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Since the incorporation of Egypt has never recognised Egypt as an inwith Turkey, the two great qnes dependent government, is at this motions, until within a few years, have ment demanding the payment of the been, Ist, whether the pachas have arrears of the khazveh, and is anxious acted honestly and fairly by the to oppose the dominion of the rebel Egyptians, as representatives of the Pacha, in that portion of its former Sublime Porte ; and 2nd, whether dominions (Syria), to which now we they have submitted to the suzeraineté must direct a moment's attention. of the Sultan, and have faithfully Syria, or Suristan, was possessed by transmitted the khazneh, or tribute, a succession of foreign nations, before to the Sultan. The Mameluke Go- the time of Ptolemy, when it became a vernment was an episode. The Man province of the Roman empire. Five melouks or Mamelukes were a race centuries afterwards, when the sons of originally composed of Circassian or Theodosius divided their immense paMingrelian slaves, and for some years trimony, this country was annexed to were the only military force in the the empire of Constantinople. In this country. For many years, at the close situation it continued till the 7th cenof the past and during the present tury, when the Arabian tribes, under century, Egypt was distracted by civil the banners of Mohammet, laid it waste. wars between the contending beys, by Since that period, torn by civil wars whom its provinces were governed. and by numerous invaders, it fell In 1786, the Turkish admiral, Hassan into the hands of the Turks, who have Ali, gained several victories; but been its masters from the beginning though he repressed, he could not to. of the 16th century. It is divided in tally subdue them. In 1811, the Pacha to the governments of Aleppo, TriMehemet Ali, having received infor- poli, Damascus, Acre, and Gaza, or mation of a conspiracy formed by the Palestine. Beys, he, under the plea of a solemn Is this province of Turkey in Asia, feast, induced 800 of the chief Mame- bounded on the north by Caramania lukes to join in a procession to Cairo. and Diarbekir, on the east by the latWhen in the citadel, they were en- ter and by the deserts of Arabia, on trapped between the outer and inner the south by Arabia Petræa and Egypt, wall-many of them were shot, and and on the west by the Mediterranean, the rest were beheaded. An equally to become a portion of Egypt, under large number were subsequently killed an independent crown, and separated in the neighbouring towns and vil from Turkey, or is it to remain conlages, and their massacre was pursued nected with the Turkish empire? This into Nubia, till the race of Mamelukes is one of the mighty questions which became extinct.
must erelong be resolved in the East The history of the pachas, from the Land one of those to which we must time of Selim I. downwards, would direct the attention of our readers, Of be profitless, though not uninteresting Syria itself it has been truly said, -and it would prolong this article to On Syria's plains, though plenty bills her an unreasonable length. It is only horn, necessary to be borne in mind, that the And Smyrna's fruitful fields abound in corn, Pacha of Egypt, up to very late years, Deem not those happy in the peaceful shade, was the acknowledged subject of the Whom earthquake, fire, and pestilence inPorte; that, with but very few excep vade, tions, the submission of the pachas
Whose freeborn souls to haughty despots was complete; and that, although in
bow, consequence of the gradual weakening
And for tyrannic pachas bold the plough.” of Turkey by the defection of her al- If Syria and the Syrian Christians lies England and Austria, and by the were unhappy under the domination aggressions of her foes the Russians of Turkey, they are not less so under and the Greeks, her authority is so that of Ibrahim. If the Drusęs en. much reduced, her power so incon- couraged the Sultan in his attempt to ceivably small, and her state so help regain Syria, they did so with sinceless, as to be unable to resist the diso- rity ; and the whole of Syria is now bedience and rebellion of the present prepared to rise up against their Egyp. Pacha and his victorious and able son, tian oppressors. Alas! for poor SyIbrahim,-yet that the Sublime Porté ria, the land of so many marvels in
ages long passed away, there is no Thus Turkey was weakened to help. hope, we fear, for her, either from the lessness, and Egypt was strengthened expiring power of the Porte, the rising and fortified, whilst Great Britain, fortunes of Mehemet Ali, or the tender under Whig domination, looked on at mercies of the Cabinet of St Peters, the dismemberment of the Turkish burg.
empire, and at the creation of an Egyp. We think the reader of the forego. tian dynasty, and pronounced no proing pages will now be prepared for hibition, uttered no veto. the contemporary history of Turkey - France boasts that the treaty of Egypt-Syria—the Sultan-the Pa. Kutahia was favourable to her views, cha-and the approaching dénouement and satisfactory to her policy. “She Let us briefly recapitulate the events gained by the treaty of Kutahia," says of the last very few years.
