Anglo-Zanzibar War

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Anglo Zanzibar War

The Anglo-Zanzibar War was fought between the Sultanate of Zanzibar, a state in and capital of the country of Zanzibar, and the United Kingdom on 27 August 1896. Lasting between 38 to 45 minutes, it is the shortest recorded war in history.[1]

Background[change | change source]

The current Sultan (the person who rules the Sultanate of Zanzibar), Sultan Hamad bin Thwaini, who was pro-British, died.[2] While he was alive, because he was English Council approved, he and the Sultanate of Zanzibar were on good terms with England, but when he died, a new Sultan was needed.[3]

Sultan Khalid bin Barghash, his 29-year-old nephew eventually became his successor, but Khalid was no-longer approved by England, now making him and his state enemies with the English Army. England told him to come out of hiding, but the new Sultan's response was to barricade himself in his palace even more. As expected, the Sultanate of Zanzibar was absolutely destroyed by the English Army, which led to what we know today as the Anglo-Zanzibar war, the shortest recorded war in history that lasted between 38 to 45 minutes.[1]

Casualties and losses[change | change source]

There were varying casualties on both sides. For England, only a single sailor was wounded, but for the Sultanate of Zanzibar five hundred were killed or injured (including civilians), 4 artillery pieces were destroyed, a shore battery was destroyed, two other boats were sunk, and the HHS Glasgow (the Sultan’s personal royal ship) was sunk.[4] The Sultan’s palace was also burned down to the ground.[1]

Aftermath[change | change source]

Khalid was captured by English forces in 1916, and a new Sultan, Sultan Hamoud, became his successor. This new leader was extraordinarily loyal to England and their council, which definitely helped Zanzibar recover from this attack, as England decided not to impose new harsh rules on their relationship with the sultanate.

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Kokkinidis, Tasos (16 October 2023). "Shortest War in History that Lasted 38 Minutes". Greek Reporter.
  2. "Sultan of Zanzibar Dead", The New York Times, p. 9, 19 July 1902, retrieved 16 October 2008
  3. "A Warning to Said Khalid". The New York Times. 27 August 1896. p. 5. Retrieved 16 October 2008.
  4. "Will Not Surrender Khalid". The New York Times. 30 August 1896. p. 5. Retrieved 16 October 2008.