Commentary No : 2013 / 77
5 min read

Author: Şükrü Server Aya, Athol Books, Belfast, 2013
Book Review (Review of Armenian Studies)
Hazel Çağan Elbir
Analyst, AVİM

Geoffrey Robertson, who prepared a report named “Was There an Armenian Genocide?” and this report was submitted to the British Parliament by British Armenian All-Party Parliamentary group on 14th December 2009. The report includes documents from Foreign and Commonwealth of Nations. The purpose of the report is to declare British Parliament as a denier of the so-called Armenian genocide.

This informative book was written in order to respond Prof. Geoffrey Robertson QC (Queens Counsel) article by article considering Armenian allegations which are contrary to the existing documents. Each article is interpreted and uncovered by the author, Şükrü Server Aya in a simple and frank way. Mr. Aya presents a documented historical response to Mr. Robertson. In order to adhere to the original report by Mr. Robertson, Mr. Aya quoted the related articles from the report. Therefore, the readers have a chance to read both sides at the same time. 

The set of response begins with a photo which was used as a front cover of the report. The distortions in the photo are indicated by Mr. Aya. 

Furthermore, Mr. Aya continues that the location where the photo was taken is not mentioned. Another important point which should be highlighted that the same photo was used in a web page "The Pontian Genocide: Distortions Misconceptions and Falsehoods". On the web page, it was claimed that the marching people in the photo were Pontic Greeks. Therefore, the front page photo does not give the report readers the impression of being trustworthy. 

This book analysis surely not sufficient to show how hatemongering is always carried out by pro-Armenian enunciators who are supporting Armenian allegations and try to make governments to receive Pro-genocide law amendments. Mr. Aya’s book is intense and to the point on replying Mr. Robertson’s report. In order to have a deep understanding on the theme of the book, this interactive book is recommended to be read with the support of electronic sources.

Armenian allegations and distortions of the truth are being raised by Mr. Robertson at the very beginning of the report. The promotion of hatred or hatemongering collapses with the refuse of the recent British governments. Due to the documents and historical facts, it is proved that the promises given to the Armenians were forgotten. This was also proved with the Official Gazette of the League of Nations, 1929. Furthermore, the following paragraphs on the issue part were supported by the electronic resources strongly.

Mr. Robertson expressed that Raphael Lemkin was a legal architect of the Genocide Convention and formulated the word genocide. Nevertheless, Mr. Aya replies that Lemkin had no relationship to law or had not known about the League of Nations’ resolutions. Armenian genocide was only mentioned in Nuremberg a trial which was based on invalid document concerning a speech by Hitler. Furthermore, this document was warped by the Armenian soldiers in the Nazi Army. The Jews were sent to the death camps by these soldiers under the auspices of SS soldiers. This information is also strengthened by Mr. Aya with the submission of another internet link. Mr. Aya emphasizes that these documents like photos, evidences and all details were historical truth. There is another epicenter point about the historical facts of the salvation of the Jewish people. Mr. Aya again set forth evidences that Turkish diplomats saved many Jews from slaughter or sent them to the places in the Middle East. 

Mr. Aya highlights that there are lots of repeated fantasies exaggerated by Mr. Robertson. In his report, Mr. Robertson, intents to replace "relocation" with "deportation”. To Mr. Aya, "deportation" is used to promote "relocation" as one of the crimes against humanity. 

Mr. Aya repeatedly reminds readers of British imperialism and its aftermath. Here again, Mr. Aya replies Mr. Robertson with the racist ideas of British imperialism while defending Ottoman Empire. Furthermore, he adds, the Ottoman Empire was lack of racialist ideology and this remarkable feature of Ottoman Empire was applauded by one of the British poets, Rudyard Kipling, Mr. Aya highlights.

Mr. Robertson repeatedly denotes in his report that he got benefits from eyewitnesses, journalists, German bankers, missionaries etc. But, somehow he never refer to "neutral witnesses" says Mr. Aya. Mr. Aya adds, is it proved that supply of news information is from Reuters London to the rest of the world. Furthermore, Mr. Aya narrates how Turkish troops were helpful to the Armenians and orphans in Van with respect to the book, which was written in 1937, by Kathe Erhold, Returning Home (Dresden, Leipzig) the distortions in Morgenthau's book were exposed by Mr. Aya in his book, "Preposterous Paradoxes of Ambassador Morgenthau". Swedish army officer Pravitz report was used as one of the sources. Mr. Aya emphasizes that there are 226 pages of irrefutable historical documents and these documents are available on the website which is indicated in the book. 

In the Article 41 of Mr. Robertson’s report, the Blue Book was a production of war propaganda. As a tool of propaganda, the Blue Book does not constitute a set of facts and this is also denoted. What Mr. Robertson wants is to re-discuss the said allegations. Nevertheless, Mr. Aya strongly replies, as a war propaganda the Blue Book was written with the purpose of putting into the shades the atrocities done by the Russians against the Jews when WWI commenced. The ultimate purpose was to produce allegations against Turks.

One of the parts in Mr. Robertson's report, the most respectable historians Prof. Justin McCarthy, Prof. Bernard Lewis and Prof. Heath Lowry are known for their neutral historical studies. However, Mr. Robertson claims that these “Pro-Turkish” historians were recruited by Turkish government and they were paid money. Mr. Aya makes the point of bringing Mr. McCarthy’s thoughts about “paid Pro-Turkish historians” that the idea is simply a lie and there is no document that these respectable historians were paid by Turkish government.

Mr. Robertson benefitted limited number of selected resources and generally the report was written on assumptions. Nevertheless, as a reply, this book is explanatory enough on the Armenian allegations by using reliable historical documents and neutral respectable historians.

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