05 June 2007

1733) Facing "FACING HISTORY"

"Facing History and Ourselves" likes to think of itself as an educational organization, spreading "good" in its genocide awareness program. But like other pseudo-educational organizations, such as "Teach Genocide," "The Genocide Education Project," and "Prevent Genocide," many of which are fronts for Armenian and other propaganda, what they spread is "evil."

Their teaching materials, as far as regarding the Armenians, generally have nothing to do with "history," and everything to do with vicious propaganda.

"Facing History" is an 800 pound gorilla that deserves huge in-depth reportage, but this page will only be providing a beginning. It will mainly feature a letter written to one of the organization's vice-chairs, Jeffrey Bussgang, in March 13, 2006 (it is now June, 2007). The reason why Mr. Bussgang was contacted is because he had a personal e-mail address, where I could be sure a higher-up of the organization would receive the message. He's a busy investment manager who doesn't seem to be very involved in the affairs of the organization. My hope was to appeal to his conscience.


Jeffrey Bussgang

He did not have the courtesy to respond, nor — from a cursory search at the Facing History site today, where the Armenian genocide matter continues full blast — did he make any effort to sound off to the powers in charge. If he read the letter, he did not even bother to see if the claims of the letter were true.

Bussgang is still active with the Facing History organization; a news item declares, "Facing History and Ourselves and Benefit Chairs Lynda and Jeffrey Bussgang and Tracy and Leon Palandjian invite you to the 2007 New England Benefit Dinner." Plenty of Armenian friends here, more than a few wealthy and influential, given that the organization is based in Massachusetts.

The Armenians activists have certainly infiltrated this group. Richard Hovannisian and Peter Balakian comprise part of their band of respected "scholars."

The Mission

The mission of "Facing History":
Facing History and Ourselves is an international educational and professional development organization whose mission is to engage students of diverse backgrounds in an examination of racism, prejudice, and antisemitism in order to promote the development of a more humane and informed citizenry. By studying the historical development and lessons of the Holocaust and other examples of genocide, students make the essential connection between history and the moral choices they confront in their own lives.

How utterly ironic. When "Facing History" teaches false genocides, as with the Armenian mythology, Facing History perpetuates hatred, prejudice and racism. That's one sure way to "engage" impressionable students in the "examination" of these poisons. That becomes quite a "moral choice," all right.

The organization's Executive Director, President and Co- Founder, Margot Stern Strom, is described in the following manner:

Margot Stern Strom is an international leader in education for justice and the preservation of democracy. Through her commitment to honoring the voices of teachers and students and her deep belief that history matters, she has enabled millions of students to study the Holocaust, to investigate root causes of racism, antisemitism and violence, and to realize their obligations and capabilities as citizens in a democracy.

What she has done is engage in the most severe injustice. History matters certainly, but given the direction she has allowed for the presentation of the Armenians' revisionist invention, she knows nothing about history. The organization now has the audacity to present a "Teaching Award" in her name, this most mediocre teacher.

She grew up in "racially segregated Tennessee," and in 1976 attended a Holocaust conference that "changed her life." In her defense, of course she was motivated from the perspective of "Good." What she may not have realized at the time was that "genocide" is a highly charged hot potato, and the politicized fakeries such as the Armenian matter didn't even occur to her. But what choice did she have, if she wanted to pursue this direction? The Armenians, with their wealth and influence and bullying tactics, made their presence felt; if one chooses to sign a pact with the genocide devil, it is a given that the Armenians must come along for the ride. (Of course she had a choice. One always has a choice, and she chose the path of spreading vicious misinformation in the pursuit of her agenda.)


Margot Strom

"She became committed to the field of education, convinced that it was critical that educators not betray children by protecting them from difficult issues and painful history." By stressing the study of these "genocides," real or not, is where the betrayal of children comes in. The Republic of Turkey purposely kept the heinous crimes of the Armenians and Greeks out of Turkish classrooms, so as not to induce hatred. As a result, Turkish people are today largely free of hatred. There is a time to introduce genocide pornography, but not when children are of an impressionable age.

