"I SHALL DO NOTHING FOR THE ARMENIANS" SAYS THE GERMAN AMBASSADOR
Suppose that there is no phase of the Armenian question which has aroused more interest than this: Had the Germans any part in it? To what extent was the Kaiser responsible for the wholesale slaughter of this nation? Did the Germans favour it, did they merely acquiesce, or did they oppose the persecutions? Germany, in the last four years, has become responsible for many of the blackest pages in history; is she responsible for this, unquestionably the blackest of all?
I presume most people will detect in the remarks of these Turkish chieftains certain resemblances to the German philosophy of war. Let me repeat particular phrases used by Enver and other Turks while discussing the Armenian massacres: "The Armenians have brought this fate upon themselves." "They had a fair warning of what would happen to them." "We were fighting for our national existence ... .. We were justified, in resorting to any means that would accomplish these ends." "We have no time to separate the innocent from the guilty." "The only thing we have on our mind is to win the war."
These phrases somehow have a familiar ring, do they not? Indeed, I might rewrite all these interviews with Enver, use the word Belgium in place of Armenia, put the words in a German general's mouth instead of Enver's, and we should have almost a complete exposition of the German attitude toward subject peoples. But the teachings of the Prussians go deeper than this. There was one feature about the Armenian proceedings that was new---that was not Turkish at all . For centuries the Turks have ill-treated their Armenians and all their other subject peoples with inconceivable barbarity. Yet their methods have always been crude, clumsy, and unscientific. They excelled in beating out an Armenian's brains with a club, and this unpleasant illustration is a perfect indication of the rough and primitive methods which they applied to the Armenian problem. They have understood the uses of murder, but not of murder as a fine art. But the Armenian proceedings of 1915 and 1916 evidenced an entirely new mentality. This new conception was that of deportation. The Turks, in five hundred years, had invented innumerable ways of physically torturing their Christian subjects, yet never before had it occurred to their minds to move them bodily from their homes, where they had lived for many thousands of years, and send them hundreds of miles away into the desert. Where did the Turks get this idea? I have already described how, in 1914, just before the European War, the Government moved not far from 100,000 Greeks from their age-long homes along the Asiatic littoral to certain islands in the Aegean. I have also said that Admiral Usedom, one of the big German naval experts in Turkey, told me that the Germans had suggested this deportation to the Turks. But the all-important point is that this idea of deporting peoples en masse is, in modern times, exclusively Germanic. Any one who reads the literature of Pan-Germany constantly meets it. These enthusiasts for a German world have deliberately planned, as part of their programme, the ousting of the French from certain parts of France, of Belgians from Belgium, of Poles from Poland, of Slavs from Russia, and other indigenous peoples from the territories which they have inhabited for thousands of years, and the establishment in the vacated lands of solid, honest Germans. But it is hardly necessary to show that the Germans have advocated this as a state policy; they have actually been doing it in the last four years. They have moved we do not know how many thousands of Belgians and French from their native land. Austria-Hungary has killed a large part of the Serbian population and moved thousands of Serbian children into her own territories intending to bring them up as loyal subjects of the empire. To what degree this movement of populations has taken place we shall not know until the end of the war, but it has certainly gone on extensively.
