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Talk:Middle East

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Ignorance of people when it comes to the term "Middle East"[edit]

This is a false misrepresentation of what the Middle East is. Stop confusing the Middle East with Western Asia or with a continent or with the fact that a country needs to be Arab in order to be considered in the Middle East. The Middle East is not Synonymous with "Arab". There are 3 none Arab countries in the Middle East..Turkey, Iran and Israel. The Middle East is transcontinental and lies in the intersection of Africa, Asia and Europe which means it expands to Egypt and Turkey(Egypt is an Afroasian country via the Sinai Peninsula and Turkey is a Eurasian country via the Istanbul bridge connecting between Asia and Europe ) this does not include Sudan.The term “Middle East” was actually popularized in Egypt by the British due to the importance of the Suez canal and it was also applied to the countries between Suez and the Persian Gulf and it later became officialized by the state department of the United States shortly after the Suez canal crisis in the 1950′s and it only included the following countries…Egypt, Syria, Israel, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Qatar.

Turkey, Iran, Palestine, Yemen, Oman, UAE and Cyprus were later added.

Anyways, the old term of Middle East used to be “Near East” which basically included the same countries of modern Middle East. Back then, the Near East region referred to the Oriental countries. Back then, the word “Orient” or “Oriental” in it’s original meaning used to refer to the modern day middle eastern countries especially Egypt and the Levant. Now the word “Oriental” is associated with far East Asian cultures and nations(China, Japan, Korea, Etc).

We also sometimes determine regions based on ancient historical accounts which is the case with the Middle East. The Arab geographers in the middle ages split the Arab world in 2(The Maghreb and the Mashriq) the Maghreb is the region that includes (Libya, Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco). On the other hand, the Mashriq region is what we now call the Middle Eastern region which begins with Egypt. The word "Maghreb" in this context refers to the West and means "place where the sun sets" and "Mashriq" refers to the East and means "place where the sun rises".

Please learn some of these historical contexts to give you a better idea on how we determine regions. —The preceding comment was added by ArabPride (talkcontribs)

African countries[edit]

I know that the boundaries of the Middle East are somewhat open to interpretation, but as far as the traveler is concerned, I think Egypt and Sudan should be considered Africa, so I've removed them from this page. I also removed Turkey, since we included it on the Mediterranean Europe page and its accompanying map. – cacahuate talk 19:43, 8 April 2007 (EDT)

Ok, actually on closer inspection it seems that we've included only a part of Turkey in Mediterranean Europe... conversation continued at: Talk:Turkey#Who.27s_your_daddy.3Fcacahuate talk 02:58, 19 April 2007 (EDT)
I added Turkey to the Middle East earlier today. I feel strongly that it belongs there, 100 years ago most of the region was ruled by the Turks. This is not to say it should not also be included in Mediterraenean Europe. Pashley 03:36, 19 April 2007 (EDT)
Dear Pashley Turkey it isnt in mid-east because mid-east is Arapic region and Turkey isnt in mid-east even israil firstly Turks are secular and Turks dont have any religion and Turkish race belong europid/touran race accordingly Turkey isnt in mid-east please visit to and United region page or official web( or( thanx for ure understanding and for ure effort. by :aegeanfihter
I agree that Turkey is largely a European country and the isIn link for Turkey should point to Mediterranean Europe. However, to me, it is also an important part of the Middle east region, one of the main players there, former ruler of most of it. So we also need links to Turkey from this article.
We have a policy Wikitravel:The_traveller_comes_first; I think that is the test. If a friend was planning a trip to the Middle East and asked for advice, I'd certainly suggest visiting Turkey. That is why I think it belongs here. Pashley 06:15, 22 April 2007 (EDT)
cyprus is in mid-east look at map,if u removed to cyprus u must remove to Turkey too.
Ya know, I think we're going to need to come to some sort of agreement on where to place these places and stick to it... and not from a historical point of view necessarily, but from a traveler's point of view right now. I know there's some that straddle the line between regions, but it works out much simpler as far as a travel guide goes to have it be in one or the other. I think Turkey and Cyprus should both be in the Europe article should be in the Mediterranean Europe "countries" list, and then in the Turkey and Cyprus articles we can mention it's relevance or whatever to the Middle East in the Understand section or in the intro. And remove them both from the Middle East article. At least from the list anyway. Thoughts? – cacahuate talk 00:44, 10 May 2007 (EDT)
I agree. The "Countries" lists indicate our (somewhat arbitrary, but carefully considered) decision of which region each place "belongs" in from a travel perspective. Given Cyprus' EU membership and Turkey's EU candidacy, that's (Mediterranean) Europe. For countries we've put in one region but it was a difficult choice and they're often considered part of another region, we should have a brief explanation to that effect at the end of the list. - Todd VerBeek 09:05, 10 May 2007 (EDT)
Would we then remove Russia from Asia? Removing it from either Europe or Asia would significantly reduce either continent ;) I certainly understand the advantage of avoiding overlapping regions, but Turkey (as well as Russia) seems like straightforward exceptions. Listing Turkey in both the Middle East and Europe is a practical way of indexing the country (in regions for which the country is very often on a traveler's itinerary) and does not cause any significant content overlap, which is the concern of the "avoid overlap" policy. We have to be arbitrary with the breadcrumbs, but here I see no need or even utility. --Peterfitzgerald Talk 12:03, 10 May 2007 (EDT)
Exception yes, but how to handle exceptions so far seems to be by putting them in one region or another, not both. But you've got me thinking, other than breadcrumb nav, why can't something be in two regions? obviously it would be a mess to have too many things overlapping, but for a few countries like these that really are on the cusp, would it hurt anything to have them on the maps for both regions? That may even be more helpful for the traveler. Hhhhmmmm.... – cacahuate talk 03:32, 11 May 2007 (EDT)

