Military Review

Red and white could make peace in Constantinople

Red and white could make peace in ConstantinopleSecret plans of Bolshevization of Turkey

In 1924, Mikhail Bulgakov published the story "The Crimson Island", later transformed into a play. I note that both the story and the play were allowed by the Soviet censor. The essence of the story: on the Crimson Island is a revolution, and then civil war. The British support the privileged caste of arap, fighting with commoners Moors. In the end, the Arap killed their commander and fraternized with the Moors, and then all together beat the "enlightened navigators." The English ships are flying away from the Red Island.

“After that, the radio antennas on the Eiffel Tower in Paris intercepted green lightning, which were transformed in the apparatus into words of telegrams unheard of in their audacity:“ Glenarwan and Ardan! Celebrating the feast of our great unification, we send you a helmet, su ... (unintelligible) that we laid down on you ... (untranslatable wordplay) ... with a parting ... (unintelligible) with our respect to you arapes and moors. "


Mikhail Nikolayevich himself served as an officer of the Goodwill, and if not personally, then through his wife he was well acquainted with Lieutenant-General Slaschev-Krymsky. Needless to say, the writer was well versed in the situation in the white army and the emigration. Not only Bulgakov, but also many white officers and intellectuals dreamed of reconciling the reds and whites. Let us recall, for example, the movement of the Smenowekha people. To implement reconciliation, emigrants invented the most fantastic plans. Here, for example, is now the deliberately forgotten mass emigrant movement "Mladorossy". The main slogan of the movement was “the Tsar and ... the Soviets,” that is, the Soviet power under the auspices of one of the children of the Romanov family. I note that the second person in the movement of the “Young Russians” after the Fuhrer (head) Kazembek was Grand Duke Andrei Vladimirovich.

It is now the Russian media that carry out a specific social order, are trying to present all the officers of the Goodwill, and later the Wrangel's “Russian Army”, as super-patriots, inflexible fighters “for the one and indivisible” and convinced anti-communists. Alas, this has nothing to do with reality. Take, for example, the elite of the Russian army: the cavalry Life Guards regiments are the personal guard of the emperor. The officers appointed there were exclusively convinced monarchists of the most distinguished noble families. But the revolution came, and the former Life Guardsman Baron Mannerheim served in the Finnish Fuhrer. Although the baron did not know Finnish until the spring of 1917, he referred to the Finns as “Finns”.

Another Life Guardsman, General Pavel Skoropadsky, contacted the Germans and with their help became the hetman of all Ukraine. And their colleague on horse guards Baron von Wrangel at the end of 1917 - the beginning of 1918, is being recruited to serve the Tatar kurultai in the Crimea. There is a bargaining. Pyotr Nikolayevich wants to be the commander of the entire Tatar army. But here the Black Sea sailors disperse the Tatar nationalists. And now the unemployed baron goes to Kiev to his acquaintance in the Guards revels of Skoropadsky. Wrangel again wants to be in charge. Alas, the life guards did not agree on the conditions, and General Alexander Dolgorukov, also from the horse guards, becomes the main one in the Hetman's army. Well, Baron Wrangel went to Denikin. He got the position and immediately began to weave intrigue against the "grandfather", as he called Anton Ivanovich.

Does the author of the article go too far? Not a bit! And all the doubters refer to the memories of Baron Wrangel himself. What Wrangel! Vaughn, his friend, Baron von Ungern, a great Russian patriot, accepted Buddhism and declared himself a Mongol khan and a descendant of Genghis Khan. Even earlier, in the 1960-ies, another myth was formed in the USSR that, they say, the Volunteer Army mainly consisted of aristocrats, lieutenants Golitsyn and Obolensky cornets. Alas, alas! All the highest aristocracy - the Romanovs, Yusupovs and others - preferred to fight Bolshevism from Paris and Berlin, or at least from Finland.

The overwhelming majority of officers of the white armies were not regular royal military officers, but “wartime officers,” that is, bourgeoisers, engineers, students, clerks who, in 1914 – 1917, completed accelerated courses of ensigns or midshipmen. During the war years, tens of thousands of gymnasium students entered the white armies. Some of them decided to fight "for the one and indivisible," and some just wanted to shoot.

