The Crimean War- A Battle That Glorified Britain in the World History


Going by the several excerpts that have come up in the books of history, one can easily find out how the Crimean War has actually ended up in unifying the British and helped them grow up as a nation. People at large, who have been studying this, or doing some research on it, consider it to be the war against the Napoleonic France, and the two great twentieth-century conflicts against Germany in this respect. But people forget about the Great War against the Russian forces, the great Crimean War which helped them fight the national identity back and fixed in a completely new mass media of the Victorian Age.

One of the noted historians, Orlando Figes mentions how the names Alma, Balaklava, Inkerman, Raglan, Cardigan and Palmerstone now exist in the culture of the British as a collective memory, mainly through the street names and pubs at every corner. Personalities like David Cameron are found to name their daughters after Florence Nightingale, the famous nurse who actually made her name and left impressions on the society during the Crimean War. Today Britain considers her values as the epitome of middle-class Victorian values, but only a few of them can actually come up with a clear concept what the Crimean War was all about.

While assessing some of the recent warlike activities that have been happening in Iraq and Afghanistan, few of them will find that the reason that these places gave for the war, were similar to what Britain gave during the Crimean war. It was the defense of Turkish sovereignty against the Russian aggression that was at the forefront, but the real and deeper aims of the war were far beyond what was said. The British have always had their imperial interest in the Levant, and the Crimean war was to reduce the power of Russia in this race. The British sovereignty even wanted to have a firmer hold on the pro-Western reformist government of the Ottoman Empire, which then had to go through a struggling period, to control the Islamic nationalists of the Middle East.

Since there was some gap identified, the journalists, poets, artists, photographers, orators and priests, who actually fixed the public meaning of the war, had a great and interesting role to play. In the age that stressed on mass communication, this was the first modern war that was fought, and in fact, the first one that was even photographed. One of the important aspects of British character that came up during the Crimean war was the concept of gallant Britons standing strong against the Russian bear to defend liberty- which was posed as a simple fight for the Right against the Wrong.

For a matter of fact, this is actually how they have started seeing themselves and their position in the world where John Bull comes and rescues the tyrants against all kinds of bullies that they were facing. Orlando Figes believes that many such emotive forces actually started working when the British went to war against the Germans in defense of the little Belgium and Poland consecutively in 1914 and 1939. Any war has its own perspectives and whenever it is being written in the books of history it is being politicized. The real stories are lots completely under the sheets of personal glory.