Tall Armenian Tale


The Other Side of the Falsified Genocide


  Dashnak Diaspora Domination Detailed by Derounian  
First Page


Major Players
Links & Misc.



Mahmut Ozan
Edward Tashji
Sam Weems

The Armenian Displaced Persons

A First Hand Report on Conditions in Europe


(Arthur Derounian)


A Journal on Armenian Studies

Winter, 1949-1950            Vol. 1, No. 1



Three cheers for John Roy Carlson — the rare Armenian patriot (he believed in the "genocide," used terms like "Turkish yoke," and Christian code such as "Smyrna" and "Constantinople") who attempted to send a "red alert" to his fellow Armenians as to the mass infiltration of the fanatical, slimy Dashnaks, threatening to act as the one voice for the Armenian people. He tried to give the warning, but it was to no avail. The Dashnak mentality prevails today among the diaspora, at least among those who speak publicly.

Isn't that always the way? Where fanaticism and money lead, the masses follow. For example, American Muslims at this point don't want much to do with the fanatical Wahhabis... but it's their big, Saudi-oil money that is serving as great influence, behind the scenes. Similarly, the concept of Abraham Lincoln's Republican "conservatism" hasn't much to do with the fanatical, obscenely wealthy religious right that has taken over the Republican Party in recent years... doing a great job of brainwashing the American populace through their huge network of media outlets.

Carlson says it flat out: "the ARF assumed the leadership by its more fanatic appeal, and its policy of liquidating by terror all opposition." Today, it's these immoral, "the end justifies the means" fanatics with no concern for truth or honor, that rule. Even Armenian professors have adopted this mentality; the instant someone steps out of line from the standard propaganda-speak  —  even a little, as Vincent Lima or Ara Sarafian mildly blurted  —  the fanatics are quick to jump down their throats, making reputation-harming allegations (to the implied extent of being Turkish tools, in the aforementioned examples).

Carlson used the correct word in his article: INSIDIOUS. He describes the above technique, as used for financial extortion: "Another effected practice was the intimidation of prominent men in order to obtain financial support. Those who refused were 'put on the spot.' In fact, it was very similar to the underground methods of modern racketeering, except that its goal was noble." These terror tactics, including the time-honored fanatical Armenian smear campaign, are straight out of the gangster's rulebook.

This is a highly informative article that should open the eyes of many. Carlson — famed for going undercover to expose fascist organizations in the United States (such was the title of one of his books, Under Cover) — spells it all out. The Dashnak collaboration with the Nazis, and the "racial superiority" theories that caused so many Armenians (along with the reason of pure hatred, what too many have been systematically taught since childhood) to blindly engage themselves in mass murder during WWI, following bloody leaders such as "General Dro." Note Carlson's "Footnote 1" regarding the inspiration for the Armenian Youth Federation, or the AYF. We also learn of the establishing forces behind what is today known as ANCA, the truth-challenged and financially powerful Armenian-American organization.

This conditioning of Dashnak hatred that is prevalent on the minds of too many brainwashed Armenians is the reality today, among the Armenian Diaspora. The "reasonable" Armenians dare not speak as loudly as Carlson did; silence is compliance, and that is why Armenians are among the most monolithically-acting people in the world today.


 The Armenian Displaced Persons
A First Hand Report on Conditions in Europe


DISEMBARKING MONTHLY at New York and other piers are hundreds of “Armenian DPs,” mainly from Germany. They are arriving under the sponsorship of ANCHA (Armenian National Committee to Aid Homeless Armenians) which is representing itself as a purely humanitarian, non-political organization. But is this entirely true? Is ANCHA non-political? Is ANCHA a “national committee” made up of representative

Armenians --or is it politically sectarian? I charge that ANCHA is now supported by members, as well as the leadership of a political group of international ill-repute which has had a political axe to grind from 1890 to the present day. I visited the major Armenian DP camp in Germany during a trip in 1949. Although an investigation was far from my intention, what I saw so startled me that I spent several days making inquiries, and photographing the evidence.

As a citizen it is my purpose to urge officials of the International Relief Organization (IRO), and our immigration and DP officials to make sure that these DPs come in the best interests of America, as worthy of citizenship. It is my purpose to insure our country against the entry of propaganda agents, or recruits to a political group whose misdeeds are a matter of record.

Through the expert publicity gained for it by a restaurateur, the work of ANCHA has been so well daubed with the paint of un-adulterated humanitarianism that in order to evaluate its work, it is imperative to go into the background of the sponsors. With this in view I’m compelled to present the reader first with a documented history of events which led to the founding of ANCHA in 1947. He is then in a position to determine for himself the merits of the enterprise as a whole.

By way of preface it might be stated that there are Americans and Americans. The good and the questionable. Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt is an American; so are Cardinal Spellman, Bishop Oxnam and Father Coughlin. Carl Sandburg, William Foster, Westbrook Pegler are Americans. Al Capone, Henry Wallace, Harry Truman, Gerald L. K. Smith, Lepke Buchalter of Murder, Inc.- all these are (or were, in the case of Al and Lepke) native-born Americans.

By the same token, there are Armenians and Armenians. There are Rouben Mamoulian and Hovsep Pushman. But there are also two Armenians of murderous persuasion who are condemned to life in prison.

Unfortunately, some timid souls are horrified at the exposure of Armenian prototypes of the Smiths, Capones, Buchalters. This attitude is based on the premise that our faults should remain unpublicized to “outsiders.” Why? Are we not at least as human as our native-born American brethren who themselves claim no monopoly on virtues? Are we Armenians “superior’ to all other ethnic groups? Are we a race” apart, free of weakness? Denying that self-analysis is a virtue, the timid souls would even deny that our frailties are common to humanity everywhere.

By censuring unrepresentative Smiths, Capones and Buchalters, do we mean to besmirch the good name of all Smiths, all Italians, all Jews? Obviously not. And by censuring the political acts of unrepresentative Armenians abroad and unrepresentative Armenians here, no aspersion whatever is cast on the overwhelming majority of respectable Armenians everywhere. Nonetheless, we expect to be roundly denounced as anti-Armenian: first, by the milquetoasts, then by the guilty-minded partisans.

Samuel P. Orth, the sociologist, observed: “The Armenians especially are eager to become American citizens!” The record shows that we have an astonishingly small crime record. Our native-born generation is making phenomenal progress in the arts, medicine, science, business. Of these accomplishments we are justly proud. Nonetheless, the questionable Armenians are hard at work. We believe their political chicaneries should be exposed. The cause of justice is best served by truth, and the cause of truth by the merciless exposure of those who, under the guise of patriotism, seek to pervert both truth and patriotism

 two Armenian DPs hoisting the red-blue-orange flag of the defunct Dashnag government, over Funkerkaserne, Stuttgart, Germany

Photo, taken in March, 1949 [by John Roy Carlson], shows two Armenian DPs hoisting the red-blue-orange flag of the defunct Dashnag government, over Funkerkaserne, Stuttgart, Germany, where the bulk of the Armenian DPs were located.

There was once a man named Hitler who made lavish promises to labor and capital. After he had assumed power he betrayed both. Then he made lavish promises of independence to minorities of the Ukraine, Carpatho-Russia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, as well as the anti-British, Hitler subsidized Arabs like the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem who either had a grievance against Britain, or had been kicked out of Soviet Union territory and wanted to get back at any price. Former director of the Office of War Information in Europe, Wallace Carroll, observes in an article in Life (Dec. 19, 1949): "Hitler had authorized the creation of units from the lesser Soviet minorities — an Armenian legion, a Georgian legion. . . ."

And so, as the Wehrmacht marched eastward, it was followed by fifth-column Ukrainians, White Russians, Arabs and other elements bent on regaining will-o’-the-wisp independence under Hitler. As Nazi legions conquered Odessa and the Crimea, and edged their way along the shores of the Black Sea toward the Caucasus —
 where nestled the Republic of Soviet Armenia — "pro-Independence Armenians" appeared in Europe. Formally they were known as the Armenian Revolutionary Federation,
popularly called Dashnag.

These European Dashnags, with headquarters in Berlin, appealed to, and bargained with Hitler’s emissaries for an "independent" Armenian state. That they had to boot-lick Nazi masters goes without saying. That, as potential officials of a puppet Nazi state, they would have assumed the infamous roles of the Paveliches, Antonescus, Lavals, Tisos or Vidkun Quislings was also a foregone conclusion Once committed to it, there was no alternative to the price for "independence" except subservience to Hitler.

By 1940 Dr. Alfred Rosenberg had been appointed Minister of Eastern Occupied Areas He was in constant touch with the Dashnag hierarchy in Germany, which by that time had formed the Armenian National Council. It was "Armenian" only in the sense that Dashnag Armenians belonged to it. Far from being "national," it spoke only for certain Quisling minded Dashnags of Europe, not for the overwhelming majority of Armenians the world over who were pro Ally, and fought valiantly for the Allied cause.

Dro "The Butcher" Kanayan

Master of international intrigue;
Dro "The Butcher" Kanayan

The Naziesque Dashnag Council (not to be confused with the Armenian National Council of America) was comprised of Prof. Ardashes Abeghian, president; Abraham Gulhandanian, vice president; Harootiun Baghdasarian, secretary; members-at-large (meaning Dashnags outside Germany) were: Der Tovmassian, Vahan Papazian, David Davidkhanian, Garegin Nejdeh, and a master of international intrigue known as General Dro Ganayan. The following are significant excerpts from the document —  comprising 12 points —  signed between Nazi Germany and the European Dashnag Council, with the above mentioned Dashnags serving as its officers. it was made public on February 15 1943:

1. The Armenian National Council was organized in Berlin, December 15, 1942, under the patronage of the Ministry of the Eastern Occupied Areas. Thus the Armenian National Council undertakes to be an agent between Germany and the Armenians....

3. In order to carry out these purposes and programs freely, to achieve and to establish them firmly, the Armenian National Council considers the political protection of the German Reich over Armenia the most secure guaranty. . . .

7. The Armenian National Council is convinced that the efforts of its people should be crowned with success because Armenia, through the powerful help of the German Reich, will become a self-governing country and as such, will be built up. . . .

8. The Armenian National Council will do everything to facilitate the work of its patron government, including the national wealth of the land, taking into consideration the economic reconstruction of Armenia and the interest of the two peoples. . . .

9. Under the protection of the German Reich, Armenia, so far as she is able, will strive to strengthen the German influence in the Near East. In this connection, the Armenian National Council finds it imperative to evaluate the bitter disappointments and terrible misery which Russia, as well as England have caused on the Armenians in the course of history. . . .

11. Realizing the historic, political, economic and cultural intimate ties between Great Germany and her protectorate, Armenia, the Armenian National Council will consider it its high duty to strengthen these mentioned ties and to render them unbreakable. For this purpose are already called, and hereafter will be called, those auxiliary Armenian forces which are now active and fighting with the Germans for final victory and liberation.

12. The Armenian National Council is an agent in the present period of transition. Its jurisdiction and activity cease the moment when, under the leadership of Germany and the help of the Armenian National Council, a new government is created in Armenia.

An avowed task of the Council was to select —  with Nazi approval, of course —  Russian-Armenian soldiers from the prisoners-of-war camps. Many of these later joined special units of the Wehrmacht composed of similar anti-Soviet minority troops. Whether there is any connection between their release and their joining Nazi units is a matter of speculation. Some were identifiable by an armband composed of the Dashnag colors: red-blue-orange. For example, Dashnag recruits from France bore the mark Légion Arménienne.

In the meanwhile, efforts of European Dashnags for the "independent" state played deeper into Nazi hands. Dashnag henchmen appeared in every occupied country to collaborate with the Nazis. Here are a few specific instances. Nejdeh —  who was once sponsored by Boston Dashnags to organize a racist youth group in the United States called Tzeghagron [1] —  had organized an espionage network based in Nazi-occupied

[1] Literally Tzeghagron means "to make a religion of one’s race." Patterned after the Nazi Youth It was also called Racial Patriots. Nejdeh wrote: "The Racial Religious believes in his racial blood as a deity. Race above everything and before everything. Race comes first. Everything is for the race." In the April 10, 1936, issue of Hairenik Weekly, Nejdeh stated: "Today Germany and Italy are strong because as a nation they live and breathe in terms of race." From Racial Patriots and Tzeghagrons, the name of the Dashnag youth group was later changed to Armenian Youth Federation, or the AYF, as it is currently known.

American Dashnags have consistently followed a course of opportunism and double-dealing.


Bulgaria. He and his adjutant were later caught and executed. According to the January 14, 1945 issue of Bahag, published in Bucharest, the arrest of Antonescu's iron Guard members netted many Dashnags. Greece was honeycombed with Dashnags serving as Nazi spies. One of them even recruited parachutists for fifth column work behind Allied lines. 

According to articles printed in the Sept 1, 1945 Mirror-Spectator English Armenian democratic weekly published in New York, and reprinted in the Congressional Record (Nov. 1, 1945), General Dro Ganayan is charged with organizing a band of his own and following close on the heels of Nazi armies, marching with them, into the Crimea and upper Caucasus. As a former officer under the Independent Armenian government (which survived from 1918-20, to be followed by the Soviet regime), he was familiar with the territory. The Very Rev. Sooren Vartabed, writing in the January, 1944 issue of Etchmiadzin, organ of the Holy See of the Armenian Church, and widely reprinted in this country, made the following charges against Dro Ganayan: 

This bandit with his volunteer “heroes” has done everything not to lag behind his German masters whom he was serving as a hired mercenary. While at Pyatigorsk and Armavir, he has tried to induce the church councils to organize charitable societies to collect funds for the benefit of “Armenian prisoners, sick and wounded soldiers." But soon his mask was ripped. . .  

With the approach of the Red Army the plunderers carried away... precious church “utensils and vestments. . . all the silverware collected for the church cross by Avadian Soorep and Thomasian Iskoohi, rnenibers of the Church councils of Krasnodar as well as silken and velvet vestments donated by the faithful flock. 

When I met Ganayan in Beirut, Lebanon, while posing as a Dashnag sympathizer, he admitted to me that he “went as far forward with the Germans as they did in the Caucasus.” His role was "humanitarian" and "patriotic," he said, his object being "to save the Russian Armenians from  vengeful German hands.” Point II of the Dashnag Nazi agreement in mentioning “auxiliary Armenian forces which are now active and fighting with the Germans," probably had reference to Dro Ganayan and his cohorts. At any rate, he can hardly disclaim his associations with the Nazis. I have a photograph of him surrounded by three uniformed Nazi officers and five Dashnag collaborators. After the Nazi debacle at Stalingrad, Ganayan returned with his men to Romania, then found refuge in Germany, after which he made his way to Beirut, via Cairo. 

Despite this record, Ganayan managed to get into our country early in 1949. American Dashnags feted him at meetings everywhere, and glorified him in their Journals as a patriot and hero. 

In Vienna I spoke with Archbishop Habozian, head of the Armenian Roman Catholics known as the Mechitarist Fathers, and director of the publishing house. "Ahh, we sold many books to the Dashnags during the war," he confided. When I asked why so many had been bought, he replied: "Abeghian, Dro and the others were expecting  to go to Armenia with the Germans. The books were bought to replenish the libraries of Soviet Armenia."

