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Atatürk, Kemal

Subject History

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405189224.2011.x


(1881–1938), first President of Turkey (1923–38), following the collapse of Ottoman rule (see turkey and europe ). Born Mustafa Kemal, he later became popularly known as Atatürk (“Father of the Turks”) – which title was then formally confirmed in 1935 by the parliament of the republican regime whose creation he had led. In 1908–9 he had participated in the rebellion of the young turks against the autocratic sultanate of abdul hamid ii , before going on to consolidate his military reputation in the italo-turkish war of 1911 and in the defense of the dardanelles four years later. Following Turkey's defeat in world war i , he became commander in Anatolia. From there he began in 1919 his campaign against Allied military control and Greek demands for territorial annexations. By April 1920 he had succeeded in bringing disparate Turkish groups into a Grand National Assembly, which then elected him to head a provisional government bent upon supplanting Ottoman authority. His dominance was confirmed by his skilful leadership in the greek–turkish war of 1921–2, which prompted the Allies to abandon the unratified sèvres treaty of 1920 (see also paris peace settlement ) and to negotiate with him the altogether less punitive lausanne treaty of July 1923. In the following October, 11 months after the sultanate had been declared abolished, the National Assembly formally inaugurated ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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