Memorie.al publishes the unknown memoirs of Qamil Çela from Elbasan, also known as Qamil Çelirama, former secretary of Fan Noli in the government of ’24 and then one of the first communists in Albania with Ali Kelmendi, etc. who with the return of Zog to power left the country and stayed in emigration as an anti-Zogist, where he cooperated closely with KONARE. His return to Albania in 1945 where he was first appointed as the President of the Red Cross in Tirana and later as the Director of the Library of the city of Elbasan. How was he removed from there after he refused to be considered a patriot in the model of the history book of Albania, Haxhi Qamili, which caused him to be abandoned by the communist regime and be seen as “bourgeois and reactionary” until as “enemy of the people”, as he later refused to write about “Enver Hoxha’s revolutionary activity in France”, saying: ‘he did not know about such’ ?! Qamil Çela’s memories of the story of Haxhi Qamil that Memorie.al is publishing in this article, he handed over to the Institute of History in Tirana when the model of that book was being drafted and a copy of them, have been preserved by family members in the city of Elbasan, where he lived until April 1988.
Unknown memories of Qamil Çelirama (Çela) from Elbasan for the Uprising of Haxhi Qamil in 1914
Esad Toptani, Dhespot Jakovi, etc. in provisional cooperation with the reactionary clergy and their followers, anti-national fanatics, with the group of agents from Turkey, to touch in the weakest sense the fanatical mass of Durrës, Shijak, Tirana, Kavaja, Ishmit etc., to set it up in an armed uprising. We say in provisional cooperation because they had different paths and purposes. They joined together to oust King Vid and destroy Albanian independence because later, Assad will carry out his predetermined plan!
Esat Toptani, assisted by his allies, Albania’s external enemies, was able to raise the masses of that basin against the Albanian independence of King Vid, under the banner of Baba Dovlet, and for “know and believe”. As a result, he triumphantly triumphed against the patriots. At a time when different parts of our country were occupied by Greeks, Serbs and Montenegrins, patriots were fighting for their liberation.
The year 1914 was a good year for agriculture and for political opportunity, the people of that basin were not burdened at all with heavy taxes as some charlatan opportunists claim. Considering that the lands of that basin are among the most fertile in our country, it cannot be said that that uprising was made for bread and for the land. If that was the case, Kruja, Peza, Martaneshi, Shpati, Verça, Skrapari, Kolonja, Kurveleshi, etc., who were in a really bad economic situation, should have moved.
Realizing the danger that threatened the homeland and being convinced that the rebels were playing the game of the enemy the patriots did the opposite. The Patriots fought between two fires as happened in Starovo and elsewhere. While the colonial patriots fought to liberate the Albanian lands held by the Serbs and Greeks and to defend the borders of the homeland, the rebels in cooperation with the beys of Starova, fell behind them. In that attempt where Gani Butka and his comrades were killed, the betrayal of the rebels was best proved and the claim of the charlatans who considered the rebels to be opponents of the beys was completely refuted.
Haxhi Qamili agent of Turkey
The rebels were commanded by Qamil Haxhi Fejza, who later, after liberation, ironically was considered a revolutionary patriot, decorating him with the “Decoration of Freedom” of the third class. He was the head of the group of young Turkish agents who came from Turkey for the black of Albania. After capturing Shijak, Kavaja, Ishmin, and Tirana, the rebel forces attacked Elbasan, where it was predicted that they would encounter strong resistance, and this would have happened if Aqif Pasha had not left that city, entrusting the defense of Elbasan. Shefqet Vërlacit.
However, the supporters of the rebellion were not absent in Elbasan either, the people, especially that of the city, were with flesh and blood against the rebels. As such he grabbed weapons to fight the rebels. Under the leadership of the great patriot, sees Hysen Sulova of Muharrem Moglica, anti-rebel volunteers fought street by street against the rebels on the outskirts of Elbasan, even in the streets and alleys of the city. Despite the great resistance, Elbasan fell into the hands of the rebels. With the fall of Elbasan, the rebels increased their forces and directed them against Durrës, where they encountered strong resistance.
In addition to the gendarmerie organized by the Dutch organizers, Durrës was also protected by volunteers from all over Albania. These forces were commanded by prominent patriots Preng Pasha, Hys Buletini, Bajram Curri, etc. In Durrës, fierce fighting took place, where there were casualties on both sides. Colonel Thomson, the main Dutch organizer, Major Kamo Sejdini from Elbasan, Haki Glina, Ceno Sharra, etc. were killed by the patriots.
As soon as they entered Elbasan, the rebels burned the national flag, shouting “the crows died” and raised the flag of Turkey in its place. Albanian schools are closed, replacing them with madrasas and mejtepe in Turkish and Arabic. The government returned to Turkish as the official language. The rebels formed a “council” administrative council consisting of the country’s fanatical and anti-national party. They were sworn enemies of Albania’s freedom and independence.
The rebels formed an army of 3,130 men held by bribery and robbery. This army left Elbasan to subdue Berat, which was plundered and plundered barbarically. Until recently, they were found in the houses of rebel commanders, tapestries and other valuables that were looted in Berat. They released from prison in Elbasan despot Gjermeni and Efren Gjini with friends, leaving them free to return to Florina to continue their fight against our country with more rigor.
As a result of that betrayal, there were dozens of villages burned, hundreds killed and dead, thousands of Muhajirs, mostly colonists, who spent a long time in the olive groves of Vlora.
