Archive for April, 2007
Cartoon source: “Ermenistan,” seen on the shirt of a Ku Klux Klan member, means Armenia in Turkish and Azerbaijani
What do Ku Klux Klan, Terrorism, Narkomania, Snakes, Swastika, Evil, blood thirsty Scarpions, Weapons, Death, Beasts and Big Nose devils have in common? They equate to Armenians and their country, according to a supra-talented Azerbaijani oil “investigator” and cartoonist who has received many honors from his government.
In October of 2005 I posted an article from Agence France Press telling about the president of Azerbaijan’s National Geophysicists Committee, Kerim Kerimov, who, the article said, is better known for signing treaties to open Azerbaijani oil to American and western markets than for his anti-Armenian cartoons.
Much of his work targets Armenia, against which Azerbaijan fought a bloody war, and in large parts complements the government’s official information campaign against the Caucasus nation.
Anyone in Baku will tell you that Azerbaijan has many enemies: Armenia with its Russian backing, Armenia’s wealthy diaspora, Azerbaijan’s own opposition forces and perhaps a few loose clerics from Iran.
Kerimov goes further and puts the enemies into pictures, with horned and bewarted horrific caricatures of Armenians clawing at the map of Azerbaijan or driving a wedge between the country and its ally Turkey with a giant bomb.
If you are surprised that you have not heard of Kerimov before, don’t feel bad. I mean what is wrong making hundreds of cartoons depicting Armenians as snakes, scorpions and Ku Klux Klan members? After all, Armenia has won the war over Azerbaijan, hasn’t it?
Cartoon: Azerbaijan holding Armenia’s swastika knife
This is exactly what you hear all the time. Azerbaijan hates Armenians to death, smashes their ancient monuments to dust, jail its own Azeri journalists for writing the truth about the war with Armenia, and even deports a Turkish pianist with Armenian roots because of the war of Nagorno-Karabakh in the early 1990s. Who dares to ask why the war started in the first place? Who dares to remember the anti-Armenianism in Azerbaijan and the pogroms against Armenian citizens and the destruction of monuments before there was even word about war?
If you are still surprised that you have not heard of Kerimov before, you are missing something big. According to his official website, “Prof. Kerim Kerimov for the first time in the world found the right way and method for prediction earthquake approximately 4-5 hours before the starting of this process.” This is not Borat, it is true.
And there is more, in case you are interested. According to his official website, Kerimov is:
• President of National Committee of Geophysics of Azerbaijan (read about Committee)
• President of Azerbaijan Section of SEC
• Member-corresponding of Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences
• Doctor of Geology and Mineralogy sciences, Professor • Head of scientific works and author of many inventions
• Honored man of science and techniques
• Real member of Eastern International Oil Academy
• \fs20cf4Real member of Ecoegenetic International Academy
• Real member of European Academy Sciences
• He is an editor and chief of “Geophysics news in Azerbaijan” magazine An author of more than 550 scientific works, including different monographs, atlases, maps, inventions, articles and other.
He is an author of more than 4500 political cartoons, which have been published in different countries.
Since 1998, he has been awarded with a lot of medals including gold medals from the government and several times was appointed with the following titles: the man of the year, inventor of the year, scientist of the year.
He was conferred the cold order “Glory”, by government.
Pretty amazing. Did you catch the part that he is “author of more than 4500 political cartoons”?
Cartoon: Turkic countries – Kazakhstan, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Kirgizstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan – killing the Nazi snake, Armenia. The cartoon is reflective of Pan-Turkism, a racist-linguistlic idea to establish a pan-Turkish Empire from Turkey to Kazakhstan that some scholars have argued has contributed to the planning of the Armenian Genocide.
I must admit I have not seen all 4,500, although I had the displeasure to go through hundreds of them available at his website (added in October of 2006). Besides the boringly self-repeating few figures, there is something else that Kerimov’s cartoons have in common. Most of them say in four different languages, “Terrorism, narkomania and armenism are the same diseases.”
These ones are worth no words:
© Blogian 2007 – Pow Wow Native American Festival in Denver
In July 2006 an Alaska Native woman in Fairbanks reported to the police that she had been raped by a non-Native man. She gave a description of the alleged perpetrator and city police officers told her that they were going to look for him. She waited for the police to return and when they failed to do so, she went to the emergency room for treatment. A support worker told Amnesty International that the woman had bruises all over her body and was so traumatized that she was talking very quickly. She said that, although the woman was not drunk, the Sexual Assault Response Team nevertheless “treated her like a drunk Native woman first and a rape victim second”. The support worker described how the woman was given some painkillers and some money to go to a non-Native shelter, which turned her away because they also assumed that she was drunk: “This is why Native women don’t report. It’s creating a breeding ground for sexual predators.”
