The annexation of the former Turkish possessions was not carried out in order to turn them into colonies. The time of the colonial seizures was coming to an end. The word "colony" among the "progressive" powers was not fashionable. Now they were talking about the mandate of the international community (then it was called the League of Nations) to certain territories in order to create national states there.
What to do with the territories of Mesopotamia and Transjordan, the British were, in general, clear. In the war against the Ottoman authorities in these parts, the British were assisted by Arab detachments, which were led by two brothers from the Meccan family of Hashimi — Faisal and Abdullah. The Hashimi family led its clan directly from the prophet Muhamad, on the basis of which owned the main Islamic shrines, cities of Mecca and Medina. For helping the British in the war against the Ottomans, the brothers were promised very sweet pieces, the richest cities in the Middle East - Baghdad and Damascus.
In 1921, Faisal became king of Iraq and in fact moved to Baghdad. For his brother, Abdullah, the British in 1923 created the kingdom of Transjordan on the east bank of the Jordan River. Of course, poor consolation for not received Damascus, which was ceded to the French along with Syria. Moreover, by participating in the war, the Hashimi family lost control of Mecca. And Mecca, and all of Arabia captured the Saud clan. Why Arabia is now called Saudi.
To the west of the Jordan River, Great Britain had to create a national center of the Jewish people. This promise was officially made in 1917 by the British Foreign Secretary, Lord Balfour. The trouble was that this territory was rather densely and unevenly populated by both Jews and Arabs. It would seem difficult to draw a clear border between the two nations even in the most ideal case.
In fact, the situation was very far from ideal. Much of the territory around Jerusalem and the city itself was controlled by the rich Arab clan Husseini. Sharing power with anyone and the land was not part of the clan’s plans. Therefore, they periodically staged riots of the Arab population in the territory of what was then Palestine. These uprisings were directed not so much against the British "colonialists", as against the Jewish population of Palestine.
Jewish pogroms took place in the cities. In rural areas, armed gangs attacked Jewish agricultural settlements, killed people and burned houses. Buses and trucks on the roads also became targets of attack. To fight the bandits in Jewish cities and settlements, self-defense units were formed from young people.
British troops would not interfere in the fights of the “natives” among themselves if the case were limited only to beating Jews. The usual colonial philosophy - divide and conquer. However, the Arab gangs also began to attack the British military, and most importantly, the oil pipeline from Iraq to the port of Haifa.
In addition, it became clear to the British that one of the fronts of the approaching war could arise in Palestine and in Egypt. In 1936, a division of General B. Montgomery arrived in Egypt to defend the Middle Eastern possessions. The combat general did not need guerrilla wars on the territory controlled by his troops. The eradication of the rebels was entrusted to the captain Charles Orde Wingate (1903−1944).
Captain Wingate became shortly before arriving in Palestine. At the headquarters of the division he was responsible for the implementation of complex tasks, for which special forces are now taken.
Wingate previously served in Sudan. There, his squad patrolled the border with Ethiopia, successfully catching gangs of slave traders and smugglers. Based on his Sudanese experience, Wingate envisioned fighting with bandit groups, acting in small units. The detachments are well-armed, perfectly prepared physically and oriented on the terrain not worse than the locals. Such units must be mobile, constantly conducting reconnaissance and, in the first place, looking for the bases of the bandits. Their main task was, in modern terms, to destroy the infrastructure of terror and pinpoint the liquidation of the leaders of the bandit groups.
Upon learning of the existence of youth self-defense detachments, Wingate was delighted. Here they are, the fighters for the troops that he intended to create! Local places were native for these guys. They were perfectly orientated on the terrain, knew Arabic, and, not least, many spoke good English.
Thus, the “Special Night Squads” were created. These detachments operated by British volunteer commanders. Wingate personally coached and trained his "special forces".
Wingate troops patrolled an all-terrain vehicle line of the Kirkuk-Haifa pipeline. The fighters also raided villages that served as shelters for bandits. During these raids, the leaders of the detachments were destroyed.
Wingate was born in India, in a family of Catholic missionaries. But he supported the idea of creating a Jewish state and strong Jewish armed forces. His remarks aroused the displeasure of the British command. In 1939, the captain was expelled from Palestine, forbidding return there. In 1941, he was promoted to Ethiopia, having increased his rank. Under the leadership of Wingate, the Ethiopian army defeated the Italian troops. When the emperor Haile Silassie led his soldiers into Addis Ababa, Wingate was next to him.
In February 1942, Wingate arrived in India. Here he was engaged in the preparation of special units for the war with the Japanese in the jungles of Burma, he received the rank of general. He soon died in a plane crash, returning from Burma to India.
The stay of Charles Wingate in Palestine was not long. However, his contribution to the creation of the Israel Defense Forces is enormous. Many prominent Israeli soldiers began their careers as Wingate’s “special night squads”. The principles underlying the Israeli army are the principles that Wingate brought up in his subordinates: excellent weapons, excellent physical training, excellent knowledge of the terrain, mobility and initiative.
The memory of the English captain, with the help of which the state army was created, is honored in Israel. Many cities have Wingate streets. His name is a higher educational institution - the Institute of Physical Culture and Sports.