DIFFERENT OPINIONS ON
OTTOMAN AND GERMAN
POLITICAL MILITARY AND ECONOMIC RELATIONS
Ata Atun, Şükrü Server Aya
Near East University
NORTH CYPRUS and TURKEY
The purpose of this paper is to surf through history and emphasize some of the important events took place between the Ottoman Empire and German Kingdoms like Prussia, Kingdom of Bavaria up to the ending of WW-1.
The importance of this paper is to put forward the immense political, social, judicial and military relations between Ottoman Empire and German Kingdoms for the past millennium.
At the request of Sultan Mahmut II, the appointment of Captain Moltke’s (Helmuth Karl Bernhard Graf von Moltke), a young (Captain-officer) in the German Army, as an advisor to Anatolia in the year 1838, started the military interrelations between Ottoman Empire and Prussia. When he returned to Germany, he had written a book on Russian-Turkish conflicts and this raised the attention of Germans about Turks. Moeltke in 1857 was Chief of General Staff of Prussian Army for 30 years, and in 1871 he was promoted to the rank of Field Marshal (Karal, 1961, p.165).
This first initiative formed a strong base for a firm military relation between the two empires and the German-Ottoman relations reached to peak during the reign of Abdulhamit II. Prior to the foundation of Germany’s National Unity, the relations at the time of reign of Bismarck came closer but Bismarck was a pacifist and did not want to get involved in the Eastern Question
Abdulhamit II’s sympathy (or need) of Germany started to establish cultural relations, some officers were being sent to Germany for education. Germany sent a Military Advisors group under command of Wettendorf. Few years later this was substituted by a larger group (1883-1895) under Von der Goltz. German Deutsche Bank opened a branch in Istanbul and import of German military equipment and goods started (Karal,1961, p.174 ).
In 1888 Germans were given the right to operate the Istanbul Izmit railway and extend it to Ankara. The portion Eskişehir to Konya was completed in 1896. The plan was to complete the railway line all the way to Bagdad and Basra. Britain was competing with Germany to get the concession of this railway but the project was given to Germans.
These interactive military, social, cultural and economic relations between the Ottoman Empire and German Kingdoms got stronger each decade more than the previous and fortified the ties between the two countries.
As the conclusion of this study it can be emphasized that;
Relations between German and Turkish States and people have been rather calm, cooperative and beneficial to all parties at all times.
Keywords: Ottoman, German, Political, Military, Relations
From dated it was founded in A.D. 1299, the spread of the Ottoman Empire firstly in Europe followed a pattern of power and use of all available technical means.
Sultan Mehmet’s conquest of Istanbul in 1453 was made possible with the large guns cast by master Urban or Orban said to be of Hungarian origin. One of the gigantic guns can be seen in the British Museum, with a diameter of about 92 cm. shell weight of about 700 kgs. and range of about 1,200 meters.
The Empire became famous, only after Constantinople (today’s Istanbul) was conquered with an army of about 70.000 Turkish soldiers against what had remained in the city, about 10.000 Christian fighters, mostly Byzantine Orthodox and a few thousands of Venetian and Genovese professional soldiers. The Byzantines had to depend on the strength of their walls. The Pope had refused to assist Orthodox Christians because they had not become Catholics despite several calls. The city was emptied; the healthy ones that could afford had gone to other countries.
Sultan Mehmet’s step mother is said to be Serbian – Christian Mara who raised Mehmet and later died in Serbia as Christian.
Sultan Mehmet was fluent in Greek. The Edict he gave to the Genovese of Galata, four days after Constantinople was conquered, can be seen in the British museum and also with contents (Aya, 2010, p.296).
Mehmet’s goal was Rome, and he identified himself strongly with Alexander the Great (Mansel, 1996, p.6). Although born and raised Moslem, he was very liberal towards others religions, like his ancestors.
The first thing he did was to restore the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate and assure the Orthodox of their faith and freedom. Next, in 1461, Armenians were let to settle in the city; a new Gregorian Patriarchate was founded independent from the one at Etchmiadzin. Greeks, Armenians, Jews, Italians etc. were all embraced to restore trading, craftsmanship and bring the city into life.
