102-The deputation that had gone to Kutayah had actually been arrested

As I have already remarked, the deputation that had gone to Kutayah had actually been arrested

As I have already remarked, the deputation that had gone to Kutayah had actually been arrested. The wording in the sense you are aware of had been dictated to them. I knew before the deputation left what would happen; that is why I had Kiasim Pasha, who by chance sat on my left hand during the interview, given to understand that he must not go, although Reshid Bey insisted that he should accompany him. For, if they kept Kiasim Pasha under arrest, not temporally but permanently, they could gain great advantage by the use of his signature.

During the same night I sent this reply: “I shall submit your telegram to the Council of Ministers to-morrow. )? On the night of the 27 th December I sent the following telegram in cipher at the same time to Ismet Bey Effendi, in command of the western front at Eski-Shehr:

“I send you herewith the exact wording of the telegram sent by the deputation that went to Kutayah. I beg you to forward a sum marised account of the most essential points telegraphically to Refet Bey and Fahreddin Bey.

“The telegraphic reply which I had sent personally to the depu tation was simply this: ( I shall submit your telegram to the Council of Ministers to-morrow. Following the resolution of the Council of Ministers I shall inform the deputation to-morrow that their mission is fulfilled and that they shall return to Angora as soon as possible. Then I intend to explain the matter in detail to the Assembly. I re quest Ismet Bey and Refet Bey to keep their troops where they are concentrated and ready for action against the flying columns and to pay more attention to the general dispositions that have been decided upon.

“In any case, I consider that we must not come into action before they have begun the attack themselves.”

Mustapha Kemal, President of the Grand National Assembly.

On the following day this telegram was sent to the western and southern fronts:

In cipher. 27 ttL December, 1920.

To the Commanding Officer of the I st Division on the

Western Front. To the Commanding Officer of the I st Division on the

Southern Front.

For Refet Bey Effendi and Ismet Bey Effendi. The telegram from the deputation that was sent to Kutayah has been read at the Council of Ministers who have decided that the following resolutions shall be sent directly to Kutayah to-night by the President of the Grand National Assembly in an open telegram, declaring that the work of the deputation is regarded as completed. Be good enough to take the necessary steps and give me your opinion. (Fewsi, Acting Chief of the General Staff.)

Salih, Chief of the Intelligence Department.

Decree.

27 tii December, 1920.

Considering the fact that the necessity and continuance of the unity of the ideal aim, and the unconditional obedience of the troops must be placed above everything else for the salvation and actual liberation of our country, the Council of Ministers after having taken notice of the telegram sent by Djelal Bey, Reshid Bey, Ejub Sabri Bey, Wehbi Bey and Kilidj Ali Bey, members of the National Assembly, on the 26 th December, and having considered the facts produced by it have come to the following decisions:

1. The I st Flying Column must obey the laws of the Grand National Assembly and the regulations and orders of the Government unreservedly and unconditionally, and must submit to military dis cipline in the same manner as the other troops.

2. The suggestions and observations concerning the fulfilment of military obligations and the affairs of the command of the I st Flying Column are exclusively under the authority of the command under whom they serve and through this command of the other competent authorities.

3. It is the duty of the Chief of the Staff to take the necessary

steps in this matter. /0 . , x , r , -, Tr t

^ (Signed) Mustapha Kemal.

Fehmi, Minister of Public Worship and Education. Fewsi, Minister of National Defence. Ahmed Muhtar, Minister for Foreign Affairs. Dr. Adnan, Minister of the Interior. Fewsi, Acting Chief of the General Staff. Fend, Minister of Finance,

On the 27 th December I answered the telegram from Djelal Bey, Reshid Bey, Ejub Sabri Bey, Wehbi Bey and Kilidj Ali Bey, members of the National Assembly. I communicated to them word for word the resolution of the Council of Ministers, and added: “In terms of this resolution I request you to return to Angora, because the special mission which we asked you to fulfil has been accomplished.”

I received the following telegram from the deputation on the *28 th December:

Kutayah, 28 th December, 1920. To the President of the Grand National Assembly, Angora.

We considered your telegram containing the resolution of the Council of Ministers yesterday. We have all come here in full sincerity in obedience to your commands for the salvation of the country and nation. We have convinced ourselves about the state of affairs here and at Eski-Shehr from what we have seen.

We have examined the question in dispute impartially and in a spirit of perfect justice. We have explained to you the stages and development of the negotiations as they took place and have written to you as to how in our honest conviction a solution would be possible. From what we have written it is impossible for us to under stand what the resolution of which we have been informed can mean. On the contrary, we observe that our report, which was intended to secure the salvation and welfare of our country, has not been inter preted in a favourable light. We beg you to understand that the question will not admit of being further prolonged.

Djelal, Reshid, Ejub Sabri, Wehbi, Kilidj AH. This was my reply to this telegram:

In cipher. At the instrument.

To Djelal Bey, Reshid, Ejub Sabri Bey, Wehbi Bey, Kilidj Ali Bey, Members of the National Assembly, Kutayah.

Reply to your telegram in cipher of the 28 th December, 1920.

The cordial interest which you take in the salvation of our country and nation fills me with gratitude.

I had officially brought the question before the Government be fore you left, and after having given you instructions and shown you the documents I asked you to take the trouble to undertake this journey for the purpose of explaining to our comrades in that part of the country what the guiding lines are that they should follow.

The point that you mention in your telegram has, by the way, also been considered here. I had declared that the general measures and regulations of the Government could not have the object of securing to any special party a particular position of predominance. 46 1

Moreover, the resolution of the Council of Ministers contains once more in a definite official form the points which are well known and which it is everybody s duty to obey. Your communications have not in any way been unfavourably interpreted. It only shows me as I have also maintained here that my perfectly sincere efforts and the personal and private steps I have undertaken for the last month and a half have, unfortunately, not been appreciated. This has compelled me to delegate the duty of considering and trying to solve this question to competent and responsible authorities.

Mustapha Kemal, President of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey.

It was discovered that the members of the deputation to Kutayah had succeeded in escaping from the hands of Edhem Bey and his brothers by convincing them that it would be better for them if they gave an account of the situation before the Assembly. Reshid Bey had naturally remained at Kutayah,

After I had communicated the resolution of the Council of Ministers to Kutayah and informed the deputation that they were to return, I ordered the commanders at the fronts to proceed simultaneously against the mutineers Edhem and his brothers.

We conceived it to be an imperative duty to record an example in the history of our revolution of a wholesome punishment to these brothers and their followers, as well as the enemy on whom they leaned for support, by reducing them to impotence and chastising them. These were the brothers who regarded military operations as a pillaging expedition, the organisation and administration of the State as an enterprise of brigands, in which innocent children were kidnapped and concealed in the mountains for the purpose of ex torting ransom. These were the insolent, shameless and impudent men who infested the whole of our Turkish country and filled the Grand National Assembly of the Turkish Nation with their clamour and their deception these were the creatures who were so low and despicable that they became the spies and creatures of any enemy for a crust of bread! With this aim of inflicting chastisement we took these measures:

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