Pleas For Armenia By Germany Futile -nyt19151010b

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Kaiser's Ambassador Only Able to Prevent Repression in Constantinople


Infuriated by Desertion of Christian Soldiers to Allies, Turks Will Not Stop Outrages

OCTOBER 10, 1915

CONSTANTINOPLE, Sept. 20, (Correspondence of The Associated Press.)--By virtue of a total suppression of all news on the subject, the Turkish Government has succeeded in throwing an impenetrable veil over its actions toward all Armenians. Nothing definite is obtainable in Constantinople of the fate of this people out in the provinces, but it is known that severe massacres planned against the Armenians in the Ottoman capital were not carried out owing to objections of the German Government.

Concerning the Armenian affairs, three separate notes were presented to the Ottoman Government by the German Ambassador ad interim, Prince Hohenlohe--Luxemburg. If The Associated Press is rightly informed, these notes had no far-reaching effect, because under present conditions the German Government has been obliged to act rather gently. Turkey is still the ally of Germany, and the Armenians seem to have alienated the good will of the German Government and people to a Considerable extent by having made open cause with the Entente powers. Many of them have joined the Russian forces they revolted against Turkish authority. The three notes referred to were but official incident in weeks of endeavor to persuade the Turkish Government to take a more reasonable and humane view of the Armenian affair. One of the notes drew attention to the great injustice of making all Armenians suffer for the acts of a few. The Turkish Government, however, seems to have remained adamantine.

As already stated, its has been impossible to secure so acurate information. Turkish officials have all refused to discuss the situation or have placed all blame on the Armenians; these latter on the other hand have either refused to talk for fear of being also persecuted, or have assigned all responsibility to the Turks. A mass of irreconcilable statements has been the result, ranging, on the absurd claim that in Zeitun, Dort-Jul and other places 50, 000 Armenians had been massacred.

That the Turks have in many instanced been guilty of needless severity, and in some cases have permitted barbarous acts of violence, including murder and rape, seems well established. On the other hand, the Armenians in the Van country have been accused of similar excesses against the Turkish population, and the Turks having power on their side, have repaid such acts with liberal interest. It is said in well informed Constantinople circles.

It cannot be said that the acts of the Turkish Government in this connection have found the approbation of the advanced Turkish classes in the capital, who, for the greater part, favor a policy of conciliation and some of whom even go so far as to advocate the establishment of a separate Armenian State in Asia Minor under the sovereignty of the Ottoman Imperial Government. Meanwhile the tendency of the Ottoman Government, either to deny altogether that the Armenians are being persecuted, or give its acts a too obviously artificial basis and character, would have but one result, clearly, to indicate that it is both ashamed and afraid to let the truth be known. The many attempts made by The Associated Press correspondent to throw some light on the Armenian population resulted in failure, because the Turkish officials would not talk and the censorship would not permit the free passage of dispatches on the subject.

Nevertheless, it must be said that the Armenians are not blameless. Divested of all factors related to the national ambitions of the Armenians, their conduct toward the Turks and the Ottoman Government has invited constantly measures of repression. The rising of Zeitun, Dort Jul, and Van, and wholesale desertions of Armenian soldiers to the Allies on the Gallipoli Peninsula, and turned the Turk's heart into stone in matters Armenian, and he is now wreaking vengeance upon guilty and innocent alike.

Constantinople has for weeks had its daily crop of Armenian Rumors. One of the most interesting of them is that even the Sheik-Ul-Islam is a man of moderation and of very progressive tendencies.

It is asserted in Constantinople that the German Government has for some time, even at the beginning of the war, taken a special interest in the Armenians. The Germans feared from the very start of the war between Turkey and the Entente that the Armenians would make an attempt to re-establish by force their independence.

Prominent Armenians were informed that Germany would continue, and even increase, its benevolent interest in the race of the men who had been entrusted with the dissemination of this promise had the desired result. But last January and February, more especially in March and April, when the Allies had begun to attack the Dardanelles in real earnest, the services of These intermediaries ceased to be of value. Exaggerated reports of Entente victories in flamed the imagination of the Armenians, an in many parts they rose in revolt.

What has happened since then is still an unwritten chapter. No newspapermen are allowed to visit the affected districts and reports from these are altogether unreliable. The reticence of the Turkish Government cannot be looked upon as a good sign, however, especially when viewed in the light of what the German Government has been obliged to do.

A hard copy of this article or hundreds of others from the time of the Armenian Genocide can be found in The Armenian Genocide: News Accounts From The American Press: 1915-1922