The paragraph above is from a study by Amnesty International, released on April 24, 2007, that has concluded, “One in three Native American or Alaska Native women will be raped at some point in their lives. Most do not seek justice because they know they will be met with inaction or indifference.”
© Blogian 2007 – Pow Wow Native American Festival in Denver
According to the report, Native American women are about 3 times more likely to be raped in America than other women. Moreover,
According to the US Department of Justice, in at least 86 per cent of reported cases of rape or sexual assault against American Indian and Alaska Native women, survivors report that the perpetrators are non-Native men. (This is in the case when most rapes in America are perpetrated by the same racial group – Blogian.)
The violation against Native American women is shocking and reminds of all the trouble and suffering that these people have been going through for hundreds of years. Reading Lakota Woman earlier this year – a book by Mary Crow Dog about her experience as a Native American woman – I could not believe that even in the 1970s there was cultural genocide going on against the Natives. But it turns out it is going on today, in 2007.
© Blogian 2007 – Pow Wow Native American Festival in Denver
I think the rape of Native American women is continuation of the cultural genocide. But whatever you name it, it is happening and needs immediate reaction, especially given the Amnesty International charge that the US government is to blame for not protecting these women and children.
Interestingly, I brought similar topic up with my Native American studies professor Glenn Morris two weeks ago when I asked him what was the situation with human trafficking among Native American reservations (having found out about domestic human trafficking in the US, I had figured out that most vulnerable of US communities – the “Indian” reservations – would be a source for violating women and children). Prof. Morris didn’t know whether there was human trafficking, but he said there were lots of rape.
The full study is available at http://web.amnesty.org/library/Index/ENGAMR510352007.
The Professor from Sweden who is in Turkey to investigate a possible Armenian genocide mass grave that we wrote about a few posts ago, has sent another e-mail with more details about the Turkish Historical Society fiasco:
As you know by now I was at the mass-grave sıte on Aprıl 23 wıth Yusf Halacoglu the presıdent of the TUrkısh Hıstorıcal Socıety. For me thıs was a pılot case for the degree to whıch ıt was possıble to do an ınternatıonal co-operatıon on a strıctly scıentıfıc no-nonsense basıs.
We were to make a prelımınary survey of the grave ın Kuru vıllage, Nusaybın dıstrıct, Mardın provınce, ın order to see ıf a later scıentıfıc ınvestıgatıon could be made by archaeologısts, forensıc medıcal experts, physıcal anthropologısts, hıstorıans and others. My role was sımply to determıne ıf thıs was a suıtable sıte for a full-scale ınterdıscıplınary research. The fırst task was to determıne ıf the fındıngs were ıntact accordıng to the photographs publıshed ın October and November 2006 – whıch I had wıth me. I had asked also for the archaeologıcal report from the Mardın museum that was dated December 1, 2006 but was not gıven because ıt would cause “complıcatıons”. I dıd get thıs report on the day after the vısıt to the grave.
Based on newspaper artıcles I expected to see the remaıns of 38 persons lyıng more or less on a pıle on top of the floor of a cave wıth masses of skulls, fragments of skulls, leg bones and so on. The skulls were not blackened. Analysıs of the photos had been done by forensıc medıcal experts and they saıd ıt ındıcated that someone had been arrangıng the skulls for the photos, so we already expected a certaın degree of contamınatıon to the sıte.
But I was thouroughly unprepared to dıscover that there were no skulls, skull fragments or large leg bones lyıng vısıble. To one sıde there were some very blackened rıb-bones and few large pıeces of Roman perıod pottery. When I protested, showed the photos, the Turkısh sıde argued that ıt had been raınıng hard durıng the wınter and maybe all of the bones had been covered ın mud and that we could begın dıggıng to fınd them. Thıs ın ıtself was an admıssıon that the sıte was heavıly contamınated sınce ıt meant that the openıng had been left uncovered and unprotected. But why should the roman pottery be lyıng neatly and cleanly exposed whıle all of the major bones had sunk ınto the mud. (I had prevıously heard from many sources lıvıng ın many countrıes that the bones had been removed at an early stage – obvıously before the Mardın museum report of December 1. But I had belıeved that they would have been transported back for the sake of our scıentıfıc ınvestıgatıon.) I refused outrıght to do anythıng more ın the grave sıte and left whıle professor Halacoglu made a statement ın the pourıng raın for the medıum sıze press group that was assembled there.
