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Congressman John Sarbanes Sends Letter to State and Defense Department Officials to Correct Inaccuracies Regarding Turkey’s Involvement in WWII
July 17, 2009—No. 53 (202) 785-8430

Congressman John Sarbanes Sends Letter to State and Defense Department Officials to Correct Inaccuracies Regarding Turkey’s Involvement in WWII


WASHINGTON, DC—On July 9, 2009 Congressman John P. Sarbanes (D- 3rd MD) sent a letter to the Assistant Secretary of Defense, Bryan G. Whitman and Assistant Secretary of State, Philip Gordon, regarding the historical inaccuracy of a recent statement made by U.S. Navy Admiral Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, during his keynote address to the 28th Annual Conference on U.S. Turkish Relations. According to the letter, this statement wrongly asserts that “Turkey fought in WWII on the side of the Allied Forces” (see Dept. of Defense press release). In addition, Congressman Sarbanes' letter highlights the “historical inaccuracy of the State Department’s background note on Turkey” which implies the same matter.

The American Hellenic Institute (AHI) congratulates Congressman Sarbanes for his initiative and for bringing to the forefront the inaccuracy made by a high-ranking U.S. government official by the State Department on this issue of “crucial historical importance.”

Contrary to Admiral Mullen’s statement, the truth is otherwise. Turkey not only did not fight in WWII alongside the Allied Forces, but in reality aided and abetted the war effort of the Axis Powers. Turkey failed to honor its treaty with Britain and France to enter the war, remained neutral and profited from both sides!  In fact, Turkey supplied Hitler with chromium, a vital resource for Nazi Germany’s armaments industry and war effort. See F. Weber, The Evasive Neutral p. 44 (1979).

Further, Hitler’s armaments chief, Albert Speer, provided Hitler a memorandum in November 1943 on “Alloys in Armaments Production and the Importance of Chromium Imports from the Balkans and Turkey,” which stated that the loss of chromium supplies from Turkey would end the war in about 10 months. See A. Speer, Inside the Third Reich pp. 316-17, 405, 550 n.10 (1970).

One can make the argument that, “Turkey’s supply of chromium to Nazi Germany prolonged World War II by 7 months. Thus, based on Turkey’s support of Nazi Germany, all battlefield and concentration camps deaths in the last 7 months of World War II lie at Turkey’s doorstep” said Executive Director of AHI, Nick Larigakis.

With the defeat of Germany imminent, Turkey, among other nations, declared war on Germany 2 weeks before Germany’s surrender. “Turkey did this to claim a seat at the conference table after the war and not because it shared the spirit and principles of the Allies”, said Larigakis.

Click here to read the John Sarbanes letter.

Click here to read the Press Release from the Dept. of Defense.


For additional information, please contact C. Franciscos Economides at (202) 785-8430 or at For general information about the activities of AHI, please see our Web site at