3524) The Armenians Want An Acknowledgment That The 1915 Massacre Was A Crime

Geoffrey Robertson

23 January 2015

Just before the invasion of Poland, Adolf Hitler urged his generals to show no mercy towards its people – there would be no retribution, because “after all, who now remembers the annihilation of the Armenians?” As the centenary of the Armenian genocide approaches – it began on 24 April 1915, with the rounding up and subsequent “disappearance” of intellectuals and community leaders in Constantinople – remembrance of the destruction of more than half of the Armenian people is more important than ever. Although, as Hitler recognised in 1939 (and it is still the case today), the crime against humanity committed by the Ottoman Turks by killing the major part of this ancient Christian race has never been requited, or, in the case of Turkey, been the subject of apology or reparation. . . .

The “Young Turks” who ran the Ottoman government did not use gas ovens, but they did massacre the men, and sent the women, children and elders on death marches through the desert to places we only hear of now because they are overrun by Isis. They died en route in their hundreds of thousands from starvation or attack, and many survivors died of typhus in concentration camps at the end of the line. The government ordered these forced deportations in 1915, and then passed laws to seize their lands and homes and churches on the pretext that they had been “abandoned”.

The destruction of more than 1 million Armenians was declared a “crime against humanity” by Britain, France and Russia in 1915, and these allies formally promised punishment for what a US inquiry at the end of the war described as “a colossal crime – the wholesale attempt on a race”. But the Treaty of Sèvres, designed to punish the Young Turks for this “colossal crime” – now called “genocide” – was never implemented. Modern Turkey reportedly funds a massive genocide denial campaign, claiming that the death marches were merely “relocations” required by military necessity and that the massacres (the Euphrates was so packed with bodies that it altered its course) were the work of a few “unruly’ officials. In Turkey, today, you can go to jail – and some do – for affirming that there was a genocide in 1915; this counts as the crime of “insulting Turkishness” under Section 301 of its criminal code.

Conversely, in some European countries, it counts as a crime to deny the Armenian genocide. The parliaments of many democracies – France, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands, Russia, Greece and Canada, for example, recognise it explicitly, as do 43 states of the US. The problem is that Turkey – “neuralgic” on the subject (the word used privately by the British Foreign Office to describe its attitude) – has threatened reprisals and is too important geopolitically to provoke by affirming the genocide, lest it carry out threats to close its airbases to Nato and its borders to refugees. Thus Barack Obama, who roundly condemned the Armenian genocide in 2008 and promised to do so when elected president, dares not utter the “g” word. Instead, he calls it Meds Yeghern (Armenian for “the great crime”) and asserts that his opinion has not changed, although you must Google his 2008 campaign speech to discover his opinion that it was genocide.

As for Britain, the story is even stranger. No nation, in 1915, was more determined to expose and punish what it termed a “crime against humanity”. The evidence of the atrocities collected in Arnold Toynbee’s Blue Book, although published by the government for propaganda purposes, has withstood all attempts to discredit it. Winston Churchill condemned the “infamous general massacre and deportation of Armenians … in one administrative Holocaust”, and Britain even attempted to put some of the perpetrators on trial in Malta, only to find that there was no international criminal law at the time to punish government officials for killing their own people. However, in recent years, the FCO has briefed ministers to call the events a “tragedy” but to deny genocide because “the evidence is not sufficiently unequivocal” – an oxymoronic term (something is either unequivocal or it is not).

The FCO certainly knew that this “genocide equivocation” was dodgy: one internal memo obtained under the Freedom of Information Act admits that “HMG is open to criticism in terms of the ethical dimension. But given the importance of our relations (political, strategic and commercial) with Turkey … the current line is the only feasible option.” Ministers were also advised to avoid attendance at any commemoration of the Armenian genocide, and to avoid any mention of it at Holocaust Day memorials.

This position could not hold, especially after the International Court of Justice declared the Bosnian Serbs guilty of genocide at Srebrenica, for killing 8,000 men and deporting up to 25,000 women and children. The claim that the evidence is “not sufficiently unequivocal” was then abandoned by the FCO (although the Turkish government website claims that this is still the UK’s position), and the search began for a formula that could answer the question: “Will HMG recognise the Armenian genocide?” without answering the question.

Now, the FCO claims to empathise with the “suffering” of the Armenian people in the “tragedy” of 1915, and says it is not for governments to decide a “complex legal question”. It has thus moved the “line” from genocide equivocation to genocide avoidance – a move slightly in the right direction. Last year there was even talk at the FCO of giving to the Armenian Genocide Museum copies of some files in the National Archives attesting to the Ottoman atrocities: this was turned down, ostensibly because the photocopying costs of £431.20 could not be afforded, but probably because the Turks would go ballistic.

The FCO files recently recorded ministerial approval for “more active participation” in centenary events, but there has, as yet, been no lifting of the ban on reference to the Armenian genocide on Holocaust Memorial Day. The real test of this government’s willingness to accept historical truth will be whether it sends a senior minister – or any minister at all – to the genocide commemoration in Yerevan, the Armenian capital, on 24 April. Ministers will be present at Gallipoli for the centenary of the ill-fated British-Anzac Dardanelles landing on 25 April, and it would be simple for them to fly there from Yerevan, were it not for the certainty that Turkey would deny them entry.

The Dardanelles landings were in fact the trigger for the commencement of the genocide, and (together with Russian military activity on Turkey’s eastern front) were used as an excuse for the destruction of the Armenians, on the pretext that they might support the allied invasion. But the evidence of the government’s genocidal intent is overwhelming, coming as it does from appalled German and Italian diplomats and neutral Americans, to whom the Young Turk leaders admitted that they were going to eliminate “the Armenian problem” by eliminating the Armenians.

There can never be justification for genocide. This was understood by Raphael Lemkin, the Polish lawyer who coined the word and worked tirelessly to have the annihilation of the Armenians recognised as an international crime. In 1948 the UN’s Genocide Convention achieved Lemkin’s objective. Its definition of the crime includes the destruction of part of a racial or religious group by, for example, inflicting on it life-threatening conditions (such as death marches). Applied to 1915, this produces a verdict of guilt, beyond reasonable doubt.

It was, of course, a century ago: does it still matter? A century is just within living memory: last year a 103-year-old woman, once a small child carried by her mother across burning sands, took tea with Obama and the world’s most famous Armenian descendant (Kim Kardashian!). The mental scars and psychological trauma for the children and grandchildren of survivors throughout the diaspora will continue until Turkey acknowledges the crime, and offers an apology.

