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THE TURKISH QUESTION
other nations against the arrogant attitude people of Turkey. The reverse is the fact. assumed, together with the instinct for self- Prejudice against them and against the preservation, make Pan-Germanism as impos- Christians who are carrying them on there sible of execution as was Napoleon's vision doubtless is, and opposition to them by some of world rule.
men high in political and ecclesiastical circles. It is not because Europe wants to crush But in the main the Americans have comGermany that it is in arms to-day, but because mended themselves to the Turks. America it will not submit to be supine under German has no desire to encroach on Turkey's terriautocratic command.
tory, or to possess Constantinople, or to exercise any political control in Turkey's
affairs. No considerable body of Americans THE TURKISH QUESTION
are interested in making money out of Turkey,
and the interest of the missionaries and the No European Power has a greater interest teachers and doctors has not been to make in the maintenance of justice and peace in proselytes out of the Turks. In consequence, Turkey than has the United tes.
there is in Turkey no such hostility to America Americans have in Turkey several hundred as there is to her nearer national neighbors. educational and philanthropic institutions, in- The Turks have good reason to believe that cluding ten colleges, twenty high schools, and they have no disinterested friends in Europe, twelve hospitals, all filled to the doors. These that their only unselfish friends are Amerinstitutions have been firmly established at icans. important points at an expense of many Hitherto the protection of American citimillions of dollars, and they are maintained zens in Turkey has depended, as the protecby hundreds of American citizens residing in tion of other foreigners in Turkey has Turkey. These men and women have gone depended, on certain special treaties; detailed thither with the full assent of the Turk- information respecting them and how they ish Government, and have purchased their grew up will be found on another page. property and constructed their buildings with Enough here to say that owing to the proits direct authorization. Their object is not visions of these treaties. Turkey is unable to to make money out of the people, but to increase or reduce her customs duties without render disinterested service to the people. the consent of the Powers; foreigners have They are not the propagandists of a hostile the right of trial in civil and criminal cases or a novel religion. Their schools and col- by their own diplomatic and consular courts ; leges are not organized to turn Moslems into and they are exempt from the payment of Christians, but to imbue the people of Tur- certain taxes. America has no such specific key with that spirit of justice and good will treaty with Turkey, but it is entitled to claim which is the essence of Christianity. They the same rights by a general treaty giving to are Christian in the same sense in which America all the privileges of the most favored Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Vassar, and Bryn nation. Turkey has now given notice that Mawr are Christian. Though it is stated she abrogates all these international agreeon good authority that there are in these ments restricting the sovereignty of the Porte schools now at least a thousand of the Mos- and will not regard them as binding upon lem faith, the pupils are generally Christians, her after the first of next October. not Moslems. The service which has been Had Turkey acted in accordance with rendered by these institutions to Turkey can- international etiquette, perhaps we should not be estimated. The direct influence has say international law, except that there is not been great, but the indirect influence much much difference between the two, she would greater. As a result of their establishment have entered into negotiations with the the whole educational system of Turkey has Powers before giving this notice. But been recreated and reorganized, and educa- must be said on her behalf that she has not tion has been modernized. While Turkey has in the past found that appeals to the sense no such universities as those of Russia, its of justice of the Christian nations of Europe public school system for the education of the resulted in any very distinguished success. people is far superior.
It was natural, and The Outlook is inclined It is a mistake to suppose that these to think legitimate, for her to seize this schools, colleges, hospitals, and Christian opportunity, when those nations are engaged churches have aroused the opposition of the in other and more important business, to free herself from what she not unnaturally regards possess Constantinople, because the possesas an interference with her national liberty and sion of Constantinople by any strong Power an obstacle to her economic and political would threaten the Suez Canal and England's progress. There is no reason to think that empire in the Far East.
The same reason Germany has incited her to this action. makes England unwilling to see Turkey a Austria and Germany, as well as Italy, France, strong Power. Turkey is therefore natuEngland, and Russia, have protested against rally suspicious of the motives of England, it. It is not, however, unreasonable to think Germany, Austria, Russia.
