A reliable source of information is the book of Henry Morgenthau:
"American Ambassador at Constantinople from 1913 to 1916", where the honest diplomat reveals the facts that have
taken place in Turkey during that period:
"I have therefore laid aside any scruples I had as to the propriety of disclosing to my fellow countrymen the facts which I
learned while representing them in Turkey. I acquired this knowledge as the servant of the American people, and it is their property
as much as it is mine."
In his book, chapter XXII (The Turk reverts to the ancestral type) the American Ambassador (of jewish origin) quotes: "New Turkey, freed from European tutelage, celebrated its national rebirth by murdering not far from a million of its own subjects..... I think that these old Turks present the most complete illustration in history of the brigand idea in politics. They were lacking in what we may call the fundamentals of a civilized community. They had no alphabet and no art of writing; no books, no poets, no art, and no architecture; they built no cities and they established no lasting state. They knew no law except the rule of might, and they had practically no agriculture and no industrial organization. They were simply wild and marauding horsemen, whose one conception of tribal success was to pounce upon people who were more civilized than themselves and plunder them. In the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries these tribes overran the cradles of modern civilization, which have given Europe its religion and, to a large extent, its civilization.... And for centuries the Turks simply lived like parasites upon these overburdened and industrious people. They taxed them to economic extinction, stole their most beautiful daughters and forced them into their harems, took Christian male infants by the hundreds of thousands and brought them up as Moslem soldiers.... And now the Young Turks, who had adopted so many of Abdul Hamid's ideas, also made his Armenian policy their own. Their passion for Turkifying the nation seemed to demand logically the extermination of all Christians---Greeks, Syrians, and Armenians. Much as they admired the Mohammedan conquerors of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, they stupidly believed that these great warriors had made one fatal mistake, for they had had it in their power completely to obliterate the Christian populations and had neglected to do so. This policy in their opinion was a fatal error of statesmanship and explained all the woes from which Turkey has suffered in modern times. Had these old Moslem chieftains, when they conquered Bulgaria, put, all the Bulgarians to the sword, and peopled the Bulgarian country with Moslem Turks, there would never have been any modern Bulgarian problem and Turkey would never have lost this part of her empire. Similarly, had they destroyed a ll the Rumanians, Serbians, and Greeks, the provinces which are now occupied by these races would still have remained integral parts of the Sultan's domain. They felt that the mistake had been a terrible one, but that something might be saved from the ruin. They would destroy all Greeks, Syrians, Armenians, and other Christians, move Moslem families into their homes and into their farms, and so make sure that these territories would not similarly be taken away from Turkey. In order to accomplish this great reform, it would not be necessary to murder every living Christian. The most beautiful and healthy Armenian girls could be taken, converted forcibly to Mohammedanism, and made the wives or concubines of devout followers of the Prophet. Their children would then automatically become Moslems and so strengthen the empire, as the Janissaries had strengthened it formerly. These Armenian girls represent a high type of womanhood and the Young Turks, in their crude, intuitive way, recognized that the mingling of their blood with the Turkish population would exert a eugenic influence upon the whole. Armenian boys of tender years could be taken into Turkish families and be brought up in ignorance of the fact that they were anything but Moslems....
Chapter XXIV (The murder of a nation): "Let me relate a single episode which is contained in one of the reports of our consuls and which now forms part of the records of the American State Department. Early in July, 2,000 Armenian "ameles" (such is the Turkish word for soldiers who have been reduced to workmen) were sent from Harpoot to build roads. The Armenians in that town understood what this meant and pleaded with the Governor for mercy. But this official insisted that the men were not to be harmed, and he even called upon the German missionary, Mr. Ehemann, to quiet the panic, giving that gentleman his word of honour that the ex-soldiers would be protected. Mr. Ehemann believed the Governor and assuaged the popular fear. Yet practically every man of these 2,000 was massacred, and his body thrown into a cave. A few escaped, and it was from these that news of the massacre reached the world. A few days afterward another 2,000 soldiers were sent to Diarbekir. The only purpose of sending these men out in the open country was that they might be massacred. In order that they might have no strength to resist or to escape by flight, these poor creatures were systematically starved. Government agents went ahead on the road, notifying the Kurds that the caravan was approaching and ordering them to do their congenial duty. Not only did the Kurdish tribesmen pour down from the mountains upon this starved and weakened regiment, but the Kurdish women came with butcher's knives in order that they might gain that merit in Allah's eyes that comes from killing a Christian. These massacres were not isolated happenings; I could detail many more episodes just as horrible as the one related above; throughout the Turkish Empire a systematic attempt was made to kill all able-bodied men, not only for the purpose of removing all males who might propagate a new generation of Armenians, but for the purpose of rendering the weaker part of the population an easy prey.... As a preliminary to the searches everywhere, the strong men of the villages and towns were arrested and taken to prison. Their tormentors here would exercise the most diabolical ingenuity in their attempt to make their victims declare themselves to be "revolutionists" and to tell the hiding places of their arms. A common practice was to place the prisoner in a room, with two Turks stationed at each end and each side. The examination would then begin with the bastinado. This is a form of torture not uncommon in the Orient; it consists of beating the soles of the feet with a thin rod. At first the pain is not marked; but as the process goes slowly on, it develops into the most terrible agony, the feet swell and burst, and not infrequently, after being submitted to this treatment, they have to be amputated. The gendarmes would bastinado their Armenian victim until he fainted; they would then revive him by sprinkling water on his face and begin again. If this did not succeed in bringing their victim to terms, they had numerous other methods of persuasion. They would pull out his eyebrows and beard almost hair by hair; they would extract his finger nails and toe nails; they would apply red-hot irons to his breast, tear off his flesh with red-hot pincers, and then pour boiled butter into the wounds. In some cases the gendarmes would nail hands and feet to pieces of wood---evidently in imitation of the Crucifixion, and then, while the sufferer writhed in his agony, they would cry: " Now let your Christ come and help you!"
