24 June 2006
The Arabs, like the Armenians, rebelled.
The Arabs, like the Armenians, were said to be suffering under the "Turkish yoke."
Arabs under Ottoman rule
His Eminence Haji Amin Effendi El Husseini, on behalf of the Arab Higher Committee for Palestine, testified on the 12th of January, 1937, before the Palestine Royal Commission sent by the British Mandatory Power. He explained the position of the Arabs under the Ottoman rule as follows:
"Under the Ottoman Regime the Arabs formed an important part of the structure of the Ottoman Empire. It is wrong to say that the Arabs were under the yoke of the Turks and that their uprising and the assistance which was rendered to them during the Great War were merely intended to relieve them from such yoke. The fact is that under the Ottoman Constitution they enjoyed all rights and privileges, political or otherwise, on an equal basis with the Turks, as the Ottoman Constitution provided for one form of government of all Ottoman territories and elements. The Arabs had a complete share with the Turks in all organs of the State, civil as well as military. There were Arabs who held the high office of Prime Minister and Ministers, Commanders of Divisions and Ambassadors....There were Arab ambassadors, provincial and district governors. There was also a large number of Arab Deputies in both Houses of the Ottoman Parliament, in proportion to their numbers as prescribed under the Ottoman Constitution....There were two Parliaments, two Constitutions. One was made in the early days of the reign of Sultan Abdul Hamid, in 1876, and the other was made after the grant of the Constitution in 1908. ..but even in the Parliament under the first Constitution there were Arab representatives. In the first Parliament, you find the President of the Council of the House of Representatives was a Deputy from Jerusalem, Yusif Dia Pasha Al Khalidi. Moreover, the administration of Arab territories was entrusted to elected Administrative Councils. Those Councils were elected and existed in the provinces, districts, and sub-districts. Those Councils were vested with extensive powers in all matters relating to administration, finance, education, and development, but, irrespective of all this, the Arabs were aspiring to the attainment of complete national independence and the regaining of the distinguished position which the Arab peoples had held in the past centuries, when the Arab peoples made the greatest contribution to civilization and to every phase of human activity."
Source: Notes of Evidence Taken from the Palestine Royal Commission on Tuesday, 12th January, 1937, published by the British Government, pp. 292-293.
(thanks to Mavi Boncuk)
Like the Arabs, the Armenians held positions of power in Ottoman society and government, like this man.
Like the Armenians, the Arabs engaged in treachery against their Ottoman nation that had taken such good care of them for centuries, in their Ottoman nation's darkest hour, as this example from popular culture reminded us.
On the other hand...
"Unfortunately, the aid given to the Allied campaign against the Turks by the Arab Revolt was minor; Lawrence once described it as 'a sideshow of a sideshow.' The Sherif Hussein did send out his call for an Arab rising throughout the Ottoman Empire, but in fact no such rising took place. There was no mutiny by Arabs anywhere in the Turkish Army; on the contrary, the Arabs fought enthusiastically in the cause of their Turkish overlords. In spite of efforts at persuasion by Faisal and Lawrence, the Arabs of Syria had refused to join the war effort."
The complete article, "What role did the Arab population play in World War I?" is at palestinefacts.org
The source site of this article gets revised often, as better
information comes along. For the most up-to-date version, and
the related photos, the reader may consider reviewing
the direct link as follows:
Please also read the complementing excerpts from EMPIRES of the SAND Efraim & Inari Karsh, ISBN 0-674-00541-4 Harvard Univ. Press
by Sukru Server Aya: