In a previous article about the Centennial of the Armenian Genocide in 2015, I argued about the need to focus our limited resources to supporting independent academic research, to continue to reveal the truth and facts of 1915 and establish a “common body of knowledge” between Turks and Armenians. In this article, I will elaborate on the necessity to deliver those facts directly to the Turkish people; will outline some of the obstacles created by the denialist policies of the Turkish state; and finally, will provide a few suggestions for the Turkish state to consider by 2015.
Meaningful dialogue between two conflicting parties can only happen when both parties are aware of the facts and the truth. Even though the Turkish state has not allowed the truth of 1915 to come out until very recently, there are now clear signs that the taboos are finally being broken and that this “common body of knowledge” is emerging among Turkish opinion makers and ordinary citizens.
For four generations, Turkish citizens were brainwashed about the genocide by the state education system and the media. The Turkish people, however, can no longer be defined as a homogenous, uniform group. Clashes between the Turkish state and the sizable Kurdish/Alevi population, as well as the prosecution and punishment of the “deep state” leaders who ruled Turkey until a few years ago, have led some to question the state’s version of history regarding 1915. A few bright personalities/opinion makers in politics, academia, media, and literature have advocated for increased democratization, freedom of speech, and minority rights; moreover, they have acknowledged the truth about the genocide and demanded that the state do so as well. There is now a small but fast-increasing segment of the population that wants the state to face its past.
To date, there have been very few attempts for dialogue between the Armenian world and this liberalized segment of the Turkish population. Apart from the activities of the Hrant Dink Foundation based in Istanbul, the only contact has been through a few individuals in academia, film, media, music, and culture; and organizationally, by the Zoryan Institute in the academic field, by the Armenian NGO Civilitas through its recently opened office in Istanbul, and some recent political exchanges between Kurdish political parties and representatives of the ARF. Armenian academia, NGOs, and opinion makers should aim to establish direct contact with their Turkish counterparts to convey the truth through jointly organized conferences, seminars, TV programs, films, and translated publications.
Ordinary Turks, for example, should find out about the courageous Turkish officials who resisted the inhumane government decisions to annihilate the Armenian population in 1915. They should learn about the fate of the properties left behind by the annihilated Armenians, including hundreds of thousands of houses, fields, shops, warehouses, factories, mines, churches, and schools, all confiscated by the state, the Ittihat Terakki leaders, or local Muslim notables. They should understand that most of the Ataturk House Museums scattered all over Anatolia once belonged to deported or murdered Armenian citizens of the Ottoman state. They should be reminded that the very residence where the Turkish president sits today in Ankara was once owned by an Armenian family.
Of course, the Turkish state will continue to use all of its resources to prevent its citizens from finding out the truth. Notwithstanding the boasts of Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan that the archives are open and have nothing to hide, the reality is that the Ottoman archives are not entirely open and have gone through two major cleanups.
The first cleanup and destruction of files was back in 1918, when the Ittihat Terakki leaders escaped from Istanbul in a German warship to avoid prosecution as war criminals, carrying several trunkloads of documents with them. At the same time, the main planner of the Armenian deportations and massacres, Special Organization Chief Bahattin Shakir, also burned rooms full of documents related to their activities.
The second purging was in the 1990’s when the Ottoman archives were reorganized, translated into modern Turkish, and digitized. A team of diplomats, historians, retired ambassadors, and military officers sifted through millions of documents with the objective of eliminating any incriminating reference to the Armenians.
Recent WikiLeaks documents indicate that the Ottoman archival documents, initially estimated at 50 million records, numbered more like 200 million and therefore, the intended purge could not be carried out effectively. Clearly, several thousand documents escaped scrutiny and a few prominent Turkish scholars like Taner Akcam, Umit Kurt, and Ugur Ungor have been able to produce significant historic facts about the intended annihilation of the Armenians and the confiscation of their properties based only on these archives. Recently it was revealed that all researchers delving into the Armenian issue in the Ottoman archives were being tracked and monitored. If their work was deemed to be against the state version, there would be harassment and funding repercussions against them, as well as the institutions where they worked/studied. Meanwhile, Turkish researchers who produce/falsify/create documents minimizing Armenian losses are encouraged and rewarded. In 2005, Murat Bardakci, an investigative journalist, published Talat Pasha’s diary, revealing that Talat had kept detailed records about the numbers and destination of the deported Armenians. He had tallied the loss of Armenians at 972,000, but had also stated that the total missing could exceed 1.2 million due to unaccounted relocations.
During a recent TV talk show about history called “Rear Window of History,” Bardakci invited a history professor from Sakarya University, a state-sponsored “expert” on the Armenian issue. This expert announced that the archives show that the Ottoman government took all precautions to care for the 300,000 Armenians, who were temporarily deported only from the eastern war front; that only a few thousand died from illness; and that most of them returned home safely after the war. Bardakci confronted him by producing Talat Pasha’s diary and the numbers that Talat himself had quoted. The expert said he was only able to work with whatever is available in the state archives. He also announced that Turkish historians have now “proven” that all the genocide allegations are “fiction” based on American Ambassador Henry Morgenthau’s book, which, he said, was specifically produced as a propaganda tool to drum up support for the United States to enter the war. Even Bardakci found this expert’s comments embarrassing for Turkey, as it would result in more ridicule internationally and weaken Turkey’s hand further on the eve of 2015.
If Erdogan really wants to prove that Turkey has nothing to hide, all he has to do is order the release of two sets of critical documents—the deportation books and the deeds. The first set of documents are the 33 dossiers of the Deportation and Liquidation Commissions formed in 1915-16 in various Ottoman Anatolian provinces. They recorded, listed, appraised, and held on to the assets of the deported Armenians for their eventual return, but also sold or distributed some of these assets to Muslim refugees. The whereabouts of these dossiers is a mystery, but it is speculated that they are still intact and kept in the prime ministry offices. The second set of documents contain the Ottoman land registry and property deeds records. In 2005, when the government attempted to comply with European Union (EU) modernization initiatives by translating and opening these records up to the public, it was prevented from doing so by a stern warning—dated Aug. 26, 2005—from the National Security Committee of the Turkish Armed Forces, which stated, “The Ottoman records kept at the Land Register and Cadaster Surveys General Directorate offices must be sealed and not available to the public, as they have the potential to be exploited by alleged genocide claims and property claims against the State Charitable Foundation assets. Opening them to general public use is against state interests.”
Recently, it came to light that a former prime minister had come close to taking a positive step toward resolving the Armenian issue. Being a very pragmatic politician, in the early 1990’s Turgut Ozal had sought to end Turkey’s denialist policy and had commissioned a study to quantify the amount of compensation owed to Armenians worldwide. It is reported that the study did come up with a monetary figure, but no further steps were taken, either because the cost would be exorbitant, or because Ozal mysteriously died in 1993. His sudden death is still a subject of speculation today, 20 years later; his body was recently exhumed and examined for the presence of poison. It is said that he was severely criticized by the military and the deep state, not only for this Armenian episode, but more critically, for his desire to end the separatist Kurdish issue by giving concessions.
Based on the feedback and comments my past articles have garnered, there seems to be a significantly wide readership in Turkey, even within their government circles. A recurring theme I hear is that the present government, unlike the previous ones, has taken many positive steps toward Armenians, but that there has been no acknowledgement or reciprocating goodwill from the Armenian side. The positive examples often cited include the restoration of the Akhtamar Holy Cross Church (note that the church is still known as the Akdamar Museum in Turkey); the return of several confiscated properties belonging to the Armenian church and charitable foundations (note that these returns are still less than 10 percent of the properties seized after the 1930’s, and include none from before 1915, and no private properties); and increased freedom of speech, with the utterance of the term “Armenian Genocide” no longer a punishable offense (note that people like Hrant Dink can still get killed for saying that term, and that his real murderers remain hidden). I do acknowledge that these are positive steps in the right direction, but they are only a few steps in a very long journey.
Perhaps the journey cannot be completed by 2015, but several concrete and specific steps must be taken by Turkey in order to achieve some credibility and respectability. Instead of diversionary tactical steps, like Foreign Minister Davutoglu’s recent visit to Armenia, which achieved nothing, I humbly offer a few suggestions for consideration by my Turkish government acquaintances:
1. Open the border with Armenia without any preconditions. Rename the Alican border-crossing the Hrant Dink Gate, in honor of the heroic advocate for dialogue.
2. Grant citizenship to all living descendants of the deported Ottoman-Armenian citizens.
3. Clean up the textbooks at all levels of the educational system by eliminating the falsifications, hatemongering, and discrimination toward the Armenians (and other minorities).
4. Initiate a state program by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism to restore the more than 2,000 destroyed or deteriorating Armenian monasteries and churches, and return them to their rightful owner, the Armenian Church (Istanbul Armenian Patriarchate).
5. Offer a symbolic but meaningful apology to the Armenian people for all the crimes of 1915, by returning Mount Ararat and Ani to Armenia, perhaps as part of a territorial exchange based on equivalent land area.
6. Open up to the public the afore-mentioned documents related to the deportation/liquidation records and the Ottoman property deeds related to the deported Armenians.
7. Allow the compensation cases by descendants of Ottoman-Armenian citizens to proceed in Turkish and international courts.
8. Offer free transit and duty-free port facilities for Armenia at a Black Sea city such as Trabzon and Rize, as partial compensation for the economic losses of Ottoman-Armenian citizens.
Turkish acquaintances in government circles complain that the Armenians’ insistence on using the word “genocide” is a barrier to any progress toward dialogue about 1915. None of the suggestions above refer to that word, and all of them are doable by 2015, if there really is goodwill.
Once there is knowledge of the facts, followed by dialogue about the truth of 1915, among the Turkish opinion makers and ordinary citizens, the far-reaching result would be the creation of voters aware of the truth. Knowledgeable voters would then vote-in knowledgeable parliamentary members and eventually governments, which would set policies and decisions according to the voters’ preferences. I suggest that decisions taken in the Turkish Parliament respecting the truth of 1915 will be far more effective than any decision taken in the parliaments of third-party states.
Vatan daily newspaper, Sept. 12, 2011, “Bavul dolusu Ermeni belgesi kacirildi” (Trunkloads of Armenian documents were taken out).
Zaman daily newspaper, April 24, 2012, “Ozal Yasasaydi Ermeni Sorununu Cozecekti” (If Ozal had lived, he would have solved the Armenian issue).
Internethaber news online, Dec. 12, 2013, “Turkiye’de skandal: Ermeni meselesini calisan ogrenciler fislendi” (Scandal in Turkey: Students researching the Armenian issue are being monitored).
Murat Bardakci, Talat Pasanin Evrak-i Metrukesi (Talat Pasha’s Black Book), 2005, Everest Yayinlari (Everest Publishing House).
Raffi wrote this:
“2. Grant citizenship to all living descendants of the deported Ottoman-Armenian citizens.”
Raffi, please, Armenians in Turkey are not safe. No Armenian in his or her right mind would move there.
Also, Raffi, Turkey will always represent a threat to Armenians because it is directly in the path of eastward Turkish expansion towards Azerbaijan and central Asia. Turkey (and Azerbaijan) want to destroy Armenia for that reason. History shows this.
Baron Raffi Bedrossian,
I would like to congratulate you for this pragmatic, visionary, political, humane article!
Allow me to add few more suggestions to your list.
1- New Armenians who get the Turkish citizenship as you suggested will be allowed to do business tax exempt from all government fees for 100 years.
2- All Turkish students have to take mandatory “Crimes against humanity courses” teaching them what has happened 100 years ago, just like Germans are thought about what the Nazis did. They should be thought to be sad about what happened to humanity without feeling remorse about their grandparents; just as Germans feel sad about their grandparents but they are not stuck in shame. On the contrary they are very proud Germans.
