Military Review

"Father of the Arabs." One hundred years nasser

26
Exactly one hundred years ago, on January 15 of 1918, Gamal Abdel Nasser was born - a man who was destined to play a very significant role in the newest stories Middle East and North Africa. One of the few foreigners Gamal Abdel Nasser was awarded the high title of Hero of the Soviet Union (although the latter fact caused, in due time, a lot of complaints from the Soviet citizens).


Nasser is a very ambiguous figure, causing the most controversial assessments not only by Western and Russian, but also by the Arab historians themselves, including Egyptian historians. But, be that as it may, this man, who had led Egypt for almost fifteen years, was also an extraordinary politician in the very difficult years of the Cold War, which was far from cold in the Middle East, and was completely remembered to be remembered after a century after his birth.

"Father of the Arabs." One hundred years nasser


In the Arab world, the figure of Gamal Abdel Nasser is still revered by many supporters of secular nationalism. At one time, it was Nasser and his ideas that had a decisive influence on Arab nationalists in Libya, Algeria, Syria, Yemen, and many other countries. The Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi considered Nasser to be his teacher. Even now, when the ideas of religious fundamentalism in the Middle East and North Africa pushed aside Arab secular nationalism, the memory of Nasser is honored in many countries. Egypt is no exception. In fact, it is Nasser who can be considered the founder of the political tradition that still retains its dominant influence in this largest Arab country.

Gamal Abdel Nasser Hussein (that is how his full name sounded) was born on January 15 1918 in Alexandria. He was the first child in the family of the newlyweds - postal employee Abdel Nasser and his wife Fahima, married in 1917 year. The family was not rich, and because of the nature of the service of the father often moved from place to place. In 1923, Nasser Sr. settled with his family in the city of Hatatba, and in 1924, the six-year-old Gamal was sent to his uncle in Cairo. In the 1928 year, Gamal was transferred to Alexandria - to her maternal grandmother, and in 1929, she was enrolled in a boarding school in Helwan.

In 1930, twelve-year-old Gamal participated in a political demonstration against colonialism and even spent the night at the police station. This detention was the beginning of the life of Gamal Abdel Nasser as an Arab revolutionary. In 1935, he led a demonstration of young students and was slightly injured during its dispersal. In his youth, Gamal was fond of reading the biographies of famous nationalist leaders and military leaders - Napoleon, Bismarck, Garibaldi. The life and views of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk had a great influence on him. Nasser decided to link his fate with a military career.

In 1937, a young man applied to the Royal Military Academy in Cairo, but due to political unreliability he was denied admission to an educational institution. Then Nasser entered the Law College of the University of Cairo, but soon left his studies there and again made an attempt to enter the military academy. This time, the young man was supported by the Deputy Minister of War of Egypt, Ibrahim Khayri Pasha, after which Nasser was still enrolled in an educational institution. In July, 1938, with the rank of lieutenant Nasser, was released into the army and began serving in the garrison of the town of Mankabat. In 1941-1943 he served in Sudan, which was then under the Anglo-Egyptian administration, and in 1943 he returned to Cairo, taking the post of instructor of the military academy.

Already at the beginning of his service, Nasser was a staunch Arab nationalist and gathered around him a small group of officers who sympathized with his ideas. This group included Anwar Sadat - also the future president of Egypt. During World War II, the Arab nationalists, and Nasser were no exception, did not hide their sympathies for the Axis countries, hoping that Hitler would crush the power of the British Empire and thereby contribute to the national liberation struggle of the Arab countries.

However, the Second World War ended with the defeat of the Axis countries. In 1947-1949 Egypt took part in the Arab-Israeli war. Naser, who noticed that the Egyptian army was not prepared for military operations, also went to the front. It was during the war that Nasser began work on one of his program works, The Philosophy of Revolution. Returning from the front, Nasser continued to serve in the military academy, combining it with underground activities. In 1949, the Free Officers Society was created, which initially included 14 people. Nasser was elected chairman of the society.

Further activation of the Egyptian revolutionaries was associated with the events around the Suez Canal. 25 January 1952 in the city of Ismailia clashed between British troops and the Egyptian police, killing about 40 police, which caused a storm of public indignation in the country. In this situation, Nasser and his associates decided that the time had come to act more actively.