Even with real genocides, as the Holocaust: what comes along with empathy for genocide victims is the hatred for the oppressors. This is not the correct course of action to take, at least not to the extent where genocide education serves as the thrust of the matter. And imagine the damage produced when children are taught hatred in the cases where genocides have been fabricated. Words fail to describe how unconscionable this sort of thing is.
"Facing History" Tidbits


Seth Klarman

Seth A. Klarman, the insanely wealthy investment manager who heads a firm managing over five billion dollars (and author of the popular Margin of Safety: Risk-Averse Value Investing Strategies for the Thoughtful Investor), serves as chairman of "Facing History," and his motivation might have had something to do with "serving a noble cause" (spreading word of the Holocaust is something too many Jewish folks believe is a worthy mission), along with giving his wife something to do; Beth S. Klarman is another vice-chair of the Board of Directors, along with the aforementioned Jeffrey D. Bussgang, Ronald G. Casty and Dana W. Smith. Dorothy P. Tananbaum is co-Chair.

Until the middle of Fiscal Year 2006, the organization received over eleven million dollars in contributions. In 2005, the organization had assets of nearly eighteen million dollars, versus liabilities of $144,000.

This is high finance propaganda.

Their "partners" include:
Harvard Law School
Lesley University
New Visions for Public Schools
New York University Steinhardt School of Education
Public Broadcasting Service (PBS)
Reebok Human Rights Foundation
University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education
USHMM Committee On Conscience

Once again, PBS helps to ruin its credibility by aligning what should be its "neutral" self with such a propagandistic organization. (One of the resources Facing History offers is the PBS film, Andrew Goldberg's "The Armenians, A Story of Survival." It is only one of Facing History's many Armenian genocide propaganda productions.)

The "Partners," with which Facing History collaborates "closely," "share our desire for a more informed, involved, and morally-aware citizenry."

It is simply horrifying how they shamelessly couch their mischief with such doing-good terminology.

Major supporters — the ones who part with their cash to finance such perpetuation of hatred — include:

The Allstate Foundation
The Claims Conference
The Crown Family
The Bernard F. and Alva B. Gimbel Foundation
The Goldman Sachs Foundation
The Plough Foundation
The Charles H. Revson Foundation
The Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation
The United States Institute of Peace

These companies need to be informed as to the fake history "Facing History" endorses. They all bear a responsibility to the racism "Facing History" teaches the children.

Most depressingly, "Facing History" claims that in 2006:

Reached over 1,500,000 students through a network of 22,000+ educators.

Some may agree that is, figuratively, an example of a real "genocide," with 1.5 million victims: a systematic extermination campaign of the truth.

Now I wish we could get into their ridiculous "Armenian" history in greater detail (and if they have no credibility with the Armenian subject matter, obviously nothing else from Facing History can be accepted at face value). But dissecting such familiar propaganda can get awfully redundant, after a while.

The fact is, "Facing History" presents not just Armenian propaganda... but the kind most Armenian propagandists would not go near. They serve as the propagandists' propagandists.

For example, as the letter below to Bussgang will relate, they go for a total Armenian survivor figure of 600,000, while even Dadrian and Balakian concede one million. Even more incredibly, their "Armenian Genocide Chapter 4" begins with:

"The Armenians living in Turkey will be destroyed to the last. The government has been given ample authority. As to the organization of the mass murder the government will provide the necessary explanations."
—Behaeddin Shakir, a member of the Central Committee
for the Committee of Union and Progress

If you run a "Google" search for any key phrase from the above, you will get back (at the time of this writing) only four results. (Once this page goes up, this number will be sure to increase.) One is the Dadrian study where this was taken from (which TAT readers have come to recognize as Vahakn Dadrian's Greatest Embarassment, the Hyelog entry where it was reproduced, another stupid genocide article by UCLA's Stephan Astourian ("The Armenian Genocide: An Interpretation," reproduced in a 1990 issue of "The History Teacher." Groan!), and Facing History.

The reason why propagandists leave this one aside is because it comes from a forgery of Aram Andonian.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen. "Facing History" has no qualms about sinking to the level of proven forgeries to teach their history.

And Jeffrey Bussgang was made very aware of this very fact over a year ago. Assuming he read the letter, he lacked the honor and the conscience to do anything about it.