Certain German writers have even advocated the application of this policy to the Armenians. According to the Paris Temps, Paul Rohrbach "in a conference held at Berlin, some time ago, recommended that Armenia should be evacuated of the Armenians. They should be dispersed in the direction of Mesopotamia and their places should be taken by Turks, in such a fashion that Armenia should be freed of all Russian influence and that Mesopotamia might be provided with farmers which it now lacked." The purpose of all this was evident enough. Germany was building the Bagdad railroad across the Mesopotamian desert. This was an essential detail in the achievement of the great new German Empire, extending from Hamburg to the Persian Gulf. But this railroad could never succeed unless there should develop a thrifty and industrious population to feed it. The lazy Turk would never become such a colonist. But the Armenian was made of just the kind of stuff which this enterprise needed. It was entirely in accordance with the German conception of statesmanship to seize these people in the lands where they had lived for ages and transport them violently to this dreary, hot desert. The mere fact that they had always lived in a temperate climate would furnish no impediment in Pan-German eyes. I found that Germany had been sowing those ideas broadcast for several years; I even found that German savants had been lecturing on this subject in the East. "I remember attending a lecture by a well-known German professor," an Armenian tells me. "His main point was that throughout their history the Turks had made a great mistake in being too merciful toward the non-Turkish population. The only way to insure the prosperity of the empire, according to this speaker, was to act without any sentimentality toward all the subject nationalities and races in Turkey who did not fall in with the plans of the Turks."
The Pan-Germanists are on record in the matter of Armenia. I shall content myself with quoting the words of the author of "Mittel-Europa," Friedrich Naumann, perhaps the ablest propagator of Pan-German ideas. In his work on Asia, Naumann, who started life as a Christian clergyman, deals in considerable detail with the Armenian massacres of 1895-96. 1 need only quote a few passages to show the attitude of German state policy on such infamies: "If we should take into consideration merely the violent massacre of from 80,000 to 100,000 Armenians," writes Naumann, "we can come to but one opinion---we must absolutely condemn with all anger and vehemence both the assassins and their instigators. They have perpetrated the most abominable massacres upon masses of people, more numerous and worse than those inflicted by Charlemagne on the Saxons. The tortures which Lepsius has described surpass anything we have ever known. "What then prohibits us from falling upon the Turk and saying to him: 'Get thee gone, wretch!'? Only one thing prohibits us, for the Turk answers: 'I, too, I fight for my existence!'---and indeed, we believe him. We believe, despite the indignation which the bloody Mohammedan barbarism arouses in us, that the Turks are defending themselves legitimately, and before anything else we see in the Armenian question and Armenian massacres a matter of internal Turkish policy, merely an episode of the agony through which a great empire is passing, which does not propose to let itself die without making a last attempt to save itself by bloodshed. All the great powers, excepting Germany, have adopted a policy which aims to upset the actual state of affairs in Turkey. In accordance with this, they demand for the subject peoples of Turkey the rights of man, or of humanity, or of civilization, or of political liberty---in a word, something that will make them the equals of the Turks. But just as little as the ancient Roman despotic state could tolerate the Nazarene's religion, just as little can the Turkish Empire, which is really the political successor of the eastern Roman Empire, tolerate any representation of western free Christianity among its subjects. The danger for Turkey in the Armenian question is one of extinction. For this reason she resorts to an act of a barbarous Asiatic state; she has destroyed the Armenians to such an extent that they will not be able to manifest themselves as a political force for a considerable period. A horrible act, certainly, an act of political despair, shameful in its details, but still a piece of political history, in the Asiatic manner. . . . In spite of the displeasure which the German Christian feels at these accomplished facts, he has nothing to do except quietly to heal the wounds so far as he can, and then to let matters take their course. For a long time our policy in the Orient has been determined: we belong to the group that protects Turkey, that is the fact by which we must regulate our conduct. . . . We do not prohibit any zealous Christian from caring for the victims of these horrible crimes, from bringing up the children and nursing the adults. May God bless these good acts like all other acts of faith. Only we must take care that deeds of charity do not take the form of political acts which are likely to thwart our German policy. The internationalist, he who belongs to the English school of thought, may march with, the Armenians. The nationalist, he who does not intend to sacrifice the future of Germany to England, must, on questions of external policy, follow the path marked out by Bismarck, even if it is merciless in its sentiments. . . . National policy: that is the profound moral reason why we must, as statesmen, show ourselves indifferent to the sufferings of the Christian peoples of Turkey, however painful that may be to our human feelings. . . . That is our duty, which we must recognize and confess before God and before man. If for this reason we now maintain the existence of the Turkish state, we do it in our own self-interest, because what we have in mind is our great future. . . . On one side lie our duties as a nation, on the other our duties as men. There are times, when, in a conflict of duties, we can choose a middle ground. That is all right from a human standpoint, but rarely right in a moral sense. In this instance, as in all analogous situations, we must clearly know on which side lies the greatest and most important moral duty. Once we have made such a choice we must not hesitate. William II has chosen. He has become the friend of the Sultan, because he is thinking of a greater, independent Germany."
