Sunday, April 24, 2005

Aremenian Genocide

Ninety years ago today, April 24, 1915, the Turkish government ordered the arrest of over 2300 Armenian political and community leaders. This date is officially commemorated as the start of the Turkish genocide that all but wiped out Turkey's Armenian population.

An article in The American Thinker (HT: Little Green Footballs) brings out a facet of those events that we had not previously been aware of, namely the jihad aspect. The Armenians were Christian dhimmis, living under Muslim "protection" (i.e. subjugation) after being conquered. There was pressure from Europe to grant full rights to the Armenians, so of course they had to be killed in the name of Islam.
"The Ottoman Turkish destruction of the Armenian people, beginning in the late 19th and intensifying in the early 20th century, was a genocide, and jihad ideology contributed significantly to this decades long human liquidation process. These facts are now beyond dispute. Milan Kundera, the Czech author, has written that man's struggle against power is the struggle of memory against forgetting. [50] In The Banality of Indifference, Yair Auron [51] reminds us of the importance of this struggle:
Recognition of the Armenian genocide on the part of the entire international community, including Turkey (or perhaps first and foremost Turkey), is therefore a demand of the first order. Understanding and remembering the tragic past is an essential condition, even if not sufficient in and of itself, to preventing the repetition of such acts in the future...
Yet ninety years after the events of April 24, 1915, the Turkish government persists in its denials of the Armenian genocide, abetted by a well-endowed network of unsavory political and pseudo-academic sycophants operating with the imprimatur of morphing geostrategic rationales--formerly, "Turkey as a bulwark against Communism," and now, "Turkey as a bulwark against radical Islam." This leeway afforded Turkey is both illogical and morally indefensible. West Germany was arguably a much more direct and important ally against the Soviet Communist bloc, while each successive post-World War II West German administration, from Adenauer through Kohl, made Holocaust denial a punishable crime. Moreover, there is burgeoning evidence, available almost daily, that both Turkey's government under the Muslim ideologue Erdogan(see here as well) and large swaths of the Turkish media and intelligentsia (see, "Turkish Media Project") hardly qualify as "bulwarks against radical Islam." Indeed, Turkey's contemporary Islamic "revival" is of particular relevance to the tragic events that transpired between 1894 and the end of World War I, because the Armenian genocide was in large measure a jihad genocide. But most importantly, there is a compelling moral imperative which transcends the flimsy geopolitical considerations used to rationalize and sustain Turkey's ongoing campaign of genocide denial. Professor Deborah Lipstadt,�the renowned Holocaust scholar, and author of Denying the Holocaust,� and History on Trial (which recounts her crushing defeat of Nazi-sympathizer David Irving's "libel" suit), in conjunction with twelve other leading genocide scholars, elucidated the corrosive immorality of genocide denial in this 1996 statement:
Denial of genocide--whether that of the Turks against the Armenians or the Nazis against the Jews--is not an act of historical reinterpretation. Rather, it sows confusion by appearing to be engaged in a genuine scholarly effort. Those who deny genocide always dismiss the abundance of documents and testimony as contrived or coerced, or as forgeries and falsehoods. Free speech does not guarantee the deniers the right to be treated as the "other" side of a legitimate debate when there is no credible "other side;" nor does it guarantee the deniers space in the classroom or curriculum, or in any other forum. Genocide denial is an insidious form of intellectual and moral degradation..."
Turkey continues to deny that it perpetrated genocide, but the denials are not the least bit credible.

The full article goes into considerable detail on the jihad aspects of the killings, including eyewitness reports. Considering that hundreds of thousands of innocent men, women, and children were brutally killed in the name of Allah, you may want to read the rest of the story.

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