Muhammad Ali Pasha Origin
Muhammad Ali Pasha “4 March 1769 – 2 August 1849” started as an Ottoman Albanian
commander in the Ottoman army and rose to the position of the ruler of Egypt.
He is regarded as the father and founder of modern Egypt due to the extensive
reforms to the economic, military, and cultural aspects of Egypt. He used his
leadership skills, political intelligence, and cunning to bring peace, prosperity, law,
and order to Egypt which was transformed into a true superpower and great influences all over the world at the time.
How Did Muhammad Ali Pasha Get the Rule of Egypt?
In 1798, Egypt was under the weak leadership of the Ottoman Empire but was
also occupied by the French forces under the control of Napoleon Bonaparte
himself who destroyed the Mamluk rulers on the battlefield but in 1801 the
French forces had to withdraw which left a vacuum that gave Muhammad Ali
the chance to seize the moment appointed himself the ottoman “Wali” governor
of Egypt to take control of the Ottoman army to re-occupy the province but he had other plans.
He used his support of the general public and the religious establishment to work
on taking more control and charge of the country and to eliminate the Mamluks
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controlled Egypt for more than 600 years. On the First of March in 1181, the
Mamluks gathered in the Cairo citadel and Muhammad Ali’s troops began killing
all the sixty-four Mamluks, including twenty-four commanders, he then dispatched
his troops through Egypt to destroy any remaining traces of the Mamluk forces.
He had a dream of creating his own dynasty and his own kingdom away from
the decaying Ottoman Empire, that’s why he transformed Egypt into a regional
power and declared himself the rightful successor. His dynasty ruled Egypt from its
date of foundation in 1805 until 1953 AD following the Egyptian Revolution.
Muhammad Ali Pasha Achievements in Egypt
He understood that if he wanted to detach Egypt from the Ottoman Empire
and make it truly independent then he has to have a more powerful economically
and militarily force. He developed a strategy based on agriculture as he planted crops
for the sole purpose of exportation like rice, sugarcane, and especially cotton.
All the income from agricultural production and export was used to develop public
work and national projects like irrigation, canals, dams, and barrages.
He also disbanded his foreign army and created a fleet and an army of pure
Egyptians who were commanded by the Turks and trained by French commanders
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in the art of warfare. He also started an educational revolution as he constructed
Western-style schools and universities produce doctors, engineers, veterinarians,
and other specialists. He sent educational expeditions to Europeans who
were trained in modern techniques to complete his bureaucrats.
He launched an industrial age in Egypt as he built factories to produce sugar,
glass, and textile that competed with the European product, and build ships,
weapons for the new army, and navy. There was also a dark side to his master
plan as he added excessive taxation to pay for all his expensive projects which led
him to lose a great deal of his public support. His control of agriculture expanded
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his monopolization of world trade led to a bad relationship and exchange with
Britain saw Egypt as a threat to its economical influence. He also tried to
expand his empire by invading Syria in 1831 but was stopped by the great forces o
f Britain, France, and Russia. Muhammad Ali had no choice but to sign 1841
treat, which commands Muhammad Ali to stripped of all the conquered territory
except Sudan but in return granted the hereditary governorship of Egypt for life.
Muhammad Ali Pasha Legacy
passed the rule of Egypt to his son Ibrahim in 1848 that died shortly after and
died in 1849. He was able to leave a great legacy which shows in the famous
Muhammad Ali mosque in Cairo. Under his rule, Egypt became a powerful nation
afters series of rapid economical expansions and modernization plus he entered
the international community of nations as an independent state, not as
a province of the Ottoman Empire. He built a powerful army that depended
on the scientific process, opened Egypt to European commerce and trade,
and most importantly improved education to match European standards.
He entered Egypt into industrial Egypt and created what has become known as modern Egypt.