Egypto-Turkish Wars (Magill’s Guide to Military History)
Article abstract: At issue: Supremacy in Syria. Result: Great power intervention.
Although technically an Ottoman vassal, Egypt’s ruler Muhammad ʿAlī Pasha enjoyed de facto independence in 1831, when he demanded Syria as a reward for sending troops to suppress the Greek insurrection. Ottoman intransigence led to war.
Muhammad ʿAlī’s son Ibrāhīm Pasha took a well-trained western-style army into Palestine. Like Napoleon, his target was Acre. Despite a powerful defense, Egyptian troops stormed the city (May 27, 1832). Next, Ottoman provincial forces under Mehmed were crushed at Homs (July 8, 1832). Another 20,000 Ottoman soldiers, commanded by Huseyin, dug into the pass at Bilan. Ibrāhīm’s 16,000 men secured a great victory there on July 29, 1832.
The Egyptians then invaded Anatolia, and Ottoman authorities rushed to create a new army. Under the Grand Vizier Mehmed Rasid, the new army numbered almost 50,000 troops of indifferent quality. Ibrāhīm, with fewer than 30,000 men, faced them at Konia (December 21, 1832). He gained a decisive victory, for Konia eliminated the last Ottoman troops between Ibrāhīm and Constantinople.
A Russian intervention resulted in the Convention of Kutahia (April 8, 1833), a truce that placed Syria under Egyptian control. Six years later, a new Ottoman army invaded Syria, meeting Ibrāhīm’s troops at...
(The entire section is 346 words.)
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