You can get an idea of Facing History's ways in an "Armenian Genocide" section of their site. Note the propaganda material consulted, passing for "history," including their "resource book" (which featured the Behaeddin Shakir forgery. To be more specific, Andonian did not have Shakir in mind when he concocted this particular forgery; it is Dadrian who told us it must have been Shakir, since the letters BEHA were supposedly on it — as though Shakir would have signed his document with the first four letters of his name. What Dadrian does not explain is that if Shakir were to engage in this unusual practice, the Turkish spelling of his name would have been BAHAttin), along with the Goldberg PBS film.

Other teaching materials of this "history" include a painting by an Armenian, Gorky, described as "a survivor of the Armenian genocide." In the next few lessons, prepared by crackerjack educators Adam Strom and Mary Johnson (with the quality of their work, they would well deserve the 2007 Margot Stern Strom Teaching Award), we are told Armenians "struggled to obtain equal rights" in the 19th century, as persecuted as they were, and that "many European and Russian diplomats became increasingly concerned about the treatment of minority groups within the Ottoman Empire. Their arguments and efforts to protect those minorities would set important precedents for the international movement for human rights." That's right, folks. We all know the British and the Russians were acting selflessly, and the thought of using the Armenians as pawns to further their imperialistic interests never occurred to them.

"Lesson Three: Analyzing Historical Evidence," is the one that invites the greatest scrutiny, and what they have to offer is: "On May 24, 1915, the Allied nations of Great Britain, France, and Russia warned the Young Turk leaders that their 'crimes against humanity and civilization' would not go unpunished." Indeed, the warning of three powers set to divide the ailing Ottoman Empire between themselves through secret treaties must be considered as objective sources. They also point to Armin Wegner's undocumented photographs at "armenian-genocide.org" (the site's "photo_wegner.html" page.) All that can be determined are that people were miserable and suffering. Suffering is not genocide. A few shots feature corpses, with helpful captions such as "Corpse of murdered young man," as if the dishonest writer could determine what the cause of death would have been. Are these supposed to "prove" genocide?

(Instruction to teachers: "Allow students a choice to put their heads down or leave the room if the content becomes overwhelming. Show Wegner’s photographs without commentary.") What incredible orchestration and manipulation.

There are a good number of genuine and documented photos of massacred Turks at the hands of the Armenians. Note that the racist "Facing History" organization would never make room for these.

The hatred is then permitted to spread to modern Turks, in their final lesson, "Denial, Free Speech, and Hate Speech."

"After the Armenian Genocide, the international community lacked the political will to fulfill its promises to hold perpetrators of the genocide accountable." What an incredible falsehood. The British worked feverishly to uncover the genuine evidence to convict their accused in the precursor to "Nuremberg," the Malta Tribunal (1919-1921). No evidence could be found.

We are then told that "Several former Ottoman officials complicit during the genocide assumed important positions in the new government." If the British could not determine the guilt of these individuals, on whose say-so should we go by? Fatma Muge Gocek's, for example? (She says, for example, that Ismet Inonu was a "genocide culprit.") One cannot honorably accuse another of having committed a crime without the valid evidence. But "honor" is obviously not in the vocabulary of the propagandistic "Facing History."

"Since that time the Turkish government has denied that the Armenian Genocide occurred. "

There we go. That conforms to the entire agenda of the unscrupulous pro-Armenians. Make the Turks out to be "evil." Yes, this is the kind of poison being taught to 9th graders, thanks to the underhanded efforts of "Facing History."

"The denial has taken many forms and used many strategies... To deny its factual and moral reality as genocide is not to engage in scholarship but in propaganda and efforts to absolve the perpetrator, blame the victims, and erase the ethical meaning of this history."

These people do not know the first meaning of what "scholarship" entails, they engage in the most vicious propaganda, and then dare to tell us those who attempt to right their wrongs are committing the very crimes they are committing. Of course; that is part and parcel of their agenda.

A suggested activity for teachers:

On the board write, “Denial is hate speech and as such it should be forbidden.”
Explain to students that denial continues and many people are struggling to find a way to deal with it. Henry Theriault, a professor of philosophy at Worcester State College, Worcester, Mass. suggests that denial is hate speech, and therefore should be restricted.

