THE REPRESENTATIVE OFFICE OF THE RED CRESCENT IN VIENNA
Millî Eğitim Bakanlığı, Şehit Mustafa Çuhadar Ortaokulu, Konya/TÜRKİYE
Keywords: Austrian Red Cross, Hilal-i Ahmer (Red Crescent) Society, Red Crescent Vienna Representative Office, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Ottoman Empire.
One of the organizations that tried to ease the heavy burden upon the Ottoman Empire during the troubled years of the First World War was Hilal-i Ahmer Cemiyeti (The Red Crescent Society). The society, which consumed almost all of its resources during the Balkan Wars, mobilized available facilities in the country and sought ways to obtain support/ assistance from abroad after the Ottoman Empire got involved in the war. For this, the Red Crescent administration would try to supply the materials that it had difficulty in finding in the country due to the war conditions by opening a representative office in the allied countries. The Red Crescent Society’s Vienna Representative Office was founded for these purposes and met some of the cash and in-kind needs of the society with the support of the Vienna Embassy during the war.
The purpose of this study is to reveal the activities carried out from the time when Dr. Hikmet Bey was sent to Vienna as the representative of the Red Crescent to the end of the First World War. The start of activities of the society by establishing a representative office in Vienna and the promotion of the society to the Austrian public, how the committees that would collect aid for the benefit of the Red Crescent were formed, the activities carried out by the committees and the activities organized for the inclusion of the people in this mobilization and supply period (by donation or purchase) of the materials (tents for field hospitals, transportation vehicles to be used for food products, clothing, patient and material transporting) requested by the society from the Vienna Representative Office and matters regarding their transport to Istanbul constitute the content of this study. The activities of the society in Vienna will be evaluated in the study in detail using qualitative research method in the light of the information reflected in the Turkish and Austrian press of the period and archival documents in particular.