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#17108 Some Cretan History

Posted by MickMcT on 01 February 2013 - 02:39 PM in Explore Crete

Bits and pieces about (relatively) modern Cretan history available at:http://mickmctiernan...cretan-history/. The latest offering ...What to do with a spare Princess!
Feel free to share with your friends!

#17097 The History Of Paleochora

Posted by MickMcT on 27 December 2012 - 04:49 PM in Explore Crete

Can you remember where in the museum? I can't recall ever seeing any mention of Christian violence against Muslims, but I'd be interested to see what the museum has to say about these events... too often this aspect of Cretan history is simply ignored.

#17095 The History Of Paleochora

Posted by MickMcT on 24 December 2012 - 03:18 PM in Explore Crete

Just to address what appears to be unfortunate error in the section of the site "Explore West Crete : Paleochora from ancient Kalamyde to the present day"


The article states:

"Paleochora was bathed in blood once more during the great rising of 1897, when the Turkish army slaughtered every Christian they found in the area."

In reality, while there were undoubtedly a number of Cretan Christians killed by the Ottoman (Turkish) army in the 1897 uprising, the vast majority of those killed in Selino at that time, were Cretan Muslims; killed by Cretan Christians.

Over 100 Cretan Muslims were killed in January 1897 when, following the promise of protection given to them by local Christian leaders, they attempted to evacuated the village of Sarakina and make their way to Paleochora (Selino Castelli) to leave the island. While going down the narrow gorge between Sarakina and Paleochora, the Muslims were fired on by their Christian escort and the majority of them, women and children included, murdered. (Report from the British Consul in Chania in House of Commons Command Paper C.8398 Turkey #8 Bilotti to Marquis of Salisbury (Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs) 22 February 1897).

In March that same year, Biliotti was involved in the evacuation of Cretan Muslims, and the Ottoman garrison, from Kandanos where nearly 2000 Muslims were at risk of starvation and slaughter having been besieged by Cretan Christians assisted by Greek soldiers. The evacuation was carried out by troops and marines from British, French, Italian and Russian warships. The Europeans got the refugees to Paleochora without major incident but while boarding the waiting ships, they were fired on by the Christians; the latter were eventually repulsed by gunfire from the ships and by a charge lead by British marines.

Biliotti's report was read out in the House of Commons: "Successfully rescued to-day, but not without the greatest peril, 523 men, 1,047 women and children, and 340 soldiers from Candamos. Picked (up) on way back 112 soldiers from Spaniako blockhouse. Natives of Candamos embarked. We are now embarking Mussulman refugees at Selino Castelli, about 1,000. Danger of Christians attacking Selino Castelli.” (See:Hansard on line at: http://hansard.millb...8970310_HOC_109)

Further massacres of Cretan Muslims occured elsewhere on the island around that time, most notably at Sitia where the Commander of HMS Dragon reported that over 300 to have been killed (See: http://hansard.millb...ulmans-in-crete).

By the end of 1898, the whole area around Paleochora had, to all intents and purposes, been completely cleared of all but Cretan Christians; the Cretan Muslims either having fled abroad or to the Muslim enclaves on the northern coast of Crete.

Being neither a Christian, Muslim, Greek or Turk, I've got no axe to grind in this matter and my only reason for posting is to clarify a historically incorrect statement which has, no doubt, been put up in error.