Birth of Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman Empire kept on spreading and in the year 1517, Sultan Selim I. (B. 10.10.1470 – D. 22.09.1520) conquered Egypt and acquired the title of Khalif (Osmanlı, 2013), God’s representative and leader of all Moslems on Earth, a pious practice of the Islam religion. The lands ruled by the Mamluks (Syria, Palestine, Arabia) too entered under Sultan’s domination (Uzunçarşılı, 2011, p.292).
During the very same epoch Catholic Priest, later professor of theology Martin Luther, was reforming the religion introducing Protestantism faith in Germany. The Holy Roman emperor Charles V (1500-1558) had collected a Religious Congress in 1829 and prohibited the printing and spreading of the new Protestant Bible (Uzunçarşılı, 2011, p. 485-6).
The Lutherans had asked help from Suleiman to put up against Pope. We understand that Suleiman sent a messenger and letter and was on the side of the Lutherans (but later Protestants were to become arch enemy of Moslems). When the printing press was invented, a new development or renaissance in art and science was in fast progress, Suleiman who became Khalif and hence adopted the “Sharia law” in all establishments soon fell back on all modern developments and science.
Piri Reis, an Admiral who had an inexplicable map showing Africa, South America and some parts of the North with the precision of today’s instruments was and had submitted a book he wrote on navigation in 1525, was hanged by order of the Sultan in 1554. Likewise, an observatory which was put into use in Istanbul was closed, because it was a sin to watch God and how he created t he World. Shortly, when the western world was coming out of the dark ages, the Ottomans had pulled themselves the curtain of the holy book Koran over their heads and entered the “Moslem dark age” which continues even up to day.
An observatory was built in Istanbul with the grant of 10,000 Ottoman gold of Sultan Murat III, by “the soothsayer” (astronomer and mathematician) named Takiyuddin, who was originally an Arab master of astronomy and trigonometry, to be able to follow the movements of stars. It was started in 1578, and opened in 1579, equipped with best instruments of astronomy of the day.
Apparently he could tell what was to happen by looking at stars. A year later (1580) the observatory was destructed in one day with cannon fire from the sea.
There are two rumors for the destruction.
One is that the Sheikul Islam issued a fatva for demolishing based on the rumor that the “soothsayer was watching the legs of the angels in the heaven”.
The second rumor is that an earthquake happened which was attributed to God’s punishment because of the observatory and the fatva was issued. Another live episode about the German version of the art of soothsaying will follow (Uzunçarşılı, 2011, p.118).
A century later another courageous man, Hezarafen Ahmet Celebi (1609-1640) devised wings and in the year 1632 he flew from Galata tower to the other side of the Bosporus. Sultan Murad IV, who saw the flying, was told that “this man could be dangerous since he could fly”. He was given a purse of gold as reward, but he was also exiled to Algiers where he died at a young age.
The army of the Ottoman Empire
In the early ages of the Empire, the Ottoman Army’s backbone was the “Janissary Corps”, who were recruited every five years from healthy mostly Balkan Christian orphan boys aged 10-12 and had the chance to become a high social class. The Janissary Corps were established in 1383, performed excellently in the conquest in Istanbul and other battles, owing to their strict discipline and brotherhood. They were the first regular army on salary with uniforms (Uzunçarşılı, 2011, p. 517). They were permitted to marry only after retirement.
The great advantage of becoming a Janissary and join the conquests of other lands, was the right to share the plunder. One fifth of the plunder was Sultan’s share, the second one fifth is the State o Prophet’s share and the remaining three fifths was the “halal income” of the warrior. The enemy cities, who would surrender without fighting, were exempt from destruction and plunder.
Those which would resist were let free for three days for plunder by victors. This Ottoman battle rule was one of the reasons why the city Vienna was kept under blockade and no serious attack was made to conquer it in 1683, is said to be the Grand Vizier’s concern of the plunder of the city for three days after it was taken. The city was expected to surrender, since all logistic means were cut and they were out of food.