International law may provide some assistance: there are assets expropriated in 1915 that can still be traced, and many ruined churches that can be restored and returned. Armenians want restoration of their historic lands in eastern Turkey, which is asking too much (although I have suggested that the majestic Mount Ararat, overlooking Yerevan, might be handed over by Turkey as an act of reconciliation). But what they want most is what they are plainly entitled to have: an acknowledgment from Turkey, and for that matter from the UK, that what happened to their people in 1915 was not a tragedy but a crime. A crime against humanity – as Britain said in 1915, and should, in 2015, repeat.

• Geoffrey Robertson’s An Inconvenient Genocide: Who Now Remembers the Armenians? is published by Random House.



Closing of the Historians' debate by the Armenian side without listening to the Turkish side is akin to claiming that there is life on the moon, but depriving the rest of the world from woicing opposing views.

Antoine S. Terjanian atilla oguz
Contrary to what you state, this Hitler speech was not first unveiled in 1945. Anyone reading this can go to a library and search for the book published by Louis P. Lochner (Dodd Mead & Company, New York) in 1942, repeat 1942, entitled "What about Germany", in which he describes how he got hold of Hitler's speech of August 1939. I advise you to read at least the first chapter of the book.
I am sorry you are missing the point. I refer to the Lochner quote of Hitler's speech when I want all our brothers and sisters around the world to know that a homicidal criminal maniac, Hitler, thought he could get away with Genocide, because by that time, the Armenian (so far referred to as) massacres had been forgotten.
I want to do that so that any of us, including you Mr. Oguz, are less likely to be at the whim of such genocidal maniacs in the future.
I can assure you Mr. Oguz, that I will stand shoulder to shoulder with you if some maniac in China suddenly decides to annihilate all the Uyghurs, because a few of them have decided to revolt against Chinese domination.

Dear Sirs:
We Turkish People have made a big mistake in counter attacking to so called "Blue Book" of British Government published as a war instrument during WWI (mid 20s) and following Armenian attacks mostly depending on the Blue Book.
I have no intention to discuss or defend Ottoman Empire against Armenian accusations, because it is a task belong to historians. However, I may advise Mr. Robertson and/or responsible administratives who proposed or accepted his article to be published in your Newspaper to read the following:
- The Court Decisions convened in Malta to investigate Ottoman Administrators for Armenian Massacre claims.
- Reports of American Special Mission on Armenian Issues (please look at the site:
- European Parliament resolution # C-190, dated July 20, 1987
- European Court of Justice resolutions T-346/03 dated Dec.2003 and C-18/04 dated April 17.
M. Fahri Uzunefe

ID0471078 Jannaan
Jannaann, I am very sorry about the personal loss your family has experienced and I appreciate you mentioning it. You are on the mark in saying that everybody suffered because of war, and that "those were the World War-1 years" and British suffered in great numbers as well. No one can argue with that, but this is not the issue here.
By the time your grand father was shot and later died, Anatolia was emptied from its Armenian inhabitants. By 1916 already a million Armenians were killed, marched out of their towns and villages and killed in valleys and fields. The Russian armies had already penetrated deep into Anatolia. Not to diminish your loss or shift the blame, but It is more plausible that your grandfather was shot by an Armenian lunatic out for revenge, Russian army units, or Armenian detachment in the Russian army. But as sad as your story is, it is not the point.
No one argues that millions of Germans died and huge numbers of Germans suffered during WWII. No one justifies the Holocaust by bringing up German losses. No one has in the past or is saying today that Turks were not killed by Armenians, either for revenge or as a result of Armenian soldiers serving in the Russian army. The genocide is a different matter, Armenians were eliminated long before the Russians came into Anatolia.
What is unacceptable is to turn this commentary section into a pseudo scientific historian's forum and quote dubious sources, like the "armenians-1915" blog to prove genocide did not occur. Your own post contains questionable proof gathering where leads you reject the fact more that 300 intellectuals who arrested and liquidated. you even question them being intellectuals where even your countrymen in Turkey, for the past few years, commemorate the memory of fallen intellectuals in Istanbul's Taksim square.
And now you seem to start another fictitious rumour that will surely be "copy and pasted". Where did you get the notion that the Young Turks had promised autonomy to the Armenians…and had the Armenians accepted it….etc… This is a total fabrication that will join other fabrications, such as the 80 000 Turks killed in the Van uprising and other "talented" fabrications" such as Yusuf Halacoglu's masterful "discovery" of 523 299 names (and addresses) of Turks killed specifically at the hands of Armenians. Same Halacoglu who was fired by the Turkish authorities for incompetence and fraud. But his "500,000" number litter the internet to "prove" Armenians wrong.
Geoffrey Robertson has written a very compelling article, all you, and co. do is mud-slinging and fiction writing.
ID0471078 ozgurbutun
Wrong on many accounts.
What Turks are doing today is tailoring events in order to fit and legitimize the final outcome.
The calls for so-called "historians debate" from the Turkish side is a red hearing, and it is as red as it can get. Historians have already rendered their verdict on this matter it is for the Turks to accept it.
To our Turkish posters a REMINDER: The Turkish Armenian Reconciliation Commission (TARC), formed July 9, 2001, by Turkish and Armenian civil society representatives, which included the late Mr. Gündüz Aktan, a Turkish ultranationalist hawk, requested that the International Centre for Transitional Justice (ICTJ) facilitate an independent legal study on the applicability of the 1948 Genocide Convention to the Armenian case. On February 4, 2003, ICTJ provided TARC the following analysis on the subject. This analysis was issued to the public by TARC on February 10, 2003.
VERDICT: "The Armenian case possessed the requisite genocidal intent". To which, the Turkish side, contrary to their prior promise to accept the verdict of the ICTJ, promptly rejected the verdict, because ostensibly it was not to their liking.
There is a huge self-deception on the Turkish side that paralyzes the individual from functioning adequately and prevents them to accept the reality of the Armenian genocide.
ozgurbutun Illinoisan
OK. that rests my case.
Illinoisan ozgurbutun
What is conveniently forgotten by Turkey's accusers is the very concept of "Innocent until proven guilty". After WW I, the British themselves brought 144 Turkish government officials and members of the intelligentsia to the island of Malta to try the them for war crimes. After two years of trying, including searching the archives of other countries involved, there was no evidence to bring charges against the Turks, and the detainees were sent back home.
Armenian diaspora has continously tired to bring this political debate of 'Genocide' towards the public for the last 100 years. Given the grave time difference and the dispute always ending up in a deadlock of; Turkish side claiming counter arguments which they claim: have never been publicly aired. This vicous cycle causes the issue to become a cat and dog fight rather than anything else. Nothing similar to providing a platrorm to bring historical scholars debate over it. Interestingly Armenian side has always shyed away from such historical debate, causing the Turkish side (or whats left it, as the issue has become uninteresting there) to assume that their counter facts based on offical archive documentation from Britisih, American and even Russian by then governments are truely valid. Even Steve Jobs wanted to be a part of this never ending debate but after his visit to Istanbul and of being shown of the ' offical records' ; he has decided not response on this issue anymore (maybe he had no tim?e) Long story short; no one can tell for sure whether there was a genocide or not (in the sense of Hitler/Stalin style) but there was war between both sides; as a matter of fact Armenia had attacked the Ottomans (by the help of Russians) and they maybe they got a fine retaliation? like the Japanese in the ending days of WW2?
Mustafa Ozbulut
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orhantan ID0471078

