Arab Nationalism

The Cold War

Europe 1958.0222

Arab Nationalism

The Cold War in Europe (22 February 1958)

Historical Map of Europe & the Mediterranean

After the Suez fiasco, Britain and France abandoned their colonial empires, with France turning to closer ties with its European neighbors. In the Arab world, the affair turned Egypt's President Nasser into a hero and encouraged Syria to join Egypt in the United Arab Republic, intended as the first step towards a larger pan-Arab state. However the move was feared by the monarchies of Jordan and Iraq, who formed their own federation in response. In the end, neither union lasted long and the hopes of Arab nationalism faded.

Main Events

Soviets launch Sputnik, the first artificial satellite to be put in orbit

Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands and West Germany found the European Economic Community

United Arab Republic

Egypt and Syria proclaim their political union as the United Arab Republic, with Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser becoming president of the new state on 22 February 1958. The union lasts until 28 September 1961, when Syrian Army officers, dissatisfied with domination by Egypt, seize power in Damascus and restore the Syrian Republic. On 5 October, Nasser recognizes the Syrian secession, although Egypt will continue to call itself the United Arab Republic until 1971.

Arab Federation

Responding to the formation of the United Arab Republic, the Kingdoms of Iraq and Jordan unite as the Arab Federation, with King Faisal II of Iraq as head of state. The union lasts only six months before Faisal is deposed by a military coup on 14 July, being formally disestablished by Jordan on 2 August.

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