24 June 2006
Is it fair to pick on Thomas O'Dwyer? After all, he is only one of so many journalists accepting claims of Armenian propaganda at face value. Unfortunately, an article spotlighting his blind partisanship caught my eye, and it's only fair to reveal his shoddy journalistic standards. Not that he may otherwise be a shoddy journalist; but because of his apparent prejudices against Turks, he has committed the unpardonable sin among professional journalists: to rely 100% on one side of an issue, and one that is a propagandistic one at that.
Thomas O'Dwyer's biographies make sure to tell us he is from Ireland, and he is described as "one of the most experienced journalists in the Middle East." We learn that he lived in Cyprus for nine years, and that he "became editor of the Cyprus Mail before being hired to open the first permanent Reuters office in Nicosia." "Cyprus," of course, means Greek Cyprus. We can be sure Mr. O'Dwyer did not escape the prevalent anti-Turkish atmosphere during his near-decade long stint, and that he would see anything but eye-to-eye with Irish M.P. Sean Power, who had a refreshing bead on Cypriot realities.
("For several years he wrote the Cyprus sections of the Encyclopedia Britannica Yearbook and The Annual Register of World Events." Great!)
He later moved to Israel, becoming foreign editor and columnist for The Jerusalem Post; his column was later featured in Ha'aretz.
That is the newspaper where this unbelievable commentary on the Armenian "Genocide" appeared, entitled "Nothing Personal / Among the deniers," and dated May 9, 2003. It may be accessed here.
The boo-hoo'ing begins with "If the victims of genocides cannot depend on the support of the descendants of the Holocaust — where on earth will anyone ever find truth and justice?" Thankfully, we have Mr. O'Dwyer to sanctimoniously tell us that the Armenian experience should be termed a "genocide," without paying note to certain basics of the 1948 United Nations Convention on Genocide.
He drops Deborah Lipstadt's name without being aware that Ms. Lipstadt herself had earlier (in "Denying thte Holocaust") concluded the Armenian experience "was not part of a process of total annihilation of an entire people."
Apparently, Ms. Lipstadt herself has a short memory: "'Outrageous,' is how Deborah Lipstadt, the defeater of deniers, has described the Turkish denial. 'The Turks have managed to structure this debate so that people question whether this really happened'." Whether what really happened? Massacres? The Turks don't deny that. Genocide? Now, there are certain definitions of genocide where only one person needs to be killed in order to be construed as a genocide. This is what waters down the word and makes it essentially meaningless. Yes, the U.N. Convention does state "in whole or part." So if Lipstadt is zeroing in on the "in part" part (as she must, because we know from her earlier quote that she she is aware what occurred did not have the goal of annihilation for all), then she is not being honest, because there is no evidence of intent even for the "in part" part; more importantly, the Armenian mythology is put on the same plane as the Holocaust. She is implying that what "really happened" was on a parallel with the Holocaust. If that's the case, then this "defeater of deniers" is defeating herself, as she herself had distanced the Armenian episode from the Holocaust. (These "genocide scholars" have a tendency to get much too emotional, forgetting reason and, what's worse, ethics. )
"After a newspaper item appeared on Sunday saying that a government brochure mentioned that a 'third generation survivor of the Armenian holocaust in 1915' would light a torch at the Independence Day ceremony, Turkish embassy hysteria went into its customary overdrive in protest."
It never occurs to biased partisans as O'Dwyer that the reason why there is protest is not because crimes are being deliberately covered up — the Turks admit Armenians were massacred, in stark contrast to pro-Armenians who won't utter a peep about the horrendous crimes of their own forefathers — but because the charges are unsubstantiated. Let's see how much Thomas O'Dwyer would like being accused of a ruinous crime based on hearsay, and whether he would not be "in denial." Look at that demeaning word he uses, by the way: "Hysteria." What form did this protest take? Was the Turkish embassy running through the streets half-naked and screeching?
Here we go with the usual mindless blather: "The Ottoman Empire ethnically cleansed and murdered 1.5 million
Armenians between 1915 and 1918." Is this the kind of sloppiness we can expect from "one of the most experienced journalists in the Middle East"? A responsible journalist would make sure to substantiate the facts. This fellow is completely content to amateurishly rely on propagandistic sources.
The pre-war population, according to most "neutral" sources (that is, Western, and pro-Armenian) of the period was around 1.5 million. For example, the Encyclopedia Britannica said so in its 1911 edition. Mr. O'Dwyer must have respect for that work, since he has been recruited to contribute what must surely be his slanted views on Cyprus for this work.
He goes on to amateurishly inform us that "About 600,000 survived." Does that mean 1.5 million minus 1.5 million would equal 600,000?
He is taking the propagandistic pre-war number of the Armenian Patriarch's 2.1 million. He has no idea that the Patriarch himself broke down his own inflated number as such, at the very end of 1918: 1,260,000 survivors, and 840,000 dead. It's beginning to look more and more that he is the kind of journalist that would make cub reporter Jimmy Olsen seem like Edward R. Murrow.
