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Full text of "The Egyptian Problem"

:      •                                      40                       THE EGYPTIAN  PROBLEM                 CHAP.
i
•       '                               of a popular assembly.    He was too cautious to resent it
•'   ,   '                               openly, but the Notables could not remain unaware of
'"     i                               his real sentiments, and they inclined more and more
towards Arabi, until in the end, when he had made himself practically the dictator of Egypt, they, who had refused to bow down before the Khedive, bowed down before him I                       without realising that they had only exchanged masters.
1                                        Another and far more mischievous factor had in the
meantime  appeared on the  scene,  namely,  a  Turkish
H                                     mission.    The  insubordination of  the  Egyptian army,
which was—and not merely in theory—part of the Ottoman army, gave the Sultan a valid excuse for fishing in troubled waters. He had even contemplated an occupation of Egypt by Turkish troops. But England and France were still sufficiently at one to dissuade him, though ;••                                          Lord Salisbury was inclined not to exclude altogether
*,       r                                  the idea of Turkish intervention as a last resort against
!'!*                                           anarchy.   The  Sultan's  envoys  played fast  and loose
1                                          with  everyone.    Arabi was induced both by  his fear
|                                          of Turkish intervention and need of popular support
j1'1                                         to divest his propaganda as far as possible of the anti-
t;          . . :   .                       Turkish character which the mutiny of  the troops had
jf                                          originally   borne,   and   to   give   it   an   anti-European
H                                         character with a flavour even of Mahomedan fanaticism.
r
j,                                            Confusion became worse confounded when Gambetta
\                                         was overthrown early in 1882 and succeeded by Freycinet,
I                                         who was neither so convinced a believer in an Anglo-
I                                         French understanding nor so ready to face responsibility
v                                        for   grave   Egyptian   complications.    The   Chamber   of
I,                                        Notables began to assume a more imperious tone, and
f                                        claimed the right to vote as well as to discuss the Budget,
I                                        and demanded a new Organic Law conferring that right
I                                        upon it should it be denied under the existing regulations.
;    -          '                          The Prime Minister, Cherif Pasha,  could neither resist
]                                        nor give way.    So he resigned, and in the new Cabinet
i                                        Arabi himself became War Minister, whilst his brother
I                                        officer, Mahmoud   Sami, who had   hitherto   held   that
|                                        portfolio, became Prime Minister.     The fusion between
!                                        the military party and the Nationalist party was complete,