Friday, March 19, 2010

Confronting Genocide - Armenian Democide

About the Turkish Armenian Reconcilation Commission go here, its members here.

A note from one of its members last week:

''They, the members were chosen by the Turkish government and were in constant communication with the authorities in Ankara. They pushed for the independent study and when the study was concluded and they did not receive the answer they wanted, they disbanded TARC. Source: "Unsilencing the past: track two diplomacy and Turkish-Armenian reconciliation" By David L. Phillips
For the Turkish readers and others who repeatedly call for independent inquiry; well there was one down during TARC at the behest of Gunduz Aktan and the other Turkish members. They, the Turkisg governement, did not like the outcome and dissolved TARC. So basically Turkey will continually ask for new forums when they do not like the result. An independent inquiry has been done. "Turks and Armenians participating in the Turkish-Armenian Reconciliation Commission, requested a legal analysis on “the applicability of the Genocide Convention to Events during the early Twentieth Century.” The legal analysis employed a far more rigorous definition than Norman Stone who simply defines genocide as “the sort of thing Hitler did.” The crime of genocide has four elements — 1, The perpetrator killed one or more persons. 2, Such person or persons belonged to a particular national, racial or religious group. 3, The perpetrator intended to destroy in whole or in part that group, as such, and 4, The conduct took place as part of a manifest pattern of conduct. Since some Ottoman leaders knew that the deportation of Armenians from eastern Anatolia would result in many deaths, the legal analysis concluded that the perpetrators possessed the requisite genocidal intent and thus the events include all the elements of the crime of genocide as defined by the Genocide Convention. The legal analysis also concluded that the Genocide Convention contains no provision mandating its retroactive application. It was, in fact, intended to impose prospective obligations to its signatories. Therefore, no legal, financial or territorial claims arising out of the events could successfully be made under the convention. The outcome was a win-win. It validated the suffering of Armenians as genocide and freed Turkey from liability. Opponents of genocide recognition may muddy the facts, but they should not distort the legal definition of genocide embodied in the convention."

An aricle by good friend Orhan Kemal Gendiz: Confronting Genocide

Have you ever tried to tell someone directly what his problem is? This person, for example, may have a deep inferiority complex, and this may be very obvious to you.

Do you think it would be helpful to say this to him upfront? “Hey, you have an inferiority complex, be aware of your problem and correct yourself!” If this kind of “help” worked, millions of people would not spend years seeing psychiatrists and psychoanalysts.
Let us assume you even know what the root cause of his problem is. You know his childhood, and you know what kind of specific traumas in his childhood caused his problems today. Would it help to tell him this root cause? “Your father used to beat you up a lot, and therefore, this caused you to have very low self-esteem.” Would this work? I do not think so. You cannot reach his subconscious self by simply saying the “truth.” The logical “content” does not make what is subconscious conscious.
Continue reading herrreeeeee

And another article by Orhan:

When I sat down to write this article, I was interrupted by a television program in which the Armenian question was being discussed. One of the most popular television channels in Turkey held an open discussion on the events of 1915 in Turkey.

There were two historians in the studio, and one was joining in from the US via satellite. The two in the studio were just repeating the “official Turkish history” thesis, but the academici from the US was fighting quite passionately against the official narrative of 1915. He is Turkish historian Taner Akçam.
Akçam has been fighting against official Turkish history for quite some time. To ultranationalist Turks, he is a “traitor.” For me, he represents the conscience of Turkey. Many people in Turkey are not aware of this, but Akçam is the figure who showed Armenians that, like the ones who saved the lives of Armenians in 1915 despite the threat of execution, there are indeed “good Turks.” Akçam may be the only Turk some diaspora Armenians have ever seen in their lifetimes, and he changed the image of “Turks” in their minds forever. Akçam is quite an intelligent man. He is very cultured. I deeply admire his analysis of Turkey. But he is also a man who speaks from the bottom of his heart, like Hrant Dink. To me, he represents the future of Turkey, which will have no taboos and will be free from the burden of the past.
Continue reading herrrreeeee

If you have read everything, you are able to reach your own conclusion. All written here is written down by Turks, not Armenians, French, Americans or Swedish etc.

Day Opening - March 19

Steam Railway, Lake Brienz, Switzerland (click on picture to enlarge)