By May 1920, the White armies were everywhere finished, only the Wrangel army remained in the Crimea. By building powerful fortifications and taking advantage of the lack of fleet among the Bolsheviks, the baron could sit on the peninsula for many years. Nevertheless, in May he goes on the offensive. What is he hoping for? With 100 thousand soldiers to defeat the 5 millionth Red Army? Or the allies?

Already in the 1919 year, both England and France withdrew all their armed forces from the territory of Russia and, in principle, did not want to get involved in a big war with the Bolsheviks. Their population was tired of war, and their main task was to hold the new Versailles’s structure in Europe. Wrangel’s only ally was Pan Pilsudski. Wrangell entered into a secret alliance with the "head of state." Moreover, this alliance was secret not so much from the Bolsheviks, as from the population of Poland and the Crimea. The fact is that Wrangel was still talking “about the one and indivisible”, and his friend Pilsudski from the beginning of 1920 of the year called for the creation of a confederation of the Intermarine with Kiev, Smolensk and Odessa, that is, the borders of the times of Prince Vitovt.


Needless to say that the synchronism of the attacks of Pilsudski and Wrangel on Soviet Russia was not an accident. At first, the allies were lucky. The Poles took Kiev, and the whites approached Kakhovka. However, this joint performance was a major psychological victory for the Bolsheviks. All Russia sang: "The White Army, the Black Baron." And the Russian officers, including the anti-Soviet, were enraged when they learned about the fall of Kiev. Already on May 30 in Moscow, an appeal was issued by General Brusilov and a number of other generals who were in opposition to the Bolsheviks, "To all former officers," which called for the immediate entry into the Red Army. So Pan Pilsudski “sent” thousands of Russian officers to the Red Army. And let the current media chatter that they were being driven into battle at the point of the revolvers of the “Parhat commissars,” as was depicted on the posters of the Volunteer Army.

And here’s how Grand Prince Alexander Mikhailovich reacted to the capture of Kiev: “When in the early spring of 1920 I saw the headlines of French newspapers announcing Pilsudski’s triumphal march across the wheat fields of Little Russia, something inside me could not stand, and I forgot about the fact that and a year has not passed since the execution of my brothers. I just thought: the Poles are about to take Kiev! The eternal enemies of Russia are about to cut off the empire from its western frontiers! I did not dare to speak openly, but, listening to the absurd chatter of the refugees and looking into their faces, I wished with all my heart the Red Army's victory. ”

It is clear that Pilsudski used the “Russian Army” as a trump card at the peace talks in Riga. So that thousands of Wrangel on the Kakhovsky bridgehead paid with their lives for the accession of Western Belarus and Ukraine to Poland. Well, that will be with Wrangel, the lords in Riga did not even stutter. Having dealt with the Poles, the Reds quickly turned the whites from the Kakhovsky bridgehead, the 200-thousandth group took Perekop on the move, protected by the entire 10 thousand Vrangelians. And here begins the detective история, which for some reason passed all emigrant and Soviet historians.

Evacuation of the army of General Wrangel from the Crimea. 1920 Photo of the Year


After the breakthrough of Perekop, Frunze threw into battle 1-th cavalry army of Budyonny, 2-th cavalry army of Mironov, equestrian corps of Kashirin, and also 15 – 20 of thousands of equestrian Makhnovists. In early November, the steppe Crimea is an ideal place for cavalry actions. It would seem that deep breakthroughs, cavalry, bursting into the pier, where the Wrangel members were loading, were all inevitable. But, alas, everything went grandly noble. General Slaschev later wrote: “On November 11, I was at the front on the orders of Wrangel, to watch and report on his condition. Parts were in full retreat, that is, rather, they were not parts, but separate small groups; for example, in the Perekop direction to Simferopol, 228 people and 28 guns departed, the rest was already near the ports. Reds did not press at all, and the departure in this direction took place in peacetime conditions. ”

I note that it was written when Yakov Aleksandrovich was already in the service of the Reds, and the participants in the battles for the Crimea could easily catch him in a lie. In emigration, a number of officers talked about cavalry columns of red and white, who walked along the steppe in parallel at a distance of several kilometers from each other and did not attempt to attack.

Personally, I am sure that the French and Soviet commanders for the second time in the Crimea (the first time - in April 1919 of the year) concluded a secret agreement: we leave, you do not touch us. The text of the agreement is still unprofitable to publish neither Russia nor France. Only the text of the French admiral’s ultimatum was published, threatening to bombard Soviet ports if French ships were in danger.

