A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Thursday, April 3, 2014

The 99th Anniversary of the "Battle of the Wasa‘a"

Yesterday was the 99th anniversary of the so-called "Battle" of the Wasa‘a (or as they pronounced it Down Under, "Wozzer"), when Australian and new Zealand troops stationed in Cairo and about to ship out for Gallipoli, systematically trashed the Red Light district of Cairo. It resulted in fires, destruction, and the British Army intervening to stop the largely inebriated ANZACs.

Back in 2011 I wrote a lengthy discussion of this notorious event, placing it in the context of  the toleration of prostitution, the history of Cairo and the locations involved. It includes photos, quotations from memoirs and diaries, and a newspaper clip. Though I'm a day late in marking this 99th anniversary, those unfamiliar with the story may want to take a look at that account.

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