V. I.   Lenin

The End of the Italo-Turkish War

Published: Pravda No. 129, September 28, 1912. Signed: T.. Published according to the Pravda text.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, [1975], Moscow, Volume 18, pages 337-338.
Translated: Stepan Apresyan
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2004). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.
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Representatives of Italy and Turkey have signed preliminary terms of peace, according to telegraphic reports.

Italy has “won” the war, which she launched a year ago to seize Turkish possessions in Africa. From now on, Tripoli will belong to Italy. It is worth while taking a look at this typical colonial war, waged by a “civilised” twentieth-century nation.

What caused the war? The greed of the Italian money bags and capitalists, who need new markets and new achievements for Italian imperialism.

What kind of war was it? A perfected, civilised blood bath, the massacre of Arabs with the help of the “latest” weapons.

The Arabs put up a desperate resistance. When, at the beginning of the war, the Italian admirals were incautious enough to land 1,200 marines, the Arabs attacked them and killed some 600. By way of “retaliation”, about 3,000 Arabs were butchered, whole families were plundered and done to death, with women and children massacred in cold blood. The Italians are a civilised, constitutional nation.

About 1,000 Arabs were hanged.

The Italian casualties exceeded 20,000, including 17,429 sick, 600 missing and 1,405 killed.

The war cost the Italians over 800 million lire, or over 320 million rubles. It resulted in terrible unemployment and industrial stagnation.

The Arabs lost about 14,800 lives. Despite the “peace”, the war will actually go on, for the Arab tribes in the heart   of Africa, in areas far away from the coast, will refuse to submit. And for a long time to come they will be “civilised” by bayonet, bullet, noose, fire and rape.

Italy, of course, is no better and no worse than the other capitalist countries. All of them alike are governed by the bourgeoisie, which stops at no carnage in its quest for new sources of profit.


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