The Armenian Weekly April 2013 Magazine
Is it true? Are things really changing in Turkey, the land of genocides, pogroms, repression, and a prolonged war for the past 30 years with its own Kurdish citizens? Is the war that has claimed more than 40,000 lives—mostly Kurdish—in Turkish Kurdistan really coming to an end? Is this nightmare, which has played out not only in the mountains but also in cities and towns, almost over, allowing for a normal life—a life that children and adults under 30 have never known?
These were the questions crucial not only for the Kurdish people’s future in Turkey, but also for everyone who demanded real democracy, the full observance of human rights, equality, justice—in short, a better life to live. For us, the success of the Kurds’ struggle meant the opening of the road that would lead us all to a more promising future.
But now, everything seems blurred and vague. It is as if we are walking on a tightrope and, at any moment, we can fall into a bottomless abyss. PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan’s recent statements during the negotiations and, ultimately, his letter read out loud during the Newroz celebrations were a disappointment for many.
During the civil war, Newroz meant the violent intervention of security forces, sometimes with firearms, sometimes with tear gas and water cannons, causing deaths and injuries. It was a time of military raids in towns and rural villages, a time when villagers were arrested en masse and taken away, when civilians were killed during military operations. Kurdish human rights fighters, lawyers, and journalists were kidnapped and found dead by the roadside, and sometimes not found at all. During these years, more than 3,000 villages were evacuated and burned down. More than 3 million Kurds had to leave their homes and migrate to nearby towns and cities, totally helpless, jobless, unable to earn a living. Forests were set on fire by the soldiers. The whole landscape turned into a desert—a bare land with ghostly images of destroyed villages, with the remains of houses blackened by fire.
Newroz, in those years, was invariably associated with brutality and loss of human lives. It was during the Newroz celebrations of 1992 that nearly 140 civilians were killed and hundreds of others injured following then attack of the security forces on demonstrators, and the subsequent operations—accompanied by bombings—carried out in the province of Şırnak and its district Cizre. Those nightmarish “celebrations” were followed by a large wave of Kurdish immigration to nearby cities.
Hopes for peace
This year’s Newroz celebrations were held in dramatically different circumstances. The so-called “Peace Process” had started; negotiations with Öcalan, who had been isolated in prison for 14 years, were ongoing. Deputies of the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) visited him twice. Letters between Öcalan and the PKK headquarters in Qandil, in Iraqi Kurdistan, were exchanged.
The celebrations everywhere, both in a number of western provinces, including Istanbul, and in the Kurdish provinces, particularly in Diyarbakir, were spectacular. It was for the first time a real celebration with enthusiastic festivities. Hundreds of thousands of people came together, with women dressed in bright colors, and children dancing and singing joyously.
All were waiting for Öcalan’s letter to be read out loud in Kurdish and Turkish. He would make his final statement, the outcome of his “peace” talks with government authorities, in his cell.
In addition to the Kurds, and since the defeat of the Turkish left by military rule in 1980, veteran socialists and communists, and others who stood for democracy, human rights, and freedom, had all set their hopes on the Kurds’ struggle against the establishment in Turkey. It was because the Kurdish political movement had done something that the Turkish left had always dreamed of, but never achieved, during its long years of struggle. The Kurdish political movement had mobilized masses of ordinary people, both in rural and urban areas, and integrated them into the struggle. It was this struggle that made it possible for the forces of democracy in Turkey to make progress—no matter how modest—in freedom of speech. It was not a coincidence that the Armenian Genocide started to be discussed in Turkey during the years of the Kurdish insurgency—an insurgency that could not be defeated in 30 years by the Turkish Armed Forces, Europe’s biggest and the world’s 8th biggest army, second only to that of the U.S. in NATO.
