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01 March 2009

2760) Media Scanner March-Part 1 2009 (73 Items)

  1. Turkey Rapporteur: I Am Receiving Threats From Armenians
  2. Armenian Lobby Targets US Lawmaker
  3. Shifting Neighborhood: What Are Turkey's Intentions As New Movement Stirs In Caucasus?
  4. Khojaly Genocide & Occupation Of Nagorno Karabakh Is On The Agenda Of British Parliament
  5. OSCE Mg Co-Chairs Met With Azerbaijani Officials
  6. Speeches About Khojaly Genocide In Turkish Parliament
  7. There Can't Be Any Change In Turkish-Armenian Relations Without Karabakh
  8. Democrat Parliamentarian Called For Prevention Of "Genocide" Bill
  9. Bahceli: Armenia Is Source Of Trouble Threats Peace & Security
  10. Film Inspired By A Column By Hrant Dink
  11. What Is An Armenian? A Poem
  12. Three Main Factors In Improvement Of Turkey-Armenia Relations
  13. Prof Questions Ethnic Conflict: Armenian Students Respond To Denials
  14. ANCC Challenges Prof. Ataov's Armenian Genocide Denial
  15. Obama/Biden & Turkey G Rossides
  16. Erdogan Must Normalize Relations With Armenia To Restore His Reputation
  17. Greek Lobby Most Powerful In U.S.?
  18. Bagis: Developing Ties With Armenia Is Important
  19. Turkish Scholar Denies Remark On Armenians
  20. Turkey Defrauds Maximum: And We? J Hakobyan
  21. 'Armenians' Excessive Aggression:Consciousness Of Armenian Issue In Turkey'
  22. 23.000 People Left Armenia In 2008
  23. Barack Obama Will Not Use "Genocide" Word
  24. Turkey-Armenia: War & Linguistic Media
  25. Minister Concerned About Anti-Diaspora TV Broadcasts
  26. Erdogan:"I Believe The US Feels Importance Of Turkey"
  27. Accusations Against ANCA Initiated By Turkish Lobby?
  28. Turkish Scholar Denies Remark On Armenians
  29. ANCA Refutes Accusations
  30. ArmenianAustralian Politician Joe Hockey Moving Onward CanberraTimes
  31. Armenians Benefit from Obama Befriending Turkey H Sassounian
  32. Obama’s Foreign Policy Approach & Turkey
  33. Prosperous Armenia Party–Tactical Maneuvers Or
  34. Only 5-7% Of Armenians Use Internet
  35. Truths Reached Obama & Decision
  36. ATAA Mourns Khojaly Massacres Victims
  37. Threats And Insults
  38. How To End A Genocide Debate NewsWeek
  39. Turkish Video Game Part Of Memorial For Slain Journalist
  40. "Turkey-Armenia Relations At Historic Point, Border Could Be Opened"
  41. April 24 Not Deadline For Armenia Rapprochement
  42. Turkish Identity Awareness Lies Beneath Nation-State
  43. Full Transcript Clinton Interview With M A Birand
  44. Turkey Says US Understands Its Sensitivities Over Armenian Claims
  45. Obama Not To Deliver Anticipated Address On Islam In Turkey-Report
  46. New Era Started In Turkish-U.S. Relations
  47. U.S. Administration Understands Turkey's Stance On 1915 Incidents
  48. Obama To Visit Turkey
  49. Clinton Visits Ataturk Mausoleum, Says Obama Will Visit Turkey Soon
  50. Clinton Hails Us-Turkey Ties
  51. Joint Statement by Turkey and the USA on the Occasion of the Visit of U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Upon Invitation of FA Minister of Turkey Ali Babacan
  52. Turkey’s Relations with Armenia & Impact of Armenian Diaspora by Kamer Kasim
  53. Obama Plans to Visit NATO Ally Turkey
  54. Morgenthaus vs. Genocide, By Rafael Medoff
  55. Celebrating International Women’s Day By Hillary Clinton*
  56. Clinton To Appear In A Women's Talk Show On Turkish TV As A Way Of Combating Anti-Americanism
  57. Obama's Trip Next Month To Turkey
  58. How To Lose Friends & Alienate People
  59. Washington Ethics Group Targets Armenian Grassroots Organization By Khatchig Mouradian & Comments by S.S. Aya
  60. U.S. Prefers to Leave Iraq Through Jordan & Kuwait, Rather than Turkey by Harut Sassounian & Reader’s Reply Comments by Sukru S. Aya
  61. Turkey Gets Taste of its Poisonous Anti-Armenian Policies By Appo Jabarian & Reader’s Reply Comments by Sukru S. Aya
  62. Turkish-Armenian Issue: Not This Time
  63. TCA, Utah University Announce New Turkish Program
  64. Clark University's Taner Akçam To Deliver Lecture March 19 On Armenian Genocide, Questions Of National Security
  65. ANC Alerts Hampshire College To Its Association With Genocide Denier Decries Anti-Defamation League's Invitation To Ensure Campus Tolerance
  66. Azerbaijani-Armenian Gay Romance Novel Fuels Controversy
  67. From Lebanon To US, Prof Khachig Tololyan Reflects On 34 Years Of Change
  68. Editorial: Freedom & Genocide
  69. Learnings From Sari Gelin Case
  70. If President Obama Gives A Kick In The Ball In Wrong Direction .. By Hasan Cemal
  71. Armenian Genocide:Ataov Tackles Adolph Hitler
  72. "Armenian Remains An Insult"
  73. Diaspora Minister-Armenia Belongs To Diaspora As Well

Turkey Rapporteur: I Am Receiving Threats From The Armenians
Ria Oomen-Ruijten, the European Parliament’s rapporteur on Turkey, says the Armenians have told her that they will do their best to prevent her re-election to the European Parliament.

The European Parliament's rapporteur on Turkey, Ria Oomen-Ruijten, has said Armenian lobbyists have threatened to destroy her career because she has refused to refer to the World War I-era killings of Anatolian Armenians by the Ottoman Empire as "genocide."

The Dutch Christian Democrat, whose report on Turkey was approved with a record 65 votes against only four votes in opposition and one abstention in the Committee on Foreign Affairs on Feb. 12, said the Armenians have told her that they will do their best to prevent her re-election to the European Parliament.

Oomen-Ruijten, one of the most senior members of the European Parliament, has been hailed for her balanced reports on Turkey in recent years. Despite enormous pressure from the Armenian lobby, Oomen-Ruijten has so far refused to refer to the 1915 events as "genocide." Her predecessor as the rapporteur on Turkey, Camiel Eurlings, who was also a Dutch Christian Democrat, was heavily criticized for being too pro-Armenian and for authoring biased reports on Turkey. Oomen-Ruijten, who is expected to run for a European Parliament seat again in June, will defend her report in a plenary session on March 11. The report is expected to win the approval of the European Parliament without any major changes.

Speaking Thursday night on "European Desk," a news program on the STVHaber news channel, Oomen-Ruijten agreed that the Armenian lobby did not like her much and revealed that the lobby has made it clear that they will work hard to remove her from the European Parliament. When asked to comment if these warnings should be seen as threats, Oomen-Ruijten replied: "Absolutely. Ask my office what sort of threats I have already received." Vowing that she would work hard to keep her report as it was, she said: "But I will never step away. If I am convinced that the document is good for both Turks and Armenians, then I will keep the report as it is."

Elaborating on what sort of threats she was receiving, she said, "They vowed that in the next European elections they would do everything in their power to remove me from the European Parliament."

Stressing that she very much appreciated Turkish President Abdullah Gül's visit to Armenia last fall, the first by a president in Turkish history, and also Foreign Minister Ali Babacan's efforts for reconciliation with Yerevan, Oomen-Ruijten added that the Turkish-Armenian border should be opened, but that the Armenians living in Europe and the US are not very interested in the opening of the border.

Joost Lagendijk, co-chairman of the Turkey-EU Joint Parliamentary Committee, was also on the program. He said he does not receive threats from the Armenians any more because he is considered a "lost cause." He said he supported the stance taken by Oomen-Ruijten on the 1915 events. "Looking back on eight years of how the issue has been handled, I am so happy that we are now out of the trap that we had put ourselves in. The debate was done around whether someone would call it genocide or not. It was such a sterile discussion that did not mean much in terms of present-day relations between Turkey and Armenia," Lagendijk said.

Ergenekon: cleansing of dirty history

While stressing that she did not want to get involved in an ongoing court-case, Oomen-Ruijten said it was absolutely necessary for Turkish society to clear up the question of Ergenekon, a clandestine criminal network charged with attempting to overthrow the government. By strengthening the language of her report's paragraph on Ergenekon this year, she said, she wanted to put pressure on the investigation itself, but also to draw attention to the rights of the defendants.

Lagendijk acknowledged that he was very happy with the latest version of the paragraph on Ergenekon and said: "Ergenekon is the cleansing of Turkey's dirty past, but please play it by the rules and the book. If you don't, it will turn against you and all the attention will go to the procedures."

In this year's report the paragraph on Ergenekon calls on Turkish authorities to take the Ergenekon case more seriously, particularly on the issue of extrajudicial killings and the murder of Armenian-Turkish journalist Hrant Dink.

'Baykal should behave in Ankara as he talks in Brussels'

Oomen-Ruijten criticized Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal for getting involved in the Ergenekon case and revealed that she had warned the CHP to be careful with regard to the investigation. "In my private meetings with CHP members, I tell them to be careful with the Ergenekon court case and not to get involved with it. I am coming from another sort of democracy. In my country politicians would never ever get involved in a judicial process," she said.

Lagendijk said Baykal's recent visit to Brussels was very good news, but stressed that the "nice words" of Baykal in Brussels should be followed up with "voting" in Ankara. "I hope the nice words of Mr. Baykal saying they are the only pro-EU party in the country will be proven true during voting in the Turkish Parliament. Because I still remember, unfortunately, that it was his party that voted against a few reforms that were requested by Brussels, such as the revision of Article 301 [of the Turkish Penal Code] and the Law on Foundations. I wish I could believe him. I hope I can believe him. The proof of the pudding is in the eating; in the CHP case it is in their voting. Their willingness to sit with the government to try and find a solution for those big parts of the Constitution that should be revised or changed completely should be put into action." 28 February 2009, TODAY'S ZAMAN


Armenian Lobby Targets US Lawmaker
WASHINGTON - The two largest U.S. Armenian groups have condemned a leading Democratic congresswoman for qualifying what they see as the "Armenian genocide" as an "inter-communal war" and a "historic dispute" between Turkey and Azerbaijan.

In a Wednesday letter to all her 434 colleagues in the House of Representatives, lawmaker Eddie Bernice Johnson, representing the Dallas area in Texas, opposed a planned resolution that urged the United States to formally recognize 1915 incidents as "genocide".

Addressing the resolution's sponsors in her letter, Johnson said: "I respectfully ask for your careful consideration of the proposed Armenian genocide resolution, a resolution that holds that the inhumanity in the inter-communal war in 1915 was one-sided."

She added: "I am naturally troubled by the assertions in the resolution, which would endorse one side of a historic dispute between Armenia and Turkey, thus undermining today’s normalization process."

An eight-term lawmaker, Johnson said she was greatly encouraged by progress in Turkish-Armenian relations, as evidenced by President Abdullah Gul's September visit to Armenia.

"With the number of challenges in the region critical to U.S. national security -- spanning from Russia, to Iraq, to Afghanistan, and Iran -- the United States cannot afford at this time to derail these hopeful efforts. On the contrary, we should nurture and encourage them," Johnson said.

Johnson's letter won the ire of the Armenian National Committee of America, or ANCA, and the Armenian Assembly of America, or AAA.

"The congresswoman's line of attack, long ago discredited by historians and genocide scholars, is a particularly toxic form of denial that seeks, without any basis in fact, to create parity between perpetrator and victim," the ANCA said in its website.
© Copyright 2008 Hürriyet


Shifting Neighborhood: What Are Turkey's Intentions As New Movement Stirs In Caucasus? Analysis by Aris Ghazinyan
Turkey's positions have recently strengthened perceptibly in the political processes surrounding the Caucasus region. Theses positions were never weak after the collapse of the Soviet Union, however, such activation has not been observed during the whole post-Soviet period. It is enough to mention that on January 1 Turkey became a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for 2 years.

Making an attempt not to miss "the historical chance," Ankara has already come up with the initiative of creating the Platform of stability and cooperation in the Caucasus, which, as the Turks themselves claim, "must become a platform for discussing issues" between five countries in the region: Turkey, Russia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Armenia. Taking into account the amount of contradictions between these states, the proposed initiative produces an impression of a very serious project. All the invited parties have already stated they are "for" it, although some political forces in Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh do not think Yerevan's approving position is a correct step.

"Turkey's initiative of creating the security platform disregards the realities shaped in the region," a member of ARF Dashnaktsutyun Bureau Vahan Hovhannisyan announced. "It will be efficient only if it takes into account the fact that there are six, and not three state formations in the region: Armenia, Georgia, and Azerbaijan (UNO members) and Nagorno Karabakh, Abkhazia, and South Ossetia. Thus, official Ankara completely ignores the fact that such distribution exists on the territory of the South Caucasus and is primordially oriented towards the invariability of the region's political map."

The government circles of Nagorno Karabakh support the idea voiced by Hovhannisyan. A number of Nagorno Karabakh politicians believe that the participation of Nagorno Karabakh, Abkhazia, and South Ossetia in the work of the platform is imperative. Otherwise, it makes no sense.

Opinions were expressed that Moscow, whose recognition of the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia should be taken into account, will hardly agree to the Turkish initiative, which is mainly based on the inviolability of the borders of the three South Caucasus countries. To clarify these and other issues the President of Turkey Abdullah Gul went to Moscow on February 12 for a three-day state visit..... Before departure he announced, "The relations between Russia and Turkey are more than 500 years old, and today it is going through the highest phase of prosperity in history." Speaking about the Platform of stability and cooperation in the Caucasus, Gul said: " In this part of the planet there are a lot of frozen conflicts, but it would be wrong to attempt keeping them in the freezer forever."

He also announced that it is Moscow that plays the key role in settling the Karabakh issue. On February 13, on the basis of the outcome of the negotiations, Presidents Gul and Russian President Dimitry Medvedev signed a joint declaration on the advance to a new stage of relations between Russia and Turkey and the further consolidation of friendship and multilateral partnership.

"Turkey wants to include the solutions of problems with Armenia into the context of its relations with Russia and, by doing so, to decrease the significance of Armenian-Turkish relations," political scientist Manvel Sargsyan said in this respect. "In the case of such positioning, supposing we manage to reach an agreement in the issue of Armenian-Turkish relations, Turkey will hardly make concessions in the Karabakh settlement issue."

Sargsyan thought it suspicious that on the day of adopting the Turkish-Russian declaration during the visit of Gul to Moscow the President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliev suddenly expressed his conviction in the possibility of a peaceful resolution of the Karabakh conflict. "Azerbaijan is hoping that in this case a plan of resolving the Karabakh issue may be worked out that will be beneficial for Azerbaijan; it is hard to give another explanation for Aliev's words," Sargsyan stressed.

Director of the Oriental Studies Institute of the National Academy of Sciences of RA Ruben Safrastyan has a different point of view. "I don't see any reasons why we should revise our approach to the relations between Turkey and Russia. Historically Russia and Turkey were opponents in the region, and Caucasus was the region that each of them was trying to either join to their country, or take under protection. There are no signals that the situation has changed; we are witnessing a certain political coordination of activity, a developed economic cooperation, but in the military-political sphere we have different vectors, from the strategic viewpoint there are still no changes in the policy of Russia and Turkey."

As to the Karabakh conflict settlement, Safrastyan thinks that "positive shifts in the Russian-Turkish relations will hardly have any influence on settling the conflict. In my opinion, the Karabakh conflict is the sphere in which the interests of the two states do not coincide, but clash."

According to him, the fact that Ankara is demonstrating attempts to restore the relations with Armenia, is first of all related to the preparation of the new resolution on the Armenian Genocide in the US Congress. Besides, Safrastyan believes that the efforts of Turkish diplomats will most likely have positive results - President Barack Obama will refrain from using the term "genocide" in his April 24 speech.

"In a telephone conversation with the Turkish leaders Obama raised the issue of normalizing Armenian-Turkish relations, and I am sure he was told about the negotiations with Armenians and that the intervention of the US and the topic of genocide will have negative influence on the process."

Answering the question about the consequences of a possible recognition of the Armenian Genocide by the US Congress, Minister Ali Babajan said on February that any intervention of a third country into the on-going negotiation process between Armenia and Turkey can have negative impact.

"The Armenian-Turkish dialogue is aimed at normalizing the whole complex of the bilateral relations, and while the sides acknowledge progress and continue to conduct such important negotiations, each one must abstain from taking steps that could harm the process."

This statement was dictated by the fear that the Jewish lobby in the USA may (practically for the first time in history) support "the Armenian resolution." In other words, the Turkish diplomat made it clear that the process of the genocide recognition in the US Congress can mark the wrapping up of the Turkish-Armenian dialogue on establishing diplomatic relations, and "the American Congressmen will be the ones to blame for this."

Taking into account the increased tension between Turkey and Israel, Safrastyan thinks that "the Jewish lobby is not so unambiguous in its support of Turkey, therefore, the probability of adopting the Genocide resolution in Congress is still high."

Thus, it is premature to speak about a more or less specific scenario of the development of the political processes. Everything changes very rapidly and it is uncertain how much time the formation of a new distribution of powers will take.

Khojaly Genocide And Occupation Of Nagorno Karabakh Is On The Agenda Of British Parliament
On the initiative of the European Azerbaijani Society (TEAS), member of the British House of Commons Mike Hancock submitted EDM 893 “Anniversary of Khojaly Massacre” to the British parliament in connection with the 17th anniversary of Khojaly tragedy.

It was said in the document, which condemned the Armenia’s aggressive policy against Azerbaijan, hat the House calls on the Government to recognize the 17th anniversary of the Khojaly massacre and use it as an opportunity to launch a new international peace effort to resolve the Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagorno-Karabakh conflict; notes that the non-resolution of the conflict is a threat to the whole Caucasus region, as well as to UK investment in Azerbaijan; believes that the failure in reaching a peaceful resolution is largely due to the non-implementation by Armenia of UN Security Council Resolutions 822, 853, 874 and 884 which call for the withdrawal of Armenian troops from the occupied territories of Azerbaijan and for the return of the one million Azerbaijani refugees back to their homes; supports the resolution of the conflict while assuring the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan, with high autonomy for the people of Nagorno-Karabakh; and highlights the fact that the UK is the largest foreign investor in Azerbaijan, with 5,000 expatriates and a 20 per cent share in Azerbaijani oil.

Full text of the document is available at http://edmi.parliament.uk/EDMi/EDMDetails.aspx?EDMID=37972&SESSION=899 Early Day Motions (EDMs) are formal motions submitted for debate in the House of Commons. However, very few EDMs are actually debated. Instead, they are used for reasons such as publicising the views of individual MPs, drawing attention to specific events or campaigns, and demonstrating the extent of parliamentary support for a particular cause or point of view. An MP can add their signature to an EDM to show their support. The EDM on the anniversary of Khojaly massacre has already been signed by 10 members of the House and is open for signature by the end of the current session – end of 2009.

European Azerbaijan Society was established by Tale Heydarov in Great Britain in 2004. The society is the founder of the English-language magazine “Visions of Azerbaijan” and www.karabakh.co.uk internet portal dealing with Karabakh truths. The society is also the author of the books “Khojaly Tragedy – an International View”, “International Visions: Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict over Karabakh” and “Azerbaijan: 100 Questions Answered" published in Russian and English. Documentary My Surreal Duty was made by British director Nick Tiron on the initiative of the society. Detailed information about the society and its activity is available on www.t-e-a-s.eu.
www.historyoftruth.com


Osce Mg Co-Chairs Met With Azerbaijani Officials
Azerbaijani FM Elmar Mamedyarov discussed ways of resolution of the Karabakh conflict with the OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs, reports Day.Az with reference to the press service for the Foreign Ministry of Azerbaijan.

Mamedyarov, Matthew Bryza, Bernard Fassier, Yuri Merzlyakov and special representative of OSCE chairman-in-office Anzhey Kaspshik exchanged views about the Prague negotiation process on the peaceful resolution of the Karabakh conflict.

OSCE MG co-chairs also met with Azerbaijani defence minister. During the meeting the sides discussed the military and political situation in the region and ways of resolution of the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict over Nagorno Karabakh.

The meeting was held with participation of US ambassador to Azerbaijan Anne Derse.

OSCE Minsk Group co-chairs Matthew Bryza, Yuri Merzlyakov and Bernard Fassier arrived for a visit to Azerbaijan Thursday. Today they and personal representative of the OSCE chairman-in-office Anzhey Kaspshik held a meeting with Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mamedyarov.
www.historyoftruth.com


Speeches About Khojaly Genocide In Turkish Parliament
Some parliamentarians made speech in Turkish parliament on the anniversary of Khojaly genocide.

Head of Turkey-Azerbaijan interparliamentary friendship group, member of Justice and Development Party (AKP) Mustafa Kabakci said Armenians committed genocide against Azerbaijanis in Khojaly with support of the 366th Motorized Rifle Regiment of the Soviet army on February 26, 1992. He said 613 Azerbaijanis were killed, 418 wounded, 1274 captured and 150 went missing.

“Some martyrs were beheaded during this tragedy, people were burned to death, women, children were killed atrociously. Our people will never forget it. Armenians, who had been our lieges for a millennium, though lived independently in our lands, committed similar murders in Erzurum, Erdahan after the World War I. This shows hatred towards Turkic people. We will continue our efforts for ceasing the occupation of Azerbaijani territories and returning of IDPs to their native lands and keep this issue on the agenda,” he said.

Shenol Bal from Nationalist Movement Part (MHP) made speech after Kabakci. Bal called Khojaly tragedy a black spot in the history of mankind. She said according to informal reports, 1300 civilians were killed in Khojaly. She added that despite serious evidences nothing is done for recognition of the genocide and bringing the perpetrators to trial.

“There were people in Khojaly, whose eyes were gouged out, heads were skinned, some parts of their bodies were cut, abdomens of pregnant women were cut. I pray for these Azeri Turks and bow before their soul,” she said.

Ms. Bal said genocide against Azerbaijani Turks lasted for 200 years. Hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijanis were killed and displaced in 1915, 1918, 1920 and afterwards. The parliamentarian from opposition said over 250,000 Azerbaijanis were deported from Armenia in 1988, the occupation of Nagorno Karabakh and 7 adjacent regions and unification of Armenia ended in 1993.

Bal condemned the false intellectuals in Turkey, who are apologizing to Armenians, and reminded about the mass protest in the country against the Israel’s oppression in Gaza. “Our nation is always supporting the oppressed people. Prime Minister won the appreciation of even his critics with his behavior in Davos. We expected from the Prime Minister to show the same resolution in the Azerbaijan and Kirkuk issues too. However Turkey is taking now the position aggrieved our Azeri brothers. They intended to force us to forget what had happened and to open borders with Armenia”. Bal said relations and borders between Turkey and Armenia could be established only under the following conditions:

1. Armenians must leave their claims of “genocide”, which has no historic background;

2. Armenia must recognize Turkey’s territorial integrity and to announce it at the international arena;

3. Armenia must unconditionally withdraw its forces from the occupied Azerbaijani lands in accordance with the UN resolutions and return refugees to their homeland.

Then member of the parliament from MHP, former state minister for the relations with Turkic countries Reshat Dogru took the floor. He said last year they prepared draft law on declaring February 26 a “Day of Genocide” in Turkey and demanded to discuss and to adopt the draft law.

Ferit Movlut Aslanoglu, Republican People’s Party (CHP), paid tribute to the Azerbaijanis killed in Khojaly and said CHP MP Canan Aritman would deliver speech at the parliament on this issue.
www.historyoftruth.com


There Can't Be Any Change In Turkish-Armenian Relations Without Solution Of Karabakh Problem
“Backing on the last meetings with the relevant government organizations, I am decisively stressing that there can not be any change in the Turkish-Armenian relations without solution to the Karabakh problem, liberation of the lands occupied by Armenians and returning of refugees to their homeland. It is not an idea based on my past experience.

I saw at the meetings with Armenians that they also understand that they can not normalize the relations with Turkey without solution to the Karabakh problem and ending the occupation of Azerbaijani lands”, Ankara-based member of the Turkish parliament from Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) Togrul Turkesh told APA Turkish bureau. Togrul Turkesh is the son of the legendary leader of the nationalists late Alparslan Turkesh. He said there could be such rumors among the public community. “The phrase of “One nation, two states” will remain as a doctrine between Turkey and Azerbaijan. Withdrawal or delaying of Karabakh issue at the discussions with Armenia is out of question. Our Azerbaijani brothers should be convinced in this”.
www.historyoftruth.com


Democrat Parliamentarian Called For Prevention Of "Genocide" Bill
Women Parliamentarian Eddie Bernice Johnson defined Armenian allegations over 1915 event as "historical dispute".

When a women Parliamentarian from Democratic Party Eddie Bernice Johnson defined Armenians’ allegations over 1915 events as "historical dispute", she attracted huge reactions from Armenian organizations in the U.S.

In the letter that she sent to her 434 counterpart, Johnson opposed the new "genocide" resolution that Armenian lobby is being prepared to present to U.S. House of Representatives.

Johnson said that the Armenian resolution is approaching to 1915 events partially.

Eddie Bernice Johnson said that United States cannot take a risk to damage ongoing normalization process between Turkey and Armenia.

The letter of American parliamentarian irritated Armenian organizations in United States.


Bahceli: Armenia Is The Source Of Trouble That Threats Peace And Security
General President of Nationalist Movement Party Devlet Bahceli defined Armenia as, "Challenging to international community, the source of trouble and element of instability that threats the peace and security in Caucasus" and said, "The opening of borders and establishment of diplomatic relations with Armenia will not be thought unless Armenia ends the occupation of Azerbaijani lands".

In his written statement due to 17th anniversary of Khojaly massacre, Bahceli said, "Occupation of the lands of our brothers Azerbaijanis started on 25-25 February 1992 in the Khojaly, Nagorno Karabakh with a inhuman massacre which did not seperate women or children".

Bahceli expressed his pain and sorrow about the event on the anniversary of the Khojaly massacre and underscored that 20 percent of Azerbaijani lands are still under Armenian occupation and more than 10 percent of Azerbaijani population is in refugee status.

In his statement Bahceli said, "Armenia which swallows the pride of humanity with its illegal and agressive policies, challenges to international community and it is the source of trouble and element of instability that threats the peace and security in Caucasus". He added that it became the state policy of Armenia to continue land claims from neighbouring states and holding a hostile policy against them.

Bahceli said;

The major obstacle for the normalization of relations and opening of the borders to Armenia is the hostile policies of Armenia which bases on enmity against Turkey.

Armenia questionizes territorial integrity of Turkey and not recognizes Turkey's borders. Besides it continues to appropriate national symbols of Turkey and runs a shameless defamation campaign against Turkey and Turkish history with lies of genocide.

The opening of borders and establishment of diplomatic relations with Armenia will not be thought under any circumstances unless Armenia ends the occupation of Azerbaijani lands. The policies that contradicts with this understanding will not find support from Turkish people and such sturggles will hurt national conscience.

Nationalist Movement Party and Turkish nationalists will oppose such intentions and initiations of changes in policies which bases on cheap policies that bases on external pressure. I should underscore that we believe the friendly and brotherly relations between Turkey and Azerbaijan and cooperation that is based on "one nation-two states" understanding to develop and continue forever."


Film Inspired By A Column By Hrant Dink
ISTANBUL - Volunteer artists have gathered to adapt Agos’ late editor-in-chief Hrant Dink’s article 'Kertenkele,' published in daily Birgün in October 2004 to the silver screen. The film has been directed by national and international award-winning documentary maker Özgür Arık

Volunteer actors and actresses coming together under the slogan, "Our struggle is until this country becomes the land of brotherhoodÉ," have shot a 32-minute short film in honor of slain journalist Hrant Dink.

The product of months of work the film, "Kertenkel" (Lizard), was inspired by a column published in daily Birgün in October 2004 written by Agos editor-in-chief Dink, who was assassinated on Jan. 19, 2007.

Özgür Arık, a documentary maker who holds many national and international awards, directed the film. The film’s budget was 40,000 Turkish liras, provided by the Green Agency and it was shot in the Mediterranean city of Antalya.

Although the film cannot find a movie theater that will screen it, there are plans to show it to audiences this year in many national and international film festivals, including the International Istanbul Film Festival that will be organized by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts, or IKSV, in April. One of the most important planned destinations for the film is the International Golden Apricot Film Festival to be organized in Armenian capital, Yerevan in July. From Feb. 17, the film will be screened with English and Turkish subtitles at the Nazım Hikmet Culture Center on Istanbul’s Asian side in Kadıköy.

"Being inspired by the painful events Armenians went through and with the words of Dink, this film aims to draw attention to the pain people are experiencing throughout the world. Unfortunately, we fight to live in an environment in which people are moving away from each other and becoming enemies," said Arık.

Arık said the film was based around a character named Abdullah. "A lizard, when it feels danger, it shelters in the smallest hole it can find, just like Abdullah." He said the content of the story was traumatic, "Yes, there is violence in the story but it is based on causality. We wanted to highlight once again the cost of excess in this film."

"I have read almost all articles written by Dink," said Arık. He said "Lizard" was very important to him, "As soon as I took the paper and started reading the article, scenes from the film took shape in my mind."

Supporting characters from local to general
Even though Arık sticks to the original story in the film, he also backs it up with supporting characters. "Rather than localizing the story, we wanted to draw attention to pain in the world by showing incidents in our own land. Materiality is what lies behind pain all around the world. I think economic worries nourish nationalism," Arık said. Arık added a hodja character to the film. He said the character, hiding behind religion, behaves cruelly toward people and confiscates their land. "The hodja prays five times a day but all he thinks about is owning more."

Arık said the film was set in the time of World War I, "While watching the film, viewers will be able to see events that happened during the war and the effect on people's psychology." He said he intentionally shot a short film and that its message was very short and certain. He added the film had a mission in addition to commemorating Dink. "With this film, rather than agitate, we try to highlight once again that everyone who shares this land is a brother."

The End of the World War
The film depicts the end of World War I. A young Armenian person, who survived the painful events of 1915, shelters in a village in the slopes of Mount Süphan in eastern Anatolia. He does not play on the streets like the other young people. He lives in the shed of a villager named Ismail and tells people nothing except that his name is Abdullah. One day when he is in the toilet, other children see he is uncircumcised, and start throwing stones at him. With fear, Abdullah shelters in the shed and circumcises himself with a sharp tool and then throws the bloody piece of skin at the people. by Vercihan Ziflioğlu © Copyright 2008 Hürriyet


What Is An Armenian? A Poem by Alan Whitehorn from Reflections on the Armenian Genocide (forthcoming book, 2009)

Is it someone living in the diaspora who speaks the language,
but does not help the earthquake victims?
Is it someone who writes in English,
but shares the quest for justice on the genocide?
Is it someone born in the country,
but who opts to leave for the wealth of the West?
Is it someone who visits the ancestral homeland yearly,
but who cancels the trip in more trying times?
Is it those who, in order to survive the genocide,
changed their name and converted to Islam?
Is it the orphans who were given up ever so reluctantly
by desperate mothers, facing certain death,
Is it these children who have now grown up,
not knowing their ancestral past?
Is it a genocide orphan’s great grand daughter,
who makes wonderful dolmas,
but who feels ever so proudly Canadian?

Or are we all Armenians?
Should we join our hands together
and celebrate
around Mt. Aragats?
And some day,
some day that will be very special,
we will come together at the foot of Mt. Ararat.

All Armenians together at that sacred mountain,
together and reunited at last.
Some day.
Some day,
perhaps in my lifetime.
Perhaps some day.

http://keghart.com/node/291


Three Main Factors In Improvement Of Turkey-Armenia Relations - Unsuccessful Foreign Policy, Probability Of Us' Recognizing "Armenian Genocide", Local Elections... - Analysis, APA Feb 26 2009 Azerbaijan

Davos scandal strikes the first blow on Turkey's rating in Azerbaijan

Baku. Vugar Masimoglu - APA. The policy of "improving relations with Armenians", which started with Armenia-Turkey football match, has already passed the next stage. The reports that Ankara gave up stipulation of Nagorno Karabakh issue in the talks with Yerevan are observed with serious concern in the public opinion of Turkey and Azerbaijan. Actually, the information first leaked from Armenian sources, and it was the results of the purposeful policy. The news "Turkey puts Nagorno Karabakh issue into the background" was a kind of taking the pulse in the region. In fact, if Ankara had immediately refuted the information, which was circulated by Armenia and made a bomb effect, it would not have caused so much tension in Azerbaijan. But Turkish government has not yet refuted the report that Nagorno Karabakh problem, one of the three main stipulations put forward for establishment of direct political, economic and diplomatic relations with Armenia was removed from the political discussions. On the contrary, official Ankara's reaction shows that AKP government is going to take serious diplomatic steps to normalize relations with Armenia.

AKP government's efforts to normalize the relations with Armenia are based on a number of external and internal factors. High probability that new U.S. administration will recognize the so-called Armenian genocide, tension in Turkey-Israel relations makes Ankara improve relations with Armenia. For long years efforts for recognition of the "Armenian genocide" by the US were impeded by the Jewish lobby in the country. But the word duel between Prime Minister Erdogan and Israeli President in Davos cast shadow on Turkey-Israel relations and therefore it is doubtful that Jewish lobby will help Turkey to impede the recognition of "Armenian genocide" in the U.S. Congress.

In other words, Turkey's foreign policy is suffering from Prime Minster's steps in Davos intended for domestic policy. That's why official Ankara tries to remove negative results of the uncertain relations with Israel, its serious strategic ally in the region, at the cost of improving relations with Armenia. So, Turkey has involuntarily made a tactical change with respect to Armenia and "Armenian genocide" - Ankara has given up proving that these claims are false and in stead begun to demonstrate that Turkey is interested in improving relations with Armenia and recognition of "Armenian genocide" will impede this improvement.

Is the change having purely defense character in Turkey's foreign policy course permanent? It will be known after April 24. If Turkey can persuade the United States that it is interested in improving the relations and solving all the problems with Armenia, the U.S. President in his annual speech will not regard the happenings of 1915 as genocide. But for this, Turkey should take some practical steps. Otherwise, Ankara may face more serious problems in terms of "Armenian genocide" next year and its position in the world.

What steps is Turkey going to take to improve the relations with Armenia? It is difficult to express concrete opinion, as the process is going on behind the curtains. But the information leaked to media and reactions of AKP officials allows us to say -the process of improving the relations (or giving such an impression) has started! AKP's goodwill messages to the Armenian community in the country, statements made on different levels that the borders with Armenia will open, cross-border trade will extend, the businessmen trading with Armenia will get tax and customs concessions allow us to surmise Turkey's next steps.

Measures taken toward the Turkish-Armenian approach were estimated for the domestic political interests too. Weakening of the ruling party's influence will lead to losing of votes in the municipal elections. This fact was recognized by AKP representatives as well. AKP, which is seriously fighting for every vote, is trying to win the support of Armenian community (Turkey's Armenian community is close to CHP) and business people living in the areas bordering with Armenia as well. AKP election campaign in the Eastern Anatolia is based on the theses of allowance for the free trade with Armenia and its impact on improvement of social situation of the population in border areas.

Long-time different campaigns (involving the international organizations, financial institutions, political parties, municipalities, non-governmental organizations, media and etc.) were provided in that region for direct trade with Armenia and small electorate, which is wishing the normalization of relations with Armenia, was formed in Ardahan, Kars, Igdir and Agri provinces. One of the reasons forcing AKP government to approach with Armenia is to win the support of that electorate. The government should take control over the municipalities in the border areas to open the borders with Armenia. Therefore the opening of borders became the main strategic line in the election campaign.

Basic reasons of the Ankara-Yeravan approach are known and the protest of Azerbaijan against this approach is also known. How long will this concern last and will Ankara take measures to lift it? Turkish foreign policy yet doesn't show a willingness to do that. Ankara doesn't express weighty reaction to the reports about its retracting the one of the basic principles of the Turkish diplomacy - settlement of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict.

The statements made so far show that Turkey will not take into consideration the interests of the third countries in its policy toward Armenia. This message was sent to Azerbaijan because there is no other country except Azerbaijan, which is concerning over this approach. It is naturally that Azerbaijan concerns over it, because Turkey is intending to normalize its relations with Armenia at the expense of interests of our country.

Turkey's foreign policy toward Armenia was always formed within the triangle of Ankara-Baku-Yerevan and three conditions were basic principles in the relations with Yerevan: Armenia must leave its territorial and 1915 "genocide" claims against Turkey, must unconditionally withdraw its forces from the occupied lands of Azerbaijan. Over the past 20 years, Turkey followed this course and didn't leave it even in the most difficult times. But now Ankara was forced to change this course and to disregard the Azerbaijan's interests. Turkey took out the Nagorno Karabakh issue from the discussions to prevent the recognition of "Armenian genocide" this year. What costs it will pay in the next years?

Essence of the tensions in the Azerbaijani society is that Turkey gave away the Azerbaijan's interests for its unsuccessful foreign policy.

AKP government, which is trying to eliminate the results of its unsuccessful foreign policy at the expense of approach with Armenia, and blamed media for the concerns among the Azerbaijani society. Azerbaijani media is sharply criticizing the Turkish-Armenian approach, but these critics are targeting not Turkey, but the AKP government, which is making mistakes in the foreign policy. Undoubtedly the Turkey's unsuccessful foreign policy toward Armenia will severely hurt Azerbaijan. Attempts to approach with Armenia are the signals of threats, because it is impossible to believe that Turkey, which abandoned the interests of Northern Cyprus and Kirkuk, will meet the interests of Azerbaijan.


Professor Questions Ethnic Conflict: Armenian Students Respond To Genocide Denials by Matthew Rist
The George Washington University The GW Hatchet media.www.gwhatchet.com Feb 26 2009

One of history's most controversial debates came to the Marvin Center Monday night.

Turkkaya Ataov, a professor at Ankara University in Turkey who is internationally recognized for his vehement denials that the 1915 massacre of Armenians was a genocide, presented a lecture entitled, "How to Come to Terms with One's Past: Searching the Truth Behind Armenian Claims on Genocide."

A handful of Armenian students listened in silence among a crowd of 100 mostly Turkish or Turkish-Americans as Ataov discounted Armenian claims of genocide at the hands of the Turks during World War I.

"I'm not saying that nothing has happened, but certain things have happened and that there are omissions, and omission is a way of censorship," Ataov said.

The professor appeared to speak directly to the Armenian students in the audience at times and even pointed at them at one point in the lecture, telling them to see him afterwards to discuss what he was talking about.

"The Armenians are very fine people, very intelligent, very hard-working, very able," Ataov said.

Ataov characterized Turkey and its people as, historically, accepting of other ethnicities.

"Genocide is the natural outcome and continuation of racism. Only racists can pursue policies of genocide," Ataov said.

Ataov went on to talk about the disagreements that have arisen between the two opposing viewpoints on the interpretation of historical facts.

"We must agree on dispassionate, nonpartisan, open-minded controversy," Ataov said. "I have met very few [Armenians] that fit this description."

During his lecture, Ataov compared the misinformation about the Armenian massacres to a game he played as a child, similar to the game of telephone, asserting that this verbal passing of information is to blame for some of the misinformation.

"What actually happened in history is very different, or to a great extent different, than what the younger generations keep hearing from their elders," Attaov said.

Leah Brayman, president of the Armenian Student Network, said she was offended by Ataov's analogy.

"For professor Ataov to relate the genocide to an elementary school game of telephone is not only completely inaccurate, but it humorizes mass genocide," she wrote in an e-mail after the event. "As a critic of 'uneducated people' professor Ataov's claims about Armenian history and genocide were extremely false, completely misstated and he made a mockery of the Armenian people."

Esra Alemdar, president of the Turkish Student Association, said her organization brought Ataov to campus in order to educate students about the allegations of genocide.

"I feel like we, as Turkish-Americans, really do not have a lot of information about this issue, so that's one of the reasons why I wanted to have the professor speak," she said.

Alemdar said she was pleased to have students from the Armenian Student Association in the audience.

Brayman said that relations between the Turkish Student Association and the Armenian Student Association have never been a problem.

She added, "Unfortunately our history of conflict is still a national and international issue that we hope will be resolved very soon, so that all future relations will be nothing but peaceful and productive."

After his lecture, Ataov had a specific message for GW students of Armenian and Turkish descent looking to move forward and work together in the future.

"The duty of scholarship is to study the views of the other side because the Armenian side is making this mistake; which is described in psychology as the egoism of victimization, in which one side thinks only of its own losses and rejects the other," Ataov said. "In reality, what the other suffered may be even worse."


ANCC Challenges Prof. Ataov's Armenian Genocide Denial Campaign AZG DAILY 27-02-2009
Turkish nationalists attempt to curtail Canadians' freedom of speech

Toronto -- The Armenian National Committee of Canada's (ANCC) Executive Director Aris Babikian challenged Turkish professor Turkkaya Ataov's attempt to deny the historic reality of the Armenian Genocide during the latter's lecture at the Ryerson University on Feb. 18. Prof. Ataov's presentation was titled "How to come to terms with one's past".

When Babikian tried to correct Prof. Ataov's erroneous statements regarding the Armenian Genocide, and the Turkish professor's accusations that the Western world was racist, anti-Islamic and practiced genocidal policies, many of the Turkish nationalists in the audience tried to silence Babikian. When Babikian insisted on being heard, some of the organizers turned off the microphone and threatened Babikian with forceful removal from the podium.

Babikian reminded the audience that they are living in Canada and not in Turkey and that freedom of speech is one of the most cherished rights of Canadians, specially in academic settings.

After Babikian's condemnation of Turkish nationalists' anti-democratic behavior, the ANCC executive director was allowed to make his statement, challenging Prof. Ataov's boiler-plate propaganda. Babikian also condemned Prof. Ataov's use of the "religion card" to justify his accusations against the West. Earlier in his lecture Ataov had accused Western countries of killing five million Muslims in the Balkan and in the Caucasus. Ataov's manner was condescending towards the West and his audience.

Babikian asked Ataov how did he reconcile his statement that only two Armenians were killed on April 24, 1915 with Talaat Pasha's, Minister of Interior and the main architect of the Armenian Genocide, diary ("Black Book") which stated that 924,158 Armenians had been killed by the Turkish government. Talaat also kept a detailed account of Armenians deported from each city, county, and province.

Babikian also questioned the credibility of the historians Ataov cited as experts on the Armenian Genocide, such as Justin McCarthy, Gunther Lewy, Sanford Show, and Andrew Mango. Babikian then read "British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies'" evaluation of McCarthy's work as "junk food, junk bonds and now junk history". Babikian reminded Ataov and the audience with the testimony of 126 Holocaust scholars, International Association of Genocide Scholars, the International Centre for Transitional Justice and hundreds of other scholars and historians who have contradicted Ataov's claims and the Turkish Government's denial of the Armenian Genocide.

When Babikian tried to question some of Ataov answers, Turkish nationalists once again tried to suppress Babikian from speaking. Embarrassed by his compatriots behavior and as a face-saving measure, Ataov invited Babikian to the stage to stand next to him and to continue the discussion. Babikian and Ataov continued to discuss many relevant issues to the Armenian Genocide.

After the event, Dr. Girair Basmadjian, president of the ANCC, said that he "condemned the behavior of the Turkish nationalists and their attempt to intimidate and silence a Canadian, while trying to deny him one of the most basic human rights to freedom of thought which is enshrined in our constitution."

Dr. Basmadjian added: "The modus operandi of these nationalists is indicative and reminiscent of the Turkish government's modus operandi in suppressing freedom of speech and silencing anyone who dares to challenge the official Turkish government narrative of the Armenian Genocide under article 301 of the Turkish penal code." The persecution of award-winning novelist Orhan Pamuk and many other righteous Turks, and the assassination of Turkish-Armenian journalist are eloquent examples of these policies," said Dr. Basmadjian.

"We also abhor Prof. Ataov's 'the West is racist' statement and his other temper tantrums. Such a statement has no place in our academic and scholarly circles," said Basmadjian. Ataov's attempt to whip up hysteria and to try to put a wedge among Canadians by using religious fervor should be condemned by everyone, he said. "Therefore, we ask Ryerson University to dissociate itself from this lecture which she jointly organized with the Federation of Canadian Turkish Association, apologize to Canadians, condemn Prof. Ataov, and hold accountable the sociology department professor of Turkish background who deceived the university and put Ryerson in such a compromising situation," said Basmadjian.

The ANCC is the largest and the most influential Canadian-Armenian grassroots political organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout Canada and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCC actively advances the concerns of the Canadian-Armenian community on a broad range of issues.


Obama/Biden And Turkey By Gene Rossides Hellenic News of America, www.hellenicnews.com ,Feb 25 2009, PA
The recent anti-Israel and anti-Semitic outburst by Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in his attack on Israel and Israeli President Simon Peres at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, calls for a thorough review by the Obama/Biden administration of U.S.-Turkey relations.

At Davos, Erdogan engaged in a verbal assault on Perez regarding Israel's response to Hamas' rocket attacks on Israel and then walked out of the meeting. On his return to Turkey he was greeted enthusiastically. Turkish elections are scheduled for the end of March.

Erdogan's theatrics demonstrate vividly that U.S. and Turkish views on important matters do not coincide and that Turkey is an unreliable ally. Turkey's apologists in the State Department, the NSC and elsewhere should take note.

Turkey--a disloyal ally

In past administrations officials would refer to Turkey as "our long-time loyal ally" during the Cold War and thereafter. Such comments, routinely made were and are blatantly false and misleading. I have documented that during the Cold War decades Turkey on several occasions, actively aided the Soviet Union's military to the detriment of U.S. interests. Examples include:

During the Arab-Israeli war of 1973, Moscow's overflights of Turkish airspace were tolerated while Turkey refused to allow the U.S. refueling and reconnaissance facilities during the American airlift to Israel.

In the 1977-78 conflict in Ethiopia, Turkey granted the Soviets military overflight rights to supply the pro-Soviet Ethiopian communists under Colonel Mengistu, who eventually prevailed.

Over U.S. and NATO objections, Turkey allowed three Soviet aircraft carriers, the Kiev on July 18, 1976, the Minsk on February 25, 1979 and the Novorosiisk on May 16, 1983, passage rights through the Bosphorous and Dardanelles Straits into the Mediterranean in violation of the Montreux Convention of 1936. The Soviet ships posed a formidable threat to the U.S. Sixth Fleet.

Dr. Ted Galen Carpenter

Dr. Ted Galen Carpenter, Vice president for defense and foreign policy studies at the respected CATO Institute stated it clearly when he said: "The conventional wisdom in American foreign policy circles regarding Turkey asserts a number of propositions:

First, that Turkey has been a loyal ally of the United States since the earliest days of the Cold War and remains a loyal ally.

Second, that Turkey is a force for stability in the Middle East and Central Asia in addition to its role within NATO and European affairs.

Third, that Turkey is basically a Western secular country.

Fourth, Turkey is a good candidate that should be admitted to the European Union in the near future.

I'm going to argue that every one of those assumptions is either partially false or totally false.

First, is Turkey a loyal ally of the United States? Well if that was ever true, it's not true any longer. It is certainly not true with regard to the Iraq mission in 2003.

Second, is Turkey a force for stability in the Middle East? I don't think that has ever been true. You have fairly obvious things like the invasion of Cyprus in 1974... the ongoing claims to Greek territory in the Aegean and the provocative overflights by Turkish planes....the economic blockade of Armenia.

Third, is Turkey a Westernized, secular country? If anything the trend appears to be in the opposite direction under the guidance of the governing Justice and Development Party.

Fourth, is Turkey a good candidate that should be admitted to the EU in the near future? Turkey shows signs of becoming an increasingly bizarre and intolerant cauldron of populist nationalism. It's difficult to reconcile that Turkey with a worthy candidate for admission to the European Union...To be very polite about it, Turkey's bid to join the E.U. is decidedly premature...."

"Extortion in the name of alliance"

On March 1, 2003, Turkey's parliament voted not to allow the U.S. to use Incerlik Air Force base and Turkish territory to open a second front against the Saddam Hussein dictatorship. The U.S. had irresponsibly offered 26 billion dollars to Turkey to allow use of its territory to open a second front. Turkey's prime minister then asked for $6 billion more to change the vote! A U.S. Treasury Department negotiator called it "extortion in the name of alliance." The U.S. refused and the U.S. 4th mechanized division which had been on ships in the Eastern Mediterranean had to be sent to Kuwait to enter Iraq from the south.

Turkey--an anti-Christian country

Turkey is an anti-Christian nation. In the twentieth century Turkey committed genocides against its Armenian and Greek Christian populations killing over 1.5 million Armenian Christians and 350,000 Pontian Greek Christians from 1915-1923. An exchange of populations with Greece resulted in one million Greeks being removed from Turkey to Greece and 400,000 Turks from Greece to Turkey.

One hundred thousand Greek Orthodox Christians were allowed to remain in Istanbul under the agreement. However in September 1955 Turkey initiated a massive program against the Greek Christians in Istanbul which resulted in most of them leaving Turkey. Today only a few thousand elderly Greek Christians remain in Istanbul.

Turkey's anti-Christian actions against the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the world-wide head of the Eastern Orthodox Christian Church, are well-known and have been documented in many places including before the Helsinki Commission of the U.S. Congress by Archbishop Demetrios and others.

Turkey's U.S. lobbyists/foreign agents

Turkey has relied for decades on U.S. lobbyists particularly former members of Congress, as paid foreign agents of Turkey registered with the Department of Justice. Currently former Democratic Majority Leader Dick Gephardt and former Republican Majority Leader Dick Armey are paid U.S. foreign agents for Turkey. They are paid over a million dollars each.

In accordance with the Obama/Biden campaign statements on lobbyists, the Obama/Biden administration should refuse to see, talk or deal with Gephardt, Armey or their colleagues in any way.

Obama/Biden national security team needs to critically review and revise the U.S. policy of appeasement towards Turkey

In October 2008 the Obama/Biden campaign issued a disappointing campaign statement regarding Turkey which reads as if it had been written by Turkey's lobbyists. See www.barackobama.com.

Prime Minister Erdogan's actions these past few years culminating in his anti Israel and anti -Semitic actions at the Davos World Economic Forum call for an end to the present appeasement policy towards Turkey.

The Turkish military and the Turkish political leaders are responsible for Turkey's aggression and occupation in Cyprus, for Turkey's threats in the Aegean, for threats against the Ecumenical Patriarchate and for the horrendous treatment of it's Kurdish minority.

The U.S. in its own interests should call for:

1.the withdrawal of the aggressor's military forces on Cyprus; the demilitarization of Cyprus and return of the 180,000 illegal settlers in Cyprus in violation of the Geneva Convention;

2.autonomy for the 20% Kurdish minority--between 15 and 20 million Kurds;

3.the immediate return to the Eastern Orthodox Christian Church of the several thousand properties illegally take from it and the immediate opening of the Halki Theological School illegally closed in 1971.

4.a halt to Turkey's provocations in the Aegean Sea; and

5.the Congress to pass a resolution recognizing the Armenian Genocide and the Pontian Genocide and compensation for the victims.

The need to use diplomatic, economic and political pressure including sanctions and the withdrawal of benefits if Turkey does not cooperate To get Turkey to act as a responsible member of the international community will require more than words. Unless the Obama/Biden administration is willing to apply adequate diplomatic, economic and political pressure on Turkey to cooperate, there is little hope of progress. The pressure should include sanctions, withdrawal of benefits and no high level visits to Turkey or from Turkey until there is specific progress on the several issues with Turkey.

Dr. Carpenter urged the following in his remarks on July 16, 2008, commemorating the 34th year of Turkey's aggression and occupation in Cyprus:

"Now what specifically should Washington do? First of all, there should be a very blunt statement from the highest level...to Ankara that a close relationship between Turkey and the United States is impossible without major Turkish concessions on the Cyprus issue. Without that, we can have only an arms' length correct and rather frosty relationship.

Second, U.S. leaders should make it clear that the United States will do nothing to encourage the European Union to proceed with Turkey's desire for membership unless and until Ankara's policy regarding Cyprus undergoes a radical, constructive change."

President Obama has spoken eloquently regarding the application of the rule of law and human rights in international affairs. Call on him to demonstrate his sincerity by ending the decades of appeasement of Turkey and by applying the rule of law to Turkey.

Gene Rossides, founder of the American Hellenic Institute and former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury.


Erdogan Must Normalize Relations With Armenia To Restore His Reputation 26.02.2009
/PanARMENIAN.Net/ "Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's showdown in Davos inevitably hurt bilateral relations between Turkey and Israel. High-level officials from both sides have made harsh statements," said Ali Bulac in his article "Fury of the Lobbies".

He mentions that to some degree, these statements are understandable. However, when they cross the line and the parties' attitudes and stance become harsher, the criticisms turn into serious problems, causing unpleasant results. According to Bulac, a recent column by David L. Phillips from The Boston Globe is one such example. "If Erdogan wants to restore his reputation as a statesman and a reliable partner of the West, Turkey must repair its ties with Israel, normalize relations with Armenia, and welcome ships from Cyprus. Becoming an advocate for Hamas is a mistake. Turkey's future lies with the West. The Islamist street leads away from Europe to the Middle East," he writes.

"A country like Turkey is not afraid of such threats; it won't consider the threats referred to by Phillips. In fact, Erdogan's response to Peres in Davos should not be exaggerated. Other Arab countries have done the same. Muammar Qaddafi described the Arab leaders as cowards for their failure to do anything vis-a-vis the civilian massacres in Gaza. The Algerian parliament adopted a resolution making all diplomatic and commercial relations with Israel a crime. We also know a lot about the initiatives of the emir of Qatar under the roof of the UN Security Council. Iran, while displaying a balanced reaction, never wavered in its position vis-a-vis Israel," Bulac states.

The analyst considers that Jewish lobbies in the US falsely believe that they are strong enough to make their agenda accepted. "When it comes to the Jewish lobbies' threats with respect to the Armenian issue, this is not something Turkey should be worried about. There will be no difference between the endorsement of the claims by the US Congress and the approval of the same allegations by parliaments of other countries. Besides, the Jewish lobbies will be most affected by this because they will lose the monopolistic power over the "genocide" issue," worldbulletin.net reports.


Greek Lobby Most Powerful In U.S.? 25.02.2009
/PanARMENIAN.Net/ The United States' chilling relations with Turkey is not conditioned by compassion for Armenians or Kurds, according to an Israeli daily.

The matter concerns the powerful Greek lobby in Washington, Haaretz daily reports, enumerating the names of officials of Greek descent in the U.S. administration.

Ankara has been trying to neutralize the Greek activities with the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). However, the Israeli lobbyists have surrendered positions recently. The myth about Israel's global power is cracking, the report says.


Bagis Says Developing Ties With Armenia Is Important Today's Zaman Feb 25 2009
State Minister and chief EU negotiator Egemen Bagis has said that Turkey attaches importance to developing ties with Armenia within the scope of the country's policy of friendly relations with its neighbors.

"In this respect, we see the Armenian community in Turkey as an essential vehicle for this strategy," he said at a meeting at the Private Pangaltı Armenian School with administrators, directors and other representatives of schools run by Armenian minority foundations in Istanbul.

Bagis_ gave a speech thanking everyone for a warm welcome and saying that he brought Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's good wishes to them. "For centuries, we have shared our bread and water in these lands. We have been together in our good and bad days," he added.

Recalling that he was appointed the chief EU negotiator for Turkey on Jan. 8, Bagis_ said: "Today, Recep Tayyip Erdogan has become not only the prime minister of Turkey, but also the voice of the conscience of the world. We attach great importance to developing relations with Armenia as part of our policy for having good ties with our neighbors. We know that Turkey has increased its foreign trade with its neighbors 400-fold. We seek to improve political, economic and social relations with Armenia. Recent developments are reinforcing our hopes. I am hopeful. We see the Armenian community in Turkey as an important bridge in this respect because there are many contributions you can make to this friendship."

