‘He who controls the media, controls the mind’ [Jim Morrison]. What role has the media and/or propaganda played in shaping the civil war process?

Conflict is one of the defining features of the modern world and since the end of the Cold War there have been countless civil wars involving the deaths, suffering, and displacement of millions of people. There has long been a close association between media and warfare, and as such mass media often plays a key role in shaping the civil war process. As a rule media within the country experiencing civil war has been used to support the struggle of the motherland. However, with the expansion of global media, such as CNN and Al-Jazeera, as well as the internet, information is broadcast to people around the world on an almost instantaneous basis. Subsequently this leads to public reactions, often moral outrage or anger, resulting in pressure on governments to intervene in civil wars across the world. As a result it is no longer just the media within the country at war but also the global media which shapes the civil war process. Additionally, propaganda has played a significant role in the prelude and execution of war throughout the 20th and beginning of the 21st century. Propaganda interprets events in biased ways often exaggerating the successes or virtues of one side, while inflating the failures of the adversary. This contributes to the shaping of the civil war process by lending support to one side, enabling them to reach out and appeal to the population of their own country and to third parties who might intervene in the civil war.

Propaganda is defined as ‘the systematic propagation of a doctrine or cause through information reflecting the views and interests of those advocating such a doctrine or cause’. Prior to the expansion of global media, propaganda was widely used in shaping the civil war process. It was used to mobilise hatred against the enemy, preserve the friendship of allies, and if possible to procure the cooperation of neutrals. The Bolsheviks organised a highly effective propaganda campaign during the Russian Civil war of 1918-1921. Through speeches, newspapers, and posters, the people were continually told that under the Bolsheviks life would be better and more equal. In addition Bolshevik propaganda pressed home the idea that the White Armies and leaders would destroy the achievements gained during the revolution and reinstate the ways of the Tsarist regime. In this way the Bolsheviks were able to build upon their support. Moreover the media was very one sided since the Bolsheviks imposed severe censorship. This effective propaganda campaign and censorship of the media helped shape the civil war process in Russia by allowing the Bolsheviks to build a support base, handing them an important advantage. According to Christopher Lazarski, white propaganda was a half-hearted, badly organised effort which could not effectively counter-balance the propaganda of the Bolsheviks; even bringing more harm than good according to General Denikin. The Reds controlled the majority of what was published, thus appearing the lesser of two evils.

The media has played a much larger role in shaping the civil war process in more recent years, in 1962 only 29% of Americans cited the television as their primary source of news while post 9/11 this increased to 81%. Studies also indicate that television is more trusted than other news sources, because images often verify the claims that have been made. The CNN effect is defined by Steven Livingston as the impact of new global real-time media on diplomacy and foreign policy, it incorporates the responses from domestic audiences and political elites to global events that are transmitted by real time communications technology. It claimed to change the very politics surrounding war and was considered an important factor in subsequent western humanitarian military interventions throughout the 1990s; thus the media played a large role in shaping the civil war process. According to Robinson (1999) the CNN effect theorises that when news media broadcast emotionally driven stories of human crisis, a major response was provoked amongst domestic audiences and political elites.

In a humanitarian circle it is seen as a cause for good often leading to outside intervention in civil wars where cases of human suffering might otherwise have been ignored, such as in Kosovo. The civil war in Kosovo was a brutal war which is seen to have been shaped by the media. In 1998/1999 images of human suffering in the war shocked the Western world; it was largely seen as these images of massacres which galvanised western support against the Serbian side and pushed the world’s greatest military alliance, NATO, into war. Additionally the Nigerian Civil war, 1967-1970, was a war in which both the media and propaganda played a central role in shaping the civil war process. Media had a big influence on morale at home and the dynamics of international involvement. The Biafran war bombarded western culture with images of the starving African child, intensifying in the summer of 1968 as the famine caused by the civil war was classified as genocide around the world. Biafran elites studied western propaganda techniques and carefully constructed public communications in an intentional fashion to appeal to international public opinion, while maintaining morale domestically. It was the television pictures of starving children in Biafra in 1968 which were credited with provoking a major response, primarily NGO led, and in shaping the civil war process.

Interestingly the lack of media coverage can shape the civil war process. The civil war process in Rwanda was shaped by the media in the sense that a lack of media coverage led to continued massacres of Rwandan citizens. In the mid-1990s 8,000-10,000 Rwandans were being killed each day, Bearsly 2003, but the international media failed to inform the world of this mass genocide. For almost 3 weeks the story failed to make the top of the TV news bulletin despite being branded as one of the 20th century’s worst crimes. Richard Dowden, the director of Royal African Society said this was widely a result of Rwanda not being important enough to western editors. Lieutenant-General Dallaire said during the crisis, “I felt that one good journalist on the ground was worth a battalion of troops because I realised they could bring pressure to bear”. This sums up the impact the media can have on shaping the civil war process very succinctly, had the media emphasised the genocide more widely it is highly likely that countries would have taken steps to prevent the crisis. Policy makers feel compelled to respond to media pressure when humanitarian interests are at stake, and as such media can often drive foreign policy decisions when it comes to civil wars, thus shaping the civil war process.

Mass media has an enormous influence over how civil wars are presented to the public, via the media people are constantly bombarded with information which is often shocking and inhumane. The media are drawn to events that display significant levels of human suffering, often resulting in public outrage about civil wars. This subsequently leads to pressure upon governments or humanitarian organisations to intervene in the war, shaping the civil war process. Many diplomats and policymakers have viewed the emergence of the media and propaganda as an intrusive new player in the civil war process that could pressure governments into making foolish decisions. Despite the adamant opinion of many politicians, such as former British Secretary Douglas Hurd, that policy should not and will not be dictated by the media there is no denying that the media and propaganda both play crucial roles in shaping the civil war process.

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Prisoner of war stories from World War One

Alexander Arthur Fraser, 20th Lord Saltoun, 8 March 1886 – 31 August 1979. 

My great-grandfather, Lord Saltoun, fought in World War One in Germany, but was captured by the Germans and spent four years as a prisoner of war. While he was imprisoned in a camp in Germany a friend of his in London concocted a plan to help him. This friend in London sent a package to the camp where he was imprisoned, addressed to my grandfather. The package was a cake but what the German prison guards discovered was that the cake was merely a ruse and a gun had been baked into the center of the cake in question. My great-grandfather was lucky not to be shot because of this, and the friend in question was swiftly packed off to the British Embassy in Peru to make up for his sins. So much for helping a friend…

The Red Terror and the Military

V. I. Lenin, 1918.

What was the red terror and why did it come about?

  • A campaign of mass killings, torture, and systematic oppression conducted by the Bolsheviks after their seizure of power. Widely attributed to the attempted assassination on Lenin in the summer of 1918.
  • The Cheka were the secret police, they diversified to a broader security police force in 1918. The change in the duties of the Cheka, and the move to violence, can be seen in these two sources:

Red terror within the military

  • Lenin realised the necessity of terror before it became legalised- necessary to keep the army until control. Did not agree with the abolition of the Kerensky decree.
  • Targeted specific groups such as ex-Tsarist officers serving in the Red Army. Used in the guise of ‘military specialists’ with about 15,000-20,000 ex-Tsarist officers constituting 75% of officer core in Red Army in 1918. To maintain control over the officers terror was used against them.
  • Red army faced huge problems during the civil war- desertion, ill-discipline, supply issues etc. Terror used to impose discipline after emerging out of the chaos of 1917.

Red terror used for military objectives

  • Terror used to defeat the Whites, and other enemy groups, to enforce the grain requisitioning policy necessary to feed to army, to ensure the support of the population even if it was forced.

Below is a link to a powerpoint that explains everything in more depth:

Red Terror and the Military

The role of resources and social status in Civil War

Are civil wars better understood as conflicts over resources or struggles over social status?