the French ministerial organ, “ beWe have said that the treaty of cause it is the interest of France to Unkiar Skelessi, which was that of maintain the grandeur of Egypt." But 1832, between Turkey and Russia, why is France interested in maintainmade Turkey the vassal of the Russian ing the “ grandeur of Egypt ?" empire ; and now we add, that the First, That she may carry on with treaty of Kutahia, previously signed Egypt an extensive and most profitable between the Porte and the Pacha, de- commerce. stroyed the integrity of the Ottoman Second, That she may carry on with empire, and constituted Egypt an in. Syria a large and beneficial trade. dependent province or nation. Yet Third, That the new French pos. the great Lord Chatham exclaimed, sessions in the Barbary States may "I do not take the pains to discuss the have a powerful and independent ally question of the East with any man who on the north of Africa. does not perceive that the independ F ourth, That France may, by her ence of the Ottoman empire is a ques. alliance with Egypt, be able to exertion of life and death to Great Bri. cise a control over the maritime influtain." Was Lord Chatham right- ence of England, and, above all, may or is Lord Palmerston a better patriot, possess sufficient influence with the an abler diplomatist, and a more pro- Egyptian Government to prevent found statesman? We shall see here Great Britain from greatly profiting after.
from her proposed land communicaThe treaty of Unkiar Skelessi tied tions with India. and bound the Ottoman Porte, and Fifth, That France may concur with placed it in the hands of its old ene- Egypt, when powerful and independ. my, Russia. The treaty of Kutabia ent, in preventing the northern powers gave Syria to the Pacha of Egypt. of Europe from gaining any footing The Porte had lost all but Syria. in the north of Africa, or in Asia Moldavia, Wallachia, Greece-all Minor, and any permanent and im, all had been taken ;-Russia was mis- portant influence in the Mediterratress de facto of the Dardanelles,- nean. Egypt was only nominally subject to Sixth, That France may, in conthe Porte, to whom it even refused the junction with Egypt, keep Turkey in payment of the tribute ; but Syria was a feeble and helpless state, by perpe. left. Well, Syria was sacrificed also tuating the separation of Syria from -and the Porte stood alone. The the dominions of the Porte. former treaty rendered the old ally of And, lastly, That France may thus Great Britain helpless, and dependent become in Eastern affairs a mediating on their common antagonist- Russia: power, and attain a degree of importthe latter treaty, that of Kutahia, ance and weight which never could conferred power on that Pacha whose otherwise belong to her in any Oriental ambition knows no bounds, and who questions, since neither her geograwill be the first to throw all impedi- phical, commercial, por maritime poments in the way of Great Britain in sition entitle her to any preponder. her land approaches to her Indian pog. ance. sessions, if he can only make such ar France affects, indeed, to feel a great rangements with Russia as shall secure interest in the preservation of the to him and his descendants the here. Ottoman empire - and the govern. ditary empire of Egypt and Syria. inent declares that it must remain in. tact. But what does France mean by The interest of France, we are told, intact ? Simply that Austria shall not is not one of conquest. Granted. But possess Bosnia and Albania, and that what is it? It is the erection of an Russia shall not take open and avowed Egyptian and Syrian empire as op. possession of Constantinople. But is posed to Turkey. This is what France this sufficient to restore life to Tur- calls the status quo. “ Egypt is to key? Is this to be the compensation become a civilized state. She is on for the loss of Egypt, Greece, and her way. France must take care not Syria, as well as of Walachia and to interrupt her progress, and not to Moldavia ?
allow it to be interrupted.” But why « La France," says one of the ablest this anxiety for the progress of Egypt? writers of the new school of politics The secret has escaped the French in that country, “ dans la question politicians of the 19th century. It is d'Orient est une puissance mediatrice. this :--for the moment, the progress Ce qui lui donne ce caractère aux of Egypt is favourable to French comyeux de tout le monde, c'est qu'il est merce and to French conquests in Afriévident qu'elle n'a en Orient aucun ca;-and eventually Egypt and Syria intérêt de conquête et d'agrandisse- may be worthy of French ambition ! ment. Elle n'a qu'un intérêt de civi- « Commençons par fonder notre colisation."
