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More muddled history and The One Unforgivable Crime

Reader comment on item: Turkey in Cyprus vs. Israel in Gaza
in response to reader comment: Lies make things worse, not better, Caleb.

Submitted by Caleb (United States), Sep 13, 2010 at 23:48

The Greek Communists were forgiven many things after the civil war ended but taking the children was so abhorrent, so against all the values of Greek and Western civilization that it was an unhealed wound in the society for generations afterward. Like all Mediterranean peoples, Greeks believe strongly in the family. But Communism puts the State and the Party first, seeking always to weaken the family because it competes with those organs. There was no justification for this act of mass abduction and brainwashing--which failed in the end as did Communism itself. There were no twentieth century "Janisaries" [from the Turkish **Yeni Ceri** = "new soldiers"]. The Royal Hellenic Republic whatever its failings did not make war on children. Nor were the people of the Soviet satellites particularly glad to receive these thousands of extra mouths to feed out of already strained resources, however useful the boss in Moscow thought they might prove in a renewed effort to Communize Greece. All this is well described in the 1983 book "Eleni" by Greek-American journalist Nicholas Gage (Nicola Gatzoyiannis), later made into a feature film), about his search to learn what became of his mother during the Civil War, a search that took him in part to Communist Czechoslovakia. The book now is available in a Greek edition. Did Turkey sign treaties with the Soviet Union? Yes, there was the Treaty of Kars (1921) by which National Turkey got back the Kars region and some other areas (and which the USSR tried to cancel in 1945). Turkey also was able to evict the Italians from Adala, the British from Chanak (with much more effort), the French, and the Greeks--who had invaded much of western Anatolia in a revenge campaign involving much cruelty and wanton destruction. There was, then a certain convergence of aims between the nascent Soviet Union and the reborn Turkish state, both with foreign armies on their soil. It might be useful to recall that the Soviet Union also entered in the Rapallo Pact with Germany only a year later. Did Turkey allow ships of the Nazi **Kriegsmarine** to transit the Straits during World War II? Yes it did, as it was bound to do under the Montreux Convention. Turkey also rescued as many as 10,000 Jews from deportation and certain death at the hands of those same Nazis. Turkey made a treaty with Germany when the **Panzers** were fifty miles from Istanbul, the **Wehrmacht** having invaded and conquered Greece after Mussolini's army had ground to a halt there. Oddly, Winston Churchill, haunted perhaps by the Gallipoli campaign-- was obsessed with bringing Turkey in the War on the **Allied** side although Turkey did not have anything like a modern army in 1943.

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