Tall Armenian Tale

The Other Side of the Falsified Genocide



  Articles from The Times of London  
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Mahmut Ozan
Edward Tashji
Sam Weems


"Armenians are especially indebted to the Manchester Guardian and
The Times for their valuable services to their cause, humanity and truth in exposing the reign of terror in Armenia and the Turk's affectation of "clean-fighting."

Avetoon Pesak Hacobian, "Armenia and the War," 1918, Footnotes, 4 of Ch. 2.


Viscount Northcliffe

Viscount Northclife

The Times of London, as its "Times" counterpart from New York, was not known for its friendly take on Turks, feeling no compunction about printing stories that made the Turks come across as another species. The newspaper was published by Lord Northcliffe, a pioneer in the implementation of propaganda in the press; he was appointed "Director of Propaganda in Enemy Countries" in February 1918. On this page we'll present articles of interest, at times representing better kernels of truth that slipped past the generally biased publication. (With thanks to reader M. Mersinoglu.)


1) The Armenian Atrocities, 02-1895

2) England and Russia, 12-1894

3) The Porte and Armenia, 12-1894

Armenian Forces Armed by French, 10-1921?

Before continuing, let's keep in mind what Edward Said (in his scholarly work, "Orientalism") noted about the widespread European attitude regarding the Turks:

"Until the end of the seventeenth century the 'Ottoman peril' lurked alongside Europe to represent for the whole of Christian civilization a constant danger, and in time European civilization incorporated that peril and its lore, its great events, figures, virtues, and vices, as something woven into the fabric of life."

"From the fourteenth to the end of the seventeenth century the Ottoman Empire was almost continuously at war with the Christian Powers of
Western Europe. The terror inspired by the Turkish name among all the
European peoples was largely responsible for the widely spread popular
belief that the Turks were a race of uncivilized barbarians who,
wherever they went, left nothing but smoking ruins behind them and stamped out every vestige of civilization. Religious fanaticism, coupled with the
fear born of unbroken Turkish military successes, resulted in creating among
some detractors of the Turks a state of mind which rendered them for
the most part incapable of viewing Turkey and the Turks with an objective
and unbiased eye."

The Times of London was no different in its reportage. Writers constantly referred to how "barbarous" the Turks were. But within these mostly biased articles may be found kernels of truth, not only about history in general, but regarding Armenian-related events that led up to the "genocide" years.

Many thanks for M. Mersinoglu; it was through this reader's good graces that these articles have been made possible.

The British humor weekly got down to the heart of the matter with this cartoon: "Part Four: The Reaction; Punch or the London Charivari — May 18, 1895; The Duke of Argyl (Bryce) and Gladstone    Brothers in arms    THE OLD CRUSADERS!     The Duke of Argyll and Mr. Gladstone "Brothers in arms" again! BULGARIA 1876       ARMENIA 1895"

(The Duke of Argyll was an Armenophile par excellence; for example, see his "Our Responsibilities for Turkey," K.G., K.T., John Murray, 1896, p. 72, included in A. P. Hacobian's "Armenia and the War," 1918. From Jeremy Salt's "Imperialism Evangelism and the Ottoman Armenians 1878-1896”: P.125: Among them were the Duke of Argyl and Gladstone - drawn in Punch as the ‘Old Crusaders’ sitting on white chargers with lances in hand - and the Duke of Westminster, Lord Bryce and an assortment of higher ecclastics. Symbolically the first mass meeting of the “Armenian agitation” [May 1895] was held at St. James hall, Picadilly. The mood was one of uncompromising hostility to the Turks and their religion. The Duke or Argyl began by insisting that England had the duty to impose a protectorate over the Christians of the Ottoman state. P.129: Gladstone suggested that recent action of the Porte ‘in Armenia particularly but not in Armenia exclusively’ were founded on ‘a deliberate determination to exterminate the Christians of that Empire’. No one apparently asked for the evidence or suggested that without it such a statement was inflammatory and irresponsible. The rhetoric was unchanging, generally predicated on England’s rights and responsibilities as a Christian nation and it was usually England’s failure to ‘do something for the Armenians was contrasted with its apparent readiness to go to war with the United States over Venezuela.)


