Every year, Turkish-American youth from K-12 to college level are bombarded with baseless Armenian propaganda, deceptively calling the events of 1915 genocide, which is a long-discredited political claim. There are movies, documentaries, political resolutions, partisan articles by Armenian writers, newspaper editorials, billboards, demonstrations, and more. What does all that mean? Does that mean they can replace the international law? Does that mean the fabricated Armenian evidence replace the historical truth in the archives? Of course not. The characterization of the 1915 events as Genocide is a racist and dishonest interpretation of history. Racist because it deliberately ignores the enormous Turkish pain, suffering, and losses at the hands of Armenian revolutionaries. And dishonest because it dismisses Armenian revolts and terrorism since 1862, Armenian treason since 1877, Armenian territorial demands since early 19th century in areas where they were only a small minority, the vast Turkish suffering due to all of these factors, and wartime homeland security aspect of the TERESET (or Temporary Resettlement) order of 1915. Turks and Armenians lived in peaceful cohabitation in Anatolia for close to a millennium. Armenians, like other religious communities in the Ottoman Empire, namely Greeks Jews, Assyrians, and others, were given the status of “millet”, which means nation in Turkish. The millets were free to govern their own community, run their own schools and churches in their own language and customs, collect taxes, and resolve legal disputes. They would pay annual taxes to the Ottoman government and would be free from military service. This allowed them to concentrate on trade, arts, and crafts, which made them prosperous and rich. This system was a far cry from those of the European nations where kingdoms and empires would rule with an iron hand and persecute minorities at will. Religious freedom was unheard of. The Ottoman Empire was far ahead of the Western civilization in that respect. Things started changing in the 19th century with the design of major European powers like Britain, France, and Russia, over the lands of the Ottoman Empire which all coveted. Spread of the notion of nationalism after the French revolution led to several Balkan countries to secede from the Ottoman Empire. Some Armenians aspired to these Balkan nations not understanding that those nations (Romanians, Serbians, Bulgarians, and others) constituted a majority in their lands, whereas Armenians were scattered over a wide geography and were a minority in that territory. The arrival of American Protestant missionaries in Ottoman lands, since 1820s and their teachings of Christian superiority and nationalism caused the Turkish-Armenian relations sour and even turn violent. Some missionaries and American schools are known to harbor known Armenia terrorists and even store Armenian weapons. Armenians now wanted more than autonomy; they wanted their own country like the Serbian, Romanians, Bulgarians, and others, on vast Ottoman lands where Armenian were a minority. If they succeeded in their violent revolts, the Armenians would have established the first apartheid of the 20th Century where a small Christian minority would rule a massive Muslim majority. Armenians resorted to terrorism, revolts, bombings, assassinations, mass killing, treason, and more, to achieve their anti-democratic goals. Turks only defended their homeland against a treacherous group. When the Ottomans were in the vice in April of 1915 by the greatest allied armada ever assembled viciously attacking Dardanelles in the West and the brutal and cruel Russian army invading in the east, Ottoman Armenians, instead of helping their own government and state, chose to join the invading enemy armies. Armenians killed more than 80,000 Muslim in the city of Van and turned over the key to the city with great fanfare and drama to the invading Russian army general. What did Armenians expect from the Ottoman Empire for their heinous crimes? A pat on the shoulder? Is this how Armenians paid back for their centuries-long peace, self-rule, and prosperity? How would the European powers or America react to back-stabbing ingrates? It is educational to note that Turkey is the only country in the world that is criticized, defamed, and demonized for defending their own home. After all, the war was not fought in London, Paris, Moscow, or Washington DC. It was fought in Dardanelles, Sarikamis, Adana, Marash, Urfa, Mesopotamia, Palestine, Sinai… All Ottoman-Turkish lands. When the allies (except America) rained death and destruction upon Turks, and the Armenians heinously aided and abetted them, the invading enemies, what was expected of the Turks? Accept defeat and foreign rule?
Myths and Realities