Mustafa Kemal Atatürk bigraphy, stories - Turkish officer and statesman

Mustafa Kemal Atatürk : biography

1881 - 10 November 1938

Mustafa Kemal Atatürk ( 19 May 1881 (Conventional) – 10 November 1938) was an Ottoman and Turkish army officer, revolutionary statesman, writer, and the first President of Turkey. He is credited with being the founder of the Republic of Turkey. His surname, Atatürk (meaning "Father of the Turks"), was granted to him in 1934 and forbidden to any other person by the Turkish parliament.

Atatürk was a military officer during World War I.Zürcher, Turkey : a modern history, 142 Following the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in World War I, he led the Turkish national movement in the Turkish War of Independence. Having established a provisional government in Ankara, he defeated the forces sent by the Allies. His military campaigns led to victory in the Turkish War of Independence. Atatürk then embarked upon a program of political, economic, and cultural reforms, seeking to transform the former Ottoman Empire into a modern, secular and European nation-state. Under his leadership, thousands of new schools were built, primary education was made free and compulsory, while the burden of taxation on peasants was reduced.Mastering Modern World History by Norman Lowe, second edition The principles of Atatürk's reforms, upon which modern Turkey was established, are referred to as Kemalism.

Notes

Military career

Early years

Following graduation, Mustafa Kemal was assigned to the Fifth Army based in Damascus as a Staff Captain in the company of Ali Fuat (Cebesoy) and Lütfi Müfit (Özdeş).Mango, ibid, p. 37. He joined a small secret revolutionary society of reformist officers led by a merchant Mustafa Elvan (Cantekin) called Vatan ve Hürriyet ("Motherland and Liberty"). On 20 June 1907, he was promoted to the rank of Senior Captain (Kolağası) and on 13 October 1907, assigned to the headquarters of the Third Army in Manastır.T.C. Genelkurmay Başkanlığı Yayınları, ibid, p. 2. He joined the Committee of Union and Progress, with membership number 322, although in later years he became known for his opposition to, and frequent criticism of, the policies pursued by the CUP leadership. On 22 June 1908, he was appointed the Inspector of the Ottoman Railways in Eastern Rumelia (Doğu Rumeli Bölgesi Demiryolları Müfettişi). In July 1908, he played a role in the Young Turk Revolution which seized power from Sultan Abdülhamid II and restored the constitutional monarchy.

In 1910 he was called to the Ottoman provinces in Albania. At that time Isa Boletini was leading Albanian uprisings in Kosovo and there were revolts in Albania.Enstehung und Ausbau der Königsdiktatur in Albanien, 1912–1939 Von Michael Schmidt-Neke In 1910 he met with Eqerem Vlora.KUJTIME nga: Eqrem Bej Vlora. Ekrem Bey Vlora, Lebenserinnerungen – Teilband II: 1912–1925

Later, in the autumn of 1910, he was among the Ottoman military observers who attended the Picardie army manoeuvres in France.

In early 1911, he worked at the Ministry of War (Harbiye Nezareti) headquarters in Istanbul for a short time.

Italo-Turkish War (1911–1912)

Later in 1911, he was assigned to the Ottoman Tripolitania Vilayet (present-day Libya) to fight in the Italo-Turkish War, mainly in the areas near Benghazi, Derna and Tobruk. A massive Italian amphibious assault force of 150,000 troopsThe History of the Italian-Turkish War, William Henry Beehler, page 96 had to be countered by 20,000 BedouinsThe History of the Italian-Turkish War, William Henry Beehler, page 14 and 8,000 Turks (a short time before Italy declared war, a large portion of the Ottoman troops in Libya were sent to the Ottoman province of Yemen in order to put down the rebellion there, so the Ottoman government was caught with inadequate resources to counter the Italians in Libya; and the British government, which militarily controlled the de jure Ottoman provinces of Egypt and Sudan since the Urabi Revolt in 1882, didn't allow the Ottoman government to send additional Ottoman troops to Libya through Egypt; causing the Ottoman soldiers like Mustafa Kemal to go to Libya either dressed as Arabs (risking imprisonment if noticed by the British authorities in Egypt), or through very few available ferries (the Italians, who had superior naval forces, effectively controlled the sea routes to Tripoli).) However, despite all the hardships, Mustafa Kemal's forces in Libya managed to successfully repel the Italians in a number of occasions, such as the Battle of Tobruk on 22 December 1911. During the Battle of Derna on 16–17 January 1912, while Mustafa Kemal was assaulting the Italian-controlled fortress of Kasr-ı Harun, two Italian planes dropped bombs on the Ottoman forces and a piece of limestone from a damaged building's rubble entered Mustafa Kemal's left eye; which caused a permanent damage on his left eye's tissue, but not a total loss of sight. After receiving medical treatment for nearly a month (he attempted to leave the Red Crescent's health facilities early after only two weeks, but when his eye's situation worsened, he had to return and resume the treatment) on 6 March 1912 Mustafa Kemal became the Commander of the Ottoman forces in Derna. He managed to defend and retain the city and its surrounding region until the end of the Italo-Turkish War on 18 October 1912. Mustafa Kemal, Enver Bey, Fethi Bey and the other Ottoman military commanders in Libya had to return to Ottoman Europe following the outbreak of the Balkan Wars on 8 October 1912, due to which the Ottoman government agreed to surrender the provinces of Tripolitania, Fezzan and Cyrenaica (present-day Libya) to the Kingdom of Italy with the Treaty of Ouchy (First Treaty of Lausanne) signed ten days later, on 18 October.

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