EGYPT'S POLITICAL SITUATION AT THE BEGINNING OF THE 20TH CENTURY IN THE REPORTS OF NEWSPAPER ORRESPONDENT TADEUSZ SMOLENSKI (Sytuacja polityczna Egiptu w poczatkach XX stulecia w korespondencjach prasowych Tadeusza Smolenskiego)
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This article brings to light the reports and analyses written by Tadeusz Smolenski, a undeservedly forgotten or ignored source to the political history of the Middle East, and particularly Egypt, in the first decade of the 20th century. Tadeusz Smoleński (1884-1909), the first Polish scientist on an archaeological mission to Egypt, was also a regular correspondent of the Lwów daily 'Slowo Polskie'. In his reports he outlines a panoramic view of Egypt's extraordinarily complex political situation, determined in large measure by tensions among the European powers, ie. the rivalry between Britain and France, but also between Russia and Germany. Another factor, whose growing importance is noted by the Polish observer, is the rise of nationalist and Islamist movements in both Egypt and the Arab world as a whole. This takes place against the chronic political instability of the Ottoman Empire. While acknowledging all the beneficial aspects of British rule (especially under the consulship of Sir Evelyn Baring), Smolenski does not hide his sympathies for Mustafa Kamil, leader of the Egyptian nationalists. In his analyses Smolenski also hints at some analogies between the situation of the Egyptians and the Poles and their ambitions to set up an independent nation state.
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