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40 Maps That Explain The Middle East

40 Maps That Explain The Middle East | Human Geography Too | Scoop.it
These maps are crucial for understanding the region's history, its present, and some of the most important stories there today.

Via Seth Dixon
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Javier Antonio Bellina's curator insight, February 9, 9:26 AM

Seth Dixon - the teacher that sent this article at the first place - assess a very sound comment about the use of maps as tools of comprehenssion of the real world. I love maps, but can t avoid to be worried about what he is saying, so I recommend a thougthful reading of his statements.

(Seth Dixon - el profesor que envió este artículo en primer lugar - hace un profundo comentario acerca del empleo de mapas como herramietas de comprensión del mundo real. Yo amo los mapas, pero no puedo evitar preocuparme por lo que (Dixon) señala, así que recomiendo una reflexiva lectura de sus planteamientos.)  

David Lizotte's curator insight, March 11, 4:44 PM

This was an excellent portrayal of the middle east. The using of maps accompanied by side paragraphs explains the long history which is necessary to know if one is to understand its current status. When learning about different realms and regions (that existed throughout history) I always find it on a map. In order to truly understand a certain empire, one must know its geographical setting and its significance. It helps me better understand the region. These maps, specifically the ones that are changing through the domains reign, are extremely helpful in better comprehending the misunderstood middle eastern region. This website also creates more thought. If a particular map captivates the reader they can do more research on the topic. However, the "slides" do stand alone portraying much knowledge to a wide variety of specific elements that are still ongoing. The grouping of the slides by region/conflict/country was also an excellent strategy. It shows organization which in turn develops an easier learning process. 

The initial map educates many people of how what is modern day Iraq used to be an Oasis. However, over time, due to over farming and soil erosion the landscape changed to dry/desert territory. 

The maps displaying the rise of Islam and its transitioning into the Ottoman Empire give a great perspective as to the amount of land it covered. The Islamic world thrived and was very advanced in there culture in regards to medicine and arithmetic. The shear size of the empires should increase ones respect of the Islamic theatre. What many people are not aware of is how the Ottoman Empire was knocking on the door of the Holy Roman Empire during the sixteenth century. This was quite an advancement of territory crossing through much of eastern Europe ending as far west as Vienna. A lot of what is Eastern Europe today was part of the Ottoman Empire, including Greece. 

Another excellent map that contributes to the better understanding of western involvement can be seen in the carving up of the Ottoman Empire post WWI. Colonialism was very much present throughout less developed regions so the carving up of the middle east was not an exotic concept to the victorious west. Territories/countries were created and ethnic groups dominated one another. Its certainly true a western presence has contributed to prior and existing issues throughout the middle East.

 

Lora Tortolani's curator insight, March 15, 8:47 PM

It is interesting to see the same trends over and over again.  These maps are a great tool to show the history of the area, as well as the history of religion and political views.  I appreciate the information provided since the Middle East has undergone the most transitions (going all the way back to Mesopotamia) and its history can be confusing. 

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Interactives: War and Refugees

Interactives: War and Refugees | Human Geography Too | Scoop.it

UNHCR has been attempting to count the world's refugees since it was created. If you want to find out which years resulted in the worst displacement, which were the biggest countries of origin and which were the biggest countries of asylum, use the interactive map.


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, July 27, 2013 10:02 AM

This interactive on refugees is especially timely, given that the Syrian civil war has created refugee situations in many of the neighboring countries.  One of my favorite elements of the Guardian's interactive is that they provide the raw data, so students can create their own maps with the same high quality data.  Equally important, this interactive shows the regional power bases of all the various factions of the Syrian rebellion that is seeking to overthrow the Assad regime.  The political conflict has huge demographic implications.    

Tags: refugees, Syria, migration, conflict, political, MiddleEast, war.

Emilie Kochert's curator insight, September 8, 2013 4:25 AM

via gduboz

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, October 6, 2014 12:16 PM

unit 2

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Fields of Green Spring up in Saudi Arabia

Fields of Green Spring up in Saudi Arabia | Human Geography Too | Scoop.it
Saudi Arabia is drilling for a resource possibly more precious than oil by tapping hidden reserves of water in the Syrian Desert.

