King's College London
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Highlights of the FCO periodicals collection

About 'If you ask me'

“If you ask me” began in July 1952.

It was edited by William Harold Ingrams (1897-1973), who worked at the Colonial Office from 1919 to 1948. His first position was as assistant district commissioner in Zanzibar, where he developed his interest in the Arab world.

From 1927 to 1933 he was assistant colonial secretary in Mauritius. Then in 1934 he was sent to Aden as political officer, and held a variety of positions of increasing importance. He became an Arab expert, wore semi-Arab clothing, was known as Al Muslahi, ‘the settler [of disputes]’ and thought that the country should be “developed with minimal British personnel and intervention” (OMDB).

He retired from colonial service in 1948 but still worked at the Colonial Office in a variety of advisory roles. One of these was as editor for “If you ask me”.

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