3- The Ottoman deputy and senate Armenian seats lost in 1915 should be returned to current Turkish Armenians who stayed in Turkey.
Regarding the last paragraph about “knowledgeable voters”. I think you have too high of an opinion on Turks here. I think it’s just as likely, if not more likely that pro-Armenian genocide recognition MPs and government would be voted out of office. The big 3 parties in Turkey are the AKP, CHP (Kemalist party led by a Kurd/Alevi from Dersim who criticized Erdogan for offering an apology for Dersim), and MHP (whose unofficial “militant” arm are the neo-fascist Grey Wolves- who “volunteered” for service in the NKR war with Azerbaijan). What government is going to solve this? Which MPs? Who? The people who get imprisoned for speaking the truth or the people who get murdered outside their newspaper office for encouraging (apparently) vile anti-Turkish things like dialogue, understanding, and peace? And voters aware of the truth? What truth? The truth they wouldn’t accept if you shoved it in their faces? Are those the “aware voters”? But maybe people can change. To be honest, there was a time when I actively denied the Armenian genocide. I try to block it out. Thoroughly disgusted with myself.
As to the suggestions… I don’t think those are ‘steps’. They kind of sound like reparations without calling them reparations. For number 2: would Armenians really want that?
There are Turks who dislike Armenians, but who, perhaps reluctantly admit the AG, and for that matter the Christian Genocide overall – Greeks, Pontic Greeks, and Assyrians.
What persuaded you there was a Genocide, have your friends/family disowned you, and what do you think the consequences of Genocide as to each and all victim groups should be e.g. reparation, apology, restituion?
Who in his right mind wants to be a citizen of Turkey that does not have to be?
Even Ethnic Sunni Turks can be murdered by gangs or the government, or the deep state with impunity, and one never is more than a few hours away from new coup and counter-coup plots being exposed, sort of.
Highest number of journos in prison. The curr gov looks with favor on Sharia. Al Qaeda gets a free pass to the Syrian border and just for bad measure they oppress the Kurds, who sooner or later are going to destabilize the eastern part. Rural areas are awash with fundamentalism. Maybe if you’re a Muslim with a hankering for a 13 year old wife.
Citizen of this? Turkey may be more liberal than Saudi Arabia, but its still a terrible place to live.
How was I persuaded? Interesting story. I was actually trying to DISPROVE the Armenian genocide . Anyways, one website/article after another gave me a strong dose of reality, combined with documentaries, pictures, etc. I studied International Affairs in college, so after that I took classes on genoicde, ethnic nationalism, human rights, etc., all of which touched upon the Armenian genocide. In the end, the facts are facts, and I accepted the reality of the situation.
As for personal repercussions, not really. Growing up in Georgia, I was usually the only Turkish kid around so I had no Turkish friends. I was able to persuade some in my family, others disagreed but overall there was just a disturbing amount of indifference which still makes me angry.
Reparations. First there needs to be an apology. Monetary (very heavy) compensation to RoA for those murdered. I guess an international commission can be set up for personal reparations (dealing with life-insurance, destroyed homes, properties, etc.) Churches and schools- those still in existence- need to be restored and returned to the Armenian church, those that have been destroyed should be compensated for monetarily to RoA. As for those who have deeds for houses/properties still around that are occupied now…. I don’t really know. I don’t think kicking out the Kurdish/Turkish occupants would really be right, as they might be the 2nd, 3rd, or 4th occupant since the original owners were deported or murdered. For land/territory. I think mass territory transfer is not practical or realistic. Certain areas, like Mt. Ararat, Akdamar Island, etc. should be returned, but mass territory transfer, again, seems a little idealistic more than realistic. I guess that’s a starting point.
Finally, to your point about living in Turkey, depends on where you are. I find the west coast cities to be very modern and in the resort towns you can easily forget you are in a Muslim country and not somewhere in Europe. Still would pass though if I were Armenian.
Oh please, it is clear you have not really followed facts and figures and documents, maybe just emotions. There is so much that can be done to make 2015 mean something or be the beginning of something but we know it will not happen. No one bothers to ask what Armenians will do or need to do for that. Turks will be also very occupied with the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Gallipoli, you know the one that coincided with the massive Armenian rebellion in Van.
Hell would turn into an ice-skating rink before I could be forced into accepting, let alone asking for Turkish citizenship. This does not mean that I do not want the return of my father and grandfather’s property. You do not have to be a citizen to receive the return of land and possessions that already belong to you.
As for Armenian descendants becoming citizens in order to vote—even if every single one of us became citizens, met residency requirements, and went to the polling booth and cast a ballot—in other words, an unprecedented miracle took place, we would numerically be a grain of sand in the growing desert of Turks at the polling booth. Our vote would be meaningless.
Ararat and Ani have always belonged to us. They will belong to us long after time itself does not exist. Artificial boundary lines do not negate the ownership of Ararat and Ani. Putting your name on stolen property does not make it yours.
The number of 1.2 million Armenians murdered is based in large part on census figures. Babies and little children were not counted. I want the babies and little children in my family counted.
Perouz, you seem to have a very unhealthy obsession with 1915. I myself do believe the Genocide was a genocide, but, judging by your other posts too, you seem to be overly attached to it emotionally (as if you are actually and really living in 1915). Return your family’s property that they owned 100 years ago? Do you imagine what kind of a havoc this would create? What, should all other nations do the same after so many wars and atrocities? See, the Jewish Genocide, singular in its scope and atrocity, is a rightful exception. The Armenian Genocide, although no less tragic at the individual level, was nowhere near as comprehensive or systematic. While I don’t buy the counter-argument, it is still not ridiculous to argue, as many Turks and others argue semi-convincingly, that those events had a tincture of a civil war where Armenians sided with Russians in a war of independence (for understandable reasons), whereas only the craziest persons could deny the Holocaust, given the enormity of the evidence (gas chambers, Hitler’s writings, etc, etc) and ESPECIALLY there not being a land aspect or independence aspect to their plight (unlike Armenians who, rightfully, did not wish to live under Turkish foreign rule).
