It is true the hardest stories to tell are the stories that connect with you personally, stories of other people’s pains are much easier to write, writing about your own painful history is like making an open surgery on yourself, I’m an Armenian writer and in this article I want to share my own story of Armenian genocide which killed one and half million Armenians, and want to show why it’s not an Armenian story it’s a global one.
It has been 100 of years, where Turkish government is denying the Armenian genocide, in order to conceptualize this for the new reader on the subject, this 100 years consists of 4 generations of Armenians, who were been effected by the Genocide and carried this historic wound with us, it has been 100 of years, our ancestors telling the painful stories to us, the stories of torture, humiliation and abandonment from the home lands and the horrific evidences of mass massacre , it is sad and insulting to see not only for Armenians but also for all humanity that Turkish government denies the Armenian Genocide, with doing so it encourages the wrongdoing to repeat again.
When I was a kid back in Syria, my father took me to the Dair Al Zour Church, where I saw the remains of the thousands of people who died from deliberate starvation and torture, and later I had the chance to visit Armenia and went to the memorial museum of Genocide there, the one impression you make from seeing all the evidence even if you are not an Armenian, that terrible things happened to this people in the years of 1800-1920 , you can easily notice the Turkish Islamic hate to the Armenian people, their deliberate attempts to eradicate the Armenians from Ottoman turkey, by the use of force and torture on a scale never happened to any nation lived in the middle east.
Just make a search on Google and you will see, how Armenian women and young girls, has been raped and crucified in the years when the mass Armenian genocide happened, the level of Turkish brutality at that times, was only comparable to the German Nazi brutality in world war two on the Jewish people.
I remember very well, how my grandfather (my mother’s father) told me shedding his tears and after a long hesitation and denial, how he and his family escaped from the small village where the Turks entered the town and massacred all the people inside, his family watched how their relatives being butchered and killed in front of their eyes, with cold blood and hatred, my grandfather’s family only managed to escape when a Turkish friend opened the house taking them in, and hiding them inside his house storage, afterwards they took a cart and a horse and escaped south to Syria, where I was born as the second generation Armenian.
My grandfather from the father side, had a different story and more painful one, he and his brothers, were captured in Istanbul, they were intellectuals and writers, from a wealthy and respectable family there, but because they were Armenians, they been detained and sent to the (road to death) which killed the million and half Armenians on the journey, he had 7 brothers, all of them were killed because of starvation and hunger, he was the only one who survived the killings because he was very young, and after they reached the final destination in Al Dair zour in Syria, the Armenians stayed and settled there, my grandfather became an orphan, and managed to create his life by his own effort, maybe people will be surprised why there is Armenians in Syria, and the reason is Armenians were escaping from mass murder in the lands of the north.
After the reader has been shown my family’s tragic history, the lost lives houses and belongings and the absent family relatives that were never existed for me as a fourth generation Armenian, you can imagine now, how this event shaped and created an irreversible event in our people’s lives and psychology, it made clear to us that Christians can be mass murdered in Muslim countries at any moment in time, and it had an immediate effect on me and my family who lived in Syria and become part of the culture there.
The Turkish persecution of Armenians never stopped there, at the midst of Syrian civil war, the Turkish government is backing extremist Islamic groups, and trying to eradicate Syria not only from Armenians, but also Christians as well, when I was back in Aleppo, Syria, I witnessed how the so called the rebel groups, attacked and shelled the Armenian and Christian streets in a ratio of 100% more than other streets and neighborhoods, it is the same Islamic hate to the Christian minorities in the middle east, who is dressing now in a different clothes and slogans, the purpose was always the same depopulate the Christian streets and populate them with Muslim neighborhoods, it’s a story we know it well and learnt it by history and personal experience.
Another direct evidence to the Turkish hate in the Syrian region, is the case of the town of Kessab, this town was a touristic marvel, my family had a small apartment there, the majority of the population in Kassab are Armenian, although this town never had and will have any strategic significance for the rebels in Syria, the Turkish government have sent proxy groups from its borders to burn and loot the city, and after they succeeded to enter the city, they burnt and looted the churches and houses they stolen our house and broken our crosses and bibles, and after they left they left behind a deserted town and people who don’t have nowhere else to go except their destroyed homes and towns.
The latest chapter of this tragic events happened in Sulemania Street in Aleppo, Syria, where the so called rebels, are shelling the Christian streets with very damaging local made rockets, they destroyed a 300 meter street and made it inhabitable, most the residents were Armenians in that street, one of my friend’s family now is staying in hospital and his daughter will never be able to see again.
My final message is this, talking with the Turks on this subject, showed time and time again that it’s not effective, the Turkish government only understands the language of force, and I urge the global community to put pressure as much as possible on the Turkish government whether it be political economic and social, or by abandoning it from Nato in order to stop intimidating Christians and stop fighting them under its sphere of influence, and I urge the global community to demand a full recognition of the Armenian Genocide, for the well observer Turkey showed time and time again that it falls short in protecting human rights internally and externally and in showing this traits, it proved that it is a dangerous country for the peace and prosperity of the world.