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Full text of "The Egyptian Problem"

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la<w could not be relaxed. But General Allenby lost no time in seeking contact with whatever law-abiding elements there might yet be in the country. Egypt was still without a Government, and as there were no Ministers whom he could consult, he invited a number of Egyptian notables to the Residency the day after his arrival, and he informed them, according to his instructions, that his threefold object was, first, to restore order, secondly, to inquire into the causes of discontent, and thirdly, to redress justifiable grievances. He added that it was their duty to help him in the restoration of order and they ought to trust him to work for the redress of grievances and the welfare of the country. Meanwhile he appealed to them warmly to co-operate with him in calming the " passions now let loose.5'
The immediate result seemed promising. A circular was issued on the following day by some fifty of the most influential personages in Egypt, including the Rector of El Azhar, the Grand Mufti, the Coptic Patriarch, nine ex-Ministers, and other Moslem and Coptic notables, and it was circulated at once all over the country. It was in the form of an appeal to the Egyptian nation to return to peace and order, and was drafted in such a way as to lay special stress, not only on the wickedness, but also on the uselessness of acts of violence. The appeal read like that of men who were in earnest and who genuinely desired to put an end to a state of anarchy. How much effect it may have actually had it is not easy to say, nor whether all were equally in sympathy with the document to which they affixed their names, for order was already being fast re-established manu militari.
On March 31st the High Commissioner was in a position to announce that he was " glad to see that disturbances, outrages, and the destruction of property have largely subsided. ... He thinks the time has come when responsible Egyptians with the interest of their country at heart should submit to him a statement showing
o in the provinces.