Below you can read the american - british press of that era:
The New York Times
December 4, 1922 Page 16, Col. 3
THE STATESMANSHIP OF EXTERMINATION.
What The Times thinks about the morality of the Turkish plan to drive every Greek and Armenian out of Turkey--which means that a great many of them will die or be murdered on the way, and that others will fall victims to famine or pestilence in their places of refuge--has already been said. It has been pointed out, too, that the serious thing is not so much the morality of the Turk, which has been fairly well known to the world for several centuries but that of the so-called Christian Powers which stood by and were consenting.
The British Government protested in the name of humanity when the Greek revolutionaries shot a group of ex-Ministers and Generals. But when the Turks announce that a million Greeks are to be expelled from the country where they have lived since two thousand years before the Turks were heard of, and driven out to die, Lord Curzon's moral scruples are satisfied with a request for two weeks delay. Politicians it seems can be knocked by killings only when the victims are other politicians.
Even granting that this eviction on a grand scale will be successful--as apparently it will--what is to become of Turkey? What will become of the deported Greeks and Armenians is, unhappily plain enough. What of the Turks who will be left to undisturbed enjoyment of the country which has been somewhat inexactly called their homeland? Their friends make much of their "racial vitality" which has been demonstrated by the national revival. But racial vitality which exhausts itself in a capacity for fighting diplomatic intrigue and a low grade of agriculture is poor equipment for a nation in the twentieth century, especially for a nation occupying a country of enormous strategic and military importance. Already there is trouble in Smyrna. The expulsion of the Greeks and Armenians has ruined the town. What has happened in Smyrna will happen in Constantinople if the Christian population is expelled. Turkey will be left a nation of peasants, and the business which was formerly done by Greeks and Armenians will have to be done by somebody other than the Turks.
It is too much to suppose that the world will leave the Turks to till their fields and enjoy the pleasant spectacle of deserted and ruined cities undisturbed by the complications of modern business. Somebody is going after the iron and the oil. The great cultured nations of Western Europe which watch calmly the annihilation of some of the oldest stocks of European culture may be calm because they think they will get a bigger share of the business with resident business men out of the way. But business there must be: even the Turks will need it. And the killing off of the races that have done the business hitherto will merely widen the field for that foreign intrigue which the Near East has known for centuries and will continue to know so long as weak or incompetent States lie in the zone between Asia and Europe.
Constantinople, Oct. 2  (Associated Press).
"The cries of the Christian refugees of Smyrna for water and food are met by a Turkish lash," said Dr. Esther Lovejoy of New York, President of the of the American Women's Hospital, who has just returned here after a week's survey in the stricken city. Dr. Lovejoy declared that the world has not been told the real story of the fire and horror.
"There are still several hundred thousand Christians in Smyrna and the interior whose lives are in peril, for the time limit of their evacuation has expired," she said. "Only Providence knows what their fate will be. The crowds on the quay are so great that some of them are pushed into the sea. Women stood waist deep in the water, holding their babies aloft in their arms to save them from drowning.
"Turkish soldiers are systematically robbing the men and wrenching the rings from the women. The wretched sufferers are willing to be robbed if the robbing can purchase life. "At night the Turkish soldiers commit excesses against the women and girls. Only when searchlights from the ships in the harbor are turned on them do they desist. In terror of the Turks the refugees are packed in thousands in front of the American Consulate.
"There are more than 100 mothers who gave birth to babies. Some were delivered while standing. I attended many. Some of the infants died within a few hours from exposure, but the mothers clung pitifully to the dead bodies of the little things." Dr. Lovejoy said that a Turkish soldier, mistaking her for a Greek woman, struck her heavily with the butt end of a rifle and left a mark. This soldier was about to strike her again when an American officer intervened. She declared that she saw two men attempting to escape by swimming out to a boat. They were discovered by Turkish soldiers, who fired on them. The shots were wild, and American bluejackets were able to pick up the two men in a motor boat before they were killed. One of the doctors, asserted Dr. Lovejoy saw a Greek woman cut her throat and then hurl herself into the water, where she was drowned.
Dr. Lovejoy declared that Americans at home could not begin to visualize the terrible anguish of the refugees as their loved ones were torn from them, children being separated from their mother and the fathers being sent into the interior. Refugees who were evacuated had to pass through a series of gates, she said. Dr. Lovejoy described how at each gate they were stripped of their belongings. Including their money and clothing. In some cases the women were forced to undress so that they could not take any funds with them. By the time a refugee woman reached the last gate her clothes were in tatters.
Dr. Lovejoy described the sanitary conditions in Smyrna as unspeakable. The whole city, she said, was befouled. She thought that the Turkish officers were doubtless unaware of the misbehavior of their soldiers. In many cases the officers showed real compassion for the refugees, she said. She mentioned one instance in which a Turk threw himself across the body of a child in order to save it from being trampled to death. American relief workers in Athens have sent the following telegram to the headquarters of their organization here: "About 25,000 refugees are at Piraeus, and more are expected. The American committee is caring for thousands of mothers and babies. A local newspaper is raising a million-drachmae fund."
"The Turks have decided upon a war of extermination against their Christian subjects."
The circular of the Turkish Ministry of Education of 14 April 2003.
German Ambassador Wangenheim to German Chancellor von Bulow, quoting Turkish Prime Minister Sefker Pasha, July 24, 1909.
"The anti-Greek and anti-Armenian persecutions are two phases of one programme - the extermination of the Christian element from Turkey."
Father J. Lepsius, German clergyman, July 31, 1915.
"...the entire Greek population of Sinope and the coastal region of the county of Kastanome has been exiled. Exile and extermination in Turkish are the same, for whoever is not murdered, will die from hunger or illness."
Herr Kuchhoff, German consul in Amissos in a despatch to Berlin, July 16, 1916.
