Transcript of a clip from Derek’s June 29, 2021, appearance on The Wright Show on Bloggingheads.TV

Link to the full show ROBERT WRIGHT: As for the military situation, I gather there are Iran-backed militias that would like the US to leave the country, but also militias that are not so closely aligned with Iran that would also like the US to leave the country? DEREK DAVISON: Yeah, I think there's still … Continue reading Transcript of a clip from Derek’s June 29, 2021, appearance on The Wright Show on Bloggingheads.TV

Today in Middle Eastern history: the Battle of Myriokephalon (1176)

While in many respects the 1071 Battle of Manzikert was the beginning of the end for the Byzantine Empire, it was a very long end and it should not be said that the empire went quietly. In fact, over the next century after Manzikert there were signs of life out of Constantinople and it even … Continue reading Today in Middle Eastern history: the Battle of Myriokephalon (1176)

Today in Middle Eastern history: the Battle of Lalakaon (863)

The two centuries-old Arab-Byzantine conflict was on the cusp of a total shift in fortunes in the middle of the 9th century. Where the Arabs had been the aggressors for most of the period following the Battle of Yarmouk in 636, the Abbasid Caliphate now found itself falling apart, with local principalities asserting more and … Continue reading Today in Middle Eastern history: the Battle of Lalakaon (863)

Today(?) in Middle Eastern history: the Sack of Amorium (838)

The 1071 Battle of Manzikert and the political chaos that ensued ended a period of around two centuries during which the Byzantine Empire seemed to be finally making a comeback. After having endured massive losses in the early Arab conquests, then having survived several offensives by the Umayyad Caliphate, and then having watched pieces of … Continue reading Today(?) in Middle Eastern history: the Sack of Amorium (838)

Today in Middle Eastern history: the North Yemen Civil War begins (1962)

Historians of the 20th century Middle East have to reckon with the impact of not one, but two cold wars. The main one was of course the Cold War, in which the United States and Soviet Union jockeyed for power and influence all over the world and particularly in the oil-rich Greater Middle East. The second was … Continue reading Today in Middle Eastern history: the North Yemen Civil War begins (1962)

Today in Middle Eastern history: the Siege of Acre ends (1799)

Napoleon’s siege of Acre, which lasted for two months from March 20 to May 21, 1799, was the high water mark of his eastern campaign. The French general (his years as emperor were still to come) had arrived in the eastern Mediterranean with a splash, capturing Malta on the way to a crushing victory against … Continue reading Today in Middle Eastern history: the Siege of Acre ends (1799)

Today in European history: the Siege of Syracuse ends (878)

The Aghlabid dynasty governed the province of Ifriqiya (which included modern Tunisia as well as eastern Algeria and western Libya) from 800 until 909. Although nominally they operated as vassals of the Abbasid caliphate, they were almost totally autonomous from Baghdad. Their reign is noteworthy for the growth of Ifriqiya as an economic center and … Continue reading Today in European history: the Siege of Syracuse ends (878)