The Middle East is part of three major continents, Africa, Asia, and Europe with trade routes overland and sea. Cultural Diffusion is the spread of ideas, invention, and achievements by traders, conquerors, and migrating people. Strategic locations like the Middle Eastern nations sit on vast reserves of oil. It has importance to the world’s military and economy. Some countries link seas to the ocean by canals so ships with tanks filled with oil can transport the goods.
Physical Features have affected human settlement in the Middle East with the five main physical regions like the Northern Tier, Arabian Peninsula, Fertile Crescent, Nile Valley, and the Maghreb. The Northern Tier stretches across Turkey and Iran with a region of plateaus. In the west lies the Anatolian plateau ringed with the Pontic and Taurus mountains. The Anatolian has fertile soil so there is a large population. The Anatolian plateau is located in Asia Minor, large peninsula that connects Asia to Europe. The Iranian plateau is ringed by mountains including the Elburz and Zagros with a small population because it is dry and arid. The Arabian Peninsula has a small population for its lack of water with some fertile areas on the mountainous southern coast. The peninsula is a barren desert. The Arabian Peninsula plays a major role in the world’s economy because of the vast oil underneath the desert surface. The Arabian Peninsula is the birth place of Islam and the holy city of Mecca that attracts Muslims from around the world.
The Fertile Crescent is an arc shaped region that stretches from eastern Mediterranean, Tigris and Euphrates rivers, and the Persian Gulf. There is rich soil and an abundance of water that causes a large population. There are very few natural boundaries so invaders have conquered fertile lands and rich cities. In the spring, early summer, the snow melts from the mountains causing flooding. It fertiles Mesopotamia, but destroys other crops and causes death. The Nile...
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