"On 26 November, Rafet Bey told me: ‘We must finish off the Greeks as we did with the Armenians’...On 28 November, Rafet Bey told me: ‘Today, I sent squads to the interior to kill every Greek on sight.’ I fear for the elimination of the entire Greek population and a repeat of what occurred last year."
Herr Kwiatkowski, Austro-Hungarian consul in Amissos to Baron von Burian, Foreign Minister of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, November 30, 1916
"Consuls Bergfeld in Samsun and Schede in Kerasun report of displacement of local population and murders. Prisoners are not kept. Villages reduced to ashes. Greek refugee families consisting mostly of women and children being marched from the coasts to Sebasteia. The need is great."
German Ambassador Kuhlman to German Chancellor Hollweg, December 13, 1916. Herr Pallavicini, Ambassador of Austria-Hungary to Turkey, writes to Vienna, listing the villages in the region of Amissos that were being burnt to the ground, their inhabitants raped and either murdered or exiled, December 19, 1916:
"The situation for the displaced is desperate. Death awaits them all. I spoke to the Grand Vizier and told him that it would be sad if the persecution of the Greek element took the same scope and dimension as the Armenian persecution. The Grand Vizier promised that he would influence Talaat Bey and Enver Pasha."
Austro-Hungarian Ambassador Pallavicini to Vienna, January 20, 1917
Morgenthau's successor as Ambassador to Turkey, Abram Elkus, cabled the U.S. State Department in 1916 that the Young Turks were continuing an ". . . unchecked policy of extermination through starvation, exhaustion, and brutality of treatment hardly surpassed even in Turkish history."
"The time is near for Turkey to be finished with the Greeks as we were with the Armenians in 1915."
Talaat Bey as quoted by an Austro-Hungarian agent, January 31, 1917
"...the indications are that the Turks plan to eliminate the Greek element as enemies of the state, as they did earlier with the Armenians. The strategy implemented by the Turks is of displacing people to the interior, without taking measures for their survival by exposing them to death, hunger and illness. The abandoned homes are then looted and burnt or destroyed. Whatever was done to the Armenians is being repeated with the Greeks."
Chancellor Hollweg of Germany, February 9, 1917.
Professor Marjorie Housepian Dobkin writes:
Siueeyman Kuelce in his book (Maresal Fevzi Cakmak) implicitly concedes that General Nourredin, commander of the army which took over Smyrna on September 9, 1922, was responsible for the massacre and the fire. Kuelce blames the general for his "myopic" outlook. His view is supported by Falih Rifki Atay, author of Cankaya. Atatuerkuen Dogumundan Qeluemuene Kadar (Chankaya. From Ataturk's Birth up to his Death), Istanbul: n.p., 1980. Atay writes of the two "lynches"-one in Ismid in July 1922, by which time some of the surviving deportees had returned, and the other involving the Greek Metropolitan of Izmir-and both producing in the author "nothing but revulsion" (p. 324). Quoting from notes he made at the time of the fire, Atay continues: "Why were we burning Izmir? [Izmiri nicin yakiyorduk?] Were we afraid that we would not be delivering ourselves from the [sway] of the minorities in case the mansions, hotels and cafes were left to remain? Driven by the same fear we put to the torch all the inhabitable quarters and neighborhoods of the Anatolian cities and towns during the World War I Armenian deportations." (p. 323) Atay also emphasizes the bigotry and "penchant for arrogance and cruelty" of Army Commander Noureddin on whom he blames the burning of Smyrna (an act Kemal was evidently unable or unwilling to prevent). Noureddin's actions, according to Atay, were "undoubtedly . . . reinforced by ... the ruins of Turkish villages which the Greeks since their retreat from Afyon had been reducing to ashes" (p. 325).
The destruction of Carthage and the great fires of Rome and London ring familiar echoes in the Western consciousness today, but the spectacular destruction of a great city a mere fifty years ago has been largely forgotten. Indeed the period 1914-22 in Turkey appears by now to have fallen into an historical abyss between the mountain of writings concerned with the end of the Ottoman Empire and the growing mound of books dealing with Kemal Ataturk's republic. In the midst of such historical indifference the Turks officially continue to maintain that the “alleged massacres” of Armenians in 1915 were merely the measures necessary to put down a revolt. The Greeks, they insist, set the torch to Smyrna in 1922. The historical consensus as reflected in the Encyclopaedia Britannica appears to support this view. The 1970 edition refers to the city's destruction in terms of “war damage” inflicted during the Greek retreat. It emphasizes “atrocities against the Turkish population” during the Greek occupation in 1919. Taking their cue from Toynbee,* most British and American experts on modern Turkish history continue to overlook the shortcomings and to extol the virtues of Turkey's emergent nationalism under the Young Turks and Mustafa Kemal, whose title Ataturk, “Father of the Turks”, was bestowed by his countrymen in recognition of his services. The liquidation of the minorities, when mentioned at all, is weighed as a fundamental advance toward homogeneity.
“Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians,” Hitler declared as he announced his own plans for genocide to his Supreme Commanders on 22 August 1939. "The world believes in success alone."
Excerpted from the book Realms of Gold: An Iliad of Our Time by Arthur N. Frangos:
"Following an ancient tradition that extended back in time to his ancestor, Tamerlane, Kemal allowed his troops to sack the city and annihilate its Christian inhabitants at will. This time, however, tradition conveniently facilitated policy, for Kemal was determined to solve the "minorities question" once and for all. He intended on nothing less than the complete elimination of all non-assimilable minorities from the soil of Turkey by any means necessary. If the Allies chose to evacuate their Christian brethren in time, fine -- if not, other "more traditional" means would be employed. Meanwhile, custom would be observed and Kemal's victorious troops would be allowed to rape, loot, and pillage in the ancient and time-honored way of the Turk.......
