Review Of Armenian Studies
As always, the first article in the 46th issue of our journal is “Facts and Comments”. This article covers the domestic and international developments of Armenia, the process for concluding the peace agreement with Azerbaijan following the 2020 Karabakh War, and Türkiye-Armenia relations in the period of June-November 2022. Two full years have elapsed since the end of the war and the cease-fire agreement signed by the leaders of Azerbaijan and Armenia in Moscow with the participation of the Russian President. It is possible to explain this lapse with the efforts of Armenia using delaying tactics as it appeals to third states with own interests in the region, to minimize its losses and make some gains. There is an active resistance to the peace agreement initiatives of the government also by a radical-militant group in the Diaspora and an opposition in the country. The most serious challenge before the peace agreement is the issue of delimitation and demarcation of the borders as it would lead to the acknowledgement of Karabakh to be within the boundaries of Azerbaijan. In foreign policy, the efforts to shift to the West without drawing the ire of Russia is being carried out with the re-fashioned concept of multi-vector foreign policy. Relations with Türkiye are moving forward in a step-by-step approach within the process of normalization. On the other hand, the long-established anti-Turk and anti-Türkiye stand of Armenia does not seem to be restrained despite this process.
In his article titled “Sultan Abdülhamit II`s Alleged Role in the 1909 Adana Events”, Murat Köylü analyzes the circumstances surrounding the highly controversial Adana Events of 1909 that claimed the lives of many Ottoman Muslims and Armenians and the allegations that the Ottoman Sultan Abdülhamit II had orchestrated these events. To carry out such an analysis, he narrates the personality and deeds of Abdülhamit II, the formation of the Armenian national movement, the importance of Adana for the Armenian national cause, the events leading up to the flare up of the Adana events, the details of the events themselves, and the domestic and foreign reporting on these events. Based on the accounts of the kind of person Abdülhamit II was and the available evidence concerning the 1909 Adana Events, he argues that it is simply not possible to lay the sole blame of the events on Abdülhamit II, since a variety of factors had come together that led to the said events. Köylü adds that Armenian nationalists and Western media nevertheless blamed Abdülhamit II based on hearsay and exaggerated accounts, contributing to Abdülhamit II’s unwarranted notoriety in the Western world.
In her article titled “Socio-Political Struggle Concerning the Russian Language in Armenia”, Günel Musayeva evaluates Armenia’s state policies concerning the use of the Russian language in post-Soviet Armenia. She highlights that there is a stark contrast between Armenia’s official claims of adherence to democratic values and its harsh clampdown on the use of Russian in the public and private spaces of Armenia. She observes that the Armenian political elite view the Russian language as a threat to Armenia’s goal of national identity construction, even though Russian poses no true threat to an overwhelmingly mono-ethnic state like Armenia. She indicates that Armenia successfully evades a harsh reaction from its ally Russia in this regard, which traditionally serves as a guardian and promoter of the Russian language in the post-Soviet world. Musayeva argues that Armenia’s state policies concerning the use of the Russian language amounts to systematic marginalization that not only violates the rights of the Russian minority living in Armenia, but also deprives Armenians the chance to properly learn Russian that will be useful in pursuing educational and business activities in the post-Soviet world.
Our 46th issue also contains three book reviews.
The first review is by F. Jale Gül Çoruk on the book titled “Adam and Eve in the Armenian Tradition, Fifth Through Seventeenth Centuries”. The book is heavy on theology, but is important for those conducting research on Armenian studies because it reveals aspects of the historical trajectory of Armenian culture and Armenian’s conception on morality informed by their religious beliefs. The book also contains a useful biography section on many Armenian authors throughout history.
The second review is by İlknur Dişlioğlu on the book titled “A Letter from Japan - Strategically Mum: The Silence of Armenians”, a fascinating collection of letters by Iver Torikian, an Armenian American scholar living and working in Japan. Torikian gives an account of his family and life that stretches from Türkiye to the US and Japan, and expresses his frustration at the state of Turkish-Armenian relations. He argues that his own people and the Western world exclusively focus on the plight of the Armenians concerning controversial historical events to the detriment of the Turkish side, and that many Armenian authors writing about such subjects are either distorting facts or withholding them to suit their own narrative.
