TURKISH HISTORIAN TO PUBLISH BOOK ABOUT ARMENIAN GENOCIDE
November 28, 2013 | 13:39
Well-known Turkish historian Taner Akcam, who is the author of numerous
works on the Armenian Genocide, informed that he will write a book
especially for Turkish PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
In his work, Akcam will present the words spoken by Mustafa Kemal
Ataturk-founder of the Republic of Turkey-about the deportations and
massacres of the Armenians.
In his article published in Taraf daily of Turkey, Akcam reflected on
the term "Kurdistan," which Erdogan had used recently in Diyarbakir
city. Subsequently, the Turkish PM had stated that he was just
repeating Ataturk's policy and words used back in the 1920s.
"Ataturk, however, made statements in the 1920s also about the
deportations and massacres of the Armenians in 1915. But he did not
deny the fact of the tragedy that occurred, which serving PM Erdogan
"And [therefore] I decided to write a book for Erdogan, where I will
gather Ataturk's words about 1915," Taner Akcam wrote, in particular.
News from Armenia - NEWS.am
TURKISH HISTORIAN TO PUBLISH BOOK ABOUT ARMENIAN GENOCIDE
Posted 29 November 2013 - 09:31 AM
TURKISH HISTORIAN TO PUBLISH BOOK ABOUT ARMENIAN GENOCIDE
Posted 03 December 2013 - 11:36 AM
AL-MONITOR: WILL ERDOGAN VISIT ARMENIAN GENOCIDE MEMORIAL IN 2015?
Armenian Genocide, Turkey
The approach of the Turkish government to the [Armenian Genocide] issue
has somewhat changed. Otherwise, the police would not have protected
activists on April 24 from protesting extremist, nationalist groups,
"But the freedom the government allows to civil society and
intellectuals to debate and observe the genocide doesn't mean a
change to Turkey's official position on 1915. Reports leaked to the
media about the preparations for 2015 by the government indicate that
former official policies are going to prevail," the article reads.
"It is very likely for the prime minister to go to Armenia, lay a
wreath at the Armenian Genocide memorial and apologize to Armenians."
This earth-shattering prediction is not based on information or
reports. It's the accusation of a Turkish nationalist against Prime
Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Erdogan has done so many things to upset
us, this nationalist is saying, don't be surprised if he apologizes
to the Armenians.
"Some aspects of Turkey's preparations for 2015 can be detected from
remarks of the government spokesman Bulent Arinc: "2015 is the 100th
year of both the Dardanelles and the claims of Armenian genocide. We
are working seriously. There is work on symposiums, conferences,
panels, publications and documentaries. But we are also engaged
in very special public diplomacy activities that could affect the
"We also know that leading members of the government and opposition
have met in the parliament to discuss Turkey's 2015 strategy. Sadly,
all these strategies don't appear to be anything else but mere
repetition of Turkey's routine approaches," Al-Monitor continues.
The Turkish Historical Society is also preparing for 2015. Mehmet
Metin Hulagu, president of the society, said it is working on a
complete works of Turkey-Armenian relations in preparation for 2015.
Putting all these preparations and views of government officials
together, the author predicts that" Turkey's defensive attitude based
on denials is not going to change in 2015. Though the Foreign Ministry
is striving to improve Turkey's image related to the Armenian issue
with gestures such as opening the border, it also seems determined
to combat the Armenians' campaign for 2015."
"In short, if Erdogan doesn't turn the world upside down with a
last-minute surprise, we are likely to see in 2015 a more refined and
sophisticated version of Turkey's denial policy of the past century,"
the article concludes.
Posted 27 August 2015 - 09:27 AM
TANER AKCAM RELEASES NEW BOOK ON PLUNDER OF ARMENIAN PROPERTIES
11:39, 27 Aug 2015
Turkish historian Taner Akcam has released a new book (with Umit Kurt)
on the plunder of Armenian properties.
The book titled "The Spirit of the Laws: The Plunder of Wealth in the
Armenian Genocide" examines the confiscation of Armenian properties
during the genocide and subsequent attempts to retain seized Armenian
Through the close analysis of laws and treaties, it reveals that
decrees issued during the genocide constitute central pillars of the
Turkish system of property rights, retaining their legal validity,
and although Turkey has acceded through international agreements to
return Armenian properties, it continues to refuse to do so.
The book demonstrates that genocides do not depend on the abolition of
the legal system and elimination of rights, but that, on the contrary,
the perpetrators of genocide manipulate the legal system to facilitate
Posted 23 March 2016 - 10:10 AM
TANER AKCAM'S BOOK "THE ARMENIAN ISSUE IS RESOLVED" REPUBLISHED IN TURKEY
15:14, 23 Mar 2016
Turkish genocide scholar Taner Akcam's book titled "The Armenian Issue
is Resolved" has been republished for the seventh time by Iletisim
Publishing, Akunq.net reports.
