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|No Reconciliation Without Compensation
Jirair Tutunjian, Toronto, 25 January 2015
Armenians have ample reasons to mistrust the recent diabetes-inducing words of Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu about making peace with Armenians. But assuming that the Turkish PM is genuinely interested in making a just and permanent peace with Armenia and Armenians…
Why does Turkey not address the just demands Armenians have made for a century? Turkey keeps a close eye on what Armenians (in Armenia and in the Diaspora) write and say. Davutoglu knows exactly what the Armenians want yet sidesteps the core issues and talks of “shared pain” and “shared history” to twist history.
Why is Turkey trying to sabotage the most important day of the Armenian calendar by cynically shifting its Gallipoli campaign’s 100th commemorations to coincide with April 24, 2015?
Why does President Erdogan continue to insult the Armenian nation in his speeches?
Why did President Erdogan send an inane letter to President Serge Sarkissian inviting him to the Gallipoli “celebrations of peace and friendship” when he didn’t respond to Sarkissian’s invitation to Yerevan on the same date.
Why does Turkey continue to spend millions in anti-Armenian propaganda?
Why do state-sponsored Turkish scholars deny the millennia-long Armenian statehood and presence in Western Armenia and Cilicia? (sorry, we mean Cukorova).
Who do the same Turkish scholars claim Urartians have no links to Armenia/Armenians?
Why will the Akdeniz University host an anti-Armenian seminar (April 8—to 11) titled “A Hundred Years of Deadlock of an Old Friendship…The International Symposium of Turkish-Armenian Relationship: Social Memory, Prejudice and Truth” without inviting a single representative from Armenia to take part?
Why do Turkish archeologists hide Armenian relics they dig or mislabel them?
Why doesn’t Turkey unconditionally end the blockade of Armenia?
Why doesn’t Turkey return the Armenian churches and monasteries?
Why do Armenians in Istanbul feel like a besieged people?
Why has Turkey, for a century, pushed the Armenian Patriarchate in Istanbul to irrelevance and, in fact, decides who becomes patriarch?
Why do countless hidden Armenians, living in Turkey, fear to reveal their identity?
Why are young Armenian students in Istanbul forced to study that their nation is the enemy of the Turks and Turkey?
Why did Turkey order Syrian rebels to target the Armenian community in Aleppo and to destroy the Armenian church in Deir el-Zorr?
Why does Turkey sponsor history chairs at universities outside Turkey to denounce Armenians and to deny the Genocide?
Why does Turkey continue to sponsor non-Turkish ‘historians’ who deny the Genocide and write books filled with hatred of Armenians?
Why does Turkey’s ambassador in Canada, to cite just one example, campaign to have Canada’s recognition of the Genocide repealed?
Why are Armenian historic sites destroyed and the ones which are still around (Ani) not identified as Armenian?
Why calling a Turk “Armenian” is such a common curse in Turkey that it is even used in the Turkish parliament?
Why doesn’t Turkey reveal who was behind the assassination of Hrant Dink?
Why does Turkey persecute Turkish writers and intellectuals who recognize the Genocide?
Why are racist and terror groups, such as the Grey Wolves, allowed to spout their anti-Armenian slander and threats?
Why doesn’t Turkey truly open its historic archives regarding the Genocide?
Why does Turkey continue its campaign to hide or erase the vast Armenian financial, political, social and cultural contributions to the Ottoman Empire and to the Republic of Turkey?
Why does Turkey continue to repeat the slander that Armenians of the Ottoman Empire conspired with the Russians to bring down the Ottoman Empire?
Mr. Davutoglu knows the above are indisputable facts. Yet he expects Armenians to approach Turkey like lambs just because of his honey-dipped words. Why do Erdogan and Davutoglu insult the intelligence of Armenians by talking about reconciliation while ignoring, for example, the return of the illegally-occupied Kars and Ardahan to the Republic of Armenia?
Why does Davutoglu still indulge in twinning the Armenian ‘suffering’ (his word) with the losses the Ottomans suffered in WWI when he knows well that the Turkish suffering was self-inflicted (they declared war and attacked Russia) and Armenians had nothing with Turkish losses?
There’s a North American/British phrase which goes like this: “What part of ‘NO’ don’t you understand?” It’s uttered to underline a rejection. We say to Mr. Davutoglu “What part of ‘NO’ don’t you understand?” Our response to Turkey’s sweet words should remain “No, thank you,” unless Ankara, Messrs. Erdogan and Davutoglu back their words with concrete proposals which recognize historic facts and Armenian rights.
Armenians are tired of Davutoglu’s stale “just memory”, “shared history”, “recognize each other in light of 800 years of common history”, “natural trust and cooperation”, “engaging in a humane relationship” and “Turkish empathy for what the Armenians went through” while he ignores what matters: compensation which Armenians have made clear a thousand times over during a very long and painful one-hundred years.