Page:Ambassador Morgenthau's Story.djvu/71

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47
AMBASSADOR MORGENTHAU'S STORY

great military review. The occasion was a splendid and a gala affair. The Sultan attended in state; he sat under a beautifully decorated tent where he held a little court; and the Khedive of Egypt, the Crown Prince of Turkey, the princes of the imperial blood and the entire Cabinet were also on hand. We now saw that, in the preceding six months, the Turkish army had been completely Prussianized. What in January had been an undisciplined, ragged rabble was now parading with the goose step; the men were clad in German field gray, and they even wore a casque-shaped head covering, which slightly suggested the German pickelhaube. The German officers were immensely proud of the exhibition, and the transformation of the wretched Turkish soldiers of January into these neatly dressed, smartly stepping, splendidly manœuvring troops was really a creditable military achievement. When the Sultan invited me to his tent I naturally congratulated him upon the excellent showing of his men. He did not manifest much enthusiasm; he said that he regretted the possibility of war; he was at heart a pacifist. I noticed certain conspicuous absences from this great German fête, for the French, British, Russian, and Italian ambassadors had kept away. Bompard said that he had received his ten tickets but that he did not regard that as an invitation. Wangenheim told me, with some satisfaction, that the other ambassadors were jealous and that they did not care to see the progress which the Turkish army had made under German instruction. I did not have the slightest question that these ambassadors refused to attend because they had no desire to grace this German holiday; nor did I blame them.