League of Nationalist Action

League of Nationalist Action
عصبة العمل القومي
Ligue d'action nationaliste
Founder Abderrazak Al-Dandashli
Founded 1932
Dissolved 1939
Succeeded by Arab National Party
Headquarters Damascus, Syria
Ideology Syrian nationalism,
Arab nationalism

The League of Nationalist Action (Arabic: عصبة العمل القومي ‘Usbat Al-'Amal Al-Qawmi; French: Ligue d'action nationaliste), was a Syrian Arab nationalist political party, created in 1932–1933 by a lawyer of Homs, Abderrazak Al-Dandashli.


This party was created in response to the Turkish Sanjak of Alexandretta. Its founders were opposed to the National Bloc (Syrian main party of the time, nationalist and conservative), considered too compromised with the French Mandate authorities. The Nationalist Action League is also opposed to sectarianism (ta'ifi'yah), tribalism (asha'iriyyah), differences in families ('a'iliyah) and "latitude". By its social composition, the League is the expression of "a middle class of merchants, teachers and civil servants".

In terms of ideological affiliation, the Nationalist Action League is the heir of the secret societies Arab anti-Ottoman (Fatat al-, al-Qahtaniya, al-Ahd) and pan-Arab nationalist party Istiqlal, active in all Crescent fertile. According to Albert Hourani, the League never became an important organization because one of its principles was the non-cooperation with the existing regimes and leaders.

In 1938, his former secretary general "offer its cooperation to the French authorities." The opposite trend to the Secretary General then causes the bursting of the Ligue. The following year, after the death of its first president, Abderrazak al-Dandashli, the League broke up, but one of its most active militants, a teacher of Alexandretta Alawite refuge in Syria after the transfer of the Sanjak to Turkey Zaki al-Arsuzi, will set up a Club of Arabism, Nadi al 'Uruba, becoming one of the founders of the Ba'ath Party.

For Claude Palazzoli, the Nationalist Action League "shows, at the national bourgeoisie, the beginning of a phenomenon of cracking and the first effort of the middle classes to distance themselves in respect of an upper middle class which they come off quite thereafter ".


The League had become a mass party, which was to mobilize the Syrians beyond the traditional elites. However, the party does not go beyond the small group, except in the city of Alexandretta, where party activists roamed the literary and sports clubs, schools and cafes. It was the site of spread of Arab nationalism and militant recruitment.

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