Minister Bagis_ noted that hatred and animosity cannot continue forever, as the two nations have lived in peace for many years. "Whenever we cooperated with common enthusiasm and common desires, we all won. Now we share common enthusiasm and common desires once again. This common enthusiasm is EU membership," he said.


Turkish Scholar Denies Remark On Armenians Hurriyet Feb 25 2009
WASHINGTON - A leading Turkish historian has said that a controversial remark by Adolf Hitler about the Armenians' claims of "genocide", which Armenians say inspired the Nazi dictator to launch the Holocaust, simply did not exist.

Armenians often quote Hitler as having told his aides in 1939, "after all, who remembers the Armenians" on the eve of Poland's invasion and one of the worst points of the Holocaust. But Turkkaya Ataov, a professor emeritus at Ankara University, told a lecture here late Monday that this remark did not exist in original Nazi documents.

The Nuremberg court, which punished Nazi leaders in the wake of World War II, did not accept this remark as true during the trials in 1946, Ataov told the lecture organized by U.S. Turkish groups at George Washington University.

He said the quote in this form first appeared in two separate reports in The New York Times and the London Times on the same day, on Nov. 24, 1945.

He said the articles had not carried a reporter's name and only had the byline, "by our special correspondent."

"There is no indication that Hitler, who was ignorant and an idiot who led his nation to a disaster, had any comprehensive knowledge about Turkish-Armenian relations," said Ataov.

Armenians and their supporters claim that nearly 1.5 million Armenians were killed between 1915 and 1923 by the Ottoman empire, modern Turkey's predecessor, qualifying the deaths as "genocide."


Turkey Defrauds The Maximum: And We? James Hakobyan Lragir.am 25/02/2009
The Turkish and Azerbaijani authorities keep announcing that Turkey did not change its stance on the conflict of Nagorno-Karabakh when establishing the Armenian and Turkish relations. The stance of Turkey on the conflict of Nagorno-Karabakh is clear to everyone: Turkey demands the Armenian army's withdrawal from the region and considers that the conflict should be settled in the framework of territorial integrity of Azerbaijan considering it as a ground for resumption of the Armenian and Turkish relations. Consequently, if Turkey does not change its stance on the conflict of Nagorno-Karabakh the establishment of our relations is not to Armenia's interests. It might seem that in this case Armenia should reject further development of our relations with Turkey if Turkey and Azerbaijan do not change their stance on the conflict of Nagorno-Karabakh.

However, Armenia not only does not reject it but also continues the Armenian and Turkish meetings and even expresses optimism on the perspectives of the normalization of the Armenian and Turkish relations. It turns out, that either the Armenian authorities are not honest in their public announcements on the Armenian and Turkish relation or Azerbaijan and Turkey are not honest when announcing no change of their stance. Of course, for the societies it is difficult to guess who is honest20or not but it should not be a secret for the sides. In other words it should be clear to Armenia whether Turkey has changed it stance continues demanding the withdrawal of the Armenian army.

On the other hand, in case of invariability of the stance of Turkey the Armenian and Turkish dialogue must not be considered unnecessary. Maybe the aim of the Armenian government is just to make Turkey change its stance through dialogues and to establish relations with Armenia without a precondition. So, it is not ruled out, that none of the sides is dishonest: Turkey's stance is unchangeable but Armenia continues the negotiations in order to change its stance. From this point of view, the settlement of the Armenian and Turkish relations which was launched or activated with the help of so called football diplomacy may not contradict Armenia's interests at all.

Perhaps, the problem is that the Armenian and Turkish relations have two layers: bilateral and geopolitical while the importance of the second layer maybe bigger. However, it is obvious that the problem must be examined in this context too. And when it is considered in this context it becomes clear that if Armenia does not lose almost anything from bilateral point of view it can even win something if Armenia is able to persuade Turkey and as for the geopolitical point of view till Armenia does not persuade Turkey it loses. Armenia loses because Turkey =0 D under the veil of settlement the Armenian and Turkish relations liberates itself from international pressure. And in this case without this pressure afterwards more confident tries to defraud the maximum for its geopolitical and regional purposes.

The Armenian and Turkish relations are not profitable for Armenia from geopolitical and regional points of view, as even if the borders are open it will not enhance Armenia's geopolitical and regional weight and its role though. Moreover, it may seem a paradox but Armenia can be more valuable as a geopolitical factor in case of closed borders.

Consequently, undertaking this process of settlement of the Armenian and Turkish relations and considering it as a possibility for its development Armenia should gain a very tangible success through enhancing its official potential and competitiveness in order to justify the nutrition of the Turkish success by this process started by Armenia. No prospect for such a success seems to have been outlined for Armenia so far which means that Armenia is charging the Turkish interests unilaterally.


'Armenians' Excessive Aggression Somehow Created A Consciousness Of Armenian Issue In Turkey' Journal of Turkish Weekly

Laciner: "Armenians' Excessive Aggression Somehow Created a Consciousness of Armenian Issue in Turkey which did not exist before."

* Interview with Assoc. Prof. Dr. Sedat Laciner, Director of the Ankara-based Turkish think tank USAK (International Strategic Research Organization) by Dilek AYDEMIR (JTW)

Q: Armenian Diaspora has been trying to impose their allegations on genocide to Turkey for decades. Do you think Diaspora will succeed in their cause?

SL: "First, I think Armenian Diaspora is trying to take revenge from Turkey more than imposing anything on it. Second, they protect their Armenian identity via keeping the sorrows and hostilities of the past alive. To analyze the first one, the sincerity of the Armenian Diaspora is questionable in claiming their cause. Modestly speaking, I do not personally believe that Armenian Diaspora aims to impose something on Turkey. If their aim was to pressure Turkey to accept their allegations on 1915 events, they could have achieved this until now. I am not sure if Turkish people or the State would use the word "genocide' to describe the 1915 events, however, they would have accepted the misdeeds conducted in these events. When you talk to ultra-nationalist Armenians, they say that Turkey's denial of its misdeeds in 1915 events is what frustrates them most. According to this ultra-nationalist approach, Turkey's denial of the allegations is a worse crime than its causing the death of many Armenians and sorrow of them. To understand the trauma caused by the sorrow of Armenians and Turks' ignorance of the issue should not be that hard. Healing the trauma caused by 1915 events is only possible through communicating with Turkish people. Yet, the Armenian side seems like trying to keep the wounds open and intensify the trauma instead of easing the wounds. I am not sure if this stance is intentional or it is a reflexive one. However, it is certain that nationalist Armenian Diaspora neither tries to persuade Turkey to see its "wrongs', nor it tries to heal the wounds of Armenian nationalism and identity."

Q: What are the problematic aspects of Diaspora's Turkey approach?

SL: "First of all, the Diaspora is trying to persuade Turkey without communicating it. Moreover, Diaspora only targets Turkey. When you just bother one without communication, it is meaningless to wait for mutual understanding. Aggression is commonly followed by the defense and counter-aggression of the targeted one. As long as Armenians keep bothering Turkey like this, Turks will try to defend themselves, and even prepare themselves for a counter-act. Armenians' excessive aggression towards Turkish State and Turks has somehow created a consciousness of Armenian Issue among Turkish people in Turkey and overseas which did not exist before. Armenians like to make Turks living especially in Europe and in North America a part of the Armenian Issue without making any differentiation between them. For instance, a Turkish worker in Germany, a Turkish art history student in France or a Turkish deputy candidate in Netherlands, who are totally irrelevant persons to the topic, can be target of Armenian lobbies. Armenian Diaspora's anti-Turkey activities not merely damage the interests of Turkish State, but also harm the interests of people of Turkish origin no matter where they live. For instance, numerous Turkish people have developed a curiosity towards the Armenian Issue just after Armenians' enduring allegations. Moreover, these people gained more nationalistic views than they had before. Armenians' efforts to persuade Turkey on the issue have not produce solutions until now. On the contrary, these efforts have somehow marginalized Turkey to an extent which is not favorable for Armenians. Maybe the most significant characteristic of Turkey, which Armenians need to understand, is that Turkey cannot be persuaded on any political matter merely through use of power or threats. Several states have attempted to use this way before, however, they have failed to succeed. For instance, Stalin's taming policy towards Turkey by threatening and blackmailing resulted in Turkey's NATO membership. Moreover, US's and EU's menacing approaches on Cyprus, Greece and Armenian Issues turned out conversely. Forcing countries like Turkey, Russia or France, which are highly sensitive to their national pride, to accept some policies using threats and blackmailing is not possible. Such an approach even can create unintended negative consequences which are not beneficial for the policy makers as it was in the Armenian Issue. As Armenians' anti-Turkey campaigns got harsher, Turkey's attitude became more disagreeable in accordance.
Another mortal wrong in the Armenian strategy regarding the issue is Armenians' seeking for backing of other countries. This approach is a disease of Armenian nationalism. Armenian nationalists, who witnessed numerous Christian minorities' gaining of independence with the support of Russia and other Western states in 19th century, planned a similar independence for Armenia. In this perspective, Armenian separatist nationalists were encouraged by France, Russia, England and United States and were mostly backed by these countries as well. Yet, it became very clear by the end of the World War I that the great powers of the age sought their own advantages more than Armenians', contrary to what was expected. Moreover, in these years Armenians were left alone by these states almost in every uneasy situation. For instance, France promised Armenians for an independent state in Cilicia, thus France could reduce its loses in the World War I with the help of Armenian Legion while debilitating the Ottoman State from inside at the same time. However, when Turks had started to gain significant success against France, France left Armenians alone while being the first occupier to leave the Turkish territory. Likely, Russians had ignored Armenians' benefits to get along with Turkey and they never considered Armenians unless Armenian interests served to theirs. There are many instances that Armenians were used as a tool for the benefits of great powers in the history. It is a fact that when Armenians and Turks are compared in terms of their economic, political and military possessing, Armenians compose an inconsiderable group for the great powers. If a great power prefers to better its relations with Armenians instead of Turks, it should be noted that this power aims to debilitate Turks and to create instability in Turkish state more than trying to please Armenians. Great powers can sometimes camouflage their easy aims with higher political, religious or humanitarian values. However, almost 200 years old Armenian case presents that Russia and Western powers' supports of Armenians has never been constant nor this support has considered Armenian benefits directly. Unless Armenians stop dreaming to debilitate Turkey with the help of backings of the other countries, they cannot have a powerful and stable state and strong regional relations. As it is widely known, this simple fact was underlined by the first president of the Armenia Levon Ter-Petrossian as well. Petrossian and his team, who realized that Russia's backing of Armenia debilitates Armenia instead of solving the regional disputes, tried to enhance Armenia's own power instead of seeking foreign support. Yet, Petrossian's approach, which could be considered as the milestone of modern Armenian history, was hampered by Russia and Diaspora radicals unfortunately."

Q: Why Armenian Diaspora behaves in this way?

SL: "First of all, the Diaspora lives in an imaginary world and it has marginalized from the reality of Armenian Issue as the years passed by. When we focus on the second and third generations, we see that they hate Turks more than the Armenians who witnessed the 1915 events. Moreover, we also know that there are numerous Armenians who still have a deep love of Turkey although they experienced emigration and other conflicts in the Ottoman State. Since young generations neither know Turks personally nor they take the problem rationally, they are angrier of Turks than their ancestors. Moreover, many of them are even full of hatred against Turks. Especially in Diaspora, Armenian generations are imposed with hatred against Turks in churches, schools or camps of radical political parties. 1915 events are written and rewritten more emotionally in the Diaspora every day by being more exaggerated at the same time.

Armenians' stateless position for long years can be considered as the primary reason of this situation. State means responsibility which prevents masses from being marginalized and from following superficial paths which do not fit reality. Armenians stayed stateless until 1991 and they carried a stateless nationalism in the Diaspora for approximately 70 years. Another negative effect of statelessness is the immature development of the Armenian identity and lack of fulfillment of nationalistic tendencies through legitimate ways. Another threat of statelessness is the assimilation. Even today, greater numbers of Armenians live in Diaspora than the numbers of Armenians live in Armenia. Many of the Armenians scattered around Canada, Latin America, Russia and France. Moreover, Diaspora Armenians come from diverse cultural backgrounds as well. Some of these Diaspora Armenians come from Russia and Armenia, some from Iran and Arab countries, and some from Anatolia. Thus, their cultures and even languages are sometimes differ from each other significantly. Hence, collecting such a scattered society under an umbrella identity is really tough. Church and some Diaspora institutions saw Turkish- Armenian problems as a cure to heal this inefficiency.

In other words, Armenian cause has long been considered as a cement to protect Armenians from assimilation and to keep them together in Diaspora. Approaching the issue from this perspective should not be understood as an underestimation of the problems between Turks and Armenians. There had been major problems between Turks and Armenians and Diaspora's abuse of these problems -deliberately or notâ€" does not reduce the significance of these problems."

Q: Do you believe there is an industry over Armenian Genocide?

SL: "Yes, that's true. Many get political and economic benefits from Armenian cause in Diaspora. Numerous people have become well-known, strong or rich thanks to Armenian cause. Maybe these changes are not even premeditated. As a matter of fact, the most dangerous aspect of the issue is these unintended consequences of the issue. Strong reflexes came about in the process and these reflexes helped to existence of the problem more than solving it."

Q: What are the wrongs of Turkish side?

SL: "When a problem is scattered around a century, people, who derive benefit from this handicap, occur in two sides in tandem. In other words, industry over Armenian Issue is not only present in the Armenian party of the dispute but also it is at hand in Turkish side as well. In Turkish side, this industry is composed of less numbers of people and it is much more political than it is in the Armenian side. With the multiparty regime, an ideological group arose as a result of their fear of losing their interests. This group manipulated the governments by speculating upon threats that Turkey was witnessing and it even withdrew the governments via military coups. Since May 27 military coup, there has been an interior conflict between the elected representatives of Turkish people and a militarist group. When Turkish democracy got stronger and economic-social-political pluralism was enhanced, the militarist cadre lost its power before the representatives of the state. Thus, this militarist cadre sought for collaboration with nationalist-right and ultra-nationalist left, moreover, it manipulated the Kurdish Issue, Cyprus Issue, relations with neighbors, European Union process and Armenian Issue mostly. In other words, endurance of Armenian Issue was employed as a tool to hamper democratization in Turkey and some paid efforts to make it unsolvable."

Q: What are the other faults of Turkey considering the issue?

SL: "Maybe Turkey's most significant fault on the issue is the ignorance of Armenian Issue for a long time. Until a Turkish ambassador's assassination in 1973, even finding a book on the topic was impossible in Turkey. Afterwards, Turkey perceived issue as a state problem and a few number of books appeared with the support of Turkish state. As ASALA and Tashnak terrorists assassinated numerous numbers of Turkish ambassadors, Turkey started to share special budgets for the solution of the disputes over Armenian allegations. However, that date was a bit late for a concrete solution and the state backed studies and researches were weak and skin-deep considering the complexity of the issue. Especially during September 12 period, in which army withdrew the government, numerous studies on the issue was published in Turkey. These books were sent to many libraries in the world as well. However, many of these books were borrowed by fanatic Armenians and were never brought back. Moreover some pro-Turkish books were destroyed as a result of fanatic Armenian readers' vandalism. Nevertheless, if Turkey could take the issue apart from a state problem and could set universities and civil society into action, it could be much more successful in handling the issue. While approaching the issue from this perspective, I do not mean "Turkey failed in its propaganda. It should have gone further.' It is certain that Turkey's approach to the Armenian Issue is ineffective and this is not that favorable for Armenians as it is expected. Turkey's presentation of its stance modestly would help the solution of the problem in depth."

Q: When Turkey's approach to issue is considered, how would Turkey can help the solution of the problem?

SL: "There are basically three significant aspects of the issue to which Turkey can contribute directly. Democratization, full membership to the European Union, and more dialogue with neighbors including Armenia and Armenians are these aspects. When Turkey is more democratized, the militarist groups, who get benefit from the unsolvable situation of the Armenian Issue, will leave the government, EU process will accelerate and the relations with other neighbors including Armenia will better accordingly. Indeed, all three stages will affect and help each other in tandem.
Interestingly enough, Armenians have tried to hamper Turkey's EU process via manipulating the Armenian Issue."

Q: What are the possible solutions to the problems from the Armenian?

SL: "What should Armenians do was analyzed very well by Hrant Dink, Turkish Armenian journalist, who was martyred by the Turkish deep state. For Dink, first thing that Armenians need to do was to end the hostility towards Turks which moves like a poison in their veins. Armenians' accusation of Turkey for anything goes bad was not only wrong but also dangerous for Dink. As he assumed, numerous problems of Armenians were shadowed by the excuse of Turkish threat. Hrant Dink's second suggestion for Armenians was that Armenians needed to focus on maintaining stability in their country instead of keeping the hostility towards Turkish people alive. Dink also used to think that Armenians gained their independence after longing for years thus maintaining stability and gaining power was hard as well as survival of the Armenian State. Moreover, Dink believed that unless Armenians collaborate, keeping the Armenian State alive was not that easy. To sum up, only if Armenians end the hostility towards Turkey, which poisons their blood, they can reach a common ground in Turkish- Armenian relations."

Q: Do you have further suggestions on the topic?

SL: "First of all, parties should change the communication language that they are using. If you employ a way of communication which is highly offensive, you will possibly receive an offensive expression from whom you address.

Second, if you aim to impress the party who you are addressing, and want to express yourself, you need to talk to him/her. Whenever Turkey demands a communication to talk about the allegations, Armenian side says "There is nothing to talk on, yet, just accept your misdeeds'. I call this stance as "shut up and accept' mood. To clarify, trying to impose some policies without listening other is not an acceptable approach in international relations. Such a stance would be at least "rude'. Thus, whatever their beliefs and allegations are, the parties should consider each others' opinions and they also need to follow international relations rhetoric and be polite as well."

23 February 2009 Interview by Dilek Aydemir (JTW)


23 Thousand People Left Armenia In 2008, 28.01.2009, PanARMENIAN.Net
Substantial increase in migration was fixed in 2008, according to the migration agency at the RA ministry of territorial administration.

The Armenian state border was crossed 2 mln 817 thousand times last year. The number of leaving people exceeded the number of those arriving with 23 059.

It has been the worst index since 2001 when 60 thousand people left the republic. At that, the largest human drain was fixed in March-April, after the tragic events that followed the February presidential election.

Its also reported that 600 thousand people visited Armenia as tourists. They were mostly Armenians from the United States, France, Georgia and Iran.


Barack Obama Will Not Use The Word "Genocide" According To An Armenian Political Scientist 25 February 2009, Krikor Amirzayan / armenews

U.S. President Barack Obama will not use the word "genocide" in his speech of 24 April next year to protect its ally Turkey. That month, the affirmation of Roupen Safrastian, director of Oriental Studies of the Academy of Sciences of Armenia. According to political scientist and leading scholar of geostrategy of the region, Turkey with U.S. military bases, an ally for the United States in the region. For the specialist Armenian, Afghanistan remains the center of interest of the U.S. administration and U.S. President will undoubtedly need the help of Ankara to carry out its mission. Krikor Amirzayan


Turkey-Armenia: War And Linguistic Media 25 February 2009 by Stéphane / armenews
"Universities in Turkey are better that the best departments of Armenian language and literature," reports the newspaper Golos Armenii Yerevan. This phenomenon observed in Istanbul, but also in provincial universities has led to "a shortage of teachers of Armenian." This surprising trend "is not the altruistic intentions," the title analysis. Turkey is aware that anyone, including friends and allies not to believe that the genocide [of 1915] did not take place. This will be used as a means of pressure on Ankara [by the community International]. Turkey realizes that it can no longer stop this avalanche, and attempts to minimize the damage. "

How Turkey argues Does his denial of the genocide? "In saying that, in its archives, there is no documentation confirming", said Golos Armenii. Ankara argues that the archives are open to all, but "seeks to 'comb' and some sort, with a total audit of Armenian documents. Of course, everyone can not have access to this type of task. This requires people safe. It is to prepare these auditors that Turkish universities have been responsible for recruiting. That is why there is a selection among those who want to become a professor of Armenian. "

On a policy of blind denial of the genocide, Turkey has risen to an against-propaganda. To this end it began in 2008 to broadcast in Armenian on the Armenian territory. She wants to present as a tolerant, democratic, full of love for his neighbor. " According to the newspaper, Yerevan is losing the media war in Ankara. "We do not even have a little news of fifteen minutes in Turkish. And if the archives truly open to the public, we will send to person, since we do not even have language specialists Turkey, "laments the title.

www.courrierinternational.com/article.asp?obj_id=94882


Minister Concerned About Anti-Diaspora Television Broadcasts In Armenia Gibrahayer February 19, 2009
YEREVAN - Armenia's Diaspora Ministry issued a statement on Thursday regarding recent concerns, published in the press, about the negative manner in which Diaspora Armenians are being depicted in television broadcasts.

"This could create a schism between Armenians from Armenia and from Diaspora. Such incidents upset both Armenian and Diasporan audiences," said the Ministry statement.

The Ministry explained that currently one of the most important bridges between the Diaspora and Armenia is television, through which Armenians in the Diaspora find a lasting link with the homeland.

"Each insulting statement can have an irreversible impact on Armenia-Diaspora cooperation and efforts to unite our nation," continued the statement.

The Ministry said it took into consideration a wave of protests from the Diaspora and has appealed to Armenian broadcasters to be mindful that any and all broadcasts contain a positive message of bringing all Armenians together around an independent Armenian Republic.

The Ministry also announced its production entitled "Established Diasporans," which began airing on Armenia State Television, with the first instalment featuring VivaCell General Manager Ralph Yerikian.


Recep Tayyip Erdogan: "I Believe The United States Feels The Importance Of Turkey" 25.02.2009
/PanARMENIAN.Net/ Turkey's ties with Israel were severely strained by Turkish prime minister Erdogan's fierce criticism of the recent bombardment of Gaza, which left more than 1,300 Palestinians dead. Relations soured further after he stormed out of a debate at the world economic forum in Davos after clashing angrily with the Israeli president, Shimon Peres. The gesture was widely acclaimed in Turkey and throughout the Muslim world but was condemned in Israel, where Erdogan was seen as an apologist for the Palestinian militant group Hamas, with which his government has cultivated ties.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan said an Israeli-Palestinian settlement had to include Hamas, which he called the party of "change and reform". He also condemned Israel's recent onslaught as disproportionate. "Hamas doesn't have any planes. Hamas doesn't have any tanks or artillery, and with the use of disproportionate force Gaza was being put under fire," he said. "One thousand, one hundred and 30people have died. We have more than 5,500 injured. Who is going to ask: what has happened here and who is going to pay the price for this?"

However, Erdogan dismissed fears that the US pro-Israel lobby would retaliate by lifting its opposition to a congressional resolution recognizing the Armenian Genocide claims. During last year's US presidential election campaign, Obama and his vice-president, Joe Biden, voiced support for the resolution.

But Erdogan said: "I believe the United States feels and knows the importance of Turkey within the region more than some people who do not understand this." According to him, Armenian Genocide is not an issue that can affect Turkey-American relations in a very strong way. I don't believe the US Congress would take a decision based on emotions. It should be left to historians."

Allegations by the Armenian government and Diaspora about the fate of their people under the Ottoman empire have long been one of Turkish society's biggest taboos. Turkey vehemently disputes Armenian claims that up to 1.5 million were deliberately killed in a program amounting to genocide. Officials say the death toll was much lower and a result of inter-ethnic clashes in which many Turks also died. Turkey has called for a historical commission to examine the issue and has recently pursued rapprochement with Armenia, with which it has no diplomatic ties, Guardian reports.


Accusations Against Anca Might Be Initiated By Turkish Lobby 24.02.2009
/PanARMENIAN.Net/ Accusations against the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) are purely political ARF Dashnaktsutyun Bureau's Hay Dat and Political Affairs Office Director said.

"The ANCA is registered as a public non-profit organization. It's not a charity organization, as it is inferred from the of CREW incriminations. ANCA is not registered as a lobbyist organization either in the House of Representatives or Senate," Kiro Manoyan told a PanARMENIAN.Net reporter.

"These accusations might be initiated by the Turkish lobby. Should there be any financial violations, the American Government would have noticed them," he emphasized.

"The accusations are much too serious. Discredit is thrown upon the voices of 15 senators, 211 congressmen and U.S. President Barack Obama," Manoyan said.

The Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington asked Wednesday federal agencies to investigate the Armenian National Committee of America for alleged campaign-finance and lobbying violations.

In a seven-page complaint, the CREW asserts that the Armenian-American group failed to register either as a domestic lobbying group or as a foreign agent despite its political work and its close ties to an Armenian political party.

"We're not saying they should be out of business," said Melanie Sloan, a former federal prosecutor who's now the head of the private Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. "We're saying there are laws and they should be following them."


Turkish Scholar Denies Remark On Armenians by Ümit Enginsoy
WASHINGTON - A leading Turkish historian has said that a controversial remark by Adolf Hitler about the Armenians' claims of "genocide", which Armenians say inspired the Nazi dictator to launch the Holocaust, simply did not exist.

Armenians often quote Hitler as having told his aides in 1939, "after all, who remembers the Armenians" on the eve of Poland's invasion and one of the worst points of the Holocaust. But Turkkaya Ataov, a professor emeritus at Ankara University, told a lecture here late Monday that this remark did not exist in original Nazi documents.

The Nuremberg court, which punished Nazi leaders in the wake of World War II, did not accept this remark as true during the trials in 1946, Ataov told the lecture organized by U.S. Turkish groups at George Washington University.

He said the quote in this form first appeared in two separate reports in The New York Times and the London Times on the same day, on Nov. 24, 1945.

He said the articles had not carried a reporter's name and only had the byline, "by our special correspondent."

"There is no indication that Hitler, who was ignorant and an idiot who led his nation to a disaster, had any comprehensive knowledge about Turkish-Armenian relations," said Ataov.

Armenians and their supporters claim that nearly 1.5 million Armenians were killed between 1915 and 1923 by the Ottoman empire, modern Turkey's predecessor, qualifying the deaths as "genocide."


ANCA Refutes Accusations PanARMENIAN.Net 24.02.2009
/PanARMENIAN.Net/ A high-profile ethics organization on Wednesday asked federal agencies to investigate the Armenian National Committee of America for alleged campaign-finance and lobbying violations.

In a seven-page complaint, the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington asserts that the Armenian-American group failed to register either as a domestic lobbying group or as a foreign agent despite its political work and its close ties to an Armenian political party.

The Armenian National Committee of America is one of the country's most prominent ethnic organizations and has worked closely with members of Congress on Armenian genocide commemorative resolutions.

"We're not saying they should be out of business," said Melanie Sloan, a former federal prosecutor who's now the head of the private Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. "We're saying there are laws and they should be following them."

Sloan attached 161 pages worth of exhibits in support of the allegations.

Armenian National Committee of America officials denounced the charges as unfounded.

"We've taken a preliminary look at (the) allegations, and they are without merit and full of inaccuracies and misrepresentations," said Elizabeth Chouldjian, the Armenian National Committee's communications director.

Chouldjian declined to undertake a point-by-point rebuttal of the complaint, but she said that "the real story is why this is being brought up now." She noted that the complaint was filed about two months before the annual Armenian Genocide commemoration on April 24; she didn't elaborate on a potential motive for the complaint's timing.

The Armenian National Committee of America describes itself on its Web site as "the largest and most influential Armenian-American grass-roots political organization." It's active in regions with large Armenian-American populations, including New Jersey, Florida and California.

Its allies are rallying renewed support for an Armenian genocide resolution that collapsed in the last Congress. Under presidents of both political parties, the Pentagon and State Department have opposed the resolution as an insult to Turkey, which denies that mass deaths from 1915 to 1923 amounted to genocide.

The genocide commemoration will pose a dilemma for President Barack Obama. As a candidate, he voiced support for the resolution. As president, he called Turkish President Abdullah Gul on Monday for what the White House called a "warm and productive" chat.

The genocide resolution is also at the heart of the new complaint.

"Circumstantial evidence indicates that ANCA and its current or former executive directors ... have lobbied Congress and the executive branch heavily with regard to perennial congressional Armenian genocide resolutions," the complaint says.

The complaint cites interviews and news releases in which Armenian National Committee of America leaders tout their efforts to sway Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., among others.

The committee hasn't registered as a lobbyist with either the House of Representatives or the Senate. Failure to register can be a felony offense, though Sloan said potential problems often were resolved simply by registering after the fact.

The Armenian Assembly of America, the nation's other prominent Armenian-American organization, is registered and reported spending $182,000 on lobbying last year.

"These are the rules, and everybody has to follow them," Sloan said.

The multi-pronged complaint asks the Internal Revenue Service to review potential tax violations and asks the Justice Department to open a criminal probe. It also asks the House and Senate to open "companion inquiries" into the lobbying allegations.

Citing news accounts, a U.S. Embassy study and the research of Heather Gregg, an assistant professor at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Calif., the complaint contends that the Armenian National Committee of America is "an arm" of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation, a political party that's part of Armenia's ruling coalition.

Agents of foreign political parties are required to register with the Justice Department.

The Armenian National Committee of America can endorse political candidates, as a 501(c)(4) organization. The affiliated Armenian National Committee of America Western Region, based in Glendale, Calif., cannot because it's a 501(c)(3) organization. The complaint alleges that the Western office nonetheless participated in the national organization's candidate endorsements, in part by sharing a Web site.

Sloan said the complaint arose from "a tip" received late last year.

Sloan's nonprofit, six-year-old ethics group claims no partisan affiliation, and it previously has filed ethics complaints about lawmakers of both parties.


Armenian Descent Politicians in Australia: Joe Hockey, Moving Onward, Ever Upward Canberra Times February 22, 2009
IT IS not often you will find a politician willing to imitate a large green ogre on national television.

Then again, Joe Hockey has made a career out of the unlikely.

Born to an Armenian father and Palestinian mother, both of whom had fled Palestine amid the turbulent and violent creation of Israel, Hockey the youngest of four reaped the benefits of his parents' determination and hard work to create a new life in Australia.

Educated at a prestigious Jesuit Sydney school, he went on to become the first of his family, in any generation, to attend university.

Representing the wealthiest electorate in the country, his ascendancy to politician, minister, cabinet minister and now key Opposition spokesman is a remarkable tale of the unlikely.

Replacing embattled Deputy Opposition leader Julie Bishop last week as Treasury spokesman, it is the second time Hockey has been parachuted into a crucial and vulnerable portfolio, where the previous occupant was seen to be underperforming. In February 2007, then prime minister John Howard appointed Hockey as salesman of his WorkChoices legislation, coming under brutal attack from a Labor opposition.

Ousting a staid Kevin Andrews as minister for employment and workplace relations, Hockey immediately set about introducing himself to voters as "minister for jobs", in honour of the national employment boom.

And then there was the Shrek episode.

Affixing a lime-green headband with ears to his head, Hockey appeared on the Nine Network's Mornings with Kerri-Anne, imitating the unlikely fairytale hero while explaining his government's industrial relations reforms.

The charade was a nod to a political cartoon that appeared in newspapers after he reportedly said Labor's deputy leader Julia Gillard was prettier than he was, although Hockey maintains his comments were twisted.

It wasn't quite the macarena but it was a brave move.

Indeed, the Member for North Sydney owes much of his public profile to breakfast television.

He appeared on Seven's Sunrise program alongside Kevin Rudd for five years, tossing around friendly political banter each Friday morning.

The pair's segment and the network enjoyed high ratings before the jovial arrangement was scuttled by the "fake dawn service" scandal. Rudd had been scheduled to travel to Vietnam for an Anzac dawn service at the site of the Battle of Long Tan.

The service was to be broadcast live meaning it needed to be held an hour before dawn in Vietnam to compensate for time differences.

Predictably, the proposal sparked outrage among veterans and when details of the stunt appeared in newspapers, all parties denied any knowledge of the plans.

Cancelling the segment, Rudd offered the excuse that the pressures of an election year were a little much for two "long- standing mates" on opposite sides of the political divide.

The early morning banter and ogre ears may have been put away for good not least since Labor has interred WorkChoices in a pauper's grave but Hockey's unique brand of politicking is still in play.

Facing off against Treasurer Wayne Swan this week on the ABC's Q and A program, Hockey drew laughter from the studio audience when he labelled the Government's spending habits as "worse than a drunken sailor".

It would be a mistake, however, to pigeonhole Hockey as the jolly polly.

As the Coalition careened towards election defeat, Hockey was just one of four Liberals to let Howard know his time was up. It was a bold move from a man who owed much of his career to Howard, who by appointing Hockey as cabinet minister afforded him the distinction of being the youngest to take up such a role. Additionally, there was no larger target leading into the election for Labor's aggression than WorkChoices and although plenty of mud was slung, Hockey emerged relatively untainted by Howard's poisoned chalice.

These days, a casual observer of question time would do worse than to surmise Hockey perhaps harbours special feelings for the dispatch box, so often does he leap to his feet to raise points of order with Speaker Harry Jenkins.

He has now relinquished the position of manager of opposition business to Christopher Pyne, but will have more than enough opportunity to face off with the Government over the economy.

But it was not Labor, however, that presented Hockey with his first challenge this week.

He had not set one foot in the House of Representatives or issued a single line of a press release before suggestions appeared there were intra-party grumblings over his appointment as Treasury spokesman.

Reports emerged Malcolm Turnbull had first offered the shadow Treasury gig to Peter Costello, making Hockey a humiliating second choice. The veracity and origin of the offer have now come into question, but Hockey made it clear he had moved on from the issue.

"There was no instability," he said. "As I said earlier in the week, if you get offered a baggy green cap to play for Australia, you don't really care who you beat for the job."

Second fiddle? Unlikely.


Armenians May Benefit from Pres. Obama Befriending Turkey By Harut Sassounian Publisher, The California Courier
Turkey's two top leaders were elated that Pres. Obama called them last week. Pres. Gul and Prime Minister Erdogan used glowing terms to describe their talks with the President of the United States.

At a time when Turkey is facing a series of political setbacks --antagonizing Israel and American Jews by siding with Hamas in the Gaza conflict; failing in its self-appointed mediating role between Syria and Israel; and prompting Cyprus to threaten to veto Turkey's application for European Union membership due to its continued occupation of Northern Cyprus -- Gul and Erdogan are desperately trying to exploit every opportunity to prop up their country's image and gain support from their constituency at home before next month's crucial local elections.

The newspaper Sabah headlined its article on Pres. Obama's Feb. 16 phone calls as "Double Praise for Ankara." It claimed that the U.S. President told Gul: "We appreciate the leadership displayed by Turkey in the region. You are putting forth important efforts in Afghanistan and the Caucasus." Obama then reportedly told Erdogan: "I want to state that your personal leadership is vital in the Middle East peace process."

Moreover, Sabah reported that during the "25-30 minute" conversation, the two presidents discussed Afghanistan, Pakistan, the Caucasus, the Middle East and the European Union. Pres. Obama "emphasized the importance of Turkey's strategic cooperation" and stated: "America will always approach Turkey's concerns with understanding." In response, Obama allegedly expressed the hope that his administration would "collaborate with Turkey in numerous issues, including achieving peace in the Middle East, bringing an end to the PKK terrorist organization, as well as relations with Armenia."

According to the Anadolu news agency, Erdogan "highlighted Turkey's sensitivities regarding Armenia and the Middle East, expressing the importance of fair and impartial stance of the United States to secure that the relations between the two countries were not damaged."

The Hurriyet newspaper provided additional details of the phone calls by reporting that "the issue of the 1915 incidents was high on the agenda of Obama-Erdogan discussion." Gul supposedly told Obama that an Armenian Genocide resolution "should not be put before Congress." Erdogan was quoted as saying: "America's fair and impartial approach is important in order to prevent anydamage to bilateral relations." According to Hurriyet, "the U.S. president welcomed the recently restored dialogue between Turkey and Armenia, signaling that under the existing circumstances he would refrain from taking any steps that would harm these efforts."

There are two serious problems with the foregoing Turkish reports:

1. Given the Turkish leaders' self-interest in making exaggerated claims, coupled with the tendency of the Turkish media to publish rumors, no one knows if the reports of what was discussed during these phone calls are accurate. Such suspicions are validated by the fact that the White House, in its official announcement, did not make any reference to Armenia or the Armenian Genocide.

2. The Turkish leaders probably misjudged Pres. Obama's intent in making these phone calls as well the implications of his words. During his long presidential campaign, Pres. Obama repeatedly spoke about bringing a new approach to both domestic and foreign policy. Rather than threats or harsh language, Pres. Obama prefers to use polite and respectful words to win over foreign heads of state. The new American president's approach is to find common ground with Democrats and Republicans at home, as well as friends and foes overseas!

After reading the self-serving Turkish reports, most Armenians were displeased as they too misjudged Pres. Obama's intent in making these phonecalls. In my opinion, cordial or even friendly relations with the leaders of Turkey do not in any way detract from Pres. Obama's sympathy towards Armenians or his commitment to affirm the Armenian Genocide.

On the contrary, having a warm personal relationship with Turkish leaders would make it easier for Pres. Obama to use gentle persuasion when necessary. He could explain to them that commemorative congressional resolutions were adopted in 1975 and 1984 and a presidential statement was issued by Pres. Reagan without harming U.S.-Turkish relations. Consequently, acknowledging a genocide that took place almost a century ago should not detract from current friendly ties between the two countries. Indeed, opposing such an action is neither necessary nor wise!

Obama’s Foreign Policy Approach and Turkey Suleyman Ozeren
Since becoming the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama has followed a different path in several policy issues, including foreign relations. One of the most prominent aspects of Obama’s foreign policy is that he and his State Department team are open to dialogue and they approach the issues with an understanding of the positions of the concerned parties. This perspective enables them to communicate with the countries which may have conflicting positions in different issues.

The appointment of Richard Holbrook, a former United States Ambassador to the United Nations, as a special envoy to Afghanistan; trying to reach out to Iran with offers to start a dialogue; and significant changes in the US administration’s attitude toward detainees suspected of terrorism are among some of those policy changes.

Another significant aspect of the new US foreign policy is its ability to enlist and empower dialogue with countries like Turkey.

Turkey’s Role in Delicate Issues

Turkey has historically had a unique position in the Middle East, and given this background, it has played the role of arbitrator in the region for years. Turkey has been among the few countries which could communicate with Israel and the Arab countries, as well as with the Palestinian leadership. The effectiveness of the role that Turkey has played in the Middle East throughout history might have its ups and downs, but the feelings of the people in the Middle East toward Turkey have never changed.

Turkey is a country which has been showing the world that even in difficult circumstances it can criticize policies of any country if they are not in accordance with universally accepted values. Even in cases where there might be collateral damage in terms of foreign relations, such perception and understanding has proven itself to be a righteous option. At the recent Davos summit, the Turkish Prime Minister’s critical approach to Israeli policy toward Gaza led to enormous support from the Middle East public sphere as well as from the international community.

Moreover, Turkey has not had a double standard approach to cases which involve the disproportionate use of force or the targeting of civilians. In that respect Turkey perceives Israel to be at fault for using disproportionate force and targeting civilians in its so-called counterterrorism operations in Gaza. Similarly Turkey also has criticized Hamas for its reluctance to stop rocket attacks against Israeli territories.

As a country which has signed all the United Nations resolutions addressing counterterrorism issues, Turkey is also a role model for other countries.

More importantly, in spite of the problems within the country, including terrorism, Turkey has been the most stable country in the Middle East. Due to its experience with all kinds of terrorism, Turkey has developed a different kind of counterterrorism strategy whose focal point rests in respecting human rights and the integrity of human value.

Another example is the NATO mission in Afghanistan, where Turkish military forces provide services for people who, unlike other foreign forces, do not consider Turkish military personnel as an invading force.

Not only can Turkey talk to the leadership in Afghanistan and Pakistan, Turkey can also bring these states, which currently have serious problems, to the same table. Again in the case of Russia-Georgia conflict, Turkey was the one which acted swiftly to reach out to both parties.

Whether it is the history, the culture, religion, or regional dynamics, the reality is that Turkey always has the upper hand when it comes to enlisting dialogue among the countries in the region. Of course this is not something for granted. This advantage, if you will, is grounded in the foundation of a democratic state, which is in the process of accession to the EU, could show leadership in crisis situations, and is willing to show its dedication to peace and stability.

Common Grounds for Turkey and the US

Naturally the US and the EU members have their own interest in the region, and particularly the US has long history of involving itself in the region’s politics. The terrorist attacks against the US on 9/11, the previous ones in Africa and the others in the Middle East have been justified by the terrorists as a reaction to the US policies toward the countries of the region. In other words, every policy decision of the US has found a response in several ways, both negative and positive.

Considering the aforementioned points, there are common grounds for both Turkey and the US in terms of politics in the Middle East and Central Asia. Besides being long time allies, these two countries now have different kind of mission.

Lately, the new administration in Washington has indicated a significant deviation from the previous administration in their approach to foreign policy issues. To realize a positive climate in the Middle East, the Obama administration should be more communicative than the previous administration. In that respect President Obama’s recent phone calls to the President Abdullah Gul and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan are important. On the phone, Obama addressed the fact that Turkey has the leadership role in the region. The importance of this call lies in the fact that since the Davos meeting Prime Minister Erdogan has been harshly criticized by some of the foreign media as well as by some experts in the country. However, this phone call says otherwise.

What is to be done?

To realize regional stability, the US should work with Turkey with more of a cooperative approach rather than with just burden-sharing expectations. It is not something that both parties will need to develop; it is something they have put into practice before. The US should not dictate its plans and strategies to other countries, including Turkey. Regional policies especially should be developed through working together. In other words, the consultation and implementation stages should be worked through together; however, these lie within the responsibility of the US.

Obama heightened the expectations in his country and abroad. To fulfill such enormous expectations, it is a must for him to actually work with countries like Turkey to broaden the stability in the region.
Monday, 23 February 2009

An Obama Policy toward Turkey: Continuity or Change? Featuring Soner Cagaptay, Mark Parris, and Ian Lesser February 23, 2009
On February 18, 2009, Soner Cagaptay, Mark Parris, and Ian Lesser addressed a Policy Forum luncheon hosted by The Washington Institute's Turkish Research Program to review Dr. Cagaptay's recent four-month sabbatical in Turkey and to discuss the Obama administration's policy toward Turkey. Dr. Cagaptay is a senior fellow and director of the Turkish Research Program at The Washington Institute. Ambassador Mark Parris is the former U.S. ambassador to Turkey, and currently is counselor to the Turkey Project at the Brookings Institution. Ian Lesser is a senior transatlantic fellow at the German Marshall Fund, focusing on Turkey and the U.S.-Turkey-EU triangle. The following is a rapporteur's summary of their remarks.

Soner Cagaptay

Turkey is an elite project; historically, large elite groups have led Turkey toward their own societal values and foreign policies. This was the case during the Ottoman Empire, the Republican era, and, today, with the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). The AKP represents the new elite; it is supported by a large business community, directs domestic intelligence, and controls the executive and legislative branches. Former AKP member Abdullah Gul is now the Turkish president with the power to appoint judges to the high courts. In addition, around 50 percent of the media is now owned by pro-AKP businesses.

As the new elite, the AKP is shaping Turkish society in its own image, promoting social conservatism through administrative acts. It is this author's observation that it is not religiosity that is on the rise in Turkey -- i.e., the number of people attending mosque services or praying -- but rather government-infused social conservatism. Indications of social conservatism, such as women wearing Islamic-style headscarves (turbans), are used as benchmarks to obtain government appointments, promotions, and contracts. Social conservatism, however, is not in itself the problem, and a conservative Turkey can certainly be European. The problem is that a government-led project of this type is incompatible with the idea of a liberal democracy. And given Turkey's nature as an elite project, AKP-led social conservatism is reshaping Turkish society.

The new AKP elite is also reshaping Turkish foreign policy. In the past, Turkey's foreign policy paradigm centered around the promotion of national interests vested in the West. Today, the paradigm is based on a civilizational view of the world, manifested by Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's recent treatment of events in the Gaza Strip and Sudan. The government's sympathy for Hamas and harsh remarks for Israel's attack on civilians coincided with an Ankara visit by the Sudanese vice-president as his government faced charges on genocide at the International Criminal Court in The Hague. The AKP cares if Muslims are killed by non-Muslims, but not if Muslims kill Muslims. For the AKP, the problem in the Middle East is not violence or human suffering, but rather Muslim suffering at the hands of non-Muslims. The subsequent anti-Western, anti-U.S., and anti-Israeli view is the new paradigm promoted by pundits, think tanks, and newspapers close to the AKP. This paradigm drives public opinion, which is becoming increasingly anti-Western and anti-American. And because Turkey is a democracy, public opinion matters. Sooner or later, the anti-Western views will cripple Turkey's foreign policy partnership with the West.

Given these developments, the Obama administration should engage Turkey in a multipronged initiative, though one with strong gauges, to prevent the country's slide away from the West and liberal democratic values. Washington should treat Turkey as a Western country and take six concrete steps to rebuild bilateral ties. First, Obama should maintain strong cooperation against the Workers Party of Kurdistan (PKK), including ongoing discussions with Turkey, Baghdad, and the Iraqi Kurds to this end. Since 2007, U.S. assistance to Turkey against the PKK has helped improve Washington's standing in Turkey and built mutual confidence.

Second, the U.S. administration should rebuild bilateral military cooperation and emphasize NATO's role in U.S.-Turkish ties. If the Obama administration cannot win the hearts and minds of midlevel Turkish officers, Washington cannot sustain military ties with Turkey in the long term. NATO also provides a gauge with which to check Turkish foreign policy's slip away from the United States. Once Obama builds a consensus in NATO, such as a common stance on Iran, he should expect to find Turkey onboard.

The third step is to counter the new anti-Western paradigm of Turkish foreign policy. This is where the Turkish leadership has to step up to the plate. Turkey sits a fence between the Middle East and the West; pro-Western and anti-Western statements carry equal weight in shaping public opinion toward the West. Accordingly, to improve the U.S. image in Turkey, the Turkish government needs to highlight for the their public the two countries' commonalities, including institutions such as NATO, values such as democracy and free markets, and regional interests such as a stable Iraq.

Fourth, President Obama, while renewing transatlantic ties, must convince the French president to move ahead with Turkey's EU candidacy. EU accession is an important measure of support to the enfeebled liberal democratic values, such as media freedom, in Turkey. Fifth, economic ties and energy cooperation should be promoted to provide a "shock absorber" to the U.S.-Turkey relationship. The last step is to avoid an inactive U.S. policy; 2009 is the wrong year to make it appear as if Washington rejects Turkey.

Mark Parris

Many know the concept of Occam's Razor: if a problem has two explanations, go with the simpler one. For example, one can view Erdogan as anxious to pack the Turkish bureaucracy with people who share his worldview, who displays paranoia toward the press, whose vision is limited to the next elections, and whose enthusiasm for the United States and Europe is tied to a calculation of "what can you do for me." From this, you can conclude either of two things: that Erdogan has a secret agenda and wants to impose an Islamic paradigm on Turkey, or that he shares the same political culture as his predecessors, is acting much the same way they did, and is not retreating from the democratic ideal.

In terms of foreign policy, the AKP's record is marked by Turkey's its closeness to Sudan, Russia, and Iran, and paints an alarming picture. But it is not only Turkey that is getting closer to Sudan -- Russia is as well. One can look at these changes and see a shift toward an anti-U.S., or even anti-Semitic, picture. Or the changes could be seen as a reaction shared by many countries that simply had difficulties with certain aspects of the previous administration's policies.

The Obama administration should help build liberal democracy in Turkey. Threats to this progress come in different forms, such as in 2007 when the Turkish military warned the AKP not to change the country's secular orientation. Europe is the key to keeping Turkey on the right track.

Ian Lesser

The global economic crisis will eventually have an effect on Turkish foreign policy. The implications of getting Turkey into the EU have become more costly with the current international market instability, and Turkey will be seen as a greater potential burden by European countries during accession talks.

At this point, it will be difficult for Turkey to get the Obama administration's attention. During this period of domestic troubles, the United States might be looking for low-maintenance partnerships, and Turkey has not necessarily been an easy partner to work with. Continued convergence between Turkey and its Western partners is desirable, but Turkey should not expect miracles from the Obama administration regarding its ability to change the EU's stance on Turkey. Still, the president should make a visit to Turkey as part of his European trip to underline Turkey's European identity.

Finally, the AKP's changes to Turkish foreign policy are not merely the party's project anymore. All Turks embrace them. What is dangerous about this shift in orientation is not necessarily its direction, but the fact that it is neither focused nor well prioritized.

This rapporteur's summary was prepared by Melis Evcimik.
www.washingtoninstitute.org/templateC05.php?CID=3016


Envoy Voices Concern About Being Recalled To Ankara
Turkey's ambassador to the United States, who had previously been recalled to Turkey briefly over prospects of the US Congress passing a resolution to recognize Armenian genocide claims, has said he is concerned that such an incident could happen again, warning that a new crisis of this scope would cause significant damage.

"This was a first in our history. It somehow meant a protest against US policy," Ambassador Nabi Sensoy said in a speech in New York late on Friday, referring to Ankara's 2007 decision to recall him amidst tension over attempts in the US House of Representatives to pass a resolution recognizing allegations that Armenians were subjected to genocide at the hands of the Ottoman Empire in eastern Anatolia. He had stayed in Ankara for nine days for "consultations" before being sent back to Washington. "Then everyone understood the seriousness of the matter and a wrong step was avoided. Now we are facing the same danger."

President Barack Obama made firm promises during his election campaign to recognize the genocide claims. US presidents traditionally issue commemorative messages on every April 24, when Armenians claim the genocide campaign started, but none has ever used the word "genocide," dismaying Armenian Americans. Many say Obama could break the tradition and use the word this time. Separately, the Armenian lobby is also working to pass a resolution in Congress designating the World War I-era events as genocide. Observers say prospects for its passage are greater this time, because, contrary to 2007, when the US administration worked against the resolution, the new administration also favors such a move. In addition to Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton both pledged to support the Armenians' cause during their election campaigns.

"The Turkish nation is ready to struggle altogether against such a move. I hope that the officials in the new US administration will understand the importance of Turkey, the meaning of this issue to the Turkish people and the harm it will bring to Turkish-American relations," Sensoy said in New York.

He also stressed that there were serious chances for progress in efforts to normalize relations between Turkey and Armenia. "I am happy to tell you that we are close to that," Sensoy said, referring to prospects for normalization in Turkey's ties with Armenia. He added that Turks and Armenians would have a good opportunity to discuss their problems unless the US Congress passes a "genocide" resolution.

Turkey severed its diplomatic relations and closed its border with Armenia in protest of Armenia's occupation of Nagorno-Karabakh in a territorial dispute with Turkey's ally Azerbaijan. Normalization of ties, Ankara says, is contingent upon Armenian withdrawal from Azeri territory, as well as a reversal in Yerevan's policy of supporting diaspora efforts to win international recognition for genocide claims.

The Turkish ambassador also said Turkish leaders have recently invited Obama to visit Turkey to attend a meeting of the UN-backed Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) in Istanbul, slated for April. Turkish officials say Obama would send the world a message in support of East-West dialogue by paying an early visit to Turkey, which sees itself as a bridge between the East and the West. Sensoy said Obama was invited to the UNAOC meeting, which will be held in Turkey in April.

US congressman: 'Genocide' resolution not in US interests

Meanwhile, Robert Wexler, the co-chairman of the US-Turkey Caucus in the US Congress, also warned that US moves to grant recognition to Armenian genocide claims would not serve the interests of the United States. He also warned that any US step in the direction of endorsing the genocide charges would hurt attempts to normalize relations between Turkey and Armenia.

Wexler, who had talks with Turkish leaders in Ankara during a visit last week, said at a meeting with a group of journalists before wrapping up his trip that the US Congress should focus on ways to help bring about a Turkish-Armenian rapprochement. The process of dialogue picked up momentum when President Abdullah Gul visited Yerevan last September to watch a game between the national soccer teams of the two countries. Since then diplomats have been holding talks behind closed doors on normalizing relations.

Wexler also appeared to dismiss arguments that Turkey is moving away from the West because it is pursuing a policy that calls for closer dialogue with Middle East actors. He said Turkey decided that it belongs with the West a long time ago. According to Wexler, the US and Turkey may have different tactics in the Middle East, particularly concerning the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and dialogue with the radical Palestinian group Hamas, but they share the same objectives.

The US congressman also praised the progress made by Turkey's democracy, recalling how the state establishment and the people were alienated from each other when he first visited Turkey in 1991.

http://historyoftruth.com/


Beyond Genocide, The Great Catastrophe
There was a fair amount of thoughtful reactions from Turkey and abroad regarding the apology campaign that was launched on December 15, 2008. The main criticism from the Armenian Diaspora and from some Turkish scholars and activists was stressing that the word "genocide" is skipped in the body of the short text.

Developed in the West, the concept of genocide and its meanings are of great importance not only to Armenians but also to western public opinions. For them, the word "genocide" and what it stands for is beyond dispute, time and space. But I am not certain if the concept of genocide is adequate to the task of describing entirely what happened. To overcome the dilemma I propose to go back to those times of horror and the way Armenians themselves described it.

With due respect to the vast knowledge accumulated through genocide studies, I must point out that the notion of genocide remains, as far as the Armenian Genocide is concerned, confined to the understanding and the description of the act as well as the victims of genocide and the committers. The term "Great Catastrophe," which was shaped and used by the Armenians of the Ottoman Empire in those days to describe what was going on then and which we used in the apology campaign, however, is more evocative of the past events. In fact, the decision of the Committee of Union and Progress to eliminate Armenians, as one of the oldest groups of Anatolia, is a disaster that permanently affected the future of, not only the Armenians, but also all other entities living in the same land. Already torn apart by wars, Anatolia, which lost its Armenians, Assyrians and Roums (Greeks), has become a depleted piece of land that had to struggle with human, economic, social, political and cultural disintegration and decline.

In this sense, the Armenian Genocide is a common tragedy of Anatolia, and even today what is uttered in the villages of Anatolia as part of the old stories is the tally of an unprecedented catastrophe. Yet, I am not convinced that the "genocide" word is sufficient to accurately read the consequences of this irrational decision that Anatolia was subjected to. It is inadequate to explain what happened beside the genocide of Armenians and confines historic understanding of this horrible event. The Armenian history is then taken out of Anatolia and is being revived all around the world through the Diaspora. It doesn’t, however, tell about Anatolia after 1915.

Today the gap between the word "genocide," its cold, eerie and "distant" meanings on the one hand, and the "closeness" of words such as "çart" (massacre), disaster, catastrophe or slaughter on the other, is as deep as the gap between that awful decision of the state taken in Istanbul and the human drama that took place in Anatolia.

In fact, so many different grey areas subsist between the genocide victims and the perpetrators, so many people, including those who had to change their identity to survive, who were indirectly victimized, who saved lives, who simply remained to bear the consequences of the genocide. The Great Catastrophe is the great catastrophe for these people also. Native and individual stories of disasters that have been dug out through nascent historical research reveal the dimensions of the great catastrophe that Anatolia experienced, and witness a disaster that somehow goes beyond the genocide. From this perspective, the Great Catastrophe means more than the Genocide. Again in this sense, if the recognition of the genocide will be a punishment, the learning of the Great Catastrophe would be a virtue paving the way for living together again.

The debates that have started with the apology campaign on December 15, 2008 offer an immense opportunity for us to learn what happened to Armenians as well as their neighbors. Likewise, this year is the centenary of the takeover by the military wing of the Committee of Union and Progress and consequently the beginning of a special political mindset that still continues to hold Turkey in its grip. More centenaries to come, almost every year until 2023 and even beyond, will provide us the opportunity to learn and remember the fate of Armenians, as well as the consequences of that common catastrophe for people of Anatolia. Justice will rule as we learn about the dimensions of the process which has begun a hundred years ago and about what it has cost to all of us.
Cengiz Aktar © Copyright 2008 Hürriyet


Prosperous Armenia Party – Tactical Maneuvers Or The Start Of A Power Struggle 2009/02/23, HETQ, Gevorg Darbinyan
The answer to the question what was the problem that the recent 4th Prosperous Armenia Party (PAP) Congress sought to resolve remains unanswered. In reality, rather than providing answers to existing questions, the Congress raised at least two new issues that in the near term will be the top matter for discussion regarding developments internal to the regime.