Öcalan calls for withdrawal
When Öcalan’s letter was read in Diyarbakir—before an audience of hundreds of thousands, if not more than a million—declaring a cease-fire and instructing PKK guerrillas to withdraw beyond the borders, it was clear Öcalan was aware of the criticism against his statements in the minutes of his meeting BDP deputies during the “peace” process leaked to the press which resonated an overt antagonism towards non-Muslim peoples of Asia Minor. So he was careful to include Armenians and other peoples making up the Anatolian population in the scope of his endeavor to bring peace to the country.
In the aforementioned meeting with the BDP deputies, Öcalan had, for instance, referred to the “Armenian lobby” as a force that, historically, has never wanted peace in Anatolia. “The Armenian lobby is powerful. They want to dominate the agenda of 2015,” he had said. The Kurds were marginalized during the creation of the Turkish Republic as a consequence of the efforts of the “Israeli lobby, the Armenians, and the Greeks, who had decided that their success would depend on marginalizing the Kurds,” he continued. “This is an ongoing, thousand-year tradition.” He had added, “After the Islamization of Anatolia, there has been Christian anger that has lasted a thousand years. Greeks, Armenians, and Jews claim rights to Anatolia. They don’t want to give up their gains under the pretext of secularism and nationalism.”
Despite some references to Armenians and other non-Muslims, Öcalan’s Newroz letter—full of enthusiastic rhetoric about peace, fraternity, the peaceful coexistence of peoples of different beliefs and ethnicity, and a new era of peace—was no consolation to those of us who demand real justice in this country.
Muslim brotherhood brings chilling memories to mind
The most alarming aspect of the letter was its emphasis on Islamic brotherhood, a brotherhood that saw the death, agony, plunder, and annihilation of the Christian children of Asia Minor. His reference to the Turks’ and Kurds’ “historical agreement of fraternity and solidarity under the flag of Islam” sounded like an ominous prophecy. His praise of the so-called “Liberation War” of Turkey, which was, in fact, the continuation of the genocide of the Armenians, Assyrians and Anatolian Greeks, was a perfect echo of the Turkish official mindset. “During World War I, Turkish and Kurdish soldiers fell together as martyrs in the Dardanelles. They fought together in Turkey’s Independence War, and together opened the 1920 National Assembly. What our mutual past shows is the mutual necessity of forming our future together. The spirit of the 1920 National Assembly enlightens the upcoming era,” he said. What he doesn’t mention is that the spirit of 1920 was a genocidal spirit that was determined to complete the annihilation process of Christians and also to repress Kurdish national identity with bloodshed.
The result is that now, people in Turkey who stand for human rights, democracy, and peace are forced to choose between one of two evils: Either be presented as one who does not want peace, or support something that may be reconciliation between Kurds and Turks but not real peace for all in Turkey.
Is Öcalan a true respresentative?
I know and respect millions of Kurdish people’s devotion to their leader Öcalan. But I also know that Öcalan and the politically conscious Kurdish people, as well as some sections of Kurdish political movement are not one and the same. There is the Kurdish political movement, with its political party, its armed units in the mountains, and the millions who protest courageously at the risk of being shot; and there is Öcalan, who has been confined to a solitary cell for 14 years, disconnected from realities on the ground.
After all, it is the Kurdish people who lost family members in unsolved murders; who cried after their children joined the guerrilla movement, and were later found dead, half burnt, with their eyes scratched out; and who stood totally armless against tanks and panzers in revolt against repression. And it is the guerrilla fighters who put their lives at risk for so many years in the mountains.
Karayılan, one of the chief commanders of the PKK, in an interview with the journalist Hasan Cemal, repeatedly confirmed that while they are loyal to their leader, they had some reservations: “There will be no withdrawal without the state doing its share.”
“Mid-level command elements especially have some concerns; we have to persuade them.”
“Yesterday I talked with 250 mid-level people. They say, ‘We came here to wage war, and we’ve been here for 10 years. We’ve come to the point of accomplishing a result, then you ask us to stop.’”
“At this point, leader Apo [Öcalan] should get involved in the persuasion process, and for this reason direct contact between Öcalan and the Qandil headquarters should be established.”