Military Historian Dr. Edward Erickson says in book with the title of “Ottomans and Armenians, A Study in Counterinsurgency” ; “…..Armenians were the real cause of their fate, because there was a“rebellion by the Armenians .” It is interesting that the Armenians and their supporters with prejudice read only the books which support Armenians’ bias claims, such as one written by Geoffrey Robertson, QC… Realities could only be reached with impartial approaches.
Grandson of the loved ones who were massacred by the Armenian Revolutionary Bandits.

Jannaan ID0471078
Your patronizing tone says that you think your kind of racial and religious people were the only ones to suffer, and especially the Turks were (and still are) the villains. You need to open the bandage from your eyes and grasp the whole truth from all aspects - not just the hand picked stories to justify your preconsieved geno- story. Those were the World War-1 years, a time when even the British suffered and died in huge numbers - even the folks living away from the war zone in places like the USA died in huge numbers due to epidemics.
My dad was born (a Muslim/Turkish) in 1916 smack in the middle of Anatolia, in a town far away from the war zone, and yet - his story is just as sad as yours'...
His mom died within days of giving birth to him due to rampant epidemics of those times. His dad died within three months shot by the Armenian militia while he was on his way to cotton picking in Cilicia.
My uncle who was four years old at the time used to describe the last time he saw their dad. Apparently, their dad held the baby (my dad) on one knee and my uncle on the other. And all of a sudden rain drops fell on my uncle. He looked up to discover that it was his dad's tears (probably because he had to leave his baby with three siblings all alone in order to earn food for them).
All the women of the village who gave birth around the same time, breast fed my dad in between their children and so he survived. But their two year old sister died of malnutrition the next year.

Luckily the Turks had a smart leader (named Mustafa Kemal) who lead them to victory after ten more years of fighting, culminating in the establishment of today's Republic of Turkey out of the remnants of the Ottoman Empire however on war torn lands.
I was lucky to be brough up with honorable slogans like "Peace at Home, Peace on Earth". May be you would feel a winner, if your Dashnak leaders of the time, were satisfied with the offer of autonomy promised by the Young Turks in Autumn of 1914 in exchange for their allegiance against the Russian invaders?... But, they chose to join the ranks of Tsarist Russia (150,000 armed men as claimed by Karekin Pastermadjean, A.K.A. Dro in his book "Why Armenia Should be Free" published by the Boston Hairenik Press in 1918). Instead, they chose to kill their Muslim/Turkish neighbors with terrible atrocities.

Oh well!... Your leaders need to share the blame for the suffering that followed. War is something you pay at the exit. You cannot continue to live in a make believe World where you blame everyone else to gain pity for your own self.
Any war sounds like a genocide, if the dead of only one side is counted!...
Below we see manifestations of perfect examples of Turks rewriting history. This is masterful demonstration of tactics of falsifications, manipulations and obfuscations. This shameful practice has one aim only, and that is to deny, deny and deny the factuality of the Armenian genocide. And this is done not without an overt patronizing tone, coupled with insults and defamation of the entire Armenian nation.
There is not one Armenian in the world today who does not have a tragic personal family history connected with this genocide. That is why the entire Armenian nation speaks in one voice on this subject...to the chagrin of modern leadership of the republic of Turkey.
It is disturbing to read Turks pirating the experiences of Armenian and other Christian victims and presenting them as their own. Rape, pillaging, theft of properties were committed on the defenceless Armenian, Assyrian populations, who happened to be Christian. Those who committed the pogroms and genocide happen to be Muslims and we are chastised for mentioning this fact.
As the son of survivors of the Armenian genocide, whose entire families were decimated in the cruelest manner, I suggest the Turkish contributors to show a minimal respect to the memories of the murdered ancestors of the Armenians and, yes, other Christian subjects of the Empire and start facing the terrible legacy of a criminal past handed to them by their predecessor regime. Learn something from post-war Germany.
To start with, Turks must refrain from cowardly reversal of historical sufferings of their victims upon themselves. Stop transposing the inhuman treatment of Armenians, as attested even by Turkish Prime Minister Davutoglu in a recent speech, upon themselves. And finally realize that fabricating lies to justify a policy of denial is not only futile but it is a coward's game.
Those Turks who wish to play that game are welcome to crown themselves as such.
Nataniel Sarian
Son of survivors of the Armenian Genocide. My parents; a young girl and a boy whose family members were murdered en masse, on the brinks of death by starvation, saved by Dutch missionaries of Levant.

Here is a summary from

The number of Armenian committee members rounded up in I.stanbul increased from 180 to 235 between the dates April 24 1915 and May 24, 1915 along with 19 Mauser guns, 74 Martini rifles, 111 Winchester guns, 96 maniher, 78 gira, 358 filovir, 3.591 pistols and 45.221 pistol bullets. Obviously they were prepared for another revolt. Why call them ‘intellectuals’.
In April, 60-70 of them were imprisoned in a military warehouse in Ayas and 100 were sent to Cankiri for compulsory residence. Later the detainees’ numbers in Cankiri swelled up to 140 by the end of May. The new comers wandered about the town freely. They were scattered into the houses in groups of three – five men. Some stayed in summer houses Half an hour walkway from the city, but had to show up at the police station every twenty-four hours. The needy were provided daily allowance by the Ministry of the Interior.
They did not ‘disappear’ as claimed by Mr. Robertson. Those found innocent and ill (13 of them) were set free. Gomidas was imprisoned for only 13 days. He became ill after his return to I.stanbul and requested to be sent to Vienna in august 1917. His request was granted by the Ottoman Government.

