genocide



 The Armenian genocide was one of the most massive «root-and-branch» exterminations ever carried out against a defenseless people. In 1915, as World War I raged, the Turkish government (ruler of the Ottoman Empire) decided upon the systematic extermination of most of the male Armenian population, and the forced deportation of the remainder, mostly women, children, and the elderly. The deportation became a death march, with extreme violence and deprivation leading to the death of most of the survivors of the initial gendercide — as was intended. By the time the exhausted and traumatized survivors reached refuge in nighbouring countries, up to three-quarters of the entire Ottoman Armenian population had been exterminated


 The events of World War I, which saw Turkey allied with Germany and Austria-Hungary against Britain, France, and Russia, gave these architects of genocide the opportunity they sought to implement their plan. One of the movement's leading ideologues, Dr. Nazim, told a closed session of the CUP Central Committee in February 1915 that «if this purge is not general and final, it will inevitably lead to problems. Therefore it is absolutely necessary to eliminate the Armenian people in its entirety, so that there is no further Armenian on this earth and the very concept of Armenia is extinguished. We are now at war. We shall never have a more suitable opportunity than this.» (Quoted in G.S. Graber,Caravans to Oblivion: The Armenian Genocide, 1915, pp. 87-88.)
Like the Jewish holocaust, the Armenian genocide represents a case of a clear-cut, «pre-emptive» targeting of the male population, followed by a «root-and-branch» extermination of as many of the survivors as could be killed outright or driven to death. The two gendercidal strategies followed at the outset were 1) the mobilization of «battle-age» Armenian men for service in the Turkish army, followed by the execution or death through overwork of some hundreds of thousands of them; and 2) the concomitant rounding-up and mass slaughter of remaining community males. The U.S. Ambassador to Turkey, Henry Morgenthau, provided one of the most gut-wrenching descriptions of «The Murder of a Nation» in a report to his superiors, published after the war (the U.S. was at the time neutral in the conflict). He summarized the first strategy as follows


 In the early part of 1915, the Armenian soldiers in the Turkish army were reduced to a new status. Up to that time most of them had been combatants, but now they were all stripped of their arms and transformed into workmen. Instead of serving their country as artillerymen and cavalrymen, these former soldiers now discovered that they had been transformed into road labourers and pack animals. 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, they were forced to drag their weary bodies into the mountains of the Caucasus. Sometimes they would have to plough their way, burdened in this fashion, almost waist high through snow. They had to spend practically all their time in the open, sleeping on the bare ground — whenever the ceaseless prodding of their taskmasters gave them an occasional opportunity to sleep. They were given only scraps of food; if they fell sick they were left where they had dropped, their Turkish oppressors perhaps stopping long enough to rob them of all their possessions — even of their clothes. If any stragglers succeeded in reaching their destinations, they were not infrequently massacred. 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 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 their victims' sufferings by compelling them to dig their graves before being shot.

 
Morgenthau describes one such episode in July 1915, in which some 2,000 Armenian «amйlйs» («such is the Turkish word for soldiers who have been reduced to workmen») were dispatched from the city of Harpoot, ostensibly for a road-construction project:The Armenians in that town understood what this meant and pleaded with the Governor for mercy. But this official insisted that the men were not to be harmed, and he even called upon the German missionary, Mr. Ehemann, to quiet the panic, giving that gentleman his word of honour that the ex-soldiers would be protected. Mr. Ehemann believed the Governor and assuaged the popular fear. Yet practically every man of these 2,000 was massacred, and his body thrown into a cave. A few escaped, and it was from these that news of the massacre reached the world. A few days afterward another 2,000 soldiers were sent to Diarbekir. The only purpose of sending these men out in the open country was that they might be massacred. In order that they might have no strength to resist or to escape by flight, these poor creatures were systematically starved. Government agents went ahead on the road, notifying the Kurds that the caravan was approaching and ordering them to do their congenial duty. Not only did the Kurdish tribesmen pour down from the mountains upon this starved and weakened regiment, but the Kurdish women came with butcher's knives in order that they might gain that merit in Allah's eyes that comes from killing a Christian. These massacres were not isolated happenings; I could detail many more episodes just as horrible as the one related above ...

 
With this «conscription-as-gendercide» thus accomplished, the Turkish authorities turned their attention to the remaining male population. The authorities were now free to turn to the destruction of the remainder of the Armenian population. Armenians were told they were to be deported to «safe havens» in third countries. The deportation process, was seen as simply another tool of genocide, as Morgenthau notes: «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.»

 
«The passage of rivers, and especially of the Euphrates, was always an occasion of wholesale murder,» writes Toynbee. Morgenthau notes that «In a loop of the river near Erzinghan… the thousands of dead bodies created such a barrage that the Euphrates changed its course for about a hundred yards.»

 
«Whatever crimes the most perverted instincts of the human mind can devise, and whatever refinements of persecution and injustice the most debased imagination can conceive, became the daily misfortunes of this devoted people,» Morgenthau summarized. «I am confident that the whole history of the human race contains no such horrible episode as this. The great massacres of the past seem almost insignificant when compared with the sufferings of the Armenian race in 1915.»
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ужас… просто нет слов...
Я много знаю о геноциде армян, но эти фото вижу впервые…
да, о геноциде многое не сказано много чего не знают даже армяне
Ahavora
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