Now dozens of graduated historians claim that Frunze on the radio offered the White Guards to remain in the Crimea and promised them freedom and amnesty. Many officers remained, but they were basely deceived and repressed. In fact, Frunze sent a radiogram with a proposal to surrender the Crimea with all the ships and military property in exchange for amnesty and freedom. No one has responded to this offer. Moreover, Wrangel ordered to seal all the radio stations, except for three. So no one has learned about the offer of Frunze in the white camp. And even if an agreement was reached, the withdrawal of the fleet to Constantinople would automatically terminate it.

Ports of Crimea left the whole armada of ships: 1 dreadnought, 1 old battleship, 2 cruisers, 10 destroyers, 4 submarines, 12 minesweepers, 119 transports and auxiliary vessels. 145 693 people (not including ship crews) were taken out of them, of which 116 758 people were military and 28 935 were civilians. I note that by this time around 40, thousands of Russian émigrés, mostly men of military age, were already in the Straight Area. The only reasonable step Wrangel would have been the order: "The campaign is over, the bayonets into the ground." Alas, the baron went on an adventure and decided to keep his army in the pouring area.

The funny thing is that several tens of thousands of adventurers — the British, French, Americans, Greeks, Italians — were already sitting in this zone. Why so sharply - "adventurers"? Because they, by force and deceit, climbed into the Strait Zone and did not themselves know what to do next. No one was going to seriously fight the Soviets. To make Istanbul a French colony, Paris would not refuse in principle. But this would not allow him to all the other countries of the Entente. England was in a similar situation. Both countries had to arrange a sanitary barrier between Russia and Germany and force Germany to comply with the conditions of the Versailles Peace.

And then there is the Greek Prime Minister Venizelos climbed with plans for the revival of Byzantium. It got to the point that the Greek king Constantine I of the dynasty of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg, that is, one hundred percent German, suddenly declared himself emperor of the Romans Constantine XII. Well, from the east, the victorious Turkish army of General Mustafa Kemal moved to the Straits, who would later be given the title of Ataturk - the “father of the Turks”.

From all this, the governments of England and France and the allied command in the Straits were dizzy, and then Wrangel and his hungry army. Even before the evacuation from the Crimea, French Foreign Minister Briand said that he would consider the Wrangel army ordinary refugees, with all the ensuing consequences.


From the point of view of International Law, after the arrival of the Wrangel fleet in Constantinople, France had two legal options: either to intern the Russian army, or to declare war on Soviet Russia. It is clear that Wrangel did not want to receive refugee status in principle. The personnel of the Russian army, stationed in camps in the Straits, starved and experienced a wild hatred of the allies, especially the French, regarding them as the culprits of their troubles. Several officers attempted to flee to Mustafa Kemal’s army. They were caught. General Kutepov personally brutally beat everyone, and then ordered to shoot him.

A lot of noise did shooting Colonel Shcheglov. 45-year-old Shcheglov before the revolution served in the railway regiment. In Dobrarmii he repeatedly distinguished himself in battles, was wounded. Shcheglov was accused of pro-Soviet propaganda. The sick colonel was dragged from the infirmary and shot.

Is it any wonder that there were several dozen officers who conspired to seize Constantinople from the Allies and hand it over to the Bolsheviks. By this they hoped to earn not only forgiveness, but also reward. From the point of view of the General Staff, mechanically counting the number of bayonets, machine guns and cannons, white officers had no chance of success. But in reality, several thousand soldiers and officers who had already lost nothing to lose fire and water could easily suppress the resistance of French and British soldiers who essentially did not want to fight anyone.

And who does not agree with this assumption, let him remember the riots of French soldiers and sailors of 1918 – 1919 in Odessa and Sevastopol, and how in May 1920 of the year in Enzeli the British troops surrendered without a fight when the ships of the Volga-Caspian flotilla appeared. By the way, a few months later the British and French surrendered Istanbul and the Straits to the troops of Mustafa Kemal without a fight.

About the conspiracy of officers became known Cheka. And here's 22 on April 1921 of the pre-rally committee Lenin received a strictly secret letter signed by Chicherin, in which it was reported that the board of the People’s Commissariat of Foreign Affairs strongly decides to accept the very attractive offer of a certain mysterious comrade E. And he advises to establish contact with Wrangel’s troops, so that they, having received Soviet weapon, money and the promise of complete forgiveness, seized Constantinople, in the region of which their parts are located. Then, naturally, they will transfer the city to the Soviet side.

