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He considers the CUP as more benign than is often portrayed; moreover, he regards the committees and Turkification policy as less important to the CUP and as less popular than others have posited. The author notes that Ottomanism continued to exert strong support among both Turks and non-Turks, and that Turkification was not universally accepted, even among Turks. Nor was Arabism widely hailed among the Empire's Arab population. The author's treatment of the crucial years of war is also deft and multi-faceted. He notes how the First Balkan War of nearly destroyed the Empire.

Macfie also postulates that the Ottoman-German alliance of was a sudden one, inspired partly by Britain's abandonment of decades of suspicion toward Russia. An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while. Read preview. Reviewed by Michael Fischbach The first in a new series on "Turning Points" in history, this general work offers a succinct discussion of the final years of the Ottoman Empire from the Young Turk coup of to the extinction of the House of Osman by Mustafa Kemal Atatirk in Other Editions Friend Reviews.

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How much prior knowledge does this book require of WW1 and the Ottoman Empire? This would be my first book on either subject so I have little prior knowledge. Oliver Absolutely none. I read it quite easily without any prior knowledge of the subject. Although and did find myself googling a few things sometimes, …more Absolutely none.

Although and did find myself googling a few things sometimes, overall the maps and the author's descriptions render the book very comprehensible. So maybe not a book to read by the beach, but no need to be a scholar to appreciate it. See 1 question about The Ottoman Endgame…. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. More filters. Sort order. What's a girl like you doing in a place like this? At first, the fall of the Ottomans seemed an odd subject for the man who gave us The Russian Origins of the First World War but hereditary enemies entwine their histories and the series of Russo-Turkish wars spanning four centuries tied the fates of the Balkan and the Caucasus to those of the two powers.

The rise of the Young Turks, so often glossed over as a sudden burst of modernism, is set within a context of reforms under the Ottoman sultan What's a girl like you doing in a place like this? The rise of the Young Turks, so often glossed over as a sudden burst of modernism, is set within a context of reforms under the Ottoman sultans, as slow and partial as they may have been. The Great War, in turn, is set firmly within the context of the Tripolitanian and Balkan wars. The overall effect is an adjustment of the 'Sick Man of Europe' view: he made several miraculous recoveries in a decade of warfare.

The story as told here has its strengths and weaknesses. On one hand, the Caucasian front gets an amount of attention in proportion to the importance Enver Pasha attached to it, not seldom to the detriment of other theaters. Lawrence of Arabia gets taken down from his mythological pedestal to a level even with the second-rate impact of the Arab revolt on the Ottoman war. On the other hand, there is still too much Gallipoli here and events in Mesopotamia unfold a bit too rapid after the infamous siege of Kut.

The occupation of Constantinopel by British, French and Italian forces was news to me. The Allied intervention carries for good reasons similarities with their undrwhelmed support of the Whites in the Russian civil wars. The main event in McMeekin's version is the Greek invasion and its mutual atrocities, accumulating in the fire of Smyrna after the lines in front of Ankara almost broke.

The following breathless excerpt p. After beginning so well at Basra and Suez, had thoroughly turned sour for Britain in the Ottoman theatre. It was about to get worse. View all 6 comments. Naturally, the emphasis was on the First World War. The Great War was seen in the West as the death throes of Ottoman power. But, as McMeekin presented so well, it was preceded by devastating blows delivered by Russia, Italy, and the Balkan nations before , coupled with the rise of internal reformist elements the Young Turks , and followed by the bloody post-war clash with a predatory Greece.

Despite the circling vultures, Ottoman Turkey was not a helpless "sick man," but a remarkably rugged and resilient power that staved off defeat and dismemberment again and again. With the empire's demise in , Kemal and the nationalists created a successful nation-state by abandoning the ungovernable empire and its troublesome minorities. Even today outside the borders of Turkey -- in Iraq, Syria, Kurdistan, Palestine, and elsewhere -- "the War of the Ottoman Succession rages on, with no end in sight.

A distinguished American academic, most of McMeekin's writings have concentrated on Russia, but he taught at two universities in Turkey and now holds a chair at Bard College. His research reflected solid work among primary sources and archives in Russian, German, and Turkish. McMeekin earned Five Stars from me.

View 1 comment. Mar 30, Andrew rated it it was amazing Shelves: turkey , military-history-warfare , asian-history , middle-eastern-islamic-history. The Ottoman Empire was a fascinating conglomerate of cultures, religions and regions that lasted for hundreds of years. It controlled territory that today is often considered restive, areas such as the Balkans, the Middle East, and North Africa.

