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25 March 2016

3588) Ghost Lands - A Century-Old Slaughter Still Haunts Turkey & Armenia

By Paul Salopek
National Geographic Magazine
April 2016




A stone cenotaph in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, commemorates this tragic event: the Medz Yeghern, or “great catastrophe,” of the Armenian people. Each spring—on April 24, when the pogroms started—many thousands of pilgrims climb an urban hill to this shrine. They file past an eternal flame, the symbol of undying memory, to lay a small mountain of cut flowers. Just 60 miles to the northwest, and a few hundred yards across the Turkish border, lie the ruins of an older and perhaps more fitting monument to the bitterness of the Armenian experience: Ani.

What is Ani? Ani was the medieval capital of a powerful, ethnically Armenian kingdom centered in eastern Anatolia—the sprawling Asiatic peninsula that today makes up most of Turkey— and straddling the northern branches of the Silk Road. It was a rich metropolis that hummed with 100,000 souls. Its bazaars over . . .






Source - Source(pdf)



Comments


Adrienne Schwarz
Mr. Salopek, thank you so much for spending time in Armenia and highlighting a place that many know nothing about or even where it is located. Unfortunately the mention of the Genocide brings out every brainwashed, present day Turk spewing their hatred, foul language and degrading comments. They are a sad bunch not realizing how they have been brainwashed by their own ancestors, their government and other denialists. For me I don't need a book or an official to tell me what happened. I can remember the story of my family. My grandfather who lost his parents, aunts and uncles, my grandmother who saw her own daughter murdered before her eyes and for whom I am named. I can remember my grandmother who never let one day of her life go by when she didn't talk about the atrocities for how could anyone "get over" something like that? I know the real truth in my heart and nothing these naysayers come up with will change that. We Armenians are strong, still here and will ALWYS be here.

Shyamal Ray
Tragic part is after WWI maps were redrawn with the idea that languages and nations are not deprived. Sadly Ani was never returned to Armenia, the benefit of a holocaust.

Okan Duru
Paul Salopek;
Your article isn't a objective article.This is a propaganda article.Your article not published Turkish Edition of Nat Geo in Turkey.
Paul Salopek, you are a ignorant about American Relief statistics during ww1,about Ottoman Armenian annex's of Vital Cuinet,Bliss,Brittanica etc.
Sukru Aya critized your article. Do you want to read?
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BzdlbFzESnuucnpZWm1TSWJPTWs/view

Muhammad Zubair Bhatti
Explore the truth of history is an extremely difficult task. Whatever happened was very bad ..... . With great regret .......we humans are savages today .....

Charles Jamgotchian
Next for the Turks i s to eliminate the Kurds with the blessing of America

John Mikhitarian
This is a throughly AMERICAN sided story, trying to make the NATO ally Turkey not as bad as it has been...By its posture that there is "a turkish side" of the Genocide sprinkled evenly throughout the article, it tries to give credits actually to the US state department's and US Congress schizofrenic stand on the

ARMENIAN GENOCIDE.

As a matter of fact, one hundreds years later, there is no turkish and armenian truth on the matter but

THE TRUTH OF SCHOLARS

It was a genocide and the US Congress as well as the State dept must solemnly recognize it as did nearly all states of USA. American media should simply stop washig the US policy clean on the matter because it is shameless to use the blood of 2 millions Christians (Armenians, Syriacs, and Pontus Greeks) as cash, i.e. as means to convince Turkey to do whatever whitehouse wishes, whenever need be on completely unrelated matters.

How would this (false) message sound "There is Jewish and Nazi side of Holocaust" ?

Hamazasp Danielyan
I don't want to politicize this beautiful piece on a very difficult topic, but there are few factual mistakes. Most important in my opinion is the following sentence: "The Armenian side also remains sealed, owing in part to pressure from the diaspora against normalizing relations with Turkey."

Actually since the first day of Armenia's independence there has been not a single administration/government that even for a day sealed the border or considered doing that. It would be plain stupid. The fact is that even the most demanding diasporan organizations understand the vitality of that border to Armenian economy and constantly lobby their governments (say in US or France or elsewhere) to force/convince their colleagues from Turkey to open the border with Armenia and stop the blockade, which BTW is an act of war.

