He shows how the Aghas, which were the dominant community in this region, gave out so much power to men, which made them control virtually everything that happens in the society. Islam and its laws emerge to have great impact on the political structure of Turkey in the early 1860s, and every one ascribes to the Islamic traditions which guide how people live and relate to one another. During this time, the Aghas community share power within the community with the male child coming into leadership after the demise of the sitting leader (Meeker 21).
Meeker shows how the Oflus, a minor tribe in Turkey, feel alienated by the dominant tribes especially by the Aghas and the Hodjas in matters relating to political decisions and religious matters. Due to this difference, the Oflus make constant resistance to the decisions that the Aghas and the Hodjas bring forth which creates so much tension between these two parties. Alongside their differences, these warring sides show high cases of corruption amongst themselves which make matters worse given that this prevents Turkey from making positive economic progress during the early years.
Meeker’s text shows how Ottoman’s leadership becomes authoritative to people and how it purely functions on friendship and the interpersonal affiliation rather than aptitude to employ the government top officials and aides. The Sultans take high positions in the political range and they make major decisions pertaining to who join the military (Meeker 113). The leadership position during the 19th century is only taken by those who come from wealthy backgrounds while those who come from the slavery lineage are considered as outcasts who have no place in the society. It is during this time that the Aghas become prominent over the other tribes and act as the imperial leaders of the town of ‘Of, which had become so magnificent over the other uprising towns around Turkey.
To attain total control