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Sykes-Picot and the making of the modern Middle East

May 12, 2016
AAron Hughes

Aaron Hughes, the Philip S. Bernstein Professor in Judaic Studies in the Department of Religion and Classics, weighs in on the impact the Sykes-Picot Agreement, a secret accord that established political control of territories in the Middle East among Great Britain, France, and Russia after World War I. As the accord turns 100 years old, The Conversation is publishing a series of essays from Hughes and other scholars that explain the agreement and argue for and against the influence of the secret deal.

Hughes is a scholar and prolific author of Jewish philosophy, Islamic studies, and theory and method in the academic study of religion. He argues that the Sykes-Picot Agreement still underlies the discontent in the Middle East.

“The Sykes-Picot Agreement is instrumental to understanding the modern Middle East. It represents the framework of its colonial past and shows the potential for national fractures inherent to the region’s present and future.

When taken in the larger context of other agreements, declarations and promises to the players in the region over the years, we see how the agreement is at the root of so many contemporary problems.”

Read more from the Conversation >>

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Category: Voices & Opinion