The Janissary corps in 1525 had made a major revolution against the palace; in 1648 it repeated and showed that this army had turned into a large group threatening the palace asking “bakshih” (since there were no victories and rewards) and even deciding for the fates of the viziers. (Mansel, 1996, p.221)
By the time the Janissaries were disorganized and could not keep with the newly developed arms and engineering techniques in Europe.
The expansion of the Ottoman Empire could be stopped in 1699 with Karlowitz Treaty. The old war techniques and arms were no longer enough. Europe had undergone an important reform in culture, industry, arts, sciences, whilst the Ottoman Sultans no longer marched with their armies and preferred to enjoy their harem.
In1730 inanother revolt, Istanbul was raided; hoodlums got the control of the city. It was only in 1826 that Sultan Mahmut II, could wipe off the degenerated Janissary Corps and look for reorganization under existing great changes that had taken place.
In 1827 the Ottoman Navy was ambushed and totally destroyed at Navarro by the united Christian navy.
Sultan Suleiman’s second great blunder was to bestow on French capitulatory rights to trade freely under Ottoman protection in empire’s lands in the year 1536. This capitulatory agreement was updated and became definite in 1740, when Europe was changing in industry, arts, culture and economy. (Uzunçarşılı, 2011, p.118)
Actually this was an extension of the Edict (Aya, 2010, p.296) given to the Catholic Genovese colony in Galata, against their assisting Turks during the siege of Constanople and in particular the dragging of Turkish navy into the Golden Horn, on a track of about two miles built by logs crossing over hills.
Accordingly, the unilateral benefits granted to industrially strong countries, plus the heavy restrictions of the Koran laws prohibiting simplest modern improvements, started to bring the end of the empire.
Baltalimani Capitulatory Agreement with Britain and Ireland
The Turkish industry and trade was already at great disadvantage against western powers’ concessions. Turks needed the assistance of Britain to put up against the revolting Mehmet Ali Paşa of Egypt. In those days most countries were levying taxes on both import and export of goods and raw materials. Britain, to favor the Turkish requests asked a new Trade Agreement which was signed on August 1938 at Baltalimani in Istanbul. This enabled Britain to import all raw materials without paying any tax, and sell their own production to Turks free of any customs tax. As a consequence, even street or house brooms were imported (Aya, 2012, p.16-17). “Made in Britain” cheap goods occupied markets wiping the remaining of the local industry. The same trade benefits were later extended to several other European Countries like France, Denmark, Spain, Sweden, Portugal and others.
The Prussian – Ottoman relations
The Prussian – Ottoman relations started in 1761 but it is said that an Army of Germans fought for the first time against Turks, during the second siege of Vienna in 1683, when religious wars and inquisitions dominated Europe. The Holy Roman Empire of the German Nations consisted of some 500 tiny city states and was only dissolved as late as 1806. We also know that once unified, Germany imposed heavy custom duties against imports from Britain and France. This gave the support for fast progress of German industry. Now they needed to sell to other countries their products, mostly competing with Britain.
Sultan Mustafa III tried to reform the army. Because of his interest in astronomy he had brought some books from France. He also brought human body organs made of wax for study of medicine.
He was astonished that Prussia rather a small state of the era, could win over the great Russia in the seven years wars (1756-1763). He believed that this could only be” achieved by having capable soothsayers”. So he sent his ambassador to the Prussian King and asked for “three soothsayers” to be sent to him. King Fredrick told the ambassador “tell your Sultan that having a good army, training it during peace time ready to go to war and keeping the treasury full are my three soothsayers. Tell our friend your Sultan that there are no other soothsayers.” (Karal, 2011, p.165).
Sultan Mahmut II, had asked “military advisors from the Kaiser”; he sent Captain Moltke, Helmuth Karl Bernhard Graf von Moltke to Anatolia in 1838. The Ottoman Governor of Egypt, Mehmet Ali Paşa had revolted and was marching towards Anatolia with a modern army of about 40.000 men.