Turks and friends of Turkey will oppose any and all attempts by Armenians and their supporters to start the clock on April 24, 1915.
Armenians conveniently forget to tell the public that they had killed 120,000 Muslims by the end of 1914 (see page 34, Pope, Stephen "The MacMillan Dictionary of the First World War," London, 1995)
… and another 80,000 during the VAN rebellion (see McCarthy, Arslan, Tas,k?ran, and Turan, "The Armenian Rebellion at Van." University of Utah, Salt Lake City, 2006. )
These horrific numbers come to 1.33 % of the total Ottoman population when the first year of WWI was not even completed yet. Imagine this: 1.33% of American today would be 4.4 million Americans. What would America do if Armenians (or any other people) killed 4.4 million Americans today? Would America stop at TERESET (Temporary Resettlement) like the Ottoman Empire did? Or would another Nagasaki or Hiroshima be on the table? Be honest.
Armenians today are screaming, crying, lying, and pounding your kitchen table with their shoes screaming "Genocide!" every single day, playing poor, starving, helpless victim. But the facts tell us a completely different story; a story of persistent propaganda, violent agitation, systematic terrorism, bloody revolts, supreme treason, territorial demands, raids, assassinations, bombings, murders, and more. All this, spread over protracted period of time, a half century to be exact (1862-1922).
Armenians took up arms against their own government and killed their Muslim neighbors and fellow Ottoman citizens. What's even worse, they heinously handed over the city of Van that they had cleansed of Muslims to the invading Russian armies and then joined thm in search of more Turks to kill. Turks only defended their home. The homeland security measure the Turks took to mitigate this serious wartime military threat was temporary resettlement (TERESET) of the Armenian insurgents and their supporters.
But that is old history. Turks have long since chosen to forgive and forget and forge ahead with hope. Turks built a nation out of the remnants of a collapsed empire and an economy 16th largest in the world today. What did Armenians do in the meantime? They cultivated hatred and vengeance, promoting a bogus genocide. They should blame the Armenian leaders for causing Armenians to undermine a millennium of relatively peaceful cohabitation with Turks in Anatolia. They should hold accountable the Dasnaks, Huncaks, Armenakans, Ramgavars, Nemesis, (and more recently ASALA, JCAG, ARA) and other Armenian terror groups, for sawing discord and polarization in the Ottoman communities and for revolts, terrorism, and treason. Maybe 2015 will provide a forum for civilized debates by honest truth-seekers.
One last thing, Turks did not bomb London and Manchester; or devastate Paris and Marseille; or rained death on Moscow and St. Petersburg. Brits, French and Russians attacked my home. They rained death and destruction on my country. And they used my friend, neighbor, and fellow citizen, Armenian and Greek to backstab me. Should not it be the other way around and that Britain, France, Russia, treasonous Armenians and Greeks be apologizing to Turks?
Son of Turkish Survivors from both Paternal and Maternal Sides

The endless “War years” of 1912-1922 (seferberlik) brought wide-spread death and destruction on to all Ottoman citizens. No Turkish family was left untouched, mine included. Those nameless, faceless, selfless Turkish victims are killed for a second time today with politically motivated and baseless charges of Armenian genocide. Allegations of Armenian genocide are racist and dishonest history. They are racist because they imply only Armenian (or Christian) dead count, the Turkish (or Muslim) dead do not. And the allegations of Armenian genocide are dishonest because they simply dismiss...
...“The Six T’s Of The Turkish-Armenian Conflict”:
1) Tumult : Numerous violent Armenian armed uprisings between 1862-1920.
2) Terrorism: Nalbandian puts the start of Armenian terrorism victimizing Ottoman-Muslims as 1862 which lasted until 1922 when Armenian volunteer gangs in Greek armies tortured, raped, and killed many Turkish civilians in Western Anatolia.
3) Treason: Armenians joining the invading enemy armies as early as 1914 and lasting until 1922. Armenian volunteers traitorously carried uniforms of the invaders (Russia, France, Britain and Greece) and raped and pillaged Turkish villages exterminating their Turkish population. Still no remorse by Armenians to this date.
4) Territorial Demands: From 1877 to present, in regions where Armenians were a minority, not a majority, attempting to establish Greater Armenia, which if succeeded, would have been one of the first apartheids of the 20th Century, with a tiny Christian minority ruling over a massive Muslim majority.
5) Turkish Suffering And Losses : More than 3 million Muslims, mostly Turks, died during WWI; 1.1 million of them in Eastern Anatolia alone; and half a million of those at the hands of Armenian revolutionaries. Compare that with less than 300,000 Armenian casualties (Gurun) which number is shamelessly magnified to 1.5 million over the years through sheer Armenian propaganda. (Bottom line: more Turks than Armenians perished; what kind of genocide is that? Answer: a bogus one.)
6) TERESET : Temporary resettlement order of May 31, 1915. Triggered by the first five T’s above and amply documented as such; not to be equated to the Armenian misrepresentations as genocide.
What the world needs today is more honest research, reasoned debate, and civilized dialogue; not name-calling, demonizing, and polarization.
Son of Turkish Survivors From Both Paternal & Maternal Sides
It is surprising that an academician Like Robertson still uses the fake Hitler quote. Only the two versions of the Hitler speech which do not contain the "Who afterall remembers..." section were accepted as evidence during the Nuremberg Trials.
Most commenters favoring the Armenian thesis emphasise that the Armenians are Christian and Turks are Muslim. With this, could they be trying to gain the support of Western Christian Powers. Only someone who knows deep down that he is on the wrong side of the argument would revert to such tactics!
I recommend this comment which has many factual and some first hand information. Mr Robertson should have the courtesy to answer as he freely accuses Turkey and the Turks:
While I respect Mr Robertson's conviction, I am afraid personal feelings and convictions are not sufficient to justify demonizing an entire country and its people with the most serious crime of genocide. I am thankful that we have another inconvenient truth that is called "law" to stop lynch mobs all of whom are known to have similarly strong convictions.