Brian Loomis
Professor Justin McCarthy, Professor Bernard Lewis, Professor Stanford J. Shaw , & Professor Heath W. Lowry, are and were all on the pay roll of the Turkish Government. Their main goal is to make sure the history Turkey looks good in the eyes of the World. In addition, their goal is to re-write the History of the Armenian Genocide. The Turkish government puts a lot of money into denying the Armenian Genocide.

All of these professors own houses in Turkey and are always well connected with high officials within the Islamic government of Turkey.

Brian Loomis
The Turkish government has continued to deny what happened in 1895-1896 (353,000 Christian Armenians were murdered) and from 1915-1923 (Holocaust of 1,500,000 Christian Armenians). Only cowards cannot face up to past transgressions.

The German's have acknowledged the tragedy of the Holocaust. Many Americans recognize the travesty of what happened to Native Americans. The Turks steadfastly deny that a systematic effort was made to eliminate Christian people (Armenians and Assyrians along with Greeks living in Turkey) from their native homeland.

Turkey committed genocide against the Armenians. They deny it because they can. They have created laws making it a national security matter - a crime to criticize the nation - a common strategy of governments with something to hide! Throughout history there have been attempts to hide the truth. It is up to good men and women to tell the truth no matter the cost or political consequences.

Holocaust Denial is the Gateway to the modern torment of jihadism, mass murder and ethnic cleansing. The Armenian Holocaust Denial has become a grim harbinger of the terror we face daily 100 years later.

Brian Loomis
I don’t expect anything less from Turks,

Lies, innuendos, assumptions, ambiguities, allusions, hypotheses, re-writing history, false claims, are very common with Turks.

Turks are very well known on falsifying & forging history. The more they write, the more they are digging themselves a big hole.


Whenever they get crucified on the wall, they’ll come up with a new version of history. They just keep inventing and making up stories.

Remember just recently, Turks like you believe it was a Muslim Turk who discovered America 300 years earlier than Christopher Columbus. They incriminate themselves with false history and events without realizing that Turkey did not exist at that time. There was no Turkey.

Majja Nachapet
Armenia and armenian nationalists are guilty of genocide against Azeris. Armenian president has told about it:

"Before Khojali, the Azerbaijanis thought that they were joking with us, they thought that the Armenians were people who could not raise their hand against the civilian population. We were able to break that [stereotype]." President of Armenia S Sargsyan, interview, 1992
(Thomas de Waal, "Black Garden: Armenia and Azerbaijan through peace and war", New York & London: New York University Press, 2003, pp. 169-172)

Majja Nachapet
ARmenians are guilty of genocide of Turks:

“…the material evidence on the ground itself, have convinced us to the general truth of the facts, first that Armenians massacred Mussulmans on a large scale with many refinements of cruelty, and second that the Armenians are responsible for most of the destruction done to towns and villages…”. Se s. 113-114, https://www.academia.edu/11940511/The_Armenian_Forced_Relocation_Putting_an_End_to_Misleading_Simplifications

for more material see.
Prof. Justin McCarthy, Death and Exile. The Ethnic Cleansing of Ottoman Muslims,1821-1922, Princeton: Darwin Press, 1995, pp. 196-202. Prof. M. Perinchek “Armenian issue in 120 documents of Russian state archives”.

Brian Loomis
The Armenian Genocide was one of the most compelling human rights crises of World War I. Today, there are forces of denial and revisionism that are still striving to expunge from history the record of this enormous crime against humanity. The Armenian Holocaust of 1915 was the first modern genocide of the 20th century. Over 1,500,000 Christian Armenians were murdered.

It is only through learning and remembering past atrocities that we are able to work toward their prevention and become a more humane society.

Below are some Turkish Quotes:

Three rulers of wartime Turkey, Cemal Pasha, Enver Pasha and Talat Pasha.

Enver Pasha
One of the triumvirate rulers publicly declared on 19 May 1916...

“The Ottoman Empire should be cleaned up of the Armenians and the Lebanese. We have destroyed the former by the sword; we shall destroy the latter through starvation”.

“In reply to US Ambassador Morgenthau who was deploring the massacres against Armenians and attributing them to irresponsible subalterns and underlings in the distant provinces, Enver's reply was...”

“You are greatly mistaken. We have this country absolutely under our control. I have no desire to shift the blame onto our underlings and I am entirely willing to accept the responsibility myself for everything that has taken place”.

