HomeREADERSLEADERSHIP100 Quotes by Ataturk (1881-1938)

100 Quotes by Ataturk (1881-1938)

A healthy mind in a healthy body.

A nation devoid of art and artists cannot have a full existence. –

A nation which makes the final sacrifice for life and freedom does not get beaten.

Armies, your first goal is the Mediterranean. Forward !

As in every job, you will fill your place in the sky waiting for you at the highest level in a short time.

As they have come, so they will go.

Authority, without any condition and reservation, belongs to the nation.

Because the Turkish nation has been successful in overcoming hardships through national unity and togetherness. And because the torch the Turkish nation holds in her hand and in her mind, while marching on the road of progress and civilization, is positive science.

Culture is the foundation of the Turkish Republic.

Do not be afraid of telling the truth.

Education, culture and knowledge are the widest window to enlightenment.

England does not want the Turkish unity, modernization, real independence, even in the future. A completely modern and strong Muslim-Turkish government with new possibilities and views, if the Caliphate is at its head, will set a bad example for the Muslim captives in the hands of England. If England could take over Turkey completely, it would cut off its head and make it a loyal colony in a few years. In our country, especially the religious classes are already in favor of this. But since it would not be possible to do this without fighting with France, it cannot be a supporter. However, if it is necessary to protect Turkey as a whole, that is, if it understands that the division can be made with great military sacrifices, it will hold and support the American view in order not to involve the Latins. As a matter of fact, there are those among British politicians who are already inclined to this view. Famous people like Morrison (Morison) want the American to establish a mandate in Turkey. ( Speech. 1927)

Every man can follow his own conscience, provided it does not interfere with sane reason or bid him against the liberty of his fellow-men.

Every nation as the right to demand proper treatment and no country should violate the territory of any other country.

Everyone will be against you, everyone will try to turn you from your path. But you will resist it, and they will pile up endless obstacles in front of you; You will overcome these obstacles by counting yourself not big, small, weak, without tools, believing that no help will come from anyone. If they call you big from now on, you’ll laugh at those who say it.

Everything we see in the world is the creative work of women.

Following the military triumph we accomplished by bayonets, weapons and blood, we shall strive to win victories in such fields as culture, scholarship, science and economics.

For nearly five hundred years, these rules and theories of an Arab Shaikh and the interpretations of generations of lazy and good-for-nothing priests have decided the civil and criminal law of Turkey. They have decided the form of the Constitution, the details of the lives of each Turk, his food, his hours of rising and sleeping the shape of his clothes, the routine of the midwife who produced his children, what he learned in his schools, his customs, his thoughts-even his most intimate habits. Islam – this theology of an immoral Arab – is a dead thing. Possibly it might have suited tribes in the desert. It is no good for modern, progressive state. God’s revelation! There is no God! These are only the chains by which the priests and bad rulers bound the people down. A ruler who needs religion is a weakling. No weaklings should rule.

France, which cannot find what it is looking for in Syria, wants to cover its losses from Turkey. Since Italy is an honest imperialist, it openly says that it entered the war only to have a share in the division of Anatolia. England’s game is a little more subtle.

Gentlemen, we will declare the Republic tomorrow  Gazi – 28 October 1923

Happy is he who says, I am a Turk.

He is a man born out of due season, an anachronism, a throw-back to the Tartars of the Steppes, a fierce elemental force of a man. Had he been born in the centuries when all Central Asia was on the move he would have ridden out with Sulyman Shah under the banner of the Grey Wolf, and with the heart and instincts of a Grey Wolf. With his military genius, and his ruthless determination unweakened by sentiments, loyalties or moralities, he might well have been a Tamerlane or a Jenghis Khan riding at the head of great hordes of wild horsemen, conquering countries, devouring and destroying cities, and filling in the intervals of peace between campaigns with wild and hideous orgies of wine and women.

He is a weak ruler who needs religion to uphold his government; it is as if he would catch his people in a trap.

Heroes who 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 Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours. You, the mothers, who sent their sons from far away 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.

Humankind is made up of two sexes, women and men. Is it possible for humankind to grow by the improvement of only one part while the other part is ignored? Is it possible that if half of a mass is tied to earth with chains that the other half can soar into skies?

I am not ordering you to fight, I am ordering you to die.

I do not leave any verses, dogmas, nor any moulded standard principles as moral heritage. My moral heritage is science and reason. What I have done and intended to do for the Turkish nation lies in that. Anyone willing to appropriate my ideas for themselves after me will be my moral inheritors provided they would approve the guidance of science and reason on this axis.

I have been able to teach many things to this nation, but I haven’t been able to teach how to be lackeys.

If one day, my words are against science, choose science.