First, what relations does the PAP have with Robert Kocharyan, the second president Armenia, and what plans do they share with each other? Second, have certain contradictions surfaced between Robert Kocharyan and Serzh Sargsyan that could lead to the collapse of the regime’s pyramid structure?

It was evident that during its conference the PAP was going out of its way to underline the role of Serzh Sargsyan. Not by accident, President Sargsyan pointedly took advantage of the PAP conference, by way of a long-winded speech, to present his principled approaches to a number of urgent topics. This was something that generally had no precedent in the political arena.

However, throughout the entire speech, President Sargsyan deliberately shied away from any internal political issues and thus left the impression that it wasn’t a topic for discussion since everything was under control.

It was generally obvious that the president was trying to behave as freely as a home owner in his own house. The president’s office set out the accreditation process for journalists allowed at the congress with complete oversight and it decided what media outlets would be permitted to cover the event. Despite the fact that this was based on the fact that starting now it would be the president’s office that would be handling the accreditation of reporters who could cover functions at which the president was present, there was no clarification as to why the decision to implement this process began with the PAP Congress.

And when PAP leader Gagik Tzarukyan declared that the party would continue to support the reforms of Serzh Sargsyan, it became clear that the PAP itself strove to underscore the regime’s unity and unanimity presided over by Serzh Sargsyan.

Against the backdrop of all of this, the absence of not only Robert Kocharyan but also the representatives of his team were glaringly evident. Despite the fact that representatives of the entire regime’s top echelon were present at the congress, this list of dignitaries didn’t include Armen Gevorgyan, who is considered to be Robert Kocharyan’s “grey cardinal”. Such a demarche of the Kocharyan wing wouldn’t have been so striking if it hadn’t been for the trial balloons let loose by the PAP before the congress declaring the return of Robert Kocharyan to active politics via the PAP and his pretensions to become prime minister. The question thus arises, in whose interests and for what reason was such disinformation spread if, nevertheless, Kocharyan’s participation in the congress hadn’t been planned for from the very beginning.

It must be assumed that, in reality, the course of the “game” had drastically changed, perhaps at the very last moment, just one or two days before the congress. Two facts bear witness to this.

First, until that moment, no representative of PAP had ever categorically denied the rumors regarding Kocharyan’s participation in the congress; rumors that had given rise to corresponding expectations that some earth shattering declaration would be mad by the PAP during the conference.

Second, just two days before the congress, Victor Soghomonyan, Robert Kocharyan’s press spokesman, officially declared that the second president had no ambitions as to the presidency of the PAP or to the post of prime minister. It remains unclear why Kocharyan’s headquarters had remained silent on the matter up till then.

All this signifies that there are two possible versions to the story. Either, Kocharyan’s intentions vis-à-vis the PAP were temporarily postponed or fell through at the last moment, based on a variety of developments or factors, or else the “outflow” of information regarding these intentions was carried out in an organized fashion by the regime, in which both Sargsyan and Kocharyan support circles exist.

The latter should be considered very dangerous because without it the bureaucratic-oligarch system could be subject to shake-ups in its hunt for a true “master” and lose its ability to resist.

In all likelihood, we are facing the first version. The drastic about-face of Kocharyan’s plans could only have occurred under the influence of powerful factors. One such factor might be that Kocharyan hadn’t received corresponding stimuli from the outside, perhaps specifically from Moscow, to return to the “great game”. If this is the case, then the $500 million Russian stabilization loan to Armenia can be considered not only as an economic coup for Serzh Sargsyan but a political victory as well even though it still isn’t clear what he must pay in return for this victory.

The other possible factor might be based on the March 1st public rally called for by the opposition and the expectations of a certain heightening of tensions afterwards.

Kocharyan cannot be blind to the fact that by returning to the front ranks of the regime right before the rally he will surely incite activist oppositional circles in the society and will merely spur them on to work with a greater sense of purpose. The called for public rally will show just how strong the resistance will be to block the road to Kocharyan’s return.

Regardless of which version is the true one, Kocharyan’s “false start” is only temporary in nature. Commenting on the possibility of a Kocharyan reappearance on the back of the PAP, Gagik Tzarukyan stated a few days after the party conference that, “When he resurfaces he will disclose his supporters. It is premature and senseless to talk about this now.”

That it is merely “premature and senseless to talk about this now” was also confirmed by Kocharyan, when his press spokesman declared the following immediately after the PAP president made the above statement, “Tzarukyan said it all.” Besides this, even during the congress the PAP delicately underlined this fact. By criticizing the government for implementing an incorrect taxation policy, Tzarukyan, in essence showed that he wasn’t burring any bridges with the former president despite showing a preference for the political coalition and Serzh Sargsyan and that for the PAP the demand for the government to resign could become a part of its political agenda at any given moment.
However, in this jockeying for position within the regime , it is the Prosperous Armenia Party, attempting to position itself betwixt the two scales of balance, that mostly comes out on top by assuming the role of an equalizing force and thus takes on a value of equal importance for the two sides. Regardless of whether Robert Kocharyan will use the PAP to ensure his return or not, the possibility of a Serzh Sargsyan-Robert Kocharyan confrontation, as a matter of principle, can all but be ruled out. What is taking place are tactical maneuvers, pure and simple, whose aim can only be the redistribution of circles of influence internal to the regime. Otherwise, such restlessness can quickly lead to a severe crisis within the regime.


Only 5-7% Of Armenians Use The Internet 2009/02/23 Kristine Aghalaryan

Studies conducted by the “Enterprise Incubator Foundation” reveal that some 150,000 to 200,000 individuals in Armenia, or 5-7% of the population, availed themselves of the internet in 2008. The number of individual subscribers numbered between 90,000 to 100,000, or 3% of the population. An oerwhelming majority, some 80-85%, of internet users still use telephone dial-up services.

According to 2006 statistics, 20% of households possessed a computer while the number dropped to 10% for educational institutions and national and local self governance bodies.
http://hetq.am


(Translated from Turkish) – (Letter to Members of Turkish Forum) Feb.23,2009
Truths Have Reached President Obama And Decision

Dear Friends,

From the very beginning, we all maintained our mutual belief that “CONVEYING OF TRUTHS TO PRESIDENT OBAMA, ONLY” will stop the Armenian claims. For this reason, we have given priority in establishing a contact with President Obama, and since April, we have conveyed information to his consultants.

First request of information came from a consultant in the first week of April, who was friendly with one of our members. The name of this friend is Mr. Kenan Sarı. He and his wife Sevi have created the Turkish Radio of Florida from zero, with their own efforts and finance. www.floridaturkradyosu.com . All of us are thankful to Kenan – Sevi couple, for their outstanding activities. Through Kenan bey, we have related our studies on the Armenian Genocide Allegations, together with a pocket guidebook developed in Britain to President Obama. In this respect, we also consulted our New York Consulate; they gave us all supports for which we are thankful.

We were aware as Turkish Forum, of President Obama’s preference to use respectable civic organizations, instead of official channels or biased specialists for obtaining information, and for this reason we started a detailed study based on American and Armenian based archival documents.

Respectable and all valued members of our consulting committee, and starting with Mr. Sukru Server Aya, researcher and writer, and thereafter Dr. Orhan Cekic from Maltepe University, Mr. Refik Mor from Germany as member of Neumunster Board, and also Mr. Ergun Kirlikovali and Dr. Robert B. MacKay from USA have devoted valuable assistance. For names of committee members see: turkishforum.com/tr/content/Turkish-forum/

We have hastily prepared the necessary documents based on American Archives, and submitted with a covering letter to the USA Ankara Embassy for presentation to President Obama. See:

www.turkishforum.com.tr/en/content/2009/02/08/turkish-forums-letter-of-facts-to-president-barrack-huseyin-obama-special-anouncment-to-members/ or www.turkishforum.com.tr/tr/content/2009/02/08/abdde-ermeni-tasarisi-ve-turkish-forumdan-obamaya-yonlendirici-bir-mektup-ve-metubun-metni-ozel-bir-duyuru/

If you refer to the above, you will see the scope of the contradiction between their consultant reports and the historical resolutions that they themselves had adopted. Each annexed document we have submitted is capable of scraping the roots of the Genocide allegation, by itself. We have started to distribute these annexes to the members of Turkish Forum, who have granted financial and other services to our activities.

According to news which reached us through our members, Obama will not acknowledge the Armenian genocide in the manner demanded by the Armenian lobby. Realities have not only reached the President, but also impressed him. President Obama, does not want to lose (because of an Armenian genocide allegation that never happened), a country such as Turkey, which presents a historical dualism with the USA interests.

You may observe some evidence from the press news. For example, the messages sent by Obama to Ankara… The sudden visit of the Turkish-friends group, of senators to Ankara !… The fact that when Obama visited Canada, he went to a Turkish grocery store for chatting… Please observe the press news…you will clearly notice that Obama is getting close to Turkey... Think of the investigation against the Armenian lobby, which gave financial and electoral support to Obama… Please follow the press and Turkish Forum…you will see Obama’s getting nearer. Above news, have been report to you, our esteemed members, in the quickest way and posted in our web sites in Turkish or English http://www.turkishforum.com/

This result has been achieved by you… Turkish Forum has acted within the scope of your wishes and put a strong mark in the American Political life. Truths, have reached President Obama. The honor of applying this stamp is due to the Turkish Forum Management and the Members of the Cobsulting Committee, who have become a storehouse of knowledge. To continue our struggle against anti-Turkish lobbies, we require your financial and moral support, as a sacred service.

I wish that my friends will live their happy tomorrows in the spirit of righteousness, and that our next generations will not carry the stain of genocide in their future life.

Dr. Kayaalp Buyukataman, President Turkish Forum – World Turkish Coalition

( Translated by Sukru S. Aya! Hope Kaya bey is right!)


ATAA Mourns the Victims of the Khojaly Massacres in Western Azerbaijan
The Assembly of Turkish American Associations mourns the victims of the Khojaly massacres. As Human Rights Watch documented, between February 26 and 27, 1992, the Armenian Armed Forces and Russian 366th Motor Rifle Regiment massacred 613 Azerbaijani civilians, 106 of them women and 83 of them children. Armenian forces took hostage another 1275, torturing 56 to death; another 150 remain missing to date. Over 480 civilians were disabled through mutilation, 76 of them teenage boys and girls. Young girls were raped and sexually mutilated. Twenty-five children lost both their parents, while 130 children were left motherless or fatherless.

According to Human Rights Watch, the massacres occurred while Azeri villagers were fleeing as their town fell to invading Armenian forces. The Armenian invasion of western Azerbaijan continues to date, and has caused the displacement of 1.5 million Azeris.

Human Rights Watch stated, "We place direct responsibility for the civilian deaths with Armenian forces. Indeed, neither our report nor that of Memorial includes any evidence to support the Armenian argument that Azerbaijani forces obstructed the flight of, or fired on Azeri civilians"

Markar Melkonian, the brother of Armenian American terrorist and Armenian forces leader, Monte Melkonian, boasted, "Khojaly had been a strategic goal, but it had also been an act of revenge."

Serge Sarkisian, long-time Defense Minister and Chairman of Security Council of Armenia, proudly declared, "Before Khojaly, the Azerbaijanis thought that the Armenians were people who would not raise their hand against the civilian population. We were able to break that [stereotype]!"

The ATAA condemns the heinous acts of the Armenian Republic, in the Khojaly massacres, as well as subsequent similar massacres that occurred in Shusa and Lachin in May 1992, Kelbajar in April 1993, Agdere in June 1993, Agdam in July 1993, in Fizulu and Djebrail in August 1993, Kubatly in September 1993, and Zangelan and Goradiz in October 1993.

The ATAA calls upon the United States and international community to hold Armenian leaders accountable for these crimes, as well as for the refugee crisis that continues to date as Armenian forces occupy western Azerbaijan.

Declaration on Launching of International Awareness Campaign : "Justice For Khojaly- Freedom For Karabakh" [pdf]

For more information on Armenian-Azerbaijan Conflict, please visit www.ataa.org

Declaration On Launching Of International Awareness Campaign - “Justice For Khojaly – Freedom For Karabakh”
(Initiated By Mrs. Leyla Aliyeva, General Coordinator Of Icyf-Dc For Inter-Cultural Dialogue), Announced on 8 May 2008

We representatives of youth organizations from different geographic, cultural and political background Striving for contribution towards the peace and understanding between peoples, cultures and civilizations; Rejecting the means of using violence, injustice, occupation, aggression and oppression in all their forms and manifestations;

Conscious on great responsibility laying upon all concerned citizens, civil society actors and in particular active youth of the world in regard to establishment of international justice, defending rights of oppressed and promoting peace;

Highlighting the danger for international peace and security presented by unresolved conflicts in the South Caucasus Region, in particular the danger of extended conflict in the Nagorno Karabakh region of Azerbaijan; and calling for its prompt resolution on the basis of principles of international law, particularly the relevant 4 resolutions of the United Nations Security Council;

Underlying the importance of cultural activities and commemorations of significant historic dates of common cultural heritage of humankind; of addressing differences between cultures and nations that have given rise to cultural and political conflicts; and recognizing the negative impact of ethnic, religious, political, humanitarian and territorial conflicts as major sources of violation of universal human rights, on the prospects of global intercultural dialogue.

Appreciating creative initiative by Mrs. Leyla Aliyeva, General Coordinator of ICYF-DC for inter-cultural dialogue on launching international awareness campaign under the motto of “Justice for Khojaly, Freedom for Karabakh” (hereinafter Campaign) and ICYF-DC efforts to promote international inter-cultural civil actions in this regard;
DECLARE:
1. To call upon international institution in particular the United Nations and the OSCE to extend their efforts in peaceful and just resolution of Nagorno Karabakh conflict on the basis of principles of international law; as well as to take all necessary measures for bringing those perpetrated the Khojaly massacre to justice the act, which will constitute a solemn message of vigorous opposition by international community to genocides, ethnic cleansings and massacres wherever they are perpetrated and whomever they are perpetrated against;

2. To join and actively participate in the International Campaign collectively and through inviting individual members by signing this Declaration, participating in international rallies, meetings and gatherings aimed at achieving the Campaign’s objectives; contributing to its creative idea of raising international awareness through production of images and photos;

3. To call upon our friends and networks on local, national and international levels to join the Campaign in diverse ways and actively contribute to image/photo messaging;

4. To establish an international youth E-network with the aim of disseminating of photo/image messages to international and regional inter-governmental and non-governmental organizations to raise the awareness on Khojaly Massacre and unresolved issue of Nagorno Karabakh conflict;

5. To call upon international institutions to provide for organization of the events and exhibitions under the Campaign in their headquarters and during international gatherings, meeting and conventions to educate international decision-makers on the reality in the region of South Caucuses and to foster them for promotion of peace, security and freedom in the region; and to provide all necessary support toward the successful achievements of the objectives of the Campaign

6. To support establishment of a special web-site dedicated to online promotion of the Campaign and to invite participants of the Campaign to benefit from the services of the site and to forward their image/photo messages as well as commentaries and other contributions to its official E-mail address: campaign@icyf-dc.org


Threats And Insults
From: Michael Assarian
Sent: February 07, 2009
To: turkishcoalitionofamerica.org
Cc: HAGOPIAN; Palaian Steven; Steve Robinson; Susan Papazian;
Douglas Snyders; Jason Sohigian; Jeff Masarjian; Matthew Bagdasarian

Turkish Coalition: The Armenian Genocide is REAL and did occur. My grandparents survived it. The Turks ruthlessly murdered 1.5M of a total of 2M Armenians that were at that time living in Armenia. It is you who is the HUGH LIE. You should be ashamed of your yourselves denying that this ever happened. You know that it did, so just admit it as the Germans did. Until this is resolved, this hatred will grow and continue as long as there is one Armenian alive on this planet.
Michael T. Assarian

From: someone someone
Sent: 26, 2009
To: turkishcoalitionofamerica.org
Subject: ur wrong

the armenian genocide really happened

the word genocide was created because of what u did to those poor armenians

i read in a very rare documentary that the turkish government used a lot of their money to take out what u did to the armenians. they also used their money to make lies and say what the turkish government whants to say so u would not look like the bad guy. there are also facts that ur wrong. they tried their best to say that the genocide never happened...everyone wittnessed that ur wrong ... the only people on ur side are the turks (obvoisly). so when u went to school u were never taught about the truth. i know u wont believe me and thats because u never learned about it because of what the turkish government did. seriously...take ur turky necked friends and listen up...UR WRONG!!!

From: Grisha Kirakosyan
Sent: December 24, 2008
To: turkishcoalitionofamerica.org
Subject: turkishcoalitionofamerica.org

I'm a 16 year old guy living in Glendale , California . You might think of me as a kid who doesn't know what he is saying, but know a lot of imformation about the Armenian Genocide. We claim that 1.5million of our people have died, you stole our land, you killed our women and children, and your burned our literature, yet Turkey denies that it was the act of genocide. Can you tell me what the difference between Armenians being killed by Talat Pasha was different from Hitler killing the Jews? Don't tell me that Turks died do so its not an act of genocide, because many Germans were also killed by Jews, as self defence, to protect their family, lets say 50 Turks were killed, which was to protect their family, 1.5million of our people are gone. The creator of the word "genocide", Raphael Lemkin, saw what was being done to the Armenians and couldn't think of a word that described it, so he came up with the word genocide. So your telling me the person who created the word genocide, doesn't know about genocide as much as you guys do? My final statement is that there so many people blaming Turkey for genocide, why would so many people be blaming Turkey for genocide? Armenians, Assyrians, Greeks, and Kurds are all blaming Turkey for genocide. I want you guys to answer back and try proving me wrong on this subject, I doubt you can, don't think of me as a little kid or anything because I do a lot of research on this subject.

From: DancerA1
Sent: February 01, 2008
To: turkishcoalitionofamerica.org
Subject: Your website Is so full of lies. Do you think anyone would believe a bunch of lying Moslem Turks?

A Turk tried to kill the our Pope. Turks kill Kurds. Turks kill an innocent journalist. Turks kill Christian missionaries. Turks just love to KILL KILL KILL. What do you expect from a population that has penal code 301? Nothing but censorship and lies. You are MONGOLS don't forget it, savage MONGOLs that raped and pilaged the minorities and 85% of Turks have Georgian, Kurdish, Armenian, Greek and Assyrian blood in them. We had to make you people look presentable. I guess 5 million murdered minorities are all LIARS? After all you don't even know or understand your own bloody history. And you wonder why Turkey is so disliked by the rest of the world? Fat chance you will never get your Mongol asses into the EU.

From: Eric Hendricks
Sent: December 13, 2008
To: turkishcoalitionofamerica.org
Subject: Bullshit TCoA

My Great Grandmother's family was driven from their homes and slaughtered before the eyes of her, then a 10 year old girl. I will never rest until Turkey pays for its crimes, and the world recognises the barbarity of the Turkish people. Your attempts to obscure such a genocide is scummy in the worst degree. The civilized world knows of your crimes and shuns you. Thank God that there are good people in this world to counter the efforts of evil men like you.

I spit on you and your lies,
An American Armenian

www.taldf.com/comments.html


How To End A Genocide Debate
The Frozen Relations Between Armenia And Turkey Are Now Showing Some Signs Of Melting, Grenville Byford, NewsWeek, Mar 9, 2009

It's almost April, so Washington is gearing up for another performance of the "Armenian Genocide Resolution Spectacular," a regular event since 1984. Here's the historical plotline: the Armenian-American lobby gets a few U.S. congressmen to sponsor a resolution recognizing the 1915 massacre of Armenians in what is now Eastern Turkey as a "genocide." Then other members of the House are induced to support it. (Members of the House may not be history buffs, but they understand the importance of stroking a powerful domestic lobby.) Next, the Turkish government says Turkey is too important to be insulted like this. In response, the American administration, recognizing that Turkey is indeed a critical NATO ally whose Incirlik Air Base is vital to the Iraq mission, starts twisting congressional arms to abandon the resolution. Offstage, the Israeli lobby, generally keen to boost Turkish-Israeli relations (though less so this year), works against the resolution. Finally, the House leadership reluctantly shelves the whole thing and the curtain falls.

Before staging this year's performance, however, Congress should note that hitherto frozen relations between Armenia and Turkey are now showing signs of melting, and that this may be the first step toward reconciling the Turkish and Armenian peoples. In September, Turkish President Abdullah Gül attended a Turkey-Armenia football match in Yerevan at the invitation of Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan, who recently met with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Davos. The two foreign ministers, Turkey's Ali Babacan and Armenia's Eduard Nalbandian have also been meeting. Both have made optimistic noises.

Progress has been possible because the Armenians have focused on the concrete issue of opening the Armenian-Turkish border—a vital matter to them since none of their other neighbors (Azerbaijan, Georgia and Iran) can offer a viable trade route to the West. Both sides have wisely avoided the genocide dispute, surely recognizing it will have to be dealt with eventually but that developing economic ties will make it easier to do so. Lingering in the background, however, is the Armenian diaspora's passionate insistence that there was a genocide—and its mirror image in the fury of the Turkish people denying it. Right or wrong is not the point. No Turkish government could contemplate opening the Armenian border with this issue front and center, and Congress should recognize that a genocide resolution would put it there.

In all probability, Turkey and Armenia can only resolve the genocide dispute if they recognize that "was it a genocide?" may be the ultimate question, but it is not the most important one today. To those aiming for reconciliation, two questions outrank it: what common facts can Turks and Armenians be brought to accept, and is the common ground sufficient for both sides to start binding up the wounds? To this end, Erdogan's proposal to establish a joint historical commission should be pursued. Though Armenia has rejected the idea so far—largely because it is winning its argument on the world stage—the government has softened its stance recently. If the aim is reconciliation, persuading the Turks to abandon the blanket denial they are taught as schoolchildren is what counts.

Progress is not as implausible as it sounds. In the early days of the Republic, Kemal Atatürk, who was not personally implicated, described the Armenian massacres as "shameful acts." No ex-Ottoman officials were investigated, however, as Turkey needed the newly minted heroes of its War of Independence to have no stain on their characters. Today, Erdogan will accept an investigation. In return, Armenia must accept a reciprocal investigation into the Ottoman Armenians, who fought with the sultan's Russian enemy, and their responsibility for massacres of Turks and Kurds. Weaving together these two violently opposed historical perspectives will take time and patience. As important as the final answer, however, is the development of empathy across the divide.

Congress can help keep the path to reconciliation open if it is willing to deny the Armenian-American lobby the instant gratification of a genocide resolution. Surely doing so would be far better than repeating the exercises of the last 25 years over and over again until a resolution finally passes and all the House's leverage over Turkey evaporates, along with most of the good will in the Turkish-American alliance, and maybe even the alliance itself. For its part, the Armenian diaspora might even support reconciliation if only as its second choice. Finally, good relations between Turkey and Armenia would further U.S. objectives in the Caucasus. The proposed hydrocarbon corridor through the Caucasus from Central Asia looks much more secure in the context of Turkish-Armenian friendship, and it might give Armenia the confidence to break with the status quo in the longstanding Nagorno-Karabakh dispute with neighboring Azerbaijan. Congress and others should recognize that this year holds real promise for the beginning of reconciliation between the Turkish and Armenian peoples. If nothing comes of it, Congress can always return to a resolution.

Byford writes frequently on Turkish affairs and is a regular contributor to Newsweek.com.
www.newsweek.com/id/186973

Comments:
Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/03/2009
I am not comparing a culture to rats, just you. Don't flatter yourself as being the sole representative of a culture. You are nothing but a liar and a crook and you know it. You are also a coward for continuously hiding behind fake names.

Please, prove me wrong by revealing your true identity here, for the benefit of unsuspecting readers. If you cannot, then you prove me right by default, that you, indeed, are the rat in ararat.

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
"Once arat, always a rat... like the rat in ararat (smiles) "

Sir, you are out of line - this ideology of comparing a culture to rats is offensive and hate speech. It is this menatality that was used to justify the Armenian Genocide and the Jewish Holocaust - that we are "rats" to be "exterminated"
and you take pleasure in comparing human being to rats (classic Neo-Nazi behaivor)

Thank you for proving my point and I have yet to see a single Turkish individual denounce this gentleman - this is why genocide keeps repeating and why Armenians are fearful of another one until Turkey accepts the responsibility for the Armenian Genocide

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/03/2009
artsakh, or shall i say jda, j, jd, juiff, pierre, hasan, burcu, manukyan, bob, john, el mexicano, blah...blah...blah...million such fake names behind which you hide. As if that is not enough, you have these fake names start a debate which inevitably proves your racist views are absolutely positively right... And then you pipe in under your jda name to "thank" all the fake names you created and whose debate you manipulated... Now, how sick is all that? (This is the kind of person lurking behind the virulent comments attacking me.)

Then you create a Walter Murphy character to dupe your readers, including me. When I thank Murphy for volunteering that new info, you come out laughing and boasting how you duped us. The Armenians duped the whole world with a bogus genocide for decades; is it too much that you duped me once? Your trick taught me to never trust an Armenian activist.

Then your racist jokes came out pouring, basically ridiculing all Turks and every facet of Turkish culture. You even say Turks have no sense of humor. Then I finally smelled the rat in ararat: it was you under all those lies, fake debates, falsifications... Your predecessors, Andonian of the fake Talaat telegrams and schmavonian of the falsified Morgenthau stories, and many others, would be proud of you.

Once arat, always a rat... like the rat in ararat (smiles)

If you are so righteous, why don't you reveal your identity to the readers of this column out of respect to them, like I reveal mine, always? Let's see who the coward is: me or you, the rat in ararat?

I ask the readers: who do you really trust? Me, the honest Turk who always says it like it is and signs his true name? Or this tricky Armenian who uses many fake names and bogus arguments to dupe the readers?

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
When it was discovered that the world was round, there were some who denied it, even intelligent professors at universities couldn't believe that the world was round and not flat, but the truth was that the world is round despite any denial of it. I am sure you can find someone somewhere who will say that the world is flat but that doesn't make it true.

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
This is a quote from Mr. Kirlikovali which is racist to say the least and he should be condemned by Turks and Armenians for promoting outright racism:

"Come out you littel rat... Identify yourself to me... I got a nice, yummy piece of cheese for youuuu... Come out of your hole now... Love you...(smiles)

How rude of me, never asked your preference. Jda (never mind your million other Andonian names) Should I call you the rat in ararat or Pinocchian? Which one do you like better"

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/03/2009
Ahmet Altan and others like Berktay, Akcam, Insel, etc., all belonged to the same marxist-lleninist groups of 1970s in Turkey and are avenging Turkey for foiling their attempts to create a Soviet satellite in Turkey back in 1970s. Most were caught, tried, convicted, and jailed. Some even escaped (Akcam). You can see their "wanted" posters of 1970s at www.tallarmeniantale.com, for nostalgic reasons if nothing else. Akcam is now a paid Armenian agent, getting salaries from both the Cafesjian Foundation and Zoryan Institute. Because of the pressure we, the Turkish Americans, placed on the University of Minnesota, the Armenian lobby found him another job at Clark University in Massachusettes. Akcam is now tasked with being a mouth piece for Dadrian's falsifications. Armenian diaspora narratives are so racist and dishonest that they cannot even withstand scrutiny here in Newsweek columns, let alone a court room. Armenian will have to face their own history, and demons, as summarized in the "six T's of the Turkish-Armenian conflict"" Tumult (rebellions), terrorism (then and now), treason, territorial demands, Turkish suffering and losses caused by the first 4 T's, and the Tereset (caused by the first 5 T's.) Any questions?

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
There is a simple explanation for this wide divide between the Turkish people and their government. Turkey is not a democracy. The citizens of Turkey have very little influence on the policies of their government.

The following very touching article by Ahmet Altan, a righteous Turkish writer, reflects how much Turkey must evolve before it can be classified among the ranks of civilized European nations. This article, translated into English, is simply titled ???Genocide.??? It was posted in Turkish on www.gazetem.net on May 9:

Part 2
Our guilt today is, not allowing the Armenians even to grieve for their cruelly killed relatives and parents. Which Armenian living in Turkey today can openly grieve and commemorate a murdered grandmother, grandfather or uncle?

I have no part in the terrible sin committed by the Ittihadists, but the sin of not allowing grief for the dead belongs to all of us today. Do you really want to commit this sin?

Is there anyone among us who would not shed tears for a family attacked and killed at home in the middle of the night, or for a little girl having lost her mother is left all alone in the hell called "deportation," or for her white-bearded Armenian grandfather shot to death?

Whether you call it genocide or not, hundreds of thousands of human beings were murdered. Hundreds of thousands of lives were extinguished.

The fact that some Armenian fighters also killed some Turks cannot be an excuse to mask the truth from our eyes.

Every human being of conscience is capable of grieving for the murdered Armenians, Turks, and Kurds. If you ask me, we all should. Babies died; women and old people died. They died tormented, crying and horrified.

Is it really so important for you what religion or race these murdered people had?

Even in these terrifying times there were Turks who risked their lives trying to rescue Armenian children. We are as much the children of these rescuers as the children of the murderers.

Instead of siding with the barbarism of the murderers, why don't we side with the rescuers' compassion, honesty, and courage? There are no more victims left to be rescued today, but there is grief to be shared and supported. What's the use of a bloody, warmongering dance around a deep pain?

Forget the numbers, forget the Armenians, forget the Turks. Just think of the babies, teenagers, women and the elderly with broken necks, slashed bellies, and mutilated bodies. Think about these people, one by one.

If nothing moves in you when you hear a baby wail as her mother is murdered, I have nothing to say to you. Add my name then to the list of "traitors."

Because I am ready to share with the Armenians the grief of so many people killed. Because I believe there is something yet to be rescued from all these meaningless and callous arguments. That something is called "humanity."

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
The following very touching article by Ahmet Altan, a righteous TURKISH writer, reflects how much Turkey must evolve before it can be classified among the ranks of civilized European nations.

This article, translated into English, is simply titled ???GENOCIDE"

It was posted in Turkish on www.gazetem.net on May 9:
* * * * *
I would like to ask you a very simple, ordinary question. Would you wish to have been an Armenian in 1915? No, you wouldn't. Because you now know that you would have been killed.

Please stop arguing about the number of murdered or the denials or the attempts to replace pain with statistics. No one is denying that Armenians were murdered, right? It may be 300,000, or 500,000, or 1 million, or 1.5 million. I don't know which number is the truth, or whether anyone knows the exact number.

What I do know is that there are dead people and suffering behind these numbers. We forget that we are really talking about human beings when we are passionately debating the numbers. Those numbers cannot make us understand the murdered babies, women, the elderly, the teenage boys and girls.

If we leave these numbers aside, and if we allow ourselves to hear the story of only one of these murders, I am sure that even those of us who get enraged when they hear the words "Armenian Genocide" will feel the suffering and have tears in their eyes. Because they will then realize that we are talking about human beings.

When we hear about a baby snatched from a mother's lap and killed by being smashed against the rocks, or a youth shot to death beside a hill, or an old woman strangled by her tender neck, even the most cold- hearted among us will be ashamed to say, "Yes, but they killed Turks too."

Most of these people killed no one. These people became the innocent victims of a crazed government -- established on murder -- whose ruthlessness is only matched by its incompetence. This bloody insanity was so barbaric that we can neither take pride in nor be a part of. This was a slaughter that we should be ashamed of, and, if possible, share in the pain.

I understand that the word "genocide" has a damningly critical importance, based on the fact that the Armenians, leaving aside the tragedy of their ancestors, continuously exclaim, "Accept the Genocide," and similarly, the Turks, while acknowledging that hundreds of thousands were killed, say "No, it was not at all a genocide."

And yet, this word is not that important for me, no matter how significant it is in politics and diplomacy. What is more important for me is the fact that many innocent people were killed so barbarically.

When I see the shadow that this great tragedy casts on our times, I see another great injustice done to the Armenians.

mystercoren @ 03/03/2009
Let's get something straight because as I can see there are many Armenian friends here who have been living on little sticks which were given to them by people who couldn't handle being denied by Turks after betraying them. Turks and Armenians lived as brothers through out centuries. I am a Turk, and I have many Armenian friends. People who haven't betrayed us when we needed them. The only thing happened between some Armenians and Turks in 1915 was a war which was started by Armenians who weren't very happy about being removed from their homes. This is supported by many foreign(!) historians, and it is also proved by the reports of European agents during the "move" that there was no inappropriate actions from the Ottoman Army. To my friend below who defends a comission which has the sole purpose of defending lies; Turkish government asked Armenian government to form a comission to discuss and investigate the so-called "genocide". Armenians refused saying that they wouldn't work with Turkish historians. One of our faithful Armenian citizens burned himself to alert whole country about the plans of betrayers of dividing this country turning brother against brother. Lastly, I don't understand how a nation which defends a lie can execute the same thing they defended happened to them on Azerbaijan. Conclusion: We are a nation with great hospitality. And we have always defended those who asked for it. People who live in this country; Muslims, Jews, Christians, white, black, Turk, Armenian, Kurd, they live together as a family. Of course we have ignorant people like any other country in the world. But these are just matters of time. What matters is that whatever those people who betrayed us at the time defend, they make no difference to us who know the truth and still live together. Period.

mystercoren @ 03/03/2009
I don't understand the arguments about Turks taught to be "prejudice". Besides that it is completely wrong, we Turks don't have books that try to show every event from our point of view and show our enemies as villains. It is easy to call people ignorant and judge them by their education. The fact is you haven't been a student in Turkey, and you have no idea whatsoever about this to make meaningless generalizations. Everyone can make generalizations. Why don't you stop pushing your own reality to people, and let them find the truth for themselves. The truth is out there if you know how to reach it.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"About what "argument" are you talking Turkish karabash all those distorted explenations or falsifications will never convince the world that there has not been a genocide against Armenian Nation."

The Israeli Parliament rejected the "genocide" resolution in 2007.
The Danish, Bulgarian and Swedish Parliament rejected same kinds of resolution in 2008.
The Assembly of OSCE accepted a Turkish resolution about historical controversies.
The Armenian lobbies failed to obtain a "genocide" resolution in US Congress since 1984. The will fail again.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"If you want the truth, the Armenians in Van who were in their right minds did not support the rebellion. Because why should they revolt? Everything was in the hands of the Armenians; the entire wealth was theirs. As soon as the committees were established, they forced the tradesmen to revolt. They were looking at anyone who did not join in as if he was a traitor. [...]

When we arrived at Zeve, the village couldn't be passed through because of the stench. It was as if the bones in our noses would fall off... There were bodies everywhere. We saw a weird scene on the threshold of one house: they had filled the house with Muslims and burned it, and so many people had been burnt that the fat that had oozed from under the threshold had turned back into the trench in front of the door.
That is, it was as if the river of fat had risen and later receded. The fat was still fresh. The entire village had been destroyed and was in this situation. I saw this with my own eyes, and I???ll never forget it."

Haci Osman Gemicioglu, Ottoman Armenian converted to Islam, who fought within Ottoman Army during WWI, testimony of 1981, reproduced in Huseyin Celik, "Görenlerin Gözüyle Van???da Ermeni Mezalimi", Ankara, 1993, p. 95. For an English summarized version: www.tbmm.gov.tr/yayinlar/yayin1/5-Celik(87-108).pdf

Mount Ararat @ 03/03/2009
Hi Lucrece: You are discussing with yourself, sorry, a case for itself??? you have started scanning books, as if we had no money to by books and had to watch ???brainwashed DVD´s??? while being 11 or 9 year old, ignoring the fact that we are not cut of the rest of the world and living in open societies etc

.. Either you are not happy that the Armenian Genocide happened and not strong enough to accept the facts and crimes of Turkey, and ow you regard this as it were your patriotic duty to correct the wrongdoings of Talaat by searching for contra arguments etc.. or your are ust not happy that a part of Armenians survived this Genocide ???

There are enough Neo Nazis and disturbed creatures in the world, who can bring (and is being down, despite many laws!) hundred of excuses and ???proves??? and contra arguments that Jews were not so innocent during WWII and the Holocaust is being execrated (etc and this was after all just underground fight between different family clan ,etc..

But even if tomorrow Newsweek starts denying the Jewish Holocaust, it will not change any facts. Turkish government and its lobbyists should better understand this!

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"You are discussing with yourself"
I am no more discussing with myself than your friends and yourself, who write various comments, generally without any consideration for the others comments.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
About IAGS:
"I am less than impressed by the unanimous vote of the International Association of Genocide Scholars that the Armenian case 'was one of the major genocides of the modern era.' The great majority of these self-proclaimed experts on Ottoman history have never set foot in an archive or done any other original research on the subject in question."

Guenter Lewy, professor emeritus of political science at Masschusetts University (Amherst), author of "The Armenian Massacres in Ottoman Turkey", "Commentary", February 2006:

www.commentarymagazine.com/viewarticle.cfm/genocide--11140?page=2

Mount Ararat @ 03/03/2009
Hi Lucrece: You are discussing with yourself, sorry, a case for itself??? you have started scanning books, as if we had no money to by books and had to watch ???brainwashed DVD´s??? while being 11 or 9 year old, ignoring the fact that we are not cut of the rest of the world and living in open societies etc

.. Either you are not happy that the Armenian Genocide happened and not strong enough to accept the facts and crimes of Turkey, and ow you regard this as it were your patriotic duty to correct the wrongdoings of Talaat by searching for contra arguments etc.. or your are ust not happy that a part of Armenians survived this Genocide ???

There are enough Neo Nazis and disturbed creatures in the world, who can bring (and is being down, despite many laws!) hundred of excuses and ???proves??? and contra arguments that Jews were not so innocent during WWII and the Holocaust is being execrated (etc and this was after all just underground fight between different family clan ,etc..

But even if tomorrow Newsweek starts denying the Jewish Holocaust, it will not change any facts. Turkish government and its lobbyists should better understand this!

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"There are enough Neo Nazis and disturbed creatures in the world"
Did you mean to Romen Yepiskoposyan, the most famous Armenian Shoah denier, author of book entitled "The National System", who incitate to hate both Jews and Turks? This book was welcomed by many Armenian intellectuals: www.hahr.am/english/open/hydesem.htm

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/03/2009
Genocide is a legal term precisely defined in the 1948 UN Convention, artciles 1-3. If you read artcile 6, it also tells you who can decide if an event is genocide and how: only "competent tribunal" can render that verdict and only after "due process". Such a verdict does not exist for the TERESET (temporary resettlement of 1915) and no competent tribunal has since attempted to give a verdict like that. Genocide is a "belief" the Armenians poromote for political benefits. Such charges do not even have the snow flake's chance in hell to survive court scrutiny. The trouble with Armenian falsifiers and their Turk-hating friends (hence the acronym A.F.A.T.H.) , is that they do not tell the whole story, only parts that benefit them... and embellish even those... AFATH narratives are not to be trusted. Period.

IAGSPresident @ 03/03/2009
After studying the history of the Ottoman Empire from the 1890's under the Sultan to the Young Turk regime during World War I, the International Association of Genocide Scholars, whose members include nearly every reputable genocide scholar in the world, passed a resolution in 1997 declaring the massacres committed by the Young Turk regime against Armenians to be "genocide." Raphael Lemkin, who defined the word "genocide" declared the massacres of Armenians to be one of the classic cases of genocide that led him to define the term.

The reason the Turkish government and Grenville Byford, who speaks for it, wants to create a "historical commission" to study the "Armenian question" is that the Turkish government wants a commission that will include genocide deniers to be appointed so it can "question" the undeniable evidence. If a similar "historical commission" were appointed to study the Holocaust, it would include genocide deniers like David Irving, masquerading as legitimate scholars.

If the Turkish government is serious about an "historical commission", let the International Association of Genocide Scholars appoint the commission, and let the government of Turkey present its evidence that no genocide occurred. Let the thousands of pages of archives in the US and Germany, the transcripts of the 1919 trials, and the eyewitness testimonies of thousands of Armenian genocide survivors also be considered. Then let another verdict be rendered.

The reason Turkey will not do that is that its "historical commission" proposal. advocated by Byford, is just one more red herring to draw Congress away from the scent of the blood of the Armenian genocide.

Professor Gregory Stanton
President
International Association of Genocide Scholars

Mount Ararat @ 03/03/2009
Hi Lucrece: You are discussing with yourself, sorry, a case for itself??? you have started scanning books, as if we had no money to by books and had to watch ???brainwashed DVD´s??? while being 11 or 9 year old, ignoring the fact that we are not cut of the rest of the world and living in open societies etc

.. Either you are not happy that the Armenian Genocide happened and not strong enough to accept the facts and crimes of Turkey, and ow you regard this as it were your patriotic duty to correct the wrongdoings of Talaat by searching for contra arguments etc.. or your are ust not happy that a part of Armenians survived this Genocide ???

There are enough Neo Nazis and disturbed creatures in the world, who can bring (and is being down, despite many laws!) hundred of excuses and ???proves??? and contra arguments that Jews were not so innocent during WWII and the Holocaust is being execrated (etc and this was after all just underground fight between different family clan ,etc..

But even if tomorrow Newsweek starts denying the Jewish Holocaust, it will not change any facts. Turkish government and its lobbyists should better understand this!

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"???Such an abominable scene wasn???t even to be found among the Kurds. The Kurds only killed men and behaved more temperately towards women and children; nothing was done to them openly. This story reminded me of an incident that we experienced during the siege of Van.

???In order to observe our artillery fire, I was in a garret with a number of policemen. On the roof of a house in the vicinity, an old Muslim woman was hanging clothes out on a line. As soon as the Armenians saw this, they opened deadly fire and finally riddled the old woman???s body. Then, they fired on us. When they had killed half the policemen, the Armenians felt excessive pleasure at having killed such unfortunate people."

Rafael de Nogales, "Four Years Beneath the Crescent", New York, 1926.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"If you want the truth, the Armenians in Van who were in their right minds did not support the rebellion. Because why should they revolt? Everything was in the hands of the Armenians; the entire wealth was theirs. As soon as the committees were established, they forced the tradesmen to revolt. They were looking at anyone who did not join in as if he was a traitor. When we arrived at Zeve, the village couldn???t be passed through because of the stench. It was as if the bones in our noses would fall off???There were bodies everywhere. We saw a weird scene on the threshold of one house: they had filled the house with Muslims and burned it, and so many people had been burnt that the fat that had oozed from under the threshold had turned back into the trench in front of the door.

That is, it was as if the river of fat had risen and later receded. The fat was still fresh. The entire village had been destroyed and was in this situation. I saw this with my own eyes, and I???ll never forget it."

Haci Osman Gemicioglu, Ottoman Armenian converted to Islam, who fought within Ottoman Army during WWI, testimony of 1981, reproduced in Huseyin Celik, "Görenlerin Gözüyle Van???da Ermeni Mezalimi", Ankara, 1993, p. 95. For an English summarized version: www.tbmm.gov.tr/yayinlar/yayin1/5-Celik(87-108).pdf

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"We hear much, both truth and gross exaggeration of Turkish massacre of Armenians, but little or nothing of the Armenian massacres of Turks. The recent so-called Marash massacres [of Armenians] have not been substantiated, in fact, in the minds of many who are familiar with the situation, there is a grave question
whether it was not the Turk who suffered at the hands of the Armenian and French armed contingents which were known to be occupying that city and vicinity."
Colonel Charles Furlong, Army Intelligence Officer, U.S. Delegate to the Paris Peace Conference, letter to president Wilson, March 23, 1920.

"I know of no country today that is having more unjust propaganda put over against it [than Turkey]. Turkey has its faults, but half truths are worse than none. We hear half the truth when we hear of the massacres of Armenians in Turkey; we???ll have the other half when we hear of the massacres of Turks by Armenians and Greeks."

Colonel Charles Furlong, speech July 25, 1921 (transcript survives in US National archives).

"In this entire region [from Bitlis through Van to Bayazit] we were informed that the damage and destruction had been done by the Armenians, who, after the Russians retired, remained in occupation of the country, and who, when the Turkish army advanced, destroyed everything belonging to the Musulmans. Moreover, the Armenians are accused of having committed murder, rape, arson and horrible atrocities of every description upon the Musulman population. At first we were most incredulous of these stories, but we finally came to believe them, since the testimony was absolutely unanimous and was corroborated by material evidence. For instance, the only quarters left at all intact in the cities of Bitlis and Van are the Armenian quarters as was evidenced by the churches and the inscriptions on the houses, while the Musulman quarters were completely destroyed. Villages said to have been Armenian were still standing whereas Musulman villages were completely destroyed."

Captain Emory Niles and Arthur E. Sutherland, report to US government, 1919: louisville.edu/a-s/history/turks/Niles_and_Sutherland.pdf

youngturkcanada @ 03/03/2009
Some Armenians will never change. The greediness and lack of leadership lead them war since day one. In 1910???s, they attacked to all of their neighbors, Ottomans, Georgians, Azeris and even Russians. After the communist era, in 1992, they attacked to Azeries and committed massacres in Khojali and deported about 1 million Azeris now they live in exile. Instead of accusing their greediness and lack of leadership, they still keep blaming the others. According to census, Armenians were not majority in todays Armenia when Armenian republic established. Today, 98% are Armenians, and Armenians never asked what happended to those were living there. Suppressing free thought, hijacking parliaments and avoiding offers for a joint commission to face the truth are covardness and shameful tools. Today, it seems Armenians still do not have leadership but bigger greediness ever and keeps using same baseless propaganada and tools.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
" they attacked to all of their neighbors, Ottomans, Georgians, Azeris and even Russians"
Do not forget the Jews. In Eastern Anatolia and Western Azerbaijan, the Dashaks destroyed entirely the Jewsish community. Between the Polish pogroms of 1648-1650 and the Shoah, only the White Russians (1918-1920) killed more Jews than the Dashnaks. This Moutain Jews communities, which existed since the Antiquity disappeared.

youngturkcanada @ 03/03/2009
Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"The premeditated destruction of objects of Armenian cultural, religious, historical and communal heritage was yet another key purpose of both the genocide itself and the post-genocidal campaign of denial."

Sure. And I am the pope.

"What about the charges that ancient Armenian churches and other historical monuments are being allowed to fall into ruin or being otherwise mistreated? Although it is true that contemporary Turkish studies downplay the historical Armenian presence in Eastern Anatolia, there can absolutely no doubt that the government of Republican Turkey has made strenuous efforts to preserve the vast archeological heritage. Anyone who has visited the country can attest to this fact. While isolated incidents of vandalism may occur and adequate funds for preservation are not always available, there is no evidence that the Turkish government is destroying Armenian churches and monument as an official policy. On the contrary, as even foreign Armenians who visit Turkey can testify, historical Armenian sites in eastern Anatolia and ancient Cilicia are being preserved and protected better than might be expected for a country that is not yet blessed with all the necessary required means the more fortunate might possess.

At Aghtamar, for example, the famous island in Lake Van that once was the center of an independent Armenian Catholicosate, efforts recently have been made at maintenance and landscaping. [...] The Turkish military has even built an helicopter pad on the island to facilitate the VIP visits. The ancient Armenian capital of Ani, right on the Soviet border, is readily accessible, and the military, who controls the area, provide permits and escorts for visitors."

Michael M. Gunter, "'Pursuing the Just Cause of their People'. A Study of Contemporary Armenian Terrorism", Westport-New York-London, Greenwood Press, 1986, p. 139.

Since 1986, Turkish authorities restored several others churches.
The Greek government, and, of course, its Armenian counterpart, did never restore a single mosquee. All the mosquees of Saloniki were destroyed after 1912, and almost all the mosquees of Erevan were destroyed too. The fanatic Christians destroyed not only mosquees, but also schools, cultural buildings, etc. During the 1990's, the Armenian soldiers destroyed the cultural presence of Azeris in Western Azerbaijan, including the region where the Azeris were a majority until 1992-1993.

Mount Ararat @ 03/03/2009
ecause Turkey would do this and that - if the facts remain as its - is a reason for NEWSWEEK to re-write the history of Armenian Genocide.. and in order to make a dispute out of facts and just to give Armenians the chance to have something to prove in ???historian commission???, we - Newsweek - can excuse e.g. Armenians of mass killings of Kurds- let Armenian to prove the opposite-- this is what this article is trying to say, nothing else! (Well there are really hard times???money is welcomed too)

Turkey has a very deep strange identity complex and as long as Turkey has problems with her identify and historical facts, her communication with the rest of the world will remain disturbed.

Prior to Armenian Genocide there were - let say ???Turkish Armenia??? - or ??? 6 Armenian Velijats of Ottoman Turkey??? . Turkish schoolchildren/students do nothing about this and so on !

Participation of Ottoman Turkey in WW I , was illegal, because this decision was not had been approved by Ottoman parliament (voice of non Turkish ???millet??? were no heard) . The decision regarding WW I had been taken by a small croup of the bloody leaders of Young Turkish regime- who were dreaming of Pan Turan. On eof those Enver Pash , who had no idea what war is???the decision of Enver did cost 100 000 Ottoman solders there life in 1914 ??? among them thousands of Ottoman Armenians!!

Young Turkish regime was just aware of the fact that:

People living in ???Russian Armenia???- East Armenia - and people living in ???Turkish Armenia??? ??? West Armenia ??? were the same folk /Millet ! ??? Young Turkish regime had in this case no problems to turning the heart of Armenian high land to a bloody battlefield.. the rest needs no comment??? (Russian empire as Ottoman Empire was expecting loyalty form there citizens, beside this West Armenia was increasingly being populated by Kurds and ???Muslims??? by the order of Sultans! -
Young Turkish regime left its Christian population two choose: Either to fight for pan Turkism and die or just being deported and annihilated! The result on the ground speaks for itself. This is not just Armenian Genocide, it would be historically correct to call it ???Christian Genocide of Ottoman Turkey???

Turkish historians do not make any mention. about British hostages taken by Turkish to force the release of Turks jailed in Malta ??? as you read in the article ??? e.g.: ???Incirlik Air Base is vital to the Iraq mission??? ??? so what ???? for this Newsweek decided to change the facts and re-write the history of Armenian Genocide???

And if you are going to mention: R. Lemkin were aware of the fact of Armenian Genocide, you will hear different kind of excuse (just mocking ) and theses from Turkish nationalists as if the term ???genocide??? is being coined by Turkish- No Turkish annihilation policy gave just birth to the term ???genocide??? . Term Genocide is being included into international law after the Jewish Genocide- This is

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"Turkish historians do not make any mention. about British hostages taken by Turkish to force the release of Turks jailed in Malta"
The exchange of prisonners was signed after the failure of British found any evidence against the Turks jailed in Malta. Several British and US documents establish that the British, Armenian and Greek investigators were absolutely unable to find evidence. For example:

"I regret to inform Your Lordship that there was nothing therein which could be used as evidence against the Turks who are being detained for trial at Malta. Having regard to this stipulation and the fact that the reports in the possession of the Department of State do not appear in any case to contain evidence against these Turks which would be useful even for the purpose of corroborating information already in possession of His Majesty's Government, I fear that nothing is to be hoped from addressing any further inquiries to the United States Government in this matter".

Foreign Office, 371/6504/E.8519. R.C. Craige , British Embassy in Washington to Lord Curzon, No. 722, of July 13, 1921.)

Mount Ararat @ 03/03/2009
This article by Byford shows that the recognition Armenian Genocide is indeed a must more than ever. Do not trust this Turkish politicians- this are not much better than Talaat, Enver and Cemal. As soon as you have starched your hand to them, be sure they keep a knife in the second hand, even if they smile and let your hand without prejudice, leave the room always backward!

Mount Ararat @ 03/03/2009
MISSION IMPOSSIBLE FOR NEWSWEEK?

How comes that NEWSWEEK International all of sudden becomes so much intressted on the issue of Armenian Genocide? As if Armenian Genocide bill is going to be discussed in UN and the world has to know this- but this all is first of all just a decision by US and by US Congress, which has documented this genocide better than the Germans..!

Mount Ararat @ 03/03/2009
Because Turkey would do this and that - if the facts remain as its - is a reason for NEWSWEEK to re-write the history of Armenian Genocide.. and in order to make a dispute out of facts and just to give Armenians the chance to have something to prove in ???historian commission???, we - Newsweek - can excuse e.g. Armenians of mass killings of Kurds- let Armenian to prove the opposite-- this is what this article is trying to say, nothing else! (Well there are really hard times???money is welcomed too)

Turkey has a very deep strange identity complex and as long as Turkey has problems with her identify and historical facts, her communication with the rest of the world will remain disturbed.

Prior to Armenian Genocide there were - let say ???Turkish Armenia??? - or ??? 6 Armenian Velijats of Ottoman Turkey??? . Turkish schoolchildren/students do nothing about this and so on !

Participation of Ottoman Turkey in WW I , was illegal, because this decision was not had been approved by Ottoman parliament (voice of non Turkish ???millet??? were no heard) . The decision regarding WW I had been taken by a small croup of the bloody leaders of Young Turkish regime- who were dreaming of Pan Turan. On eof those Enver Pash , who had no idea what war is???the decision of Enver did cost 100 000 Ottoman solders there life in 1914 ??? among them thousands of Ottoman Armenians!!

Young Turkish regime was just aware of the fact that:

People living in ???Russian Armenia???- East Armenia - and people living in ???Turkish Armenia??? ??? West Armenia ??? were the same folk /Millet ! ??? Young Turkish regime had in this case no problems to turning the heart of Armenian high land to a bloody battlefield.. the rest needs no comment??? (Russian empire as Ottoman Empire was expecting loyalty form there citizens, beside this West Armenia was increasingly being populated by Kurds and ???Muslims??? by the order of Sultans! -

Young Turkish regime left its Christian population two choose: Either to fight for pan Turkism and die or just being deported and annihilated! The result on the ground speaks for itself. This is not just Armenian Genocide, it would be historically correct to call it ???Christian Genocide of Ottoman Turkey???

Turkish historians do not make any mention. about British hostages taken by Turkish to force the release of Turks jailed in Malta ??? as you read in the article ??? e.g.: ???Incirlik Air Base is vital to the Iraq mission??? ??? so what ???? for this Newsweek decided to change the facts and re-write the history of Armenian Genocide???

And if you are going to mention: R. Lemkin were aware of the fact of Armenian Genocide, you will hear different kind of excuse (just mocking ) and theses from Turkish nationalists as if the term ???genocide??? is being coined by Turkish- No Turkish annihilation policy gave just birth to the term ???genocide??? . Term Genocide is being included into international law after the Jewish Genocide- This

vaspuragan @ 03/03/2009
About what "argument" are you talking Turkish karabash all those distorted explenations or falsifications will never convince the world that there has not been a genocide against Armenian Nation.Thousand of German, Austurian, Italian, french, British, Russian,American archives prouve historical truth of Armenian genocide, the premeditated extermination of Armenian people from Edirne to whole Anatolia and Western ARMENIA(OCCUPIED)now.All those nonsense polemics will not contribute to resolve the problem.And it is not a secret that Turkey will be obliged to pay financial compensation and handed over all Armenian territories which keep occupied.Already 30000 turks expressed their pain about the genocide of 1915.Instead of barking as turkish karabash you had better to ask pardon to Armenians you torkish converted muhachir-devshirme.

vaspuragan @ 03/03/2009
"You go and kill more than a million Armenians,wipe the traces of Armenians from Anatolia, grab their property, and then show childeren videos about ' What the Armenians did to us'....We are cutting these childeren off from the rest of the world,"said Ahmet Altan, editor of independent newpaper Taraf."There is a sick, abnormal tissue of Turkish society that poisoned by a nationalist, racist virus", said Ufuk Uras, an independent MP.To that category belongs all those turkish deneyers who spread deniyelist poison in their comments.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"Taraf" is an ultra-leftist newspapers, and like many other left-wing extermists, they their proper country. The stupidies of Mr. Altan are supported by no kind of evidence. The arguments for support the so-called "Armenian genocide" were crushed, here and eslewhere.

You do not use rational and scholar study of the past, but unwarranted assertions, for political purposes.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
Sorry : "they hate their proper country".

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"If you believe in a conspiracy of thousands of Armenian grandparents and that marches through the desert were told by them as 'propaganda' then that it your choice. By probability theories, the chance that thousands of Armenian grandparents repeated the exact same story in the exact same time period as being a random event is zero."

