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Mubarak Al-Sabah : founder of modern Kuwait 1896-1915

Author: B J Slot
Publisher: London : Arabian, 2005.
Edition/Format:   Print book : Biography : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"Mubarak Al-Sabah, who ruled Kuwait from 1896 to 1915, is depicted by some contemporary sources and later writers as a character out of a picaresque novel, cunningly leading the great powers by the nose. This is not so wide of the mark, despite his own preferred guise as "just a simple Arab sitting on the edge of the desert"." "In this new biography, B.J. Slot examines Mubarak's career in unsurpassed detail,  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Biographies
Biography
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Slot, B J.
Mubarak Al-Sabah.
London : Arabian, 2005
(OCoLC)756213807
Named Person: Mubarak Al Sabah; Sabah dynasty; Mubarak Al-Sabah; Dynastie des Sabah
Material Type: Biography
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: B J Slot
ISBN: 0954479246 9780954479244
OCLC Number: 61478194
Description: xvii, 461 pages, [32] pages of plates : illustrations ; 24 cm
Contents: Kuwait's Emergence in the 19th Century; The Regional Crisis of 1890-1895; Change of Rule in Kuwait, 1896; The British Solution, 1897-1899; The Secret Agreement Partially Unveiled, 1899-1900; The Hinterland and Sarif, 1900-1901; The "Kuwait Crisis" and the Status Quo Understanding, 1901-1902; Mubarak's Position Improves, 1902-1904; Mubarak's Attempts at Independence, 1904-1907; Mubarak and the Young Turks, 1908-1912; Turkey and Britain Agree Kuwait's Legal Status, 1912-13; Mubarak's Last Years, 1913-15; Index.
Responsibility: B.J. Slot.

Abstract:

In the is political life of Mubarak Al-Sabah, ruler of Kuwait from 1896 to 1915, B. J. Slot examines his career in unsurpassed detail, analysing its significance and presenting a balanced assessment  Read more...

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"The portrait sketched by B. J. Slot is that of a small shaykhdom at the mercy of complex international machinations involving the British, the Ottomans, the Germans, the Russians, the French, the Al Read more...

 
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   schema:reviewBody ""Mubarak Al-Sabah, who ruled Kuwait from 1896 to 1915, is depicted by some contemporary sources and later writers as a character out of a picaresque novel, cunningly leading the great powers by the nose. This is not so wide of the mark, despite his own preferred guise as "just a simple Arab sitting on the edge of the desert"." "In this new biography, B.J. Slot examines Mubarak's career in unsurpassed detail, analyzing its significance and presenting a balanced assessment of the man and his political achievement. In order to do so, he not only draws exhaustively on the entire range of available sources in the British, French and German archives, but also uses Ottoman, Russian, Kuwaiti, Indian, Austrian and Dutch ones, as well as contemporary press coverage in Europe and British India." "Mubarak Al-Sabah took control of his tiny state in 1896, just as the Ottoman Empire seemed on the point of swallowing it up. He then played for time by manipulating the indecision and venality of the Ottoman system. At the same time he managed to kindle a hesitant British interest in Kuwait, doing so by deftly exploiting a rivalry among European powers that was fuelled by speculation over Kuwait's strategic importance as the possible terminus of a railway - conceived as the vital link in rapid communication between Europe and India." "By the Agreement of 1899, concluded secretly, Mubarak contrived to make Kuwait a British protectorate, but in the vaguest and most deniable way. The Agreement's very secrecy afforded him wide freedom of action, especially in tribal conflicts in the Arabian hinterland, and British officials came to seem more in his power than the converse. Britain nursed doubts about the real strategic value of Kuwait, but remained afraid that another power might acquire it. Hence Mubarak could be confident that well-timed overtures to Turks, Russians, Germans, French or even Persians would sow alarm among British officials and policy-makers." "Ultimately it was only with the outbreak of the First World War that Britain dared publicly to declare Kuwait a protectorate, by which time its autonomy within the British system had become an accepted fact. Mubarak's reign was thus pivotal in the history of Kuwait, establishing it clearly as a separate and sovereign entity under international law, while limiting the freedom of its British protectors." "Also to his rule were owed the first steps in the evolution of a shaikhdom controlled by a merchant oligarchy into a state offering public services."--Jacket." ;
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