However, at first, Lt. Col. Nasser did not expect that he would be able to lead the revolution against the royal regime, accused by revolutionaries of complicity with the British colonialists. Therefore, the role of the head of the conspiracy went to the commander of the ground forces, Major General Mohammed Naguib. Although, as a politician, Naguib clearly lost to Nasser, he was above him in military rank and place in the military hierarchy. 22 — 23 July 1952, the army took control of key facilities in the capital. King Farouk was sent to an honorary exile, and a year later, 16 June 1953, Egypt was officially proclaimed a republic. Major General Mohammed Nagugh became President of the country. All power in the country was in the hands of a special body - the Revolutionary Command Council, whose chairman was General Nagugh, and the deputy chairman was Lieutenant Colonel Nasser.

However, in the changed political situation between Naguib and Nasser, contradictions sharpened. Nasser spoke with a more radical program and counted on the further development of the Arab revolution. In February 1954 of the year, the Revolutionary Command Council met without Naguib, in March, Nasser launched reprisals against the supporters of the general, and in November 1954, General Naguib was finally removed from his post as president of the country and placed under house arrest. So power in Egypt was in the hands of Gamal Abdel Nasser, who instantly protected himself from potential rivals, arresting many representatives of opposition organizations of various kinds - from fundamentalists from the Muslim Brotherhood to the Communists from the Egyptian Communist Party. In June 1956, Gamal Abdel Nasser was elected president of the country.

The key idea of ​​Gamal Abdel Nasser in the first years of his presidency was to strengthen Egyptian statehood, above all - to ensure the true sovereignty of the country. The main obstacle to this Nasser believed the continued control of Britain over the Suez Canal. 26 July 1956, Nasser made a statement in which he announced the nationalization of the Suez Canal and again strongly criticized the policy of British colonialism. The channel was closed for any ships of the state of Israel. The result of the nationalization of the channel was the Suez crisis, which resulted in the fighting of Israel, Britain and France against Egypt in 1959. The conflict was "extinguished" by joint efforts of the USA and the USSR. The actual failure of the Israeli intervention provided an unprecedented growth in the popularity of Nasser, both in Egypt and beyond, primarily in the Arab world.

Gamal Abdel Nasser, not alien to the pan-Arab views, claimed the role of the unconditional political leader of the Arab world. To some extent, he was right, because in the second half of the 1950's. in the Arab world there was no other equally charismatic politician capable of competing with Nasser. The US tried as an alternative to support the King of Saudi Arabia, but the popularity of the latter among the many millions of disadvantaged Arabs in the Middle East and North Africa was out of the question. Nasser, on the contrary, was regarded as a popular leader, able to oppose Western colonialism and lead the standoff between Arabs and Israel.

The unification of Egypt and Syria in the UAR - the United Arab Republic - was largely associated with the name Nasser. The unification initiative came from the Syrian side, which was able to put pressure on Nasser, who initially did not want to create a unified state. However, it was Nasser who became the president of the UAR with four vice-presidents - two from Egypt and two from Syria.

Being a supporter of Arab nationalism, Nasser adhered to his own version of Arab socialism, connecting the future of the Arab world with the socialist system. The core of Nasser’s economic policy was the nationalization of large-scale industry and strategically important industries, primarily enterprises owned by foreign capital. The social program of Nasser was very progressive, why the Egyptian president is still remembered with a kind word. Thus, the Nasser program provided for the introduction of a minimum wage, the creation of free education and free medicine, the construction of affordable housing, the accrual of a share of profits to workers of enterprises. At the same time, Nasser was pursuing an agricultural reform aimed at limiting the positions of large landowners and protecting the interests of peasant tenants. A huge contribution was made by Nasser in strengthening the defense capacity of the Egyptian state, in the development of modern industry in the country, the construction of power plants, transport and social infrastructure facilities.

During the reign of Nasser, Egypt really began to change, turning from a feudal monarchy, which it was before 1952, into a relatively modern state. At the same time, Nasser pursued a policy of secularization at a heightened pace - recognizing the significance of Islamic values, he nevertheless sought to limit the influence of religion on the life of the Egyptians. The main blow of the repressive apparatus was inflicted on religious-fundamentalist organizations, primarily on the Muslim Brotherhood.

