The Great Game, Straight, McMahon-Hussein correspondance (1916)
This work represents the correspondence between Colonel Sir Henry McMahon, British High Commissioner in Egypt and Hussein bin Ali al-Hashimi, Arab leader, Emir of Mecca, during the First World War and at the beginning of the Arab revolt against the Ottoman Empire in 1916. These letter exchanges have had a decisive impact on Middle Eastern history as they mark the official promise by the British government of an independent Arab state. A state that will never see the light of day and will be superseded by the Sykes-Picot Agreements, which will divide the Middle East into two zones of influence through the establishment of administrative mandates; implicating the British in Palestine, Jordan and southern Iraq, and the French in present-day Syria and Lebanon. The formation of these contemporary states is the direct consequence of the failings of this correspondence. Sir Arthur McMahon, David George Hogarth, Thomas Edward Lawrence, Hussein bin Ali, Sharif of Mecca and Colonel Sir Mark Sykes are all depicted in this hand.