There, in the street in front of the trembling barber's shop, they sat Chrysostomos on a stool after wrapping a barber's sheet around his neck. A huge Turk with a straight razor grabbed the Archbishop by the beard and jerked his head back violently. "Let's shave the giaour priest, " he shouted. The wild mob soon tired of this diversion and fought to tear out the rest of his beard, while ripping the sacred vestments from his body as they kicked and stomped him mercilessly and smeared his face with dog excrement picked up from the street.....
By Monday night the slaughter was in full swing, as the Turks continued to hunt down their helpless civilian victims in full view of the indifferent Allied fleet at anchor in the harbor. "
New York State's governor George Pataki and the Armenian National Committee have recently added their voices to a growing community of individuals and organizations of conscience that have recognized the genocide of Asia Minor's Greeks by the modern Turkish state.
German parliament confirms Armenian massacre. ISN SECURITY WATCH (22/04/05) - The German parliament has agreed to a resolution asking Ankara to accept the Turkish role in the expulsion and massacre of as many as 1.5 million Armenians during and after World War I.
Statement of George Bush, on Armenian Remembrance Day
For Immediate Release Office of the Press Secretary
April 24, 2005
On Armenian Remembrance Day, we remember the forced exile and mass killings of as many as 1.5 million Armenians during the last days of the Ottoman Empire. This terrible event is what many Armenian people have come to call the "Great Calamity." I join my fellow Americans and Armenian people around the world in expressing my deepest condolences for this horrible loss of life.
Brussels, the 22nd of September, 2004
A few years ago, the Turkish Minister of Education revealed his true intentions by deciding to brainwash university students and secondary school pupils and make them regard accusations concerning the genocide committed by Turkey as "lies about genocide". Through a circular from Dr. Hüseyin Çelik, the current Turkish Minister of Education, teachers of primary and secondary schools are obliged to create resistance among the pupils to the so-called "unjustified accusations of Armenians, Pontiac Greeks and Syriac Orthodox" and to organize competitions of essays on this issue. The participation of Armenian and Greek schools in such competitions was also required. Consequently, school programs and manuals of history were modified. In Elbeyli (Kilis District) six teachers, who had raised questions in an instruction meeting held on May 30, 2003, were accused of "provocation of social disorder" by the public prosecutor. The teacher Hülya Akpinar was temporarily imprisoned and later released on bail.
The language of the Turkish Ministry of Education used in the curricula and textbooks is the same as that of the genocide perpetrators - the Committee Union and Progress - when stigmatizing the future victims of their assault, first of all Armenians and Greeks, calling them "enemies", "traitors", "spies", before dehumanising them as being "useless" and "microbes".
By using anew such a vocabulary, the Ministry of Education adds to the intimidation of the Christian communities in Turkey, which are already deeply scared. Only six Syriac Orthodox families and their priest, father Yusuf Akbulut, still live in Diyarbekir, once a prosperous centre of Aramean Christianity. In 2000, father Akbulut was denounced by Turkish newspapers as "the traitor among us", because he had mentioned the issue of the Armenian and Syriac Orthodox genocides in the presence of journalists. The ensuing court case for alleged ?unrest of the people? was suspended in April 2001, on the basis that the number of Christians in the region had declined to such a degree that the judge found that any "unrest" was no longer possible due to the lack of Christians. Nevertheless, the tiny Christian community does not live peacefully. On 27 June 2002, the newspaper Aksam qualified the Syriac Orthodox as "separatists ". During the night of 6 to 7 January 2003 (Christmas Eve in Oriental churches), the Syriac Orthodox Church of St. Mary of Diyarbekir was attacked and precious items of ritual importance were stolen. Icons of saints were thrown to the ground and profaned. Secrets agents, who sometimes enter the church with their arms, now regularly control Father Akbulut?s Sunday service.
Hebrew University professor Stanley Cohen's statement regarding the Turkish government's aggressive campaign of denial vis-a-vis the Armenian Genocide applies equally to its denial of the genocide of Asia Minor's Greeks:
"The nearest successful example [of 'collective denial'] in the modern era is the 80 years of official denial by successive Turkish governments of the 1915-17 genocide against the Armenians in which some 1.5 million people lost their lives. This denial has been sustained by deliberate propaganda, lying and coverups, forging documents, suppression of archives, and bribing scholars. The West, especially the United States, has colluded by not referring to the massacres in the United Nations, ignoring memorial ceremonies, and surrendering to Turkish pressure in NATO and other strategic arenas of cooperation" (Law and Social Inquiry, Winter 1995).
Statement made by Mr. Michalis Charalambidis
Genocide: With the formation of the Young Turks’ movement a new chauvinist and ethnocentric ideology appeared in the Ottoman Empire. After it gained power in a military coup d’etat in 1908, the Christian co-citizens were increasingly perceived as "internal" enemies. Corresponding with this tendency, the idea of eliminating these "enemies" developed and was executed during and in the aftermath of World War I. The estimated total figure of Ottoman citizens of Greek origin at that time was 2.5 to 3 millions, among them about 750.000 Greeks living in the Pontus region at the south coast of the Black Sea. Following slaughters and the deportation order against the Greek population of Ionia (Aegean coastland) in 1913 and 1914, the Greeks of the Pontus region were annihilated since 1916 until 1923. The methods were the same as in the case of the Armenian genocide: massacres, atrocities, death marches, mass rape, slave labour, etc. Only those Greeks were saved from persecution, whose ancestors had already adapted Islam or embraced this religion under "fire and sword". No military or security reasons can be accepted to "explain" these crimes.
In all, estimations for the Greek population of Asia Minor (Pontus included) and East Thrace, who perished during 1912-1923, reach a figure of 1.5 million, among them 353,000 Greeks from the Pontus regionPontians). As in the case of the Armenians and Syriacs (Arameans/Assyrians), the Turkish state and lawmakers until today deny the fact of the genocide, committed on the Pontians and other Greeks from Asia Minor.
