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Gallipoli: The Untold Story – ‘The first casualty of war is truth’

 
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Gallipoli: The Untold Story – ‘The first casualty of war is truth’
Gallipoli: The Untold Story – ‘The first casualty of war is truth’

April 24, 2015
By GERRY DOCHERTY & JIM MACGREGOR

The truth about Gallipoli has, unlike its victims, been buried deep. Historians like Peter Hart who describe it as “an idiocy generated by muddled thinking”1 are justified in their anger, but not their conclusions. The campaign was conceived in London as a grotesque, Machiavellian strategy to fool the Russians into believing that Britain was attempting to capture Constantinople for them. The paradox of its failure lay in its success. Gallipoli was purposefully designed to fail.

A secret cabal of immensely rich and powerful men – the Secret Elite – was formed in England in 1891 with the explicit aim of expanding the British Empire across the entire globe. They planned a European war to destroy Germany as an economic, industrial and imperial competitor and, to that end, drew France then Russia into an alliance termed the Entente Cordiale. Their massive land armies were needed to crush Germany. France would be rewarded with Alsace and Lorraine, while Russia was conned into believing she would get Constantinople.2 Thereafter, seizing the Ottoman capital became a “widespread obsession, bordering on panic” in St Petersburg.3

Had Britain encouraged the friendship of Turkey in 1914, the disaster of Gallipoli would never have happened.4 The Turks generally disliked the Germans and their growing influence,5 and made three separate attempts to ally with Britain. They were rebuffed on each occasion.6 They also pleaded in vain with the French to accept them as an ally,7 and protect them against their old enemy, Russia.8 Poor fools. The French and British alliance with Russia was at the expense of the Turks, not an alliance with the Turks to save them from Russia. Britain and France planned to carve up the oil rich Ottoman Empire. To that end, the Turks had to be pushed into the German camp and defeated.

In July 1914 the majority of the Turkish cabinet was still well disposed towards Britain,9 but their faith was shattered by the seizure of two battleships being built for them in England. As an essay in provocation it was breathtaking.10 “If Britain wanted deliberately to incense the Turks and drive them into the Kaiser’s arms she could not have chosen more effective means.”11 Winston Churchill (a loyal servant of the Secret Elite) seized the dreadnoughts because they were “vital to Britain’s naval predominance.”12 The truth ran much deeper.

Back in February, Russia laid plans for her Black Sea fleet to take Constantinople by landing 127,500 troops and heavy artillery from Odessa. Arrival of the dreadnoughts from England would destroy this plan.13 Russia’s Foreign Minister Sazonov issued a thinly veiled warning to London on 30 July: “It is a matter of the highest degree of importance that… these ships must be retained in England.”14 Fearful that Russia would renege on her commitment to war should the ships be released, the Secret Elite withheld them. It kept Russia on board and helped drive Turkey into the German camp (they signed a treaty on 2 August), but it created a major problem. How to prevent the Russian Black Sea fleet from seizing Constantinople? Two German warships provided the answer. On 4 August, while off the coast of Algeria, the battle cruiser Goeben and attendant light cruiser Breslau received orders to head for Constantinople.
Vastly outnumbered (73 to 2) by French and British warships, the escape of the German cruisers to Constantinople, 1,200 miles away, is described as a “fiasco of tragic errors” by “fumbling” British Admirals.15 The British Admiralty supposedly had no idea where they were heading, but the reality was very different. On 3 August, Kaiser Wilhelm telegraphed King Constantine to say that both warships would be proceeding to Constantinople. This information was transmitted to London,16 and to the British naval mission in Athens.17 Naval Intelligence in London had intercepted and decrypted the actual encoded message from Berlin to Goeben: “Alliance concluded with Turkey. Goeben and Breslau proceed to Constantinople.” The Admiralty knew,18 but relayed information to the Mediterranean fleet that “was either useless or inaccurate.”19 Goeben and Breslau were allowed to escape in order to neutralise the Russian Black Sea fleet. Foreign Secretary Sazonov was outraged that the Royal Navy had failed to prevent it.20

The Ottoman Ambassador in Berlin summed it up perfectly: “Considering the displeasure and complications which a Russian attack on Constantinople would produce in England, the British navy having enabled the German ships to take cover in the Sea of Marmora, has, with the Machiavellianism characteristic of the Foreign Office, foiled any possibility of action by the Russian Black Sea Fleet.”21 Safe arrival of the Goeben rendered a Russian amphibious operation well-nigh impossible,22 and the British Ambassador at Constantinople admitted that their presence served British interests, since “they protected the straits against Russia.”23

On 9 September Admiral Arthur Limpus, head of the British naval mission in Turkey, was recalled. Turkey, although still neutral, closed and mined the Dardanelles. In late October Goeben and Breslau bombarded Sevastopol and other Black Sea ports. Infuriated, Tsar Nicholas insisted on war with Turkey and the seizure of Constantinople for Russia. British and French fears that he would make peace with Germany if Constantinople was denied him gave the Tsar overwhelming diplomatic leverage, and it was agreed that Turkey must now be brought into the war.24

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[link to www.newdawnmagazine.com]
Anonymous Coward
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05/01/2015 07:03 AM
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