It controlled these areas for centuries, where many others failed to for even a f The Ottoman Endgame: War, Revolution and the Making of the Modern Middle East, , is a book on the final years of the Ottoman Empire, and its dissolution after WWI. It controlled these areas for centuries, where many others failed to for even a few years, and it did so using religious power the Caliph in Istanbul , military might, and decentralized administration. In its final few decades, however, the Ottoman's were often considered the punching bag for an increasingly Imperialist Europe.

Britain, France and Russia all staked claims to the Empire, shaving off territorial concessions and new nations for decades before WWI. Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, Bosnia, Greece, Macedonia and Montenegro all spawned from previous Ottoman provinces, and proceeded to squabble over the spoils of a weakened state. This book helps to refute the notion that the Ottoman's were the "Sick Man of Europe" by showing how they were attacked from all fronts for Imperialist purposes.

Any nation would have had difficulty defending from a combination of Great Powers in this time period, and the Ottoman's were no exception. As a result, the Germans began to ship masses of men and material to the beaten and bruised Ottoman army, which had been fighting wars in the Balkans for almost a decade leading up to WWI. During the war, the Ottoman's garnered victory and defeat on the battlefield, failing to capture the Suez Canal, and losing territory to Russia in the Caucus regions. However, the successful defense of Gallipoli, and the closure of the Dardanelles to Russian fleets put the squeeze on the Entente powers, and showed that the Sick Man of Europe could scrap with the best of them.

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Following the war, the Ottomans continued to fight, resisting occupations by Greece, France and Britain, and beating the Soviets and Italians to strategic resources. The Ottoman Empire lost millions of citizens during the war, to flight, to conflict, and most disturbingly, to inter-ethnic cleansing, massacre, and religious strife. The Armenian massacres are well known in modern circles, but Kurds, Pontic Greeks, and Muslims themselves were massacred by both Ottoman forces, paramilitary groups and foreign armies.

With the modern political rhetoric that circles any talk of Turkish genocide, I will leave it at that. Suffice to say, this was an excellent read, that chronicles the transformation of the Ottoman Empire into nationalistic states like Turkey, Armenia, and Azerbaijan, as well as the carving up of the Arab world, and the beginning of the inter-ethnic conflict the Balkans and Middle East are synonymous with in the modern world.

The Ottoman war effort is chronicled in detail, down to their troop operations on their multiple fronts, and the naval excursions into the Black Sea. This is a really interesting look at WWI from the Ottoman viewpoint, and helps to solidify the Ottomans as one of the powers of the war, and not just the Sick Man of Europe sneer that is so often pointed in their direction, even to this day.

A solid read and worth your time if your are a history or war buff. View 2 comments. Oct 09, Bou rated it really liked it Shelves: downloaded , english , audio , non-fiction , on-ipod. The Great War saw the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. In fact it was a result of a long period of conflict and revolution and was not a collapse, but rather a climax.

In this book, Sean McMeekin offers a grand overview of the events leading up to this collapse. Oct 30, Bryan Alexander rated it it was amazing Shelves: world-war-i. Sean McMeekin's latest book is perfect for this purpose, as it describes the conflict from the Ottoman empire's perspective. The results are impressive: an exciting, well told, and illuminating narrative history. This focus requires a somewhat broader perspective than a battlefield account. McMeekin reaches back to indeed, begins in the late s in orde I came to The Ottoman Endgame in my quest to explore the global reach of WWI - i.

McMeekin reaches back to indeed, begins in the late s in order to set up the "sick man of Europe" problematic, and to introduce the crucial Balkan Wars. There's also a strong if understated pointer to our time, as the book's last line reminds us: "Outside Turkey's borders, the War of the Ottoman Succession [see below] rages on, with no end in sight.

Students of the First World War are familiar with the fact that it brought down so many empires; McMeekin gives us a front row seat for one's spectacular crash. We see intrigue, betrayal, ambition, disaster, epic struggle, and many, many battles. Not only does the Ottoman empire get destroyed and replaced with a constellation of states still unsettled to put it mildly today, but the Russian empire collapses into revolution and civil war, Israel's founding starts to move, and the whole, more familiar drama of the Western front transpires. A crucial argument in the book is to consider the Ottoman story as not a sideshow, in TE Lawrence's terms, but as "central to both the outbreak of European war in and the peace settlement that truly ended it.

Those are ultimately very persuasive arguments, especially given the close connections between the Ottomans and Russia "Russia, always the prime [external] mover in Ottoman affairs", , for the former point. Ottoman Endgame offers some intriguing perspectives on the first World War. There's the possibility of WWI breaking out in , as the great powers maneuvered around the First Balkan War , which makes for a fascinating counterfactual.

McMeekin, no fan of TE Lawrence, nevertheless picks up his call for the British to land in the Ottoman realm not at Gallipoli, but at Alexandretta ff , arguing that such a campaign might have been far more effective for the Entente than the disaster or, from the Ottoman perspective, glorious victory of Gallipoli. Speaking of Gallipoli, the book raises the possibility that a Russian attack on Constantinople which had been promised during the Entente's bloody campaign might have collapsed the Ottomans as early as ff.