In search of maintaining identity: The Islamised (Muslim) Pontians of Greek origin were for decades deprived of the right to communicate with their compatriots in Greece, in the countries of the former USSR or elsewhere in the Diaspora. Nevertheless, these Muslim Greeks maintained their identity as a Greek subethnos. Estimations about their recent number vary from 500,000 to one million. It is believed that there are still about 300 villages at the southern Black See coastal areas with a Muslim, Greek speaking majority. However, even careful attempts by Pontian intellectuals to articulate in words or in writing their history and cultural identity were met by over-reactions and menacing actions by the Turkish authorities. This includes pseudo-academic attempts to distort a regional Greek history, which covers nearly three millenniums. Even the toponym Pontus was banned. In 2002, arbitrary court-cases against Muslim Pontians, such as the author Omer Aslan or the student Fethi Gultepe were filed, trying to present the Muslim Pontians as secessionist. At many occasions, Muslim Pontians were and are discriminated for their Greek origin in public life, in particular in school.
Despite Turkish denial, there is no doubt about the Armenian Genocide. For example, German ambassador Count von Wolff-Metternich, Turkey's ally in World War I, wrote his government in 1916 saying: "The Committee [of Union and Progress] demands the annihilation of the last remnants of the Armenians and the [Ottoman] government must bow to its demands."
Henry Morgenthau Sr., the United States ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, sent a cable to the U.S. State Department in 1915: "Deportation of and excesses against peaceful Armenians is increasing and from harrowing reports of eye witnesses [sic] it appears that a campaign of race extermination is in progress under a pretext of reprisal against rebellion."
Only one Turkish government, that of Damad Ferit Pasha, has ever recognized the Armenian genocide. In fact, that Turkish government held war crimes trials and condemned to death the major leaders responsible.
The Permanent People's Tribunal recognized the Armenian Genocide in 1984.
The European Parliament voted to recognize the Armenian Genocide in 1987.
President Bush issued a news release in 1990 calling on all Americans to join with Armenians in commemorating the Armenian Genocide on April 24.
President Clinton issued a news release on April 24, 1994, to commemorate the "tragedy" that befell the Armenians in 1915.
The Russian Duma (the lower house of the bicameral Russian legislature) voted on April 20, 1994, to recognize the Armenian Genocide. Israel officially condemned the Armenian Genocide as Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Yossi Beilin proclaimed on the floor of the Knesset (the Israeli legislature), on April 27, 1994, in answer to the claims of the Turkish Ambassador, that "It was not war. It was most certainly massacre and genocide, something the world must remember".
On 18 June 1987, the European Parliament issued a decision to bind acceptance of Turkey to the Union on the condition that Turkish Government should acknowledge its Genocide perpetrated on the Armenians. Mr. Roberto Kalderoli, the Italian Minister for Reform, went so far as to say in December 2004 that eventual acceptance of Turkey into European Union "would be a crime against our History and against our Christian heritage."
In 1996 the Greek Parliament designated April 24th as a day of remembrance for the Armenian Genocide.
Since 1987 the European Parliament has on several occasions called on the Turkish government to recognize the genocide committed against the Armenians in 1915-17 and has made this recognition a precondition for EU accession in its resolution of 18 June 1987. In another resolution adopted on 15 November 2000, the European Parliament reiterated this requirement, in particular with regard to a better policy towards minorities (cf. article 10):
"The European Parliament calls, therefore, on the Turkish Government and the Turkish Grand National Assembly to give fresh support to the Armenian minority, as an important part of Turkish society, in particular by public recognition of the genocide which that minority suffered before the establishment of the modern state of Turkey."
In its Motion for a resolution adopted on 28 February 2002, the European Parliament demands that Turkey (Article 15) lift the blockade imposed on its neighbour Armenia and thus, together with the recognition of the Armenian Genocide in conformity with the resolution of the European Parliament of 18 June 1987, "... calls upon Turkey to create a basis for reconciliation. " In two further documents, the first published on February 2, 2004 and the second on March 19, 2004, "the European Parliament reiterates its position set out in its Resolution of 18 June 1987 on a political solution to the Armenian question".
Statement made by Baroness Caroline Cox of Queensbury London, UK
Please let me explain, why I decided to support the Memorandum, that had been forwarded today to the members of the European Council, of the Council of the European Union, to the European Commission and to the members of the European Parliament.
The European Parliament adopted a resolution on June 18, 1987, which called on the Turkish government to recognise the genocide committed against the Armenians in 1915-17 as a precondition for Turkey’s accession to the EU. In more recent years, the European Parliament has made it very clear on several occasions that this decision is still valid and that the government and the lawmakers of Turkey are expected to acknowledge publicly the annihilation of 1.5 million Armenians during WW1 as a matter of fact. As reasons for this demand the European Parliament named both the fostering of democracy inside Turkey and in particular the recognition of the Armenian genocide as a confidence building act, and also as a factor in stabilising its foreign relations, in particular towards its neighbour, the Republic of Armenia. Having twice appealed to my own national parliament for the recognition of the Armenian genocide, I am convinced that such an affirmation of historical facts is of outstanding importance both for the descendants of victims and for survivors, as well as for Turkey as heir of the once multi-religious and multiethnic Ottoman Empire. Not only does such a public and official recognition reestablish the historical truth, but it helps the survivors and the descendant to heal their trauma.