Thıs was a very dısappoıntıng result of an attempt to do some serıous scıentıfıc work. The Physıcıans for Human Rıghts had agreed to do the forensıc medıcal ınvestıgatıon and the Instıtute for Hıstorıcal Justıce and Reconcıllıatıon was to assıst ın the hıstorıcal documentatıon. My task was to gıve a green lıght for a later full scale ınvestıgatıon wıth all necessary permıts. I had to report back that thıs sıte was too contamınated, but there mıght of course be some evıdence remaınıg for a paınstakıng undertakıng.
I have not broken off dıalogue wıth the Turkısh HIstorıcal Socıety because of the grave fıasco as there are other serıously scıentıfıc thıngs that we found worthwhıle dıscussıng. Only tıme wıll tell ıf thıs ınıtıatıve ıs more fruıtful.
An echannel.am column in Armenian by Harut Kbeyan gives some tragic-comedy-style insights to the May 2007 parliamentary elections in Armenia.
A cartoon from another column at echannel.am
Talking about the platform of all participating political parties, Kbeyan writes:
It seems all of the parties have downloaded their campaign platforms from the same website and translated [into Armenian]. The translation has worked ok for some, not so much for others and not at all for other ones.
The columnist is surprised with the fact that the never-ending
identical justice platforms of all political parties – social equality, employment, free or affordable health care, improved education, military reforms, fantastic retirement funds – do not include environmental problems.
Although the rest of the promises will most likely stay promises in any case, not talking about the environment means Armenia’s voters are not concerned about the issue.
Ironically, environment was one of the major issues for Armenia’s independent movement in the late 1980s and the early 90s. And environment may as well become the TOP issue in 2024 – a little too late though - when Armenia will be totally forestless.
This is not 1915 when official orders can be destroyed after ”the work is done.” This is 2007 when confidential orders are often e-mailed and sometimes to unintended recipients.
On March 7, 2007, Turkey’s cabinet Ministry of National Education sent this confidential letter to the Istanbul Governorate requesting “information and action so that the above mentioned arguments
[that detail how to deny the Genocide] are taken into consideration in the organization of educational, cultural and social activities.” Source: e-mail.
REPUBLIC OF TURKEY
MINISTRY OF NATIONAL EDUCATION
DG Private Education Institutions
No : B.08.0.0.ÖÖG.0.0I.19.01.01/420.1
Subject: Fight against So-called Genocide Claims 07 MARCH 2007
TO ISTANBUL GOVERNORATE
(Provincial Education Directorate)
In the 16th meeting of the Coordination Board for Fighting against so-called Genocide Claims, the following principles have been adopted:
It should be voiced that:
Turks respected and showed tolerance to the religions and cultures of the minorities living among the states that they had established,
In the history of Turks, in their state tradition and culture, there has been no racism or hatred causing genocide and assimilation like it was in the western world,
In order to protect the respectability of their professions, it is necessary for the colleagues to show reactions with the scientists and media that do not act on an unbiased basis vis-à-vis genocide claims,
Armenia has destroyed Turkish cultural products; Turkish population was exiled from Armenia or annihilated.
In this scope and in the framework of the general objectives and fundamental principles of our National Education System, I request your information and action so that the above mentioned arguments are taken into consideration in the organization of educational, cultural and social activities.
|İstanbul GovernorateOffice of the Clerical OfficerKozmik Büro
Provincial Education Director
pp the Governor Ömer Güney
pp the Minister Director General
Beşevler Kampüsü E. Blok 06500 / ANKARA
Tel:213 47 25 Faks: 223 99 26 CONFIDENTIAL
Newly found mass grave believed to be from the Armenian genocide manipulated in Turkey
While for an American diplomat a simple word like genocide can mean end of a career, it doesn’t seem Turkey’s denial of the Armenian Genocide is simply a refusal to label the mass murder of 1.5 Armenians a “genocide.” There is much more than that.
Photographs by Ülkede Özgür Gündem (a Kurdish newspaper in Turkey that was closed down after reporting the discovery of the mass grave) of a possible Armenian mass grave before manipulated by the Turkish Historical Society
Turkey is not simply rejecting the word genocide; the denial is on micro level as seen in recent developments. The skeletons of a newly discovered mass grave thought to be from the Genocide, for example, have been reportedly changed and displaced by the Turkish Historical Society.
The Zaman newspaper from Turkey reports on April 24, 2007 that David Gaunt – a historian from Sweden – had traveled to Turkey this week to participate in a joint investigation of the mass grave. After seeing the site, Prof. Gaunt refused to continue his participation because the initial photographs of the mass grave (taken by a Turkish-language Kurdish newspaper) from October of 2006 – when it was discovered – were quite different from the site he was taken to. He told Zaman, “My impression is that this grave is one in which no scientific research can be carried out. The grave has undergone numerous changes so it is not recognizable.”