She has no susthat if this protest leads Turkey into war she picions of America and no reason for suspiwill be found fighting with Germany and cions. For America to ask Turkey now to Austria against Russia and England. There postpone action until the European war is is no reason to believe that this is intended over is to align America in the Turkish mind as a prelude to a general religious war by with these European Powers, and to arouse Mohammedans throughout the world against against ourselves the suspicions from which the Christian races. That it might lead to America is now free. And if we postpone such a war is possible, though not probable. negotiations with Turkey until we can negoIf anything could bring about so disastrous a tiate in co-operation with European Powers, result, it would be the union of all the Chris- we should naturally, and almost necessarily, tian Powers in an attempt to force Turkey drift into one of those entangling alliances back into the humiliating position of tutelage with Europe against which Washington wisely from which she is trying to escape. That
warned his countrymen. the Powers will make any present attempt to
Before the United States there appears to compel Turkey to retrace her steps is highly us to be only two practicable courses: Refuse improbable. They must wait till the Euro- finally and be prepared to enforce our refupean war has come to an end.
sal ; or consent cordially, but consent in such What should America do ?
a way as to make it clear to Turkey that the America might join in the protest. And. United States expects her to treat American then what? Wait ? Our commercial inter- citizens and their wards as other civilized ests might wait, but our National honor cannot. nations treat foreigners residing in their terWe owe protection to American citizens who ritories. The case is not one for half-way have gone to Turkey with the cordial assent
It is not one for watchful waiting. of the Turkish Government to render un- It is one for immediate and decisive action. selfish service to the Christians and the Mos- The Outlook believes that the policy of lems residing in Turkey. We owe protection cordial consent is the wiser, the more effito their pupils, who are their wards and whom cient, and the more Christian policy. they certainly will not desert. Hitherto the We can best interpret the spirit in which rights of these American citizens and their we should like to see the United States act wards have been guaranteed by the special by a concrete illustration of one method which treaties now abrogated. For the enforce- that spirit might employ. ment of these treaties we have depended on In the winter of 1867–8 Admiral Farrathe European Powers. We have had neither gut in an American man-of-war made a fleet nor army in the Near East.
friendly visit to Constantinople. He was depend on these European Powers no longer. entertained at dinner by the Grand Vizier. We must be prepared, and prepared now, to Dr. Cyrus Hamlin, the President of Robert protect our fellow-citizens, and we must de- College in Constantinople, requested Admiral cide whether for that protection we will Farragut to ask the Grand Vizier what predepend on force or diplomacy.
vented Dr. Hamlin from getting from the It has been proposed that the United Government the permission to erect the States ask Turkey to postpone action until necessary building for his college-a permisthe European war is over. Such a request sion often promised but never given. The would almost certainly be refused. If granted, Admiral asked the question. History does it could only postpone perplexity, not solve not record the answer; but a few days later it. By postponement the perplexity would the long-delayed permit was sent by the be increased. Turkey knows that Russia Grand Vizier to President Hamlin. To the and Pan-Germany—i. e., Germany and Aus- Oriental a show of force which is not in form tria—want to possess Constantinople. They a threat gives both significance and dignity know that England does not want them to to a diplomatic request. We should like to
THE GREAT REFUSAL
see our Administration take a hint from this
THE GREAT REFUSAL incident. We should like to see the President appoint three commissioners, two of The great refusal is the refusal to accept whom at least should be known and liked by the gift of life, which is the supreme gift of the Turks. There have been American edu- God to man. Without that gift all other cators in Turkey who were statesmen. One gifts would have been impossible either of of the commissioners might well be such an bestowal or of acceptance.
Men and women educator ; another, some former Minister to come into life without their own volition, but Turkey who by his administration has com- they are not compelled to accept the gift of mended the American Nation to the Turk ; life; many do not accept it; instead of taking the third, a man of at least National, if pos- it with gratitude and using it with the courage sible of international, reputation. We should of insight into its splendid possibilities, they like to see them embark on a war-ship-other strive to protect themselves from it as if it means of transportation across the Atlantic were a menace to their ease, a danger to being somewhat difficult, not to say danger- their comfort. It is and ought to be both, ous—land at Constantinople, bring to the for ease and comfort are perilous and despiTurkish Government the cordial consent of cable if one seeks them.
