The 1904-1905 Russian-Japanese War From The Perspective Of The Ottoman Empire
ALADAĞ, Hüseyin Hilmi
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The main aim of the present paper is to present the perception of the Russian Japanese War (1904-1905) by Sultan Abdulhamid II and the Ottoman public. Although it took place far away from the Ottoman borders, the Russian-Japanese War was given special importance by Abdulhamid II and the Ottoman administration and was followed carefully for its militarily, diplomatic, and political aspects. Due to the close follow up by the Ottoman Sultan, the Ottoman public, government, and press gave special importance to this war. After the presentation of the special interest given to this war, its impact on our economic and political life will be documented, and this will be important to put forth the world view of the Ottomans at the beginning of the 20th century. It can be stated that Abdulhamid II was differing in his views from the Ottoman public opinion regarding this war. The Ottoman public believed that Japanese victory would be beneficial as Russia is one of the archenemies of the Ottomans throughout history. The defeat of the archenemy by another force than the Ottoman Empire was a reason of joy in the public. However, it seems that the matter was not that simple for the Sultan. Abdulhamid II could foresee that a defeated Russia by Japan would cause Russia to change its focus from the Far East to the Balkans and hence this would cause problems in the Balkans.
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