History 439

World War I and Its Aftermath

February 6, 2007


I. 18th and 19th Century Contacts

            1. Strategic Uncertainties (foundations of US foreign policy; the Barbary Wars and their effects; the Greek revolt, the Ottoman Empire, and the origins of Monroe Doctrine)


2. Commercial and Cultural Contacts (US approach to the world—commercial treaties, missionaries, Northeastern-centered)


3. U.S. Withdrawal from the Middle East (aftereffects of Civil War; path to World War I and Ottoman decline)


II. World War I

            1. Nature of War (alliance system and conflict; role of the Balkans in World War I; Turkish decision for war; Turkish war aims; Russia, the Czar, and appeals to Armenia—failed Turkish invasion; Churchill, Britain, and the Middle East: strategic questions—maintain integrity of OE?, role of the Hejaz; fateful decisions: Gallipoli campaign, backing Emir Hussein; Young Turks and Armenian genocide)


            2. The United States and the Armenian Genocide (international reaction: Turkish fears, German recalcitrance; Allied declaration of “crimes against humanity”; Wilson concerns—international law, fate of American missionaries and religious colleges, role of Lansing; Morganthau response; New York Times and American press; collapse of relationship)


            3. Wilson, the Middle East, and the War (fate of Turkey: Ottoman Empire in 14 Points; Zionist movement and road to Balfour Declaration—Herzl and Uganda option, divisions within movement, significance of Lloyd George: Suez and British strategic desires expansion from Iraq as war aim to Iraq and Palestine, conception of Balfour Declaration; US response—weakness of movement, importance of Brandeis)


III. The Interwar Era

            1. The League and the Middle East (Wilsonian rhetoric—ideals and reality: Egypt, Armenia, naïveté of Inquiry; origins of the mandate system; Senate opposition—significance of peace progressives; boundaries and 1920s difficulties)


            2. The Origins of Oil Diplomacy (strategic effects of World War I: tanks and planes; Iraq and development of Red Line Agreement—Hoover and BFDC: oil access as part of international agenda; British reaction—strategic realities and imperial pretensions, development of Anglo-American cartel?; emergence of Saudi Arabia: Ibn Saud and postwar world; isolationism and 1920s approach; significance of Depression; reaching out to US; Standard Oil, ARAMCO, and origins of US-Saudi alliance)