Gertrude Bell’s Role in Establishment of Iraq Mandate

Author : Mustafa Celalettin HOCAOĞLU
Number of pages : 833-867


Gertrude Bell, who travelled through the Ottoman regions as an traveller from 1899 to 1914, was employed is Basra in 1916 due to allegations that Arabic tribes might have rebelled after British army’s failure in the wars of Dardanelles and Kutu’l Ammare. Shiahs, fighting against the British occupation with the fatwas of shiah religious leaders in favour of Turks, struggled for some important Ottoman follower leaders’ being neutral at first and then being allies of the British such as the Sheihk of Muntefiq tribe, Uceymi Sadun Pasha, the Sheihk of Rashidi, Ibn-i Suud, the Sheihk of Dulaim Ali Sulaiman, the Sheihk of Anazeh Fahad b. Hadhdhal. After Bagdat was captured in 1917, Bell settled and lived there until her death. While Percy Cox was employed as the High Commissioner in Bagdat, Bell promoted to Oriental Secretery. The couple (Bell-Cox) endeavored to enable the foundation of Iraq and determining the borders of it on the area of Bagdat, Basra and Musul, and made an effort to resolve such political problems as Shiahs, who were the partners of Turks, Musul Turks, who wanted to unite with Turkey even if they couldn’t gain their independence, and Kurds. Bell represented Iraq in the Paris Peace Conference in 1920 and in the Cairo Conference in 1921. Kingmaker Bell, made King Faisal accepted the mandate who acceded to the throne in 1921.


Keywords: Gertrude L. Bell, Percy Cox, Ottoman Empire, World War I, Iraq


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