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Old 19-09-2014, 11:32 PM   #288
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Lightbulb Faisal I of Iraq

Faisal bin Hussein bin Ali al-Hashimi, (Arabic: فيصل بن حسين بن علي الهاشمي‎ Fayṣal ibn Ḥusayn; 20 May 1885 – 8 September 1933) was King of the Arab Kingdom of Syria or Greater Syria in 1920, and was King of Iraq from 23 August 1921 to 1933.. He was a member of the Hashemite dynasty..Faisal fostered unity between Sunni and Shiite Muslims to encourage common loyalty and promote pan-Arabism in the goal of creating an Arab state that would include Iraq, Syria and the rest of the Fertile Crescent. While in power, Faisal tried to diversify his administration by including different ethnic and religious groups in offices.. In addition, Faisal’s attempt at pan-Arab nationalism may have contributed to the isolation of certain religious groups..On 23 October 1916 at Hamra in Wadi Safra, Faisal met Captain T. E. Lawrence, a junior British intelligence officer from Cairo.. Lawrence, who envisioned an independent post-war Arabian state, sought the right man to lead the Arab forces and achieve this.In 1916-1918, Faisal headed the army of rebellion that confronted the Turks in what was to become Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Syria..After a 30 month-long siege he conquered Medina, defeating the defense organized by Fakhri Pasha and looting the city..

Faisal had hoped that Zionist influence on British policy would be sufficient to forestall French designs on Syria, but Zionist influence could never compete with French interests.. At the same time Faisal failed to enlist significant sympathy among his Arab elite supporters for the idea of a Jewish homeland in Palestine, even under loose Arab suzerainty...In March 1921, at the Cairo Conference, the British decided that Faisal was a good candidate for ruling the British Mandate of Iraq because of his apparent conciliatory attitude towards the great power and based on advice from T. E. Lawrence, more commonly known as Lawrence of Arabia.. But, in 1921, few people living in Iraq even knew who Faisal was or had ever heard his name. With help of British officials, including Mrs Gertrude Bell, he successfully campaigned among the Arabs of Iraq and won over popular support..He encouraged an influx of Syrian exiles and office-seekers to cultivate better Iraqi-Syrian relations... In order to improve education in the country Faisal employed doctors and teachers in the civil service and appointed Sati' al-Husri, the ex-Minister of Education in Damascus, as his director of the Ministry of Education..This influx resulted in much native resentment towards Syrians and Lebanese in Iraq..In 1925, after the Syrian Druze uprising, the French government began consulting Faisal on Syrian matters. He advised the French to restore Hashemite power in Damascus.. The French consulted Faisal because they were inspired by his success as an imposed leader in Iraq...

In July 1933, right before his death, Faisal went to London where he expressed his alarm at the current situation of Arabs that resulted from the Arab-Jewish conflict and the increased Jewish immigration to Palestine, as the Arab political, social, and economic situation was declining. He asked the British to limit Jewish migration and land sales..King Faisal died on 8 September 1933, at the age of 48.. The official cause of death was a heart attack while he was staying in Bern, Switzerland, for his general medical checkup. He was succeeded on the throne by his oldest son Ghazi. Many questions arose from his sudden death, as Swiss doctors assured that he was healthy and nothing serious was with him.. His private nurse also reported signs of arsenic poison before his death.. Many of his companions noticed that day that he was suffering from pain in the abdomen (sign of poisoning) and not chest (a typical sign of heart attack). His body was quickly mummified before performing a proper autopsy to find the exact result of death, a normal procedure in such situations... long as the Arabs fight tribe against tribe, so long will they be a little people, a silly people - greedy, barbarous, and cruel, as you are..I carry 23 great wounds, all got in battle...
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