|16 Feb 2010||12:00pm - 1:30pm||CRASSH|
A light buffet lunch will be provided. Please contact Anne Alexander to reserve a place. Readings will be available before the seminar.
Within hours of each other on 25 February 1954 the military regimes in Egypt and Syria went into crisis. Gamal ‘Abd-al-Nasir and ‘Adib Shishakli both faced coalitions of military and civilian rebels apparently united in their opposition to continued military rule. With popular protests spreading, the two armies split into warring factions and the old civilian politicians waiting in the wings, the disintegration of both the Egyptian and Syrian regimes seemed imminent. Yet while Shishakli was quickly ousted, within a month ‘Abd-al-Nasir was able to carry out what one his biographers has called “virtually a second coup, reminiscent in its timing and subtlety of Mark Antony’s speech on the death of Caesar.”
This paper compares the crises in Syria and Egypt as a starting point for exploring the distinctive features of the early Nasserist regime. It analyses the development of Shishakli’s Arab Liberation Movement and the Egyptian Liberation Rally and explores why Shishakli was unable to mobilise the ALM to rescue the military regime, while ‘Abd-al-Nasir was able to use the LR for this purpose in Egypt.