The Armenian Genocide: Review Of Its Historical, Political, And Lega

Vahakn N. Dadrian


During World War I, the authorities of the Turkish Ottoman Empire
carried out one of the largest genocides in world history, destroying
huge portions of its minority Armenian population. That genocide
followed decades of persecution, punctuated by two similar but
smaller rounds of massacres in the 1894-96 and 1909 periods, which
claimed two hundred thousand Armenian lives. In all, over one million
Armenians were put to death during World War I. Adding to this figure
are the several hundred thousand Armenians who perished in the course
of the Turkish attempt to extend the genocide to Russian Armenia in
the Transcaucus during the spring and summer of 1918, as well as in
the fall of 1920 when Ankara’s fledgling government ordered General
Karabekir’s army to “physically annihilate Armenia.” The European
Powers, who defeated the Turks time and again on the battlefield,
were unable or unwilling to prevent this mass murder.[1] Of even more
consequence, they failed to secure punishment of the perpetrators in
the aftermath of the war, despite the fact that they had publicly
committed to doing so. The events of that time have subsequently
slipped into the shadows of world history, thus acquiring the imagery
of “the Forgotten Genocide.” To this day, Turkey denies the genocidal
intent of these massacres. Such a scale of perpetration, at the very
least, warrants a documentary exposure and examination. The results may
yet impel the civilized world to show a greater concern for the depth
of the anguish that has been tormenting Armenians for generations. It
may even move the more enlightened segment of the population of modern
Turkey to face the historical fact of the Armenian Genocide and try
to come to terms with it.

Over the past eighty years, the Armenian nation has struggled to bring
the history of the Armenian Genocide to light and examine it. Despite
the magnitude of the disaster, the international community has only
recently officially recognized its genocidal character. In April of
1984, a group of public figures–including three Nobel Prize laureates,
including the late international jurist Sean McBride–conducted
“People’s Tribunal” hearings on the Armenian Genocide at the Sorbonne
in Paris and adjudged it to be a crime of genocide without statutory
limitations. In August of 1985, the U.N. Sub-Commission on Prevention
of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities, which had been
deadlocked for over fourteen years, “took note,” by a 14-1 vote (with
four abstentions), of the historical fact of the Armenian Genocide. In
June of 1987, the European Parliament declared the Turkish massacres
of World War I to be a crime of genocide under the terms of the U.N.

Convention on Genocide, stipulating that Turkey must recognize the
Armenian genocide before the European Parliament would favorably
consider Turkey’s application for membership in the European
Community. The European Parliament labeled Turkey’s refusal to do so
an “insurmountable obstacle to consideration of the possibility of
Turkey’s accession to the European Community.” Moreover, on April
24, 1994, the wire services of United Press International and the
Associated Press announced that “Israel issued its first official
condemnation of the Turkish Genocide of the Armenians, ending a
tradition of silence to appease its regional ally, Turkey.” Deputy
Foreign Minister Yossi Bellin then told the Israeli Parliament
that Israel would become part of an effort to ensure that the world
remembers the genocide. “We will always reject any attempt to erase
its record, even for some political advantage,” he said. Rejecting
Turkish denials of the crime and its claim that the incident was
a “civil war,” Bellin declared that “it was not war. It was most
certainly massacre and genocide.”

The relatively low impact of the destruction of one million Armenians
on modern public consciousness raises serious questions about the
ability of the international community to prevent or punish acts of
genocide. Many see the lack of action and reaction following the
Armenian Genocide as a critical antecedent of the ensuing Jewish
Holocaust during World War II. Indeed, it has been reported that,
in trying to reassure the doubters of the morality and viability of
his genocidal schemes, Hitler stated, “[w]ho, after all, speaks today
of the annihilation of the Armenians?” This historical connection was
raised repeatedly during the U.S. Senate’s consideration of the U.N.

Convention on Genocide, which the United States ratified on February
19, 1986. A score of senators, most notably Kerry and Wilson,
emphasized the historical precedent of the Armenian case and pointed to
the enormous calamity of the Jewish Holocaust, which they claimed was
a by-product of humanity’s callous disregard of the Armenians’ fate.

Neither were, nor are, other victim groups in the post-Nuremberg
world exempt from the consequences of the obliviousness to which
the Armenians were subjected. Foremost among the series of genocidal
massacres that stand out in this respect are those that occurred in
Bangladesh, Cambodia, Rwanda, and the Kurdish territory in Iraq. In
each one of these cases, a state system was beset by the pressures
of centrifugal movements and revolutions before being engulfed by wars.

Given certain conditions of simmering international conflicts, war
emerges as a catalyst for radical methods of conflict resolution. From
the standpoint of contemporary international law, the central issue
is the relationship between the concept of war crimes on the one hand,
and crimes against humanity on the other.

The recognition of the significance of this relationship in deciding
to initiate legal actions against the offenders was evident in U.N.

efforts to come to grips with the contemporary issues of ethnic
cleansing. In its Resolution 808 (1993), the U.N. Security Council
unanimously established an ad hoc international tribunal to prosecute
and punish the perpetrators associated with the series of wars that
were waged in the territories of former Yugoslavia, especially in the
province of Bosnia. An almost identical initiative was applied to the
Rwandan case in November of 1994. The basis of this initiative was the
August 12, 1949, Geneva Civilian Convention Relative to the Protection
of Civilian Persons in Time of War. The idea was to punish, under
international law, the offenders accused of crimes against humanity.

A note on a specific category of sources and data used in this study
may be in order. They originate from within Ottoman Turkey and her
allies during World War I, Germany and Austria-Hungary. Specifically,
these sources include:

1. Secret and top-secret Ottoman-Turkish state documents, each one
of which was authenticated by ministerial officials before being
introduced in the Turkish Court Martial Proceedings.

2. The importance of the preponderance of German and Austrian documents
anticipating and corroborating the findings of the Turkish Military
Tribunal cannot be overemphasized. As noted above, Imperial Germany
and Imperial Austria-Hungary were the political and military allies
of the Ottoman Empire during World War I. Their representatives’
“confidential,” “secret,” and “top-secret” reports, mostly composed
during the war for internal and in-house purposes only, have an
authenticity and immediacy not matched by any other available category
of sources and data.

European Diplomacy and International Law

The interplay of European attempts to impose reforms and the
Turkish resistance set the stage for a bellicose Turkish response
to the escalation of the Turko-Armenian conflict. In this clash,
the disjunction of European public law and Turkish customary law
deteriorated into a sharp conflict between the two legal domains.

Taking the series of enacted reforms seriously, the Armenians pressed
for their actual implementation as a matter of legal entitlement. The
Turks, however, relied on their common law claims of traditional
super-ordination vis-a-vis the non-Muslim subjects of the empire. One
such cardinal common law principle refers to a rule in the AkdE© Zimmet
(contract with the ruled nationality), which stipulates cessation
of hostility against non-Muslim subjects following their defeat and
submission. Once defeated, these subjects are dehalet ‘granted refuge
and protection.’ By attempting to influence Turkish national policy
in their favor by enlisting the intercession of foreign powers, the
Ottoman Turks argued that the Armenians had violated this fundamental
treaty provision, and under the prevailing common law, had therefore
forfeited the Berat ‘grant of exemption and clemency.’

The cycle of massacres preceding the World War I genocide was
rationalized essentially in this fashion. In describing the scenes
of the 1895 Urfa Massacre and the entire 1894-96 era of Abdul Hamit
Massacres, the Chief Dragoman of the British Embassy, who was fluent
in Turkish and who based his report on evidence supplied to him by
local Muslims, wrote the following:

[The perpetrators] are guided in their general action by the
prescriptions of the Sheri Law. That law prescribes that if the ‘rayah’
[cattle, figuratively speaking] Christian attempts, by having recourse
to foreign powers, to overstep the limits of privileges allowed to them
by their Mussulman masters, and free themselves from their bondage,
their lives and property are to be forfeited, and are at the mercy of
the Mussulmans. To the Turkish mind the Armenians had tried to overstep
those limits by appealing to foreign powers, especially England. They
therefore considered it their religious duty and a righteous thing
to destroy and seize the lives and property of the Armenians. . . .[2]

This reasoning is confirmed, as follows, by the contemporary Israeli
historian, Bat Ye’or: the Armenian quest for reforms invalidated their
“legal status,” which involved a “contract.” This “breach . . .

restored to the umma [the Muslim community] its initial right to kill
the [subjugated minority] the dhimmis, [and] seize their property. . .


In resorting to massacre as a method of conflict resolution, the
religious tenets of the preeminent Islamic common law destroyed the
public law’s efficacy. To emphasize the religious thrust of the laws,
the perpetrators performed Muslim rites when killing their victims
whenever suitable. In reference to Urfa, a British historian named
Lord Kinross provides the following example:

When a large group of young Armenians were brought before a sheikh, he
had them thrown down on their backs and held by their hands and feet.

Then, in the words of an observer, he recited verses of the Koran and
“cut their throats after the Mecca rite of sacrificing sheep.”[4]

This lethal disjunction between public and common laws in the Ottoman
system was predicted by Grand Vizier ReÅ~_id. In his famous Memorandum
of Dissent regarding the Reform Act of 1856, ReÅ~_id foresaw the
possibility of bir mukateleyi azîme ‘a great slaughter’ against the
non-Muslims in connection with efforts to establish equality through
the enactment of public laws.[5]

The Failure of International Intervention on Behalf of the Armenians

Although the European Powers had repeatedly forced Turkey to publicly
proclaim equality for its non-Muslim subjects, they were unwilling or
unable to force the Ottomans to honor such promises. As seen above,
Turkey had many opportunities to make good on its agreements but
inevitably failed to do so. By 1878, when the Treaty of Berlin was
signed, the Armenian Question had ceased to be a merely domestic
problem for the Ottoman Empire. Article 61 of that treaty read:

The Sublime Porte undertakes to carry out, without further delay,
the ameliorations and reforms demanded by local requirements in
the provinces inhabited by the Armenians, and to guarantee their
security against the Circassians and the Kurds. . . . It will make
known periodically the steps taken to this effect to the Powers,
who will superintend their application.[6]

Commenting on the significance of this clause and Article 62 of the
treaty–which provided for religious liberty, civil and political
rights, as well as admission to public employments, functions, and
honors–Rolin-Jaequemyns asserted that the Armenians were placed
“under the express protection of international law of contract, and
under the control of the Great Powers. The natural obligations of the
Turkish Government . . . have become as regards the Armenians, strict
engagements with the States which are parties to the Treaty. . . .”[7]
In reality, however, not only were the Armenians denied protection,
but their condition of physical security deteriorated. They suffered
a string of massacres between 1894 and 1896.

The series of conflagrations was launched with the 1894 Sassoun
Massacres under circumstances not unlike those surrounding the
1876 Balkan insurrections and the Turkish response to them. The
indigenous Armenian peasantry had long been enduring, among other
forms of oppression, a system of double taxation that had triggered
the uprising of the Slavs in the Balkans. The Armenians were being
forced to pay taxes not only to government officials ostensibly
representing the central government but also to local Kurdish
chieftains. The resulting uprising of the Sassoun mountaineers,
who are often compared with the mountaineers of Montenegro, was thus
analogous to that of the peasants of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Like the
Armenians in eastern Turkey, they too were subjected to a system of
double taxation by two separate classes of oppressors: extortionist
Turkish officials and local Muslim landowners and tribal chiefs, who
were themselves Slavs but had converted to Islam. Nor do the parallels
end here. Both victim groups were also exposed to external agitation,
including some tacit encouragement from Russia in the case of the
Balkan subject nationalities.

Given the vulnerability of the Armenians geographically,
demographically, and politically, the retaliation by Sultan
Abdul Hamit (1876-1908) was as severe as it could be under the
circumstances. Entire villages were annihilated, and hundreds of
trapped victims were mercilessly slaughtered–many of them burned
alive, often with the assistance of regular army detachments
and irregulars. As usual, the Powers went through the motions of
protests, collective investigations and inquiries, denunciations,
and warnings, but there was no interest or inclination to initiate
punitive measures. Once more, these Powers allowed themselves to be
mollified by Turkish promises of effective reforms. Turkey monopolized
for herself the right to exclusively superintend the implementation
aspect of the promises in the name of “national sovereignty.” These
massacres were perpetrated “at a time when the regime was hard pressed
by European Powers and was afraid of external intervention. . . .”[8]
The estimated number of victims ranged from 100,000 to 200,000.[9]

The following three circumstances set in motion the process of
deterioration leading to these massacres: the subversion of public law
by the Turkish authorities, the lack of solidarity among the European
Powers in ensuring Turkish adherence to the public laws, and the lack
of any national ties between the Armenians and the European Powers.

Continued subversion of public law

As in the case of the previous reform acts of 1839 and 1856, as well
as the 1876 Constitution, the Berlin Treaty clauses regarding the
treatment of nationalities and minorities remained dead letters,
especially with respect to the Armenians. Their formal enactment
was done as a matter of expediency and was intended to forestall more
drastic initiatives on the part of the Powers. In a dispatch to Berlin,
Prince von Radolin–the German Ambassador–informed his Chancellor
of a conversation with Sultan Abdul Hamit. During that exchange,
“[the Sultan] most solemnly swore to me that under no circumstances
would he yield on the matter of ‘the unjust’ Armenian reforms.”[10]
Moreover, the Ottoman system was ill-suited to extend equality to
the Armenians socially, politically, or legally. As the prominent
Harvard historian William Langer had concluded, “It was perfectly
obvious that the Sultan was determined to end the Armenian [Q]uestion
by exterminating the Armenians.”[11]

Lack of cohesion among the European Powers

The European interventions historically hinged upon a modicum of
consensus among the Great Powers. Until the 1878 Berlin Treaty, the
unified insistence of England and Russia–the dominant Powers in the
Concert of Europe–could induce, if not compel, Turkey to submit
to some degree of intervention by the Powers.[12] These lines of
cooperation, however, were not exclusive of rivalries on many other
levels, nor were these interventions purely “humanitarian.”[13] The
Treaty of Berlin ushered in a period of increasingly acute distrust
between Russia and England, thus ensuring the gradual collapse of the
Concert of Europe. The necessity of cooperation among the Powers and
the ever-present suspicion of ulterior motives[14] were limitations
often inherent in the principle of multilateral intervention, whether
humanitarian or otherwise.

As European concern for Turkey’s need to implement Article 61 of the
Berlin Treaty lessened and eventually evaporated in the face of the
Anglo-Russian rivalry and suspicion, these limitations became distinct
liabilities for the Armenians.[15] While England appeared willing to
intercede if joined by the other Powers,[16] France supported Russia’s
adamant opposition to such license for intercession. Germany was even
more reluctant to act on behalf of the Armenians, but unlike the other
Powers, she did not equivocate on her posture. Bismarck, who tried to
dissuade England from interfering in “the internal affairs” of Turkey,
articulated that exercise of realpolitik with brutal frankness. In
a dispatch dated May 17, 1883, and addressed to his Ambassador in
London, Bismarck deprecated that

the so-called “Armenian Reforms” [are] ideal and theoretical efforts
constituting the ornamental part of the [Berlin] Congress. Their
practical significance is of very doubtful value and for the Armenians
means [a] double-edged [sword]. . . . I cannot join Lord Dufferin
[British Ambassador to Turkey] in a policy which sacrifices his
practical goals to a temporary philanthropic halo.

A day before, on May 16, Bismarck had told Lord Ampthill (Odo
Russell)–British Ambassador at Berlin–that the concern of the Powers
for the welfare of the subjects of the Sultan “was philanthropy,
and that he [Bismarck] hated philanthropy in politics.” Bismarck
then stated that his main concern was “the new danger looming in
the distance in the shape of an alliance between Bulgaria, Serbia,
Montenegro and Greece” against Turkey. He should, therefore, prefer
helping the Sultan prepare for self-defense.[17]

Apprised of Bismarck’s policy amounting to a deliberate derogation
from Article 61, British Minister of Foreign Affairs Granville had
ordered Ambassador Goschen to cease pursuing the Armenian Question
two years earlier at Constantinople “in consequence of the objections
raised by the German Government.”[18] Kaiser Willhelm II ratified the
Bismarckian attitude regarding the Armenian reforms when, on November
22, 1895, he declared that “the Berlin Congress was a mistake that
entailed grave consequences. I will never agree to the convening of
a second one.” A day earlier, the Kaiser, in dialogue with his wife,
had declared that “[t]he Berlin Congress offers no protection at
all to the Christians and doesn’t prevent the Turks from cutting
off their necks.”[19] Austria eventually joined these Powers in
defining the stipulated reforms as moribund and inherently full of
“hidden complications for the Powers.”[20] For a variety of reasons,
the Powers thus abdicated the responsibilities they had assumed as
signatories to the Treaty of Berlin.

The vague and imprecise terms of the Treaties of Paris and Berlin also
allowed the Powers to hedge and disclaim responsibility. For example,
Article 9 of the Paris Treaty stipulated reforms while prohibiting
any intervention, “either collectively or separately,” in the internal
affairs of Turkey. The imprecision of the word “superintend,” inserted
into the last paragraph of Article 61 of the Berlin Treaty, compounded
the treaty’s ambivalence. The specific functions of superintendence
were left undefined, allowing any signatory to argue that the Powers
were contractually responsible to each other alone. Thus, in practice,
the reforms were left unmonitored. Moreover, Article 61 implicitly
proscribed unilateral action by any of the signatory Powers through
the use of the corporate term “the Powers.”[21] Sultan Abdul Hamit,
whose name and regime are associated with the nineteenth-century
Armenian massacres, understood the reluctance of the Powers to
intervene actively on behalf of the Armenians and appreciated their
proclivity to take refuge in the imperfections of the Treaty clauses
involved.[22] The Powers’ only reaction to the massacres was to
remonstrate Turkey and issue ambiguous threats.

The Armenians’ lack of ties to any European power

The Armenians’ failure to obtain the national emancipation achieved by
other non-Muslim nationalities under the Ottoman rule was also a direct
result of their lack of tutelage and active sponsorship by any of the
European Powers. The Slavic nationalities–the Serbs, the Bulgars,
and the Montenegrins–enjoyed Russian guardianship because of their
racial and ethnic kinship. Religious ties through the Eastern Orthodox
Church accounted for the Russian guardianship of the Greeks and the
Romanians of Wallachia. The French, for their part, virtually rescued
the Catholic Maronites of Lebanon by invading Lebanon and compelling
the Turks to give the Maronites limited autonomy. The Armenians,
however, did not enjoy sufficient religious or ethnic bonds to any
European Power and thus were unable to benefit from similar treatment.

Furthermore, past episodes of the “ingratitude” of Balkan nationalities
that had benefited from outside intervention reduced the Armenians’
chance of receiving similar assistance. Bulgaria, for example,
thwarted Russian attempts at control despite the active Russian
support she had received in the past when freeing herself from Ottoman
domination. After that experience, the Tsars not only studiously
dissociated themselves from the Armenians, but during the reign of
Abdul Hamit, they tacitly supported the Turkish persecution of the
Armenians. The Russians explained their behavior as a way to avoid
the emergence of a second Bulgaria on their southern border.[23]
Frank Lascelles, the British Ambassador at St. Petersburg, quoted
Russian Foreign Minister Prince Lobanof-Rostowski as declaring that he
was decidedly opposed to seeing the rise in the proximity of Russian
territory of “another Bulgaria.”[24]

Another factor alienating the Armenians from other Ottoman
nationalities involved geo-political considerations. While all
the other nationalities on whose behalf the European Powers
intervened were located on the periphery of the Ottoman Empire,
Armenia’s historical location caused her to be regarded as a threat
to the Turkish heartland. Logistical difficulties involved in
providing assistance–such as Armenia’s lack of ports for British
vessels–further compounded the problem.[25]

The Armenians were also hindered because they lacked the geographic
concentration of the Balkan nationalities. Sultan Abdul Hamit had
been redistricting the heavily Armenian-populated provinces with the
intention of reducing them to numerical minorities, especially in
such regions of historic Armenia as the provinces of Erzerum, Van,
Sivas, and Bitlis. Additionally, a significant portion of the Armenian
population in search of relief from depredations–as well as on a
quest for economic opportunities–resorted to internal migration. The
resulting geographic dispersion diluted the pre-existing density of
Armenian population enclaves, thereby rendering dubious the idea of
a concrete Armenian state analogous to Greece or Bulgaria.

The Use of Rising Armenian National Awareness as a Catalyst for a
New Ottoman Policy of Decimation

The international efforts of the European Powers may in fact have
caused the Armenians more harm than good. By helping to raise
the consciousness of the oppressed peoples within Turkey without
concurrently enhancing their power, international actors created a
situation in which the Ottomans had both the incentive and the excuse
for dealing with the “Armenian problem” with massacres. Encouraged
by the promises of the Treaty of Berlin, the Armenians experienced
a new sense of national consciousness, which in turn engendered
rising expectations. Sporadic displays of assertiveness began to
erode their tradition of passively enduring the abuses endemic in the
Ottoman system. Additionally, émigré Armenian intellectuals formed
committees in the capitals of Europe to protest these abuses and push
for the implementation of the promised reforms. As the Ottoman regime
resisted these agitations and refused to execute the reforms in any
meaningful way, Armenian revolutionary cells emerged within and without
the Empire and braced themselves for resistant combat. In a report
to Paris entitled Exposé historique de la question arménienne,
long-time French Ambassador Paul Cambon traced the genesis of the
Armenian Question to this period. He wrote:

A high ranking Turkish official told me, “the Armenian [Q]uestion does
not exist but we shall create it.” . . . Up until 1881 the idea of
Armenian independence was non-existent. The masses simply yearned for
reforms, dreaming only of a normal administration under the Ottoman
rule. . . . The inaction of the Porte served to vitiate the good will
of the Armenians. The reforms have not been carried out. The exactions
of the officials remained scandalous and justice was not improved . .

