Over the past century,http://www.timemaps.com/history/middle-east-1648ad the military garrisons in Syria,http://www.timemaps.com/history/syria-1789ad Egypthttp://www.timemaps.com/history/egypt-1789ad and Iraq,http://www.timemaps.com/history/iraq-1789ad which theoretically answer to the Ottoman sultans in Constantinople, have come to dominate their respective provinces and now govern them as virtually independent states. The Ottoman empire’s hold on the region is more apparent than real outside Asia Minor.http://www.timemaps.com/history/turkey-1789ad
Luckily for the Ottomans, Iranhttp://www.timemaps.com/history/iran-1789ad has experienced even greater weakness. The Safavid dynasty has fallen from power, and successor regimes have become increasingly unstable. Through all this, the leadership of the Shi’ite branch of Islam has been strengthening its hold on the country.
By this date, Western economic interests are being felt in the region. These will only get stronger.
ORIGINAL SOURCE: timemaps.com