Victory in 1922 battle 'milestone' for Turkish nation

Turkish victory has become model, motivation for all oppressed nations fighting against imperialism, says security analyst

Sibel Morrow   | 30.08.2019
Victory in 1922 battle 'milestone' for Turkish nation


Turkish victory on Aug. 30 in the 1922 Battle of Dumlupinar was a clear message to the world that Turkish presence in Anatolia, which started with the Battle of Manzikert in 1071, will continue forever, according to a security analyst.

"It was a war of Turkish nation who was tried to be removed from its historical geography and whose historical mission against imperialism was tried to be ended," Mehmet Seyfettin Erol, head of the Center for International Strategy and Security Studies think-tank, told Anadolu Agency.

"With this war, the Turkish nation has strengthened its presence in the mainly Anatolia-based Turkish geography and gave to the whole world the following message: Our presence in Anatolia which started with the Battle of Manzikert in 1071 will continue forever," he added.

Turkish domination in Anatolia began with the Battle of Manzikert in Aug. 26, 1071, which saw Seljuk Turks led by Sultan Alparslan defeat a Byzantine army.

Erol said the Aug. 30 victory in what he described as "the last castle of Turkish Islamic geography" became a model and a motivation for all nations warring against imperialism.

The victory was a message from Turkish people that the Turkish Republic and National Pact, also known as Misak-i Milli -- which refers to the set of six decisions taken by the late Ottoman Parliament and later used as Turkish borderline -- would be permanent.

"So, the August 30 victory is a significant milestone in carrying out the National Pact targets, which also guarantee the presence of Turkish Republic," Erol said.

"When we look at the recent developments, particularly in Iraq, Syria and the Middle East-based developments, we see that the same war has still been going on and the determination of Turkish Republic to carry out its historical mission about its National Pact is continuing," Erol said, placing Aug. 30 as the most important turning point in fulfilling the National Pact decisions.

Strong leadership

There were three very important things that brought the victory, according to Erol.

"The first one was a strong leadership and resolve [of Mustafa Kemal] who had confidence in his own people," Erol said.

"The second one was," Erol said, "using diplomacy and military skills in a coordinated and determined way."

He added that Aug. 30 was not just a military victory but a full-scale campaign fueled with a strong leadership and a smart mobilization of a nation.

Patriotic sentiments

"The nationalism, but not in a racist way but mostly with patriotic sentiments, played an important role of course. Patriotism plus religious belief," Erol said.

Erol said the Ottomans were considered the "last castle" of the Muslim Turkish World and that the defeat of the Ottomans would mean defeat for the oppressed Muslims against imperialism.

"That was what triggered the patriotic sentiments of Turkish people, which once again has accomplished a vital mission in Anatolia it assumed since the crusades," Erol said.

The war was against the spirit of the crusades and Western imperialism, and while fighting this war, the Turkish people were aware of their mission on behalf of the entire Muslim Turkish world, Erol said.

Turkey was occupied by allied forces after the defeat of the Ottoman Empire at the end of the World War I (1914-1918).

The foreign occupation prompted Turkey’s War of Independence in 1919, in which Turkish forces -- led by Gen. Mustafa Kemal -- eventually drove the invaders from Anatolia.

From Aug. 26 to Aug. 30 of 1922, Turkish forces fought the Battle of Dumlupinar (considered part of the Greco-Turkish War) in Turkey’s western Kutahya province, where Greek forces were decisively defeated.

By the end of 1922, all foreign forces had left the territories which would collectively become the new Republic of Turkey one year later.

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