Fig. 52. VIEW OF URFA. One of the largest towns in Asia Minor
Fig. 53. A RELIC OF THE ARMENIAN MASSACRES AT ERZINGAN. Such mementos are found all over Armenia
Such was the German state philosophy as applied to the Armenians, and I had the opportunity of observing German practice as well. As soon as the early reports reached Constantinople, it occurred to me that the most feasible way of stopping the outrages would be for the diplomatic representatives of all countries to make a joint appeal to the Ottoman Government. I approached Wangenheim on this subject in the latter part of March. His antipathy to the Armenians became immediately apparent. He began denouncing them in unmeasured terms; like Talaat and Enver, he affected to regard the Van episode as an unprovoked rebellion, and, in his eyes, as in theirs, the Armenians were simply traitorous vermin.
"I will help the Zionists," he said, thinking that this remark would be personally pleasing to me, "but I shall do nothing whatever for the Armenians."
Wangenheim pretended to regard the Armenian question as a matter that chiefly affected the United States. My constant intercession in their behalf apparently created the impression, in his Germanic mind, that any mercy shown this people would be a concession to the American Government. And at that moment he was not disposed to do anything that would please the American people.
"The United States is apparently the only country that takes much interest in the Armenians," he said. "Your missionaries are their friends and your people have constituted themselves their guardians. The whole question of helping them is therefore an American matter. How, then, can you expect me to do anything as long as the United States is selling ammunition to the enemies of Germany? Mr. Bryan has just published his note, saying that it would be unneutral not to sell munitions to England and France. As long as your government maintains that attitude we can do nothing for the Armenians."
Probably no one except a German logician would ever have detected any relation between our sale of war materials to the Allies and Turkey's attacks upon hundreds of thousands of Armenian women and children. But that was about as much progress as I made with Wangenheim at that time. I spoke to him frequently, but he invariably offset my pleas for mercy to the Armenians by references to the use of American shells at the Dardanelles. A coolness sprang up between us soon afterward, the result of my refusal to give him "credit" for having stopped the deportation of French and British civilians to the Gallipoli peninsula. After our somewhat tart conversation over the telephone, when he had asked me to telegraph Washington that he had not hetzed the Turks in this matter, our visits to each other ceased for several weeks.
There were certain influential Germans in Constantinople who did not accept Wangenheim's point of view. I have already referred to Paul Weitz, for thirty years the correspondent of the Frankfurter Zeitung, who probably knew more about affairs in the Near East than any other German. Although Wangenheim constantly looked to Weitz for information, he did not always take his advice. Weitz did not accept the orthodox imperial attitude toward Armenia, for he believed that Germany's refusal effectively to intervene was doing his fatherland everlasting injury. Weitz was constantly presenting this view to Wangenheim, but he made little progress. Weitz told me about this himself, in January, 1916, a few weeks before I left Turkey. I quote his own words on this subject:
"I remember that you told me at the beginning," said Weitz, "what a mistake Germany was making in the Armenian matters. I agreed with you perfectly. But when I urged this view upon Wangenheim, he threw me twice out of the room!"
Another German who was opposed to the atrocities was Neurath, the Conseiller of the German Embassy. His indignation reached such a point that his language to Talaat and Enver became almost undiplomatic. He told me, however, that he had failed to influence them.
"They are immovable and are determined to pursue their present course," Neurath said.