Nasser greatly supported the national liberation movements in the Arab world, including making an enormous contribution to achieving political independence for Algeria, which became a sovereign state in 1962. In the same year 1962, the monarchy was overthrown in Yemen, and the anti-monarchist revolution was led by Colonel Abdullah Al-Salyal, chief of the General Staff of the Yemeni army, known for his sympathies for nasserism. Since the ousted Imam, King Mohammed Al Badr, was supported by Saudi Arabia and he began an armed struggle against revolutionaries, Egypt became involved in the Yemeni conflict and only in 1967 did the Egyptian troops who participated in the Yemeni civil war leave the country.

Despite the fact that in domestic politics, Nasser did not complain of the Egyptian communists and conducted repressions against them, he managed to maintain very good relations with the Soviet Union. On the initiative of Nikita Khrushchev, who clearly sympathized with Nasser, in 1964, Gamal Abdel Nasser was awarded the title Hero of the Soviet Union. The Golden Star of the Hero was also received by field marshal Abdel Hakim Amer, the closest to that period. Khrushchev’s decision caused well-founded criticism from many Soviet citizens, including party leaders, because, firstly, Nasser’s merits for the Soviet Union were not so significant for such a high award, and secondly, Nasser was not really a friend of the Egyptian Communists many of which rot in the prisons of Egypt. There was another piquant moment in Nasser’s biography - the Egyptian president favored former Nazi war criminals, many of whom not only took refuge in Egypt at the beginning of 1950, but were also accepted as advisers and instructors for service in the Egyptian special services, army and police.



The most serious political defeat of Nasser was the Six-Day War in June 1967, during which Israel defeated a coalition of Arab countries for six days, which included Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Iraq and Algeria. Naser accused Field Marshal Amer, who 14 of September 1967, committed suicide in the defeat of the Egyptian army. Despite the failure of the Six Day War, Nasser continued the course of armed confrontation with Israel, calling it a "war of attrition." The low intensity fighting continued in 1967-1970. in order to return under the Egyptian control of the Sinai Peninsula.

28 September 1970, as a result of a heart attack, Gamal Abdel Nasser died at the age of 52. Although there is a common version about the poisoning of the Egyptian president, do not forget that he suffered from diabetes and was very dependent on smoking, and both his brothers also died of heart disease, before they reach the age of 60. The funeral of Gamal Abdel Nasser, held on October 1 1970, gathered about 5 million people. This was not surprising - the untimely death of Nasser deeply shook the entire Arab world, in which there was no longer a leader comparable in popularity to the Egyptian president. “Arabs are orphaned” - with such headlines came out on the day Nasser died, newspapers in many countries of the Middle East and the Maghreb.
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  1. XII Legion
    XII Legion 15 January 2018 07: 02
    20
    Secular Nationalism Better Than Religious Fundamentalism
    And of course - with socialist notes.
    Nasser - an iconic figure of a supra-regional scale
    Thank you
    1. Pushkar
      Pushkar 15 January 2018 11: 59
      +2
      Are you talking about National Socialism?
      1. XII Legion
        XII Legion 15 January 2018 16: 56
        16
        No, I’m talking about the healthy nationalism inherent in every nation - but without it they will devour with giblets as the Arabs now eat Europe. It is desirable with socialist streaks.
        And anything is better than religious fundamentalism
        1. Dimmih
          Dimmih 16 January 2018 13: 44
          +2
          And is Nasser's desire to destroy Israel a healthy nationalism or nationalism in the degree of "easy malaise"? Nasser-and-Our-and-Yours. As a result, the investments of the USSR in Nasser did not pay off, to whom should, I forgive everyone. And other ills are the same.
        2. Pushkar
          Pushkar 17 January 2018 00: 03
          +1
          Quote: XII legion
          No, I'm talking about healthy nationalism
          Healthy nationalism is the same as beneficial syphilis.
  2. parusnik
    parusnik 15 January 2018 07: 29
    +1
    “The Arabs Orphaned” - with such headlines, newspapers in many countries of the Middle East and the Maghreb came out on the day of Nasser's death.
    ... a very precise definition ...
  3. polpot
    polpot 15 January 2018 08: 38
    14
    Lives in the sand and eats from the belly
    Half-fascist, half-wrestler,
    Hero of the Soviet Union,
    Gamal Abdel-on-all-Nasser-rhyme was not invented yesterday, a brief description of this character.
    1. Conductor
      Conductor 15 January 2018 09: 40
      +1
      How mono to be simultaneously both a semi-fascist and a half-socialist. ))))
      1. ilyaros
        15 January 2018 10: 56
        +6
        You can) A typical example - Boris Savinkov))
    2. alebor
      alebor 15 January 2018 10: 27
      +1
      Like any folklore, the rhyme has different options. There is such a start option: "Lying in the sun upside down ..."
    3. Alexey RA
      Alexey RA 15 January 2018 19: 29
      +5
      Losing true faith
      It hurts me for our USSR!
      Take the order from Nasser -
      Not suitable for the Nasser Order!

