Ibn Saud was allied with Wahhabi warriors, with Bedouins called the
-- in Arabic theBrotherhood. Mounted on camels they helped Ibn Saud secure his position at Riyadh. Ibn Saud wasan impressive figure and strong. There was security in alliances, contrary to what the Hebrew prophetIsaiah had claimed. Marriages helped in making alliances, and Ibn Saud made alliances.In 1914, before the war, Ibn Saud allied himself with the Turks, agreeing that he should have relationswith no other foreign power and be committed to joining Turkish forces in resisting any aggression.When war came Saud opted for neutrality and kept his options open. Then he allied himself with theBritish, who offered recognition of the middle of the Arabian Peninsula (namely the Nejd and Hasa) ashis and that of his father before him and his descendants after him -- with the proviso that he and hisheirs not be antagonistic toward Britain. Ibn Saud agreed not to enter into relations with anotherforeign power and promised to come to the aid of Ibn Saud should he be the victim of aggression.Britain lent Ibn Saud £20,000, 1,000 weapons and 200,000 rounds of ammunition. Added to this wasa subsidy of £5,000 per month. This strengthened Saud against a territorial rival, the Hashim(Hashimite) family, which in 1915 was allied with Britain's enemy, Turkey.Matters became more complicated for Saud in 1916, when the Hashim family broke with the Turksand went over to the side of the British -- what became known as the Arab revolt. Britain beganlooking after the interests of both ibn Saud and his enemy, and the British would draw territorial linesthat were not to his liking -- especially regarding Kuwait. The Rashid family, however, remained alliedwith Turkey and supplied by Turkey and the dominant power on the Arabian Peninsula. In May 1919and in 1920, Ibn Saud marched against the Rashids. He defeated them in November 1921, showedthem clemency and reconciled with them, marrying the widow of their now dead ruler. His territorynow extended north to territory that the British had given to the Hashemite brothers whom they hadmade kings of Transjordan and Iraq. The
(Brethren), a photo probably from the 1920sThe British responded to a raid by the Ikhwan into Transjordan with a ground and air attack thatkilled all but 8 of 1,500 Ikhwan. Ibn Saud kept his cool and submitted to a British decision regardingborders. The British gave him a free hand in the Hejaz and the Nejd. In 1924-25, Ibn Saud and hisWahhabi warriors drove Sharif Hussein ibn Ali, the father of the Hashimite brothers in Iraq andTransjordan, from the holy cities of Mecca and Medina. With the end of the caliphate in Turkey,Hussein had wanted recognition as caliph of all Muslims, his family, the Hashim, claiming to bedescendants of the Prophet Muhammad, But on January 8, 1926, ibn Saud was proclaimed King ofthe Hejaz and Sultan of Nejd. Hussein fled to Cyprus and then went to Transjordan where his sonwas king.