It is hard to determine whether civil wars are better understood as conflicts over resources or struggles over social status; every civil war is inherently different from the next making it difficult to draw this sort of conclusion. Civil wars have such varied origins and outcomes that it is not possible to pinpoint whether one factor or another has more weight when looking at civil wars as a whole; although it is certainly possible to look at individual wars and determine the main reason for the war. As a result of the varied nature of civil wars it is valid to say that they can be understood both as conflicts over resources and struggles over social status. Indeed, it is rare that there is merely one factor which contributes to the start of a civil war; however it appears that more often the outbreak can be attributed to a conflict over resources as opposed to struggles to do with social status. This is particularly true in countries situated in Africa where many civil wars have been fought because of natural resources, which are for the most part fairly abundant in these countries. On the other hand, civil wars in Europe, such as the Spanish and Russian civil wars, are often more focused on social status than resources; although naturally there are many other factors at play both in Europe and Africa. Location can affect the nature of civil war, this essay compare civil wars from Africa and Europe and demonstrate how depending upon location civil wars can either be better understood as conflicts over resources or struggles over social status. This essay will argue that civil wars are in fact better understood as conflicts over resources; however it will also acknowledge the importance of struggles over social status as well as other factors not mentioned in the question.

Civil War is one of the most deadly human phenomena, and since the end of World War II more than 20 million people have died because of civil wars worldwide.[1] The nature and origins of civil wars are thus a highly debated topic among historians, who have come to varying conclusions about why civil wars begin. These reasons range from poverty, inequality, poor economic growth, the fractionalisation of society, struggles over social status and the role of resources; which is one of the main factors this essay is focusing on. Resources have multiple impacts on civil wars and therefore civil wars can be better understood as conflicts over resources than as struggles over social status.

Many studies argue that there is a link between the dependence on natural resources and the outbreak of civil war, such as Collier and Hoeffler (2002). They found that natural resources and civil war are highly correlated and believe that states which rely heavily on the export of primary commodities face a higher risk of civil war than resource poor states.[2] This suggests that a state’s dependence on natural resources has a significant influence on the likelihood that a civil war will begin over the next five years. Since 1998 the conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo has been partially driven by the trade in conflict minerals. Although there have been a number of complex reasons driving the civil war, including conflicts over basic resources such as water as well as various political agendas, it is resources which have caused the most issues.[3] Dependence on primary commodities played a central role in causing the conflicts in the Congo, in particular their high levels of dependence on mineral exports. However, although natural resource dependence was a significant determinant of civil wars in the Congo it was not dependence as such that motivated the conflicts, but rather the geographic concentration of resources and their unequal distribution among ethnic groups that proved to be the crux of the issue.[4] This disproportionate concentration of resources and wealth also provided incentives for secessionist movements, as the struggles for regional control of resources led to the outbreak of civil war.

The abundance of resources presents an incentive to fight in order to gain control over the valuable resources themselves, often leading to wars of secession such as the second Sudanese civil war where the north and south were pitted against one another in order to gain control of natural resources harboured in certain areas of the country. The second Sudanese conflict was also triggered by resources. However, although this is another African civil war dealing with similar issues and origins, resources played a different role in this war and it was not a large dependence on primary resources which was the issue. Instead this civil war was caused by the government taking control of resources and diverting them to a region of the country which they did not originate from; leading to tension and eventually a war of secession when the south tried to break away as a separate state. In 1983 the Sudanese President decided to place oil in the country’s south under the jurisdiction of the north; subsequently leading to the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA) to complain that the north was stealing the resources of the south and demand that it stop.[5] However instead of responding to the SPLA’s demands the government waged a campaign of astonishing brutality which to date has killed an estimated 2million people. Oil exports make up about 70% of Sudan’s export earnings and contribute to the development of the country, which shows again that this civil war was largely brought about by the country’s dependence on natural resources. Yet, it is not only a large dependence on natural resources or the possibility of a war of secession which are consequences of resources in civil wars.

Resources can help finance rebellion and civil wars because regardless of the beliefs, ideologies and grievances involved all armed conflicts must be funded; since the soldiers need to be paid. Resources equal power and so unrest often breaks out over possession of areas rich with natural resources, such as minerals. There are other studies which approach the issue of resources from a different angle, for example Fearon argues that the presence of certain types of resources, mainly gemstones and narcotics, tend to make wars last longer. While Laitin has drawn the conclusion that oil exporting states are more likely to suffer from civil war.[6] Once again this can be seen in the Sudanese civil war, where oil was not only one of the main causes of the war but also prolonged the conflict since it was such a valuable resource to be fighting for. These findings are backed by Ross, who also agrees oil exports are linked to the onset of conflict while ‘lootable’ commodities like gemstones and drugs are correlated with the duration of conflict.[7] Struggles over resources can lead to fighting over the labour force necessary to harvest the materials, as well as control over the markets and trade routes required to them valuable.[8] In addition since resources often equal power, as stated above, foreign states can often invade or support one side in a civil war in their own pursuit of access to the resources.[9] Nevertheless, it was not just oil which led to civil war in Sudan. “The south has always been viewed and treated by the sectarian politicians as an afterthought, an appendage, and a marginalised section of society”; southern people believed they were mistreated and in addition to the conflict over oil wanted to rise up and cement their place as equals within Sudan.[10] Thus, although resources are often to primary reason for civil war in Africa, it is necessary to remember that there is never a singular cause; the reasons behind civil wars are more often than not extremely complex.

A third civil war in Africa, in which once again the conflict revolves around resources, is the civil war in Sierra Leone. However, yet again resources take on a slightly different role in the outbreak of this civil war compared to the conflicts in Sudan and the Democratic republic of Congo. The civil war in Sierra Leone is an example of how minerals can weaken a government’s territorial control, thus leading to civil war. Resource wealth tends to promote civil wars by giving people who live in resource rich areas an economic incentive to form a separate state; something which under these circumstances could only be achieved through civil war. In Sierra Leone the government had long had difficulty exercising its authority over the diamond fields, a problem exacerbated by the private armies, armed gangs and paramilitary forces that operated in the area.[11] In 1991 when a group of insurgents called the Revolutionary United Front crossed the border from Liberia the government was too weak to repel them and the country was drawn into civil war. All three civil wars, in Sierra Leone, Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo, are conflicts over resources; however even when this is the case the exact issues are still different from one civil war to another and resources can play many different roles in the origins and nature of war. In addition inequality can drive civil war when the poor rebel to induce the redistribution of resources, while the rich regions may mount secessionist rebellions to pre-empt this distribution; which shows that although resources are more often the cause of civil war in Africa they can be influence by social struggles.[12]

When comparing civil wars in terms of resources and social status there appears to be a divide, between civil wars in Africa and those in Europe. From the case studies mentioned already in this essay it is clear that struggles over resources often constitute the primary causes of civil conflict within the African continent. However, countries in Africa often possess an abundance of natural resources and so it is hardly surprising that the key issues in civil wars in these countries revolve around resources. If historians look at civil wars in other parts of the world, such as Europe, they find very different reasons for the origins of civil war and it is often the case that these conflicts are better understood as a struggle over social status rather than a conflict over resources. Ross believes there is little agreement among scholars on why natural resources have such a profound effect when it comes to civil wars, and although journalists claim that resources ‘fuel’ a given conflict they too are vague about how this occurs.[13] Indeed he states that it is possible the resource-civil war correlation could be spurious and civil wars may in fact be caused by another variable entirely. It therefore makes sense to examine other factors involved in the origins and course of civil wars. Historically within Europe most civil wars have been wars of succession, struggles to achieve secession, which have also been called national liberation wars, and finally ideological or revolutionary civil war in which people seek to drastically alter the established system or introduce completely new ideas and policies.[14] Civil wars can be understood as a struggle over social status because these wars can be fought by individual groups looking to increase their standing or power in society. This can be seen in the Russian civil war.