Feb. 23, 1895, p. 5

The Special correspondent of Reuter's Agency who has been travelling on the Russo-Armenian frontier with the object of obtaining information concerning the reported outrages at Sasun and elsewhere, in a further communication posted at Tiflis on the 18th ult., writes:—

In the letter I wrote ten days ago giving the result of some preliminary inquiries I had made at Constantinople, Samsoun, Kerrasund, Trebizond, and Tiflis, concerning the alleged atrocities and the state of affairs generally in Armenia, I endeavoured to convey some idea of the difficulties that would be encountered in prosecuting any sort of investigation or getting at the real facts of the case.

That I did not exaggerate these difficulties will be apparent from further information on the point which I am now in a position to supply. Take, to begin with, the cholera quarantine which is being enforced in various portions of the Sultan's dominions in such a manner as to draw a net round the districts of Armenia in which the atrocities are alleged to have occurred and to keep away from the scene of the outrages and from those who could throw any light on the subject all independent investigations.

It is announced that cholera exists in Van, Bitlis and Moosh, and that strict quarantine regulations must therefore be enforced. Now it certainly is a peculiar circumstance that cholera should have happened to break out at this season of the year in the region of the Sasun massacres, and nowhere else in Asia Minor. Who is to prove or disprove the statement that the disease is raging in those snow-clad, practically inaccessible mountain fastnesses? Even in Constantinople and Stamboul little or nothing is known by the public or by newspaper correspondents concerning the cholera outbreaks officially reported from time to time in these cities. In the Turkish capital a medical officer reporting a case of cholera receives double pay until a clean bill of health is returned from the affected district, and in a country like Turkey it is not surprising if doctors find symptoms of cholera in everything from croup to typhoid fever.

Even without the cholera quarantine, it would be practically impossible for the commission to make any real headway until spring, owing to the intense cold and the great amount of snow in Armenia. The situation may be judged to some degree by the fact that the roads to Erivan and Kars, in Russia, which are in a much lower altitude, have been for more than a fortnight blocked with snow.

At Kars a temperature of 30deg. below zero (Reaumur) has been experienced. Greater cold is reported from more exposed places. Water tossed into the air comes down frozen into ice, aad the moisture from a man's breath freezes his beard into a solid mass in less than a minute. As the Sasun mountains are much higher, the state of the weather may be imagined.

However, the British Government does not need Mr. Shipley to follow the Turkish commission, except for the purpose of seeing what the commission does not do, for a full report of the Sasun outrage has already been made by Mr. Halward, British Vice-ConsuI at Van. It is on this report that the British Government is now acting in insisting upon a full investigation. Mr. Halward's report is incomplete, it is true, owing to the interference of the Turks in preventing a more thorough investigation, but the main facts are given, and the Government needs no further proof.

If there is any lingering doubt in the Western world as to the main facts of the Sasun massacre, there is none here, not even among people who have scant liking for Armenian people or Armenian traits of character. The Armenian Catholicos, the father of all the Armenians, whose home is at Etchmiadzin, in the Ararat region, near the Turkish frontier, is so well convinced of the truth of the matter that he is now waiting in Tiflis for permission to go to St. Petersburg to implore the help of the Emperor in behalf of the oppressed and persecuted people of Turkish Armenia. The Father has been waiting in Tiflis a fortnight since his arrival in Etchmiadzin, but the permission to proceed north has not yet come. However, he is not discouraged, but looks forward confidently to a speedy solution of the vexed Armenian question. "Say to our friends in England, said he, " that it is a very dark time for our people m Turkey, but a better time is coming very soon."

