A Peace to End all Peace by David Fromkin

The critically acclaimed New York Times bestselling account of how the modern Middle East came into being after World War I, and why it is in upheaval today.

In our time the Middle East has proven a battleground of rival religions, ideologies, nationalisms, and dynasties. All of these conflicts, including the hostilities between Arabs and Israelis that have flared yet again, come down, in a sense, to the extent to which the Middle East will continue to live with its political inheritance: the arrangements, unities, and divisions imposed upon the region by the Allies after the First World War.

In A Peace to End All Peace, David Fromkin reveals how and why the Allies came to remake the geography and politics of the Middle East, drawing lines on an empty map that eventually became the new countries of Iraq, Israel, Jordan, and Lebanon. Focusing on the formative years of 1914 to 1922, when all-even an alliance between Arab nationalism and Zionism-seemed possible he raises questions about what might have been done differently, and answers questions about why things were done as they were. The current battle for a Palestinian homeland has its roots in these events of 85 years ago.

David Fromkin is a professor at Boston University and the author of several acclaimed books of nonfiction, including The King and the Cowboy: Theodore Roosevelt and Edward the Seventh, Secret Partners. He lives in New York City.

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A Peace to End all Peace, A Century of Intervention in the Mideast


Published on Mar 12, 2012

In order to understand the United States’ current involvement in the Middle East, it is essential to understand the origins of Western intervention in the region during World War I. During World War I, Britain and France conducted secret negotiations to carve up the Middle East into new nation states under their control. The resulting Sykes Picot treaty suppressed Arab self-determination and inaugurated a century of western intervention in the region with the United States later taking over the leading role. Our guest is Professor David Fromkin, the author of “A Peace to End All Peace, The Fall of the Ottoman Empire and the Creation of the Modern Middle East”.

Correction: A photo incorrectly identifies Kermit Roosevelt, Sr., rather than Kermit Roosevelt, Jr. as organizer of the 1953 Iran Coup.

Note: This YouTube production is based on an edition of the nationally broadcast radio series “History Counts”, now called “In Context”.

About “In Context”
In Context is broadcast on listener sponsored, non-commercial radio WPKN 89.5 FM, Bridgeport, Connecticut. The broadcast can be heard in most of Connecticut and parts of New York. Programs stream at http://www.wpkn.org and are archived after broadcast at http://www.incontextreport.com for free listening and download. Please visit our website for the current broadcast schedule, audio podcasts, videos and original articles.

History Counts and In Context are produced by MDR Productions, Inc. This YouTube edition of History Counts was created for MDR Productions by Ken MacDermotRoe.

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