Ekrem Buğra Ekinci, 1987’de Ankara Hukuk Fakültesi’ni bitirdi. Avukatlık stajı yaptı.

Ankara’da başladığı kariyerini İstanbul’da sürdürdü.
Doktorasını 1996’da İstanbul Hukuk Fakültesi’nde tamamladı.

Türkiye ve Daily Sabah gazetelerinde yazmaktadır.
Devam
 
TWO SIDES OF THE GALLIPOLI WAR

18 Mart 2016 Cuma

Today marks the 101st year since the Gallipoli naval battle of World War I, which ended with a unique victory against the Allied forces. Yet the high casualties and successive battles led to the collapse of the Ottoman Empire

In the summer of 1914, Europe, and later the other powers, found themselves in the middle of a war. The assassination of Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand by a Serbian terrorist was the excuse behind the war, but no one knew the real reason. Afterward, Germany's desire to be a part of Britain and France's colonial ambition was considered as the reason. It was first thought to be a local war that would last for a short time, but it ended up lasting four years with millions of people killed. From submarines to tanks and poisonous gas, various technical inventions were tried during the war. The agreements after World War I forced the defeated countries to pay very heavy prices, leading to the breakout of a much bigger disaster after 20 years, World War II.

Although there was no apparent reason, Russia and the Ottoman Empire also got involved in the war that was between Germany, Britain and France. Russia was already an ally of Britain and France, but it was nothing more than suicide for the Turks to join the war. The so-called "patriot" Committee of Union and Progress (CUP) leaders who lost Ottoman lands in Bosnia, Bulgaria and Tripoli without even blinking their eyes were after taking back the Turkish lands that had been lost over the last two centuries. They were also trying to establish first an Islamic and then a Turkic union. This fantasy cost the Turkish people dearly. The Turkish army was soundly defeated and millions of soldiers and civilians were killed. Let alone taking back the lands that the Ottomans had previously lost, territory mostly populated by Muslims was lost in World War I.

The war lasted four years, but it took nine years for the Turks. It froze in the memories of the nation as one of the biggest disasters in Ottoman history. During this long period, the Turkish army won a couple of local battles that can be considered as badges of honor for the army. The naval battles during the Gallipoli Campaign in 1915 were one of them. The aim of the British and French battleships that came to the Dardanelles was to help their ally Russia, which was fighting against Germany, and force the Ottoman Empire to surrender by entering Istanbul by sea. Thanks to genius German staff officers who served in the Turkish military and the bravery of the Turkish soldiers, the Turks achieved a unique victory against a powerful enemy. However, this victory brought more harm than benefit.

The Gallipoli Campaign had two phases, including naval and ground attacks. Cevad Çobanlı Pasha served greatly in the naval victory that ended on March 18. Esad and Vehib Pashas, who were brothers, led the ground attacks that began in April and continued until August. Then Lieutenant Colonel Mustafa Kemal was the commander of reserved units during the ground attacks. He orchestrated and attacked the Anzacs on April 25, who landed in Gaba Tepe, what is now known as Anzac Cove, and marched to Chunuk Bair with 57th Regiment without waiting for orders from his superiors. He then activated other regiments. On Aug. 9, he repelled the British, who marched to Suvla Bay. When his proposition for a counterattack was not accepted, Mustafa Kemal resigned and withdrew from the front.

The Gallipoli Campaign was a battle of reserve officers. The campaign caused the deaths of tens of thousands of highly educated young men who were brought up during the reign of Sultan Abdülhamid. The casualties in the campaign reached almost 250,000, including the dead and wounded. These highly educated young men who were trained during the peaceful, 30-year reign of Abdülhamid were brought to the battle front and many high schools and universities had no graduates. This is why the battle looks more like a defeat than a victory. Since defensive battles are relatively easier than attacks, the number of casualties is surprising.

Lord Kinross once reported a story that Mustafa Kemal ordered the soldiers at Suvla Bay to attack and fight in close quarters to the death. He said: "If you do not have bullets, you have bayonets," and the cavalry commander under Mustafa Kemal's command hesitated. Mustafa Kemal asked: "Did you understand what I said?" He said: "Yes, sir, you ordered us to die." Hence, the phrase: "I am not ordering you to fight, I am ordering you to die," entered into war history.

