Why Was the Sykes Picot Agreement Made

The Sykes-Picot Agreement, also known as the Asia Minor Agreement, was a secret deal made during World War I between French and British diplomats, Francois Georges-Picot and Mark Sykes, respectively. The agreement was aimed at dividing the Ottoman Empire into spheres of influence for the two European powers.

The partition of the Ottoman Empire had been a long-standing goal of the Great Powers since the late 19th century. The Sykes-Picot Agreement was meant to be a blueprint for how to divide the spoils of the war between France and Britain.

The agreement was signed on May 16, 1916, and was based on two main assumptions. The first was that the Ottoman Empire was going to be defeated, and the second was that France and Britain would be the dominant powers in the Middle East after the war.

The agreement divided the Ottoman Empire into three zones. The first zone was to be under French influence, the second under British influence, and the third zone was designated as an international zone that would be under the control of Russia.

The French zone included Syria and Lebanon, while the British zone included Palestine, Jordan, and Iraq. The agreement also allowed for some overlap between the French and British spheres of influence, particularly in areas such as the Mosul region in Iraq, where there were oil resources.

At the time, the Sykes-Picot Agreement was seen as a way for the European powers to maintain their position of dominance in the Middle East. However, the agreement had many flaws. First, it ignored the wishes of the people who lived in the region and imposed artificial borders that did not take into account the complex ethnic and religious divisions that existed in the Ottoman Empire.

Second, it did not anticipate the rise of Arab nationalism, which would lead to the creation of independent Arab states in the region. Finally, the agreement was not implemented as planned, as the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in 1918 led to a renegotiation of the terms of the agreement.

In conclusion, the Sykes-Picot Agreement was made to divide the Ottoman Empire between France and Britain. It was a reflection of the imperial ambitions of the European powers and did not take into account the wishes of the people in the region. While it had a lasting impact on the Middle East, it was ultimately a failed attempt to control the region.