A Scapegoat Sought In Turkey -nyt19190219

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A Scapegoat Sought in Turkey

FEBRUARY 19, 1919

It is a fact both curious and interesting that in Constantinople, first of all places, high officials have been brought to trial on charges of having committed or permitted atrocities in the course of carrying on war. Already the prosecution has begun of KAIMAL BEY, who was Governor of Diarbekir, and the accusation against him is that he is responsible for a wholesale massacre of Armenians in the territory he ruled. He deserves punishment, according to a brief report of the prosecutor's opening speech, because this and other massacres of the same kind "filled the whole world with horror."

The characterization is true, but other Turkish Governors have done the same thing so many times, and so often produced the same emotion, without exciting any comment except praise in Turkish official or judicial circles, that KAIMAL BEY has some right to regard himself as ill-used in being brought to book for following what after all was a well-established custom.

He is a victim of what for Turkey is a new form of morality, or rather, perhaps, of a new respect for foreign opinion . His conviction will presumably be easy. If it is really intended, and intended it may be as a convenient way of concentrating responsibility on a dead man. That has been done before -- in the case of poor Captain Kidd, to mention only one instance nearer home than Turkey.

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