The origins of the Russian Civil war lie in the seizure of Bolshevik power in October 1917, although most scholars see it as beginning with the dissolution of the constituent assembly in January 1918. The civil war was a multi-party war in the former Russian empire fought between the Bolshevik Red Army and the White Army, consisting of the loosely allied anti-Bolshevik forces. Resistance to the Red Army began immediately after the Bolshevik uprising with numerous anti-Bolshevik forces aligning themselves against the communist government included landowners, republicans, conservatives, middle-class citizens, reactionaries, pro-monarchists, liberals, army generals as well as socialists who did not identify with Bolshevism. It also involved a wide variety of ethnic and national groups who were fighting for self-determination as well as those who were eager to prevent the Bolsheviks from consolidating their hold on power in the former Russian Empire. Due to the fact that so many different ethnic, social and national groups were involved it is clear that there was a distinct struggle over social status; this was especially clear in the attempts to eradicate the old Tsarist regime entirely and increase the standing and position of the workers, peasants and soldiers in a ‘new Russia’. However, Lenin was a “heartless and ambitious individual…brutal in his attempt to subject his own people to radical social transformation” which contributed to the civil war since he was only prepared to use force in this struggle for social status.[15]

It was the huge inequality within society that led to people choosing sides in the civil war. The Bolsheviks promised better conditions for the lower sphere of society such as the peasants and workers who believed these promises because they were desperate to change their position within Russian society and gain rights for themselves. However, on the opposite side were the middle and upper classes, as well as any remnants of the old Tsarist Regime, who were eager to maintain their place in Russian society as the rules and leaders of the country. Although there is some basis for introducing resources when discussing the Russian Civil War since one could argue that it was control of resources such as the main cities, armament factors and seizure of old weapons that allowed the Bolsheviks to win the war. However, this is where this European civil war differs to those in Africa. Despite the fact that resources played a part in the outcome of the war they did not influence the outbreak or origins of it; that was due to a clash over social status that ensued after the fall of Tsarism. Couttenier and Soubeyran explored the notion that inequalities increase the likelihood of a civil war in a given country, they believed that the fractionalisation of society was a major contributor to civil conflict; when inequality was so rife people fought to break out of the section of society in which they had been pigeon holed, thus they were struggling over social status.[16]

This can be seen yet again in the Spanish civil war. Spain was a deeply divided country that was politically torn between the right-wing nationalists and the left-wing republicans. The nationalist part was made up of monarchists, landowners, employers, the Roman Catholic Church and the army while the republicans consisted of workers, trade unions, socialist and peasants; there was a clear social divide thus the civil war would have involved some form of struggle over social status. After being badly affected by the great depression following the Wall Street crash the military dictatorship, which had ruled since 1923, collapsed in 1929; this was followed by the abdication of the King in 1931 after the Republicans came to power. However, republican government rule was short lived and after the introduction of right-wing people into the government, the reduction of farm workers’ wages and the purge of the military to remove republican members the country became so divided and unstable that in 1936 the army rebelled. They removed the republicans from power and civil war ensued. This is an example of an ideological or revolutionary civil war where people seem to alter the established system or introduce new ideas, which Payne believes is a key type of civil war in Europe.[17] One reason for the difference between European and African civil, aside from the difference in resources, is the fact that many countries in Africa were once part of an Empire; whether it was British, Spanish, French or any other. This mean that the countries were often governed by foreign nationals, or heavily advised on how to run the country and when decolonisation occurred this changed. The withdrawal from colonies resulted in “the acquisition of political or economic independence by such colonies.”[18] Having had little experience of ruling a country the governments established in the wake of decolonisation faced numerous problems, not least the fact that they were weak and very susceptible to attacks from opposition groups; whereas in Europe this was not as much of an issue.

From the evidence given throughout this essay and the use of various case studies it is clear that any given conflict is brought about by a complex set of events; including poverty, ethnic or religious grievances and unstable governments as well as resources and social status. Therefore natural resources are never the only source of a conflict. Yet since the mid-1990s there has been a growing body of research on the causes of civil wars, and one of the findings is that natural resources play a key role in triggering and prolonging civil war conflicts. So even after these other factors have been taken into account studies consistently find that natural resources heighten the danger that a civil war will break out, and that once it does the conflict will be more difficult to resolve.[19] In addition, “the higher the dependence on natural resources, the higher the number of years of conflict. It seems that countries which have abundant natural resources are more likely to be subject to civil war”.[20] Since many African states are highly dependent on resource exports they are unusually prone to resource-related conflict, while the abundance of resources in these countries helps to explain why a growing share of the world’s civil wars have taken place in Africa. The lack of resources in European countries and the often more advanced forms of government means that European civil wars often take the form of struggles over social status. However even in these cases resources do become involved such as in the Russia civil war. As Jeremy Black state, “War…is not possible without resources, both their presence and their use”.[21]

 

Bibliography:

Ali, T.M. and Matthews, R.O. (eds.) Civil Wars in Africa, Roots and Resolution (Québec, 1999).

Black, J. Why Wars Happen (London, 1998).

Collier, P. and Hoeffler, A., ‘Greed and Grievance in Civil War’, World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 2355 (2001).

Collier, P., Hoeffler, A. and Sambanis, N., ‘The Collier-Hoeffler Model of Civil War Onset and the Case Study Project Research Design’ in P. Collier and N. Sambanis (eds.) Understanding Civil War, Evidence and Analysis Volume I: Africa (Washington, 2005) pp. 1-34.

Couttenier, M. and Soubeyran, R. ‘An Overview of the Roots of Civil Wars: Natural Factors and Economic Conditions’, G-MonD Policy Papers 2 (2002) 1-34.

Cramer, C., Civil War is not a Stupid Thing: Accounting for Violence in Developing Countries (London, 2006).

Daly, M.W. and Sikainga, A.A. (eds.) Civil War in the Sudan (London, 1993) pp. 97-116.

Fairhead, J. ‘The Conflict over Natural and Environmental Resources’ in E.W. Nafziger, F. Stewart and R. Vayrynen (eds.) War, Hunger, and Displacement: Volume I (Oxford, 2002) pp.147-175.

Figes, O., A People’s Tragedy: The Russian Revolution 1891-1924 (London, 1996).

Gellately, R. Lenin, Stalin, and Hitler, The Age of Social Catastrophe (New York, 2007).

‘Inquiring Minds: Studying Decolonization’ The Library of Congress Blog (2013) http://blogs.loc.gov/loc/2013/07/inquiring-minds-studying-decolonization/ (last accessed 10/12/2014).

Lee, S.P., Ethics and War: An Introduction (Cambridge, 2012).

Midlarsky, M.I., The Evolution of Inequality: War, State Survival, and Democracy in Comparative Perspective (Stanford, 1999).

Midlarsky, M.I., (ed.) Handbook of War Studies III: The Intrastate Dimension (Ann Arbour, 2009).

Ndikumana, L. and Emizet, K.F. ‘The Economics of Civil War, The Case of the Democratic Republic of Congo’ in P. Collier and N. Sambanis (eds.) Understanding Civil War, Evidence and Analysis Volume I: Africa (Washington, 2005) pp. 63-88.

Payne, S.G. Civil War in Europe, 1905-1949, (New York, 2011).

Ross, M. L. ‘How Do Natural Resources Influence Civil War? Evidence from Thirteen Cases’, International Organisation 58 (2004) 35-67.

Ross, M. L. ‘Natural Resources and Civil War: An Overview’ (Los Angeles, 2003) http://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/polisci/faculty/ross/WBpaper.pdf (last accessed 10/12/2014).

Ross, M. L. ‘What Do We Know About Natural Resources and Civil War?’ Journal of Peace Research 41 (2004) 337-356.

Shah, A. ‘The Democratic Republic of Congo’, Global Issues 87 (2010) http://www.globalissues.org/article/87/the-democratic-republic-of-congo (last accessed 10/12/2014).

Soeters, J.L. Ethnic Conflict and Terrorism, The Origins and Dynamics of Civil Wars (New York, 2005).

[1] P. Collier and N. Sambanis (eds.), Understanding Civil War, Evidence and Analysis Volume 1: Africa, (Washington, 2005), p. 1.

[2] M. L. Ross, ‘What Do We Know About Natural Resources and Civil War?’, Journal of Peace Research 41 (2004) 340.

[3] A. Shah, ‘The Democratic Republic of Congo’, Global Issues 87 (2010) http://www.globalissues.org/article/87/the-democratic-republic-of-congo (last accessed 10/12/2014).

[4] L. Ndikumana and K. F. Emizet, ‘The Economics of Civil War, The Case of the Democratic Republic of Congo’ in P. Collier and N. Sambanis (eds.), Understanding Civil War, Evidence and Analysis Volume I: Africa, (Washington, 2005), p.63.