The United Nations 1948 Convention on Prevention and Punishment of Genocide provides the definition of genocide and stipulates that genocide charges can only be litigated at a "competent tribunal" which shall follow "due process" to prove "intent to destroy." Such was never done in the case of Turkish-Armenian conflict and no court verdict exists saying it is genocide. To call it one anyway would be defrauding the unsuspecting public that there is a genocide verdict when we all know that there is not. So calling it genocide would be a fraud.
In a landmark decision, The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) unequivocally supported the above position in its Dec 17, 2013 verdict on Perincek vs Switzerland that "[t]he existence of a 'genocide', which was a precisely defined legal concept, was not easy to prove". The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) added: "doubted that there could be a general consensus… given that historical research was, by definition, open to discussion and a matter of debate, without necessarily giving rise to final conclusions or to the assertion of objective and absolute truths". Thus, the ECHR created a legal precedent of inadmissibility of any comparison between the Holocaust and the Armenian claims; the latter lacks what the former clearly has: concrete historical facts, clear legal basis, and existence of the "acts had been found by an international court to be clearly established". Let the facts speak for themselves.
The Jewish Holocaust is a court-proven genocide and there is a competent tribunal that went through due process to prove intent to exterminate. Remember Nuremberg? Where is the Armenian Nuremberg? To call 1915 a genocide would be to equate "official" Armenian narrative to real Jewish experience. It would be an insult to the silent memory of six million Jews who were killed just for being Jews. Whereas Armenians resorted to terrorism (1862-1922,) revolts (1882-1920,) and treason (1878-1920) and caused 519,000 Turks and other Muslims to meet their tragic ends at the hands of Armenian revolutionaries. Jews did not do any of those heinous acts in 1930s or 1940s. So how can any decent human being measure the two events by the same yardstick: genocide ? That is why the UN, the US, the UK, Australia, Israel, Sweden and many other countries do not accept the useof the term genocide to describe the Turkish-Armenian conflict.
Armenian Genocide is an oft-repeated fallacy and a long-discredited political claim promoted by Armenians and others who have only been exposed to the official Armenian narrative during their upbringing and education. These people, for example, can never explain a photo like this (see www.ethocide.com) where Armenian cadets at the Armenian Military Academy , established in 1906 in Bulgaria, arrogantly brandish their Russian-made Mosin weapons. They cannot because they have never heard about the Armenian Military Academy in Bulgaria whose cadets practiced their art of killing on my grandparents in the village of KIRLIKOVA. They cannot because they have never heard terms like Dashnaks, Hunchaks, Armenakans, Ramgavar, Nemesis, and more, names of Armenian terrorist gangs, who, collectively, killed 519,000 Turks and other Muslims during WWI.
I am the son of Turkish survivors from both paternal and maternal sides. My father was the sole survivor of the village of KIRLIKOVA--hence my family name--where the entire Turkish population of the village and the four neighboring Turkish villages were exterminated by Bulgarian and Greek irregulars, helped by Ottoman-Armenian cadets from the Armenian military academy nearby (www.ethocide.com .) So where is my pain in the alleged Armenian genocide narration ?
atilla oguz ID0471078
Turkey already hosts more than 2 million refugees, yezidis, kurds arabs.. So far Turkey says it has spent $4 billion on the refugee crisis..How about EU,USA or armenians???
Not only armenians also muslim turks, arabs were victims of WW1
At the end of WW1, 5 million Turks were exiled from their homes, or killed in balkans caucasus ..

