Rev 2011 3 west actually increased furthermore the

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Unformatted text preview: to the Essentials of Modern World History. Wk 8: Mid-East and North Africa, 1453-1914, © D. G. Rowley, 2004. Rev. 2011. 3 West actually increased. Furthermore, the Ottoman reforms were not enough to raise its military to a level of equality with Russia, and the only reason Russia did not drive Ottoman forces out of Europe was because—as in the eighteenth century—Britain and France wanted to prevent Russia from expanding into the Balkans at Ottoman expense. Therefore, in 1854, after Russia once again defeated the Turkish army, Britain and France intervened. In the Crimean War (1854-56), France and Britain defeated and forced to give up its gains. Great Britain and France did not attempt to colonize the Ottoman Empire, but they were able to gain economic rights similar to colonialism. Great Britain gained the same trade concessions as the French had won in the Treaty of Capitulations. In addition, both countries pressed “modernization” loans on the Sultans, amounting to hundreds of millions of dollars. When the government neared bankruptcy, Britain forced the Sultan to permit the creation of the Ottoman Public Debt Administration (it had 7 members, 5 appointed by European powers, 1 by the Ottoman Bank, and one by the Sultan) which began to oversee all Ottoman income and expenditure. One-fifth of all revenues went directly to Europe to pay the debt and the OPDA directed investment in the Ottoman economy. It favored railroads, telegraph, and port construction that was useful for trade with Europe but did little for native industrial development. Furthermore, European investors were paid subsidies and guaranteed profits. Officials who favored modernization realized some major goals in 1876 when they influenced the new sultan, Abdülhamid II (1876-1909), to approve a constitution that provided for a bicameral legislature, a cabinet, and freedom of the press, and turned Islam from a state to a private religion. Although Abdülhamid quickly dismissed the parliament and suspended the constitution, it remained an ideal that liberals fought for. Liberal and nationalist opposition to Abdulhamid’s despotism and subservience to the west grew, and in 1889 a group of students at the Imperial Military Medical college formed the Committee for Union and Progress, better known in the west as “the Young Turks.” They called for democratic reform and an end to slavish Westernization. They also promoted Turkish nationalism over Ottoman imperialism. Many of them wanted to disassociate from the Arab Middle East and form a federation with Turkic peoples in the Caucasus and Central Asia (a policy known as “Pan-Turanism.”). After 1900, the countryside experienced crop failures, the cities suffered from inflation, and the government was unable to pay its troops. In 1906 Turkey was swept by rebellions, riots, and mutinies, and in 1908 the Committee for Union and Progress (CUP) led a military revolt that forced Sultan Abdülhamid to restore the constitution of 1877. When he blocked further reform, he was forced to abdicate in favor of Muhammad V, a puppet of the CU...
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