[5] M. L. Ross, ‘Natural Resources and Civil War: An Overview’, (Los Angeles, 2003) http://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/polisci/faculty/ross/WBpaper.pdf (last accessed 10/12/2014).

[6] M. L. Ross, ‘How Do Natural Resources Influence Civil War? Evidence from Thirteen Cases’, International Organisation 58 (2004) 35.

[7] Ibid. 38.

[8] J. Fairhead, ‘The Conflict over Natural and Environmental Resources’ in E.W. Nafziger, F. Stewart and R. Vayrynen (eds.) War, Hunger, and Displacement: Volume I, (Oxford, 2002), p.148.

[9] M. Couttenier and R. Soubeyran. ‘An Overview of the Roots of Civil Wars: Natural Factors and Economic Conditions’, G-MonD Policy Papers 2 (2002) 16.

[10] T. M. Ali and R.O. Matthews, ‘Civil war and Failed Peace Efforts in Sudan’, in T.M. Ali and R.O. Matthews (eds.), Civil Wars in Africa, Roots and Resolution, (Québec, 1999), p. 199.

[11] M. L. Ross, ‘Natural Resources and Civil War: An Overview’, (Los Angeles, 2003) http://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/polisci/faculty/ross/WBpaper.pdf (last accessed 10/12/2014).

[12] P. Collier, A. Hoeffler and N. Sambanis, ‘The Collier-Hoeffler Model of Civil War Onset and the Case Study Project Research Design’ in P. Collier and N. Sambanis (eds.), Understanding Civil War, Evidence and Analysis Volume I: Africa, (Washington, 2005), p.8.

[13] M. L. Ross, ‘How Do Natural Resources Influence Civil War? Evidence from Thirteen Cases’, International Organisation 58 (2004) 36.

[14] S.G. Payne, Civil War in Europe, 1905-1949, (New York, 2011), p. 2.

[15] R. Gellately, Lenin, Stalin, and Hitler, The Age of Social Catastrophe, (New York, 2007), p. 69.

[16] M. Couttenier and R. Soubeyran. ‘An Overview of the Roots of Civil Wars: Natural Factors and Economic Conditions’, G-MonD Policy Papers 2 (2002) 2.

[17] S.G. Payne, Civil War in Europe, 1905-1949, (New York, 2011), p. 2.

[18] ‘Inquiring Minds: Studying Decolonization’, The Library of Congress Blog (2013) http://blogs.loc.gov/loc/2013/07/inquiring-minds-studying-decolonization/ (last accessed 10/12/2014).

[19]M. L. Ross, ‘Natural Resources and Civil War: An Overview’, (Los Angeles, 2003) http://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/polisci/faculty/ross/WBpaper.pdf (last accessed 10/12/2014).

[20] M. Couttenier and R. Soubeyran. ‘An Overview of the Roots of Civil Wars: Natural Factors and Economic Conditions’, G-MonD Policy Papers 2 (2002) 15.

[21] J. Black, Why Wars Happen, (London, 1998) p. 14.

Barbados plans to remove the Queen as head of state

 

The Queen and Prince Philip visit Bridgetown, Barbados in 1977.

Barbados could remove the Queen as its head of state, almost 400 years after it was colonised by the British. The island was under the United Kingdom’s control from 1627 until independence in 1966, but has remained a constitutional monarchy ever since.

The Prime minister, Freundel Stuart, feels that the country’s head of state should not be a foreign woman who has the job because of a history of conquest. Queen Elizabeth last visited Barbados in 1989, 26 years ago, and Stuart promises to present a bill to remove her in time for the 50th anniversary of Barbadian independence. Stuart says he wants his country to become a parliamentary republic – a system in which the people choose a legislature, which then chooses the leaders of the government. According to Stuart it makes no sense for the British monarch to be head of state of an independent country.

There is an air of uncertainty about whether this will happen or not as not all Bajans support the change. Many do not consider this an important issue right now; while others believe the decision should be made by a direct vote of the people – not by Parliament. In fact there have been several plans to make Barbados a republic in recent years, none of which have been acted upon. In 2005, the then Prime Minister Owen Arthur outlined his proposals for dropping the queen in favour of a president but he process was not completed.

Will other countries be tempted to follow Barbados? Many Commonwealth countries, including Pakistan, South Africa and Kenya, have not kept the British monarch as head of state so it would hardly be unprecedented if more countries decided upon this course. However the last country to remove the queen as head of state was Mauritius in 1992. The queen has always made it clear that she believes it is entirely up to the population of any realm whether or not to keep her as head of state, and never expresses an opinion on the matter.

Mounting student debts in the United Kingdom

In 2015 approximately half a million new undergraduates embarked on student life at universities across the UK, but thousands more British students also settled into their studies at universities across mainland Europe.[1]

As the United Kingdom becomes the most expensive place to study in Europe, thousands of students are opting for a free degree outside the UK – whether it’s in Denmark or Bulgaria. British Council research published in 2015 declared that up to a third of British students are now considering overseas study, which is higher than it has ever been. If you’re an EU citizen you can receive a free university education – crucially with your lectures taught in English – in around half of all European countries. So it is hardly surprising that more and more British youngsters are seriously considering this as an alternative to studying in the UK. Testament to the clear rise in levels of interest in courses across Europe UCAS has announced it would consider adding European universities to admissions forms.

A third of English 18-year olds now apply to university, a proportion that has recovered from the dip that followed the introduction of the new fee regime in 2012. Today’s 16 to 18 year olds are beginning to worry about debt; a ComRes opinion survey commissioned by the Sutton Trust reports that 78% of young people were concerned as potential students about the cost of living and 58% by having to repay student loans.

With tuition fees of up to £9,000 per year, many students feel as if they can no longer afford further education if they remain in the UK. A report commissioned by the Sutton Trust, in 2014, found that on average students in the UK will graduate with a debt of £44,000. This is a staggeringly large amount of money, especially for a recent graduate who may not have secured themselves a job. College education in the US is often viewed as being extremely expensive, however only 70% of US students graduate with debt while in Britain all students graduate with debt almost twice the US level.[2]

[1] http://www.theguardian.com/education/2015/oct/03/british-university-students-who-study-abroad-europe

[2] http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/aug/09/student-debt-kick-in-teeth-for-poor-families

Democracy Is Still the Most Effective Tool to Fight Terrorism

An interesting article written by Belgin San-Akca, assistant Professor in the Department of International Relations at Koc University, Istanbul.

“In upcoming years, one of the most – if not the most – significant challenges facing democratic nation-states and their project of perpetual peace through economic, social, and political interdependence will be terrorism instigated by non-state armed groups that have territorial and political demands”…

Source: Democracy Is Still the Most Effective Tool to Fight Terrorism

The British occupation of Egypt 1882

‘How far was the occupation of Egypt a result of its rulers’ failure to modernise?’

The British occupation of Egypt in 1882 was supposed to be a temporary expedient, undertaken reluctantly by the government; and initially it appeared as if it would be short-lived. However, what had started out as joint Anglo-French financial control in Egypt soon turned into permanent British occupation, which subsequently lasted for 72 years.[1] The motives behind the occupation have been debated widely. As Galbraith points out, British reasons behind the intervention have been examined by publicists and scholars from the time of the occupation up until the present day.[2] There are two main sides to the argument; the idea that Egypt was occupied in the interests of capitalists and industrialists or what can be called the Robinson and Gallagher thesis.[3] Robinson and Gallagher’s thesis, which emphasised political and strategic factors, sparked a generation of debate and research; whereas Cain and Hopkins are among the historians to have looked at economic causes, such as gentlemanly capitalism.[4] Clearly it was in Britain’s interests for Egypt to modernise, however the Egyptian rulers’ had been tackling this problem since well before the 1800s. Although they were not always successful the rulers were attempting to change things and so it would not appear that the British occupied the country purely for this reason. However, there are other explanations put forward by historians and politicians over the years. One of the most widely examined arguments is that of British interest in the Suez Canal, which provided Britain with a significantly shorter route to India. There were also economic reasons linked to the canal, with investment both in India and Egypt at stake. In addition complicated Anglo-French relations played their role in the eventual occupation of Egypt. There is still no prospect of the debate ending since no the gulf between advocates of different theories seemingly cannot be bridged. Furthermore, the motives which lay behind the occupation were “complex and devious”.[5]

