Sunday, August 24, 2008

Middle East Political Map

Here you can download some printable Middle East political map images. The politics of the Middle East is complicated, as is the job of drawing a map of the Middle East.

The Middle East is a term for a region with no exact definition, and there are different opinions about what countries are to be considered part of the region. The most standard definition includes the Arab countries of Western Asia, plus the Jewish state of Israel, and the Farsi-speaking nation of Iran, and perhaps Egypt which is not in Asia but in North Africa. Other classifications include Turkey and more Arab countries in North Africa, and sometimes parts of central Asia like Afghanistan. You will see in the maps below that there is some disagreement amongst classifications.

Another thing you might notice in the maps below is that some maps do not include the country Israel and instead write "Palestine" in place of Israel and the Westbank and Gaza. This is for political reasons resulting from the state of war between Israel and many Arab states. Maps printed in Arab countries usually do not recognize Israel.

Many of the political borders you see on these maps were artificially imposed upon the Middle East by the former British and French colonial powers when they decided upon their spheres of influece, often ignoring the ethnic complexities on the ground. This has caused massive problems today, one example being the dissection of the Kurdish homeland between at least three different countries (Turkey, Iran, and Iraq).

Middle East political map with country boundaries shown.

Middle East political map with country boundaries shown.

Middle East political map, simple printable version.

Middle East political map showing countries and borders.

Large printable Middle East political map with highways

Shades of gray Middle East political map that's easily printable.

I hope you found these Middle East political maps useful. Be sure to check out more of our pages using the menu in the sidebar.

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