Southern Asia 1933: First East Turkestan Republic

In 1931 the warlord-ruled Chinese province of Xinjiang fell into civil war when the former khanate of Kumul revolted against the government. The neighboring Muslim Chinese of the Ma Family invaded in support of Kumul, but eventually fell out with the native Uyghur people. On 12 November 1933 the Uyghurs of southern Xinjiang declared their independence as the East Turkestan Republic, but their new state would barely last five months before being crushed by the Ma.


Changes to the map 22 September 1932–12 December 1933

Xinjiang Wars: Ma Zhongying has returned to Xinjiang, taking Kumul and besieging the capital of Urumqi. The first East Turkestan Republic has been declared at Kashgar after a Uyghur rebellion against both Xinjiang and the Ma family, however Ma Zhanchang holds out in Kashgar New City.

Central China: Liu Xiang has driven Liu Wenhui from most of western Sichuan in the Uncle-Nephew War. Communists have entered northeast Sichuan as part of their move inland following Chiang Kaishek's encirclement campaigns.

Iraq: Iraq has been granted independence but must still provide military access to Britain.

Arabia: After the Saudis crush an Idrisid revolt in Asir, Yemen occupies Najran and demands the restoration of the Idrisi.

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

3 Oct 1932 Independence of Iraq

Following the Anglo-Iraqi Treaty of 1930, the Kingdom of Iraq is granted independence under King Faisal I bin Hussein bin Ali al-Hashimi. By the terms of the treaty, Britain has the right of transit for military forces and may maintain air bases near Basra and Habbaniya. In times of war, these rights are to be extended to include use of “all possible facilities”.in wikipedia

? Jan–? Dec 1933 Second Ma intervention in Xinjiang

Ma Zhongying returns to Xinjiang, as a representative of the Kuomintang and leader of the 36th Division, intent on the overthrow of Governor Sheng Shicai. He captures Kumul and advances on Urumqi, the provincial wikipedia

30 Jan 1933 Chancellor Adolf Hitler

In a coalition agreement between the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (NSDAP or Nazi party) and the German National People’s Party (DNVP), German President Paul von Hindenburg appointed Nazi leader Adolf Hitler as Chancellor of Germany. From here Hitler would move swiftly to consolidate absolute wikipedia

7–11 Aug 1933 Simele massacre

After the largely Christian Assyrians of northern Iraq refuse to sign a declaration of loyalty to King Faisal I, the newly independent Kingdom of Iraq initiates a military campaign against them. The Iraqi army hits 63 villages in the Dohuk and Mosul districts, resulting in the deaths of around 3,000 Assyrians. The action temporarily strains Anglo-Iraqi wikipedia

12 Nov 1933 First East Turkestan Republic

Sabit Damulla, leader of the Khotan Rebellion against both Jin Shuren’s government in Xinjiang and the intervening Ma family, declares the establishment of the Turkish Islamic Republic of East Turkestan (TIRET, also called the First East Turkestan Republic) in Kashgar, even though Ma Zhanchang still holds out in Kashgar New City. Sabit Damulla becomes prime minister and names fellow Uyghur revolutionary Hoja-Niyaz as president. Despite currently fighting in the Kumul Rebellion to the north, Hoja-Niyaz travels south to join the new wikipedia