Well before 1800 modernisation, diversification and industrial growth were being moulded by the incorporation of Egypt into the global economy; principally as a supplier of raw materials to Europe, especially cotton, and also as a consumer of European manufactured goods.[6] Muhammad Ali recognised the importance and necessity of modernisation, if Egypt was to progress in any way. He had many schemes of modernisation, often based on western ideas; however these ideas were not just confined to the Egyptian economy. Aside from introducing a more modern tax system and improving irrigation, thus creating a better farming system, he also realised the importance of modernising the Egyptian army.[7] It would appear then as if Egypt was already in the process of modernisation, thus the British occupation cannot be justified as a reaction to failure on this front. However, it is important to note that a significant amount of doubt remains over whether Muhammad Ali’s schemes raised the standards of health and wealth as a whole, or just benefited certain groups of people. In addition, between the years 1863-1879 fresh attempts at industrialisation, under Khedive Ismail, faltered quite drastically without adequate local powers of trade protection while problems also arose from involvement in the construction of the Suez Canal.[8] External intervention followed shortly after, led by private financial interests from Britain and France. Therefore, although Britain had invested interest in Egypt due to these financial problems it is clear that Egypt was attempting, and not too unsuccessfully, to modernise. Thus there were other reasons aside from failure to modernise that played a greater role in leading to the occupation in 1882; reasons that required this decisive British action.

The Suez Canal was opened in 1869, under Napoleon III, linking the Mediterranean with the India Ocean.[9] Although construction of the canal was initially opposed by the British they soon realised its strategic value; with the canal becoming the “jugular vein of the Empire”.[10] Despite the initial opposition to the Suez Canal, in 1875 the Conservative Government under the leadership of Benjamin Disraeli bought the Egyptian ruler Ismail’s 44% share in the canal; although this still did not grant the British outright control of the strategic waterway. According to Jankowski, the conventional explanation of the British occupation of Egypt emphasises their concern for the safety and security of the Suez Canal; Britain’s major lifeline to its eastern possessions.[11] In their 1961 essay ‘Africa and the Victorians’, Robinson and Gallagher argue that the British occupation was partly as a direct result of the British desire to protect their control over the Suez canal; allowing them to maintain their shipping route to the Indian Ocean.[12] The Suez Canal reduced the average length of time from England to India from 5 months via the Cape to 40 days via the canal.[13]Furthermore, Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid states that 89% of all shipping sailing through the Canal was British, and that the canal was the artery to India and other colonies in the Far East; thus Britain would have occupied Egypt if any sort of threat to the safety of the canal was posed since it was such an important part of their trade and economy.[14]

Opening of the Suez Canal in 1869

Britain’s interests in these new possibilities of communication were obvious from commercial and strategic points of view. It was vitally necessary to ensure that no European rival should place herself along these new lines of communication. In addition, the occupation of Egypt provided Imperial Britain with a naval base as well as strengthening their control of an indispensable passage to Asia.[15] In the mind of the British government, the safeguarding of their interest in the Suez Canal was acceptable but occupation in the sense of annexation was out of the question.[16] Indeed, Marlowe points out that it was Gladstone himself who asked the House of Lords for money to fund the expedition to occupy Egypt. He explained to the house that such an expedition was necessary for the protection of the Suez Canal which was menaced by the anarchical conditions in Egypt.[17] R.L. Tignor advances the argument that the British government, despite their hesitation and reluctance to play a significant role in the running of Egypt, occupied the country because of its location on the route to India; not for other economic reasons, or because of the revolt.[18] “Egypt was occupied because of India, not because of the bondholders”.[19]

A.G. Hopkins rejected Robinson and Gallagher’s argument, citing both original and second-hand sources to claim that there was no perceived danger to the Suez Canal from the Orabi movement.[20] However, he does point out that British investment in Egypt had grown massively leading into the 1800s, particularly in regard to the Suez Canal; thus it is understandable that they would have occupied Egypt to protect this investment.[21] On the other hand, Alexander Schölch believes it would be misleading to regard the events of 1882 as a ‘Suez crisis’; instead insisting that the occupation was as a result of the failure of Dual control in Egypt.[22]

Finally it is important to acknowledge the other argument historians have pushed forward; that of justifying the occupation by the importance of the Suez Canal. John Galbraith believes that the Suez Canal was not a legitimate reason for Britain to occupy Egypt. He argues that Gladstone did not order the occupation as a result of worrying about the Suez Canal since after the Alexandria bombing; he told Granville that he did not fear an Egyptian attack on the canal.[23] The ‘security of the canal’ argument was put forward by the government merely as justification for the occupation since it provided the most palatable explanation. The rest of the Liberal party and the British public demanded an explanation, and the Suez Canal security was cited to ensure they did not lose faith in the government; not because the gravity of the situation actually merited such action.[24]

British investment within Egypt expanded significantly leading into the 1880s, and so when the security of this investment was threatened it was almost inevitable that the government decided to take action. The Orabi Rebellion, in September 1881, marked the final phase of the crisis and led to worry among Europeans that the Egyptian nationalists might renege on repayment of the Debt, as well as prompting British fears for the safety of the Canal.[25] Indeed, Cain and Hopkins have recently returned to look at economic reasons being the cause of the British occupation; although they emphasise gentlemanly capitalism rather than industrial capitalism.[26] Hopkins himself argues that Gladstone and the cabinet were motivated by protecting the interests of British bondholders, who had invested in Egypt; leading to the occupation in 1882.[27] Egyptian finances continued to deteriorate despite dual power and the two European representatives, the controllers, resigned in protest. They warned their respective governments, French and British, that Ismail’s plan was not feasible and that the bondholders risked not being paid; consequently the powers who were espousing the cause of their bondholders decided action must be taken.[28] Lord Cromer, a widely respected politician, felt that the financial interests concerned were so great, that the risk that financial disorder would eventually have led to anarchy was too considerable to not have led to an armed intervention.[29]

Alternatively Robinson and Gallagher go to great lengths to show that the British government did not intervene in the affairs of Egypt from 1876 onwards because of pressure from the bondholders; but rather as a result of a amalgamation of factors combining together to make the occupation necessary.[30] Although the bond holders applied pressure to the British government, the final decision to occupy Egypt was made because the ensuing chaos following the rebellion threatened the Suez Canal.[31]

At the start of the 1800s Major Misset, the British Consul General in Egypt, was agitating for the annexation of Egypt by England to stop it from falling into French hands.[32] Robinson and Gallagher’s thesis emphasised amongst other factors, the importance of Anglo-French rivalry in bringing about the British occupation of Egypt.[33] They take great pains to show that the intervention of the British government in the affairs of Egypt was motivated “by their anxiety to keep in step with France. To allow France to steal a march on them in Cairo would give her command of the Suez route.”[34] On November 10th 1881 an event occurred which some argue ultimately ensured the British occupation of Egypt; the Jules Ferry government fell and Léon Gambetta took office as the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of France.[35] He determined that dynamic action in Egypt was necessary, but only remained in office for s short period of time before the succeeding Freycinet government came to power. However, where Gambetta had believed that dynamic action was the way forward the Freycinet government shrank away from what was supposed to be a joint French-British action; leaving Britain to deal with the Egyptian situation alone. J. A. Williamson’s study, entitled ‘A Short History of British Expansion’, reproduced the official version of events. Egypt was a corrupt and backward state, however Britain was still unwilling to intervene but ending up being left in the lurch by France and thus had to take action.[36] An example of this was when British Admiral, Sir Beauchamp Seymour, sent on ultimatum during July 1882 demanding that the forts at Alexandria be dismantled within 24 hours or be bombed; only for the French government to refuse to be associated with the ultimatum.[37]

