1916-10-09-DE-001
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Source: DE/PA-AA/R14093
Publication: DuA Dok. 303 (gk.)
Central register: 1916-A-27741
Edition: Genocide 1915/16
Date of entry in central register: 10/13/1916 p.m.
Embassy/consular serial number: Nr. 626
Translated by: Vera Draack (Translation sponsored by Zoryan Institute)
Last updated: 04/22/2012


From the Chargé d’Affaires in Constantinople (Radowitz) to the Reichskanzler (Bethmann Hollweg)

Report



Nr. 626
Pera, 9 October 1916

1 Enclosure

In its lead article (enclosed in translation), the local Turkish newspaper, "Taswiri Efkiar", discusses the Armenian question subsequent to the outline by the committee for ”Unity and Progress”, of which Your Excellency is aware, and reaches the conclusion that the policy of a union and fusion of the various elements of the population which was originally adopted by the committee has ”gone bankrupt”, and instead a ”purge” of all the non-Mohammedan, i.e. Christian, elements in the empire should be contemplated. The article most likely gives a true impression of the convictions of the ultra-national circles. Some of these ideas have already been implemented by driving out the Syrian Christians residing in the eastern border provinces and the Greeks in the individual districts of Asia Minor and Rumelia. Probably the author is also further demanding the evacuation of those Armenians in Constantinople and Smyrna who have previously been exempted from evacuation.


Radowitz


Enclosure

Teswiri Efkiar dated 7 October 1916 No.1886

Bankruptcy and Purge.

The whole world knows that the Armenians residing within the war zone and along the military supply and communication routs have been removed from these districts and sent to areas where they are removed from any active or passive participation in the occurrences of the war. With the exception of Constantinople and Smyrna there is no place left where this measure or, as it is officially called, ”the evacuation” (‘tehdshir’) has not been carried out. The fact that we heard that this measure was not carried out in a uniform manner in the different regions has not failed to make us uneasy. This results in our view of the Armenian question being completely and absolutely unfounded. This is a fact, which we are extremely pleased to admit. This question was thoroughly presented and explained at the ”Unity and Progress” party’s congress, which recently held its final meeting, and we can say nothing more but that the government, which follows this direction, was left with no other choice in its actions against the Armenians, and that we regard these actions as being reasonable and necessary. This is the second fact; it cancels out the first fact.

As the report of the general assembly, which was presented to the congress, historically presented the question from the beginning to the end, we would first like to cite some lines from this report.

(detailed excerpts from the report mentioned follow; the article then continues:)

It is not necessary to list here once again those preparations made by the Armenians for the revolt and the individual incidents as they have been read by everyone in the previously mentioned report. The solution to the question of how a nation that is involved in a dreadful fight to the death will proceed upon determining these facts can be left to humanity’s conscience. To speed up the matter we prefer to hear the Armenians’ own opinion for they are no longer afraid to speak the truth. In this connection we have at hand extensive personal material, but we will restrict ourselves to the various remarks, which have been published in the Armenian magazine, ”Datshar”.

It is understandable that the evacuation and deportation of the Armenians, ordered for those compelling reasons given in the party’s report, are not a pleasant event for this people. The ‘Datschar’ holds all of the Armenian parties and committees responsible for the great misfortune, which has befallen the Armenians and writes:


The Armenian newspaper then lists the regrettable incidents, which were caused by the Armenian committees and closes with the conclusion that there are no objections to the measures taken by the Turkish government against the committees allied with Russia. We reserve the right to return to this question at a later point; today, we would like to point out another fact. When the constitution was re-established in the year 1324, the Turks sincerely strove to establish a policy of unity among the elements of the population. Their attempts foundered on the separatist efforts of the non-Mohammedan elements. In bloody battles this policy was violated and finally, due to the Armenian incidents, it went completely bankrupt.

No one among us doubts that in the policy of ”Unity and Amalgamation” we had depended on coming to an understanding with the Armenians as the best way. The Armenian committees proved to us that we were on the wrong track in that during these difficult times they were not able to refrain from becoming the tool of our most dangerous enemy. Of necessity, therefore, under the weight of these facts we must take a new road towards a new goal. This necessity is based on the realisation that the familiar policy of unity among the elements of the population has gone bankrupt and that the era of ”purging” has begun for our native country.


Junus Nadi


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