The Armenian witnesses did not say the same things. An Ottoman Armenian, who became an US citizen under the name of James K. Sutherland, praised, in his book "Adventures of an Armenian boy" (Ann Arbor Press, 1964) the policy of Jemal Pasha, governor of the Near East, vis-à-vis the Armenian displaced peoples. Yegisabeth Kasebian (born in 1900) corroborated, later the Sutherland's testimony: www.tallarmeniantale.com/mahmut-granny.htm

Edward Tashji, son of an Ottoman Armenian and an Ottoman Assyrian, defended during all his life the Turkish side, and justified his position by what his parents said to him.

Hatchadurian Hatchik Abedi, an Armenian citizen, interviewed for "Sari Gelin" in front of the "Genocide" monument in Erevan (probably the last place in the World when you could imagine a pro-Turkish speech) said that the Turks were good for Armenians during the Ottoman period, including WWI; and that the killers of Armenians were Kurds. It is an exaggeration for the whole Anatolia (they were Turkish criminals and Kurdish brave peoples, for example in Mamuret-ül-Aziz), but correct for some regions.

By this way: around 100 old Turks produced testimonies about Armenian atrocities, from 1963 to the late 1980's; several hundreds of other Muslims testified during the WWI, interviewed by Ottoman jandarma, General Kazim Karabekir and the US investigators Emory Niles and Arthur Sutherland, these testimonies were, for a great part, corroborated by material and archeological evidences, as I already explained here. Do you think really that they were wrong?

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
Denial is a weakness of the human condition. It takes strength to admit to the mistakes of your ancestors and is a primitive defense mechanism. Germany accepted the Holocaust and now has the strongest economy in Europe. Turkey, even with its great strategic location, is a laggard in comparison despite staying out of WW II. Denying the past keeps a country rooted in the past and the mentality of the past, preventing progression to a full potential economically and democratically. If a Turk loves his country, he or she should accept the past, reject government propaganda, and move forward into the new millenium.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
You do not respond to the facts and arguments mentioned by me. Again.

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
We can argue about exact wording and retroactive legal applications but the facts of the Armenian Genocide are very clear for anyone who does objective research and compares the percentage of Armenians in Anatolia then (10) and now (0.1) as well as the number of Armenian villages then (hundreds) and now (1). Even though it was war, the Kurdish and Turkish populations did not change in such a manner, so it was either mass suicide like Jonestown or government sponsored extermination campaign. If you have walked in a desert for even one day, you would see that it is not meant to prolong your life.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"There was a TARC group (Turkish Armenian Reconciliation Group) which was a majority Turkish group"

The Turks were not a majority, and TARC was disbanded before an agreement, because dashnak pressures. The words quoted by you are only the point of view produced by the Armenian members. Gündüz Aktan, former member of TARC, wrote a refutation of these conclusions. Justin McCarthy too:

www.eraren.org/index.php?Lisan=en&Page=Makaleler&MakaleNo=170
www.tallarmeniantale.com/mccarthy-genocide.htm

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
The information you are providing contradicts the information at the U.S. State Department

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
1) You do not quote any document from US State Department.
2) The precise reference about the disbanding of TARC can be found within Guenter Lewy's book, "The Armenian Massacres in Ottoman Turkey", Salt Lake City, University of Utah Press, 2005.

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
The words are quoted are directly from the ruling itself - opinions on the ruling by outsider don't change the actual ruling

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
Even McCarthy was forced to acknowledge the genocide after the ruling:

According to McCarthy, a pro-Turkish denialist:

It must first be understood that the ICTJ statement that the word
"genocide" can be applied to what happened to the Armenians is true. They applied the UN Genocide Convention definitions to the history of one group, the Armenians, during World War I.

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
???Turkish Courts-Martial of 1919-20---

Domestic courts-martial were designed by Sultan Mehmed VI to punish members of the Committee of Union and Progress (CUP) in Turkish:"Ittihat Terakki" for involving the Empire in World War I. The courts-martial blamed the members of CUP for pursuing a war that did not fit into the notion of Millet. The Armenian issue was used as a tool to punish the leaders of the CUP. Most of the documents generated in these courts were later moved to international trials. By January 1919, a report to Sultan Mehmed VI accused over 130 suspects, most of whom were high officials. The military court found that it was the will of the CUP to eliminate the Armenians physically, via its special organization. The 1919 pronouncement reads as follows:

The Court Martial taking into consideration the above-named crimes declares, unanimously, the culpability as principal factors of these crimes the fugitives Talat Pasha, former Grand Vizir, Enver Efendi, former War Minister, struck off the register of the Imperial Army, Cemal Efendi, former Navy Minister, struck off too from the Imperial Army, and Dr. Nazim Efendi, former Minister of Education, members of the General Council of the Union & Progress, representing the moral person of that party;??? the Court Martial pronounces, in accordance with said stipulations of the Law the death penalty against Talat, Enver, Cemal, and Dr. Nazim.

The term Three Pashas, which include Mehmed Talat Pasha and Ismail Enver, refers to the triumvirate who had fled the Empire at the end of World War I. At the trials in Constantinople in 1919 they were sentenced to death in absentia.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
These trials were mockery of justice, and did not respect the elementary rights. See the analysis of Guenter Lewy about it:
www.meforum.org/748/revisiting-the-armenian-genocide

There are more arguments, about this point and many others, in his book "The Armenian Massacres in Ottoman Turkey", Salt Lake City, University of Utah Press, 2005.

mush-bitlis @ 03/03/2009
Denial of Armenian Genocide by Newsweek is purely political motivated as genocide itself is a political crime.

Instead arguing non stop with brainwashed Turkish nationalist, better to check if there area possibilities outside US to sue Newsweek International for this 'shameful act' ( to be polite!)

Turkish government has once aging showed its true face!

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"Denial of Armenian Genocide by Newsweek is purely political motivated as genocide itself is a political crime."

A mirror, perhaps? The question of "Armenian genocide" is purely political, according to those who promote this thesis. Brian Ardouny, chairman of the Armenian Assembly of America, said, interviewed by PBS: "We don't need to prove the genocide historically, because it has already been accepted politically."

"Instead arguing non stop with brainwashed Turkish nationalist,"
There is no "brainwashed Turkish nationalists" here. Your insults discredit only yourself.

"better to check if there area possibilities outside US to sue Newsweek International for this 'shameful act' ( to be polite!)"
There is no possibilty for it.

"Turkish government has once aging showed its true face!"
The Turkish government has nothing to do here. This unsubstantiated obsession is surely not a proof of serenity and rationality.

vaspuragan @ 03/03/2009
STATE OF DENIAL.Turkey spends Millions to cover up Armenian Genocide by David Holthouse-Intelligence Report,Summer 2008. It will be intresting to see how Turkey try to impose its denial policy in the United STATES.Some passages from that article will help international public opinion to understand the real face of that genocidal state Turkey. www.splcenter.org/intel/intelreport/article.jsp?aid=935

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
Guenter Lewy filed a complaint for defamation against the SLC:
www.taldf.com/complaint.pdf

You reproduce words who would be sentenced in justice.

mush-bitlis @ 03/03/2009
Denial of Armenian Genocide by Newsweek is purely political motivated as genocide itself is a political crime.

Instead arguing non stop with brainwashed Turkish nationalist, better to check if there area possibilities outside US to sue Newsweek International for his 'shameful act' ( to be polite!)

Turkish government has once aging showed its true face!

mush-bitlis @ 03/03/2009
Denial of Armenian Genocide by Newsweek is purely political motivated as genocide itself is a political crime.

Instead arguing non stop with brainwashed Turkish nationalist, better to check if there area possibilities outside US to sue Newsweek International for his ???shameful act??? ( to be polite!)

Turkish government has once aging showed its true face!

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
Cultural loss

The premeditated destruction of objects of Armenian cultural, religious, historical and communal heritage was yet another key purpose of both the genocide itself and the post-genocidal campaign of denial. Armenian churches and monasteries were destroyed, Armenian cemeteries flattened, and, in several cities (e.g. Van), Armenian quarters were demolished. [167]

In 1914, the Armenian Patriarch in Constantinople presented a list of the Armenian holy sites under his supervision. The list contained 2,549 religious places of which 200 were monasteries while 1 600 were churches. A review in 1974 showed that only 916 Armenian churches could be identified, of which half were as good as totally destroyed and 252 of the remaining objects were only ruins. Only 197 objects/sites were in stable conditions.

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
In 2005, the International Association of Genocide Scholars affirmed that scholarly evidence revealed the "Young Turk government of the Ottoman Empire began a systematic genocide of its Armenian citizens ??? an unarmed Christian minority population. More than a million Armenians were exterminated through direct killing, starvation, torture, and forced death marches" and condemned Turkish attempts to deny its factual and moral reality. In 2007, the Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity produced a letter signed by 53 Nobel Laureates re-affirming the Genocide Scholars' conclusion that the 1915 killings of Armenians constituted genocide

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
Law professor Raphael Lemkin, who coined the term "genocide" in 1943, has stated that he did so with the fate of the Armenians in mind, explaining that "it happened so many times??? First to the Armenians, then after the Armenians, Hitler took action." Several international organizations have conducted studies of the events, each in turn determining that the term "genocide" aptly describes "the Ottoman massacre of Armenians in 1915-1916." Among the organizations affirming this conclusion are the International Center for Transitional Justice, the International Association of Genocide Scholars, and the United Nations' Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
" the facts of the Armenian Genocide are very clear for anyone who does objective research and compares the percentage of Armenians in Anatolia then (10) and now (0.1) as well as the number of Armenian villages then (hundreds) and now (1)."

The correct use of statistics is look at the human losses. There were around 1 750 000 Anatolian Armenians in 1913, and 1 100 000/1 110 000 were still alive in 1919. It is a loss of around 37% of pre-war population. It is huge, but not exceptional for the period. More than 60% of Muslims perished in the vilayet (region) of Van between 1914 and 1919. The half of the Armenians displaced by Russian army in 1915-1916, and by French army in 1920 perished too.

In the vilayet of Bitlis and Van, the destructions of Muslims houses and villages, from 1914 to 1918, were far worst than the destruction of Armenian houses and villages.

In the current territory of Armenian Republic, they were around 80% of Muslims in 1828, around 30-40% in 1913, and less than 5% in 1923. They were several thousands of Jews in the 1970's, and only 300 today. Do you have a comment about it? Hmm?

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
The topic is the Armenian Genocide and adding different issues, countries, time periods, is an attempt to obstruct and confuse the issue.

The death toll from the centrallly planned deportation orders was over 90% and the intent was to exterminate the Armenian race with death marches through the desert and that is the Armenian Genocide

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"The topic is the Armenian Genocide and adding different issues, countries, time periods, is an attempt to obstruct and confuse the issue."
The article commented here mentions the massacres of Muslims by Armenians. We are in the issue, even if you dislike it.

"The death toll from the centrallly planned deportation orders was over 90% and the intent was to exterminate the Armenian race with death marches through the desert and that is the Armenian Genocide"

Almost all the Armenians of Istanbul (160 000), Edirne (33 000), Izmir (13 000), Aydin (25 000), Kastamonu, Antalya (500), Marash (6 000), Aleppo (25 000) were exempted of deportation, like several thousands of Catholics, Protestants, civil servants... Armenians. It is much more than 10 % of pre-war population.

The Armenian deportees were sent to cities, at least if the official orders were applied (they were indeed in many cases; not all, unfortunately). The Armenian mortality because resettlement by Ottoman forces was not worst than the Armenian mortality because displacement by Russian army, during the same period, in the Caucasus.

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
The Turkish Armenian Reconciliation Commission was established in July 2001 at the State Departments initiative and concluded in April 2004. TARC members were "civil society representatives who came together to explore cooperative activities between Turks and Armenians". The conclusion of the commission was basically a 3rd party report they commissioned on whether the actions of the Ottoman authorities constituted genocide. The conclusion of the International Center for Transitional Justice report was that yes, it did.

Founding Members:
Gunduz Aktan (Ankara) - resigned June 2003
Alexander Arzoumanian (Yerevan)
Ustun Erguder (Istanbul)
Sadi Erguvenc (Istanbul) - resigned June 2003
David Hovhannissian (Yerevan)
Van Krikorian (New York)
Andranik Migranian (Moscow)
Ozdem Sanberk (Istanbul) - resigned June 2003
Ilter Turkmen (Istanbul)
Vamik Volkan (Charlottesville)

New Members (2003-2004)
Emin Mahir Balcioglu (Geneva)
Ahmet Evin (Istanbul)
Ersin Kalaycioglu (Istanbul)
Sule Kut (Istanbul)
Ilter Turan (Istanbul)


Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"We lived in harmony for a great deal of time although with unequal rights (but this wasn't New York City in 2009)"

The equality of rights was guaranteed by the reforms of 1839-1856, and by the Constitution of 1876. The single discrimination, about military services, was suppressed by the Joung Turks in 1908.

" The racist regime who ran the last 10 years of the Ottoman empire"

The CUP regime was absolutely not racist. In 1914, the Ottoman ambassador in London is an Armenian. The CUP government named even an Armenian as mayor of Van, but he was killed by Dashnaks in December 1912. Several thousands of civil servants remained in the Ottoman administration after 1915. Several thousands of Armenian soliders remained in Ottoman army, including several hundreds in combat unit of Arabia, and several hundreds as translators in strategic units.

"4. Western powers and Russia promised many things when it suited their interests."
That's true.

"There is a unjustified fear of endless land demands by Armenians"
Unjustified? What a joke. The Dashnaks and the Hunchakist said always that the "genocide recognition" was only the first step for territorial claims.

Here is the speech of Mourad Papazian, leader of the ARF for Western Europe, in Marseille, April 24, 2006:
www.ccaf.info/item.php?r=0&id=154

English translation of the conclusion: "Dear compatriots, against Turkey, we will continue to organize ourselves. We will organize so as to be better prepared to mobilize. We will mobilize to better acheive our goals and gains. Not only for the recognition of the genocide, but also for the construction of a free, independent and reunified Armenia, so that all together we can again take posession of Van, Much, Kars, Sassun, Bitlis and Erzurum."

The last World congress of Hunchakian party mentioned the territorial claims:
www.hunchak.org.au/aboutus/historical_Declaration2005.html (in English).

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"Denial is a weakness of the human condition."
What about the denial of crimes committed by Armenian gangs against unarmed Muslims and Jews?

"Denying the past keeps a country rooted in the past and the mentality of the past"
Be rooted in the past is absolutely not in Turkish mentality. Turks turned Muslims in XIth century, became sedentary in the Late of Middle Age, absorbed the Byzantine Heritage after 1453, succeeded the Westernization since XVIIIth century, etc. Be rooted in the past is typically the nationalist Armenian mentality.

"Turkey, even with its great strategic location, is a laggard in comparison despite staying out of WW II."

Turkey was a destroyed country in 1923. The Russian-Armenian gangs in the East, the Greek-Armenian gangs in the West, destroyed Anatolia. An accidental fire of 1922 destroyed the half of Istanbul. The Balkan wars destroyed the most important part of Turkish Thrace.

Turkey received few financial help until the 2000's, excepted the US military cooperation during the Cold War, for various reasons.

Germany is one of the first exportators since the XIXth century, thanks to a huge industrialization as early as 1820's. The industrialization of Turkey was most slow.

Anyway, the economic progress of Turkey are spectacular, especially during the Kemalist years, during the 1950's, and since 1980.

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
There are atrocities throughout history, but the topic is the Armenian Genocide and .

Stated simply, if many other countries killed many other people, it has no bearing Armenian Genocide - there is no logical basis for that. For example, if some Jews killed a few Nazis, then it follows from this logic that the Holocaust didn't occur? This is a false reasoning with no basis in reality. The Jewish Holocaust and Armenian Genocide are facts supported by hundreds of documents from dozens of governments and officials as well as eyewitness reports. Other atrocities have no bearing and are just attempts to confuse the issue which is a classic denial technique as is this propaganda piece.

It is often said that with denial, you have to make liars out of every survivor, reports of ambassadors, missionaries, counsels, German soldiers and officers, documents in the archives of several nations (both allies and enemies), and documents of the Ottoman archives themselves.

The centrally planned deportiation of the Armenians was a death march designed to exterminate a race, which is the definition of a genocide.

Lucrece @ 03/03/2009
"There were around 1 750 000 Anatolian Armenians in 1913"
Sorry, 1 750 000 OTTOMAN Armenians, including 1 500 000 in Anatolia, 160 000 in Istanbul, the others in Thrace and Arabian regions.

artsakh @ 03/03/2009
There was a TARC group (Turkish Armenian Reconciliation Group) which was a majority Turkish group sponsored by the Turkish and American governments which excluded any ARF members on grounds of bias submitted the issue to the International Center for Transitional Justice which concluded in 2004:

"The crucial issue of genocidal intent is contested, and this legal memorandum is not intended to definitively resolve particular factual disputes. Nonetheless, we believe that the most reasonable conclusion to draw from the various accounts referred to above of the Events is that, notwithstanding the efforts of large numbers of "righteous Turks" who intervened on behalf of the Armenians, at least some of the perpetrators of the Events knew that the consequence of their actions would be the destruction, in whole or in part, of the Armenians of eastern Anatolia, as such, or acted purposively towards this goal, and, therefore, possessed the requisite genocidal intent. Because the other three elements identified above have been definitively established, the Events, viewed collectively, can thus be said to include all of the elements of the crime of genocide as defined in the Convention, and legal scholars as well as historians, politicians, journalists and other people would be justified in continuing to so describe them. "

Link is www.ictj.org and there is english, turkish, and armenian version.

So when we hear the suggestion to set up historians to study the issue, it does not make any sense because we just did that with Turkish government as the main proponent from 2001 to 2004 and the conclusion was that the evidence showed it to be genocide. If the government didn't like the conclusion I can't control that but repeating the entire process again would be a waste of time.

artsakh @ 03/02/2009
If you believe in a conspiracy of thousands of Armenian grandparents and that marches through the desert were told by them as 'propaganda' then that it your choice. By probability theories, the chance that thousands of Armenian grandparents repeated the exact same story in the exact same time period as being a random event is zero.

Let me correct some misconceptions:

Diasporan Armenians are not told to hate Turks, they are told that

1. We lived in harmony for a great deal of time although with unequal rights (but this wasn't New York City in 2009)

2. Many Turks and Kurds saved Armenians out of kindness(I was told this directly dozens of times)

3. The racist regime who ran the last 10 years of the Ottoman empire should be despised by everyone, most of all Turks because their conduct led to the demise of the empire and the destruction of a productive minority group and loss of valuable territory (now we now exactly how valuable).

4. Western powers and Russia promised many things when it suited their interests.

5. The Turkish government today knows exactly what happened but educates their public otherwise so there is no internal pressure to face consequences of admission. There is a unjustified fear of endless land demands by Armenians which is the number one reason for the denial.

6. We can argue about exact wording and retroactive legal applications but the facts of the Armenian Genocide are very clear for anyone who does objective research and compares the percentage of Armenians in Anatolia then (10) and now (0.1) as well as the number of Armenian villages then (hundreds) and now (1). Even though it was war, the Kurdish and Turkish populations did not change in such a manner, so it was either mass suicide like Jonestown or government sponsored extermination campaign. If you have walked in a desert for even one day, you would see that it is not meant to prolong your life.

Thanks

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
A response to "Mount Ararat"

???The story was that Armenians left voluntarily???
The Armenians of Marash and other parts of Cilicia were exempted to deportation. Moreover, after the WWI, many Armenians were resettled in Cilicia. After the failure of French Army and the Angora agreement (1921), Armenian nationalists, especially the Dashnaks, forced all the Armenian who they found to go out of Turkey, despite the fact that Ataturk guaranteed the security of Cilician Armenians.

???The story was that Armenians (babies, children, women, elderly) were deported for their safety???
In the vilayet (region) of Trabzon, the boys who were less than 10 years old, the girls who were less than 15 old, the pregnant women, and the sick peoples in hospitals were exempted to deportation.

On the other hand, many first-hand evidence (Ottoman, Russian, British, US, French documents; archeological evidences) demonstrate that the Armenian gangs killed many babies, children and old Turks, even before the Armenian resettlement, for example in Zeve, near Van, and in the city of Van itself.

???but it was war???
The resettlement of population was common until the end of XXth century: the Spanish army inaugurated this practice in 1898, during the Cuba war; the British army used the same kind of use during the Boers war (1900-1901); the French army resettled many Algerians during the Algeria war; and the US army resettled many Vietnamese peoples during the Vietnam war.

The eastern Anatolia was a very violent region until the 1930???s, especially during the WWI. Several thousands of Muslims citizens were killed by Kurdish gangs, according to the ultra-Armenophile Consul Leslie A. Davis.

???it was the Kurds who committed the genocide???
Reliable evidence, even the most valuable Armenian testimonies, speak most frequently of Kurdish, Circassian, or even Arab bandits than Turks. An old Armenian citizen, Hatchadurian Hatchik Abedi, said even to a reporter of ???Sari Gelin??? that the Turks were innocent; all the responsibility should be attributed to Kurds. It is certainly an exaggeration for the whole Anatolia, but in some region, it is correct.

artsakh @ 03/02/2009
If you believe in a conspiracy of thousands of Armenian grandparents and that marches through the desert were told by them as 'propaganda' then that it your choice. By probability theories, the chance that thousands of Armenian grandparents repeated the exact same story in the exact same time period as being a random event is zero.

Let me correct some misconceptions:
Diasporan Armenians are not told to hate Turks, they are told that
1. We lived in harmony for a great deal of time although with unequal rights (but this wasn't New York City in 2009)
2. Many Turks and Kurds saved Armenians out of kindness(I was told this directly dozens of times)
3. The racist regime who ran the last 10 years of the Ottoman empire should be despised by everyone, most of all Turks because their conduct led to the demise of the empire and the destruction of a productive minority group and loss of valuable territory (now we now exactly how valuable).
4. Western powers and Russia promised many things when it suited their interests.
5. The Turkish government today knows exactly what happened but educates their public otherwise so there is no internal pressure to face consequences of admission. There is a unjustified fear of endless land demands by Armenians which is the number one reason for the denial.
6. We can argue about exact wording and retroactive legal applications but the facts of the Armenian Genocide are very clear for anyone who does objective research and compares the percentage of Armenians in Anatolia then (10) and now (0.1) as well as the number of Armenian villages then (hundreds) and now (1). Even though it was war, the Kurdish and Turkish populations did not change in such a manner, so it was either mass suicide like Jonestown or government sponsored extermination campaign. If you have walked in a desert for even one day, you would see that it is not meant to prolong your life.
Thanks

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/02/2009
Lucrece is doing a wonderful enough job of dismantling the Armenian misrepresentations effortlessly. I would like to use this opportunity, therefore, to educate the unsuspecting readers as to the nature of persistent and deliberate Amenian lies and frabrications. For example, in the artcile above, one does not read about the current Armenian aggression and ethnic cleansing in Karabagh and Western Azerbaijan, nor the pogrom in Hocali. The writer reluctantly and superficiallly touches upon the Armenian state terrorism within the context of a war. Whereas the silent memory of the victims of the Hocali pogrom, mostly non-combatant, unarmed, and unprotected Azeri women and children, is insulted by that biased description. This is the problem with pro-Armenian writers. All their lives, they were exposed to only one side of the issue: the Armenian side. It is difficult for them to break the bad habit of over-simplification, stereotyping, and biased coverage. Political, social, and religious consensus, it seems, has simply turned into a license to ignore, dismiss, or even censor dissent. His essay, otherwise, would not be published because it would not clear the editing board. But internet is changin all that. Inernet is leveling the field. Internet is also sending the dinosaurs like Los Angeles Times, the Boston Globe, even the New York Times to the dustbin of history. Good riddance!

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"Q: Were there any Armenians in yourk Zeve village?
A: No, none.
Q: Where were you at the time that the Armenians established an Armenian government with the Russians?
A: We were in Zeve at the time.
Q: How many people from Zeve survived?
A: Including to myself, six women were saved from Zeve, and that was only because of a good deed my father had done earlier. Everyone else was murdered, including many women and children.

Q: They say that a mosque near the Van castle was burned. Was this mosque in Van or Zeve?

A: It was in Van, but mosques in Zeve were burned down as well. In Van they burned other mosques such as the Kayacelebi, Ulu, and Hüsrev Pasha, as well as many smaller mosques. You can still see all of their traces.

Q: Were there any people inside the mosques in Van when they were burned down?
A: Without a doubt.
Q: How about in Zeve?
A: Many had gone into the mosque for protection. Among them were uncle Hamza, Dervis, and Derebeyli. I don't remember the names of the others except for a great personality in Zeve whose name you may have heard; Sultan Haci Hamza. He built the first dervish lodge in the area."
Testimonies of Ibrahim Sargin (born in 1903, deceased in the 1990's) during the beginning of the 1980's, translated into English within ATAA, "Armenian Atrocities and Terrorism", Washington, 1997.

Thanks to Ibrahim Sargin, a part of the squelettons of Zeve victims were found in 1990. About the 1986-1999 excavations, see:

www.tbmm.gov.tr/yayinlar/yayin1/6-Halacoglu(109-142).pdf

And:
www.anarmenianmyth.com/massacred_turks02zevemassgrave.htm

www.youtube.com/watch?v=Acsn-De8vCQ

About a more recent excavation, see:
www.eraren.org/index.php?Lisan=en&Page=DergiIcerik&IcerikNo=120

Mr. Byford is right when he says that the Armenian side should recognize massacres and other crimes perpetrated by Armenian gangs.

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"Over 20 countries today rightfully call it the 'ARMENIAN GENOCIDE' including Germany, turkey's own ally who witnessed it firsthand."

As I already explained, Germany supported never the "genocide" claims. There were a one-sided resolution voted by the Bundestag (Germand Chamber), but without the word "genocide". The Bundesrat (German Senate) never voted this resolution, and the German governement never supported it.

Interesting accounts from German archives are available within the following books: Guenter Lewy, "The Armenian Massacres in Ottoman Turkey", Salt Lake City, University of Utah Press, 2005; Cem Özgönül, "Der Mythos eines Völkermordes. Eine Kritische Betrachtung der Lepsiusdokumente sowie der Deutsche Rolle in Geschichte und Gegenwart der 'Armenische Frage'", Köln, Önel Verlag, 2005; and Yusuf Halacoglu, "The Story of 1915. What Happened to the Ottoman Armenians?", Ankara, TTK, 2008.

A comprehensive study, extracted from an history Ph.D. thesis (made in Vienna university, not in a Turkish university), is devoted to Austrian archives: Inanç Altigan, "Österreich Dilemma 1915. Türken oder Armenier?", Klagenfurt, Wieser Verlag, 2008.

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"a crime today to even talk about it in Turkey "
Since 1990, the Turkish Historical Society invited many Armenian and pro-Armenian shcolars to debate in Istanbul or Ankara. Few accepted: Levon Marashlian in 1990; Hilmar Kaiser in 2006; Ara Sarafian in 2006, 2007 and 2008.

Since 1992, several books were published in Turkish for support "genocide claims", including Taner Akçam's publication, the Bryce-Toynbee Blue Book, and the writings of Yves Ternon.

On the other hand, the Dashnaks and the Hunchakists used all the ways, legal and illegal, to preven free speech by scholars who reject the "Armenian genocide" claims:

Bombing attack against Shaw familial house (1977), sacking of Stanford J. Shaw's office at UCLA (1982), systematic disturbance of S. J. Shaw's lessons (1982-1988), death threats, and other harassment against Shaw family (1977-1997).

Death threats against Justin McCarthy and his family, who live under the protection of US police, since 1983.

Physical threats and other technincs of harassment against the 69 acadamecians, specialists of Turkey and Ottoman Empire, who signed a petition against the "genocide" resolution in 1985.

Trial of Bernard Lewis in France (1995).

Defamation campaign against Heath Lowry (1996), with pure Stalinian methods: www.tallarmeniantale.com/lowry.htm

Hate campaign, death threats and physical attack against Gilles Veinstein, in France too (1999-2000).

Defamation against Guenter Lewy (2005-2008), and attempt for prevent the publication of his book "The Armenian Massacres in Ottoman Turkey (2004-2005).

Attempts for a penalization law in France (2006-2008), which failed, thanks Liberté pour l'histoire and the Blois Appeal. Pierre Nora, chairman of Liberté pour l'histoire, was called "Himmler" (sic) by fanatic Armenians. Annette Wieviorka, a specialist of Shoah and Jewish history, who rejected the Armenian claims of genocide, and called "a scandal" the sentence of Bernard Lewis, was called "this slut" (sic again) on the forum of armenews.com, the most important French-Armenian Web site. This forum was destroyed few time after, because a defamation compaint (not by Ms. Wieviorka, but by another people).

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"the British Journal on middle eastern sudies recently labeled Justin McCarthy, a champion of Armenian Genocide denial, as subscribing to 'junk history'."

The publisher of "Muslims and Minorities. The Population of Ottoman Anatolia and the End of Empire", book written by Justin McCarthy, is the New York University Press; Hodder & Arnold, a respectable London publisher, and the New York bureau of Oxford University Press, published in 2001 another book of Prof. McCarthy, "The Ottoman Peoples and the End of Empire". "The History Teacher", an US journal, welcomed Justin McCarthy's book as a masterpiece: www.historycooperative.org/journals/ht/36.4/br_7.html

Nadine Picaudou, a professor of Near East history at Paris-I-Sorbonne University, who accepts the word "genocide" for the Armenian case, notices one author for the demographic questions in Anatolia of late Ottoman period: Justin McCarthy ("La Décennie qui ébranla le Moyen-Orient", Bruxelles-Paris, Complexe, 1992).

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"The actual word "GENOCIDE " was coined by Rafael Lemkin in 1946, SPECIFICALLY BECAUSE OF THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE"

The words was coined by Lemkin in 1944, not 1946, and for the extermination of Jews by Nazis, not for Armenian case. AFTER 1944, Lemkin had few words where he described the Armenian case as a genocide case, but: 1) Lemkin was absolutely not informed about the Ottoman history, and believed even that the Malta deportees were released only because political agreement (in fact, the Britishs were unable to found a single evidence); 2) Lemkin refered to other cases as genocide, inclunding Carthage! Few specialists of Ancien History could agree with Lemkin about a "genocide of Carthage".

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"phony paid sudo scholars' like Guenther Lewey -Mccarty - Maongo -etc that the Turks pay via The Institute for Turkish Studies"

Guenter Lewy (not Guenther Lewey) did not receive one dollar from Turkey, and filed a complaint against those who accused him to be paid by Turkey.

Andrew Mango (not Maongo) is a British citizen, from London University, and could not receive one dollar from ITS.

Justin McCarthy received money from Turkish Foundations, but, until 2000's, the great majority of his researchs were financed by US founds, and at first by his university (Louisville).

On the other hand, several pro-Armenian scholars (or so-called scholars) were financially supported by Armenian nationalists. For example:

www.tallarmeniantale.com/akcam-hosted.htm
armenians-1915.blogspot.com/2008/05/2464-it-is-official-taner-akcam-is-paid.html

And the words of Michael M. Gunter about money question in this article:
hnn.us/roundup/entries/41948.html

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"most of the Kemalist leaders were former young-turk criminals of war who were involved in the Holocaust of 1915"

Very few CUP members were important peoples in Kemalist regimes. The most important CUP survivors attempted even a coup d'État againt Kemal in the middle of 1920's. The single CUP leader who was then a Kemalist leader is Ziya Gökalp, a specialist of culture who did never any rôle in politic questions, both under CUP and Kemalist regime. Gökalp was even acquited by one of the infamous court-martial of 1919-1920, established by the puppet Ottoman government, then recognized as innocent by the British in Malta, in 1921.

On the other hand, pratically all the Dashnak and Hunchakist leaders of the interwar were butchers of Muslims and Jews. The most (in)famous was General Kanayan, so-called Dro, who supervised the massacres of thousands of innocent peoples in 1918, then was a zealous underling of the "bullets Shoah" in occupied USSR.

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"Let's be perfectly clear: The Armenian Genocide is a fact supported by ALL GENOCIDE HISTORIANS"

There is no "genocide historian". To be a specialist of Nazi Germany does not help to understand the ethnic extermination in Rwanda.

If you believe that work about Nazi Germany is a guarantee of serious about questions of Ottoman History, how do you explain that Eberhard Jäckel, the most respected specialist of Nazism, and Guenter Lewy, author of two major book about this regime ("The Catholic Church and Nazi Germany", 1964, second edition 2000; "The Nazi Persecution of the Gypsies", OUP, 2000) rejected the "genocide" label for Armenian case?

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"All those cited so-called "historians" by Turkish state propaganda are condemened by academic circles or state court"

Very funny. Could you explain to us when Roderic H. Davison, Paul Dumont, Gwynne Dyer, Edward J. Erickson, J. C. Hurewitz, Eberhard Jäckel, William L. Langer, Guenter Lewy, Andrew Mango, Robert Mantran, Jean-Paul Roux, Philip H. Stoddard, Hew Strachan, Gilles Veinstein, Anette Wieviorka, Malcolm E. Yapp or Robert F. Zeidner and some others where "condemened by academic circles or state court?

"Bernard Levy(French court) for having deneyed Armenian Genocide"
His name is Bernard Lewis, not Levy. He was not sentencde for "having deneyed Armenian genocide", but for using a too short form, which could shock (sic). The tribunal did not deny to Prof. Lewis the right to critize the notion of genocide, and declared itself non competent for judge historical controversies. This grotesque sentence was condemened both by "academic circles", including Madeleine Rebérioux and Pierre Nora, and quality press, including the "Washington Post".

vaspuragan @ 03/02/2009
All those cited so-called "historians" by Turkish state propaganda are condemened by academic circles or state court; as in the case of Bernard Levy(French court) for having deneyed Armenian Genocide .The main reason that Turkish State denyes until today Armenian Genocide, is that most of the Kemalist leaders were former young-turk criminals of war who were involved in the Holocaust of 1915.Recognizing that realty would mean that, kemalist Turkey has been created, on Genocidal and Criminal historical legacy.That's why turkish deneyers and Turkey are suffering of cycological criminal pathology of DENEYING THE FIRST genocide of 20ty century

thetruth10001 @ 03/02/2009
E. K. you FEZZ is on Too Tight!

Let's be perfectly clear: The Armenian Genocide is a fact supported by ALL GENOCIDE HISTORIANS including The 126 members of the International Association Of Genocide Scholars.

Over 20 countries today rightfully call it the 'ARMENIAN GENOCIDE' including Germany, turkey's own ally who witnessed it firsthand. The perpetrating genocidal Turks have been denying the facts for over 90 Years. They have distorted history and make it a crime today to even talk about it in Turkey yet they want a 'commission to discuss it with Armenia".

The last effort of the Turk's "Big Excuses" such as, 'the Armenians were traitors - it was a time of war - they did it to us - all documents were forged - the kurds actually did it etc. and the usual nonsense. are backed up by a small hand full of "phony paid sudo scholars' like Guenther Lewey -Mccarty - Maongo -etc that the Turks pay via The Institute for Turkish Studies, a Turkish Governmental paid program to disseminate miss -information specifically regarding the Facts of the Armenian Genocide and so to claim as 'opposing experts'. In fact, "the British Journal on middle eastern sudies recently labeled Justin McCarthy, a champion of Armenian Genocide denial, as subscribing to 'junk history'.

The actual word "GENOCIDE " was coined by Rafael Lemkin in 1946, SPECIFICALLY BECAUSE OF THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE, so NO Armenian Genocide, No word Genocide. So the denial of the Armenian Genocide is baseless. However, the real question is whether the United States will continue to lie for Turkey purely for political reasons.

When is Newsweek going to have David Irving and the Pres of Iran write an article on how to end the the Holocaust debate?????

AVartany @ 03/02/2009
Ergun,
Don't you have anything better to do than to copy/paste irrelevant matierial in this discussion post over and over again? You must be very bored--GO GET A LIFE. BUDDY.

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/02/2009
DISCOVER THE RAT IN ARARAT (1/5)

World renown historian Guenter Lewy in his article titled Revisiting the Armenian Genocide, published in Fall 2005 edition of Middle East Quarterly ( www.meforum.org/article/895 ) states:

(quote) Most of those who maintain that Armenian deaths were premeditated and so constitute genocide base their argument on three pillars: the actions of Turkish military courts of 1919-20, the role of the so-called "Special Organization" accused of carrying out the massacres, and the Memoirs of Naim Bey which contain alleged telegrams of Interior Minister Talat Pasha. Yet when these events and the sources describing them are subjected to careful examination, they provide at most a shaky foundation from which to claim, let alone conclude, that the deaths of Armenians were premeditated. (unquote)

How can you argue with the truth?

Then, Lewy penned the following review of a book by Richard Hovannisian (ed)., The Armenian Genocide: Cultural and Ethical Legacies, , another hole-in-one:

(quote) BOOK REVIEW BY GUENTER LEWY

Readers familiar with Russian and Turkish history will experience the same sense of unreality in reading Hovannisian's insistence that the Armenian disaster in 1915 was entirely unprovoked and the result of a xenophobic nationalistic mindset and a total war ethic on the part of the Young Turk regime. In this narrative there is no place for the decades-long armed struggle of the Armenian revolutionary movement for independence or for the thousands of Turkish Armenians who fought a guerrilla war behind the Ottoman army in 1915, cut roads and lines of communications, and generally aided the Russian invader. Henry Morgenthau, the American ambassador in (Istanbul), reported to Washington on 25 May 1915 that nobody put the Armenian guerrillas at less than 10,000, and that 25,000 was probably . . closer to the truth.

All this took place in a situation of extreme danger for the Ottoman regime caused by serious military setbacks. Bragging about the Armenian contribution to the Allied war effort, Boghos Nubar, the head of the Armenian delegation, told those at the Paris Peace Conference on 18 March 1919 that the Turks had devastated the Armenians in retaliation for their unflagging devotion to the Allied cause. None of this can justify the brutality and extreme callousness with which the Young Turks carried out the deportation of the Armenian community from their ancient homeland in Anatolia at a huge cost in innocent lives, but it provides the indispensable historical context for the human catastrophe that ensued.

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/02/2009
DISCOVER THE RAT IN ARARAT (2/5)

According to Hovannisian and other contributors to this volume, the scholarly world has accepted the Armenian genocide, and all those who question the Armenian version of these tragic events are "genocide deniers." Yet while many historians indeed speak of the first genocide of the twentieth century, other historians, including well-known scholars of Ottoman history such as Roderic Davison, Bernard Lewis, and Andrew Mango, while not questioning the horror that transpired, have raised doubts about the appropriateness of the genocide label for the occurrences of 1915.

Ignoring this formidable array of learned opinion, Armenians continue to assert with superb arrogance that the Armenian genocide is incontrovertible fact and established history that can be denied only by lackeys of the Turkish government or morally obtuse individuals. Unless there is a change in this attitude and Armenians accept the existence of a genuine historical controversy, I see little hope for ending this almost century-old conflict.

Guenter Lewy
University of Massachusetts, Amherst (unquote)

DR. GWYNNE DYER CALLED IT AS IT IS

Dr. Gwynne Dyer simplified the expression of the above scholarly findings so succinctly and eloquently that I think all honest writers should quote it in their fight against Armenian falsifiers:

(quote)The deafening drumbeat of the propaganda, and the sheer lack of sophistication in argument which comes from preaching decade after decade to a convinced and emotionally committed audience, are the major handicaps of Armenian historiography of the diaspora today(unquote)

The Armenians have defined the Turkish-Armenian conflict one way, their way, for 93 years. Even this could be understood within the context of ethnic and/or religious fanaticism. After all, it is a free country, you can believe whatever you want, even that the world is flat. Problem arises when the Armenians demand their claims be declared as settled history with zero tolerance for the other side of the story, coming from Turks and non-Turks alike. The problem turns into a criminal conduct when these Armenian demands turn to Armenian violence, as in Armenian terrorism that claimed 70+ innocent lives (three right here in Southern California) since 1973, aimed at imposing the Armenian will on others.

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/02/2009
DISCOVER THE RAT IN ARARAT (3/5)

Whether the Armenian claims of genocide are recognized by this country or that, does not change the fact that Armenians engineered, provoked, and waged a civil war within a world war; took up arms against their own government; killed their Muslim/Turkish neighbors; joined the invading enemy armies; demanded territories where they were a minority to create Greater Armenia; and did all that with the help of active allies (Russia, Britain, France), passive allies (U.S. diplomats, Protestant missionaries, the New York Times) and others.

Furthermore, the ubiquitous Armenian propaganda cannot change the facts summarized by the 6 T'S OF THE TURKISH-ARMENIAN CONFLICT :

1- Tumult (Armenians taking up arms against their own government,)

2- Terrorism (by Dashnaks, Hunchaks, and other Armenian terrorist organizations,)

3- Treason (Armenians joining the invading enemy armies)

4- Territorial demands (where Armenians were a minority)

5- Turkish suffering (at the hands of Armenian revolutionaries and terrorists; number exceeds half a million Muslims, mostly Turks)

6-Tereset (temporary resettlement triggered by the above 5 T's and misrepresented by Armenians as genocide.)

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/02/2009
DISCOVER THE RAT IN ARARAT (4/5)

SWEDISH EYEWITNESS BELIES ARMENIAN CLAIMS OF RIVER RUNNING RED OF BLOOD - Here is the eyewitness report refuting and devastating the Armenian claims and deception once and for all:

(quote) For fourteen days, I followed the Euphrates; it is completely out of the question that I during this time would not have seen at least some of the Armenian corpses, that according to Mrs. Stjernstedt???s statements, should have drifted along the river en masse at that time. A travel companion of mine, Dr. Schacht, was also travelling along the river. He also had nothing to tell when we later met in Baghdad. In summary, I think that Mrs. Stjernstedt, somewhat uncritically, has accepted the hair-raising stories from more or less biased sources, which formed the basis for her lecture . (unquote)

Source: H.J. Pravitz, A Swedish officer, Nya Dagligt Allehanda, 23 April, 1917 issue (A Swedish Newspaper published from 1859 to 1944) This is the right side of history. This is where Armenian deception is exposed.

BOGUS ARMENIAN PRESS REPORTS

Here are the bogus Armenian press reports from WWI that were refuted by a rare missionary whose heart was in the right place:

(quote) "In some towns containing ten Armenian houses and thirty Turkish houses, it was reported that 40,000 people were killed, about 10,000 women were taken to the harem, and thousands of children left destitute; and the city university destroyed, and the bishop killed. It is a well- known fact that even in the last war the native Christians, despite the Turkish cautions, armed themselves and fought on the side of the Allies. In these conflicts, they were not idle, but they were well supplied with artillery, machine guns and inflicted heavy losses on their enemies." (unquote)

Source: Lamsa, George M., a missionary well known for his research on Christianity, The Secret of the Near East, The Ideal Press, Philadelphia 1923, p 133. This is the right side of history. This is where Armenian deception is exposed.

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/02/2009
DISCOVER THE RAT IN ARARAT (5/5)

(quote) 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 (unquote)

Source: John Dewey, The New Republic, 12 November 1928. This is the right side of history. This is where Armenian deception is exposed...

(quote) In all the countries, under all the regimes, the staff of the armies in the field evacuate towards the back, the populations which live in the zone of fights and can bother the movement of the troops, especially if these populations are hostile. Public opinion does not find anything to criticize to these measures, obviously painful, but necessary. During the winter of 1939-1940, the radical - socialist French government evacuated and transported in the Southwest of France, notably in the Dordogne, the entire population of the Alsatian villages situated in the valley of the Rhine, to the east of the Maginot line. This German-speaking population, and even sometimes germanophil, bothered the French army. It stayed in the South, far from the evacuated homes and sometimes destroyed until 1945. And nobody, in France, cried out for inhumanity (unquote)

Source: Georges de Maleville, lawyer and a specialist on the Armenian question, La Tragedie Armenienne de 1915, (The Armenian tragedy of 1915), Editions F. Sorlot-F. Lanore, Paris, 1988, p 61-63. This is the right side of history. This is where Armenian deception is exposed.

Armed with the rock solid truth, fortified with honesty and fairness, let???s expose the Armenian propaganda for what it is: ethocide, i.e. mass-deception for political gain.

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"The dogs are barking(karabash deneyers)of Armenian genocide, but caravan is passing."

As a French citizen, I find very funny this sentence. The collapse of Armenian lobbying in France, since one or two years, is spectacular. They failed to obtain the vote of the penalization law. The tiny demonstrations and the grotesque "sit-in" (no more than ten peoples, standing in the Parisian cold of November-December) were simply a subject of fun. They were absolutely unable to riespond on a efficient level to Liberté pour l'histoire (Freedom for History, association of several hundreds of historians). The year 2009 promises to be worst than 2008, like 2008 was worst than 2007.

The Armenian lobby in USA will collapse, too. If Mr. Obama refuses to use the word "genocide", like Mr. Bush junior and Mr. Carter before, how the Armenian lobbyists could have any hope?

vaspuragan @ 03/02/2009
The dogs are barking(karabash deneyers)of Armenian genocide, but caravan is passing. In other words there will never be any reconciliation at the expense of 10 millions Armenians' historical and moral rights in order to satisfy Western country's geopolitical interests in the region.A wise advice has been given past year to Turkish governement by former Turkish Ambasador to Moscau by saying that Turkey should ask pardon for what happened in 1915,should pay financial compansations to the Armenians and return Armenian territories to the Armenian people.IT is important to know that 6 millions Armenians living abroad are origineted from Western Armenia now under Turkish occupation.So Turks and others should not dream that Armenians will give up to theirs historical rights.

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"by Turkish government is that, they Are going to pay up hall a lot of contribution, Money and worst is that they are going to give up big part of modern Turkey.That is the reason they are so afraid to take responsibility."

The Armenians renounced to monetary claims by the Gümrü treaty (December 1920), which fixed also the Turkish-Armenian boundary. This boundary was confirmed by the Kars (1921) and Lausanne (1923) treaties. The Turkish-Armenian boundary, like other European boundaries, is guaranted by the Helsinki agreements (1975).

It is funny to noticed that the Dashnaks pleaded the Gümrür treaty during their rebellion against Soviet power, in 1921, and asked for help to Kemalists. A letter of Dashnak leadership is reproduced in Kapriel S. Papazian's book, "Patriotism Perverted", Boston, Baikar Press, 1934.

Territorial and monetary claims are obsession of Dashnaks and other nationalists since many years, but they failed and they will fail again, until their political disappearance.

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"How could he explain the fact that so many countries like Germany, Italy, and Poland, without any Armenian presence or lobby have recognized the Armenian Genocide?"

Germany did not recognize the so-called Armenian genocide. The Bundestag voted in 2005 a one-sided resolution about Armenian sufferings, but without use the word "genocide". It was an attack of the CDU (Christian democrats) against Turkish candidadcy. Actually, the Social-Democrat government disapproved it. Since 2005, the CDU changed its minds. The Bundesrat (German Senate) did never vote a resolution similar to the 2005 text. The Merkel government, like the Schröder government did never support Armenian claims of genocide.

In Italy, only the deputies voted a resolution about the so-called genocide. The Senate did not vote.

I do not know exactly the situation in Poland, but anyway, it was during the far right majority. Armenian lobbyists love the Christian far right.

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
"Yes, a large number of Western students of Ottoman history reject the appropriateness of the genocide label for the tragic fate of the Armenian community in Ottoman Turkey. This list includes distinguished scholars such as Roderic Davison, J.C. Hurewitz, Bernard Lewis, and Andrew Mango. Ignoring this formidable array of learned opinion, most Armenians and their supporters among so-called genocide scholars assert with superb arrogance that the Armenian genocide is an incontrovertible historical fact, similar to the Jewish Holocaust, which would be denied only by lackeys of the Turkish government. One pro-Armenian author, Henry C. Theriault, has even suggested that denial of the Armenian genocide represents hate speech and, therefore, should be illegal in the United States."

Guenter Lewy, "The Middle East Quarterly", Winter 2006: www.meforum.org/895/correspondence

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
No one Armenian or pro-Armenian responded here to this important Ottoman document, which I reproduced already. Why?

"Document dated September 09, 1915
Ottoman Government
Ministry of the Interior
General Directorate of Security
Secret

Cipher message to the Governorate of Konya:

Ahmet from Siroz and his friend Halil have been sent to Konya today, to be prosecuted by the Military Court of the 4th Army for the crimes of murdering the Armenians and usurping their possessions. The said individuals should definitely not be permitted to escape and they should be kept imprisoned in Konya, until receiving the request and written note of Cemal Pasha in that regard.

September 09,1915

The Minister [Talat Pasha]."
Reference: Hikmet Özdemir and Yusuf Sarinay, "Turkish Armenian Conflict Document", Ankara, TBMM, 2007.

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
Let's see what wrote the strongly Armenophile US General James G. Harbord, in 1920, after an investigation in Anatolia:

"In the territory untouched by war, from which Armenians were deported, the ruined villages are undoubtedly due to Turkish deviltry, but where Armenians advanced and retired with the Russians, their retaliatory cruelties unquestionably rivaled the Turks in their inhumanity."

"Condition in the Near East", Washington, Government Printing House, 1920, p. 9.

Harbord received indeed a huge number of testimonies, and many concrete proofs, about the atrocities perpetrated by Armenian volunteers in 1916 and 1917-1918.

Lucrece @ 03/02/2009
The Memoirs of Morenthau are notorious forgeries, as demonstrated by Heath Lowry, then by Guenter Lewy, with the diary and letters of Morgenthau himself:
www.eraren.org/index.php?Lisan=en&Page=YayinIcerik&SayiNo=18

The huge war crimes by Greek sodliers against unarmed Turks, from 1919 to 1922, were investigated by a French-British-American commission:
www.ataa.org/reference/greekinvasion.html

See also:
louisville.edu/a-s/history/turks/Greek%20Atrocities%20in%20Asia%20Minor.pdf
louisville.edu/a-s/history/turks/greekatrocities_smyrna.pdf

The Greek war crimes during the Balkans wars (1912-1913) were investigated by the Carnegie Foundation, like other war crimes perpetrated during the same conflict.

See also:
louisville.edu/a-s/history/turks/coalises_balkaniques_5.pdf

As usual, Armenian propagandists are using huge lies.

Garo @ 03/02/2009
The martyrdom of the Greeks, therefore, comprised two periods: that antedating the war, and that which began in the early part of 1915. The first affected chiefly the Greeks on the seacoast of Asia Minor. The second affected those living in Thrace and in the territories surrounding the Sea of Marmora, the Dardanelles, the Bosphorus, and the coast of the Black Sea. These latter, to the extent of several hundred thousand, were sent to the interior of Asia Minor. The Turks adopted almost identically the same procedure against the Greeks as that which they had adopted against the Armenians. They began by incorporating the Greeks into the Ottoman army and then transforming them into labour battalions, using them to build roads in the Caucasus and other scenes of action. These Greek soldiers, just like the Armenians, died by thousands from cold, hunger, and other privations. The same house-to-house searches for hidden weapons took place in the Greek villages, and Greek men and women were beaten and tortured just as were their fellow Armenians. The Greeks had to submit to the same forced requisitions, which amounted in their case, as in the case of the Armenians, merely to plundering on a wholesale scale. The Turks attempted to force the Greek subjects to become Mohammedans; Greek girls, just like Armenian girls, were stolen and taken to Turkish harems and Greek boys were kidnapped and placed in Moslem households.

The Greeks, just like the Armenians, were accused of disloyalty to the Ottoman Government; the Turks accused them of furnishing supplies to the English submarines in the Marmora and also of acting as spies. The Turks also declared that the Greeks were not loyal to the Ottoman Government, and that they also looked forward to the day when the Greeks inside of Turkey would become part of Greece. These latter charges were unquestionably true; that the Greeks, after suffering for five centuries the most unspeakable outrages at the hands of the Turks, should look longingly to the day when their territory should be part of the fatherland, was to be expected. The Turks, as in the case of the Armenians, seized upon this as an excuse for a violent onslaught on the whole race. Everywhere the Greeks were gathered in groups and, under the so-called protection of Turkish gendarmes, they were transported, the larger part on foot, into the interior. Just how many were scattered in this fashion is not definitely known, the estimates varying anywhere from 200,000 up to 1,000,000.

HENRY I MORGENTHAU,
American Ambassador at Constantinople from 1913 to 1916

Garo @ 03/02/2009
The great massacres and persecutions of the past seem almost insignificant when compared with the sufferings of the Armenian race in 1915. The slaughter of the Albigenses in the early part of the thirteenth century has always been regarded as one of the most pitiful events in history. In these outbursts of fanaticism about 60,000 people were killed. In the massacre of St. Bartholomew about 30,000 human beings lost their lives. The Sicilian Vespers, which has always figured as one of the most fiendish outbursts of this kind, caused the destruction of 8,000. Volumes have been written about the Spanish Inquisition under Torquemada, yet in the eighteen years of his administration only a little more than 8,000 heretics were done to death. Perhaps the one event in history that most resembles the Armenian deportations was the expulsion of the Jews from Spain by Ferdinand and Isabella. According to Prescott 160,000 were uprooted from their homes and scattered broadcast over Africa and Europe. Yet all these previous persecutions seem almost trivial when we compare them with the sufferings of the Armenians, in which at least 600,000 people were destroyed and perhaps as many as 1,000,000.

And these earlier massacres, when we compare them with the spirit that directed the Armenian atrocities, have one feature that we can almost describe as an excuse: they were the product of religious fanaticism and most of the men and women who instigated them sincerely believed that they were devoutly serving their Maker. Undoubtedly religious fanaticism was an 'Impelling motive with the Turkish and Kurdish rabble who slew Armenians as a service to Allah, but the men who really conceived the crime had no such motive. Practically all of them were atheists, with no more respect for Mohammedanism than for Christianity, and with them the one motive was cold-blooded, calculating state policy.
Henry Morgenthau
American Ambassador to Constantinople
1913-1916

Hakan123 @ 03/02/2009
I am Turk and I would like to see Turkey accept, apologize and move forward when it comes to the Armenian issue. The recognition of the Armenian sufferings by the US Congress will be a positive step. After all what happened to all the Armenians? The military dictatorship of Turkey has brainwashed us for far too many years and I am glad to see that their days are numbered. We can have better relationships with all our neighbors, including Armenia, if we allow democracy to rule in Turkey.

Garo @ 03/02/2009
The Turks, as in the case of the Armenians, seized upon this as an excuse for a violent onslaught on the whole race. Everywhere the Greeks were gathered in groups and, under the so-called protection of Turkish gendarmes, they were transported, the larger part on foot, into the interior. Just how many were scattered in this fashion is not definitely known, the estimates varying anywhere from 200,000 up to 1,000,000. These caravans suffered great privations, but they were not submitted to general massacre as were the Armenians, and this is probably the reason why the outside world has not heard so much about them. The Turks showed them this greater consideration not from any motive of pity. The Greeks, unlike the Armenians, had a government which was vitally interested in their welfare. At this time there was a general apprehension among the Teutonic Allies that Greece would enter the war on the side of the Entente, and a wholesale massacre of Greeks in Asia Minor would unquestionably have produced such a state of mind in Greece that its pro-German king would have been unable longer to keep his country out of the war. It was only a matter of state policy, therefore, that saved these Greek subjects of Turkey from all the horrors that befell the Armenians. But their sufferings are still terrible, and constitute another chapter in the long story of crimes for which civilization will hold the Turk responsible.

From book Murder of a Nation By Henry Morgenthau
American Ambassador to Constantinople
1913-1916

Garo @ 03/02/2009
from April to October, 1915, practically all the highways in Asia Minor were crowded with these unearthly bands of exiles. They could be seen winding in and out of every valley and climbing up the sides of nearly every mountain - moving on and on, they scarcely knew whither, except that every road led to death. Village after village and town after town was evacuated of its Armenian population, under the distressing circumstances already detailed. In these six months, as far as can be ascertained, about 1,200,000 people started on this journey to the Syrian desert.

"Pray for us," they would say as they left their homes---the homes in which their ancestors had lived for 2,500 years. "We shall not see you in this world again, but sometime we shall meet. Pray for us!"