There are many America to the abrogation of the old treaties, things of real value if they come to a man as the congratulations of America on the purpose the by-products of living, but enervating and of Turkey to assume all the rights and duties corrupting if pursued as ends in themselves. of sovereignty, and the request of America for Popularity is an excellent and useful possesthe negotiation of a new treaty which would sion if one does not seek it and is not afraid secure to Turkey, so far as America is con- of it when it has been secured. Social influcerned, the rights and obligations of other ence and position are valuable if they come civilized nations, and to American citizens without seeking, but the woman who works and their wards in Turkey civil and religious for them degrades her soul; there is no liberty. We make no attempt here to indi- meanness of snobbery to which the social cate what the details of such a treaty should “ climber" will not descend, no personal be. It must suffice to say that it should indignity to which she will not submit, on the recognize Turkey's right to impose whatever ignoble path which she has chosen. Even tariff on imports she chooses, even a pro- happiness, if put before honor, duty, or hibitory tariff ; it should provide, in some service, betrays the soul. way consonant with Turkey's self-respect, A man may live and yet refuse the gift of for the trial of the non-Moslem residents by life. To exist is not to live ; they only live other than Moslem courts, a right which was who take life with all its experiences with freely granted by the Mohammedans when courage and joy, who not only put aside Constantinople was captured in 1453, at the the fear of living but welcome the opportutime of the Moslem invasion of Europe, and nities of living as a brave man welcomes a has been maintained ever since.
perilous chance to help or inspire or lead in To this particular method here proposed a moment of danger. The fear of living is there may be serious and even fatal objec- the source of that cowardice which empties tions. But we believe that if our Adminis- the lives of many people of spiritual meaning tration should approach the Turkish Govern- and human dignity. They may be blameless ment in this spirit, a spirit of friendly so far as external morals are concerned, and fellowship, coupled with a clear but diplo- yet they are guilty of refusing the supreme matic and unthreatening expression of the gift which God puts into their hands. The purpose to protect American rights and to pure in heart are not those who have never fulfill American duties at every hazard, it known temptation, but those who, fiercely would find it possible to make this abroga- tempted, have as fiercely resisted; or who, tion by Turkey of the old treaty an occasion having fallen, have risen again and through not only for a better and more efficient pro- purification made themselves clean. The tection of American teachers and their wards, heroes are not those who have kept away but also an occasion for furnishing to the from danger, but have faced it, suffered, and Young Turks a friendly counsel and a moral triumphed. support which might prove of inestimable Among the miserable throng of those who value to the people of Turkey in their strug- are bearing the pains of Purgatory there are gle toward justice, liberty, and civilization. none of whom Dante speaks with such scorn
“ those inert ones who are pleasing neither keep clear of all relations which bring any to God nor to his enemies." These wretched obligations with them in order that they may ones have made the great refusal ; they have be free to be perfectly selfish; women want lived without praise or blame; their offense to be free from the cares of maternity in is that they have been neither faithful to God order that they may devote themselves ennor rebellious. They have existed for them- tirely to social life or to what they call a selves only. When opportunity interfered career," as if the fulfillment of the oldest, with ease, they chose ease ; when duty came most fundamental, and divinest of all human companioned by danger, they bolted the door functions was not the richest, most influenand kept themselves safe; when, in the night tial, and happiest career open to men and and storm, the cry for help rose above the women, the only really creative function comtumult, they remained comfortable by the mitted to them. No people are more to fire; when life offered great enterprises, with be pitied than the young men and women the toil and peril which make success a who marry as a further step in selfishness; matter of character as well as of opportunity, who live in hotels or take their meals at they stayed securely at home.
restaurants in order to escape the responsiThe fear of living prompts men to accept bilities of having a home ; who profane a narrow positions without outlook on the noble relationship and defeat one of the future for the sake of security against the great ends of marriage by agreeing - not to vicissitudes of business ; to accept a small have children because children are s such fixed income because it provides immediate a bother.” comfort, rather than take those longer chances These unfortunate people blight their of fortune which impose patience, self-denial, souls at the very start, cut all the deeper and the training of experience at the start. roots of life, and condemn themselves to a Marriage brings heavy responsibilities ; it thin, narrow, superficial life, in order to interferes with the freedom to be selfish escape the very things they were sent into without protest or criticism ; it means many life to achieve. They make the great refusal surrenders of small comforts which are dear before they know what they are refusing ; to those whose idea of life is to keep clear of they shut the door in face of happiness in obligations; it forces a man to think some- the vain endeavor to make comfortable for times of another when he wishes to think all their bodies a world which was framed to the time and only of himself.