It is all perfectly coordinated. Refer to a non-historian like Theriault (who also points to the Andonian forgeries in order to "prove" the "Armenian genocide"), and they do their best to stifle debate — so that their invented and immoral "genocide" may not be questioned.

They are actually advocating thought censorship, teaching the children that freedom of speech is to be frowned upon. We all know what "hate speech" is, and it has nothing to do with telling historical truth; real "hate speech" perpetuates prejudice by bringing an ethnic group to sub-human status.

By encouraging students to think that Turkish people are like Nazis, the ones who are practicing "hate speech" are organizations such as "Facing History"— under the guise of following a noble cause.

It is all nothing short of evil.

Letter to Vice-chairman Jeffrey Bussgang

Once again, the unanswered letter below was sent on March 13, 2006 to Mr. Bussgang.

Jeffrey Bussgang
Facing History

Dear Mr. Bussgang,

You come across as endearing and down to earth from some of the things I've read about you. I'd like to speak to you about a very serious subject, and I hope you will have the open mind to listen to a viewpoint likely to be different than what you've been led to believe.

I'm writing you because the "Facing History" site has no email addresses I could find. Just a contact page, and what I have to say is far too important for a lower ranked individual to consider. I believe "Facing History" is just one of the things you're involved with... it is not your "main thing." But as a top gun of this organization, you bear a big responsibility.

Perhaps "Facing History" has good works to offer; I hope so. I'm writing on the basis of only one example that I've come across, one which has nothing to do with history. Paradoxically, it has everything to do with prejudice and even racism. This is a paradox, because the mission page is very concerned about "morality."

And this content is highly serious, because your organization is involved in molding many of the young minds of our country.

Your organization, according to its mission page, is resolved "to combat prejudice with compassion, indifference with ethical participation, myth and misinformation with knowledge."

The Armenian Genocide page, however, offers nothing but myth and misinformation, and fosters prejudice, by perpetuating the stereotype of the Terrible Turk, based on the hearsay of bigots and tainted evidence, and looking at this controversial topic entirely in a one sided manner.

When Facing History states "the study of history is a moral enterprise," we must bear in mind history needs to remain dispassionate, and all sides must be considered. Below is one of my favorite descriptions:

Historians should love the truth. A historian has a duty to try to write only the truth. Before historians write they must look at all relevant sources. They must examine their own prejudices, then do all they can to insure that those prejudices do not overwhelm the truth. Only then should they write history. The historians creed must be, "Consider all the sides of an issue; reject your own prejudices. Only then can you hope to find the truth."
Do historians always follow this creed? They do not, but good historians try.

There are ways to tell if a historian has been true to his craft. All important sources of information must be studied: A book on American history that does not draw upon American sources and only uses sources written in French cannot be accurate history. All important facts must be considered: a book on the history of the Germans and the Jews that does not mention the death of the Jews in the Holocaust cannot be true.

Uncomfortable facts, facts that disagree with one's preconceptions and prejudices must be considered, not avoided or ignored: Any book on the history of the Turks and the Armenians that does not include the history of the Turks who were killed by Armenians cannot be the truth. This is obvious. It should be so obvious that it need not be said. But we know it must be said, because so many have forgotten the rules of honest history.
Prof. Justin McCarthy, The First Shot

I realize this may be a hard sell. You are living, and perhaps have grown up, in "Armenian country," Massachusetts . Peter Balakian is listed on Facing History's Board of Scholars. (He is anything but a scholar, based on the rules of history.) He and other agenda-pushing pharisees who are listed indicate this organization is a very closed club, for only like-minded individuals. (There are no real Ottoman historians, in this list of "scholars," from names I was able to determine. How could genuine history be written in the absence of such specialists?)

(NOTE: It appears "Facing History" has removed their "Board of Scholars" page. One other addition to this board turns out to be Samantha Power, however. Just learned Barack Obama hired her as an advisor. No wonder he has become an "Armenian genocide" advocate, undermining his credibility.)