Karayılan’s criticism of the BDP co-chair, Selahattin Demirtaş, was very unusual. Demirtaş had recently said that 99 percent of the armed campaign of the PKK was over, and that the resolution of the remaining one percent was up to the government. “This is a shallow approach by the BDP,” commented Karayılan. “This shows that they cannot comprehend the retreat process in depth. Complete finalization of the armed campaign is not such a simple issue.”
Kurds: both perpetrators and victims
Now the crucial point: Many local Kurds in Western Armenia, not only the chieftains but also ordinary villagers, were, alongside with the Turks and other Muslim peoples, the perpetrators of the genocide of the Armenians and Assyrians. They were not only “tools” that were “used” by the Progress and Union Committee (CUP), as some of the Kurdish political leaders have put it; in many places and in many instances, they were quite conscious of what they were doing. They were not the decision-makers but the implementers, unaware that soon they would fall victim to, and be forced to revolt against, their accomplices in the genocide—the successors of the same ruling power they cooperated with in exterminating their Christian neighbors.
The history of the Turkish Republic is the history of Kurdish uprisings and their violent repression through bloodshed. The last uprising, which was the longest, was not based purely on nationalistic aspirations, but involved leftist, even Marxist, elements, with much emphasis on freedom, equality, and human rights, not only for Kurds but for all in Turkey. And it was the first and longest-lasting radical opposition movement in the history of the Republic, and was not only able to undermine at least the ideological and moral supremacy of the establishment, but also to challenge with some success the “invincible” domestic image of the Turkish military.
Those in the Turkish media, then, who criticized Abdullah Öcalan’s statements, both in the meeting minutes and his letter of cease-fire, were calling on the Kurdish opposition to not enter into a deceitful truce with this system of annihilation and denial.
Can they also be peacemakers?
Of course, the responsibility rests on the shoulders of the Kurdish oppositionists to lead the way for the acknowledgment of the Kurdish people’s complicity in the genocide of the Christian peoples of Anatolia—the Armenians, Assyrians, and Greeks—and take steps toward the restitution of the immense losses they suffered.
Without fulfilling this responsibility, the Kurdish side of the conflict cannot possibly pave the way for, and urge the Turkish state to agree to, a real peace—the ultimate sovereignty of justice throughout the country.
The Kurds are both perpetrators and victims, the victim of their own comrade-in-arms during the genocide. In order to be the peacemakers now, they must refuse Öcalan’s offer of a so-called “peace” between Turks and Kurds based on the common denominator of Islamic brotherhood, the driving force behind the genocide.
It’s a question of peace vs. piece. Will Kurds demand a true peace or compromise to get their piece?
Gunaysu quotes Ocalan as saying (whether by coercion or on his own volition):
“This is an ongoing, thousand-year tradition.” He had added, “After the Islamization of Anatolia, there has been Christian anger that has lasted a thousand years. Greeks, Armenians, and Jews claim rights to Anatolia. They don’t want to give up their gains under the pretext of secularism and nationalism.”
This is not a statement advocating peace. It is a pretext for reinvigorated xenophobic sentiment based on a twisted reading of history. It is practically a call to war. When exactly was the so-called ‘Islamisation of Anatolia’ accomplished? I thought the Turks prided themselves in their long history of allowing Ottoman Christian and Jewish communities to govern themselves. There were many millions of un-Islamized Anatolians attending the thousands of ancient churches and synagogues that dotted the landscape well into the 20th century. It took genocide to ‘Islamize’ Anatolia, and it only happened in the last one hundred years or so. But Ocalan is right about one thing; we are quite angry about that! Will Kurds align themselves with a struggle for justice for a genocidal campaign that they first participated in and subsequently found themselves victims of, or will they make peace deals to get their piece of the Anatolian pie, and others be damned?
“I thought the Turks prided themselves in their long history of allowing Ottoman Christian and Jewish communities to govern themselves.”
