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1918 - Constantinople Liberated

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  • 1918 - Constantinople Liberated

    With the defeat of the Ottoman Empire the Catholic and Orthodox church's succesfully champion the reformation of a Byzantine Nation with its capital of Constantinople. Heralded by Greek/Serbian/Russian/Byzantine Orthodox working rarely with Rome force the west to accept this provision of peace. This new Byzantine nation would span much of what would have been Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey, Yugoslavia, and Cyprus.
    "America has gone to hell since John Wayne died". - Al Bundy

    "One finger is all any real American needs"

    "A gesture is worth a thousand words - but you usually only need two"

  • #2
    No need for such an extended political entity in my opinion. Encourage exchanges of population between the Greek-inhabited areas on Turkey's Mediterranean coast and the Turkish population in Constantinople. Delineate an area of land west and east of the city itself and encourage Christian immigration from abroad in both that area and the city itself. The new entity can be called Byzantium or the Byzantine State.

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    • #3
      Even if the new entity could withstand the Muslim backlash without British and French aid (both being pinned down by revolts in their protectorates across the middle east), the South Slav movement would have never accepted domination from Constantinople (Muslim or Christian),... nor do I think the Greeks would have been interested. Romanian and Bulgaria might be interested but what are you going to do about the Muslim Turkish majority in eastern and western Anatolia, etc. How do you hold a Christian state that would now hold a majority population of Muslims?

      The Catholic Church would hold little powere as outside Croatia there are few large communities of Roman Catholics in the former Ottoman Empire or the Balkans.

      Not a proposition with a long life expentantcy.
      The Purist

      Words ought to be a little wild, for they are the assault of thoughts on the unthinking - John Maynard Keynes.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by The Purist View Post
        Romanian and Bulgaria might be interested but what are you going to do about the Muslim Turkish majority in eastern and western Anatolia, etc. How do you hold a Christian state that would now hold a majority population of Muslims?
        Only Russia, Bulgaria and Greece would be directly/primarily interested.

        The new state wouldn't hold a Muslim majority if limited to Turkey's current strip of land on the European continent, the city of Constantinople itself and a few hundred miles off to its West + population exchange + immigration.

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        • #5
          I rather wish the original stipulated premise didn't have what could be interpreted as a veiled anti-Islamic bias (I'm sure unintended), but:

          As to the general concept, certainly, if the post-WWI Greeks hadn't engaged in a classic example of hubris and sought to conquer the heart of Islamic Asia Minor they could have had an enlarged (and historically justifiable) polity from Constantinople (no name change of course) through southern Greece, Crete and most of the Aegean Islands. One interesting question is would that have been advantageous or not to the traditional western (and especially British) goal of restricting Russia/the U.S.S.R. from direct access and influence in the Mediterranean. I also wonder whether the Orthodox peoples have, or would, ever forget or forgive the disgraceful western (instigated by the Venetians) Fourth Crusade's conquest and sack of Constantinople.

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          • #6
            Hmmm... There is a possiblity, however vague. The Greeks were the last European nation to attempt any control of Anatolia, waging a brief war with the new Turkish nation after the French, British, and Italians had departed. The historical result was the Greek army was defeated & several million Ionian Greeks left their traditonal home land, emmigrating to modern Greece.

            Lets supose for amoment that a combination of failure of the Turkish leaders (mayby Kemal Ataturk dies) and continued British support leads to a catastophic defeat of the Turks. Stricken with victory disease the Greeks charge north and find themsleves in possesion of Constantinople, the Bosphous, Adrianople, ect... how does that play out? Could the Greeks hang on to this, or would Hubris lead to failing at this one?

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            • #7
              The Greeks could have just stopped at Constantinople, and the straits could have become an international waterway.

              However, when Germany occupied Greece in WW2, that would have meant Axis access to the Black Sea.
              "Why is the Rum gone?"

              -Captain Jack

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              • #8
                In my earlier post it should read "hundred miles off to its East." Sorry.

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                • #9
                  Liberated or occupied? Liberated from whom?
                  "Ask not what your country can do for you"

                  Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

                  you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Imperial View Post
                    Only Russia, Bulgaria and Greece would be directly/primarily interested.

                    The new state wouldn't hold a Muslim majority if limited to Turkey's current strip of land on the European continent, the city of Constantinople itself and a few hundred miles off to its West + population exchange + immigration.
                    With the Muslim Balkan states to west still might fit.
                    "Ask not what your country can do for you"

                    Left wing, Right Wing same bird that they are killing.

                    you’re entitled to your own opinion but not your own facts.

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                    • #11
                      The 1453 desecration by the Ottoman Turks

                      Originally posted by Half Pint View Post
                      Liberated or occupied? Liberated from whom?
                      It is said that the Hagia Sophia so moved the Russian Czar that he converted all of Russia to Orthodoxy, when Constantinople fell the Turks promptly desecrated the cathedral and white-washed the mosaics.