At any rate, Balakian spelled out in his "Burning Tigris" the roots of Armenian infiltration in Massachusetts . (http://www.tallarmeniantale.com/burningtigris.htm#alice) Ohannes Chatschumian stole the heart of an "intellectual," and like a stack of Dominos, everyone bought the Armenian version. It was easy, since no one was around then to defend the Turks. With these people's ingrained prejudices, the media presented the view that the Armenians were poor, innocent Christians ready to be martyred by the Terrible Turks' bloody swords. Things are not that different today. As a Massachusetts resident, you are especially susceptible to this unilaterally presented propaganda... made possible by big money and influence.

I'm going to ask you to dig deep and consult the "fair" part of you. Put your "historian" cap on, and let's take a look at whether my words have basis.

We are referring to this horrible, horrible propagandistic page that is on your organization's site.

(NOTE: The link for their "Chapter 4" .PDF file was provided.)

The page begins with a quote from Behaeddin Shakir, "The Armenians, living in Turkey , will be destroyed to the last..." There it is, in black and white; genocidal proof.

How peculiar that one of the worst partisans for this alleged genocide, Professor Richard Hovannisian (who is another nationalist ideologue on the organization's Board of Scholars) is reported to have said in the "Congress on the Problems of World Armenians" held in 1982: "The Armenian problem could not be proved. The genocide is not valid legally and it is exposed to prescription."

If Bahaeddin Shakir actually said those words, why would Hovannisian have made such a statement? After all, what Shakir said sounds like actual proof, doesn't it?

Which leads us to ponder: what is the source of this dubious quote?

Footnote 66 informs us that it's Vahakn Dadrian (the "foremost scholar on the Armenian genocide," as Peter Balakian says), regarding his work on the Naim-Andonian documents.

The fact that these are notorious forgeries is commonly accepted. The British themselves rejected them, during their 1919-1921 "Nuremberg ," The Malta Tribunal. This is the one where every Turkish official was freed at the end, for lack of evidence.

Consider the enormity of that. The British had signed the death sentence for the Turkish nation with the Sèvres Treaty (the intention of the British, along with the rest of the Entente Powers, was to divide the "Sick Man" between themselves, as proven by secret treaties. It was convenient for them to come up with a Turkish monster, which people in the West were ingrained to accept since the times of the Crusades, in order to justify the allies' land-grabbing scheme), and even the British (to their credit) rejected the Andonian documents. There is not one serious historian that holds them to be valid. That is, not one who holds the concept of "morality" dear to heart.

(If you'd like to discover what an embarrassing low your organization's version of "history" has sunk to, try this simple test, with the knowledge that there are tons of "Armenian Genocide" sites on the Internet. Type a key phrase from the Shakir quote into Google. I got four results, three pointing to the Facing History propagandistic page. The fourth regarded the work of an Armenian history teacher. If this Shakir quote is so legitimate, how do you explain that everyone has avoided it?

Only Vahakn Dadrian, among a handful of others, would stoop so low. Dadrian is a propagandist and has the agenda to affirm his genocide. He will stop at nothing to alter statements, translations and in offering false documents as his evidence. No serious historian would regard Dadrian as a true scientist.

Even among the ranks of the "genocide scholars," Dadrian has become one to be wary of. Hilmar Kaiser points to the "misleading quotations" and the "selective use of sources" in Dadrian's work, and he has concluded that "serious scholars should be cautioned against accepting all of Dadrian's statements at face value." ["Germany and the Armenian Genocide, Part II: Reply to Vahakn N. Dadrian's Response," Journal of the Society for Armenian Studies, 9 (1996): 139-40.] Donald Bloxham also has issues with Dadrian's lack of scholarly ethics.

Yet this article refers to Dadrian repeatedly. In addition, conflicted sources such as missionaries like Johannes Lepsius, and war propaganda chiefs like Lord Bryce are presented. It's unbelievable, for an organization that purports on molding young minds, and for holding "morality" so dear.

