The British and French Mandates in the Middle East: The History of the Allied Powers' Post-War Occupations via the League of Nations, Charles River Editors
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The British and French Mandates in the Middle East: The History of the Allied Powers' Post-War Occupations via the League of Nations

Author: Charles River Editors

Narrator: Michelle Humphries

Unabridged: 3 hr 41 min

Format: Digital Audiobook

Publisher: Findaway Voices

Published: 03/03/2023

Genre: History - Middle East

Synopsis

The United Nations is one of the most famous bodies in the world, and its predecessor, the League of Nations, might be equally notorious. In fact, President Woodrow Wilson’s pet project was controversial from nearly the minute it was conceived. At the end of World War I, Wilson's pleas at the Paris Peace Conference relied on his Fourteen Points, which included the establishment of a League of Nations, but while his points were mostly popular amongst Americans and Europeans alike, leaders at the Peace Conference largely discarded them and favored different approaches. British leaders saw their singular aim as the maintenance of British colonial possessions. France, meanwhile, only wanted to ensure that Germany was weakened and unable to wage war again, and it too had colonial interests abroad that it hoped to maintain. Britain and France thus saw eye-to-eye, with both wanting a weaker Germany and both wanting to maintain their colonies. Wilson, however, wanted both countries to rid themselves of their colonies, and he wanted Germany to maintain its self-determination and right to self-defense. Wilson totally opposed the “war guilt” clause, which blamed the war on Germany.

One of the League’s most lasting legacies was the manner in which it handed over administrative control of land in the Middle East to the victorious Allied Powers, namely France and Britain. The Ottoman Empire quickly collapsed after World War I, and its extensive lands were divvied up between the French and British. The intention of the mandate system was to have the administrators peacefully and gradually usher in independent states, and both European powers eventually attempted to withdraw from the region, but anyone with passing knowledge of the Middle East’s history in the late 20th century knows that the region has seen little peace.

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