'Happy' Ottoman and Kemalist Jews
Submitted by Ianus (Poland), Apr 10, 2009 at 15:11
yasemin wrote :
> Many nations had problems with Jewish people except Turkey. They always had been secure and happy and rich in Turkey and also in Ottoman Empirement.<
It seems that in your Ottoman empire nobody had the slightest reason to complain, particularly none of the oppressed rayas of whom the Jews were a part. If anyone disliked the Ottomans it was because of his or her malice and ingratitude. The rayas had a great time under shari'a, didn't they ? And the Jews should praise their time in Turkey as the happiest in their history, shouldn't they ?
Perhaps being a raya, always prejudiced by Moslem law in case of a conflict with a Moslem, always exposed to physical and verbal attacks and greed of the revengeful Moslems is thought by Turks to be what constitues happiness. Definitely, the Turkish wolves were happy to exploit the defenceless infidel herd ... But I doubt if any Jew having a choice between - say - 17th c. Holland and the Ottoman Turkey would have stayed in your jihadist Ottoman paradise for a single day.
I intended to write a longer reply to your hagiographic propaganda on happy Jews under Ottoman shari'a but I am sure Andrew Bostom did it much better than I would ever do. So inspect the site and try to use your own brain -if you still can- instaed of relying on the impaired brain of the notorious counterfeiters from the Ministry of Turkish Self-Glorification and pro-Turkish Propaganda.
An interesting quote from the latter article about 19th century Palestine shows how "secure and happy and rich in Turkey and also in Ottoman Empire" the Jews were.
> Inside the towns, Jews and other dhimmis were frequently attacked, wounded, and even killed by local Muslims and Turkish soldiers. Such attacks were frequently for trivial reasons: Wilson [in British Foreign Office correspondence] recalled having met a Jew who had been badly wounded by a Turkish soldier for not having instantly dismounted when ordered to give up his donkey to a soldier of the Sultan. Many Jews were killed for less. On occasion the authorities attempted to get some form of redress but this was by no means always the case: the Turkish authorities themselves were sometimes responsible for beating Jews to death for some unproven charge. After one such occasion [British Consul] Young remarked: 'I must say I am sorry and surprised that the Governor could have acted so savage a part— for certainly what I have seen of him I should have thought him superior to such wanton inhumanity— but it was a Jew— without friends or protection— it serves to show well that it is not without reason that the poor Jew, even in the nineteenth century, lives from day to day in terror of his life'.<
Much more fled from Kemalist Turkey and for very good reasons. In 1934 -at a time where Hitler started his antiJewish pogroms- Kemal engineered also a Jewish pogrom in Thrace and the Hellespont area. The area was strategic and Ataturk contempted Jews as much as he hated all foreigners and treated them as potential traitors. No political pogroms in a dictatorship like that of Ataturk's could happen spontaneously. Jewish shops were looted, Jews beaten . Officially 3000 panic-stricken Jews had to flee their homes. Furthermore Ataturk introduced also discriminatory tax system in which non-Turks had to pay up to four times more than Moslem Turks. Curiously enough, even the Islamic converts from Judaism were taxed double as the Moslems. This discriminatory tax system was refined after Ataturk's death in 1942 into the infamous "Varlık Vergisi" ("wealth tax") . It intended to ruin the Greek , Armenian and Jewish community and force them to leave the country or cease to play any role in teh capital. Those unable to pay it were sent to labor camps while about 30,000 Jews emigrated. It worked. In September 1955, the Istanbul Pogrom was organized by the authorities against the Greek, Jewish, and Armenian communities of Istanbul and other major Turkish cities. Its scale greatly surpassed that of 1934. More than 4,000 shops and 1,000 houses were destroyed and 10,000 Jews fled Turkey.
So much for Turkey's happy Jews under Kemalism.
>It is not to talk without knowing.<
Doctor, heal thyself!
Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".
Reader comments (523) on this item
Comment on this item
You can help support Daniel Pipes' work by making a tax-deductible donation to the Middle East Forum. Daniel J. Pipes