lonie d'Alger," cries the monarchical But what is this interest of France, organ of the Revolution of July. And when examined closely, and searched what afterwards ? Listen to the fol. to its heart? We are told that such lowing announcement:interest is to maintain the Ottoman “Tant que la guerre sera contenue empire in its present state—and we are entre l’Egypt et la Turquie, tant que assured that such state is one of inde- le traité de Kutahia seulement sera en pendence. It is no such thing. The question, la question sera encore toutOttoman Porte is dependent. It is a-fait Orientale." dependent on Russia on the one hand, Yes; but when it shall cease to be and on the Pacha of Egypt on the wholly Oriental, when that war, as to other. The French politicians tell the East, which Marshal Soult, the us, that the present independence of Premier of France, has just declared Turkey is necessary to the preservation at the French tribune to be sooner or of the European equilibrium. But we later inevitable, shall break out, what replythat the equilibrium was destroyed will then be the position and conduct by the treaties of Kutahia and of Un. of France? Hear, again, the governkiar Skelessi. When Turkey had not ment organ. bowed her neck to the Pacha of Egypt- “ Mais dès que la guerre sortira de when Syria yet belonged to the Porte ce circle, dès que le traité d'Unkiar -when Russia did not exclude from Skelessi sera aussi remis en jeu, la the Dardannelles whom she thought lutte alors s'engagera entre l'Anglefit to proscribe ; when Wallachia terre et la Russie, la question devien. and Moldavia were not under her real dra Européenne, and Dieu seul sait le domination ; when the Black Sea dénouement." was not the private property of the Thus the policy of France is for the Czar ;-there was something like an moment--for the time being—for some European equilibrium as to the affairs years to come, to favour the progress of the East ; but such equilibrium of Egypt in Syria; to assist the deveexists no longer-and Turkey must lopement of what she calls “ Egyptian fall, if the status quo be preserved. civilisation;" to maintain intact the 6. But,” it is said, “ France protested treaties of Kutahia and Unkiar Skeagainst the treaty of Unkiar Skelessi lessi ; to preserve a nominal and sham, and she could do no more.” And what but not real peace, between the Porte was the reply of Russia to her pro- and the Pacha; to profit from this state test ? " That, whenever the case of things in her trade and commerce; should arrive that the Porte should to exert her influence in preventing require her aid, in virtue of the condi. Great Britain from completing her tions of that treaty, that she should arrangements for her overland expefulfil those conditions in the manner ditions to India ; and then, when the and to the extent she might think fit, time shall come to decide whether paying no attention to that protest " there shall be a Turkish or an Egyptian empire, to be able to say, “ I have dentalism, the journalism, the budgetthe north of Africa under my control. ism, the parliamentaryism of the 19th Algiers is mine: Tunis is mine: Tri- century. The times of Soliman are poli is mine. It is now time that still those to which they look back, Egypt should be mine also; and that and refer with Ottoman pride and thus both coasts of the Mediterranean Eastern delight. They know and feel should be subject to my sway, and that Turkey is fallen. They know obey my domination." And is this a and they feel that the Turkey of 1839, new project on the part of France ? is but the shadow of the Turkey of Is this the policy of 1839 only? No; former generations. The “ regener. it was the policy of the Directory, of ation" of the Ottoman empire, to which the Consulate, and of the Empire; French writers so often refer, is no. and if we may believe the declarations thing more than the expedient of the of the opponents of the Restoration, bankrupt noble-the disgust of a wornit was not foreign to the views of those out voluptuary – the affected disapwho undertook, in 1830, the expedi- probation of lust, which time and tion against Algiers.
circumstances no longer allow to be The French politicians, and the best enjoyed. The“ regeneration” in quesFrench writers on this Oriental ques. tion is the evidence of weakness, not tion, are perpetually speaking of the of power of fallen grandeur, and “ interior regeneration of the Ottoman not of rising glory. When France empire!" What does this mean? thus proposes that Turkey shall be What has France to do with the in- left to herself - she places the escut. terior regeneration of the Ottoman cheon beforehand on the gates of that empire? Let us see. Has this " re- once mighty empire, and inscribes on generation," as it is termed, been pro- the sign of dissolution, “ REQUIESCAT ductive of weakness or of strength to IN PACE!" When France proposes the Ottoman Porte? Has it attached that the treaty of Kutahia shall be the populations of Turkey in Europe, maintained, and that Turkey shall be Turkey in Asia, or Turkey in Africa, left to pursue the work of her own to the Ottoman government? No. regeneration, she merely seeks to gain Have the changes introduced fortified time for the working of her own policy, the alliances of the Sultan, concentra- which is that of suffering Turkey to ted the national spirit, bound the expire, that Algiers in the mean time Mussulmans together as one man, and may become a wide and a mighty given life and vigour to a decaying colony, and that, when the East shall frame? Just the reverse. We speak have to be divided, her share may be not as amateurs when we say this, but Egypt. With such convictions as to on the information of the most able the nature of French policy in the and enlightened travellers and resi. East, we have undertaken the prepadents of modern days. The bankrupt ration of the preceding and following noble, who has no longer his chests filled observations on the Eastern question ; with guineas and his title-deeds free and we now propose to examine, delifrom mortgage-who can no longer berately but briefly, the present state meet the pressing demands of enraged of the Eastern crisis. creditors with a diminished revenue The history of Turkey has shown and lessened estates—will perhaps in- us, that in all ages Russia has been the veigh against the extravagance of for- enemy of the Ottoman Porte. This mer years, and the villainy of his is a fact of vast importance. dismissed stewards. The banquets of The history of Egypt has shown us, gone-by days will be condemned as that the Porte has never voluntarily absurd, and the splendours of his more abandoned that province of its mighty wealthy years as madness and folly. dominions; and that Mehemet Ali is But why did not the nobleman enter- still in revolt against his legitimate tain these opinions when his resources sovereign. were vast, and his means of existence The history of Syria has shown us, and happiness indubitable ? No, no; that never did it belong to Egypt; he is still a spenáthrift by choice, and that for centuries it belonged to Tur. reformed only from necessity. Thus key; and that, at this very moment, it is with the Sultan Mahmoud and his the Syrian Christians have decidedly Turkish subjects. They have no taste less partiality for Ibrahim Pacha than for the penury, the reductions, theocci, even for the Porte and the Crescent.
