27 Articles is Lawrence of Arabia’s classic set of guidelines on military leadership in the Middle East. The 100th anniversary edition features a new introduction by foreign policy expert John Hulsman and a new afterword from CBS News President David Rhodes, addressing the articles’ lasting lessons.
In 1916, T.E. Lawrence was deployed to the Arabian Peninsula to aid with the Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Empire. It was the middle of World War I and the British command was throwing its weight behind the long-rebellious southern territories of the Ottoman Empire. Lawrence had extraordinary success fighting alongside the coalition of Arab revolutionaries, and his story has since become legend. Worried that Lawrence would die on the battlefield and that his knowledge would vanish with him, British command asked Lawrence to write out a series of guidelines on his own tactics and teachings.
27 Articles, the text of Lawrence’s guidelines, has become required reading for military leaders. Lawrence’s deployment was the West’s first modern involvement in war in the Middle East, and his campaign held myriad lessons for future generations. Despite being a century old, the articles are deeply prescient on the challenges America has faced in its wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Terse and to the point, Lawrence’s articles begin on the battlefield but their value extends well beyond, into the fields of management, leadership, and business.
On the 100th anniversary of 27 Articles’ original publication, foreign policy John Hulsman and CBS News President David Rhodes now speak to the articles’ ongoing importance, outlining the wisdom they hold for political, military, and business leaders on into the future.
T.E. Lawrence, popularly known as Lawrence of Arabia, lived from 1888 to 1935. He was a British military officer and diplomat, acting as a crucial liaison with Arab forces during the Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Empire from 1916 to 1918. The basis for the 1962 movie Lawrence of Arabia, his best known book is Seven Pillars of Wisdom, describing Lawrence’s experiences during the revolt, while 27 Articles summarizes his techniques and tactics.