Lord Kinross also accused Mustafa Kemal of not being able to predict the naval gunfire support during the Gallipoli Campaign. Esad Pasha, on the other hand, accused Mustafa Kemal of launching the attack without waiting for orders from the headquarter and causing the deaths of everyone in the 57th regiment, including the commanders of the Arab regiment. In fact, the Suvla Bay Battle was not considered a victory back then. Some attribute these accusations to the jealousy of War Minister Enver Pasha of Mustafa Kemal. Back then, however, Enver Pasha was not the one who should have been envious. German Gen. Liman von Sanders soothed Enver Pasha, who accused Mustafa Kemal of causing the deaths, saying was not the reason thousands of soldiers froze to death in Sarıkamış, as it was Mustafa Kemal who resigned from his duties following Enver Pasha's behavior. Afterward, Mustafa Kemal told Mademoiselle Corinne, whom he knew from Bulgaria and exchanged letters in a cynical manner, that Ottoman soldiers followed his commands and ran to death in order to go to heaven and meet the "houris."

Mustafa Kemal did not want to be involved in the war with British forces. However, he requested to join in a combat unit where he would obviously be promoted. He was assigned to be colonel in Çanakkale and, without waiting for the end of the war, he struggled for unilateral peace. This is why he crossed the ruling CUP leaders. He even asked Cemal Pasha, known for his pro-French proclivities to stage a coup. He said: "You will become Grand Vizier and I will be war minister. And then we can make a separate peace agreement." Cemal Pasha, however, did not accept out of fear. When Mustafa Kemal headed to Anatolia as army inspector in 1919, journalist Ruşen Eşref published "An Interview with the Hero of Anafarta Spur," and made Mustafa Kemal known to the public. On the other side, the CUP took advantage of the Gallipoli Campaign to show itself as the hero to the public because it later got involved in the Ankara movement. In other words, the Gallipoli victory was exploited to canonize the CUP.

What would have happened if the allied powers had passed through the Dardanelles? First, the war probably would not have taken that long. If the allied powers' fleet had passed through the strait, Babıali likely would have had no choice but to ask separate peace. Second, the ground wars that caused great causalities would not have been necessary. New fronts like Iraq, Syria, Egypt and Galicia would not have emerged, where nearly 1 million of Ottoman soldiers died. The Turks might have withdrawn with fewer casualties. If they had passed through the strait, the war would have been shorter and thousands of residents in Anatolia and Rumelia would not have been forced into exile.

The Arab revolution also might not have happened and the empire might not have lost Palestine, Syria, Iraq and Arabia. Considering the successive effects, the Wahhabi Saudi kingdom in Arabia and Israel in Palestine might not have been established. Moreover, oil reserves and religious sites might not have been invaded. Arab lands might have been independent, or they could have been gathered under a Commonwealth structure.

Even the Bolshevik Revolution might not have happened, as the allied powers provided help to Russia. This would have avoided the establishment of communist regime that made the world groan bitterly for 70 years. Millions of Turkish-origin people might not have become the victims of massacres. The Bolsheviks might not have invaded the South Caucasus and Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia.

If the allied powers had passed through the strait, they might not have treated the Ottomans in such cruel way and who might not be seen as war criminals, as they prolonged the war, although it was not directly related with the Turks. On the other hand, the Turkish republic might not have been established either, while national heroes like Mustafa Kemal Atatürk and others emerged in Ankara. The appearance of Turkish territory might not have changed.

It is also said that the allied powers did not much prioritize passing through the Dardanelles, as they were able to pass it easily, but rather stuck on the war front to just delay the Turks. The seriousness of the famous phrase "Çanakkale is impassable" was understood after the strait was passed in no more than three years. Alas, local victories in big wars are not important, as the results are what we need. In the first 30 minutes of a football match, goals can be scored, but the final score is what is important.


 Önceki Yazılar
19.05.2017 - MAY 19: START OF THE ANKARA MOVEMENT

12.05.2017 - BEING A TRADESMAN NOT AN EASY JOB IN THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE

05.05.2017 - SPRING IS FINALLY HERE: HIDIRELLEZ

28.04.2017 - SABBATAISM AND DOENMEHS IN OTTOMAN SOCIETY

21.04.2017 - OTTOMAN HUMANITARIAN AID TO THE IRISH GRIPPED BY FAMINE

14.04.2017 - GREAT COLONIAL EMPIRE ESTABLISHED BY A SMALL COUNTRY

07.04.2017 - CALLIGRAPHY AS INCORPOREAL PROTECTOR OF OTTOMAN HOUSES

24.03.2017 - MODERN INSURANCE SYSTEM HAS ITS ROOTS IN MEDIEVAL ANATOLIA

17.03.2017 - PRINTING PRESS AS A TURKISH INVENTION

10.03.2017 - THE PALESTINE ISSUE THAT COST SULTAN ABDULHAMID II THE OTTOMAN THRONE

03.03.2017 - THE RISE AND FALL OF THE ISLAMIC CALIPHATE IN HISTORY

24.02.2017 - THE MEMORIES OF ARMENIAN OLYMPIANS IN THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE

17.02.2017 - RUMELIAN TURKS: OTTOMAN MIGRANTS FROM BALKANS TO ANATOLIA

10.02.2017 - IN THE PURSUIT OF ROYAL OTTOMAN FAMILY'S TANGLED INHERITANCE

03.02.2017 - MUHAMMED ALI PASHA'S CAIRO AND EGYPT UNDER OTTOMAN RULE

27.01.2017 - JOURNEY OF TOBACCO FROM THE CARIBBEAN TO OTTOMAN EMPIRE

20.01.2017 - CYPRUS DISPUTE: AN ISLAND AT A CROSSROADS

18.01.2017 - Graves of Ottoman princes, sons of Sultan Abdulhamid II in ruins in France’s Bobigny cemetery

13.01.2017 - A FAREWELL TO LAST HEIR OF OTTOMAN EMPIRE PRINCE OSMAN BAYEZID

10.01.2017 - New heir to the former Ottoman throne witnesses horrors of Syrian civil war in Damascus

06.01.2017 - OTTOMAN-ERA CLOCK TOWERS TELLING TIME FROM BALKANS TO MIDDLE EAST

23.12.2016 - ALEPPO: AN ANCIENT CITY RUINED IN MODERN-ERA DESTRUCTION

16.12.2016 - THE HISTORY OF ROWING ALONG THE BOSPORUS IN OTTOMAN ISTANBUL

10.12.2016 - TEA: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT A TURKISH OBSESSION

02.12.2016 - THE EVOLUTION OF OTTOMAN-ERA SECRET SERVICES

25.11.2016 - HISTORIC FOUNTAINS AND WATER CULTURE IN OTTOMAN ISTANBUL

11.11.2016 - MUMMIES OF ANATOLIA STILL A MATTER OF INTEREST

04.11.2016 - AGE OF FIRE: THE DISASTER THAT MENACE OTTOMAN CITIES

28.10.2016 - HEJAZ RAILWAY: A HISTORIC LINE TO ISLAM'S HOLIEST CITIES

21.10.2016 - BIRDHOUSES: MINIATURE MANSIONS OF ISTANBUL

14.10.2016 - SPORTS CULTURE IN OTTOMAN SOCIETY

07.10.2016 - TURQUERIE: EVOLUTION OF TURKISH THEME IN EUROPEAN ART, STYLE

30.09.2016 - THE BALYAN FAMILY: ARMENIAN MASTERS BEHIND OTTOMAN ARCHITECTURE

23.09.2016 - WORLD'S FIRST HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS

16.09.2016 - THE KULELI INCIDENT: AN OTTOMAN COUP ATTEMPT

09.09.2016 - THE SOCIAL DIVIDE BEHIND THE SYRIAN WAR

02.09.2016 - SYRİA: FROM THE DAWN OF CİVİLİZATİON TO CHAOS OF WAR

26.08.2016 - FEB 28: A 'POST-MODERN' COUP OF RELIGIOUS, POLITICAL OPRESSION

19.08.2016 - 1971 MILITARY MEMORANDUM: A POLITICAL DOWNTURN

12.08.2016 - THE 1980 COUP: FEARFUL PERIOD AMID POLITICAL CRACKDOWN

08.08.2016 - THE 1960 COUP: FIRST ATTACK ON TURKISH DEMOCRACY

29.07.2016 - TREATY OF LAUSANNE: TRIUMPH OR LOSS?

