Russian Assistance to Turkey in 1920-1922 – Chronology of the Supply of Gold and Weapons

Russian Assistance to Turkey in 1920-1922

In 1920-1922, Bolshevik Russia supported and armed Kemalist Turkey, just as Putin’s Russia today is arming and supporting Azerbaijan which had been established by the Bolsheviks. In both cases, it has been done against Armenia and Armenians.

On August 16-18, 1920, Russia granted the warships “Zhutkiy” (“Eerie”) and “Zhivoy” (“Living”) to Turkey for the purpose of the further delivery of weapon supplies.

On August 24, according to a prior agreement, Russia granted Turkey 10 million rubles in gold. The amount was transferred in several parts. The first 500 thousand rubles in gold were handed over personally.

In September, Khalil Pasha delivered one million rubles in gold to Turkey. In the same month, another million rubles in gold was delivered to Ankara by Yusuf Kemal Pasha.

On October 4, Soviet diplomatic representatives who arrived in Ankara handed over to Kemal the promised 200.6 kg of golden ingots (about 400 thousand rubles), six thousand rifles, more than 5 million rounds, and 17,6 thousand shells.

The Ukrainian Ambassador to Turkey Mikhail Frunze, in his turn, granted 100 thousand rubles in gold to build an orphanage for the children of the Turks who had died during WWI.

With the support of the Bolsheviks, two gunpowder factories were built in Ankara. Russia also presented Turkey with factory equipment and resources for the production of ammunition.

After the signing of the Moscow Treaty, the Bolsheviks presented Turkey with another 10 million rubles in gold, more than 33 thousand rifles, about 58 million rounds, 327 machine guns, 54 howitzers, more than 129 thousand shells, 1,5 thousand sabers, 20 thousand gas masks, and many more other weapons.

In addition, at the beginning of 1922, Russia granted several other batches of arms to Turkey.

In April 1922, Ambassador Semyon Aralov handed over 20 thousand liras to Turkey for printing machines and film projectors. On May 3, 1922, in Ankara, Aralov handed to Turkey the remaining 3,5 million rubles in gold promised under the treaty.

In total, Turkey received 6 tons of gold from Russia, a country which had been torn by WWI, the 1917 revolution, and has been suffering from hunger.

Soviet “ambassadors” Mikhail Frunze, Budu Mdivani (Soviet state and party leader, one of the leaders of the Georgian opposition), and Semyon Aralov took part in the training of the Turkish army and the development of military operations.

Undoubtedly, thanks to this assistance, the Turkish army was able to defeat Armenians and Greeks, after which the birth of the Turkish Republic became possible.

Yura Torosyan

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Comments 1

  • I wish the author had explained why Russia–which was defeated in the war and starvation was widespread–was so generous with its gold and weapons to Turkey.

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