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Friday, September 18, 2009

Top Turkish Newspaper Openly Writes of Armenian Genocide

In a very rare news article published by one of the top newspapers in Turkey Today's Zaman the author openly speaks about the Armenian Genocide and how they were orchestrated.

In the beginning it was total silence and denial. Then in the recent two years we started seeing phrases like "so called Armenian Genocide," "Armenian claims of genocide," and so on. In any case the word genocide was always written in quotation marks. Yet today, one of Turkey's premier newspapers Today's Zaman published a rare story about how the Armenian Genocide was organized and orchestrated by the ruling elite of the Turkish government in 1915.

Orhan Kemal Cengiz, a human rights advocate writes that the "Massacres of Armenians were orchestrated and organized by the Committee of Union and Progress (CUP) -- which came to power through a military coup -- while the Ottoman Empire was falling apart. After these massacres and as a result of the lack of confrontation with our past, the CUP and its gangs changed their format and turned into the “deep state” in Turkey. These deep state elements continued their massacres and manipulations and drenched Turkey with blood during the Republican era. We have these deep state elements, but we also have many people fighting against them with or without knowing the history."

True the word genocide is not used in that paragraph. Instead Cengiz is using the phrase Massacres of Armenians. However, in the 5th paragraph he openly talks about the Armenan genocide in the following way. "I was in Toronto last year attending an extremely interesting course on genocide. For two weeks we went into all the details of different genocides that took place in various parts of the world. All lecturers gave exemplary presentations, and I felt I had really learned something. However, I also realized that there was a fundamental difference in the way in which the Armenian genocide is being handled. When we spoke about the Holocaust, we spoke of the Nazi regime; when we discussed the genocide in Cambodia, we talked about the Khmer regime; when it came to the Armenian genocide, though, we only heard the word "Turks."

While his sincerity is most appreciated he does have a point that when the world refers of the Jewish or Cambodia national tragedies we do refer to regimes. However, we speak of the Armenian Genocide Turks are indeed pointed. But why is this?

It is the 90 years of the denial of the truth and the fear to face its own history that has made things come to this place, where a Turk is pointed when speaking of the Armenian Genocide. Why is it taking Germany only 20 years to face the Jewish Holocaust, say thank you and compensate, but when it comes to the Armenian Genocide even the past 90 years are not enough?

It is believe that if Turkey had earlier recognized the genocide and condemned it the following generations would have blamed it to the ruling regime of the time not the nation. In fact, I have heard many stories that many Turkish families have risked their lives hiding the Armenian families, their neighbors from massacres and killings in and around 1915.

A historic moment is upon us. Today the president of Armenian, meeting with the leaders of various Armenian parties and discussing the pre-signing of the Turkey Armenia normalization protocols, despite much criticism, said that "we want to show that even the nation that has fallen a victim to a genocide can be the first to offer a hand of normalization of relationship." Arming themselves with sincerity, honesty and the sense of fairness and justice the Armenian, Turkish and Azerbaijani nations should look to a new South Caucasus, building a better future for their children and themselves.

Written by Armen Hareyan
Founder of

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