According to the source, immediately after the Balkan War, the
Committee of Union and Progress cleansed the Anatolian lands of all
non-Muslim elements and Turkified them. The 1915 massacre of Armenians
was the last stage of the Turkish policy.
In the work based on Ottoman documents Taner Akcam focuses on what
the primary sources are telling about the events. The author presents
the atrocities carried out under the constant control of Talaat Pasha
and the reasons behind the so-called 'deportation.'
The book quotes Tallat Pasha as saying in one of the telegrams that
"The Armenian issue is resolved. There's no need to stain the nation
and the government with extra atrocities."
Posted 04 May 2016 - 03:23 PM
Clark University News Hub
May 4 2016
Clark history professor receives ‘Friend of the Armenians’ award
May 4, 2016
| By Clark News & Media Relations
Clark University History Professor Taner Akçam received the “Friend of
the Armenians” award from the Diocese of the Armenian Church of
America (Eastern) at a banquet of the Diocesan Assembly on April 29 in
Cleveland. Hundreds of Armenian Church leaders from around the country
“It is deeply rewarding to be recognized as a friend of the
Armenians,” Akçam said. “While power, not truth, reigns supreme in
politics, it is truth that wins in the fields of education and
scholarship. We need to train dozens of young academics who can
express the truth not as an emotional plea but as a scholarly fact.”
In his speech, Akçam (pictured, right) recognized two scholars,
Khatchig Mouradian and Ümit Kurt, who recently earned their doctoral
degrees in Armenian genocide studies from Clark’s Strassler Center for
Holocaust and Genocide Studies.
“The truth is that the more academics we have working in this field
the less oxygen denialism receives. Education is where the real
investment needs to be made,” he said.
Every year, the New York-based Diocese of the Armenian Church of
America bestows its “Friend of the Armenians” award on an individual
in the public arena who has been a heroic advocate for the
Armenian-American community. Past recipients have included U.S.
Ambassadors Harry Gilmore and John Evans; U.S. Sens. Edward Kennedy
and Robert Dole; and Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick.
The Diocese selected Akçam for the award because of his “history of
courageous humanitarianism” and his “lifelong effort to reveal and
defend historical truth of the Armenian genocide through his
“All of these things have done much to promote admiration, goodwill
and affection for [him] throughout the Armenian-American community,”
wrote Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, primate of the Diocese of the
Armenian Church of America.
In recent years, Akçam has been honored with the Hrant Dink Spirit of
Freedom and Justice Medal by the Organization of Istanbul Armenians,
the Heroes of Justice and Truth Award from the Diocese and Prelacy of
the Armenian Apostolic Churches of America and the Hrant Dink Freedom
Award from the Armenian Bar Association. In 2006, he was recognized by
the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for his outstanding work in human
rights and for fighting genocide denial.
Akçam is the Robert Aram, Marianne Kaloosdian and Stephen and Marian
Mugar Chair in Armenian Genocide Studies. He received his doctorate in
1995 from the University of Hanover, with a dissertation on "The
Turkish National Movement and the Armenian Genocide against the
Background of the Military Tribunals in Istanbul Between 1919 and
Posted 19 January 2018 - 11:20 AM
History News Network
tags: Taner Akcam,
Turkey has always denied the Armenian Genocide carried out by the Ottoman government beginning in 1915. While decades of scholarly research has decisively established the systematic annihilation of Armenians, the scarcity of direct evidence has allowed the Turkish government to persist in its denial.
In his groundbreaking new book, “Killing Orders: Talat Pasha’s Telegrams and the Armenian Genocide,” due out in March, Clark University historian Taner Akçam destroys the Turkish government’s denial strategy. Akçam includes a recently discovered document, a “smoking gun,” which points to the Ottoman government’s central role in planning the elimination of its Armenian population. Furthermore, he successfully demonstrates that the killing orders signed by Ottoman Interior Minister Talat Pasha, which the Turkish government has long discredited, are authentic.
Akçam, described as “the Sherlock Holmes of Armenian Genocide” in a New York Times article in April 2017, made these landmark discoveries in a private archive. He argues that the documents he uncovered remove a cornerstone from the denialist edifice and definitively prove the historicity of the Armenian Genocide.
“Successive Turkish governments have gone to great lengths to ensure that evidence of the intent to extinguish the Armenian people could not be located,” Akçam says. “These findings are ‘an earthquake in the field of genocide studies.’ They will make it impossible for the Turkish government to continue to deny the Armenian Genocide.”
Akçam holds the Robert Aram and Marianne Kaloosdian and Stephen and Marian Mugar Chair in Armenian Genocide Studies at Clark’s Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies. An internationally recognized human rights activist, Akçam was one of the first Turkish intellectuals to acknowledge and openly discuss the Armenian Genocide.
