If there are around seven million Armenians
worldwide, how could it be that hardly a one dares to speak publicly for the
history the TAT site presents? Even if the claims of this site are untrue,
you'd think there would be a few "rebellious" Armenians who would
still go against the grain, out of that enormous pool of seven million-plus.
The reasons have to do with the Dashnak inspired "Curtain
of Fear." (As Prof. Heath Lowry termed it, the idea boiling down to: "Armenians
know full well what their fate will be if they are labeled as 'informers' by
the terrorists." His excellent article may be consulted here.) If an
Armenian deviates a tad from the claims of Hai Tahd ("The Armenian
Cause"), Armenian extremists will be down his or her throat at least
smearingly, and at most fatally. So when the Armenian Forum co-editors
dared to reveal even a little bit that went against the propagandistic line,
Armenian nationalists were all over them, ironically victimizing fellow
nationalists Ara Sarafian and Vincent
nationalist, Editor James Tashjian of the Armenian Weekly, reportedly lost his job after daring to
expose an Armenian falsification.
It is this atmosphere of fear which has caused many
Armenians to clam up and not dare to discuss the genuine facts publicly. It is
this reason why you will come across the claim, within this site, that
Armenians are as monolithic a people as possible. Curiously supportive
of the fact that non-Armenians (Muslims and Jews, chiefly) have been driven
out of what was their own "ancient homeland" of Armenia, and Armenia
today is some 95% "pure."
Some rights are denied those few remaining of different ethnic stock.
An article, "The Burden of Memory," is very revealing. In what
young scholar Lisa Siraganian has called "the fetish-culture of diasporan
Armenians," we are told that "many diaspora Armenians are reared to
hate Turkey with a fervor that seems completely at odds with their daily
"After Armenia gained independence, the leading
party, the Armenian National Movement (ANM), under then-President Levon
Ter-Petrossian, decided that genocide recognition could not be a condition for
Armenia's relationship with Turkey.... Thus began what Libaridian calls 'the
battle for the soul of the new republic.' Ter-Petrossian was vilified by
critics in the diaspora for his refusal to give priority to genocide
recognition, and for banning the ARF party, a militant political group with
strong diaspora ties.
The article's author, Meline Toumani, continues:
"My own memories of the Ter-Petrossian years include stories of
Armenian-American children chanting 'Death to LTP!' at ARF gatherings in
suburban New England — LTP being the preferred moniker of disrespect for the
president among diaspora malcontents."
The result? The voice of moderation and reason couldn't
stand a chance; the extremist and terroristic Dashnak A.R.F. barreled its way
in, and is currently in power within Armenia. Just what John Roy
Carlson/Arthur Derounian was afraid of, the dominance of this immoral organization that
has brought so much death and misery upon Armenians and others, eventually
taking over the diasporan mentality.)
An individual Armenian has to be very brave to go
against such a fanatical mindset.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1) Edward Tashji
3) Armenian Grandmother, Yegisabeth Kasebian
4) "The Turks Were Good"; Armenians from
5) An Armenian Oral Historian
6) The "Rashomon" of Rafael Hambartsumyan
Edward Tashji, at a Rutgers University conference in the last year
of his life; his wife, Mary, is at left.
The only Armenian who has deviated from this mold in a major way has
been Edward Tashji, who died in 2005. Born in America, his influence was his own parents,
who went through the same hell as the rest of their brethren, in the last tumultuous days of
the Ottoman Empire. The only difference is these parents decided to tell the truth, and
chose not to poison their children with hatred. Tashji paid a price, having his name smeared
as an Armenian in the employ of the Turkish government (if the Turkish government was in the
business of "hiring" Armenians to be pro-Turk, how could Tashji have been the only
one?), and never knowing if a bullet would be far behind. Edward Tashji's writings have been
featured at TAT; see under "Comment" in the navigation bar above. ADDENDUM, 5-07:
See link, page bottom, for a brave new contender.
Armenian-Turks are in a category of their own. They have been naturally accused of
being cajoled by the "totalitarian" Turkish government.
Now that the propagandistic genocide forces is
making an inroad into Turkey itself, with the aid of Turks who have opportunistically
joined the genocide bandwagon, nationalist feelings appear to be stirring among some
Armenian-Turks. For example, the editor of AGOS, Hrant Dink, appears to be
singing a different tune, of late.
