What Has Been a Long Term Effect of the Sykes Picot Agreement

Finally, after Russia agreed on April 26, 1916, the final conditions were sent by Paul Cambon, the French ambassador to London, to Foreign Secretary Edward Grey on May 9, 1916, and ratified in Grey`s response on May 16, 1916. [34] [35] The agreement was drafted and negotiated by the countries` diplomats in the coming months and signed by the Allies between August 18 and September 26, 1917. [38] Russia was not represented in this agreement because the Tsarist regime was in the midst of a revolution. The lack of Russian approval of the Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne Agreement was then used by the British at the 1919 Paris Peace Conference to invalidate it, a position that greatly enraged the Italian government. [41] The objective was to compensate for the loss of military power in the Middle East theater of war of World War I, when Russian (Tsarist) forces withdrew from the Caucasus campaign, although they were replaced by the forces of the First Republic of Armenia. [39] It was clear to the Italians that the area allocated to them could not be so easily abandoned by the Turkish Empire, so the British Prime Minister proposed a vague formula for post-war adjustment if the actual post-war allocation did not seem balanced. [40] The agreement is seen by many as a turning point in Western and Arab relations. He denied the Uk`s promises to the Arabs[9] regarding a national Arab homeland in the greater Syrian region in exchange for British support against the Ottoman Empire. The agreement, along with others, was signed on 23 September. Published by the Bolsheviks[10] in Moscow in November 1917 and repeated in the British Guardian on November 26, 1917, so that “the British were embarrassed, the Arabs dismayed and the Turks delighted.” [11] [12] [13] The legacy of the agreement has sparked a lot of resentment in the region, especially among Arabs, but also among Kurds who have been denied an independent state. [14] [15] [16] [17] The first lesson is that international and regional actors have a limited capacity to implement solutions, although the military and diplomatic resources they could mobilize are much greater than those of national actors. The way international actors deal with the Levant is influenced by many considerations, some of which have little to do with the situation on the ground.

The US has become a little more assertive in its policy towards Syria since Russia decided to intervene there. The resources the US allocates to Syria are only a fraction of what it could theoretically mobilize, but they are already larger than they were before Putin began to flex his muscles. Like France and Britain in 1918, the United States and Russia are treating Syria in one eye to the other. The same is true for Iran and Saudi Arabia, while Turkey`s desire to see the end of the Assad regime is tempered by their determination to curb the successes of the Syrian Kurds, lest such successes strengthen kurdish opposition in Turkey. On the other hand, local actors tend to be much more determined and to contribute all their resources to achieve their goals. ISIL has only one goal at this point – to build an Islamic state – and all the resources it can mobilize are dedicated to that goal. The Sykes-Picot agreement created the modern Middle East. It represents one of the first episodes in a long line of modern – and later – European – interference in the region.

And by making a series of unrealistic and impossible promises to the Arabs, it led directly to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Very little of the Sykes-Picot agreement was implemented, and the borders that were eventually established hardly resemble the lines drawn – exquisitely imperially – by the two diplomats whose main concern was to decide how Britain and France would divide the Arab parts of the Ottoman Empire. Paradoxically, it is the failure of the agreement that makes it relevant to understand the forces that currently threaten the disintegration of the States of the Levant and possibly the reconfiguration of the region. If Britain and France had succeeded in shaping the Levant as they wished, the deal could be rejected as a product of a past colonial era with little relevance to the present. But they weren`t. The actions of Arab and Turkish nationalists, the demands of minorities, the ambitions of politicians, the collapse of Tsarist Russia and the bankruptcy of Britain and France after the war shaped a Levant quite different from that of the two diplomats. In accordance with modern international law, new states automatically inherit borders created before their independence – uti possidetis. This rule has also been applied by Israel and its neighbors Egypt and Jordan in their peace treaties.

The scale of the conflicts in this region, including the Lebanese civil war of 1975-1990, the current Syrian civil war that has been raging since 2011 with no end in sight, and even the Sunni-Shiite sectarian civil war in Iraq of 2003-2008 have all been bloody, long-lasting and seemingly persistent. Lebanon appears to have calmed down, but with a likely decline in the Christian population and with Iranian-backed social and medical services distributed by Shiites to other identity groups. May 16 marks the centenary of the agreement, amid questions about whether its borders can survive the region`s current rage explosions. “The system that has been in place for a hundred years has collapsed,” Barham Salih, a former Iraqi deputy prime minister, told the Sulaimani Forum in Iraqi Kurdistan in March. “We don`t know which new system will take its place.” The outside world, led by the United States, has redeveloped to help save both countries. After its eight-year intervention, however, Washington is unwilling to take responsibility for the political consequences. “We need to have real humility about our ability to influence the course of events,” Brett McGurk, Obama`s top official for the anti-ISIS coalition, told me in Washington last month. “We have to be very careful before we are overinvested. We need to define our interests very narrowly and focus very aggressively on achieving those interests. As a result of the Sasonov-Paleolog agreement included, Russia was to receive Western Armenia in addition to Constantinople and the Turkish straits already promised as part of the Constantinople Agreement of 1915.

[8] Italy accepted the 1917 agreement on the Treaty of Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne and received Southern Anatolia. [8] The Palestinian region, with a smaller area than later Mandatory Palestine, was to fall under “international administration.” The real question is not whether any of these solutions would be desirable, but whether any of them could become real on the ground. Does the fact that an independent Republic of Latakia resisted French efforts to welcome it to Syria for six years mean that it could be replicated? Would an independent Iraqi Kurdistan survive with hostile neighbors on all sides? Would there be enough economic and even political resources to make Kurdish cantons in Syria more than a short-lived phenomenon? And what would determine whether these entities remain hollow, kept alive through international agreements and support, or maintain and support themselves? External support could certainly become a factor, but it is sad to remember the fragility of states left behind by obligate states, armed with superior power and the authority of the League of Nations. And there are sobering contemporary examples outside the Levant: in 1995, the Dayton Accords ended the war and carnage in Bosnia, an excellent example of what international intervention and good diplomatic work can do. Twenty years later, one can still wonder if the Bosnian state will ever be more than an empty shell. On April 21, Faisal set out east. Before his departure, Clemenceau sent a draft letter on April 17 in which the French government declared that it recognized “Syria`s right to independence in the form of a federation of autonomous governments in accordance with the traditions and desires of the people,” and claimed that Faisal had recognized “that France is the qualified power to provide Syria with the assistance of various advisers, that are necessary to create order and achieve the progress they require. the Syrian people” and on April 20, Faisal Clemenceau assured that he was “deeply impressed by the selfless kindness of your remarks towards me while I was in Paris, and I must thank you for being the first to propose the deployment of the Inter-Allied Commission, which will soon leave for the East to determine the wishes of the local peoples regarding the future organization of their country.