dear User_talk:Peterfitzgerald, I think u dont know anythink about Political geography why We called Europe(belong west asia) and Mid-east(belong west asia),Thise regions are political regions,so All Arapic counries İn Mid-east even North africa mid east is a region only,yes russia is totaly European Ok? Turkey,Cyprus(greek and Turkish part) too accordingly Europe is Historical and Political region,Mid-east too,All Arabian countries is in mid-east look at the arapic union(mid-east union),,,I removed Turkey again If u'll be add to Turkey U must add to Cyprus and Greece too Because If Turkey in mid-east cypruss too and Half of agean islans(greece) Too,Its Totaly unfair,,,Sure Russia is european U must remove To Russia in asian countries list because Russia isnt Asian like Turkey and Cyprus(greek and Turkish part) AegeanFighter

Turkey and Cyprus[edit]

There have been some efforts lately to add Cyprus to this list and to remove Turkey. The current consensus is that Turkey straddles the line between what is European and what is Middle Eastern, while Cyprus is European. While anyone is encouraged to edit articles, it takes a long time to come to an agreement about what countries should be placed in each region, and once that agreement is reached we prefer that it not be changed without further discussion. -- Ryan • (talk) • 12:54, 27 May 2007 (EDT)

Turkey has been removed from the country list & Istanbul from the cities list. I'd say this was a mistake; they are a vital part of this region. This has been extensively discussed before. Talk:Turkey#Who.27s_your_daddy.3F
The change seems to have been made without discussion, let alone consensus. I would revert it without hesitation, but I do not know how to change the map and do not want to change text without that.
Could someone who knows maps please fix this? Pashley 12:57, 24 December 2010 (EST)
Removal of Turkey was done here. I'm not sure if there was a specific discussion that led to that, but Talk:Europe/Hierarchy has numerous references to incorporating Turkey into a European region. Since this hierarchy has been in place for at least a year I would think that some discussion & consensus is needed before making any modification. -- Ryan • (talk) • 14:05, 24 December 2010 (EST)
Of course Turkey is a European country, but it is also very much part of the Middle East. It should certainly be re-inserted here. See Talk:Turkey#Who.27s_your_daddy.3F for reasons. Pashley 03:33, 29 August 2011 (EDT)
Oops. I was wondering "who's the prick making that political edit"--and it turns out it was me! I fully support restoring Turkey to the list, and it should be shaded in both on the M.E. map here and the general Asia map. There is no getting around the fact that it is both European and Asian, in all senses of both words. --Peter Talk 13:46, 29 August 2011 (EDT)

It was totally a mistake that such a region, Middle East, exists. It is not even a continent. "Middle East" is artificial. So while adding Cyprus, which is classified as in Asia geographically, to Europe, why do you classify Turkey as in Middle East? Turkey has agreements with European Countries, such as UEFA, European Council, so many other associations. So simply remove Turkey from Middle East map, while it is an official candidate of European Union. This should be considered to classify Turkey where it should actually be placed. --Nitrium Talk 00:23, 11 December 2011 (EST)

