Naval Parade To Commemorate The Gallipoli Wars

On 24 April 2015, to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of Çanakkale Wars, a naval parade was held under the command of Turkish Navy Northern Task Group Commander Rear Admiral Ali Murat Dede.

The formation led by Turkish frigate TCG Salihreis was made up from the following ships from 5 different nations:

Position Number Name Country Type
1 F-246 TCG Salihreis Turkey Frigate
2 150 HMAS Anzac Australia Frigate
3 F-241 TCG Turgutreis Turkey Frigate
4 D-614 FS Cassard France Destroyer
5 F-242 TCG Fatih Turkey Frigate
6 F-77 HMNZS Te Kaha New Zealand Frigate
7 F-240 TCG Yavuz Turkey Frigate
8 L-15 HMS Bulwark Great Britain Assault Ship
9 F-511 TCG Heybeliada Turkey Corvette
10 SG-702 TCSG Güven Turkey OPV
11 SG-703 TCSG Umut Turkey OPV

To commemorate the 100th anniversary of Gallipoli Land Wars, 4 different ceremonies were held. The first ceremony was organised by Turkish Republic at the Turkish War Memorial on 24 April 2015. On the same day following these Turkish ceremony one ceremony at the British War Cemetery and one in French Cemetery are held simultaneously by their respective nations.

The last and, one of the major commemoration ceremonies was the Dawn Service at the Anzac Cove on 25 April 2015. More than ten thousand Australians and New Zealanders attended this special event.

The naval parade was organized for the commemorations at Turkish War Memorial and for the Anzac Dawn Service. The following photos are from the first event.

The parade of the warships was followed by an impressive show of Turkish Stars the aerobatic demonstration team of the Turkish Air Force. Click here for the photos.

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For the photos of the rehearsal click here.

Turkish Coast Guard Released Photos And Videos Of M/V Doğan Kartal

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Two Type 80 class Coast Guard vessels use their water canons to stop the vessel. Photo: Official Turkish Coast Guard photo.

 

Detailed information has been published by Turkish Coast Guard on their intervention on the freighter M/V Doğan Kartal on 12 March 2015.

The Coast Guard was informed that this ship loaded with refugees was sailing on Marmara Sea heading to the Çanakkale Strait. Coast Guard vessels reached the vessel near Şarköy but the ship refused to stop and tried to get away. It was only close to Gelibolu about 22 nautical miles south-west when M/V Doğan Kartal was stopped by firing upon it.

The released videos and photos show that it was a very dangerous operation. Various tactics including hosing pressured water into the bridge of M/V Doğan Kartal was tried before using the machine guns. The Type 80 class boats of Turkish Navy have one water cannon.

The videos and the photos show that every aspect of the operation was recorded by each boat.

This is the video posted on the Turkish Coast Guard website.

This is another video from the operation. This show the firing upon the ship.

The videos show that the passengers(!) of M/V Doğan Kartal were hostile to the Coast Guard crews. It is a very delicate act of force to stop a ship fully loaded with unfriendly people without hurting them at all. I think in the end it was a job well done by our coast guard.

18 March 2015 Naval Parade (Part 1)

On 18 March 2015, Turkish Navy organised a Naval Parade in Çanakkale Strait to commemorate Turkish Victory over the Allied Armada 100 years ago.

6 Navy and Coast Guard helicopters, 3 maritime patrol planes and 6 Army helicopters took part in a fly over. And the Turkish Stars, the aerobatic demonstration team of the Turkish Air Force made a display. The focal point of the commemorations was the Çanakkale Martyrs’ Memorial, was off the limit for me. But I was never the less able to take photos of the warships taking part in the parade, Coast Guard Boats, providing security and ships that were open for public.

