Foreign Office, Great Britain
FOREIGN OFFICE, GREAT BRITAIN
The Foreign Office leads the conduct of British international relations.
Occupying a palatial building in London since the mid-nineteenth century, the Foreign Office is linked with the world by modern communications technologies. The Foreign Office is led by a British politician whose power depends on the prime minister, cabinet, and party. The foreign secretary relies on the information and advice he receives from the permanent undersecretary and his staff. The foreign secretary must sell British policy to parliament and the media at home as well as to diverse regimes and public opinions abroad.
Foreign policy has pivoted less upon events and relations in the Middle East and North Africa than upon maintaining Britain's ties to the great powers of Europe and, since World War II, the United States. As foreign secretary and prime minister for over two decades, from the 1830s to the 1860s, Lord Palmerston (Henry John Temple) saw the Ottoman and Qajar Empires as buffers against the Asiatic expansion of Russia, while the defense of India concerned him less than maintaining the balance of power in Europe. Benjamin Disraeli backed the "good ol' Turk" but increased the British presence in the eastern Mediterranean, particularly at the Suez Canal. To counter Germany, Edward Grey's concessions to France in North Africa and Russia in Persia alienated the Young Turks, who joined Germany in World War I. A. J. Balfour's declaration to the Zionists late in 1917 put the Jews of America, Europe, and Russia before the Arabs of the Middle East. George Nathaniel Curzon limited his Middle Eastern ambitions because of diplomatic pressures and Turkish nationalism. Anthony Eden, the only foreign secretary trained as an Orientalist, relied on Arab collaborative regimes before and during World War II, after which Ernest Bevin tried to put people before pashas. Since the Suez Crisis in 1956, when Britain's secret alliance with France and Israel against Egypt's Gamal Abdel Nasser infuriated the United States, the British Foreign Office has mostly followed the U.S. lead in the Middle East and North Africa.
See also Balfour Declaration (1917); Bevin, Ernest; Eden, Anthony; Palmerston, Lord Henry John Temple.
Yapp, M. E. The Making of the Modern Near East, 1792–1923. New York; London: Longman, 1987.
Yapp, M. E. The Near East since the First World War: A History to 1995. New York; London: Longman, 1996.
"Foreign Office, Great Britain." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . Encyclopedia.com. (January 17, 2019). https://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/foreign-office-great-britain
"Foreign Office, Great Britain." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . Retrieved January 17, 2019 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/foreign-office-great-britain
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.