Of course no Germans could make much impression on the Turkish Government as long as the German Ambassador refused to interfere. And, as time went on, it became more and more evident that Wangenheim had no desire to stop the deportations. He apparently wished, however, to reestablish friendly relations with me, and soon sent third parties to ask why I never came to see him. I do not know how long this estrangement would have lasted had not a great personal affliction befallen him. In June, Lieutenant Colonel Leipzig, the German Military Attaché, died under the most tragic and mysterious circumstances in the railroad station at Lule Bourgas. He was killed by a revolver shot; one story said that the weapon had been accidentally discharged, another that the Colonel had committed suicide, still another that the Turks had assassinated him, mistaking him for Liman von Sanders. Leipzig was one of Wangenheim's intimate friends; as young men they had been officers in the same regiment, and at Constantinople they were almost inseparable. I immediately called on the Ambassador to express my condolences. I found him very dejected and careworn. He told me that he had heart trouble, that he was almost exhausted, and that he had applied for a few weeks' leave of absence. I knew that it was not only his comrade's death that was preying upon Wangenheim's mind. German missionaries were flooding Germany with reports about the Armenians and calling upon the Government to stop the massacres. Yet, overburdened and nervous as Wangenheim was this day, he gave many signs that he was still the same unyielding German militarist. A few days afterward, when he returned my visit, he asked:
"Where's Kitchener's army?
"We are willing to surrender Belgium now," he went on. "Germany intends to build an enormous fleet of submarines with great cruising radius. In the next war, we shall therefore be able completely to blockade England. So we do not need Belgium for its submarine bases. We shall give her back to the Belgians, taking the Congo in exchange."
I then made another plea in behalf of the persecuted Christians. Again we discussed this subject at length.
"The Armenians,"' said Wangenheim, "have shown themselves in this war to be enemies of the Turks. It is quite apparent that the two peoples can never live together in the same country. The Americans should move some of them to the United States, and we Germans will send some to Poland and in their place send Jewish Poles to the Armenian provinces---that is, if they will promise to drop their Zionist schemes."
Again, although I spoke with unusual earnestness, the Ambassador refused to help the Armenians.
Still, on July 4th, Wangenheim did present a formal note of protest. He did not talk to Talaat or Enver, the only men who had any authority, but to the Grand Vizier, who was merely a shadow. The incident had precisely the same character as his pro forma protest against sending the French and British civilians down to Gallipoli, to serve as targets for the Allied fleet. Its only purpose was to put Germans officially on record. Probably the hypocrisy of this protest was more apparent to me than to others, for, at the very moment when Wangenheim presented this so-called protest, he was giving me the reasons why Germany could not take really effective steps to end the massacres. Soon after this interview, Wangenheim received his leave and went to Germany.
Callous as Wangenheim showed himself to be, he was not quite so implacable toward the Armenians as the German naval attaché in Constantinople, Humann. This person was generally regarded as a man of great influence; his position in Constantinople corresponded to that of Boy-Ed in the United States. A German diplomat once told me that Humann was more of a Turk than Enver or Talaat. Despite this reputation I attempted to enlist his influence. I appealed to him particularly because he was a friend of Enver, and was generally looked upon as an important connecting link between the German Embassy and the Turkish military authorities. Humann was a personal emissary of the Kaiser, in constant communication with Berlin and undoubtedly he reflected the attitude of the ruling powers in Germany. He discussed the Armenian problem with the utmost frankness and brutality.
"I have lived in Turkey the larger part of my life," he told me, "and I know the Armenians. I also know that both Armenians and Turks cannot live together in this country. One of these races has got to go. And I don't blame the Turks for what they are doing to the Armenians. I think that they are entirely justified. The weaker nation must succumb. The Armenians desire to dismember Turkey; they are against the Turks and the Germans in this war, and they therefore have no right to exist here. I also think that Wangenheim went altogether too far in making a protest; at least I would not have done so."
I expressed my horror at such sentiments, but Humann went on abusing the Armenian people and absolving the Turks from all blame.