Henry Morgenthau
American Ambassador to Constantinople
1913-1916

Garo @ 03/02/2009
All through the spring and summer of 1915 the deportations took place. Of the larger cities, Constantinople, Smyrna, and Aleppo were spared; practically all other places where a single Armenian family lived now became the scenes of these unspeakable tragedies. Scarcely a single Armenian, whatever his education or wealth, or whatever the social class to which he belonged, was exempted from the order. In some villages placards were posted ordering the whole Armenian population to present itself in a public place at an appointed time-usually a day or two ahead, and in other places the town crier would go through the streets delivering the order vocally. In still others not the slightest warning was given. The gendarmes would appear before an Armenian. house and order all the inmates to follow them. They would take women engaged in their domestic tasks without giving them the chance to change their clothes.

Henry Morgenthau
American Ambassador to Constantinople
1913-1916

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/01/2009
BIAS & BIGOTRY IN THE TERM ???ARMENIAN GENCOIDE??? (1 of 4)

If one cherishes values like fairness, objectivity, truth, and honesty, then one should really use the term ???Turkish-Armenian conflict???. Asking one ???Do you accept or deny Armenian Genocide??? shows anti-Turkish bias. The question should be re-phrased ???What is your stand on the Turkish-Armenian conflict????

Turks believe it was an inter communal warfare mostly fought by Turkish and Armenian irregulars, a civil war which is engineered, provoked, and waged by the Armenian revolutionaries, with active support from Russia, England, France, and others, all eyeing the vast territories of the collapsing Ottoman Empire, against a backdrop of a raging world war. Armenian, on the other hand, ignoring Armenian agitation, raids, rebellions, treason, territorial demands, and Turkish victims killed by Armenians, claim that it was a one way genocide.

GENOCIDE ALLEGATIONS IGNORE ???THE SIX T???S OF THE TURKISH-ARMENIAN CONFLICT???

While some in unsuspecting public may be forgiven for taking the blatant and ceaseless Armenian propaganda at face value and believing Armenian falsifications merely because they are repeated so often, it is difficult and painful for someone like me, the son of Turkish survivors on both maternal and paternal sides.

Those seemingly endless ???War years??? of 1912-1922 brought wide-spread death and destruction on to all Ottoman citizens. No Turkish family was left touched, mine included. Those nameless, faceless Turkish victims are killed for a second time today with politically motivated and baseless charges of Armenian genocide.

Peace,

ERGUN KIRLIKOVALI, Son of Turkish Survivors from Both Maternal & Paternal Side, www.turkla.com

Garo @ 03/02/2009
Looking from your posted picture on your website you are 25-30 how old was your father when fathered you,70 years old?what a lier.

bafaer @ 03/02/2009
Whereas nothing has proved by scientists, nor by any juridical instance, it is absurd to suggest to the Congress to recognize such an criminal act.

Instead, why you don???t think to push the Congress to establish a joint international commission composed bye the historians of both countries and all other related countries.

The role of parliaments must be to take a stance against injustice and to help to find a solution whatever question, internal or international.

Another aspect of this question, having a position in such a question means that the Congress would be acting as a judge in a question, which is mainly an international law matter. And that would be against to the principle of division of power, which is an essential element of democracy

edmit @ 03/02/2009
The only way to end a genocide debate is to recognize the genocide. It is morrally incorrect when people are trying to find an excuse to delay this recognition. Among reasons not to recognize this historical events Byford is trying to bring Armenian-Turkish relations. However, the truth is more important then any pragmatic political interests. If Turkey does not want to open the border with Armenia, this is not because of a genocide debate. The bottom line: to improve Turkish-??rmenian relations Turkey must start first by recognizing the truth, the historical facts. Otherwise, Turkey will be excused once again to process with another genocide.

edmit @ 03/02/2009
The only way to end a genocide debate is to recognize the genocide. It is morrally incorrect when people are trying to find an excuse to delay this recognition. Among reasons not to recognize this historical events Byford is trying to bring Armenian-Turkish relations. However, the truth is more important then any pragmatic political interests. If Turkey does not want to open the border with Armenia, this is not because of a genocide debate. The bottom line: to improve Turkish-??rmenian relations Turkey must start first by recognizing the truth, the historical facts. Otherwise, Turkey will be excused once again to process with another genocide.

ACohen22 @ 03/02/2009
If we Americans are serous about taking a stance against Genocide, our Congress should recognize the Armenian Genocide just as it should recognize the Dar fur Genocide. I don't believe that the reconciliation of Turkey and Armenia should be an obstacle to taking a strong position against Genocide.

ACohen22 @ 03/02/2009
If we Americans are serous about taking a stance against Genocide, our Congress should recognize the Armenian Genocide just as it should recognize the Dar fur Genocide. I don't believe that the reconciliation of Turkey and Armenia should be an obstacle to taking a strong position against Genocide.

Garo @ 03/02/2009
From a book Murder of a Nation by
Henry Morgenthau
American Ambassador to Constantinople
1913-1916

Garo @ 03/02/2009
I had no right to interfere. According to the cold-blooded legalities of the situation, the treatment of Turkish subjects by the Turkish Government was purely a domestic affair; unless it directly affected American lives and American interests, it was outside the concern of the American Government. When I first approached Talaat on the subject, he called my attention to this fact in no uncertain terms. This interview was one of the most exciting which I had had up to that time. Two missionaries had just called upon me, giving the full details of the frightful happenings at Konia. After listening to their stories, I could not restrain myself, and went immediately to the Sublime Porte. I saw at once that Talaat was in one of his most ferocious states of mind. For months he had been attempting to secure the release of one of his closest friends, Ayoub Sabri, and Zinnoun, who were held as prisoners by the English at Malta. "This fine Turkish distinction had a certain metaphysical interest, but I had more practical matters to discuss at that time. So I began to talk about the Armenians at Konia. I had hardly started when Talaat's attitude became even more belligerent. His eyes lighted up, he brought his jaws together, leaned over toward me, and snapped out:

"Are they Americans?"
The implications of this question were hardly diplomatic; it was merely a way of telling me that the matter was none of my business. In a moment Talaat said this in so many words.

"The Armenians are not to be trusted, " he said, "besides, what we do with them does not concern the United States."

I replied that I regarded myself as the friend of the Armenians and was shocked at the way that they were being treated. But he shook his head and refused to discuss the matter. I saw that nothing could be gained by forcing the issue at that time. I spoke in behalf of another British subject who was not being treated properly.

"He's English, isn't he?" answered Talaat. "Then I shall do as I like with him!"
"Eat him, if you wish!" I replied.
"No," said Talaat, "he would go against my digestion."
"Why don't you give this money to us? " he said, with a grin.
" What money? " I asked.

"Here is a cablegram for you from America, sending you a lot of money for the Armenians. You ought not to use it that way; give it to us Turks, we need it as badly as they do."

But on this occasion, as on many others, Talaat was evasive and non-committal and showed much hostility to the interest which the American people were manifesting in the Armenians."Why are you so interested in the Armenians, anyway?" he said, on another occasion. "You are a Jew; these people are Christians. The Mohammedans and the Jews always get on harmoniously. We are treating the Jews here all right. What have you to complain of? Why can't you let us do with these Christians as we please?"
words By He

Garo @ 03/02/2009
I had no right to interfere. According to the cold-blooded legalities of the situation, the treatment of Turkish subjects by the Turkish Government was purely a domestic affair; unless it directly affected American lives and American interests, it was outside the concern of the American Government. When I first approached Talaat on the subject, he called my attention to this fact in no uncertain terms. This interview was one of the most exciting which I had had up to that time. Two missionaries had just called upon me, giving the full details of the frightful happenings at Konia. After listening to their stories, I could not restrain myself, and went immediately to the Sublime Porte. I saw at once that Talaat was in one of his most ferocious states of mind. For months he had been attempting to secure the release of one of his closest friends, Ayoub Sabri, and Zinnoun, who were held as prisoners by the English at Malta. "This fine Turkish distinction had a certain metaphysical interest, but I had more practical matters to discuss at that time. So I began to talk about the Armenians at Konia. I had hardly started when Talaat's attitude became even more belligerent. His eyes lighted up, he brought his jaws together, leaned over toward me, and snapped out:

"Are they Americans?"
The implications of this question were hardly diplomatic; it was merely a way of telling me that the matter was none of my business. In a moment Talaat said this in so many words.

"The Armenians are not to be trusted, " he said, "besides, what we do with them does not concern the United States."
I replied that I regarded myself as the friend of the Armenians and was shocked at the way that they were being treated. But he shook his head and refused to discuss the matter. I saw that nothing could be gained by forcing the issue at that time. I spoke in behalf of another British subject who was not being treated properly.

"He's English, isn't he?" answered Talaat. "Then I shall do as I like with him!"
"Eat him, if you wish!" I replied.
"No," said Talaat, "he would go against my digestion."
"Why don't you give this money to us? " he said, with a grin.
" What money? " I asked.

"Here is a cablegram for you from America, sending you a lot of money for the Armenians. You ought not to use it that way; give it to us Turks, we need it as badly as they do."

But on this occasion, as on many others, Talaat was evasive and non-committal and showed much hostility to the interest which the American people were manifesting in the Armenians."Why are you so interested in the Armenians, anyway?" he said, on another occasion. "You are a Jew; these people are Christians. The Mohammedans and the Jews always get on harmoniously. We are treating the Jews here all right. What have you to complain of? Why can't you let us do with these Christians as we please?"
From the bo

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/01/2009
ALLEGATIONS OF ARMENIAN GENOCIDE ARE RACIST AND DISHONEST HISTORY (2 of 4)

They are racist because they ignore the Turkish dead: about 3 million during WWI; more than half a million of them at the hands of Armenian nationalists.

And the allegations of Armenian genocide are dishonest because they simply dismiss ???THE SIX T???S OF THE TURKISH-ARMENIAN CONFLICT???:

1) TUMULT (as in numerous Armenian armed uprisings between 1882 and 1920)

2) TERRORISM (by well-armed Armenian nationalists and militias victimizing Ottoman-Muslims between 1882-1920)

3) TREASON (Armenians joining the invading enemy armies as early as 1914 and lasting until 1921)

4) TERRITORIAL DEMANDS (where Armenians were a minority, not a majority, attempting to establish Greater Armenia, the would-be first apartheid of the 20th Century with a Christian minority ruling over a Muslim majority )

5) TURKISH SUFFERING AND LOSSES (i.e. those caused by the Armenian nationalists: 524,000 Muslims, mostly Turks, met their tragic end at the hands of Armenian revolutionaries during WWI, per Turkish Historical Society. This figure is not to be confused with about 2.5 million Muslim dead who lost their lives due to non-Armenian causes during WWI. Grand total: more than 3 million, according to Prof. Justin McCarthy.)

6) TERESET (temporary resettlement) triggered by the first five T???s above and amply documented as such; not to be equated to the Armenian misrepresentations as genocide.)

Peace,
ERGUN KIRLIKOVALI, Son of Turkish Survivors from Both Maternal & Paternal Side, www.turkla.com

Ergun Kirlikovali @ 03/01/2009
VERDICT WITHOUT DUE PROCESS AMOUNTS TO LYNCHING (3 of 4)
Those who take the Armenian ???allegations??? of genocide at face value seem to also ignore the following:
1- Genocide is a legal, technical term precisely defined by the U.N. 1948 convention (Like all proper laws, it is not retroactive to 1915.)

2- Genocide verdict can only be given by a "competent court" after "due process" where both sides are properly represented and evidence mutually cross examined.

3- For a genocide verdict, the accusers must prove ???intent??? at a competent court and after due process. This could never be done by the Armenians whose evidence mostly fall into five major categories: hearsay, mis-representations, exaggerations, forgeries, and ???other???.

4- Such a "competent court" was never convened in the case of Turkish-Armenian conflict and a genocide verdict does not exist (save a Kangaroo court in occupied Istanbul in 1920 where partisanship, vendettas, and revenge motives left no room for due process.)

5- Genocide claim is political, not historical or factual. It reflects bias against Turks. Therefore, the term genocide must be used with the qualifier "alleged", for scholarly objectivity and truth.

LYNCHING OF THE TURKS BY ARMENIANS ( 4 of 4)

Recognizing Armenian claim as genocide, therefore, will deeply insult Turkish-Americans as well as Turks around the globe and destroy the excellent relations currently enjoyed between the U.S. and Turkey. It will, no doubt, please Armenians but disappoint, insult, and outrage Turkey, one of America's closest allies since the Korean War of 1950-53. Turks stood shoulder to shoulder with Americans in Gulf War, Somalia, Bosnia, Kosovo, Afghanistan, and more. American gratitude and thanks will appear to come (because of the Armenian lobby) in the form of the worst insult that can be dished out to an entire nation.

History is not a matter of "conviction, consensus, political resolutions, or propaganda." History is a matter of research, peer review, thoughtful debate, and honest scholarship. Even historians, by definition, cannot decide on a genocide verdict, which is reserved for a "competent court" with its legal expertise and due process.

What we witness today amounts to lynching of the Turks by Armenians to satisfy the age old Armenian hate, bias, and bigotry. Values like fairness, presumption of innocence until proven guilty, objectivity, balance, honesty, and freedom of speech are stumped under the fanatic Armenian feet. Unprovoked , unjustified, and unfair defamation of Turkey, one of America's closest allies in the troubled Middle East, in order to appease some nagging Armenian activists runs counter to American interests.

Those who claim genocide verdict today, based on the much discredited Armenian evidence, are actually engaging in "conviction and execution without due process". Last time I looked in the dictionary, that was the definition of ???lynch mobs???.

Isn???t it time to stop fighting the First World War and give peace a chance?

Peace,
ERGUN KIRLIKOVALI, Son of Turkish Survivors from Both Maternal & Paternal Side, www.turkla.com

Garo @ 03/01/2009
The Armenians are not the only subject people in Turkey which have suffered from this policy of making Turkey exclusively the country of the Turks. The story which I have told about the Armenians I could also tell with certain modifications about the Greeks and the Syrians. Indeed the Greeks were the first victims of this nationalizing idea. I have already described how, in the few months preceding the European War, the Ottoman Government began deporting its Greek subjects along the coast of Asia Minor. These outrages aroused little interest in Europe or the United States, yet in the space of three or four months more than 100,000 Greeks were taken from their age-long homes in the Mediterranean littoral and removed to the Greek Islands and the interior. For the larger part these were bona-fide deportations; that is, the Greek inhabitants were actually removed to new places and were not subjected to wholesale massacre. it was probably for the reason that the civilized world did not protest against these deportations that the Turks afterward decided to apply the same methods on a larger scale not only to the Greeks but to the Armenians, Syrians, Nestorians, and others of its subject peoples. In fact, Bedri Bey, the Prefect of Police at Constantinople, himself told one of my secretaries that the Turks had expelled the Greeks so successfully that they had decided to apply the same method to all the other races in the empire.

From the Murder of a Nation book by
Henry Morgenthau
American Ambassador to Constantinople
1913-1916

Garo @ 03/01/2009
The Armenians are not the only subject people in Turkey which have suffered from this policy of making Turkey exclusively the country of the Turks. The story which I have told about the Armenians I could also tell with certain modifications about the Greeks and the Syrians. Indeed the Greeks were the first victims of this nationalizing idea. I have already described how, in the few months preceding the European War, the Ottoman Government began deporting its Greek subjects along the coast of Asia Minor. These outrages aroused little interest in Europe or the United States, yet in the space of three or four months more than 100,000 Greeks were taken from their age-long homes in the Mediterranean littoral and removed to the Greek Islands and the interior. For the larger part these were bona-fide deportations; that is, the Greek inhabitants were actually removed to new places and were not subjected to wholesale massacre. it was probably for the reason that the civilized world did not protest against these deportations that the Turks afterward decided to apply the same methods on a larger scale not only to the Greeks but to the Armenians, Syrians, Nestorians, and others of its subject peoples. In fact, Bedri Bey, the Prefect of Police at Constantinople, himself told one of my secretaries that the Turks had expelled the Greeks so successfully that they had decided to apply the same method to all the other races in the empire.

From the Murder of the Nation Book by
Henry Morgenthau
American Ambassador to Constantinople
1913-1916

rfiu7955 @ 03/01/2009
Babikian asked Ataov how did he reconcile his statement that only two Armenians were killed on April 24, 1915 with Talaat Pasha???s, Minister of Interior and the main architect of the Armenian Genocide, diary ("Black Book") which stated that 924,158 Armenians had been killed by the Turkish government. Talaat also kept a detailed account of Armenians deported from each city, county, and province.

Babikian also questioned the credibility of the historians Ataov cited as experts on the Armenian Genocide, such as Justin McCarthy, Gunther Lewy, Sanford Show, and Andrew Mango. Babikian then read "British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies'" evaluation of McCarthy???s work as "junk food, junk bonds and now junk history". Babikian reminded Ataov and the audience with the testimony of 126 Holocaust scholars, International Association of Genocide Scholars, the International Centre for Transitional Justice and hundreds of other scholars and historians who have contradicted Ataov's claims and the Turkish Government's denial of the Armenian Genocide.

When Babikian tried to question some of Ataov answers, Turkish nationalists once again tried to suppress Babikian from speaking. Embarrassed by his compatriots behavior and as a face-saving measure, Ataov invited Babikian to the stage to stand next to him and to continue the discussion. Babikian and Ataov continued to discuss many relevant issues to the Armenian Genocide.

After the event, Dr. Girair Basmadjian, president of the ANCC, said that he "condemned the behavior of the Turkish nationalists and their attempt to intimidate and silence a Canadian, while trying to deny him one of the most basic human rights to freedom of thought which is enshrined in our constitution."

Dr. Basmadjian added: "The modus operandi of these nationalists is indicative and reminiscent of the Turkish government's modus operandi in suppressing freedom of speech and silencing anyone who dares to challenge the official Turkish government narrative of the Armenian Genocide under article 301 of the Turkish penal code." The persecution of award-winning novelist Orhan Pamuk and many other righteous Turks, and the assassination of Turkish-Armenian journalist are eloquent examples of these policies," said Dr. Basmadjian.

"We also abhor Prof. Ataov???s ???the West is racist??? statement and his other temper tantrums. Such a statement has no place in our academic and scholarly circles," said Basmadjian. Ataov's attempt to whip up hysteria and to try to put a wedge among Canadians by using religious fervor should be condemned by everyone, he said. "Therefore, we ask Ryerson University to dissociate itself from this lecture which she jointly organized with the Federation of Canadian Turkish Association, apologize to Canadians, condemn Prof. Ataov, and hold accountable the sociology department professor of Turkish background who deceived the university and put Ryerson in suc

rfiu7955 @ 03/01/2009
ANCC CHALLENGES PROF. ATAOV'S ARMENIAN GENOCIDE DENIAL CAMPAIGN

Turkish nationalists attempt to curtail Canadians' freedom of speech

Toronto -- The Armenian National Committee of Canada's (ANCC) Executive Director Aris Babikian challenged Turkish professor Turkkaya Ataov's attempt to deny the historic reality of the Armenian Genocide during the latter's lecture at the Ryerson University on Feb. 18. Prof. Ataov's presentation was titled "How to come to terms with one's past".

When Babikian tried to correct Prof. Ataov's erroneous statements regarding the Armenian Genocide, and the Turkish professor's accusations that the Western world was racist, anti-Islamic and practiced genocidal policies, many of the Turkish nationalists in the audience tried to silence Babikian. When Babikian insisted on being heard, some of the organizers turned off the microphone and threatened Babikian with forceful removal from the podium.

Babikian reminded the audience that they are living in Canada and not in Turkey and that freedom of speech is one of the most cherished rights of Canadians, specially in academic settings.

After Babikian's condemnation of Turkish nationalists' anti-democratic behavior, the ANCC executive director was allowed to make his statement, challenging Prof. Ataov???s boiler-plate propaganda. Babikian also condemned Prof. Ataov???s use of the "religion card" to justify his accusations against the West. Earlier in his lecture Ataov had accused Western countries of killing five million Muslims in the Balkan and in the Caucasus. Ataov's manner was condescending towards the West and his audience.

youngturkcanada @ 03/01/2009
An Armenian propaganda machine member quoted'...they Are going to pay up hall a lot of contribution, Money and worst is that they are going to give up big part of modern Turkey..' Armenians were daydreaming while they were trying to create "Great Armenia" even though they were not majority on any Ottoman territory they claimed before and during WWI. Sounds like greediness and daydreaming continue, and same pathetic tactics are being used which failed them again and again. Is it lack of intelligent or moral value that expect everyone will belive their one sided tall stories?

rfiu7955 @ 03/01/2009
There could be some people saying Armenian Propaganda but !Talaat pasha's, minister of interior the main architect of the Armenian Genocide, diary("black book")which stated that 924,158 Armenians had been killed by Turkish government.

Talaat also kept detailed account of Armenian deported from each city,county and province.

Also 126 holocaust scholars ,International Association of Genocide Scholars,International center for Transitional Justice and hundreds of over scholars and historians contradicted denials claims and the Turkish Government's denial of Armenian Genocide.

rfiu7955 @ 03/01/2009
We all know that Turkey would not even consider to open it's borders with or without USA's recognition of Armenian Genocide,so this normalization is all political game as usual.

Turkey needs USA more than USA needs Turkey because as we know USA is Turkey;s (father)by any means military or economically even Turkish army officers are mostly Americans.

Turkish government is talking about Turkish - Armenian relationship normalization but in the aver hand ministry of education spreading DVDs about, how Armenians killed Turks which is absurd.It means raising an aver Turkish nationalist generation, which shows you how genocide is still going on.

So it would be better that USA recognizes Armenian Genocide, To stop Turkey's support to Sudan committing Darfur Genocide.

Sevana @ 03/01/2009
What is needed is not so much an end to the Armenian "Genocide debate" but rather an end to the sham of denial by Turkey and its friends of a globally and authoritatively accepted historical truth.

Truth will ultimately prevail, vested interests permitting. Long live freedom and hypocrisy.

Sevana @ 03/01/2009
Mr Byford; what needs to come to an end is not so much the Armenian "Genocide debate" but the sham of denial by Turkey and its colluding "friends" of a widely and authoritatively accepted historical truth .

Truth will ultimately prevail, vested interests permitting ofcourse. Long live freedom and hypocrisy.

AramB @ 03/01/2009
This author is deceiving the public that this is a war between the Armenian lobby and the Turkish government. How could he explain the fact that so many countries like Germany, Italy, and Poland, without any Armenian presence or lobby have recognized the Armenian Genocide? More than 20 countries in the western world have recognized the Armenian Genocide. Our government is a lonely standout on this moral issue.

rfiu7955 @ 03/01/2009
You Know what is worst part of Armenian Genocide to be acknowledged
by Turkish government is that, they Are going to pay up hall a lot of contribution, Money and worst is that they are going to give up big part of modern Turkey.That is the reason they are so afraid to take responsibility.

Germany did not have lands involved just money,that's why it was not so match harm for Germany to pay contribution for Jewish Genocide and get there respect back.But Turkey shamefully denies THE FACT that there was Armenian Genocide committid By Turkish people.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
A video about the excavations in Turkey since 1986, with testimonies of old Turks, recorded during the 1980's:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=Acsn-De8vCQ

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
If you like the videos, why not watch it?
www.youtube.com/watch?v=dFKpNQTg4I8

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
"by Turkish government is that, they Are going to pay up hall a lot of contribution, Money and worst is that they are going to give up big part of modern Turkey.That is the reason they are so afraid to take responsibility."

The Armenians renounced to monetary claims by the Gümrü treaty (December 1920), which fixed also the Turkish-Armenian boundary. This boundary was confirmed by the Kars (1921) and Lausanne (1923) treaties. The Turkish-Armenian boundary, like other European boundaries, is guaranted by the Helsinki agreements (1975).

It is funny to noticed that the Dashnaks pleaded the Gümrür treaty during their rebellion against Soviet power, in 1921, and asked for help to Kemalists. A letter of Dashnak leadership is reproduced in Kapriel S. Papazian's book, "Patriotism Perverted", Boston, Baikar Press, 1934.

Territorial and monetary claims are obsession of Dashnaks and other nationalists since many years, but they failed and they will fail again, until their political disappearance.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
""A shameful Act -The Armenian Genocide and the Question of Turkish Responsibility".That's the title of Taner's Akcam new study about Armenian Genocide that I propose to Turkish deneyers so that they learn the truth about what happened to Armenian people instead of repeating official Turkish falsfied views."

I suggest to read too the comments of real scholars about Mr. Akçam's forgeries:
www.tc-america.org/Erman%20Sahin-Review%20Article.pdf

And I must say again that I am not defending the official Turkish thesis. Among my great-grandparents, there were not a single Turk, Turkic or Ottoman. The ad hominem attacks and insults by nationalist Armenian is the best proof of their bad faith. These methods are unfair and irrational.

youngturkcanada @ 03/01/2009
Way to go Lucrece! It is hard for some Armenians to digest their lost in war and to accept wrongdoing of their ???bureau???. Sadly, ???bureau??? still leads the Armenian diaspora and use the very same method that failed them. It does not matter whether it is a monarchic Ottoman era or nowadays, as Einstein quoted once, same method will fail although they expect the other way. Expect more hate propaganda and greed.

rfiu7955 @ 03/01/2009
You Know what is worst part of Armenian Genocide to be acknowledged
by Turkish government is that, they Are going to pay up hall a lot of contribution, Money and worst is that they are going to give up big part of modern Turkey.That is the reason they are so afraid to take responsibility.

Germany did not have lands involved just money,that's why it was not so match harm for Germany to pay contribution for Jewish Genocide and get there respect back.But Turkey shamefully denies THE FACT that there was Armenian Genocide committid By Turkish people.

JanJan @ 03/01/2009
There is no comparison to the Holocaust. The Jewish lawyers and doctors were banned by law to represent or treat German citizens as they were deemed inferior. Jews were forced to wear a visible sign for discrimination. In Turkey it was the other way around. The Armenians treated the majority Turks as inferior. Thus ???racial discrimination??? which is the main ingredient of genocide is not proven for the Armenian case.

Second, the aim to exterminate was not present among the Turks. IF they wish to exterminate the Armenians, they would have done it then and there. Instead they spent millions of dollars with today???s rate to export them to a distance away from the Russian border.

Third, government involvement is missing. If any Turkish government was involved it was for protecting the deportees.

Genocide is a legal term and it cannot be used loosely only when it suits Christian Armenian interests.

JanJan @ 03/01/2009
Not the denial of the Turkish Government, but the insistence of brainwashed Armenians to label a civil war they started as genocide is costing the Turkish Government. There cannot be denial of an allegation which remains unproven. I see that Armenian propagandists at this forum are carrying on a smear campaign against anyone who dares to disagree with them, instead of facing the TRUTH of their history.

Armenians were deported from the war zone to avoid their collaboration with the 200,000 young Armenian volunteers who were armed by Russia to fight against the Turks as admitted by Garegin Pastermadjeyan (the Armenian war hero code named Armen Garo) in his book ???Why Armenia Should be Free???, Baikar Press, Boston, 1918. The total population of Armenians in Anatolia was around 1.3 million as per the Ottoman census bureau which was headed by a Jewish named Fethi Franko. Out of a total population of 1.3 million, 200,000 armed rebels is a lot. It was WAR, not geno-. Warring parties were left outside the UN genocide convention upon Raphale Lemkin???s recommendation who was only 14 years old when the said events took place and has never been in the vicinity of the location. Whatever opinion he had about the Armenian case was based on hearsay and opinions do not count for geno-. Sad as it may be not every death can be labeled geno-.

The Armenian Churches in Kayseri and Sivas were converted into ammunition depots. The Armenian Christian Churches are now brainwashing Armenian children as early as three years old to claim geno- without any proof. Most of you are products of that upbringing. Armenians should be treated to overcome their racial prejudice.

There was no awareness of Armenian race in Turkey until Armenians started to kill Turkish Ambassadors worldwide. If any hatred towards Armenians is developed among the Turks, it is well earned by the unreasonable propagandists who try to pocket monetary gains with unfair accusations of geno-.

I imagine, the Russian commander???s comment of 1915, that Armenians saw wind and ploughed tornado will come true again.

JanJan @ 03/01/2009
Not the denial of the Turkish Government, but the insistence of brainwashed Armenians to label a civil war they started as genocide is costing the Turkish Government. There cannot be denial of an allegation which remains unproven. I see that Armenian propagandists at this forum are carrying on a smear campaign against anyone who dares to disagree with them, instead of facing the TRUTH of their history.

Armenians were deported from the war zone to avoid their collaboration with the 200,000 young Armenian volunteers who were armed by Russia to fight against the Turks as admitted by Garegin Pastermadjeyan (the Armenian war hero code named Armen Garo) in his book ???Why Armenia Should be Free???, Baikar Press, Boston, 1918. The total population of Armenians in Anatolia was around 1.3 million as per the Ottoman census bureau which was headed by a Jewish named Fethi Franko. Out of a total population of 1.3 million, 200,000 armed rebels is a lot. It was WAR, not geno-. Warring parties were left outside the UN genocide convention upon Raphale Lemkin???s recommendation who was only 14 years old when the said events took place and has never been in the vicinity of the location. Whatever opinion he had about the Armenian case was based on hearsay and opinions do not count for geno-. Sad as it may be not every death can be labeled geno-.

The Armenian Churches in Kayseri and Sivas were converted into ammunition depots. The Armenian Christian Churches are now brainwashing Armenian children as early as three years old to claim geno- without any proof. Most of you are products of that upbringing. Armenians should be treated to overcome their racial prejudice.

There was no awareness of Armenian race in Turkey until Armenians started to kill Turkish Ambassadors worldwide. If any hatred towards Armenians is developed among the Turks, it is well earned by the unreasonable propagandists who try to pocket monetary gains with unfair accusations of geno-.

I imagine, the Russian commander???s comment of 1915, that Armenians saw wind and ploughed tornado will come true again.

youngturkcanada @ 03/01/2009
It is a wishfull thinking to expect Armenian diaspora will emphaty for others and to come to point for a reconciliation. They will keep using the only tool they have to keep them united, hatret and genocide myth. The comments of pro-Armenians here are full of revenge, distorted facts and hate propaganda. Hope Armenia will do the other way, and will accept Turkish proposal to build a joint commission to investigate the events of Turkish-Armenian conflict, and then establish a common ground for understanding each other and prosperity of future generations.

westarmenia @ 03/01/2009
This Article by is just a THANK YOU letter from Turkey to President Sarkisjan for inviting President Gul to Yerevan and in the same time a Thank you to letter to Ex President Ter-Petrosyan, you created the favourable conditions for the visit of President Gul to Yerevan???. !

People better to ignore Lucrece, just brainwashed, wasting time and more, don´t you see that he aim is not to find out what happen! !

westarmenia @ 03/01/2009
The Article by is just a THANK YOU letter from Turkey to President Sarkisjan for inviting President Gul to Yerevan and in the same time a Thank you to letter to Ex President Ter-Petrosyan, you created the favourable conditions for the visit of President Gul to Yerevan???.

People better to ignore Lucrece, just brainwashed, wasting time and more !

vaspuragan @ 03/01/2009
"A shameful Act -The Armenian Genocide and the Question of Turkish Responsibility".That's the title of Taner's Akcam new study about Armenian Genocide that I propose to Turkish deneyers so that they learn the truth about what happened to Armenian people instead of repeating official Turkish falsfied views.

vASAK @ 03/01/2009
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=__gPYneWdQ4

HERE IS THE VIDEO (Rated NC 17)
You love Armenian blood. You have it in your veins, on your hands, and on your minds and in your mouths!
Turks descend on an Armenian village.
This video shows it was GENOCIDE.

Enjoy the video, Turkish deniers. ENJOY that you are mostly ARMENIAN BY BLOOD and also ARMENIAN BLOOD is on your hands and ON YOUR MOUTHS! You love it!

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
"I can understand the pain and anger of armenians. "
And the pain and anger of Turks?

"I am from the Gollu village. The Armenians revolted when the army in Van retreated towards Erzurum. The Armenians killed all our parents. My father was a gendarme sergeant and he was among those who were killed. The villagers in Mollakasim, Amik, Sihayne, Gollu, Hidir, Kurtsatan, and Koprukoy were also murdered. Some of our villagers were hidden in Zeve and were later killed, but we were able to escape.

Armenians tortured and practiced all types of cruelties on the people they kidnapped. They cut up pregnant women and removed the unborn children with their bayonets. They raided and burned all of the Muslim villages, murdering men, women, children and the old. The Muslim population, which fled from the villages, I mentioned, tried to escape by crossing the bridge on the Ablengez River. The Armenians demolished the bridge, and threw the bodies of their prisoners into the river. In the spring when the snow melted, the bodies were carried away into the lake. During the day time, my mother, my two sisters, and I stayed in the hills. We knew that if the Armenians found us they would kill us. My mother died before we reached Diyarbakir. I later lost my two sisters, and was left all alone. I stayed in Diyarbakir for three years, and returned to my village the fourth year. Van and the Muslim villages were all burned and destroyed, we settled down in an Armenian village since they remained intact. We later returned to our villages which we rebuilt with our own hands.

Words cannot express the torture we suffered at the hands of the Armenians. We lost our homes, families, and possessions. After losing my mother, father, and two sisters, I also lost my cousin and other relatives who were trying to escape to Tatvan by ship with thousands of other people. All of the passengers on the ship were brutally slaughtered by the Armenians near the Parket village near Adilcevaz."
Testimony of Mehmet Saar, during the beginning of 1980's, translated into English within ATAA, "Armenian Atrocities and Terrorism", Washington, 1997.

Mr. Saar, born in 1901, is still alive.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
Taner Akçam is not an historian, but a former marxist-leninist terrorist, who asked killing all the US citizens and Turkish soldiers of Turkey during the 1970's, was sentenced to 7 years of jail for his hate articles. He is currently a socioglist in USA, thanks to the Armenian-American sociolgist V. Dadrian, denounced as a falsifier even by moderate pro-Armenian historians, like Hilmar Kaiser.

Halil Bertkay is absolutely not a specialist of the WWI, and said about it only within press interview. It is not scholar work, but crude propaganda to talk about him.

ehud @ 03/01/2009
a shameful act
I can understand very well the pain and anger of armenians.
what a shame, how ugly, just too much, a crime against the memory of the victims of any genocide. i wounder if grenville b. has any connection to neo nazis. people witting such stupid articles normally getting enough money to buy a coffin in advance :-)

but keep cool! armenians will win!

even if every armenian would say: where is aasala , turkey is given enough time to change her policy, all emotions understandable , butter to stay and fight for justice in legal norms!

vaspuragan @ 03/01/2009
More and more Turkish historians like Fatma Gocek,Halil Berktay or Taner Akcam recognise Armenian Holocaust(word used)for the first time by American newspapers during the massacres of 1894-95 in Sasson (occupied Western Armenia) and later by Winston CHURCHILL in his memorys( 1918).So all those historical distortions orginesed by Turkish governements in order to deny Armenian genocide doomed to failure.

ehud @ 03/01/2009
I can understand the pain and anger of armenians.
what a shame, , how ugly, just too much, a crime against the memory of the victims of any genocide. people witting such stupid articles normally getting enough money to buy a coffin in advance :-)
but keep cool! armenians will win!

even if every armenian would say: where is aasala , turkey is given enough time to change her policy, all emotions understandable , butter to fight for justice in legal norms

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
1) I am not defending the official Turkish position. I refuse to call the events in question to "civil war" (it was a civil war in Van and some other region, but surely not within whole Eastern Anatolia); i do not use Kamuran Gurun's figure of Armenian deaths (300,000 in total), but Guenter Lewy's figure (640-650 000); etc.

2) If your single argument is that I am alone this night, it is the best proof that the Armenian side is worry when nacked facts are presented.

Factfinder74 @ 03/01/2009
by the way the situation of Mr. Lucrece defending official Turkish positions and his Loneliness in this debate is a good example mirroring The situation of Turkey on this matter!!

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
"the denial of the genocide has cost too much for the republic of Turkey"
The crazy anti-Turkish line costed much more to Armenia. This country is simply jeopardized to death, because the ineptness of its leaders, and the madness of the Diaspora nationalists, who are asking again and again an anti-Turkish line.

During the year 2008, 28,000 peoples left Armenia. Around the half of the Armenian citizens lives in an other country than Armenia, including betwenn 70,000 to 100,000 peoples in Turkey.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
Mr. Vaspuragan claims helps to raise the origin of the "genocide" claims. These claims were almost openly a product of Russian propaganda to ask Turkish territories, destabilize an important NATO member, a use again the old Armenian tool, which was used against Ottoman Empire from 1862 to 1917, and against the Turkish Republic in 1945-1948, when Stalin asked Kars and Ardahan districts.

US politicians should not forget that the Dashnaks left the Western side during the Cold War, supported the Soviet side, and, until today, are a tool of Moscow against NATO and European Union. Why the Dasnaks are so hostile to the Nabucco pipe-line, called "denialist pipe-line"? Why the ASALA (formed by dissident Dashnaks and other fanatics) threatened US companies, which were building the BTC pipe-lin in 1993? Because it was Russian interest.

Factfinder74 @ 03/01/2009
well, now I see,this report is now advising everybody(including Congress) to be quiet this April and ignore Armenian Genocide Resolution(Which the Autor Mr.Byford is so keen to keep it inside the quotation marks!)hopeing that this year the borders will be open,but it fails to explain why now the Turkish government signals such a thing which he calls "signs of melting"(by the way now i need realy a quotation mark!),The reality is that Turkey is in great trouble ,the denial of the genocide has cost too much for the republic of Turkey and it is getting more and more Deficult for them to stay in this Ridiculous path,not to mention it has already put theire contractors in The US (mainly jewish orgenizations with tragic and terrible Holocaust experience!(and I don`t use a quotation mark for jewish holocust and I`m sure Mr.Byford will not do that either nor he needs some historians to decide on it!!)) in a bad moral situation and harms theire credibility(he didnt mention about that ADL scandal which made some other jewish orgenizations to destance themselves from Turkish position)

The fact is that this is an indirect message from Turkey to US begging to delay the resolution in exchange of something that nobody knows what it exactly is described here as "signs of melting",and if it is true and there are such real signs it is only the result of Armenian lobby groups which are not only clever but also have the advantage of having the truth beside them,and the truth will prevail!!

vaspuragan @ 03/01/2009
Talking about so-called Armenian-Turkish "friendship" context prouve only your cynical hypocrsy(Byford) policy against Armenians.How can a coutry which commited a genocide in 1915 (Turkey) which continue to occupy Armenians lands could be regarded a friendly country by Armenians or Armenia

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
"Talaat pasha's, minister of interior the main architect of the Armenian Genocide, diary("black book")which stated that 924,158 Armenians had been killed by Turkish government."

This quotation is both a fake and a logicall fallacie. There were around 1 750 000 Ottoman Armenians in 1913, and around 1 100 000/1 110 000 survivors in 1919. The most credible figure of Armenian casualities, produced by Guenter Lewy, is 640-650 000. Among these deaths, there are around 175 000 peoples who perished because ineptness of Russian army, and several dozens of thousand of deaths during military clashes.

"International Association of Genocide Scholars"
Almost no one of these self-proclamed "scholars" have never set foot in an archive or done any other original research on the Anatolian events; and many of them are not even historians. The "genocide studies" are imposture. The "genocide" per se is not a relevant object of studies. Be a specialist of Nazi Germany do not help to understand ethnic extermination in Rwanda.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
"Document dated September 09, 1915
Ottoman Government
Ministry of the Interior
General Directorate of Security
Secret

Cipher message to the Governorate of Konya:

Ahmet from Siroz and his friend Halil have been sent to Konya today, to be prosecuted by the Military Court of the 4th Army for the crimes of murdering the Armenians and usurping their possessions. The said individuals should definitely not be permitted to escape and they should be kept imprisoned in Konya, until receiving the request and written note of Cemal Pasha in that regard.
September 09,1915

The Minister."
Reference: Hikmet Özdemir and Yusuf Sarinay (ed.), "Turkish Armenian Conflict Documents", Ankara, TBMM, 2007, p. 261.

vaspuragan @ 03/01/2009
There are three conditions to Armenian-Turkish reconciliation , first recognizing the holocaust of the Armenian people,second financial compansations, and third handing over Armenians lands to the Armenian people.After that we can talk about reconciliation

rfiu7955 @ 03/01/2009
There could be some people saying Armenian Propaganda but !Talaat pasha's, minister of interior the main architect of the Armenian Genocide, diary("black book")which stated that 924,158 Armenians had been killed by Turkish government.

Talaat also kept detailed account of Armenian deported from each city,county and province.

Also 126 holocaust scholars ,International Association of Genocide Scholars,International center for Transitional Justice and hundreds of over scholars and historians contradicted denials claims and the Turkish Government's denial of Armenian Genocide.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
"Last year Congress passed a resolution acknowleding the suffering of Korean "Comfort Women" at the hands of Japan during WWII."

The case of "Confort Women" was judged by an International Tribunal. The responsible peoples were sentenced after a fair trial.

Anyway, history is not the business of Parliament, and this resolution is surely not the most clever text which was voted by the US Congress. Right or wrong, that's irrelevant.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
"In this entire region [from Bitlis through Van to Bayazit] we were informed that the damage and destruction had been done by the Armenians, who, after the Russians retired, remained in occupation of the country, and who, when the Turkish army advanced, destroyed everything belonging to the Musulmans. Moreover, the Armenians are accused of having committed murder, rape, arson and horrible atrocities of every description upon the Musulman population. At first we were most incredulous of these stories, but we finally came to believe them, since the testimony was absolutely unanimous and was corroborated by material evidence. For instance, the only quarters left at all intact in the cities of Bitlis and Van are the Armenian quarters, as was evidenced by churches and inscriptions on the houses, while the Musulman quarters were completely destroyed. Villages said to have been Armenian were still standing, whereas Musulman villages were com- pletely destroyed."
Captain Emory Niles and Arthur E. Sutherland, U.S. Archives, 867.00/1005, reproduced in Justin McCarthy, "The Report of Niles and Sutherland", "XI. Türk Tarih Kongresi", Ankara, 1994, pp. 1828-1829 :

louisville.edu/a-s/history/turks/Niles_and_Sutherland.pdf

garzooma @ 03/01/2009
Last year Congress passed a resolution acknowleding the suffering of Korean "Comfort Women" at the hands of Japan during WWII. I didn't notice Byford or any other anti-Armenian bigots complaining about this.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
"As a result of three month touring the area occupied and devasted by the Russian army and Christian army of revenge, during the spring and summer 1916, I have no hesitation in saying that the Turks would be able to make out as good a case against their enemies as that presetend against the Turks in Col. Agha Petro's letter. According to the almost universal testimony of the local inhabitants and eye-witnesses, the Russian acting on the instigation and advise of the Nestorians and Armenians who accompagnied them, the leading of whom seems to have been Agha Petro himself, murdered and butchered indiscriminately any Moslem member of the civil population who fell into their hands. A typical example that might be quoted is the extermination of the town of Rowanduz and the wholesale massacre of its inhabitants.

While Col. Petros is able to quote isolated examples of Turkish atrocities, a traveler through the Rownaduz and Neri districts would find widespread and wholesale evidence of outrages committed by Christians on Moslems. Anything more thorough and complete would be difficult to imagine. I might also mention that according to the testimony of the Kurdish population, Col. Agha Petros proved the Russians' evil genius and was to a greast extent directly responsible for the excesses committed by Russian troops."

Major Edward W. C. Noel, political officier of the British Army, report of 1919, Archives of Foreign Office, 371/4173/80976, quoted in Stanford J. Shaw, "From Empire to Republic: the Turkish War of National Liberation", Ankara, TTK, vol. II, p. 922.

: garzooma @ 03/01/2009
Last year Congress passed a resolution acknowledging the suffering of Korean "Comfort Wormen" during World War II. I didn't notice Byford or any other anti-Armenian bigots complaining about this.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
"So I have to ask you : ' If the Armenians were killed because they rebelled - why were the Christian Assyrians eradicated?"

The Assyrians were not "eradicated", and there are Assyrians in Eastern Turkey until today. But many were killed, that???s right. Why? Because several thousands of Assyrians, especially in Van region, supported the Armenian rebellion, destroyed Kurdish villages, raped women, killed old peoples and young children. Major Edward W. C. Noel adds that, during th year 1916, Assyrians participated to the extermination of Muslims in some parts of Eastern Anatolia, together with Armenian nationalists and Cossaks.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
Unfortunately, many of the Internet addresses which I indicated here are automatically cutted by the software, and so could not be used. Sorry.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
???in spite of Turkey's refusal to open its hidden archives of the Secret Organization that planned the forced deportations and massacres???

The whole Ottoman Archives are theoretically open to every researcher since 1989. Practically, some documents were unavailable until recently, but the last are open since 2005.

Many documents about the Special Organization were translated into modern Turkish and used for the official history of WWI. These documents proved that the Special Organization was not used for the resettlement of Armenians. Dr. Edward J. Erickson, who speaks Turkish and reads Ottoman Turkish, established this fact in well-documented article of 2006:

www.meforum.org/article/991

Many other Ottoman documents were translated, published, and are today available online: www.tsk.mil.tr/ENGLISH/8_FRAGMENTS_FORM_HISTORY/8_1_Armenian_Issues/issues/Armenian_Activities_in_the_Archive_Documents/Armenian_Activities_in_the_Archive_Documents.html
www.eraren.org/index.php?Lisan=en&Page=YayinIcerik&SayiNo=29
www.devletarsivleri.gov.tr/source.cms.docs/devletarsivleri.gov.tr.ce/docs/Yayinlar/35_ermenisoykirim_1.pdf
www.devletarsivleri.gov.tr/source.cms.docs/devletarsivleri.gov.tr.ce/docs/Yayinlar/36_ermenisoykirim_2.pdf
wasearch.loc.gov/sep11/20011115105742/http://www.mfa.gov.tr/grupe/eg/eg11/default.htm

The Armenian side neglected until recently to use these hundreds of documents. Why?
On the other hand, the archives of the Dashnak party and of the Armenian patriarchate are closed to almost all independent historians, like Guenter Lewy, or even Ara Sarafian, a strong supporter of ???genocide??? thesis.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
A response to ???Mount Ararat???

???The story that Armenians left voluntarily???
The Armenians of Marash and other parts of Cilicia were exempted to deportation. Moreover, after the WWI, many Armenians were resettled in Cilicia. After the failure of French Army and the Angora agreement (1921), Armenian nationalists, especially the Dashnaks, forced all the Armenian who they found to go out of Turkey, despite the fact that Ataturk guaranteed the security of Cilician Armenians.

???The story was that Armenians (babies, children, women, elderly) were deported for their safety???

In the vilayet (region) of Trabzon, the boys who were less than 10 years old, the girls who were less than 15 old, the pregnant women, and the sick peoples in hospitals were exempted to deportation.

On the other hand, many first-hand evidence (Ottoman, Russian, British, US, French documents; archeological evidences) demonstrate that the Armenian gangs killed many babies, children and old Turks, even before the Armenian resettlement, for example in Zeve, near Van, and in the city of Van itself.

???but it was war???
The resettlement of population was common until the end of XXth century: the Spanish army inaugurated this practice in 1898, during the Cuba war; the British army used the same kind of use during the Boers war (1900-1901); the French army resettled many Algerians during the Algeria war; and the US army resettled many Vietnamese peoples during the Vietnam war.

The eastern Anatolia was a very violent region until the 1930???s, especially during the WWI. Several thousands of Muslims citizens were killed by Kurdish gangs, according to the ultra-Armenophile Consul Leslie A. Davis.

???it was the Kurds who committed the genocide???
Reliable evidence, even the most valuable Armenian testimonies, speak most frequently of Kurdish, Circassian, or even Arab bandits than Turks. An old Armenian citizen, Hatchadurian Hatchik Abedi, said even to a reporter of ???Sari Gelin??? that the Turks were innocent; all the responsibility should be attributed to Kurds. It is certainly an exaggeration for the whole Anatolia, but in some region, it is correct.

artsakh @ 03/01/2009
"What common ground"
This is an interesting story - I didn't know Newsweek had a new fiction secton

Right after the genocide, it was ACCEPTED by the god of the turks, Ataturk himself, in their parliament, as a shameful act and the perpetrators were branded as cowards and sentenced to death. When they saw that they could get away with it, denial became the policy

Then, the story was that no Armenians existed only some 'Russian Christian group'
Then, the story was that Armenians left voluntarily
Then, the story was that Armenians (babies, children, women, elderly) were deported for their safety
Then, the story was that Armenians were deported as a security measure and some bandits killed them
Then, the story was that Armenians were deported as a security measure and massacres occured but it was war
The latest stories are that even if it was genocide, that word wasn't invented until 1948 so we can't use it
But if we want to use that word, that is fine, but it was the Kurds who committed the Genocide not the Turks

At some point the truth will be reached - it is interestng that denial started with Ataturk denying his own self, then
denial of British, French, and American archives and reports as wartime propaganda then denial of eyewitness reports by counsels, ambassadors, missionaries, and German soldiers as 'forged'

The only direct denial I have not seen is to the Kurds, who have accepted their part in it under orders and most tellingly, The German acknowledgement about their culpability in the genocide in their parliament
The Germans fought along side the Turks and assisted in genocide activities but the Turks are silent about the confession of their partner in crime

The real "shameful act" is this article and the editorial board of this 'so called' news magazine

What's next, what common ground is there on the existence of the sun ?

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
Mark Momjian @ 03/01/2009
Time and patience? Oh, I see now. The Armenian genocide needs more "time" for research and scholarly review, and Armenian-Americans and other human rights activists from around the world need to be more "patient." Of course! How could have I missed this insightful formula? The Armenian genocide began in 1915, and in spite of Turkey's refusal to open its hidden archives of the Secret Organization that planned the forced deportations and massacres of over a milllion Armenians, why is "time" all of a sudden a solution? Is 94 years not long enough? Byford's polemic is not only anti-intellectual, but he is a continuation of Turkey's systematic campaign of denial. Genocide recognition isn't a political football; it has nothing to do with open borders or soccer diplomacy. It is about caling rhetoric to account and applying the rallying cry of "Never Again" not just to the Holocaust, but to all genocides, wherever and whenever they occur.

youngturkcanada @ 03/01/2009
Thank you Mr. Byford. I am not surprised how Armenian Propaganda Machine attacked this article. It was esasy for them to brainwash and pursue their political agenda, but the number of intellectuals is increasing to see the truth. The sad event of WWI during monarchic Ottoman Empire was a human tragedy, affecting all participants, Muslim, Christian, Turks, Armenians and other Caucause people. Today, you can hear horror stories of Armenian crimes against Turks in Eastern Anatolia and Azerbijan. Armenian diaspora loosing their one sided pathetic propaganda and it hurts them deeply as it hurts any brainwashed living organism. Turkey was late in response and to educate foreign public and will take a while to catch up them. The first thing Armenians will learn that today's Armenia was not an Armenian territory and what happended to peeople they were living there before tzcharist Russia established Armenian state. Way to go Mr. Byford. Keep up the good work to show the other side of the same tragic events of Armenian-Turkish conflict, and hope both sides will come to a position to reconsile thir pasts.

Lucrece @ 03/01/2009
Mr. Byford's article is quite interesting and with a sympathic irony. Mr. Byford is right when he says that the question "was-it-genocide" is the utlimate question for a real discussion.

However, there is at least one mistake within this article. Mr. Byford asserts indeed that "no ex-Ottoman officials were investigated, however, as Turkey needed the newly minted heroes of its War of Independence to have no stain on their characters." Talat Pasha, minister of Interior of Ottoman Empire, sent order for trials of murderers and robbers in 1915, and more than twenty were sentenced to death and hanged. After this, Talat created several investigation commissions. As a result, from March to May 1916, 1 673 Muslims were tried, 67 sentenced to death and hanged, 524 sentenced to jail, 68 sentenced to forced labor and other penalities. Moreover, Jemal Pasha, governor of the Ottoman Near East, sent orders for arrest several other criminals, who were sentenced to death and hanged in January, then in February 1916.

VANMA @ 03/01/2009
Turkish people never committed so called "genocide". but armenian massacred thousands of Azeri turks during Nagorno Karabakh conflict.

Turkey will never open its border with armenia since Yerevan returns occupied territories of Azerbaiajn despite betrayal of AKP government of Turkey.

Mount Ararat @ 03/01/2009
Mr Byford - that is to say Newsweek ??? following the example of Turkish paid lobbyist in Capitol Hill goes down to the level of Turkish Agitation and Propaganda Department.

The latest news by Byford and Turkish Agitation and Propaganda Department brought to you by Newsweek: "Armenians systematically massacred massacred - committed genocide - on Kurds living in Turkey"

One can just feel sympathy for Turkish government, his brainwashed, paranoia politicians and for Mr Byford to have nothing to say but to manipulation facts and to use aggressive and cheap, sordid agitation for the denial of mass killings and for there Anti-Armenian campaign!

Poor, sordid Turkey, which is indeed pitiable, pathetic !

Mount Ararat @ 03/01/2009
Mr Byford - that is to say Newsweek ??? following the example of Turkish paid lobbyist in Capitol Hill goes down to the level of Turkish Agitation and Propaganda Department.

The latest news by Byford and Turkish Agitation and Propaganda Department brought to you by Newsweek: "Armenians massacred - committed a genocide - on Kurds living in Turkey"

ruthlin99 @ 03/01/2009
Byford's script: 1945:
It's almost April, so Washington is gearing up for another performance of the "Israeli Genocide Resolution Spectacular," a regular event since 1984. Here's the historical plotline: the Israeli-American lobby gets a few U.S. congressmen to sponsor a resolution recognizing the 1933-45 massacre of Israelis in what is now Germany as a "genocide." Then other members of the House are induced to support it. (Members of the House may not be history buffs, but they understand the importance of stroking a powerful domestic lobby.) Next, the German government says Germany is too important to be insulted like this. In response, the American administration, recognizing that Germany is indeed a critical NATO ally whose Military Base is vital to the Iraq mission, starts twisting congressional arms to abandon the resolution. Offstage, the Turkish lobby, generally keen to boost German-Turkish relations (though less so this year), works against the resolution. Finally, the House leadership reluctantly shelves the whole thing and the curtain falls.

vASAK @ 03/01/2009
www.youtube.com/watch?v=7U3IXFATX7k
Here is what I wish could happen to the author of this TURKISH GOVERNMENT TALKING POINTS article.

vASAK @ 02/28/2009
Dear Grenville Byford:

You lost your credibility when you said the Armenian massacres were limited to eastern Turkey. It was the whole region, including European Turkey, sir. Again, those lands, which are the Armenian highland, by the way, were NOT the only area of mass killings: you repeate Turkish obfuscation! The ethnic cleansing, including shipping entire communities (and my 4 grandparents) by foot and cattle trains to Deir Zor, Syrian desert, where Turkish soldiers waited to decapitate the men (my father's uncle and grandafather) and sell the women off to Muslim (Turkish, Kurdish and northern Arab) sex harems, My dad's aunts and mom's aunts were STOLEN and sold off. That s GENOCIDE by UN CONVENTION. It was called RACE EXTERMINATION by the US AMBASSADOR Henry Morgenthau.

Nice try, though. Glad you work and live an dlove in Turkey.

youngturkcanada @ 02/28/2009
Facts vs propaganda
The last victim of Armenian Propaganda Machine was Bask Regional Parliament (Spain), the number was 2 million in 2007
Armenia has rejected Turkey???s 2005 proposal to establish a joint historical commission
Armenia has lost one third of its population in last 15 years
Armenians started genocide claims; number of lost game started as few thousands
The Manifesto of H. Kachaznouni , the First Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia in 1918-1919 , Bucherest, 1923 ( Arm. Propaganda Machine started to hide/destroy them)
Armenians and their allies lost the war after WWI
Armenians betrayed monarchic Ottoman Empire, Ottoman Empire collapsed
Armenians established revolutionary bands, mid-1800s

rfiu7955 @ 02/28/2009
We all know that Turkey would not even consider to open it's borders with or without USA's recognition of Armenian Genocide,so this normalization is all political game as usual.

Turkey needs USA more than USA needs Turkey because as we know USA is Turkey;s (father)by any means military or economically even Turkish army officers are mostly Americans.

Turkish government is talking about Turkish - Armenian relationship normalization but in the aver hand ministry of education spreading DVDs about, how Armenians killed Turks which is absurd.It means raising an aver Turkish nationalist generation, which shows you how genocide is still going on.