The Ottoman army was about the same size, but had no tents and had suffered seriously with epidemics in the past eight months. When both armies took positions, the Prussian officers who were the advisors told the commander in chief Hafiz Paşa that they could win if they would attack immediately. It was Friday, and the religious consultants inside the army said that “according to the Koran, fighting on Fridays is sinful”.
Next day the Prussian officers told that they should make a sudden surprise night attack, but again it was rejected since it would not fit the reputation and chivalry of Sultan’s armies. Meanwhile the Egyptian army started to encircle the Ottoman army; Moltke said that the army should immediately retreat. But again the Commander said that retreating would be cowardice. The Egyptian army attacked and within four hours the Ottoman army was lost with thousands of casualties and complete destruction. (Karal, 2011, p.141)
Moltke was later to return to Germany; he wrote a book about Turks, which created some interest in Germany to learn Turks. Moltke in 1857 became Chief General Staff of the Prussian Army for 30 years and he was promoted to the rank of Field Marshal (Karal, 2011, p.165). This very incident explains the great difference between mentalities of Eastern and Western countries.
Until the rise to power of Otto von Bismarck during the last quarter of the 19th century, Prussia’s attitude was basically sympathetic to the Ottoman Empire, but at the same time it refrained from acting in a manner that would distort what it considered to be more important interests, namely its relations with the other members of the Concert of Europe. Prussia did, however, act as a friendly mediator when possible, favoring the Ottomans in the negotiations regarding the Near Eastern crisis, which led to the Treaty of Edirne, signed in 1829, and also in the peace negotiations that followed the Crimean War between years 1853-1856. (Öncü, 2003, p.6)
Ottoman Empire’s Relations with Great Powers of Europe
German-Ottoman relations reached to peak during the reign Abdulhamit II. prior to the foundation of Germany’s National Unity, the relations during the reign of Bismarck came closer; but Bismarck was a pacifist and did not want to get involved in the Eastern Question (Karal, 1962, p.161).
In the 1877-78 Russia’s War against Ottomans the Turks were totally beaten and Russians came up to the location of today’s Istanbul airport namely Yeşilköy or Agios Stephanos. The British intervened and sent their navy to the Bosporus. Turks accepted heaviest peace terms and agreed to pay an indemnity of 30 million gold liras, when they were bankrupt (Aya, Hopscotch, p.34)
Britain arranged a new Conference in Berlin on 13.7.1878, to ease terms; Russians were given other concessions, such as the right to protect Christians in Ottoman Empire; Cyprus was leased to Britain against debts, to later become British as Crown Colony by the Order of the King. (Aya, Hopscotch, p.36)
Bismarck was not in favor of colonies in far away countries. Although there were some German settlements in New Guinea and Africa these were not satisfactory. On the other hand new colonies required a strong Navy, and Germany’s geographical location presented some problems (Karal, 1962, p.170).For this reason Germany got interested in the fertile lands of Anatolia and thought that the alliance of Turks will be of great value for future wars against France, Russia and Britain (Karal, 1962, p.171).
Cultural Relations between Ottoman Empire and Germany
Abdulhamit II did not trust or liked Britain nor France. They had established large economic power in the Ottoman Empire through Christian businessmen exporting all commodities and even guns, which had become a free commodity for all citizens after the 1876 Edict of Restoration and declaration of Constitution guaranteeing rights of the citizens. Armenians were to use this freedom and many houses surely had more than one weapon, even for women (Karal, 1962, p.173).
Abdulhamit II’s sympathy (or need) of Germany started to establish cultural relations, some officers were sent to Germany for education. Germany sent a Military Advisors group under command of Wettendorf. Few years later this was substituted by a larger group (1883-1895) under Von der Goltz. German Deutsche Bank opened a branch in Istanbul and import of German military equipment and goods started (Karal, 1962, p.174).
In 1889, Emperor Giyom II or namely Kaiser Wilhelm II, visited Istanbul and became friends with Abdulhamit II. To honor his visit he gifted the “German Fountain” to the city of Istanbul, monument now in the Sultanahmet Square. Kaiser Wilhelm II continued his trip to Damascus, Jerusalem and Haifa where he was warmly received by Arabs and Jews; he showed that he was a friend of 300 million Moslems (Karal, 1962, p.177).
