Southern Asia 1929: Ikhwan Revolt

Political map of South & Southwest Asia on 29 Mar 1929 (Rising Nationalism: Ikhwan Revolt), showing the following events: Ararat rebellion; Ikhwan Revolt; Pacification of Sarhad; Aden Command; Bardoli Satyagraha; Presidency of Chiang Kaishek; Reign of Kalakani.

The Saudi conquests in Arabia had been achieved with the support of the Ikhwan tribal armies, who wanted to go on to attack the British protectorates of Iraq, Kuwait, and Transjordan. Not wishing to antagonize the British, Ibn Saud attempted to reign in the Ikhwan but soon faced open revolt. Eventually the Ikhwan were defeated by Saud's more modern army, helping to bring about a centralized Saudi state.


Changes to the map 20 May 1927–29 March 1929

Ikwhan Revolt: The Ikhwan have turned against Ibn Saud, invading Iraq and Kuwait. They are presently engaged in the decisive Battle of Sabilla, in which they will ultimately be defeated by the Saudis.

Aden and Yemen: With the formation of the Aden Command, the British have been able to secure the Aden Protectorates’ border with Yemen.

Persia: The Persian government has invaded western Baluchistan and is in the process of pacifying the region.

Afghanistan: The Tajik bandit Kalakani has taken advantage of the weak government to seize control of Kabul.

Northern Expedition: The Guangxi Clique, allied with Chiang Kaishek, have defeated the Wuhan Government. Chiang Kaishek has secured Beijing and nominally reunified China.

British Protectorates in the Persian Gulf

The British Residency of the Persian Gulf maintained British India’s influence in a number of Gulf states from the 19th Century until 1947. These states were nominally independent - and shown as such in most atlases from the period - but all signed treaties guaranteeing British control over their foreign affairs.

The Sultanate of Muscat and Oman was the only one of these states with significant international relations, having obtained trade agreements with the US and France before it signed its treaty with Britain. Maps of the time often show Trucial Oman and even Qatar as regions of Oman.

Trucial Oman was the region to the west of Oman which collectively signed treaties with Britain. The sheikhdoms of this region were often called the Trucial States, and later became the United Arab Emirates. However at this time they had little unity, with no regional council until 1952.

Indian Empire

The British Indian Empire, also known as the British Raj, was comprised of a complex of presidencies, provinces, protectorates, and agencies. Only the top level subdivisions are shown here.

The area under direct British rule was known as British India and made up of presidencies and provinces - a presidency simply being the name for an older province.

Outside British India, but often included within the sphere of the presidencies/provinces, were the hundreds of protectorates or ‘princely states’. These were indirectly ruled states, the largest being Hyderabad, Kashmir, and Mysore. The others were either collected into agencies - which might in turn contain other smaller agencies - or fell under the sway of the provinces.

Main Events

13 Sep 1927–17 Sep 1930 Ararat rebellion

Kurdish rebels seize control in the east of the Turkish Republic, declaring the Republic of Ararat on 28 October 1927. After a number of unsuccessful attempts to crush the rebellion, the Turks launch the Third Ararat Operation in August 1930 with tens of thousands of soldiers and air support. The Kurds are forced to take refuge around Mount Ararat, on the Persian border, where the last rebels surrender on 17 wikipedia

5 Nov 1927–10 Jan 1930 Ikhwan Revolt

Ikhwan tribesmen under the leadership of Sultan bin Bajad and Faisal al-Dawish assert themselves against Ibn Saud of the Kingdom of Hejaz and Nejd, wanting to continue to expand into the British protectorates. In November 1927 they raid Busayya in the British mandate of Iraq, followed by attacks on Kuwait in January 1928 and 1929. Ibn Saud responds by crushing the Ikhwan at the Battle of Sabilla in March 1929, but it is not January 1930 that the rebellion is finally wikipedia

? ?? 1928–? ?? 1934 Pacification of Sarhad

The Persian army of Reza Shah Pahlavi invades the breakaway region of western Baluchistan, defeating Dost Mohammad Khan of Bampur in 1928. However the Damani tribes continue to resist in the Sarhad plateau and it is another 6 years before they are finally wikipedia

8 Mar 1928 Aden Command

The British establish Aden Command, a Royal Air Force command responsible for the control of all British armed forces in the Aden Protectorates. This helps bring an end to Yemeni attacks on Aden’s frontier wikipedia

? Apr–? Aug 1928 Bardoli Satyagraha

Indian National Congress representative Vallabhbhai ‘Sardar’ Patel leads a non-violent protest starting in Bardoli, in Gujarat in the Bombay Presidency of British Indian Empire, when that town, which had recently suffered from floods and famine, was faced with a 30% tax hike. In collaboration with Patel, village officials throughout Gujarat resign and tax revenues plummet. The Bombay government eventually agrees to rescind the tax and restore property it had confiscated during the wikipedia

10 Oct 1928 Presidency of Chiang Kaishek

Following his visit to Beijing, Chiang Kaishek is named director of the State Council—the equivalent of President—of the Nationalist Government of wikipedia

17 Jan–16 Oct 1929 Reign of Kalakani

The Tajik bandit Habibullah Kalakani is crowned King of Afghanistan after seizing Kabul from Amanullah Khan and his brother Inayatullah Khan while the Afghan army is involved in suppressing revolt in Laghman and Nangarhar. His reign is resisted by Mohammed Nadir Shah, who retakes Kabul in October and has Kalakani hanged on 1 November wikipedia