So it would be better that USA recognizes Armenian Genocide, To stop Turkey's support to Sudan committing Darfur Genocide.

rfiu7955 @ 02/28/2009
We all know that Turkey would not even consider to open it's borders with or without USA's recognition of Armenian Genocide,so this normalization is all political game as usual.

Turkey needs USA more than USA needs Turkey because as we know USA is Turkey;s (father)by any means military or economically even Turkish army officers are mostly Americans.

Turkish government is talking about Turkish - Armenian relationship normalization but in the aver hand ministry of education spreading DVDs about, how Armenians killed Turks which is absurd.It means raising an aver Turkish nationalist generation, which shows you how genocide is still going on.

So it would be better that USA recognizes Armenian Genocide, To stop Turkey's support to Sudan committing Darfur Genocide.

rfiu7955 @ 02/28/2009

Alex Van Z @ 02/28/2009
My appologies for the redundant postings. I don't know what I did to repeat the same positing.

youngturkcanada @ 02/28/2009
Armenian diaspora is under the suppression of mostly ultra nationalist Armenian organizations. They use this baseless claim as a glue to keep them together and exploit the sympathy of others. They still dream of great Armenia, and have a strict political agenda, which failed before and during WWI. Turks know what some Armenians have done and how they betrayed their own government, monarchic Ottoman Empire. Armenians are afraid of their own past. Turkey's 2005 proposal to establish a joint historical commission should be pursued although Armenia has rejected the idea so far. In last 15 years, Armenia, under ultra nationalist regimes, has occupied Karabagh (an Azeri territory), and committed massacres (Khocali), but has lost one third of its population (nope, not a genocide trivia again). Armenian organizations work as political parties, do not care US public interest, and I hope Armenians will realize where they are leading to.

Victman @ 02/28/2009
The border should not have been closed in the first place - it was only done so to isolate Armenia as much as possible. Genocide - is crime against humanity - it cannot and should not be nullified or bargained with.

Mr Byford, one way of knowing whether someone who pretends to know the historical facts , but is a staunch Genocide denier is to ask them ' if the Armenians were killed because they rebelled, why were the Christian Assyrians completely eradicated? ' ,(they also state that what happened was Genocide)

So I have to ask you : ' If the Armenians were killed because they rebelled - why were the Christian Assyrians eradicated?

I am sure you cannot answer because you are a Genocide denier.

1915justice @ 02/28/2009
Byford is a Genocide denier. Shame on him and for Newsweek for publishing his immoral article.

Alex Van Z @ 02/28/2009
It is more than apparent that the discussions for Turkish - Armenian reconciliation was timed perfectly by Turkey. It certainly doesn't take a "rocket scientist" to figure out the scenario.

Knowing that the Armenian Genocide resolution will be brought to the U.S. Congress again, and this time with a President and Secretary of State that are proponents of recognition, an ideal strategy is to say that we will reconcile if you deny the Genocide. It certainly is an excellent chess move.

In addition, as the Turks have done throughout the years. they will threaten the U.S. with denial of use of Incirlik Air Base in Turkey and a bunch of other nonsensical threats. The problem with that is that the U.S. really doesn't need the Turks. The Turks need the U.S. more than the U.S. needs them. However, it takes intestinal fortitude on the part of the U.S. to finally stand up to them. To date the U.S. hasn't had the back bone to do so.

The First Genocide of the 20th Century has been documented over the past 90 plus years and is an accepted fact by the majority of the historians, organizations and countries that have any interest in the study of Genocide. Conspicuously, the U.S. and Israel, of all people, have denied the Armenian Genocide, not because they don't believe it to be fact, but do to political expediency. That in itself is sad.

The excuse of using the Armenian - Turkish reconciliation talks as a reason for not recognizing the Genocide is nonsense. It sounds like a strong reason, but in fact, Turkey is under a lot of pressure to re-open its borders with Armenia, in addition to changing its policy on Cyprus and freedom of speech ( Article 301), if it wants to get into the European Union.

Turkey has more to lose than to gain by maintaining its intransigent position.

Alex Van Z @ 02/28/2009
It is more than apparent that the discussions for Turkish - Armenian reconciliation was timed perfectly by Turkey. It certainly doesn't take a "rocket scientist" to figure out the scenario.

Knowing that the Armenian Genocide resolution will be brought to the U.S. Congress again, and this time with a President and Secretary of State that are proponents of recognition, an ideal strategy is to say that we will reconcile if you deny the Genocide. It certainly is an excellent chess move.

In addition, as the Turks have done throughout the years. they will threaten the U.S. with denial of use of Incirlik Air Base in Turkey and a bunch of other nonsensical threats. The problem with that is that the U.S. really doesn't need the Turks. The Turks need the U.S. more than the U.S. needs them. However, it takes intestinal fortitude on the part of the U.S. to finally stand up to them. To date the U.S. hasn't had the back bone to do so.

The First Genocide of the 20th Century has been documented over the past 90 plus years and is an accepted fact by the majority of the historians, organizations and countries that have any interest in the study of Genocide. Conspicuously, the U.S. and Israel, of all people, have denied the Armenian Genocide, not because they don't believe it to be fact, but do to political expediency. That in itself is sad.

The excuse of using the Armenian - Turkish reconciliation talks as a reason for not recognizing the Genocide is nonsense. It sounds like a strong reason, but in fact, Turkey is under a lot of pressure to re-open its borders with Armenia, in addition to changing its policy on Cyprus and freedom of speech ( Article 301), if it wants to get into the European Union.

Turkey has more to lose than to gain by maintaining its intransigent position.

Alex Van Z @ 02/28/2009
It is more than apparent that the discussions for Turkish - Armenian reconciliation was timed perfectly by Turkey. It certainly doesn't take a "rocket scientist" to figure out the scenario.

Knowing that the Armenian Genocide resolution will be brought to the U.S. Congress again, and this time with a President and Secretary of State that are proponents of recognition, an ideal strategy is to say that we will reconcile if you deny the Genocide. It certainly is an excellent chess move.

In addition, as the Turks have done throughout the years. they will threaten the U.S. with denial of use of Incirlik Air Base in Turkey and a bunch of other nonsensical threats. The problem with that is that the U.S. really doesn't need the Turks. The Turks need the U.S. more than the U.S. needs them. However, it takes intestinal fortitude on the part of the U.S. to finally stand up to them. To date the U.S. hasn't had the back bone to do so.

The First Genocide of the 20th Century has been documented over and over again in the past 90 plus years and is an accepted fact by the majority of the historians, organizations and countries that have any interest in the study of Genocide. Conspicuously, the U.S. and Israel, of all people, have denied the Armenian Genocide, not because they don't believe it to be fact, but do to political expediency. That in itself is sad and shows the immorality of society..

The excuse of using the Armenian - Turkish reconciliation talks as a reason for not recognizing the Genocide is nonsense. It sounds like a strong reason, but in fact, Turkey is under a lot of pressure to re-open its borders with Armenia, in addition to changing its policy on Cyprus and permitting freedom of speech (Article 301), if it wants to get into the European Union.

Politically, Turkey doesn't have much of a leg to stand on.

Haydat @ 02/28/2009
Next time try to convince your readers that Holocaust never happened. Ask the Iranian president, he second that motion.

Haydat @ 02/28/2009
The article is a shameful continuation of the Turkish propaganda machine. Recognized or not, the genocide took place and the world has already recognized it. Everybody, including Turks understand that what they did constitute genocide. When the Iranian president denied the Holocaust, the US was the first to condemn it. Nothing can be lower on this planet than Israel's support of the genocide denial because of Holocaust. Denial of the Armenian Genocide on the pages of top newspapers have nothing to do with the freedom of speech. It has material context only. Shame on all those who make money by denying undeniable.

Mark Boy @ 02/28/2009
Armenians all over Anatolia, not just on the eastern war front, were wiped out. The cities of Yozgad, Sivas, Caeserea, Hadjin, Marash, Adana, and Ankara -- just to name a few -- are hardly in the east. One needs but to look at a map of Turkey to see this. Turkish apologists depend on American ignorance of geography to make such foolish claims

Both the Turks and the Russians offered the Armenians autonomy. Neither promise could be trusted. Truth is the first victim of war. Neither the Turks nor the Russians had a history of granting their subjects freedom. The last tsar, Nicholas II, would not even share power with his own Russian people, which prompted the Russian revolution during World War I. Russia even forbade Armenian refugees, who had managed to flee the Genocide, from returning to their ancestral lands, which the Russian armies had overrun during the war. Prince Lobanov-Rostovsky, foreign minister of Russia in 1895, summed up Russia's traditional stance by saying, "Yes, Russia wants Armenia, but without the Armenians."

Mark Boy @ 02/28/2009
The Turkish archives covering the period of the Armenian Genocide are not opened to the public. They are only open to Turkish scholars and persons friendly to Turkey.

The Turkish archives have been closed so long that scholars have no idea of what is being, or has been, purged. Furthermore, the work of the Genocide was done under the aegis of the Committee of Union and Progress, a shadow government similar to the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, and in particular by its Special Organization (Teshkilat-i Mahsusa) under the notorious Dr. Behaettin Shakir who was sentenced to death in absentia by a Turkish court-martial following World War I. Will their records be opened? There is no talk of that

Mark Boy @ 02/28/2009
The Turks died, unfortunately, because their own government led them into World War I against the European Allies. Many Turkish Muslims also died fighting Arab Muslims, who were seeking their freedom from Ottoman oppression, and Indian Muslims who were with the British Middle East army in Mesopotamia. All this Muslim blood, then, is on the head of the Ottoman Turkish government and not on the victimized and helpless Armenians.

There were at most around three million Armenians in the Ottoman Empire, most of them old men, women, and children, and they can hardly be blamed for the death of three million "Turks or Muslims." That is absurd.

Mark Boy @ 02/28/2009
America is the moral leader of the world. We must set the record straight, to rehabilitate America's innocence, extricate the U.S. from an ugly distortion of history, and restore America's respectability in the eyes of our European allies who, accepting the truth, are amazed at America's hypocrisy.

No principled Turk should be offended by the truth. After all, a large number of Armenian survivors of the Genocide owe their lives to devout Muslim Turks, Kurds, and Arabs. To be a patriotic Turk does not require hating Armenians or distorting history. In fact, there are Turkish scholars who recognize the Genocide and urge their government to come to terms with Turkish history. A few, including Taner Akcam, have published books on the Armenian Genocide

Mark Boy @ 02/28/2009
The Turkish government and its supporters have adopted the line of "leave Armenian history to the historians" because they do not have objective scholarship supporting their allegations and have resorted to propaganda. Currently, they are losing their propaganda battle. The issue of the Armenian Genocide is not a question of historical truth; that has been settled by historians. It is rather an issue of morality, legality and the acceptance of the truth.

History is too important to leave to historians. By leaving the Armenian injustice of World War I uncorrected, the stage was set for the Holocaust of World War II. The abandonment of the Armenians was not lost on Hitler. Hitler said before sending his troops into Poland, "Go, go kill without mercy. Who today remembers the extermination of the Armenians?"

Mark Boy @ 02/28/2009
Genocide is a crime against humanity, and there is no statue of limitations on genocide -- not even one 90 years old. At the time the Armenian Genocide was being carried out, the Allies called it "a crime against humanity and civilization." The term genocide had not yet been created by Rafael Lemkin, but "genocide" means the murder of a nation, a term which the American ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, Henry Morgenthau, used in his report to the U.S. State Department.

The fact that a major crime against humanity takes place 8,000 miles away from the United States makes it no less a crime. Was Hitler justified in killing Jews because he was 5,000 miles away? Should American troops not defend Saudi Arabia because Saddam Hussein was 9,000 miles away?

It was the old Ottoman Empire that committed the crime, but present-day Turkey becomes an accomplice after the fact by its expensive campaign of denial, denial not only for itself but for the old Ottoman Empire. This principle of becoming an accomplice by the cover-up of a crime is part of the rule of law.

Mark Boy @ 02/28/2009
The Turkish government has spent millions of dollars on public relations experts attempting to eradicate from the public mind a memory of the Armenian Genocide or at least to cast doubt in the public mind. This attempt is made easier by the fact that few Americans today know anything about Turkey, Turkish history, and most certainly Turkish geography. The Turkish government does not have to disprove the Armenian Genocide, it merely needs to cast doubt on what happened in 1915-1923.

Their job of propaganda is made easier by the inclination of most Americans not to think evil of anyone and always give the accused the benefit of a doubt. Genocide is so ultimately an evil that there are not two sides to it, and those who perpetrate it, or their legal successor, must face the consequences of their actions. The greatest aid to the denialists are the nice people who don't want to take sides.

Mark Boy @ 02/28/2009
The Turkish government has spent millions of dollars on public relations experts attempting to eradicate from the public mind a memory of the Armenian Genocide or at least to cast doubt in the public mind. This attempt is made easier by the fact that few Americans today know anything about Turkey, Turkish history, and most certainly Turkish geography. The Turkish government does not have to disprove the Armenian Genocide, it merely needs to cast doubt on what happened in 1915-1923.

Their job of propaganda is made easier by the inclination of most Americans not to think evil of anyone and always give the accused the benefit of a doubt. Genocide is so ultimately an evil that there are not two sides to it, and those who perpetrate it, or their legal successor, must face the consequences of their actions. The greatest aid to the denialists are the nice people who don't want to take sides.

RUSS2040 @ 02/28/2009
Byford you should shut your mouh about giving Armenians any advise how to deal with Turkey and genocide issue. You just insulted millions of Armenians and more than million victoms of the genocide by your stupid comments and dumb opinion. If you said something this stupid about Holocost your carreer would be over in a few days. Also shame on some of the jewish loby that supresses Armenian Genocide issue. People liky you with racist and stupid opinions in the past, have been the reasons why past genocides have not been prosecuted and new one have been committed. There is no excuse for genocide. Next time you write about the genocide, get you facts correct and do a little research you dumb Sh**.

Mount Ararat @ 02/28/2009
The Armenian Diaspora - the masses of people forced to disperse throughout the world - is a result of the genocide executed by the Turkish; the Armenians, including American Armenians, are not pursuing an arbitrary and unfounded interest, they have a justified demand for justice and recognition. At the same time, this demand is also a concern of the international community of states which created and approved the legislation known as "public international law" or "international criminal law."

It is not just a matter of morality to condemn genocide, it is a premise for peaceful coexistence. It is a cornerstone of international peace, and the looming threat of this very crime is a principal reason behind military intervention and self-defense.

Now more than ever the denial of genocide must be responded to, for denial is intrinsic to the methodology of genocide. Genocide is denied even as it is practiced. From the beginning, the perpetrator seeks pretexts and justifications to conceal the real intentions.

Governments and politicians and some news media of Western democracies that use doubletalk and self-serving domestic "statements" to silence the cries for justice by the victims of genocide as well as the critical voices within their
own countries claim that today's Turkey is not responsible for the genocide of the Armenian people. Such statements are nothing less than cynical, for such doubletalk masks the fact that the politics of genocide are thus continued and sanctioned through officially approved denial. Such statements obscure the nationally authorized and aggressive Turkish politics of denial that are being continued and exported under the smokescreen of "protection of the Turkish honor and pride." But is it not a matter of the honor and pride of the United States to speak the truth about the Armenian Genocide?

Mount Ararat @ 02/28/2009
What does Mr Grenville Byford knows about Armenian Genocide and other genocides?

Denial is the final step in the completion of a mass extermination - and the first step towards the next genocide.

Why should US build there relationship with Turkey biased on lies and denial of Armenian Genocide?

The slanderous denial and obfuscation of genocide is in itself not all that far removed from the planning and implementation. To the independent historian, it is undisputed fact that Turkey systematically and cruelly liquidated a large part of the Armenian people during the First World War! No intelligent, seriously-thinking person questions the fact of the systematic annihilation of the Armenians by Turkey. At the time it was happening, even Talaat Pasha ??? the then Turkish Secretary of Interior and one of those responsible ??? openly admitted it was going on to foreign diplomats. But even that which was freely admitted by those in charge at the time is now vehemently denied by the Turkish government of today. They even go so far as to claim the victims as the perpetrators, which in itself is a both a result and proof of Turkey's dangerous loss of memory.

Mr Grenville Byford before writing any essay about Armenian Genocide he should better informs himself about historical facts and shameful denial policy of Turkish government!

Genocide - extermination of a race - is a political crime. Genocides are not committed by private individuals, but by the state itself.

The reference to historians and historical science in regard to the Armenian Genocide is a tactical and spurious argument to relieve the world governments from the responsibility to act while simultaneously giving the perpetrators carte blanche. The proper reaction to political crimes is therefore only possible through political response ??? from the parliamentary houses, the politicians and the governments.

AramB @ 02/28/2009
Would this author advocate a commission of holocaust advocates and deniers, such as the Catholic Bishops and European historians, to come up to a meaningful conclusion?

AramB @ 02/28/2009
There are many who deny the holocaust such as Catholic bishops and some European historians. Would this author advocate a commission of holocaust deniers and advocates to come up to a conclusion?

Victman @ 02/28/2009
As the association of Genocide scholars stated ; it was a clear Genocide. I doubt anyone in the US not least the author of this article would ever dare to say that the Shoa was not Genocide. The fact of the matter with regard to the a commission of historians is not to do with the Armenian side 'winning' internationally - it is not a game of who wins! It is a fact that Turkey has snubbed out all debate in Turkey with regard to Genocide, just last week there was outrage regarding a racist DVD shown as part of the curriculum for elementary schools depicting Armenians as murderers etc. - is that the sign of a country which wants to set up an independent commission - dont be so naive - you obviuosly have little knowledge of what happened during that period - having so many Turkish contacts needed for your writing about Turkey has obviously biased you in your opinion on Genocide.

NapoleonicCode @ 02/28/2009
The problem overlooked in this article is that the fact it was genocide is relatively undisputed (face it, what historical event is not disputed by someone?) by historians. This is an important fact, which when ignored, easily fosters the moral relativism displayed in this article. It highlights, for example, that some Armenians fought with the Russians, while forgetting that half the Armenian population were citizens of the Russian empire and thus naturally expected to fight for that side. It tries to draw an equality between the experience of what happened to the Armenians and what happened to everyone else- essentially saying sure a few were killed on both sides, that means it is equal so get over it and get down to the business of flowing gas and oil. Furthermore it neglects that the main reason some Armenians took up arms against the Ottoman state was because of the decades of massacre culminating in the deportations of 1915 which spurred them to this. One cannot look at the effect, which was not widespread like the deportation of Armenians was, but neglect the cause which puts it into perspective. In fact this article doesn't say anything about what actually happened to the Armenians except for one brief passage alluding to "shameful acts", while the fact Turks and Kurds were killed is directly mentioned as if to justify those otherwise unmentioned acts as something everyone was doing at the time. Even more absurd is the fact that Kurds, not Turks, were the ones largely responsible for the massacres in 1915 and yet here they are held up as a party persecuted by Armenians. Facts like these are undisputed and it seems the writer of this opinion didn't go any farther for his research than the average Turkish government propaganda piece, which I've seen more than enough times to recognize.

The article poses the rhetorical question "what common ground can be reached on this issue?" as a way of solving the crisis while making it clear there is no common ground between history and the Turkish government's position. It is obvious the Turkish state will not admit what happened at any cost, so at what point do we finally stop the moral relativism on this issue and speak the truth, instead of hiding it to avoid offending an ultrasensitive bully?

NapoleonicCode @ 02/28/2009
The problem overlooked in this article is that the fact it was genocide is relatively undisputed (face it, what historical event is not disputed by someone?) by historians. This is an important fact, which when ignored, easily fosters the moral relativism displayed in this article.

It highlights, for example, that some Armenians fought with the Russians, while forgetting that half the Armenian population were citizens of the Russian empire and thus naturally expected to fight for that side. It tries to draw an equality between the experience of what happened to the Armenians and what happened to everyone else- essentially saying sure a few were killed on both sides, that means it is equal so get over it and get down to the business of flowing gas and oil. Furthermore it neglects that the main reason some Armenians took up arms against the Ottoman state was because of the decades of massacre culminating in the deportations of 1915 which spurred them to this. One cannot look at the effect, which was not widespread like the deportation of Armenians was, but neglect the cause which puts it into perspective. In fact this article doesn't say anything about what actually happened to the Armenians except for one brief passage alluding to "shameful acts", while the fact Turks and Kurds were killed is directly mentioned as if to justify those otherwise unmentioned acts as something everyone was doing at the time. Even more absurd is the fact that Kurds, not Turks, were the ones largely responsible for the massacres in 1915 and yet here they are held up as a party persecuted by Armenians. Facts like these are undisputed and it seems the writer of this opinion didn't go any farther for his research than the average Turkish government propaganda piece, which I've seen more than enough times to recognize.

The article poses the rhetorical question "what common ground can be reached on this issue?" as a way of solving the crisis while making it clear there is no common ground between history and the Turkish government's position. It is obvious the Turkish state will not admit what happened at any cost, so at what point do we finally stop the moral relativism on this issue and speak the truth, instead of hiding it to avoid offending an ultrasensitive bully?



Turkish Video Game Part Of Memorial For Slain Journalist By Michael Thompson, Ars Technica Feb 27 2009
A memorial for slain journalist Hrant Dink has captured a lot of attention for a number of reasons, but one of the most interesting things is that it happens to include the first editorial video game to come out of Turkey.

Hrant Dink is not a well-known name in the United States, but the man has come to be a symbol of many things in Turkey. During his life, the newspaper editor was one of the loudest voices advocating Turkish-Armenian reconciliation and demanding human and minority rights in Turkey; it was his criticism of Turkey's denial of the Armenian Genocide that ultimately led to his assassination at the hands of a seventeen-year-old Turkish nationalist. Since his murder, allegations of a cover-up and the involvement of government officials in helping protect those associated with the assassination have resulted in public outcry and scandal. As a result, a number of artists have created the "Forgetting is losing" campaign in Dink's memory; noteworthy in several ways, but one of the most interesting is that it contains the first editorial game produced in Turkey.

The game, Huys (Armenian for "hope") actually uses the same engine as the flash game Madrid, where players have to click on hotspots within a limited time frame. However, while Huys uses the same mechanics as Madrid, it utilizes different graphics: in Madrid, the hotspots light up candles held by people, in Huys, players have to "illuminate" signs held by people that read, "We are all Armenian -We are all Hrant Dink." Meanwhile, facts from the murder case and subsequent trial are displayed in a sidebar on the right-hand side of the game's screen. If players run out of time, an image of Dink appears on screen with the message, "to lose is to forget."

Huys may not seem like a terribly impressive piece of software based on its mechanics and length, but it is noteworthy for the fact that it's the first editorial game out of Turkey. The game helps to simultaneously remember a man who championed human rights and spread his message. The game can be played in Turkish, Armenian, and English.


"Turkey-Armenia Relations At Historic Point, Border Could Be Opened"
The relations between Turkey and Armenia are at a historic turning point and the developments could result the opening of the border of two neighboring countries, a U.S. congressman said late on Friday.

Robert Wexler told the U.S. Foreign Affairs Committee it seemed relations between Turkey and Armenia were at a point of historic opportunity, adding the relations could be normalized and border gates between Turkey and Armenia could be opened, the state-run Anatolian Agency reported Saturday.

Wexler, co-chair of the Turkish friendship group in the U.S. House of Representatives, paid a visit to Turkey and held a series of talks with high-level officials last week.

Turkey and Armenia have no diplomatic relations and their border has been closed for more than a decade, as Armenia presses the international community with the backing of the diaspora to admit the so-called "genocide" claims, instead of accepting Turkey's call to investigate the allegations, and over Armenia's invasion of 20 percent territory of Azerbaijan.

A warmer period began in relations when Turkish President Abdullah Gul paid a landmark visit to Yerevan in September to watch a World Cup qualifying football match between the two countries on the invitation of Sargsyan. The two countries have been holding contacts at the ministerial level since. Hurriyet, 1 Mar 2009


April 24 Not Deadline For Armenia Rapprochement
US Secretary of State Clinton will be in Ankara next week to discuss Washington-Ankara ties.
Armenian-American efforts to win US endorsement on their claims of an Armenian genocide at the hands of the Ottoman Empire are likely to be among the topics of discussion when US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visits Ankara next week.

But she is unlikely to see on the same menu any timetable for a quick normalization of relations between Armenia and Turkey, which Turkish officials say proceed on a separate track and according to different criteria.

Restoration of diplomatic ties between the estranged neighbors is a step that would certainly improve the atmosphere in favor of Turkey in Washington, where Armenian-American groups are lobbying strongly for US recognition of the genocide charges. April 24, when Armenians say the genocide campaign started more than 90 years ago in eastern Anatolia, will stand as a turning point in the recognition campaign because President Barack Obama, who has made firm pledges to Armenian-American voters to support their cause during his election campaign, will release an official statement on that day to commemorate the suffering of Armenians during the years of World War I. Given his clear pledge of support in the past, lobbyists expect him to break a tradition followed by American presidents until now to avoid the "g-word" in their April 24 messages.

A US presidential statement acknowledging the genocide of Armenians by the Turks would certainly be a deep blow to Turkish-US ties that neither Turks nor Americans would be happy to see. But Turkish policymakers make clear they will not trade a rapprochement with Armenia for US silence on the genocide issue.

"Our efforts to resolve our problems with Armenia are not linked to Armenian genocide claims in the US," a Turkish official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said on Friday. Given the complex issues that need to be worked out between Turkey and Armenia before any step in the direction of normalization, any drastic breakthrough is indeed unlikely in the near future, according to Turkish policymakers.

Turkey severed its diplomatic ties and closed its border gate with Armenia in 1993 in a show of solidarity with Azerbaijan, who was then at war with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh. Armenia occupied a chunk of Azerbaijani territory due to a dispute over the Nagorno-Karabakh region. Ankara now says normalization of ties depends on an Armenian withdrawal from Nagorno-Karabakh (or at least a partial withdrawal from some of the occupied territory) and a reversal in the Armenian policy of supporting Armenian diaspora efforts to win international recognition for genocide claims, as well as a formal declaration by Yerevan for recognition of the current border with Turkey.

Hopes for rapprochement have been high since President Abdullah Gül visited Armenia last September to watch a World Cup qualifying match between the national teams of the two countries. Since then, diplomats have been holding closed-door meetings on how to normalize ties. Turkish, Armenian and Azerbaijani foreign ministers have also held three-way talks to discuss the Nagorno-Karabakh problem. Any step in the direction of normal ties with Armenia should guarantee that neither Azerbaijan nor the Turkish public, sensitive over genocide accusations and widely against the deterioration of ties with Azerbaijan, will be offended.

First visit by new secretary of state

The Armenian issue is perhaps the single potential source of tension in relations with the Barack Obama administration, which officials say are progressing smoothly. When Clinton visits Ankara on March 7, her first visit to Turkey as secretary of state, the two countries are also expected to discuss Middle East peace efforts, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Officials said that any US request to use Turkish facilities for withdrawal from Iraq will need to be negotiated, although authorities are warm to the idea of assisting a US pullout from the neighboring country. Modalities and principles need to be negotiated, said an official, once the US side comes up with a clearer set of requests.
28 February 2009, FATMA DEMIRELLI zaman


Turkish Identity Awareness Lies Beneath The Nation-State
Being a Turk does not necessarily imply a particular ethnic affiliation. Coming from the long history of the Ottoman Empire and a strong tradition of mixed marriages, there are ethnically Kurdish, Armenian, Greek, and Arab people, among others who claim citizenship in Turkey. Thus, the ethnicities of later generations of such families became blurred in the course of time.
Nationals of the Turkish Republic, where cultural and ethnic differences peacefully coexist, greatly honor their families and show the utmost respect to their older relatives, but are not very inclined to learn about their lineage, either because it is too difficult to gather such information or because they have been taught that such efforts may undermine the idea of the nation-state, experts say.

The Ottoman Empire had a multinational, multiethnic and multi-religious community structure. Following its collapse after World War I, a nation-state, the Republic of Turkey, was established within narrowed borders and a contracted territory but still preserving a multitude of differences among its people. Embracing those differences, “Turk” is a constitutionally defined and widely encompassing term. Article 66 of the 1982 Turkish Constitution, which is still in effect, states, “Everyone who is bound to the Turkish state through the bond of citizenship is a Turk.” Therefore, all Turkish citizens of Kurdish, Armenian, Bosnian, Arab, Circassian, Greek and other origins are Turks according to that constitutional definition, and they all have the same rights and duties and are all equal before the law.

Different ethnics, one nation

What is derived from this clarification is that being a Turk does not necessarily imply a particular ethnic affiliation whatsoever. However, it is very well known by all that there are ethnically Kurdish, Armenian, Greek, Albanian and Arab citizens, among others, alongside those who have Turkish ethnicity, in Turkey. Analyzing the demographics of the Turkish population has become confusing due to continuous population migration in the country, which has made regional categorization of ethnicities impossible. What makes the picture even more complicated is the fact that many families were composed of men and women of different ethnicities as a natural result of living together, not only after the republic was founded, but also for centuries during the Ottoman era. Thus, the ethnicities of later generations of such families became blurred in the course of time.

A survey titled “Who Are We?” conducted in 2006 by KONDA, a research and consultancy company, received more than 100 different responses from a sample of 47,958 persons in response to a question asking what ethnicity they knew, or felt, they belonged to. According to that report, which took participants’ responses as reliable estimates of their ethnicity, 76 percent of the Turkish population was of Turkish ethnicity whereas 15.7 percent were Kurds and Zazas, 0.7 percent were Arabs and 0.3 percent and 0.2 percent were originally from the Caucasus and the Balkans, respectively. The report also indicated that 0.1 percent of the Turkish population were non-Muslim citizens; this group comprises individuals of Armenian, Greek, Syrian Orthodox and Jewish descent. Only 2 to 3 percent of the entire group of respondents did not give an answer to the question, which leads researchers to state in the report that Turkish people essentially do not have a problem expressing their identity and ethnicity. Thus, an average Turkish citizen does not have a perceived lack of knowledge about who he or she really is, according to the report.

What adds more color to the above-described picture are the cultural specifics of Euro-Turks. Although they are present in Turkey only for a limited time of the year -- their summer holidays -- and are consequently not always visible, it was not the first time the Turkish media and academia acknowledged them when Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan addressed an audience of 18,000, a sports center full of Turks living in Cologne last year and 15,000 Belgian-Turks in a stadium a month ago in Hasselt, Belgium. The Euro-Turk group contains people who have dual citizenship and those who are only nationals of the Turkish Republic as well as Turkish-speaking citizens of their host countries. It is not possible to give an exact number due to illegal migration, but it is estimated that more than 4 million Turks reside in Europe, spread all throughout the continent, but mostly in Germany followed by Bulgaria, France and the Netherlands. Hence, discussions about identity and ethnic awareness now contain new elements due to the fact that these Turks’ social environments are characterized by the countries in which they live. Citizenship, integration into the host country and cultural change, as well as assimilation and trans-national links, are all incorporated into academic discussions to fully understand the complexity of the current situation.

A report titled “Euro-Turks: A Bridge or a Breach between Turkey and the EU?” prepared by Ayhan Kaya and Ferhat Kentel, associate professors in the departments of international relations and sociology, respectively, at Istanbul Bilgi University, states that third and fourth-generation Euro-Turks, in particular, have developed a cosmopolitan identity that highlights differences, diversity and citizenship. “There are no perfectly authentic ethnicities. They are rather combinations of the most recent cultural affiliations and are continuously in transformation due to social interactions and mobility. However, in Turkey, this transformational process had been affected by the rise of the nation-state. Today it is not seen appropriate by people to search one’s lineage because what may come out of it may harm the idea of the nation-state,” Kentel told Sunday’s Zaman via phone from his office in İstanbul.

There are, however, Turks who are willing to learn about their lineage, too. For them, asking relatives, especially parents and grandparents and the like, if possible, is naturally the most traditional way to start their search. However, it is sometimes either too late for many to discuss the matter with someone who might have known about their family lines, or the information received in this way is mixed with speculation and confusion and is thus not always reliable. Learning about lineage extending as far back as the mid-19th century is possible through an alternative method. Provincial and district population and citizenship directorates, which are part of the Turkish Interior Ministry’s General Directorate of Population and Citizenship Affairs, can provide information regarding lineage upon demand and free of charge. The general directorate currently holds the records of 54,184 family trees, including those from the archives kept by its subsidiary units, covering a time period since the second quarter of the 19th century.
01 March 2009, M. Edib Yilmaz Istanbul, Zaman


Reader's Comment:
# 14
Professor Turkkaya Ataov’s speech at Ryerson University in Canada on Feb.18th and intervention by Aris Babikian according to AZG daily: The Turkish sources give a different evaluation, in as far that ANCC tried to prevent the lecture in advance. When it started Babikian and several Armenian students were let in (contrary to Turks not being permitted in entering the Armenian diaspora functions). Babikian was not a speaker, and could only ask questions as audience. We understood that the chairperson granted an unusual opportunity to Babikian, where he could “talk everything in length freely”, instead of placing only questions. Another source says, that Babikian had asked 1.5 hour equal time (!) to deliver his speech . I conclude that Babikian is not aware of any of the Free E-books Here and instead answering Ataov’s statement that so far “not even one document could be presented as evidence” he preferred to attack the speaker on general grounds, such as “being in Canada, being anti-Christian” and said that “924.158 Armenians” (not 1.5 million) was killed! Babikian’s low insults for McCarthy as “junk food, junk bonds and junk history” may have pleased only the few Armenian bystanders with similar animosity. Suggest you ask Babikian or Basmadjian to point out which of your E-books are “junk or fabricated document”! Absolute lack of courtesy and seriousness is heartbreaking!

# 13: Ataov at George Washington University on Feb. 26th: This speech and interventions seems to be more balanced and constructive, showing a normal relationship between Turkish and Armenian student bodies.

# 15 - 16 - 17: Greek Lobby and Hellenic News about Obama-Biden and Turkey:
Conclusion: Anything negative on Turkey and Turks is “good for Greeks and Armenians”!

# 22 - 23 – 24 – 25: Armenian news wars with Ankara and Armenian-Diaspora cooperation, plenty words on NO RESULTS!

Observe: The interests of Armenians of Armenia and those of diaspora are contradictory!

# 24 : PanArmenian News 24.02.09 that Accusations against ANCA might be initiated by Turkish lobby:

To the best of my knowledge there were no accusations, they were genuine mostly Armenian documents!

# 30 Joe Hockey, moving onward-upward, Canberra Times, Feb. 22, 2009. Wish someone would forward My Essay to the editor
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Action: Lara will forward it to Canberra Times
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# 31: Article by Harut Sassounian in the California Courier: Too bad that this big moth writer, did not even read the Armenian historians or some of the works of Armenian heroes! Empty words on “genocide, indemnity etc.”!

# 35: Turkish Forum circular letter of Feb. 23, 2009: " No one can say how much this effort indeed worked"!

# 37: Threats and Insults to “turkishcoalitionofamerica.org” from several diaspora Armenians:

The low level of the comments [almost all of American Armenian ethnicity] does not exhibit the slightest hope of reciprocal understanding and pacification. On the contrary “all remarks sound like screams of warriors!
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Sukru Server Aya
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Full Transcript of the Interview With Mehmet Ali Birand CNN Turk Hillary Rodham Clinton, Secretary of State, Ankara, Turkey, March 7, 2009

QUESTION: Madame Secretary of State, thank you for your time. I know it’s very limited, so it’s going to be a very disorderly interview. (Laughter.) I’m going to jump from one question to another without the – now, the big news you brought us is President Obama’s coming visit to Turkey. Now, I wonder, is the President going to come to Turkey as a NATO ally, or as an ally – Islamic country to address the Islamic world from here? What will be --

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, first of all, I am delighted that President Obama will come to Turkey. Ten years ago, my husband and I were together here in Turkey, and we were received so warmly by the Turkish people, and I know that President and Mrs. Obama will as well.

He’s coming as an ally, a partner, and a friend representing the United States of America, which we believe is all of that with Turkey. We have been good allies in NATO. We have been partners in areas like Afghanistan and fighting terrorism. And we have been friends. There is the biggest increase in Turkish and American students visiting the other’s country. In fact, I learned today that American and Turkish young people are number and two in using Facebook.

SECRETARY CLINTON: So, we have a lot in common, and I think the President wants to illustrate that commitment as we start our new Administration.

QUESTION: Is he going to give this message to the Islamic world from Istanbul?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, that hasn’t been decided. But by coming to Turkey, he’s going to be speaking to the Turkish people. And Turkey, as everyone knows, is a model democracy with a secular constitution that shows Islam can coexist with both. So I think that’s a great example.

QUESTION: Interesting. Now, how do you qualify Turkey today? I mean, previous administrations used the terminology “moderate Islam.” Now, will you be using the same terminology? Is it --

SECRETARY CLINTON: No. We’re not going to characterize any country’s religious affiliation. We’re looking for an opportunity to strengthen and deepen our relationship with Turkey.

Turkey is many things. Turkey has many aspects to it. What I love about Turkey is the vibrancy of the society and the democracy. The fact that Turkey is a predominantly, but not exclusively Muslim nation, that there are varying levels of society that are moving forward together, we find all of that very exciting. So we want our relationship to be with the Turkish people.

QUESTION: You are putting the emphasis on democracy - secularism. Now, do you have any doubt that Turkey might go or tilt more to Islamic values, to Islamic world? Do you have any doubt, or what would be your reaction?

SECRETARY CLINTON: You know, my view is that Turkey has proven to be a reliable ally and partner and, as I like to think, friend. I know right now that the Turkish people are somewhat negative about America, I would argue, because of some of the decisions of the last eight years.

I remember very well when my husband and I were here in ’99. The Turkish people were very positive about America. That’s what we want again. Because we think we have so much in common, and the role that Turkey is playing as a regional and global leader on important issues is something that we’re very supportive of. So we hope to increase the relationship’s positive feelings again between the Turkish and American people. But our government-to-government relation is strong, and we will build on that.

QUESTION: Now, I’m going to ask you a question, maybe about your talk with the prime minister. I’m going to ask this question because he said that –he said openly that he would ask you. Did Mr. Erdogan complain about the State Department’s Human Rights Report? Because in this report he was criticized about his threats to freedom of press and some pressure to some media groups. Did he complain about this before?

SECRETARY CLINTON: He raised it with me and --

QUESTION: Oh, I don’t believe it.

SECRETARY CLINTON: No, he did, and that’s what friends do. You know, it would not be an honest relationship if he had a criticism and wouldn’t raise it with me. I would worry about that. You know, I’ve known the prime minister since 1996 when he was mayor of Istanbul, and I’ve seen him several times in New York when I attended break-fast for Eid. And so I have a great deal of respect for him and what he’s trying to do in Turkey.

QUESTION: What was your reaction?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, my reaction is that we put out this report every year, and I fully understand. You know, look, I was in politics, and no politician ever likes the press criticizing them. I understand that because I lived through it. But overall, we think that Turkey has made tremendous progress in freedom of speech and freedom of religion and human rights, and we’re proud of that.

QUESTION: You say it’s a must for – as far as this report indicator it’s a must – freedom of the press is a must as long as --

SECRETARY CLINTON: It’s part of a vibrant democracy. As much as those of us in public life complain about you and the press, it’s a combination that --

QUESTION: Are you complaining ?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Not me, no, I’m not complaining. (Laughter.) But I understand it. I’m not complaining because you’re not an American journalist. (Laughter.) But I understand that it’s just a natural tension, but it’s a necessary tension.

QUESTION: Now, let’s get to the Kurdish problem a little bit. Now the worry here is that with withdrawal of some armaments and ammunition might be gone to PKK’s hands. Do you have any contingency with this, one?

And second one, now you are withdrawing from Iraq. There will be a vacuum of power, especially around northern Iraq. And we have a PKK problem; the common enemy, you have said yourself. Do you have an initiative or a plan to solve this problem –I’m talking about terrorism and the Kurdish problem. Do you have an initiative? I mean, what – who should do what – Turkey and northern Iraqis?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, you’re right; we consider PKK a common enemy. And our military has cooperated with the Turkish military to prevent PKK activity and incursions from the north of Iraq into Turkey, and we will continue to cooperate. We are just beginning our planning with respect to the withdrawal. The President made the announcement after careful study. So we will withdraw. How we do it and how we protect against, as you say, a vacuum is something we’re going to consult with Turkey over and have our militaries, who are, after all, allies in NATO, work those through together.

QUESTION: I’m told that the interview is over.

SECRETARY CLINTON: It’s gone by too fast.

QUESTION: Well, yeah, it’s going – you are great. I mean, I was afraid that I’m going to get to maybe two more questions. Now, if you were to name three issues where Turkey will be helpful, which one are they? Pakistan? Palestine? Iran? Which one are the most important?

SECRETARY CLINTON: It’s all three. And that’s what’s so important about Turkey’s role. The leadership role that Turkey is now playing is not limited the way maybe it was in the past. What Turkey did in helping us in Afghanistan --

QUESTION: Do you want more troops in Afghanistan?

SECRETARY CLINTON: You know, we are going to discuss that, and that’s something that will be up to the Turkish Government. But I remember the first time I went to Afghanistan as a senator in 2003, I was met by a Turkish general. And Turkish soldiers have been very courageous and have fought and died with American soldiers in Afghanistan. We agree that Pakistan is very fragile, and we both have to work there. I applaud what Turkey did in creating the Syria-Israel track. That was an enormously helpful effort. Once there’s an Israeli government, we have to go on both a Syria track and a Palestinian track. And we need Turkey’s leadership in helping the United States push for a comprehensive peace plan that includes a two-state solution.

And with Iran, you know the Iranians better than we do. You have shared a border for – I think I was told over 350 or so years. So we are going to ask for your help in trying to influence Iranian behavior.

QUESTION: What about Hamas. Are you happy that Turkey has a very close relationship with Hamas?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, clearly, Turkey is committed to a peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. And the Arab League and the Quartet, of which we are both members of one of those, have said that Hamas should recognize Israel, should renounce violence, and should agree to comply with all the prior agreements entered into by the PLO.

Any influence that can turn Hamas away from Iranian influence and toward a more peaceful approach to resolving the conflict is helpful.

QUESTION: So role of Turkey is a facilitator or a mediator?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Absolutely.

QUESTION: Which one is it? Facilitator or mediator?

SECRETARY CLINTON: I think, and depending upon the case, it’s both.

QUESTION: Thank you very much. It’s great. And are you happy with the visit? Because the echoes are really very, very positive.

SECRETARY CLINTON: My only problem is it’s too short.

PRN: 2009/T2-24 www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2009a/03/120125.htm


Turkey Says Us Understands Its Sensitivities Over The Armenian Claims
The new U.S. administration appreciated Turkey's opinions and sensitivities regarding the Armenian claims on the 1915 incidents, the Turkish Foreign Minister said on Saturday, adding later there was however still a "risk" over the U.S. stance on the issue. (UPDATED)

The claims regarding the 1915 incidents was on the agenda during U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's visit to Turkey, Ali Babacan was reported as saying by the Anatolian Agency at a joint press conference after his meeting with Foreign Minister Alejandro Hamed Franco of Paraguay in Ankara.

"I can easily say that the current U.S. administration perceives Turkey's opinion and sensitivity on this matter. We have no difficulties with communication in that sense," he said when asked Turkey's concerns regarding the U.S. president's stance on the issue.

The issue could be solved without any problems and without overshadowing relations between Turkey and US, he added.

Armenia, with the backing of the diaspora, claims up to 1.5 million of their kin were slaughtered in orchestrated killings in 1915. Turkey rejects the claims saying that 300,000 Armenians, along with at least as many Turks, died in civil strife that emerged when Armenians took up arms, backed by Russia, for independence in eastern Anatolia.

Turkey has offered to form a joint commission to investigate what happened in 1915 and opened up all official archives, but Armenia has continued to drag its feet on accepting the offer.

"RISK" REMAINS
Babacan said however there was still a "risk" that U.S. President Barack Obama would recognize the incidents as "genocide" in an interview with NTV television channel on Sunday, adding that such a move would only impede efforts to reconcile Turkey and Armenia.

"I still see a risk," Babacan said. "Mr. Obama made the promise five times in a row."

Obama, who is expected to visit Turkey in April, said on several occasions during his election campaign that he would recognize the 1915 incidents as "genocide".

PKK ISSUE
Replying to a question on whether Turkey expressed any demand for the solution of the terrorist PKK organization issue before the U.S. withdrawal from Iraq, Babacan said the details of the withdrawal plan were not clear yet, the agency also reported.

Media reports had suggested ahead of Clinton’s Ankara visit that a demand to use Turkish soil as part of its Iraqi withdrawal could be made during her meetings.

"However, there is no connection between the PKK issue and the withdrawal process. Such a connection was expressed neither by us, nor by them. There is a tripartite mechanism in Iraq and sharing of intelligence and coordination of military units continue within this framework," he said.

Turkey, provided with intelligence by the United States, has stepped up its campaign to crackdown on the PKK both inside Turkey and in northern Iraq, after the terror organization increased its attacks on Turkish soldiers, as well as civilians.

The PKK is listed as a terrorist group by Ankara and much of the international community, including the EU and the United States.

© Copyright 2008 Hürriyet


Obama Not To Deliver Anticipated Address On Islam In Turkey-Report
A Washington Post report on Sunday said that U.S. President Barack Obama was not expected to use the Turkey visit to deliver his anticipated address on Islam, a speech he promised during his campaign to give in a Muslim capital soon after taking office.

"Obama's stop in Turkey, announced yesterday (Saturday) in Ankara by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, partly fulfills Obama's pledge to engage the Muslim world in a substantive way within his first 100 days in office. But the president is not expected to use the Turkey visit to deliver his anticipated address on Islam, a speech he promised during his campaign to give in a Muslim capital soon after taking office," the newspaper said.

The two events are totally different from each other, a senior official told the newspaper on the condition of anonymity, adding that the place or the date for President Obama's address to the Muslim world was not set yet.

"This visit is not about healing some E.U.-NATO rift. This is about underscoring our deep alliance with Turkey, that it is an important part of Europe, and that it is an important voice in the Muslim world," the report quoted the official as saying.

Despite U.S. support for NATO-member Turkey’s EU membership, the country has been kept out of the Union, a point that has caused friction within the NATO alliance at a time when the Obama administration is seeking more European troops for Afghanistan.

Turkey has mediated indirect talks between Israel and Syria over the status of the Golan Heights, and has offered to assist in solving other frozen conflicts in the region.

"By concluding a European trip with a stop in Turkey, Obama is seeking to highlight its importance as a growing market, military ally and key player in securing oil and future natural gas from the Caspian region, administration officials and outside analysts said," the daily added.
© Copyright 2008 Hürriyet


New Era Started In Turkish-U.S. Relations, Turkey's Foreign Minister
Turkey's foreign minister said on Sunday that a new era began in relations between Turkey and USA after the new U.S. administration took office.

Attending a program on private NTV channel, Babacan said that Turkey and USA's priorities in foreign politics were totally in line with each other.

Commenting on U.S. President Barack Obama's upcoming visit to Turkey, Babacan said that the exact date of the visit would be announced by U.S. officials.

Upon a question on U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's not using the expression "moderate Islam" for Turkey, Babacan said Turkey was an important example showing that democracy, secularism and Islam could coexist, adding that USA attached great importance to this fact.

Babacan also said that Obama's paying one of his very first visits to Turkey was an "important message to the world".

Replying to a question on whether Obama would use the word "genocide" while describing the incidents of 1915 in his speech on April 24, Babacan said, "Time will show what will happen. I still see a risk at that point, however, the important thing is that the new U.S. administration perceived Turkey's sensitivity on certain issues".

Babacan also said that good developments took place towards the normalization of Turkish-Armenian relations.

"The tripartite mechanism among Turkey, the United States and Iraq in the fight against the PKK terrorist organization will continue. Besides military struggle, we need to benefit from economic, socio-cultural and diplomatic instruments to succeed in the fight against the PKK. The withdrawal of U.S. soldiers from Iraq should be carried out gradually to prevent any difficulties," he said.

Babacan said that the United States did not request Turkey to dispatch reinforcement units in Afghanistan.

Referring to the relations with Iran, Babacan highlighted importance of dialogue and diplomacy in efforts to find a solution. "I do not convey any messages from the United States to Iran," he said.

Upon a question about the relations with Israel, Babacan said, "our contacts have never been halted. We believe that the only way to resolve problems is dialogue. We have strategic relations with Israel based on national interests of both countries."

When asked about the decision of the International Criminal Court (ICC) which issued an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir for war crimes in Darfur, Babacan said, "actually, our priority is protection of stability and peace in Sudan. No one should ignore likely impacts of arrest of the president on Sudanese people."
08 March 2009, THE ANATOLIA NEWS AGENCY ANKARA


U.S. Administration Understands Turkey's Stance On 1915 Incidents, Turkish Fm
Turkey's foreign minister said on Saturday that the current U.S. administration perceived Turkey's opinion and sensitivity regarding the incidents of 1915.

Speaking at a joint press conference after his meeting with Foreign Minister Alejandro Hamed Franco of Paraguay in Ankara, Babacan said that incidents of 1915 were also on the agenda of his talks with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Upon a question on whether Turkey's concerns regarding U.S. president's stance on such issue were expressed during the talks, Babacan said, "I can easily say that the current U.S. administration perceives Turkey's opninon and sensitivity on this matter. We have no difficulties with communication in that sense".

Babacan also said that he hoped such issue could be solved without any problems and without overshadowing the relations between Turkey and USA.

Replying to a question on whether Turkey expressed any demand for the solution of the PKK problem before USA's withdrawal from Iraq, Babacan said the details of the withdrawal plan were not clear yet.

"However, there is no connection between the PKK issue and the withdrawal process. Such a connection was expressed neither by us, nor by them. There is a tripartite mechanism in Iraq and sharing of intelligence and coordination of military units continue within such framework," he said.

Commenting on Cyprus issue as well, Babacan said USA paid close attention to Cyprus and such matter was discussed in a detailed way during his meeting with Clinton.

08 March 2009, THE ANATOLIA NEWS AGENCY ANKARA


Obama To Visit Turkey, First Trip To Muslim Nation
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton held up Turkey on Saturday as proof that democracy and Islam can coexist and said Barack Obama would visit the NATO state in his first trip as president to a Muslim country.

The choice of Turkey -- a secular Muslim democracy that aspires to join the European Union -- reflects the value Washington places on links with Ankara as it tries to forge a better relationship with the Islamic world.

"Democracy and modernity and Islam can all coexist," Clinton said in Ankara, appearing on a popular Turkish television chat show, Hadi Gel Bizimle (Come and Join Us).

"I really consider the role of Turkey as a global leader very important," she told her four female interviewers.

After eight years of former President George W. Bush, who invaded two Muslim countries and gave strong support to Israel, Obama has pledged a "new way forward" with the Muslim world.

There has been speculation he might use Turkey as a platform for a widely expected major policy speech on ties betwen the United States and Islamic countries.

"He will be visiting Turkey within the next month or so. The exact date will be announced shortly. We are coordinating with the Turkish government to find a date that works," Clinton told a news conference along with Foreign Minister Ali Babacan.

TURKISH MEDIATION
Clinton, who also met Prime Minister Tayyip Erdoğan and President Abdullah Gül, said her trip had focused on Ankara's role in Middle East peacemaking, particularly in mediating between Israel and Syria.

"The importance of this track, the peace effort, cannot be overstated. Turkey has played a very important role."

In an interview with CNN Turk, Clinton said Washington will seek Turkey's help for Obama's plan to engage Iran, a major shift in US policy. Ankara has warm ties with Tehran.

The United States is at odds with Iran on a range of issues, including Tehran's nuclear programme, which Washington says is aimed at building bombs. Iran denies the charge.

"We're going to require your help with Iran, especially in terms of affecting a change in Iran's stance," she said.

Also discussed were NATO's role in Afghanistan, where Turkey has 800 troops, as well as intelligence-sharing in the fight against Kurdish rebels, and the situation in Iraq, she said.

Turkey, which refused to let U.S. troops deploy on its territory for the 2003 invasion of Iraq, has signalled it would allow them to use its bases and ports to withdraw, after Obama pledged to pull out combat forces by 2010.

There has been a wave of anti-Americanism in Turkey, particularly following the Iraq war, and many of those tensions linger. But Clinton said Turkey and the United States stood "shoulder to shoulder" in tackling global isues.

"The relationship between our two countries is one of alliance, partnership and friendship," she said.
Obama Turkey visit to focus on Iraq, Afghanistan

For one of his first foreign visits, President Barack Obama will call on NATO ally Turkey, an overwhelmingly Muslim country viewed as critical to aiding the US pullout from Iraq, turning around the Afghanistan war and blocking Iran's nuclear ambitions.

The invasion of Iraq has strained the long friendship between the US and Turkey, a Western-style democracy that straddles Europe and the Middle East and has an Islamic-oriented government. Obama's visit, expected at the end of a European trip in early April, would mark an improvement in ties.

“We share a commitment to democracy, a secular constitution, respect for religious freedom and belief and in free market and a sense of global responsibility,” US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Saturday in announcing Obama's plans after meeting with Turkish leaders in the capital.

The visit is “a reflection of the value we place on our friendship with Turkey,” the chief American diplomat said on the last stop of her weeklong trip to five countries. The president asked her to make the announcement, she added.

Turkey had advised against the US -led invasion of Iraq in 2003 and refused to permit US ground forces to launch elements of the attack from Turkish soil.

In a more cordial atmosphere now, Washington and Ankara are consulting on ways Turkey can help facilitate the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq. Turkey has said it is ready to serve as an exit route for the Americans. The US air base at İncirlik, Turkey, has been used for transfer of US troops and equipment to Iraq and Afghanistan.

“We have to discuss what will pass, what kind of equipment,” Foreign Minister Ali Babacan said at a news conference with Clinton. “We are ready to cooperate.”

Neither Clinton nor the White House would confirm a date for Obama's visit. But it probably will follow his trip to Europe from March 31 to April 5 that includes a NATO summit and meetings with European Union leaders; Turkey is seeking EU membership. Obama's only trip since taking office Jan. 20 has been a day visit to Canada.

“We've got a unique opportunity to reboot America's image around the world and also in the Muslim world in particular. So we need to take advantage of that,” Obama said in a December newspaper interview, though he declined to say whether the speech would happen in his first year.

Obama's ascension to the White House won cheers around the globe as a sign that America would be more embracing and open to change. In his Inauguration Day address, the new president said, “To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect.” Obama also gave his first formal television interview as president to the Saudi-owned Al-Arabiya network.

Before Obama sees NATO leaders, his national security council plans to finish an Afghanistan policy review. The manner in which that policy is announced is expected to be packaged with direct outreach to the Muslim world.

The US has about 38,000 troops in Afghanistan and is the largest contributor to a joint NATO force. NATO also has about 30,000 non-US troops there.

The war effort in Afghanistan has deteriorated the past two years as the Taliban and extremist insurgency has gained strength and U.S. and allied casualties have increased. Obama has approved sending an additional 17,000 U.S. troops to Afghanistan this spring and summer, but he also has emphasized the need to have a broader, unified international approach to the war.

The Turks think the US should put more focus on expanding and improving the Afghan security forces and on pressing Afghan authorities to reconcile with elements of the Islamic insurgency, rather than on putting tens of thousands more US troops.

İncirlik could take on a greater role following Kyrgyzstan's recent order that the US vacate on air base on its territory that is a transit point for 15,000 troops and 500 tons of cargo each month to and from Afghanistan.

Obama answered “no” when asked in a New York Times interview Friday whether the war was being won and raised the possibility of reconciliation with elements of the Taliban.

On Iran, which shares a border with Turkey, the Obama administration has raised the prospect of diplomatic engagement as part of a new direction in US foreign policy. But a chief source of friction is Iran's nuclear policy. The US and other countries believe the program is intended to produce weapons; the Iranians say it is designed for civilian energy production. Yet during her trip, Clinton accused Iran of seeking to “intimidate as far as they think their voice can reach.”

Turkey supports Iran's right to develop nuclear energy for peaceful use but wants Tehran to be transparent about its nuclear program and favors dialogue.

In addition to her talks with Turkish leaders, Clinton appeared on a popular TV talk show that focuses on women's issues. Several women asked Clinton about Michelle Obama, whom the secretary of state praised as a good role model. None brought up Clinton's personal life, but one asked her about a comment she made during her swearing-in ceremony at the State Department on Feb. 2 in which she thanked her husband for “a lifetime of _ all kinds of experiences.” The woman asked how she coped with those experiences.