TCG Fatih and TCG Akçay were moored in Çanakkale and were open for public visitation:
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The point ship of the naval parade was the replica of the small minelayer TCG Nusret. She was followed by TCG Alanya, TCG Akçakoca and TCG Ayvalık. This was a very propitiate selection ans the mines of the original Nusret laid 100 years ago had a had very definitive results, from the point of view of the continuation of the battle and the future of the world, the mines laid as Sir Winston Churchill once said.
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The second line of the ships were the frigates TCG Oruçreis, TCG Salihreis, TCG Yıldırım, TCG Yavuz, TCG Gemlik and corvettes, TCG Heybeliada, TCG Bozcaada and TCG Bafra.
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The frigates were followed by the patrol boats TCG Türkeli and TCG Karabiga.
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Coast Guard section was headed by TCSG Dost. TCGS Güven, TCSG 303 and TCSG 106 followed her.
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The fast attack boats were the last group of ships to take part in the parade. TCG Mızrak, TCG Kalkan, TCG Atak, TCG Doğan, TCG Tayfun, TCG Rüzgar.
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The following boats provided security during the ceremonies:
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Large landing ship TCG Osmangazi made an appearance in Çanakkale but she did not take port in the commemorations.
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18 March 1915: Çanakkale Is Impassable

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The battlefield of the naval battle on 18 March 1915

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Fort Hamidiye under enemy fire during the battle on 18 March 1915

 

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A 381mm dud shell from dreadnought HMS Queen Elisabeth

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Fort Çimenlik in Çanakkale after the enemy bombardment

100 years ago the idyllic town Çanakkale was the center of a very fierce and bloody fighting. This fighting shaped the directly the future of Turkey, accelerate the end of the Romanov dynasty and created an unique Australian identity  following the war.

On 18 March 1915 when the Allied Armada made up of 18 battleships and numerous of cruisers and destroyers tried to forced her way up the Dardanelles. Their destination was Istanbul, the capital of Ottoman Empire.

Everything seem to be on the side of the Allied naval forces until at around 14.0, when a small cloud of yellowish smoke, which turned black afterwards, came out of the starboard quarter of the French warship Bouvet. This old battleship had struck a mine. One of the mines laid ten days ago by small Ottoman minelayer Nusret. Bouvet sank in a very short time.

In a matter of a couple of minutes first HMS Inflexible and shortly  later HMS Irresistible struck to same mines from Nusret.

Of the 18 capital ships that sailed in the Dardanelles that morning HMS Ocean, HMS Irresistible and Bouvet never returned. HMS Inflexible and Gaulios had to be beached at the near by small island in order to be rescued. Suffren heavily damaged by Turkish guns had to be docked at Malta for intensive repairs..

Winston Churchill defined those mines as the reason for the prolonging of the war and the enormous casualties, in the interview he made with “Revue de Paris,” in 1930.

The failure of the naval forces forced the Allied forces to land troops ob Gallipoli peninsula which led to long and bloody trench warfare.

The legacy and the heroism of the defenders of Çanakkale will never forgotten. Çanakkale geçilmez.

Turkish Coast Guard Fires On M/V Doğan Kartal

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M/V Doğan Kartal, seen here in Bosphorus in 2009 photo. Photo: marinetraffic.com

On 12 March 2015, Turkish Coast Guard vessels chased the cargo ship M/V Doğan Kartal in the Çanakkale Strait and forces the ship to stop by firing on her engine room.

According to AIS data from marinetraffic.com website, the Turkish flagged 59 metre long ship has departed from Istanbul on 11 March 2015. It is not know to me where the hundreds of Syrian refugees have come on board.

When the ship has passing through the Çanakkale Strait on 12 March, Turkish Coast Guard hailed the ship and wanted to perform on board inspection. According to news reports the captain of the ship refused the VBSS inspection and did not stopped the ship. This started a chase of the M/V Doğan Kartal by coast guard vessels in Çanakkale Strait. The Strait was closed for transit traffic during the chase.

The stubborn ship was forced to stop when a coast guard vessel fired on her engine room which disabled the steering of the ship. It was not disclosed which boat fired with what kind of weapon. But the photo below shows at least two Type 80 class patrol boats with one 40 mm gun and two 12,7 mm machine guns. So it may be assumed that M/V Doğan Kartal was hit by a 40 mm projectile.

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M/V Doğan Kartal surrounded by Turkish Coast Guard vessels. Photo: DHA.

