At its territorial height in 1683, the Ottoman Empire was one of the most formidable and longest empires in history. You could say that the rise of the Ottomans began just after their victory in the siege of Constantinople (Istanbul) over the Byzantines in 1453, and it collapsed just after loss in the First World War in 1918. In its territorial height, the empire spanned across three different continents stretching from modern-day Poland,in Europe, all the way up to Iran,in the Middle East, and Sudan, in Northern Africa. In this blog so it would be interesting to think about what would happen if it reunited today. Firstly, I would like to say that this is impossible to happen as there is no way you can convince Israel and Turkey into the same country but what if it was just given all of this land?
Population and Land
So the first thing we need to think about of the recreated empire is the population and land it would have in possession. To start off, 30 modern-day countries would lose all or some of their territory to the Ottomans but I am not going to name all of them for obvious reasons. The Empire would mostly dominate the Balkans and the Middle East while also having a significant portion of North Africa and would have a decently large area of around 2,000,080 Square Miles (7,682,300 Square kilometers) which would put it just behind Australia, However, despite this, the empire would have almost seventeen times their population at around 426,000,000 compared to Australia's puny 25,000,000. This would put it in 3rd Place, well ahead of the United States (331,000,000) but remaining well behind the usual competitors, India (1.381 Billion) and China (1.4 Billion). It would be difficult to consider what the capital would be for the Ottomans but the most likely choice would be Istanbul as it is already a massive financial and population hub of Turkey and the rest of the territory, but of course, it would have to be renamed back to Constantinople like the good old days (Sorry Istanbul). The largest city in the empire would be Cairo, in Egypt with an urban population of 21,500,000 being well ahead of the capital, Constantinople (16,200,000). Here would be the top 10 cities in the empire.
- Cairo (21,500,000)
- Constantinople (16,200,000)
- Baghdad (7,150,000)
- Alexandria (5,950,000)
- Amman (5,700,000)
- Ankara (5,150,000)
- Jeddah (5,150,000)
- Kuwait City (4,500,000)
- Algiers (4,025,000)
- Damascus (3,900,000)
(Thanks to GrandOldMan for putting the list together for me)
Territory of the Recreated Ottoman Empire
Money and GDP
As well as a huge land area, the Ottoman Empire would boast a massive economy with a nominal GDP of about $3.7 Trillion, enough to boost it all the way to 5th Place beating up other prosperous nations like the United Kingdom ($2.6 Trillion) and India ($2.5 Trillion) but remaining just behind Germany ($3.8 Trillion) and well behind Japan ($4.9 Trillion). The GDP per capita however of the empire wouldn't be as impressive due to the impoverished areas of Moldova, Syria, Iraq, and Ukraine. The wealthiest areas would be Kuwait, Israel, and the territory taken from Saudi Arabia with all of these countries averaging well over $30,000 but despite this, the GDP per capita would be around $6,300 which would put it in 94th Place, in terms of average yearly wages, putting it ahead of Bosnia and Herzegovina ($5,920) but remaining just behind Namibia ($6,140). To compensate for its small GDP per capita, the Ottomans would find themselves in control of a big amount of all of the World's Oil Reserves at around 45% of all of it. As well as this, they would also control two of the most vital trade routes in the world: The Suez Canal, and the Bosphorus Strait. Focusing on the Suez Canal, it would be one of the main wealth producers of the empire as a total of 12% percent of global trade of all goods pass through the canal.
Now moving onto Military Size. The Ottomans would also possess a gargantuan military with a total size of around 8.1 Million Soldiers, to begin with, which is by far the largest standing force anywhere being well ahead of other military juggernauts like China and the United States. The defence budget of the empire would also be massive at an estimated amount of $137 Billion which would make it the 3rd Highest in the world. The Ottomans would also be one of the only countries to possess a nuclear arsenal as it would control all of Israel's nukes at an estimated size of about 80-400 nukes.
Overall, the Ottoman Empire would have about the same power and wealth as Russia and could be a vital ally for any country it chooses. With a formidable Military and Nuclear Arsenal, the empire would also be an extremely powerful force. It would be, with no doubt, impossible to predict what it would do in the real world with this much power but suggestions are welcome! Please let me know in the comments about your thoughts and anything else you want me to add. But for now.... Goodbye!
Kuwait City (4,500,000)