In TAT, the story of Artin Penik, the
brave Armenian-Turk who committed suicide in 1982 to protest the murderous actions of
his brethren at that time, may be read
Dikran Kevorkian, Pastor of Kandilli
Armenian Church, as quoted in an October 7, 2000 TV program called “In a Nutshell”:
The genocide and relocation
denote two different concepts. The imperialist schemes and the Armenian apolitical
dream leaders (media, churches and clergy) are the causes of this situation. The
Patriarch is a spiritual leader and a blunder is committed when his opinions are
sought in the political matters. What could ASALA and PKK do if there were no
political support behind them?
There was a German pressure on
the Sublime Port for the relocation in an attempt to shake the existing order and to
secure itself an economic benefit through the Berlin-Baghdad railroad.
With regard to assimilation, I am
prepared to say this: Today, it is only in Turkey among all countries of the world
that the Armenians manage to maintain their own identity. The Armenians in the
diaspora abroad continue their struggle for existence by changing their names because
there are efforts there to melt the Armenians in the cultural pot.
The diaspora knows very well that
the Sunday rites in all major American churches are in English and the Armenians are
gradually losing their own language. Those who declare these things are branded to be
black sheep of the herd. It is for these reasons that we as the Armenians living in
Turkey, declare our regrets against these efforts, because an injustice is committed
to the spirit of national forces entrusted to us by Atatürk. All this is a stratagem
concocted abroad, including the ASALA, PKK and Kocharian’s declaration. We, as the
citizens of Turkey, believe that an injustice is perpetrated here. The Armenians
should know better than being scapegoats if they are
(Thanks to ermenisorunu.gen.tr, for the Kevorkian account.)
"Comments From Turkish Citizens of Armenian
An Armenian by the name of Misak Torlakyan killed an
Azeri minister in Istanbul on July 18, 1921. He was apprehended by the British
occupying forces. Mr. Torlakyan was represented by his lawyer Hasruyan efendi. In
court, the lawyer was trying to justify his client’s crime by focusing on Armenian
sufferings during the 1915 relocation process. When asked to be specific, Hasruyan
efendi said, “It is impossible to confirm or deny what happened during the
relocation. Some were killed, some died after reaching their destinations. Sixty
thousand Armenians were killed, six hundred thousand settled in various parts of the
Source: Cumhuriyet Newspaper, Istanbul, Turkey-December 28, 2005.
Patriarch Snork Kaloustian, spiritual leader of the Turkish Armenians made the
following remarks to a group of Turkish and foreign journalists in 1983: “We call
on nations of the world to cooperate in taking strict measures to combat terrorism…We,
as sons and daughters of the Republic of Turkey are preserving our culture better than
those of our race in many other countries, along with our traditions, customs,
language and religion both as individuals and as institutions under the guarantee of
the Turkish state.”
During a symposium held in Istanbul, Turkey, titled “Armenian Question with All its
Dimensions” (September 21, 2005) Levon Panos Dabagciyan, historian, said, “Let
us not fool ourselves. We are Turks. Foreigners and agitators among us should
understand how we bitterly feel about the invention of ‘Armenian genocide’. “
“I am approaching the end of my life. I have always lived in comfort and peace
with the Turks. Allegations of ‘ Armenian genocide’ are lies.” Tahuki
Desteoglu — Age 82 — Mersin, Turkey — October 4, 2005, Turkish Press.
“In 1915, it was forced migration, not genocide… My two uncles died while
fighting as soldiers in the Ottoman army…When I pray, I pray for both sides…It was
a terrible tragedy…Resolutions issued by parliaments are decided under pressure from
Armenian lobbyists.” Dikran Kevorkyan, President of Kandilli Armenian Church
Foundation, Istanbul, Turkey — Nov 23, 2005.
“In view of repetitive claims by the Armenian diaspora, I want to emphasize that
every nation makes decisions in war…The relocation of Armenians had flaws. There was
inefficient control, tribal involvement and activities of opportunists. It can not be
labeled genocide. I am a Turkish lawyer of Armenian origin. I practice my profession
freely in this country…We do not want to be used as tools of vengeance or decoys by
the Armenian diaspora. We are determined to live in peace and harmony in Turkey.”
Kegam Karabetyan — Interview at Turkish Radio and Television International Channel
on November 30th, 2005.
|"Turks did nothing wrong to Armenians."
The testimony of a grandmother carries special weight, since Armenian grandmothers have been
most instrumental in passing on the
Yegisabeth Kasebian was 105 at the time of her 2005
account. She was 15 years old when she came to Lebanon from Hatay via Syria in 1915. Her
words appeared in a Lebanese magazine, which reportedly and unsurprisingly got Dashnak flack
afterwards, as indicated by the magazine's editor, Nataly Restokian.
During the journey, Yegisabeth Kasebian stated the
Armenians went through great hardship: "We walked for days. Turkish cavalry were
always next to us. They were protecting us against the attacks, but they sometimes were
beating us when we were not able to walk fast enough to catch up with the others."