Akcam has lectured widely and published numerous articles and books, translated into many languages. His 2012 book, “The Young Turks’ Crime Against Humanity: The Armenian Genocide and Ethnic Cleansing in the Ottoman Empire,” was co-winner of the Middle East Studies Association’s Albert Hourani Book Award and one of ForeignAffairs.com’s “Best Books on the Middle East.”
Akçam’s many honors include the Hrant Dink Spirit of Freedom and Justice Medal from the Organization of Istanbul Armenians and the Hrant Dink Freedom Award from the Armenian Bar Association (both in 2015), and the "Heroes of Justice and Truth" awarded at the Armenian Genocide Centennial commemoration in May 2015. The Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern) recognized him as a Friend of the Armenians in 2016.
Posted 08 February 2018 - 10:48 AM
Posted 21 March 2018 - 09:30 AM
Debunking the Turkish Historical Society's arguments is the central focus of "Killing Orders."
The idea that the Ottoman government intentionally destroyed its Armenian population during World War I, in a series of massacres that amounted to a genocide, has become nearly universally accepted.
Even the Turkish government, long the leading voice of denial, has softened its stance. While still officially rejecting that the killings amounted to genocide – explaining them as merely casualties of a war that was bloody on all sides – the government under Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has noticeably reduced the volume on the issue. Turks are no longer prosecuted for “insulting Turkishness” when they acknowledge the genocide, and more and more books are published in Turkey that frankly discuss what happened during the war.
But of course, holdouts remain, and a new book by one of the leading Turkish historians of the genocide purports to offer a “smoking gun” that will “make it impossible for the Turkish government to continue to deny the Armenian Genocide.”
The book, “Killing Orders” by Taner Akçam, publishes and analyzes a hitherto-unknown set of private archives, from an Armenian priest and historian who photographed some of them at the archives of the Armenian Patriarchate in Jerusalem, which have since become closed to researchers. The priest, Krikor Guerguerian, photographed other documents at a library in Paris in 1950, which subsequently lost them. Guerguerian's photographs eventually passed into the hands of his nephew, who showed them to Akçam in 2015.
Akçam uses the documents to corroborate the authenticity of some of the most explicit evidence of the Ottoman government's intent: a series of telegrams from Interior Minister Talat Paşa to officials in Aleppo. “You were already previously informed of the official decision [...] that all Armenians within Turkey should be completely extinguished and annihilated. […] Regardless of the severity of the measures and without regard to women, children, and handicapped persons, all should be exterminated without any consideration for feelings of guilt,” one telegram read. “The order that all of the Armenians’ rights on Turkish soil, such as the rights to live and work, have been eliminated, and not one is to be left – not even the infant in the cradle; the government accepts all responsibility for this,” read another.
However, the way in which these telegrams reached us was so indirect as to invite skepticism as to their authenticity. They were originally published by Aram Andonian, an Armenian journalist from Istanbul who himself survived the deportations. Andonian eventually made it to Aleppo, where in 1918 he met a secretary in the local Deportation Office of the Ottoman Empire's Interior Ministry, Naim Effendi. Effendi sold him handwritten copies of 52 official Ottoman documents, as well as 24 original copies. Andonian then published them the following year, and they became widely known as some of the damning pieces of evidence against the Ottoman government.
In 1983, however, the Turkish Historical Society published a book arguing that the telegrams were forged. The evidence that they were forgeries was convincing enough that the book became a foundational work for the genocide denial camp. It even persuaded those who – based on voluminous other evidence – believed that a genocide occurred, but accepted that these telegrams may have nevertheless been forgeries.
Debunking the Turkish Historical Society's arguments is the central focus of “Killing Orders.” “To show the authenticity of these telegrams and Naim's memoirs means nothing but to remove the last brick from the denialist wall,” Akçam writes.
The notion that the new evidence is a “smoking gun” is somewhat overblown. The Guerguerian archives do offer some new data, such as documents mentioned, but not published, in Andonian's original book. Akçam also found documents in the Ottoman Archives in Istanbul that offer supporting evidence that the ciphering system in the Naim Effendi documents is consistent with that in other Ottoman communications of the time. And other newly unearthed documents provide evidence that Naim Effendi was in fact a real person, something that the Turkish Historical Society book had questioned. There are long discursions into arcana such as the numbers of digits used in Ottoman ciphers and the types of lined paper Ottoman bureaucrats used.
This sort of prosecutorial approach to history feels like an anachronism. As Thomas de Waal wrote in his 2015 book on the aftermath of the genocide, “Great Catastrophe”: “Engaging with history rather than with a virtual Armenian-Turkish courtroom, contemporary historians spend less time on the issue of intent – after all, even if there is no single archival document which dots the i's and crosses the t's, there was demonstrably both a murderous disposition in the actions of the Young Turk leaders in 1915 and a genocidal outcome for the Armenians.”
