hold on Egypt, it must be borne in mind that, besides the deficiencies enumerated, they labour under geographical difficulties which would prove formidable even to a much better organised army. Before they reach Egypt those forces will have to traverse a waterless desert. I have seen Bedouins accomplishing this feat with wonderful ease. After several weeks' march on bare feet across the burning sands of the Sahara, they would stride into camp, with a handful of dates for food, and a branch of scrub for fuel-no provision was made for water, the few wells along the route and the goodwill of God being trusted to slake their thirst. But the Ottoman soldier is not a Bedouin. The stationary life of centuries has robbed him of the nomad's marvellous endurance and frugality. His needs may be fewer than those of a European soldier, but they are numerous enough to require an efficient commissariat. It is precisely in the matter of commissariat that the Sultan's armies show at their worst; and it may be doubted whether the Kaiser can do much to cure this evil.


The second task allotted to Turkey, though indirect, deserves much more serious consideration. The Sultan's participation in the war against Russia, France and Great Britain is expected to stir up the Mohammedan subjects of the three Powers into rebellion. Nothing less is anticipated than a Pan-Islamic upheaval, stretching from the shores of the Atlantic to the slopes of the Himalayas-a general Revolt of Islam. The Mohammedan inhabitants of Turkestan, Afghanistan, Hindustan, Egypt, Tripoli, Tunis, Algeria, Morocco will rise in their millions, at the call of the Caliph, and hurl themselves upon the Christian invaders of Asia and North Africa; and the Commander of the Faithful, from his palace in Stambul, will be hold the vast ocean of the Moslem world swell at his bidding and overwhelm the Unbelievers under its waves. To what extent the Kaiser pins his faith to such a cataclysm, we have no means of knowing. But many of his Turkish allies are firmly convinced that this will be one of the results of their move. Many Turks, both Young and Old, have for years past been amusing themselves with the vision of a Pan-Islamic Empire under their suzerainty; and secret missionaries have

periodically been sent forth from Stambul to all the cardinal points of the Moslem world to preach this gospel and to prepare the soil for a general Jehad. Under Abdul Hamid these efforts partook of the spasmodic and desultory character that pervaded all his activities, and were tempered by the timidity, or the appreciation of realities, that always paralysed his policy. But the more enterprising and less experienced spirits which have since the Revolution steered, or failed to steer, the ship of the Ottoman Empire have displayed in this direction also their characteristic energy, ambition, and utter inability to distinguish between solid facts and the iridescent fancies of a feverish dream.

It would be a mistake to suppose that the stuff this dream is made of is wholly imaginary. The idea of a Revolt of Islam is not an offspring of the uncreative Turkish mind. The Turk has only tried to nourish a plant which originally sprang from the fertile soil of Arab idealism and still derives its sustenance from Arab faith. I have had occasion to test the vitality of the Pan-Islamic tree, to see its flowers and to speculate upon its possible fruits, during the Tripolitan war. The Arab tribesmen who came out of the Sahara to fight the Italians came full of a fine religious fervour. In fighting the invaders of Tripoli they believed they were fighting the enemies of Allah. To them the campaign was not & merely local and isolated enterprise, but an incident in a general crusade of the Faithful—one act in a great drama destined to find its climax in a liberation of the whole of North Africa from the hands of the Infidel. They gave expression to this conviction by calling the expedition a 'Holy War' and themselves ·Holy Warriors'; and they proved its sincerity by their wonderful readiness to die in witness thereof. Nor was there any dearth of apostles eager to fan their zeal and keep the hope of ultimate triumph burning.

I had the good fortune to gain the friendship of one of these enthusiastic preachers-a very remarkable personality of the Peter-the-Hermit type. He had devoted his life to going to and fro in the earth and walking up and down in it, scattering the promise of redemption in all Moslem hearts wherever they might be found. He had already been twice across the Sahara

from Morocco to Egypt. He had been in the Caucasus, in Afghanistan, in India. When I met him in the TurcoArab camp outside Tripoli he had just arrived on foot from Alexandria, having covered the distance in ninetyfour days, which included stoppages at all the TurcoArab camps on the way. At each place he halted for a few days, not to rest, but to preach and fight. He carried across his back an Italian rifle, at his side an Arab scimitar, and on his shoulder a flag with a significant device-a green globe representing Africa, and some red patches over it representing the Moslem provinces under Infidel occupation. Alongside this blazon was embroidered the text, “Nasrun min Allah wa fethun karib' (* Victory (is) from God, and the conquest near ').