Turkey and the Armenian Atrocities, 1896
The writer need not have worried about whether there was any "lingering doubt" in the West, regarding Sasun; not when the "great Armenian horrors' boom all over the western world and America" was in full swing, as phrased in an Armenophile's 1895 article. The above illustration from the book "Turkey and the Armenian Atrocities, published in the United States in 1896, served as a typical example. Caption: "Slaughter of Armenians in Sasun. This is a true picture of the slaughter of innocent people which was inflicted on the innocent Armenians by the bloody Kurds and enraged soldiers. The carnage ended in the massacre of 50,000 people or more. Hundreds of thousands were left without food or shelter after the plundering and burning." (Erich Feigl, The Myth of Terror)

And how many actually died? According to the British archives, a British representative stated in an Oct. 12 memo that there were at most 10,000 Armenians in the region to begin with (Cuinet had counted 8,369) and the dead could not exceed 900. But the British Consul's report arrived at a different total, less than one-third: 265. (F.O. Turkey No. 1 [1895], No. 277, enclosure, p. 203; ibid., No. 252, pp. 155-61. From Gurun's "The Armenian File.") Naturally, there is no mention of the number of Muslims killed, as a result of "Murad" Boyajian's having incited 3,000 Armenians (including those who came from Mush, Koulp and Silvan) to rebel.

His followers and friends feel equally confident, but many of them think that his policy, or what is supposed to be his policy, is a mistake. Some even go so far as to declare that the eloquent Father is making the great mistake of his life. It is understood that he intends to ask that a tract of land be given by the Russian Government somewhere in the Ararat region for the founding of a colony of refugees from the persecuted regions of Turkish Armenia, and it is said he is ready to promise that the Armenian Church will bear the expense of transferring the people to the colony and taking care of them after they arrive there. This would be advantageous to Russia and also beneficial, in a material way at least, to the people to whom it is intended as a benefit. The scheme is believed to have the support of all the Armenians except those who are working for the independence of Armenia and the selection of a President or King. However, it is unlikely that anything will be done in the matter until after the Turkish Commission of Inquiry has made it report. it is believed here that the Sultan will order some sort of reform in the method of governing Armenia, but that it will merely be a husk and not a kernel of corn no one here has any doubt. Armenians will not be satisfied with a few promises.

If the Great Powers do not interfere there will be a wholesale emigration, or the more radical of the revolutionary leaders will push things to the extreme, and we shall have a repetition of the nameless atrocities. Let it not be supposed that the promise of interference by the Christian Powers has had any effect in lessening the activity of the revolutionary leaders.

On the contrary, these leaders were never more active than at present, as they realize the value of the opportunity that has now come in their way. It is, perhaps, not necessary to take measures to keep alive a burning hatred of the Turk among Turkish Armenians, but lest time should lessen the feeling of horror brought into existence by the Sasun massacre, a lithographed chromo has been put on public sale here depicting a typical scene of a massacre of Christian men, women and children by Turkish troops. The colouring of the picture is vivid and the realism awful. It is duly labelled "A massacre of Bulgarians by Turkish troops," but the purchaser knows what its real significance is intended to be. It needs no stretch of imagination to substitute "Armenian" for "Bulgarian."

This picture and frequent reports of fresh atrocities in various parts of Armenia are well calculated to keep alive the hot fever of hate which has agitated Armenians in other lands during the past few months. When the angered Armenians demand to know why something is not done to revenge the wrongs of their outraged countrymen some very fanciful stories are circulated.

Tales of oppression, outrage, and murder in other parts of Armenian Turkey are as thick as blackberries here and along the southern coast of the Black Sea, and enough information is obtainable from thoroughly trustworthy sources to establish the main facts without the aid of the more or less wild rumours or Armenian origin, the very absurdity of which makes the patient investigator weary of his task. If the detailed facts of the Sasun massacre are ever established —and they probably never will be—they must be established independently of Armenian testimony, or their value may be seriously questioned.

