- The North African Ottoman provinces of Tripoli and Cyrenaica together composed Libya, which became of predatory interest to Italy after the French occupation of Tunisia to the west in 1881 and the British occupation of Egypt to the east in 1882. As the economic potential of a territory that was mostly desert was limited and the opportunities for emigration there modest, Italian ambitions in Libya were in large part the product of nationalist zeal and the accurate perception that Ottoman hold on the provinces was too weak to withstand a determined challenge.With the Moroccan Crisis of 1911, Italy’s opportunity came to strike while avoiding the open objections of Britain or France. It therefore announced that its obligation to protect the Italian community in Tripoli required military intervention, and Libya became the centerpiece of the Italo-Turkish War. Although Italy formally acquired Libya from the Porte by the terms of the Treaty of Lausanne in 1912 - the name Libya had fallen into disuse and was revived by the Italians - Arab guerrilla resistance at one point required as many as 100,000 troops to suppress.See also <
>; < >.FURTHER READING:Beehler, W. H. The History of the Italian-Turkish War. Annapolis: Advertiser-Republican, 1913;Wesseling, H. L. The European Colonial Empires, 1815–1919. London: Pearson Education, 2004.CARL CAVANAGH HODGE
Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1914. 2014.