Italians-Antalya 1919-1921

Discussions on the final era of the Ottoman Empire, from the Young Turk Revolution of 1908 until the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923.
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Peter H
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Italians-Antalya 1919-1921

Post by Peter H » 23 Aug 2005 05:42

Any information on the Italian forces in the occupation of Antalya,Turkey would be appreciated.

Garrison units also were at Konya(a 100 miles inland from Antalya) and the coastal city of Bodrum on the Aegean.

The occupation force is said to have totalled around 13,500 men(one division?).

Tolga Alkan
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Post by Tolga Alkan » 23 Aug 2005 12:26

We have a lot of resources on occupation of Antalya by the Italians but mostly covered in Turkish.I've no time to translate something at the moment.I would like to help you when I find free time to go further on translation.I'm sorry for not being helpful at the moment.

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RCW Mark
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Post by RCW Mark » 24 Aug 2005 13:18

Les armées alliées en Orient après l’armistice de 1918 Volume 3 covers the occupation troops in Turkey. It is in French, naturally.

Mark

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Peter H
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Post by Peter H » 24 Aug 2005 13:55

Thanks gentlemen.

The Italian occupiers were said to have had a somewhat pro-Kemal,or at best neutral stance with proceedings in Turkey at the time and never got into any major entanglements with the Turkish forces.

Durand
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Post by Durand » 24 Aug 2005 15:28

Although it does not answer the question, here is some information regarding the initial occupation of Adalia/Antayla that might be of interest. An Italian battleship sailed into the harbor at Adalia on 12 March 1919. The ship's captain notified the local Turkish governor that, due to bandit activity in the vicinity, Italy was now responsible for security in the area. The governor rejected the offer. Later that night, an explosion occurred in a building next to the home of an Italian bank director and resident of the city. In response, 300 Italian sailors went ashore to occupy the town and restore order. Several days later, the sailors were replaced by Italian marines based at Rhodes. Italian forces then began moving up the coast toward Smyrna. Source: Smyrna 1922 by Marjorie Housepian Dobkin (p. 62).

Best Regards,

Durand

Tosun Saral
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Post by Tosun Saral » 24 Jan 2006 13:16

It is less known in Turkey. On March 28th 1919 Italians occupied Antalya. then Fethiye, Marmaris, Bodrum, Konya, Isparta and Aksehir. There were also archeologs with the army. They immediately began to collect antic treasures and transported them to Italian consulate. The high school teacher Suleyman Fikri Bey protested Italians and fought to get those antic treasures. After getting them from Italians he collected all antics in the Mosque of Tekeli Mehmet Pasha. After the withdrawel of Italians those antics became the grundstein of Antalya Museum.
http://64.233.161.104/search?q=cache:KE ... nlar&hl=tr

During the occupation Italians acted as if they were pro Turkish. They gave food, goods and matarial to poor. They builded new schools and renewed the old schools, opened new roads.They even helped those who refuged from Greek occupied regions. Banco di Roma opened a branch in Antalya.

Italians tried their best not to fight with Turks. They gave information to Kemalist forces. They supported them.

On the other hand many Turks were againts Italian occupation of Antalya. Mehmet Emin Bey, he got Adison as his surmane after the new Turkish Republics law reforms, was one of them. He was the publisher of "Antalya" news paper. He wrote againts Italians. Our pro Turk and friendly Italians arrested him and exiled to Rhodos Island.

Italians moved to Konya on December 23 1919.

May 25 1921 Italians withdrawed from Marmaris. June 21st 1921 Italians withdrawed from Antalya region. July 5th Italians left Antalya to the Turks.
Italian High Commissioner Count Sforza was thinking to support Mustafa Kemal.

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Lupo Solitario
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Post by Lupo Solitario » 25 Jan 2006 15:28

After WWI italy (as other western countries) tried to gain concessions in Anatolia and sent a military contingent. After few time, anyway, Italy started to support Kemalist movement. After 1920, italians started to retreat from anatolic position and leave them definitely in 1922. This mainly for two reasons:
-having support for definitive adsorption of Dedecaneso islands
-having support for the growing anti-greek italian policy


some detail more:
Italy receives at Paris the internal Cilicia and part of western Anatolia. The first italian land at Antalya March, 29th, 1919. The bulk of forces arrives at the end of april. The "anatolic expeditionary corps" (Gen. Battistoni) includes:
34th Infantry Regiment
IV Bersaglieri Battalion
two squadrons of Roma Light Horse Regiment
a mountain artillery battalion
supports
joining the XXXI Bersaglieri Battalion which had been the first italian unit to land at Antalya. In August arrives a plane group.