This is not WikiGeopolitics, it's Wikitravel, where the traveller comes first. ~Relevant information is included here for the benefit of people seeking travelling information. This is why this page exists, this is why Turkey is included here and should not be removed. 17:28, 10 December 2011 (EST)
But, it gives an political Message, MiddleEast is created to mention a region in political aspect. MiddleEast should not be used in terms of Travel. When you group Turkey to the MiddleEast, you give a rough message that Turkey is a country like Saudi Arabia, Iran, Jordan, Egypt, which is totally false. Turkey implements secularism, democracy, Swiss model, and all European standards. Only because of having a Muslim majority in Turkey, you classify Turkey to be in such a region. Isn't this a prejuidice? If it is ok with talking in terms of Travel, please kindly put Cyprus, and Greece to the same region, which are close to the region --Nitrium Talk 00:40 11 December 2011 (EST)
It has nothing to do with religion and everything to do with geography. You'll note that Turkey is included in the country lists on both Europe and Middle East. That is the only fair way to describe the geographical situation -- and the political situation is not of particular importance to us, as a travel site. LtPowers 22:25, 10 December 2011 (EST)

Can you kindly check Asian Region? Turkey is shaded and not included as Middle Eastern country... If you are supporting the idea of including TR here in ME, please unshade Turkey and include it in the Asian Map also, this gives more consistent message. --Nitrium Talk 00:53 11 December 2011 (EST)

Yes is there valid explanation for my previous question or request.--Nitrium 15:26, 28 December 2011 (EST)

It looks like the map of Asia has been fixed to include Turkey. --Peter Talk 19:50, 29 December 2011 (EST)

Palestinian Territories[edit]

Why not label the territories of Gaza Strip and the West Bank? It seems rather confusing to leave them blank... —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs)

Done – cacahuate talk 13:39, 23 June 2009 (EDT)

Adding Isfahan to main cities[edit]

IntroHi everyone I am very new on this site but find the depth and wealth of info fascinating. Me and my family travel quite a bit, however since I am only 14 I have recently started to get a real understanding of places I visit. I've been to Rome, Paris, Florence, Vienna, Prague, Budapest, Frankfurt, Munich, Nice, Venice, Vatican, all around USA and Canada, Tehran and a few more but they didn't have true meaning to me at that age. I love history/politics and culture and languages and such topics and really find this site great.

Actual For the cities I added Isfahan, because there was only 8 and 2 cities in Saudi Arabia are listed and both of them are pretty much off limits to non muslims (travel to Saudi is restriced heavily) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Bnatsfan7 (talkcontribs)

Adding Isfahan is a fine idea. There's a Persian saying "Isphahan is half the world".
Why Riyadh? Yes, is is the capital, but if we must have Saudi city, Jeddah or even Damman are more travelled. I'd certainly put at least Isfahan and Tabriz above any Saudi city in importance to travellers.
Istanbul is not on the list. This is absurd. Pashley 12:28, 24 December 2010 (EST)
Despite about 77 out of every 100 world citizens are barred from entering, isn't Mecca an extremely important tourism (well, kinda) destination anyway? I'd be fine with switching Riyadh with Isfahan, though—Iran is the largest and the most populous country in the region, and if any country gets two cities listed, that should be Iran. As for Istanbul, although the city is a main entering point for trips into Middle East, most of the city (and the major sights, for that matter) lies on European mainland. I would call even its geographically Asian part hardly as "Middle Eastern", but as I lived there for seven years, I am perhaps biased on this, and I guess I should better leave that to have decided by travellers to the city. – Vidimian 10:41, 25 December 2010 (EST)
Istanbul should be on there, it's the largest city of the Middle East. Turkey should also be colored on the map. --globe-trotter 15:37, 29 August 2011 (EDT)

Turkey and Arabic[edit]

"Arabic is the primary language of the region, and the main language in all Middle Eastern countries except Iran (where Persian predominates), Turkey (Turkish) and Israel (Hebrew). Even in those countries, Arabic is fairly common as a second language;"

This is a false expression for Turkey. In Turkey, Turkish is primary language, and in Turkey, Arabic is not faily common as a second language. This statement should be corrected. Even though the worshipping language is in Arabic, most of the people do not understand or speak Arabic. --Nitrium Talk 16:50 11 December 2011 (EST)

Good point, and for that matter while Iran has an Arabic-speaking minority in some regions and Arabic is used in the religion, I doubt it is widespread as a second language there.
Is it enough to change "fairly common" to "sometimes spoken"? Or do we need some more radical rewrite? Pashley 19:50, 11 December 2011 (EST)

Iraq is included as the Middle East?[edit]

For the same reason as Iran, couldn't it also be controversial to add it to the Middle East since it can also be considered part of South Asia or Central Asia? Any thoughts? Riyadhman (talk) 06:08, 30 June 2016 (EDT)