She goes on to conclude that "Turks did nothing wrong to Armenians." Here
is the rest.
"The Turks were good."
The following accounts are from the documentary, "Sari Gelin."
Hatchadurian Hatchik AbediI
Hatchadurian Hatchik Abedi, from Yerevan, Armenia,
stated: "Sometimes, when the subject opened, when we had
guests, or the conversation got deeper, my father's eyes would fill with tears, and he
would say, the Turks were good. Turkish villagers always had good intentions towards
Armenians. The Turkish villages, even the whole Turkish nation, was so good to
Armenians and Armenians were close to them. But the Kurds... they took advantage of
this. They did very bad things. They raided us. They would even steal the things we
carried. They were plunderers."
Another Armenian, Sarkis Garabetin, gave an
account about the movement of his family:
"My parents are from Adana,
from Dortyol. They immigrated to Damascus; from Damascus, we went to Beirut. We lived
for five or six years in Beirut. We came to Yerevan in 1946."
The idea here, of course, is that if the idea was
extermination, this family's movement could not have been as possible.
|From an Armenian Oral Historian
"We Armenians have to admit our guilt. We wanted to have our
independence. The Armenian political committees did a lot of political uprising. Of course,
Turks would not allow these. We have to admit it. If we today did something like they did,
here in the United States, the United States Government would shove us into the Pacific
Donald E. Miller, Lorna Tourya Miller: Armenian Survivors:A
Typological Analysis of Victim Response. Oral History Review 10 '1982': pp. 63-64. (The
authors have gone on to put out a book on "Armenian Oral History," the paperback
edition of which came out in 1999. Did the above passage make it into this book?
Furthermore, did the authors — one of
whom is an Armenian — stop to think
about the weight of these words?)
Thanks to Fatma S. for the above
"Rashomon" of Rafael Hambartsumyan
Two conflicting reports:
An Armenian site (mediaforum.am) reported that "The Armenian Genocide
was organized by Russia and Turkey equally," as declared by historian Rafael
Hambartsumian via an April 21, 2005 press conference in Yerevan. He stated that
certain facts ought not be forgotten, some of which have been "prohibited up to
this day." Russian "vice-prince of Caucasus Golitsinn," for example,
stated "30 years before the Armenian Genocide the slogan 'Armenia without
According to R. Hambartsumian, the article continued, "Russia has always used the
innocent blood of Armenians for its aggressive purposes." He blamed Russia for
"sending more than 200 thousand Armenian soldiers to the Russian-German
front," freeing "Turkey to commit the Genocide." The main goal of the
Russian-Turkish treaty of March 16 1921 was "full annihilation of the Republic of
Armenia." The historian was further quoted as stating, "Finally, you will
find no Eastern Armenian great writer or art figure whom the Russian state had not
tortured or liquidated."
(A variation of the above was published on PanARMENIAN.Net, spelling the historian's name as Hambartsumyan,
and wording one of the claims with the following: "During the World War II
Russia indirectly abetted Turkey in perpetrating the Genocide by sending over 200
thousand soldiers to the Russian-German front." World War II"??)
A report from Azerbaijan ("Express," a paper from Baku, in an article dated 4-26-2006,
authored by Hasan Agacan) reported the news this way:
"The famous Armenian Historian Rafael Hambarsumyan shocked Erivan and Moscow: The
ones who killed the Armenians was Russia."
"We Armenians accuse the Turks of having committed a genocide against the
Armenians during the reign of the Ottoman Empire. On the contrary, the state that
tried to erase and eliminate the Armenians was not Turkey but Russia."
This statement, unexpected for Armenians, was made by the accomplished Armenian
Historian Rafael Hambursumyan, a member of The Armenian Academy of Science.
In Erivan, the historian related that it is the time to tell the truths and realities
that have been 'forbidden' for Armenians until now, and added. " In the time of
the Ottoman Empire, 30 years ago, the Russians began to kill and exile the Armenians.
The slogans like 'Armenia without Armenians,' 'The Armenian nation must be done away
with' came not from Turks but in the name of Tsarist Russia by Golitsin, a
representative of the Caucasus at the time. Golitsin said: 'If a wonderful history
museum is established in Tiflis, and if they put an Armenian scarecrow within to show
that a creature like the Armenian had lived in the Caucasus, then I would be able to
relax .' The minister of Foreign Affairs in Russia, Lobanov-Rostotski *, wrote a
letter to the Ottoman Sultan in 1895 and requested that: 'If you want to improve our
relationship, then... one of the conditions is the doing away with Armenians. Kill
them, kill them, kill them to the last person.' History demonstrates this."
