Photo Gallery The Aftermath of World War I in the Middle East

World War I may have ended in 1918, but the conflict and the peace agreements that followed continue to mark the political realities in the Middle East today. The arbitrary borders drawn at the time ensured a century of strife and violence.
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The Big Four of (left to right) British Prime Minister David Lloyd George, Italian leader Vittorio Emanuele Orlando, French Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau and US President Woodrow Wilson. This image was taken in 1919 during the negotiations over the Treaty of Versailles.

Foto: dpa
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The war in the Middle East was not as bloody as the slaughter on the Western Front, but there were still hundreds of thousands of casualties. In addition, some one million Armenians were killed or starved to death during their deportation by Turkish forces.

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The initial British attempt to take Constantinople failed at Gallipoli, where thousands of Australian and New Zealand soldiers lost their lives as well in addition to tens of thousands of English troops. The anniversary of the Gallipoli landing, April 25, is still marked in Australia, as this image from 2013 shows.

Foto: Chris Hyde/ Getty Images
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The Ottoman triumph at Gallipoli also marked the beginning of the rise of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, who is still revered in Turkey as being the country's founder.

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The peace deals struck at the end of the war in the Middle East continue to mark the region today. Britain and France sliced the area up into several smaller countries without regard to ethnic or confessional makeup. Conflicts since then have been numerous and bitter. Here, a 1948 photo shows a ceremony in Tel Aviv marking the official creation of the Israeli army during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War.

Foto: AFP
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Much of the violence in the Middle East has centered on Israel. Here, Israeli troops during the Six Day War in 1967 which pitted Israel against its neighbors.

Foto: A2800 epa IGPO/ dpa
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Not all of the violence involved Israel, however. Here, Jordanian soldiers examining a destroyed Palestinian jeep during fighting between the Jordanian army and Palestinian fedayeen fighters during Black September in 1970. The violence came about when King Hussein of Jordan decided to break up the Palestinian Liberation Organization's state-within-a-state in Jordan.

Foto: AFP
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Here, Israeli soldiers are seen bombarding Syrian positions on the Golan Heights during the Yom Kippur War in 1973.

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Most of the countries created in the Middle East in the wake of World War I were unsustainable from an ethnic and religious perspective. Lebanon is perhaps the most unwieldy of them all. The country's civil war lasted from 1975 to 1990 and resulted in an estimated 120,000 deaths. In this photo from 1986, Lebanese crowd around the scene of a bomb blast in Beirut that killed more than 30 people.

Foto: AP/dpa
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Saddam Hussein standing next to an artillary piece in an undated photo taken during the Iran-Iraq War, which raged from 1980 to 1988. It was the result of a number of border disputes between the two countries and was one of the bloodiest conflicts in the region in recent decades.

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Iraq has remained a focal point of violence in the region, with two US invasions of the country since 1990. This image shows the opening bombardment of Baghdad ahead of the US invasion of the country in 2003.

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Map: Borders in the Middle East before and after World War I.

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