. from one end of the Empire to the other, there is rampant corruption
of officials, denial of justice and insecurity of life. . . . The
Armenian diaspora began denouncing the administrative misdeeds, and in
the process managed to transform the condition of simple administrative
ineptness into one of racial persecution. It called to the attention
of Europe the violation by the Turks of the Treaty of Berlin and
thereby summoned up the image of Armenian autonomy in the minds
of the Armenian population. France did not respond to the Armenian
overtures but the England of Gladstone did: The Armenian revolutionary
movement took off from England[26] . . . [A]s if it were not enough
to provoke Armenian discontent, the Turks were glad to amplify it b[y]
the manner in which they handled it. In maintaining that the Armenians
were conspiring, the Armenians ended up conjuring the reality of her
existence. . . . The harsh punishment of conspirators, the maintenance
in Armenia of a veritable regime of terror, arrests, murders, rapes,
all this shows that Turkey is taking pleasure in precipitating the
events [in relation to] an inoffensive population. In reality the
Armenian Question is nothing but an expression of the antagonism
between England and Russia. . . . Where does Armenia begin, and where
does it end?[27]

Later in the report, Cambon prophetically questioned the reasonableness
of transporting the Armenians to Mesopotamia, a solution reportedly
contemplated by the Ottoman government.

Mesopotamia would later serve as the valley of the Armenian Genocide.

The Pre-World War I Antecedents: The Debacles in the Young Turk
Ittihadist Era (1909-13)[28]

The 1909 twin Adana Massacres: The actual prelude to the World War
I Genocide

That the commitment to constitutionalism was both tenuous and
less than uniform–as far as all ethnic elements of the empire were
concerned–was a fact that came into full view in April of 1909. It is
a fact that the March 31/April 13, 1909, counter-revolution–staged
by an assortment of Islamic fundamentalists, opponents of Ittihad,
and Abdul Hamit loyalists–was crushed when contingents of the
Ottoman III’s Army marched into Istanbul from Saloniki and restored
both the Ittihadist regime and the principle of constitutionality
that was identified with that regime. A singly contributing factor
to that outbreak was the assassination of the chief editor of a
Turkish newspaper who, defying all threats to his life, was severely
criticizing Ittihadist measures of autocracy and coerciveness. The
reference is to Hasan Fehmi, Editor of Serbesti. The failure
of the authorities to track down and apprehend the assassin or
assassins aroused the ire of many people and precipitated the
counter-revolution. Even more significantly, this act of plain murder
heralded a series of subsequent murders to which other prominent
editors–equally critical of the regime–fell victim. The culprits
of these crimes likewise managed to escape and remain free. As time
progressed and problems mounted, the Young Turk revolutionaries
gradually relinquished their adherence to constitutional principles
and adopted severe measures of repression, thereby surpassing the
notoriety of the preceding Abdul Hamit regime in many respects.

The elusive character of the Ittihadist Young Turk constitutionalist
revolution came into full view with the launching of the two-tier
Adana Massacres in the April 1/14-April 14/27, 1909, period, during
which some twenty-one thousand Armenians fell victim. In contrast
to the multitudes of Armenian residents in the Ottoman capital
where the counter-revolution was unleashed, the Armenians in Adana
were recognized as the demonstrative champions of the Ittihadist
constitutional liberty principles. Intoxicated with their new-found
freedoms, they flaunted them to the point of provoking many Turks–some
of whom were Abdul Hamit loyalists who resented the new leadership
of the Young Turks; others were residual bureaucrats apprehensive
about their jobs; while most of them were aroused and angry at the
idea of considering their former rayas ‘infidel’ Christian subjects
as co-equals. Moreover, Adana and its environs were those rare spots
that had escaped the massacres and devastations of the 1894-96 Abdul
Hamit era. This fact, plus the relative affluence of the indigenous
Armenian population, served to render them a suitable target for
annihilation at a propitious moment.

Thus, cupidity, status anxieties, religious dogmas, and occasional
displays by the victims’ bravado, were factors converging at a level
of conflict that served to produce the pogroms. Superseding all
of these factors was the actual organization of the bloodbath. It
involved mainly the cooperation of the governmental functionaries
with Ottoman military authorities who made ample use of the local
garrison arsenals. In the aftermath of the massacres, however, the
Ottoman government publicly and officially exonerated the Armenians,
thereby implicitly recognizing their victim status.[29] Moreover,
during an interpellation in the Ottoman Chamber of Deputies, which is
also known as the Lower House of the Ottoman Parliament, Grand Vizier
Hilmi PaÅ~_a scorned “the reactionary, criminal scoundrels who were
bent on massacring and plundering the Armenians through a surprise
attack.”[30] Local tribunals and military courts-martial altogether
convicted and executed 124 Turks–all of them minor officials and
haphazard individual perpetrators–on the gallows in the period
between May 28/June 10, 1909, and November 30/December 13, 1910. To
mollify Muslim sentiment, seven Armenians were also hanged.

Two salient points about this episode merit discussion. First of all,
there is the matter of the degree of the Armenians’ vulnerability as
the victim group. As stated above, the 1909 Adana Holocaust had two
stages. The first one proved more or less abortive for the assaulting
forces. Anticipating the eventuality of the onslaught, several hundred
young Armenians had secured arms and devised a self-defense strategy.

As a result, they not only warded off attacks and protected the larger
populations residing in the Armenian wards of the city of Adana,
but in the process they exacted heavy tolls from the assaulting forces.

This fact demonstrates the viability of deterrence or mitigation
through organized self-defense for groups targeted by inexorable foes
for destruction.

There are also limits to such defensive undertakings. Having
experienced a depletion of their resources for armed resistance, and
in a condition of utmost exhaustion, the Armenians wearily consented
to disarm for a truce arranged by the British consul at nearby Mersin.

In the meantime, new contingents of the Turkish army had arrived
ostensibly to restore “peace and order.” What followed was one of
the most gruesome and savage bloodbaths ever recorded in human history.

Enraged by the magnitude of the losses they sustained during the
first round of the conflagration, the Turks–directly supported
by the newly-arrived army contingents–descended upon the totally
disarmed and defenseless Armenians, butchering and burning them alive
by the thousands. Schools, hospitals, and churches–overcrowded with
despairing multitudes seeking refuge in them–were especially selected
for this purpose. The overwhelming majority of some 22,000 Armenian
victims of the 1909 Adana Holocaust died at this second stage of the
perpetration of the mass murder.

Second, the internal vulnerability of the victim population was
compounded by the external vulnerability factor. The warships of
seven nations–England, France, Italy, Austria, Russia, Germany, and
the United States–had streamed into the waters near Adana’s port
city of Mersin. They consisted mostly of cruisers and frigates,
along with their regular complements of combat sailors ready
for action. None of them were ordered to intervene inasmuch as
the victims were Ottoman subjects and outside the pale of their
protective duties. The non-materialization of the anticipated–yet
feared–foreign intervention was not only a great relief to the
perpetrators but also served as an incentive to renew the carnage
with even greater ferocity. This failure of external deterrence
only served to amplify the vulnerability of the targeted group as
it considerably emboldened the perpetrator group. This critical fact
underscores the dysfunctional aspects of the principle of humanitarian
intervention. The naval forces of the Powers failed to intervene for
a variety of reasons, chief among which were the following:

1. There was no concrete agreement to act jointly.

2. Each Power was anxious to protect its own nationals trapped in
the conflagration, including consular personnel.

3. Mutual suspicions of imperial and/or colonial designs on a decaying
empire stifled the will for unilateral initiative on the part of
any Powers.

4. The abruptness of the outbreak of the bloodbath astounded the
governments of these Powers, denying them the possibility to clearly
define the situation and work out a response. They were, in a sense,
paralyzed by confusion and uncertainty.

The net result of all this was that the commanders and the naval
forces at their disposal, comprising this formidable international
armada, were reduced to the ignominious role of spectators of the
1909 Adana Holocaust. More significantly, the top leadership strata
involved in the decision-making and organization of this holocaust
almost completely escaped punitive justice.

The rise of the Ittihadists and the ultimate decision to “liquidate”
the Armenians

The transition to a new Turkish regime through a bloodless revolution
that deposed Sultan Abdul Hamit and installed the Ittihadists–namely
the Young Turks–in July of 1908, only compounded the problems of
domestic conflict in general and the Turko-Armenian conflict in
particular. Though their regime (1908-18) was dubbed the Second
Era of the Constitution, the Young Turk Ittihad leaders–like their
predecessor Abdul Hamit (“the Red Sultan”)–embraced violent measures
against the minorities on whose behalf the Powers had again begun to
intercede. Their policy of repression helped spark the 1912 Balkan War
and later played a role in the adoption of nationalist policies that
plunged Turkey into World War I. As noted, British historian John A.

R. Mariott stated:

The Young Turk revolution brought matters to a head. [That undertaking]
was in fact a last effort of the Moslem minority[31] to retain
its ascendancy in the face of growing resistance on the part of
subject races and impending European intervention. The revival of the
constitution was little more than an ingenious device for appeasing
Liberal sentiment abroad while furnishing a pretext for the abrogation
of the historic rights of the Christian nationalities at home.[32]

At the 1910 annual Ittihadist Congress at Saloniki, the secret
discussion outside the formal sittings revolved around the plan for
the coercive homogenization of Turkey, which was euphemistically
called “the complete Ottomanization of all Turkish subjects.”[33]
British Ambassador Gerard Lowther observed that “[t]o them ‘Ottoman’
evidently means ‘Turk’ and their present policy of ‘Ottomanization’
is one of pounding the non-Turkish elements in a Turkish mortar.”[34]
When assessing these decisions in a report, the British Foreign Office
employed the words “to level”–to eliminate–with the forecast that
“the Young Turks will endeavor to extend the ‘levelling’ system
to the Kurds and the Arabs.”[35] In a series of reports based on
“authentic documents” furnished by confidential sources, the French
Consul at Saloniki informed his Foreign Ministry in Paris that the
Young Turks decided to employ force and violence, including massacres,
as a last resort for the resolution of nationality conflicts.[36]

A final clue to understanding this pattern of repudiation regarding
the ideas of social and political reform is found in a secret speech
by Talât, who was simultaneously the preeminent Young Turk leader and
Interior Minister. He delivered the speech to a conclave of top Ittihad
leaders assembled in Saloniki in August of 1910 for a pre-Congress
strategy meeting. Austrian, French, and British intelligence sources
in that city confirmed both the occurrence of this meeting and the
authenticity of the text of the speech. The British Vice Consul at
Monastir, Arthur Geary, vouched for “the accurate reproduction of the
gist of Talât’s discourse” as it was obtained from “an unimpeachable
source.” The relevant portion of that speech reads:

You are aware that by the terms of the Constitution equality
of Mussulman and Ghiaur [infidel, a derogatory label applied to
non-Muslims] was affirmed but you one and all know and feel that this
is an unrealizable ideal. The Sheriat [the religious laws of Islam],
our whole past history and the sentiments of hundreds of thousands
of Mussulmans and even the sentiments of the Ghiaurs themselves . . .

present an impenetrable barrier to the establishment of real equality.

. . . There can, therefore, be no question of equality until we have
succeeded in our task of Ottomanizing the empire.[37]

The homogenous Ottoman society Talât envisioned as a precondition
for real equality the required liquidation in one form or another of
the existing heterogeneous elements. In confirming the authenticity
of that speech, a fourth source, a French diplomat, spoke of the
Ittihad resolve to déraciner ‘deracinate,’ or uproot the bases of
nationalistic tendencies to “deform” the nationalities themselves.[38]

Within a year of taking power, the Young Turks introduced a number
of constitutional changes and laws purporting to liberalize the regime.

Although promulgated through the Parliament, these changes brought
no relief to the minorities. In the Balkans–particularly Macedonia
and Albania, in the eastern provinces with large concentrations of
Armenians, and even in distant Yemen–Ottoman misrule deteriorated into
bloody oppression. With the exception of the Armenians, the subject
nationalities resorted to open rebellion. Many of these rebellions
were successful, and the Empire suffered further shrinkage of its
territories as a result.

The Turkish Military Defeats in the 1912 Balkan War and the
Accentuation of the Eastern Question

The historical background of the Balkan War

In terms of its origin and outcome, this war had a profound effect
upon the Young Turk Ittihadist leadership as it grappled with the
task of maintaining the integrity of the Ottoman Empire, which
was in danger of disintegration through centrifugal forces. The
Balkan Peninsula emerged as the main theater on which these forces
exerted themselves, effectively challenging the sovereign authority
of the Ottoman state. In other words, the nationality question–or
more specifically the Eastern Question–became a crucible for the
survival of the empire. Equally important, to the extent that the
Armenian Question had become an extension of the Eastern Question,
the Turko-Armenian conflict functioned as an integral part of that
crucible, or test case, for the preservation of the empire.

The disastrous outcome of the 1912 Balkan War, however, left the
very survival of that empire hanging in the balance. The attempt of
the Armenians to revive the thorny Armenian reform question at this
critical juncture of Ottoman history, with all that it portended
for the Turks, served to arouse the ire and fury of despondent
Ittihadists, thereby further intensifying the already simmering
Turko-Armenian conflict. The ground was prepared for the Turks to
redefine the Armenian Question as an ominous variant of the Eastern
Question, warranting drastic and pre-emptive measures in order to
avert a total disaster. To understand these developments more fully,
a brief historical review of the events surrounding the 1912 Balkan
War is in order.

The rising tide of nationalism in Europe and elsewhere had certain
roots that were independent from any experience of foreign or colonial
domination but were nevertheless susceptible to being reinforced
by such experiences. The nationalism that was beginning to blossom
in the Balkans was substantially influenced by the legacy of the
French Revolution, which consecrated the twin ideals of liberty
and nationality. Nor can one disregard the impetus that the Great
Powers inadvertently provided in this regard in their pursuit
of aggrandizement, riches, and hegemony. The efforts of Napoleon
III stand out in this context. As a measure of spite against the
Hapsburg Empire, he encouraged the spread of nationalism among
the Balkan nationalities. With England–and later Germany–merely
playing the role of the more or less disinterested and benevolent
mediators, Russia assumed a predominant role in due time. Ethnic and
religious affinities, on the one hand, and an eye on the big prize,
Constantinople, on the other, energized that role.

Nevertheless, Russia had some grounds for bitterness that drove her to
engage in some disruptive behavior. Through the maneuvers of Austria
and Germany–and especially England–her spectacular victories in
the 1877-78 Russo-Turkish War were reduced to insignificance at the
July meeting of the 1878 Berlin Congress. The ensuing Berlin Treaty
contained many of the seeds of discontent that animated the Serbian,
Bulgarian, and Macedonian nationalists to play a major role in the
precipitation of the subsequent 1912 Balkan War.

At that Congress, Bosnia and Herzegovina were handed over to Austria,
thereby angering the Serbs. The Serbs lost Nis and Mitrovitza and were
cut off from their kinsmen, the Montenegrins, through the loss of
Novibazar–of which the Austrian military occupation was sanctioned
by the Congress. Furthermore, the Three Emperors’ League, involving
Germany, Austria, and Russia–established in 1881 and renewed for three
years in 1884–granted Austria the right to annex the dual provinces
of Bosnia and Herzegovina whenever she deemed it opportune. The
terms of the Berlin Treaty were considered even more damaging to
Bulgarian interests and aspirations, as the territories granted to
her by the 1878 San Stefano Treaty–the forerunner of the Berlin
Treaty–were reduced by two-thirds. Moreover, she had lost Macedonia
and was cut off from the Aegean Sea. Pro-Russian Montenegro likewise
sustained territorial losses, including a strip of Bosnia. Perhaps
most importantly, Russia had to acquiesce in the Berlin Congress to
the imposition by the other Powers of all these terms under a very
real threat of war from Austria and England.

In substituting the Berlin Treaty for that of San Stefano, the Powers
were once more outlining and solidifying their notion of humanitarian
intervention, while zealously guarding their own national interests.

At issue were the nationality conflicts subsumed under both the
Eastern Question and the Armenian Question. The San Stefano Treaty was
virtually dictated by victorious Russia to the defeated Turks–who
had sued for peace–and thus had a bilateral character. The terms
of both the 1856 Paris Peace Treaty and the 1871 London Agreement,
however, stipulated that any change in the terms involved respecting
the status of Turkey, including her borders, could not be valid
without the collective assent of all the Powers–England, Russia,
France, Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Italy.

In 1870, Russia had repudiated the Black Sea clauses of the Treaty
of Paris, and the Powers, while grudgingly accepting this Russian
fait accompli, declared their stand against unilateral breaches of
international agreements. The same San Stefano Treaty’s Article
16 had made the departure of Russian troops from “the Armenian
provinces” in eastern Turkey contingent on the actual implementation
of the reforms provided in that article. In the substitute Berlin
Treaty, however, that article was sufficiently diluted to render it
inoperative. This was done by acceding to the Turkish demand to let
her assume responsibility for the implementation of the reforms she
had committed to undertake, without the presence of Russian occupation
troops, who eventually left as a result.

The projected reforms not only failed to materialize, but the Ottoman
authorities embarked upon a deliberate campaign of massacre and
repression to reduce the issue of reform to irrelevance. Consequently,
Macedonia–which under Article 23 of the Berlin Treaty was guaranteed
similar reforms–together with Armenia became a testing ground for
Turkish defiance of treaty obligations and Turkish resolve to obviate,
if not eliminate, the Macedonian and Armenian Questions. This was
to be accomplished through a new wave of persecutions, as well
as by way of decimating the native populations involved through a
series of massacres and compulsory demographic changes–including the
importation of large numbers of Muslim refugees into the Balkans for
resettlement purposes.

Through Articles 23 and 61, the Berlin Treaty of 1878 thus emerged as
the immediate nexus, the acute connecting link, between the Eastern
Question and the Armenian Question. It highlighted their convergence in
the processes through which the doctrine of humanitarian intervention
gradually emerged and crystallized itself, with Russia emerging as
its chief champion. In order to stymie this Russian penchant for
unilateral protectionism, the Powers, led by England, supplanted that
doctrine by insisting on the need for collective engagement on the
part of the Concert of Europe. The objection of the Powers rested
on the argument that they all had a stake in the improvement of the
conditions of the nationalities seeking reform and deliverance from
Ottoman dominion. Therefore, they maintained, no single Power was
entitled to monopolize this overall humanitarian concern for remedies.

When one examines the relationship between the terms of the settlement
incorporated into the Berlin Treaty and the 1912 Balkan War, one cannot
help but observe again the dysfunctional, if not counterproductive,
aspects of the humanitarian intervention principle.

The Powers managed to agree among themselves and reach a modicum of
consensus, but in the process generated a treaty that was pregnant
with inevitable future conflict among the peoples on whom its terms
were imposed as a humanitarian service. Macedonia was a major source
of such conflict. Serbia, Bulgaria, and Greece had conflicting claims
inasmuch as that province was almost entirely populated by Greeks and
Serbs, but also Bulgarians. The severity with which the Young Turk
Ittihadist regime began to forcibly denude Macedonia of its indigenous
Christian population and repopulate it with Muslim migrants was such
as to alarm and agitate these three nationalities, which all began
exploring the possibility of an alliance primarily against Turkey. As
described in note 36, the Ittihadists had already resolved–during the
secret meetings of their 1910 annual Congress–to resort to massacre,
if necessary, to cleanse Macedonia of Christians.

The first initiative for an alliance came from the Serbs approaching
the Bulgarians with whom they had fought and lost a war in 1885. The
Serbs were angry about the loss of Bosnia, which Austria finally had
incorporated–as allowed in the Three Emperors’ League agreement–in
the wake of the 1908 Young Turk revolution. At the same time, Bulgaria
had almost simultaneously proclaimed her complete independence,
repudiating the existing arrangement of Ottoman suzerainty. Likewise,
angry at the Turkish policy of extermination in Macedonia, the
Russophile Bulgarian Premier not only responded favorably to the
Serbian overture, after some initial hesitation, but proposed an even
wider Balkan alliance.

The outbreak and outcome of the First Balkan War

The Serbo-Bulgar Pact was first forged under the guidance and
sponsorship of Russia within the space of two months during the year
of 1912. It had a secret annex providing for a common action against
Turkey–subject to Russian approval–in the event of a threat of
war or an outbreak, such as a massacre. This pact was followed by
a Greco-Bulgar alliance, supplemented by a military convention,
and joined by Montenegro. The resulting Balkan League, disguised
as a defensive alliance, was an instrument designed to pounce at an
opportune moment on a foe that for centuries had oppressed the subject
peoples in the Balkan Peninsula, and whose expulsion from Europe was
presently held to be warranted once and for all.[39]

The Serbo-Bulgar Pact also provided for the rearrangement of
the boundaries of the two countries by an eventual partition of
Macedonia to which, as noted above, both countries had respective
claims. To enhance the significance of the treaty, the sovereigns
of the two states, in addition to the ministers, signed it. Apart
from aspirations that she entertained with respect to Macedonia,
Serbia was a tiny, land-locked state when compared to a relatively
aggrandized Bulgaria, and she had high hopes of creating the nucleus
of a future Yugoslav Empire.

As if to accommodate the zeal of the partners of the new Balkan
coalition, the Ottoman regime was not long in providing the opportunity
for these partners to go collectively into offensive action–preceded
by the dispatch to Turkey of unacceptable ultimatums.

That opportunity involved the twin massacres perpetrated by the Turks
in the summer of 1912. One massacre took place in the town of Ishtib,
east of Skopje, and the other and major one in Kocani, southeast
of Skopje–the capital city of Kosovo province in Macedonia. The
bloodbaths aroused the people of Bulgaria and galvanized the
governments of the Balkan Alliance, which, led by tiny Montenegro,
proceeded to carry out the projected war against Turkey.

