Derek is taking a sick day today, I’m afraid. I’ll be back Sunday for our usual updates. For now here’s another “this day in history” piece, this one on the 1538 Battle of Preveza and the Ottomans’ victory over one of the many Holy Leagues formed to counter it. Thanks for reading!
September 28 is actually the anniversary of a couple of notable events in Middle East history. For example, if you’re a fan of lost causes, it’s the date in 1995 when Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat signed the Oslo II accord, which was supposed to provide for Palestinian autonomy leading to future (HA!) talks on an independent Palestinian state. If on the other hand you’re a fan of assholes, then you should be interested to know that on this date five years later (2000), then-Israeli Defense Minister Ariel Sharon did his best to bury Oslo II as deep as he possibly could by “visiting” the Al-Aqsa/Temple Mount area in Jerusalem and precipitating the Second Intifada. And if the lives and times of Arab strongmen are more your thing, then you probably already know that Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser died on this date in 1970.
But since I like older stuff and this is my blog, let’s ignore those relatively recent events and talk about the (naval) Battle of Preveza, which happened on this date in 1538 and was the decisive battle in the third (!) of seven (!!) Ottoman-Venetian wars (most of which didn’t go well for the Venetians) that took place between the 15th and 18th centuries. This one ran from 1537-1540.