      You can even cover the floor with a mat,
      Give gifts at random
      Calling Nasser our brother
      But give the Hero - stop it!

      Why is there no gold in the country?
      They gave away, bastards, gave away.
      Better to be given in the war
      And Nasser after forgive us!

      © Vysotsky, of course smile
  4. Conductor
    Conductor 15 January 2018 09: 51
    +1
    My distant relative worked for me, Mlyn. somehow behind the glass he told how much we swelled there, just HORROR. AND WHAT WERE INSURED.
    1. San Sanych
      San Sanych 15 January 2018 10: 56
      +5
      Quote: Conductor
      My distant relative worked for me, Mlyn. somehow behind the glass he told how much we swelled there, just HORROR. AND WHAT WERE INSURED.

      And not only in Egypt, Khrushchev turned the USSR into a cash cow for many countries of the Third World, and for this people he raised prices for food and other goods, lowered labor costs, generous for strangers, greedy for his own.
  5. Luga
    Luga 15 January 2018 10: 06
    +2
    Well, colleagues, about the "half-socialist" it was already who was the first to quote Vysotsky? wink
    The character is a strong leader and a convinced statesman, a patriot of his people, an iconic figure for the Arab world, but I agree with Vysotsky.
    1. San Sanych
      San Sanych 15 January 2018 10: 38
      +1
      An extraordinary person, and for his people he may be a hero, but not for the Soviet Union.

      ... You can cover the floor with a mat
      Giving gifts at random
      You can call Nasser our brother
      But to give a hero, that’s - give it up.
      1. San Sanych
        San Sanych 15 January 2018 11: 05
        +1
        You can even cover the floor with a mat,
        Give gifts at random
        Calling Nasser our brother
        But give the Hero - stop it!
    2. karish
      karish 15 January 2018 12: 04
      +2
      Quote: Luga
      Well, colleagues, about the "half-socialist" it was already who was the first to quote Vysotsky? wink
      The character is a strong leader and a convinced statesman, a patriot of his people, an iconic figure for the Arab world, but I agree with Vysotsky.

      I wish the Arabs more such patriots.
  6. Pushkar
    Pushkar 15 January 2018 11: 57
    +2
    "During the Second World War, Arab nationalists, and Nasser was no exception, did not hide their sympathy for the Axis countries, hoping that Hitler would crush the power of the British Empire and thereby contribute to the national liberation struggle of the Arab countries." "There was another piquant moment in Nasser's biography - the Egyptian president favored former Nazi war criminals, many of whom not only found refuge in Egypt in the early 1950s, but were also accepted as advisers and instructors to serve in the Egyptian special services , army and police. " This is the main thing that characterizes this character throughout his conscious life.
    1. voyaka uh
      voyaka uh 15 January 2018 13: 36
      +2
      Pope of the present Assad also willingly accepted those who fled
      in different directions from Germany SS men. "Specialists".
      1. San Sanych
        San Sanych 15 January 2018 15: 14
        0
        In fairness, then we must remember the United States, they also willingly accepted the SS men to the service.
        1. voyaka uh
          voyaka uh 15 January 2018 15: 37
          +4
          No. Germans, Nazi criminals who lied to Green Card penetrated the USA
          in profiles about your past. And the checks did not reveal fraud.
          Some were exposed through the organization of Eli Wiesel many years later.
          Some have slipped.
          Technical specialists (engineers and scientists) were willingly taken to their place
          both the USA and the USSR are racing.
          But Germans came to Egypt and Syria - from the SS and the Gestapo, who did not hide their past.
          Some, on the contrary, touted themselves as anti-Jewish specialists.
          This counted as a plus.
          1. San Sanych
            San Sanych 15 January 2018 16: 42
            +1
            The United States used the services of not only scientists and engineers, the American special services, the OSS, and after it the CIA, also used "specialists" from the Gestapo and the SS in profile. Also many war criminals served in the French foreign legion.
          2. Alexey RA
            Alexey RA 15 January 2018 19: 41
            0
            Quote: voyaka uh
            No. Germans, Nazi criminals who lied in profiles about their past, penetrated the Green Card in the USA. And the checks did not reveal fraud.

