Crescent and Iron Cross

Crescent and Iron Cross

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Crescent and Iron Cross by E. F. Benson

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1918

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Crescent and Iron Cross

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When the Young Turks came into power, they proclaimed that they were going to weld the Ottoman Empire into one homogeneous and harmonious whole. But by a piece of brilliant paradoxical resasoning, says Mr. Benson, German determined that it was she who was going to do it for them.

Book Excerpt

oligarchy, so long as there were houris to divert their leisure, tribute of youths to swell their armies, and taxes wrung from starving subjects to maintain their pomp, there was not one of those who held the reins of government who cared the flick of an eyelash for the needs of the nations on whom the Empire rested, for the cultivation of its soil that would yield a hundredfold to the skilled husbandman, or for the exploitation and development of its internal wealth. While there was left in the emaciated carcase of the Turkish Empire enough live tissue for the cancerous Government to grow fat on, it gave not one thought to the welfare of all those races on whom it had fastened itself. Province after province of its European dominions might be lost to it, but the Balance of Power still kept the Sultan on his throne, and left the peoples of Asia Minor and Syria at his mercy. They were largely of alien religion and of alien tongue, and their individual weakness was his strength. Neglect, and the decay consequen

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