Of course, the Patriarch exaggerated on both ends of his inflated figure. (When he was in a different mood, the Patriarch's pre-war population went down to a more realistic, but still inflated, figure of 1,850,000, as Holy Man Johannes Lepsius swore at the 1921 Berlin trial of Talat Pasha's assassin.) But look at how deeply Thomas O'Dwyer embarrasses himself. Hard-line Armenian propagandists don't go as high as the Patriarch's figure of 1,260,000 survivors, but even they have a consensus for one million survivors. Yet, this amateur journalist outdoes even the hardcore propagandists, by citing a figure of almost half.
Those who cite from propaganda become propagandists. These blind proponents of Armenian propaganda seem to have no idea how their practices can reflect on the credibility of the rest of their work. Why should we trust anything a propagandistic reporter has to tell us?
But he really outdoes himself by writing, "the government sanctioned raids by Turkish soldiers, who destroyed whole Armenian villages, not sparing even the women or the children."
Shame on Thomas O'Dwyer for writing such an incriminating statement as that without the proof. We know he has no proof, because that is exactly what the British had set out to prove during the 1919-21 Malta Tribunal process. They couldn't come up with a single shred of factual evidence; instead, they learned firsthand on what a liar the Armenian Patriarch was, whose reports they almost solely relied on at the outset.
"Modern Turkey continues to vehemently deny these crimes against humanity and fights ferociously around the globe to bury the historical facts. And again this week — and not for the first time — we have witnessed the State of Israel's complicity in the lie, because it is scared of upsetting its only friend in the Muslim states."
When has aggressive Israel ever made moves based on being "scared"? Is this fellow actually trying to tell us Nobel Prize winner Shimon Peres would make a statement to the tune of "We reject attempts to create a similarity between the Holocaust and the Armenian allegations. Nothing similar to the Holocaust occurred. It is a tragedy what the Armenians went through but not a genocide," because he would have been afraid?
The Armenian foreign minister is pointed to as having stated,
"Israel has to show a moral authority since we have gone through a similar history and experience." Quite the contrary, Israel has a moral responsibility for the Jewish victims of the Holocaust. Comparing their plight with the victims of an unproven genocide would be deeply disrespecting their memory. And proof is not gathered by pointing to those such as Yehuda Bauer, as O'Dwyer has done. (Bauer: "We and many others have accepted the United Nations definition of genocide and there can be no argument about [the Armenian case] being genocide") If these genocide-sensitive individuals are blinded by emotion, we can put their testimony in the same category as the sources the British themselves had dispensed with during the Malta Tribunal, when the British tried desperately to come up with real evidence. The reason? As their embassy in Washington stated, once rejecting the material from the U.S. archives, what was offered all boiled down to "personal opinions."
(Another Bauer opinion: “We should properly use the term “Holocaust” to describe the policy of total physical annihilation of a nation or a people. To date, this has happened once, to the Jews under Nazism.” From "The Holocaust in Historical Perspective," P. 38.)
The office of Turkey's chief rabbi said in a statement: "We stress that the genocide of six million Jews in the Holocaust in World War II should not be compared to any other event and should not be overshadowed by so-called genocide claims."
The statement said inclusion in the British ceremony of "so-called genocides or claims unconfirmed by historians" was disturbing to Turkish Jews.
"This comparison is considered disrespectful to the souls of the six million victims (of the Nazi Holocaust)."
From the CNN report, "Europe remembers the Holocaust," January 27, 2001
"The British for many decades denied responsibility for the Irish
potato famine that killed an estimated two million people and sent
another two million into exile - because it was a natural disaster -
although history recorded full well that the British were taking
convoys of food out of Ireland under armed guard. It took Tony Blair to admit responsibility 150 years later, and apologize, to lay the shame to rest."
No, there are still plenty of folks who consider the Irish Famine as another example of "genocide," a contention a good few Irish historians disagree with. Tony Blair did not say the Irish Famine amounted to a "genocide," so this "shame" is not at rest among those who are genocide-batty. What Turkey is being asked to do is to acknowledge these events as a "genocide," and O'Dwyer's parallel simply does not fit.
"Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the
Armenians?" asked Adolf Hitler when persuading his fellow thugs that a Jewish extermination would be tolerated by the West.
Boy, Thomas O'Dwyer is really out of control. Not only is that statement in reference to the Poles, and not the Jews, but there is no evidence that Hitler actually uttered those words. But at this point, I think we are justified in asking what does "evidence" matter to Thomas O'Dwyer?
But at least he tries to offer more "genocide evidence"; being the faithful proponent of propaganda that he is, he points to the August 1, 1926 Ataturk interview from The Los Angeles Examiner. But if he had taken the time to inspect that hoax, he would have discovered it's an "interview" in the form of a first-person article written by Ataturk. (In other words, the article does not even know what it is.) There are many other discrepancies about this piece that a professional journalist would instinctively question, assuming the journalist is professional enough to look beneath the easy surface.