A significant item appeared in News Week on Nov. 12, 1941, entitled Armenian Puppet State, which further corroborates our preceding statements regarding Abeghian, Dro Ganayan and their former links with the Nazis.

  As the Near East crisis develops, look for evidence of Nazi fifth column activity by Armenians [read Armenian Dashnags] in Turkey and Syria. The Nazis have picked out the Armenian Revolutionary Federation or “Dashnag” party to do the fifth column work. This intensely nationalist organization has recently moved its headquarters from Switzerland to Paris to Berlin. . . .  The Nazis have promised the Dashnags an autonomous state similar to Croatia in return for their cooperation.

In this country the Armenian Revolutionary Federation maintains headquarters in Boston. The charges made herein pertain specifically to Dashnags overseas, and whenever in this article I use the term “Dashnag,” or Armenian Revolutionary Federation, without qualification, I allude to the European group. The American group, however, has been guilty of pro-Nazi utterances. As an example, the Sept. 17, 1936 issue of Hairenik, its official organ, stated editorially: 

And came Adolf Hitler, after herculean struggles. He spoke to the racial heart strings of the German, opened the fountain of his national genius, struck down the spirit of defeatism. . . . . At no period since the World War had Berlin conducted so realistic, well organized, and planned policy as now, since Hitler’s assumption to power. . . . And whatever others may think concerning Hitlerism and Fascism as a system of Government, it is proved that they have revitalized and regenerated the two states, Germany and Italy. 

On August 19, 20, 21, 1936, Hairenik published a series of articles in praise of the Nazi regime and the myth of "Aryan" culture. In these articles the author furthered the Nazi concept of identifying Jews with Communism: “As the British use battleships to occupy lands and to protect their fatherland, in this same way the Jews use internationalism or Communism as a weapon.” In the same issues of Hairenik the American Dashnags "explained" the Nazi persecution of the Jews with these horrendous remarks: 

Sometimes it is difficult to eradicate these poisonous elements when they have already struck deep root like a chronic disease. And when it becomes necessary for a people to ‘eradicate them in an uncommon method, these attempts and methods are regarded revolutionary. During a surgical operation the flow of blood is a natural thing. . . .

Under such conditions dictatorship seems to have the role of savior. 

No less outspoken were the columns of Hairenik Weekly, the English language organ. The May 10, 1935 issue quoted the vice-mayor of Bucharest as saying: “The Armenians [meaning only Dashnags] have helped the Romanians not to become slaves of the Jewish elements.” On Sept. 25, 1936, the Weekly denounced Zionist aims with these scurrilous remarks: 

And the type of Jew who is imported to Palestine is not anything to be proud about. Their loose morals, and other vices which were unknown to the Arabs prior to the Belfour Declaration, on top of all communistic activities, were the cause of most of the Arab criticism. 

American Dashnags have consistently followed a course of opportunism and double-dealing. Completely reversing its former acid commentary on Nazi-persecuted Jews, Hairenik published a tearful article in its Sept. 22, 1943, issue entitled The Jewish Tragedy. It shed copious crocodile tears and bemoaned the “terrible fate of Jewry.” Instead of “the most fanatical nationalists and race worshippers,” Jews became the noble “allies of civilization.” Not to be outdone, Hairenik Weekly went all out for Jewry and Zionism in the March 24, 1944, issue. In contrast to its former condemnation of Zionism, it devoted an entire editorial to the jubilee birthday of Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, a leading American Zionist. Here are typical excerpts:

   The Armenians have special cause for hailing warmly the renowned Rabbi’s Jubilee because the ernancipatory struggle which Jewry is now waging is a just cause, very close to the heart of the Armenians, and, in its touching episodes, it is so similar to the ~ Armenian Cause; secondly, because the person of Rabbi Wise is so cherished by all Armenians. 

The Jewish people have been one of the most wronged, crucified, and afflicted peoples of the world, and this misfortune is directly traceable to the loss of the Jewish homeland. Since the fall of Palestine’s independence nearly two thousand years ago, Jewry became a homeless element, hunted by fortune, until it understood that its only salvation lay in its return to the mother soil. This consciousness was embodied in the Zionist movement whose founders rightly perceived that a people cannot be happy until it has acquired a homeland of its own. Only a people having taken roots in the native homeland can live securely, can grow and flourish as a nation. 

The November 10 and 24, 1949, issues of Hairenik Weekly again reversed themselves. The party line changed with a flip-flop characteristic of Dashnagtzoutune. Former paeans to Zionism were forgotten in zealous efforts to curry favor with Arab delegates at the UN. Columns of praise were showered on the Arabs. The delegates of Lebanon, Syria, Egypt and Iraq were invited to speak on "Armenian Revolutionary Federation Day" in New York on November 13. Their photographs were plastered on the front page. According to the printed accounts all four are understood to have accepted. That they failed to show up is incidental to the main issue. All sent their deep regrets and professions of sympathy. The assemblage telegraphed a uniform message to the would-be guests. "We greet you as a friend of the Armenians, and their just cause," it read in part. This time it was not Zionist Jewry, but anti-Zionist Arabs who became friends of the Dashnag Armenians’ “just cause” -- whatever it was for the moment. 

The interest of American Dashnags in the Arab cause is as sudden as it is mysterious. Dashnag “intellectuals” from Arab countries have been visiting the United States, lecturing and raising funds for the Dashnag cause abroad. The latest arrival is Aram Sahakian from the Lebanon. Another is a bustling journalist named Levon Keshishian. He claims to be representing 17 Arab newspapers, but at the United Nations at Lake Success, N. Y., he was accredited only to LeSoir, a French-language Lebanese newspaper. On the many occasions I visited the UN, I saw Keshishian with Arabs, and members of the Arab delegations. I had many conversations with him. It was my, impression that Keshishian acted as liaison between Boston Dashnags and the Arab delegates. 

He is an Arab-born Armenian, short, nervous, hustling, in his thirties. I had met Keshishian first in April, 1948, in Jerusalem. Sometime after the Mandate expired in May, 1948, he was arrested by Jordan police, and kept for months in a filthy prison in Amman; he was also beaten, Keshishian told me. A man who speaks of his personal affairs with considerable frankness, Keshishian described in great detail how he had been arrested, the nature of the various charges (which, in the main, were regarded as being anti-Arab). He told me how certain incriminating letters, given to him by a Jerusalem Jew for mailing, had been found on his person; other letters had been intercepted by Jordan censors. He told me Jordan police had traced letters addressed to him, to a Dashnag-owned drugstore in Amman, which he used as a mail drop. 

I was in Amman in the summer of 1948. Keshishian’s imprisonment was an open secret. Armenians were particularly shocked, and ashamed, that a compatriot should be jailed on such charges. At my meetings with him at the UN, Keshishian protested his innocence. He also denied that he was a Dashnag, although he has contributed a regular column to Hairenik Weekly, addressed Dashnag meetings, and associated closely with American Dashnag elements. 

Although Keshishian is at times quiet-spoken, the violence of his language is predictable. In Jerusalem, for example, he had said to me: "I can have you hanged for bringing a book like this to Palestine” (a copy of Under Cover). At the UN, in October, 1949, after he had heard of a speech I had made commending Zionism, Keshishian first warned, then pleaded with me to say or write nothing detrimental to the Arab cause. Then he said, matter.of-factly: “You’ll never be able to return to any of the Arab countries. If you and I were there now I’d have you killed. Life is cheap in the Middle East. We do things manfully there. It’s not like here where you Americans live only for material comforts. I’d have you killed, I swear to it as God is my witness." 

"You sound like an Arab terrorist agent," I said to him, laughingly. "Remember, this is America." 