The intercession by the Powers–first through efforts of
persuasion and subsequently through a warning to the effect that no
territorial conquest would be recognized by any of the partners of
the coalition–was of no avail. For their part, Turkish masses led
by Ittihadist leaders and university students launched a series of
noisy militant demonstrations in the streets of Istanbul, defiantly
insulting their former subjects and chanting in unison: “We want war,
war, war.” They also shouted such battle cries as “To Sofia, to Sofia,”
“Down with Greece! Greeks, bow your heads,” and some other unprintable
epithets directed at both Greeks and Bulgarians. Equally significant,
the university students kept screaming, “Down with Article 23, down
[with] it” when confronting Grand Vizier and veteran Army Commander
Ahmed Muhtar PaÅ~_a–in whose presence some of the students went so
far as to cry out, “Down with equality . . . we don’t want equality,”
referring to the central provision of Article 23 of the Berlin
Treaty, stipulating reforms to benefit the downtrodden Christian
subjects. With an inclination to underscore the religious dimensions
of the escalating conflicts, other demonstrators shouted, “The Balkan
dogs are tramping on Islam,” “They are insulting an empire which is
adorned with victories amassed in the course of six centuries, and
which can crush that pack of dog lice with a single blow of the heel.”

As if to publicly confirm the interconnectedness of Articles 23 and
61 of the Berlin Treaty and their nearly identical ramifications for
Turkey, Tanin–the semi-official mouthpiece of Ittihad–declared in
an editorial:

Who can guarantee that Article 61 will not follow Article 23, which
Article they presently want to resuscitate. Europe’s intervention
and Europe’s desire to control our internal affairs is a warning
to us to ponder the fate not only of Rumelia [Macedonia], but also
eastern Turkey for it will be impossible to spare eastern Turkey the
fate awaiting Rumelia.[40]

Similar meetings and demonstrations were taking place in Sofia,
Belgrade, and Athens–where bellicosity and clamors for war were no
less pronounced. There was a sense of self-righteousness in these
gatherings, which Bulgarian Premier I. E. Gueshof articulated as
follows: “The present war in which the Greeks, Bulgarians, Serbians,
Catholic Albanians and Orthodox Montenegrins will fight hand in hand,
is not a product of panslavist agitation. It is a crusade against
unbearable Turkish tyranny that is exploiting and martyrizing the
Christians of the Balkan [P]eninsula.”[41]

In less than three weeks, that crusade harnessed a series of
spectacular military victories, with each of the three major
partners of the coalition displaying inordinate martial prowess on
the battlefields. The redoubtable Ottoman army suffered humiliating
defeats that were as unexpected as devastating. Under General Savof,
the Bulgarians scored a series of victories in the battles of
KE©rkkilise in Thrace and Luleburgaz, forcing the Turks into full
retreat. In the process they reached the outskirts of Adrianople
(Edirne) and the gates of Istanbul at Òªatalca.

The Serbs were equally, if not more, successful. On October 18,
Serb King Peter issued a proclamation to his troops declaring that
the object of the Balkan League was to liberate Macedonia and bring
liberty, fraternity, and equality to the Christian and Muslim Serbs,
as well as to the Albanians with whom the Serbs had coexisted for
thirteen centuries. The 150,000 man Serbian army was first victorious
at Novibazar–the district out of which the Turks were cleared. A
portion of that army subsequently occupied Pristina. The main part
of that army began to march toward Uskub (Skopje) in Macedonia, the
ancient capital of the Serbs. The Turks blocked the way by occupying
Kumanovo. There the two armies met, and after three days of fierce
fighting between October 22 and October 24, 1912, the Serbs scored
a complete victory. Two days later, the Turks were forced to yield
Uskub. The triumphant entry in that ancient Serbian capital marked
a historical milestone for the Serbs, who for five hundred years had
waited for the day to avenge their defeat at the hands of the Turks
in the June 15, 1389, Battle of Kossovo Polye. It was a defeat that
had sealed the fate of the Serbs for five centuries, many of whom
had sought refuge in the mountains of Montenegro to continually wage
war against the Turks ever since that time. Many more had migrated
to Bosnia. In quick succession, the Serbs had become the masters of
Novibazar, Old Serbia, western Macedonia, and the Albanian coast of
Duräzzo on the Adriatic Sea.

Similar victories were scored by the Greeks, who entered Saloniki
on November 3, 1912, after three days of combat in Yenice. In the
second round of the Balkan War, which started on February 3, 1913,
the Bulgarians and Serbs finally captured the ancient Ottoman capital
of Adrianople. On March 6, the Greeks won a phenomenal victory at
Janine with the fall of this almost impregnable fortress. The Greeks
captured 200 guns and the 33,000 soldiers of the garrison.

The conduct of the Powers in the face of these Balkan coalition
victories was significant in several respects, but was critical in
one respect. The critical component centered on the rise of acute
dissension in its ranks and the formation of two types of alignments
counterpoised to each other. This splitting foreshadowed, in a
sense, the establishment among the Great Powers of the two enemy
camps prevalent at the outbreak of the war–the Entente Powers,
consisting of England, France, and Russia, and the Central Powers,
consisting of Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Italy. Even though these
Powers–especially Austria-Hungary and Russia–had warned Serbia,
Montenegro, Bulgaria, and Greece that they would be denied the right
to appropriate the lands they might conquer in the war, they now were
in disagreement about this issue. Sympathetic from the very start
with the cause of the coalition, Russia suggested that the conquered
territories belonged to the victors by right of occupation and should
be partitioned among them by way of friendly agreement. British opinion
was almost unanimous on the side of the allies of the coalition. On
November 9, 1912, Prime Minister Herbert Asquith declared that the
Powers would recognize accomplished feats and would not oppose the
recognition of the territorial changes achieved through military

The Central Powers, on the other hand, demurred and resisted such
accommodation. A particular bone of contention was Serbia’s retention
of DurÔzzo, which afforded her access to the Adriatic Sea. The
Entente Powers were willing to support Serbia’s stance, but it was
opposed by Italy and especially Austria, which was willing to wage
war for the Adriatic because she considered it her sole preserve. In
the interest of an autonomous Albania, Austria-Hungary pressured
Serbia and Montenegro to surrender Scutari (IÅ~_kodra), which had
been captured during the war.

The Balkan League was formed under the auspices of the Russian Tsar.

It essentially revolved around Serbia, which had become Russia’s
outpost in the Balkans. The League did not last long, however, as
the Serbs and Greeks were forced to reunite against Bulgaria, which
had made a mockery of the coalition by her twin surprise attacks
against Serbia and Greece. Reportedly engineered by the Bulgarian
Commander-in-Chief, General Savof, without the knowledge of the
Cabinet and Premier Gueshof, the initiative backfired at great cost
to Bulgaria. This war of partition between the former allies began
in June and ended on July 29, 1913.

In the meantime, Austria-Hungary and Russia had resorted to partial
mobilization, with Russia amassing troops on the Caucasian frontier
and informing Turkey that she could not promise neutrality if the
war in the Balkans started again. Germany sternly let it be known
that an attack on Turkey might trigger an all-out European war. One
of the consequences of the military defeats sustained by Turkey was
that the Central Powers, especially Germany, became most apprehensive
about the design of Russia and her Slavic client-states in the Balkans.

This is the context in which the Powers, after much haggling, combined
their influence in 1913-14 to persuade Turkey to agree to a set
of Armenian reforms for which the Armenians had been clamoring for
decades. Three elements in this undertaking rendered the February 8,
1914, Reform Agreement explosive. It was initiated by the Russians–the
mortal enemies of the Turks–and coincided with one of the worst
moments of Ottoman-Turkish history. Finally, the Powers impelled,
if not compelled, the Turks to accede to it.

The Aftermath of the Balkan Wars: The Dissolution of the Eastern
Question into the Armenian Question and its Ominous Portents

The Armenians’ vulnerability magnified

As one student of the Young Turks observed, the Albanians, Greeks,
and the different Slavic nationalities in the Balkans had emancipated
themselves one by one from Ottoman dominion, and by 1913, “only the
Armenians and Arabs remained as subject nationalities.”[42] Since the
Arabs were far more numerous, inhabited areas that were peripheral
to the heartland of the empire, and perhaps most significantly,
were of Muslim faith, the Turks turned their combative attention to
the Armenians as a residual minority of primary importance. Their
catastrophic experiences in the first Balkan War of 1912 not only
shocked them, but also informed them of the potential perils
mistreated nationalities could bring to bear on the Empire. As
a result of that Balkan War catastrophe, Turkey had lost nearly
70 percent of her European population and about 85 percent of her
European territory. The streets, mosques, and other communal places
of abode in Istanbul were full of destitute and emaciated Muslims
who had fled the war zones or were dislocated as a result of Greek,
Serb, and Bulgarian territorial conquests in the former Ottoman
provinces of the Balkans. It was against this overall backdrop of
misery and despair that the Armenian leadership once again chose to
launch its campaign for Armenian reforms inside and outside Turkey,
mobilizing prominent diplomats, clergymen, and public figures in
Russia and Europe. From a Turkish point of view, however, this was
a time of deep anguish, grim reflection, taking stock, and new,
drastic initiatives for remedies in pursuit of national redemption.

Halil (MenteÅ~_e)–President of the Ottoman Chamber of Deputies and
Foreign Minister in World War I–openly lamented the losses in the
Balkans and in 1914 declared in Parliament: “I exhort my nation from
this eminent podium that it should not forget [the tragedy in the
Balkans] (shouts of ‘we won’t forget’). . . . We have on the other
side of our borders brothers to be freed. . . . Only thus can we
protect our future from the dangers of repeating the mistakes which
led to our defeats and tragedies.”[43]

One major conclusion the Ittihadists derived from their reflection was
that the renewal of the Armenian pursuit of reforms, if successful,
had all the potential of becoming an extension of the Balkan disaster
in eastern Turkey–with far graver consequences for the future of
Turkey. Abdullah Cevdet, one of the original pillars of Ittihadist
ideology, as well as a military physician, veteran publicist,
and exponent of the drive for Westernization in Turkey, linked his
lamentations for the losses in the Balkans to his apprehensions of
greater potential dangers in Asiatic Turkey: “Will these thunderous
roars on our European borders, these blows, awaken us? . . . Don’t
kid yourself that because of our preoccupations in European Turkey, we
should not worry about Anatolia. Anatolia is the well spring of every
fibre of our life. It is our heart, head, and the air we breathe.”[44]

The implicit message contained in this statement is clear: beware of
the Armenians and their clamors for reform to be introduced in the
heart of our fatherland. For the Turks, it was not easy to forget
that the Balkan nationalities’ attainment of complete freedom and
independence was traceable to the rudimentary demands for reform
that eventually involved some form of autonomy. Projecting into the
future any kind of autonomy in any scheme of reforms was defined by
the Ittihadist leaders as a non plus ultra for Turkey.

As if to exacerbate the situation, several other factors entered
the picture. The resumption of the campaign for Armenian reforms
occurred during the critical months of the fall of 1912, when Turkey
was suffering setbacks externally–such as the Balkan War military
defeats–and internally when Ittihad temporarily was forced out of
power. Moreover, a number of non-Turkish members of the Ottoman Chamber
of Deputies, including Greeks and Armenians, were becoming more vocal
about their criticism of Turkish nationality policies in Europe and
Asiatic Turkey. In the meantime, the deposed Sultan Abdul Hamit chided
the Ittihadist leaders as misguided patriots for allowing non-Muslims
such scope for dissidence and opposition, which critically undermined
Turkish national interests. This Turkish exacerbation reached its apex
by the most crucial factor at work throughout the entire episode. The
Armenian reforms movement was spearheaded by the Russians who now
had become the defenders–if not champions–of the Armenian cause,
reversing their policy of tacit support for the massacres prevalent
in the 1890s. Through their persistence and willingness to address
the concerns of the Turks and their German advocates, the Russians
finally succeeded in overcoming the obstacles created by Turkish
methods of stalling and temporizing. On February 8, 1914, the
Armenian Reform Agreement, reflecting a hard-won consensus by the
Powers that had been grudgingly approved by Turkey, was signed in
Istanbul as an international law document akin to a treaty. The most
critical and consequential feature of the Agreement was a provision
for two foreign inspectors-general to administer and superintend
the projected reforms, a provision which alarmed and offended the
Turks while inspiring and relieving the Armenians.[45] The Turkish
intent to derail the implementation of the Agreement, however, was
evident in the resentment of many Ittihadist leaders regarding the
collective pressures they felt the Powers had utilized to influence
Turkey to sign the Agreement. These Powers had succeeded in ironing
out their differences through the forging of a more or less united
front, mainly through the active engagement of Russia and Germany,
as well as by impelling Turkey to accommodate. The lasting effects
of this resentment were manifest at the outbreak of World War I,
when several Ittihadist leaders, including party boss Talât, openly
berated and vilified the Armenian leaders for resuscitating the reform
issue at the most painful and vulnerable moment of Turkish history.

This resentment gave way to rage when these same Ittihadists made
reference to the fact that the Armenians had dared to seek and obtain
foreign intervention on their behalf. The more blunt Ittihadists are
reported to have gleefully reminded some of the Armenian leaders on
their way to liquidation during the World War I genocide that Å~^imdi
intikam zamanE©dE©r ‘[t]his is our moment of settling scores.'[46]

The adoption of a radical Turkish ideology

Parallel to the projections of a potential Armenian threat to the
integrity of the Turkish state, the Young Turk Ittihadists embarked
upon a comprehensive program of national renewal and political
reorientation. One aspect of this undertaking was the vehemence
with which Ittihad proceeded to deal with dissidents from within and
opponents from without the party. There was a prevailing sense among
the party leaders that the recent misfortunes befalling Turkey were
largely due to their “mistake” of having allowed their political and
military antagonists to challenge the party and its leaders. Several
prominent party members bitterly opposed to the party had resigned
from it to form the Freedom and Accord Party (Hurriyet ve Itilâf) in
November of 1911 and were anticipating the downfall of Ittihad. This
new party of liberals included non-Muslims in its ranks–especially
Armenians–whose essential common objective was the overthrow of the
Ittihadist regime.

In addition, there was the active opposition of the Savior Officers
(Halâskar) group, which had close ties to the abovementioned Freedom
and Accord Party. Their objective was the demolition of the Ittihadist
power structure, the disengagement of military officers from the
vagaries of politics, and the restoration of a “legal government.”

Through a variety of pressures, which culminated in an ultimatum
demanding the dissolution of the Ottoman Parliament, they managed to
oust Ittihad from power in July of 1912. These initiatives coincided
with the reigniting of the Macedonian crisis and the subsequent
outbreak of the Balkan War, ultimately giving rise to a general
conviction that the rift among the Turkish military–pitting Ittihadist
against anti-Ittihadist officers–in no small way contributed to the
defeat suffered by the Ottoman army.

The Ittihadist program of national renewal essentially aimed at
discarding the traditional concept of multi-ethnic “Ottomanism”–which
was based on the premise of concord among the various nationalities–as
useless and even pernicious. This concept was predicated upon the
assumption that the other ethnic elements would eventually integrate
themselves in the Ottoman system, and would relinquish most of their
ethnic ties, with the temporary exception of their religions. This
assumption proved not only illusory but ill-advised because it
implied eventual assimilation–a condition that was abhorrent to
these nationalities. Ottomanism was, therefore, to be dismantled and
replaced by a narrowly conceived nationalism, glorifying “Turkism” and
seeking the “Turkification” of the entire fabric of Ottoman society.

With this turn of events, the rudimentary liberal ideals of the
Young Turk Ittihadist Revolution were doomed to be relinquished
or repudiated.

The main instrument for this radical change was the Ittihadist
Party, the Committee of Union and Progress, relying as it did on
its organization and hierarchy of leadership, including its covert
designs and submerged structures. Top priority was given to the task
of creating a vast network of party branches in the provinces to be
directed by trusted party loyalists. They were to be entrusted with
party secrets and the execution of party directives independent from,
and sometimes in contradiction to, officially stated policies. These
measures of party penetration and expansion were applied most
resolutely in those provinces of Anatolia and eastern Turkey in
which there were large clusters of Armenians. As it turned out,
the principal aim of the entire undertaking was to gradually gain
control over these populations, emasculate them further through
legal-political constrictors, and create a general atmosphere of
anti-Armenianism among the Muslim multitudes in these provinces. In
the 1910 secret speech of Talât, alluded to above, there was already
a provision included for this type of party build-up and secrecy of
certain party designs, about which even regular civilian functionaries
in the Ottoman provincial administration were to be kept incognito.[47]

Consistent with the thrust of these administrative initiatives,
Ittihad, in the very midst of Turkish military reverses in the 1912
Balkan War, launched a comprehensive program of indoctrination and
paramilitary training of Turkish youth. Ittihad had tried to inculcate
a new mood of nationalism and militancy among the young generation
committed to its care. The Association for the Promotion of Turkish
Strength (Turk Gucu Cemiyeti), established in 1913, in its Number 1
Statute, speaks of the need for “military training [of the youth] to
enable the nation to become again a warrior (silahÅ~_or) nation” in
order to avert Turk E©rkE© inhitata ‘the decay of the Turkish race.’
Additionally, there were a number of Ottoman youth groups that,
under the direction of the War Ministry, were to be prepared “for
the defense of the fatherland” and for whose purpose “the ministry
is to supply, free of charge, rifles, bullets, and ammunition.”[48]

These activities were directed by Ittihadist War Minister Enver and
chief Ittihadist ideologue Ziya Gökalp. Both leaders were indicted
by the post-war Turkish Military Tribunal investigating the wartime
Armenian massacres, and Enver was convicted and sentenced to death.

The League for National Defense (Mudafaa-i Milliye Cemiyeti),
established in the midst of the Balkan War, had the mission to prepare
the Turks for combat, despite its disinterest in political and party
involvements and its profession for such other ancillary ends as
peace, prosperity, and happiness. These professions were belied
by the subsequent activities of the League. Equally important,
the founders of the League included the top leaders of Ittihad,
who were also Cabinet Ministers named Interior Minister Talât, War
Minister Enver, Foreign Minister Said Halim, Marine Minister Cemal,
and Justice Minister Ibrahim.[49]

The military initiatives

Given the preeminent role of the military officers in the outbreak
of the Ittihadist Revolution and the general sway of militarism
in the unfolding of the career of the Ottoman Empire, the military
functioned as the backbone of the party organization in launching
these initiatives. As a first step, the officer corps of the armed
forces was purged inexorably. Ittihadist War Minister Enver abruptly
dismissed a total of 1100 officers from all ranks, including generals
who were considered incompetent and less than loyal to, or outright
opponents of, Ittihad.[50] Concomitantly, the same War Minister
promoted young, trusted Ittihadist officers, including himself, to
much higher ranks than normal procedure would allow. The net result
of these undertakings was the optimal politicization of the officer
corps and the swift ascendancy of Ittihadist zealots in all ranks.

Under the auspices of the same War Minister, and in close cooperation
with the Supreme Directorate of the Talât factions, the Turks
reactivated and enlarged the Special Organization. A quasi-military
outfit led by regular army officers, this organization in its nuclear
form was already active in the 1913 Second Balkan War. It mainly
conducted guerrilla operations against the Bulgarians. As publicly
stated, a vital part of its assigned task was surveillance and
“neutralization” of internal foes. Its secret mission was to liquidate
the discordant and “alien” minorities at the first opportunity, which
were major threats to Turkish national security, as evidenced later
in the war as the Armenians headed this list of minorities.

The party directorate, in close cooperation with the Public Security
Office (Emniyeti Umumiye) of the Interior Ministry, set up a special
department of surveillance and intelligence in the General Directorate
of Turkish Police. This department housed the secret files compiled
on Armenian clerical, political, and educational leaders, as well
as journalists and intellectuals against whom warrants for future
action existed.

A number of members of the League of National Defense enrolled in
the ranks of the Special Organization, which served as the principal
instrument in the implementation of the Armenian Genocide. These
Special Organization contingents were led by such highly committed and
prominent Ittihadist military officers as Yakub Cemil, Halil (Kut),
and Yenibahceli Nail, who were heavily implicated in the subsequent
wartime planning and direction of the massacres against the Armenians.

They simply transferred the skills they had acquired as guerrilla
leaders in the Balkans[51] to their new field of operations involving
the extermination of the bulk of the Armenian population in Turkey
during World War I.

The successful achievement of that objective was in line with the
objectives of the new nationalism of the Ittihadists, which centered
on radically restructuring Ottoman society by way of converting a
heterogeneous social system into a more or less homogeneous one–the
optimal Turkification of a residual empire.

The Conditions of Initiating the Genocide

Contrary to some views being advanced in recent times, the World War
I genocide against the Armenians was not simply an aberration due to
wartime exigencies. The 1894-96 Abdul Hamit era and the subsequent 1909
Young Turk Ittihadist era Armenian massacres not only constitute the
antecedents of that genocide, but given the conditions surrounding
them, the latter genocide is rather ominously foreshadowed in this
chain of massacres. Within such a historical perspective, there is a
discernible Ottoman-Turkish pattern where resort to wholesale massacres
emerges as an integral part of the policy respecting the treatment of
minorities considered to be discordant and troublesome for the state.

Although the Armenian massacres preceding World War I were significant
in many respects, they underscored two especially important facts.

First, the massacres were not subjected to the test of viable
criminal proceedings, either nationally or internationally. The
resulting impunity accorded to the perpetrators became a form of
negative reward. Second, as a result, no deterrence materialized
in anticipation of the 1915 genocide. Current international law
on genocide revolves around the twin principles of prevention and
punishment. The examination of the special case of the Armenian
Genocide, in which both of these principles failed to operate,
brings into question the reliability and adequacy of international
law[52] and, accordingly, the efficacy of international efforts to
deter genocide.

Evidence suggests that Turkey’s entry into World War I was
substantially influenced by a desire to seize a suitable opportunity
to finally resolve all lingering domestic conflicts, especially the
Armenian Question. The recent literature analyzing the problems of
genocide is replete with discussions recognizing this historical fact.