During the 57 humanitarian missions, which I led to Nagorno Karabakh since 1992, I had the opportunity to observe on many occasions the profound impact of the Turkish genocide denial on the psyche and political mentality of the Armenian population both in Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh. The consistent denial of the genocide as a matter of fact both by the Turkish government and the opinion leaders of Turkey is perceived by many Armenians as a direct threat. 70 years of Azerbaijani misrule over Nagorno-Karabakh, the slaughters in Sumgait, Kirovabad and Baku from 1988 until 1990, the expulsion of many thousands of Armenians from Azerbaijan and the deportation of further tens of thousands from Nagorno-Karabakh in 1990 and 1991, the deliberate destruction of valuable Armenian cultural monuments by Azerbaijan are perceived by many Armenians in the South Caucasus as a continuation of the Turkish genocide. Turkey’s moral, political and material support to Azerbaijan, its co-operation in an illegal blockade since 1993 despite decisions made by the European Parliament and the similarity of threatening chauvinist Anti-Armenian statements by Turkish and Azerbaijani opinion-leaders are quoted as proof of the widely spread belief, that in the long term Turkey is still intending to wipe out the remaining Armenian nation, as it wiped out the majority of Turkey’s Christian population during the last decade of Ottoman rule. In all, 3.5 million Armenian, Greek and Arameans Christians were massacred, starved, worked or walked to death, when the nationalistic leaders of the Ottoman Empire tried to convert the multiethnic state into a monoethnic Turkey for the Turks.
The circular of the Turkish Ministry of Education of 14 April 2003.
HERE at last is the truth about the destruction of Smyrna and the massacre of a large part of its inhabitants by one who was present. The writer of the following pages is a man, happily, who is not restrained from telling what he knows by political reasons or by any consideration of fear or self-interest. He gives the whole story of the savage extermination of Christian civilization throughout the length and breadth of the old Byzantine Empire in a clear and convincing manner.
That it should have been possible twenty centuries after the birth of Christ for a small and backward nation, like the Turks, to have committed such crimes against civilization and the progress of the world, is a matter which should cause all conscientious people to pause and think; yet the writer shows conclusively that these crimes have been committed without opposition on the part of any Christian nation and that the last frightful scene at Smyrna was enacted within a few yards of powerful Allied and American battle fleet. We turned a deaf ear to the dying Christians, when they called to us for aid, fully aware that America was their only hope, and now it would appear that there is a growing tendency in this country to whitewash the Turks and condone their crimes in order to obtain material advantages from them.
The author takes the position that this can not be done, as the Turks have put so great an affront upon humanity that it can not easily be overlooked, and the truth is sure to come out. He claims that high ideals are more than oil or railroads, and that the Turks should not be accepted into the society of decent nations until they show sincere repentance for their crimes. Fraternizing with them on any other terms creates a suspicion of sordidness or even complicity. From the outspoken nature of this book it will be evident to the reader that the writing of it has required considerable courage and that it has been inspired by no other possible motive than a desire to make the truth known about matters which it is important for the world to know.
(Signed) JAMES W. GERARD (Former Ambassador to Germany)
THE complete and documentary account of the ferocious persecutions of the Christian population of the Smyrna region, which
occurred in 1914, is not difficult to obtain; but it will suffice, by way of illustration, to give only some extracts from
a report by the French eyewitness, Manciet, concerning the massacre and pillage of Phocea, a town of eight thousand Greek
inhabitants and about four hundred Turks, situated on the sea a short distance from Smyrna. The destruction of Phocea
excited great interest in Marseilles, as colonists of the very ancient Greek town founded the French city. Phocea
is the mother of Marseilles. Monsieur Manciet was present at the massacre and pillage of Phocea, and, together with three
other Frenchman, Messieurs Sartiaux, Carlier and Dandria, saved hundreds of lives by courage and presence of mind.
The report begins with the appearance on the hills behind the town of armed bands and the firing of shots, causing a panic. Those four gentlemen were living together, but when the panic commenced they separated and each installed himself in a house. They demanded of the Kaimakam gendarmes for their protection, and each obtained one. They kept the doors open and gave refuge to all who came. They improvised four French flags out of cloth and flew one from each house. But, to continue the recital in Monsieur Manciet's own words, translated from the French:
"During the night the organized bands continued the pillage of the town. At the break of dawn there was continual "tres nourrie" firing before the houses. Going out immediately, we four, we saw the most atrocious spectacle of which it is possible to dream. This horde, which had entered the town, was armed with Gras rifles and cavalry muskets. A house was in flames. From all directions the Christians were rushing to the quays seeking boats to get away in, but since the night there were none left. Cries of terror mingled with the sound of firing. The panic was so great that a woman with her child was drowned in sixty centimeters of water."
"Mr. Carlier saw an atrocious spectacle. A Christian stood at his door, which the bandits wished to enter, as his wife and daughter were in the house. He stretched out his arms to bar the way. This motion cost him his life for they shot him in the stomach. As he was staggering toward the sea, they gave him a second shot in the back, and the corpse lay there for two days."
"Fortunately there were two steamers in port, and we managed to embark the unfortunate Christians in small groups. Despite all our efforts, these wretched people were in such haste to depart that they upset the small boats. An odious detail proved the cynicism of this horde, which, under pretext of disarming those leaving, shamefully robbed these poor, terrified people of their last belongings. They tore away from old women packages and bedding by force. Anger seized me and I blushed to see these abominations and I told an officer of the gendarmerie that if this did not stop, I would take a gun myself and fire on the robbers. This produced the desired effect, and these unfortunates were enabled to embark with what they had saved from the disaster, which proves that the whole movement could have been easily controlled."
SMYRNA AS IT WAS
From Ionia, the mother civilization spread to old Greece, to Sicily, to Italy and along the shores of the Black Sea, and finally to Europe and America! It is more than probable that Homer was a Smyrniote, or an inhabitant of Asia Minor, and for countless years his writings were a sort of Bible or sacred book, molding the character of millions. Perhaps the earliest conception of monogamy, certainly the most beautiful, comes from Homer's poems. Our conception of the family is Greek; we get it from the Odyssey, very probably written in Smyrna, thousands of years ago.