Also, if you feel so pained about the events that took place in 1915, imagine how the living Azeri families feel regarding the atrocities you Armenians committed a mere 20 years ago! Are you going to give back their property or compensate? In fact, you might have to … there is actually a $300B case before the European courts to get Armenia pay for their atrocities in Karbaak and adjacent areas.
I think there is more to Armenian memories of the Genocide, more than just a search for justice. I think this additional factor is the typical Middle Eastern thirst for revenge. Tell me this. Suppose, there was no Genocide per se, and 95% of your population had been killed in a war by Turkey. Would you be after Turks any less than you are now? Of course not! I wouldn’t care a bit either whether it was a genocide or not. I would feel no less hateful toward my enemies. So while I understand your anger, I think it is a bit confused or misplaced one. This is not about Genocide per se, but a vendetta. And you have a very right to do so. And Turkey would have long recognized the Genocide if they didn’t think that the real goal in all of this is land and their bankruptcy.
@RVDV, I continue to be puzzled by you a bit. You talk of the Armenian Genocide in such a detached way. From what I know, the Kurdish hands are more blodied with Armenian deaths and the Turkishs one. It is you Kurds who now live in Western Armenia. Where are your cousins going to go if the land is given to Armenia? Of if Turkey pays huge reparations (as I think they should), where is that money going to come from, but from taxes on all, including many poor Kurds … for the crimes committed before their fathers were born.
What would I do if I were Turkey? Deny and fight the Gencoide recognition to my last breath, even if I believed it. Would you not? Or would you let your country go bankript and break apart? No sane country would do anything else. Any Turkish government who even goes in that direction should be impeached immediately as spelling the end of the counry. Imagine, a US President paving the way to give Texas and Calirfornia back to its rightful former owner Mexico? Americans would be out in the streets with a pitchfork, even though they ALL know that this would be the right thing to do. What puzzles me is that Armenians, while they shoud be aware of all this, somehow feel puzzled and outraged by Turkish policies? Would they do anything different? This does not mean you should not push them and antagnoize them. Fine, do that. But don’t then buy your own proganda about justice, blah, blah. Put yourself in the other guy’s shoes, and you would do the same thing. And you don’t actually have to change shoes … Look at the Khojali massacre of Azeris in 1990s? You deny it, despite factual evidence (videos, picture, foreing observers, etc). And yet, you want everyone to buy your story from 1900s.
Karim: Kurds have lived in western Armenia/Eastern Turkey/northern Kurdistan long before the Armenian genocide. As did Turks. The ordinary Turk and Kurds who participated ended up with some more land, gold, etc., and many others moved into the region to fill in the newly vacant homes. Let’s not act like this region was purely Armenian or, for that matter, I’m not even sure Armenians were the majority there, but that’s not really the point. Just wanted to make that distinction. My family is from central Turkey, not western Armenia, and I’ll go through this one more time. I do not care about what’s in the best interest of Kurds. Number one, I care about the interests of Alevis, and a close second, Turks. Kurds were just as despicable towards Alevis historically, things are a lot better now but there is a reason my people had to live in the remote mountains, excluded by Turks AND Kurds (even though many of us were Kurds! That’s even worse)
“What would I do if I were Turkey? Deny and fight the Genocide recognition to my last breath, even if I believed it. Would you not?”
Nope. I would not.
“Or would you let your country go bankrupt and break apart?”
Like I’ve said countless times, I do not support mass territory transfer, nor do I find it realistic. It’s just NOT going to happen, even if I wanted it to. Secondly, bankruptcy??? Who’s going bankrupt? Turkey? Not a chance. Turkey has a strong and stable economy, even the harshest monetary reparations won’t be devastating to Turkey. Unless they demand trillions of dollars and I’m unaware of this.
” Look at the Khojali massacre of Azeris in 1990s? You deny it, despite factual evidence..”
Me? I don’t deny anything. I do believe it was Armenian forces that fired upon Azeri civilians, I just think the situation devolved to a point where there was just mass chaos. And in that chaos, Azeri civilians were murdered, likely by Armenian bullets. I just haven’t seen any evidence to suggest that this was the plan by the Armenians all along. I don’t think they went in planning on killing any civilians. However, regardless of that, war crimes are war crimes and I think those responsible need to be on trial, whoever they are, whatever their intent. In the NKR war, which ever side had the advantage at any point was the side that was violating international law more. Blame Armenians if you want, you have reasons to do so, but remember, so do they, if not more.
you have not really recognized the Armenian Genocide, Karim: would you like me to paste what you wrote a while back, and JDA’s forceful response to your phony ‘acknowledgment’ ?
and who are you to question Perouz ? do you know her family history ?
despite your frequent and desperate references to some DNA studies to ‘prove’ you are not nomads, your behaviour here @AW is a signature nomadic one.
This site is called ArmenianWeekly.
You are a Turkbeijani guest.
Yet you give yourself the nomadic ‘right’ to insult those whose dwelling you have entered.
You insulted one of the most respected Columnists of AW.
You insult Perouz, most of whose ancestors were slaughtered during the AG.
Didn’t you promise that you were leaving AW at least a couple times already ?
Can’t help yourself can you ? You just have to keep coming back so you can e.g. add salt to the wounds of someone like Perouz, don’t you ?
Your self professed hatred for Armenians is on full display here.
Yep, just like I said: 1000 years has not made a bit of a difference other than the clothes.
Karim, I would suggest you take off your blinkers and have a good look at the both sides of your path. If you stop being a brainwashed turk, you would realize that Azeris were newcomers, and Azerbaijan was created by those cartels which you know who. Armenians did not occupy any of your so called Azeri land, they merely took back only a portion of their of their historic land which was forcibly robbed from Armenians by Stalin and given them to you people. So stop being a sore loser. Like wise look back and remember your terrible pogroms which took place in Sumgait. Where you butchered thousands of Armenians and confiscated their centuries old properties.