I could not have found a more competent exponent of the Pan-Islamic dream, or a more clear-sighted critic of its strength and its weakness. All his statements were enlightening, and one of his most emphatic prophecies (he laid claim to prevision of the future) has already found a startlingly accurate fulfilment. He described the nations of Europe as so many brigands who said, Islam is asleep; let us go in and take all we can.'


'But,' he added, "wait and see. The day of retribution is

, at hand. In a few years, very few years—I will give it to you in writing, if you like-there will be a great European war, Italy fighting Austria, Germany fighting France, England fighting Germany. Then is our time for a general sweep.'


He claimed to be the spokesman of millions of Mohammedans who thought as he thought, and felt as he felt. That the claim was well founded I ascertained from numerous conversations I had with Arabs of all sorts and conditions. But, on the other hand, I also ascertained both in Egypt and in Tunis that the distance which separates aspiration from action is as wide in Islam as it is in Christendom. Every Moslem country evinced a profound sympathy with the Tripolitan struggle for freedom; and that sentiment found practical expression in a variety of ways. But it is most instructive to note that it did not express itself in any attempt at rebellion against Infidel rule. Neither we in India and Egypt, nor the French in Tunis and Algeria, suffered from the agitation which the Italians created in Tripoli; the seismic disturbance, contrary to anticipation, produced no sympathetic shock outside the Tripolitan area. Why?

* These were his exact words, uttered at the beginning of 1912. See • The Holy, War in Tripoli,' by G. F. Abbott, p. 263,

There are two principal reasons-one positive and the other negative. The positive reason is the satisfaction of all those Moslem populations with Christian rule-a satisfaction based upon a shrewd appreciation of the practical benefits of that rule, and one that can co-exist with much sentimental discontent, without being seriously affected by it.

Observers who read the nationalist newspapers of Young Tunis, Young Egypt, and Young India are often misled into the belief that the able editors of those journals are ripe for sedition. No graver error, or one betraying a more fatal ignorance of human nature, could well be made. Even if the writers of those articles mean what they say (which is far from being always the case, though the writers themselves may think it is), few of their readers are impressed otherwise than in a febrile way by them. No true Mohammedan, if he were offered the choice between the two ideals, would choose Infidel rule. But we are not living in an ideal world. The average African and Asiatic has this fundamental quality in common with the average European-he knows on which side his bread is buttered. They have never experienced under Moslem domination the personal freedom, the equality of justice, the security of life and property, the protection against disease and famine, the commercial prosperity, which they experience now under the British and French flags; and they know it. One of the main arguments I heard advanced against the Italians by the leaders of the Arab resistance in Tripoli was not the religion of the invaders, but their poverty and their inability to do much more for the Arabs than their Turkish rulers had done for them. I am not concerned here to judge the soundness of the argument, but only to state it, as being significant. And its significance was enhanced by the fact that the men who put it forward would then go on to contrast these

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shortcomings of the Italians with the wealth and administrative competence of the English and the French on either side of Tripoli. Indeed, a number of Tripolitans had appealed to France to take them under her flag.

This appreciation of material advantages, though keenest among Arabs of culture and substance, is just as noticeable among the most ignorant and indigent. One instance will suffice. On the Tripoli-Tunis frontier there is a rain-water cistern built by the French. On my return from the desert, I pointed it out to my cameldriver, who was not aware of its existence. After quaffing some of the clear liquid-so different from the mud he was used to on the other side of the border—and making certain noises of satisfaction with his throat and lips, he said, 'Praise be to Allah, and to the French Government. Ah, sir. The French can think; they are not like us or the Turks!' In addition to these practical advantages which it shares with ours, I found the French administration popular for a quality which ours lacks. The French appeared to me to have found their way to the Arab's heart, as well as to his head. I have found in Tunis a camaraderie between alien rulers and native subjects which, after some experience of AngloIndia and Anglo-Egypt, struck me as a most exhilarating novelty.

This sound estimation of the beneficent and liberal nature of French and British rule has already, since the outbreak of the war, manifested itself in the loyal and cordial support which both Powers have received from their Moslem subjects. Fifty thousand African Arabs are at this moment fighting for France, and fighting as cheerfully as any other citizens of the Republic. We have to acknowledge with gratitude, and a perfectly legitimate self-gratulation, the devotion of British Moslems from one end of the Empire to the other. Such men of light and leading in Islam as the Agha Khan and the Nizam of Hyderabad have given magnificent tokens of the spirit which animates them and their followers. All the Mohammedan communities in India have hastened to renew to the Viceroy their expressions of hearty adherence to our cause, and to add to them expressions of unqualified disgust at Turkey's action. Egypt has

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