Several of these discussions singled out the 1894-96 Abdul Hamit
era massacres as a historical antecedent of contemporary issues of
genocide,[53] while others focused on the World War I massacres.[54]

The opportunity factor

When World War I broke out in July of 1914, Turkey was neither
prepared militarily, nor disposed to commit herself instantly and
unconditionally to the camp of the Central Powers led by Imperial
Germany. Sympathies for Germany among the most powerful leaders
of Ittihad, such as War Minister Ismail Enver, some of his close
associates in the ministry, and Dr. NazE©m–the shadowy arch
power-wielder in the supreme directorate of the party–were pervasive.

Several factors additionally favored the adoption of a pro-German
Turkish stance. Foremost among these was German Emperor Wilhelm II’s
legacy of diplomatic support of Sultan Abdul Hamit’s regime at a time
when most of the other Powers of the Concert of Europe were against
the wholesale Armenian massacres carried out under the aegis of the
regime they had condemned. Moreover, it was an Ottoman tradition to
entrust the reorganization and rebuilding of the Ottoman army mainly
to German officers, among whom Helmuth von Moltke and Baron Colmar
v.d. Goltz stand out. Perhaps most importantly, the Ittihadists’ first
major move after they overthrew their opponents’ government in January
of 1913 was to seek German military assistance in reorganizing the
Ottoman army, which was then directly under Enver’s control. Enver’s
sympathies for the Germans bordered on exaltation of Germany as a
formidable military machine that he had an opportunity to observe and
assess when serving in Berlin as Turkish Military Attaché prior to
World War I. Following the signing of a contract, the arrival of a
German Military Mission to the Ottoman capital of Turkey in December
of 1913 foreshadowed the Turkish intent to forge a partnership with
Germany. That partnership materialized on August 2, 1914, when the
Turko-German political and military alliance was signed, following
a series of stringent negotiations whereby the Turks secured German
commitment for massive monetary and other types of economic assistance
to Turkey.[55]

The dividends of this alliance for the unfolding of Turkish designs
and aspirations were multifarious. First and foremost, Germany now
offered a protective shield to Ittihad’s wartime plans. Internally, the
centerpiece of these plans was the homogenization of the ethnic make-up
of what was left of the Ottoman Empire. As later events demonstrated
by explicit and strict orders from the German High Command in Berlin,
the multitudes of German officers who were affiliated with the German
Military Mission to Turkey were forbidden from intervening in the
process of Armenian deportations. The same prohibition applied to
the thousands of other German officers assisting in the Turkish war
effort, whether as commanders-in-combat or as administrative support
personnel. This order was rationalized by twin arguments. First,
unconditional support of the Turkish ally for the sake of a common
victory in a war for survival was to be regarded as a matter that
should take precedence over everything else. Second, Germany could
ill-afford to ignore “Turkish sensitivities” with regard to the
Armenian issue. This policy of non-intervention was approved at
the highest level of the German government and sanctioned by the
Kaiser. In fact, in a lengthy report made to Berlin on April 15,
1915, German Ambassador Hans Freiherr von Wangenheim declared that
by intervening in “a hopeless case (aussichtslose Sache), i.e.,
the Armenian problem, we may jeopardize interests which are more
important and crucial for us.”[56]

Apart from these attitudes of indulging the Turks and thereby granting
them a laissez faire license, German intelligence operatives helped
the Ittihadists to set up a surveillance bureau within the General
Police Directorate in the Ottoman capital. As noted above, the purpose
was to prepare lists and dossiers on Armenian community leaders to be
treated as potential foes of Turkey. Furthermore, upon German advice,
War Minister Enver reactivated and expanded the residual TeÅ~_kilatE©
Mahusa ‘Special Organization’ as an instrument of wartime agitation,
sabotage, and murder both inside and outside Turkey.

Thus, taking advantage of the crisis generated by the outbreak of
the war in July of 1914, the general mobilization in the wake of the
signing of the Turko-German alliance, and the endemic state of siege
together with the corollary martial law, the Turkish authorities
proceeded to prepare the ground for the holocaust-to-come, while
energetically preparing themselves for preemptive war. The opportunity
was not only at hand, but also was considerably maximized.

In his memoirs, Major-General Joseph Pomiankowski, the Austro-Hungarian
Military Plenipotentiary attached to the Ottoman General Headquarters
during the War, alluded to the unabated antagonism between Muslim and
non-Muslim nationalities. Referring to “the spontaneous utterances
of many intelligent Turks,” Pomiankowski conveyed their view that
these conquered peoples ought to have been forcibly converted to
Islam or “ought to have been exterminated (ausrotten) long ago.”[57]
His conclusion is noteworthy:

In this sense there is no doubt that the Young Turk government
already before the war had decided to utilize the next opportunity
for rectifying at least in part this mistake. . . . It is also very
probable that this consideration, i.e., the intent, had a very
important influence upon the decisions of the Ottoman government
relative to joining the Central Powers, and upon the determination
of the exact time of their intervening in the war.[58]

Ambassador Henry Morgenthau, whose contacts with high-ranking Young
Turk officials were more frequent and intimate than Pomiankowski’s,
was even more explicit in this regard:

The conditions of the war gave to the Turkish Government its longed-for
opportunity to lay hold of the Armenians. . . . They criticized their
ancestors for neglecting to destroy or convert the Christian races
to Mohammedanism at the time when they first subjugated them. Now
. . . they thought the time opportune to make good the oversight of
their ancestors in the 15th century. They concluded that once they
had carried out their plan, the Great Powers would find themselves
before an accomplished fact and that their crime would be condoned,
as was done in the case of the massacres of 1895-96, when the Great
Powers did not even reprimand the Sultan.[59]

Morgenthau’s opinion was unequivocally confirmed by the Young Turk
party leader Mehmet Talât, one of his chief sources in Turkish
government circles. Talât told Dr. Johann Mordtman, the man in
charge of the Armenian desk and the dragoman at the German Embassy
at Istanbul, that Turkey was “intent on taking advantage of the
war in order to thoroughly liquidate its internal foes, i.e., the
indigenous Christians, without being thereby disturbed by foreign
intervention.”[60] In a joint memorandum to Berlin requesting
the removal of German Ambassador Metternich on account of the
envoy’s unceasing efforts to intercede on behalf of the Armenians,
Talât–along with warlord Enver–reemphasized this point: “[T]he
work must be done now: after the war it will be too late.”[61]

The observations of two prominent German experts also merit special
attention. In explaining Turkey’s motivation for entering World War
I on the side of Germany, K. Ziemke–a renowned German political
scientist–described Turkey’s desire to extricate herself from the
bondage of the Armenian Reform Agreement of January 26/February 8,
1914, initiated in the wake of the 1912 Balkan War, as a contributing
factor. He recognized the massacre and destruction of “one million
Armenians” during the war as “the radical solution” of the Armenian
Question, delivering Turkey from the burden of all future vexations.

By so doing, the Turkish Government eliminated the conditions for
future reform projects, as well as the allied pressures.[62] More
significantly, a German officer serving as Vice Consul of Erzerum,
where a large Armenian population was destroyed, informed Berlin that
“the Armenian [Q]uestion which for decades occupied the attention of
Europe’s diplomats is to be solved in the course of the present war[.]
. . . [M]easures undertaken by the Turkish government . . . are
tantamount to the total destruction of the Armenians.”[63]

This view is further corroborated by the sources within the Ittihadist
regime itself. Ahmet Cemal PaÅ~_a, who served both as a member of the
Young Turk triumvirate running the Ittihadist regime from 1908-18 and
also as the Commander of the Fourth Army and Marine Minister during
the war, states in his memoirs that “our sole objective (bizim yegane
gayemiz) was to free ourselves from all the governmental measures
[imposed upon us] in this war and which constituted a blow to our
internal independence.”[64] These shackles involved the international
stipulations on the autonomy of Lebanon and the Armenian reform
agreement–signed on February 8, 1914, by Turkey and Russia with
the concurrence of the other Powers. As Cemal stated, “We wanted
to tear up that Agreement.”[65] Enver, also a member of the ruling
Ittihad triumvirate, likewise denounced the reforms stipulated by the
international Agreement of February 8, 1914. During an exchange on
August 6, 1915, with Hans Humann–German naval attaché and Enver’s
childhood friend–the Minister admitted that the main rationale of the
anti-Armenian measures was “the total elimination of any basis” for
future interventions by the Powers on the behalf of the Armenians.[66]
As a departmental head in the Turkish Justice Ministry declared,
“There is no room for Armenians and Turks in our state, and it would
be irresponsible and thoughtless for us if we didn’t take advantage of
this opportunity [afforded by the war] to do away with [the Armenians]

The annulment of the treaties

Through the December 3/16, 1914, Imperial Rescript, the Agreement of
February 8, 1914, was cancelled.[68] Talât, then Interior Minister,
justified this move by declaring to Dr. Mordtman, “C’est le seul
moment propice.”[69] This reflected a general determination during the
war to abrogate the international treaties that had resulted from the
application of the “humanitarian intervention” principle. On September
5, 1916, Ottoman Foreign Minister (MenteÅ~_e) Halil informed German
Ambassador Count Paul Wolff-Metternich that “the Ottoman Cabinet had
decided to declare null and void the Paris Treaty of 1878.”[70] As
Halil explained, “All three of these international treaties had imposed
‘political shackles’ on the Ottoman state which the Porte intended
to be rid of.”[71] It is important to note that Richard von Kuhlmann,
the German Ambassador at Istanbul, pointed to the relationship between
the Armenian reform movement and the imposition of these “shackles”
on Turkey–especially the February 8, 1914, Reform Agreement–as a
condition justifying the ensuing genocide. Reviewing the history
of the Turko-Armenian conflict, on February 16, 1917–six months
before he became Foreign Minister–Kuhlmann traced “the destruction
of the Armenians which has been carried out on a large scale, and was
based on a policy of extermination” to “Armenian reform endeavors,
especially those launched during the 1912 Balkan [W]ar.”[72]

The Allies’ warning and the introduction of the principle of “Crimes
Against Humanity”

As the genocide was beginning, the Allies issued a joint declaration
on May 24, 1915, condemning “the connivance and often assistance of
Ottoman authorities” in the massacres. “In view of these new crimes of
Turkey against humanity and civilization,” the declaration continued:
“[T]he Allied governments announce publicly . . . that they will hold
personally responsible . . . all the members of the Ottoman government
and those of their agents who are implicated in such massacres.”[73]

The Administrative Measures

Alleging treasonable acts, separatism, and other assorted acts by
the Armenians viewed as a national minority, the Ottoman authorities
ordered the wholesale deportation of the Armenian population of the
Empire’s eastern and southeastern provinces under the guise of national
security.[74] This measure was subsequently extended to virtually all
of the Empire’s Armenian population, including such faraway cities
as Bursa, EskiÅ~_ehir, Konya, and the Ottoman capital, Istanbul.[75]

The execution of this order, ostensibly a wartime emergency measure
of relocation, actually masked a deliberate plan for the execution of
the Armenian population. The vast majority of the deportees perished
through a variety of direct and indirect atrocities perpetrated during
the deportations. As Winston Churchill wrote:

In 1915 the Turkish government began and ruthlessly carried out the
infamous general massacre and deportation of Armenians in Asia Minor .

. . the clearance of the race from Asia Minor was about as complete as
such an act, on a scale so great, could well be[.] . . . There is no
reasonable doubt that this crime was planned and executed for political
reasons. The opportunity presented itself for clearing Turkish soil of
a Christian race opposed to all Turkish ambitions, cherishing national
ambitions that could be satisfied only at the expense of Turkey,
and planted geographically between Turkish and Caucasian Moslems.[76]

A secret propaganda campaign followed the deportation order and was
waged by Department II of the Turkish War Office. The campaign sought
to deflect blame from the Turkish government by labeling the Armenians
a national security threat. As one Turkish naval captain attached to
that office recounted:

In order to justify this enormous crime (bu muazzan cinayet) [of the
Armenian Genocide] the requisite propaganda material was thoroughly
prepared in Istanbul. [It included such statements as:] “the Armenians
are in league with the enemy. They will launch an uprising in Istanbul,
kill off the Ittihadist leaders and will succeed in opening up the
straits [to enable the Allied fleets to capture Istanbul].”

These vile and malicious incitements [were such, however, that they]
could persuade only people who were not even able to feel the pangs
of their own hunger.[77]

The main vehicle of this anti-Armenian agitation was the Ottoman
propaganda weekly Harb MecmuasE© ‘War Magazine.’ Edited by Colonel
Seyfi, the head of Department II at the War Office, this weekly’s
influence went well beyond its 15,000 subscribers. A Turkish newspaper
during the Armistice declared that it was Seyfi who, as director of
the Political Department at Ottoman General Headquarters, mapped the
strategy of the Armenian massacres. In close cooperation with Dr. B.

Å~^akir, and under the auspices of the Ittihad party’s Central
Committee, he mobilized the cetes ‘brigands’ of the Special
Organization.[78] The Turkish government also worked to deflect
blame for the eventual killing of the Armenians through its use of
the Special Organization. The members of the Special Organization,
mostly ex-convicts, would be identified as the actual villains and
portrayed as “beyond the authority and control of the government.” An
American author noted their recourse to this method and described the
unruly “group of brigands” who made up the Special Organization as
“a secret, rather disreputable group.”[79]

Mobilization and deportation

Proclaiming a state of “armed neutrality,” Turkey, with the assistance
of German staff officers, launched a general mobilization on August 3,
1914. Among those affected by this scheme were male Armenians, who were
inducted in three stages. First called were those between twenty and
forty-five years of age, followed by those between fifteen and twenty,
and finally those in the forty-five to sixty age group, who were used
as pack animals for the transport of military equipment.[80] About a
month later, on September 6, 1914, the Interior Ministry utilized a
cipher circular to instruct the provincial authorities to keep Armenian
political and community leaders under surveillance. When Turkey
finally entered the war two months later through a pre-emptive attack
on Russian seaports and shipping in the Black Sea,[81] the military’s
emergency measures assumed inordinate dimensions of severity. The
requisitions in particular stripped the provincial Armenian population
of most of their accumulated goods. The confiscation included almost
anything subsumed under the general category of supplies and provisions
for the army.[82] Widespread governmental provocations, during which
some Armenians clashed with gendarmes and soldiers who were harassing
them, accentuated these hardships.[83] There were also sporadic acts
of sabotage performed by isolated groups of Armenians.[84] This unrest
culminated in the Interior Ministry’s issuing of the order of April
24, 1915, which authorized the arrest of all Armenian political
and community leaders suspected of anti-Ittihad or nationalistic
sentiments. Thousands of Armenians were seized and incarcerated. In
Istanbul alone, 2,345 such leaders were arrested,[85] most of whom
were subsequently executed.

Except for a small minority, none of them were either nationalists
or in any way involved in politics. Most significantly, none of them
were tried and found guilty of war-time sabotage, espionage, or any
other crime.

The last and decisive stage of the process of reducing the bulk
of the Armenian population to absolute helplessness was merciless
deportation. In a memorandum dated May 26, 1915, the Interior Minister
requested that the Grand Vizier enact a special law authorizing such
deportations. The memorandum was endorsed on May 29, 1915, by the
Grand Vizier even though, as required by law, the Cabinet did not
act on it first. Instead, it did so on May 30, 1915. Meanwhile, the
press had already announced the promulgation of the new emergency law
called the Temporary Law of Deportation[86] on May 27, 1915. Without
referring to the Armenians, the law authorized the Commanders
of Armies, Army Corps, Divisions, and Commandants of the local
garrisons to order the deportation of population clusters on the
mere suspicion of espionage, treason, and for reasons of military
necessity. The key word was hissetmek ‘sensing.’ The authorities,
empowered to order deportations, had merely to have a feel, or a
sense, of looming offence or danger.[87] This purposefully vague
but sweeping authorization resulted in the deportation of the bulk
of Turkey’s Armenian population. As one Turkish historian admitted,
the Interior Minister “was intent on creating an accomplished fact,”
and “railroad[ed] the Cabinet approval of the law” by beginning to
administer the deportations prior to submitting his draft bill to the
full Cabinet.[88] The Temporary Law of Deportation, it should be noted,
was eventually repealed “on account of its unconstitutionality”
in a stormy November 4, 1918, session of the post-war Ottoman
Parliament. During this session, the Armenian Massacres, the scope
of the victims, and the responsibility of the government, were

Expropriation and confiscation of goods and assets

A supplementary law enacted on June 10, 1915, contained instructions
on how to register the property of the deportees, how to safeguard it,
and how to dispose of others through public auctions. The revenue was
to be held in trust for remittance to the owners upon their return
after the war.[90] Another temporary law promulgated on September 26,
1915, disposed of the deportees’ goods and property. It provided for
the handling of the debts, credits, and assets of the deportees. In
relaying this new law to the German Foreign Office, Arthur Gwinner,
the Director of the Deutsche Bank, sarcastically stated that eleven
articles might well have been compressed into the following two: “1.

All goods of the Armenians are confiscated. 2. The government will
cash in the credits of the deportees and will repay (or not repay)
their debts.” [91]

Unlike the Temporary Law of Deportation, which though approved by the
Cabinet was never promulgated by the Ottoman Parliament as required by
Article 36 of the Ottoman Constitution, the Ottoman Senate publicly
debated the Temporary Law of Expropriation and Confiscation (“The
Temporary Law”). Over a two month period–from October 4 through
December 13, 1915–a lone senator, Ahmed Riza, raised his voice in
opposition to the proposed measure.[92] The evolving debate sheds
further light on the political forces and biases that shaped the
Ottoman government’s decisions.

In the September 21/October 4, 1915 session of the Senate, for
example, Riza pleaded with his government to allow the deportees,
“hundreds and thousands of whom, women and children and old people,
are helplessly and miserably wandering around in the streets and
mountains of Anatolia[,] to return to their original places of
residence or to settle wherever they wish before the onset of the
winter.”[93] He then submitted a draft bill that proposed to postpone
the Temporary Law’s application until the end of the war.[94]

Senator Riza claimed that the Temporary Law was contrary to Article
16 of the Ottoman Constitution because it was announced two days
before the convening of the Parliament. He further argued that “[i]t
is also inimical to the principles of law and justice. This law must,
therefore, pass first through the Parliament and go into effect only
after the end of the war. Hence, on the basis of [A]rticle 53 of the
Constitution[,] I request the adoption of the change as proposed
in the bill before us.”[95] The ensuing debate revealed that the
parliamentarians knew nothing about the Temporary Law in question,
and that nobody knew when, if ever, it would come to the Parliament for
consideration. Therefore, no proposal for change would be entertained.

Following Senator Riza’s expression of concern that the Temporary
Law might either arrive at the Parliament too late or not at all,
the Senate voted to transmit the senator’s bill to the Legislative
Acts Committee of the Senate.

In the October 19/November 1, 1915, session of the Senate, Senator
Riza again urged his fellow legislators to consider the suffering of
the wretched deportees in the rigors of the Anatolian mountains and
provide relief before the onset of the winter season. He requested
that the Senate expedite relief, which the government had formally
promised to provide according to the president of the Senate.[96]
In discussing these debates, prominent Turkish historian Bayur
noted the pressures brought to bear upon Senator Riza to withdraw
his bill. One Deputy shouted at Riza that “this is not the time to
provoke rumours,”[97] alluding to the delicate political matter of
the massacres that were still in progress. Bayur states that Senator
Riza was especially harassed during the November 24/December 7, 1915,
session when the Senate decided to consider the bill only after it
was formerly reported to the Senate. As Bayur observed, “[T]wo and a
half months had elapsed since the bill was introduced and the Chamber
of Deputies hadn’t even begun to consider it. Clearly, the Parliament
was intent on sanctioning the application of the Temporary Law while
putting Riza’s bill ‘to sleep.'”[98]

During the November 30/December 13, 1915, session, Senator Riza once
more raised his voice to protest the subversion of the Constitution,
which forbade the implementation of any law before the Parliament
passes it while in session. Since the law had been introduced in the
Chamber of Deputies for consideration and debate after the Chamber
had convened, Riza argued that the matter became the concern of the
Legislative branch. Focusing on the key elements of the Temporary Law,
the Senator raised the following objection:

It is unlawful to designate the Armenian assets and properties as
‘abandoned goods’ [emvalE© metruke][,] for the Armenians, the
proprietors, did not abandon their properties voluntarily; they
were forcibly, compulsively [zorla, cebren] removed from their
domiciles and were brutally exiled. Now the government through its
officials is selling their goods. . . . Nobody can sell my property
if I am unwilling to sell it. Article 21 of the Constitution forbids
it. If we are a constitutional regime functioning in accordance with
constitutional law we can’t do this. This is atrocious. Grab my arm,
eject me from my village, then sell my good[s] and properties, such a
thing can never be permissible. Neither the conscience of the Ottomans
nor the law can allow it.[99]

In his November 4, 1915 communication to the State Department,
Morgenthau confirmed the occurrence of these debates. He further
disclosed that Talât himself exerted the greatest pressure upon
Senator Riza by threatening to initiate more severe measures against
the Armenians should Riza continue his agitation on their behalf:
“From other sources it is stated that the Cabinet promised to modify
[its] attitude towards the Armenians if Ahmed Riza and his friends
would agree not to interpolate the government. This Ahmed Riza did not
[do].”[100] The Temporary Law was thus left intact. A Turkish Armistice
government facing the victorious Allies [101] subsequently annulled
the law on January 8, 1920, but the insurgent Kemalists reversed the
annulment on September 14, 1922.[102]

During the November-December 1918 hearings of the Fifth Committee
of the Ottoman Chamber of Deputies, which investigated the wartime
massacres, several Turkish Deputies took former Justice Minister
Ibrahim to task over the illegal aspects of the expropriation. One of
them pointed out the widespread “robberies and plunders” that were
committed in the course of the confiscations.[103] Ibrahim conceded
that his government officials investigated “abuses” that occurred.[104]
Other observers were less charitable in their analysis.

