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The United States Response to Turkish Nationalism and Reform, 1914-1939

The United States Response to Turkish Nationalism and Reform, 1914-1939

Copyright Date: 1971
Edition: NED - New edition
Pages: 292
  • Cite this Item
  • Book Info
    The United States Response to Turkish Nationalism and Reform, 1914-1939
    Book Description:

    Professor Trask analyzes a critical period in the history of relations between the United States and Turkey. The period from the beginning of World War I to the start of World War II, covered in this book, forms a significant part of the background necessary to an understanding of the present political importance to America of the Middle East.

    eISBN: 978-1-4529-3717-5
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. [i]-[vi])
  2. Preface
    (pp. [vii]-[viii])
    Roger R. Trask
  3. Table of Contents
    (pp. [ix]-2)
  4. The Highlights of Turkish-American Relations to 1914
    (pp. 3-15)

    An appreciation of Turkish-American relations in the twentieth century requires understanding of interaction extending back to the late eighteenth century. Associations between the two nations before World War I were at least formally cordial, although neither could look to the other as a close friend or as an important diplomatic or commercial partner.¹

    During the American colonial period traders were the first Americans attracted to the Ottoman Empire, particularly to the port of Izmir.² United States newspapers advertised figs and other Turkish goods as early as the 1780s. Philadelphia interests established the mercantile firm of Woodmas and Offley as the...

  5. World War I to Lausanne, 1914–1923
    (pp. 16-36)

    Europe’s eruption into war in late July and early August, 1914, seriously complicated relations between the United States and Turkey. The Ottoman Empire’s assessment of its national interest ultimately dictated association with the German Empire. The Turks had reason to identify with Germany, in part because the Kaiser’s government opposed two countries, Russia and Great Britain, against which Turkey had special grievances. The Ottoman government, still controlled by the Young Turks, feared that Russia, if victorious in the struggle, would attempt to satisfy its historic ambition to dominate the Straits area. Russia’s ally, Great Britain, had not sympathized with the...

  6. Rejection of the Lausanne Treaty and Resumption of Diplomatic Relations, 1923–1927
    (pp. 37-64)

    On January 18, 1927, the United States Senate rejected the Treaty of Lausanne by a vote of fifty to thirty-four, six short of the required two-thirds majority. Strong Armenian and church opposition and the injection of a partisan political struggle complicated the treaty’s congressional history. The Senate vote almost three years after President Calvin Coolidge submitted the treaty for consideration forced the United States and Turkey to find another way to regularize their diplomatic relations.¹

    Opposition to the Lausanne Treaty began almost as soon as it was signed. Enemies of the treaty were more vocal than its supporters, and they...

  7. America Faces Turkey: The Framework of Turkish-American Relations in the Interwar Period
    (pp. 65-93)

    When the United States re-established formal relations with Turkey in 1927, that nation was much different than it had been when Ambassador Elkus left in 1917. The decadent and sprawling Ottoman Empire had been transformed into a dynamic republic under the leadership of a national hero, Kemal Atatürk. Turkey’s outlook on both domestic and foreign affairs was vastly different than it had been in the days of the Sultans. Relieved of many of the problems of the old Ottoman Empire, the new republic was able to chart a progressive and modernizing course. On the domestic scene, Atatürk instituted a series...

  8. The Economic Dimension: Commercial Relations Between the Wars
    (pp. 94-126)

    Historically, the earliest links between Turkey and the United States had been made by traders, and commercial exchange traditionally had been one of the main areas of interest in Turkish-American relations. There was no substantial increase in volume between the wars, but bilateral trade remained a significant concern of the two nations. There were important markets in the United States for certain Turkish products. The Turks not only wanted some particular American commodities but also worked to expand trade as one phase of their extensive program of economic modernization and development.

    World War I and the breaking of diplomatic relations...

  9. The Economic Dimension: Investments and Technical Aid
    (pp. 127-146)

    Since the end of World War II, the influence of the United States in determining the nature of economic development in the Republic of Turkey has been obvious.¹ The significant American economic impact in Turkey since 1945 has been partly the result of vastly expanded political influence there.² Although the demands of international politics after 1945 have been of prime significance to both the United States and Turkey, part of the historical basis for the American role in Turkish economic development in this period was established during the interwar era. Ironically, from the early 1920s to 1939, the political noninvolvement...

  10. “Unnamed Christianity”: The American Educational Effort
    (pp. 147-169)

    Before World War I, American missionary educators provided the basis for one of the most important links between the United States and the Ottoman Empire and also played a prominent role in education within the Empire.¹ World War I, which found Turkey fighting with the Central Powers, of necessity led to some curtailment of American educational work, especially after the United States became associated with Turkey’s enemies in April, 1917. Factors of more significance than World War I in explaining the problems of American educators in Turkey included the postwar disintegration of the Ottoman Empire and the Turkish nationalist movement,...

  11. The Expansion of Friendship: Social, Cultural, and Philanthropic Activities
    (pp. 170-187)

    Although the settling of many specific diplomatic problems contributed greatly to the development of rapprochement between Turkey and the United States in the interwar period, social, cultural, and philanthropic activities also were extremely valuable. As already noted, the educational work of the missionaries, in part a philanthropic effort, was an important kind of interrelationship between Turks and Americans. The American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions also supported a medical program, which, together with two independent American hospitals, provided badly needed medical facilities in Turkey. Another outlet for American charity materialized when physical disaster struck. The American Red Cross, working...

  12. The Status of Citizens: Problems and Solutions
    (pp. 188-216)

    Aside from the broad task of applying general policy and handling questions of bilateral or international scope, a diplomat in the field must spend considerable time looking after the interests of the individual citizens of the nation he represents. A United States citizen residing and working in a foreign country normally is protected by various treaties and agreements providing certain privileges and immunities. American citizens in Turkey after World War I — educators, traders, archaeologists, technical experts, manufacturers, or tourists — unfortunately did not have all of these normal guarantees. The capitulations, long a shield behind which foreigners in Turkey...

  13. The United States, Turkey, and International Politics, 1923–1939
    (pp. 217-239)

    The Ottoman Empire emerged from World War I as a decadent, defeated, and dying nation. Occupied in many areas by Allied forces, invaded by the Greeks, and deprived of much of its territory by the Treaty of Sèvres in 1920, the future of the embattled nation seemed one of domestic confusion and international obscurity. A savior appeared, however, in the person of Kemal Atatürk, who rallied the Turkish peasants of the interior to resist the Greek invaders. The fight ended in success with the expulsion of the Greeks through Izmir in September, 1922. The Lausanne conference confirmed the Kemalist victory...

  14. Conclusions
    (pp. 240-248)

    The occasional comments by scholars touching on Turkish-American relations usually dismiss the years between the two world wars as of little consequence. “Until World War II,” Lewis V. Thomas has written, “Turkey remained for most Americans a distant land.”¹ According to another scholar, “the political approach of the United States toward the Middle East up to 1941 could be described as one of indifference, good will, and a conviction that the area was a British preserve where no major American interests were involved.”² These judgments are generally accurate in the sense that the United States did not view Turkey as...

  15. Bibliography
    (pp. 249-270)
  16. Index
    (pp. 271-280)