do-gooders. It's what the United States would do if they had an ethnically different minority of people who wish to keep their culture and lifestyle and do not wish to mingle, let's call them Indians. Oh wait, you DID have such a minority. Snap! Well, if you hadn't killed 95% of them you would probably be offering them a little bit of Texas to make their poor, crappy country there too.

188.221.137.12 (talk) 01:21, 6 December 2010 (UTC)

Can we get someone with a rudimentary knowledge of geography to start fact-checking these articles? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 66.75.8.208 (talk) 10:39, 2 February 2009 (UTC)


I don't know how, but I would like to please create a centralized discussion that will (A) help REPLACE the word "middle east" and articles pertaining to it to "Western Asia." Geopolitically and culturally also, Iran is NOT part of the middle east. I don't know how to make edits like these or talks like these, please help me. Please understand that we need to make this change for Wikipedia. The word "middle east" is extremely eurocentric, and if we start with Wikipedia, we can change the word so it says "Western Asia" for ALL articles. I am an expert in this field of geopolitics. Also, Iran is NOT a part of the so-called "middle east," it is in South Asia, culturally, geopolitically, historically, etc... Please help me make this change; you are all better with Wikipedia than I am!

Thanks:

Mtheory1 (talk) 03:33, 26 March 2012 (UTC)mtheory1

Transliteration needs to be standardised[edit]

Throughout the article, various transliterations of many Arabic terms are used (e.g. "Hezbollah", "Hizbullah") with no explanation. This is confusing. Only one transliteration should be used consistently for each term, with other common transliterations mentioned in brackets after the term is first introduced.

For continuity, all the Arabic terms should be transliterated similarly, meaning that if we use "Hizbullah" as the standard, we should also use 'Muhammad' rather than 'Mohammed'. The short 'e' and 'o' vowel sounds as we use them in English do not exist in Arabic, so it could be argued that "Hizbullah" is preferable to "Hezbollah". Raylin (talk) 10:10, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

Agree that consistency is important. There is also policy to use names recognisable to readers of English. Articles relating to the Islamic Prophet use Muhammad and I believe that is a policy of the Islam Wikiproject. "Hezbollah" is the most usual form of that name in English, so there is a case for using it even if on this occasion we are not consistent with other transliterations. Itsmejudith (talk) 10:19, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

Ataturk "emancipated women" did he?[edit]

"Meanwhile, the fall of the Ottomans had allowed Kemal Atatürk to seize power in Turkey and embark on a program of modernisation and secularisation. He abolished the caliphate, emancipated women enforced western dress..."

I hesitate to agree that emancipate is the correct terminology... the pendulum swung the other way entirely, and "emancipated" is entirely at odds with what comes after it - "enforced western dress". —Preceding unsigned comment added by 82.46.212.51 (talk) 03:18, 5 January 2008 (UTC)

Mention of Israel Curiously Absent.[edit]

I'm just curiuos why there is no mention of the original Kingdom of Israel, established around 1020 BCE and continuing, though eventually divided around 930 BCE into Israel and Judah, until the Assyrians defeated Israel around 722 BCE and the Babylonians subsequently did the same to Judah, around 586 BCE. It seems that this page is just another taking part in the general historic revisionism intended to help the eventual aim of eliminating Israel from existence. This page, until it is revised to include the existence and history of Israel, deserves a failing grade.

The word "palestine" did not even come into use until the Romans conquered the area and, as they usually did, they usurped and renamed just about everything as part of their campaign of subjugation. I'm wondering if anyone can tell me the borders of any country named "palestine", what day or year any such nation was formed, who was their first leader, what was their currency, etc. The answers, of course, cannot be given because, thanks largely to the Arabs, there never has been any country named "palestine" and, as far as I know, the Israelis are the contry that has done the most to rectify this situation, negotiating for decades against their better interests to provide for creation of a "palestine" on land they rightfully conquered after being attacked by Arabs who previously prevented it from being used for the same purpose.