If you don’t have ammunition, you have bayonets! FIX BAYONETS! GET DOWN!

In human life, you will find players of religion until the knowledge and proficiency in religion will be cleansed from all superstitions, and will be purified and perfected by the enlightenment of real science.

It is necessary to overcome pride in successes, and to resist despair in disasters. One should always seek success, but it is pointless to boast that I did this, that boast is already a thing of the past.

Lasting peace is sought, it is essential to adopt international measures to improve the lot of the masses. The welfare of the entire human race must replace hunger and oppression. People of the world must be taught to give up envy, avarice and rancour.

Liberty and independence are my character.

Mankind is a single body and each nation a part of that body. We must never say What does it matter to me if some part of the world is ailing? If there is such an illness, we must concern ourselves with it as though we were having that illness.

Men, I am not ordering you to attack. I am ordering you to die. In the time that it takes us to die, other forces and commanders can come and take our place.

My greatest work is the Republic of Turkey.

My people are going to learn the principles of democracy the dictates of truth and the teachings of science. Superstition must go. Let them worship as they will, every man can follow his own conscience provided it does not interfere with sane reason or bid him act against the liberty of his fellow men.

No matter how wealthy and prosperous a nation is, if it is deprived of its independence it no longer deserves to be regarded otherwise than as a slave in the eyes of civilized world. –

O Turkish child of future generations! As you see, even under these circumstances and conditions, it is your duty to save the Turkish Independence and the Republic! The strength that you will need is present in the noble blood which flows in your veins!

One day my mortal body will turn to dust, but the Turkish Republic will stand forever.

Our great ideal is to raise our nation to the highest standard of civilization and prosperity.

Our life here is truly hellish. Fortunately, my soldiers are very brave and tougher than the enemy.

Our nation has succeeded owing to the unshakable unity it has shown in its actions and endeavors.

Our object now is to strengthen the ties that bind us to other nations. There may be a great many countries in the world, but there is only one civilization, and if a nation is to achieve progress, she must be a part of this civilization. The Ottoman Empire began to decline the day when, proud of her success against the West, she cut the ties that bound her to the European nations.

Our true mentor in life is science.

Peace at Home, Peace in the World.

Persons, who knows that, that they will not be able to rest along the way when they took a path, will never get tired.

Reform in education starts in the head of the teacher

Religion is an important institution. A nation without religion cannot survive. Yet it is also very important to note that religion is a link between Allah and the individual believer. The brokerage of the pious cannot be permitted. Those who use religion for their own benefit are detestable. We are against such a situation and will not allow it. Those who use religion in such a manner have fooled our people; it is against just such people that we have fought and will continue to fight. Know that whatever conforms to reason, logic, and the advantages and needs of our people conforms equally to Islam. If our religion did not conform to reason and logic, it would not be the perfect religion, the final religion.

Religions have been basis of the tyranny of kings and sultans.

Science is the most real guide for civilisation, for life, for success in the world. To search for a guide other than science is absurdity, ignorance and heresy.

Science is the only true guide in life.

Sovereignty and kingship are never decided by academic debate. They are seized by force. The Ottoman dynasty appropriated by force the government of the Turks, and reigned over them for six centuries. Now the Turkish nation has effectively gained possession of its sovereignty… This is an accomplished fact… If those assembled here … see the matter in its natural light, we shall all agree. Otherwise, facts will still prevail, but some heads may roll.

Sovereignty is not given, it is taken.

Teachers are the one and only people who save nations.

Teachers: the new generation will be your devotion.

The biggest battle is the war against ignorance.

The centuries rarely produce a genius. It is our bad luck that the great genius of our era was granted to the Turkish nation. We could not beat Mustafa Kemal.

The cornerstone of education is an easy system of reading and writing. The key to this is the new Turkish alphabet based on the latin script.

The foundation of our religion is very strong. The material is strong as well, but the building itself was neglected for hundreds of years. As the plaster dropped down, none thought to replace it and none felt the need to reinforce the building. Quite the contrary: many foreign elements and interpretations, as well as empty beliefs, came along and damaged it still more.

The future is in the skies; Because nations that cannot protect their skies can never be sure of their future…

The greatest war is the war against ignorance.

The heroes who shed their blood and lost their lives on this country’s soil! You are in the soil of a friendly country now. Therefore rest in peace. You are side by side with the little Mehmets. The mothers who send their sons to the war! Wipe your tears away. Your sons are in our bosom, are in peace and will be sleeping in peace comfortably. From now on, they have became our sons since they have lost their lives on this land.

The nation has placed its faith in the precept that all laws should be inspired by actual needs here on earth as a basic fact of national life.

