Saturday 21 October 2023

The Raid on the Suez Canal, 1915


The Raid on the Suez Canal, also known as Actions on the Suez Canal, took place between 26th January and 4th February 1915, when a German-led Ottoman Army force advanced from Southern Palestine to attack the British Empire-protected Suez Canal, marking the beginning of the Sinai and Palestine Campaign (1915–1918) of World War I (1914–1918).

Substantial Ottoman forces crossed the Sinai Peninsula, but their attack failed – mainly because of strongly held defences and alert defenders.

Since its opening in 1869 the Suez Canal had featured prominently in British policy and concerns. Among its great advantages were as a line of communication and also the site for a military base as the well equipped ports at Alexandria and Port Said made the region particularly useful. 

However, the Egyptian public was becoming increasingly opposed to the British occupation of Egypt, in particular various policies issued by Britain during the occupation.

The Convention of Constantinople of 1888 by the European great powers guaranteed freedom of navigation of the Suez Canal. In August 1914 Egypt was defended by 5,000 men in the Force in Egypt.

Photos:  Memorial photo - Chorley Pals Memorial by Andrew Mackay

The Ottoman Camel Corps 1916