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Shanelle Zaino's curator insight, October 26, 2014 9:37 PM

From 1987-2012 NASA has been recording some very strange topography from satellite imaging. Green patches have been presenting themselves as a result of deep oil drilling. In search of fossil fuels far below the desert's crust, water reserves have been located. These water reserves are believed to have been trapped from the last Ice Age. It is because of this discovery that these water reserves have been tapped and irrigation has taken place.Irrigation is being used to water fields with a sprinkler system. This process is known as center-pivot irrigation. Although experts do not know how much water could be below the surface, it is estimated it may only be enough to last for 50 years. With this estimation this may only be a temporary aid to this otherwise dry country.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 16, 2014 1:52 AM

It's amazing to see how Saudi Arabia is able to transform an area once categorized by it's dryness and lack of vegetation is now being Terra-formed into a green area. This shows what huge amounts of money can do, physically alter the earth and landscapes. Because of the massive amounts of oil available to the Saudi's they are able to ship in a more valuable resource, water.

Kevin Cournoyer's curator insight, May 6, 6:51 PM

These satellite images provide some interesting perspective about the scarcity of water in Saudi Arabia. Due to rainfall totaling only about one inch a year, Saudi Arabia has been forced to drill for water trapped beneath the desert sand in order to sustain agriculture and life. The progression of the images shows that this water drilling has clearly done some good for Saudi Arabia in terms of green space, but scientists estimate that pumping water will only be a viable option for another 50 years or so, at which point, Saudi Arabia will be forced to explore other options for finding water. 

 

It is safe to say that many other countries around the world do not share the problem of finding water that Saudi Arabia does (though climate change has surely led to increased droughts in recent years).It puts into perspective, then, the universal struggle of the search for natural resources. In countries where water is in abundant supply, people are generally more concerned with securing oil or other means of energy creation. In a place like Saudi Arabia, however, which is incredibly rich in oil, people don't worry about energy, but about water. It just goes to show that we often don't appreciate what we have until it is put into perspective just how difficult it is for people who don't have what we do. Like the U.S. or China must do for oil and other energy resources, Saudi Arabia must find a viable option for securing water before it is too late. 

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The Archipelago of Eastern Palestine

The Archipelago of Eastern Palestine | Human Geography Too | Scoop.it

The shape of a state can greatly impact the political cohesion of a country as well as it's economic viability.  While this is obviously a fictitious map, it draws our attention to the logistic difficulties that confront Palestine with the Israelis controlling crucial transportation access points and corridors.   

 

Questions to Ponder:  How is the a 'persuasive map?' What are some of the geographic impacts of this fragmentation on Palestine? For Israel?

 

Tags: cartography, MiddleEast, political, states, territoriality, unit 4 political.


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Melissa Burr's comment, October 10, 2012 10:13 AM
This map is persuasive because it does not show the usual Palestine. This map is fragmented and the geographic impacts it shows are the routes taken in at leisure for maritime activity and also shows the urban and popluated areas in the past and how how the sraelites impact those areas.
Matthew Jones's comment, October 10, 2012 10:16 AM
The reason this is a persuasive map in my opinion is that this map does a very good job of allowing the reader to understand the focus in which it intends to present. information key which it offers is crucial to the map b/ it help the reader better understand and analyze this map in its entirety. as far As the second question unfortunately I am not very knowledgeable as far as the impact his map as on palestiine or isreal.
Jesse Gauthier's comment, October 10, 2012 11:24 AM
This map is unique and not typical. The way that Palestine's land is severed and each transportation access point is clearly shown and highlighted, makes this map's data very persuasive and impactful. This map examines the Israelis' control of the land.
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Global Oil Reserves

Global Oil Reserves | Human Geography Too | Scoop.it

Who has the oil? http://pic.twitter.com/7Njc7OD8rw


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Jessica Rieman's curator insight, March 26, 2014 6:03 PM

This graph depcits Sauda Arabia with the most oil reserves in at 262 Billion barrels and in second place coming in at 132 billion barrels is Iran. These barrels are a very important assett to not only the US but to the world. This is why gas is so expensive because most of the time the US has to import it from differnt countries in order to obtain the amount we need for resources and mostly everything is based on oil as far as some fossil fuels are concerned. 

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 14, 2014 5:22 PM

India is demonstrated at 2,000-2,999 in range of bbps. This amount of oil reserves is very important to the revenue of the country and the way that the poeple survive, natural resources such as oil are a very important and costly resource to obtain. Having oil in your country helps with trade and revenue income and trade routes are compiled which helps the economy.