Talat Pasha
In a conversation with Dr. Mordtmann of the German Embassy in June 1915...

“Turkey is taking advantage of the war in order to thoroughly liquidate (grundlich aufzaumen) its internal foes, i.e., the indigenous Christians, without being thereby disturbed by foreign intervention”.

After the German Ambassador persistently brought up the Armenian question in 1918, Talat said "with a smile"...

“What on earth do you want? The question is settled. There are no more Armenians”.

Cemal Pasha
To a German officer upon seeing the deportations in Mamure said...

“I am ashamed of my nation” (Ich schame mich fur meine Nation)


In addition:

Prince Abdul Mecid
Heir-Apparent to the Ottoman Throne, during an interview...

“I refer to those awful massacres. They are the greatest stain that has ever disgraced our nation and race. They were entirely the work of Talat and Enver. I heard some days before they began that they were intended. I went to Istanbul and insisted on seeing Enver. I asked him if it was true that they intended to recommence the massacres which had been our shame and disgrace under Abdul Hamid. The only reply I could get from him was: It is decided. It is the program.”

Grand Vezir Damad Ferid Pasha
Equivalent rank in the US would be head of the cabinet I think. He described the treatment of the Armenians as...

“A crime that drew the revulsion of the entire humankind”.

Mustafa Arif
Minister of Interior stated on 13 December 1918...

“Surely a few Armenians aided and abetted our enemy, and a few Armenian Deputies committed crimes against the Turkish nation... it is incumbent upon a government to pursue the guilty ones. Unfortunately, our wartime leaders, imbued with a spirit of brigandage, carried out the law of deportation in a manner that could surpass the proclivities of the most bloodthirsty bandits. They decided to exterminate the Armenians, and they did exterminate them”.

Today’s famous Turkish authors

Orhan Pamuk
Famous Turkish author stated (and was put on trial for making this statement) in February, 2005...

“One million Armenians were killed in these lands and nobody but me dares to talk about it”.

Taner Akçam
Another Turkish author

“The attempt to justify and rationalize the death of a whole nation, including women, children, the old and infirm, must itself be considered a crime against humanity.”

“[In response to atrocities against Armenians] the British government issued a joint memo with France and Russia on 24 May 1915. The first draft, proposed by Russia, contained the phrase "crimes against Christianity and civilization," but France and Britain feared this would offend their own colonial Muslim populations and succeeded in changing the phrase to "crimes against humanity." This paved the way for the concept to assume its place after the war as one of the most important categories in international law.”

“In general, those who resort to mass murder on a collective scale always put forward the justification that they acted on behalf of the nation.

Alice Ravary
This is an important article to be read, specially by denialist comments above!

A court session of the Turkish courts-martial of 1919–20. CUP's leaders, Enver, Djemal, Talaat, among others, were ultimately sentenced to death under charges of wartime profiteering, and massacres of both Armenians and Greeks.[1][2][https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turkish_courts-martial_of_1919–20

Jack G.
It is ridiculous how ignorant Turkish people are. Every article about the Armenian Genocide, these people complain "what about the Turkish side of the story?" What about it? The Turkish side of the story is that Armenians were disloyal to Ottomans during WWI and suffered consequences. They were massacred all across a vast country, but, it wasn't genocide. Such logic!

The genocide did not start in 1915. It goes back to the 1800s. And if your people are being slaughtered, of course you are going to be disloyal. Didn't know about massacres in the 1800s? Oh, that's because they don't teach you that in Turkey.

Another argument is that Armenians had armed groups, killing Turks. Yes, in fact, I am proud of my ancestors having formed armed groups to protect what they could and fight back instead of being slaughtered like sheep. There should have been MORE, but the Ottoman government took the guns away from Armenians years before. But genocide wasn't planned, it's all a coincidence! They were disloyal!

They were supporting Russia! Traitors! Yes, if being targeted and massacred for decades and when Russia intervened of course Armenians would side with Russia. Did you expect Jews joining the ranks of Nazi troops to fight off the Allies during WWII? Again, such logic!

Did you know that the new Turkish government after WWI acknowledged the genocide but let the perpetrators flee to countries like Germany despite being sentenced to death? You are, however, aware that most of them were assassinated. Do you realize your argument that Armenians killed these Turks is equivalent to someone arguing that Hitler was assassinated? Once again, Turkish logic.