"It is a matter of safety," he replied; "the Turks have got to protect themselves, and, from this point of view, they are entirely justified in what they are doing. Why, we found 7,000 guns at Kadikeuy which belonged to the Armenians. At first Enver wanted to treat the Armenians with the utmost moderation, and four months ago he insisted that they be given another opportunity to demonstrate their loyalty. But after what they did at Van, he had to yield to the army, which had been insisting all along that it should protect its rear. The Committee decided upon the deportations and Enver reluctantly agreed. All Armenians are working for the destruction of Turkey's power and the only thing to do is to deport them. Enver is really a very kind-hearted man; he is incapable personally of hurting a fly! But when it comes to defending an idea in which he believes, he will do it fearlessly and recklessly. Moreover, the Young Turks have to get rid of the Armenians merely as a matter of self-protection. The Committee is strong only in Constantinople and a few other large cities. Everywhere else the people are strongly 'Old Turk'. And these old Turks are all fanatics. These Old Turks are not in favour of the present government, and so the Committee has to do everything in their power to protect themselves. But don't think that any harm will come to other Christians. Any Turk can easily pick out three Armenians among a thousand Turks!"
Humann was not the only important German who expressed this latter sentiment. Intimations began to reach me from many sources that my "meddling" in behalf of the Armenians was making me more and more unpopular in German officialdom. One day in October, Neurath, the German Conseiller, called and showed me a telegram which he had just received from the German Foreign Office. This contained the information that Earl Crewe and Earl Cromer had spoken on the Armenians in the House of Lords, had laid the responsibility for the massacres upon the Germans., and had declared that they had received their information from an American witness. The telegram also referred to an article in the Westminster Gazette, which said that the German consuls at certain places had instigated and even led the attacks, and particularly mentioned Resler of Aleppo. Neurath said that his government had directed him to obtain a denial of these charges from the American Ambassador at Constantinople. I refused to make such a denial, saying that I did not feel called upon to decide officially whether Turkey or Germany was to blame for these crimes.
Yet everywhere in diplomatic circles there seemed to be a conviction that the American Ambassador was responsible for the wide publicity which the Armenian massacres were receiving in Europe and the United States. I have no hesitation in saying that they were right about this. In December, my son, Henry Morgenthau, Jr., paid a visit to the Gallipoli peninsula, where he was entertained by General Liman von Sanders and other German officers. He had hardly stepped into German headquarters when an officer came up to him and said:
"Those are very interesting articles on the Armenian question which your father is writing in the American newspapers."
"My father has been writing no articles," my son replied.
"Oh," said this officer, "just because his name isn't signed to them doesn't mean that he is not writing them!"
Von Sanders also spoke on this subject.
"Your father is making a great mistake," he said, "giving out the facts about what the Turks are doing to the Armenians. That really is not his business."
As hints of this kind made no impression on me, the Germans evidently decided to resort to threats. In the early autumn, a Dr. Nossig arrived in Constantinople from Berlin. Dr. Nossig was a German Jew, and came to Turkey evidently to work against the Zionists. After he had talked with me for a few minutes, describing his Jewish activities, I soon discovered that he was a German political agent. He came to see me twice; the first time his talk was somewhat indefinite, the purpose of the call apparently being to make my acquaintance and insinuate himself into my good graces. The second time, after discoursing vaguely on several topics, he came directly to the point. He drew his chair close up to me and began to talk in the most friendly and confidential manner.
"Mr. Ambassador," he said, "we are both Jews and I want to speak to you as one Jew to another. I hope you will not be offended if I presume upon this to give you a little advice. You are very active in the interest of the Armenians and I do not think you realize how very unpopular you are becoming, for this reason, with the authorities here. In fact, I think that I ought to tell you that the Turkish Government is contemplating asking for your recall. Your protests for the Armenians will be useless. The Germans will not interfere for them and you are just spoiling your opportunity for usefulness and running the risk that your career will end ignominiously."