A considerable number of them died of starvation and malaria, those who remained took the road of exile. They fled to Europe, America and elsewhere to escape death. The place of criminals and traitors in our prisons was taken by patriots and patriots who fought for freedom and independence.
Imprisonment of Albanian patriots
The rebels burned in Elbasan the houses of Aqif Pasha, Beqir Plangarica, Emin Kashari, Ali Chaushi and Kodhel Dede with friends. They also burned Bektashi tekkes, imprisoned and exiled patriotic fathers and dervishes. In imprisonment and torture, the rebels did not spare women either. They imprisoned Tushi e Xhanit, who together with his mother and other friends, Dane Xhuvani, Zegjie Krasta, Shahu i Dylgjerit, etc., were among the first patriotic women of Elbasan who had worked in time to spread the Albanian language of the national idea.
The instigators and supporters of the rebellion were the tools of the Turkish occupier. Yes, they became the tools of Esad Toptan and our chauvinist neighbors, Serbs and Greeks. Haxhi Qamili himself was from a wealthy tribe. Those who present Haxhi Qamil as a poor layer are ignorant and charlatan. Haxhi Qamili dressed like a carnival. From the waist up, he dressed as a Turkish general, wearing the collar and jacket of Fadil Pasha, which he had robbed. In the lower waist he wore benevreka.
From both his dress and his demeanor, it was clear that Haxhi Qamili was a man of no value and half-mad. He was the blind tool of intriguers and foreign agents. The motto of the rebels was: “Here are the Turks in the mosque, here in the church, here are the Albanians in the dump”. The rebels stole considerable sums of money from imprisoned patriots. They forced the victims to pay hundreds of napoleon gold, threatening to suffer the fate of the patriot Hysen Sulova, who was killed by Haxhi Qamili himself.
So, they were forced to sell everything they had and even get into debt to pay the fine. They pledged the only olive grove owned by the patriotic brothers from Elbasan, Hasan and Hysen Xhani. Sheh Hysen Sulova was killed by Haxhi Qamili himself with his own hands, in the court of Hyqymet on 3.5.1915. On the same day, father Hamit Toçi from Dibra was imprisoned and beaten. Before the Balkan War, Baba Hamiti was the father of the Bektashi tekke in Tetovo, one of the best tekkes in the Balkans.
With the Serbian occupation as a patriot, he emigrated to Albania in Elbasan, where within a short time he gained the respect and love of all the people of Elbasan. Sheh Hysen Sulova honored him by donating the tekke of Elbasan, which became the father of the tekke. With the murder of Hysen Sulova, the mufti of Elbasan, Haxhi Tahir Hallulli, protested as much as he clashed with Haxhi Qamil. The latter bit Haxhi Tahiri with his teeth and they bled.
Haxhi Tahiri was a man with a broad religious culture. He had completed his higher studies in Istanbul. After the clash, Haxhi Tahiri was forced to go underground. When Sheh Hysen Sulova was killed in the Elbasan prison, the Elbasan patriots were also imprisoned. Ali Çelirama (father of Qamil), Ali Kopili, Bim Pajenga, and Ahmet Bylyku. The latter with the occupation of Elbasan by the rebels fled to Italy, but ostensibly with the guarantee of Qamil Haxhifejza, returned and ended up in prison.
They were charged with being from the Renaissance and having learned to read and write in Albanian before the Invasion. Ali Çelirama was aggravated more than that he had been the first coma of Byshek’s Çeta and that he had sent his normalist son to the Elbasan Normal, had fought against the Assadists and rebels and had fled with Aqif Pasha to Italy.
The rebels’ agreement with Toptan
The rebels were not against the rich and the beys as it has been trumpeted and from them you cannot expect reforms in favor of the minority! With the outbreak of World War, I, Turkish agents in Albania received further instructions. According to Germany and Austria-Hungary, Turkey should change direction in Albania, turning in favor of Albanian independence and King Vid.
The flag of Albania had to be raised again. Although such a turnaround was difficult, if not impossible, the Turkish government bows to the masters. She did not hesitate to give completely opposite orders to their agents, who delayed the return to the country. Meanwhile he was doing his job and the Anglo-French propaganda led by agent Esad Toptan. The previous connection of the Assadists with the rebels no longer existed. Despite that the rebels made no turn.
The second phase of the rebels is as black as it was in its infancy. Some want to give it the color of a peasant revolution. The rebels broke up with the Assadists, not because Esad Toptani was rich and wealthy, but because he got the word out, he betrayed them for the deal they had made. As in Elbasan, in Tirana the rebels burned and looted. In addition to Esad Toptan’s house, they also burned and looted the houses of patriotic Belgers such as Murat Toptan and Abdi Toptan. So was the house of the patriot Seit Petrela who was neither rich nor rich. Zija Toptani was one of the richest beys of Tirana, but nothing touched him. Shit Petrela was not rich, but he was persecuted and imprisoned as a patriot.
In the last stage of the rebellion more robberies, imprisonments, tortures and murders took place. Thus, they tortured the great patriot Bab Dud Karbunara, whose beard hair was pulled out. The rebellion in Berat was so severe and inhuman that it caused resentment and discord among the Tosks and Ghegs. At that time, the patriotic rebels Ismail Klosi and Gjebrea were killed in Berat. Turkish agents who set fire to this country could not extinguish it when they wanted to. The rebellion started and ended as an anti-national movement./Memorie.al