Turkish Genocides: Conclusion
This did not mark the end of the terror. In spite of the almost complete annihilation of all the original Christian people who inhabited Asia Minor before the Islamic conquest, the same course has been pursued in modern times. The Greek-orthodox priest seminary in Halki was forced closed in 1971. Demolishing of churches that the Christian minorities sought to build, and driving out small Christian minorities in the south eastern corner of Turkey. Among these were ancient oriental church communities, some speaking Aramaic, the language spoken by Jesus when he walked on earth.
That the Kurds resist the destruction of their villages is understandable. But it is not comprehensible how the European countries have remained silent, and still remain silent, about the genocides perpetrated by the Osmannic empire, and the genocides in ‘modern’ Turkey, and that they did not act against the Turkish army occupying the northern part of Cyprus in 1974.
That Turkey probably did not learn any lessons from this is evident in article 301 of the Turkish penal code, which stipulates up to 10 years of prison for “Insulting Turkishness”, exemplified by authors mentioning the genocides, as well as their attempts to colonize new areas in Europe. That the Turkish prime minister Erdogan, head of the Islamist party, can state about the Turkish mosques in Europe: “Our mosques are our barracks, the domes our steel helmets, the minarets our bayonets”, is a scandal, but completely in line with the fact that one of the most favoured names for new Turkish mosques in Germany, and the west in general, is “Fati Cemiie” = Mosque of Conquest, named after Sultan Mehmet II, who conquered Constantinople and promised to conquer the remaining parts of Europe.
In Germany, Soviet, Cambodia, South Africa, people and leaders looked into themselves and condemned Nazism, Communism and Apartheid. Museums and history books in the respective countries describe the crimes of these ideologies. Turkey has never condemned or even admitted the wars of conquest, atrocities and genocide that their Islamic ideology has caused on other peoples. Murderers were promoted and many are still treated as exemplary icons. One is proud of the Islamic conquests and lie consciously about the atrocities the subdued peoples were subjected to. When talking about holocaust denial, this is found extensively in Islamic countries. But not only pertaining to the Jews, also all the other peoples suffering partial or complete annihilation throughout history.
The current level of public opinion in Turkey can be difficult to gauge, but one indication came on March 29th in The Guardian, where the newspaper reports that Hitler’s Mein Kampf is a best-seller in Turkey. Already this anti-Semitic classic has considerable circulation in Arab countries and is printed in large stocks in Lebanon and the Palestinian areas, from where they are distributed to Europe and sold in large numbers in European mosques. In Germany, where the book is outlawed, the book is sold in spite of the German ban in most German mosques. The Turkish publisher of the book tells that more than 100,000 copies of the book have been sold in Turkey in a mere two months – mainly to young people. The development worries the small Jewish community in Turkey, who lately have been subject to serious bomb attacks in Istanbul. Jewish-Turkish spokesmen say, according to The Guardian, that it is not feeling assured by the word of the publisher that it has purely commercial motives, not ideological. The popularity of the book coincides with a wave of anti-Semitic articles in the Turkish press, including extensive holocaust denial.
The Norwegian holocaust centre wrote in the summer of 2005 this press release about the Islamic, and in particular the Turkish, lies about the Turkish genocides: “The Turkish foreign minister Abdullah Gül has protested towards Norway due to the planned exhibition at the Holocaust museum about the genocide against the Armenians. The Turkish newspaper ‘Milliyet’ wrote about it according to Bergens Tidende on the 23th June 2005 under the headline: “Turkey rejects that a genocide has taken place” The Turkish department for foreign affairs confirms towards the newspaper that foreign minister Gül has protested towards Norway in a conversation Tuesday in Ankara with state secretary Kim Traavik. The official Turkish position is that around 300,000 Armenians and thousands of Turks were killed during “inner riots” when the Armenians in Turkey took the part of the invading Russian forces during World War I. According to Armenian sources up to 1,500,000 Armenians were slaughtered merely during the years 1915 through 1917. (HLSenteret). On Bygdøy in Oslo the main exhibition about holocaust and other genocides opened in August 2006.
The Vatican envoy to Turkey at the same time condemned an “institutional enmity towards Christianity” in this mainly Muslim but supposedly secular country. “In Turkey – a country defining itself as a secular democracy – religious freedom exists only on paper”, said archbishop Edmond Farhatin, the Vatican envoy to Turkey, to the Italian news agency ANSA. “It is included in the constitution, but is not applied in practice”, Farhatin adds. The envoy of the Vatican believes that the attitude of the official Turkey is not largely different from other Muslim countries. The Vatican is working to ensure that the new EU treaty contains a clause mentioning that European values are inseparable from our Christian heritage. The idea of admitting Turkey or even other Mediterranean countries to the European Union can only exist due to a misunderstanding of the importance of our cultural roots that laid the foundation for Europe to be a free and prosperous area.
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Suggested further reading:
Alfred de Zayas on the legal implications today: