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Stories Of Hardship

Armenian Genocide Project

Brett Blizzard

on 3 May 2010

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Transcript of Stories Of Hardship

Stories Of Hardship Abraham H. Hartunian & The Armenian Genocide insert picture here Origins of the Genocide Many acts of aggression have been purpotrated by the Muslims, dating back 30 years prior to the start of the genocide (remembrance and denial)

The beginnings of tense relations between the Muslims and the Armenians began in early to middle 19th century but escalated as years went on

When the Europeans came to through the Ottoman Empire on their trade routes, they favored trading with the Armenians in the area rather than the Muslims because the Armenians were Christian, like the Europeans. (remembrance and denial)

The preference in trade caused growing resentment towards the Armenians, which eventually sparked the violent acts by the Muslims (armenian national institute) Background Information The Ottoman Empire was a large country to the east of the Mediterranian Sea; the primary religion of the area was Islam (little armenia)

The Armenian population was Christian, and
was estimated at about 2.5 million before 1914

Although Muslim agression towards the
Armenians predates the start of the genocide,
the day on which the genocide officially
begins is April 24, 1915 (armenian national

The genocide was supported by the
government, which still refuses to admit that
the genocide occured; this is still an important
argument in the United Nations Armenia: a historical atlas [Robert H. Hewson] emersonkent.com acus.org warcrimes.info 19th Century Hostility In the late 19th century, acts of violence by the Muslims against the Armenians started to appear, from robberies to destruction of shops; even some murders occured (turks, armenians, and the g-word)

On December 1, 1875, the Turkish government ordered the destruction of several Armenian marketplaces (remembrance and denial)

In August of 1984, there was a large scale government supported attack on Armenian villages, where seventy four villages were destroyed, along with 10,000 brutal deaths (remembrance and denial)

At this point, the attacks were carried out by muslim citizens aided and supported by the government, but soldiers didn't get heavily involved until further on (turks, armenians, and the g-word) The Genocide Begins The genocide officially started on April 24, 1915 when over 800 Armenian leaders, intellectuals, and writers are rounded up in Constantinople, and are executed. This day is the day annually commemorated to the genocide (little armenia)

The reason for the Government to
escalate the genocide at this point
in time is due to the First World War.
The war made it easier to cover up
the genocide at first, and it gave the
other nations of the world something
else to focus on (armenian national

Terror spreads as Muslim soldiers and
citizens alike march from town to
town slaughtering the armenians,
often either beating them to death or
killing them with blades; ammunition
was saved for the soldiers in the war
Genocide Spreads When a new town was attacked, often there were small groups of Armenians who attempted to defend their town and family from the Muslim invaders. However, the poorly armed Armenians didn't last long against the well equipped Muslim raiders, especially not when there were soldiers among them (turks, armenians and the g-word)

As town after town fell, the Muslims burned the shops and homes, and killing, torturing, or raping any survivors they might find.

Ironically enough, they had orders not to loot, because "they were there to cleanse, not to steal". Even with these orders, it wasn't uncommon for a soldier to take money or possessions from a murdered family
(turks, armenians, and the g-word)

The mass killings slowed as more and more Armenians escaped via Allied ships, and World War One ends. It is difficult to put a date on the end of the genocide, because the Turkish government denies the existence of the genocide, and even still continues with outright descrimination; the killings started to slow in the mid 1920's, however (armenian national institute) Abraham Hartunian Abraham's hometown of Severek was one of the earlier towns to be raided by the Muslim forces. On Sunday, October 27, 1895, Severek was overtaken by a mass of enraged Muslim citizens (A. Hartunian)

In the initial raiding of the town, countless shops, homes, and churches were burned down or desecrated, and almmost every adult, male Armenian was brutally beaten to death or trampled by the angry crowds (A. Hartunian)

Abraham survived the crowds because they beat him so badly, they mistook him for being dead and left him. A group of Armenian women then found him and hid him for a few hours, until a group of Muslims coming back found him and threw him in the local jail with the rest of the surviving Armenian men (A. Hartunian)

