3742) James Bryce – The Historian Who Sold Out

By Dr Pat Walsh 2020-02-14

I am grateful for the following contribution from a reader:

The Year 1915 in the Ottoman Empire and the Work of the War Propaganda Bureau at Wellington House

– A Departure Point for the Truth Seeker –

James Bryce’s “The Treatment of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire 1915-1916”, (London: G.P.Putnam’s Sons for HMSO, 1916) is the No. 1 baseless source of the Armenian claims regarding the incidents of 1915 in the Ottoman Empire.

Bryce was, it appears, at first a staunch advocate of “Teutonic Freedom” (Keith G. Robbins, “Lord Bryce and the First World War”, The Historical Journal, Vol.10, No.2 (1967), p.255), then was forced to change his views when he was 77 years old and work for “Report of the Committee an Alleged German Outrages, Presided by, James Bryce, (NY: Macmillan and Co., 1915) which became his first book wartime propaganda.

Britain had set up the War Propaganda Bureau (WPB) at Wellington House for the sole purpose of promoting lies and misinformation on Germany and the Ottoman Empire. The Allies were in . . .

full co-operation with Protestant missionaries in Anatolia and their diplomatic missions in Istanbul conjured a so called Armenian genocide based on gossip, hear-say and erroneous information. The real purpose behind this exercise was to create and strengthen an image in the minds of Allied armies and nations that Turks were evil, horrible and untrustworthy.

Jameson Ryley’s article in The Iowa Historical Review, “The Historian Who Sold Out: James Bryce and the Bryce Report” reaffirms the fact that Bryce was a mere propagandist.


Quite astonishingly, “his days as a student at the University of Heidelberg gave him a long-life admiration of German historical and legal scholarship. He became a believer in “Teutonic freedom”, an ill-defined concept that was held to bind Germany, Britain, and the United States together. For him, the United States, the British Empire and Germany were natural friends”.

(Robbins, Keith G. (1967). “Lord Bryce and the First World War”, The Historical Journal. 10 (2): 255–278).

Thus, Bryce, it appears was an early example of proto-fascism too (Bryce, The Relations of the Advanced and the Backward Races of Mankind, Romanes Lecture, 1902) Bryce later shelved his “Teutonic” views as seen in “Essays and Addresses in War Time 1918”,
(https://archive.org/details/essaysaddressesi01bryc/page/n6/mode/2up) where he rigorously discussed “War and Human Progress” (pp.72-103), trying to vindicate himself that it was in fact not war but peace required for the human progress.

The birth of the narrative of the Armenian “genocide”, had therefore a nefarious origin, an origin which attempted to employ as instruments almost all the peoples of the Ottoman Empire for the purposes of destruction, in which in taking down the Ottomans these people would be collateral damage n modern terminology.

Source: James Bryce – The Historian Who Sold Out



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