Bear in mind that Armenians are very stupidly tolerant people. This
has always been their weak side, to “Turn their other cheek” but in
the mean time they are like a heavy duty coil spring, they will tolerate up to certain amount of pressure to its limit, otherwise they will create a hell when passed its limits.
Frankly speaking, I don’t hate you for your distorted judgements, but on the contrary I do hate the Armenia’s government for its mismanagement, for signing the treaturous PROTOCOLS agreement without listening to its people, and most importantly for after the termination of 60 years forcibly imposed Treaty of Kars, secretly giving back the Kars City, The Ararat region and Arax river, from which sources Turkey is benefiting millions of dollars by selling our water to Syria!
What’s more, under certain notorious pressures they have gaged our media, the parliament and or even the opposition political parties by preventing them to discuss about it!
I AM NOT INTERESTED IN CLAIMING BACK OUR SEVERAL DILAPIDATED CHURCHES AND THE RELEVANT LANDS, WHICH IS NO USE TO US ANDY WAY.
THE IMPORTANCE IS TO REINSTATE AND REPOSSESS CITY OF KARS, THE ARARAT REGION AND DEAR OLD MOTHER ARAX RIVER.
So RVDV, you don’t support mass territory transfer to Armenia to correct a wrong and a crime against humanity, but you support mass territory transfer to Turkey as a benefit of Genocide?
Karim, you say you recognize the Genocide, but judging from your post it seems it is disingenuous. You say that Turks make sense in denying the Genocide, but only the craziest people deny the Holocaust. Do you realize you have perhaps just insulted a large chunk, if not the majority of your brethren in Turkey? Incidentally, Mein Kampf is a best seller in Turkey, and I’m pretty sure that it would be openly a best seller in Azerbaijan as well, if not for Israel arming your belligerent country. One thing is clear, crazy or not, those that deny the Armenian Genocide are crude, simple-minded and downright laughable. Join the club if you wish.
As far as Azerbaijan, and your obvious indoctrination of its falsities, what makes you convinced that when Armenia lost its territories, it went one side only?
You complain that some of us are stuck with 1915, but of course you have no clue or appreciation of its scope and how devastating it was for our culture and country, but instead as Azeris, you happily got stuck on the Khojali incident, an event so minute, so minor, and in fact being a result of your own government, and you even have the audacity to call it a “genocide”. Talk about desperation.
And Khojali happened because why? An attempt at genocide against Armenians failed? You Azeris have no one to blame but yourselves. You talk about some dozens of Azeri civilians killed during war, yet you speak nothing of your genocidal government which tried to starve ALL the Armenians of NK by blocking off “Lachin”, and firing missiles at Stepanakert indiscriminately. After such terrorist attacks, body parts could be found on the streets of innocent civilians killed. And we haven’t even begun to talk about Sumgait and Baku and everywhere else. Do you believe that in the greater scheme of things Khojali has one iota of significance for us? It is too bad the clueless dupes around the world give your government even one second of their time listening to the Khojali nonsense. In the end they will all discover they’ve been played as political prostitutes with oil money.
Finally when you say:
“What would I do if I were Turkey? Deny and fight the Gencoide recognition to my last breath, even if I believed it. Would you not? Or would you let your country go bankript and break apart? No sane country would do anything else.”
Here you are displaying how a people with a crude, nomadic mindset think, and guilt and criminality is written all over your statement. Compare this to one of the most technologically advanced and rich countries of the world and imagine if they used that logic and “fought to the last breath” against Holocaust recognition.
And please don’t insult the USA by comparing it with Turkey. Turkey is no USA, and it never will be. The USA is a place where people go to escape oppression. Turkey is a place where people leave to get away from it.
Mack, I always smile when reading posts like yours, a Diaspora Armenian getting his history lessons from ANCA press releases. I have noticed that the Armenians living in Armenia are much more educated about the regional history. E.g., Stalin DID NOT give Karabak to Azerbaijan. I know it makes a great propaganda point in the West (look the evil Stalin gave it to them!). The truth is Stalin did not give it to Azerbaijan, but voted to let it STAY as part of Azerbaijan. In exchange, Azerbaijan gave up Zengazur to Armenia, thru a law that specifically called this Azeri act “an act of friendship.” Now Zengazur is called Sunyuk. Also, deal with this historical fact, Mack: The treaty whereby Karabak came under the rule of Russia (Kurekchay Treaty, signed in 1805 by general Pavel Tsitsianov on behalf of Tsar Alexander I) was signed for the other side … wait for it .. the Azeri khan Ibrahim Khalil Khan of Karabakh! This is documented, in Russian archives! Get it?! Now, Stalin’s vote came in 1918. So, Mack, please tell me what happened between 1805 and 1918 that made Karabak Armenian? If Armenians had owned Karabak, why the heck the Russians were signing the treaty with an Azeri? So where did the modern Armenian population of Karabak came from? Russian settled them there after the war with Iran, to create a buffer against the Muslims (moving them from Iran and Turkey, under the sponsorship of Griboyedov, a Russian General. This is all documented history (and not ANCA press releases, or your grandma’s bedtime stories). I bet you didn’t even know that there is a monument Armenians raised in Karabak in 1979 to celebrate the 150th anniversary of their settlement in Karabak! The monument is still there! So check yourself before your wreck yourself when talking about history
Nice Christmas wish list, I will make sure Santa gets it, LOL….
