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Egyptian professor sheds new light on the country’s history
1.       tunci
7149 posts
 23 Oct 2011 Sun 12:20 pm

Egyptian professor sheds new light on the country’s history

23 October 2011, Sunday / SUNDAY’S ZAMAN, İSTANBUL

Professor of History at Cairo University Muhammad Afifi comments on the recent criticism of European orientalists and Arab nationalists on Turkey’s increasing influence across the Middle East, especially in Egypt, in his latest book “Arabs and Ottomans.”
 

There have been a great number of critical remarks on Turkey’s recent influence across Middle East, saying that Turkey has been taking advantage of the regional upheaval in the region and is planning to proclaim itself a leader by seeking to enhance its regional celebrity just like the old Ottoman Empire once was. The criticism continued with those arguing that the presence of Ottomans in Arab countries, including Egypt, was a period of occupation that undermined the status of Cairo and led to stagnation in politics and a worsening of conditions for trade and crafts.

Afifi stresses the fact that the arrival of Portuguese and Spanish colonialists in the region and the Ottoman conquest of Egypt occurred in the same period, meaning that if Ottoman had not come to the region, then Egypt would have been colonized by these countries.

According to the author of “Arabs and Ottomans,” there is enough evidence of what would qualify for religious tolerance in the countries of the Ottoman Empire, overall economic well-being, and a certain degree of social cohesion to suggest that the days of the Ottomans in the Arab countries were good ones overall.

Describing the Egyptians’ affection for the Ottoman Empire Afife says: “Our national hero Muhammed Ferid during World War I wrote that the second homeland of the Egyptians is the Ottoman Empire. Another important Egyptian writer, Naguib Mahfouz, wrote in his book that the Egyptians cried when they heard that the Ottoman Empire has been defeated in the World War I.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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