The Swiss historian Samuel Zurlinden quoted in a detailed study of the
Armenian Genocide “a knowledgeable German” source who had stated that
“what really happened was an expropriation carried out on the greatest
scale against 1.5 million citizens.”[105] At Aleppo, American Consul
Jackson pointed to the major role the confiscation played in the
genocidal scheme of the Turkish government. Jackson identified the
genocide as “a gigantic plundering scheme as well as a final blow to
extinguish the [Armenian] race.”[106] Turkish historian Dogan AvcE©oglu
confirms this point by stating that after the European interventions
of 1856-78, “[t]here emerged a need to radically solve this problem.

The nationalization of the economy was the complementary part of
this policy. . . . Among those who quickly enriched themselves in
the process of the expropriation of the Armenians were [Ittihad]
party influentials, ex-officers serving as party operatives, and
Turkish immigrants.”[107]

Neither the text of the Temporary Law on Deportations nor that of the
Temporary Law of Expropriation and Confiscation referred specifically
to the Armenians or, in fact, to any nationality. During the secret
Parliamentary debates of the fledgling Turkish Republic convening
in Ankara after World War I, however, Turkish deputies were told
that general terms were used to conceal the true purposes of the law
from the Armenians. This fact emerged during the debate on April 3,
1924, when Deputy Musa KázE©m objected to Article 2 of a fiscal bill
draft that used the covert formula, siyasi zumre ‘a political body of
people’, to target non-Muslim minorities. He argued that “[t]he guilt
of a person should be determined in a court of law. In my opinion,
the insertion in a bill of economic character of a clause smacking
of politics is very much out of place. It is a shame. I implore
you to let us remove it.”[108] In responding to this objection,
former Finance Minister Hasan Fehmi, representing the Parliamentary
Commission in charge of preparing the bill in question, explained
the rationale of secretly targeting non-Muslims. Given the risks
involved when specifically identifying them in the bill, he said that
the Commission had secretly made a deal with the Finance Minister to
the effect that the Muslims were to be excluded from the application
of the law. In this connection, he revealed the fact that the same
procedure had been adopted during the war when the September 13/26,
1915 Temporary Law on Expropriation and Confiscation was instituted.

He stated:

Not a single Muslim’s good were liquidated–you can establish these
facts by examining the old records of the secret deliberations. The
Parliament at that time secretly secured reassurances from the Finance
Minister that the law would not apply to Muslims who likewise had
fled as a result of the war. Only after registering this assurance
did we proclaim to the world the enactment of that law. Presently,
we are repeating that procedure.[109]

Deputy KázE©m thereupon withdrew his motion and the bill was

Intent and outcome

Contrary to the avowals of the Ottoman authorities who implemented
these emergency laws, the Armenians did not return from the
deportations.[111] The deportations proved to be a cover for the
ensuing wholesale destruction of the targeted victim population. As
the American Ambassador Morgenthau observed:

The real purpose of the deportation was robbery and destruction;
it really represented a new method of massacre. When the Turkish
authorities gave the orders for these deportations, they were merely
giving the death warrant to a whole race; they understood this well,
and, in their conversations with me, they made no particular attempt
to conceal the fact.[112]

By official Turkish accounts alone, those directly killed numbered
about 800,000,[113] not counting the tens of thousands of wartime
conscripts liquidated by the military. To quote Morgenthau again:

In many instances Armenian soldiers were disposed of in even more
summary fashion, for it now became almost the general practice to
shoot them in cold blood. In almost all cases the procedure was the
same. Here and there squads of 50 or 100 men would be taken, bound
together in groups of four, and then marched out to a secluded spot
a short distance from the village. Suddenly the sound of rifle shots
would fill the air, and the Turkish soldiers who had acted as the
escort would sullenly return to the camp. Those sent to bury the bodies
would find them almost invariably stark naked, for, as usual, the Turks
had stolen all their clothes. In cases that came to my attention,
the murderers had added a refinement to the victims’ sufferings by
compelling them to dig their graves before being shot.[114]

In an October 2, 1916 message to his ambassador in Istanbul, German
Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs Zimmermann–who six weeks later
replaced Jagow as Foreign Minister–denounced the exterminations
accompanying the deportations. He also denounced the forcible “mass
conversions” to Islam of Armenian children whose parents had been
killed, as cause for “indignation in the entire civilized world.”[115]
He added that he had discussed his feelings on this point with the
Turkish Foreign Minister Halil. In that communication, Zimmermann
used the dubious expression “with an appearance of legality” when
describing the official deportation measures.[116]


Several factors are seen emerging as pivotal in the incidence of the
wartime Armenian Genocide. Foremost among them is the Turko-Armenian
conflict, which provides an essential historical framework by which to
study that Genocide. The cumulative aspects of this conflict are seen
as the matrix of a process through which that conflict progressively
intensified and ultimately became explosive. The resort to genocide by
the perpetrator camp is thus viewed as an attempt to radically resolve
that conflict. Such a task-performance is necessarily contingent
on critically disparate power relations obtained by the potential
perpetrator and the potential victim group. In other words, successful
genocidal enactments are contingent upon a fundamental condition,
namely, a critical disparity of power relations. The functional
importance of such a power differential has historically almost
always proven decisive for the genocidal outcomes of such lingering
conflicts. Thus, evolving power relations are viewed within such a
framework of conflict-laden relations as the crux of the problem. What
remains constant, however, is the structural vulnerability of the
potential victim group in a socio-political system where power
is associated with the dominant group status of the perpetrator,
and by the same token, vulnerability flows from a minority group
status. In and of themselves, such disparities in power relations
are not necessarily conducive to explosive conflicts precipitating
genocidal outbursts. There is a need to consider special types of
potential perpetrator groups confronting special types of victim
groups. The particularity in question here serves also to determine
the nature and outcome of the conflict itself.

It is most significant that the two instances of mass murder
treated in this study, the 1909 twin Adana Massacres and the World
War I Genocide, were committed during the autocratic rule of the
Ittihadist political party. It is equally significant that the
empire-wide massacres in the 1894-96 period, which are not covered
in this essay, were also the by-product of the autocratic regime of
Sultan Abdul Hamit. What is at stake here is the concentration of
power and its near-monopolistic exercise by dictatorial regimes bent
on resolving domestic conflicts through reckless abuse of power and
reinforced by an atavistic penchant for murderous violence. Such
mechanisms of reinforcement require special attention, inquiry,
and attempts at explanation. What are the latitudes–the so-called
Spielraums–that afford perpetrators the audacity to commit mass
murder? The historical experience of the Armenians is such as to yield
a relevant answer, namely, the calculated anticipation of impunity by
the perpetrator camp. Throughout the modern era of Armenian history,
a series of periodic massacres were inflicted upon the victims, and
the arch perpetrators nearly always remarkably escaped punishment. In
other words, while impunity has become the haunting by-product of the
Armenian experience of victimization in modern times, it simultaneously
emerged as a reliable end-product for the perpetrator camp bent
on profiting from its criminality. Nowhere is this condition more
evident, nor more astounding, as in the statement from Talât, the
principal architect of the wartime Armenian Genocide. In his capacity
as Interior Minister and CUP Party Chief, he had an exchange with
Halide Edib, who at the time was both a CUP partisan and a prominent
Turkish feminist. Edib quotes him as declaring, “I have the conviction
that as long as a nation does the best for its own interests, and
succeeds, the world admires it and thinks it moral.”[117] (Emphasis
Added) This form of fixation on successful outcomes as a standard
of conduct, as well as the attendant indifference to the nature of
the deed producing that outcome, is emblematic of typical genocidal
decision-making. It epitomizes the intoxicating spell of impunity in
the wake of a crime. In this way, it helps engender stimuli for new
ventures of criminality, while enabling the actor to persist in the
denial of both the victim and the act itself.

The overarching illegality of the origins and evolving career of the
CUP regime supersedes all of these considerations in both import and
consequence. It was the type of illegality that, completely devoid of
elements of responsibility and accountability, readily degenerated
into lethal criminality. In the process, the functions of the state
were overwhelmed by the imposition on the respective system of the
desiderata of a highly monolithic and dictatorial political party. The
subversion and ultimate criminalization of these state functions thus
became the order of the day. The January 1913 Young Turk overthrow of
the government and the subsequent political purges throughout the land
are the incipient initiatives of this process. The common pattern
of substituting party authority of the CUP with all its variants
for legitimate state authority is all too evident. Accordingly,
the cardinal lesson to be derived from this essay is that the most
important determinant in cases of genocide is not the state–to
whose powers and resources are generally attributed the latitude
for genocidal decision-making and its associated enactment–but
rather the progressively incremental power structure of a dictatorial
political party. Equally important is the fact of the illicit capture
of constitutional authority and its transfer from the legitimate
state to a political party that is mobilized with highly secretive
and radical exterminatory designs. Such illicit action is capable
of providing the requisite dynamics for genocidal radicalism. Among
the many ways in which state functions are thus subverted, perhaps
the most consequential is that many of these functions are reduced
and instrumental to the hidden goals of the party. In other words,
in addition to subverting its functions, the quasi-omnipotent
party specifically aims to reduce the state to a level of optimal
subservience. Thus, in one way or another, the state ultimately becomes
complicit in the series of crimes that inevitably ensues. This is a
process that might be called radical and deadly task-performance.

Such an outcome was foreseen by Aristotle when he declared nearly
twenty-five centuries ago that “when separated from law and justice
[man] is the worst of all [animals].”[118]


[1]. The terms “Ottomans” and “Turks” are used interchangeably given
the historical interconnections and interplays.

[2]. FO 195/1930 Folio 34/187.

[3]. Bat Ye’or, The Dhimmi: Jews and Christians under Islam 48, 67,
101 (D. Maisel, P. Fenton, & D. Littman trans. 1985).

[4]. Lord Kinross, The Ottoman Centuries 559-560 (1977). The passage,
more fully, is as follows:

[The massacre’s] objective, based on the convenient consideration that
Armenians were now tentatively to question their inferior status, was
the ruthless reduction, with a view to elimination, of the Armenian
Christians, and the expropriation of their lands for the Muslem Turks.

Each operation, between the bugle calls, followed a similar pattern.

First into a town there came the Turkish troops, for the purpose
of massacre; then came the Kurdish irregulars and tribesmen for
the purpose of plunder. Finally came the holocaust, by fire and
destruction, which spread, with the pursuit of the fugitives and
mopping-up operations, throughout the lands and villages of the
surrounding province. This murderous winter of 1895 thus saw the
decimation of much of the Armenian population and the devastation of
their property in some twenty distinct districts of eastern Turkey.

Often the massacres were timed for a Friday, when the Moslems were
in their mosques[.] . . . Cruellest and most ruinous of all were the
massacres at Urfa, where the Armenian Christians numbered a third
of the total population. . . . When the bugle blast ended the day’s
operations some three thousand refugees poured into the cathedral,
hoping for sanctuary. But the next morning–a Sunday–a fanatical mob
swarmed into the church in an orgy of slaughter, rifling its shrines
with cries of “Call upon Christ to prove Himself a greater prophet
than Mohammed.” Then they amassed a large pile of straw matting,
which they spread over the litter of corpses and set alight with
thirty cans of petroleum. The woodwork of the gallery where the
crowd of women and children crouched, wailing with terror, caught
fire, and all perished in the flames. Punctiliously at three-thirty
in the afternoon the bugle blew once more, and the Moslem officials
proceeded around the Armenian quarter to proclaim that the massacres
were over. . . . The total casualties in the town, including those
in the cathedral, amounted to eight thousand dead.

[5]. Ahmet Cevdet PaÅ~_a, Tezâkir 79 (C. Baysun ed., 1953).

[6]. M. G. Rolin-Jaequemyns, Armenia, the Armenians, and the Treaties
38-39 (1891).

[7]. Id. at 39.

[8]. Robert Melson, A Theoretical Inquiry into the Armenian Massacres
of 1894-1896, 24 Comp. Stud. in Soc’y & Hist. 481, 507 (1982).

[9]. Kaiser Wilhelm II informed British Colonel Swaine in Berlin that
up to December 31, 1895, approximately eighty thousand Armenians had
been slain (umgebracht). Das Turkische Problem 1895, 10 Die Grosse
Politik der Europaïschen Kabinette 1871-1914, Doc. No.

2572, at 251 (transcript of Kaiser’s dictation) (J. Lepsuis, A.

Bartholdy, & F. Thimme, eds. 3rd ed. 1927). British Ambassador, Sir
William White, however estimated one hundred thousand victims up to
early December of 1895. Id., Doc. No. 2479, at 127. H.A. Loze, the
French Ambassador at Vienna, cited the combined figure of two hundred
thousand to cover those actually killed as well as those expected to
perish from “hunger and cold during the coming winter.” French Foreign
Office, 12 Documents Diplomatiques Francais 1871-1900, Doc. No. 256,
at 384 (1951) [hereinafter Documents Diplomatiques]. German Turkophile
and Foreign Office operative Ernest Jackh estimates the number of
Armenian victims of Hamit era as follows: two hundred thousand
killed, fifty thousand expelled, and one million pillaged and
plundered. Ernst Jackh, Der Aufsteigende Halbmond, 139 (Berlin 6th
ed. 1916). Such losses of human lives cannot be separated, however,
from the collateral material damage they entail. The real test of the
success of exterminatory assaults is the extent to which the social
fabric and cultural institutions undergirding the victim population as
a national or ethnic entity are devastated in the process. Following
his two month (May-June 1896) post-massacre trip to the sites of
the massacres, Johannes Lepsius compiled the following data: 2,500
towns and villages were desolated and 645 churches and monasteries
destroyed. The survivors of 559 villages and hundreds of families in
cities were forcibly (zwangsweise) converted to Islam. Included in this
are 15,000 Armenians, each from the provinces of Erzurum and Harput,
who had converted under threat of death. Moreover, 328 churches were
recast into mosques and 546,000 people were reduced to a state of
destitution (Not). In addition, 508 churches and monasteries were
completely plundered and 21 Protestant and 170 Gregorian-Apostolic
priests were killed. Johanne Lepsius, Armenien und Europa 34-35 (1897).

[10]. 9 Die Grosse Politik Der Europaïschen Kabinette 1871-1914,
supra note 9, No. 2184, at 203.

[11]. 1 William Langer, The Diplomacy of Imperialism 1890-1902, at 203

[12]. The cooperation of these two Powers started with the April 4,
1826, St. Petersburg Protocol, in which they agreed to mediate between
the Turks and the Greeks on the basis of complete autonomy for Greece
under Turkish suzerainty. See Jonathan Arthur Ransome Marriott,
The Eastern Question: An Historical Study in European Diplomacy 214
(4th ed., 1958). The July 6, 1827, Treaty of London, which under the
name of “humanitarian intervention” threatened Turkey with military
support for Greece, was likewise initiated jointly by Britain and
Russia. Id. at 218. The December 1876 Constantinople Conference,
at which the Powers insisted on European control and supervision of
Ottoman reforms, was the consequence of Anglo-Russian agreement to
the terms of the projected peace negotiated between Lord Salisbury
and General Ignatief, the representative plenipotentiaries. British
Foreign Office, Blue Book, Turkey, No. 1 (1877), Doc. No. 1053, at
719. The July 13, 1878, Berlin Treaty followed a secret Anglo-Russian
Agreement (May 30, 1878), engineered by Count Shuvalof, the Russian
ambassador to Britain. Encyclopedia of World History 735-736 (William
Langer rev. ed. 1948). The Anglo-Russian accords on major issues
were thus crucial to the Concert of Europe’s united action bringing
pressure to bear upon the Ottoman authorities.

[13]. In the Gentleman’s Agreement of 1844, Tsar Nicholas I proposed
a joint action for the disposition of the Ottoman Empire in the event
of its collapse, which was then anticipated. Nine years later, during
discussions with Lord Seymour, the Tsar described the Ottoman Empire
as “the sick man,” and bid for its partition. 62 Das Staatsarchiv,
Nos. 5612-13, at 167. In the July 8, 1976, Reichstadt Agreement, Russia
and Austria laid out their contingency plans involving territorial
acquisitions in the event the Turks should suffer defeat at the hands
of the Serbs and Montenegrins. 3 Die Grosse Politik der Europaïschen
Kabinette 1871-1914, supra note 9, No. 605, at 293. Encyclopedia
of World History, supra note 12, at 724. In the January 15, 1877,
Budapest Convention between Russia and Austria, similar plans were
devised for disposing of Turkish territories. Id.

at 735. Most importantly, Austria was given a mandate to occupy Bosnia
and Herzegovina, and to garrison the district of Novi Bazar, a strip
between Serbia and Montenegro. Similarly, in a secret Anglo-Turkish
agreement, Great Britain took Cyprus from Ottoman dominion. For the
French text of the agreement see 3 Gabriel Effendi Noradoughian,
Recuil D’Actes Internationaux de L’Empire Ottoman 522-25 (1902). For
the English text see 4 Edward Hertslet, The Map of Europe by Treaty
1875-1891, at 2721-22 (1891). All of these events were directly
connected to the Treaty of Berlin. To the Russians, the benefits
of victory in the 1877-78 Russo-Turkish war were minimal enough to
plant in their minds the seeds of bitterness toward Great Britain,
which lasted for decades.

[14]. See Josef L. Kunz, The United Nations Convention on Genocide,
43 Am. J. Int’l L. 738, 742 (1949) (discussing Lauterpacht’s view of
the subversion of humanitarian intervention for “selfish purposes”).

[15]. These rivalries found expression in the British challenge to the
provisions of Article 16 of the San Stefano Treaty, in which Russia had
acquired the right to continue to occupy eastern (primarily Armenian)
provinces of Turkey, which they had conquered through the 1877-78
Russo-Turkish War, until Turkey had carried out the reforms she had
promised. Considering the presence of Russian troops in that region a
threat to British colonial interests in India, Disraeli went through
the motions of preliminary mobilization to signal to Russia his intent
to wage war, if necessary to force Russian withdrawal. This British
maneuver directly affected Armenia. As Lloyd George outlines:

Had it not been for our sinister intervention, the great majority of
Armenians would have been placed, by the Treaty of San Stefano in 1878,
under the protection of the Russian flag.

The Treaty of San Stefano provided that Russian troops should remain
in occupation of the Armenian provinces until satisfactory reforms
were carried out. By the Treaty of Berlin (1878)–which was entirely
due to our minatory pressure and which was acclaimed by us as a great
British triumph which brought ‘[p]eace with honour’–that article
was superseded. Armenia was sacrificed on the triumphal altar we had
erected. The Russians were forced to withdraw; the wretched Armenians
were once more placed under the heel of their old masters, subject to
a pledge to ‘introduce ameliorations and reforms into the provinces
inhabited by Armenians.’ We all know how these pledges were broken for
forty years, in spite of repeated protests from the country that was
primarily responsible for restoring Armenia to Turkish rule. The action
of the British Government led inevitably to the terrible massacres of
1895-97, 1909, and worst of all to the holocausts of 1915. By these
atrocities, almost unparalleled in the black record of Turkish misrule,
the Armenian population was reduced in numbers by well over a million.

Having regard to the part we had taken in making these outrages
possible, we were morally bound to take the first opportunity that
came our way to redress the wrong we had perpetrated, and in so far
as it was our power, to make it impossible to repeat the horrors for
which history will always hold us culpable.

When therefore in the Great War, the Turks forced us into this quarrel,
and deliberately challenged the British Empire to a life and death
struggle, we realised that at last an opportunity had been given us
to rectify the cruel wrong for which we were responsible.

2 David Lloyd George, Memoirs of the Peace Conference 811 (1939).

During the November 18, 1918, Parliamentary debates in the House of
Commons, Aneurin Williams raised the same question, declaring:

This country owes a debt to Armenia, because, after all, we more than
forty years ago prevented Armenia from being released by Russia from
Turkish tyranny. If we had not done that, the awful sufferings which
have occurred since would not have occurred. We therefore owe them
a debt. We owe them further debt because they have fought valiantly
for us in this War.

[16]. The tenuous character of this willingness bordered on
deception. Diplomatic records highlight the incidence of frivolous
party politics carried out under the guise of “humanitarian
intervention.” The British handling of the Armenian Question
exemplified the influence of domestic party squabbles on foreign
policy, pitting the Gladstonian liberals against the conservatives
represented by Disraeli, and subsequently by Salisbury. In
dismissing Gladstone’s fervent pronouncements in support of efforts to
extricate the subject races from the Ottoman yoke, Disraeli denounced
Gladstone as an “unprincipled maniac, extraordinary mixture of envy,
vindictiveness, hypocrisy . . . never a gentleman.” Andre Maurois,
Disraeli: A Picture of the Victorian Age 310 (Hamish Miles, trans.


This overall judgment seems to be corroborated in part by the statement
of William Summers, a liberal MP (and a colleague of Gladstone)
who, during a brief visit in Constantinople in 1890, met with some
diplomats. In his September 28, 1890, report to his chancellor in
Berlin, German Ambassador Radowitz, and after describing Summers as the
“most energetic supporter of the Armenian cause in England,” quoted
Summers: “Gladstone and I are involved in the Armenian [Q]uestion for
the sole purpose of causing difficulties to the Salisbury Cabinet.” 9
Die Grosse Politik der Europaïschen Kabinette 1871-1914, supra note 9,
No. 2178, at 194. This was the period when Conservatives and Liberals
often went out of their way to introduce motions in the Parliament
“in order to embarrass their opponents.” George Peabody Gooch,
History of Modern Europe 1878-1919, at 244-245 (1923).

[17]. The May 17th statement is in 9 Die Grosse Politik der
Europaïschen Kabinette 1871-1914, supra note 9, at 200, No. 2183. The
May 16th statement is in British Documents on Ottoman Armenians 462,
Doc. No. 204 (Bilal N. Å~^imÅ~_ir ed. 1983).

[18]. British Foreign Office, Blue Book, Turkey, No. 6 (1881), Report
No. 170, at 322.