Dashnags rest their chief claims to "patriotism" on their anti-Soviet attitude. That many of these claims are a sham is proved by the evidence of their own writings. They help support our thesis that their "anti-Soviet" attitude is largely opportunism. Here are specific instances of our contention.

American Dashnag policy, theretofore anti-Communist, underwent a change when the tide turned after the Soviets’ firm stand at Stalingrad. Both the English and Armenian editors of the Haireniks began to reprint articles from Lraper, an Armenian journal of distinctly leftist tendencies, which both had previously denounced as “Communist.” They reprinted from Sovetakan Hayastan, official organ of Soviet Armenia. When the Soviet Embassy Information Bulletin in Washington published Soviet Armenia and the Patriotic War, the panegyric appeared promptly in the lead position on the front page of the March 29, 1944 issue of Hairenik Weekly. "These are happy days for the Soviet people,” it chortled. “The families of Red Army men also share in the warm solicitude of the Armenian people."

While on the one hand American Dashnag denounce Soviet Armenia, when the opportunistic spirit moves them, their readers in both languages, get a diet extolling certain aspects of Soviet Armenia. A case in point is an article on Yerevan, capital of Soviet Armenia. It’s reprinted from Sovetakan Hayastan in the Winter, 1948, issue of a Dashnag quarterly published in Boston. The logic of denouncing a political system, and praising it at the same time, escapes us. 

When in 1944 Nazis began to face disaster, American Dashnags zealously began to court the Armenian Left. Boston Dashnags made open, unashamed overtures of peace to Lraper and others. Hairenik ran an editorial which completely repudiated its former attitude of anti-Sovietism, and urged all anti-Dashnag factions in the United States to please forget the past and effect a merger in a common cause. Surrendering its policy of an “independent Armenia” the American Dashnags’ new party line sought to identify itself with the ambitions of Soviet Russia — namely the wresting of the provinces of Kars and Ardahan from Turkish hands and their incorporation within Soviet Armenia. The appeal appeared first in a Hairenik editorial. It received added circulation in translated form in the Hairenik Weekly of May 19, 1944: 

The attitude of the Federation toward the Soviet government in relation to the practical Armenian national policy is no different from theirs. Like them the Federation too looks to the Soviet government . . . and is willing to make all possible sacrifices the realization of that national aim. The Federation, too, like them, admits that Soviet Armenia is the rightful political trustee of the Armenian cause.

 That line, kept up for many months. An American Dashnag Armenian National Committee set up shop, published elaborate memoranda, sent delegations to the San Francisco Conference and agitated energetically for the merger of the strategic Turkish provinces with the Soviet Union. 

There was a time when Dashnags — who now denounce the repatriation of poverty stricken Armenians to Soviet Armenia — actually urged financial support of the scheme. They told their readers that it meant the "reunion of the Armenians." Those who went were "devoted to the reconstruction of the Fatherland." On Oct. 15, 1941, Hairenik urged its befuddled readers to "do [their] utmost . . . to crown with brilliant success this undertaking" — namely help in collecting $1,000,000 to support repatriation. Thus the presumably "anti-Soviet" Hairenik pleaded with the zeal of a convert: 

Numbers make for strength. As the number of our people increases in our Fatherland, so will increase our political influence. A sparsely populated weak Armenia will never be taken into account. On the contrary, a densely populated, prosperous Armenia represents a great potential which merits the respect of both friend and foe. Repatriation or the reunion of Armenians means the strengthening of Armenia. . . . 

Every Armenian who participates in repatriation should know that he is sending a soldier for the defense of Armenia, or sends there an intellectual, or the deft hands of an artisan. Enthuse by this knowledge. We must give at least this year as much as we gave last year. We should not indulge in various small considerations in the matter of serving the Fatherland.  

To those who have followed the devious history of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation, opportunistic changes in policy are no surprise. The ARF started in 1890 as “Socialist-Revolutionist” with the worthy aim of liberating Armenia from the Turkish yoke and establishing its independence. Other Armenian groups — Ramgavar and Hunchag — were devoted to the same ideal. Of the three factions, the ARF assumed the leadership by its more fanatic appeal, and its policy of liquidating by terror all opposition. But with its failure to govern the independent state of Armenia (1918-20) [2] toward which all three groups had sacrificed their manpower, and its eventual ouster by the ushering in of the Bolshevik regime, the Dashnag cause has degenerated into cold-blooded opportunism.



[2] A. Khatisian, former Dashnag prime minister of Armenia, states in his book, The Origin Development of the Armenian Republic (Athens, 1930, p. 155) that “land in Armenia was nationalized and given to the workers” by agrarian laws. “Being true to its fundamental ideal, socialism," declares Khatisian, the people were invited by the Dashnag press to rise and take possession by force individually owned land, and the property and lands belonging to the churches. 

The Bolshevik character of the Dashnag Republic was undeniable. 

In a proclamation of May 29, 1919, the Dashnag Bureau in Yerevan declared: "Dashnagtzoutune,  after realizing its political ideal, the establishment of a Democratic republic, and being true to its fundamental doctrine, socialism, will steer our ship consistently and with determination, through the channel of social reforms, to that haven of social justice, towards which the workers of all the nations are bound." 

I have the eyewitness testimony of an Armenian American in a highly responsible position in New York who said to me: “In the public halls during that period, [1918-20), many banners wea inscribed in Armenian: 'Proletariats of the world, unite!'" 

H. Kachaznouni, another former prime minister (they changed often), in his book Dashnagtzoutune Has Nothing More to Do (Vienna, 1923, pp. 31-2), denounces the "Bolshevistic system" of the Dashnag government in the following lucid terms: 

In Armenia there was no Parliament; it was an empty form without content. The problems of state were being discussed and solved behind closed doors, in the rooms of the Dashnag

faction, and then declared from the rostrum of the parliament. In reality, there was not even a parliamentary faction, because this latter was under the very strict supervision of the Dashnag Bureau, and was obliged to carry out its orders.

There was not a government either. This also was ruled by the Bureau; it was a kind of executive body for the Bureau in the state. This was the Bolshevistic system. But what the Bolshevists are doing openly and consistently, we were attempting to veil under democratic forms. The United States sent Gen. Harbord to investigate the “policies of the Armenian Government.”

The commission reported: "The policy is unfortunately affected by Dashnagtzoutune methods, which are always liable to precipitate trouble." 

When Dashnags anywhere parade themselves as spokesmen for all "Armenians" they resort to nothing short of willful, deliberate misrepresentation.


Our quarrel is not with the idea of an “independent Armenia.” All Armenians, except those on the Left, would welcome a truly independent and sovereign state — if it were feasible, if full protection were guaranteed from the bloody Turks, if it could be managed properly, which it wasn’t under Dashnag auspices. Our quarrel is with manifestations of Dashnag leadership then and now, the gamut of collaboration with Nazis, the duplicity, terror, treachery and opportunism it has manifested in its period of frustration, since 1920. Historically, the Dashnag ouster was the result of a combination of popular will and the promise of the Bolsheviks for "bread and peace." To a refugee population already massacred and decimated by the Turkish policy of genocide, and further persecuted by Kemal Ataturk’s fiendish army, Bolshevik promises were like manna from heaven. Ultimately the bedraggled Armenians revolted against Dashnag mismanagement and centralized bureaucracy. Dashnags then became anything and everything to anyone — not excluding Nazi Rosenberg — who would restore their power. 

Dashnags in America are now shunned by the overwhelming majority of respectable Armenian Americans. As a result Dashnags have to set up their own fraternal, social, sport, literary, religious and other bodies. While some sympathy exists toward innocent Dashnag followers, contempt is the order for its leadership both here and abroad. On the other hand, persons like Mrs. Elizabeth Dilling, the Jew-baiting, raucous propagandist, has praised them as "patriotic." 

