The skulls and bones of Armenians still lie in the sands south of the Turkish border which Isis now controls; and when al-Nusrah captured parts of Deir ez-Zor, they blew up the Armenian cathedral of the Syrian city, took the bones of genocide victims from the vaults and scattered them in the streets. Several German officials who witnessed the original genocide went on to use their ‘expertise’ during the Jewish Holocaust in the Nazi occupied Soviet Union. And Hitler, preparing to invade Poland in 1939, asked his generals: “Who…is today speaking of the annihilation of the Armenians?”
Needless to say, we saw the usual weedy fence-sitting by the news agencies (especially by those with offices in Ankara and Istanbul) who emphasised the Turkish denial of the genocide and the “hotly disputed” nature of an international crime against humanity which – were those same agencies writing of the Jewish genocide – they would rightly never dare to ‘balance’ by quotations from deniers.
France and Russia and at least 18 other nations now accept the Armenian genocide as a fact of history, along with good old Pope Francis – the only major exception being the one whose name we would all guess: the US. An almost annual visit to Washington by a coterie of Turkish generals is usually enough to bring the White House to heel. Doesn’t America need those important air bases in south-eastern Turkey from which the US wages war against Isis (and from which, speak it not, Turkey now wages war against Kurds)?
But thank God, once more, for Germany. Here was one vote for which the country would be certain to snap obediently to attention.