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The Armenian Genocide in the extant Arabic language literary sources part four

Reader comment on item: Does Turkey Still Belong in NATO?
in response to reader comment: Did the Arab press also lament "200 000 women, girls and children ...forcibly converted to Islam" by al-itihadiyuun?

Submitted by dhimmi no more (United States), Aug 5, 2012 at 06:55

Ianus wrote

Hi, dhimmi no more !As always your input is valuable and highly appreciated by me and not only in itself but also because it leads to further interesting questions and insights.

Thank you.

You wrote :"the trend in the press in Egypt at the time was to blame the German government as being supportive of the Turks"I just wonder if they remember who had been supportive of the Turks before the Germans assumed that thankless position , say during and after the Bulgarian horrors.

No and the reason is very obvious. The Arabs and more so the Egyptians had no like for the Turks or their imperialism

"and it is just an opinion you can take it or you can refuse it but the text really says the following:1. The Germans (unidentified) were the teachers/sponsors of the Turks in this crime2. The ones that committed such crime were al-itihadiyuun or الاتحاديون (read this as the Turks) and not the Germans"If I am not mistaken the term 'al-itihadiyuun' refers to 'members of the Committe for Union and Progress" (in the Osmanic language "İttihat ve Terakki Cemiyeti") or roughly "Unionists" and as such is far from being synonymous with "the Turks".

You are correct the Arabic word al-itihad means the union and to the Arabs and to the Egyptians the word al-itihadiyuun means those that belong to the union but it was also read at the time (1919) as the Turks

How many men from the "İttihat ve Terakki Cemiyeti" were among the peasants that robbed and slaughtered the Armenians in their villages in 1915 or among the savage Kurdish tribes that swooped like hugry vultures upon the wretched treks of the Armenian deportees ?

I think you are stuck in what the word means to a European but to the editor of al-Ahram it really did mean the Turks

And by the way it is really tragic that the Kurdish tribes are now the victims of the Turks as would have been expected after all I'm sure that the next victim on the agenda of the Turks would have been the Kurds

" 3. That the Turks did not solve the Armenian's problem by creating a state for them4. But the plan of the Turks was to mahw or محو (and this word means http://www.almaany.com/home.php?language=arabic&lang_name=%D8%B9%D8%B1%D8%A8%D9%8A&word=%D9%85%D8%AD%D9%88and here in the meaning in English http://www.almaany.com/home.php?language=arabic&word=%D9%85%D8%AD%D9%88&lang_name=English which means destruction, expulsion, getting rid of, elimination etc.. and this must have being the word used instead of the Arabic word for genocide which it is http://www.almaany.com/home.php?word=genocide or ibada or ابادة so the author is saying that the Turks were the ones that committed this genocide and it is clear as it can get"An interesting question that arises here is that of the Arabs' attitude towards the caliph who after all stood behind the 'al-itihadiyuun' and the genocide? Didn't they blame "Allah's shadow on earth" by blaming his faithful servants who were waging formal jihad against the infidels and were Islamizing Turkey by exterminating non-Moslems ? And who did they blame - if they did - for the Greek genocide that was taking place during Kemal's jihad with no "al-itihadiyuun", who had fled the country in a German submarine, any longer ruling the country?

Good questions and it is no secret that the Arabs in general and the Egyptians in particular had no like for the Turks because their imperialism was an economic disaster to the whole Arab world and I do urge you to read Albert Hourani's "Liberal Age" http://www.amazon.com/Arabic-Thought-Liberal-Age-1798-1939/dp/0521274230 and you will discover that the great Egyptian thinker and liberal Sheikh Mohamed Abdou (D1905) regarded the "caliph" as an infidel

" 5. Then he tells us that there were neutral eye witnesses that witnessed this crime unfoldingI hope I made it clear"Well, do the Arabs also report what the neutral sources do , e.g. that as of 1918 "200 000 women, girls and children ...forcibly converted to Islam" by al-itihadiyuun" and do they shed any tears over that ? I mean it has always puzzled me when I considered what Moslems had to say about other Moslems , especially when it turns out that it is exactly what they used to do themselves or would gladly do/have done under more favorable conditions (like now in Egypt ). Sorry for this note of incredulous curiosity (and/or cynicism ) on my part but I am a bit wary of Moslem sources on anything. Lying, concealment and half-truths in dar al-Islam are , alas, such a natural and conspicuous thing there which is not limited only to the history of early Islam, you know. ;( It doesn't mean though that the Arab sources on the Armenian genocide are not important to expose the official Turkish lie and denials. Quite the contrary!

I understand what you are saying and this is why I do urge you to read about great Egyptians of the time including Sheikh Mohamed Abdou and his followers and Sheikh Tahtawi and they had no like for Turkey I also did mention to you that this could have been the opinion of the editors of al-Ahram only because the owners of the paper were Syrian and Christian (the Takla family) but it seems that this opinion is to be found in various Egyptian papers of the time. I do believe that there was really genuine disgust with what the Turks did to the Armenians and by the way in regard to the Greek genocide the information in the Arabic language sources is from translations from European and American newspapers but I still have to come across an editorial so stay tuned

However if one turns to the rantings of Egyptian Muslims about the Armenian Genocide now you get a different story and for this see هاني السباعي or Hani al-Siba3ee and he is a salafist from Egypt who is living in London and he works at the al-Maqrizi center in London and here is his take on the Armenian Genocide http://www.almaqreze.net/ar/news.php?readmore=1553 and it is really the same Turkish BS so I guess your skepticism has a place but i do belive that there was a fleeting moment in 1919 when Arab Muslims had sympathy for the horrible ordeals of non Muslims and in this case the Armenian Genocide

Best regards

Thank you

Submitting....

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