The world knows what happened to Armenians. Turkey denies it because they are afraid of reparations and ruining their name (you can go to jail for "insulting" Turkey - this is a NATO member who aspires to be part of EU, people) as if they have no other human rights violations. The world allows this injustice because at this time Turkey is being used for Mideast policies; it's really that simple. Nobody takes your denial seriously.


As a side note, there is a National Geographic magazine from 1915 about the Armenian people and described the Armenian Genocide AT THAT TIME, which I have a digitized copy of. I have a lot of respect for Nat Geo and appreciate you raising awareness about the ancient Armenian people. Thank you.

Pierre Vallee
Regarding the supposedly "multicultural Ottoman Empire". There is no pluralism in Islam. It is a MONOCULTURAL dictatorship. It was ever thus.

S Sarian
Thank you for this beautiful well-written article. I found it interesting, enlightening and the photography vivacious. In particular, I want to express my gratitude for the photograph of the massive Armenian Apostolic Church of St. Garabed in Chungush. My great-grandmother and her family were from Chungush and they worshipped and experienced the sacraments in that church. The eerie Duden gorge saddens me whenever I see it. Conscientious Turks from the local area have expressed sorrow to me when they find out my great-grandmother's origins.

Vardan Pzdikyan
What a beautiful story, and sadly marred yet again by denialists. How sad that the descendants of the perpetrators are now ridiculing themselves as the victims. It seems that Ataturk's rewriting of history has worked quite effectively in Turkey.

Gürkan Özsoy
http://en.devletarsivleri.gov.tr/assets/content/Yayinlar/osmanli-arsivi-yayinlar/armanians_in_ottaman_documants.pdf

betula nelson
Here is truth about Ambassador Morgenthau's book: See comment below by Dr Walsh in

3395) The (Former) US Ambassador Has Falsified The History

to SS Aya's book:
Preposterous Paradoxes of Ambassador Morgenthau : A Factual Story About Politics, Propaganda and Distortions


The important point in my story is how central the book of Ambassador Morgenthau remains. It is the corner-stone of the case against the Ottomans about the events of 1915.

As Professor Justin McCarthy says:
“Morgenthau has long held a prominent place in what has become the popularly accepted history of the events of World War I. His descriptions of Armenian suffering feature prominently in accusations that the Ottomans committed genocide. The difficulty, as demonstrated by Aya, is that Morgenthau readily accepted fabricated evidence and himself falsified the record.”

Morgenthau spent 26 months as U.S. Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire from November 1913 to February 1916. During this time he composed a lengthy diary and many letters which formed the basis of his book, ‘Ambassador Morgenthau’s Story.’ The book contains narrations of long conversations with, and statements of, various German and Ottoman officials which are placed in quotation marks. This device adds credibility to the account - as if the statements are taken down verbatim. And yet they cannot be found in the diary or letters, the original sources of the book.

The book seems to have been the concoction of a team of propagandists. The journalist, Burton J. Hendrick was the sensationalist ghost-writer. Morgenthau’s Armenian Secretary, Hagop S. Andonian, on whom the Ambassador relied for translations, was heavily involved after being allowed to ‘elaborate’ himself in writing up the original diary. The Ambassador’s interpreter, Arshag K. Schmavonian was another key constructor. And Morgenthau had no direct experience of the events he was writing about in Eastern Anatolia, having never left Istanbul in his tenure as Ambassador.

Harout Mekhitarian
I posted this in response to one of the commenters requesting more material but I believe it can be useful for all.

Read Ambassador Morgenthau's Story by Henry Morgenthau and Beginning again at Ararat by Dr. Mabel Elliott. Both are first hand accounts of the genocide. One is from the U.S. ambassador to Turkey and the other from the lead medical director of the Near East Relief Society. Also research that near East Relief Society/Armenian genocide separately. Also research Raphael Lempkin, he coined the term genocide, actually watch the video first. Search Raphael lempkin/ Armenian Genocide. Also I would highly recommend the documentary Watchers of the sky by director Edet Belzberg. These are just a few examples among a trove that would take an entire library to fill.

* anytime you see articles about the genocide you will without a doubt find same few genocide deniers in the comments section. A short Google search of their names will usually tell you all you need to know especially of Mr. Tan.