sportsmoosh Can Ali Gurguc
more turkish propaganda, combined with ignorance
you cant really blame them, they brain wash everyone, half of their military training is devoted to brain washing them regarding armenians
sportsmoosh atilla oguz
you might fool a 6th grader with all that propaganda
Geoffrey Robertson is on the mark when he writes about Ottoman Turks killing members of an "the ancient Christian race". Just like ISIS today where Islam is used as pretext to eliminating non-Muslims; Yezidi, Christian, and even non-Sunni Muslim communities from the occupied areas, the Turkish government in 1915 used Islam to inflame passions for the sole purpose of achieving a political/military aim. That aim was the elimination of the Christian subjects of the Ottoman Empire.
When we talk of the Armenian Genocide we are also talking of a Turkish campaign towards eliminating ALL Christian communities, including Assyrian, Chaldian, Greek citizens of the Empire. Therefore, mentioning the Christian character of the victims committed by Muslims is neither prejudicial nor racist, it is just stating the facts.
ID0471078 FDemirmen
Talk about poking holes in a posted commentary.
To blame the Armenians today for the loss of Sarikamis battle against the Russians is to repeat the same excuses that Enver Pasha gave in 1915 which had more to do with saving his sorry self, and cover up his incompetence.
The Sarikamis campaign stands out as the biggest blunder of the Ottoman army in WWI. Led by Enver Pasha, the Military Minister, it was ill planned, badly executed, and showed utter incompetence on the part of Enver. It was his inept leadership that led to the deaths of many of 80 000 soldiers killed in this battle.
The Armenian conscripts of the Ottoman Empire performed admirably and thanks to Armenian soldiers Enver Pasha was saved from being taken prisoner by the Russians on the Sarikamish front. Enver even sent a letter of gratitude to Archbishop Zaven Der Yéghiayan, the Armenian Patriarch of Istanbul in 1915.
But since blaming Armenians for all the ills in the Empire was a popular excuse, and a plan to eradicate of the Armenians of the Empire was in place, the defeat at Sarikamish became the pretext to blame Armenian soldiers of treachery. On Feb. 12, 1915 Enver Pasha signed the order to disarm Armenian soldiers to force them become “amel tabouri” (labor battalions) and “hamal tabouri” (porter battalions). This was followed by their isolation and disarmament of Armenian officers. Enver later followed these with the order to eliminate all Armenian soldiers in the Ottoman Army.
Few reflections by Turkish sources on this issue. Considering the heavy handed censorship that exists today Turkey one needs to read between the lines of these mild reflections.
Hurriyet Daily News January 1, 2015
The Sar?kam?s, operation started on Dec. 22, 1914, under the command of Enver Pas,a to thwart the Russian Caucasus Army gathered in the area of Sar?kam?s,, Selim and Kars. The Turkish Third Army, which lost huge number of soldiers due to winter conditions rather than battle wounds, was defeated on Jan. 5, 1915.
Worldbulletin.net December 26, 2013
An estimated 60-80,000 soldiers died when a military maneuver during the First World War went terribly wrong, trapping a 90,000-strong army branch in the freezing winter cold in the district of Sarikamis in a December 1914-January 1915 campaign.
Geoffrey Robertson’s “expose” of 1915 events is so full of holes, you can drive a truck through them. Still worse, in statements like “… the crime against humanity committed by the Ottoman Turks by killing the major part of this ancient Christian race,” M. Robertson reveals religious prejudice bordering on racism. No nation owes apology or reparations to a group for committing treason. Armed Armenian gangs and volunteers closely collaborated with Russians against Ottoman Turks during World War I. During the winter of 1914/1915, some 80,000 Turkish troops perished at the battle of Sarikamis; Armenian militias colluding with the Russian army had a major role in this disaster. At the Lausanne Peace Treaty, that followed the Sèvres Treaty, “Armenian question” was not even on the agenda. As J. Kachaznuni, the first PM of the Armenian Republic at the Dashnak Convention in Bucharest in 1923 observed, for the tragic events that befell Armenians the fault lies nowhere but at the Armenian revolutionaries themselves. They took arms against Turks and were blinded by false promises of European powers. Yet, after a century, the West is blissfully silent or ignorant about the loss of more than half a million Muslims that fell victim to Armenian violence and plunder during that period.
In arguing the application of the term “genocide” to the 1915 events, Mr. Robertson is apparently unaware of the fact that the Armenian population living in the western part of Anatolia including Istanbul was exempted from relocation orders – nullifying the “racial or religious group” caveat in the 1948 Convention. He also ignores that the Ottoman central government’s instructions to local authorities specified that refugees must be transported in such a way as to ensure their safety and safeguard their belonging. This is a fact based on Ottoman government archives, not hearsay.
In short, before accusing Turks of the crime of genocide, Mr. Robertson should first learn some history, not the least the words of Sir Eric Drummond, Secretary-General of the League of Nations, in 1920: “Criminal elements on the Muslim side were outside the control of the Ottoman government.” “Genocide” is a closely defined legal term, and there is no court verdict as to “Armenian genocide.” Mr. Robertson should know that. He should also not sideline or gloss over the Malta Tribunal under the pretense, “there was no international criminal law at the time.” The British had their own criminal law. If any apology on the 1915 events is due, it should first come from the Armenian side. Period.
Geoffrey Robertson quotes many who claim the actions that befell the Armenians is a crime. He clearly infers affirmative advocacy to that end. The title of the article states that Armenians view the genocide as a crime. A crime denotes an unlawful act that punishable.
That act of genocide left Armenia a land-locked, ex-soviet republic, not the result of a natural process of state evolution, but rather the post-genocide repository of genocide survivors.
Justice demands that punishment fit the crime -- the penalty must be proportionate to the injury. While Mr. Robertson's offer of Mt Ararat in reconciliation is most gracious, commensurate reparations not only include land (enough to assure Armenian self-viability) but monetary compensation for what was lost to the Armenian people over the past century. A large portion of the economic wealth Turkey has enjoyed comes from confiscated Armenian gold, land, infrastructure, agriculture, animals, water, etc.
Yerevan, Armenia
Can Ali Gurguc
Armenians have a very limited knowledge of being a free state.What happened at Eastern Anatolia one century ago is not a genocide.It is supression of an uprising against government provoked by some foreign nations.What happens during the action are exactly similar to the conditions of any war.Uprising was the choice of Armenians.They were so lost with their ideal,They did not hesitate to wear enemies's uniforms.They fought to kill.They burned villages And massecared people.Ofcourse, they lost their loved ones.Armenians were on the sid e of nations that won the war but They did not enjoy victory.Almost a century of Russian dominance followed.I suppose they are happy about this since they don't talk about it.Is Armenia
One wonders why people resort to inaccurate informations, misinformation or delve into pure propaganda to score "a point". When the issue of the Armenian genocide is discussed the official Turkish denial is well known. In the world of internet, where any misinformation takes wings and becomes a reference source, "copy and paste"-ing becomes a popular activity for the desperate.
Two recent such "information" are a) so-called Armenian-Nazi collaboration, b) Armenians having mass-exterminated Jews, some say 10 000, and some need to bring the toll to 25 000 (looks more damning).
A) There has been no Nazi-Armenian collaboration*. The battalions that were created were formed by Soviet soldiers who were captured in the battlefields. There was an Armenian Battalion, but there were also Georgian, Greek and other Balkan battalions. They were a distrusted bunch by the Nazis and stationed in Netherlands, away from the active fronts.
*The irony of this accusation is magnified even more when Turks who readily "highlight" Nazi collaborations somehow forget about the documented close collaboration that was taking place between the leadership of the Republic of Turkey and the Nazi regime during the hight of WWII.
The famous Israeli scholar Yair Auron has noted in his book "Banality of Denial" that Turkish nationalist efforts to thwart recognition of the Armenian Genocide have resulted in the dissemination of various Turkish propaganda publications in regard to the Armenian Legion aimed at portraying Armenians in negative light.
B) "mass-killings" of Jews by Armenians: This is an even more recent fiction that anti-Armenian Turkish propagandists thrive upon. This is such an outrageous lie that no serious person gives any credence to it. Imagine Jews, both in Diaspora and in Israel with the level of knowledge of their own history and the deep sense of awareness of anti-Semitism and fight against Holocaust denial, know nothing about this so-called Armenian crime of "mass extermination of Jews". This is pure insolence on the part of all those who propagate this lie.
atilla oguz ID0471078
No to manipulation..t is time for a sensible dialogue now; no more name calling as genocidal turks, deception,lies,paranoia or turcophobia.
Armenian propaganda, hearsay and forgeries have run their course.
The source that you are citing does not support the statement that the quote is realiable..BTW Armenians must be really desperate if they are suggesting a delusional homicidal maniac like Hitler as a reliable historical source!!
The existing records of this speech used as evidence during the Nuremberg trials, not containing a reference to Armenians, are already damning enough.
On November 26, 1945, fifth day of Nuremberg Trial Proceedings, US Nuremberg prosecutor Sidney Alderman has resulted as the proof original texts of both Hitler's speeches in Obersalzberg, on August 22, 1939
Read original text OK?