Lest We Forget: The Gallipoli Campaign

Yesterday and today at dawn, many Turks, Australians and New Zealanders commemorated the 99th anniversary of the  Gallipoli wars and the death. This is post I have written 4 years ago. But I don’t think anything has changed.

It was clear to the Allied commanders, after their attempt to force the Dardanelles by the naval alone, failed dramatically in 18 March; ground troops were needed to silence the Turkish defenses along the Strait.

On the dawn of 25th April after more a month of preparation and planning British, French and ANZAC troops landed on the beach on Gallipoli and Anatolia. This was the beginning of the one of the gruesome campaigns of the First World War.

For the next 8 and half months over 200.000 soldiers of all participants were either killed, wounded, hospitalized by illness or went missing.

The Gallipoli wars were particularly important for Turks, Australians and New Zealanders. Although the ANZAC came to our home as invaders there is a special bond between these nations. Long forgotten are the atrocities of the war. Every year thousands of Aussies and Kiwis come to Çanakkale and visit the battleground and attend the dawn service in Anzac Cove (now this is the official name of the cove). I do not know any other commemoration where two former enemies join to remember their fallen soldiers.

Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, who personally fought against the ANZAC’s in Gallipoli, later wrote in 1934 for his former advisories the following words:

Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives… You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmet’s to us where they lie side by side now here in this country of ours… you, the mothers, who sent their sons from faraway countries wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace. After having lost their lives on this land. They have become our sons as well.

Turkish Navy Naval Parade In Dardanelles

On 18 March,we have celebrated the victory of against the Allied Fleet in 1915.  I am honored and delighted to share some of the excellent photos Mr. Ahmet Güven, a very dear contributor to these blog before shared these beautiful photos.

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A-579 TCG Cezayirli Hasan Paşa passing through Dardanelles.

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F-247 TCG Kemalreis anchored at Dardanelles.

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F-247 TCG Kemalreis anchored at Dardanelles.

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F-247 TCG Kemalreis anchored at Dardanelles.

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F-247 TCG Kemalreis anchored at Dardanelles.

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F-247 TCG Kemalreis anchored at Dardanelles.

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F-247 TCG Kemalreis anchored at Dardanelles. At the background from left to right P-330 TCG Kılıç, P-335 TCG Imbat, P-334 TCG Meltem, P-337 TCG Atak

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F-241 TCG Turgutreis anchored at Dardanelles

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F-241 TCG Turgutreis anchored at Dardanelles

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F-241 TCG Turgutreis anchored at Dardanelles

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F-241 TCG Turgutreis anchored at Dardanelles

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SG-701 TCSG Dost at Dardanelles

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SG-701 TCSG Dost at Dardanelles

Photos From Recent Warship Passages In Bosphorus

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Russian Alligator class 152 Nikolia Filchenkov passing through the Bosphorus on 12 September 2013. Photo: Kerim Bozkurt. Used with permission.

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Russian Alligator class 152 Nikolia Filchenkov passing through the Bosphorus on 12 September 2013. Photo: Kerim Bozkurt. Used with permission.

Russian Kashinin class destroyer 810 Smetlivy passing through the Bosphuros on 13 September 2013. Photo:   haberler.com

Russian Kashinin class destroyer 810 Smetlivy passing through the Bosphuros on 13 September 2013. Photo: haberler.com

Click here for more photos from the passage of Smetlivy and click here for a short video.

It was not only Russian ships that passed through the Bosphorus this weekend. The SNMCMG-2 has left the Black Sea after spending 19 days in various ports in the region.

M-1061 FGS Rootweil and M-263 TCG Erdemli leaving the Bosphorus on 14 September 2013.

M-1061 FGS Rottweil and M-264 TCG Erdemli leaving the Bosphorus on 14 September 2013. Photo: denizhaber.com.tr

Turkish Navy Naval Parade In Dardanelles

Just like in the previous years, on 18 March 2013, Turkish Navy organized a naval parade in Dardanelles, to commemorate the 98th anniversary of the victory against the Allied Fleet in 18 March 1915.

Unlike past 3 years, I was not able to travel to Çanakkale to watch the parade. But instead I am honored and delighted to share some of the excellent photos Mr. Ahmet Güven. All photos in this post are his work and used by me with his permission.

