This simple but poignant question, posed by one of the presiding judges of the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) to the lawyers defending the official Armenian narrative during the January 28, 2015 appeal hearings in Strasbourg , sums it all up, doesn’t it? It is like “the king is naked” call of the “genocide industry”.
The United Nations 1948 Convention on Prevention and Punishment of Genocide provides the definition of genocide and stipulates that
a) genocide charges can only be litigated at a “competent tribunal,”
b) which shall follow “due process,”
c) to prove “intent to destroy.”
Such was never done in the case of Turkish-Armenian conflict surrounding the 1915 events and no court verdict exists saying it is genocide. To call it one anyway would be defrauding the unsuspecting public that there is somehow a genocide verdict when we all know that there is not.
The Kangaroo courts of occupied Istanbul by the corrupt Ottoman judges, 1919-1920, designed to settle political scores left no room for due process; the Malta Tribunals, 1919-1921, were abandoned before they could start, by the crown prosecutors due to lack of evidence that could withstand the scrutiny of the court room; and the 1916 Ottoman courts martial actually prosecuted some of its own military personnel for mistreating Armenians and proving, in the process, that TERESET (TEmporary RESETtlement) could not have been a genocide. Here is the entire legal background of the TERESET which is skillfully and persistently dressed as genocide by anti-Turkish, Islamophobic, and/or other special interests.
In a landmark decision, ECHR unequivocally supported the above position in its Dec 17, 2013 verdict on Perincek vs Switzerland that “[t]he existence of a ‘genocide’, which was a precisely defined legal concept, was not easy to prove”. The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) added: “doubted that there could be a general consensus… given that historical research was, by definition, open to discussion and a matter of debate, without necessarily giving rise to final conclusions or to the assertion of objective and absolute truths“. Thus, the ECHR created a legal precedent of inadmissibility of any comparison between the Holocaust and the Armenian claims; the latter lacks what the former clearly has: concrete historical facts, clear legal basis, and existence of the “acts had been found by an international court to be clearly established”.
The Armenian lobby can no longer hide behind “denier” accusations after the ECHR issued its verdict in Perincek vs Switzerland that events of 1915 cannot be classified as genocide. Mutual suffering, shared pain, and fair memory are the operative words here that can lead to a joint narrative, peace, and eventual closure. When you refer to 1915 as genocide anyway, you deliberately dismiss the three momentous events that caused the TERESET order by the Ottoman Government came on May 31, 1915:
(1) By December 1914, Armenian revolutionaries and insurgents have already killed 120,000 Muslims, mostly Turkish.  This number represents 0.8% of the Ottoman population of 15 million at the time. Imagine if 0.8% of the US population today, roughly 2.6 million Americans, were wiped out by Armenians (or other insurgents). What would America do? Considering the US launched a global war against a pretty much “invisible” enemy, where more than a million (mostly Muslims) were killed and 1.5 trillion dollars spent over a 13 years for 3,000 Americans lost on 9/11, can you even venture to guess what the US would do if 2.6 million Americans were killed by some “visible” insurgents? Would the US stop at TERESET like the Ottomans did in 1915, or would at least a Waco or even a Nagazaki be on the table? Be honest.
(2) Sarikamish defeat. It is no secret that volunteering Ottoman-Armenian scouts helped Russian armies invade North Eastern Anatolia while others took part in the Russian invasion. The Ottoman 3rd army lost anywhere between 30,000 to 75,000 (number in dispute) soldiers in that campaign and it halted Turkish advance into the Caucasus. Add this defeat to the massive casualty number given above. What do you get? And that sum does not even begin to describe the Turkish anxiety, disappointment, and , indeed, anger.
(3) Here comes the clincher. Armenian insurgents in the City of Van were preparing for this day for decades.  On April 19, 1915, Armenian revolted in Van and by 17 May, they have killed or forcibly removed about 80,000 Ottoman
Muslims, destroying all of the Muslim quarters of the City of Van. They then presented the key to the city to the Russian commander of the invading Russian armies.  Supreme treason with 80,000 more Muslim victims!
Adding 80,000 and 120,000, one gets 200,000, or 1.33 % of the Ottoman population in 1915. This would correspond to about 4.4 million Americans today; imagine this many Americans being killed by Armenians (or some other insurgents) in 2015. Reflect on that number for a while, before you quickly move on.
Imagine 1.33% of the Ottoman population is being killed by some insurgents, obviously with some help from the Armenian community, and all the Ottoman government decides to do is TERESET. With its best young men already sent to countless fronts defending the tri-continental Ottoman empire, leaving the central government unable to control such a wide scale insurgency as in Van and the rest of Eastern Anatolia, much less separate the guilty from the innocent, the Ottoman government decides to temporarily relocate the whole community (minus those who work for the government, craftsmen, soldiers, doctors, nurses, as well as Armenians of Catholic or Protestant persuasion or those who live in Western cities like Istanbul, Izmir, Edirne, and so on. The Western parts of the empire was excluded from the TERESET order, because the Armenians there mostly stayed loyal to the Ottoman Empire. This, alone proves, that it was no genocide, as loyalists were left untouched.)
Would the US stop at TERESET, i.e. moving insurgents from point A to point B in America, if those insurgents killed 4.4 million Americans?
If we cannot be fair, think rationally, and engage in a reasoned debate, then all we have is an ill-advised “travel program” cultivating bias, hatred, and more polarization, like the one I am responding to here which does little more than recirculation of the same old Armenian narrative with no new information, angle, or approach to even faintly suggest the inclusion of Armenian complicity in 1890-1915 period.
What about the losses of the Turks? Are they ignored by the supporters of the Armenian Diaspora’s distorted history because they were Muslims? Turks, because of their culture, grieve through their trauma silently and may not exactly scream in your face like Armenians. This dignified silence of the Turkish victims of Armenian atrocities, however, should not be interpreted as admission of guilt for crimes not committed. That said, where is the pain of Turks, at the hands of Armenian revolutionaries, in the alleged Armenian narrative?
And how can we forge peace and reach closure if my pain is “systematically” ignored?
And if biased academicians, ignoring international law, contradicting historical evidence, and responsible opposing views to propagate a well-crafted and relentless myth?