Lev Kukla
I AM READING COMMENTS OF PEOPLE AND I would like to ask a question to all....If you say ".Yes, there was a genocide! But to Turks, not to Armenians!" Than why is Armenia 26 times smaller than Turkey shouldn't it be the other way around???? And who ever thinks that we Armenians killed turks during the genocide you are absolutely right! what you think you would do if you saw your sister get raped your mom get killed.... Tell me now will you sit and watch and do nothing?

And for does who think that my own grandfather was telling me lies while crying.... FOR WHAT SHALL I ASK WILL HE DO THAT.????? TO MAKE IT DRAMATIC AND ANTI-FACTUAL. .... COME ON.......

Orhan Tan
Comment from Ms. Lale Gurman is below:

This un-ending problem will go in that way if the scratchings goes on...The story here is narrated one sidedly which is not ethical. Bad "Politics" doesn't help to unite people of our planet! Be honest and let's talk about nothing but the "Truth" at all times.

I want you all to give ear to your own historians, not to your grandparents. Kachazhuni- the first prime minister of Armenia- had officially expressed in his book and told, "It was our fault. We rioted against the Government with armaments, which is a crime everywhere invariably". And A.B. Karinian had ascertained in his book “Imperialist War and Armenians”, published in 1925, “European countries, Christian missionaries and above all, Dasnaksutyuns are responsible for Armenian tragedy”. Russian Brigadier General Bolhovitinov says in his report: “Even before the deportation, Armenian terrorists had massacred Turks and Kurds in their villages and killed even prisoners of war.” Lots of Russian commanders who used Armenians against Ottomans were horrified by these massacres. In his book, “Twisted Law versus Documented History” published in England, Mr. S.S. Aya disproofs every single argument in“Was There an Armenian Genocide?” written by Prof. Geoffrey Robertson one by one.

Yes, there was a genocide! But to Turks, not to Armenians!

Sadi Dinlenc
There are so many remarks to be made and corrections to be offered to this article, there would be no place and time to do so. But, let me suggest the following:

1. The author totally ignores the definition of the word Genocide by the U.N. made in 1948 and uses this word so freely, easily and incorrectly.

2. As is usually case in all Armenian articles, he started his write-up at the middle of this historical period, 1896-1918. There is no reference or information about 1896 Ottoman Bank incident, the vicious attacks by armed Armenian guerrilla groups on civilian Turkish population, killings, raping and robberies but history starts with only the Armenian sufferings !... Wish N.G. Magazine had used a contributor more knowledgeable about history than about traveling in this assignment.

3. The crux of the whole article is the same approach as that of the man in the street; " Armenians were wrongfully accused....rebellion ...and siding with the Russian army.." Well, didn't they actually help the advancing Russian Army in 1915-16, providing military support ? What is wrong about it ? Didn't they rebel all across the Eastern Anatolia killing innocent civilians, raping women, burning houses even before the Russian advance ?

4. The reference to Morgenthau's book is really poor...That book was not written by Morgenthau but a professional writer Mr. Hendrick for a fee. Morgenthau's daily memoirs are not the same as those written in the book.

5. I think the Armenian people, ignoring the Diaspora brethren, should pay attention to Germany and Japan, who lost their wars but now selling cars, TV sets and electronic gear to the US in peace. Forget the war, forget the sad feelings and the losses both sides took, and look at the future. Turkey which now allows 32,480 illegal civilian Armenians to work in Turkey and send money home to their families, would welcome the opportunity to help the 3 million Armenian neighbors in Armenia. Your 3R Plan has no place to go.

6. And finally, listen to one of your great political leaders; Katzchaznouni who said " Dashnaksutyun Has Nothing To Do Anymore".

Harout Mekhitarian
Here is the video testimony of the remaining Morgenthau family members on his views of the genocide. I really want to see how you're going to dispute this. What you are asking is for people to believe you over a first-hand account documented by the Ambassador himself and video testimony from his remaining family members.

During the genocide many Turks helped Armenians survive and risked their own lives in doing so. You should be celebrating those people as Heroes, instead you're continuing the act of genocide by trying to erase it from memory and the history books which is the final phase of genocide by definition.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=fAzSzX6EE2o

Van Peters
@Sadi Dinlenc I'm glad you pointed out all the historical reasons why the mass exodus and extermination of the Armenian people is reasonable.

