Compare and contrast the process of Westernization by Middle Eastern governments during the late eighteenth and the nineteenth centuries. Why did such attempts take place, and what consequences did they have?
Westernization in the Middle East began through revolution. This was first carried out in 1908 by the young Turks in power in the Ottoman Empire and in Iran, 1905 by the then constitutionalists. During this time, leadership and the law were strictly based on the Islam religion and the leaders went to brutal extremes to ensure that religious requirements were adhered to. They viewed this as a responsibility according to their religion. In the beginning national movements against foreign leaders and overlords saw the removal of some unwanted leaders. However, revolution increasingly became as a result of the forceful overthrowing and removing of preceding leaders. One of the most popular revolutions in the Middle East is the Islamic revolution in Iran, in the year 1979 (Hinnebusch, 2003, 63). This revolution resulted in a massive shift in political and economic movement that was backed by a mass movement for change.
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