So it's hard to support the claim, made in the book's promotional materials, that: “These findings are an earthquake in the field of genocide studies. They will make it impossible for the Turkish government to continue to deny the Armenian Genocide.”
The futility of that aspiration was demonstrated by the response to the publication of the Turkish version of the book, in 2016. The Review of Armenian Studies, a journal published by the Ankara-based think tank Institute for Eurasian Studies, published a review by one unconvinced scholar, which engaged mainly on the level of lined paper and cipher techniques. In an editor's note, the journal suggested that the book was part of a political pro-Armenia agenda. “What is the purpose of putting in the effort to prove the authenticity of so-called documents that are clearly fake?” it asked.
Another commentary by the same think tank sidestepped the issue of whether the newly published documents were authentic, instead nitpicking one narrow claim by Akçam. “In such an environment [...] all the possibilities of healthy discussion are unfortunately exhausted. The truth is, such an approach gives an excuse to persons like Akçam to refrain and escape from real academic discussions,” the reviewer said, in words more applicable to his own piece.
And so the debate, such as it is, goes on. In an interview after the Turkish version of the book came out, Akçam himself anticipated these responses. “The denialism of historical truth is a policy, it is a preference – a choice rather than a rational argument,” he said. “For this reason, regardless of how many documents we publish regarding the truth of what happened, a denier will always find new things and continue to deny. This is an endless game.”
Posted 24 March 2018 - 09:05 AM
By Contributor on March 23, 2018
NEW YORK—Professor Taner Akcam will be delivering a talk titled “Killing Orders: Talat Pasha’s Telegrams and the Armenian Genocide” at Columbia University on March 28, at 8 p.m.
The lecture will be followed by a signing of Akcam’s newly-published book of the same title. The event will take place at 329 Pupin Hall, 538 West 120th Street (at Broadway), Columbia University.
The program is co-sponsored by the Armenian Center at Columbia University, the Research Institute on Turkey (RIT), the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR), and Columbia University’s Institute for the Study of Human Rights (ISHR).
In the immediate aftermath of the Armenian Genocide, Aram Andonian, an intellectual and survivor, sought out documents to establish the historical record about deportations and massacres. In 1918, Naim Efendi, an Ottoman bureaucrat in Aleppo sold to Andonian a cache of 21 original Ottoman documents, along with his handwritten memoir. The memoir included a total of 52 original documents Naim had copied by hand. In 1921, Andonian published The Memoirs of Naim Bey, illustrated with 14 of the original documents. Some of these documents originated with the Minister of Interior Talat Pasha, the architect of the genocide, and contain direct orders for the killing of Armenians.
A 1983 book, published by the Turkish Historical Society, asserted that these documents were forgeries. The claim was based on three arguments: 1. An Ottoman bureaucrat named Naim Effendi never existed; 2. this non-existent person can’t have written a memoir; 3. the original documents must be fakes as they contain significant mistakes relating to signatures and dates. Indeed, until today, no evidence was found to prove the existence of a government official named Naim Effendi which would likewise make it possible to authenticate the memoir. The original documents, meanwhile, remained missing. Thus, it was impossible to refute the arguments of the Turkish Historical Society, which were accepted as truthful and made historians reluctant to use them as evidence. The topic was remembered as “the fake telegraphs attributed to Talat Pasha.”
Akcam has uncovered the missing evidence needed to disprove the claims of the Turkish Historical Society. He has established that Naim Bey was an Ottoman official in Aleppo, he has discovered original copies of his memoirs, and he has proven that the documents presented within it are genuine. We now have evidence demonstrating that the Turkish Historical Society distorted the truth: both the memoir, as well as the kill orders of Talat Pasha are authentic.
Akcam holds the Robert Aram and Marianne Kaloosdian and Stephen & Marian Mugar Endowed Chair of Armenian Genocide Studies at Clark University. He is the author of more than ten scholarly works as well as numerous articles in Turkish, German, and English on Armenian Genocide and Turkish Nationalism. His most known books are A Shameful Act: The Armenian Genocide and the Question of Turkish Responsibility (Metropolitan Books, 2006, received the 2007 Minnesota Book Award for General Nonfiction) and Young Turks’ Crime Against Humanity: The Armenian Genocide and Ethnic Cleansing in the Ottoman Empire (Princeton University Press, 2012, awarded in 2013 Hourani Book Prize of The Middle East Studies Association; and selected as one of Foreign Affairs’ Best Books on the Middle East for 2012). Akçam’s latest book is “Killing Orders: Talat Pasha’s Telegrams and the Armenian Genocide (Palgrave, 2018)
For more information about this program, contact Prof. Khatchig Mouradian at email@example.com.
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