22.07.2016 - A BRIEF HISTORY OF COUPS IN TURKEYTORY OF COUPS IN TURKEY

15.07.2016 - UNWRAPPING THE HISTORY OF PAPER AND ITS INFLUENCE IN THE ISLAMIC WORLD

08.07.2016 - A TRAVEL DIARY FROM MAGHRIB TO THE ATLAS MOUNTAINS

04.07.2016 - RAMADAN BAYRAM: SHARE, REJOICE, WORSHIP

24.06.2016 - PRINCESS EMINE NECIBE: A LOST TALE FROM CAIRO TO ISTANBUL

17.06.2016 - THE KARAMANLIDES: A TURKISH-SPEAKING GREEK ORTHODOX COMMUNITY IN ANATOLIA

10.06.2016 - DATES: THE SACRED FRUIT DURING RAMADAN

03.06.2016 - THE SOCIAL ROLE OF WAQFS DURING THE OTTOMAN ERA

27.05.2016 - SHAMANISM: A PRACTICE OF EARLY TURKIC BELIEFS

20.05.2016 - A MONETARY HISTORY OF ISLAMIC SOCIETIES

16.05.2016 - FEZ: A TIME-HONORED OTTOMAN HAT FROM THE MEDITERRANEAN

06.05.2016 - THE ABDULLAH BROTHERS: PIONEERS OF PHOTOGRAPHY IN THE LATE OTTOMAN PERIOD

29.04.2016 - THE SIEGE OF KUT: AN UNFORGOTTEN OTTOMAN VICTORY

23.04.2016 - HEALING IN ISLAMIC SCIENCE AND MEDICINE

18.04.2016 - BEDESTEN: THE OTTOMAN PRECURSOR TO THE SAFETY DEPOSIT BOX

08.04.2016 - THE ART of THE MEDDAH: TRADITIONAL TURKISH STORYTELLING

01.04.2016 - RETHINKING THE IMPERIAL HAREM: WHAT DID LIFE LOOK LIKE FOR OTTOMAN PALACE WOMEN?

25.03.2016 - THE ROMA: A LIFE OF CONSTANT TRAVEL

11.03.2016 - EUROPE MUST KEEP THE TRADITION OF LIVING TOGETHER

04.03.2016 - THE HOLODOMOR: A MANUFACTURED HUMAN TRAGEDY

26.02.2016 - JAMRAH: THE HERALD of SPRİNG

19.02.2016 - HANDKERCHIEFS: THE SECRET LANGUAGE OF LOVE

12.02.2016 - KARAITE JEWS: THE READERS of HEBREW SCRIPTURES

05.02.2016 - 150 PERSONAE NON GRATAE: THE BLACK LIST OF THE NEWLY ESTABLISHED REPUBLIC

29.01.2016 - WHY THE ISLAMIC WORLD FELL BEHIND IN SCIENCE

22.01.2016 - ADA KALEH: A TURKISH ISLAND IN THE DANUBE RIVER

15.01.2016 - THE MOSUL QUESTION: A CLASH FOR OIL

09.01.2016 - THE GOOD OLD DAYS, WHEN DUMPING SNOW IN THE BOSPORUS WAS AMUSEMENT

01.01.2016 - NEWSPAPERS: AN INTELLECTUAL LEGACY of the OTTOMAN EMPIRE

18.12.2015 - THE GALATA BANKERS: FINANCING OTTOMAN STATE

11.12.2015 - A BRIEF HISTORY OF TURKISH-RUSSIAN RELATIONS

04.12.2015 - FRAMING WOMEN'S STATUS THROUGH THE AGES

27.11.2015 - SICILY: AN ETERNAL MEETING POINT BETWEEN AFRICA AND EUROPE

20.11.2015 - TURKISH-ARAB RELATIONS FROM PAST TO TODAY

13.11.2015 - SLAVERY AND ISLAM: A TRANSFORMATIVE MEETING

30.10.2015 - THE BRIEF HISTORY of ELECTIONS in TURKEY

23.10.2015 - ASHURA: THE TRADITIONAL DESSERT EMBRACING PEOPLE FROM EVERY RELIGION

16.10.2015 - TURKISH CHEESES OFFER A VARIETY OF TASTES

09.10.2015 - TRANSFORMATION OF OTTOMAN COFFEEHOUSES TO THE PRESENT

02.10.2015 - THE STORY OF THE STAR AND CRESCENT ON THE ARMS OF TWO EUROPEAN CITIES

25.09.2015 - QURBAN BAYRAM: HOW DO MUSLIMS CELEBRATE A HOLY FEAST?