According to Hambarsumyan's explanation, Russia has always shed the blood of
Armenians, in the pursuit of goals for conquest. for her occupying goals. The
historian added that the main objective of the agreement made by Russia with Turkey in
1921 was the destruction of all Armenians from earth.
A group scholars from The National Academy of Russia, the University of History, said
that they were shocked by the statements of Hambarsumyan.
After his presentation it was discovered Hambarsumyan had not returned home, and no
one knows where he is.
Thanks to the
translation of Dr. Sahin Filiz
(* Prince Aleksey
Borisovich Lobanov-Rostovsky — he was "famous" in genocide lore for having
stated, ""Yes, Russia wants Armenia, but without the Armenians.")
And just what is the Azeri newspaper implying... that the
historian was knocked off by the Dashnaks, unable to bear with genocide deviation?
So whom do we trust here? Both ends
have reasons to exaggerate. The Armenian report doesn't let the Turks off the hook,
only adding Russian blame. The Azeri report pins the blame entirely on the Russians.
Yet the Azeri report has added details that lend credence. It doesn't sound like they
made things up just to give their "propaganda" added weight. Things like the
"scarecrow" reference, I believe, genuinely must have originated from the
And let's keep in mind, it would be the rare Armenian news medium that would honestly
relate an Armenian historian's sacrilege of fully shifting genocide blame away from
One reason why I'm edging toward the Azeri piece is that another Armenian source (a
search reveals this news has not been widely reported) presented the story as follows:
Historian Rafael Hambartsumyan condemns Russia of supporting the Armenian Genocide
The anniversary of the Armenian Genocide makes us once again look at the past to
understand how the Armenian Genocide was executed. Historian Rafael Hambartsumyan
considers Russia is guilty of the Genocide. The historian confirms that with its
policy Russia supported the annihilation of Armenians. In 1918-1948 Russia exiled
thousands of Armenian intellectuals to Siberia, thus continuing the extinction of
“By the way, April 24 is not only the day of commemoration of the Genocide. It is
the day of the 40th anniversary of establishment of the United National Party –
National Self-Determination Union, and a number of arrangements are foreseen o this
occasion,” Paruyr Hayrikyan said.
The above is from Public Radio of
Armenia. Even though the headline uses the word "supports," implying
Russia was only one of the culprits, the text makes it sound as though Russia gets the
full blame. ("...Considers Russia is guilty of the Genocide.")
However you spell his name, Historian Hambartsumyan deserves much credit for at least
a degree of honesty. If he's letting the Turks off the hook, then bless him. Let's
hope the last ominous line from the Azeri version isn't true, and that he is doing
Who were these
I was curious about the cast of Russian characters mentioned
above, and looked into the background of Prince Golitsyn. The information
was sparse. Yet the search led
to a very interesting excerpt, as researched by Fuad R. Akhundov:
A.S.Griboyedov, Ambassador of Russian Empire to Persia,
wrote in 1828 (“Notes on migration of Armenians from Persia to our regions”,
1828, in 2 volumes. Vol. II - Moscow, “Pravda” Publishing House, 1971, pp.
“Armenians have mainly been settled on lands of Moslem landowners ... Migrants
live cooped themselves and created problems for Moslems, whose resentment is
... We also talked about how to convince Moslems that their current burden will
not be for long, that they should not worry that Armenians would seize their
lands where they had been allowed to live for the present”.
N. I. Shavrov: “New threat to Russian activities in
Trans-Caucasus: forthcoming sale of Mugan to aliens”, Sankt-Peterburg, 1911,
“During the period from 1828 to 1830 we brought to Trans-Caucasus over 40,000
Armenians from Persia and 84,600 Armenians from Turkey and settled them on the
best public lands of Yelizavetpol and Erivan provinces where there were
practically no Armenians...
Successfully completed war with Turkey in 1877-79 brought the flow of migrants
from Asia Minor: about 50 thousand Armenians came to the Kars region and about
40 thousand Greeks ... When in 1897 newly appointed Governor Prince G.S. Golitsyn arrived, there were already about
900 thousand Armenian migrants rather than 100 thousand as in 1894.
... Most of migrants are Armenians: of 1 million 300 thousand people living now
in Trans-Caucasus 1 million are Armenians who are not indigenous here and were
settled by us.
... Widely using false evidences, newly arrived Armenians seized vast
territories of public lands.”
There is surely a wealth of information from Russian
sources busting so many myths of the Armenians. Too bad more of these Russian
sources have not been investigated, and translated into English.