Isn’t it hilarious, watching the desperation of that uneducated Azerbaijani villager, who tries so enormously hard to persuade us to believe the false and absurd history lessons that are taught in the schools of Baku. However, we sit here and laugh together at him, his dog master (President Aliyev), and their dog pound (Azerbaijan). Why don’t we examine a few of the hilarious lies that are taught in the Azerbaijani classroom: (1) Stalin did not give Artsakh to Azerbaijan, but voted to let it stay as part of Azerbaijan. (2) In exchange, Azerbaijan gave up Zangezur to Armenia, as an act of friendship. Yeah right! Since when have those Azeri savage beasts ever been friendly with Armenians? Anyway, if one takes time to study the history of Artsakh (Karabagh), right around the beginning of Soviet rule, he or she will find out that on November 30, 1920, the day after the proclamation of the establishment of the Armenian SSR, the Soviet government declared the regions of Karabagh, Nakhichevan, and Zangezur, would remain as part of Soviet Armenia. However, soon after, the situation changed in favor of Azerbaijan, due to Turkey’s involvement. The Soviet government, was desperately hoping that the new republic of Turkey, under the leadership of Kemal Attaturk and with the help of Russia, would join the Soviet Union. In order to appease Turkey, the Russians chose to donate Karabagh, as well as Nakhichevan, both acknowledged as being part of Armenia, to the republic of Azerbaijan. This decision was made by Joseph Stalin.
Another hilarious lie, taught in the Azerbaijani classroom, is that the land of Artsakh has always been Azerbaijani, and that Armenians first settled there 150 years ago, which would be around 1860-1870. Exactly how can that be possible? The first mentioning of Artsakh, dates back to the cuneiform script from the Uratuian King Sardur 2, of Armenia (763-764 BC). The document mentions the country of Urtekhini, which the Greek geographer, historian, and philosopher Strabo (63 BC-24 AD), called Orkhistene, which means Artsakh in Armenian. As a matter of fact, in 180 BC, Artsakh became one of the 15 provinces of the Armenian kingdom. Since that time, the Armenian culture has flourished in the land of Artsakh.
What about Azerbaijani culture? Well, truthfully speaking, there was no such thing as Azerbaijani culture before 1918. Prior to 1918, the people who inhabited present-day Azerbaijan, were called Tatar Muslims, who happened to be the descendants of the backward Turk savages who arrived on that land from central Asia, back in the eleventh century.
We always smile when Turkbeijani nomads start the world history at a convenient time for them, Karim bey.
Apparently Armenians who are indigenous to Armenian Highlands, including South Caucasus, for about 5,000 years, vanished into thin air at an opportune time for Asiatic Turkic invaders. Your ancestors.
And Oghuz Turks who left their nomadic paradise in East and Central Asia about 1,000 years ago came to a place that was completely devoid of any human populations. Right.
If you are one of the indigenous peoples of the region, such as Talysh, Lezgin, Tat, Avar, etc – then your homelands are East of the Kur river.
(Hint: Artsakh is West of the Kur river)
If you are an Oghuz Turk nomad, your homelands are in and around Uyguristan: go East young man, go East.
Lands West of Kur river have been Armenian since the beginning of time (or about 5,000 years: whichever comes first (last ?))
And a Turkbeijani nomad coming to ArmenianWeekly as a guest and insulting one of its most respected Columnists and insulting an Armenian poster whose ancestors were massacred during the AG is par for course: InvadoNomads have no manners.
btw: a couple of days ago (Jan 19/20) Oghuz Turk nomads attempted to invade sacred Armenian lands.
Sadly one Armenian young conscript soldier, 20 year old Junior Sergeant Armen Hovhannisyan, was KIA during the firefight that threw the invaders from Terrorbaijan out of Armenian lands.
Armen was a GREAT Armenian: God bless his eternal memory.
Sadly, Armenian warriors sent only 7 invaders to meet their makers. About 20 or so invaders were wounded. We trust some were wounded so severely that they will return to peaceful civilian life.
We hope and pray that next time far more Terrorbaijani invaders of sacred Armenian lands will be prematurely called to eternal rest.
[“I do hate the Armenia’s government for its mismanagement, for signing the treaturous PROTOCOLS agreement without listening to its people … under certain notorious pressures they have gaged our media, the parliament and or even the opposition political parties by preventing them to discuss about it!”]
Absolutely right, Mark Vahanian. Which proves yet again that our number one priority should be the establishment of democracy in Armenia. Until then, we cannot even hope to get any just resolution to the issues of tge Genocide recognition and restitution. Being undemocratic, Armenia’s government responds not to the people’s wishes but to primarily to self-interest and external pressure. A democratic Armenia will be far more difficult to manipulate, as its easier to pressure one tyrant than 3 million people.
your number one priority should be to bring Democracy to your own homeland, Nomad: the oil-fume choked ‘paradise’ of Baku Khanate, Owned & Operated by your Sultan for Eternity, Father to His Turkbeijani Children, İlham Heydər oğlu Əliyev, and his Aliyev Clan Crime Syndicate, Inc.
Pretty funny how your incompetent Turkebaijni nomad kin can’t even successfully fake an ‘election’: ‘voting’ results were released by Turkbeijani CEC by mistake _before_ the voting even started to select the next Paramount Sultan of Baku Khanate. Terrorist thug Ilham was declared winner by 73% before polls opened.
“The truth is Stalin did not give it to Azerbaijan, but voted to let it STAY as part of Azerbaijan.”
Yes and no, Karim. Stalin (or the Kavburo) finalized a temporary arrangement. Karabagh had been provisionally placed under Azeri control based on the August 10, 1920 Armenian-Soviet armistice after the Bolsheviks defeated Armenia and occupied NK in July. So, we can say both: that he left NK with Azerbaijan (as stated in the Kavburo decision) and that he permanently gave NK to Azerbaijan from a temporary status.
The truth is that it was the Armenian General Andranik and the British who gave NK to Azerbaijan in 1918. In November of 1918, after the WWI ended and Ottoman troops withdrew, Andranik was about to enter NK. But the British officer Thomson told him not to and “temporarily” placed NK under Azeri control until a final decision in Paris, and Andranik foolishly trusted him. British historian Christopher Walker details it all:
“Even after widespread criticism, the British refused to remove Sultanov from his post; and the Armenians sickened by the prospect of further bloodshed, eventually agreed to Azerbaijan’s provisional control of Karabagh. Provisional, however, it never was; and Mountainous Karabagh with its large Armenian majority remained Azerbaijani throughout the pre-Soviet and Soviet period, being an autonomous region of the Azerbaijani SSR today; all dating from Andranik’s trust of the word of a British officer, and the partiality of that officer and his successor to Azerbaijani landowners.”