Well if you turn a blind eye to or deny every aspect of your history that shows how xenophobic and homicidal you can be/were, all you’re left with is the tolerance you’ve shown… at some point… long ago.. that went away… and hasn’t ever returned…
I believe we must be careful went we speak about the Assyrians as though they were a monolithic block. It is for us to remember there is the very ancient and pious church of Assyria which in the USA is called: The Assyrian Church of the East. The mother church is in San Jose California, and it is here their bishop resides.
The Patriarchal See of the Holy Apostolic Assyrian Church of the East is located in Chicago not San Jose.
The Patriarchal See was forced out of Mesopotamia in 1933, soon after the Massacre of Assyrian Christians at the hands of the newly independent Iraqi army. Before the Assyrian Genocide, the See was located in the ancient Assyrian village of Qoshanas, which was located just south of Lake Van.
No one including Kurds or Armenians can carve out a small piece of land from Anatolia with ever getting stronger Turkey in this millenia. Trust me, If this peace deal doesn’t work, People of turkey won’t take this crap any more for a long time
Thank you for this explanation my great grand father is from Qoshanas and I was looking for it on the map, Now all is clear regarding the Assyrians .
It’s sad to say, but humanity generally tends toward the lowest common denominator, in this case as dramatically evidenced by the Armenian (also Pontic Greek and Assyrian) Genocide aka the Chrisitan Holocaust, perpetrated in the name of Islamic Jihad.
So here we go again… the fraternal Islamic Brotherhood. As an Armenian, I’m completely fed up with such euphenisms. Bottom line is that the coming of Islam to Anatolia has been over a thousand years of hell for Armenians and other Christians in Anatolia. So now the Kurds have a choice, to saddle up with their so called Islamic Turk brothers, or to liberalize themselves to ideas of basic human dignity, where all people, despite their race or religion are treated equally and with respect.
If Kurds do choose the archaic Islamic brotherhood then let there be no mistake, Armenians will respond in like kind, and this time around, unlike in 1915, we Armenians are not to be led like sheep to slaughter. Rather, as survivors of genocide, we know that to not fight is to most assuredly die. This so called Islamic Brotherhood made a huge mistake by starting the Armenian Genocide and not completing it. Now they are left with the absolute burning anger of Armenians with a set agenda… that is Hay Tad – the Armenian Cause and come hell or high water, we Armenians intend to acheive it!
A Turkish proverb “Sharp vinegar only damages its container”..
This is a trick the Turkish government is playing with the Kurds. Unable to defeat the Kurdish armed rebellion for the last thirty years, uneasy about the total loss of control over the east and the southeastern provinces, and faced with threats from neighboring countries in turmoil, such as Syria, Iraq and Iran and heavily populated by the Kurds, the Turks are trying to con the Kurds into laying down their arms and to desert their strongholds from the Kurdish areas so the Turks can move in to take their places to secure the artificial eastern borders of Turkey.
This is not the first time the Turks have tricked the Kurds. The Turks were successful in tricking the Kurds into joining the Hamidieh cavalry especially created and formed by Sultan Abdulhamit II in the 1890s to exterminate the Armenians in return for Armenian territories and assets. Once the Turks were done using the Kurds to accomplish their genocidal task to wipe out the Armenians and secure Western Armenia for the Turks, they turned around and began suppressing their Kurdish comrades-in-arms now turned into victims, ironically.
The content of Ocalan’s letter is a proof that Armenians must never trust the Kurds without verification of their intent in regards to the eventual Armenian repatriation to their ancestral homelands currently under Turkish occupation and primarily populated by the Kurds. Having no recourse and wanting to save his own neck, Ocalan is cornered and pushed against the wall to make peace with the enemy he has been fighting for the last several decades. A true leader would sacrifice himself instead of sacrificing his own people at the hands of the cunning Turkish enemy that only knows to make “peace” with his perceived adversary through trickery, reprisal and brutal force.