[19]. The November 22, 1895, statement is in 10 Die Grosse Politik der
Europaïschen Kabinette 1871-1914, supra note 9, at 114, No. 2464,
Kaiser’s marginalia. The November 21, 1895, statement is in 10 Die
Grosse Politik der Europaïschen Kabinette 1871-1914, supra note 9,
at 109, Doc. 2463.

[20]. Documents Diplomatiques, supra note 9, at 371 Doc. No. 248.

[21]. As England’s Duke of Argyll noted, “[W]hat was everybody’s
business was nobody’s business.” Duke of Argyll, Our Responsibilities
for Turkey 74 (1896). British scholar Dawson reasserted this point
nearly thirty years later: “[N]o solemn international covenant has
been so systematically and openly infringed and ignored, in part by
the Signatory Powers themselves, as the Treaty which was concluded in
Berlin in July, 1878, ‘in the name of Almighty God.'” W. H. Dawson,
Foreign Policy and Reaction, 3 The Cambridge History of British
Foreign Policy 72, 143 (A. W. Ward & G. P. Gooch eds., 1923).

[22]. Commenting on the impact of this stance upon European diplomats,
noted British historian G. P. Gooch wrote,

The [European] Concert was dead[.] . . . [I]t became clear that
pressure without the intention of resorting to force stiffened rather
than weakened the resistance of the Sultan, who had no intention
of allowing Armenia to go the way of Bulgaria. . . . The lamentable
result of the fitful interest shown by the Powers was to awaken hopes
in the Armenian highlands which could not be fulfilled, and to arouse
suspicions in the breast of the Sultan which were to bear fruit in
organized massacre and outrage in days to come.

G. P. Gooch, History of Modern Europe 1878-1919, at 22-23 (1923). In
a speech in the British Parliament, Lord Salisbury–later Foreign and
Prime Minister of England–noted skeptically, “[w]hether it ever will
be possible to induce the six Powers to agree together to use, not
diplomatic pressure, but naval and military forces, I very much doubt.

. . . I am sure nothing can be gained by a compromise between the
two[.] . . .” M. MacColl, The Sultan and the Powers 291 (1896) (citing
Times (London), Oct. 27, 1890). The standard Turkish reaction to
threats of the use of force was the raising of the spectre of general
massacre against the entire nationality in the given provinces. In
the 1860 French intervention in Lebanon, French Foreign Minister M.

Thouvenel dismissed this threat, stating, “[i]f such reasoning were
once to be admitted, it would be put forward on every occasion when
an abuse was to be corrected in Turkey.” Id. at 34.

[23]. Soon after the Treaty of Berlin, Bulgaria, the protégé
of the Russians, was reduced to a pawn in Russian hands. Russian
officers and officials descended on Bulgaria’s capital in a swarm
and reduced the country to a Russian province. Any complaint was
branded as “ingratitude.” Growing discontent, attended by anti-Russian
sentiments, led to the 1881 overthrow of the regime. Russia responded
by appointing Russian generals in Bulgaria, who took their orders
directly from the Tsar, and “Russian generals were appointed to
the Interior, War, and Justice [ministries.] . . .” In defiance,
nationalists in Bulgaria subsequently coined the phrase, “Bulgaria
for the Bulgarians.” These are the conditions under which Bulgarian
“ingratitude” arose and crystallized. Gooch, supra note 22, at 3-6.

[24]. Letter from Sir F. Lascelles to the Earl of Kimberley (June 13,
1895), in Correspondence Respecting the Introduction of Reforms in
the Armenian Provinces of Asiatic Turkey 83 (British Foreign Office
ed., 1896).

[25]. Russia was the only power that indeed felt capable of overcoming
the logistical difficulties involved in rescuing the Armenians
from Ottoman bondage. Russian policy on this matter of conflict
obtained between territorial sovereignty of the state, on the one
end, and the principle of humanitarian intervention, on the other,
was articulated by Russian Foreign Minister Alexander Gorchakof–who
in a November 7, 1876, dispatch to the Russian ambassador to Berlin
Count Paul Shuvalof–stated “if the Great Powers wish to accomplish
a real work . . . it is necessary . . . to recognize that the
independence and integrity of Turkey must be subordinated to the
guarantees demanded by humanity, the sentiment of Christian Europe
and the general peace.” British Foreign Office, in Correspondence
Respecting the Affairs of Turkey 1877, Doc. No. 1053, at 90. But
as British author Pears noted, “Armenians were to be protected if
they would abandon their national Church and become formally united
with the Russian faith, but not otherwise.” Sir Edwin Pears, Turkey,
Islam and Turanianism, 14 Contemp. Rev. 373 (1918).

[26]. In an exchange with his German colleague Baron von Saurma,
Russian Ambassador Nelidof commented that the Armenians were
frustrated not only by the lack of any tangible results from European
intervention, but also by the ensuing massacres. Die Grosse Politik
der Europaïschen Kabinette, supra note 9, Doc. No. 2426, at 69. See
also supra note 16.

[27]. Documents Diplomatiques, supra note 9, at 7174, Doc.

Feb. 20, 1894; see also Livre Jaune, Affaires Arméniens, Projets de
réformes dans l’Empire Ottoman 1893-1897, Doc. No. 6, at 10-13 (1897).

[28]. The terms “Young Turks,” “Ittihad,” and “CUP” are seen as
interchangeable, even though CUP seems to be the prevalent modus

[29]. Takvimi VekayÄ­ (Turk.), July 31, 1909 (publishing the
ministerial circular announcing the blamelessness of the Armenians
who were described as “devoted and loyal” citizens).

[30]. 2 V.H. Papazyan, (Armenian Deputy in the Chamber), Im Hushere
[My Memoirs] 118 (1952).

[31]. In 1910, the British Foreign Office estimated that as a national
rather than religious group, “the Turkish element only number[s] some
six million in an Empire of thirty million. Under a real constitutional
regime it would be swamped, more especially as it is inferior to the
majority in intelligence, instruction, and business qualities. It
can only maintain its position by the army and by the method [of
repression].” FO 424/250, Turkey, Annual Report 1910, at 4.

Turkish statesman and editor H.C. Yalcin confirms the view of the
numerical minority of the Turks in the Ottoman Empire while deploring
it as fact. Huseyin Cahit Yalcin, 1 Yakin Tarihimiz 214 (1962).

[32]. Supra note 12, at 443-44.

[33]. FO 195/2359, fol. 276.

[34]. Doc. No. 181, Sept. 6, 1910, Report, in 9 British Documents on
the Origins of War 1889-1914, pt. 1, at 207 (Gooch & Temperley eds.,
1926) [hereinafter British Documents].

[35]. FO 424/250, supra note 31, at 4.

[36]. M. Choublier, La Question D’Orient Depuis le Traité de Berlin
(1897). In his November 15, 1910, report, quoting Halil–the head
of the parliamentary branch of the party comprising Ittihadist
deputies–Consul Choublier mentions the proposal of relying “solely
on military might” in order to deal with the nationalities. 7 N. S.

Turquie Politique Intérieure, Jeunes Turcs 149 [hereinafter N. S.

Turquie]. In his November 16 report, the Consul revealed the existence
of a divergence of opinion among Ottoman authorities as to the
choice between “deportation” and “massacre” in handling the problem
of Macedonia and the Bulgarians in Adrianople (Edirne). Id. at 150.

According to the highly confidential information supplied to him
in the November 16, 1910, report, the Monastir branch of the party
opted for the deportation to Asiatic Turkey of parts of the Christian
population of Macedonia to be supplanted by Muslim refugees, whereas
the Adrianople branch opted for the massacre of the resident Christian
population (l’éxtermination de tous les chrétiens hostiles a la jeune
Turquie) should the implementing of large bodies of Muslim immigrants
fail to attain the desired results. In the November 17 report, he
speaks of the resolve of Ittihad to resort to “la force des armes”
if efforts “to achieve peacefully the unity of Turkey should fail . . .

for which purpose we should develop the patriotism of the Turks.” Id.

at 151. All these disclosures are confirmed by the Dean of Turkish
historians who stated that, weary of the protracted Turko-Armenian
conflict, Ittihad would turn to the army to resolve the conflict by
force of arms. 2 Y. Bayur, Turk InkÄ­labi Tarihi [The History of the
Turkish Revolution] 13 (1952).

[37]. British Documents, supra note 34, at 208. Confirmation
of the speech is in Austrian Vice Consul von Zitkovsky’s No. 69
“secret” report of October 14, 1910, in 12 A.A. Turkei 159, No. 2,
A186643. French confirmation is in N.S. Turquie, supra note 36,
at 92-97. A particular additional phrase in this French version,
not found in the British report, is Talât’s proposal to lull the
potential victims of the Ottomanization program to complacency: “il
faut que nous tranquillisions nos voisins.” This report is stamped
“received” by the Direction Politique et Commerciale of the French
Foreign Ministry, bearing the symbols D. Carton 391, and the date
August 6, 1910, indicating that it was wired on the very same day on
which the speech was delivered.

[38]. This source was the French Chargé at distant Hidjaz in Arabia,
who was reporting to Pichon, the French Foreign Minister. N.S.

Turquie, Jan. 26, 1911.

Two prominent Turkish sociologists both confirm and explain the
inevitability of this decision of Ittihad to resort to the violent
elimination of non-Turkish nationalities. One concluded that
Ittihad meant to “[assimilate them] through coercive methods, if
necessary.” A. Yalman, The Development of Modern Turkey as Measured by
its Press 101 (1914). The other, the high priest of Ittihad ideology,
traced the lingering nationality conflicts to the introduction of
statutory public laws, equating Muslims with non-Muslims. In a rarely
publicized internal party document written during the World War I
genocide against the Armenians and bearing the title: “The Two Mistakes
of Tanzimat,” ideologue Ziya Gökalp lambasted the 1839 and 1856 reform
edicts. Declaring them serious mistakes, he reasserted the concept of
milleti hakime ‘the nation of overlords’ with the watchword: “Islam
mandates domination.” According to the author of the book in which
this document was published for the first time in 1949, the document
was in the possession of Ittihad party Secretary-General Midhat
Å~^ukru Bleda. K. Duru, Ziya Gökalp 60-69 (1949) (Turk.). Another
author has revealed that Gökalp wrote this essay for the benefit
of the Ittihadist leaders, to whom they were then distributed at
the party’s 1916 convention. Ziya Gökalp, Turkish Nationalism and
Western Civilization 319 n.6 (Niyazi Berkes ed., trans. 1959). In
explaining the ideological grounds for adopting this new policy, an
American expert on modern Turkey states that Ittihad “soon turned from
equality and Ottomanization to Turkification[.] . . .” Roderic Davison,
The Armenian Crisis, 1912-1914, 53:3 Am. Hist. Rev. 481, 482-83 (1948).

[39]. On the formation of the Balkan League and the associated wars
see Gooch, supra note 22, at 500-10; A. J. Grant & H. Temperley, Europe
in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries (1789-1950), at 375-80 (6th
ed. London 1962); C. Seymour, The Diplomatic Background of the War
1870-1914, at 221-39 (1927); R. Sontag, European Diplomatic History
1871-1932, at 176-82 (1933); W. S. Davis, The Roots of the War 426-43

[40]. 3 A. Andonian, Badgerazart Untartzag Badmootun Balkanian
Baderazmin [Comprehensive History of the Balkan War] 499 (1912)

[41]. Id. at 503.

[42]. Feroz Ahmad, The Young Turks 154 (1969). In one particular
respect the Armenians stood out among all the subject nationalities,
such as the Albanians and various Arab groups–the Yemenis, Syrians,
Lebanese, and Jordanians. The Armenians avoided militancy and
confrontation, consistently seeking remedies through appeals and pleas
which were always suffused with pledges of unswerving loyalty. The
Balkan nationalities and the Arabs, on the other hand, resorted
to rebellion in order to end Ottoman subjugation and the attendant
repression. The Armenians were characterized by Ottoman rulers as
milleti sadE©ka ‘the loyal nation,’ for this display of fidelity,
Sadi KocaÅ~_ Tarih Boyunca Ermeniler ve Turk-Ermeni IlliÅ~_kileri
[The Armenians Throughout History and Turko-Armenian Relations] 59, 61
(1967) (Turk.). Their subsequent transformation from loyal servants
of the State into its militant opponents is, however, an example of
the futility of entreaties and pleas applied to regimes thriving on
oppression and tyranny. In a meeting with British Ambassador Sir
Henry Elliot on December 6, 1876, Patriarch Nercess Varjabedian,
the duly recognized religious head of the Armenians, expressed the
hope that the impending Constantinople Conference would not urge the
Porte to accord certain privileges to the rebel provinces (Serbs,
Bulgars, Montenegrins) and to deny the same to the loyal ones (the
Armenians). The Ambassador demurred, saying that the purpose of the
Conference was not to scrutinize the entire Administration of Turkey,
but rather to secure peace and tranquility in those provinces where
revolts were threatening the general peace. The Patriarch retorted
that if rebellion were a prerequisite for enlisting the support of
European Powers, then there would be no difficulty whatsoever in
organizing a movement of that nature. FO 424/46, No.

116, Dec 7, 1867.

[43]. 3 TarC~Pk Zafer Tunaya, Turkiyede Siyasi Partiler [The Political
Parties in Turkey] 465 (2d enlarged ed. 1984).

[44]. Id. at 463.

[45]. W. I. van der Dussen, The Westenenk File. The Question of
Armenian Reforms in 1913-1914, 39 Armenian Rev. 1 (1986).

[46]. The testimony of Ottoman Civil Inspector and Ittihadist
sympathizer Mihran Boyadjian, the French version of which is in
Renaissance, June 25, 1919.

[47]. Supra, notes 36-37.

[48]. Tunaya, supra note 43, at 297.

[49]. Id. at 294-95.

[50]. Liman von Sanders, Five Years in Turkey 8 (1927).

[51]. Pasa Halil & Taylan Sorgun, Bitmeyen SavaÅ~_ [The Unending Fight]
125 (1972) (Turk.); Tunaya, supra note 43, at 123, 275, 294.

[52]. The classification of genocide as a crime under international
law in the U.N. Convention on Genocide poses a number of difficulties
in current international jurisprudence, where the doctrine of state
sovereignty still remains powerful. While a variety of new principles,
conventions, and covenants have emerged in the post-Nuremberg period
and provided some help in this arena–especially those involving the
twin ad hoc tribunals that prosecuted the respective crimes in former
Yugoslavia and in Rwanda–these difficulties remain substantial.

The ad hoc International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia
was established at The Hague in 1994 pursuant to Security Council
Resolution No. 827. Several convictions for the crimes against
humanity have been handed down, including for the crimes of rape
and enslavement. On August 2, 2001, Trial Chamber I of the Tribunal
rendered the first judgement convicting an individual of having
committed the crime of genocide. General Radislav KrstiÄ~G was
sentenced to forty-six years of imprisonment for his involvement in
genocide, forced transfer and deportation committed between July and
November 1995, in particular for his responsibility for the crimes
committed by Serbian forces in the town of Srebrenica. On November 23,
2001, the U.N. Tribunal indicted Slobodan Milosevic for committing
genocide against the Bosnian people. His trial for crimes against
humanity committed during the Serbian crackdown on ethnic Albanians
in Kosovo and during the war in Bosnia and Croatia opened in February
2002. He is the first head of state to stand trial for genocide.

The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda was established in 1995
at Arusha, Tanzania, pursuant to Security Council Resolution No. 955.

On September 2, 1998, the first verdict interpreting the Genocide
Convention was handed down by the Arusha Tribunal in the judgement
against Jean-Paul Akayesu, who was held guilty on nine counts for
his role in the 1994 Rwandan Genocide.

Alfred de Zayas, The Twentieth Century’s First Genocide: International
Law, Impunity, the Right to Reparations, and the Ethnic Cleansing
Against the Armenians 1915-16, in Ethnic Cleansing in Twentieth
Century Europe 166 (Steven Béla Várdy & T. Hunt Tooley eds., 2003).

It is only recently that the crime of genocide has even been considered
a crime under international law. As Willis states:

Not until 1948 would genocide . . . be clearly defined as an
international crime, and in 1919 adherence to time-honored notions
of sovereignty placed limitations upon the scope of traditional laws
and customs of war. The Hague conventions . . . [did not deal] with
a state’s treatment of its own citizens. . . . From this perspective,
Turkish action against Armenians was an internal matter, not subject
to the jurisdiction of another government.

James Willis, Prologue to Nuremberg: The Politics and Diplomacy
of Punishing War Criminals of the First World War 157 (1982). As
indicated in this study, this deference to state sovereignty was
ever-present in the international reaction to the Armenian Genocide.

See the exchange between U.S. Secretary of State Lansing and President
Wilson during World War I, in George, supra note 15, at Introduction.

[53]. See A. Jacoby, Genocide, 4 Schweizerische Zeitschrift fur
Strafrecht (4 Revu Pénale Suisse) 472 (1979) (Ger.); Cervantes Rio,
Ã~Itude sur l’Article 175 du Code Pénal Mexicain “Genocide,” 16-17
Ã~Itudes Internationales de Psyco-Sociologie Criminelle 52 (1969)

[54]. See Antonio Pflanzer, Le Crime de Génocide 15, 18, 20 (1956);
The United Nations War Crimes Commission, History of the United Nations
War Crimes Commission and the Development of the Laws of War 25,
45 (1948) [hereinafter War Crimes Commission]; Sharvash Toriguian,
The Armenian Question and International Law (2d ed. 1988); M. Cherif
Bassiouni, International Law and the Holocaust, 9 Case W.

Int’l L.J. 201, 210 (1979); Arthur K. Kuhn, The Genocide Convention
and State Rights, 43 Am. J. Int’l. L. 498, 501 (1949); Josef L. Kunz,
The United Nations Convention on Genocide, 43 Am. J. Int’l. L. 738, 741
(1949); Rafal Lemkin, Genocide: A New International Crime: Punishment
and Prevention, 10 Revue Internationale de Droit Pénal 367 (1946);
Egon Schwelb, Crimes Against Humanity, 46 Brit. Y.B. Int’l L.

178, 181-82, 198 (1946); Kurt Stillschweig, Das Abkommen zur
Bekämpfung von Genocide, 3 Die Friedenswarte Fur Zwischenstaatliche
Organisation 97, 99 (1949) (Ger.).

[55]. For a detailed discussion of the circumstances under which this
pact was signed see Bayur, supra note 36, vol. 2:4, at 629-647.

[56]. A.A. Turkei 183/36, A13922, R14085.

[57]. Joseph Pomiankowski, Der Zusammenbruch des Ottomanischen Reiches,
162 (1969) (Ger.).

[58]. Id.

[59]. Henry Morgenthau, The Greatest Horror in History, 9 Red Cross
Magazine (Mar. 1918). Louis Heck, the U.S. High Commissioner in
Istanbul and a Special Assistant of the Department of State, also
pointed out the opportunity factor provided by World War I: “[T]he
Young Turk Government soon availed itself of the opportunity afforded
by war conditions to try to exterminate the Armenian population
of Asia Minor and thus rid itself once for all of the ‘Armenian
[Q]uestion.'” FO 371/3658/75852. Folio 441, at 2 (May 19, 1919).

[60]. The Talât statement is in German Ambassador Wangenheim’s June
17, 1915, report to his chancellor in Berlin, A.A. Turkei 183/37,
A19744, R14086. The same Talât in a Cabinet meeting in the fall of
1915, when the anti-Armenian exterminations campaign had all but run
its course, is reported to have declared that he was aiming at the
creation of a solidly Turkish nation, cleansed from alien elements,
so that the Powers would have no more cause to intervene in the
internal affairs of Turkey. A.A. Turkei 159, No.2, v. 14, Chargé
Baron von Neurath’s November 5, 1915, report to Berlin.

These judgments are confirmed by Ernst Jäckh, the German expert on
Turkey who undertook several inspection trips to Turkey during the war,
relaying his conversations with high ranking Turkish officials and
his observations to Kaiser Wilhelm II at his headquarters, the German
Chamber of Deputies, and the Foreign Office. In his twenty-two page
report covering his September-October 1915 trip he stated, “Indeed
Talât openly hailed the destruction of the Armenian people as a
political relief. . . .” A.A. Turkei 158/14, p. 18 (Oct. 17, 1915).

Another German author, the last German Ambassador to Turkey in
World War I, commented in his memoirs: “When I kept on pestering
him [Talât] on the Armenian Question, he once said with a smile,
‘What on earth do you want? The question is settled. There are no
more Armenians.'” The ambassador later explained this assertion
of having solved the Armenian Question in terms of the ancestral
territories of the victims, namely, “Armenia where the Turks have been
systematically trying to exterminate the Christian population.” Despite
his expressions of esteem for Talât, the ambassador conceded Talât’s
role in that extermination: “[H]is complicity in the Armenian crime he
atoned for by his death.” Memoirs of Count Bernstorff, 176, 180, 374
(Eric Sutton trans., 1934). All of these admissions and testimonies
are confirmed by a Turkish newspaper that was able to gain access to
a pile of secret documents hidden in a suitcase, which was found and
impounded by the Turkish judicial police during a raid at the home
of attorney-at-law Ramiz, the brother-in-law of Dr. B. Å~^akir. In
its December 14, 1918, issue, Sabah, the newspaper in question,
concluded that “Talât has ordered the extermination of the Armenians.”

[61]. Ulrich Trumpener, Germany and the Ottoman Empire 127 (1968).

[62]. Kurt Ziemke, Die Neue Turkei 1914-1929, at 271-72 (1930). The
French text of the February 8, 1914, Agreement is in Andre
M. Mandelstam, Le sort de l’Empire Ottoman 236-38 (1917). Another
German author who defined the Turkish conflict with the Armenians
as a struggle for self-preservation and hence indirectly justified
the resort to radical measures, characterized the Armenian reforms
as dynamite–a nauseating medicine for the Turks cast in the role
of a patient. Friedrich Naumann, Asia 132 (1911). In this context,
Naumann advanced the view that given the Islamic tenets of Ottoman
theocracy, there should be allowance made for the Turks exercising
barbarisches Naturrecht, ‘the natural law of barbarism.’ Id.