Industrial Relation between Ottoman Empire and Germany
In 1888 Germans were given the right to operate the Istanbul Izmit railway and extend it to Ankara. The portion Eskisehir to Konya was completed in 1896. The plan was to complete the railway line all the way to Bagdad and Basra. Britain was competing with Germany to get the concession of this railway, but the project was given to the Germans.
The Company formed to build the new railway line was financed 40% by Deutsche (German) Bank and 40% by the French Ottoman Bank. The remaining 20% was financed by various shareholders. The railroads that were built and opened, immediately contributed to the progress of farming and trading in the adjacent towns and villages. The investment was reimbursing the share holders. One very important incentive or capitulation given under this railway contract was that the geographical and topographic preferences were left to the Company. An area of 20 km on either side of the railway, totaling a band of 40 km wide was also left to the complete benefit of the Company, including all quarries, mines and other resources that were available on this wide strip of land, with the possibility of drilling new oil wells. There were rumors that Germany would resettle new immigrants from Germany and form a “de facto independent German land”. Britain was of course much disturbed with this expansion towards Basra which was their road to India.
Uprisings in Balkans
In 1912 with the support of Russia the Orthodox Christians in the Balkans (Serbia, Albania, Montenegro, Romania, Greece, and Bulgaria) revolt and the Ottoman Army loses all fights and retreats towards Istanbul. More than five million Moslem settlers in those countries desert their villages and properties and immigrate to Anatolia, many subjected to atrocities and murders to make them leave.
The western powers were happy with this large defeat of the Turks and loss of all their land in Europe. Their reaction was to send a joint force of 2700 soldiers (British-French-German-Austrian) in November 1912 to occupy key points in Istanbul “to protect Christians, in case the Moslems of Istanbul were to retaliate for the happenings in the Balkans. In this turmoil the Young Turks (Enver-Talat-Cemal and Friends) raided the office of the Grand Vizier with a “coupe de etat”. Enver became the Minister of War.
The new government tried to please western powers. Reform of the gendarmerie was given to France; reform of Navy including purchase of two dreadnought class battleships from Britain with the donations of the people was given to Britain (Aya, 2009, p.220). And the reform of the Army was entrusted to Germany again. General Von der Goltz was busy in reforming the Turkish Army since 1882 and him translated-published more than 4000 pages of military lessons.
Alliance of Ottoman Empire and Germany in World War I
Ottomans had asked Kaiser Wilhelm II to send an “Army Reformation Envoy” in May 1913. The emperors sent General Liman von Sanders, who was reputed with his discipline plus a delegation of 42 officers in October 1913. Liman von Sanders was put on duty for 5 years with very wide authorities even equaling or surpassing the Minister of War (Özgüldür, 1993, p.305).
The assassination of Archduke Ferdinand in Sarajevo on June 28th, 1914 gave the Austro-Hungarian Empire the excuse to start the WW.I much earlier than what was anticipated by all parties. Germans needed Ottoman Empire’s man power and strategic location, the Ottomans needed an ally for the WW.I in sight, because their approach to Britain was rejected earlier and those to France and Russia, was likewise refused in the spring of 1914.
Turks needed not only new army discipline and training but also, arms, ammunition and money to pay the salaries of the army officers delayed for several months. Alliance with Germany was inevitable and the young Minister of War, educated in Germany and liked by the Kaiser, grabbed the situation to drag the Ottoman Empire into the War, which had started in Europe on July 28, 1914.
Some documents revealing the alliance of Turkey and Germany in WW.I history.