The French and British sent a note to their respective representatives in Cairo who subsequently communicated it to the Egyptian government on January 6th 1882. The Chamber of Notables’ support swung over to support the army, becoming exigent in their demands for control of the budget in addition to an increased army size.[38] The British government considered whether they should make concessions to the demands of the Chamber, but the French disagreed and thus the Egyptian government moved in the direction of constitutional self-government.[39] Subsequently the British government became increasingly suspicious that the French government was planning on coming to terms with both Orabi and the Khedive; leaving the British out of the loop.[40] While Britain had no wish to govern Egypt they could not allow France to gain the upper hand.[41] Since so much of the shipping through the canal was British, England was even more anxious than France to protect her interests in Egypt.[42] It was impossible for Great Britain to allow the troops of any other European power to occupy Egypt.[43]

Therefore, although it was the French lead and their concern about the safety of the canal which pushed the British government forward on the road to intervention in 1882; however after January 1882 the French pressure was non-existent.[44] Thus, the occupation of Egypt cannot have been as a direct result of Anglo-French relations but must have been due to a combination of factors. Historians are still unsure whether intervention was dictated by fear of a foreign challenge to British supremacy by ‘strategic considerations’ since there was such close Anglo-French collaboration before the occupation.[45]

In 1881 a group of Egyptian army colonels succeeded in replacing the Circassian minister of War as well as getting the Khedive to dismiss the Pasha, and invite the leader of the constitutionalists to form a ministry. The efforts behind this movement were seemingly directed against the Khedive, however it soon became clear that the ultimate object was the power behind him; the Anglo-French controllers. Essentially it became an anti-foreign military movement.[46] According to historian Vatikiotis, Egypt had two governments just before the occupation; a Khedivial one whose power and authority were confined to the already British-controlled Alexandria and the Orabist rebel government in full control of Cairo and the provinces.[47]

The Orabi Rebellion happened largely as a result of 1300 foreign officials being brought in at huge salaries to do work that had been done more cheaply by Egyptians; this caused huge resentment and fuelled anti-European feeling. The subsequent military revolt was led by the only four native Egyptian colonels in the army, with a slogan of “Egypt for the Egyptians”.[48] When the British cabinet first decided to occupy Egypt it did so with no thought beyond rescuing the Egyptian monarch from the nationalists, restoring his authority, effecting rapid reforms in the administration and then retiring from Egyptian political life.[49] Robinson and Gallagher argue that in addition to protecting the Suez Canal, the British occupation was also ordered to quell the perceived anarchy of the Orabi revolt.[50] Britain landed troops at Ismailia and suppressed the revolt by the battle of Tel-el-Kebir on September 13, 1882. According to Cromer, “England stepped in, and with one rapid and well-delivered blow crushed the rebellion.”[51] As stated earlier it had been claimed that this was only a temporary intervention, however British troops remained until 1956. Gladstone believed that they needed to convert the present interior state of Egypt from anarchy and conflict into peace and order. The Commons vote, about providing money for the expedition to occupy Egypt, was secured by Gladstone arguing that British intervention was a means of providing the Egyptian people with hope and freedom.

Tignor believes that the final decisions to occupy were based upon specifically crushing an indigenous proto-nationalist movement, the Orabi revolt, which threatened the security of Britain’s major route to the east, the Suez Canal.[52] He states that the reason given by the British for occupying Egypt was their desire to restore order in Egypt. On the other hand, Jankowski places some of the blame for the occupation upon the ‘men on the spot’ who warned the British government that Egypt faced anarchy and that the European position of privilege which had developed in recent years was menaced by the new nationalist regime.[53] “The massacre of 11 June was a critical event in determining the British occupation”; it convinced those in England that law and order had broken down and the Egyptian army were unwilling to control the situation, endangering European lives.[54] Hopkins argues that Britain would not have taken action had it not been for the political instability in Egypt, according to him the invasion was an involuntary response to the continuing collapse of the current Egyptian regime.[55]

However there are historians who counter this argument, believing that Orabi and his forces were not chaotic anarchists but in fact maintained law and order. If this was indeed the case then the British could not justify their occupation by the supposed rebellion. The intention of the British to ‘rescue’ Egypt from disorder and the Egyptian throne from a nationalist movement, dubbed a military mutiny, and to then retire was not a clearly conceived policy by any means; especially considering that in reality there was not a general agreement about whether occupying Egypt was the right decision. Although a large reason behind England occupying Egypt in 1882 was as a consequence of the revolt of Orabi Pasha, it was also partly in order to avenge the violated rights of her own nationals and to safeguard their interests in the future.[56] Nevertheless it is important to acknowledge that it would be fair to state that although the motives behind the occupation are complicated, an immediate incentive was stopping a nationalist rebellion that threatened to make an end of European intervention in Egyptian affairs.

The occupation of Egypt in 1882 came about due to a multitude of reasons that resulted in Britain’s belief that their intervention was necessary. Although the attempts at modernisation within Egypt were not completely successful, the government was trying to progress and move forwards. Therefore it does not seem likely that the occupation of Egypt was as a result of the rulers’ failure to modernise. When the modernisation schemes began to produce less favourable results, external involvement occurred in the form of financial interest from Britain and France; and so they had invested economic interests in Egypt’s future. However, this investment was not so much in modernisation as in the Suez Canal which was of vital importance to Britain. Anglo-French relations were important in influencing the 1882 occupation. The intervention of the British government in the affairs of Egypt was motivated “by their anxiety to keep in step with France. To allow France to steal a march on them in Cairo would give her command of the Suez route.”[57] Despite France playing their part in the occupation, it was first and foremost to keep primary control of the Suez Canal and not let France monopolise it or collaborate with the Egyptian government that Britain occupied Egypt. An immediate incentive in occupying Egypt was to stop the nationalist rebellion that threatened to mark an end of European intervention in Egyptian affairs. This would have been a huge blow to Britain since they desperately needed to remain involved in the running and use of the Suez Canal, which they had not only heavily invested in but which also provided them with vital trade routes. Due to the expansion in British investment in Egypt leading into the 1880s, it was natural for them to want to protect these investments when they appeared to be under threat. However, it was the £4 million investment in the Suez Canal that they were most concerned about therefore believing it necessary to occupy Egypt when this appeared to be under threat from the rebellion.

The various factors which combined together and resulted in the occupation of Egypt all revolve around the Suez Canal, and therefore it was because of the importance of and danger to the canal that Britain ultimately occupied Egypt. There are historians, such as Galbraith, who argue that Britain only used the Suez Canal as justification for their occupation not because they believed it was in any danger. However, the Suez Canal was vitally important to the British Empire given that without this trade route their economy and trade would have suffered since it provided them with a route to India or the ‘jewel in the crown’ as it was referred to.

Bibliography:

Books:

Al-Sayyid, Afaf Lutfi. Egypt and Cromer, A Study in Anglo-Egyptian Relations (London, 1968).

Al- Sayyid-Marsot, Afaf Lutfi ‘The British Occupation of Egypt from 1882’, in A. Porter and W. M Roger Louis (eds.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: Volume III: The Nineteenth Century (Oxford, 1999).

Earl of Cromer, Modern Egypt Volume I, (London, 1908).

Jankowski, J. Egypt, A Short History (Boston, 2000).

Louis, W.R. The British Empire in the Middle East, 1945-1951: Arab Nationalism, the United States and Postwar Imperialism (New York, 1984).

Mansfield, P. The British in Egypt (London, 1971).

Marlowe, John. Anglo-Egyptian relations 1800-1953, (London, 1954).

Marlowe, John. Cromer in Egypt, (London, 1970).

Reid, Donald Malcolm. ‘The Urabi revolution and the British conquest, 1879-1882’ in M.W. Daly (ed.), The Cambridge History of Egypt, Volume II: Modern Egypt, from 1517 to the end of the Twentieth Century, (Cambridge, 1998) pp. 217-238.

Robinson, R. and Gallagher, J. Africa and the Victorians: The Official Mind of Imperialism (Basingstoke, 1978).

Schölch, Alexander. Egypt for the Egyptians (Essex, 1981).

Tignor, R.L. Modernisation and British Colonial Rule in Egypt, 1882-1914 (Princeton, 1996).

Tilby, A. Wyatt. British India 1600-1828 (Charleston, 2009).

Vatikiotis, P.J. The History of Egypt from Muhammad Ali to Mubarak (London, 1985).

Articles:

Chamberlain, M.E. ‘The Alexandria Massacre of 11 June 1882 and the British Occupation of Egypt’, Middle Eastern Studies13 (1977), 14-39.