The italian presence is taken as "provisional" and largely in anti-greek position and diplomatic efforts are made to avoid a clash with turkish nationalist forces. In fall 1919, italian carabinieri start to reorganize the turk gendarmery.
July 7-8, 1919 some combat action between italian and greek forces; it's fixed a separation line
July 14 italian forces in Anatolia and Egean are unified. The contingent includes also civilian missions including geographical and archeological ones. Political powers are usually given to local authorities while italians keep public order duties.
October 25, the italian commander, Gen. Elia, writes:
"...Our aims are political and commercial. Italian interests are serving equilibria in the Med against anglo-french gains in Syria and Palestina, reduce greek expansion and be good at telling something on european Turkey destiny..."
The contingent is reduced in following months. In March 1920, there are only three italian garrisons in anatolia

Indipendent by this contingent, an italian battalion-sized task force, named only "K Unit" was given in April 1919 to Konya garrison under British command. The K unit is retired in March 1920

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Post by Tosun Saral » 25 Jan 2006 16:16

Dear Lupo, Thank you for your information. Iam from Fethiye. I always heard from my uncles and aunts that the Italians were very friendly to people in Fethiye. My older uncle let his children to study University in Florenz. My girl nephew even married an Italian from the Uni. and still lives there happily with her half Italian half Turkish sons and husband.

On the other hand Mussolini was not Turkish friendly. He aimed to gain the territory that Italians left to Kemalist Turks. At that time Rhodos and Dodocanes were Italian soil. He send navy to the Turkish cost to show power. They even come to fethiye. The Turkish General Staf in Ankara ordered my late father who was at that time a staff captain to investigate the matter in Fethiye and to organize a defence mobility. My father sailed to fethiye with a passenger steamboat from Istanbul. On the way he got acqueinted with a gentlemen from Fethiye. He was the mayor of the town. When they reached to Fethiye, the family of the mayor was waiting at the port. One of the family members was the young sister of the mayor. My father fell in love with that girl at first sight. They married.
http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/7d696/

Il vino italiano e buono.
With my best wishes

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Lupo Solitario
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Post by Lupo Solitario » 25 Jan 2006 16:32

Tosun Saral wrote:Dear Lupo, Thank you for your information. Iam from Fethiye. I always heard from my uncles and aunts that the Italians were very friendly to people in Fethiye. My older uncle let his children to study University in Florenz. My girl nephew even married an Italian from the Uni. and still lives there happily with her half Italian half Turkish sons and husband.

On the other hand Mussolini was not Turkish friendly. He aimed to gain the territory that Italians left to Kemalist Turks. At that time Rhodos and Dodocanes were Italian soil. He send navy to the Turkish cost to show power. They even come to fethiye. The Turkish General Staf in Ankara ordered my late father who was at that time a staff captain to investigate the matter in Fethiye and to organize a defence mobility. My father sailed to fethiye with a passenger steamboat from Istanbul. On the way he got acqueinted with a gentlemen from Fethiye. He was the mayor of the town. When they reached to Fethiye, the family of the mayor was waiting at the port. One of the family members was the young sister of the mayor. My father fell in love with that girl at first sight. They married.
http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/7d696/

Il vino italiano e buono.
With my best wishes


Given the connection with your family history I'd tell that episode you're narrating happened about 1940, doesn't it?

Tosun Saral
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Post by Tosun Saral » 25 Jan 2006 17:36

Yes Sir ! in 1940

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Chavusch
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Post by Chavusch » 01 Sep 2006 22:11

Although In occupation of the Istanbul they respresent themself as of their 600 years Catholic ancestors who lives moslty in Galata region < Istanbul`s old Genoves trade center> they were some clashes between Turkish under ground fighters but mostly they were quiete and friendly against the Turks...but meanwhile fully advising and material support to Greek army<s> in Eastern Anatolia , Italians they never fought Kemalist movement and Turk forces , they are as of winner allied membership just to keep their promises to ever greatest Greek fun and supporter but ever gratest Turk enemy English George Lyod cabinet ,came to occupied deep southern Aegean region and spent some piecefully time overthere , established very friendly and CIVILIZED relations with locals and when the time arrived they just understud that status quo is seriously changing and no more joke! French trrops badly beating by local poorly armed citizens of the both Antep and Urfa with heavy loses !that means is very clearly trouble at the their door... so just left w/o any major incedent in almost piecefully to their lovely Italian owned and occupied Eagean islands ...

Always carpe diem per Italianos..

Si ,Barolo is best full body Nebiolo and still my Favorite...

space_frog
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Re: Italians-Antalya 1919-1921

Post by space_frog » 04 Apr 2018 23:23

Hey all,
Any information about soldiers that did not return to Italy from Turkey is appreciated.

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