To such an extent has the fear of the revolutionary movement taken hold of the officials of Turkey that Americans and Englishmen find it next to impossible to travel in any part of Armenia, however remote from the vilayet of Bitlis. To an American citizen of Armenian birth it is simply impossible to get into the country at all, no matter on what pretext.

Holdwater: Note how the reporter was wise enough to not trust "Armenian testimony, or their value may be seriously questioned."

One of the more revealing statements is: "
This picture and frequent reports of fresh atrocities in various parts of Armenia are well calculated to keep alive the hot fever of hate which has agitated Armenians in other lands during the past few months." Similarly, the non-stop genocide stories of well over a century later serves one main purpose: to keep the Armenians together, "well calculated to keep alive the hot fever of hate."


 Dec. 17, 1894, p. 6

St. Petersburg, Dec. 15

The Russian Press continues to receive the telegraphic statements coming from England as to an alleged fresh grouping of the Powers on the basis of the rapprochement between England and Russia, and in fact, all the signs and evidences of British advances, with undisguised scepticism and suspicion. It is insinuated that the Armenian atrocities have been puffed up by the English Press for ulterior motives of self-interest. Russia, as to-day's Exchange Gazette observes, continues to maintain an expectant attitude towards the extraordinary revolution of feeling which appears to have occurred in England regarding this country, and waits for something more convincing in the shape of deeds than Ministerial speeches and newspaper articles. The value and great desirability of a general Anglo-Russian understanding is fully admitted on all hands; but the suddenness and overwhelming ardour of the change of front in England, as gathered from the daily Press, has only increased Russian mistrust, and made Russian writers think that it is far too good all at once to be quite sincere and lasting. —Our Own Correspondent.

Holdwater: So the Brits switched tracks to start working with the Russians in order to hasten the Ottomans' demise, and the Russians still weren't satisfied?


Dec. 8, 1894, P. 5



The Turkish Government is manifesting great anxiety to arrive at the truth with regard to the atrocities which are reported to have occurred in Armenia. In order to give complete satisfaction to foreign Powers in this respect, the Porte asked the United States Government to appoint a delegate to take part in the inquiry which is to be made by the Turkish Commission. Lord Kimberley was also requested to name one of the British Consuls in Asia Minor as a member of the Commission. The British Government immediately agreed, and at the same time the President of the United States, who had previously declined to appoint an American delegate, telegraphed to the effect that be had reconsidered his decision and would allow the American Legation here to nominate a delegate. The British, American, and Turkish Governments are still in communication on the subject, and no final arrangements have yet been made regarding the coarse to be adopted.

It is officially explained that the origin of the difficulty in Armenia was a kind of insurrection of the Armenians at Sasun against the Turkish authorities. Bands of men excited the country to rebellion, the result being that the Turkish troops were repulsed and killed. Moreover, some conflicts took place between the Armenians and Kurds, and the country was in a state of great disorder. Consequently, Turkish troops were sent to repress the rebellion, and hare been accused of excesses.

It is, however, firmly believed by the authorities that no such murders or excesses were committed by the regular troops. It is possible that in their operations against the rebellious villages a great number of people may have been killed, but the murder of defenceless inhabitants is deemed to bo wholly improbable, as Turkish troops would only fight against rebels with arms in their hands.-Reuter.

Mr. Miles Jewett, United States Consul at Sivas, has been appointed to represent the United. States on the Turkish Commission which is to inquire into the alleged outrages m Armenia. He will present a separate report to the Secretary of State.—Reuter.