Shunned by Armenians who know them, many American Dashnags have now resorted to promoting themselves before any non-Armenian who will take them at their word. They parade as "leaders" of Armenian communities everywhere, magnifying their importance completely out of proportion to truth. With highly commendable zeal, which might be used to benefit the whole Armenian-American community instead of serving a narrow, partisan cause, they represent themselves as the custodians of the "Armenian question," "Armenian interests," etc. American, English and Arab officials are warned that the Armenian Revolutionary Federation speaks for, and represents only itself. Its politics are its own. They do not reflect those of the overwhelming majority of the Armenian community in this country or elsewhere. When Dashnags anywhere parade themselves as spokesmen for all "Armenians" they resort to nothing short of willful, deliberate misrepresentation. Noteworthy is a letter written on March 26, 1935, by Thomas E. Dewey, now Governor of New York but then a special assistant to the U. S. Attorney General’s office, to Herbert Lehman who was governor of New York: 

For many years a very small group of fanatic zealots among the Armenian people have perpetrated murders and assaults upon the duly constituted authorities, in a campaign of terrorism . . . for the purpose of imposing the will of the few, upon the many. I believe it is correct to say that this group, the Dashnags, does not constitute more than 5% of the Armenian population.

It may be that certain American, English and Arab governmental agencies are exploiting Dashnags to further their own particular cause. In view of the fact that such dictatorships as Turkey and Spain, many Nazis in Germany and Fascists in Italy are now in the “friendly camp,” in addition to Communist (but not Stalinist) Yugoslavia, to say nothing of numerous ex.-fascists, ex-communists, spies and international gangsters now being used for the same cause, it’s possible that certain individuals within the ARF abroad have been recruited by certain American, English and Arab departments toward the same end. If so, prostitution of their talents should be no new experience for such ARF leaders as Dro Ganayan and Prof. Abeghian. Both have already run the gamut of political collaboration.

headquarters of the Homenetmen at Funkerkaserne, 1949

Photo (taken in March 1949 [by John Roy Carlson]) shows headquarters of the Homenetmen at Funkerkaserne. The unmistakable Dashnag character is indicated by three Dashnag flags, in addition to a photo (top left) of General Nazarbekoff, a Dashnag favorite. On the right is the photo of an unidentified military figure. The photograph in the middle is also unidentified.  On the mantelpiece is a bust of Avedis Aharonian, first president of the now defunct Dashnag government (1918-20), and a writer on Dashnag revolutionary themes. Just above (MISSING TEXT).... the Armenian Revolutionary Federation.


Prof. Ardashes Abeghian, president of the Naziesque Council alluded to by Archbishop Hahozian is now living comfortably in Stuttgart, and is hopefully waiting to emigrate from Germany. I visited him at his home, Zuffenhausen, Salzweg, 33. He teaches mathematics at the Armenian DP camp established under IRO auspices at Funkerkaserne in Stuttgart. I saw his daughter working in the Funkerkaserne office and spoke to her.

About 1,400 Armenian DPs were stationed there as of May, 1949. About 40 were in Frankfurt, 25 in Heidelberg, 20 in Berlin. Settlements totalling about 500 were strewn about in Milan, Naples, Rome, Bari, Vienna and France. Harootiun Baghdasarian, former secretary of the Council, was living and working in Munich, awaiting emigration with 400 other DPs under IRO care. Other Dashnag leaders are scattered over Europe. It must be emphasized that all these Dashnags are posing as "stateless." All
— with but a few exceptions — have DP status, and are eligible for immigration to the United States.

I visied Funkerkaserne in March of last year. The political-military character which this IRO camp had assumed is unforgettable. I found its atmosphere pervaded with an aura of conspiracy and stealth, such as I used to encounter in my investigations of undercover activity in the United States. In contrast to other DP camps, a gang of tough-Iooking, unshaven, Dashnags challenged me upon entrance. Accompanied by several guards, I was escorted to the office of Levon Beg Dilijan, commander of the camp. I introduced myself as an Armenian journalist, giving my correct name, and asked to be shown around. Dilijan and others who had surrounded me, first asked if I knew Darbinian, Vratzian or any other Dashnag chief in Boston. When I professed to know them all personally, no further questions were asked. I was taken into the fold.

“We are in close touch with Boston,” Levon Beg said. “We receive Hairenik and read it daily.”

“Do you know George Mardikian?” someone asked. “He has helped a great deal.”

“I know him,” I said truthfully. “I’ve also eaten at his restaurant in San Francisco.”

Levon Beg and the other took me on a tour around the camp. A large, cold room with rough desks served as a Dashnag school. In the middle of the acre-square yard, I saw two young men hoisting the familiar Dashnag red-blue-orange flag of the defunct Armenian Republic of 1918 (see photographs). Other youths whom we met were members of Homenetmen, as Dashnag “Boy Scouts” are called. They were more like young soldiers. Indoctrinated in Dashnag ideology, they saluted Levon Beg stiffly. I was told they held drills regularly. We visited their headquarters. The room was lined with photographs and busts of Dashnag heroes. Dashnag flags, Dashnag inscriptions, Dashnag insignia were plastered all over (see photograph). It was obvious that no one could survive in that atmosphere without being a Dashnag or thoroughly subservient to them.

"You speak with different accents," I observed to Levon Beg and his companions. "Are you all from Russia?"

"Of course not," he confided. "Some of us are from Persia and Turkey. But we have all said we were from Russia so we could be classified as DPs and come to America."

"But how did you manage that?" I asked incredulously.

"That's our secret," Levon Beg said laughing.

I browsed around Funkerkaserne. One DP I met said he had left his family in Yerevan, Soviet Armenia. “I wish there would be a war so I could go back to my wife and child,” he said.

"How did you get to this camp?" I asked another Armenian.

"I am from Rostov," he answered. "Men from Zoravar (General) Dro’s army told us to come to Germany before the Russians recaptured Rostov. They told us it would be better, so we came."

"Are you happier here than in Rostov?" I asked.

"I can’t say that I am. I am not a political man. I worked in a shoe factory. I worked harder than was good for me. Here I don’t work at all. I like this idleness less. But I can’t say I was unhappy in Rostov. . . . Oh well, it is now too late. They have promised to send us to America. We shall see. . . ."

Speaking to a DP who said he was from Romania, I asked if he were Dashnag.

"Anshousht (of course) ," he answered stiffly. "We were very strong in Romania. We are now waiting to come to America. What is the status of Dashnagtzoutiune in America? Are they the leaders?"

"Why are the stores shut?" I asked, pointing to a dozen boarded shops. "The American Military Police came the other day and closed them down," Mugurdich Mosigian, chief of the Homenetmen, answered.

"Why?" I asked. "Americans don’t usually interfere. . . ."

"Oh, the police said we were doing black marketing," Mosigian explained, laughing.

Whether or not the police were right in this case, the fact is that many DPs are engaged in black market activity as a means of livelihood. The authorities overlook this except in cases of flagrant violations. In Stuttgart, some Dashnags enjoyed a non-enviable reputation as proficient black-marketeers.

 DP shops inside Funkerkaserne, Mugurdich Mosigian, Levon Beg Dilijian

Photo (taken in March 1949 [by John Roy Carlson]) shows DP shops inside Funkerkaserne closed and boarded by American Military Police for alleged black market activity. In front of the shops, at the extreme left, is Mugurdich Mosigian, chief of the Homenetmen, the name given to Dashnag "Boy Scouts," who is now in the United States. At the extreme right is Levon Beg Dilijian, "mayor" of Funkerkaserne.


