The Iranian History 1916 AD


Russians Occupy Kermanshah

Feb, 25, 1916 AD

A 1916 Illustration from a French Magazine (Le petite Journal) shows Russian cossack army in Isfahan.As usual Iran's declaration of neutrality before the World War I was not honored by invading Russia and Britain.Russian troops completed occupation of Kermanshah after defeating Iran's gendarmerie forces. Russians had started intrusion into the city on Feb, 23 and Iranians were defending the city with no artillery units. After Kermanshah fell, groups of people from Tehran, Qom and Isfahan went there to organize resistance but the central government was week and Iranians lacked a powerful leader. Members of the National Defense Committee moved their headquarters to Ghasreshirin. Prime minister Abdolhossein Mirza Farmanfarma resigned from office in protest to this action. Iran's declaration of neutrality before the World War I was not honored by Russia and Britain. (Updated: Feb, 11, 2009)

Ahmad Shah Urged To Stay In Tehran

Aug, 20, 1916 AD

Young Qajar king Ahmad Shah standing in Uniforms. He's holding on to a sword adorn with jewels. A medallion is on his chest and a light hat with feathers on top which was used instead of the 2.5kg Kiani Crown is seen on his head.In the middle of the World War I, despite Iran's declaration of neutrality, Russians occupied Kermanshah on Feb, 25, 1916 and reached Ravandooz on May, 13 on their way to Iraq. The cabinet of Sepahdar Tonekaboni was dissolved on Aug, 12, as the Ottoman forces reached Hamedan. The next day, Ahmad Shah appointed Vosooghoddoleh as Prime Minister, but he could not create his cabinet due to disagreements with Sir Charles Marling, the British Minister Plenipotentiary in Tehran. On Aug, 18 Russia and Britain formally asked Ahmad Shah to leave Tehran and go to Anzali where Russians could protect him. The two states were planning to change Iran's neutral status in their own favor. Iran was in chaos.
In absence of Majlis representatives who had fled from Tehran, the Supreme Majlis consisting of 35 noblemen convened at the Qajar royal court on Aug, 19. They discussed the chaotic situation but could not reach any agreement. On Aug, 20, 1916, during the second session of the Supreme Majlis, it was decided for Ahmad Shah to stay in Tehran in order to keep Iran's neutrality. All foreign embassies were strictly asked not to leave Tehran and a committee consisting of three important people: Ghavamossaltaneh, Moshaverolmamalek, and Mohtashamossaltaneh departed towards Hamedan in order to ask Turkish commander Ehsan Pasha to refrain from proceeding towards Tehran.
On Aug, 22, upon Vosooghoddoleh's resignation, Ahmad Shah appointed Alaossaltaneh as Prime minister who was forced to resign the next day. Young Ahmad Shah did not have the experience, charisma or the authority to play Russians and British on one side against Germans and Ottomans on the other side. Finally, Vosooghoddoleh accepted again to form a cabinet on Aug, 24.
In Feb, 1917, British forces defeated the 6th Turkish army and occupied Baghdad in March while Russian forces drove back remaining Ottoman forces and stationed near the Iran-Iraq border. A new period of Russian-British influence that could lead to partition of Iran could have begun if the Bolshevik Revolution had not taken place in Russia in Oct, 1917. (Updated: May, 13, 2010)

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