"Are you giving me this advice," I asked, "because you have a real interest in my personal welfare?"
""Certainly," he answered; "all of us Jews are proud of what you have done and we would hate to see your career end disastrously."
"Then you go back to the German Embassy," I said, "and tell Wangenheim what I say---to go ahead and have me recalled. If I am to suffer martyrdom, I can think of no better cause in which to be sacrificed. In fact, I would welcome it, for I can think of no greater honour than to be recalled because I, a Jew, have been exerting all my powers to save the lives of hundreds of thousands of Christians."
Dr. Nossig hurriedly left my office and I have never seen him since. When next I met Enver I told him that there were rumours that the Ottoman Government was about to ask for my recall. He was very emphatic in denouncing the whole story as a falsehood. "We would not be guilty of making such a ridiculous mistake," he said. So there was not the slightest doubt that this attempt to intimidate me had been hatched at the German Embassy.
Wangenheim. returned to Constantinople in early October. I was shocked at the changes that had taken place in the man. As I wrote in my diary, "he looked the perfect picture of Wotan." His face was almost constantly twitching; he wore a black cover over his right eye, and he seemed unusually nervous and depressed. He told me that he had obtained little rest; that he had been obliged to spend most of his time in Berlin attending to business. A few days after his return I met him on my way to Haskeuy; he said that he was going to the American Embassy and together we walked back to it. I had been recently told by Talaat that he intended to deport all the Armenians who were left in Turkey and this statement had induced me to make a final plea to the one man in Constantinople who had the power to end the horrors. I took Wangenheim. up to the second floor of the Embassy, where we could be entirely alone and uninterrupted, and there, for more than an hour, sitting together over the tea table, we had our last conversation on this subject.
"Berlin telegraphs me," he said, "that your Secretary of State tells them that you say that more Armenians than ever have been massacred since Bulgaria has come in on our side."
"No, I did not cable that," I replied. "I admit that I have sent a large amount of information to Washington. I have sent copies of every report and every statement to the State Department. They are safely lodged there, and whatever happens to me, the evidence is complete, and the American people are not dependent on my oral report for their information. But this particular statement you make is not quite accurate. I merely informed Mr. Lansing that any influence Bulgaria might exert to stop the massacres has been lost, now that she has become Turkey's ally."
We again discussed the deportations.
"Germany is not responsible for this," Wangenheim said.
"You can assert that to the end of time," I replied, "but nobody will believe it. The world will always hold Germany responsible; the guilt of these crimes will be your inheritance forever. I know that you have filed a paper protest. But what does that amount to? You know better than I do that such a protest will have no effect. I do not claim that Germany is responsible for these massacres in the sense that she instigated them. But she is responsible in the sense that she had the power to stop them and did not use it. And it is not only America and your present enemies that will hold you responsible. The German people will some day call your government to account. You are a Christian people and the time will come when Germans will realize that you have let a Mohammedan people destroy another Christian nation. How foolish is your protest that I am sending information to my State Department. Do you suppose that you can keep secret such hellish atrocities as these? Don't get such a silly, ostrich-like thought as that---don't think that by ignoring them yourselves, you can get the rest of the world to do so. Crimes like these cry to heaven. Do you think I could know about things like this and not report them to my government? And don't forget that German missionaries, as well as American, are sending me information about the Armenians."
"All that you say may be true," replied the German Ambassador, "but the big problem that confronts us is to win this war. Turkey has settled with her foreign enemies; she has done that at the Dardanelles and at Gallipoli. She is now trying to settle her internal affairs. They still greatly fear that the Capitulations will again be forced upon them. Before they are again put under this restraint, they intend to have their internal problems in such shape that there will be little chance of any interference from foreign nations. Talaat has told me that he is determined to complete this task before peace is declared. In the future they don't intend that the Russians shall be in a position to say that they have a right to intervene about Armenian matters because there are a large number of Armenians in Russia who are affected by the troubles of their coreligionists in Turkey. Giers used to be doing this an the time and the Turks do not intend that any ambassador from Russia or from any other country shall have such an opportunity in the future. The Armenians anyway are a very poor lot. You come in contact in Constantinople with Armenians of the educated classes, and you get your impressions about them from these men, but all the Armenians are not of that type. Yet I admit that they have been treated terribly. I sent a man to make investigations and he reported that the worst outrages have not been committed by Turkish officials but by brigands."
