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Gündüz Aktan: Why can not it be?

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Criticizing Armenians who had joined the Turco-Armenian
Reconciliation Commission (TARC), the Dashnak Party (ARF) and the ANC stated
that they were against any dialogue with Turkey unless the latter recognized the
Armenian genocide. They said that major breakthroughs had been reached for the
recognition of the genocide in the French and Italian Parliaments, as well as
the European Parliament; but not in the U.S. House of Representatives, which
declined to recognize the genocide at the last minute, but the ARF and ANC said
that with a little persuasion the entire world would recognize it and that
Armenia would have a strong position in negotiating land and compensation with
Turkey; however, they felt the TARC had prevented these developments.

As moderate Armenians, who are unable to rid themselves of
these opinions, cannot support TARC, it is necessary to reiterate what those
that represent the Turkish public can accept.

Certain members of the Turkish public have repeatedly
uttered that the 1915-1916 events were a tragedy. Most of those supporting
Turkish opinion noted that the number of Armenians who died during these events,
varied from between 200,000 and 600,000. The Armenians lost their houses, jobs,
monuments, and lands which they called their homeland. Families were divided.
Wealth diminished. It is not that impossible for the Turkish public, 30-40
percent of which immigrated from the Balkans, to feel sympathy for the

However, there are also things that the Turkish people can
never forget:

Does not everybody know that the Armenians have rebelled
so many times since 1860 for independence in the name of reform and autonomy, as
did the Balkan Christians; and that the Incak and Dashnak organizations were
established with this aim, massacring civilian Turks in violent actions that
would be defined as terrorism today; thus provoking the Turks to kill civilian
Armenians in order to urge big powers to intervene in the issue. Not only Turks
but also Armenians have said and written such facts.

Since 1830, it has been known that Russia transferred the
Armenians from Anatolia and Iran to the Caucasus, while driving away the Turks
and Muslims to Anatolia through ethnic cleansing.

During World War I, Armenian rebels fought in cooperation
with the Russian Army, which invaded Anatolia, in order to gain their
independence. They knifed Ottoman armies in the back. While their population
constituted 16 percent of the total population in the region called Armenia, the
ethnic cleansing that they applied to become the majority was very cruel for
this reason. Are not these historical cases?

Was not the deportation decision taken for this purpose?

The deportation caused less harm when compared with the
ethnic cleansing carried out by the Russians in the Caucasus and the Christians
in the Balkans by attacking the Turkish civilian masses with their armies. The
real deaths happened among those who escaped from the Russian and Ottoman armies
in the eastern Anatolia region without taking any precaution. In this respect,
is it a lie that 1,250,000 Turks and Muslims died according to German, Armenian
and Ottoman sources?

In short, unlike the Jews, the Armenians formed a
"political" group conducting military operations with political aims.
Any crime can be committed against a civilian member of a political group, but
these crimes can not be included in the scope of the "Genocide
Convention". Moreover unlike anti-Semites, Turks had never intended to
destroy Armenians because they were Armenians. According to the convention, this
intention can only be present if there is a racial hatred. Contrary to the
claims of the movie "Ararat," the Turks never hated Armenians.

Do the Armenians avoid applying the law for this reason?
However, the Jewish genocide was judged at Nurenberg and recognized by the
world. The Armenians convinced certain parliaments to recognize the genocide
thesis with an artificial effort through lobby activities, to which they paid
great quantities of money and threatened a refusal to vote prior to elections in
these countries. Is not the difference so simple?

Mainly responsible for the deportation was the Dashnaks,
who joined the Russians in carrying out ethnic cleansing against Turks with a 16
percent population. The only way to put the blame of this horrible
responsibility on the Turks is through a genocide claim.

The Turks, 5 million of whom died in the Balkans and the
Caucasus due to ethnic cleansing, and 5 million of whom were forced to migrate
to Anatolia, cannot recognize a limited Armenian deportation as genocide when
its experiences are forgotten.  

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