The Middle Eastern front of World War I was a challenge to Great Britain in seeking reliable allies to combat the Ottoman Empire, which had joined the Central Powers of Germany and Austria-Hungary, as it endeavored to protect its own empire and passage to India. One valuable candidate to support Britain’s war effort was the Grand Sharif of Mecca whose religious credentials could be used to counter the call to jihad by the Turks. That sharif was Hussein ibn ‘Ali, who wanted both protection for his sharifate in the Hejaz and dynastic security. It would be under his banner that the Arab Revolt (made famous by T. E. Lawrence “of Arabia”) helped distract Ottoman forces on the Arab Peninsula. His inducement by the British was the promise of independence for the Arab people and the caliphate—or, at least, that what was inferred to by officers stationed in Cairo during the war’s first two years. Promising the caliphate was not Great Britain’s to give and the office itself had gone through many changes and incarnations since the beginning of the Muslim empires of the 7th century. Nevertheless, Hussein took their presentations as guarantees and fought on their side against his former suzerain, the Ottoman Caliph/Sultan beginning June 1916 after a lengthy correspondence that offered only vague terms. When the war ended, the redemption of promises began. Sharif Hussein had expectations of his European ally it had no intention of fulfilling.The disillusionment began with the frustrated demands for Arab independence, the neo-colonialism espoused by both France and Britain, the rise of Zionism, and the heightened ambitions of Hussein who was not aware of the duplicity of his European allies or his own political limitations. These were the major factors that contributed to the breakdown of relations between Great Britain, the kingdom of Hejaz and, by extension, the Arab nationalist movements hoping for self-determination as proposed by the Paris Peace Conference at war’s end. The denouement would be the establishment of mandates by the European winners of the war and the disenfranchisement of Hussein and the Arab cause.