"We," Chicherin wrote, "thus seize the situation in Constantinople." And at the same time “we cannot be blamed for the events [supposedly] unfolding besides us. After that, we will transfer Constantinople to its rightful owners - the Turks, but not the Angora Kemalists ... and the work item in [the city] ... that we will organize and arm, formally, we will transfer Constantinople to the Turkish state. ”

But that's not all. “Comrade E. believes that at that moment our Wrangleran will easily occupy [more] Adrianople and Thessaloniki, our commissioners will appear there [like before in Constantinople], and the barely holding Balkan governments will be overthrown, which can have a huge political effect and on the Balkans. "

And the very next day, April 23, the question of seizing Constantinople was considered at the Politburo. According to the transcript, the “proposal of Comrade. Chicherin on subsidies to Comrade E. ”and with the participation of Lenin, Stalin, Molotov, Radek, Kamenev and others, it was decided to“ approve ”. It was decided to send “agitators” to Constantinople 20 and pay each 15 thousand liras each month. Most of the documents of the Politburo and the OGPU on this issue have not yet been declassified.

Personally, I am sure that the return from Constantinople to Generals Jacob Slaschov and Alexander Milkovsky, Colonels Mezernitsky and Gilbach was the tip of the iceberg. Perhaps they should have been involved in the seizure of Constantinople.

The rhetorical question: was it worth the return of the OGPU and the enormous costs of Slashchev's titanic efforts? Propaganda effect, they say, the general recognized the Soviet power? So the Kremlin in the service consisted of dozens of royal generals. On the contrary, the return of Sashchev could be the trump card of anti-Soviet propaganda, both among émigrés and within the country, of the left opposition. They say that Lenin not only encourages the NEP, but also befriends the bloody executioner Slashchyov. Finally, some relative of Sashchev's victim, the same Kolenberg, could have shot the general not in 1924, but directly on the boat’s ladder or at the carriage where Dzerzhinsky met him.

One way or another, white officers had a chance to seize Constantinople. To discuss how relations between great powers would develop in this case, I will not. I give it to fans of fantasy.

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  1. Middle-brother
    Middle-brother 25 December 2012 10: 33
    "Reds and whites could make peace in Constantinople"
    "Leave it to the fantasy lovers." good

    The article is controversial, but curious. The name is more than controversial.
  2. Sinbad
    Sinbad 25 December 2012 10: 40
    Very interesting and instructive.
  3. Vlaleks48
    Vlaleks48 25 December 2012 12: 07
    However, this opus is from the history of "fantasy"!
    No references from the memoirs of Denikin and Wrangel, not even a hint of these actions! It’s bold, very boldly stated! Directly according to Goebels!
    1. Karlsonn
      Karlsonn 26 December 2012 20: 37

      Have you read Wrangel's Notes and Denikin's The Way of a Russian Officer?
      Everything is there exactly as the author describes. If you haven’t personally read it, check out (you can read it without downloading):


      Quote: Vlaleks48
      Boldly, very boldly stated! Directly according to Goebels!

      Please expand your statement.
  4. vladimirZ
    vladimirZ 25 December 2012 17: 16
    An interesting scenario. Well, Wrangel, and even more so Denikin, in no way could be informed about this, it was outside their competence. There are no archives of the meetings of the Politburo of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks), since at that time all issues of special secrecy were not recorded. The fact that the Cheka worked in Wrangel's army is unambiguous, and the Cheka agents, together with patriotic officers who dreamed of returning to their homeland, could well have prepared such a conspiracy. Moreover, almost all the leadership of the CPSU (b) at that time dreamed of a World Revolution. And it was unlikely not to use this scenario on the part of the leadership of the CPSU (b). The plan failed and the most prominent participants were taken to Russia, which also explains to some extent the return of such odious figures as Slashchev, who, instead of a tribunal court and "wall", was returned to the army to teach.
  5. ism_ek
    ism_ek 27 December 2012 12: 12
    The author was poorly versed in the history of Soviet-Turkish relations in the early 20s. Let us recall the Armenian-Turkish war in which Lenin helped Turkey. Soviet Russia in those years made a big bet on the new Turkish regime.