After my visit to the Funkerkaserne, I visited Brig.-Cen. Haig Shekerjian at his home in Stuttgart. Shekerjian was an active American Army general. Now on the retired list, he was placed in charge of ANCHA activity in Europe by George Mardikian. ANCHA is an abbreviation for Armenian National Committee to Aid Homeless Armenians. George Mardikjan, the restaurateur, is founder and main promoter of ANCHA, which functions under IRO supervision.

As for Brig.-Gen. Shekerjian, he is an elderly man, of handsome blonde appearance, and with his wife lives in a well-furnished home, with a servant, private car and chauffeur. He travels around freely. Shekerjian gave me the impression that he had taken the job in order to keep busy in his retirement. He seemed completely naive politically and quite ignorant of the implications of having around such men as Baghdasarian, former secretary of the Armenian National Council of Nazi Berlin. A3 to its former president, Prof. Abeghian, I found him teaching mathematics in the same room where Mrs. Shekerjian taught English to the DPs. I did not get the impression that he had a deep feeling for his work. In one instance Shekerjian confided:

“It has been difficult to interest other nations in these DPs. They are good workers, but most of them unfortunately make a bad appearance. Those who are eligible to be sent to Australia are first interviewed by a liaison officer of the mission. Some of these Armenians look so rough that they don’t leave a favorable impression.”

Brig.-Gen. Shekerjian admitted that affidavits.for-support had been slow in coming from America in the past two years, but since Dro Ganayan’s visit to the States last winter (1949), affidavits had been arriving regularly, He had hopes for the eventual emigration of nearly 2,000 DPs from Germany alone. They were no longer referred to as “Armenians,” Sbekerjian pointed out, but as “Russians.”

“This is very helpful for a number of reasons,” he explained. It seems that the designation of these Armenians as Russians overcomes the prejudice which their reputation has given them. It identifies them all as political refugees from the USSR. The psychological effect was better all around, the General pointed out.





ANCHA was founded in 1947 as the result of a trip Mardikian made to Germany on behalf of the U. S. Army, in the course of which he visited the Armenian DPs. Mardikian contributed heavily to ANCHA. Otherwise it has been financed almost exclusively by American Dashnag capital. Correspondents in Eastern United States are urged to communicate with ANCHA at Dashnag headquarters in Boston. In Boston the Armenian Relief Corps, a Dashnag affiliate (when speaking in Armenian Dashnags refer to it as the Armenian Red Cross), has common offices and personnel with ANCHA’s.

Dashnag journals published in Boston began singing Mardikian’s praises long before ANCHA. He has supported the Armenian Revolutionary Federation in the United States by speaking at many of its meetings, by contributing financially, and by fronting for it on many occasions.

I’ve met Mardikian a number of times. His personal charm, his enthusiasm, his fine sense of hospitality are remarkable traits geared to making friends and disarming enemies. But everyone of us was born with a “blind spot.” As is so common among successful businessmen, engineers, and in this instance, a restaurateur, the blind spot is the lack of a discerning eye for politics. How else can one, for example, explain the attitude of loyal American Charles Lindbergh’s association with the America First Committee? Who but one obsessed with a political blind spot would brand a program of social welfare as the diabolical invention of the Kremlin?

When Dro Ganayan visited the United States early in 1949, he was sponsored by American Dashnags in a series of meetings from coast to coast on behalf of ANCHA.

At these meetings this former follower of the Nazi armies, and a co-signer of the infamous agreement of the Armenian National Council of Berlin, helped raise funds for ANCHA. He urged Dashnag audiences to sign affidavits-for-support for the DPs at Funkerkaserne, and elsewhere in Europe. Hairenik reported that on January 23, 1949, Ganayan spoke in Detroit, Mich. It boasted that $1,000 was collected in 20 minutes.

  It’s a fair inference that Ganayan was coming to the rescue of some of those with whom be collaborated while following the Nazi armies. Is ANCHA, an American organization financed by American capital, ignorant of Ganayan’s former role? Is Brig..Gen. Shekerjian also ignorant? 

Is George Mardikian equally ignorant?

The use of "direct action" as punishment was advocated in a copy of the American Dashnag by-laws... Dashnags abroad regularly used terror to silence opposition. To intimidate others, they boasted openly of their deeds.


Here are additional facts about the Armenian Revolutionary Federation which Mr. Mardikian should know. We consider it our duty to remind him that on Christmas Sunday, 1933, nine members of the Dashnags in this country pounced upon Archbishop Leon Tourian as he was celebrating mass in the Armenian Holy Cross Church in New York. While seven cutthroat American Dashnag gangsters distracted the attention of the parishioners, two assassins murdered the Archbishop with a butcher knife at the foot of the holy altar. These two Dashnags were convicted of first degree murder. The seven Dashnag accessories to the conspiracy were convicted of first degree manslaughter.

Archbishop Tourian was descendant of a distinguished family of clerics, scholars and statesmen. Linguist and author, be had translated the beautiful Armenian liturgy into English. He had served as Bishop of Bulgaria, Primate of Smyrna, vice-Patriarch of Constantinople and Archbishop in England. He was a close friend of the late Right Rev. William T. Manning, Episcopal Bishop of New York, who recited special prayers for the martyred Prelate at services held in the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. Revered by the Armenian community, he obeyed the dictum of the Holy See to keep "partisan and political strife" out of the Church. He foiled American Dashnag efforts to control the historic Armenian Church. For this he was branded a "Soviet agent." Then, by a weird twist of Dashnag logic, his murder trial was termed a "Bolshevik plot."

The ARF press slurred the American judiciary by writing of "ignorant jurymen." It wrote contemptuously of "false witnesses," while it adulated the nine Dashnag assassins as "our blameless comrades."

ARF emblem with dagger

ARF emblem with dagger

The brutal murder, without parallel in church history, followed a series of violent attacks upon the Archbishop in the official organ, Hairenik. Previously, at an outing in August, 1933, the Archbishop had been attacked by a truckload of Dashnag hoodlums while he was blessing parishioners of the Worcester (Mass.) Church of Our Savior. After these episodes, Hairenik began to print letters threatening the Archbishop’s life. Three samples follow. "Archbishop Tourian will be punished sooner or later. The day of reckoning will come.". . . . "He is going to be sorry for it, and very sorry.”. . . One letter offered a reward: "I will gladly give $100 if something is done to teach Pouriari a lesson." When the Archbishop asked for police protection Hairenik denounced him for seeking the protection of "alien [American] police."
The use of "direct action" as punishment was advocated in a copy of the American Dashnag by-laws I’ve examined. Noteworthy is the fact that the original emblem of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation is currently used by Dashnags here. It may be seen daily in the pages of Hairenik, and shows a quill, spade, flag, and dagger.

Dashnags abroad regularly used terror to silence opposition. To intimidate others, they boasted openly of their deeds. I. Jamharian was a wealthy Armenian who refused to contribute. He “fell under the blows of a dagger . . . in broad daylight in the courtyard of the Armenian Church, in the presence of a great throng,” wrote M. Varandyan, highly-respected Dashnag historian. “Should we continue terror or not?” party leaders asked in an official booklet, and answered the query with: “After a few successful operations, thanks to the terroristic disposition of the leading elements, the party eventually adopted Terrorism” Speaking of former revolutionary activity of Dashnags abroad, Hairenik, on Sept. 16, 1933 — thirteen weeks before the Archbishop’s murder — wrote:

Another effected practice was the intimidation of prominent men in order to obtain financial support. Those who refused were "put on the spot." In fact, it was very similiar to the underground methods of modern racketeering, except that its goal was noble.