A few more corrections. Stalin (or the Kavburo, the Caucasus Revolutionary Bureau) made the decision not in 1918, but in 1921, after Azerbaijan’s and Armenia’s Sovietization. In 1918 Stalin was too busy with the Russian Civil War to care about Karabagh.
As for etnic make up of NK, it is pretty much accepted by historians that in the 18th century, the population in the mountainous Karabagh was predominantly Armenian.
I dont know about the monument you refer to, but I am sure it was for only a small portion of the population. Another story is the territory of RoA. After Shah Abbas’ relocations in early 1600’s, the area of Irevan khanate was predominantly Azeri.
more nonsense and disinformation from our Turkbeijani guest.
@Karim, I see you are still peddling your stale stories and fictions. What is the Azeri nation and what is Azerbaijan? The Azeri nation is a fake and fabricated nation of Turkish speaking ethnic Persians. There is nothing unique about it. Azerbaijan is an artificial state created by the genocidal Turks, as part of Pan-Turanism, after depopulating Western Armenian provinces from the indigenous Armenians by committing a preplanned and state-sponsored mass extermination and genocide in 1915, and to have a foothold in the South Caucasus to wipe Armenia off the map after turning what was left of Armenia into an orphanage.
I asked you several times to show me a country called Azerbaijan on the world map before 1918 and you failed like a miserable liar. Take a look at any map of the world and Armenia will stare you in the face in every one of them. Follow the world map and trace back in history long enough and you will realize that Armenia continues to be on the map when your genocidal Turkish masters were grazing goats in Central Asia and you were worshipping fire in Northern Iran.
The Armenian kingdom, as a nation state, existed over a millennium before there was any Russia and over two millennium before the invention of the artificial state of Azerbaijan at the end of WWI. Artskah, aka Karbakh, existed as part of the ancient Armenian homeland through the centuries and its Armenian history is as old as Armenia itself. It is only according to the fabricated history of the artificial state of Azerbaijan that Armenian history in Karabakh is only a few hundred years old.
The monument erected in Karabakh is not in celebration of the resettlement of the Armenians from Iran according to your fiction but in commemoration of the repatriation of the exiled indigenous Armenians back to their homeland. Hundreds of thousands of Armenians were forcibly uprooted from Nakhichevan and Karabakh region during a war between the Persian and the Ottoman Empires in 1603 by Shah Abbas of Persia and settled in the Persian capital of Isfahan.
I’m sure according to your fictions Armenians never existed in Nakhichevan either just because there are none of them left there today when in fact they constituted 50% of the population there in 1921 and slowly but surely were driven out by the racist and anti-Armenian Azerbaijan SSR policies. By 1979 there were no Armenians left there. As if that was not enough, the racist Azeris even went as far as demolishing and desecrating a 1,300 year-old Armenian cemetery in Julfa and turning it into a military training ground. You cherry pick your fictitious nonsense but keep quiet on this fact because you can’t make anything up about this act which is documented and it is on tape. Azerbaijanis will pay through the nose for this blasphemous act in due time, guaranteed.
These acts are testaments to pathetic Azeri desperation and speak volumes about the racist and rotten Azeri character. Any nation that would go that far to destroy all evidence of Armenian existence surely deserves to be punished and must be crushed like bunch of cockroaches. Poor sadistic Azeri criminal cowards taking their fights to dead and long-buried Armenians as payback for the humiliating destruction and defeat handed to them by the indigenous Armenians in the battlefield. What a sore pathetic losers you are indeed. You are a disgrace to this world.
Karabakh was on the same path of depopulation, as was Nakhichevan, by the racist policies of the criminal Azeribaijani SSR artificial state but, unlike Nakhichevan, the Armenians in Karabakh did not have the Soviet criminals in their way and they took the fight to your backyards and decimated you and chased the rest of you cowards back to your caves in Baku. Too bad the Armenians made the mistake of agreeing to a cease-fire through Russian intervention and pleas from Azeri coward beggars. Knowing your despicable characters, they should have bombed you back to the stone age.
You can sing and dance all the fiction you want but the bottom line is that the Azerbaijani nation is a fabricated nation and the so-called republic of Azerbaijan, a mere oil-depot for foreign exploitation, is nothing but an artificial state. Sooner or later we will reunite you with your ancestors in Tabriz and put your fictions to rest once and for all.
I am so very pleased that my posts give you even a very small sampling of what it is like to be “actually and really living in 1915.” How incredibly shallow of you to ask me, “Do you imagine what kind of a havoc this would create?” Shake your head and then try to imagine what kind of “a havoc” the genocidal murder of two million people caused to those who were butchered; what havoc it created in the lives of the handful of survivors, and what havoc it continues to create in the lives of their descendants. No reputable scholar today denies the effects of genocide on many succeeding generations. I am the first generation born after the genocide, and I can bear testimony to the massive research that has been done. Your insults to several writers in this paper are no more than attempts to silence those, who like me, will continue to hold up to the light what was done to us, and will continue to demand justice which includes reparation. Your shameless attempt to compare one genocide with another—the Armenian with the Jewish—is so disgusting, it is beyond civil comment.