[63]. A.A. Turkei 183/39, A28584 (Aug. 10, 1915, report by Dr.

Max von Scheubner Richter); see also Johannes Lepsius, Deutschland
und Armenien 1914-1918, at 123-24 (1919) (Ger.).

[64]. Cemal PaÅ~_a, HatE©ralar 438 (1977).

In the September-December 1913 period, during which the Armenians
were again pressing for reform to be executed under European
control, Ahmet Cemal repeatedly threatened the Armenian leaders with
massacres through “the Muslim populations of six provinces” that
were targeted for reforms. The threat was made to Vartkes, one of the
Armenian Deputies serving in the Ottoman Parliament. Being an ardent
Ittihadist, Vartkes–who was also a nationalist Dashnak leader–was
advised to inform his party of this threat, warning against further
solicitation of European intervention. Armen Karo, Abruadz Orer [Lived
Days] 191-92 (1948). This threat was confirmed by K. Zohrab, another
Armenian deputy and professor of international law at Istanbul’s law
school. In his pre-World War I secret diary, Zohrab in anticipation
of the genocide, called attention to Cemal’s threat. Krikor Zohrab,
Zohrabee Orakroutiuni Yegernee Nakhoriageen [K. Zohrab’s Diary on the
Eve of the Genocide], VII Navasart (Armenian Monthly, Los Angeles,
C.A.), Apr. 1989, at 21. Both Vartkes and Zohrab were arrested and
summarily killed by agents of the Turkish Special Organization during
the war.

In December of 1913, Cemal had several Armenian students arrested
for leading the festivities celebrating the 1500th anniversary of the
invention of the Armenian alphabet. When exhorting them to stop their
“traitorous activities,” Cemal again threatened to “exterminate the
Armenians, sparing neither infants nor the old.” L. Mozian, Aksoraganee
mu Votisaganu: Sev Orerou Hishadagner [An Exile’s Odyssey: Memories
of Dark Days] 9-10 (1958). Cemal’s threat is further confirmed by
another Armenian deputy of the Ottoman Parliament, who along with
five other Dashnak leaders, had met Cemal in a private session after
dinner in Prinkipo (Buyukada) Island. Cemal repeated his threat at
that meeting. Papazyan, supra note 30, at 191-92.

[65]. PaÅ~_a, supra note 64, at 438.

[66]. A.A. Konstantinopel 170, folio 52; Lepsius, supra note 63,
at 122. In a report to Berlin on February 2, 1915, German Ambassador
Wangenheim stated that pursuant to Article 5 of the contract–signed
with 2 Inspectors-General–the Turkish government had the right to
cancel that contact. A.A. Turkei 183/36, A5043, R14085.

According to a Turkish historian, the contract was signed on May
25, 1914, and provided for a monthly salary of four hundred Turkish
gold pounds, plus a supplementary allocation for lodging. 4 Ismail
Hami DaniÅ~_mend, IzahlE©OsmanlE© Tarihi Kronolojisi [The Annotated
Chronology of Ottoman History] 409 (2d ed. 1961). These conditions are
described in the July 1, 1914, issue of the official Ottoman gazette,
Takvimi Vekâyi.

[67]. Johannes Lepsius, Der Todesgang des Armenischen Volkes 230
(1930). In an interview with the Director of Talât’s Hususi Kalem
‘Special Bureau,’ Hasan Fehmi, journalist von Tyszka (Harry Stuermer)
touched on the then ongoing anti-Armenian campaign. Fehmi, who had
studied in Vienna, was fluent in German, and had translated German
writer Goethe’s Egmont into Turkish, responded as follows: “We must
get rid of the Armenians. They have a revengeful and irreconcilable
attitude and, as they are brave, they constitute a danger to the
state. . . . We must make a clean sweep of the Armenians (reinen Tisch
machen).” A.A. Turkei 183/37, A25593, R14088 (Sept. 30, 1915, report).

[68]. Gotthard JÄ~Cschke, Das Osmanische Reich von Berliner Kongress
bis zu seinem Ende (1878-1920/22), in 6 Handbuch der Europäischen
Geschichte 543, 545-46 n. 36 (1968). See also Bayur, supra note 36,
vol. 3:3, at 12; FO 371/2116/56207 (Sept. 23, 1914) (British Ambassador
Mallet’s report to Grey).

The cancellation coincided with the termination of the contract of
the two inspectors–a Dutchman L.C. Westenenk, Assistant Resident in
the Dutch East Indies, and a Norwegian Nicolai Hoff, Major and later
Lieutenant Colonel in the Norwegian Army and the Secretary General
of the Norwegian Ministry of War–who were to implement the reforms.

However, as historian Arnold Toynbee pointed out, the two Inspectors’
mission was intentionally handicapped by the Turkish authorities so
as to derail and abolish it at an opportune moment:

A clause was inserted in the Inspectors contract of engagement,
empowering the Government to denounce it at any moment upon payment
of an indemnity of one year’s salary–a flat violation of the ten
years’ term provided for under the scheme; and the list of ‘superior
officials’ was inflated until the patronage of the Inspectors, which
next to their irrevocability, would have been their most effective
power, was reduced to an illusion. The unfortunate nominees were spared
the farce of exercising their maimed authority. They had barely reached
their provinces when the European War broke out, and the Government
promptly denounced the contracts and suspended the Scheme of Reforms,
as the first step towards its own intervention in the conflict. Thus,
at the close of 1914, the Armenians found themselves in the same
position as in 1883. The measures designed for their security had
fallen through, and left nothing behind but the resentment of the
Government that still held them at its mercy. The deportations of
1915 followed as inexorably from the Balkan War and the Project
[Agreement] of 1914 as the massacres of 1895-96 had followed from
the Russian War and the Project of 1878 [Berlin Treaty].

Arnold Toynbee & James (Viscount) Bryce, The Treatment of Armenians
in the Ottoman Empire 1915-16, at 635-36 (Ara Sarafian ed., uncensored
ed. 2000). See also Austrian Political Office Foreign Affairs Archives,
12 Turkei, Karton 463. In Austrian Ambassador Pallavicini’s May
16, 1914, report, he informed Vienna that “many of the competences
agreed upon by the Powers were not included in the contract,” and
in his May 25, 1914, report he complained that the two Inspectors
were being treated as subordinate civil servants under the authority
of the Turkish government, not as European Inspectors General. In
his diary, Westenenk quoted Talât as describing Hoff and him as
“just officials,” with Hoff repeatedly expressing doubt about the
seriousness of the Turkish rulers. See L.C. Westenenk, Diary Concerning
the Armenian Reforms in 1913-1914, 39 Armenian Rev., Spring 1986,
at 29, 46, 57, 69, 72. Interior Minister and Party Chief Talât’s two
appointments were revealing in this respect, portending as they did
ominous developments for the Armenians. Diyarbekir Deputy Aziz Feyzi
and his brother-in-law Bitlis province Governor Mustafa Abdulhalik
(Renda) were assigned to the staff of Hoff as Deputies. Both men
were subsequently to play pivotal roles in the destruction of the
largest concentration of Armenians in southeastern and eastern Turkey,
involving the provinces of Diyarbekir and Bitlis. Abdulhalik was later
assigned to the post of Governor-General of Aleppo province, directing
the ancillary liquidation of the remnants of the Armenian population
who had survived the exacting forced trek from the interior of Turkey
to the deserts of Mesopotamia in 1915-16. A.A. Turkei 183/38, A24658
(Enclosure VI of Aug. 20, 1915, report R14087). Zhamanag (Turk.), 6/19
July 1914, describes the other, i.e., Abdulhalik’s assignment, whose
complicity in the Armenian Genocide is sketched in Vahakn N. Dadrian,
The Naim-Andonian Documents on the World War One Destruction of the
Ottoman Armenians–The Anatomy of a Genocide, 18 Int’l J. Middle E.

Stud. 311, 336-38, 342 (1986).

Interior Minister Talât’s highhanded breaches of the February 8
Reform Agreement, transacted under the guise of a contract with the
two European Inspectors-General, were challenged by Boghos Nubar in
a protest letter to German Deputy Foreign Minister Arthur Zimmerman
on June 22, 1914. In it, Nubar, who in 1912 had been appointed by the
Catholicos of all Armenians in Russian Armenia to revive and pursue
the outstanding problem of Armenian Reforms in Europe, pointed out
that the stipulations of the Reform Act were grossly violated by the
provisions of the related contract. As an international agreement,
the Act had precedence over an internal contract, and the Turkish
government, it was claimed, had no legal basis to circumvent that Act.

Nubar was mainly objecting to the willful reduction of the
international status of the European inspectors to that of mere Ottoman
functionaries whereby they would lose their power of control over the
administration of the Reform Act, as well as their ten year tenure
set forth in that Act. He warned Zimmerman that should the Turks be
allowed to get away with these breaches, the reforms would once more
prove moribund. A.A. Botschaft Konstantinopel, 168, A12314.

The protest was an exercise in futility. Long before World War
I broke out, Talât let the Armenian leaders know that they were
wasting their time, and that under no circumstances would Turkey allow
European or any foreign control of the provincial administration. He
told an Armenian Parliament deputy: “Don’t you realize that there
are a thousand ways to derail the reforms in the course of their
implementations?” Papazyan, supra note 30, at 235-36. Talât’s Turkish
biographer confirmed this obstructive stance of the Ittihadist party
boss who avowedly was biding his time to dismantle the whole plan.

Tevfik Cavdar, Talât PaÅ~_a 308-11 (1984).

In his memoirs, an Armenian political executioner assigned by the
Dashnak party to duties involving the “avenging” of the crimes
perpetrated against the Armenians by assassinating the arch
perpetrators, claims to have encountered a Turkish agent sent to
the prison to spy on him and establish his true identity. Hasan
Burhaneddin, the agent, reportedly was induced to confess that he
was assigned to the task of assassinating one of the two Inspectors
in Romania. K. Merdjanof, Eem Gudagu [My Testament] 28-29 (1972).

[69]. A.A. Turkei 183/36, A504, R14085 (Ambassador Wangenheim’s
Feb. 2, 1915, report to Berlin). The use of the word “propitious” is
significant because it reveals a frame of mind geared to the incidence
of a suitable opportunity to proceed with the execution of a plan. In
his account of the existence of such a plan, another Armenian deputy of
the Ottoman Parliament relates Talât’s vehement reaction to the Reform
Act and all that is implied by it. He quotes Talât as declaring:

Don’t Armenians realize that the implementation of the reforms depends
on us; we shall not listen to the proposals the Inspectors may put
forward[.] . . . [T]he Armenians are trying to create a new Bulgaria.

They don’t seem to have learned their lessons; all initiatives opposed
by us are bound to fail. Let the Armenians wait, opportunities will
certainly come our way too. Turkey belongs only to the Turks.

Kegham Der Garabedianee, Kegham Der Garabedianee Vugayutounu [The
Testimony of Kegham Der Garabedian] in Garo Sassouni, Badmoutiun
Daronee Achkharee [History of Daron] 838-39 (1957). This watchword,
“Turkey for the Turks,” was the standard rationale on which other
Ittihadist leaders based their campaign against the Armenians. Dr.

Nazim, a cohort of Talât, is reported to have declared, “[T]he
Ottoman state must be exclusively Turkish. The presence of foreign
elements is a pretext for European intervention. They [the foreign
elements] should be forcibly Turkicized.” René Pinon, La liquidation
de l’Empire Ottoman, 53 Revue des Deux Mondes 128, 131 (Sept. 1919).

[70]. Trumpener, supra note 58, at 134-35.

[71]. Id. On the same day, Halil departed to Berlin to seek German
support for the annulments. In informing his government of this
move in his September 5, 1916, report, German Ambassador Metternich
directed attention to the Turkish concern for Article 61 of the
Berlin Treaty involving Turkey’s “engagements for Armenia,” and
to Halil’s justification of the act on grounds of Kriegszustand
‘the effect of war.’ A.A. Turkei, 183/44, A24061, R14093. The full
text of the repudiation of the treaties in German is in Friedrich
Edler von Kraelitz-Greifenhorst, Die Ungultigkeitserklärung des
Pariser und Berliner Vertrages durch die Osmanische Regierung, 43
Osterreichische Monatsschrift Fur den Orient 56-60 (1917) (Ger.), where
Halil predicated his abrogation of the Paris and Berlin Treaties on the
following main arguments: (1) The Paris Treaty provisions proscribing
interference in the internal affairs of Turkey were violated through
some of the provisions of the Berlin Treaty. (2) While the Ottoman
Empire scrupulously adhered to the two treaties, Italy, England,
France, and Russia repeatedly violated them. (3) France coerced
Turkey to illegally grant limited autonomy to Lebanon. Moreover, the
provisions of the autonomy were not part of any international treaty
or agreement, but rather were internal administrative adjustments.

Hence, they could be revoked and canceled. (4) Russia blatantly
violated the Paris Treaty by acts of agitation in the Balkan provinces,
an aggressive war against Turkey, a series of interventions in the
internal affairs of Turkey, and by illegally subverting the status
of the Black Sea port city of Batum. (5) The present conditions have
altered the situation in that Turkey was no longer under the Powers’
tutelage, and as a totally independent state, could act with all
the rights and privileges conferred upon such a state. (6) This new
situation justified the conclusion that the two treaties forfeited
their right to exist. For the English text of Halil’s statements,
see Current History (N.Y. Times monthly publication), 5 Feb. 1917.

[72]. A.A. Turkei 183/46. A5919, R14095. In his memoirs, Talât
confirms this Turkish reaction to renewed Armenian reform efforts.

Talât PaÅ~_anιn, HatιralarE© 50-55 (E. Bolayler ed., 1946). Nor were
the Armenians themselves unaware of the dangers looming on the horizon.

The years 1913 and 1914 up to the fall, when Turkey unilaterally
intervened in the war and joined the camp of the Central Powers,
were periods of anxiety bordering on apprehension. Turkish threats of
retaliation as a response to the revival of the Armenian reform issue
were especially aggravating for the Armenians. Mecheroatitte (Paris,
monthly, organ of Itilaf) 6, 50 (Jan. 1914): 44-45. Of particular
significance are the threat letters sent to the Armenian press and
to the Armenian Patriarch. In a communication from November 12, 1913,
the latter was addressed as follows:

You accursed ones (melounlar) have brought many perils on the head
of our esteemed government [and] . . . paved the way for foreign
aggressions (Tejavouzat). . . . You must know that the Young Turks
have awakened now[.] . . . You Armenians . . . never forget where
you live[.] . . . Turkish youth . . . shall not delay the execution
of their assigned duties.

Haigaz K. Kazarian, How Turkey Prepared the Ground for Massacre, 18
Armenian Rev., Winter 1965, at 30, 31-32. It was signed: Islam Young
Turks. Id. at 31. Four days later, a more threatening letter was sent
in which, among others, the following menacing lines were included:

The Turkish sword, to date, has cut down millions of Giavoors
(infidels), nor has it lost its intention to cut down millions more
hereafter. Know this[:] that the Turks have committed themselves,
and have vowed to subdue and to clean up the Armenian Giavoors who
have become tubercular microbes for us.

Id. In one of the series of articles, published in the Armistice
period in a newspaper edited by himself, an Armenian agent of the
Turkish secret police hinted that these letters were the work of
Huseyin Azmi–at the time the Director General of Istanbul Police
and an experienced handler of secret operations–who played an
important role in the preparation and initiation of the World War
I genocide in Istanbul. After the war, he and the other Ittihadist
leaders escaped to Germany. Haroutiun Mugurditchian, Kaghdnikneroun
Gudzigu [The Web of Secrets], Hairenik (Watertown, M.A.), Oct. 30/
Nov. 12, 1918, installment No. 2. An Armenian historian indicates
that already in December of 1913 a number of British public figures
had warned the British government that Turkey was bent on destroying
the Ottoman Armenian population in the event the Powers imposed the
Reform Act upon Turkey. On September 18, 1914, member of Parliament
Aneurin Williams likewise informed British Foreign Minister Grey of the
prevalence in Turkey of a “great fear of a massacre.” Akaby Nassibian,
Britain and the Armenian Question 1915-1923, at 31 (1984).

[73]. Guerre 1914-1918, Turquie, 887. I. Arménie (May 26, 1915);
FO 371/2488/51010 (May 28, 1915); A.A. Turkei 183/37, A17667, K168,
No. 21; Foreign Relations of the United States, 1915, Supp., 981
(1928); U.S. National Archives, Record Group 59, 867. 4016/67 (May
28, 1915). See also the report of Polish jurist Litwaski, the Legal
Officer of the U.N. War Crimes Commission, who in addition to writing
Chapter 11 in War Crimes Commission, supra note 54, also prepared a
separate report, U.N. Doc. E/CN. 4/W. 20/Corr. 1, at 1, no. 3 (1948).

In these works, including that of Schwelb, supra note 54, at 181,
the May 28, 1915, date is a misprint for May 24, 1915.

[74]. Bayur, supra note 36, at 37-38.

[75]. German Embassy Chargé von Neurath informed Berlin on November
12, 1915: “According to a reliable source, the Turkish Government
has, contrary to all assurances, decided to deport the Armenians
of Constantinople also.” A.A. Turkei, 183/40, A33705, R14089. On
December 7, 1915, German Ambassador Metternich informed Berlin that
four thousand Armenians had recently been removed from Constantinople,
that the total number of those deported from the Ottoman capital
up to that time had reached thirty thousand, and that “gradually a
clean sweep will be made of the remaining [eighty thousand] Armenian
inhabitants” of the Ottoman capital. A.A. Turkei 183/40, A36184,
R14089. For additional corroboration of this pattern of deportation
of Istanbul’s Armenians, see 2 Samuel Zurlinden, Der Weltkrieg 705
(1918); Harry Stuermer, Two War Years in Constantinople 55 (E. Allen
trans., 1917) [hereinafter Two War Years] (author maintains that
Istanbul police used daily quota system to deport Armenians in
groups ranging from two hundred to one thousand); Harry Stuermer,
Zwei Kriegsjahre in Konstantinopel 48-51 (1917) [hereinafter Zwei
Kriegsjahre] (the German original of Two War Years). See also Arnold
Toynbee, Armenian Atrocities: The Murder of a Nation 77-78 (1915);
Ambassador Morgenthau’s October 4, 1915, cipher No. 1121, U.S.

National Archives, RG 59/867.4016/159; Ahmet Refik, Iki Komite Iki
Kιtal 23-24 (1919) (Turkish intelligence officer recounting his own
observations about “atrocious” deaths of the victims of these cities
“so far removed from the war zones”). See also Foreign Ministry
Archives of Austria, XL Interna, Konfidentenberichte 1914-1918, No.

272, Forderung zur Turkisierung des Reiches, Situationsbericht No.

312, Konstantinopel, August 27, 1915. The cautious operations of
rounding up multitudes of lower class Armenians in the Ottoman capital
and the possibility of the apprehension and removal of higher class
Armenians at an opportune moment is underscored in this report. See
also the following works containing the eyewitness accounts of German
correspondents and an American diplomat stationed in Istanbul. In a
“very confidential” report, the correspondent of Kölnische Zeitung,
a major German newspaper, narrates the procedures of the gradual
liquidation of the Armenian population of the capital, concentrating
first on the provincials and singles, followed by the married ones
and their families. Ridiculing the government’s claim that only those
suspected of disloyalty are being arrested, the correspondent argued:

[T]he most harmless people are being deported in a very systematic way,
such as the two caretakers of my household; they just disappeared
after being taken in custody. . . . I have authentic information
that the arrests are being carried out absolutely at random. The
cautious procedure is due to the presence of ambassadors; once the
measures in the interior are brought to a completion, then it will
be the turn of the capital. This is the general impression among the
pro-Turkish Germans.

A.A. Turkei 183/38, A30432, R14087. The correspondent was Ernst
von Nahmer whose two reports, September 5 and 6, comprise together
twenty-two pages; the quotations are from pp. 3-4. He has a Nachlass
(Papers) at Deutsches Zentralarchiv, Potsdam. Another correspondent
provides graphic details of the mass arrests in Constantinople based
on daily quotas of “two hundred or a thousand–to be delivered up
daily from a certain quarter of the town–as I have been told was
the case by reliable Turks who were in full touch with the police
organization and knew the system of these deportations.” Two War Years,
supra this note, at 55. See also Zwei Kriegsjahre, supra this note,
at 44, 46-49, 54-55. A French demographer likewise maintains that the
Armenian population of Constantinople was subjected to “round-ups in
the streets and to executions.” Daniel Panzac, L’enjeu du nombre. La
population de la Turquie de 1914 a 1927, 50 Revue de l’Occident
Musulman et de la Meditarranée 45, 61 (1988). Finally, reference
may be made to an American diplomat stationed in Turkey during most
of the operations of genocide. In the August 23, 1915, entry of his
diary he notes that “in the capital . . . the arrests of Armenians
are of daily occurrence.” Lewis Einstein, Inside Constantinople 253
(1918). In the September 8 entry, he speaks of new wholesale arrests
“fresh consternation.” Id. at 285.

[76]. Winston Churchill, The World Crisis: The Aftermath 430 (1929).

Three massive volumes in English, German, and French document these
atrocities, relying mostly upon neutral observers (Swiss, American,
Swedish), and German and Austrian civilian and military officials
stationed in Turkey as war-time allies. (1) Toynbee & Bryce, supra
note 68 (Viscount Bryce, also author of the classic The American
Commonwealth (1888), was Regius Professor of Civil Law at Oxford
from 1870-1893, entered Parliament in 1880, and between 1907-1913 was
Ambassador to the United States, signing the Anglo-American Arbitration
Treaty in 1911. After the war he was appointed Chairman of a Royal
Commission on German atrocities in Belgium and subsequently became
a member of the Hague Permanent Court of Arbitration); (2) J.