liberate and inspire their spirits. They fall The making and keeping of a home neces- into one of the most insidious forms of sitates self-sacrifice, work, and the expendi- sensualism and one of the most devitalizing ture of time and strength. It interferes with forms of skepticism. that opportunity to do at any moment what- Without a strain of heroism life is poor and ever you want to do which many unfortunate mean. Cowardice is fatal to nobility. Those people call “ freedom of life," and who there- who want life without paying for it not only fore avoid the complications of home-making fail to get it but do not know what they are and home-keeping. The people who make this losing ; that is the penalty of cowardice. By great refusal do not know what the words work life becomes an achievement, by sur"freedom of life” mean ; they put ease of mounting obstacles and facing dangers men condition in place of some of the supreme and women become the masters of themjoys of living. To bring children into life is selves ; by self-denial and glad acceptance, to tie one's self with many bands of duty, to by greeting the “ Unseen with a cheer,” limit one's ability to spend money freely on they make the great acceptance and bepleasure, to limit one's freedom in the matter come worthy of God's great gift to his of time and place, to invoke a thousand cares children. and burdens; the coming of a child is the In the hour of sorest trial, poor, lonely, ill, most insidious form of teaching unselfishness Beethoven faced life with unflinching courwhich the Heavenly Father has yet discov- age, and life poured into him the wealth of ered. To refuse the gift of children is to knowledge and feeling which enriched all close the door in the face of a great, enduring, time in the " Ninth Symphony." " From the and wonderful happiness. It is to avoid the brink of the grave," said a noble Frenchnoblest chance of education which life offers. man recovering from a perilous illness, “I And yet thousands of people do this simply measured, not the vanity of life, but its imto escape being “ bothered ;" men want to portance.”
TURKEY'S DECLARATION OF
BY FREDERICK D. GREENE
The writer of this article is the son of the Rev. Joseph K. Greene, D.D., for fiftyfive years a missionary of the American Board at Constantinople. The son, after a boyhood in Constantinople, received an American education and returned to Turkey, and was engaged for several years in missionary and educational work in Armenia. He writes from an intimate knowledge of the Turk, both at his worst and at his best. At the time of the Armenian massacres Mr. Greene resigned from the American Board in order to be free, without imperiling American missionary interests with which he had been connected, to bring out the truth as to the horrible nature, the extent, and the cause of the Arinenian massacres. He is the author of “The Armenian Crisis, which deals unsparingly with the shortcomings of the Turkish Government, a book which at the time was useful in shaping public opinion both in America and in England. Mr. Greene writes without partisanship and in full appreciation of the great educational and philanthropic interests which America has in Turkey.
Following this article is a statement giving another point of view from an authority on Turkish affairs. An editorial on this subject will be found elsewhere in this issue.—THE EDITORS.
N September 10, 1914, the nations ernment. These privileges included certain
of the world were formally notified valuable exemptions from taxation, freedom
by Turkey of the abrogation of from military service, and the exercise by the the Capitulations. The European situation ecclesiastics not only of religious control seemed already complicated enough. Many but also of important civil functions within are puzzled to know just what this new in- the limits of their own communions, whether gredient is that has been so unexpectedly of the Catholic, Greek, Jewish, Armenian, thrown into the seething political caldron- or other faiths, including the Protestant at a why it should be thrown in now, what will later date. To these privileges there have be its probable effect upon Turkey and upon subsequently been added others, such as the other countries, and what action, if any, it right of subjects of favored nations to immucalls for on the part of the United States. nity from the procedure of Turkish law in
The term “ Capitulation,” it need hardly criminal cases, and to trial in a consular court be said, is not to be taken in a military of their own country. Foreign nations have sense ; it is a diplomatic term to designate been allowed to maintain in Turkey extracertain Ottoman state papers which were territorial post-offices with the management reduced to chapters (capita). They are the of which Turkey has nothing to do and from articles by which, from time to time, the which she can derive no revenue, each nation Sublime Porte has granted to foreigners in using its own stamps for letters going out of Turkey certain immunities, privileges, and the country. In the matter of their own extra-territorial rights. Some of these Capitu- tariff the Turks have been very seriously lations go back eight hundred years, to the exploited by having been induced many years very beginning of Turkish power, and their ago to agree to charge no higher rate than analogies can be traced even through the eight per cent on imports. The year after Roman and the Byzantine Empire, which the the Young Turk reformers came into power Turks superseded.
in 1909 they succeeded in obtaining the At the capture of Constantinople in 1453 reluctant consent of the Powers to raising Mohammed II, in order to check the exodus these duties to eleven per cent. This figure, of the Christian population, and with it the however, is entirely inadequate to provide leaders of commerce, craftsmanship, art, and absolutely necessary revenue and to foster education, decreed for these classes unusual Turkish industries or even prevent them privileges and permitted colonies of resident from extinction. As a result of the low foreigners to continue forms of local self-gov- tariff forced upon her the Turks have to im