Galbraith, John. and al-Sayyid-Marsot, Afaf Lutfi. ‘The British Occupation of Egypt: Another View’, International Journal of Middle East Studies 9 (1978), 471-488.

Schölch, Alexander. ‘The ‘Men on the Spot’ and the English Occupation of Egypt in 1882’, The Historical Journal, 19 (1976), 773-785.

Hopkins, A.G. ‘The Victorians and Africa: A Reconsideration of the Occupation of Egypt, 1882’ The Journal of African History 27 (1986), 363-391.

Nakhla, R. ‘The British in Egypt’, Studies: An Irish Quarterly Review 9 (1920), 101-117.

[1] Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid, Egypt and Cromer, A Study in Anglo-Egyptian Relations (London, 1968), p. 1.

[2] John Galbraith and Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid-Marsot, ‘The British Occupation of Egypt: Another View’, International Journal of Middle East Studies 9 (1978) 471.

[3] Alexander Schölch, ‘The ‘Men on the Spot’ and the English Occupation of Egypt in 1882’, The Historical Journal, 19 (1976) 774.

[4] D.M. Reid, ‘The ‘Urabi revolution and the British conquest, 1879-1882’ in M.W. Daly (ed.), The Cambridge History of Egypt, Volume II: Modern Egypt, from 1517 to the end of the Twentieth Century, (Cambridge, 1998) p. 218.

[5] Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid, Egypt and Cromer, A Study in Anglo-Egyptian Relations (London, 1968) p. 1.

[6] Afaf Lutfi Al- Sayyid-Marsot, ‘The British Occupation of Egypt from 1882’, in A. Porter and W. M Roger Louis (eds.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: Volume III: The Nineteenth Century (Oxford, 1999) p.653.

[7] J. Marlowe, Anglo-Egyptian relations 1800-1953, (London, 1954) p. 58.

[8] Afaf Lutfi Al- Sayyid-Marsot, ‘The British Occupation of Egypt from 1882’, in A. Porter and W. M Roger Louis (eds.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: Volume III: The Nineteenth Century (Oxford, 1999) p.654.

[9] A. Wyatt Tilby, British India 1600-1828 (Charleston, 2009) p. 256.

[10] W.R. Louis, The British Empire in the Middle East, 1945-1951: Arab Nationalism, the United States and Postwar Imperialism (New York, 1984) p.718.

[11] J.Jankowski, Egypt, A Short History (Boston, 2000) p. 91.

[12] R. Robinson and J. Gallagher, Africa and the Victorians: The Official Mind of Imperialism (Basingstoke, 1978) p.4.

[13] J. Marlowe, Anglo-Egyptian Relations 1800-1953 (London, 1954) p. 42.

[14]Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid, Egypt and Cromer, A Study in Anglo-Egyptian Relations (London, 1968) p. 2.

[15]Afaf Lutfi Al- Sayyid-Marsot, ‘The British Occupation of Egypt from 1882’, in A. Porter and W. M Roger Louis (eds.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: Volume III: The Nineteenth Century (Oxford, 1999) p.652.

[16] Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid, Egypt and Cromer, A Study in Anglo-Egyptian Relations (London, 1968) p. 28.

[17] J. Marlowe, Cromer in Egypt, (London, 1970) p. 67.

[18] R.L. Tignor, Modernisation and British Colonial Rule in Egypt, 1882-1914 (Princeton, 1996) p. 10.

[19] Ibid. p. 24.

[20] A.G. Hopkins, ‘The Victorians and Africa: A Reconsideration of the Occupation of Egypt, 1882’ The Journal of African History 27 (1986) 373.

[21] Ibid. p. 379.

[22] Alexander Schölch, ‘The ‘Men on the Spot’ and the English Occupation of Egypt in 1882’, The Historical Journal 19 (1976) 776.

[23] J. Galbraith and Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid-Marsot, ‘The British Occupation of Egypt: Another View’, International Journal of Middle East Studies 9 (1978) 472.

[24] Ibid. p. 473.

[25] Afaf Lutfi Al- Sayyid-Marsot, ‘The British Occupation of Egypt from 1882’, in A. Porter and W. M Roger Louis (eds.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: Volume III: The Nineteenth Century (Oxford, 1999) p.654.

[26] D.M. Reid, ‘The Urabi revolution and the British conquest, 1879-1882’ in M.W. Daly (ed.) The Cambridge History of Egypt, Volume II: Modern Egypt, from 1517 to the end of the twentieth century, (Cambridge 1998) p. 218.

[27] A.G. Hopkins, ‘The Victorians and Africa: A Reconsideration of the Occupation of Egypt, 1882’, The Journal of African History 27 (1986) 373.

[28] Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid, Egypt and Cromer, A Study in Anglo-Egyptian Relations (London, 1968) p. 4.

[29] Alexander Schölch, ‘The ‘Men on the Spot’ and the English Occupation of Egypt in 1882’, The Historical Journal 19 (1976) 777.

[30] Ibid. p. 774.

[31] R.L. Tignor, Modernisation and British Colonial Rule in Egypt, 1882-1914 (Princeton, 1996) p.24.

[32] J. Marlowe, Anglo-Egyptian Relations 1800-1953 (London, 1954) p. 33.

[33] D.M. Reid, ‘The Urabi revolution and the British conquest, 1879-1882’ in M.W. Daly (ed.) The Cambridge History of Egypt, Volume II: Modern Egypt, from 1517 to the end of the twentieth century, (Cambridge 1998) p. 218.

[34] Alexander Schölch, ‘The ‘Men on the Spot’ and the English Occupation of Egypt in 1882’, The Historical Journal 19 (1976) 774.

[35] P. Mansfield, The British in Egypt (London, 1971) p. 30.

[36] A.G. Hopkins, ‘The Victorians and Africa: A Reconsideration of the Occupation of Egypt, 1882’, The Journal of African History 27 (1986) 374.

[37] P. Mansfield, The British in Egypt (London, 1971) p. 43.

[38] J. Marlowe, Anglo-Egyptian Relations 1800-1953 (London, 1954) p. 119.

[39] Ibid. p. 117.

[40] P. Mansfield, The British in Egypt (London, 1971) p. 42.

[41] R.L. Tignor, Modernisation and British Colonial Rule in Egypt, 1882-1914 (Princeton, 1996) p. 14.

[42] Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid, Egypt and Cromer, A Study in Anglo-Egyptian Relations (London, 1968) p. 2.

[43] Earl of Cromer, Modern Egypt Volume I, (London, 1908) p. 298.

[44] Alexander Schölch, ‘The ‘Men on the Spot’ and the English Occupation of Egypt in 1882’, The Historical Journal 19 (1976) 774.

[45] J. Galbraith and Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid-Marsot, ‘The British Occupation of Egypt: Another View’, International Journal of Middle East Studies 9 (1978) 471.

[46] J. Marlowe, Anglo-Egyptian relations 1800-1953 (London, 1954) p. 115.

[47] P.J. Vatikiotis, The History of Egypt from Muhammad Ali to Mubarak (London, 1985) p. 154.

[48] Afaf Lutfi Al- Sayyid-Marsot, ‘The British Occupation of Egypt from 1882’, in A. Porter and W. M Roger Louis (eds.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: Volume III: The Nineteenth Century (Oxford, 1999) p.654.

[49] Afaf Lutfi al-Sayyid, Egypt and Cromer, A Study in Anglo-Egyptian Relations (London, 1968) p. 28.

[50] R. Robinson and J. Gallagher, Africa and the Victorians: The Official Mind of Imperialism (Basingstoke, 1978) p.4.

[51] Earl of Cromer, Modern Egypt Volume I (London, 1908) p. 300.

[52] R. L. Tignor, Modernisation and British Colonial Rule in Egypt, 1882-1914 (Princeton, 1996) p.11.

[53] J. Jankowski, Egypt, A Short History (Boston, 2000) p. 91.

[54] M.E. Chamberlain, ‘The Alexandria Massacre of 11 June 1882 and the British Occupation of Egypt’, Middle Eastern Studies13 (1977) 14.

[55] A.G. Hopkins, ‘The Victorians and Africa: A Reconsideration of the Occupation of Egypt, 1882’, The Journal of African History 27 (1986) 372.