Lepsius, Deutschland und Armenien, supra note 63; (3) Arthur Beylerian,
Les Grandes Puissances, L’Empire Ottoman, et les Arméniens dans les
Archives Francaises 1914-1918 (1983). Because the Bryce volume was
compiled during the war, some critics questioned the impartiality
and balance of its contents. To prove the veracity of the work, Bryce
submitted the material before publication to a number of scholars for
evaluation. Toynbee & Bryce, supra note 68. Among them was Gilbert
Murray, Regius Professor at Oxford, who declared: “I realize that
in times of persecution passions run high . . . But the evidence
of these letters and reports will bear any scrutiny and overpower
any skepticism. Their genuineness is established beyond question
. . . .” Id. at xxxi. H.A.L. Fisher, Vice-Chancellor of Sheffield
University, declared:

The evidence here collected . . . will carry conviction wherever and
whenever it is studied by honest enquirers . . . It is corroborated
by reports received from Americans, Danes, Swiss, Germans, Italians
and other foreigners . . . it is clear that a catastrophe, conceived
upon a scale quite unparalleled in modern history, has been contrived
for the Armenian inhabitants of the Ottoman Empire.

Id. at xxix. Moorfield Storey, the former President of the American
Bar Association, observed:

I have no doubt that, while there may be inaccuracies of detail, these
statements establish without any question the essential facts. It must
be borne in mind that in such a case the evidence of eye-witnesses
is not easily obtained; the victims, with few exceptions, are dead;
the perpetrators will not confess . . . Such statements as you print
are the best evidence which, in the circumstances, it is possible to
obtain. They come from persons holding positions which give weight to
their words, and from other persons with no motive to falsify, and it
is impossible that such a body of concurring evidence should have been
manufactured . . . . In my opinion the evidence which you print . . .

establishes beyond any reasonable doubt, the deliberate purpose of
the Turkish authorities practically to exterminate the Armenians,
and their responsibility for the hideous atrocities which have been
perpetrated upon that unhappy people.

Id. at xxxi, xxxii. In commenting on Toynbee’s competence and
scrupulousness in compiling the material, Bryce declared “[n]othing
has been admitted the substantial truth of which seems open to
reasonable doubt. Facts only have been dealt with; questions of
future policy have been carefully avoided.” Id. at xvi. In his note
to Vice-Chancellor Fisher, Toynbee himself described the volume as
“an awful piece of history. Fortunately, one gets absorbed in the work
of editing and arranging the documents and half deadened to things
themselves.” FO 96/206/IV, Aug. 4, 1916. In the circular attached to
the volume and sent to 250 American publications, Toynbee noted, “The
fiendish character of the atrocities committed and the deliberate,
systematic plan on which they were organized from Constantinople
appear to me to be the most striking features that emerge.” Id.

[77]. Refik, supra note 75, at 40. Dismissing these pieces of
agitation as crass propaganda that “def[y] every logic,” Refik
returns to his central theme, that under the guise of deportation and
wartime relocation, Ittihad pursued the goal of “destroying (imha)
the Armenians.” Id. at 23. Refik later became a Professor of History
at the University of Istanbul. In his memoirs Interior Minister Talât
repeats this charge of an imminent Armenian uprising in Istanbul and
the opening up of the Straits for the fleet of the Allies to make
the anti-Armenian measures look pre-emptive in nature and as borne
out of military necessity. PaÅ~_anιn, supra note 72, at 73.

[78]. The newspaper was the daily Sabah, from which an Armenian daily,
probably a day or two later, repeated that declaration in summary
form. Ariamard (namesake of Djagadamard), Dec. 13, 1918.

This shows the enormous power of Colonel Seyfi, a graduate of
the Istanbul Turkish War Staff Academy and a long-time Ittihadist
supporter of war lord Enver. He later became General, adopting the
surname Duzgören in the Turkish Republic. According to U.S. Acting
Secretary of State William Phillips, Seyfi “was vested with great
power.” FO 371/4173, folio 345, March 20, 1919 (report to U.S.

Ambassador to England, John Davis, assessing Seyfi’s liability as a
top war criminal). British intelligence during the Armistice obtained
a document from the Turkish Interior Ministry’s National Security
Office files during the Armistice in which Seyfi is described as one
of the five top Ittihadist leaders plotting the genocide against the
Armenians. FO 371/4172/31307, folio 386. Seyfi’s directing role in the
operations of the Special Organization is confirmed in the memoirs of
a top S.O. leader operating in the Balkans, i.e., Colonel Fuat Balkan.

2 Fuat Balkan, Yakιn Tarihimiz 297 (1962). On the provocative contents
of the military periodical Polis Mecruuasι (Seyfi ed.), see H.

Sirounee, Yegern Mu Yev Eer Badmoutyunu [A Genocide and its History]
in Etchmiadzin, Feb./Mar./Apr. 1965, 20 (the official periodical
of the Catholicosate in Armenia); Garabed Kapikian, Yeghernabadoum
[The Chronicle of the Genocide . . . in Sivas] 89 (1924).

[79]. Philip Hendrick Stoddard, The Ottoman Government and the Arabs,
1911 to 1918: A Preliminary Study of the TeÅ~_kilâti Mahsusa [Special
Organization] 49-50 (1963) (unpublished thesis, Princeton University).

[80]. American Ambassador Morgenthau describes the use of these
Armenian conscripts as pack animals and their eventual destruction
as follows:

Army supplies of all kinds were loaded on their backs, and, stumbling
under the burdens and driven by the whips and bayonets of the Turks .

. . almost waist high through snow . . . . If any stragglers succeeded
in reaching their destinations, they were not infrequently massacred.

In many instances, Armenian soldiers were disposed of in even summary
fashion, for it now became almost the general practice to shoot them
in cold blood.

Henry Morgenthau, Ambassador Morgenthau’s Story 302 (1918). For the
German role in the organizing of the mobilization plan see Bayur,
supra note 36, vol. 3:1, at 476. For the conscription order see
Morgenthau’s August 10, 1915 dispatch to Washington in U.S. National
Archives, RG 59.867.4016/74; Galip Vardar, Ittihad ve Terakki Icinde
Dönenler [The Curtain of Secrecy: The Inside Story of Ittihad] 271
(Samih Nafiz trans., 1960).

[81]. Trumpener, supra note 61, at 51.

[82]. In discussing these requisitions, Dr. Harry Stuermer, the
Istanbul correspondent of the influential German daily newspaper
Kölnische Zeitung, noted:

When I speak of requisitioning, I do not mean the necessary military
carrying off of grain, cattle, vehicles, buffaloes, and horses,
general equipment, and so on . . . I do not mean that, even though the
way it was accomplished bled the country far more than was necessary,
falling as it did in the country districts into the hands of ignorant,
brutal, and fanatical underlings, and in the town being carried
out with every kind of refinement by the central authorities. Too
often it was a means of violent ‘nationalisation’ and deprivation of
property and rights exercised especially against Armenians, Greeks,
and subjects of other Entente countries.

Two War Years, supra note 75, at 115.

[83]. See Toynbee & Bryce, supra note 68, at 33-36 (American nurse
Grace Knapp’s eyewitness account). See also Clarence D. Ussher &
Grace H. Knapp, An American Physician in Turkey 264-65 (1917);
Rafael De Nogales, Four Years Beneath the Crescent 60-70, 80-89, 95
(M. Lee trans., 1926) (detailed description of Venezuelan officer
who led Turkish artillery in reducing Armenian defenses in Van).

[84]. Morgenthau, supra note 80, at 304-05. As Morgenthau related,
some Armenians “proposed to defend their own lives and their women’s
honour against the outrages[.] . . . Nothing was sacred to the
Turkish gendarmes under the plea of searching for hidden arms,
they ransacked churches, treated the altars and sacred utensils
with the utmost indignity[.] . . . They would beat the priests
into insensibility.” Commenting on his intimate exchanges with
“authoritative Turkish personalities,” in a December 4, 1916, summary
report to his Chancellor in Berlin, Erzerum’s German Vice Consul,
Captain von Scheubner-Richter, reveals the incidence of Turkish plans
to provoke Armenians into “acts of self-defense” that then were used
as a basis for “inflated descriptions” of Armenian insurgency and,
therefore, as “pretexts” for subsequent operations of murder. A.A.

Turkei 183/45, A33457, R14094. On April 26, 1915, the German Consulate
at Adana relayed to the German Embassy the German text of a lengthy
report in which the Armenian Supreme Patriarch of the See of Cilicia
bitterly complains to the Armenian Patriarch in Istanbul of “the
outrageous atrocities and mistreatments the sole purpose of which is
to provoke the peaceful people of the region to extreme acts in order
to provide the government an excuse for annihilation.” A.A. Botschaft
Konstantinopel, 168 (No. 2540). See also Lepsius, supra note 9,
at 53-54. The purpose of these provocations evidently was the
creation of the basis to send highly inflated reports of Armenian
acts of rebelliousness to the Ottoman High Command and the party
leadership in Istanbul. In his affidavit, prepared at the request
of the post-war Turkish Military Tribunal, the military commandant
of Yozgat district in Ankara province–and at the same time the head
of the local Draft Board–exposed the resort to “the preparation of
official and unofficial reports to military authorities, mainly [Army]
Corps and divisional commanders, vilifying the Armenians and thereby
paving the ground for drastic measures against them.” Major Mehmed
Salim (Yozgat Å~^ube Reisi ve Mevki Kumandanι) affidavit copy is
deposited at Jerusalem Armenian Patriarchate Archive, indexed under
the Armenian alphabet character H (pronounced Ho, the 16th letter,
and not its variant Hee, the 21st), File 21, M572, bearing the date
of January 5, 1919.

[85]. Esat Uras, Tarihte Ermeniler ve Ermeni Meselesi [The Armenians
and the Armenian Question in History] 612 (2d ed. 1976).

[86]. For the English text of the law, see Richard G.

Hovannisian, Armenia on the Road to Independence 1918, at 51 (1967).

[87]. Takvimi Vekâyi (Turk.), No. 2189, May 19/June 1, 1915.

[88]. Bayur, supra note 36, at 38. See also Tunaya, supra note 43,
vol. 1, at 579 (the author characterizes this “accomplished fact”
as typical of Ittihad daring to bypass the regular channels of the
government). According to the testimony of Finance Minsiter Cavid, the
General Mobilization on August 2/3, 1914, was likewise ordered prior
to the approval of the Cabinet. Vakit, Harb Kabinelerinin Isticvabι
[The War Cabinet’s Hearings] 81 (1933) (Turk.) [hereinafter War
Cabinet’s Hearings].

[89]. Zhamanag [Istanbul Daily], Nov. 5, 1918. The repeal is described
by 3 Kutay, Talat PaÅ~_anιn Gurbet Hatιralarι [The Memoirs of
Talat PaÅ~_a in Exile] 1512 (1983).

[90]. FO 371/4241/170751. The thirty-four articles are reproduced
in Documents 76-80 (vol. 1, 1982) (a compilation of ciphers and
letters assembled by the Press and Information Office of Turkey’s
Prime Minister to justify or explain away the anti-Armenian measures).

See also Takvimi Vekâyi (Turk.), Oct. 1/14, 1916.

[91]. A.A. Turkei 183/39, A29127 Oct 7, 1915, report. The French text
of the eleven articles is found in A.A. Turkei 183/39, A29127, R14088
and Lepsius, supra note 63, at 214-16. In reacting to the same law,
the Austrian Military Plenipotentiary dismissed “the whole thing [as]
a comedy.” Joseph Pomiankowski, Der Zusammerbruch des Ottomanischen
Reiches 161 (1969). As if to punctuate this lethal melodrama,
the Turkish authorities–in another promulgation of a Temporary
Law of October 5, 1916–pretended that the deportees were to be
relocated free of charge in houses and other places of abode. When
relaying this news to Berlin, Dr. Goppert, the legal counsellor of
the German Embassy, diplomatically let it be known that the claim of
relocation was a farce. A.A. Turkei 183/45, A28792, R14094. Oct. 20,
1916 report. An American diplomat at the U.S. Embassy in the Ottoman
capital characterized this pretense of “relocation” as a “grim horror
of paternal solicitude to cover barbarous massacres.” Lewis Einstein,
The Armenian Massacres, Contemp. Rev. 490 (Apr. 1917).

[92]. Lepsius, supra note 63, at 216-18. Senator Ahmed Riza was
one of the original founders of Ittihad. Subsequently, however, he
became a dissident fighting vigorously against Ittihad excesses. On
October 19, 1918, in his first post-war speech in the Senate, Riza
invoked the memory of “the Armenians who were murdered in a beastly
manner.” A.A. Turkei 201/9, A46488, R14088. Quoting the Senator
directly, Tunaya reproduces the original Turkish words, “vahÅ~_ice
öldurulen.” Tunaya, supra note 43, vol. 3, at 156.

[93]. Lepsius, supra note 63, at 216.

[94]. For this purpose, the bill proposed to amend Article 2 of the
Temporary Law to read as follows: “This law goes into effect after
the end of the World War and one month after the signing of the peace
treaty.” Id.

[95]. Id. at 217. For specific references to the Transcripts of the
Records of the Senate covering the sessions during which Senator
Ahmed Riza interpolated on behalf of the Armenians, see Tunaya,
supra note 43, at 577; Sanders, supra note 50, vol. 1; 1 S.

AkÅ~_in, Hukumeιleri ve Milli Mucadele [The Istanbul Governments
and the National Struggle] 42-43 (1983).

[96]. A.A. Turkei 183/39, A33514, R14105, Oct. 19/ Nov. 1, 1915,

[97]. Bayur, supra note 36, at 46.

[98]. Id. at 46-49.

[99]. Id. at 48. Dr. Harry Stuermer, the Istanbul correspondent of the
German daily newspaper Kölnische Zeitung, relates an incident at the
same Parliament when war lord Enver, Talât’s acolyte, “went so far as
to hurl the epithet ‘shameless dog’ [edebsiz kopek] at Ahmed Riza in
the Senate without being called to order by the President.” Stuermer,
supra note 75, at 256. See also Zwei Kriegsjahre, supra note 75,
at 232. Turkish historian Ahmed Refik, an eyewitness of the many
procedures of expropriation, relates a scene in the city of Ankara
where the Armenians were reportedly forced to give back money they had
gotten right after selling their property to local Turks. Expressing
dismay and shame, Refik wrote, “No government had at any time in
history committed such a vicious crime [gaddarane bir cinayet]. There
is going to be a day of reckoning for this crime against humanity
[beÅ~_eriyet namιna bir cinayet]. Refik, supra note 75, at 41-42.

[100]. U.S. National Archives, R.G. 59, 867.00/797 1/2, U.S.

Foreign Relations. L. 763. Further confirmations of this conflict
between Senator Riza and the Ittihad government can be found in A.A.

Turkei 183/39. A33514, R14088. Morgenthau, supra note 80, at 339. The
importance of economic motives in the genocide is highlighted by the
following incident:

Ambassador Morgenthau wrote the following in the diary he kept during
the war:

One day Talât made what was perhaps the most astonishing request I
had ever heard. The New York Life Insurance Company and the Equitable
Life of New York had for years done considerable business among the
Armenians. The extent to which this people insured their lives was
merely another indication of their thrifty habits.

‘I wish,’ Talât now said, ‘that you would get the American life
insurance companies to send us a complete list of their Armenian
policy holders. They are practically all dead now and have left no
heirs to collect the money. It of course all escheats to the State.

The Government is the beneficiary now. Will you do so?’ This was almost
too much, and I lost my temper. ‘You will get no such list from me,’
I said, and I got up and left him.


[101]. Gotthard Jaeschke, Turk Inkilâbι Kronolojisi 1918-1923 [The
Chronology of the Turkish Revolution], at 61 (N.R. Aksu trans., 1939)
(citing Takvimi Vekâyi No. 3747).

[102]. Id. at 136 (citing I T.B.M.M., Kavanin Mecmuasι 482
(1922) (the Code of Public Laws of the newly established Ankara
government)). There are several works treating the issue of
confiscations during the war. After extensive legal debate, four
prominent experts in international law decided that the Armenian
survivors were entitled to reclaim their property and assets and
related massive indemnities. These arguments are compiled in a book
by Comité central des réfugiés arméniens, Confiscation des biens
des réfugiés arméniens par le gouvernement turc (1929). Some more
recent works include Kévork K. Baghdjian, La confiscation, par le
gouvernement turc, des biens arméniens . . . dits “abandonnés”
(1987); Shavarsh Toriguian, The Armenian Question and International
Law 85-96 (ULV Press, 2d ed. 1988); L. Vartan, Haigagan Dasnihunku Yev
Hayeru Lukial Kouykeru [The Armenian Date of 1915 and the Abandoned
Goods of the Armenians] (1970).

[103]. War Cabinet’s Hearings, supra note 88, at 527. These abuses
were brought out in the open in some memoirs and public debates in the
aftermath of the war. In the Grand National Assembly on December 6,
1920, Trabzon’s Deputy Ali Å~^ukru lamented the fact that “[t]he
so called Abandoned Goods ended up becoming the property of the
grabbers. What was the result of your shouts and protests?” 4 Yakιn
Tarihimiz 77 (1962) (Turk.). A similar observation was made at the
November 18, 1922 session of the Assembly by Yozgad Deputy Feyyaz Ali.

3 TBMM, Gizli Celse Zabitlari 1065 (1985) [hereinafter TBMM].

Moreover, in his memoirs, Economics Minister Cavid admitted that
on November 9, 1918, he ordered using up–consider changing to
“spending”–one million Turkish Pounds from the proceeds of the
abandoned goods scheme. Tanin, Aug. 30, 1945 (Turk.).

[104]. War Cabinet’s Hearings, supra note 88, at 519.

[105]. Zurlinden, supra note 75, at 596.

[106]. Letter from J. B. Jackson, American Consul at Aleppo, Syria,
to Henry Morgenthau, American Ambassador, U.S. National Archives,
NA/RG59.867.4016/148 (Aug. 19, 1915) (enclosed in Ambassador
Morgenthau’s August 30, 1915 report).

[107]. 3 Dogan Avcιoglu, Milli KurtuluÅ~_ Tarihi, 1838’den 1995’e
[History of National Liberation] 1137, 1141 (1974). Sina AkÅ~_in
likewise maintains that the Armenian deportations were implemented
in pursuit of economic goals, which eliminated minority dominance and
competition in business and industry, allowing Muslims to control these
areas. See Sina AkÅ~_in, 100 Soruda Jön Turkler ve Ittihat ve Terakki
[Ittihad ve Terakki in the Context of 100 Questions] 283 (1980).

[108]. TBMM, supra note 103, vol. 4, at 429 (Transcripts of the 28th
Secret Session, second sitting, of the Grand National Assembly of
Turkey, March 2, 1923-October 25, 1934).

[109]. Id. The explanations of former Finance Minister Hasan Fehmi
(Atac) are as significant as the fact that his elevation to a
ministerial post by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk on April 24, 1933, raised
eyebrows among the latter’s associates on account of the fact that
he was “uneducated.” Avcιoglu, supra note 107, vol. 2, at 640.

[110]. TBMM, supra note 103, vol. 4, at 429. The Finance Minister
at the time was Mustafa Abdulhalik, who was present at the sitting
and promised to execute the law as formulated. His pivotal role in
the Armenian Genocide as governor of two large provinces, Bitlis and
Aleppo, and as deputy to Talât in the Interior Ministry is discussed
in Dadrian, supra note 68, at 332, 336-38. It is noteworthy that
during the debate several deputies singled out the Jews with the
derogatory Turkish epithet “MiÅ~_on,” denouncing them as the real
“blood-suckers” of Turkey and insisting that the law should apply to
them with special emphasis. TBMM, supra note 103, vol. 4, at 430-31.

[111]. 2 Standford J. Shaw & Ezel Kural Shaw, History of the Ottoman
Empire and Modern Turkey 315 (1977). In establishing this fact,
however, the authors completely ignore the deceptiveness of these
avowals. The official decree ordering the wholesale deportation of
Trabzon province’s Armenian population expressly told the deportees
that “their exile is only temporary.” Report from Henry Morgenthau,
American Ambassador, to U.S. Secretary of State, U.S. National
Archives, NA/RG59/867.4016/106 (July 26, 1915).

[112]. Morgenthau, supra note 80, at 309.

[113]. This figure was released by a post-war Turkish Interior
Minister, relying on statistics compiled by his Ministry. See Dadrian,
supra note 68, at 342. In a recent volume authored by Turkish historian
Bayur, this figure was confirmed as a more or less accurate computation
by Turkish authorities. Bayur, supra note 36, vol. 3:4, at 787. This
800,000 figure was likewise confirmed by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk himself
in the course of an exchange with American Major General Harbord,
the chief of the American Military Mission to Armenia, in September
1919. 3 Yakιn Tarihimiz 179 (1962) (Turk.).

[114]. Morgenthau, supra note 80, at 302-03.

[115]. Two prominent Turkish authors likewise denounced the practice
of forcing Islam on Armenians orphans. See Halidé Edib, The Turkish
Ordeal 16 (1928); Avcιoglu, supra note 107, at 1141.

[116]. A.A. Botschaft Konstantinopel, 174/27; A.A. Turkei 183/44,
A26071 (corroborated by the Turkish author A.E. Yalman in his memoirs:
A.E. Yalman, Yakιn Tarihte görduklerim ve gecirdiklerim [The Things
I Saw and Heard in Recent History] 332 (1970)).

[117]. Halidé Edib, Memoirs 387 (1926) (emphasis added).

[118]. Aristotle, Politics, in Politics & Poetics, bk. 1, ch. 2, at 6
(Benjamin Jowett & Thomas Turning trans., Viking Press 1976).

From: Baghdasarian