Clinton replied that she relied on forgiveness, friends, family and faith.

“I don't know anybody whose life is smooth sailing. If you meet such a person I'd like to know him because I've lived a long time and I've yet to meet such a person,” she said. Ankara, AP
08 March 2009, REUTERS ANKARA


Clinton Visits Ataturk Mausoleum, Says Obama Will Visit Turkey Soon 2009/03/08
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with Turkish leaders in Ankara on her last stop in a one week tour of the Middle East and Europe.Clinton talked with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan for nearly two hours at his residence before visiting the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, Turkey’s national founder.
While in the Turkish capital Secretary Clinton reported that U.S. President Barack Obama will visit Turkey within the next month or so. The details of the visit haven’t been decided, she told reporters after a meeting with her Turkish counterpart, Foreign Minister Ali Babacan. Clinton said planning wasn’t advanced enough to determine whether it would be the occasion for Obama’s promised address from a Muslim capital during his first 100 days in office.

The Obama administration will draw on the partnership with Turkey to stabilize neighbouring Iraq and carry out its pledge to withdraw most U.S. troops next year. Turkey also has mediated indirect talks between Israel and Syria and has offered to help in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations

Secretary Clinton mentioned that she recalled being in Ankara during her husband’s presidency and said she had returned to help President Barack Obama promote “the work the U.S. and Turkey must do to forge peace, prosperity and progress.” Erdogan’s office said in a statement that the two discussed bilateral relations, the Middle East, Iraq, Afghanistan and combating terrorism.

Obama’s visit may coincide with his plan to attend the 60th anniversary meeting of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization on the Franco-German border on April 3-4, and a summit of the Group of 20 industrial and developing nations in London on April 1-2.

The visit is a “demonstration of the very high value that the president and I place on the relationship with Turkey,” she told women interviewing her during the taping of a television show similar to the American program “The View.”
http://hetq.am/en/politics/5368


Clinton Hails Us-Turkey Ties
Clinton has met European and Middle Eastern leaders over the past weeks to improve relations [AFP]

Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, has said that Turkey and the United States share common goals, after meeting government leaders in Ankara.

Clinton said after the talks on Saturday that Barack Obama, the US president, will visit Turkey next month, although she did not give a date.

"We covered a broad agenda today ... in addition to Iraq and Afghanistan, we discussed our co-operation to defeat our common enemy, the PKK [Kurdistan Workers' Party]; to update Nato's capabilities to meet 21st-century challenges; and we talked about the urgent need to work with the international community towards a two-state solution and a comprehensive peace in the Middle East," Clinton said during a news conference.

Clinton met President Abdullah Gul, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey's prime minister, and Ali Babacan, the foreign minister. She also visited the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founder of modern Turkey, during her trip to the capital.

"I think Turkey will be an important, and can be an important, actor in implementing both security and peace policies in the region"

Ilter Turan, professor at Bilgi Istanbul University

The US government is committed to Turkey joining the European Union and talks on finding a peace deal for Turkey and Greece over the divided island of Cyprus, she said.

"I reiterate the Obama administration's support for Turkey's membership of the European Union. The United States believes it will strengthen Turkey, Europe and our transatlantic partnership."

The Obama administration also supports UN-sponsored talks "to achieve a settlement of the Cyprus conflict, based on reunification of the island as a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation".

The US secretary of state's visit to Turkey is part of an effort by the Obama administration to enhance ties between Washington and Ankara, a senior US official travelling with Clinton said.

"There is a chance to put us on a better footing in our relationship with Turkey," the official said.

Clinton arrived in Turkey from Geneva, Switzerland, where she met Sergei Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister, on Friday.

Turkey, a Nato member and a Muslim-majority nation, has been a site for anti-Americanism following the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.

Middle East peace

Ankara's role in the Middle East peace process was said to have been at the top of Clinton's agenda during her one-day visit.

Clinton laid a wreath at Ataturk's mausoleum in Ankara [AFP]

The US, it is believed, wants Turkey to mediate indirect talks between Syria and Israel, who are still at odds over Israel's occupation of the Golan Heights, a strategic plateau captured from Syria in 1967.

Washington also wants Ankara to help convince its neighbours to allow their territory to be used as supply routes for US and Nato-forces battling the Taliban and al-Qaeda forces in Afghanistan.

But the Turkish government has opposition on its own soil from the PKK, a Kurdish organisation that has been fighting for autonomy from Ankara since 1978, a conflict that has cost thousands of lives.

Anita McNaught, Al Jazeera's correspondent in Istanbul, said that the agenda for the talks was extensive.

"This is a moment in history, certainly as the Turks would see it, where it seems like many roads, if not all roads to the resolution of the region's problems lead through Ankara," she said.

Regional experience
McNaught said that the Turkish government had been pro-active in dealing with Hamas and trying to bring the Israelis and Palestinians together in Middle Eastern peace talks.

She also said that Washington had asked Turkey to play a role in improving relations with Iran, and help with the situations in Iraq, Afghanistan and Georgia.

Ilter Turan, a professor at Bilgi Istanbul University, told Al Jazeera that Turkey's common past and religion with some of the countries of the region and an experience of dealing with populations of a similar nature could help.

"I think Turkey will be an important, and can be an important, actor in implementing both security and peace policies in the region," he said.

However, some people say that Turkey does not have the political will to increase their involvement in the myriad of areas desired by the US.

"They will face harsh opposition from the Islamist opposition, that they are killing their Muslim brothers, serving the Western interests," Kadri Gursel, a columnist with the Millyet newspaper, told Al Jazeera. english.aljazeera.net/news/europe/2009/03/20093712515219189.html


Joint Statement by Turkey and the United States of America on the Occasion of the Visit of U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton Upon the Invitation of Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey Ali Babacan

Hillary Rodham Clinton, Secretary of State, Ankara, Turkey, March 7, 2009
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Foreign Minister Ali Babacan today reaffirmed the strong bonds of alliance, solidarity and strategic partnership between the Republic of Turkey and the United States, as well as the commitment of both countries to the principles of peace, democracy, freedom, and prosperity enshrined in the Shared Vision and Structured Dialogue document agreed to in July 2006.

Turkey and the United States reiterated their determination to continue close cooperation and consultation on all issues of common concern. They pledge to contribute to peace and stability in the Middle East and in this context, to support a permanent settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict, including alleviating the humanitarian crisis in Gaza and resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict on the basis of a two-state solution; to enhance energy security and to expand the Southern corridor of natural gas and oil infrastructure to enable Caspian basin and Iraqi energy producers to reach European and world markets; to promote peace, stability, and prosperity in the south Caucasus, including through U.S. support for the efforts of Turkey and Armenia to normalize relations and joint support for the efforts of the Minsk Group to resolve the Nagorno Karabakh conflict; to continue to cooperate in the Balkans; to support strongly a comprehensive and mutually-acceptable settlement of the Cyprus question under the auspices of the UN and in this context ending the isolation of the Turkish Cypriots; and to enhance their cooperation in the fight against terrorism, particularly against their common enemies, the PKK and al-Qaeda. The United States will continue its intelligence support for Turkish operations against the PKK and is reviewing ways to be more supportive. As members of the G-20, Turkey and the United States pledge continued cooperation to deal with the global economic crisis and efforts to increase and diversify bilateral economic relations with particular emphasis on trade, investment, scientific and technological cooperation.

Secretary Clinton and Foreign Minister Babacan discussed Turkey’s accession to the European Union as a member, a goal the United States continues to strongly support, as well as the Government of Turkey’s continued emphasis on reform process. With their commitment to Transatlantic relations and as Allies in a strong NATO, they pledge continued cooperation in Afghanistan, including through continued Turkish contributions to Afghanistan. They reiterated their commitment to the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Iraq as well as reiterated their support for a democratic, pluralistic, unified and federal Iraq. They also welcome Turkey’s deepening relations with the Government of Iraq as evidenced by high level visits as well as trilateral meetings to discuss cooperation against the PKK. Turkey and the United States will strongly back the United Nations Security Council in its work to maintain global peace and security for the prevention and removal of threats to the international community and in this context will cooperate in dealing with issues including terrorism, drug trafficking, organized crime and the threat of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery in the region and beyond.

Finally, they reaffirmed their determination to diversify the broad based bilateral relations particularly between the Turkish and American people. In that context, the Secretary and Minister announced the establishment of “Young Turkey/Young America: A New Relationship for a New Age.” This initiative will enable emerging young leaders in Turkey and the United States to develop initiatives that will positively impact people’s lives and invest in future ties between the leadership of our two countries.
PRN: 2009/T2-17


Turkey’s Relations with Armenia and the Impact of the Armenian Diaspora by Kamer Kasim
Turkey’s relations with Armenia started in the unstable atmosphere of the Caucasus. As a landlocked country, Armenia needed to establish good relations with its neighbors, particularly with its western neighbor Turkey. However, developments in Turkish-Armenian relations have stalled over the years. There are three main reasons for this situation. One reason is that Armenia has not openly recognized Turkey’s territorial integrity and refuses to sign an agreement about good neighborly relations and the inviolability of borders. Another reason is the Armenian genocide allegations and the Armenian government’s policy towards it. The last reason, which was particularly responsible for the border closure, is the Nagorno-Karabakh problem. The Armenian Diaspora is an actor to be reckoned with in Turkish-Armenian relations.

Despite the obstacles mentioned above, there have been attempts for rapprochement between the two countries, although they have not yet produced meaningful results. It might be argued that Armenian Diaspora and particularly the Diaspora organizations in the US are the main reason for this.

The Armenian Diaspora has influenced Armenian politics through Diaspora parties and organizations. It is particularly active in the campaign about genocide allegations, which is an element of identity that functions to keep the Diaspora together. The Diaspora spends a great deal of its time, money, and energy on this issue, and an industry composed of research institutes has developed that produces materials such as shirts and mugs with symbols of genocide allegations printed on them and even movies supporting these allegations. Armenian Diaspora organizations in the US are particularly important in this aspect. The Armenian Assembly of America (AAA) and the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) are the two important Diaspora organizations in the US. Although there are differences and competition between them, they usually act together regarding the genocide allegations. As the Diaspora has focused its efforts on a single issue it has developed a professional ability to pressure the political machinery. After Armenia became independent, the Diaspora imposed its own political agenda on Armenia, which radicalized Armenian politics. The Diaspora has negative effects on the rapprochement efforts in Turkish-Armenian relations. The Diaspora and Diaspora parties even interrupted the Armenian administration’s opinion about the civilian initiative between the Turks and the Armenians. For example, the Turkish-Armenian Reconciliation Commission was established on 9 July 2001 with four Armenian and six Turkish members. The Armenian Foreign Ministry welcomed the establishment of the Commission. However, some Diaspora organizations, like the Armenian Revolutionary Federation and the Armenian National Committee of America, were against the Commission. After the Diaspora’s reaction against the Commission, the Armenian Foreign Ministry changed its opinion about the Commission and distanced itself from the work of the Commission.

Turkey offered to establish a commission to research the allegations. The idea to set up a scientific commission and study the matter is an idea that the Diaspora strongly rejects, and it argued that it would discuss the matter – for instance, with regard to matters such as compensation - after Turkey recognized the “genocide.” Why does the Diaspora push that approach? Because the Diaspora accepts the genocide as a given fact. Re-evaluating something accepted as a fact would also mean discussing an important aspect of its identity, as well as questioning all the activities undertaken by the Diaspora. As a result of these activities, a genocide industry has developed around the allegations. Regarding Turkey’s proposal, the Armenian Foreign Minister made an interesting statement. He said that historians have already made their point, meaning that now it is Turkey’s turn to recognize the “genocide,” then we can talk. After that, former President Kocharian changed his tone and said they could discuss the matter. He said historians may get together as well but that actual talk should be made at a governmental level. At that point the Armenian government departed from the stand point of the Diaspora. After Turkey’s insistence, the current Armenian government has reached a point that some kind of commission might be established. However, this issue will probably continue to be an obstacle in Turkish-Armenian relations for a long time.

Armenia’s borders with Turkey are closed due to the Nagorno-Karabakh problem and the genocide allegations. Armenia’s dependency on Russia should be reconsidered after the Russian-Georgian crisis, and Armenia should also consider its relations with Turkey in this atmosphere. The US also reassessed its policy towards Armenia after the Russia-Georgia war. Some policy makers in the US thought that Armenia should be tied to the West and “rescued” from Russian domination as soon as possible. The key country in this strategy is Turkey. For this reason Turkey faced pressure to open the land border with Armenia. The US and Europe wanted Turkey and Armenia to start a dialogue. In this atmosphere, the Armenian President’s invitation to the Turkish President to attend a football match between the two national teams was seen as reminiscent of the ping-pong diplomacy during the thaw in US-Chinese relations in 1971. After long discussions, Turkish President Abdullah Gül went to Armenia for the football match on 6 September 2008. There were great expectations from this visit; however, Armenia was reluctant to make the necessary effort to normalize its relations with Turkey.

The normalization of Turkey’s relations with Armenia and the opening of the Turkish-Armenian land border requires Armenia to take some steps to fulfill Turkey’s conditions. Both former Armenian President Kocharian and current President Sarkisian have from time to time stated that Armenia is ready to establish relations with Turkey without pre-conditions. These kinds of statements might be considered a public relations activity and to give a message to the international community, rather than a sign of genuine commitment. Turkey perceives these statements as that Armenia will not take any steps regarding Turkey’s conditions related to the normalization of relations between the two countries. These statements also do not explain why Turkey requires conditions to normalize relations and to open the land border with Armenia. There are three reasons for this. First, as mentioned above, Armenia has made the recognition of the genocide allegations a major objective of its foreign policy and has included it their documents. Second, the Declaration of Independence mentions “Western Armenia,” which indicates that Armenia claims rights to a part of Turkey’s territory; Armenia also rejected the opportunity to make a declaration involving the inviolability of borders and good neighborly relations, thus it is unrealistic to expect that a country would establish normal diplomatic relations with a country which does not recognize its territorial integrity. And third, the Nagorno-Karabakh problem has not been solved, and 20% of Azerbaijan’s territory is under Armenian occupation. In this situation, saying “we are ready to talk with Turkey without preconditions” actually means setting forth a condition. It means Armenia will take no action whatsoever on those issues. It is an approach that tells Turkey to recognize the genocide allegations, establish normal diplomatic relations, and open the land border. Imagine, for instance, if France did not recognize the territorial integrity of Spain and claimed that a certain part of the territory of Spain is Western France, or if forces supported by France occupied a part of another regional country which has good relations with Spain. In such a situation, the relations between France and Spain would not be so peaceful, and Europe would be like the Caucasus.

The normalization of Turkish-Armenian relations will reduce Armenia’s dependence on Russia and help Armenia’s integration with the West. In fact, the US Armenian Diaspora is also not happy with Armenia’s dependence on Russia. However, the Diaspora’s stance regarding the issues which are obstacles to Turkish-Armenian relations is not helpful for bilateral relations. The US might be able to put pressure on Armenia using the economic aid card to take the necessary steps to improve its relations with Turkey. However, the influence of Armenian Diaspora means that the US finds it difficult to implement policy which suits the US national interest. If the US manages to reduce the Diaspora’s influence on Armenia, that will be helpful in improving Turkish-Armenian relations. This became even more important after the Russian-Georgian conflict in the Caucasus. Cooperation between Turkey and the US is important for the security of energy transit in the region and also the security of energy producer and transit countries. The Armenian administration’s strong cooperation with Russia and its policy towards the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict increases Russian influence in the Caucasus. Despite the mutual benefits of regional cooperation, the circumstances do not allow the normalization of relations between Turkey and Armenia. Only domestic policy change in Armenia through outside pressure or other ways might lead to the adjustment of Armenian policy regarding the three issues which prevent the normalization of Turkish-Armenian relations.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Kamer KASIM* *Abant Izzet Baysal University, Department of International Relations/Turkey/ISRO (USAK) advisor. E-Mail:kamerkasim at yahoo.com
www.usak.org.tr


Obama Plans to Visit NATO Ally Turkey, Clinton Says By Steve Bryant and Viola Gienger
March 7 (Bloomberg) -- President Barack Obama will visit Turkey within about a month, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said today in the Turkish capital Ankara as she held talks with leaders of the NATO ally.

The details of the visit haven’t been decided, she told reporters after a meeting with her Turkish counterpart, Foreign Minister Ali Babacan. Clinton said planning wasn’t advanced enough to determine whether it would be the occasion for Obama’s promised address from a Muslim capital during his first 100 days in office. Obama is planning a European visit in early April.

The visit is a “demonstration of the very high value that the president and I place on the relationship with Turkey,” she told women interviewing her during the taping of a television show similar to the American program “The View.”

The Obama administration will draw on the partnership with Turkey to stabilize neighboring Iraq and carry out its pledge to withdraw most U.S. troops next year. Turkey also has mediated indirect talks between Israel and Syria and has offered to help in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.

“A peace between Syria and Israel, normalization of relations is something that would be part of an agenda of a comprehensive peace effort” for the Middle East, Clinton said. “We will consult closely with Turkey as we move forward.”

Iraq, Afghanistan
Clinton credited Turkey with providing trade and investment to help rebuild the economy of northern Iraq, and for contributing to the NATO-led military campaign against the Taliban and al-Qaeda in Afghanistan. She recalled that the officer who greeted her when she first went to Afghanistan in 2003 was Turkish.

“Turkey has been major contributor to the ongoing struggle to stabilize Afghanistan,” Clinton told reporters.

Babacan said the talks also touched on energy security, the fight against Kurdish rebels across the border in northern Iraq and Turkey’s aspiration to become a member of the European Union.

On Iraq, Clinton said it’s too early to talk publicly about whether and how the U.S. would rely on Turkey for its military exit.

“We will consult with and seek advice from a NATO ally like Turkey about the safest and most effective means of withdrawing our troops,” Clinton said.

G-20 Summit
Obama’s visit may coincide with his plan to attend the 60th anniversary meeting of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization on the Franco-German border on April 3-4, and a summit of the Group of 20 industrial and developing nations in London on April 1-2.

Obama is currently scheduled to conclude his European trip on April 5 with a meeting of European Union leaders in Prague.

Clinton’s stop in Ankara was the last on a one-week tour of the Middle East and Europe that combined diplomatic talks with public outreach. She met with women’s and youth groups in Jerusalem and Ramallah in the West Bank, and conducted a town hall-style forum with interns and staff of the European Parliament in Brussels.

Her appearance on the Turkish television production “Haydi Gel Bizimle Ol” featured a mix of discussion of political and social issues, including Turkey’s modernization and personal reflections on how she maintains a private life as a very public persona.

“It’s not easy, but I work really hard to find those quiet times when the spotlights aren’t on,” she said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Steve Bryant in Ankara at Sbryant5 at bloomberg.net; Viola Gienger in Ankara via the Washington newsroom March 7, 2009




Morgenthaus vs. Genocide, Opinion, By Rafael Medoff, March 13, 2009.
Robert Morgenthau’s announcement that he will retire after more than three decades as Manhattan’s district attorney caps an impressive career in law enforcement. With his latest case, against banks illegally aiding the governments of Iran and Sudan, three generations of Morgenthaus have now confronted perpetrators of genocide — which is as tragic a commentary on the persistence of human rights abuses in modern times as it is a tribute to a remarkable family that has fought those abuses.

It began with Robert Morgenthau’s grandfather. A lawyer and realtor in turn-of-the-century Manhattan, Henry Morgenthau Sr. was an unlikely crusader for human rights. His life took a surprising turn when his support for the long-shot presidential candidacy of Woodrow Wilson was rewarded with the post of American ambassador to Turkey.

Under the cover of World War I, the Turkish authorities embarked on a campaign of mass murder against their Armenian citizens. Morgenthau’s desperate cables to Washington about this “attempt to exterminate a race” — relaying details of the wholesale deportations, massacres and rapes — are among the most important evidence of the atrocities.

The ambassador persuaded The New York Times and other news media to report on the “race murder,” as he called it; he inspired charity groups to raise relief funds for the survivors. But the Wilson administration, anxious to remain neutral in the war, rebuffed Morgenthau’s appeals to intervene. Morgenthau resigned in frustration in early 1916.

While Morgenthau was unable to save the Armenians, his example has stood as a beacon to generations of activists determined to stop genocide. Morgenthau’s experience fills the opening section of Samantha Power’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book “A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide.” Now a senior foreign policy adviser to President Obama, Power regards “the American nonresponse to the Turkish horrors” as “establishing patterns that would be repeated” throughout the ensuing century. Power, according to recent media reports, is now attempting to break the pattern by urging active American intervention against the genocide in Darfur.

Two decades after Henry Morgenthau Sr. resigned his post as ambassador, a twist of fate put his son in a position to act against genocide. As the proprietor of apple orchards in New York’s Dutchess County, Henry Morgenthau Jr. became friends with his neighbor Franklin Delano Roosevelt. In 1934, Roosevelt named him secretary of the treasury.

Under ordinary circumstances, the Treasury Department would not deal with matters affecting Jews in Hitler’s Europe, but in 1943 Jewish groups asked the department for permission to send funds into Axis territory to ransom Jews. The State Department’s attempt to stall the rescue plan aroused the ire and curiosity of a senior Morgenthau aide named Josiah DuBois. His investigations revealed that the State Department had been suppressing news of the Holocaust and sabotaging rescue opportunities so America would not have to deal with what one official called “the burden and the curse” of having to care for refugees.

In early 1944, Morgenthau confronted Roosevelt with the evidence and urged him to create a government agency to rescue Jews. Just then, leading members of Congress, galvanized by the activist Bergson Group, were pressing the president to establish such an agency. The pressure convinced a reluctant Roosevelt to create the War Refugee Board. During the final 15 months of the war, the board helped save an estimated 200,000 Jews.

Like his father and grandfather, Robert Morgenthau chose a career path that one would not expect to embroil him in international affairs. As Manhattan’s district attorney since 1975, Morgenthau prosecuted the usual array of criminals, from muggers to Mafia bosses to white-collar swindlers.

Last month, however, Morgenthau announced the results of what is perhaps his most important investigation: His office caught 10 major international banks laundering “billions of dollars” for Iran and Sudan. Part of the money purchased goods that international sanctions prevent Tehran and Khartoum from acquiring. Some of the money was channeled to terrorist groups, including Hamas and Hezbollah.

Ironically, Morgenthau’s bank investigators have been collaborating with the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control — the same office that, under the direction of Josiah DuBois, his father worked with during the Holocaust.

Three generations of Morgenthaus were unexpectedly thrust into the international arena and rose to the challenge. Henry Sr. exposed the perpetrators of the Armenian genocide. Henry Jr. helped interrupt the Nazi genocide. Now the Sudanese regime that is carrying out genocide in Darfur and the Iranian regime that dreams of genocide against Israel are facing their own Morgenthau. The family’s legacy has come full circle.

Rafael Medoff is director of the David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies and the author of “Blowing the Whistle on Genocide: Josiah E. DuBois, Jr. and the Struggle for a U.S. Response to the Holocaust” (Purdue University Press, 2008).

Comments
norman israel Thu. Mar 5, 2009
You should be aware of a highly organized effort to castigate the victimized Armenians of 1915 and of today in exactly the same language Rosenthal, Goebbels, and the racist architects of the Armenian, Assyrian and Greek genocides used. Read, for example the Nazi ravings of Southern California Turkish Forum columnist Ergun Kirlikovali, who has joked about the deaths of Armenians as comparable to the deaths of vermin and flies. He has written that only 8,000 Armenian died, and that most deserved it. He regularly uses Hitlerian language to describe the victims of 1915 and today; they are and were "backstabbers" "liars" "murderers" and "traitors". Google his name, and read it for yourself. Kirlikovali almost daily uses the language anti-semites use; he recently insulted American Armenians, saying they are disloyal, and cannot serve in the military honorably; and that a majority of them want to kill Turks on sight.

Unfortunately, Kirlikovali is a national officer of Turkish American organizations who seek daily to enlist Jewish American groups to deny the Genocide of the Christians of Anatolia.

norman israel Thu. Mar 5, 2009
Here is what Kirlikovali wrote about Ambassador Morgenthau in one of nine sample ghostwritten letters he wanted his fellow Genocide-deniers to send California elected officials in opposition to commemorating the Genocide of Armenians:

"Then there is the case of the American Ambassador Morgenthau, a rabid anti-Turk, who was frequently used as a credible source. Morgenthau posed as a career diplomat and a historian, but he was neither. He was a real estate agent and a developer from upstate New York who raised the most funds for the Wilson campaign in 1912 and was rewarded with an ambassadorial post by the president elect Wilson. His male Armenian interpreter and secretaries ghost wrote all his letter and reports home and Morgenthau never ventured into Anatolia’s hinterland to investigate the outrageous Armenian claims. He just rubber-stamped stories and reports filed by the Armenian nationalists and/or American missionaries, hardly unbiased sources, no matter how embellished, exaggerated, or distorted those stories and reports were."

http://Armenians-1915.blogspot.com/2008/04/2414-no-tosjr-26-by-ergun.html

Of course, the most serious things Morgenthau wrote were direct quotations of Talaat Pasha, who admitted to him his intention to exterminate the Armenians, and who asked Morgenthau to help get the victims' life insuramce benefits payable to the Ottoman State, saying the policyholders' beneficiaries were all dead or nearly so. Memorable other quotes include Talaat's statement that Morgenthau, as a Jew, should care nothing about annihalation of Christian subjects. Kirlikovali and the other statist deniers attack Morgenthau's character daily, saying that he was unwilling to give accurate reports in good faith to the IUnited States Department of State.

norman israel Thu. Mar 5, 2009
correction: this is where
http://armenians-1915.blogspot.com/2008/04/2414-no-to-sjr-24-sjr-26-by-ergun.html

akasya Sat. Mar 7, 2009

1 The Armenians are sure that Armenian genocide really occured and claim that Turkey does not want to face with her history. On the other hand, they persistently refuse Turkey’s suggestions to discuss these events together with historians from both sides, in spite of this claim. For example:

*In 2004, the Viennese Armenian-Turkish Platform (VAT) was founded to exchange documents about the 1915 events by Austrian, Turkish and Armenian historians. After receiving 100 Turkish documents, the Armenians refused to send their documents which they promised, to the Turkish historians and afterwards the Armenian foreign minister announced that they did not want to discuss the 1915 events with historians.

*Armenia refused the Turkish prime minister's and the Turkish Assembly's invitation announced on April 13, 2005 which suggested to establish a Joint Commission composed of historians from both sides and discuss the events which took place during the 1st World War.

*Turkey sent full page ads to five popular newspapers of the United States (US) calling on Armenia to ‘bring light the events of 1915 together with Turkey and to establish a joint commission composed of historians from both sides in addition to historians from other nations’, in April 2007.

*And the Turkish prime minister repeated the same invitation on February 2008 , in Munich at the 44th Security Conference where the Armenian Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr. Oskanian also attended? In neither of these invitations was there any precondition, unlike it is claimed by the Armenians.

*Why did the Armenian historian Sarafyan, who accepted the invitation of the then chief of Turkish History Foundation, Halacoglu, for cooperation to investigate Harput events, abandon the project, after talking the Armenian diaspora?

*The Ottoman and Turkish archives are open, unlike it is claimed by the diaspora.
www.ankara.edu.tr/english/yazi.php?yad=36. www.tsk.mil.tr/ENGLISH/8_FRAGMENTS_FORM_HISTORY/8_1_Armenian_Issues/issues/Armenian_Activities_in_the_Archive_Documents/Armenian_Activities_in_the_Archive_Documents.html;
louisville.edu/a-s/history/turks/Documents2.pdf; louisville.edu/a-s/history/turks/Documents3.pdf; www.devletarsivleri.gov.tr/kitap/kitap.asp?kitap=991.
Even, Armenian historian Ara Sarafian from Gomitas Institute and Hilmar Kaiser searched the Ottoman archives
(www.sarigelinbelgeseli.com)

akasya Sat. Mar 7, 2009
2 *In spite of this, why are the Armenian archives including the one in Zoryan Armenian Institute in Boston closed? Both Turkish government and Turkish History Foundation offered the Armenians to open these archives; but the directors of the Zoryan Institute replied that they did not have enough money to open the archives. Turkish government and Turkish History Foundation promised financial support.Why did the Armenians refuse this suggestion too? (Nüzhet Kandemir, www.ntvmsnbc.com/news/418517.asp).

Note that Zoryan Institute has quite enough money to provide financial support for Taner Akçam who advocated the Armenian claims while working in Minnesota University until recently.

Why are the Armenians terribly afraid of establishment of historical joint commissions (See the news entitled ‘RA foreign minister didn’t say Armenia agrees to form commission of historians’ on November 26, 2008 in Panarmenian and ‘Dashnaks warn Sarkisian over Armenian genocide study’ on July 9, 2008 in Armenia Liberty; www.hairenik.com/armenianweekly/august_2004/history001.html

Is it not striking that Sarafian, the head of the London-based Gomidas Institute, said Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s offer to Armenia to establish a commission of historians to resolve the Armenian issue was positive, but Armenia was the wrong address. He also said that freedom of expression for historians in Armenia is limited and the genocide issue has become a political tool. www.hurriyet.com.tr/english/domestic/10426989.asp?scr=11

If a genocide had really occured, why did Brian Ardouny of the Armenian Assembly of America announce ‘We don’t need to prove the genocide historically, because it has already been accepted politically’? Why did the chief of the Armenian Archives in Armenia tell that they were not interested in the archives, but all they are interested was the world’s public opinion.

In your life, have you ever seen a criminal who persistently calls the victim to bring his evidences? And, have you ever seen a victim who passionately accuses somebody of committing crime and giving him great harm but strictly avoids of bringing his proofs before the referees or going to court, and tells that he need not prove that person’s guilt, because the community has already accepted him as guilty? In this situation would you not ask if you are living in 5000 BC?

What else should the Turks do to face with their history? Is it Turkey/Turks or Armenia and those who support them who are terribly afraid of facing with their history?

akasya Sat. Mar 7, 2009
1. The Armenians try to consider the death of Armenians in WWI, as an equivalent of Jewish Holocaust. There is not any similarity:

Unlike the Jewish Holocaust, which was proven before the Nuremburg Tribunal with the trappings of due process, there has been no kind of court decision about what the Armenians call a ‘genocide’ nor has the Armenians ever applied to any court. Moreover, International Court of Justice or domestic courts are the only authorities reserved to prosecute and proclaim genocide according to the 1948 UN Convention. Therefore, the Armenian allegation of genocide lacks evidence and legal support.

I call the readers of the forum to ask themselves these questions: Did the Jews urge the parliaments to pass resolutions to recognize that the events which took place in WWII were genocide? Did they bargain with the politicians of the country they live, to write their history and pass resolutions as they wished it to have been in exchange of Jewish votes?

Did the Jews close their archives and prevent the historians from making research?

Did the Jews threaten the historians, sue them or bomb their houses to prevent them talking all the details about their history, like the Armenians did?
(www.sarigelinbelgeseli.com;
209.232.239.37/gtd1/ViewIncident.aspx?id=56624 turkishweekly.net/comments.php/id2418/top/comments.php?id=594,
www.tallarmeniantale.com/69histors-charny.htm,
www.tallarmeniantale.com/intimidate.htm)

Did the Jews get frightened to discuss these events with all the historians of the world like the Armenians have been doing? (See the news entitled ‘RA foreign minister didn’t say Armenia agrees to form commission of historians’ on November 26, 2008 in Panarmenian and the news entitled ‘Dashnaks warn Sarkisian over Armenian genocide study’ on July 9, 2008 in Armenia Liberty; and also see www.hairenik.com/armenianweekly/august_2004/history001.html) Did the Jews establish outlawed terrorist organizations like ASALA, JCAG (Justice Commandos for Armenian Genocide) and ARA (Armenian Revolutionary Army) and did they perform dozens of murders and hundreds of terrorist activities, to introduce their thesis to the public, like the Armenians did?

www.ataa.org/reference/topalian/VIS6_Berkoz_Affidavit.pdf; Michael M. Gunter, 'Pursuing the Just Cause of Their People': A Study of Contemporary Armenian Terrorism, Wesport-New York, Greenwood Press, 1986, p. 74; Gunter Lewy, 'Pursuing the Just Cause of Their People:' A Study of Contemporary Armenian Terrorism, pp. 99-100).

akasya Sat. Mar 7, 2009
2 Also, it is of note that the Armenians presented many other forgeries and lies
www.ataa.org/reference/forgeries-delen.html,
www.ataa.org/reference/andonian-ataov.html)
Did the Jews attempt to make forgeries in documents? No. They attempted to make none of them except applying to the International Courts.

You, the Armenıans claım that Internatıonal Scholars of Genocıde approve your thesıs. Then, why dıd you not feel your evıdences powerful enough and why dıd you use fake photoes, fake documents and lıes? Why are you afraıd of sımply applyıng to the Internatıonal court of justıce, ınstead of spendıng huge amounts of money to make the propaganda of your thesıs?

jda Sat. Mar 7, 2009
The issue is the unique contribution of the Morgenthau family, and the Turkish American establishment's ongoing villification of Ambassador Morgenthau, claiming as Kirlikovali did, above, that he was a bigot, and an incompetent, with even a whisper of a sexual issue to boot ["his male Armenian secretaies and interpreter"]. Any voice, Turkish, Armenian. Greek, Assyrian, Kurdish or Arab, not to mention American, European, or other is immediately villified.

Odd that Akasya supports the idea of a Commission, as if this would be a neutral fact-finder. For it to work, scholars must be free. In Turkey they are either state servants or live in fear. We know that a Turkish citizen who says there was a genocide [or even mass deaths]is killled by the deep state [Hrant Dink], prosecuted by the state [Pamuk, Safak], defamed and physically threatened [Akcam] and abused daily in the press as a "traitor" [all of the above, plus Baskin Oran, Zaragolu, Gocek]. American scholars once supported by the Institute for Turkish Studies [a Turkish government operation]who conclude that there was a Genocide are immediately told by the Turkish state to recant or lose their funding [Donald Quataert]. Former Turkish diplomats who merely say a word of kindness to Armenians are accused of corruption [Vural].

We also know that the Turkish state daily seeks to manipulate scholars and scholarship [read Donald Quataert's 2007 review of Donald Bloxham's book on the Genocide], not to mention Lewy's description of the Turkish state's efforts to suppress and destroy free inquiry][see also Heath Lowry's infamous letter to the Turkish Ambassador advising him how to respond to Norman Jay Lifton and Vahakn Dadrian]. Today, the same efforts to shape, pervert and censor scholarship are alive and well, as at the University of Utah. In such an environment, a 'Commission" is merely a propaganda opportunity to credit denial of the Genocide with credibility.

The atmosphere of anti-semitism and anti-Armenianism in Turkey is worse than it has been in decades, since the pogroms and state-sponsored murders of Christians and Jews of 1955. Minorities live in fear. Racism is so pervasive and casual that a member of Parliament, Canan Aritman, accused the President of Turkey of having an Armenian mother recently, as if it is an insult, which of course it is. In Turkey today, calling someone Armenian is a casual insult.

Emanuel Tanay Sat. Mar 7, 2009
Darfur and our future. Emanuel Tanay M.D. Human resourcefulness enabled our species to become the masters of the planet. It also gave us the power to commit global suicide. The American moon landing evoked a collective response in people throughout the world. It was “a giant step forward for mankind.” Every genocide is a giant step backward, an event of global psychosocial dimensions. Groups, societies, and the whole humanity are engaged in a race between capacity to destroy and capacity to control aggression. When remote tribes practiced cannibalism, the civilized world was aghast but not in danger. When the so-called “rogue” States acquire atomic weapons the whole globe is at risk. In the psychosocial evolution of Homo Sapiens, cannibalism and incest became taboo and are nearly extinct. Genocide to promote ideology or religion has to join these sacrosanct prohibitions. We are too powerful to pursue armed conflicts that can lead to humanicide. Ideology, technology and bureaucracy are the backbone of our civilization. The Holocaust was made possible by the collaboration of ideology, death-technology and bureaucracy .
http://forward.com/articles/103596/


Celebrating International Women’s Day By Hillary Clinton*
On a trip to China 11 years ago, I met with women activists who told me about their efforts to advance conditions for women in their country. They offered a vivid portrait of the challenges women faced: employment discrimination, inadequate health care, domestic violence, antiquated laws that hindered women’s progress.

I met some of those women again a few weeks ago, during my first trip to Asia as secretary of state. This time, I heard about the progress that has been made in the past decade. But even with some important steps forward, these Chinese women left no doubt that obstacles and inequities still remain, much as they do in many parts of the world.

I’ve heard stories like theirs on every continent, as women seek opportunities to participate fully in the political, economic and cultural lives of their countries. And on March 8, as we celebrate International Women’s Day, we have a chance to take stock of both the progress we’ve made and the challenges that remain -- and to think about the vital role that women must play in helping to solve the complex global challenges of the 21st century.

The problems we face today are too big and too complex to be solved without the full participation of women. Strengthening women’s rights is not only a continuing moral obligation -- it is also a necessity as we face a global economic crisis, the spread of terrorism and nuclear weapons, regional conflicts that threaten families and communities, and climate change and the dangers it presents to the world’s health and security.

These challenges demand everything we’ve got. We will not solve them through half measures. And yet too often, on these issues and many more, half the world is left behind.

Today, more women are leading governments, businesses and nongovernmental organizations than in previous generations. But that good news has a flip side. Women still comprise the majority of the world’s poor, unfed and unschooled. They are still subjected to rape as a tactic of war and exploited by traffickers globally in a billion dollar criminal business.

Honor killings, maiming, female genital mutilation and other violent and degrading practices that target women are still tolerated in too many places today. Just a few months ago, a young girl in Afghanistan was on her way to school when a group of men threw acid in her face, permanently damaging her eyes, because they objected to her seeking an education. Their attempt to terrorize the girl and her family failed. She said, “My parents told me to keep coming to school even if I am killed.”

That young girl’s courage and resolve should serve as an inspiration to all of us -- women and men -- to continue to work as hard as we can to ensure that girls and women are accorded the rights and opportunities they deserve.

Especially in the midst of this financial crisis, we must remember what a growing body of research tells us: Supporting women is a high-yield investment, resulting in stronger economies, more vibrant civil societies, healthier communities and greater peace and stability. And investing in women is a way to support future generations; women spend much more of their incomes on food, medicine and schooling for children.

Even in developed nations, the full economic power of women is far from being realized. Women in many countries continue to earn much less than men for doing the same jobs -- a gap that President Barack Obama took a step toward closing in the United States this year, when he signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which strengthens women’s ability to challenge unequal pay.

Women need to be given the chance to work for fair wages, access credit and launch businesses. They deserve equity in the political sphere, with equal access at the voting booth and the freedom to petition their government and run for office. They have a right to health care for themselves and their families, and a right to send their children to school -- their sons and their daughters. And they have a vital role to play in establishing peace and stability worldwide. In regions torn apart by war, it is often the women who find a way to reach across differences and discover common ground.

As I travel around the world in my new role, I will keep in mind the women I’ve already met on every continent -- women who have struggled against extraordinary odds to change laws so they can own property, have rights in marriage, go to school, support their families and even serve as peacekeepers.

And I will be a vocal advocate -- working with my counterparts in other nations, as well as nongovernmental organizations, businesses and individuals -- to keep pressing forward on these issues. Realizing the full potential and promise of women and girls is not only a matter of justice. It is a matter of enhancing global peace, progress and prosperity for generations to come.

*Hillary Clinton is the US secretary of state.
08 March 2009, www.todayszaman.com


Clinton To Appear In A Women's Talk Show On Turkish Tv As A Way Of Combating Anti-AmericanismJamestown Foundation March 5 2009
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will visit Ankara on March 7, the last day of her diplomatic tour of the Middle East. Ankara has prepared a number of issues to discuss during the visit--most importantly, Afghanistan, the American withdrawal from Iraq and the role that Turkey will play in the pullout, Iraqi security and terrorism, the Armenian issue, Iran's nuclear program, and Turkey's possible contribution to the Middle East peace process.

Ankara supports the U.S. withdrawal plan, and parliament is ready to pass a law to allow foreign troops to use Turkish territory while withdrawing from Iraq. At the same time, however, Ankara does not want to see a security vacuum in Iraq that may end up in a civil war among the Iraqi ethnic and sectarian groups. Ankara's first priority in a withdrawal plan is to know how and when it will be implemented. Ankara expects that the United States may want to redeploy its troops to Afghanistan through Turkish territory. The ports of Mersin and Iskenderun and Incirlik air base will be used for the withdrawal, and it is likely that Washington will ask for the use of Diyarbakir and Malatya air bases as well (Radikal, February 24). "For Ankara, the most critical issue is how to maintain the security of U.S. weapons and prevent them from ending up in the hands of the wrong people, especially the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militants and the Kurdish Peshmerga (Aksam, March 5).

The second topic that Ankara wants to discuss with Clinton is Afghanistan itself. There are two main topics on this subject. First, Ankara would like to see the United States develop a better strategy to address the problems there. Second, it is likely that Turkey may be asked to contribute additional troops to fight terrorism in Afghanistan. Ankara is very well aware of the growing Taliban influence. Ankara will probably press Clinton to revise U.S. policies to include the Taliban in the political process. Foreign Minster Ali Babacan stated that "In order to solve the problems in Afghanistan, we need to find a way to let all groups [including the Taliban] participate" (Hurriyet, March 5). The Karzai government in Kabul also supports this view, but it remains to be seen how the Obama administration will approach the problem. Babacan has not closed the door to the possibility of sending additional troops to Afghanistan but would consider it, if the United States made the request (Hurriyet, March 5).

In addition to these major issues, the Turkish side may remind Clinton that any attempt to recognize the 1915 events as "genocide" would harm both U.S. and Turkish interests. Ankara does not want Obama to use the term "genocide" in his speech on Armenian Memorial Day, April 24.

The United States has its own list of priorities to discuss: the withdrawal from Iraq and Turkey's role in the U.S. plan, how to stop Iran's nuclear ambitions, how to obtain increased support for Afghanistan, and what can be done to curb anti-American sentiment among the Turks.

Hillary Clinton will appear on a women's TV show, titled "Haydi Gel, Bizimle Ol" (Come and Join Us), the Turkish version of the U.S. TV show "The View," in which four women--a former anchorwoman, a movie actress, a model, and a novelist--discuss various issues (IHA, March 4). It was reported that "the request for Clinton's appearance on the show came from U.S. Embassy officials in Ankara" (Today's Zaman, March 5). It seems that Clinton's TV appearance on a women's program is designed to reduce anti-Americanism in Turkey. The educated, upper class part of Turkish society especially has been critical of the U.S., circulating anti-American views particularly on these types of television programs. Clinton's popularity and the new American policies in the region could help improve the United States' image among the mostly educated women who watch the program.

Overall, Clinton's visit to Turkey should help create a fresh start in Turkish-U.S. relations, which could produce fruitful results in the region, if the United States abandons the unpopular policies of the Bush administration. This seems likely to happen, given Clinton's appearance on the TV show. Bill Clinton earned the sympathy of most Turks when he took a baby in his arms and played with it during his visit to earthquake sites. Hillary Clinton could have a similar affect on the Turkish public and help reduce anti-American sentiment if she performs well on Turkish television.


Obama's Trip Next Month To Include Stop In Turkey By Margaret Talev | McClatchy Newspapers
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama is expected to cap off a series of meetings in Europe next month with a stop in Turkey, a majority Sunni Muslim nation that straddles Europe and Asia and has a democratic government, diplomatic relations with Israel and ambitions to join the European Union.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was to announce Obama's plans on Saturday during her own visit to the country, said a senior administration official who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the plans hadn't been made public. The official didn't say what city or cities Obama would visit, with whom he'd meet or whether he'd speak publicly, saying the final agenda hadn't been set.

Obama is expected sometime this year and perhaps during his first 100 days as president to deliver a speech in a major Muslim city in an effort to recast U.S. relations with the Islamic world. It wasn't clear, however, whether the Turkey visit had any connection with those plans.

Obama's likely arrival in Turkey appears to coincide with the Second Forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, which is to be held on April 6 and 7 in Istanbul.

The forum "seeks to address some of the ongoing tensions and divides across cultures and religions" and examine governance and diversity in the context of globalization, according to the forum's Web site. Last year's forum drew participants from around the world, including the West, but also Egypt, Iran, Indonesia and other Middle Eastern or Muslim countries.

The White House announced earlier this week that Obama would travel from March 31 to April 5 to the United Kingdom, France, Germany and the Czech Republic for a series of meetings of the Group of 20 economic powers, NATO and the EU.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and other officials have publicly and privately urged Obama to pick Turkey for the site of his much-anticipated Muslim speech, but have urged him to visit in any case.

A spat between Erdogan and Israeli president Shimon Peres in January at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, illustrated the complexity of Turkey's relationships with the West.

Erdogan, a critic of Israel's military offensive into Palestinian-controlled Gaza, said that Peres had a guilty conscience and that "you know well how to kill," and walked out angrily after his time expired. The two leaders made up soon after, but Erdogan's angry response won approval from many in Turkey, where political tensions between Islamic and secular forces are ongoing.

Turkey, a NATO member, has diplomatic relations with Israel, but also with Hamas, the militant Islamic group that controls Gaza, and which the U.S. considers a terrorist organization.

Turkey also has relations with Iran and territorial concerns involving the Kurds, an ethnic group that's warily supported the U.S.-backed Iraqi government but claims a homeland that includes Iraqi, Turkish, Iranian and Syrian territory. Although the Turks declined to allow the U.S. 4th Infantry Division to invade Iraq through their territory in 2003, the U.S. has looked to Turkey for help in Afghanistan.


How To Lose Friends And Alienate People By David Chibo, 6 March 2009
The tragic events of 9-11, some analysts say, have been a trigger that allowed the neo-conservatives within the US government to overtly establish US military bases in the heart of the world’s strategic energy producing region; the Middle East.

While this invasion and occupation were taking place the cultural battle waged using the world’s media against the Middle Easterners and Islam has been unparalleled. This battle - long supported by the Australian media in particular - seeks to denigrate all Middle Easterners and Muslims in order to silence any local opposition and legitimise the colonial conquest of their homeland.

This cultural battle is fought within a pre-defined framework that was described by Edward Said’s theory of Orientalism. At its essence, Orientalism purposely diminishes Middle Eastern cultural heritage and customs by polarising the world between the progressive, democratic, enlightened “West”, and its “Other”, the regressive, autocratic, undeveloped “East”.

Within this framework, overt racism - as seen at the Cronulla riots - has flourished. Professor Noam Chomsky aptly describes how such racism has “long been extreme, the last ‘legitimate’ form of racism in that one doesn’t even have to pretend to conceal it”.

Australian Middle Easterners have long been aware of this biased framework, expressing their exasperation at what they consider to be one-sided media coverage of news events. The main Australian media outlet is none other than Rupert Murdoch’s News Limited, one of the main corporate interests in the former Australia United States FTA Business Group (AUSTA) that actively lobbied for the Australia-United States FTA, signed on May 18, 2004. One of the few dissenting members of the US Congress who opposed the agreement was Marcy Kaptur, from Ohio, who appropriately asked, “[W]ould we have this agreement before us if Australia did not have troops in Iraq?”

The Australian Middle Eastern and Islamic community has never been able to aptly express or manifest this alleged bias, leaving the majority of readers outside their community to rely on the supposedly non-biased Australian media.

The only way to clearly show just how the Orientalism framework functions is to compare two very similar Australian newspaper articles reporting on the two very dissimilar Australian groups. The first article was published in The Australian on October 26, 2006 and is titled “Muslim leader blames women for sex attacks”. The second article was published in the Brisbane Times on February 10, 2009 and is titled “Abortion to blame for fires: Pastor”.

At their core both articles discuss the opinions of two religious figures, Sheik Taj Din al-Hilali and Pastor Danny Nalliah, and their opinions of women. While a quick skim through both articles gives an impression of impartiality and balance in reporting a detailed examination of the articles reveals some startling statistics.

A keyword count of the first article reveals that the word Muslim appears 12 times - including the title - and the word Islam/Islamic appears three times. This is in stark contrast to the second article, where the word Christian/Christianity does not appear at all.

The clear association of one religious figure with an entire religion and the obscuring of the other religious figure’s association with any established religion comfortably fits into the Oriental framework in which all 1 billion Muslims worldwide are responsible for the opinion of one Mufti, whereas the opinion of a Christian Pastor is implied and never explicitly stated, dissociating him from millions of Christians worldwide.

Further analysis shows that in order to further alienate, and reinforce the Western concept of The Other, the author of the first article deliberately leaves foreign words - mercy (rahma), adultery (zina) and enticement (igraa) - in the article, even though they have already been translated, emphasising the cultural and linguistic divide. The second article on the other hand has no foreign words in it at all portraying the Western world’s cultural affinity with the Pastor and his religion.

Staying within the Orientalism framework, the Muslim Mufti and all Muslims are portrayed as being naturally sexist in following an ancient religion that restricts women and their rights. Follow-up media articles, interviews and chat rooms asked Muslims worldwide to apologise for the opinion of their Mufti, whereas Australian Christians have never been asked to apologise for the opinion of their Pastor. Furthermore the Christian Pastor is portrayed as being pro-life. Not one word of the article mentions the Pastor’s desire to revert the hard fought-for reproductive rights of all Victorian women by abolishing abortion.

Glossing over the article, as most readers would do when casually reading the newspaper, one does not immediately pay attention to the clear and present partiality displayed in such articles, but when analysed side-by-side with similar articles it becomes apparent just how one-sided the reporting is when it comes to portraying Middle Easterners and Islam in Australia.

David Chibo is an Australian-Iraqi from the Assyrian-Christian community and an independent writer,
© The National Forum and contributors 1999-2009 , ON LINE Opinion - Australia's E-Journal Of Social And Political Debate




Washington Ethics Group Targets Armenian Grassroots Organization By Khatchig Mouradian, The Armenian Weekly
&
Comments by S.S. Aya

Timing provides indication of less than ethical motives

WASHINGTON—On Feb. 18, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) circulated a letter addressed to Attorney General Eric Holder Jr., Commissioner of Internal Revenue Douglas Shulman, Secretary of the Senate Nancy Erickson, and Clerk of the House of Representatives Lorraine C. Miller, urging them to investigate the Armenian National Committee of America’s (ANCA) lobbying and fundraising activities.

The seven-page letter, signed by CREW executive director Melanie Sloan, asked the Department of Justice, the Internal Revenue Service, the Secretary of the Senate, and the Clerk of the House “to open investigations into possible wrongdoing by the ANCA and its related entities and seek all appropriate remedies.”

“We’re not saying they should be out of business,” noted Sloan. “We’re saying there are laws and they should be following them.” But according to many commentators, a closer look at CREW and its letter suggest that something far less innocent may be in the works.

After all, CREW’s previous targets were—almost exclusively—elected or appointed public officials, or matters of legislation. Its actions to date are very telling: It has filed 5 amicus briefs, 27 FEC complaints, 70 FOIA requests, 50 House ethics investigations, 21 Senate ethics investigations, 13 IRS complaints, 39 lawsuits, and 54 requests for investigation with DOJ, IRS, etc. In all these actions, the ANCA, as a target, stands out as the sole community-based organization.

I asked ANCA spokesperson Elizabeth Chouldjian about the allegations. “The letter that CREW—a privately funded Washington, D.C.-based interest group—recently circulated contains numerous inaccuracies, misstatements, and misrepresentations, all of which the ANCA believes are motivated by improper and illegitimate political purposes designed to harass the ANCA and distract lawmakers at a time when the White House and Congress consider recognition of the Armenian Genocide.”

Is the “never discussed, scholarly or legally proven ARMENIAN GENOCIDE LIE” a vital turning point in the history and priorities of the WHITE HOUSE and the CONGRESS? If so, have you reminded them about a joint resolution No. 192, dated 22.04.1922 (omitted in the suggested text) which totally contradicts your “Genocide Fanfare,” writing that 1.414.000 Armenians were alive at that date! If your GENOCIDE balloon is for true, then you should ask the US Senate-Congress to rectify the 1922 text!

“The ANCA vigorously denies the accusations that have been leveled against it and will respond promptly to set the record straight with the appropriate authorities,” she added.

Since the release of the report, Armenian American commentators have echoed Chouldjian’s concerns about the motives of CREW and the timing of the report.

I asked Harut Sassounian, publisher of the California Courier, about the letter. “CREW’s complaint is not an innocent action to protect the public good,” he said. “CREW has admitted that the complaint was instigated by an anonymous tip, most probably emanating from an agent for the Turkish government, on the eve of planned commemorative activities for the Armenian Genocide.”

I cordially invite ANCA, CREW and readers to first view below articles which should be more than enough to prove the “innocence” of ANCA, before they “slander emanation from an agent!”:

  1. Resolution
  2. Never Tired
  3. ANCA Works Hard
  4. St Nicholas
  5. Armenian Media Scanner
  6. It's Not Over Yet
  7. Just Want Recognition !
  8. Genocide Believers
  9. Media Scanner July 2008 (line 29 & 34)
  10. Congressman Howard
  11. Enemy Sleeps Water Never Does
  12. ANCA Coalition
  13. Media Scanner April 2007


“The complaint, despite elaborate research and information provided by sinister sources, is replete with falsehoods, half truths, and ignorant comments about Armenian community organizations,” he added. “CREW may be criminally negligent when it goes beyond the bounds of a complaint and alleges that the ‘ANCA failed to comply’ with this or that law.”

According to Sassounian, “CREW is wrongly assuming the roles of judge and jury. The ANCA should file a lawsuit for libel against CREW!”

From Los Angeles to Boston, ordinary Armenian Americans I spoke to last week also considered this an irresponsible and unethical attempt to hinder genocide recognition and undermine a grassroots organization that has become the voice of the Armenian community.

Reader’s comment: Would you please post this reply as well, or openly write which reference is untrue!

U.S. Prefers to Leave Iraq Through Jordan & Kuwait, Rather than Turkey by Harut Sassounian, Publisher, The California Courier
&
Reader’s Reply Comments By Sukru S. Aya – Istanbul, March 9, 09

Ever since Pres. Obama declared that he would end America’s military presence in Iraq, Turkish officials have been salivating at the opportunity of presenting the United States with a series of demands in return for allowing U.S. troops to leave through Turkey.

- . . salivating? What level of literary newsman ship is this, insulting from the first line!

As a NATO ally and staunch opponent of the war in Iraq, one would have expected that the Turkish government would extend all necessary logistical assistance to the United States to withdraw its troops from the region in a safe, orderly and expeditious manner. Instead, Turkey’s leaders are viewing the U.S. departure as a golden opportunity to exploit to the hilt for their own benefit.

- Benefit of gold (!) over one million dead innocent Arabs plus PKK terror just next door, by aggressors who came 10.000 miles away for looting oil of the neighboring country, bringing calamities of all types instead of democracy and progress! Sir, is your logic normal?

Even before anyone from the U.S. government mentioned about the possibility of American troops leaving Iraq through Turkey, Ankara officials volunteered to support such an idea, of course, subject to negotiations and eventual approval by the Turkish Parliament. In other words, if the price was right, and if all Turkish demands were met, Turkey would be more than happy to give its blessing.

- That was a dirty agreement between two adventurous leaders, which was “shot dead by accident” thanks God!

Turkish leaders are also pleased that Pres. Obama is going to increase the number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan, in addition to seeking soldiers from other countries. This is yet another opportunity for Turks to fleece the U.S. Today’s Zaman newspaper quoted unnamed Ankara officials as stating that Turkey is opposed to sending troops to Afghanistan, beyond its 800 non-combat soldiers already there. However, since the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide is approaching and both Pres. Obama and the Congress are expected to take a stand on this issue, Turkey may change its mind and decide to contribute troops to Afghanistan, after all!

- “fleece USA (?) ! Is Armenia going to send troops to Afganistan or give bases to USA as she did to Russia?