VIENNA, Dec. 7.
Some of the leading Austro-Hungarian newspapers, following int the wake of their German contemporaries, affect concern at England's present foreign policy. On Wednesday morning the Neue Freie Presse, dealing with the Armenian question, concluded its remarks as follows :— "Civil strife in Asia is always barbarously conducted, but that does not prove that any foreign Power has a right to interfere. If events in Armenia are grossly exaggerated in England it is probably done on quite different grounds to those of humanity. One is almost inclined to suspect that, by persistently putting forward the Armenian atrocities, and at the same time bringing grave accusations against the Porte, it is intended to do Russia a service." The same evening the Pester Lloyd, which in matters of foreign policy is known to be inspired from Vienna, referring to the same subject, wrote thus :—" The question as to why this affair has now been officially made much of in London, and has been put upon the tapis as an occasion for attacking the Porte, is difficult to answer. Possibly, England wants to make herself agreeable to Russia. It would not be the first folly of which the Liberal politicians on the Thames have been guilty. Those gentlemen appear to forget that the slightest shock given to the situation in Turkey may loosen the whole frail edifice and bring about a state of confusion of which it is impossible to foresee the consequences."

To-day's Neue Freie Presse, commenting upon the telegram published in The Times from Odessa concerning the transport of Russian troops to Batoum, writes as follows :—"If the news be true, it is of considerable importance. The concentration of Russian troops on the frontier would be a menace to Turkey, and if it takes place, it can only be in agreement with England." The Pester Lloyd expresses itself to the following effect :—"It is to be hoped that the Powers will maintain the calm and composure necessary to select the right means for alleviating the fate of the long-suffering Armenians without creating a new and embarrassing question calculated to endanger the existing peace."

It is certainly not a mere coincidence that the two leading newspapers of Austria-Hungary should take up identically the same tone towards England, nor can there be the slightest doubt that they reflect, more or less faithfully, the view taken in official quarters. Misgivings are evidently beginning to be entertained in those regions with regards to the possible results of the improvement of relations between England and Russia. There is, however, good reason to believe that the English Government is resolved to act with firmness in the Armenian question. It is, of course, entirely within its rights in demanding that a whole population, for whom the Berlin Treaty provided justice and good government, should not be left to the mercy of their barbarous oppressors simply because the Porte neglects to fulfil its obligations. Nor can it for one moment be admitted that any of the Treaty Powers should object to such a course on the part of England because it suits themselves to stand aloof in the matter. It is not likely that England will take any active measures without inviting the other signatory Powers to join her in doing so, but if they refuse there is no reason why other parties to the Treaty of Berlin, who take their stand on principles of humanity, should not see that its stipulations are carried out so far as circumstances permit.—Our Own Correspondent.

Holdwater: Bravo to the Austro-Hungarian Empire, which would show its friendship with the Ottoman Empire by annexing Bosnia-Herzegovina a few years later, for telling it like it was! And boo on the "Correspondent" for maintaining the sham that Britain was purely interested in the welfare of the Armenians, while smacking her lips on the juicy possessions of Europe's Sick Man. And just in case the reader missed the point about the "barbarous oppressors," the article made sure to conclude observations by the following reliable witnesses:

ATHENS, Dec. 7.
Two Armenian refugees arrived here to-day and give [sic] harrowing accounts of atrocities committed by Turkish troops of which they themselves were eye-witnesses. They report that on October 23 four Turkish officers and two gendarmes set fire to a number of buildings in the Armenian town of Hadjin, near Marash, consisting of about 1,200 wooden houses. They had previously poured petroleum upon the buildings to insure their burning. An Armenian named Merdakian Garabed and his mother witnessed this act of incendiarism and cried for help. The Kaimakam, however, refused to allow any assistance to be rendered and imprisoned Garabed, who was killed three days afterwards, his body being thrown, among the ruins of one of the burnt houses.

The refugees also state that Mgr. Nigohos, Archbishop of the monastery of Fournoul, near Zeitun, together With 11 villagers from that place, was captured by Turkish troops and taken in chains to Smyrna 11 days ago. Their fate is unknown. —Reuter.


Oct. 27, 1921?



The Armenian Bureau in London has received the following telegram dated April 9 from Cilicia through the naval wireless of one of the Allied Powers;—

The siege of Hadjin continues. The French military authorities declare themselves unable to undertake the defence of the region. Armenians have mobilized forces armed by the French, but owing to a lack of means of transport, progress is much delayed. It is imperative to insist in the proper quarters on the importance of holding the mountain regions for securing the safety of the plain of Cilicia.