Of course if you have extreme elements causing trouble in a nation it's only natural for the entire race to be blamed, bludgeoned, raped and killed.

The loyal subjects for 1000 years conveniently wiped out in a matter of three... so sad people continue to look for excuses.

Jack G.
@Sadi Dinlenc
"The author totally ignores the definition of the word Genocide by the U.N. made in 1948 and uses this word so freely, easily and incorrectly." ---- You are referring to the General Assembly Resolution 260 in 1948. The word and legal definition of genocide which did not exist in the past was coined to describe specifically what happened to the Armenians in order to present a legal case for the Jews. Read the memoirs of Mr. Raphael Lemkin. Instead of believing what your Turkish government tells you, go and research and read directly from sources!

mehmet sigir
The worst thing about this is that the world never listens to the Turkish side of the story. They want to readily swallow everything thrown at them by the armenians. There have been countless times when Turkey asked for an international neutral committee to be formed to research the events in 1915, and everytime it was rejected and thrown off by the armenians. I mean come on, how else can they write over dramatic, anti-factual, subjective texts like this without including one single citation, fact or document?

Van Peters
@mehmet sigir
please check the facts, the 1919 Turkish Courts Marshall found the leaders of the crumbing state, Talat, Enver, Cemal and others guilty of Genocide of not only Armenian's but of Greeks as well. They were sentenced to death in absentia, however they were never executed especially since they had left the new Turkish republic, eventually Mustafa Kemal pardoned them in 1923, so they escaped punishment.

Alia Azouqa
"...a mass slaughter that many historians label the first genocide of the modern era"

And the Circassian genocide just decades earlier? Where is that article?

ROBERT MARTIN
Powerful story, photos, and video. I learned more about the history of this period from this article, and would like to read more. Suggestions for article or books are welcomed. It's a tragic story indeed and I fear that both sides will continue to find this too painful to address in a manner which will lead to understanding. I hope I am wrong. Thanks, Paul and John. Safe travels.

Gevork Papiryan

I could suggest you my short stories, Once in Thessaloniki, Hotel Baron, etc. which you could find on Amazon Kindle page.

Harout Mekhitarian
Read Ambassador Morgenthau's Story by Henry Morgenthau and Beginning again at Ararat by Dr. Mabel Elliott. Both are first hand accounts of the genocide. One is from the U.S. ambassador to Turkey and the other from the lead medical director of the Near East Relief Society. Also research that near East Relief Society/Armenian genocide separately. Also research Raphael Lempkin, he coined the term genocide, actually watch the video first. Search Raphael lempkin/ Armenian Genocide. Also I would highly recommend the documentary Watchers of the sky by director Edet Belzberg. These are just a few examples among a trove that would take an entire library to fill.

* anytime you see articles about the genocide you will without a doubt find same few genocide deniers in the comments section. A short Google search of their names will usually tell you all you need to know especially of Mr. Tan.

Sev Yarjan
@ROBERT MARTIN
There many volumes written on the topic, most of which include exhaustive research by the authors. Raymond Kevorkian has written the seminal book on the Armenian Genocide. Also, look for books by Peter Balakian, Eric Bogosian, Taner Akcam, Lou Ureneck, and many, many others. As to the Turks commenting on the above article in denial of the genocide of the Armenians, they truly believe the version of events they've been taught in schools and told by the Turkish media. What they lack is any hard evidence of their twisted version of history. Most importantly, they lack the firsthand experiences of suffering and horror told to them at the feet of actual, real-life survivors of the Armenian Genocide. During my youth in the 1950's and 60's I heard the facts from those who lived it - while the stories were still fresh in the minds of those fortunate enough to be able to tell them - the truth about the atrocities Ottoman Turks committed against Armenians, Assyrians and Greeks between 1890 - 1930. Remember, denial is the last stage of genocide. The perpetrators know that all too well.

Taner Balkan
There is no genocide , Armenians have betrayed Ottomans and killed lots of innocent women and children and babies believing that they will have a country in todays Turkey borders with the support of Russia and other emperialst countries. Unfortunately what they get is what they have done.

Before that riot, Armenians were more precious citizens in Ottoman than Turks. They were shaping trade and craftsmenship.They were richer than muslim people and living a better life. The moral of the story is never betray the country that gives you richness and a right to live. Hope one day there is no religion and borders all around the world but only peace.


