The Case of the Soldier-Statesman With a Bloated Belly

Albert B. Lowenfels, MD


March 08, 2012


Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, considered the father of modern Turkey, was born in 1880 or 1881 into an unexceptional family. With this ordinary background, it would seem unlikely that Atatürk would attain great success as a soldier and, in later life, as a statesman. He was born in Thessaloniki, at that time still a part of the Ottoman Empire, which was beginning to decline after being a dominant power for 6 centuries. Atatürk spoke Turkish, one of several languages in the widespread Ottoman Empire.

Figure. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, first President of the Republic of Turkey.
Credit: Historical photographs of Atatürk are declared by the Government of Turkey to be national heritage and free to use.


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