You tunnel-visioned Armenians. Living in both western countries and in your own dreamworld. Hatching such silly, unreal ideas as Hay Tad. When are you going to wake up from your silly dreams? It is almost a century since Anatolia was cleared of you and other non-moslem peoples. You lost. Be thankful that you are still alive, grow up and shaw at least enough intelligence not to play with fire. You have no place in Anatolia any more. Setting up a church in Diyarbakir, crying over your old, decrepit churches is as stupid as it can get. you make it as though others/the world owes you something. In a world of lies, deceit and illusions you cry for justice; as though the world operates in truth and justice. Isn’t it about time you woke up from your dreamings? If you think that you will again be a part of the fabric of Turkey, you have rocks in your brainbox. You may be good in making money or acquiring technical skills, but you have no horse sense. The fight is between Turks and Kurds, two Islamic peoples. You try to interfere you’ll be minced meat.
So it seems fairly clear from your statement, “It is almost a century since Anatolia was cleared of you”, that you not only admit to the Armenian Genocide, but likely wish you could have participated. Just remember something about a people that have been subjected to genocide, have passed through the fire so to speak – they will make sure it never happens again!
Oh… and one more bit about… how do you say, ‘to again be a part of the fabric of Turkey’… that country that you seem so proud of… the country whose history is so much about rape and pillage… that is so hated by essentially all of it’s neighbors… oh yeah sure… that’s a country we Armenians want no part of. Not! What we Armenians want is what Turks stole through genocide… pure and simple. And about your threats of minced meat… there’s a big difference in killing defenseless women and children in the Genocide versus facing off with those that will fight back. Through the Young Turks lies and treachery, we gave up our young fighting men. Read the history of what happens when Armenians fight back. We may not of always won, but you can be sure, we don’t make it easy. To quote the famous Armenian General Antranik… “had we not allowed the Turks to decieve us into giving up our young men, we would have driven them back to the gutters of Contantinople where they came from”.
So now is about the time I would imagine when you start to beat your chest and claim the great Tamerlane, or is it Ghenghis Khan, or no… don’t tell me… Atilla the Hun. I would say to you… check out your most recent history of how well you did suppressing the Kurds. Great job there for the might Turkish armed forces. A little more of a budge I think and the your entire house of cards falls to pieces. Anyone up for the Sevres syndrome… the one feared by Turks where all of it’s enemies come closing in?
it seems to me that you are xunsap…you are creating a racist turk image and replying to him to make people believe that turks accept the genocide term and have racist ideology…Xunsap and Robert both of them have a similar writing style …BTW Turks never use a nickname starting with X..
The Turkish army couldn’t beat a few thousand of PKK terrorists. Why do not the Armenian army take a chance to beat and get back the Western Armenia as they have more than a 50K to 60K instead of talking constantly ha?
Xunsap’ha, whether a real person or a fictional character, is a cheerleader for the darkest elements of this world. He clearly is no true follower of Islam, for any true adherent of the Koran would disavow such hateful ideology. I agree with him on one thing: this world is full of, ‘lies, deceit and illusions.’ But it is also a place of justice and truth. The forces of good and evil have been battling since the beginning of creation. This battle between Turks and non-Turk Anatolians is more of the same. If we Armenians and other non-Turk Anatolians stop struggling against the xenophobic, pan-Turkic evil that was unleashed on us 100 years ago, then we deserve what we get. Ocalan may allow Kurds to be lured into making a dirty deal with Turks (I hope it doesn’t happen), but Armenians should not be surprised. It has happened before…
Armenians, compatriots, friends:
Let us all stop using the Turkic denialist term ‘Anatolian’ when referring to us Armenians. We are not Anatolians, non-Turk or otherwise.
Let us stop helping our enemies in erasing our own traces from our own ancestral lands.
I am well aware of the Greek origin of the word ‘Anatolia’. But denialist, Genocidal Turks have corrupted it to serve their own evil purposes.
It is now used by them to erase any traces of indigenous peoples of Asia Minor: even mentioning their names.