Speaking of Lawrence of Arabia, McMeekin falls squarely into the skeptic's camp. Ottoman Endgame portrays Lawrence as a bungling tactician, "an ineffective liaison officer" , a bag man for British imperial cash according to "a Bedouin sheikh Two days after the fall of Damascus, to which his only contribution was to be chauffeured into town afterwards in a Rolls-Royce sedan the Blue Mist , Lawrence asked [general] Allenby for permission to return to England, whence he returned to begin composing his own legend.

The Allied attempt on Gallipoli makes more sense considered alongside the other Ottoman battles at the same time, in Suez, Mesopotamia, and the Caucuses.

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The Young Turks and their maneuvers are more rational in their domestic setting. Sykes-Picot or Sazonov-Sykes-Picot appears more ramshackle that I recall, as well as more centered on Russian aspirations. British prime minister Lloyd George comes off as a dangerous fumbler. The Armenian genocide occurs in the midst of several military campaigns, rather than on its own.

Ottoman Endgame also draws attention to underappreciated or simply forgotten aspects of WWI, such as the Battle of Dilman , which helped the Russians drive deeply into the eastern empire , and Wilhelm Souchon 's brilliant escapades with the SMS Goeben. I was impressed that a second great battle took place in on the world-historic site of Manzikert, almost a thousand years after the first one. The first Ottoman attack on the Suez canal doesn't get nearly enough attention; I completely missed that there was a second one, in ; McMeekin wants us to consider the latter as "the decisive turning point in the British-Ottoman war" McMeekin also would like us to consider the scarcely ever mentioned Macedonian front as "the real catalyst of defeat for the Central Powers" , which I'm not fully convinced by, but enjoy thinking through.

I'd forgotten that the Versailles process raised the idea of putting the United States in charge of big swathes of former Ottoman territory ff. The epic, intercontinental carve-up of the Russian empire by the Germans and Ottomans, often neglected in favor of the epic western front battles, was very well presented. And I was pleased to see the author once more make the case for the vital importance and skills of Russia's one-time foreign minister Sergei Sazonov example: this was a key point of McMeekin's previous book on WWI and Russia.

I was disappointed at some omissions and topics underplayed.

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The entry and rapid exit of Romania into the war was very significant in , and had huge implications for the Balkans, but it barely receives a mention ex: More importantly Austria-Hungary is barely mentioned cf , which is strange, given its huge role in the Balkans, not to mention in kicking off war in On the Ottoman side I hoped to learn more about culture and society, such as public opinion, attitudes towards the war, etc. But this is more of a diplomatic and military history.

The Ottoman Endgame is well grounded in archival work, especially on the Turkish side. But one all too rare virtue made me love this book the more: its maps. Oh, what a delight to read a history liberally speckled with maps. Each one is placed precisely where it is most germane. Every one is easy to read. Nearly every single geographical detail in the text is clearly apparent on the relevant map. Publishers and authors, please learn from this book's example! Overall, I strongly recommend The Ottoman Endgame for every WWI reader, as well as for anyone curious about the modern Middle East, and for anyone interested in fine historical nonfiction.

View all 16 comments. Aug 19, Jerome rated it really liked it. The book is basically just a military history of the Turks during this period. In the introduction, McMeekin argues that the idea of France and Britain arbitrarily dividing the Middle East among themselves is a both a myth and a cliche, but he never returns to this argument in the text.

Elsewhere McMeekin writes that the Russians attempted to stir up Armenian uprisings, but he does not detail any of the Russian debate about this contentious proposal. He also asserts that the diplomacy of concluded a conflict that began in , and that the Ottomans were key players in both the outbreak and conclusion of the world war.

Unfortunately, McMeekin does not return to these arguments in the actual narrative. Elsewhere he asserts that the Greeks were planning a war of aggression against the Ottomans during the summer of they were? A well-researched, gripping and balanced work. I watched some months ago a recent 2-hour french documentary on the fall of the Ottomans and I was amazed by the clarity of it and its economic storytelling of the last days of the empire.

It didn't pay much attention to numbers ie, number of ships, number of soldiers, etc and it focused, instead in creating a compelling story. I was expecting something like that in this book, a general storytelling of the empire's last years, however, what i got was a military history of the Ottomans in the f I watched some months ago a recent 2-hour french documentary on the fall of the Ottomans and I was amazed by the clarity of it and its economic storytelling of the last days of the empire.

I was expecting something like that in this book, a general storytelling of the empire's last years, however, what i got was a military history of the Ottomans in the first world war the title says but there is plenty of space for more information.