From Letter of Ambassador Wangenheim to German F.O. Consantinople July 24, 1914 (Ernst, 1944, p.16):
“The Turkish condition is that his Majesty the Kaiser leave the German military mission her in the case of war. In return, Turkey would obligate itself to find some form under which Supreme Command of Turkish army and actual command of one-fourth of the army would be transferred, at the outbreak of war, to the military mission. The negotiations should be carried out in strict secrecy, even as regards Turkish ministers…”
From Reich Chancellor to Ambassador in Constantinople , Berlin July 28, 1914:
<Par.3: Germany turns over her military mission in case of war. Turkey guarantees actual direction of (Turkish) High Command by the (German) military mission. >
From Text of Treaty of Alliance – Translation Therapia, Constantinople August 2, 1914 (Epkenhans, 2001)
P.42: < Massacres: Europeans and Americans have shown quite different reaction to the tales of Mohammedan being massacred and the tales of Christians being massacred. When the Christians have been the unfortunate victims, the incident has been headlined and dramatized and used as just one more example of the practices of the “bloody Turk”. On the other hand, when innocent Mohammedans have been the victim, likely as not the case has been disregarded or misrepresented. This has been particularly true since the Treaty of Berlin, which made the Armenians official wards of Britain>
P.46 < A Christian historian of the eighteenth century wrote: “European Christians should be ashamed of reaching into the gutter and fishing out these outdated stories of superstitious Oriental Christians”. It is from such sources that common prejudices and misjudgments about the “the Turk” have originated. It is for this reason –to use Ataturk’s words- that “the manner of depicting Turkey in the eyes of the civilized world is bristling with faults”.
According to the agreement between the two countries, when the commander in chief was German, his general staff was Turkish. (Liman von Sanders and İzzet Pasha). When the Army Commander was Turkish, his general staff was German (Enver Pasha and General Bronssart von Schelledorf, 4th Army Commander Djemal Pasha and his general staff Colonel Kress von Kressenstein , 6th Army Commander General von der Goltz, his general staff General Ali İhsan Sabis, etc.).
The WW.I German-Turkish military collaboration, discipline, chivalry is full of many unbelievable interesting episodes, such as the foresight of Mustafa Kemal at Gallipoli as Lieutenant Colonel and his fast appraisal by Liman von Sanders.
Another episode is the disastrous attack on the Russian Army at time of Christmas 1914 planned by Enver Pasha and his aide General von Schellendorf. Sanders was against this plan to be executed by the 3rd Army, because of high mountains, severe winter weather conditions, lack of logistics, food and even winter clothing. In spite of the sinking of three supply ships by the Russian navy which should have stopped the campaign before it started, Enver fired the 3rd Army Commander who was his teacher and was against this crazy attack with so many privations, and as deputy Commander ordered the attack which ended with the greatest military catastrophe, such as death of about 60.000 soldiers frozen like statues because of cold, starvation, epidemics etc. plus a serious resistance at mountain passes put up by the Armenian revolutionaries. This was the greatest and fastest defeat of the Ottoman Army because of self praise. But both von Bronssart and Enver Pasha were up in the front lines in deep snow during this disaster and escaped from falling prisoner to the Russian army, since they had their horses and left just in the nick of time.
On the SuezCanal Front in February 1915, we read that an army of 12.000 crossed the desert on foot in several days, carrying even their pontoons to cross the canal. This impossible mission was accomplished because Von Kressenstein had gone to the area earlier and dug some water wells which made this crossing possible. The British were expecting Turks since they were informed earlier, Turks lost 2.000 soldiers and returned back to Palestine defeated, but the crossing of the dessert on foot both ways became history.
In Bagdad Area, the 6th Army intercepted General Townsend’s Army which came from India and was to take Bagdad. The British Army was surrounded and left without food and any other outside aid. The soldiers started to eat draft animals but the soldiers of India would not eat. After a blockade of about 5 months the army of 13,400 men surrendered to Turks. This victory at “Kutulamara” in 1916 by the 6th Turkish Army is marked in history and Townshend was kept as prisoner in Istanbul, Büyükada. After he was freed under the Mudros Cease Fire in October 1918, he preferred to live on the island until he died in 1924.