During the days of the Byzantine Empire, that splendid, romantic and tragic power which developed a magnificent civilization and kept the lamp of learning alight all through the darkness of the Middle Ages, Asia Minor flourished and was the province which contributed most to the strength and firmness of the general fabric. The exploits of Nikephoros Phokas and the romance of Diogenes Akritas, immortalized in verse, are well known even to those scholars who are not Byzantine specialists. Those were the days of the great land barons who kept regal state and whose forgotten history should be a vast treasure-house for romantic novelists. Later, Ionia is of intense interest to the whole Christian world. It is the land of the Seven Cities of the Revelation, of the Seven Churches and the wonderful mystical poem of St. John the Divine. Six of the candles went out in eternal darkness long ago, but that of Smyrna burned brightly until its destruction on the thirteenth of September, 1922, by the Turks of Mustapha Klhemal and the death of the last of its great bishops whose martyrdom fitly ended its glorious Christian history.
Polycarp, the patron saint of Smyrna during the long years of its existence as a Christian city, was burned alive in an ancient stadium whose contour is still plainly visible, on February twenty-sixth, in the year A. D. 156; Chrysostom was tortured and torn in pieces by a Turkish mob in front of the military headquarters of the Khemalist forces in Smyrna on September ninth, A. D. 1922.
In Asia Minor were held the great Christian assemblies: at Nicea, Ephesus and Chalcedon, were born the Church fathers, St. Paul and the two Gregories. It was at Ephesus, near Smyrna, that St. Paul fought with beasts after the manner of men. Greek civilization has again and again developed in Asia Minor to be crushed by Asiatic invasion. At its height it produced the immortal cities of Pergamus , Smyrna, Colophon, Philadelphia, Ephessus, Halicarnassus. The whole land was dotted with lesser towns adorned with schools of art and beautiful temples from many of which sprang famous philosophers and poets. Ionia is a graveyard of ancient Greek cities and marble villages toward which the interest of American scholars has been turning more and more.
HISTORIC IMPORTANCE OF THE DESTRUCTION OF SMYRNA
The object of the Emperor Constantine in founding his capital was to build a distinctly Christian city that should be the metropolis of Christendom. Its splendors, its refinement, its art and culture, its wealth, its power, its fame as a center of learning and of piety are unforgettable even to-day. In the presence of its gentlemen and great dames, the knights and ladies of Western Europe were mere boors and hoydens. Wrecked, plundered and mismanaged by the Latin knights, a calamity from which it never recovered, there was enough of its culture left, when the Turks finally laid hands on it, to scatter over Europe and regenerate the West. The Renaissance, that wonderful awakening from the darkness of the Middle Ages, was largely due to the learning brought into Europe by the scholars of Constantinople, fleeing from the Turk. Those scholars had kept the light of the old classic culture burning during all the years of European darkness and ignorance.
If Constantinople could have been spared and Christianity saved in the Near East, the results to civilization would have been incalculable. What a glorious city a Greek Constantinople would be today, if it had always stayed Greek, with its long traditions and its immense treasures of ancient culture! Another and more beautiful Paris, bestriding the Bosphorus, great in commerce, learning, science and all the graces and influences of Christian civilization.
Thus says Sir Edwin Pears, in his well-known history:
"The New Rome of Constantine Augustus passed under the power of a horde of Oriental adventurers, Turanians by original descent, mongrels by polygamy. This was the greatest victory ever won by Asia in her debate with Europe. For many decades thereafter there seemed at least a possibility that the East might destroy all the fruit of Marathon."
"Under the rule of its new masters Constantinople was destined to become the most degraded capital in Europe, and became incapable of contributing anything whatever of value to the history of the human race. No art, no literature, no handicraft even, nothing that the world would gladly keep, has come since 1453 from the Queen City. Its capture, so far as human eyes can see, has been for the world a misfortune almost without any compensatory advantage. Poverty as the consequence of misgovernment is the most conspicuous result of the conquest affecting the subjects of the Empire. Lands were allowed to go out of cultivation. Industries were lost. Mines were forgotten. Trade and commerce almost ceased to exist. Population decreased. The wealthiest state in Europe became the poorest; the most civilized the most barbarous. The demoralization of the conquered people and of their churches was not less disastrous than the injury to their material interests. The Christians lost heart. Their physical courage lessened."
This description of the condition of Asia Minor as the result of the capture of Constantinople continued down to the ultimate complete destruction of the Christians by the Turks. Nothing changed in the nearly five centuries that have passed. The Turk has not altered either in his character or his methods. The scenes described by Pears as following the taking of the Queen City, the massacres and violation of women, were duplicated at Smyrna, with the added horror of the sufferings of the Christians on the quay.
After Constantinople, Smyrna, "Ghiaour Smyrna," became the last stronghold of Christianity and Greek culture in the Near East. It had its great and valuable libraries, its learned men, its famous schools. The Greeks and Armenians could at any time have attained safety by abjuring their faith. Yet, though there have been apostates, they have, in general, kept the faith and have suffered.
THE DESTRUCTION OF SMYRNA
Mustapha Khemal now determined to make a complete and irretrievable ruin of Christianity in Asia Minor. Carthago delenda est. The plan, revealed by its execution, was to give the city up for some days to lust and carnage; to butcher the Armenians, a task which has always given a special pleasure to the Turk; to burn the town and to carry the Greek men away into captivity.
The main facts in regard to the Smyrna fire are:
1. The streets leading into the Armenian quarter were guarded by Turkish soldier sentinels and no one was permitted to enter while the massacre was going on.
2. Armed Turks, including many soldiers, entered the quarter thus guarded and went through it looting, massacring and destroying. They made a systematic and horrible "clean up," after which they set fire to it in various places by carrying tins of petroleum or other combustibles into the houses or by saturating bundles of rags in petroleum and throwing these bundles in through the windows.
3. They planted small bombs under the paving stones in various places in the European part of the city to explode and act as a supplementary agent in the work of destruction caused by the burning petroleum which Turkish soldiers sprinkled about the streets. The petroleum spread the fire and led it through the European quarter and the bombs shook down the tottering walls. One such bomb was planted near the American Girls' School and another near the American Consulate.