Disrespect by European Dashnags toward the Church and clergy was common. [3] It was not unusual for armed ARF chiefs to burst into a church by flinging open the doors, and using the altar and chancel as a platform for political meetings. Those Armenians who tried to stop the sacrilege were shot on the spot, and both clergy and community terrorized.

Two of the most virulent anti-Christian letters we have ever read appeared under the headline Better off Without Christianity in the March 29, 1935 issue of the American Dashnag publication, Hairenik Weekly. Significant excerpts follow:

I. By accepting Christianity as our national religion we lost more than we gained as a people. The new religion instantly violated us geographically. Surrounded by non-Christian neighbors, the Arab, the Turk, the Kurd, the Tartar, and their hosts, from then on we had to reckon with the unremitting inroads of unsympathetic elements which gradually sapped our vitality and brought about our downfall....

There is nothing we as a people should thank Christianity for, as far as I am able to see, and plenty we should regret on account of it. The destiny of the Armenian race would have been entirely different, and who knows perhaps much better, had we retained our pagan creed, or accepted any other religion but Christianity. (Signed, Vartoohi Aslanian, New York.)

II. I am of the opinion that the Armenian Cause suffered by the adoption of Christianity as our national religion for the following reasons. Before Christ, Armenia was a powerful state capable of more than holding her own against its neighbors, the Assyrians, the Persians, and the Romans. We possessed national unity, solidarity, and virility.

With the introduction of Christianity, all of our pagan, although heroic, literature was destroyed, and our historical moorings completely cut off. .. . Briefly, by being Christians we lost our choicest national literature, much of our virility as a militant race, and good deal more of the good will of our neighbors-all liabilities, and not an asset in the whole lot. (Signed, Antranig Khanbegian, Brooklyn.)


[3] The list of high clergymen persecuted by the Dashnags is long. We give only a few illustrations. The Rt. Rev. Bishop Roupen Minasian, Prelate in Iraq, was denounced as "the agent of the Cheka," and physically attacked in Baghdad. He brought a libel suit against Housaper, Dashnag organ in Cairo. Housaper was found guilty. It was fined, and made to pay trial expenses. The late King Feisal of Iraq then received Bishop Minasian in royal audience.

His Eminence, the Most Rev. Archbishop Torcom, Patriarch of Jerusalem, while Prelate of Egypt, was denounced with unimaginable violence of language because he refused to let Dashnag chieftains plunder the ecclesiastical income of Cairo and Alexandria.

The Right Rev. Bishop Garabed Mazloumian, Prelate of Armenians in Greece, refused to tolerate Dashnag interference in church affairs. He was accused as “an agent of the Cheka.” When the Greek government gave the charge no credence, the aged Prelate was attacked one night and beaten. His beard was shorn off, as an added insult to his office.

We are omitting the beatings and murders of anti-Dashnag laymen. Their list is endless.


 Why did Hairenik Weekly publish these astonishing letters? The answer may be found with Rouben Darbinian, who is still editor-in-chief of all American Dashnag publications, and with James Mandalian, in 1935 editor of the Weekly, and currently still associated with Dashnag publications here.

The Dashnag record abroad is replete with intrigues, political and religious murders committed all over Turkey, Egypt, Romania, Greece, Bulgaria, Lebanon, Syria, Iran. Added to these is a new refinement, that of character assassination, developed mainly since the end of the war. Critics are denounced as "Communist." Rarely are accusations made openly, in print. In keeping with the psychology of conspirators, they are in the form of "secret" reports, circulated surreptitiously The victim is thus prevented from resorting to honest, legal, counter-action or given the opportunity for a hearing.

Through the use of half-truths and exaggerated accounts of their power and follow. ing, American Dashnags have converted to their point of view certain gullible and uninformed Americans. They are experts at the art of smearing by innuendo. Numerous instances have been reported to me of the use of smear tactics against non-Dashnag Armenians seeking to immigrate independently of ANCHA. As I write this, one such tragic case is pending at Ellis Island. Another current case is that of a wealthy Armenian of Egypt who so far has been prevented from making a business trip because of his membership in the Ramgavar (Armenian Democratic-Liberal) Party. He has been smeared by Egyptian Dashnags as a "Communist."

Now the question is: Why does Mr. Mardikian, wittingly or otherwise identify himself with such a political group as the American Dashnags? What does he expect to gain from their association? Is he genuinely misinformed?

Is he being used as a tool in the hands of the American Dashnag leadership? If so, why does he permit it? Now that Mr. Mardikian is reminded of these facts will he continue to act as sponsor of ANCHA, and also as a front for Dashnagism in this country?

Through his public relations counsel, an ill-advised but well-meaning New York lady, I made strenuous attempts to reach Mardikian, to inform him personally with these facts, and ask him the above questions. Mardikian refused to see me, his counsel stating that he was “very busy running around between Washington, Philadelphia, New York and Boston.” Nonetheless, he took time to see the Rev. L. M. Birkhead, chairman of the Friends of Democracy of New York (in whose excellent bulletins the Dashnag record had been exposed). According to the Rev. Birkhead, Mardikian tried to minimize the role of the American Dashnags.




As for ANCHA, whose purpose is said to be aiding the immigration of "homeless Armenians," we make the query as to how effectively it is fulfilling its task. In the interests of our country it should aid only those Armenians worthy of future American citizenship. The impression I gathered in my investigations at Funkerkaserne was that young DPs were being trained as Dashnag recruits, and, also, that one must either bow to its political whip or be ostracized.

Hairenik declared in its October 5, 1949, issue that 617 Armenians had already left Stuttgart for the USA; 446 were being examined; 181 affidavits-for-support were on their way, so that by the end of 1949 a total of about 1250 will have gained entry into our country.

Mardikian’s high-geared publicity machinery relies heavily on the tear.jerking technique. One story tells of a “white-haired, shabby woman of 70” who “tottered off the Army transport and knelt on the wooden deck before a plump and moist-eyed man from San Francisco. Then she kissed his [Mardikian’s) hand and touched his clothing. She wept and George Mardikian wept.” Whether the incident was real, or the figment of a journalist’s imagination, is a matter of speculation. At any rate, after he stopped weeping, Mr. Mardikian is quoted as saying: "They cry and they call me their savior. I am not that. I am only a very stubborn man."

On November 27, 1949, I attended an ANCHA meeting in New York, sponsored by American Dashnags, at which Mardikian was the featured speaker. The audience was conspicuously Dashnag. I recognized many of those whom I knew either to be members of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation here, or closely allied to the American Dashnag cause. There was the Armenian lawyer who had defended American Dashnags, and served as counsel for Fritz Kuhn. Later on, he addressed the meeting. Sitting in the front row was Levon Keshishian. As Mardikian took the rostrum, the audience rose to its feet in loud applause.

George Mardikian

Mardikian in front of his restaurant,
George Mardikian's Omar Khayyam.
According to Vartkes Yeghiayan,
assassin Soghoman Tehlirian
worked for "George Mardikian
Enterprises" in later years.

"I promised my wife not to cry in public, but I can’t help it," he said, and, to everyone’s astonishment he began to cry, instantly and without effort. There was no apparent reason. Nothing to stimulate anyone’s tear ducts had occurred so far in the meeting. A short while later, he wept again when recalling, he said, his first visit to the DPs in 1947. My notes show that George wept some more as he told how he had tried to elicit support on their behalf. Looking around carefully every few minutes, I saw no one else weeping.

To me, at least, these constant emotional reactions in front of 600 sober and unresponsive listeners seemed out of place. Was it a case of hysteria, emotional exhaustion, emotional instability? Was it lack of self-control, or showmanship! I could not resolve the question at one sitting.