Induced amnesia: to manufacture the myth that Anadolu Turks are indigenous to Asia Minor, and that there was nobody else there before.
We are not Anatolians: we are Armenian Highlanders.
There is no Anatolian family.
There is no Anatolian culture: Armenian, Greek, Assyrian culture.
There is no Anatolian alphabet: Armenian, Greek, Assyrian, Turkish alphabet.
There is no Anatolian language: Armenian, Greek, Assyrian, Turkish language.
And the pan-Turkic evil was not unleashed on us 100 years ago: it reached its apex 100 years ago.
But the evil was unleashed on us about 1000 years ago, when nomadic Turkic warrior tribes, who had travelled about 3,000 kilometers from East and Central Asia, invaded our indigenous, civilized paradise.
Well this is kinda funny actually to be thought of being the same person as Xunsap’ha. Meaning no disrespect to him, I can assure you that Xunsap’ha are not the same person and that I am Armenian. With that said, while I may disagree with Xunsap’ha’s views, he does make logical arguments, albeit based on assumption for which I am not of the same opinion.
Further to my opinion, I for one do not wish war between Turks and Armenians, Turks and Kurds, Kurds and Armenians, or war period. It’s my very strong belief that if we humans are to survive as a species then we better get beyond war and I think by extension, the archaic legacy of nationalism. This is not to say we can’t appreciate each other’s race, culture, and religion. Rather it’s to say that we respect each other’s differences and stop this naive bantering over scraps of land.
Some may call it a dream, but can you imagine a place called Anatolia, a region of the world where Turks, and Kurds, and Armenian all could call home and respect each other’s right to call it home? Is that really so hard to imagine? Now of course, until that dream we all feel the need to fight it out, so to speak. We Armenians will do our part, as I’m sure will the Turks and the Kurds.
As an Armenian, I would much rather not make war, especially on innocent noncombatants. With that said though, everyone needs to understand that we Armenians went through the hell of genocide and yes… we are leary to trust Moslems in Anatolia, especially when they tell us that our time is through there. Can you blame us? But in the final analysis, would you not agree, that the better appproach is for Turks, Kurds, and Armenians, to sit down together, share some food and drink, and agree to mutual respect for each other?
“In order to be the peacemakers now, they must refuse Öcalan’s offer of a so-called “peace” between Turks and Kurds…”
I’m so glad you are in the extreme minority in this. Achieve peace through rejecting peace? Yes, the Islamic brotherhood played a role in Kurdish complicity in the Armenian genocide. And a hundred years later, it can play a role in Turkish-Kurdish peace. That’s the reality of the situation, let’s just deal with it Would you rather have continued fighting, bloodshed, and death if it meant that one day, MAYBE, your own version of “real peace” could be realized? Selfish. How about peace first, and then justice- for all.
Bennu, first things first, get my name right!! I am not “xunsap”. My name is Xunsap’ha, with a capital X. Secondly, stop insulting my intelligence, by claiming that I am Robert the dreamer. I am not. The only similarity between me and Robert is the fact that, hopefully we both have one head, two arms and two legs; (I do). I live on planet Earth. Robert and his ilk live in Lalaland. Similar writing?? What a coincidence!! We both seem to use the Latin alphabet. Robert, I don’t care about Turks, Kurds, Armenians etc. You all have the same mentality; just packaged and stamped differently. Do I admit to the Armenian genocide? Of course I do! That’s a fact!! Do I wish I had participated? I missed the boat; too late to wish anything of the sort. Comrade, how are you going to make sure the genocide will never happen again? Can you reveal your magic formula? Will the Americans or the Russians or maybe the Europeans come to your rescue? will they guarantee it for you? Surely, you are not counting on that corrupt puppet called Sargsyan in Yerevan to stop a future genocide; or are you? He and his cronies care only for one thing – MONEY!! They would gladly sell their mothers and sisters for money, grab the loot and scram out of the country if they could. “What we Armenians want is…”. Keep wanting for all eternity if you can. When I was a baby I wanted the moon. I cried a lot and hard. When I realized I couldn’t get it, I stopped wanting the moon. Quoting a dead, buried, gone general of yours. The guy is history. “Could have, would have, should have”. Wakey, wakey!! History means, the past; that’s not going to come back. Unlike you, I don’t beat my chest; I am not a moron to live in the past; I don’t even think of Tamerlanes, Gengis khans or the Atillas of the history either. Get a life, and live your life. Stop dreaming of the future or the past. Even if 500 years down the track your lot conquers the world, how will that help you? You’ll be dead and long since gone. Stop dreaming. Come down to earth and get a life before you kick the bucket!!