4. They set fire to the Armenian quarter on the thirteenth of September 1922. The last Greek soldiers bad passed through Smyrna on the evening of the eighth, that is to say, the Turks had been in full, complete and undisputed possession of the city for five days before the fire broke out and for much of this time they had kept the Armenian quarter cut off by military control while conducting a systematic and thorough massacre. If any Armenians were still living in the localities at the time the fires were lighted they were hiding in cellars too terrified to move, for the whole town was overrun by Turkish soldiers, especially the places where the fires were started. In general, all the Christians of the city were keeping to their houses in a state of extreme and justifiable terror for themselves and their families, for the Turks had been in possession of the city for five days, during which time they had been looting, raping and killing. It was the burning of the houses of the Christians, which drove them into the streets and caused the fearful scenes of suffering which will be described later. Of this state of affairs, I was an eye-witness.
5. The fire was lighted at the edge of the Armenian quarter at a time when a strong wind was blowing toward the Christian section and away from the Turkish. The Turkish quarter was not in any way involved in the catastrophe and during all the abominable scenes that followed and all the indescribable sufferings of the Christians, the Mohammedan quarter was lighted up and gay with dancing, singing and joyous celebration.
6. Turkish soldiers led the fire down into the well-built modern Greek and European section of Smyrna by soaking the narrow streets with petroleum or other highly inflammable matter. They poured petroleum in front of the American Consulate with no other possible purpose than to communicate the fire to that building at a time when C. Clafun Davis, Chairman of the Disaster Relief Committee of the Red Cross, Constantinople Chapter, and others, were standing in the door. Mr. Davis went out and put his hands in the mud thus created and it smelled like petroleum and gasoline mixed. The soldiers seen by Mr. Davis and the others had started from the quay and were proceeding toward the fire.
NUMBER DONE TO DEATH
HOW many were massacred in Smyrna and its dependent towns and villages! It is impossible to make any estimate at all accurate, but the efforts to minimize the number must at first glance fail of credence.
Official statistics give the Armenian inhabitants of Smyrna as twenty-five thousand and it is certain that the larger part of the men of this community were killed, besides many women and girls, also numerous Greeks. A dispatch to the "London Daily Chronicle" of September 18, 1922, says: "The lowest estimate of lives lost given by the refugees, places the total at one hundred and twenty thousand."
Reuter's Agency, in a dispatch of the same date, makes the following statement: "From none of the accounts is it possible to give the exact figures of the victims, but it is feared that in any case they will be over one hundred thousand."
The "London Times" correspondent telegraphed: "The killing was carried out systematically. Turkish regulars and irregulars are described as rounding up likely wealthy people in the streets and, after stripping them, killing them in batches. Many Christians who had taken refuge in the churches were burned to death in the buildings which had been set on fire."
Mr. Otis Swift, correspondent of the "Chicago Tribune", visited the Greek islands on which refugees had been dumped by the rescue steamers and saw many of the victims of the tragedy, whose stories and the nature of whose wounds bore additional testimony to the ferocity of the Turks. Here is a short quotation from Mr. Swift's report: "Hospitals of the Greek islands are crowded by people who had been beaten and attacked by the Turks. In a hospital at Chios I saw a child who still lived, although shot through the face by a soldier who had killed its father and violated its mother. In the same hospital there was a family of six orphan Armenians. A four-year-old baby of this family had been beaten with rifle butts because no money had been found sewn in its clothes."
There is no doubt that many thousands of the defenseless inhabitants of Smyrna and the surrounding country were done to death by Turks. To the number actually killed on the days of the massacre must be added the deported Greeks who perished, the people who died in the flames or were killed by falling walls, those who expired on the quay and those who have since succumbed from want, injuries or grief. The extent of the catastrophe can be realized from the magnitude of the relief work that has been carried on ever since, and from the immense sums which have been raised, principally in America, for the maintenance of the widows and orphans.
THE "50-50" THEORY
ONE of the cleverest statements circulated by the Turkish propagandists is to the effect that the massacred Christians were as bad as their executioners, that it was "50-50." This especially appeals strongly to the Anglo-Saxon sense of justice, relieves one of all further annoyance or responsibility, and quiets the conscience. But it requires a very thoughtless person indeed to accept such a statement, and extremely little thought required to show the fallacy of it.
In the first place, the Christians in the power of the Turk have never had much opportunity to massacre, even had they been so disposed. If a few Turks have been killed in the long history of butcheries that have soaked the empire with blood, the reckoning, mathematically, will not be 50-50, nor even one to ten thousand. In addition to this, even with the shortcomings of the Christians of the world, in general, the teachings of Christ have made it better. In all the former Ottoman provinces that have succeeded in casting off the Turkish blight-Hungary, Bulgaria, Serbia, Greece-there is very little, if any, record of Turks massacred by Christians.
The conduct of the Greeks toward the thousands of Turks residing in Greece, while the ferocious massacres were going on, and while Smyrna was being burned and refugees, wounded, outraged and ruined, were pouring into every port of Hellas, was one of the most inspiring and beautiful chapters in all that country's history. There were no reprisals. The Turks living in Greece were in no wise molested, nor did any storm of hatred or revenge burst upon their heads. This is a great and beautiful victory that, in its own way, rises to the level of Marathon and Salamis.
One naturally asks what other Christian nation could have done any better? In fact, the whole conduct of Greece, during and after the persecution of the Christians in Turkey, has been most admirable, as witness also its treatment of the Turkish prisoners of war, and its efforts for the thousands of refugees that have been thrown upon its soil. I know of what I am speaking, for I was in Greece and saw with my own eyes. No one, I think, will have the courage to dispute these facts. Had the Greeks, after the massacres in the Pontus and at Smyrna, massacred all the Turks in Greece, the record would have been 50-50-almost.