O'Dwyer shares a little whining with us:
"When we have the word of Ataturk himself, we don't need to be accused of 'pandering to the views of the enemies and
haters of Turks' as one Turkish diplomat once wrote to me for daring to question the lie. I assume he meant the Kurds - who for decades 'didn't exist' either in Turkish myth except as 'mountain Turks'."
He sure proved himself to pander to the "enemies and
haters of Turks" by trying to be funny about the Kurds. No, the "lie" referred to the so-called genocide. What O'Dwyer did here was add salt to the wound by telling us a genocidal people as the Turks, a people who can do no right, also did a number on the Kurds. We can no longer be certain whether he is pandering to the haters of Turks, or whether he has become one of those very haters.
And, no, we don't have "the word of Ataturk himself." If we resort to the word of Ataturk, then we go to a real interview, as the one in the March 27, 1921 issue of Pennsylvania's The Public Ledger, conducted by Clarence Streit. There, Atatürk had focused on the "conspiratorial nature of Armenian armed attacks, the bloodshed and massacre caused by them, endorsed by General Harbord as well." Click on the last link to learn more.
But in case he has not convinced you that he is 100% in line with Armenian propaganda, he embarrasses himself further by quoting from Lord Bryce... who just happened to be in charge of the Turkish division of Wellington House, Britain's war propaganda division! How's that for some genuine, neutral testimony?
He actually has the nerve to present this bit:
After the German ambassador persistently brought up the Armenian question in 1918, Talat Pasha said "with a smile": "What on earth do you want? The question is settled. There are no more Armenians."
The Armenian Patriarch himself testified the majority of Armenians had survived at the tail end of 1918, and Talat Pasha was going to say "there are no more Armenians"??
The quote is one that the notorious Vahakn Dadrian had translated from 1936's "Memoirs of Count Bernstorff," but anyone who trusts Dadrian's willful manipulations would have to have rocks in his head. Unless the German ambassador was another Christian-sympathizing bigot, perhaps the intention here was that the Armenians had been "deported," meaning there were fewer left... and Dadrian twisted this around to mean "extermination." Or perhaps Bernstoff had no idea what was really taking place, like his American ambassadorial counterpart, Henry Morgenthau. As George Schreiner wrote in his preface to “The Craft Sinister,” in criticism of Morgenthau, "It is to be hoped that the future historian will not give too much heed to the drivel one finds in the books of diplomatist-authors.”
O'Dwyer has done a wonderful job in visiting Armenian sites to mindlessly present these quotations. His last offering is one from "Prince Abdul Mecid, the heir apparent to the Ottoman Throne." When one runs a search, one can find plenty of Armenian sites who have dutifully reproduced this quotation. What's missing is the source; the more unethical among the Armenians have made an art form of putting murderous words into Ottoman officials' mouths. This kind of substantiation, we can see, is a big annoyance to Thomas O'Dwyer.
The frightening thing is that O'Dwyer comes across as a "humanist," in his participation with an organization called "Opendemocracy," which states that it "stands for human rights and democracy." How can one be a proponent of "human rights" when one accepts one form of human as more equal to another? (No word about the suffering of Turks, from Mr. O'Dwyer; everything is straight down the middle, black and white, good and evil, where he is concerned.) He also serves as editor of Coexist International Magazine, which champions the "coexistence ideal." On its International advisory board are Gunduz Aktan and Prof. Vamik D. Volkan. Hopefully, O'Dwyer's Turcophobia will be lessened, if he values the opinions of these gentlemen.
Harut Sassounian, activist publisher of The California Courier, was so delighted by this "neutral" observer's stance, he made sure to highlight this awful Ha'aretz article in one of his awful columns. ("Irish Writer Slams Israel's Stand," 07/31/2003)
"Contacted by phone in Israel, O'Dwyer told this writer that even though he is an Irishman, he was deeply offended by the double standard practiced by the Israeli government on the Armenian Genocide. He wanted to give the Israeli officials a piece of his mind. He did not mince his words."
He sure did not mince his words. Too bad O'Dwyer has a double standard regarding his evaluation of double standards. It doesn't look like he is at all offended about Armenian extermination tactics, when they brutally murdered hundreds of thousands of other Ottomans.
The source site of this article gets revised often, as better
information comes along. For the most up-to-date version, and
the related photos, the reader may consider reviewing
the direct link as follows:
Complementing Notes by Sukru Server Aya:
a- I understand that those lecturing on CYPRUS, unfortunately have not even read "The Genocide Files" Harry Scott Gibbons, Charles Bravos Publishers. London, ISBN 0-9514464-2-8. The writer was a British reporter and has eyewitnessed and photographed what really happened before and after 1974. We are facing too many unshamed writers who do not have the courage to learn truths.
b- Regarding the other several points, which is a repetition of the old nonsense and you are giving the right answers again and again, I do not want to get again in the too many details, other that within the scope of new data I have sorted from new books, if and when I put my work together, there will be an answer, sometimes from more than one source, to the fabricated accusations.