- May 2014
Are you suggesting that Arab countries would have been as wealthy as Turkey right now had European countries not conquered them and had they been able to make a radical transformation just like Turkey did?The reasons it's in a better shape is because Atatürk made maybe the most radical transformation of a country in the 20th, bolshevism excepted.
I'm not that sure that a surviving OE would have seen such a transformation, and I'm even less sure that it would have succeeded if the attempt would have been made.
The cause of that change and the explanation of it's success is based exactly on the OE's unsurvival. The terms imposed on OE triggered the armed resistance, the military success of the war (which is "the Turkish independence war" for Turks, and that's saying a lot) is what gave Ataturk the status that permitted to implement (enforce would be appropriate in some cases) that reformation.
The current discrepancies aren't so much related to OE but to the post Ottoman period (I would call it "Western mismanagement", thinking mainly to BE and France). Before WWI, the differences weren't so flagrant between Tunisia, Algeria and Anatolia, for example.