Yet what is the present state of the hereditary rights of his crown, things in Turkey, Egypt, and Syria ? but the entire independence of Egypt. Why, that Turkey is " protected" by He is firmly resolved not to allow her bitterest foe;-that Egyptis encours himself to be delivered up to the aged in her rebellion against the Porte, Porte by the European powers. He even by those who profess (as does is old, and perhaps there is nothing France) to maintain the status quo ;- better for him to do than to fall ho. and that Syria is to be required, and nourably in the conflict, rather than to if necessary compelled, to submit to leave his family, his servants, and his the domination of Egypt; and the people, to the hazard of events. He mere advance of a Turkish corps to has, in the course of his life, been the frontiers of that province, is to be obliged to shed much blood, in order magnified into a cause for legitimate to establish that which he has done, war on the part of all Europe against to obtain that which he possesses. He the Sultan.
is resolved that such blood shall not We have said that Egypt is encour- have been shed in vain. Besides this, aged in her rebellion against the Sul. his views are in harmony with the in. tan, and we say so advisedly. The terests and the policy of Europe. Why French Government never protested then sacrifice them? He is not of their against the treaty of Kutahia. The religion—but he is a man like themFrench Government has encouraged selves, and he should be treated like the Pacha of Egypt in his Syrian vic- a man; that is to say, he should be tories. The French Government now, allowed to provide for the destiny of to this day, requires that Syria shall his children, for whose future fortunes remain attached to the territories of he would provide. If the great powers the victorious Ibrahim. But more of Europe do not approve of these than this : the Pacha of Egypt claims reasons—if they will not give him any to be “ independent" of the Sultan, guarantee for the stability of the state and France encourages him in his am- of things existing in Egypt -- if they bitious projects. We know well that reduce him to the necessity of followwe shall be told that, in August last, ing only his own inspirations, and of when Mehemet Ali announced his in- taking counsel only of himself-he is tention of asserting that independence, decided on sacrificing the rest of his the French Consul was the first to life and of his strength to put an end protest to the Pacha against the to a state of uncertainty which is adoption of such a resolution; and unsupportable, because, above all, it that the Consul-General of France re- weighs down upon his children. Bepresented to the Viceroy, that to pro. sides this, he knows well, that if the claim his independence " at that time" great powers are agreed on oppress. would be to rekindle war, and that, ing him, he must succumb; but these if necessary, the powers of Europe powers are already so powerful and would oppose it by force. But what great, that such a victory will add did this protest mean? The words, "at nothing to their renown, and that even that time,” embody all its sense and the consequences of that victory may application; and the reply of the embarrass them. As to himself, there Pacha proved that he well understood are ninety-five against, and but five his position.
for him ; but that is of no moment. « The Pacha," said the diplomatic In war the dice are always uncertain ; note, “ fully relies on the excellent in- and if hazard should cause them to be tentions of the four powers with re- favourable to him, he leaves to the spect to him. He regrets to see them great powers the duty of considering opposed to his views; but be predicts the consequences of a victory which that the time is not far removed when no one then will have the right to conthey will change their opinion. He trol or to moderate." hopes, above all, that the hereditary And what says France to this proquestion of the throne will be resolved test of the Pacha? Does she remind in his favour. He will be satisfied him of the conditions of Selim, of the if it shall be terminated without war, character of all pachalick governments, and by means of negotiations; but of the impossibility of Europe to enif he cannot thus succeed, and if he courage revolt, and of the fact that the shall be forced to have recourse to Porte, who conquered Egypt, and inarms, he will then proclaim not only stituted a pacha there, has alone the