Wangenheim again suggested that the Armenians be taken to the United States, and once more I gave him the reasons why this would be impracticable.
"Never mind all these considerations," I said. "Let us disregard everything---military necessity, state policy, and all else---and let us look upon this simply as a human problem. Remember that most of the people who are being treated in this way are old men, old women, and helpless children. Why can't you, as a human being, see that these people are permitted to live? "
"At the present stage of internal affairs in Turkey," Wangenheim replied, "I shall not intervene."
I saw that it was useless to discuss the matter further. He was a man who was devoid of sympathy and human pity, and I turned from him in disgust. Wangenheim rose to leave. As he did so he gave a gasp, and his legs suddenly shot from under him. I jumped and caught the man just as he was falling. For a minute he seemed utterly dazed; he looked at me in a bewildered way, then suddenly collected himself and regained his poise. I took the Ambassador by the arm, piloted him down stairs, and put him into his auto. By this time he had apparently recovered from his dizzy spell and he reached home safely. Two days afterward, while sitting at his dinner table, he had a stroke of apoplexy; he was carried upstairs to his bed, but he never regained consciousness. On October 24th, I was officially informed that Wangenheim. was dead. And thus my last recollection of Wangenheim is that of the Ambassador as he sat in my office in the American Embassy, absolutely refusing to exert any influence to prevent the massacre of a nation. He was the one, and his government was the one government, that could have stopped these crimes, but, as Wangenheim told me many times, "our one aim is to win this war."
Fig. 54. THE FUNERAL OF BARON VON WANGENHEIM. The German Ambassador to Turkey. Mr. Morgenthau (in evening dress) is walking with Enver Pasha. Immediately in front, of them is Talaat Pasha.A few days afterward official Turkey and the diplomatic force paid their last tribute to this perfect embodiment of the Prussian system. The funeral was held in the garden of the German Embassy at Pera. The inclosure was filled with flowers. Practically the whole gathering, excepting the family and the ambassadors and the Sultan's representatives, remained standing during the simple but impressive ceremonies. Then the procession formed; German sailors carried the bier upon their shoulders, other German sailors carried the huge bunches of flowers, and all members of the diplomatic corps and the officials of the Turkish Government followed on foot.
The Grand Vizier led the procession; I walked the whole way with Enver. All the officers of the Goeben and the Breslau, and all the German generals, dressed in full uniform, followed. It seemed as though the whole of Constantinople lined the streets, and the atmosphere had some of the quality of a holiday. We walked to the grounds of Dolma Bagtche, the Sultan's Palace, passing through the gate which the ambassadors enter when presenting their credentials. At the dock a steam launch lay awaiting our arrival, and in this stood Neurath, the German Conseiller, ready to receive the body of his dead chieftain. The coffin, entirely covered with flowers, was placed in the boat. As the launch sailed out into the stream Neurath, a six-foot Prussian, dressed in his military uniform, his helmet a waving mass of white plumes, stood erect and silent. Wangenheim was buried in the park of the summer embassy at Therapia, by the side of his comrade Colonel Leipzig. No final resting-place would have been more appropriate, for this had been the scene of his diplomatic successes, and it was from this place that, a little more than two years before, he had directed by wireless the Goeben and the Breslau, and safely brought them into Constantinople, thus making it inevitable that Turkey should join forces with Germany, and paving the way for all the triumphs and all the horrors that have necessarily followed that event.
Chapter Twenty-Eight: Enver again moves for peace.