The Commander of the 6th Army, Colmar von der Goltz, was sick of typhus in Bagdad and died of high fever not seeing his army’s victory. He asked to be buried in the garden of the German Embassy in Therapia with both German and Turkish flags on his coffin. The irony is that Goltz died because of typhus. Typhus is a microbe carried with lice from one body-clothing to another and is common “when the person or clothes are not washed and kept clean”. Typhus was one of the best servants of angel Gabriel in all armies, killing in wards even without fighting. (The very last US Ambassador in Istanbul Abraham Elkus, could not leave in 1917 when the diplomatic relations were cut. He too was sick of typhus, but made it through).
The memories of Turks and Germans fighting and dying together as strong comrades are beyond any praise. However, after the WW.I ended and both Germany and Turkey surrendered, the procedures with the Kangaroo Courts set up both countries are soaked with injustice, travesty and shame. In Istanbul a Court Martial decided for the execution of several defendants (including Ataturk and all his aides) in absentia. An those put on trial could not have a lawyer to defend, no written minutes were kept and they were more like lynching courts.
The leaders of the CUP government had taken refugee in Germany with a submarine. Djemal Pasha went to Tbilisi where he was murdered by an Armenian assassin. Talat Pasha had kept his identity in secrecy in Berlin, but Armenians found and killed him in the front of his house in mid March 1921. This part is no news, because Armenian Nemesis were killing any Turk they could find, including Grand Vizier Said Halim in Rome.
The year 1921, like every year between World War I and Adolf Hitler‘s rise to power, was for Germany one of gloom, Political life had not yet recovered from the shock caused by the overthrow of a form of government deeply rooted in the history of the people. The newly empowered Reichstag was prey to wild party strife, which made the formation of a stable government difficult.
The trial of the murder of Talat Pasha proved to be a most shameful comedy, because the killer Tehlarian was found innocent whilst the victim Talat Pasha was found guilty of killing Armenians previously in Turkey. The German Judges gave in to the Armenian and Victor’s pressures.
Liman Von Sanders and the German Protestant pastor Dr. Johannes Lepsius deposed in the court as experts. Liman Von Sanders did mentioned anything about the German Ambassador of the era and also him being the Commander in Chief of the Ottoman Army. He did not testify against Talaat but he also did not tell the truth in full extend but a quarter of it only. Accordingly his testimony was against rather than pro.
Although an appeal notice was sent to Bronsart Von Shellendorf, he wasn’t called as a witness to the court. After the final verdict of the court, he published an article in a newspaper as a reaction to the court’s verdict.
Existing historical expose that:
1- Relations between German and Turkish States and people have been rather calm, cooperative and beneficial to all parties at all times.
2- The Protestant-Catholic Missionaries in the Ottoman Empire were too few to disturb peace. Excluded is the slander of fanatic Dr. Lepsius, who spent about a month in Istanbul being briefed by Armenians and Morgenthau and was not welcome by the German Embassy.
The book written by Franz Werfel “40 Days at Musa Dagh” was not based on realities but it did tremendous addition to the prejudices and antagonism against Turks in general.
3- The German Press and Government’s “black hole of historical knowledge” continues most strongly up to date in magazines, TV programs, news, and speeches of ignorant politicians over shading the historical facts and the perfect comradeship between the two brave and decent people by lies proven to be fake or doctored by irrefutable documents. Unfortunately the German academia, press and other institutions have not taken the trouble to go deep enough into this subject to discover that:
a- Any one that would read the full notes of the Solomon Tehlirian’s case on
http://armenians-1915.blogspot.com/2009/06/2893-full-transcript-of-soghomon.html will surely notice that all witnesses were those provided by the defendant and who told tales to the court and Jury, but the two most important witnesses of everything from A to Z, Generals Liman von Sanders (commander in chief of all armies) who was directly responsible for the actions of Ottoman Armies under his command, deposed in the court as an expert only but not the Commander in Chief of the Ottoman Army. General Bronsart von Schellendorf, who had the authority to sign official documents on behalf of the Minister of War were not invited by the court to tell what he knew. After the final verdict of the court, he published an article in a newspaper as a reaction to the court’s verdict.
None of the around 10,000 German officers serving in the Ottoman Army during this period invited or called to the court as a witness.