The Republic of Turkey cannot be a country of sheikhs, dervishes, and disciples. The truest, most real order is the order of civilisation.

The torch that the Turkish nation holds in her hand and in her mind, while marching on the road of progress and civilisation, is positive sciences.

The Turkish Nation consists of the valiant descendants of a people that has lived independently and has considered independence the sole condition of existence. This nation has never lived without freedom, cannot and never will.

The Turkish nation is industrious

The Turkish nation is intelligent.

The Turkish nation’s character is noble

The Turkish Republic will be happy, prosperous and victorious.

The value of an army is measured by the value of its officers and command staff.

There are two Mustafa Kemals: One is me, the flesh-and-blood, mortal Mustafa Kemal … The second Mustafa Kemal,… I can not express it with the word me, it is not me, it is we. That is an intellectual and challenging society, struggling in every corner of the homeland for new ideas, new life and the great ideal. I represent their dream. My attempts are to satisfy the things they long. That Mustafa Kemal is you, all of you. That is the non provisional Mustafa Kemal that must live and succeed.

There is no defense line, but a defense territory, and that territory is the whole of the motherland. Not even an inch of the motherland may be abandoned without being soaked in the blood of her citizens…

This nation has not lived without her independence. She will not and cannot live without it. Liberty or death!

Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives (at Gallipoli battles).. You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours.. You the mothers who sent their sons from far away countries wipe away your tears. Your sons are now living in our bosom and are in peace. Having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.

Those who see the existence of all mankind in their own person are miserable. Obviously, that man will disappear as an individual. The need for any person to be satisfied and happy to live is to work not for himself but for the future. An insightful man can only act this way. Full enjoyment and happiness in life, but the honor, presence, happiness of future generations can be found.

Those who set out not to rest never tire.

Those who use religion for their own benefit are detestable. We are against such a situation and will not allow it. Those who use religion in such a manner have fooled our people; it is against just such people that we have fought and will continue to fight.

To be great, you will not compliment anyone, you will not deceive anyone, you will see what the real purpose is for the country and you will walk towards that goal.

To see me does not necessarily mean to see my face. To understand my thoughts, my feelings is to have seen me.

To write history is as important as to make history. If the writer does not remain true to the maker, then the unchanging truth takes on a quality that will confuse the humanity.

Today the Soviet Union is a friend and an ally. We need this friendship. However, no one can know what will happen tomorrow. Just like the Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empires it may tear itself apart or shrink in size. Those peoples that it holds so tightly in its grip may one day slip away. The world may see a new balance of power. It is then that Turkey must know what to do. Ally Soviets have under their control our brothers with whom we share language, beliefs and roots. We must be prepared to embrace them. Being ready does not mean that we will sit quietly and wait. We must get ready. How does a people get prepared for such an endeavour? By strengthening the natural bridges that exist between us. Language is a bridge… Religion is a bridge… History is a bridge… We must delve into our roots and reconstruct what history has divided. We can’t wait for them to approach us. We must reach out to them.

Turkey had been our ally in the World War. Its unfortunate result was as heavy a burden for Turkey as it was for us. The great and ingenious reconstructor of the new Turkey gave his Allies, beaten by fate, the first example of resurrection. While Turkey, thanks to the realistic attitude of her State leadership, preserved her independent attitude Yugoslavia fell a victim to British intrigues.

Turkey’s true master is the peasant.

Turkish women had lived free of the veil for 5,000 years, and had been covered only in the last 600 years.

Turkish youth is owner and guard of revolutions and republic. He believed more than anyone else in their necessity and correctness. Management format and the revolution has adopted.

Unless a nation’s citizens are in danger, war is a crime.

Victory belongs to those who can say ‘Victory is mine’. Success belongs to those who can begin saying ‘I will succeed’ and say ‘I have succeed’ in the end.

We did not win the war with prayers, but with the blood of our soldiers.

We do not consider our principles as dogmas contained in books that are said to come from heaven. We derive our inspiration, not from heaven, or from an unseen world, but directly from life.

We resemble ourselves.

We Turks are a people who, throughout our history, have been the very embodiment of freedom and independence.

Why after my years of education, after studying the secular civilization and the socialization process, should i decent to the level of common people, i will make them rise to my level, let me not resemble them, they should resemble me!

You know that the degenerates who led us to the wrong path have often covered themselves with the veil of religion, and have always deceived our pure and clean people with the words of religious rules. Read and listen to our history… You will see that the evils that destroyed, enslaved and devastated the nation have always come from blasphemy and evil under the cover of religion. 1923

You will see my children, in the future everything will be done from the sky. All wars and civilizations will be in the skies above. That’s why we must give great importance to the Air Force. The future is in the sky.

Your voice is my voice. Do not forget it!

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