Gamal Abdel Nasser

Topics: Egypt, Israel, Gamal Abdel Nasser Pages: 6 (1747 words) Published: February 25, 2013
Joshua Jayasinghe
Single Party State
Under- Gamal Abdel Nasser

It is important to first identify the most common definition of a single party state. Single party, or one party states, usually arise during times of crisis. Crisis’s include economic collapse, Military instability, Social and class conflicts and ethnic differences. These conditions allow a single party leader to arise through the creation of a political ideology that provides a solution to one or more of these crisis's. The concept of a single party state is one that is unique to the 20th century. Before the 20th century, single party states were most similar to absolute monarchies- where a monarch exercises all rights to govern and rule their country. There are many 20th century single party state leaders, amongst these is Gamal Abdel Nasser, a man who rose to power in Egypt.

Define the Dictatorship

What led to the rise of Gamal Abdel Nasser can be seen in the events that preceded his success as dictator. As mentioned, a single party leader usually arises during a period of crisis. In the case of Nasser, this crisis happened to be the Military and social crisis that was the Israeli war of 1948-49. This war started a day after the U.N. Recognised Israel as an in dependant country. The war provoked criticism toward the rulers of the Arab nations and also led to the development of more ideological movements and political platforms such as Nasser’s.

During a period that saw the assassination of King Abdullah of Jordan in 1952 and the overthrowing of various leaders, Nasser managed to arise as one of the key figures- not only in Egypt- but also in the Arab Israeli conflict.

In examining Nasser, It helps to have an idea of the climate that he grew up in that led to the development of his political ideology. From a young age, Nasser took part in anti- British protests that criticised the Egyptian royal family for maintaining British co ownership of the Suez canal. Throughout his young life, Nasser developed a strong anti British sentiment as he continued to participate in demonstrations against the British in 1938 while in the Egyptian Army. It was in 1942 when the British persuaded the Egyptian King Farouq to accept a government controlled by Nahas Pasha that Nasser began to use his influence over the Egyptian army to persuade officers that the British had no place in interfering with Egyptian politics, and that their influence had to be removed. His influence over these officers later led to the founding of the free officers movement, a movement aimed at removing the king and British Government from Egypt.

After fighting in the 1948 War against Israel, Nasser came to the conclusion that the royal family needed to go and it was the responsibility of the army to lead this movement. It was on July 23rd 1952 that Nasser led the revolution to overthrow King Farouk and remove British colonial rule. Only a few days later, General Mohammed Naquib removed Farouk from power and sent him to exile.

At this point Naquib handed power over to a young, 32 year old, Gamal Abdel Nasser. Nasser then led Egypt to lead the Arab world and furthermore created hostility with the Western world . Nasser's political ideology utilized the Islamic base of socialism as outlined by the Quran, stating that the Quran strives to eliminate class domination. While Nasser was in power he strived to create a stronger Arab national identity with little influence from the western world.

Concentration of Political Power

Nasser’s political policies concentrated on socialist ideas that were influenced by Communism. Socialism, often described as a weaker form of communism, is a far left wing ideology in which the government has almost- but not all- control. As dictator, Nasser put anyone who spoke against him under house arrest, such as those who protested against the construction of the Aswan dam due to its ecological consequences. Left wing leaders such as...

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