Like Benito Mussolini, Armenians believe truth is an assertion at the head of a figurative bayonet.
Yes, don’t you see–the Armenians are deceitful and treacherous. You can’t trust them. Sound familiar? Note that any similarly gross overgeneralisation about another group of people would be met with fierce denunciations from all sides. The upshot of Fein’s article is that lots and lots of Turks died in the same period (true), there were atrocities carried out by Armenians in eastern Anatolia (also true) and there have been many Armenian terrorist attacks against Turkish targets in the 20th century (true again). The purpose of the article, of course, is to make light of the genocide and to equate the organising massacring and death march of over a million civilians by their own government (it is, of course, the intent and organised extermination, not the number, that ultimately matters) with the devastating consequences of near-total war between sovereign governments. Sounds curiously like arguments that go something like, “Lots and lots of Germans died fighting in WWII, so state-run genocide isn’t that big of a deal.”
My favourite bit is the accusation of religious bigotry (that would be bigotry against the Muslims, you see), the praise of the notorious genocide denier Shaw for his “academic courage,” and the immediate invocation of none other than Bernard Lewis. Of course, it was in no small part religious bigotry and supremacism on the part of the perpetrators that fueled the genocide, as Akcam has made clear, and I suspect that it has been the fact that the Turks are Muslim and the Armenians Christian that has kept the genocide from being more widely publicised and recognised for what it was.
Update: The Turkish Coalition of America takes mendacity to all new lows. Consider this description of H. Res. 106:
[it] targets Turkish history and heritage, hurts US-Turkish relations and the US national interest.
Impressive how they hardly ever mention anything about the substance of the resolution. That might make the “Turkish history and heritage” bit a little too hard for some folks to swallow. This “Action Alert” section is also quite hilarious in a depressing, sickening way:
Sadly, our voice has mostly been absent in this debate.
If you believe that, they have a bridge in Istanbul to sell you.