I don't want to hit you with too much, as I realize this is not a subject you are in tune with, having likely and lazily accepted the surface explanations. But practically everything this article claims is rooted in deceit. We're still on the first page, and the opening sentence after the Shakir quote states that "scholar" Robert Melson (he is no scholar; not if we agree the definition entails observing all sides of a story) explains, "Once the Ottoman Empire joined the Central Powers... against Russia, the CUP could use the excuse of military necessity to destroy the Armenians." Aside from the basic historical fact that Russia was among other enemies (Britain, France and Italy), let's examine the logic here, by creating a fantasy scenario with our own nation.

Let's say the USA is on her knees, and imagine that there are great superpowers who are attacking on all fronts. There is a critical shortage of manpower and resources, the nation's infrastructure has crumbled, and the nation is bankrupt. The nation is being threatened with extinction. This was the situation of the "Sick Man." (As history tells us, this matter of life or death ended in death for the Ottoman Empire.) Would this be the opportune time to initiate a resource-depleting program of enormity, the transportation and care of hundreds of thousands?

Truly, how logical would that be? A British writer, in a 1916 book called "The Armenians" (www.tallarmeniantale.com/c-f-dixon-BOOK.htm) got to the heart of the matter:

"The Turks had just sustained in the Caucasus a severe defeat. They needed every available man and every round of ammunition to cheek the advancing Russians. It is therefore incredible that without receiving any provocation they should have chosen that particularly inopportune moment to employ a large force of soldiers and gendarmes with artillery to stir up a hornet's nest in their rear. Military considerations alone make the suggestion absurd."

If we take our scenario further, let's imagine the enemies of our country enticed the some-one million Armenians in California to rebel, with promises of a New Armenia in that state. (Exactly what the Armenians did in the Ottoman Empire; the anti-Turkish New York Times reported, days after Russia had declared war on Nov. 7, 1914: "ARMENIANS FIGHTING TURKS — Besieging Van-Others operating in Turkish Army's Rear." www.tallarmeniantale.com/nyt-armens-fight-turks.htm) The Armenians begin to massacre fellow Americans in an effort to create an ethnically pure state, and hit the U.S. Army in the back. I don't even know if our "compassionate" President would bother with a "deportation," but let's say the decision is made to move them out of the danger zone, far inland. Where there are no rails, the Armenians have to travel on foot a long distance. Along the way are gangs of Americans waiting to take revenge, or seeking criminal opportunity. Armenians are massacred. Would this be a genocide?

It can only be a genocide if the government shows "intent" of systematic extermination (proven by the kinds of things Shakir is supposed to have said. Because the Armenians lacked evidence, they put those words in his, and other Ottoman officials' mouths), along with there not being any political alliances. These are the rules of the 1948 U.N. Genocide Convention.

Frankly, everywhere I am looking in this article, I am shuddering in disbelief. Bear with me for one more example from p. 85: "In all, including those who took refuge in Russia (300,000, as mentioned a few paragraphs before), the number of survivors at the end of 1916 can be estimated at 600,000 out of an estimated total population in 1914 of 1,800,000, according to A. Toynbee."

Fact: Arnold Toynbee, who was ashamed in later years to have served in his Majesty's propaganda division (Wellington House), estimated there were 1.2 million Armenians in all of the Ottoman Empire, the year before he became a propagandist ("Nationality and the War," 1915: 761,000 Armenians in all of Anatolia. Your article: 1,200,000, seven eastern vilayets of Anatolia, nearly double of Toynbee's estimate.)

Fact: Your "Scholar," Richard Hovannisian, had written Armenians who escaped into Transcaucasia as having numbered 500,000, vs. your article's 300,000. [" The Ebb and Flow of the Armenian Minority in the Arab Middle East," Middle East Journal, Vol. 28, No. 1 (Winter 1974), p. 20; in this article, Hovannisian further provided an additional near-300,000 who had gone on to lands the Ottomans no longer controlled, in the Middle East. There were also many thousands who had gone on to Europe and America.] Please add them up, to get a better picture of survivors, according to your own scholar.