I'm going to have to repeat myself. Your arguments are completely hallow. Just because a modern state system is not in place in a particular region does not mean that its inhabitants simply don't exist. Also, Arabs (bad generalization by the way, since Arab interests are much more distinct amongst each other than modern Western ones) had very little to do with Palestine not becoming a state, it was mostly the fact that the natives were nomads, Beduins and before 1970 only 20% of the Palestinian population lived in cities. Get it into your head: using a land to create, manage or in any way make use of a modern state is NOT some sort of noble goal, it's merely a goal. This being said, Israel's purpouse to create a proper country is not noble or valiant. It's just its purpose meant for its own self interest.

The original Kingdom of Israel is insignificant in modern debates. Why? Because there is no policy of taking back what your 2000 year old ancestors lost. Let's assume that you lose a bit of legitimacy over your past possessions with every minute that has passed since you lost it; it's a reasonable assumption. In that case, the Jews' reasoning for reclaiming their country from the Palestinians is a lot less justified than the Aboriginies reclaiming Australia, the native Americans reclaiming the United States or, for that matter, the Brits reclaiming US. Think about it: Their families have lived there for THOUSANDS of years, how are they going to feel if you tell them that they have to leave?

And to conclude, this is the 21st century, the post-modern era of international relations, conflict management and resolution.. there is no such thing as 'rightfully conquered' any more, what Israel did and continues to do to this very day actually violates international law.

You ask for people writing this article to be unbiased yet you are shamelessly biased yourself. You made sure every mention of 'Israel' starts with a capital and every mention of 'palestine' doesn't. There is no one in his right mind who would ever take you seriously. The wikipedia auto corrector will underline your word for being misspelled if you type 'palestine'

188.221.137.12 (talk) 01:49, 6 December 2010 (UTC)

 —Preceding unsigned comment added by 66.75.8.208 (talk) 10:19, 2 February 2009 (UTC) 

Reformer in the Ottoman side[edit]

The section Ottoman era claims that Ottoman Sultan Abdulhamid II was a reforming sultan as well as Mehmet Ali Pasha of Egypt. Abdulhamit and Mehmet Ali were not contemporary rulers. Mehmet Ali reigned between 1805-1848 and Abdülhamit reigned between 1876-1909. So they can't be easily compared. Besides unlike Mehmet Ali, Abdülhamit was not a reformer. A more realistic name in Ottoman side might be Mahmut II (grandfather of Abdülhamit) who reigned between 1808-1839. Mahmut II was a comtemporary of Mehmet Ali and a reformer.Nedim Ardoğa (talk) 08:11, 16 May 2010 (UTC)

The Map Image[edit]

The image appears to be enhanced artificially. When compared with Google Earth or www.wikimapia.org, the map on this article has a lot of greenery. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 210.210.41.66 (talk) 06:19, 14 January 2011 (UTC)

Wrong title[edit]

If you see here, you will agree that this history starts in 1902, and therefore either the article is too long, or needs to be renamed to History of eastern Mediterranean Koakhtzvigad (talk) 04:17, 23 January 2011 (UTC)

And the article on LGBT history should start in the 1990s because that's when the term came into use. The things they convey are almost almost older than the terms themselves. Moreover, the terms "Middle East" and "Near East" are synonymous today. Even more than that, the "Eastern Mediterranean" is a synonym for the "Levant", which is only one part of the Middle East. 213.109.230.96 (talk) 20:01, 18 November 2014 (UTC)

North Africa/Middle East 2010-2011[edit]

The fact that all these North African and Middle Eastern Nations are having uprisings MUST be mentioned in this article 68.55.176.205 (talk) 20:47, 11 March 2011 (UTC)

Language[edit]

The Middle East has had many lingue franche. It would be splendid if someone included a timeline of these in the article. 213.109.230.96 (talk) 20:04, 18 November 2014 (UTC)

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