Boyajian, I saw myself in the mirror this morning so I concluded I am real. Unlike you, my definition for “dark elements” doesn’t seem to match “realism”. But then I don’t live in your dreamworld. If I am a “false” follower of Islam, is it your place to teach me the true teachings? Realism = “hateful ideology”; so true for your ilk, because of the “glasses” you are wearing. Take them off, so you can see the real world for a change. Just like you, Alice also travelled to “wonderland” and found out that most things are upside down and back to front in that world. That is your world, but not mine. Does it really make sense to you that the world is “full of lies, deceit and illusion” at the same time as justice and truth? Think first before you respond. We live in a world where MIGHT IS RIGHT; and you expect so-called “justice and truth” in such a world? You lost it!! Admit it and move on, for your own sake, instead of fantasizing your “unreal reality”. You speak of the “forces of good and evil”. Are you the good and your opponents evil? You’d better not get involved in the “battle of the Turks and non-Turk Anatolians”, lest you become history. Be thankful you still exist as a nation, and try not to bite more than you can chew. Wake up and realize that your struggle amounts to no more than throwing cotton balls at your opponents. I say, get a life and enjoy your lives . As they say “life is short”.
To live in, and make the most of the present… definitely agree with you 100 percent on that. With that said though, what is wrong with dreaming, aka making plans, about improving one’s future situation?
You mention wanting the moon as a child, but as I’m sure you know, against great odds man set foot on the moon in 1969. Sure it was a lot of work and there was great risk involved, but the dream was made into reality.
We Armenians, being subject to countless invasions over the centuries, have not given up our hope, and yes dreaming, of a better future. Perhaps it’s that part of our character, thank God, that has allowed us to survive as a people for over 2,000 years now. Do you know the old saying, ‘without a vision… the people will perish’? We Armenians, like our ancestors before us, choose to keep that vision, that hope, that dream!
To John the Turk:
Rather than a war, wouldn’t you agree that it’s far better for Turkey and Armenia as neighbors to work out relations peacefully? I mean war only tends to beget more war.
As I mentioned to you in another post, with enough effort from both Turks and Armenians, I beleive it’s possible to reach a negotiated settlement of issues related to the events of 1915 – 23, what I view as genocide but for which I’m willing to allow others to think different, i.e. it’s a free world and people can think what they want.
Now regardless of one’s views on the Genocide, I think most would agree that Armenians lost a lot during that time. So why not work out a deal where Armenians are compensated, but for which Turks can also benefit. For example, imagine a scenario whereby diaspora Armenians are reassigned properties lost during 1915 – 23. In such a scenario it’s not to hard to further imagine that those diaspora Armenians would put money into those properties, the net result being an improvement in the areas invested and yes… taxes paid to Turkey. Further, this renewed Armenian presence could help to stabilize relations between Turks and Kurds in the area.
Bottom line here… how about we get past the archaic nationalism of the 20th century and years past? Lets move on together as neighbors into the 21st century and beyond.
Sorry to comment that, but it seems true-at least to me. Well, looking at what is said and intended, unless there will be a miraculous change in the minds of Armenians and Turks, there won’t be a smooth and easy relationships between these two geographical neighbors.
We don’t have much to do other than waiting, to see what the days ahead may bring about. I want to be but am not much hopeful.