Turkush Statesman Denounced Atrocities -nyt19151010e

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TURKISH STATESMAN DENOUNCES ATROCITIES


October 10, 1915 (II-19:3,4)

Cherif Pasha Says Young Turks Long Planned to Exterminate the Armenian.

An arraignment of a Young Turks, or the Committee of Union and Progress, as having for years plotted the extermination of the Armenian people, is contained in a letter recently addressed by Mehmed Cherif Pasha to the Editor of the Journal de Geneve. The views of this eminent exile should doubtless be considered in the light of the fact that he was obliged to fly from his native land because of his secession from the party now in power in Turkey, but even his enemies-and that he has formidable ones is evidenced by the nearly successful attempt made upon his life by Turkish police agents in Paris about two years ago-must admit that he has had excellent opportunities for observation of the Young Turks policy, since he was prominent in their councils when they first obtained power on the overthrow of the Abdul Hamid regime, and left their ranks to build up the Liberal opposition party only when he became convinced that their leaders had no intention of carrying out the program of reform to which they were pledged. He is the son of the late Said Pasha, who was one of the chief advisers of Abdul Hamid and the first Grand Visier under the new Constitution. His wife is Princess Emanine, the daughter of Prince Halim, and he is the brother-in-law of Prince Said Halim, the present Grand Visier. He, himself, was at one time Turkish minister to Sweden.

After branding the Armenian atrocities perpetrated under the present regime as a surpassing the savagery of Genghis Khan and Tamerlane, Cherif Pasha continues:

"To be sure, the state of mind of the Unionists was not revealed to the civilized world until they had openly taken sides with Germany; but for more than six years I have been at exposing them in the Mecheroutiette (his newspaper, published first in Constantinople and then in Paris) and indifferent journals and reviews, warning France and England of the plot against them and against certain nationalities within the Ottoman borders, notably the Armenians, that was being hatched.

"If there is a race which has been closely connected with the Turks by its fidelity, by its services to the country, by the statesman and functionaries of talent it has furnished, by the intelligence which is manifesting in all domains-commerce, industry, science, and the arts-it is certainly the Armenian. "

Cherif Pasha then enumerates some of the contributions which Armenian have made to Turkish civilization, including the introduction of printing and the drama, and gives credit to an Armenian, Odian Effendi, for having collaborated with Midhat Pasha in framing the Ottoman Constitution, and he lays stress upon their fine qualities as agitators against the despotisms of Turkey and Persia-qualities, one suspects which have not highly recommended them to the autocratic "reformers" of the Young Turk regime. And he continues:

"Alas! at the thought that a people so gifted, which has served as the fructifying soil for the renovation of the Ottoman Empire, is on the point of disappearing from history-not enslaved, as were the Jews by the Assyrians, but annihilated-even the most hardened heart must bleed: and I desire, through the medium of your estimable journal, to express to this race which is being a assassinated my anger toward the butchers and my immense pity for the victim's.

"Having fulfilled this pious duty, let me make some exceptions relating not to the unhappy Armenian nation but to certain individual Armenians and some propagandist groups who have for the last six years so maladroitly constituted themselves the defenders and apologists of this Committee of Union and Progress, the broader of all their present sufferings. How often have I warned them against the bad faith of the unionists, the perversity of whose black souls I knew only too well! Besides, the massacres of Adana, provoked by the Union's orders, to have brought them to a sense of the real state of affairs. Some of them by a wrong appreciation of their interest, others influenced by political alliances of an evil sort-like that poor Constantinople deputy, Zohrab Effendi, who has expiated his errors on the scaffold-all the Armenian political leaders, or almost all, by identifying themselves with the political fortune of the Union, have compromised, instead of serving their national cause.

"If, instead of enrolling themselves under the banner of that baneful and treacherous association, they had ranged themselves openly beside the true liberals who had long been pointing out the danger of their course, even at peril of their lives, they would not only have remained true to their principles, but they would also have spared their unfortunate brethren the persecutions they suffered before the war and their whole nation the prospect of an extermination unique in the annals of history."




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