18.09.2015 - MAHPEYKER KOSEM SULTAN: THE WOMAN WHO OVERSAW 3 GENERATIONS of the OTTOMAN EMPIRE

11.09.2015 - LITERACY IN OTTOMAN SOCIETY WAS HIGHER THAN BELIEVED

04.09.2015 - HOSTILITY BETWEEN SELIM I AND ISMAIL I UNDERLIES SECTARIAN DIFFERENCES

28.08.2015 - IMAM SHAMIL: A PIONEER OF THE CAUCUSES'S STRUGGLE FOR FREEDOM

22.08.2015 - THE DEVŞIRME SYSTEM: A LADDER TO THE TOP OF THE STATE FOR NON-MUSLIMS

14.08.2015 - THE SPANISH TREASURE LYING AT THE BOTTOM OF THE ATLANTIC

06.08.2015 - THE HISTORY of FRATRICIDE in the OTTOMAN EMPIRE

31.07.2015 - THE HISTORICAL CITY GATES OF ISTANBUL

24.07.2015 - THE STORY OF THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE'S CONSTITUTIONAL MONARCHY

17.07.2015 - CELEBRATING THE JOYOUS HOLIDAY OF EID AL-FITR

10.07.2015 - SYKES-PICOT: THE WESTERN AGREEMENT THAT SEALED THE MIDDLE EAST'S DOOM

04.07.2015 - A TRAITOR OR A HERO? THE EXECUTION OF SHEIKH SAID

26.06.2015 - HATS: A POLITICAL SYMBOL OF TURKISH HISTORY

19.06.2015 - RAMADAN FESTIVITIES BRING LIVELY ATMOSPHERE

12.06.2015 - LEGENDS ABOUT TAQI AL-DIN AND THE DEMOLISHED OTTOMAN OBSERVATORY

08.06.2015 - MYTHS AND REALITY ABOUT THE PRINTING PRESS IN THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE

29.05.2015 - THE CONQUEST OF CONSTANTINOPLE: THE HERALDING IN A NEW ERA

23.05.2015 - A CHURCH, A MOSQUE AND FINALLY A MUSEUM: THE NEARLY 1,500-YEAR-OLD STORY OF THE HAGIA SOPHIA

16.05.2015 - THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE: A SHELTER FOR ALL KINDS OF REFUGEES

09.05.2015 - THE MOSQUE THAT STANDS ON THE SEA: KILIÇ ALI PASHA MOSQUE

02.05.2015 - THE ROLES OF MAJOR POWERS DURING THE 1915 ARMENIAN INCIDENTS

24.04.2015 - HOW WERE THE 1915 INCIDENTS CONFRONTED BY THE OTTOMANS?

17.04.2015 - MYSTERIOUS SCHOLAR BETWEEN EAST AND WEST: LEGEND OF JAMAL AL-DIN AL-AFGHANI

10.04.2015 - A UNIQUE PERIOD IN TURKISH HISTORY: THE TULIP ERA

03.04.2015 - YEMEN: SEARCHING FOR A SIGN OF PEACE

27.03.2015 - FROM KAFFA TO ISTANBUL: COFFEE'S JOURNEY TO TURKEY

20.03.2015 - JIHAD: A MISUNDERSTOOD ISLAMIC TERM

13.03.2015 - THE BITTER STORY OF THE OTTOMAN DYNASTY’S EXILE

06.03.2015 - THE HISTORIC JOURNEY OF YOGURT: FROM TURKIC PEOPLES TO THE WORLD

27.02.2015 - THE HISTORICAL ADVENTURE OF THE TOMB OF SULEYMAN SHAH

20.02.2015 - SHOULD TURKEY SWITCH TO A PRESIDENTIAL SYSTEM?

13.02.2015 - WAHHABISM: PURE ISLAM OR EXTREMISM?

06.02.2015 - WORLD WAR I: THE HEAVY TOLL OF A DEADLY CONFLİCT

27.01.2015 - LOOKING BACK ON THE LIFE OF A KING

19.01.2015 - THE OTTOMANS’ EXEMPLARY TREATMENT OF STREET ANİMALS

09.01.2015 - HURREM SULTAN: A BELOVED WIFE OR MASTER MANIPULATOR?

03.01.2015 - AN ANCESTRAL LANGUAGE WITH A DIFFERENT ALPHABET

26.12.2014 - DISCOVER THE SEALS OF OTTOMAN SULTANS

02.12.2014 - MEMORIES OF ISTANBUL SHELTERED IN FIREPROOF LIBRARIES

10.09.2014 - SEA BATHING, THE GOOD OLD FASHION WAY

07.06.2014 - SMILE AND SAY 'CHEESE'

13.05.2014 - THE OTTOMAN AQUADUCT LEGACY

25.04.2014 - WHAT HAPPENED TO THE ARMENIANS (MILLET-I SADIKA)?

20.04.2014 - OTTOMAN MILITARY MARCHING BAND

12.04.2014 - MUSLIMS COME FIRST IN THE HISTORY OF CONSTITUTIONS

05.04.2014 - ISTANBUL COMES TO BLOOM WITH TULIPS

28.03.2014 - AN EXOTIC COMMUNITY IN THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE: THE LEVANTINES

21.03.2014 - CELEBRATE WITH SWEETS ALL YEAR ROUND

21.03.2014 - MURDERS FOR A FALSE PARADISE: THE HASHSHASHINS

10.03.2014 - NOTABLE LIFE OF MIHRIMAH SULTAN

10.03.2014 - SULTAN SULEIMAN'S INACCURATE PORTRAYAL ON TV SHOW

07.03.2014 - CRIMEA BETWEEN TWO FIRES