This is the same kind of horse-trading that went on in 2003, when Washington asked for permission to enter Northern Iraq through Turkey. After lengthy bargaining on how many billions of dollars the U.S. would offer Ankara to allow such passage, the Turkish Parliament voted down the American request. This rejection delayed the start of the war, forcing U.S. troops to travel from the Mediterranean to Iraq through the Persian Gulf, and resulted in more casualties among American troops who had to fight their way from Southern Iraq to the North.

- Sir, a man of your standing and education should not be swept out of logic just by cause of nationalism! Would USA permit Turkey to “station 65.000 soldiers in Texas, use Houston, New Orleans as landing-transit harbor and go to war with Mexico using USA soil, passing an army and armor of about 100.000 and destroy neighborly relations?” Any answers?

One wonders what demands the Turks would make this time around to allow U.S. troops to leave Iraq through Turkey and to send more Turkish soldiers to Afghanistan. How many billions of dollars would Turkish leaders ask for and which U.S. policies, in addition to genocide recognition, they would seek to influence?

- The “genocide lie, is a dirty fly in the menu on the table, which has to be served and shared”! Did it ever occur to you how much economic loss and military cost did Turkey suffer because of this unfortunate “oil banditry”?

One would hope that Pres. Obama draws valuable lessons from the experience of previous administrations -- that Turkey is not a reliable ally -- a lesson also learned by Israel during the recent Gaza conflict.

It appears that some U.S. military officials have already concluded that they cannot place the fate of American soldiers in the hands of capricious Turkish leaders. U.S. troops are expected to be evacuated from Iraq through neighboring Jordan and Kuwait, which have never put any conditions nor made any demands on the U.S. government! Given the attractiveness of the withdrawal route through these two friendly Arab countries, the American military may completely ignore the Turkish transit option. The traditional Turkish practice of making excessive demands may have finally backfired.

- Sir, you are trying to guide USA, the country that sheltered you, into adventures and risks, just because of your “Great Armenian ego”! This error was done by your grand fathers a century ago, and it was the innocent
well-doing Turkish Armenians that paid the bill, when all humpabets ran away leaving their compatriots in misery!


The Associated Press (AP) released a report last week, disclosing that U.S. troops will "shift" to the South (Kuwaiti border) and "exit" through the desert, meaning Jordan. The AP quoted Terry Moores, deputy assistant chief of staff for logistics for Marine Corps Central Command, as stating: "The Marines have already tested exit routes through Jordan with plans for a full-scale exodus" in 2010.

One would hope that at long last, U.S. appeasement of Turkey might be coming to an end. The mistake made by previous U.S. administrations as well as Israeli governments is that the more they cave in to Turkish blackmail, the more demanding the Turks become.

- “Turkish blackmail ? Or Turkish surrender and tail waging? The diaspora Armenians have not done any good for the Armenians in Armenia, or Turkey or elsewhere. Empty words of rich, secure persons, do not solve hunger!

Due to Turkey’s persistent use of bullying tactics in the past, U.S. commanders have good reason to be concerned with choosing the Turkish option out of Iraq. What would happen, if in the midst of the troop pullout, Turkish leaders object to a particular U.S. policy? What if the Turks threaten to block the transit of U.S. troops unless the State Department revises its latest human rights report which accuses Turkey of torture, unlawful killings, limited freedom of expression, and restrictions on minorities?

The wisest approach is to eliminate all such demands and threats once and for all, by telling Turkey that unless it cooperates fully with the U.S., it will receive no further economic or military aid. After all, Turkey needs the United States much more than the U.S. needs Turkey. The tail should not be allowed to wag the dog!

Human Rights? Of Turkey or Iraq or USA or Armenia?
Sir, keep the scenarios and observations for your own self. Turks are not dogs and have no tails to wag, like few typical brainwashed fanatic writers, continuously fomenting nothing but GRUDGE and TROUBLE, which is the only product they are talented to market worldwide! For more historical facts advise Altan and read as suggested.



Turkey Gets Taste of its Poisonous Anti-Armenian Policies By Appo Jabarian Executive Publisher / Managing Editor, USA Armenian Life Magazine
March 6, 2009
&
Reader’s Reply Comments Sukru S. Aya March 9, 09

The London Times published on Feb. 28 a news report covering an unprecedented legal and political development in Turkey. Serdar Kaya, a Turkish father, a doctor by profession, is suing the Turkish Education Ministry for forcing his 11-year-old daughter to watch a "racist" and "disturbing" film denying that Ottoman Turks committed genocide against Armenians in 1915 with graphic allegations of Armenian "atrocities against Turks."

- What kind of explanation or Armenian reaction can you show for the Armenian schools boys girls in the same age dressed in soldier uniforms being taught how to kill Turks?
Can you give me a reciprocal objection from any Armenian? Can you ?


"My daughter was very disturbed and frightened by the documentary and kept asking me if the Armenians had cut us up," said Dr. Kaya who is suing the ministry and the child's school for "inciting racial hatred."

"There are many mass graves, bones and skulls in the DVD. They have interviewed old granddads who inspire confidence and compassion. When they say things like 'They cut off his head' and 'they used it instead of firewood', that is bound to stay with the children," Serdar Degirmencioglu, a psychologist, told the Armenian newspaper Agos when news first broke that the documentary was being shown to primary school children - including ethnic Armenians in Turkey.

"You go and kill more than a million Armenians, wipe the traces of Armenians from Anatolia, grab their property, and then show children videos about 'What the Armenians did to us' ... We are cutting these children off from the rest of the world," said Ahmet Altan, editor of the independent newspaper Taraf. Altan is one of Turkey’s brightest writers. He has published several novels and essays which brought him fame and independence.

- Rather than depending on what Messrs. Altan “blow” without reading even Armenian historians, why don’t you elaborate on what your own Armenian historians have written in black and white, on your revolutionary, treason, killings and similar barbarities? Before you address the public, read Akaby Nassibian, A.A. Lalaian, Garekin Pastermadjian, Hovannes Katchaznuni, your memorandum to Paris Conference in 1919, bylaws of ARF etc?

You can reach my book plus many genuine documents HERE! Or were the old heroes or Armenian book writers also “denialist” or “paid agents” because what they wrote contradicts your claims?


Back in 2001, speaking of Turkey’s shaky foundation as a state, Altan said to The Middle East magazine that "’three corporations are betraying their vocation: the journalists, the historians and the men of law’. If they did not behave the way they did, Turkey would be in a different situation. Why the historians? ‘The State is founded on an initial lie: We are told lies on the foundation of the Republic, on Mustafa Kemal, on the Turks, the Kurds, the Armenians. It is forbidden in Turkey to debate on these matters.’ And what about the journalists? ‘They lied too much, and they continue,’ answered Altan. ‘I have been in this job for 27 years, I started from the bottom and climbed to the top. I can say that the Turkish press is coward: it comes out to hide the truth.’ And what about the men of law? ‘The judges and the lawyers should have rebelled and told the people the truth: the Turkish law is full of articles which go against the international law. The Turkish law considers the man as an enemy’ concluded Altan."

- Mr. Altan is a shallow writer or big mouth, abusing the liberty he has been given by attacking his countrymen and, propagating slanders or lies or words that he has “never proved to be scholarly valid and true”.

The Education Ministry alleges that it has stopped the distribution of the documentary, Sari Gelin (Blonde Bride), named after an Armenian folk song. But it has apparently not recalled it and critics say that it remains part of the curriculum.

This is the same DVD that caused Turkey an embarrassing international defeat and fiasco back in June 2005. An initial insertion of 500,000 of the same Turkish DVD’s in TIME Europe was financed by Ankara Chamber of Commerce. Later, the TIME editors acknowledged that they were duped into thinking that the Turkish DVD was intended to promote tourism in Turkey. But it turned out to be a propaganda ploy to deny the facts of the Armenian Genocide. In February 2007 TIME was compelled to spend the monies received from Turkey to correct its mistakes. TIME Europe apologized to Armenians and paid to duplicate and insert 550,000 DVD’s of "The Armenian Genocide" documentary produced by a French company. TIME affixed these DVD’s on a full-page announcement, all, courtesy of TIME Magazine.

- And what reciprocal action has ANCA or Diaspora or Armenia has ever exhibited, other than making too many films continuously, based on mythological allegations or grand-ma stories?

Do you remember then Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul being shocked to see the TIME DVD on his flight? In March 2007 Harut Sassounian, The Publisher of The California Courier, wrote: "Several Turkish newspapers reported on Feb. 26 (2007) that Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul was shocked when he saw an Armenian Genocide DVD in a copy of the TIME magazine on his plane. Gul and members of his delegation were returning to Turkey on February 11, after spending several days in Washington, D.C., lobbying against the pending Congressional Resolution on the Armenian Genocide. On their Lufthansa Airline flight, they discovered that the TIME magazine issue handed to them included a DVD as well as a full-page announcement on the Armenian Genocide. Gul was reportedly very upset that Armenians were carrying out propaganda activities even on his plane. He said he would conduct an investigation."

And now, at last, Ankara is subjected to a far-reaching legal action by an ethnic Turkish father against his own government’s denialist propaganda at home. Turkey’s militarist policy of brainwashing its schoolchildren to the point of racist paranoia has finally backfired on the Turkish "Deep State."

- Why Ankara concerns you so much but you keep silent about the abuses and lack of freedom in Armenia?

After many decades of attempting to force a gag rule on the Armenian Genocide issue in foreign capitals, Turkey is finally getting a taste of its own poisonous anti-Armenian policies.

- Your comments are full with venom already. There was never, any legally or even logically discussed or proven genocide, other than an excuse for your inflaming the diaspora and making continuous collections by selling grudge and hatred. That product is not endorsed, asked or supported by the Turkish Armenians living equally in Turkey, or some 50.000 illegal Armenians earning their livings in Turkey or the rest of Armenians in Armenia, who get your bragging excuses, instead of jobs, self-sufficiency and peace of mind with neighbors! You have deprived Armenia from taking part in the important projects of the area… The Protestant and Catholic Armenians do not even share their church with Gregorian Armenians of Turkey.


Turkish-Armenian Issue: Not This Time By Doğan Koç*
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (above) and President Barack Obama supported a resolution last year labeling the Armenian killings in 1915 as genocide. Contrary to expectations, Pelosi did not bring the resolution to a full vote in the House.

With the month of April approaching, Armenian pressure on the US Congress is increasing. Last year, the Armenian lobby was able to pass a resolution (from the House Committee on Foreign Affairs) labeling the Armenian deaths in 1915 as genocide. However, contrary to her previous statements House Speaker Nancy Pelosi did not bring the resolution to a full vote in the House.

Mostly it was interpreted as Turkey’s important role in the Middle East, especially in the Iraq war, having stopped Speaker Pelosi from bringing the resolution to the floor. In 2007, she received a joint letter signed by all of the eight living former secretaries of state, warning her that the resolution would endanger the US security interests in the region.

However, this year the Armenian lobby is more hopeful than ever of passing the resolution. There are several reasons for this hope:

a) Democrats hold the majority both in the House and the Senate, as well as the presidency.

b) The Iraq war is ending, and therefore Turkey is losing its importance.

c) The Jewish lobby is no longer supportive of Turkey.

The following section of the article analyzes these issues from both the Armenian and Turkish perspectives.

Democrats in power (Armenian): Democrats both in the House and the Senate have been supporters of the resolution. Speaker Pelosi, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama supported the resolution in the past and co-sponsored it in 2007. And now, Democrats hold the House, the Senate and the presidency; all together, it becomes more likely that the resolution will be passed.

Turkey is losing its importance (Armenian): Both in his candidacy and presidency, President Obama has stated that he would give priority to Afghanistan. Last week, he announced his withdrawal plans, ending the US combat operations in Iraq in 18 months, in 2010. Therefore, Turkey won’t be as important as it used to be.

Jewish lobby (Armenian): Tension at the Davos World Economic Forum between Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Israeli President Shimon Peres over Palestine created a negative climate between Turkey and Israel (and also the Jewish lobby in the US). After the incident, the American Jewish Congress and four other American Jewish organizations sent a letter to Prime Minister Erdoğan expressing their concerns over Turkish policies. David A. Harris, the executive director of the American Jewish Committee, criticized and warned Erdoğan.

The following week, Israeli Maj. Gen. Avi Mizrahi, commander of the Israeli army headquarters, criticized Prime Minister Erdoğan’s comments at the Davos meeting and stated that Erdoğan should “look at himself” before criticizing others -- referring to the Armenian issue. He also said that Turkey should be removed from the UN. The Turkish Foreign Ministry delivered a diplomatic note to Israel regarding Gen. Mizrahi’s comments, asking for an explanation. In addition to that, the Turkish chief of general staff warned Israel that such statements could harm their relations. Even though Gen. Mizrahi’s comment was disowned by the Israeli government and the military, it fueled existing tension between two countries.

Due to the recent tensions between Israel and Turkey, it seems the Jewish lobby will not be as supportive of Turkey as it used to be.

In light of these aforementioned issues, this year the Armenian lobby is more hopeful than ever of passing a resolution that recognizes the Armenian genocide in the US House of Representatives.

On the other hand, Turkey still has some important cards to play and the issues have other sides, too.

Democrats in power (Turkish): This is not the first time that the Democratic Party has held the power in US politics; at the beginning of the Clinton administration, Democrats had the majority both in the House and the Senate. The Armenian lobby endorsed President Bill Clinton and was hopeful that the resolution would be passed. However, it did not happen. Even the leading Armenian lobby organization in the US, the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA), accused President Clinton of betraying Armenia. In 2000, Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert stopped the resolution from reaching the floor in the House of Representatives. Hastert later explained that he was doing so at the request of President Clinton.

Speaker of the House Pelosi also co-sponsored the resolution in 2007; however, she did not bring it to the floor.

The current situation is not that much different than it was in the Clinton administration, especially during the early days. Expecting support from the Democrats is not groundless, but it may not be enough to pass the resolution.

Turkey is losing its importance (Turkish): The other claim is that the war in Iraq is ending and therefore Turkey is losing its importance to the US. Even though Turkey is an important country for the war in Iraq, its importance to the US goes well beyond the war. The Turkish and American alliance started before the Iraq war and will continue after it. As mentioned above, even during the Clinton administration (when the Iraq war did not exist), President Clinton stopped the resolution from going to the floor.

In 2003, at the beginning of the Iraq war, the Turkish Parliament did not allow US troops to use its soil to launch a second, northern front against Iraq. Still, the resolution did not pass during the Bush administration.

Turkey is also an important country with regards to Afghanistan. Last month, the Kyrgyz government closed the Pentagon’s Manas Air Base, which was a vital link in the supply chain to NATO forces in nearby Afghanistan, and now the US is looking for alternatives. Russia has better relations than the US with the Central Asian countries. But, Turkey stands as an important ally in relations to these Central Asian countries. Turkey has strong cultural and economic relations with the former Soviet Union countries, which are also called Turkic states.

Turkey has led NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) Command twice and the ISAF Regional Command in Kabul once. It has the eighth-largest reinforcement with its 1,300 troops, and it also commands 90 Azerbaijani troops. With its rising positive image, “Muslim identity,” and historical and cultural ties to region, Turkey continues to hold a major importance to the US’s interests.

Jewish lobby (Turkish): It is true that Israeli and Turkish relations have been shaken by recent incidents. However, Turkey still continues to be the only Muslim country that has a friendly relationship with the State of Israel. After the Davos incident both the Prime Minister Erdoğan and President Peres gave statements to ease the tension. The Israeli army disassociated itself from the statement of its general (for the first time in its history) in order not to damage the relations.

If the Armenian resolution passes, it is most likely that Turkey will blame the Jewish lobby and Israel more than the Armenian lobby. The Jewish lobby may claim that it is neither against nor for the resolution; the interpretation won’t be same by the Turkish public and government.

Due to the fact that Rep. Adam B. Schiff, who is the leading sponsor of the resolution, Rep. Howard Berman, chairman of the US House Committee on Foreign Affairs, and Speaker Pelosi are Jewish descendents, it will be difficult to convince Turks that the Jewish lobby and Israel stayed neutral to the resolution. If it passes, it will be perceived as a punishment for Turkey from the Jewish lobby and Israel. It will damage the already shaky relations.

Contrary to Armenian expectations, Israel and the Jewish lobby will act more carefully than ever not to further damage the relationship with Turkey.
*Doğan Koç is a Ph.D. student in political science at the University of Texas, Dallas. He teaches courses on Middle East politics and Islam and can be reached at dkocemail at gmail.com 06 March 2009,


TCA and University of Utah Establish Turkish Program
The University of Utah and the Turkish Coalition of America are pleased to announce the establishment of a major new academic program, “The Origins of Modern Ethnic Cleansing: The Collapse of the Ottoman Empire and the Emergence of Nation States in the Balkans and Caucasus.”

This novel program will advance scholarship on a critical period in a region that continues to make headlines, in part due to the turbulent forces unleashed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. According to Project Director, Professor M. Hakan Yavuz, “Our new program will explore the shaping of modern Turkish identity through scholarly work, conferences, community participation, and support for new research, much of which will focus on a series of traumatic formative events including crises in the Balkans and the Caucasus, the loss of major territories, and forced migration that presaged the establishment of the Turkish Republic.”

Lincoln McCurdy, President of the Turkish Coalition of America expects this program to be particularly vital because it will produce a new cadre of scholars who will impact the study of Turkey and the surrounding region for years. To provide insight and guidance, a Partnership Board composed of recognized experts and leaders has been formed: Dr. Sukru Elekdag, Member of the Turkish Grand National Assembly and former Ambassador to the United States, Rifat Hisarciklioglu, President of the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey, Professor Yusuf Sarinay, Director of the State Archives of Turkey, Professor Norman Stone, Historian and Professor of International Relations at Bilkent University, and Alev Alatli, journalist and writer. The project is made possible thanks to a generous multi-year gift from the Turkish Coalition of America.


Tca, University Of Utah Announce New Turkish Program
The Turkish Coalition of America (TCA) and the University of Utah have announced a new academic program, "The Origins of Modern Ethnic Cleansing: Collapse of the Ottoman Empire and the Emergence of Nation States in the Balkans and Caucasus." The program has been established with the financial support of the TCA.

In the program, scholarship will be conducted on historical fluctuations at the end of the 19th century and at the beginning of the 20th century in the region, the results of which are still felt today. The program will be directed by Hakan Yavuz, an assistant professor at the department of political science at the University of Utah.

In a statement released yesterday by the TCA, Yavuz said the period had an impact on the formation of the identity of modern Turkey and it will be explored in conferences and research. He also added that the focus will be on the significant land loss suffered as a result of the wars the Ottoman Empire waged in the Balkans and the Caucasus before the foundation of the Turkish Republic. This loss impacted all the lands of the former empire, influencing the formation of the new republic, the ethnic cleansing of Muslim populations and other traumatic incidents that were a result of forced migration.

The statement also noted that TCA President Lincoln McCurdy believes the program is important because it will train new researchers who will influence regional studies in and around Turkey.

The advisory board for the program includes Dr. Şükrü Elekdağ, former member of the Turkish Parliament; Rifat Hisarcıklıoğlu, head of the Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB); Professor Norman Stone, historian and professor of international relations at Bilkent University; and Alev Alatlı, journalist and author. 06 March 2009, TODAY'S ZAMAN ISTANBUL


Clark University's Taner Akçam To Deliver Lecture March 19 On The Armenian Genocide, Questions Of National Security
WORCESTER, Mass.-Clark University's newly appointed Kaloosdian/Mugar Professor of Armenian Genocide Studies and Modern Armenian History, Taner Akçam, will deliver "Facing History: A Threat to National Security? The Relationship Between Turkish and American National Security Concepts and the Armenian Genocide" at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 19, in Tilton Hall, 2nd floor of the Higgins University Center, 950 Main Street, Worcester.

Historian Taner Akçam (pronounced ACH-jahm) is widely recognized as one of the first Turkish scholars to write extensively and authoritatively on the Turkish genocide of the Armenians in the early 20th century, and notes that, when confronted with Turkish history, especially the Armenian Genocide, many people in Turkey grow prickly. Why are demands from inside and outside the country that Turkey come to terms with its past so vehemently rejected? Why is facing history seen as a threat to national security? Professor Akçam will explore these questions at the lecture and contextualize the Armenian Genocide issue within current debates over human rights and national security, arguing for a solution that integrates pragmatism with values.

Professor Akçam grew up in Turkey, where he was imprisoned for his participation in and fervent support for free press publications. Following a dramatic escape, he later received political asylum in Germany, where he earned a Ph.D. from the University of Hannover and worked with the Hamburg Institute for Social Research. In 2007, the Armenian Bar Association presented the Hrant Dink Freedom Award to Professor Akçam as "a champion of historical truth about the Armenian Genocide and for his courageous defense of liberty and free speech." Akçam's life and work have been featured in four critically acclaimed documentary films, and he is the author of 10 scholarly works, as well as numerous articles. His most recent book, "A Shameful Act: The Armenian Genocide and the Question of Turkish Responsibility," (Metropolitan Books), was released in 2006.

The event is free and open to the public. It will be followed by a reception. For more information, call 508-793-8897. Clark University is a private, co-educational liberal-arts research university with 2,200 undergraduate and 800 graduate students. Since its founding in 1887 as the first all-graduate school in the United States, Clark has challenged convention with innovative programs such as the International Studies Stream, the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Program, and the accelerated BA/MA programs with the fifth year tuition-free for eligible students. The University is featured in Loren Pope's book, "Colleges That Change Lives." -www.clarku.edu-


ANC Alerts Hampshire College To Its Association With Genocide Denier Decries Anti-Defamation League's Invitation To Ensure Campus Tolerance
Watertown, MA - The Armenian National Committee of Massachusetts has alerted Hampshire College President Ralph Hexter that the school's relationship with the Anti-Defamation League would associate Hampshire with genocide denial. The invitation to the ADL to visit the campus `to ensure that all students feel welcome and safe' follows reports, disputed by college officials, that Hampshire College had divested in companies that profit from Israel's occupation of Palestine.

`The Anti-Defamation League is an organization that actively engages in genocide denial, which is the highest form of hate speech and the final stage of genocide,' wrote the ANC MA. `Hampshire College's inclusion of the ADL in campus discussions on tolerance is an affront to all those fighting for genocide prevention and human rights.'

The ANC MA pointed out that as recently as last month ADL National director Abraham Foxman told The New York Times that the `ADL will continue to oppose a Congressional resolution on the Armenian Genocide because `there's too much at stake in the [Israeli-Turkish] relationship.''

`It is highly hypocritical for the ADL to present itself as an organization that secures the rights of all people while it actively perpetrates the worst form of hatred against Armenians,' the ANC MA declared. `The Anti-Defamation League is most assuredly not the group upon which Hampshire College should call to ensure an atmosphere of respect and safety for allmembers of its community.'

`Hampshire College, widely known for its progressive values and mandate, must not sanction the ADL's unethical actions by allowing it to define the terms of tolerance. By partnering with the ADL, Hampshire College will become indelibly associated with genocide denial,' the letter concluded.

Background
The Anti Defamation League (ADL) has for many years refused to acknowledge as genocide the systematic massacre of 1.5 million Armenians between 1915 and 1923 and has actively engaged in efforts to oppose Congressional affirmation of the Armenian Genocide.

Only after intense pressure that started in Watertown, Massachusetts during the summer of 2007 did the national ADL issue its `Statement on the Armenian Genocide,' which implies that the Armenian Genocide was an unintentional `consequence' of World War I conditions.

Additionally, the ADL remains on the record opposing Armenian Genocide legislation, arguing that short term geopolitical considerations related to Turkish-Israeli relations should take precedence over the moral imperative of condemning genocide whenever and wherever it occurs.

The controversy erupted on July 6, 2007, when the Watertown Tab published a letter that spotlighted ADL national director Abe Foxman's statements opposing Congressional Armenian Genocide legislation. The letter asked the local "No Place For Hate" chapter to disassociate itself from the ADL. NPFH is a national trademark of the national ADL.

The situation intensified in an explosive August 1 front page Boston Globearticle in which the Armenian National Committee condemned Foxman's genocide denial and stated that the ANC would "call for the Watertown 'No Place for Hate' program to sever its ties with the ADL unless the ADL denounces Foxman's position and acknowledges the genocide."

Watertown became the first town to end its relationship with the No Place for Hate program by a unanimous vote of the Town Council; this set the stage for numerous other public meetings in communities throughout Massachusetts, where the issue was brought to the attention of human rights commissions and town and city councils.

Twelve other Massachusetts municipalities - Belmont, Newton, Arlington, Northampton, Bedford, Lexington, Westwood, Medford, Needham, Newburyport, Somerville, and Peabody - followed Watertown's lead and withdrew from NPFH. Additionally, the Massachusetts Municipal Association ended its co-sponsorship of the program, declaring, `The Board believes that unequivocal recognition of the Armenian Genocide is both a matter of basic justice to its victims as well as essential to efforts to prevent future genocides . . . it is imperative to speak with absolute clarity on genocide.'
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Text of March 4 ANC of Massachusetts Letter to Hampshire College
March 4, 2009

Ralph Hexter, President
Hampshire College
893 West Street
Amherst MA 01002

Dear Mr. Hexter,
We are appalled to note that Hampshire College has invited officials from the Anti-Defamation League `to visit the campus, in order to work together to ensure that all students feel welcome and safe on campus,' according to the `Statement from Anti-Defamation League' posted on your website.

The Anti-Defamation League is an organization that actively engages in genocide denial, which is the highest form of hate speech and the final stage of genocide. Hampshire College's inclusion of the ADL in campus discussions on tolerance is an affront to all those fighting for genocide prevention and human rights.

The ADL does not possess the moral authority to lecture anyone on tolerance, having abandoned its mission `to secure justice and fair treatment to all' by lobbying for the Turkish government against recognition of the Armenian Genocide.

By choosing to prioritize narrow geopolitical interests - Israel's military/strategic alliance with Turkey - over universal human rights, the ADL simply has no credibility in the area of human and civil rights.

On February 5, 2009, ADL National Director Abraham Foxman told The New York Times that the ADL will continue to oppose a Congressional resolution on the Armenian Genocide because `there's too much at stake in the [Israeli-Turkish] relationship.'

And according to the February 4, 2009, issue of The Forward, `The strong Jewish opposition to Congressional recognition of the Armenian genocide has been waning, but some Jewish groups, led by the Anti-Defamation League, are actively opposing any move in Congress. `Right now we have no intention of changing our position from last year,' said Jess Hordes, who heads the ADL's Washington office.'

This ADL support for the denialist Turkish government is abhorrent, particularly for an organization that vigorously combats Holocaust denial. Israel Charny, executive director of the Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide in Jerusalem, explains the destructiveness of genocide denial: `Denials of known events of genocide must be treated as acts of bitter and malevolent psychological aggression, certainly against the victims, but really against all of human society, for such denials literally celebrate genocidal violence and in the process suggestively calls for renewed massacres - of the same people or of others. Such denials also madden, insult and humiliate the survivors, the relatives of the dead, and the entire people of the victims.'

It is highly hypocritical for the ADL to present itself as an organization that secures the rights of all people while it actively perpetrates the worst form of hatred against Armenians. The Anti-Defamation League is most assuredly not the group upon which Hampshire College should call to ensure an atmosphere of respect and safety for all members of its community.

Perhaps you are unaware that the ADL refuses to unequivocally acknowledge as genocide the massacres by the Turkish government of 1.5 million Armenians between 1915 and 1923 and that it actively engages in genocide denial by lobbying for Turkey to prevent passage of a United States Congressional resolution affirming the Armenian Genocide.

Additionally, the ADL has repeatedly endorsed Turkey's call for an investigation of the genocide, a standard tactic employed by genocide deniers to raise doubts about settled history; the International Association of Genocide Scholars (IAGS) has condemned this proposal by writing that it `would only serve the interests of Turkish genocide deniers . . . there is no more `other side' to the truth about the Armenian genocide than there is about the Holocaust.'

Due to the ADL's unethical position on the Armenian Genocide, thirteen Massachusetts communities, including Northampton, withdrew from the ADL's No Place for Hate program in 2007 and 2008.

In its September 28, 2007 letter to Abraham Foxman informing the ADL of its unanimous decision to withdraw from NPFH, the Northampton Human Rights Commission wrote, `We cannot in conscience continue a relationship with an organization that claims to stand for full accountability for genocide, yet stops short of endorsing a Congressional resolution acknowledging the Armenian Genocide. We cannot endorse selective recognition of hate by an organization that claims leadership in creating a world where there is no place for hate . . . Acknowledging the truth about the Armenian genocide not only has an impact on survivors and their families, it also has an impact on our ability to address other acts of hate.'

On April 8, 2008, the Massachusetts Municipal Association ended its sponsorship of NPFH, declaring, `The Board believes that unequivocal recognition of the Armenian Genocide is both a matter of basic justice to its victims as well as essential to efforts to prevent future genocides . .. The inconsistency between the National ADL's position on the Armenian Genocide and the human rights principles underlying NPFH is a matter of great concern to MMA Board members and the municipalities they represent ... it is imperative to speak with absolute clarity on genocide.'

Human rights advocates, both here and abroad, have condemned the ADL's position on the Armenian Genocide; the media is replete with articles denouncing its stance (please see attachments). In January, Eric Alterman wrote in The Nation: `Foxman's moral compass has gotten so twisted, he has the ADL working to undermine Congressional resolutions condemning genocide -specifically, that committed by Turks against the Armenians . . . In light of the desire of so many anti-Semites to treat the Holocaust in a similar fashion, Foxman's position strikes this Jew at least as one too many ironies to be tolerated.'

Genocide denial is not merely reprehensible, it is dangerous. According to the IAGS, `The single best predictor of future genocide is denial of a past genocide coupled with impunity for its perpetrators.'

Over twenty-five Armenian political, cultural, religious, athletic, youth, media, and social welfare organizations in Massachusetts have united to combat the ADL's denial of the Armenian Genocide. For additional information on this movement, please see noplacefordenial.com.

Hampshire College, widely known for its progressive values and mandate, must not sanction the ADL's unethical actions by allowing it to define the terms of tolerance. By partnering with the ADL, Hampshire College will become indelibly associated with genocide denial.

Sincerely,
Sharistan Melkonian
Chairperson

Enclosures
A History of Lobbying Against Recognition of the Armenian Genocide
Statements by Human Rights Organizations
Statemens by Jewish Americans
Open Letter to the Massachusetts Municipal Association
Rattling the Cage: Jews of power, Jews of Truth


Azerbaijani-Armenian Gay Romance Novel Fuels Controversy Mina Muradova, EurasiaNet, March 4 2009, NY
"Taboos will not be easily overcome" declares the sub-title of "Artush and Zaur." And in this bestseller novel about the romance between two young men -- one Armenian, one Azerbaijani -- Azerbaijan is experiencing the truth of that line.

The Armenian-Azerbaijani combination alone might raise eyebrows, but in this tradition-bound society, the homosexual orientation of the novel's two lovers is stirring additional controversy. By contrast, a heterosexual Armenian-Azerbaijani romance published in late 2008 received a largely favorable reaction.

"I think that it is a very good slap in the face for our society," commented Nigar Kocharli, owner of the Ali and Nino bookstore chain that sells the book in Baku. "In other words, publishing such a book is very painful for a society in which homosexuality and relations with Armenians are taboos."

None of Azerbaijan's large publishing houses would print the novel. Some said the book was disgraceful; others that they were afraid, according to the author, Alekper Aliyev. A publishing house allegedly located in Ulan Bator, Mongolia, finally accepted the job.

Aliyev, the author, says that a desire "to fight against petrified stereotypes" motivated him to write the book. He recalls how allegations of homosexuality undercut the political fortunes of Popular Front Party of Azerbaijan leader Ali Kerimli in the run-up to last year's presidential election. [For background see the Eurasia Insight archive]. www.eurasianet.org/departments/insight/articles/eav050608.shtml To reflect the problems faced by Azerbaijan's homosexual community, Aliyev consulted with a Dutch-financed, gay-rights non-governmental organization in Baku about the novel.

"There is no political dictatorship in Azerbaijan," he commented. "Society itself is the dictator."

Aliyev's work describes the newfound love between Artush, an Armenian in Baku, and his Azerbaijani friend, Zaur, in the opening days of the 1988-1994 Azerbaijani-Armenian war over Nagorno-Karabakh. Twenty years later, the pair again meets in Tbilisi, and discovers that their feelings remain unchanged. In the end, the two, despairing of their future together, take their own lives by jumping from Baku's Maiden Tower, a 12th century structure that is a legendary symbol of doomed love for Azerbaijanis.

The relationship symbolizes the ties that persist between Azerbaijanis and Armenians despite over 20 years of hostility, Aliyev said.

"Today, the Azerbaijani authorities offer the highest autonomy to Nagorno-Karabakh within Azerbaijan's territory and [this autonomy] foresees for the first time that they [ethnic Armenians] are citizens with the same full rights as we have. But, at the same time, the image of an enemy is cultivated within [Azerbaijani] society and media," Aliyev said. "It is hypocrisy and it makes no sense to me."

A March 11 discussion with readers about "Artush and Zaur" will test Aliyev's theory. Ali and Nino bookstore owner Kocharli says that she plans to host the event despite threats. Some young Azerbaijanis, calling themselves "national socialists" have been visiting the store's branches, threatening clerks and demanding that the store remove the book from sale, according to Kocharli. In Internet forums, others have called for book burnings.

Some readers, though, say that the book opened up new ideas to them, despite initial repugnance at the content.

"[A]fter reading the whole book, my opinion changed [about homosexuals]. The author wanted to say much more to our society --about our homeland, about emotions," said Pakiza Hamidi, a 35-year-old cleaning lady.

Hamidi, nevertheless, has mixed feelings about the couple's ethnic differences. "Their love is free, without bounds and distinction as to nationality. I understand it," she said. "But I would not want this love with an Armenian. It's humiliating."

Others object strongly. "My God, what have we come to?" fumed university student Ilgar Gozalov. "Not only that they are Armenian and Azerbaijani, but also they are gay. It's just a nightmare."

Such opposing views have meant brisk sales, although numbers may appear slim by international standards. Some 150 copies of the book have sold in the three weeks since "Artush and Zaur" first went on sale, one-third of the total print run, according to Aliyev.

Bookstore owner Kocharli can only hail the novel for sparking interest in Azeri-language literature. "As a bookstore owner, I think he is worthy of respect because he made people read books," she said in reference to Aliyev. "People who have not read a book for many years now visit their bookstores."

But Aliyev, who left a bank job to shield his employer from the novel's repercussions, takes a dim view about the chances for change in attitudes toward either Armenians or homosexuals. Those Azerbaijanis who attend next week's book discussion will most likely be mere curiosity-seekers, he predicted.

"I believe that nothing will change not only in Azerbaijan, but in the whole South Caucasus region in the next hundred years, unfortunately," Aliyev said.


From Lebanon To The Us, Professor Khachig Tololyan Reflects On 34 Years Of Change By Elana Metsch-Ampel, esleyan Argus March 4 2009
Professor Khachig Tololyan immigrated to the US with his entire family from Beirut, Lebanon when he was 16 years old. A member of the Armenian Diaspora, Tololyan is connected with communities throughout the world, one of them being the community at Wesleyan, where Tololyan has worked for 34 years since finishing graduate school in 1974. Tololyan's tenure at the University has given him a panoramic view of the University and of the way it has changed over time.

The child of Armenian refugees from Turkey, Tololyan comes from a history of persecution. His parents fled Turkey to northern Syria, where Tololyan was born. He continued to move with his family, first to Cairo, Egypt and then to Lebanon, Beirut, and finally to Watertown, Massachusetts. Despite having lived and worked in the US for the entirety of his adult life, Tololyan keeps in close contact with the other scattered Armenian communities throughout the world. He visits the Armenian community in Paris annually, for example, and has connections with the intellectual and professorial class in Armenia, along with some political ties.

Despite Tololyan's strong connection to the Armenian Diaspora, he has no desire to return to the Middle East.

"The Middle East I knew no longer exists," he explained. "There have been so many problems, changes, wars, revolutions--that world changed very fast. Frankly, I have no interest in going back."

Tololyan explains that places of his childhood like Beirut have changed unrecognizably, and he does not feel optimistic about the fate of the Middle East in the days to come.

"The Middle East is first of all not a place that can decide its own fate," Tololyan said. "What happens in the Middle East is decided as much in places like the United States as it is in the Middle East itself. There are too many cooks, and too many cooks who are trying to cook different dishes."

Tololyan's experience throughout the Middle East and as a member of the Armenian Diaspora has attracted him to the study of diasporas in general, which his personal research and preoccupations center around. Although he received his undergraduate degree in molecular biology from Harvard, Tololyan's focus is comparative literature. Initially hired at Wesleyan through the English Department, Tololyan three years ago transferred to the College of Letters, where he teaches courses that are more specifically focused on his area of training. He has taught subjects ranging from Homer and the Old Testament to Virgil and the New Testament.

Over the years, he has also held visiting professorships at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and at the University of Johns Hopkins. He has also taken sabbaticals at Brown University.

"My experience as a member of the Armenian Diaspora has prepared me not just intellectually, but in a gut way to know what it's like to live in one place but to care about two places at once," Tololyan said.

Despite commonly held perceptions, Tololyan believes that in many crucial ways, the University has stayed the same. He feels that aspects in which the University has changed are largely due to national trends manifested across the elite schools of the country and are not necessarily specific to Wesleyan alone.

"I think Wesleyan still selectively attracts kids from certain parts of the country with certain shared convictions about life, that hasn't changed very much," Tololyan said. "It's true that there's a little more anxiety than there used to be, but that's probably the case across most of America."

He also addressed the University's past reputations, noting that drug use, for example, was no different here than at any other University.

"People think of Wesleyan as the drug capital of America or something," Tololyan said.

"I'd always find it very strange that the drug lure was heavy here--are there no other campuses across the United States where there are drugs?"

Tololyan did, however, mention two specific changes in the student body that he's noticed over time. First, he remembers a world before laptops and cell phones from when he began teaching. Second, he remembers the political climate on campus, and how it has changed.

"Wesleyan above all has had left wing politics of a serious sort, of a really serious sort, and that's largely disappeared."

As for the University's students, Tololyan explained that over the years, he has noticed that the excitement freshmen feel as they enter their first year often mirrors the excitement and privilege they feel as they leave the University their senior year. He also addressed, however, the positive and negative qualities of student work ethic.

"[Students], in good and bad ways, tend to be less neurotically intense about competition than their peers elsewhere," Tololyan said. "The bad part of that is that characteristically Wesleyan students who are clearly smart and able have the tendency to flake out when the work gets difficult. Many of my good students have more ambition than a willingness to work really hard."

He explained that from his own experience, the balance between work and "partying" is often difficult to negotiate, even for Wesleyan students.

"I have many students who are smart and ambitious but who start partying too hard on Thursdays. On the other hand, they don't have the neurotic, Nazi-like intensity you find in some places. What the perfect balance is, that's very hard to say. It's not like there are whole colleges where that can be determined, it's up to an individual."

Tololyan also has specific opinions about the nature of the University today. He tries to take advantage of what he considers to be an expansive and unique art scene on campus. He explains that the opportunities offered by the University in theater, photography, the visual arts, music and creative writing are extremely valuable, and urges students to take advantage of them.

"There are places like Oberlin, for example, where music is king, but the richness and span of the arts in those places is not the same as it is at Wesleyan," Tololyan said.

"There is more richness here than there is in many otherwise similar undergraduate campuses."


Editorial: Freedom And Genocide McGill Tribune March 4 2009 Canada
"The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels." H.L. Mencken didn't have McGill in mind when he wrote that, but his words still ring true here. Campus free-speech advocates are often forced to defend charlatans and provocateurs-not because we agree with them, but because they're the first ones affected by a clampdown.

That's certainly the case with Turkish professor Turkkaya Ataov, who spoke at McGill on February 20. Ataov, who is known for denying the Armenian genocide, was invited to campus by the Turkish Students' Society. The event was a tense affair, with the large audience sharply divided into Turkish and Armenian camps.

There's no denying that Ataov's lecture was an unpleasant event, but we're troubled by the efforts some students made to keep him from speaking at McGill. The Armenian Students' Association, along with a dozen other groups, pressured the university administration to keep Ataov from speaking.

The administration stood its ground, and we applaud them for it. Barring Ataov from lecturing would be a blow to academic freedom at McGill. Many great scholars-from Diderot to Derrida, or Thomas Paine to Karl Marx-were initially denounced as scoundrels. University campuses should be forums where outrageous ideas can be developed, debated, and (quite often) discarded.

Of course, Ataov isn't on par with those scholars. But his implausible theories aren't a threat to McGill students, who should be able to see through them easily enough. And, more importantly, the best way to combat this sort of drivel is to confront it. To deny the Armenian Genocide requires a hefty dose of ignorance and ideology-both of which are easily exposed in an open forum.

Those who doubt the effectiveness of this strategy should look back to 2007, when Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was invited to speak at Columbia University. At the time, many people tried to prevent him from even taking the podium. Yet Ahmadinejad's remarks-which included him denying the existence of Iranian homosexuals-did far more to discredit him than his critics ever could.

We sympathize with students of Armenian heritage, who don't want one of history's great tragedies swept under the rug. But the Armenian Genocide happened, and nothing Ataov, or anyone else, says can change that. That's an easy debate to win, so there's no need to stifle it-especially at the expense of free speech on campus.


Learnings From The Sari Gelin Case By AyseGunaysu hairenik.com/weekly, USA, on March 4, 2009
It was March 8, 2005 when BBC News reported how Turkey renamed “divisive” animal names on the ground that they were “contrary to Turkish unity.” The report said that Turkey “is changing the names of three animals found on its territory to remove references to Kurdistan or Armenia. … The red fox, known as Vulpes Vulpes Kurdistanica, will now be known as Vulpes Vulpes; wild sheep called Ovis Armeniana becomes Ovis Orientalis Anatolicus; and roe deer known as Capreolus Capreolus Armenus becomes Capreolus Cuprelus Capreolus. The ministry said the old names were contrary to Turkish unity. ‘Unfortunately there are many other species in Turkey which were named this way with ill intentions. This ill intent is so obvious that even species only found in our country were given names against Turkey’s unity,’ a ministry statement quoted by Reuters news agency said. Some Turkish officials say the names are being used to argue that Armenians or Kurds had lived in the areas where the animals were found.”

This is the reality of Turkey, mentioned in the 2005 Minority Rights Report of the Human Rights Association (IHD) Istanbul Branch to give an idea about the background of minority rights in the country. In the March 1, 2009 issue of the daily Taraf, Ayse Hur refers to this episode, fantastically mocking such endeavours and reminding us that the names were given by the International Commission on Zoolgical Nomenclature (ICZN) and that any change in this respect was subject to strict rules and procedures.

The change of “subversive” animal names is a striking evidence of the fact that official formulations of Turkey’s age-old, untouchable “national interests”—the way with which they are promoted and the attempts to fulfill these “interests” at all costs—are so vulgar that despite the aggression displayed and the fearful threats made, they are very easy to refute. However, the general public’s intellectual capabilities are deliberately suppressed generation after generation by a mechanism so powerful that the people who make it possible for the rulers to rule don’t even notice the vulgarity of the arguments made and the way they are being implemented. But this is changing, too. With more and more people feeling the need to be better informed masses are slowly but steadily ceasing to be a monolithic body of supporters.

The degree of coarseness in communicating the official Turkish thesis was such that the decision makers of this field had apparently decided to “refine” it a bit. As such, the “Sari Gelin,” when it was first publicized, had been promoted as an “objective,” “unbiased,” and “scientific” documentary featuring arguments from “both sides” and aiming at a “solution.” The language used in promoting the documentary indeed differed from that of the vulgar discourse the Turkish public had been used to. During the research phase, the manner in which the initial contacts were made with the prospective interviewees was also in line with this new strategy. It was for this reason that some, who would otherwise not even think of taking part in such a documentary, accepted to be interviewed by the production team and later saw that their statements were censored, distorted, or taken out of context.

However, on the documentary’s official website (www.sarigelinbelgeseli.com) which is also in English, it is proudly declared that unlike the Armenian side, this documentary includes the views of the “opponents” as well. The truth is that, contrary to the producers’ claims that they would be telling the audience the “true story” of what they deemed were Armenian allegations, the documentary depicts Armenians as those responsible for the “tragedy.”

Military telling what to teach students
It is explained on the website that the research phase for the project had started in 1999 and it lasted four years, followed by eight months of shooting and four months of editing.

This calendar coincides with the great counter-attack launched by Turkey against “Armenian allegations.” In 2002, a Coordinating Committee was set up by the council of ministers for the “Fight Against Unfounded Genocide Allegations” to be chaired by Devlet Bahceli, the leader of the ultra-nationalist National Movement Party and the then-vice premier. The committee, which included a department head from the General Staff as well, decided that the official Turkish thesis against these “allegations” should be integrated into school textbooks and the curriculum. The decision was introduced by Bahceli on May 1, 2002. “To ensure that young people are informed about the past, present, and future of unfounded allegations of genocide we’ve taken the decision to include this subject in classroom textbooks starting from the 2002-03 school year,” he declared. On April 14, 2003, a circular was issued to all schools demanding that, in line with the above-mentioned decision, conferences should be held at schools to inform the children of the “realities” of the period, and how the allegations made by Armenians, Greeks, and Assyrians are unfounded. The circular also instructed schools to organize essay contests on the same topic.

The IHD Istanbul Branch immediately started to circulate, online and by fax, a protest letter to the minister to withdraw the circular and put an end to the policy. Shortly after, the association brought legal action at the Council of State demanding that the circular be cancelled as it constituted a gross violation of not only international conventions signed by Turkey, but also the Turkish Constitution and other national legislation prohibiting discrimination. The Council of State rejected the case on the grounds that the IHD was not the party to suffer as a result of the ministry’s circular.

Growing public reaction against hatred
The background of the question, as can be clearly seen, indicates that “Sari Gelin” and its use as an indoctrination tool is part of a state policy—and looking at the big picture, there is nothing new about it. However, looking more closely, one can see small changes. First, there is an effort to make the propaganda seem more “objective” by including the comments of the “opponents.” More important is the fact that the Turkish establishment is growing more responsive to criticisms raised within the country.

When news broke out that the “Sari Gelin” documentary was being shown to students at primary schools, the Turkish Armenian community was the quickest to protest and take action, issuing an open letter to the Prime Minister which appeared on Feb. 11, 2009 on the Turkish Armenian website Hye-Tert (www.hyetert.com/yazi3.asp?s=0&Id=392&DilId=1). “Given the way in which the said documentary brings up the issue, it would definitely fuel hatred and animosity and thereby raise the already existing anti-Armenian sentiments in society, by instigating violent and discriminatory rhetoric instead of providing insight into historical facts,” the letter said. This was covered by several mainstream dailies.
Then came the protests from the other sectors of society. The History Foundation released a press statement urging the ministry “to immediately abandon this incorrect and dangerous practice.” Describing such practices as “at the first place, pedagogically incorrect,” the statement goes on to indicate that “dragging education into discussions of popular politics which are defiant event for adults, and considering primary education as a tool of indoctrination are indicators of a totalitarian regime which have long been outdated by contemporary education mindset.”

The Hrant Dink Foundation brought legal action at the Istanbul Administrative Court, demanding that the screening of the film be immediately stopped. “”Ruptured bodies, shattered bones, piles of skulls, mass graves shown in the movie would gravely harm the mental and psychological well-being of children. Frightening discourses included in the documentary like quoting old people saying Armenians burned and decapitated Turks, would result in further moral violence on non-Muslim children,” said the foundation’s lawyer, Fethiye Cetin.

The IHD Istanbul Branch organized a protest in front of the post office in Galatasary Square, sending letters to the ministry urging an end to policies that instill hatred in the minds of the younger generations.

Dr. Serdar Kaya, the father of a fifth-grade student, filed a criminal complaint with the Uskudar public prosecutor’s office. “On February 13, my daughter was shown the documentary ‘Sarı Gelin’ at her school without my knowledge or permission. My daughter was extremely disturbed and frightened by the film and she asked me questions like ‘Did the Armenians slaughter us?’ … The fact that my daughter was shown such a documentary which disturbs her psychologically and instills feelings of hatred by the school to which I entrusted my daughter is a direct attack on her rights and my rights as her parent.”

A joint press conference was held by the Peace Initiative (of Turkey), representatives from Armenian foundation schools, the Helsinki Citizens Assembly, the History Foundation, the Social Democracy Foundation, and the International Hrant Dink Foundation. The joint press statement they released declared that “Sari Gelin” was not a documentary but vulgar propaganda, which was not only biased and aggressive but also openly racist and provocative. The statement also called for the punishment of those who were responsible for this crime.

Halis Erdogan, a Kurdish deputy from the Democratic Turkey Party, asked in the parliament whether or not those who ordered the screening of the documentary would be tried for violating Article 216 of the Turkish Penal Code, which bans any act that would provoke people against others with different religious or ethnic origins.

Hundreds of articles appeared in the press, and TV channels covered the protests. CNN Turk, one of the most reputable news channels in Turkey, interviewed Dilara Kahyaoglu, a history teacher and a History Foundation volunteer who for years worked on the question of discrimination in school textbooks with the director of the film, Ismail Umac, who in turn argued that the documentary was an objective production aimed at promoting scientific knowledge about this controversial subject matter. Kahyaoglu refuted this assertion by saying that despite its scientific rhetoric, the film was clearly propaganda which could by no means be used as an educational tool in schools. Kahyaoglu was very impressive and sounded indisputably credible, unlike Umac who failed to provide any sound “scientific” or “unbiased” arguments.

In the midst of these protests and wide media coverage, the Ministry of National Education declared that it would stop the “distribution of the documentary to the schools,” noting that the documentary was intended for teachers as a “supplementary educational material” and not for students, and that “they also heard” that the documentary was “in some cases” used “outside its intended purpose.” The ministry also declared that contrary to “allegations,” the General Staff had nothing to do with the documentary.

The learning points
Turkey’s leaders are becoming more and more susceptible to public protests and bold attempts to change things. They are more responsive to the reactions they are receiving. They feel the need to make a move in some way or another. At least, they can no longer ignore the voices raised. It is seemingly paradoxical that this is a result of increasing contacts with the outside world, which raises the standards in every field. It will be the combined effect of international and local dynamics that will change things in Turkey. As regards the Turkish public’s perception of the Armenian “question,” the contacts between the Armenian Diaspora and the Turkish audience will, I believe, play an important part in raising awareness in Turkey. More and more, Armenian scholars and historians from all over the world are visiting Turkey, meeting Turkish intellectuals and human rights activists, and appearing in the Turkish media. Apart from those they meet in person, Turkish newspaper readers see their photographs, look at their faces, and read what they say—in a way, get to know them. What’s more, we have now reached a time when an Armenian scholar and writer will be teaching in a university in Istanbul as a visiting professor, which means Turkish students will listen to and learn from a diasporan Armenian!

Such contact is crucial in getting to know and understand one another. This is an important catalyst for change. We need contact. More contact.


"If President Obama Gives A Kick In The Ball In The Wrong Direction ..." By Hasan Cemal 6 March 2009, by Stéphane / armenews
There is another important milestone for Turkey after the municipal elections on 24 April. This date has a close interest not only in Turkey but to the Armenians in America because it happens when the bill on the Armenian genocide comes to the agenda in Washington.

Is it that everyone is aware of the danger? The issue of April 24 is important, in fact so important that President Barack Obama must be very careful not to kick the ball in the wrong direction. So far, the signals from Washington have not been negative. I suspect that a new crisis is the last thing America, Turkey and the Armenians want. Certainly, if Turkey continues to make progress in normalizing relations with Armenia and cooperation with America and if it keeps approximation of the EU, it will be able to stand up against the higher waves the economic crisis. Each party must contemplate the real agenda and avoid deep down in any cross-roads before the visit of U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Ankara. 4 March 2009 Milliyet


Armenian Genocide: Turkkaya Ataov tackles Adolph Hitler 6 March 2009, by Stéphane / armenews
A Turkish denial asserts that the sentence of Adolf Hitler on the genocide of Armenians simply did not exist.

For denial cited by Hurriyet "Armenians often cite Hitler as having said his aides in 1939," after all, who remembers the Armenians "on the eve of the invasion of Poland. Turkkaya Ataov But, a professor emeritus of University of Ankara, said Monday during a conference that this comment has not existed in the original documents of the Nazis. The court in Nuremberg, who punish the Nazi leaders after World War II did not accept that comment as true during the trial in 1946 said Turkkaya Ataov at a conference organized by Turkish associations in the USA at George Washington University. He said the citation in this form has appeared first in two separate articles in The New York Times and London Times the same day, November 24 1945. He said that the articles did not contain the name of a journalist and had only signed by our special correspondent . "There is no indication that Hitler, who was an ignorant and an idiot who led his nation to disaster, had the slightest knowledge of Turkish-Armenian relations," said Ataov.


"Armenian Remains An Insult" 6 March 2009, by Stéphane / armenews
The widow of journalist of Armenian origin Hrant Dink, assassinated in 2007, testified Tuesday before the Swiss parliament

It defined itself as a dove worried and anxious, but felt protected by the city. Hrant Dink was assassinated on 19 January 2007 at the weekly he founded in Istanbul, Agos. Journalist of Armenian origin, he has continued to move the mirror of its past in Turkey. But more than recognition of the genocide of Armenians in 1915, his cause was the democratization of his country. His death has raised awareness. End of 2008, a letter asking forgiveness for the Armenians "Great Catastrophe" was attended by about 30 000 Turkish initials. His widow, Rakel Dink and his lawyer, Fethiye Çetin, were invited to testify Tuesday before the parliamentary groups for human rights and the Switzerland-Armenia.

Time: What is the message you want to bring to Berne?

Rakel Dink: I am not here to talk about the recognition of the Armenian genocide. If the Swiss parliament decided to do so, it will be the conscience of the people of Switzerland. What is important is to showcase my experience, the loss of her husband for a cause that I support as well.

- Have you taken up the torch?

Yes, all surrounded by the friends of Hrant. Agos is our spokesperson in the fight for freedom of expression and democratization of Turkey. Many journalists and intellectuals are still threatened. We hope that the country had the courage to confront its past, but beyond the Armenian case, we defend all minorities.

- The assassination of your husband has contributed to an awakening of public opinion?

This was an earthquake in the conscience. The recent campaign of apology conducted by intellectuals is a consequence. A newspaper was established about a year ago, Taraf, which takes no tweezers to attack the headquarters and denouncing corruption. The media have become much more courageous since the death of Hrant. Events to seek justice are held in each of the hearings into his murder.

- How to live on when you are Armenian in Turkey today?

An Armenian or a Greek, could see their property confiscated if it wants to bequeath to a foundation or a church. School books do not speak at any time from us, as if we had never lived in the region. In the Turkish language course, "Armenian" is an insult.

- The trial of the murderer of your husband is in progress. What do you expect?

The Turkish justice is independent, but the investigation is carried out by the same people who should have protected my husband and did not. The clues to the culprits had disappeared. Ergenekon network is extensively involved, but enjoys many complicities state at various levels.

- We saw the Turkish president to attend a football match Armenia-Turkey to Yerevan in September 2008. The beginning of a thaw?

This event has helped to soften the rhetoric surrounding it is symbolically very important. The acts of the government must now follow, but the holding of elections in March has again hardened positions.

Le Temps - Geneva, Switzerland


Diaspora Minister - “Armenia Belongs To Diaspora As Well” 2009/03/06
During her current visit to the United States, RoA Minister for Diaspora Affairs Hranush Hakobyan was invited to participate in the activities of the Armenian Assembly’s conference dedicated to national publicity and U.S. government recognition of the 1915 Armenian Genocide.

In her speech at the conference Minister Hakobyan noted that the American-Armenian community was one of the more better organized and established diasporan communities in terms of having an internal institutional framework and that it has the potential to seriously impact on the political life of the United States in general as well as in improving relations between Armenia and the United States.

Turning to the current situation in Armenia, Minister Hakobyan noted that an attempt was underway to forge a free and open society where social justice and human rights would reign supreme.

Minister Hakobyan proclaimed that, “in the creation of such a government the Armenian people dispersed throughout the world must also participate. Armenia is the homeland of all Armenians and its problems and concerns belong to all of us.”

Conference members visited the Genocide Museum now being constructed in downtown Washington D.C. and familiarized themselves with the work being carried out
HETQ Online

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