Catalogue


The British defence of Egypt, 1935-1940 : conflict and crisis in the eastern Mediterranean /
Steven Morewood.
imprint
London ; New York : Frank Cass, 2005.
description
xvii, 274 p. : maps.
ISBN
0714649430 (hbk.)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
London ; New York : Frank Cass, 2005.
isbn
0714649430 (hbk.)
catalogue key
5344432
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
Reviews
Review Quotes
"It has been twenty years since Steven Morewood wrote his first-rate thesis on the defence of Egypt and it is to be welcomed that he and Routledge should now publish it, in a revised form, amalgamating and adding chapters to bring it up to the outbreak of war in the Mediterranean in 1940." - Saul Kelly, King's College London
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Summaries
Back Cover Copy
A comprehensive and challenging analysis of the British defence of Egypt, primarily against fascist Italy, in the critical lead-up period to the Second World War. Culminating in the decisive defeat of the Italian military threat at Sidi Barrani in December 1940, this is a fascinating new contribution to the field. The security of Egypt, a constant of British imperial strategy, is a curiously neglected dimension of the still burning appeasement debate. Steven Morewood adds to the originality of his interpretation by suggesting the old view should be reinstated: that Mussolini should and could have been stopped in his empire-building at the Abyssinian hurdle. Thereafter, as Nazi Germany tore the Versailles peace settlement to shreds, the drift to war accelerated as British resolve and credibility were brought into question. The fascist dictators in Rome and Berlin held no respect for weakness and Mussolini became the conduit through which Hitler could apply pressure to a sensitive British interest through reinforcing Libya at critical moments.
Back Cover Copy
Acomprehensive and challenging analysis of the British defence of Egypt, primarily against fascist Italy, in the critical lead-up period to the Second World War.Culminating in the decisive defeat of the Italian military threat at Sidi Barrani in December 1940, this is a fascinating new contribution to the field.The security of Egypt, a constant of British imperial strategy, is a curiously neglected dimension of the still burning appeasement debate.Steven Morewood adds to the originality of his interpretation by suggesting the old view should be reinstated: that Mussolini should and could have been stopped in his empire-building at the Abyssinian hurdle. Thereafter, as Nazi Germany tore the Versailles peace settlement to shreds, the drift to war accelerated as British resolve and credibility were brought into question. The fascist dictators in Rome and Berlin held no respect for weakness and Mussolini became the conduit through which Hitler could apply pressure to a sensitive British interest through reinforcing Libya at critical moments.
Long Description
This book offers a comprehensive and challenging analysis of the British defense of Egypt, primarily against fascist Italy, in the critical lead-up period to the Second World War, culminating in the decisive defeat of the Italian military threat at Sidi Barrani in December 1940. The security of Egypt, a constant of British imperial strategy, is a curiously neglected dimension of the still burning appeasement debate. Yet it was a factor which demanded constant consideration by British policy-makers and figured in the crises of the period over Abyssinia, Czechoslovakia, Albania and Poland. By giving equal weight to the perspectives and assessments of the men on the spot, Steven Morewood adds to the originality of his interpretation by suggesting the old view should be reinstated: that Mussolini should and could have been stopped in his empire-building at the Abyssinian hurdle. Thereafter, as Nazi Germany tore the Versailles peace settlement to shreds, the drift to war accelerated as British resolve and credibility were brought into question. The fascist dictators in Rome and Berlin held no respect for weakness and Mussolini became the conduit through which Hitler could apply pressure to a sensitive British interest through reinforcing Libya at critical moments. The efforts to appease Mussolini are reprised through the prism of the Egyptian dimension. Because of Il Duce's grandiose ambitions to usurp the dominance of Britain and France of the Mediterranean such efforts were doomed to failure. Notwithstanding its manifest imperial over stretch, Britain remained determined to retain axiomatic parts of its empire, not least Egypt. Once Nazi Germany knocked out Britain's key ally thefirst and only Anglo-Italian war became inevitable. The author considers these developments and the Anglo-Egyptian relationship, wherein Britain was always the dominant partner. Symbolizing that dominance was its ambassador, Sir Miles Lampson, who was also an incessant campaigner to improve Egypt's defenses, provoking ire from the Chiefs of Staff.
Main Description
This book offers a comprehensive and challenging analysis of the British defense of Egypt, primarily against fascist Italy, in the critical lead-up period to the Second World War, culminating in the decisive defeat of the Italian military threat at Sidi Barrani in December 1940. The security of Egypt, a constant of British imperial strategy, is a curiously neglected dimension of the still burning appeasement debate. Yet it was a factor which demanded constant consideration by British policy-makers and figured in the crises of the period over Abyssinia, Czechoslovakia, Albania and Poland. By giving equal weight to the perspectives and assessments of the men on the spot, Steven Morewood adds to the originality of his interpretation by suggesting the old view should be reinstated: that Mussolini should and could have been stopped in his empire-building at the Abyssinian hurdle. Thereafter, as Nazi Germany tore the Versailles peace settlement to shreds, the drift to war accelerated as British resolve andcredibility were brought into question. The fascist dictators in Rome and Berlin held no respect for weakness and Mussolini became the conduit through which Hitler could apply pressure to a sensitive British interest through reinforcing Libya at critical moments. The efforts to appease Mussolini are reprised through the prism of the Egyptian dimension. Because of Il Duce's grandiose ambitions to usurp the dominance of Britain and France of the Mediterranean such efforts were doomed to failure. Notwithstanding its manifest imperial over stretch, Britain remained determined to retain axiomatic parts of its empire, not least Egypt. Once Nazi Germany knocked out Britain's key ally the first and only Anglo-Italian war became inevitable. The author considers these developments and the Anglo-Egyptian relationship, wherein Britain was always the dominant partner. Symbolizing that dominance was its ambassador, Sir Miles Lampson, who was also an incessant campaigner to improve Egypt's defenses, provoking irefrom the Chiefs of Staff.
Unpaid Annotation
This pioneering study seeks to address a neglected area of British strategy, thereby adding an important new piece to the jigsaw puzzle of diplomacy and defence policy during the era of appeasement. The vital importance to British security of trans-Mediterranean communications was acknowledged by successive governments. Egypt, occupied since 1882, was the Clapham Junction of the British Empire. Through it passed sea, land, air and telegraphic routes connecting Britain with the five-sevenths of the empire which lay beyond the Suez Canal. Notwithstanding competing claims and finite defence resources, Egypt remained a vital strategic point to hold. In this period, Britain faced two main threats to its hegemony in the eastern Mediterranean: externally, from the rise of fascist Italy; internally, from the growth of Egyptian nationalism. The Baldwin government favoured the appeasement of Mussolini to military confrontation and missed a golden opportunity to halt his empire-building during the Italo-Abyssinian Crisis. Thereafter, as Britain's defence resources were stretched by the simultaneous German and Japanese threats, it became increasi
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements
Preface
Professor Erik Goldstein, University of Boston
Introduction: Defending Egypt in the Era of Appeasement
The Lingering Strategic Significance of Egypt
The Appeasement Debate and Egypt
The Nature of the Italian Threat to Egypt
Sir Miles Lampson and the Security of Egypt
The Decision
Making Process
The Defence of Egypt in the Interwar Period
Strategic Imperatives and Rationale No Surrender
The Role of Egypt in Imperial Defence
The Defence of Egypt and the Onset of the Italo-Abyssinian Emergency The Emergence of the Italian Threat
The Origins of the Italo-Abyssinian Crisis: the Egyptian Dimension
The British Response to the Growing Abyssinian Crisis
The Position in Egypt
Countdown to War
Defending Egypt during the Italo-Abyssinian Emergency
First Phase, August
December 1935 Policy Imperatives and Dilemmas
Preparations for War
A Clash of Attitudes
The Men on the Spot and the Chiefs of Staff
The Imperial Defence Dimension and the Hoare-Laval Pact
Defending Egypt during the Italo-Abyssinian Emergency: Second Phase, January
July 1936 The Capacity to Defend the Egyptian Power Base
Too Far Too Fast
An Oil Embargo: So near and yet so far
The Suez Canal Closure Issue
The End of the Emergency
The Making of the 1936 Anglo-Egyptian Treaty of Friendship and Alliance
The Military Aspects Early Efforts to Conclude a Treaty, 1924-1930
Commencing Negotiations
The Negotiations: First Phase
The Negotiations: Middle Phase
The Negotiations: Final Phase
An Assessment
Securing an Exposed Flank
The Defence of Egypt through Diplomacy, June 1936-April 1938
The Debate over the Way Forward
Defence Planning Priorities and Egypt
Assessing the Italian Threat
From Eden's Resignation to the Easter Pact
'Bloodless War' Prelude to the Munich Agreement
The Mediterranean Dimension of the Munich Crisis
The Aftermath
Bloodless War Begins
Preparing for War
Improving the Intelligence Picture
The Approach of War in the Mediterranean A Summer of Tension
Anglo-French Incongruity
Preparing for Battle
War Comes Closer
The Onset of War
Implementing the Treaty of Friendship and Alliance
Anglo-Egyptian Relations, 1937-1940
Implementing the Treaty
Immediate Achievements and Complications
A Changed Leadership
Munich and After
The Power Struggle in Egypt
The Lead Up to War in Europe
Egypt Stays Out
The Lead Up to War in the Mediterranean
The Removal of Ali Maher
The Suez Canal and the Defence of the Far East, 1919-1941
The Origins of the Suez Canal Defence Plan
The Suez Canal Defence Plan
The Suez Canal Defence Plan and Interwar Crises 1937-1939
The Advent of War in the Mediterranean
The Canal at War
Italo
German
Japanese Motives for Closing Suez
Conclusion
Bibliography
Index
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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