When he was in jail, the Muslim captors gave them a choice: convert to Islam and live a free but limited life, or they could remain Christian and go to "trial", which usually ended in a slow death. Some took the deal and were set free, but Abraham wasn't one of them. (A. Hartunian) Abraham after the trial All of the Armenians who refused to convert, were then moved to a larger facility where they were tried for being political culprits. Abraham was also tried for treason, but he was acquitted surprisingly (A. Hartunian)

Although he was free, Abraham was constantly harassed by Turkish soldiers and officials. Eventually he was forced to relocate to Diyarbekir, where the conditions remained almost the same. (A. Hartunian)

Abraham left Diyarbekir with several Armenian students because of pressures from the local Muslim population, but when stopped by the police, the books that the students had with them were enough to get them and Abraham thrown back into jail, again for being "political culprits" (A. Hartunian)

Fortunately for Abraham, the Allied forces were making advances towards that area, so the Turks retreated with the prisoners southwest until they reached the Mediterranean Sea (armenian national institute) Turkish Retreat With Prisoners The British were making advances through Turkey, liberating towns and cities as they reached them. The Turks were continuously being beaten and pushed back further and further, and with them was Abraham and the rest of the Armenian prisoners. (A. Hartunian)

On this retreat, many of the prisoners were killed so that the Turks could travel faster, and because they didn't want to surrender the prisoners to the allies. The Turks usually killed the prisoners by having them dig their own mass graves, and then either shooting them into it, or just pushing man women
and child into the pit and burying them alive
(A. Hartunian)

Luckily, Abraham was among the few lucky
survivors that were held at a port town on the
Mediterranean Sea. In that city, the prisoners
continued to be beaten and killed, except here
they were often thrown into the sea rather than
buried. With the British encampments very close
by, Abraham knew that if he could survive a few
days, he could be rescued by the Allied forces
(A. Hartunian) Abraham is finally rescued As the final days of Abraham's captivity came, the Turks took shelter in the city of Marsh, while the Allies were in the neighboring city of Aleppo. Even though Abraham and the other prisoners were beaten daily, he never lost hope of being free (A. Hartunian)

After a few days, the battle shifted from Marsh to Smyrna, where there was outright fighting in the streets. Abraham saw an opening in the fighting, and with the Turkish officers distracted by the battle, he and a few other prisoners escaped to an American-occupied part of the city (A. Hartunian)

It wasn't long before the Allied forces forced the Turkish Army to surrender the city, and with it, they recieved the remaining prisoners that the Turks hadn't had the time to kill. Not many prisoners were recovered that day (A. Hartunian)

Abraham and the suviving Armenians were then taken out of the country on Allied naval vessels and moved to various parts of Europe. Abraham, however chose to go to America so that he could take his horrific account of the genocide and share it with the world (A. Hartunian) An estimated 2 million Armenians were massacred between the years 1915 and 1923, leaving only 500,000 survivors of the original 2.5 million

Turkey still denies the existence of the genocide, and racial descrimination still continues in Turkey

All leaders of the Turkish
government have gone
unpunished for their actions,
because according to them
they were supressing a civil
war, not executing a genocide Armenica.org Adalian, Rouben Paul. "The Armenian Genocide: Context and Legacy." Editorial.
armenian-genocide.org. Armenian National Institute, Feb. 1991. Web.
11 Feb. 2010. <http://www.armenian-genocide.org/Education.56/

Akcam, Taner. "Turks, Armenians, and the 'G-word.'" Editorial.
galenet.galegroup.com. Gale Cengage Learning, Fall 2005. Web. 11
Feb. 2010. <http://galenet.galegroup.com/servlet/History/

"Armenian Genocide Timeline." Littlearmenia.com. N.p., 2002. Web. 11 Feb. 2010.

Hartunian, Abraham H. Neither To Laugh Nor To Weep. N.p.: Beacon Press; First
Edition edition, 1968. Print.

Papazian, Dennis R. "Remembrance and Denial: The Case of the Armenian Genocide."
Editorial. galenet.galegroup.com. Gale Cengage Learning, Winter 2000. Web.
11 Feb. 2010. <http://galenet.galegroup.com/servlet/History/
Bibliography After the Genocide
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