Suez Canal

The opening of the Suez Canal transformed the strategic situation of the World. Instead of having to travel all the way round Africa, ships could now sail directly from Europe to Asia through the Mediterranean. The British were concerned that this was an Egyptian-French enterprise. They actually tried to undermine the process of financing and building the canal even going so far as to supply guns to workers and opponents of the regime. These attempts failed and Britain had to deal with a new strategic reality. Fortunately, financial difficulties for the Egyptian regime would provide Britain with the ideal situation to gain an interest in the Suez Canal Company.

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by Stephen Luscombe