Who Can Save Armenia? -ld19151030

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October 30, 1915

WHAT TO DO about the Armenian atrocities is a question agitating many minds. The government has made informal representations to Turkey through Ambassador Morganthau "pointing out the bad effect upon public opinion in the United States of the treatment of the Armenians," but beyond this, so Washington dispatches say, nothing further can be done. A London cable reports Lord Bryce as saying that "there is only one Power that can stop the Armenian atrocities, and that is Germany." The Germany press, however, give precise warning to the United States that "the Germans will not only not interfere with Turkish massacre of 'infidels,' but that they will not permit the United States to interfere." The Frankfurter Zeitung points out, with a logic all its own, that the Armenian affaire is no more Germany's business than the lynching of Negroes is German's business. A writer in the Vossische Zeitung adds this assurance:

"The American question is a purely theoretical discussion about humanity. We have battles to fight at present in order to insure our very existence. The political instinct of America's statesmen must tell them as much, especially as the all-around political situation to-day is very different from that of two months ago. The Quadruple Entente will. therefore, have just as little success with the stink bombs of hypocrisy and slander which it now throws as it has had until now in it's with honorable arms on the battle-fields of Western Europe."

When the German press decide that what has seemed to Americans a crime against humanity is "purely theoretical discussion," observes the Syracuse Post Standard, "we have learned to expect a reflection of their opinions in the minds of these publicists in this country who claim to have exclusive title to the name of neutral":

"Expectation is not kept waiting. H. L. Mencken, as American-born author who has two excellent books upon the philosophy of Nietzsche, explains the whole Armenian business in a paragraph:

"The Belgian relief-business having gradually petered out, so that it is now an almost impossible job to wring money from the books, the professional up lifters who lately engaged in it so copiously will turn their talents to collecting funds for the massacred Armenians. This Armenian excitement has been set going by the London press bureau, and follows classical lines. The same Armenians who were exterminated in 1896 are now being exterminated again. The only difference is that in the present case the accommodating Secretary Lansing has given the atrocity-mongers a life by addressing a moral note to the Turkish Government. The circulation of such notes now constitutes one of the chief duties of the State Department."

Agencies in this country, aside from the Government, are endeavoring to move the atrocities in Germany and Turkey in behalf on the stricken peoples. One private citizen sends an appeal urging that the German Emperor be sent personal letters "protesting against his countenancing the murder of women and children by his allies." It costs but a five-cent stamp. "Five hundred thousand letters at five cents each may save five hundred thousand women and children from the most horrible deaths. Who will write them? The first has gone." A meeting was lately held in the Century Theater, New York, under the auspices of a committee of prominent Americans and well-known Armenians, where the following resolutions were passed:

"Whereas, The civilized world has been shocked by a series of massacres and deportations of Armenians on the Turkish Empire: and,

"Whereas, These crimes and outrages committed upon an industrious, thrifty, and peace-loving people find no justification, viewed either in the light of law or humanity; and

"Whereas, Those Armenians who survive are in great need of succor and relief' be it hereby

"Resolved, That as American citizens, we make our most solemn protest against these cruel and inhuman practices and implore all officials and others having influence in the Turkish Empire to put an end to these wrongs and to render every aid to the American Ambassador and others who would rescue and repatriate a people, who by their history and achievements, have been a credit to the Empire.

"Resolved further, That war, wherever and by whatsoever nation waged, affords no warrant for inhumanity toward innocent persons. The slaughter of non-combatant men, the children wherever committed, have given to the fairest places upon the earth the semblance of hell. In the name of God of nations and our common humanity, we call upon the nations at war to cease these crimes against civilization and morality."

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