The general situation becomes more and more critical. The irregulars of Mustapha Kemal Pasha, with the cooperation of native Musulman bands, are threatening Cilicia on all sides. Local resources are insufficient for controlling a general rising of the Turks. — Reuter.







See also:

Letters from The Times of London



"West" Accounts


Armenian Views
Geno. Scholars


Turks in Movies
Turks in TV


This Site

...Is to expose the mythological “Armenian genocide,” from the years 1915-16. A wartime tragedy involving the losses of so many has been turned into a politicized story of “exclusive victimhood,” and because of the prevailing prejudice against Turks, along with Turkish indifference, those in the world, particularly in the West, have been quick to accept these terribly defamatory claims involving the worst crime against humanity. Few stop to investigate below the surface that those regarded as the innocent victims, the Armenians, while seeking to establish an independent state, have been the ones to commit systematic ethnic cleansing against those who did not fit into their racial/religious ideal: Muslims, Jews, and even fellow Armenians who had converted to Islam. Criminals as Dro, Antranik, Keri, Armen Garo and Soghoman Tehlirian (the assassin of Talat Pasha, one of the three Young Turk leaders, along with Enver and Jemal) contributed toward the deaths (via massacres, atrocities, and forced deportation) of countless innocents, numbering over half a million. What determines genocide is not the number of casualties or the cruelty of the persecutions, but the intent to destroy a group, the members of which are guilty of nothing beyond being members of that group. The Armenians suffered their fate of resettlement not for their ethnicity, having co-existed and prospered in the Ottoman Empire for centuries, but because they rebelled against their dying Ottoman nation during WWI (World War I); a rebellion that even their leaders of the period, such as Boghos Nubar and Hovhannes Katchaznouni, have admitted. Yet the hypocritical world rarely bothers to look beneath the surface, not only because of anti-Turkish prejudice, but because of Armenian wealth and intimidation tactics. As a result, these libelous lies, sometimes belonging in the category of “genocide studies,” have become part of the school curricula of many regions. Armenian scholars such as Vahakn Dadrian, Peter Balakian, Richard Hovannisian, Dennis Papazian and Levon Marashlian have been known to dishonestly present only one side of their story, as long as their genocide becomes affirmed. They have enlisted the help of "genocide scholars," such as Roger Smith, Robert Melson, Samantha Power, and Israel Charny… and particularly  those of Turkish extraction, such as Taner Akcam and Fatma Muge Gocek, who justify their alliance with those who actively work to harm the interests of their native country, with the claim that such efforts will help make Turkey more" democratic." On the other side of this coin are genuine scholars who consider all the relevant data, as true scholars have a duty to do, such as Justin McCarthy, Bernard Lewis, Heath Lowry, Erich Feigl and Guenter Lewy. The unscrupulous genocide industry, not having the facts on its side, makes a practice of attacking the messenger instead of the message, vilifying these professors as “deniers” and "agents of the Turkish government." The truth means so little to the pro-genocide believers, some even resort to the forgeries of the Naim-Andonian telegrams or sources  based on false evidence, as Franz Werfel’s The Forty Days of Musa Dagh. Naturally, there is no end to the hearsay "evidence" of the prejudiced pro-Christian people from the period, including missionaries and Near East Relief representatives, Arnold Toynbee, Lord Bryce, Lloyd George, Woodrow Wilson, Theodore Roosevelt, and so many others. When the rare Westerner opted to look at the issues objectively, such as Admirals Mark Bristol and Colby Chester, they were quick to be branded as “Turcophiles” by the propagandists. The sad thing is, even those who don’t consider themselves as bigots are quick to accept the deceptive claims of Armenian propaganda, because deep down people feel the Turks are natural killers and during times when Turks were victims, they do not rate as equal and deserving human beings. This is the main reason why the myth of this genocide has become the common wisdom.