atilla oguz Gayane Atoyan
Both Armenians and Muslims suffered terrible human tragedies, but due to the absence of legal basis and international court’s decision, neither side can claim the deaths among its members to be “more genocidal” than the other’s.
Armenians ignore the dire circumstances that precipitated the enactment of a measure as drastic as mass relocation.. None of the Ottoman orders killings. To the contrary, they order Ottoman officials to protect relocated Armenians...When local Muslims attacked the columns, some armenians were robbed and killed.I am not a fan of kurdish chetes..on the other hand; It must be remembered that these Muslims had themselves suffered greatly at the hands of Armenians and Russians.
In the words of U.S. Ambassador Mark Bristol, "While the Dashnaks were in power they did everything in the world to keep the pot boiling by attacking Kurds, Turks and Tartars by committing outrages against the Moslems
The British Vice-Consul Williams wrote .. Van on 4 March 1896:
"The Dashnaks and Hunchaks have terrorized their own countrymen, they have stirred up the Muslim people with their thefts and insanities,
A report in December 1912, Mayewski wrote that:
"The Dashnak revolutionary society is working to stir up a situation in which Muslims and Armenians will attack each other, and to thus pave the way for Russian intervention.
British Consul General in Adana Doughty Wily wrote in 1909 "The Armenians are working to secure foreign intervention."
I can understand how armenians feel..but we live in 21st century..there is an armenian state and turkish state..The only way to overcome grudge to bury our deads..
Holding a grudge is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die..

About the Hitler quote, it is as real as it gets!
Hitler, in an interview with Richard Breithing, the most respected editor of then conservative-nationalist German daily "Leipziger Nueste Nachrichten", is quote as saying: "new world order is awaiting us...for this... we need to introduce a great resettlement policy (does this ring a bell to our Turkish friends' ears?)...Think of biblical deportations and the massacres of the Middle Ages...and remember the extermination of the Armenians"
source: Edouard Calic, "Ohne Maske", (Unmasked) Hitler-Breiting Geheimgespräche, 1931 (Frankfurt am Mein, 1968), page 8.
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Gayane Atoyan atilla oguz

Its an imaginary lie of Turkish politicians and historians, we all know how they falsify history and do all their best to make Armenians guilty in something that never had happened... everything you write here is a shameful lie and has very short legs. Please don't let to fool yourself... Armenians never have anti-Jewish approach and never killed Muslims if the latter didn't declare war against Armenians because of their ethnicity! this issue is reflected by all the ambassadors early 20th century and the truth about Turkish atrocities against Armenian is documented accurately . Hence this book and this great peace of writing could become a reality!!!! Thank you dear Geoffrey Robertson for the objective work!!!
3d ago
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atilla oguz

If you want analogize jewish holocoust to something...You must start with Armenian Nazis ..Armenian-Nazi collaboration was evident in the activities of the 812th Armenian Battalion of the Nazi Wehrmacht, commanded by Drastamat Kanayan and its successor, the Armenian Legion. Anti-Jewish, pro-Nazi propaganda was published widely in the Armenian-language Hairenik daily and the weekly journal, Armenian chetes in WW1 Armenian.
Ben-David, former undersecretary at the Israeli Embassy in the US referred to the arguments that Armenians killed hundreds of thousands of Muslims and hundreds of Jews in the early 20th century
The ottoman archives suggest thousands of Jews were killed by Armenians. Though the definite number is not known, it is reckoned to be approximately 10,000.

atilla oguz
An Armenian Deception: "Who remembers Armenians? - Adolf Hitler"
Historian of Armenian Descent Says Frequently Used Hitler Quote Is Nothing But a Forgery
Baden-Baden, W. Germany - Dr. Robert John, a historian and political analyst of Armenian descent from New York City, declared here that a commonly used quotation of an alleged statement by Adolf Hitler concerning the Armenian massacres was a forgery and should not be used.
Dr. John demonstrated how he had traced the original document in the Military Branch of the National Archives of the U.S.A. after being handed a folder bearing the quotation at a rally outside the United Nations building in New York following the turkish Intervention in Cyprus
The quotation: "Our strength is in our quickness and our brutality.... For the time being I have sent to the east only Death's Heads units, with the order to kill without pity or mercy all men, women and children... Who talks nowadays of the extermination of the Armenians?"
Dr. John showed slides of this document, undated and unsigned, with some words cut out of the last page. The statement was supposed to have been made at a meeting of the top German staff of the Obersalzberg on August 22, 1939. The document was released to the international press covering the Nuremberg War Crimes trials on Friday, November 23, 1945. The trials had commenced that Monday. The document was one of several made available to the press that day. Two-hundred-fifty copies were given to press correspondents, but only five copies were given to the 17 defense counsels - 24 hours before the Court convened on Monday!
Much later in the trial, the German defense lawyers were able to introduce the most complete account of the address, taken down by German Admiral Hermann Boehm, which runs to 12 pages in translation. There is no mention of the Armenians or the rest of the "quotation."
Dr. Robert John said he believed that the document was introduced to create a climate of hate which was needed to stifle the protests of eminent American jurists such as Sen. R. Taft and Chief Justice Harland Stone. He had discussed it with Gen. Telford Taylor, who had said, "I know the document you mean, I don't know its provenance, and I have not used it in my own work
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Craig Ian Lester