                      Liberated from whom should be obvious from the first thread, but in case its not, from the Turks.
                      "America has gone to hell since John Wayne died". - Al Bundy

                      "One finger is all any real American needs"

                      "A gesture is worth a thousand words - but you usually only need two"

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I'm not sure why you want to "liberate" Turkish territory from the Turks 500 years after the fact.

                        The Hagia Sofia was converted to a Mosque and the icons painted over because of the prohibition on worshiping 'images'. The problem with the Eastern Orthodox Church at the time was that the "art" had become objects of worship rather than representations of the various saints and episodes of the New Testament. Its called idolatry. Even Catholicism has a prohibition against "idol worship", that is why iconism is not practised in the western Church.

                        As for desecration,... that's not really an argument,... nor is it accurate.

                        here is a good bit from wiki (a starting point at least)

                        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fall_of_Constantinople

                        and the following quote can be found therein,

                        ...Byzantine historian George Sphrantzes was in the city, and witnessed the fall of Constantinople. He later recalled in his chronicle about the fall of the city, what happened at the end of the third day of the conquest:
                        On the third day after the fall of our city, the Sultan celebrated his victory with a great, joyful triumph. He issued a proclamation: the citizens of all ages who had managed to escape detection were to leave their hiding places throughout the city and come out into the open, as they were remain free and no question would be asked. He further declared the restoration of houses and property to those who had abandoned our city before the siege, if they returned home, they would be treated according to their rank and religion, as if nothing had changed.[57][58]
                        The loss of the city was a massive blow to Christendom; the Pope called for an immediate counter-attack in the form of a crusade, but when no European monarch was willing to lead the crusade, the Pope himself decided to go; his early death eliminated the possibility of a counter-attack.
                        With Constantinople beneath his belt, Mehmed II had acquired a great, rich city albeit one in decline due to years of war. The Capital allowed the Turks to establish a permanent supply base in Christian Europe. Further advances into Hungary and the principalities bordering the two kingdoms would have been difficult, if not impossible, without the harbors of Constantinople bringing in supplies and serving as a fortified center from which to administer the empire and strategy.
                        Far from being in its heyday, by then, Constantinople was severely depopulated as a result of the general economic and territorial decline of the empire following its partial recovery from the disaster of the Fourth Crusade inflicted on it by the Christian army two centuries before. Therefore, the city in 1453 was a series of walled villages separated by vast fields encircled in whole by the fifth-century Theodosian walls. When the Ottoman troops first broke through the defenses, many of the leading citizens of these little townlets submitted their surrender to Mehmed's generals[59]. These villages, specifically along the land walls, were allowed to keep their citizens and churches and were protected by Mehmed's special contingents of Janissaries. It was these people who formed what the Ottomans called a Millet, a self-governing community in the multi-national Ottoman Empire of which Constantinople was to become the capital. Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque, although the Greek Orthodox Church remained intact, and Gennadius Scholarius was appointed Patriarch of Constantinople....
                        The Crusaders did far worse when they sacked Constantinople, Antioch, Jerusalem and a host of other eastern Christian and Muslim places of worship.
                        Last edited by The Purist; 14 Oct 09, 14:21.
                        The Purist

                        Words ought to be a little wild, for they are the assault of thoughts on the unthinking - John Maynard Keynes.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by The Purist View Post
                          The Hagia Sofia was converted to a Mosque and the icons painted over because of the prohibition on worshiping 'images'. The problem with the Eastern Orthodox Church at the time was that the "art" had become objects of worship rather than representations of the various saints and episodes of the New Testament. Its called idolatry. Even Catholicism has a prohibition against "idol worship", that is why iconism is not practised in the western Church.
                          That problem was made up by the iconoclasts who in turn were influenced by Islamic precepts regarding the portrayal of prophets. The accusations of idolatry are nonsense since they can be superficially raised against any object that is included in religious rites.

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                          • #14
                            Constantinople was indeed a mostly dead city when it fell.... but that in itself is a pretty amazing testament to the durability of that city's defenses. And it was a fairly close-run thing in that final siege.

                            If done right, this siege would make a good movie. It has all the right elements... I could go on for a Dozen threads about 1453. Did you know that this was the last year of the 100 years war, and that more time had passed between the first and the final Muslim attacks on that city than has passed since it fell?

                            In fact, I think it only fell twice since Constantine made it his city.
                            It is disappointing that the Turks changed the name, but oh well...
                            "Why is the Rum gone?"

                            -Captain Jack

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                            • #15
                              One interesting thing about Hagia Sofia, and perhaps a sign of tolerance and grudging admiration at times for the architecture of opposing religions, is the fact that it was not torn down after the Ottoman conquest, but rather converted to a mosque. I haven't yet been there, but when in Spain was struck by an analagous situation, the 1286 reconquest of Cordoba and placing a church in the middle of the great mosque. In neither case did the conquerors tear down their opponents structures (as was sadly done in Afghanistan with the buddhist statues). It's a remarkable feeling to be in the mosque area at Cordoba and then go into the superbaroque chapel, I imagine not unlike going to hagia Sophia, especially now that it's a museum.

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