            Really? And then how did this member of the NSDAP from 1937 and the SS Sturmbannfuhrer penetrate the United States:
  7. A. Privalov
    A. Privalov 15 January 2018 15: 17
    +4
    Back in 1966, Nasser signed an agreement with Moscow, according to which the USSR gained access to ports on the Mediterranean and Red Seas and three Egyptian airfields. On the Mediterranean Sea, Soviet ships stood in Port Said, Alexandria and Mersa Matruh, and in the Red Sea the USSR had a base in Ras Banas. In exchange, Moscow pledged to increase the supply of weapons and provide military specialists. Arab countries used the Soviet-Western contradictions simply sophisticatedly. It was enough to loudly call yourself a "democratic republic", speculate about a "socialist orientation" and declare the struggle against colonialism and neocolonialism, as these words turned into quite tangible economic and military bonuses from the USSR, the CMEA countries and the Warsaw Treaty. True, subsequent events showed that the USSR could find a much better application for these tens of billions of dollars. hi
    1. Alexey RA
      Alexey RA 15 January 2018 19: 36
      +2
      Quote: A. Privalov
      Arab countries used the Soviet-Western contradictions simply sophisticated. It was enough to loudly call oneself a “democratic republic”, speculate about a “socialist orientation” and declare a struggle against colonialism and neo-colonialism, as these words turned into quite tangible economic and military bonuses from the USSR, the CMEA countries and the Warsaw Pact.

      Not only they - in Africa, too, traded it. It came to the "first socialist war" when the army firmly embarked on the path of socialism Somalia, having a little misjudged the current political moment, invaded just bursting from the predatory tentacles of American imperialism Ethiopia, in front of Moscow dumbfounded by such a performance. Moreover, both sides demanded that the USSR help them. smile
      1. A. Privalov
        A. Privalov 15 January 2018 20: 46
        +4
        Quote: Alexey RA
        Quote: A. Privalov
        Arab countries used the Soviet-Western contradictions simply sophisticated. It was enough to loudly call oneself a “democratic republic”, speculate about a “socialist orientation” and declare a struggle against colonialism and neo-colonialism, as these words turned into quite tangible economic and military bonuses from the USSR, the CMEA countries and the Warsaw Pact.

        Not only they - in Africa, too, traded it. It came to the "first socialist war" when the army firmly embarked on the path of socialism Somalia, having a little misjudged the current political moment, invaded just bursting from the predatory tentacles of American imperialism Ethiopia, in front of Moscow dumbfounded by such a performance. Moreover, both sides demanded that the USSR help them. smile

        Yes, it was worth “escaping from the predatory tentacles of American imperialism” to get the “Red Terror”. You know, I’m already quite an old man, but I remember well the first emperor Haile Selassie the first, and Mengistu Haile Mariam who shot and tortured 100 000 with torture, who often went to kiss Leonid Ilyich and then Gorbachev. One of the most bloody leaders on the continent, called the Red Negus and the Butcher from Ethiopia, was almost the most staunch follower of the Marxist-Leninist teachings and even transformed his country into the People's Democratic Republic of Ethiopia. He chose the patrons of the USSR and I must say he did not lose. The assistance from the Soviet Union was more than significant. In the same famous war for Ogaden against Somalia, the Soviet leadership decided to support the Red Negus, and not Muhammad Siad Barre, although Somalia at that time seemed to be a socialist state too. But Eritrea as part of the country, even despite all the help, Mariam could not keep. The building of socialism led Ethiopia to complete ruin. The collectivization undertaken in agriculture (according to the classical Soviet method) led to further degradation of the regime. In 1984, a million people died of starvation in the country. The attempt to rebuild the economy failed miserably, although he did something useful for the country, Mengistu Haile Mariam - the level of literacy, medical care and, as a result, life expectancy increased. But in general, of course, everything was sad.