3504) History in the Trench: Ottoman Special Organization –Teskilat-i Mahsusa Literature

Polat Safi

The Committee of Union and Progress (CUP, _Ittihad ve Terakki Cemiyeti) was a heterogenic mass party that established subsidiary organizations in an effort to extend its own reach and influence. The Special Organization (SO, Tes Mahsusa) was one of the most important products of this endeavour. The SO emerged primarily out of the experience of the CUP in the Tripolitanian and Balkan wars. As an early type of unconventional warfare organization, the SO, which officially existed from 13 November 1913 to 30 October 1918,1 Ottoman history. Its operations included the recruitment, training, and supervision of armed groups tasked with conducting asymmetric warfare to weaken enemy morale and fighting strength. The SO also engaged in small-scale intelligence activity aimed both at strengthening solidarity among Muslims and revealing internal and external threats to Ottoman interests
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