The third and final review is by Şevval Beste Gökçelik on the Turkish language book titled “Maraş’ta Ermeniler Ve Zeytun İsyanları” (“Armenians in Maraş and the Zeytun Rebellions”). This book gives a detailed account of Ottoman society and inter-communal relations between the Turks and the Armenians by focusing on Zeytun in specific and Maraş in general. The book argues that the position of Zeytun and its various features made it a suitable place for the occurrence of frequent Armenian rebellions. It adds that the inflammatory activities of Western-Christian missionaries and Armenian revolutionary committees, and the resulting Armenian rebellions in the region severely damaged the trust in Turkish-Armenians relations and dragged them to a breaking point.
Have a nice reading and best regards,
Contributors: p. 5
Editorial Note: p. 7
ARTICLES: p. 11
Alev KILIÇ – “Facts and Comments”: p. 11 (Editorial)
Murat KÖYLÜ – “Sultan Abdülhamit II`s Alleged Role in the 1909 Adana Events”: p. 47 (Research Article)
Günel MUSAYEVA – “Socio-Political Struggle Concerning the Russian Language in Armenia”: p. 67 (Research Article)
BOOK REVIEWS: p. 85
F. Jale Gül ÇORUK – “Adam and Eve in the Armenian Tradition, Fifth Through Seventeenth Centuries”: p. 85
İlknur DIŞLIOĞLU – “A Letter from Japan - Strategically Mum: The Silence of Armenians”: p. 91
Şevval Beste GÖKÇELIK – “Maraş’ta Ermeniler Ve Zeytun İsyanları” (“Armenians in Maraş and the Zeytun Rebellions”): p. 97
Ambassador (R) Alev KILIÇ graduated from the Faculty of Political Sciences of Ankara University in 1968. The next year, he joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkey. Kılıç served as Ambassador to F.R. of Yugoslavia between 1996 and 1998 and Ambassador/Permanent Representative to the Council of Europe in Strasbourg between 1998 and 2001. In 2001-2004, he served as the Deputy Undersecretary for Economic Affairs of the Ministry. He served as Ambassador to Switzerland (2004-2009) and Ambassador to Mexican United States (2009-2011). He retired from the Ministry in 2011. Ambassador (R) Kılıç has been the Director of Center for Eurasian Studies (AVİM) since 2013.
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Murat KÖYLÜ was born as the child of a family of Caucasian immigrants in the Bulanık district of Muş/Türkiye. He completed his primary and secondary education in İzmir due to his father’s employment at the Municipality of İzmir. Entering the Turkish Military Academy in 1982, Köylü graduated from the Academy in 1986 at the top of his class as a Lieutenant. He subsequently enrolled at the following programs and institutions: the Faculty of Law of Dokuz Eylül University (1993), the Master’s Degree Program of the Department of Management Organization at the Institute of Social Sciences of Selçuk University (2000), Turkish Military Academy (2001), the Master’s Degree Program of the Department of Business at the Graduate School of Social Sciences of Atılım University (2001), and the Doctoral Program at the Graduate School of Principles of Atatürk and Turkish Revolution History of Dokuz Eylül University (2002). After voluntarily retiring from the Turkish Armed Forces in 2008 with the rank of Senior Colonel, Köylü served as an Assistant Professor at the Turkish-Kyrgyz University of Enterprise (Kyrgyzstan) between 2010-2011 and at the Toros University between 2012-2019. After becoming an Associate Professor in May 2020, Köylü began to serve at the Faculty of Law and Vocational School of Çağ University from August 2020 onwards. As a member of the Directorate of the Vocational School of Çağ University, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Köylü continues to teach undergraduate and associate degree courses in Law History, Political History, and Principles of Atatürk and Revolution History. To this date, he has published 19 books and 35 articles and papers on the topics of the History of the Turkish Republic, Political History, and Law History.
Dr. Günel MUSAYEVA completed her undergraduate and master’s degree education on International Relations at the Azerbaijan University of Languages. Since 2017, she has been serving as the Manager of the Department of Scientific Translation, Publication and Public Relations at the Institute of Caucasus Studies of the Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences (ANAS). On 18 March 2022, Musayeva successfully defended her doctoral dissertation on History titled “The Oil Factor in Great Britain’s Azerbaijan Policy (1991-2013)”. Dr. Musayeva currently pursues research on Armenia and Russia relations. She has so far published 32 articles, 14 of which were published internationally in Russia, Georgia, Türkiye, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan.