605) Armenian Terrorism - Ethnic Terror Information Center (ETIC)

According to the FBI, between 1980 and 1986, Armenian terrorism accounted for 24.1% of all terrorist incidents in the United States. By contrast, during the same period Libyan and Iranian terrorism each constituted 5.6%. With 77 incidents containing a North American component (i.e., the location of the incident, origination of funds and logistical support, and the permanent residence of the terrorist), Armenian terrorism has been the most active terrorism on American soil.

Between 1973 and the present, Armenian terrorist groups committed 239 acts of terrorism which killed at least 70 and wounded 524 people worldwide. Armenian terrorists took 105 hostages, executing 12, one of whom was an American. The Armenian bombing campaign included at least 160 attacks and accounted for the vast majority of the casualties, as the attacks were generally committed in crowded public areas such as airports, city squares, and shopping malls in order to achieve maximum impact. For example, the October 12, 1980 UN Plaza terrorist bombing occurred as over 200 people at the nearby B'nai B'rith building had just finished a conference and were exiting into the Plaza area. In addition, the Armenian terrorist bombing campaign caused 160 incidents of property destruction, causing several hundred million dollars in damage in the United States, Europe, Middle East and Australia.

Armenian terrorists have also systematically targeted Armenians who do not provide financial or logistical support, or who speak out against Armenian terrorism, political violence and hate crimes. Some otherwise peaceful Armenian organizations, such as the Armenian Youth Federation, have used performing arts to teach Armenian children that the acts of Armenian terrorists were actually heroic and legitimate uses of violence.

Two groups are directly responsible for Armenian terrorism: the Armenian Secret Army for the Liberation of Armenia (ASALA) and the Justice Commandos of the Armenian Genocide (JCAG). ASALA is the Marxist counterpart of the right-wing JCAG, and has lost popularity with the decline of the Marxist movements. The JCAG is the military wing of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) and the Armenian state’s Dashnak Party, both of which have utilized the public advocacy network of the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) to rationalize JCAG terrorism, and the Armenian Youth Federation (AYF) for recruitment. According to Professor Michael Gunter, a specialist in Armenian terrorism, “Although its members deny it, the right-wing, nationalist terrorist organization, Justice Commandos of the Armenian Genocide - Armenian Revolutionary Army (JCAG-ARA) appears to be an offshoot of the Dashnak [Party].”

Indeed, the October 12, 1999 indictment against Mourad Topalian, former Chairman of the Armenian National Committee of America, was supported by the testimony of a former member of JCAG and a high-level official of ARF, each of whom admitted that Topalian had directed JCAG member to travel to Beirut, Lebanon, to receive training in firearms, consult with a high-level Dashnak official, and coordinate armed efforts with ARF. The indictment further stated that Topalian demonstrated the use of automatic fire weapons to children at an Armenian Youth Federation camp. On May 11, 2000, Topalian, who was alleged to have engineered the aforementioned October 12, 1980 United Nations Plaza Bombing among at least four other attacks in the United States, admitted in writing that he had stored explosives with the intent to destroy Turkish targets. The identities of the JCAG and Dashnak members are protected by federal authorities in preparation for future criminal prosecution of other Armenian terrorists and civil actions.

Although Armenian terrorism has origins dating to the 1800s, modern Armenian terrorism has proudly and openly accepted responsibility for:

70 Killings of:
34 Civilians
31 Turkish diplomats
5 Law enforcement officers

41 Attempted killings of:
13 Civilians
28 Turkish diplomats

524 Woundings of:
500 Civilians
20 Turkish diplomats
4 law enforcement officers

105 Hostages taken, including:
100 Civilians
5 Turkish diplomats

217 Bombings or armed attacks comprising:
22 Attempted bombings (bombs defused or inoperative)
35 bomb or death threats
160 incidents of property destruction

ASALA and JCAG carried out 77 acts of terrorism that had a North American component as follows:

16 Killings of:
10 Civilians
5 Turkish diplomats
1 Law enforcement officer

12 Attempted killings of:
3 Civilians
9 Turkish diplomats

121 Woundings of:
117 Civilians
3 Turkish diplomats
1 Law enforcement officer

37 Civilian Hostages taken
71 Bombings or armed attacks comprising:
11 Attempted bombings (bombs defused or inoperative)
11 Bomb or death threats
49 Incidents of property destruction

Further worth underscoring is the following list of 22 American and Canadian Armenians who have been convicted of terrorist or terrorism related crimes:

In the United States:
Dikran Berberian, Los Angeles, California, JCAG
Vartan Chirinian, Van Nuys, California, ASALA
Steven John Dadaian, Los Angeles, California, JCAG
Viken Hovespian, Los Angeles, California, JCAG
Hratch Kozibioukian,Van Nuys, California, ASALA
Siranouche Kozibioukian,Van Nuys, California, ASALA
Suzy Mahseredjian, San Francisco, California, ASALA
Monte Melkonian, Dinuba, California, ASALA
Krikor Saliba, Los Angeles, California, JCAG
Karnig Sarkissian, Los Angeles, California, JCAG
Harout Sassounian, Los Angeles, California, JCAG
Hampig Sassounian, Los Angeles, California, JCAG
Vicken Setrag Tcharkhutian, Hollywood, California, ASALA
Mourad Topalian, Cleveland, Ohio, JCAG
Viken Yacoubian, Los Angeles, California, JCAG
Gourgen Yanikian, Los Angeles, California

In Canada:
Haig Balian, Ottawa, ASALA
Haroutium Kevork, Ottawa, ASALA
Haig Karkhanian, Ottawa, ASALA
Melkon Karakhanian, Ottawa, ASALA
Kevork Marachelian, Ottawa, JCAG
Ohannes Noubarian, Ottawa, JCAG
Rafi Panos Titizian, Ottawa, JCAG

Recommended Reading

•Gunter, Michael, ''Pursuing the Just Cause of Their People'', A Study of Contemporary Armenian Terrorism, (New York, Westport Connecticut, London, Greenwood Press, 1986)

•Gunter, Michael, ''Contemporary Armenian Terrorism'', Terrorism: An International Journal, V. 8, No. 3 (1986), pp. 213-252.

•Gunter, Michael, ''Cycles of Terrorism: A Question of Contemporary Counterterror and Harassment Against the Armenians'', Journal of Political Science, V.14, No.s 1 & 2 (1986), pp.58-73.

•Gunter, Michael, ''The Historical Origins of Contemporary Armenian Terrorism'', Journal of South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, V.9, No.1, (Fall 1985), pp.77-96.

•Gunter, Michael, ''Transnational Sources of Support for Armenian Terrorism'', Conflict Quarterly, V.5, No.4 (Fall 1985), pp.31-52.

•Gunter, Michael, ''The Armenian Terrorist Campaign against Turkey'', Orbis (Summer 1983), pp.447-477.

•Henze, Paul, Goal: Destablization Soviet Agitational Propaganda, Instability and Terrorism in NATO South , (Marina Del Ray, California, American Institute for Security Research, 1981).

•Henze, Paul, ''The Long Effort to Destabilize Turkey'', Atlantic Community Quarterly, V.19 (Winter, 1981-82), pp.468-473.

•Hoffman, Bruce, ''Terrorism in the United States During 1985'', Rand Paper P-7194, (Santa Monica, California 1985).

•Mickolus, Edward, ''Transnational Terrorism: A Chronology of Events, 1968-79'', (New York, Westport Connecticut, London, Greenwood Press, 1980).

•Perez, Frank h, ''The Impact of International Terrorism'' (PDF File)

•Perera, Judith, ''An End to Armed Propaganda?'', The Middle East , (September 1983), pp.18-20.

•Sterling, Claire, The Terror Network: The Secret War of International Terrorism, (New York, Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1981).

•Szaz, Michael, ''Armenian Terrorists and the East-West Conflict,'' Journal of Social, Political and Economic Studies (Winter 1983), pp.387-394.

•Wilkinson, Paul, ''Armenian Terrorism'', World Today V.39 (September 1983), pp.344-350.

United States Government:

•Corsun, Andrew, ''Armenian Terrorism: A Profile''(PDF File), U.S. Department of State Bulletin, No. 82, (Washington, D.C., August 1982), pp.31-35.

•Ikle, Fred. C., ''Testimony by the Honorable Fred C. Ikle, Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Before the United States Senate Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Security and Terrorism", (March 11, 1982)."

•Mullen, Francis M., ''Statement of Francis M. Mullen, Jr. Administrator, Drug Enforcement Administration U.S. Department of Justice, on Drug-Related Terrorism Before the United States Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources, Subcommittee on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse'', (August 2, 1984).

Source: Ethnic Terror Information Center (ETIC) : www.ethnicterror.org
Anti-Turkish terrorism, political violence, and hate crimes have affected the lives of tens of thousands around the world. Anti-Turkish violence, under cover of effective public advocacy by otherwise peaceful NGOs and uneven responses by political leaders, has largely escaped accountability. To this extent, anti-Turkish terrorism has served as a precedent for other modern terrorist organizations and methods.

The killings of over 50,000 and wounding of over 250,000 people by Anti-Turkish violence since 1963 has largely gone unnoticed or been forgotten. The vast majority of victims have been civilians. Anti-Turkish terrorism has caused billions of dollars in damage to private and public property around the world, as well to regional economies. Anti-Turkish terror attacks have occurred in Turkey, Cyprus, Western Europe, Australia, Canada and the United States, underscoring the transnational character of terrorism.

ETIC monitors the Armenian Secret Army for the Liberation of Armenia (ASALA) and Justice Commandos of the Armenian Genocide (JCAG). Although Armenian and Greek terrorism have substantial nationalist agendas, Christian militancy has been a main component in their ideologies. With 77 incidents containing a North American component (i.e., the location of the incident, origination of funds and logistical support, and residence of the terrorists), Armenian terrorism has been the most active terrorism on American soil.

ETIC also researches and publishes information regarding the Greek November 17 group, Greek Cypriot EOKA group, and Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

ETIC pays close attention to militant Islamic groups who seek to supplant Turkey¹s secular order with Islamic rule.



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