At 6:15 P.M., according to my notes, Mardikian’s eyes became wet again — when he called DPs from Germany to line up before the stage. This time he was joined by several females, no others. As the former DPs lined up, I recognized those I had seen at Stuttgart and Frankfurt. Mugurdich Mosigian, chief of Homenetmen, Dashnag “Boy Scouts,” was among the arrivals.

I jotted down Mardikian’s more significant remarks. "This is a purely humanitarian project," he said. "There’s nothing political about it. Our critics say that these people are General Dro’s soldiers, or that they are Dashnags. Don’t let them fool you. . .
But don’t be suprised when, after they have been settled in the United States, they turn Dashnag of their own accord."

This seemed to be a self-damning admission from one who claimed that only humanitarianism — and no politics — were involved in bringing over the DPs. It bears out our thesis that these DPs are being recruited to the American Dashnag cause.

Before taking his seat, Mardikian explained, even as the publicity stories had pointed out, that he was a sick man, a very sick man, who really needed an urgent operation. He was going to let it wait. Mardikian then told his listeners that he carried medicine with him, including sedatives. During the three hours I saw him on the platform Mardikian moved around vigorously.

When I saw him, Mardikian was finishing a killing six-week grind which had required his attendance at mass rallies and committee sessions lasting till midnight, in addition to numerous cocktail parties, dinners, radio appearances, interviews, and almost daily trips away from his New York headquarters. it was hardly the diet for a man in need of an urgent operation, as the publicity stories would have us believe.



ANCA: Dashnak tool?

Souren Saroyan, Mardikian’s personal attorney, spoke in English. Describing himself and his client as “the moving spirits” behind ANCHA, he said that it had been incorporated in Fresno. It had been launched with a “gift of $25,000 from the Armenian Relief Society.” Mr. Saroyan significantly neglected to add that the Society is an American Dashnag group. “I’ll let you in on a secret,” he went on. “The law allows only 205,000 DPs. There are 250,000 affidavits already in Europe. But if we work fast enough and get our own affidavits in now, we can bring the 1,100 Armenian DPs. I won’t tell you how we’re going to do it, but I promise you that we can do it if we work fast enough. We have friends in important places.”

Was this lawyer boasting, or telling the truth? I have no way of ascertaining. I’m merely reporting his statements. What mysterious "pull," if any, as hinted by him, is wielded by ANCHA among officials in New York, Washington, and Stuttgart. Is such alleged "pull" being used to the detriment of other deserving DPs for whom affidavits-for-support have already been filed? Saroyan also spoke of "banquets in Washington." To whom were these banquets tendered? For what purpose? Are the rights of destitute DPs in Europe — whose representatives here cannot afford "banquets in Washington" — being fully protected under the Displaced Persons Act of 1948. If anything undercover is going on we have a right to know. These are reasonable questions.

"I’ll let you in on another secret," Mardikian’s lawyer confided. "After we bring the 1,100 DPs, we’re going to try to establish a separate Armenian quota, a special quota for the Armenians who must now depend on the meager quotas of foreign governments."

This seemed to be a change which would permit the unlimited importation of Dashnags not covered under the DP status — such, for example, as the pro-Nazi Armenian Dashnags who lived in Germany during the Nazi regime, or other Dashnag collaborators in Greece, France and elsewhere who, while not homeless, would serve Dashnagtzoutune better through American citizenship. General Dro Ganayan could be included in this scheme. Vahan Papazian, his colleague in Beirut, former member-at-large of the Naziesque Council, could be another candidate.

My suspicions were confirmed in the December 8, 1949, issue of Hairenik Weekly which tells of a Mardikian and Saroyan visit to the United Nations. In an interview Mardikian is quoted as stating that after the completion of ANCHA’s work "they will tackle the problem of Homeless and Stateless Armenians in Eastern Europe and Near East countries." Speaking of Mardikian as "a good friend of the Arabs" the Arab-born columnist, Levon Keshishian notes in the same issue:

The UN is setting up a High Commissioner for Refugees and Stateless persons. I am glad to say that the ANCHA boys are taking a keen interest in this... It is no hidden fact that there are thousands of Armenians who are still stateless... They are now living in different parts of the world and are still categorized as "Stateless" not to mention the thousands of Armenian refugees now in Syria, Lebanon and Egypt from Palestine.

After Saroyan and Mardikian had finished speaking at the New York ANCHA meeting, a drive for affidavits-for-support and finances began. I record a few of the contributors in further support of my thesis that ANCHA is subsidized considerably by American Dashnag capital, and best serves the Dashnag cause in this country. The following contributions were announced:

AYF (Dashnag youth group, originally the Racial Patriots)  ................................. $100
Armenian Red Cross (American Dashnag charitable organization)  .................................. 100
Armenian Red Cross, Washington Heights Branch, New York  .................................. 100  
St. Illuminator’s Church Trustees (Dashnag church on East 27th Street, New York)  .................................. 100  

While the collections were going on, the chairman boasted of new arrivals. "Up to now we have settled more than 1,200 DPs in the United States. Last week 146 Armenians arrived in one boat, think of it! There remain only 1,100 more."




No charge is made that all ANCHA-sponsored DPs are Dashnags, or their novitiates. It seems to us that only a thorough investigation can determine that. It should be started immediately. In the interests of America, the investigation should disclose how many of these are European Dashnag Party members, or Dashnag-trained recruits. It should ascertain whether officers of the Naziesque Armenian National Council are among them. If not, are they scheduled to arrive? It should establish whether non-Dashnags among the DPs were compelled, under duress, to pledge themselves to the Dashnagist cause on their arrival here. It should determine beyond a doubt whether ANCHA-sponsored DPs are arriving as the victims of political persecution, or are
recruits to a political cause whose members are still languishing in jail for terrorism, and whose journals, in the past, printed avowed pro-Nazi statements and, within the
past year, have sponsored General Dro Ganayan.

It should be noted at this point that while these DPs are screened by our intelligence officers abroad, no safeguard is provided against the indoctrination of Dashnag ideology. It’s insidious, and difficult to detect by untrained American officers. Expert non-Dashnag Armenian counsel should be called to aid in the task of investigation.

An investigation should reveal whether ANCHA immigrants are "desirable" or "undesirable" from an American point of view. Such an investigation should be undertaken irrespective of Brig.-Gen. Shekerjian’s reputation as an honest, though politically naive, Army officer retired from active service. Investigators should differentiate between George Mardikian’s charming manner, generosity as host, and ability as restaurateur, and his imprudent political judgments. Recall, for example, how a politicaI blind spot once tainted the judgment of an even better-known American, Charles A. Lindbergh. Lindbergh’s membership in, and sponsorship of meetings of the American First Committee, exalted the Committee much as Mardikian’s name exalts the American Dashnags and Dashnag-supported ANCHA.

The fame of a restaurateur should not be used as a blind for a political cause, nor should it be permitted to serve questionable ends.

At a time when our country is threatened by enemies from without, the quality of immigration should be a matter of the gravest national concern. This is no time for the indiscriminate importation either of proven Communists or, in this instance, of rabid agitators of the ilk of Abeghian, Baghdasarian and similar Dashnags. Humane intentions, though conceived by men of good repute, should serve as no excuse for the importation of potential trouble makers, and former Nazi or Communist collaborators. Our country was founded upon the integrity of honest immigrants who came dedicated to a new idea. Political charlatans with a lifetime of revolutionary dogma and political chicanery behind them corrupt the national fabric. They are incapable, organically and intellectually, of contributing to the upbuilding of our nation. They should be rejected as unfit for citizenship. The primary object of an investigation should be to determine whether ANCHA-sponsored immigrants in the long run will help our country — or hurt it.



The above article was made possible through Sevgi.






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