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by mounted troops, in an open carriage, with the Grand Vizier facing him, came he who is the head of the Moslem world, the nominal ruler of the Ottoman Empire, the Sultan Abdul Hamid himself, his face imperturbable as he acknowledged the salute and trained acclamation of his legionaries. But it was a procession in which one seemed to be looking at the shadow of that from which Turkey has now delivered herself; one felt that all this pomp was but the empty shell of that which is now a dead thing. Then, in the afternoon, I visited the headquarters of the Young Turk party in Stamboul. Having crossed the Golden Horn by the Galata Bridge, and traversed the intricate lanes of the Grand Bazaar, I came to a quiet street of somewhat mean appearance, and in an unpretentious house, almost bare of furniture, I found the temporary meeting-place of the Committee of Union and Progress, the virtual Government of the Ottoman Empire. Here there was no pomp or ceremony; one might have been in the offices of some struggling architect in a third-rate London suburb. There was a room in which members of the organisation met in an informal manner to discuss their plans, and to put forth those suggestions which had to be obeyed by the ministers. There were other rooms in which men awaited their turn to have interviews with members of the
Committee, and chambers in which one might carry on long conversations, as I did on several occasions, with courteous Young Turks ready to impart all such information regarding this wonderful movement as it was not deemed inexpedient to divulge. I found these young Mussulmans who had freed Turkey quite unlike the conventional conspirators and revolutionaries. These were well-educated and thoughtful men, keen and energetic, with the light of resolve and great hope in their eyes betraying the enthusiasm which lay under their Turkish reserve and phlegm. The more I saw of the Young Turks the more I was impressed by their patriotism, their manliness and their sincerity. There are naturally some over-confident Chauvinists in the party, but the bulk are men of shrewd common-sense, as has been made manifest to the world by their moderation after victory, and their tactful methods of conducting the government of a disorganised country, and maintaining order throughout the Empire in the face of tremendous difficulties of every description. All the members of the Committee of Union and Progress with whom I came into contact, whether in the capital or in Salonica, whether soldiers or civilians, were enlightened men, most of whom had travelled and studied in Western Europe, and had assimilated what is best of Western culture. Thus among the civilian members of the Committee are men who would gain distinction in any country, such as Ahmed Riza, for many years the chief organiser of the Young Turk movement in Paris, the President of the Chamber; Djavid Bey, the professor; Aassim Bey, the strenuous editor of the Shura-i-Ummet, the official organ of the Committee, who took a leading part in preparing the revolution in Salonica; Rahmi Bey, a wealthy Salonican who was long in exile, a descendant of the Saracen warrior who conquered Thessalonika from the Latins five hundred years ago. The military members of the Committee, officers of the état-major, have passed through the military schools, or have been educated in France or Germany, and most of them, like the civilian members, speak foreign languages. Among them are distinguished men like Colonel Faik Bey, and Enver Bey, now the popular hero of the Turks. Another member of the Committee is Turkey's ablest artillery officer, General Hassan Riza Pasha, an old friend of mine in a way, for I discovered, on talking to him, that he was with the Epirus army during the Greek war, and that it was under the uncomfortable fire of his guns that I remained with the eccentric, but harmless, Greek army on the heights of Arta, and on one occasion narrowly escaped being killed by one of his shells.