FACT: Your article tells us only 600,000 Armenians survived, when Hovannisian, Balakian and Dadrian all concede there were one million survivors. Isn't that incredible? Your article actually out-propagandized the propagandists! But these propagandists also out-propagandized the Armenian Patriarch from the period (as the current professors vouch for a mortality of over a million and up), who broke down his inflated pre-war population of 2.1 million Armenians in this fashion (in 1919): 1,260,000 survivors (that is double the number of survivors of your article), and 840,000 dead. (The Patriarch reported 644,900 Ottoman-Armenians remained in 1921, in a report given the British.) The reality: out of an original population of around 1.5 million (most "neutral" sources said so, like the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica), if we subtract the one million survivors, we wind up with half a million dead. Most died not from massacres, but causes claiming the lives of all Ottomans, famine and disease. 2.5 Turks/Muslims also died, mainly from these causes.

How do you explain your "moral" organization (Mission Page: "Civic education must be rooted in a moral component." Morality must begin first with the educator) neglecting these historical facts? You will notice nothing I'm offering is "Turkish propaganda." If anything, they derive from sources famous for supporting Armenian propaganda. These facts are only a mouse click away. How could your "Facing History" people be so unconscientious as to not Face History?

Is it because they have an agenda to serve? I can see the organization is rooted in the teaching of the Holocaust. Unfortunately, Holocaust-centric scholars have a tendency to accept Armenian genocide claims at face value. They probably have an irrational fear that the negation of this widely accepted Armenian genocide (thanks to money and prejudice) would serve the Holocaust to be questioned. It also does not hurt that wealthy Armenians support genocide institutes throughout the world. Whatever their motivations, they are being highly unethical, in their support of obvious lies.

Prof. Guenter Lewy — an example of a real scholar, and one who cannot be called a "denialist," since Lewy is a Holocaust survivor — has recently come up with a book entitled, The Armenian Massacres in Ottoman Turkey, A Disputed Genocide. He exposes the lack of scholarly ethics of those such as Vahakn Dadrian, and explores all facets of this tale. Why would you suppose this account and the one at your organization's site would be as different as can be?
(An example of his work: www.tallarmeniantale.com/lewy-revisit.htm; his response to Dadrian: www.tallarmeniantale.com/lewy-dadrian-meq.htm)

Conclusion: you are supporting an organization, very much contrary to its sanctimonious claims of morality, that is engaged in lies and racism.

Am I being harsh by going so far as to accuse your organization of racism? Let me resort to the words of one of our nation’s deepest thinkers, Prof. John Dewey, who had wrote in a 1928 article ( www.tallarmeniantale.com/dewey-turktragedy.htm):

Few Americans who mourn, and justly, the miseries of the Armenians, are aware that till the rise of nationalistic ambitions, beginning with the 'seventies, the Armenians were the favored portion of the population of Turkey, or that in the Great War, they traitorously turned Turkish cities over to the Russian invader; that they boasted of having raised an army of one hundred and fifty thousand men to fight a civil war, and that they burned at least a hundred Turkish villages and exterminated their population.

The racism is thus twofold: not only does your organization’s horrid article reduce the Turks to subhuman, comic book monsters (perpetuating an already existing “Terrible Turk” stereotype; check the second definition of “Turk” in your dictionary), but the article totally ignores the extermination crimes of the Armenians. (British Colonel Wooley estimated the Armenians had killed 300-000-400,000 Ottoman Muslims; Ottoman archives never meant to be publicized provide a figure of some 520,000. It wasn’t only Muslims who were targeted by the Armenians, but anyone who was different, in their hopes of creating an ethnically pure state, including Jews, Greeks, and even Armenians who had converted to Islam.)

(Which brings rise to another question: If “Facing History” is genocide-centric, what determines the value of some genocides to others? More “Turks” were slaughtered by the Armenians than the other way around, since the bulk of the up to 600,000 Armenian mortality had died of reasons not entailing outright massacre. Why does Facing History not acknowledge the value of these human beings? This is what we would call “racism.”)

Imagine if you were accused of a ruinous crime strictly on the say-so of the accuser, without presentation of any factual evidence. How would you feel? (You would be "denying" the accusations at the top of your lungs.)

Do you know how unthinkably unconscientious it is to defame an entire nation with the worst crime against humanity, based on false or no evidence? I realize you must not have thought about this before, but you happen to be an integral part to these unethical goings-on.