Jason Schneider's curator insight, March 19, 8:20 PM

Even though Russia and North America has more natural gas than any other country, Saudi Arabia has the most oil resources than any other country in the world. People who work in the oil industry migrate to Qatar and Kuwait at ages 40-44 because it is closer to Saudi Arabia. Even Kuwait is just as big as Iraq in this map but in reality, it's 20 times smaller. Saudi Arabia's popularity for oil resources spreads throughout the smaller countries that border it such as Qatar, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates because most oil resources are not only in Saudi Arabia but also along the Persian Gulf. Iran is also known for oil resources but because Saudi Arabia has a higher population, it borders more countries and its size is more dominant, Saudi Arabia is more popular for its amount of oil resources.

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The Conflict Zone

The Conflict Zone | Human Geography Too | Scoop.it

"In a new series of four eight-minute videos, National Geographic Emerging Explorer Aziz Abu Sarah is a cultural educator working to build relationships between Israelis and Palestinians in Jerusalem and throughout Israel. In this series of four eight-minute videos, Abu Sarah meets with people from both sides of the conflict in order to better understand and communicate how this international dispute impacts their everyday lives."


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Israel and Palestine

Watch this Jewish Voice for Peace 6 minute mini-primer about why Israelis and Palestinians are fighting..

This video from the Jewish Voice for Peace has a more politically motivated angle than most of the resources that I post on this site, but I feel that they do justice to both sides as well as the truth. In a simple way it lays out the roots of many of the problems in the region with historic and geographic perspectives.

Tags: Israel, Palestine, conflict, political, borders.


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James Hobson's curator insight, October 28, 2014 9:58 AM

(Africa topic 1)

{{Note: Some topics and locations pertain to multiple geographic regions (i.e. northern Africa, the Middle East, and southwestern Asia, and topics in different regions may refer to the same country or location because of this.}}

I found it interesting to watch a video that comes from an implied anti-Israel standpoint, especially since the organization which made this video is called the Jewish Voice for Peace. Though there has always been disagreement as to who should occupy some of the most hallowed land in the world, it seems that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict stems more out of the UN repartitioning plan. Regardless of clashing religions and cultures, it does seem unfair that a minority of people control the majority of land and resources. This makes me wonder why exactly the UN made the Israeli state there: was is purely because of the Jewish religion associations?, or because no other country wanted to absorb the increasing number of refugees?, or because the UN wanted to gain a stronghold in the Middle East?, or perhaps a combination of all of the above?

Jason Schneider's curator insight, March 19, 8:40 PM

From 1946 to 2000, Palestine (Islamic individuals) have been at war with Israel (Jewish individuals) over land in Israel/Palestine. In 1946, Palestine took over most of Israel but throughout the decades up until 2000, Israel slowly won over almost every piece of Israel and now, Palestine barely has any land in Israel. From 1949 to 1967, Palestine took over a specific area of Israel known as the West Bank and another small part of Israel known as Gaza. There was a lot of war going on between Israel and Palestine because Israel discriminated against non-Jews. Palestinians became refugees but that didn't stop Israel from fighting to take over Palestinian land.

Kendra King's curator insight, April 30, 1:03 AM

The video was informative, but bias. I have a stronger understanding of how Israel is exploiting, how the borders were re-drawn, and how the make up of the original border mattered. However, the author gave me these facts in a very pro-Palestinian manner. The narrator sees the Palatines as refugees instead of the Jews, who as the narrator said, were "refugees living where people already lived." This similar identity clearly resonated with the narrator who almost 2 minutes of the video speaking about how the treatment of the new refugees was wrong. While a fair amount of the rest of the video advocated a solution to help Palestinian, hence the negative portrayals of the United States backed peace talks.  

 

What was missing from this video was Israeli's story. The Jewish community had become a large force within Palestinian, but was not being aptly recognized. In fact, the Palestinian's prior to the UN offer weren't treating the Jews fair. When this offer came along, it was the Palestinian's who started the fight, a point that was down played in this video as the narrator rushed to point the finger at Israeli's wrong doings. Yet, another portrayal of this conflict mentioned in class, showed the Israeli's feel threatened because they are a minority surrounded by enemies within the region. All of this information means that the Palestinian's and other neighbors play more of a negative hand in the land dispute than what the narrator says.    

 

To be honest, I don't know enough about either side to really say who I support. However, from what I gather, neither side is a bushel of roses. As learned in class their were a fair deal of geographic tensions from BOTH parties that caused the fighting and their is still a fair deal of geographic tensions from BOTH parties that factor into the fighting today. Thus, the bias of this video acts as a reminder that a person looking to understand a heated conflict, such as this one between neighbors, must view the information with causation.