[56] R. Nakhla, ‘The British in Egypt’, Studies: An Irish Quarterly Review 9 (1920) 102.

[57] Alexander Schölch, ‘The ‘Men on the Spot’ and the English Occupation of Egypt in 1882’, The Historical Journal 19 (1976) 774.

 

Typical pay in Scotland rises above England for first time

pay rates

The typical pay of a Scottish worker has risen above those in England for the first time, according to a new study. The country is on the brink of closing its seven year long “jobs gap” and returning to its mid-2008 employment rate. One of just three parts of the UK yet to restore pre-crash employment rates, Scotland is just 9000 jobs short of closing its post-crisis “jobs gap” the Resolution Foundation has said.

The non-partisan think-tank which works to improve the living standards of those in Britain on low to middle incomes, found that prospects for living standards of low and middle income Scots rests on the strength of the labour market. Closing the gap would be a positive step for living standards more broadly, the group has said.

Connor D’Arcy, Policy analyst at the Foundation, said:

“The next Scottish government should play a central role in fostering such a change.”

 

British Imperialism in the 19th century

‘In what ways did British Imperialism change over the course of the 19th century?’

Empires in 1900

In order to examine the changes in British Imperialism throughout the course of the 19th century it is necessary to define what exactly is meant by the term imperialism; it has been defined as “the process by which an expanding state dominates the territory, population, and resources of less powerful states or regions.”[1] It is possible to divide the changes that occurred in British imperialism during the 19th century into three distinct phases. From the late 18th century up to the early 19th century Europe was still in the first wave of colonisation until the American Revolution and the fall of the Spanish empire marked the end of this phase. A period of free trade ensued before this came to an end with the emergence of new imperialism towards the end of the 19th century. Throughout these three phases there were political, cultural and economic changes occurring in the British Empire.

At the end of the 18th century Britain along with France, Russia and the Chinese and Turkish empires was one of the world’s major states. However the Age of revolution, the period encompassing 1775-1825, witnessed a major setback for European Imperial fortunes. The American Revolution of 1775-83 resulted in the loss of thirteen colonies in North America and independence, while other countries including France lost colonies such as the French island of St Domingue while mainland Portugal and Spanish America successfully gained independence. These thirteen colonies had been some of Britain’s oldest and most populous and so the shock of these losses felt by the European powers “reinvigorated expansion elsewhere, particularly in Asia”.[2] Throughout the 1830s the old colonial powers of Britain, the Netherlands and France were strengthening their empires in what was known as “the orient” whilst maintaining control of their remaining American colonies. However, along with the loss of the America’s, other colonies such as the West Indies started to lose importance during the 19th century as expansion was focused elsewhere, in 1815 the West Indian islands were contributing £15.4million or 17.6% of Britain’s trade however by 1913 their economies only generated trade with Britain of £6.6million or 0.47% despite the population rising from 877,000 to over 2million by 1911.[3] This was largely because the slave trade had been a very profitable business for cities such as Bristol and Liverpool since they played a large part in the triangular trade with the Americas and Africa and slave emancipation had begun to come into effect as a result of the Abolition of Slavery Act in 1807.

There are historians who believe that the loss of the thirteen American colonies completely changed Imperial policy and caused an era of free trade to be established.[4] In 1815 the Corn Laws were introduced and are often seen as an example of British mercantilism, and restricted other nation’s economic growth as they could not import goods such as corn to Britain or its empire since the prices were too high for people to afford. However the pressure for freer trade was increasing and so in 1815 the Navigation Acts declared that heavy duties placed on American shipping in British ports should be reduced; furthermore the President’s of the Board of Trade bestowed these concessions to European powers as well resulted in a shift to freer trade. However the East India Trading Company lost its hold over the Indian trade in 1813 and it became apparent by the 1830s that Britain’s global trade network could only be secured by use of power but the President of the Board of Trade was not going to destroy the colonial system. Despite this intention by 1860 the acts had gone with the repeal of the Corn laws in1846 the turning point; people became convinced that international success could be achieved by cheap food imports and Europe and the United States were becoming serious rivals, the colonial system was not feasible once people had become convinced that this was the way to success and so it was not expected to last much longer.

A new kind of European Imperialism began to emerge in the 1830s and was influenced by “industrialization and the rise of three related ideologies: liberalism, nationalism, and scientific racism.”[5] Scientific racism refers to the sense European nations held that they had superior institutions and other areas would benefit from them while ‘social Darwinism’ supported the idea that some races were more advanced and therefore had the right to dominate others. As economic ties began to erode between competing nations European powers began to rely upon colonisation of formal empire, in the last two decades of the 19th century the race to acquire new colonies became more dramatic as Britain competed for control over Asia and Africa often known as the ‘scramble for Africa’.

British expansion in south-east Asia up was part of a dramatic resurgence in world-wide British imperialism, after being hit by the crisis in America in the late 18th. India was often referred to as the jewel in the crown because it became the most valuable and heavily populated colony in the British Empire. Military conquest allowed Britain to further increase their control into the north-east of India during the 1820s, into the north-west during the 1840s and into Burma in the 1850s. “In 1815 her world trade stood at only £8 million but grew to £120 million with Britain alone by 1913.”[6] Other colonies that Britain acquired in Asia were not considered to be as important as India but added to a growing empire nonetheless; these included Hong Kong, Singapore, and parts of Borneo.

British expansion into Africa was different to that of India and Asia in the sense that it gained the empire a large amount of territory but did not have a large economic significance. In 1815 Britain’s territory in Africa was limited to small coastal footholds and this hardly changed until the 1860s when over the course of the next fifty years “colonial expansion inland brought her territory in every quarter of the continent.”[7] By the end of the 19th century British Africa covered 2.8 million square miles. Britain gained control of the Cape Colony in 1806 having occupied it in 1795 to prevent the French acquiring it. British immigration to the Cape Colony area started to increase after 1820 and the Boers were pushed northwards to establish their own independent republics. The Suez Canal was opened in 1869 and once its strategic value became apparent it became an important route way of the Empire.

Political changes also occurred within the British Empire in the 19th century since the empire had a big influence on Britain’s international relations; imperial issues and foreign policy were often inseparable and commitments in Asia and Africa were as likely to increase Britain’s power as to create difficulties. Developments in Britain’s position as colonial rulers encouraged political inventiveness among rulers and ruled and there was a rise in variety of government institutions and practice at home and abroad. In 1801 most colonial business was brought together under the secretary of state for war and colonies until 1854 when responsibilities were distributed between separate war and colonial offices. The work in this office changed in the 19th century; until 1840 issues associated with slavery and the administration of crown colonies was undertaken, in the mid-century problems of white settler colonies and practice of self-government was handled and in the later century they coped with territorial consequences of African partition.

It is clear that there were huge changes in British Imperialism throughout the 19th century, some more significant than others but all having an impact nonetheless. One of the main ways that British Imperialism changed was the area in which the empire expanded during the 19th century. There was a step back from imperialism in the America’s and the West Indies, especially after the abolition of the slave trade in 1807, and large expansions were undertaken throughout Africa and Asia, in particular south-east Asia and India which became Britain’s most valuable colony. However there were also significant economic changes, after the abolition of slavery the West Indies were no longer producing such a significant amount of trade for Britain while the abolition of the slave trade also impacted cities back home such as Bristol since they had played an important role in the triangular trade.

 

 

[1] A.L. Conklin and I.C. Fletcher, European Imperialism 1830-1930 (United States of America, 1999) p1

[2] A.L. Conklin and I.C. Fletcher, European Imperialism 1830-1930 (United States of America, 1999)

[3] A. Porter, The Oxford History of the British Empire Volume III The Nineteenth century, (Oxford,  1999) p5

[4] Harlow, Second British Empire,

[5] A.L. Conklin and I.C. Fletcher, European Imperialism 1830-1930 (United States of America, 1999) p3

[6] A. Porter, The Oxford History of the British Empire Volume III The Nineteenth century, (Oxford, 1999) p 6

[7] A. Porter, The Oxford History of the British Empire Volume III The Nineteenth century, (Oxford, 1999) p 6