18 March on Turkey! All About Canakkale Victory Day

March 18 is an important date in Turkish history, known as “Çanakkale Victory Day” or“Çanakkale Zaferi” in Turkish. The day commemorates the victory of the Ottoman Empire against the Allied Powers during the Gallipoli Campaign in World War I. This historic event has great significance for the Turkish people as it symbolizes the strength, determination and courage of the Turkish soldiers who fought to protect their homeland.

The Gallipoli campaign was a major event in World War I as it aimed to secure the Dardanelles Strait and gain access to the Black Sea, which would have provided a direct route to Russia. The campaign was launched in February 1915 by the Allied powers including Great Britain, France and Russia with the aim of landing troops on the Gallipoli peninsula and capturing Istanbul, the capital of the Ottoman Empire.

Turkish forces, led by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk successfully defended the peninsula against Allied attacks and, after months of heavy fighting, the campaign ended in January 1916 with the withdrawal of Allied troops. The Turkish victory at Gallipoli prevented the Allies from achieving their goals and ultimately played a significant role in the outcome of World War I.

The significance of March 18 for the Turks goes beyond military victory itself. The battle of Gallipoli represented a moment of national unity for the Turkish people, divided on ethnic and religious grounds. The soldiers who fought in the campaign came from all parts of the Ottoman Empire and came together to defend their country against a common enemy. The soldiers’ courage and sacrifice inspired a sense of unity and national pride, which would later become a crucial factor in the Turkish War of Independence and the founding of the Republic of Turkey.

The legacy of the Gallipoli Campaign and the March 18 victory is still celebrated in Turkey today, with ceremonies and parades honoring the soldiers who fought and died for their country. The Turkish government recognizes the day as a national holiday, and schools and government offices are closed to mark the occasion.

The significance of March 18 also extends beyond the borders of Turkey. The Gallipoli campaign and the events of 18 March are recognized as a significant moment in world history, demonstrating the power of determination and the ability of a united people to overcome seemingly insurmountable odds. The campaign also served as a reminder of the devastating impact of war and the importance of peace.

In conclusion, the significance of March 18 for Turks lies in its representation of national unity, pride and sacrifice. The Gallipoli victory was not only a military success, but also a moment that brought together a diverse group of people to fight for a common cause. The legacy of the campaign and the events of 18 March continue to inspire the Turkish people and serve as a reminder of the importance of unity and the devastating consequences of war.

Canakkale – Turkey, Gallipoli peninsula, where Canakkale land and sea battles took place during the first world war. Martyrs monument and Anzac Cove. Photo shoot with drone in sunset landscape.

Why is the Canakkale Victory so Important for the Turks?

The date of March 18, which is known as 18 Mart in Turkish, has significant significance for the Turkish people. This date marks the anniversary of the Gallipoli campaign, which was a significant event in Turkish history that shaped the country’s identity and defined its struggle for independence. The Gallipoli Campaign, also known as the Battle of Çanakkale, was a military campaign fought between the Ottoman Empire and the Allied Powers during World War I. The campaign was aimed at securing a sea route through the Dardanelles Strait and eventually capturing Istanbul, the Ottoman Empire. the capital of . The allies consisted of British, French and Australian and New Zealand (ANZAC) forces.

The campaign began in February 1915, and after months of fighting, the Ottoman forces, under the command of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, managed to hold off the Allied forces, inflicting significant casualties on them. The battle lasted nearly a year and resulted in some 250,000 casualties on both sides.

The Gallipoli campaign was a turning point in Turkish history as it was the first time that the Turkish people fought as a united nation to defend their homeland. The battle was fought not only by the Ottoman army but also by Turkish civilians, who played a crucial role in the defense of their country. The success of the campaign marked a significant moment in the Turkish struggle for independence and contributed to Mustafa Kemal Atatürk’s rise as a national hero. After the war, the Ottoman Empire was dissolved and the Treaty of Sèvres was signed, which would have divided Anatolia into several territories under Allied control. This treaty was seen as a significant threat to the sovereignty and national identity of the Turkish people, and it was at this point that Mustafa Kemal Atatürk emerged as the leader of the Turkish national movement. He led a successful military campaign against the Allied forces and established the Republic of Turkey in 1923.

The legacy of the Gallipoli campaign and the heroism displayed by the Turkish people during this period have played an important role in shaping Turkish national identity. The battle is considered a symbol of Turkish resistance against foreign invaders and a testament to the strength and unity of the Turkish people.

The importance of 18 Mart in Turkish history is also reflected in the annual commemorative ceremonies held on this day. Ceremonies include wreath-laying ceremonies at monuments and cemeteries, parades, and speeches by political and military leaders. The day is also marked by religious functions, with prayers offered for those who lost their lives during the Gallipoli campaign. In conclusion, the importance of 18 Mart for the Turks lies in its significance as a symbol of Turkish resistance and unity in the face of foreign aggression. The Gallipoli campaign was a defining moment in Turkish history, shaping the country’s national identity and contributing to the rise of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk as a national hero. The annual commemoration of this event serves as a reminder of the sacrifices made by the Turkish people in their struggle for independence and their determination to defend their homeland.

Ece Nagihan

Hi, I'm Ece. I am a writer for Expat Guide Turkey and I strive to create the best content for you. To contact me, you can send an e-mail to Happy reading!

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