And this happened fifteen years after the Anglo-Boer war... where women, children - both European and African were interred in concentration camps and so many died a terrible death of starvation and outbreaks of disease were common. It took one woman to expose this. Britain - the pot calling the kettle black...
If Turkey is to 'man-up' and become a modern responsible democratic country it needs to acknowledge, deeply apologise and make some form of restitution for this genocide. The article also omits the genocide carried out on Pontian Greeks and Assyrians during the time of theArmenian Genocide. Great numbers of these people were also exterminated at the cruel hands of the Ottomans.
The author correctly states that this year (British) Ministers will be present in Turkey at the centenary ceremonies of Gallipoli landing of the British-Anzac Dardanelles campaign, on April 25 2015. This date is indeed the day every year Turkey, Australia and New Zealand commemorate this event. What the author has left out, regretfully, is the fact that this year the Turkish President, Mr. Erdogan, has moved the commemorations, with an expressed cynicism, back by one day for the specific reason of sabotaging the Armenian Genocide ceremonies. Every year Armenia and world-wide Armenian communities commemorate the memory of the victims of the genocide on April 24.
How hateful can a leader of a country be, how hateful can a society be to permit their leaders to take such a sinister step and meet their approval. The British leadership should unequivocally answer such hateful decision making in Turkey by sending a high level representative(s) to Armenia on April 24.
ID0471078 martinusher
The one party that is "left out" and who denies these crimes fiercely is Turkey, the heirs of a regime which committed the genocide.
It is a poor argument to say "it wasn't modern Turkey that was responsible" for the crimes. This is a long discredited viewpoint which ignore the fact that "modern" Turkey was established on the ashes of the decimated Armenian nation. Many of the people responsible for this genocide were the founding fathers of today's Turkey.
To say modern Turkey is not responsible is to say post-war Germany was not responsible for the crimes of the Nazis. In technical terms this is correct, however modern Germany did the right thing and took responsibility of the actions of its predecessor regime, and a) apologized, b) paid compensation, c) fights against the negation of the Holocaust.
What does Turkey do? a) denies genocide ever happened, b) blames the victims for for their crime, and go further by accusing Armenians having committed genocide on Turks, c) punishes all those in Turkey who are brave enough to challenge the fictional and fabricated historiography, the current official line in Ankara, d) spends tens of millions of dollars each year to propagate anti-Armenian propaganda that has denial as the ultimate aim, e) presents Armenians as enemies of the state in newly published history books to be taught in Turkish high schools.
Therefore, let's just clarify that Turkey is neither "admitting" nor "moving on". That is why the international community has to send a clear message: Turkey has to stop its anti-Armenian campaigns and recognize the Armenian genocide.
I think there's nobody left out there that denies the genocide against the Armenians. It was literally the prototype for actions against Jews and other racial undesirables a couple of decades later.
Whether there's anything to be gained by flogging that Turkish dead horse is debatable. After all, it wasn't modern Turkey that was responsible but the moribund Ottoman Empire. Still, I can't understand why any government would make stating a historical fact a crime; they should just admit what happened and move on.
patirti Aliki Ny
Well that's your very Greek view, but Turkey is heading towards the Eurasian Economic Union, so both Armenia and Turkey will probably have to reconcile and move forward.
Aliki Ny patirti
There will never be be a mutual acceptance with barbaric Turkey unless they say SORRY for the brutal murders of 1500000 Armenian civilians.And that's the only acceptance Turk the Armenians will make.
Aliki Ny patirti
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patirti thevileparty

Difficult question to answer without falling into an endless pit of argument or having to write a few paragraphs as to why. Turkey's view on events that took place before its existence on 1915-1918 under the Ottoman empire and orchestrated by 'the young turks political reform movement', differs from the claims or views of the Armenians or the 'West' (who have deliberately used this as a bargaining chip, a stalling means... against Turkey for the past half-century or so, or a reason for looking the other way when Turkish diplomats, citizens were murdered by ASALA within their territories).
Turkey can and does respect the view of Armenians and perhaps in the future maybe a mutual acceptance of sorts can be reached by cooperation of historians of both sides on what actually occurred.
Guilt, no, pity, maybe. Armenia is a small poor country, and if not for the Armenian diaspora living in relative luxury in other countries and their lobbying, they probably would be much better off.
patirti thevileparty
Difficult question to answer without falling into an endless pit of argument or having to write a few paragraphs as to why. Turkey's view on events that took place before its existence on 1915-1918 under the Ottoman empire and orchestrated by 'the young turks political reform movement', differs from the claims or views of the Armenians or the 'West' (who have deliberately used this as a bargaining chip, a stalling means... against Turkey for the past half-century or so, or a reason for looking the other way when Turkish diplomats, citizens were murdered by ASALA within their territories).
Turkey can and does respect the view of Armenians and perhaps in the future maybe a mutual acceptance of sorts can be reached by cooperation of historians of both sides on what actually occurred.
Guilt, no, pity, maybe. Armenia is a small poor country, and if not for the Armenian diaspora living in relative luxury in other countries and their lobbying, they probably would be much better off.
Turkey should be left out of NATO.
A close friendship of Europe and USA with Russia is better for Europe than a close friendship with Turkey in the long term. After all the land of Turkey as we know it, has been christian, greek, armenian and syriac longer than muslim or ethnic turkish. Turkey would never be as big as it has been enjoying if Rome (compare to Washington) and Constantinople (compare to Moscow) were not in dispute. As a result there are even more christians who live freely in Iran than Turkey today. This fate is waiting also Europe and Russia in case pan-turkic ideology is allowed to flourish because Turkey openly ranks
1. turkish ethnicity
2. sunni-islam,
3. other islamic-denominations, and finally
4. non-turkish ethnicities, christians, ezidis etc.
in its militaro-political actions. It is secret to none that they are supporting IS, to reduce the kurdish threat, even if Kurds are predominantly sunni.

 thevileparty patirti
Don't you feel at least a bit guilty about Turkey's refusal to recognise the Arminian genocide ?
P.s . You bear no personal responsibility.

    But the Treaty of Sèvres, designed to punish the Young Turks for this “colossal crime” – now called “genocide” – was never implemented.
The Treaty of Sèvres wasn't implemented because of the Turkish war of independence, where even with antiquated weaponry Turks managed to be victorious against forces of Greece, Armenia, France, UK, British India, Italy, Georgia, Ottoman Empire, US, Kurds (Iraqi)... and in 1923 formed Turkey, so get over it, once and for all. If the west needs to go on like a vinyl record stuck on a track, and play this 'game' it should also be prepared for the repercussions / results of it, on all fronts.
    In 1915 Britain was determined to expose the Armenian genocide
In 1918 Britain promised the Kurds their own state - only to renege a year later in favor of maintaining economic relations with ... the Turks.
The British attitude to this is no surprise. Turkey is apparently so important an ally (although it is hard to see on what grounds) that their active support of ISIS is ignored. They buy ISIS oil, they provide access to ISIS controlled territory, they allow training and supplying of ISIS fighters and they even allow arms supplies. And yet, the UK pretends Turkey is a friend and a normal NATO ally. If the UK can ignore all this, pretending a genocide didn't happen a century ago is easy.
    In Turkey, today, you can go to jail – and some do – for affirming that there was a genocide in 1915; this counts as the crime of “insulting Turkishness
Because of stuff like this, it's a relief that Turkey joining the EU is now almost impossible. They would prefer to be an authoritarian, non-secular regime instead it seems.

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