European Challenges to the Muslim World Rachel Cornish
Ferment in the Muslim World • By the 1500s, there were three huge Muslim empires that ruled a majority oh the world. * The Ottomans in the Middle East, * The Mughals in India, and * The Safavids in Iran. • Then 200 years later, the empires were in a decline. • The declining empires caused central government to lose control, corruption was widespread, and Muslim scholars and religious leaders allied with the state. • Reform movements started in the 1700s and the 1800s.
Challenges to the Ottoman Empire • Ottomans empire stretched across the Middle East, North Africa, and parts of Europe. • By the 1800s, provincial rulers had increased their power. • Economic problems and corruption also contributed to Ottoman’s decay. • Ideas of nationalism spread from Western Europe. • The idea made many threaten to break away from the Ottoman empire, including the Middle East, and North Africa. • Some like the Greeks and Romanians gained their independence.
Effort to Reform • Since the 1700s, the Ottoman rulers wanted reform. They improved education, built railroads, and made a modern military. • The reforms improved medical care, farming, and living conditions. • A group of liberals formed a movement in the 1890s called the Young Turks. • The Young Turks believed the only way to save the empire was to reform. • The Young Turks overthrew the sultan in 1908.
Massacre of Armenians • The Ottomans had let the minority nationalities live in their own communities and practice their own religions. • In the 1890s, nationalism started a new tension between the Turks and the minority peoples who wanted their own states. • The tension between the two caused a brutal genocide of the Armenians. • Genocide is a deliberate attempt to destroy an entire religious or ethnic group. • The Christen Armenians were distrusted by the Muslim Turks and the Turks accused them of supporting Russian plans against the Ottoman empire. • The sultan had thousands of Armenians killed because the Armenians protested repressive Ottoman polices. Some fled to the United States.
The Suez Canal • 100-mile canal that links the Mediterranean and the Red seas. • Opened in 1869. • Greatly shortened the sea route from Europe to South and East Asia. • In 1875, the ruler of Egypt was put in debt because he was unable to pay off the loans from the canal and other modernization projects. • He was forced to sell his shares of the canal to pay the debts. • British prime minister Disraeli bought the parts of canals, giving them a controlling interest in the canal.
Iran and the Western Powers • Iran’s government improved finances and railroads, and even tried a liberal constitution. • Reforms did not save Iran from western imperialism. • Russia want Iran to expand and protect their frontier. • Britain was concerned about protecting its interest in India. • The discovery of oil upset the balance in the early 1900s. • Russia toke the north, while Britain had the south. • Russia ended up in control by sending troops in to the southern parts.