Jack G.
@Taner Balkan Armenians, as Christians, were lowest class and had to pay the non-Muslim tax (I forgot the Turkish word) and had their property confiscated and given to other Turks or Kurds. Yes, there were Armenians who were doing well but majority were low-class citizens living their daily lives as best as they could under discriminatory policies.

"The moral of the story is never betray the country that gives you richness and a right to live." -- A country that gives you a right to live. Wow. You sure have Turkish genes.

Gevork Papiryan
My grandfather's family lived in Sebastia Vilayet (now Sivas Province) and all of its members had been killed or died on the way to Deir az Zor Desert. We do not know exactly. Only my grandfather survived and only because at that time, he was in Constantinople (now Istanbul) and was able to move to a neighboring country. Now take a look at a map, please, and say near which border of the Ottoman Empire was Sebastia located?

Also think please, did the Young Turks, who were in power during that time, really think that they could, for "military purposes", walk a huge number of people all over the country and bring them to the concentration camps in the Syrian Desert and settle them there? By the way, incidentally the Armenians once helped them overthrow the Sultan, and come to power.
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john markarian
Well Done. Thank you.

I agree with others, that we hope one day Armenians and Turks and Kurds can find peace and live together but, only after The Turkish Government admits to the Armenian Genocide.

peter aslanian
Thank you very much for the beautifully written article. My grandpa was from a village near Kars. Turkish soldiers had burnt his village, he a 10 year old hardly had managed to escape. The 85 year old man was crying remembering those days.

I really hope there comes a day armenians, kurds and turks can live in peace. Unfortunately looking at the comment section I don't hold very high hopes but maybe one day. Things tend to change.

Hovik Merzayan
With World War I in progress, the Turks accused the (Christian) Armenians as liable to ally with Imperial Russia, and used it as a pretext to deal with the entire Armenian population as an enemy within their empire. Turkish government(s) since that time have consistently denied that a genocide took place for political reasons, mainly because of lands and financial reparations reason.

(Armenian genocide was the first genocide of 20th century - Pope Francis)

Orhan Tan
Recently the Armenians seem paying close attention to Turkish citizens of Kurdish people. I would like to remind Armenians that the Kurdish gangs were resposible for the death of Armenians during the 1915 events. But, unfortunately Armenian diaspora uses Kurdish people to help their cause.

Alex Haruty
@Orhan Tan All Armenians remember very well what the Kurds did. The Kurds are not going to give us genocide recognition or return land to us, so what exactly is the Armenian diaspora cause that they are helping us with? The Kurds have done absolutely nothing for Armenians.

The reason why we are paying close attention is because there are similarities between their treatment as ethnic minorities and ours.

The Armenian diaspora has nothing to do with Kurdish insurgency that has taken decades to reach the point it's at now. Ironically you could have used past mistakes towards the Armenian population to make better decisions in regards to your Kurdish population. Now it's too late, and you're trying to find external reasons for why the Kurds are behaving the way they are. How could great and noble Turkey's policies possibly be at fault?

Shant Harootunian
Majja Nachabet's comments reflect a pro=Ottoman viewpoint which has been consistently rejected by virtually all scholars who arfe not on the Turkis/Azeri dole. See e.g., Ambassador Morgenthau's book and his cablegrams to his superiors in Washington. My grandparents were raped and subsequently murdered although they lived nowhere near the war zone of World War I. Her comments also fail to mention the thousands of Armenians subjected to pograms in Azerbaijan.

Washik Minasian
To all the anti-Armenia comments:

Look at the Great Armenia that started at the Caspian Sea and reached all the way to the Mediterranean Sea. It all started by countries taking over Great Armenia's land, this was way before the world wars. So Majja Nachapet don't say Armenias make victims of themselves, no in fact they actually are.

Please tell the whole story, don't mention the parts that benefit you anti-Armenia people.

mehmet sigir
@Washik Minasian Armenians are not the natives of Anatolia either. They formed Armenia by taking it from the people that lived before there as well. They were settlers and immigrants from south. Armenians slaughtered Persians to create Armenia, then Byzentine slaughterted Armenians to settle into Anatolia. Then Turks took it back from the Byzentine and let Armenians live there with them for centuries. Until the elite and rich Armenian bourgeois and bankers wanted more.

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