IBNA- The book ‘Wilhelm Wassmuss German Lawrence and Ally of Braves of Tangestan’ by Hendrik Gröttrup describes the role played by Wassmuss in the uprising of Iranian southern combatants during the World War I.
According to IBNA correspondent, ‘Wilhelm Wassmuss German Lawrence and Ally of Braves of Tangestan’ which is based on documents in the administrative profile of Wilhelm Wassmuss in German Foreign Ministry has been translated by Javad Seyyed Ashraf into Persian.
Wassmuss entered the German Foreign Office in 1906. Sent first to Madagascar, he was promoted to vice consul and assigned to the German Consulate in the Iranian port town of Bushehr by the Persian Gulf in 1909. After a mission in Madagascar, in 1913, he returned to Bushehr. With the start of World War I, Wassmuss appears to have recognized that now was the time to foment a revolt against British interests in the region.
He had learned to love the Mesopotamian desert and had educated himself into an intimate knowledge of it, its people, and their customs and languages.
For a time, he had been dazzlingly successful in Iran, helping Iranian combatants against the British rule in the south of Iran including Tangestan, but tribal support for him began to fade when it became obvious to the tribal leaders that Germany was not defeating Britain. After the war, Wassmuss, whose network had spread through Afghanistan and as far as India, and for whom the British had offered a $500,000 reward, was imprisoned by the British.
He was released in 1920 and made his way back to Berlin. Once there, the man who had had eloquently lied to the Persian tribesmen on Germany’s behalf struggled to persuade the German Foreign Office to honor his pledges and pay the money he had promised to the tribes; the German government refused.
As the post-war years went by, Wassmuss could not forget his promises. He returned to Bushehr in 1924 and, purchasing cheap farmland, promised to repay the tribesmen from the profits he hoped to make from farming. The farm failed. After legal squabbles over money with some of the tribal chieftains who once been his friends, Wilhelm Wassmuss returned to Berlin in April 1931. A broken man, he died virtually forgotten and in poverty in November 1931.
In early 1970, a popular TV series titled ‘Braves of Tangestan’ was made in Iran on the armed struggle of Tangestani people against the British forces in the height of World War I and portrayed the role of Wassmuss in those events.
‘Wilhelm Wassmuss German Lawrence and Ally of Braves of Tangestan’ in Persian has been released by Qoqnous publishing in 407 pages and 770 copies.