It all boils down to: Exactly how committed are you, as a key representative of your organization, to the truth? Actually, please forget about your organization, for the moment; let’s concentrate on you, as a man. With your involvement, your personal honor is at stake here. And if you don’t do something about this, please don’t think the credibility of this organization will remain as sacred as it evidently has.

I know you are not directly responsible, as you are not overseeing the day to day functions of this organization. What calls for determination is, why does your president, Margot Stern Strom, who hopefully is expected to ensure true history, has not questioned the integrity of many of the partisan academicians in your Board of Scholars? Why has she not made sure to fill the ranks with genuine scholars, like Prof. John Dewey, who made sure to examine all sides of the issue and did not amateurishly accept surface allegations? (Dewey, by the way, warned in his article that Americans should be wary of being deceived by Armenian propaganda. That was over three-quarters of a century ago, Armenian propaganda is stronger than ever, and organizations as yours shamefully outdo some claims of hardcore Armenian propagandists.

As an example: Richard Hovannisian was called on his shoddy scholarship in a 1985 paper (www.tallarmeniantale.com/lowry-hova-dunn.htm ), over the way he made things about an American officer, because the officer had the audacity to regard these events in an even-handed way. (A decade after its writing, the author of this article, Prof. Heath Lowry, was the victim of a smear campaign spearheaded by one of your other “scholars,” Peter Balakian. The abhorrent idea of the forces your organization champions is to stifle debate.) Hovannisian’s unethical methods are plain to see in this generation-old study.

Is your president so unaware of such research? Or does she deliberately overlook them? Either way, her own credibility and competence becomes seriously compromised.

She is supposed to be in charge of serious history; her choices are supposed to enlighten the minds of our nation’s children, not to poison them.

What is called for is to [1] do away with your awful propaganda immediately, [2] Write a true account of these events, by enlisting objective and non-partisan scholars like Guenter Lewy, and devote no less time to the ethnic cleansing efforts of the Armenians. Politically, this might be difficult; but if the organization is so concerned about being “moral,” what could supersede the importance of truth?

Please pass this letter on to President Strom and Chairman Seth Klarman. I'd appreciate a response. Your organization's immersion in defamatory, racist and painful propaganda is a very serious matter.



Talk about falling on deaf ears.
News Item: The ANC & Facing History "Ethics"

The following is from the California Courier, April 13, 2006:

Facing History and Ourselves Hosts Institute on the Armenian Genocide

PASADENA — The Armenian National Committee announced last week the first California Institute for Educators on the Armenian Genocide, offered by Facing History and Ourselves will take place June 26-30 at the Krouzian Zekarian Vasbouragan Armenian School in San Francisco.

The Institute connects a rigorous exploration of the Armenian genocide, to ethical decision-making students face today. The ANC strongly endorses this program and is calling for financial support from the community to ensure teachers from southern California will be able to attend.

The Institute and resource book, Crimes against Humanity and Civilization, provides one of the most comprehensive guides to the Armenian Genocide created for secondary education. The Armenian Genocide is placed in thorough context and is studied through historical facts as presented in primary sources from the National Archives, Library of Congress and with the support of prominent specialists in the field.

Dr. Richard Hovannisian, Holder of the AEF Chair in Modern Armenian History at UCLA, who is a member of Facing History's National Board of Scholars, will be a featured speaker at the Institute.

The weeklong institute builds on one-day trainings Facing History has already provided teachers in Southern California, including district-wide workshops in Glendale, Montebello and Pasadena.

Teachers of Modern World History, International Relations, and Comparative Government will find this institute particularly valuable. Individuals in the San Francisco Bay Area are sponsoring teachers from their region, but additional funds are needed to ensure teachers from southern California are able to participate.

Please consider sponsoring a teacher to attend the institute: $1000 will cover the costs for one teacher, including the $350 tuition, airfare and accommodations in San Francisco for one week, and all resources.

The goal is to send 12-15 teachers from Los Angeles, who collectively can expect to reach 1200-1500 students each year with the lessons and resources gained at the institute.

Following the institute, Facing History program staff will provide free follow-up support to help customize the course to meet the teachers' needs.

Quite a racket.... is it not?

© Holdwater
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:



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