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Now, i wouldn't mind reading that on another ocassion, but i just wasn't ready for a in-depth account of military affairs since the raw data puts me off history books; you don't need to tell me with how many soldiers someone fought and against how many, just tell me the ending and its consequences. Maybe on another time I would read it, if i was in the mood, but this one took me off-guard and put me off most of the book. At the beginning I felt that a lot of names were thrown in, with barely any background of them what were they, where were they and what were they doing prior to whatever you're telling me , it kind of assumed the reader to know that.

Luckily, and thanks to the documentary and history lessons at school , I knew most of the players in this timeline, but for the ocassional reader, it'd be better for him to skim the wikipedia page before diving in. Also, it has a semi-consistent approach to the turks: one chapter is talking about the ottomans and in another it's talking about the war on the other front, focusing on germans and british. Again, If i was reading a general history of ww1 that is the kind of info i'd like, but here, at times it feels that the ottomans are relegated to a secondary position in the book and more time is invested on other countries than in the ottomans themselves.

It was good overall, accuracy-wise but not too engaging. If you need raw data, this is your book. And since there are tons of characters mentioned even more than in Game of Thrones, methinks it would be wise if you had a notebook or something by your side. I will give Rogan's book a chance, but later.

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Too many Pashas for now. Mar 18, Murtaza rated it really liked it. The opening of Turkish and Russian archives in recent years has allowed for an avalanche of new scholarship on the late-Ottoman period and WW1. This book is a rarity in that it covers extensively the war fronts in Russia and Eastern Europe, as opposed to the Middle East which tend to be focused upon more due to their relevance to contemporary events. I had just finished a book on Turko-German relations by the same author that I was quite underwhelmed by, but I found this work to be far superio The opening of Turkish and Russian archives in recent years has allowed for an avalanche of new scholarship on the late-Ottoman period and WW1.

I had just finished a book on Turko-German relations by the same author that I was quite underwhelmed by, but I found this work to be far superior in every respect. Although the events will feel like a retread to anyone who has read other recent books on this era, McMeekin manages to pull out lots of historical episodes and analyses that add color to what happened. One thing that struck me was how incredibly fickle the alliances of the various powers were. The Ottomans were negotiating a possible alliance with Russia right up until the last moments when the war began.

Meanwhile the Balkan powers, which had chance after chance to take Constantinople, repeatedly hamstrung themselves with internal fights and the fracturing of their alliances against Turkey. In the end their insatiable greed destroyed all of them, particularly the Bulgarians, Greeks and Serbians who also all birthed an extremely aggressive nationalism, seemingly out of nowhere, that ended up essentially destroying their own countries.

The End of the Ottoman Empire, -

Despite their ultimate failures, its amazing how close we came to having a Serbian Empire or a Greek Empire instead of what we see in Europe today. There is a lot about the atrocities carried out during the ethnic cleansing on all sides and, as the title suggests, the diplomatic endgame that led to the emergence of the new borders that we see on the map today.

For me there was not much new, but it was still a nice review Fall of the Ottomans by Eugene Rogan is still the preeminent book on this period in my opinion, if for not other reason than the writing. This is an even-handed approach to that era that manages to convey the perspective of all sides during the tragic period of the empire's last days. Oct 11, Joel rated it really liked it Shelves: first-reads , history , middle-east , turkey. Note: I received a free copy of this book through Goodreads First Reads.

A history of the break-up of the Ottoman Empire and the emergence of the new nation of Turkey, drawing upon long-unavailable archives in Turkey and Russia. The largest share of the book covers the events of World War 1, and it's illuminating to see the war portrayed from the Turkish point of view; not one often seen in the West.

The End of the Ottoman Empire, 1908-1923 / Edition 1

I'd venture to say that most Westerners are mostly familiar with the Ottoman role in WW1 for th Note: I received a free copy of this book through Goodreads First Reads. I'd venture to say that most Westerners are mostly familiar with the Ottoman role in WW1 for three things: the Armenian genocide of , the failed British invasion of the Dardanelles and Gallipoli, and Lawrence of Arabia.

There's also a lot of interesting material concerning the confusing power shifts and strategic alliances in the Balkans in the years leading up to the War. At least half the book is essentially a war chronicle, and it suffers from the same problem as any such book: unless you're deeply interested in military history, the endless progression of troop movements, commanders, who fought whom and where, quickly grows repetitive and dull.

In this case, the problem is compounded by the fact that most names of people and places will be unfamiliar to most readers. I found the early portions of the book much more interesting, in which McMeekin familiarizes us with the state of the Ottoman Empire in the years leading up to the war.

One particular episode is especially fascinating: relating the story of one powerful German warship, caught in the Mediterranean Sea at the outbreak of the war and pursued by a British fleet, which headed for Turkey seeking sanctuary.