After writing two successive conclusions to this history, I find it necessary to add another, in view of the two kaleidoscopic revolutions just enacted in Constantinople, and the blood-curdling tragedies in Cilicia and Northern Syria. They seem to be parts of the expiring throes of Islamic despotism. The Liberal Midhat Constitution of 1876, so soon throttled by Abdul Hamid, and revived by the Young Turkey heroes, Niazi Beg and Enver Beg, July 23, 1908, roused against itself the fury of all the reactionary and absolutist forces in the empire headed by the Yildiz palace gang of Abdul Hamid, and the cause of liberty seemed to be lost a second time. But the well-drilled and loyal army of Salonica once more saved Constantinople, banished the old Sultan and placed his younger brother Reshad, a better man, on the throne, April 24, 1909, as Sultan Mohammed V.
Simultaneously with this furious outbreak in the capital, came the Cilician, sacrificing more than thirty thousand Armenian Christian lives and leaving more than that number of homeless and starving widows and orphans.
Mukhtar Pasha el Ghazi, Turkish commissioner in Egypt for twenty years, and now loyal to the Constitution, writes from Constantinople to a Turkish pasha in Egypt, that had the entrance of the Salonica army been delayed five days, not only Constantinople but all the cities in the empire would have been given over to massacre and pillage. Thank God that such horrors were averted! -and only a small part of the fiendish programme was carried out - i.e., that in Cilicia and Northern Syria.
I confess myself unable to predict what will come next. Time alone will reveal the future of this hapless empire. The hand of God is, however, so manifest in recent events that we may firmly believe that a higher and better future is in store for the new Ottoman nation.
After the Armenian massacres, in 1896, Sir Lewis Morris wrote a burning appeal to Europe to intervene, and seemed to have a seer's vision as he wrote:
Nay, nay, it is enough! enough! No more
Shall black Oppression rule. Her reign is o'er.
No more, O Earth, no more.
Let not despair afflict your brethren still!
Let the new-coming Age, a happier birth,
Bless these waste places of the suffering Earth!
Let Peace, with Law, the tranquil valleys fill,
And make the desert blossom as the rose!"
Postscript: It was impracticable for my father to personally supervise the bringing out of this book. He is therefore not responsible for any oversights in proof-reading.
He would desire to record his gratitude to Dr. Dennis for valuable suggestions on detail points which his exact knowledge made available.
H. W. J., ED.
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