In one of the earlier posts, one of Karim’s compatriots, attempts to back up his/her fellow countryman by saying that Joseph Stalin “left NK with Azerbaijan.” And then, he/she proceeds to provide us with an article about Armenia’s survival, by Christopher J. Walker. That’s not what I would define as a credible source. If a person wishes to conduct some research on the history of Karabagh, then he or she should use a source directly connected to NKR, such as this one:
If you go to the section, Nagorno-Karabakh in 1918-1920, and then to the section, Establishment of Soviet Rule, you will find out that regardless of the fact that British forces occupied Karabagh for a short while in which they did everything possible to force it to become part of Azerbaijan, they still failed. Although the Seventh Congress of Karabagh Armenians adopted a resolution on August 22, 1919, proclaiming that Karabagh agreed to a temporary recognition of itself within the borders of the Azerbaijani Republic until the Paris Peace Conference, it did not change the status of Karabagh, which remained an independent political entity. Several months later, in March-April of 1920, a war took place between Armenia and Azerbaijan, which resulted in the Armenian liberation of Karabagh. On April 23, 1920, the Ninth Congress of Karabagh Armenians proclaimed their land as being an inseparable part of Armenia. However, the establishment of Soviet rule in the Transcaucasus, led to a new political order. After the proclamation of Soviet Azerbaijan in 1920, an agreement between Soviet Russia and the Republic of Armenia, allowed the Russian army to temporarily take control of Karabagh until a peaceful settlement to the conflict could be agreed upon. However, immediately after the establishment of Soviet rule in Armenia, the Revcom (Revolutionary Committee- the Bolshevik’s main governing body at the time) of Azerbaijan, declared the “disputed territories”, Karabagh, Zangezur, and Nakhichevan, as inseparable parts of Armenia. Based on the withdrawal of Azerbaijan’s claims on the “disputed territories”, and the agreement between the governments of Armenia and Azerbaijan, Armenia declared Karabagh an inseparable part of its country in June, 1921. The text of the Decree of the Armenian government, was published in the Armenian and Azerbaijani press, on June 22, 1921. This act, signified the last legal act in terms of international law, regarding Karabagh during the Soviet rule in the Transcaucasus. The international community and Russia, welcomed this act, which was reflected in a resolution of the League of Nations Assembly, on March 4, 1921. However, the leadership of Russia, soon changed its attitude on Karabagh and Nakhichevan. This political move was undertaken in order to persuade the newly formed republic of Turkey to join the Soviet Union. The Azerbaijani leadership immediately renewed its claims on these territories. Russia ignored the decision of the League of Nations, and in procedural violation, separated Karabagh and Nakhichevan from Armenia, and attached these two territories to Soviet Azerbaijan.
Christopher Walker is a world class historian, and a pro-Armenian at that. His book (not article (!)), “Armenia: Survival of a Nation,” uses both Armenian and non-Armenian sources to narrate the recent Armenian history in an objective language, without all the nationalistic nonsense. Only the most uneducated would consider him unreliable. Nkrusa.org cannot possibly be considered a reliable source. It is a website run by a separatist entity.
Nagorno-Karabakh Armenians did accept the “temporary” Azeri rule in 1919. They may have changed their minds later, but no one cared what they thought or said. The British ruled the area at the time, and they recognized it as an Azeri territory.
The Azeri nation is a fake and a fabricated nation of Turkish speaking ethnic Persians and the artificial state of Azerbaijan, which never existed in the history of mankind, was invented at the end of WWI by their genocidal Turkish masters who wiped out millions of indigenous Armenians and confiscated their ancestral homeland to carve out and create the illegal republic of Turkey in 1923. Given these facts alone, Armenians should care less about what anyone, good or bad, has to say about these two criminal fake and illegal nations.
The Armenians MUST never give up their fight to drive these criminals out of their homelands and liberate and restore every inch of the Armenian homeland.
Christopher Walker, who happens to be pro-Azeri, is viewed as a world class historian in the eyes of uneducated Azeri Turks. The truth of the matter is that this British historian, called Christopher Walker, has poor knowledge in regard to the history of Nagorno-Karabagh. If a person truly wishes to learn about the history of Karabagh, then he or she should consult a source connected to the Nagorno-Karabagh Republic. For your own education, although the Seventh Congress of Karabagh Armenians adopted a resolution on August 22, 1919, proclaiming that Karabagh agreed to a temporary recognition of itself within the borders of the Azerbaijani republic until the Paris Peace Conference, it did not change the status of Karabagh, which remained an independent political entity. Anyway, several months later in March-April of 1920, a war took place between Armenia and Azerbaijan, which resulted in the Armenian liberation of Karabagh. You obviously failed to read that whole entire part, along with the rest of the details, which concludes with Joseph Stalin giving the Armenian lands of Karabagh and Nakhichevan to the Azerbaijanis. In terms of the British, they failed miserably at forcing Azerbaijan’s will upon the Karabagh Armenians. Hey Yildirim, just take a look at the Karabagh Armenians today. They’re laughing at the British, the same way that they’re laughing at your people over in Azerbaijan.
When this thread was initiated,Tara up above,first poster softly made Raffi understand that we will not be taken in again by Shekler Helvasi-Toikish delights….
No sireee, we ain´t gonna be pursuaded by the opening of a few churches still half standing being repaired and Toikish manipoulated Kurds offering belated brotherhood.
1.We shall await untill 2015,when our Tahd(CASE is taken up by competent attorneys at relevant instances,resolved justfully and compensation paid for BLOOD MONEY
As to lands that was populate by our ancestors, we can wait a bit more when KURISH ISSUE RIPENS UP.I for one am for that.Am sure Kurds will rise and kick the Turks outta those lands…
As to NK, it is as yet to be talked about and made to be looked a s ARMENIANS´ main issue, so as to attract attn thatwise.Fact is NK is nearly resolved and can be resolved by Nk and Azerbeijan whether through OSCE MINSK group efforts(if any) and/or us coming to a compromise with them by and by. IT IS NOT TO BRAKE OUR THRUST FWD TO 2015 WHEN THE wORLD WILL RECOGNIZE THE aRMENIAN gENOCIDE BY GENOCIDE STATE!!!
uNTILL THEN MANY WILL HAVE AGO LIKE rAFFI TO AND OTHERS TO STRIKE UP YET ANOTHER RAPPROCHEMENT WITH TURKS, most probably offering more baklava and toikish delights…