Interested parties can also see page 363, note # 37 of “The Genocide of Truth”. Truth seekers can also refer to http://armenians-1915.blogspot.com/2005/07/78-german-officers-genocide-eyewitness.html and read the written declaration of General Von Schellendorf as printed in “Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung, Nr. 342; July 24,1921”.
The “German court and jury in the turmoil of 1921s when Hitler was about to become a solution”, undoubtedly committed a judicial crime by “condemning the victim for being guilty and acquit the criminal with compliments for a murder committed in Berlin on the street. Is it not the time for Germany to “study their own records, books and authentic documents of their own Generals and other officers who were in service throughout the Empire and responsible for the initial orders to the ruling government? This paper is a formal invitation by the researcher, to meet and prove that the “genocide allegation and related propaganda documents” are nothing but unfounded lies, not even one supported by authentic document or established laws and rules for international crime declarations.
b- Isn’t the German Press and media aware of the 22.000 Armenian Legion soldiers who served Hitler (4.800 of them SS) who rounded up Jews and sent them to death Camps when Turkish Diplomats (Ambassador to Vichy, Ex Colonel Behic Erkin, Iron Cross Medal of first degree for the services in WW I.) saved over ten thousand Jews and had them transferred to Turkey saving their lives?
These are all in several books, in internet in documents. How anyone can be that naive not to see all this or that the Armenian Legion leftovers ruled the Berlin Blackmarket up to 1950’s when they started to be transferred to USA with affidavits?
Why not even one Nazi-Armenian “displaced person” did not utter a single word about any massacres in the past by Turks when they were in Germany?
This “money swindling industry through victimization started after 1960’s” and those who are not eager to “defend truth and decency” as a minimum need for global harmony and peace, should think more than twice when blaming other persons or nations based on hearsays and the shameful of all by not even “asking an opposite view” or defense. All decisions are made in absentia for different types of benefit. This is a shame, and the writer of this paper cordially invites the “sensitive or responsive parties” to take this paper as an introduction in discovering truths.
The WWI. casualties are estimated about 37 millions, 16 millions dead. All states who suffered these great losses have forgotten the past and restored peace. The name of Armenia does not even count among the countries with large losses but they have been largely fabricated and spread around and today the world forgets all the facts and busies herself to propagate the Dashnakist Armenians lies who make a living on this fanfare. Written evidences from Armenian and neutral sources are too many, for those who tale the trouble to learn truth themselves and not what liars (politicians, media, press, academia, etc. etc.) propagates taking their readers as absolute dupes.
These “black pages” in the relations of the two nations has not been studied deep enough and the German media and press sympathize with present Armenian genocide propaganda, to a degree that Armenians are about to introduce books in the German school system, and give birth to a new “German-Turkish animosity” by huge distortions, thanks to the absolute indifference of Turkish institutions or authorities. Nowadays we find very few persons interested “to learn the truth”, and of course much lesser persons who spend their lifetime to “defend truth” and avoid frictions created by lies or easy-go propagandas. Regrettably some political parties [some with a few Turkish politicians in Germany] easily join the lynch mobs based on hearsay only.
Germany is the number one trade and moral partner of Turkey practically on most things, technical education, health and too many fields to count. There are over 4000 German Companies who invested in ventures in Turkey. There are about 3.500.000 Turks living and most of them working for Germany. In short, Germany has been the Number One supplier of everything Turkey needs, in the path of civilization. The above question is posed because of the apparent shortage of justice in the Middle East. This study may be interpreted as a sincere question to ask if “you now have replenished your century old shortage or later dictatorial defects of justice”, wouldn’t you think of exporting or donating some of this most precious commodity to friendly countries and save all time friends from political and judicial suffocations?
We kindly extend our gratitude to Dr. Latif Çelik for his studies and contributions on the Turkish-German relations and his outstanding book detailing the trails of Ottomans in Europe.
We also convey our thanks to the chairs Prof. Dr. Ramazan Çalık, Prof. Dr. Eckhard Pache and the members of the Organizing Committee of Uşak University and the Würzburg Maximillians University, for organizing the II. Turkish-German Relations with Historical and Cultural Aspects Symposium
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