Following ships took part in the parade:

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F-245 TCG Oruçreis

F-246 TCG Salihreis.

F-246 TCG Salihreis. With her brand new SMART-S Mk2 3D air/surface search radar.

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F-247 TCG Kemalreis.

F-497 TCG Göksu. She too had her brand new Smart-s Mk2 3D radar.

F-497 TCG Göksu. She too displayed her brand new SMART-S Mk2 3D air/surface search radar.

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F-497 TCG Göksu

F-511 TCG Heybeliada.

F-511 TCG Heybeliada.

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P-1203 TCG Kumkale

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P-1205 TCG Karabiga

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P-332 TCG Mızrak

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P-334 TCG Meltem

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P-336 TCG Zıpkın

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P-337 TCG Atak

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M-267 TCG Ayvalık

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M-270 TCG Akçay

Lest We Forget: The Minelayer Nusret.

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TCG Nusret. A swimming replica of the original.

There are a few ships, that directly influenced the history. The small minelayer Nusret is one of them. Perhaps the smallest of them.

Today is the 98th anniversary of the victory of Turkish forces over the Allied Fleet in the Dardanelles. It is the proper time to remember this small minelayer constructed in Germany  in service of Ottoman Navy as the mines she has planted changes the course of the history.

Known as the Çanakkale Naval Victory, in Turkey, this battle effectively sunk (no pun indented) the hopes of the British Admiralty and Churchill to force the Turkish Straits and a quickly dash to Istanbul to occupy it. This Turkish victory forced the Allies to use ground force in order to bring Dardanelles under their control and led to the merciless Gallipoli Campaign.

Churchill realized that if Allies could eliminate Ottoman Empire from the war, they could help Russia via Black Sea and could pressure Central Powers from the east as well.

While the main of the British Army deeply entrench in Belgium and France and the most potent s capital ships loitering in the North Sea Allied Forces had few forces to spare for such a secondary and diversionary front.

The plan of the British Admiralty was to bombard the forts that were protecting the shores of Dardanelles to annihilation and later clean the mines to open the way for Allied warships to sail to Istanbul.

The order of the battle for the Allied fleet consisted of HMS Queen Elizabeth, HMS Agamemnon, HMS Lord Nelson, HMS Inflexible, HMS Prince George, HMS Triump,  HMS Ocean HMS Majestic HMS Swiftsure HMS Vengeance HMS Irresistible, HMS Albion from Royal Navy, Gaulois, Charlemange, Bouvet, Suffren from French Navy.

The fighting began at around 10:00 in the morning. Everything seem to be on the side of the Allied forces until at around 14:00 a small cloud of yellowish smoke, which turned black afterwards, came out of the starboard quarter of the Bouvet. She had struck a mine. The ship was in Erenköy Bay a part of the Strait previously cleared by Allied minesweepers and used by larger ships for maneuvering during previous engagements.

In the night of 8th March Nusret created a single line of 20 mines in the Erenköy Bay. This line was unique as she was parallel to the shore. This new single mine line consisting of 20 mines, changed the whole history.

During the heat of the action the Allied forces are not able to determine whether Bouvet hit a mine or was hit by a shell from a cannon ashore.

At 16:00 first HMS Inflexible, 5 minutes later HMS Irresistible struck to mines laid in Erenköy Bay. HMS Ocean was ordered to tow the now abandoned HMS Irresistible. But she too hit a mine at around 18:00, followed moments later by a shell that penetrated to a magazine below the water line.

Of the 16 capital ships that sailed in the Dardanelles that morning HMS Ocean, HMS Irresistible and Bouvet never returned. HMS Inflexible and Gaulios had to be beached at the near by small island in order to be rescued. Suffren heavily damaged by Turkish guns had to be docked at Malta for intensive repairs.

Winston Churchill defined those mines as the reason for the prolonging of the war and the enormous casualties, in the interview he made with “Revue de Paris,” in 1930.

This Turkish victory forced the Allies to use ground force to occupy the hills commanding Dardanelles in order to destroy the forts protecting the straits and mine fields. This campaign was too destined to be a defeat for the Allies.

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