As our blogging-made-news article reported last year, the site was discovered in October of 2006 by local Kurds in the Xirabebaba (Kuru) village of Nusaybin district in southeastern Turkey’s Mardin region. Several villagers were digging graves for a relative to be buried in, when they found a cave of approximately 200 skeletons. The villagers thought they had uncovered a mass burial of massacred Armenians.
There were several reports (received via private communication) that the mass grave was dumped with soil by the Turkish military. But soon I learned that the Turkish Historical Society had proclaimed the mass graves was from Roman times.
Before traveling to Turkey for the investigation, Prof. Gaunt had sent the following e-mail to a group of colleagues and students on February 27, 2007.
As you will remember Yusuf Halacoglu went out very aggressively and challenged me in the Turkish press and TV to come to the grave. I answered and said that I could come during 23-25 April and I canceled some lectures during that week.
Since the time that he challenged me in the media – two weeks ago – I have not heard a word from Halacoglu – although I have previously received faxes, regular mail and even telephone calls from the staff of the Turkish Historical Society. So they know where I work. I have repeatedly written to Halacoglu during the past weeks. No result. Given his grandstand performance previously, this silence is unnatural. It leads to the conclusion that he is no longer interested in making a truly scientific investigation of the mass-grave find. What could be the reason?
In order to give this investigation some scientific legitimacy, I had suggested that we agree to some “rules of the game” in case of disagreement. Among the things I suggested was that an international group of crime scene investigators (or the like) from for instance South America would be the first persons to enter the site. Their role would be to ascertain if the site had been manipulated in any serious way, if the bodies were intact, if there were signs of tampering with the evidence or planting of other evidence. Only if and when this team gave a clear OK signal, would any of the other investigators enter the site. I think it is a very reasonable request that we have guarantees that the site is worth investigating, and I don’t think that the Turkish side could argue against this procedure.
Are we forced to conclude, by Halacoglu’s silence that the site has indeed already been prepared, but that there is now fear that properly trained experts would easily discover the manipulation? In that case, of course, it would be reasonable for the Turkish Historical Society to want to forget all about having made an invitation and making a fuss over my participation. At present there are few alternative interpretations to Halacoglu’s silence other than that he regrets the publicity that he has given this matter.
Apparently Prof. Gaunt’s fear turned to be true: the Turkish Historical Society had manipulated the mass grave.
The Turkish cover up of the Armenian Genocide is not simply a war of a term, but a refusal by the ultra-nationalist Turkish foundation to admit that their government, in the words of Turkish historian Taner Akcam, has committed a crime against Turkey’s native Armenian population. No wonder why, as the founder of Boulder’s Alternative Radio David Barsamian said past Sunday, Turkish Ambassadors use passive voice when justifying the genocide, “something terrible happened.”
They were stoned; they were sawed in two; they were put to death by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated … They wandered in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground … The world was not worthy of them.
Marwan Naamani, AFP / Getty Images
A girl puts roses near skulls of Armenian nationals, victims of a 1915 genocide under the Ottoman Empire, inside a church in Antelias, Lebanon. (this photo is on the main page of AOL’s news website: http://news.aol.com/ under Top News Photos)
AP – Mon Apr 23, 3:44 PM ET
Armenians hold torches and a giant national flag in downtown Yerevan, Monday, 23 April, 2007, during a rally commemorating the World War I Armenian Genocide. (AP Photo/ Photolure, Hayk Badalyan)
AP – Tue Apr 24, 9:07 AM ET
Armenian Archbishop for Romania and Bulgaria Dirayr Mardichian, center, gestures during a religious service to commemorate the 1915 Armenian genocide, in Bucharest, Romania, at the Armenian Cathedral, Tuesday April 24 2007. The service was attended by members of the Armenian community of Romania.(AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)
AP – Tue Apr 24, 9:45 AM ET
A woman of the Armenian community of Romania reacts following a ceremony to pay tribute to the victims of the 1915 Armenian genocide, in Bucharest Romania, at the Armenian Cathedral, Tuesday April 24, 2007.(AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)
AP – Tue Apr 24, 8:51 AM ET
Lebanese Armenian children sit next to a shrine where skulls of Armenian people are displayed in a church in Antelias north of Beirut, Lebanon Tuesday, April 24, 2007. Marking the 92nd anniversary of the Armenian Genocide in Turkey that began in April 1915 and in which hundreds of thousands of Armenians died, Armenian communities around the world mark the killing of up to 1.5 million Armenians, on April 24 each year with marches, vigils and rallies to demand recognition from the world community, and reparations from Turkey. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Tawil)
Colorado is perhaps the only State that has designated a large portion of its Capitol building grounds as “Armenian Garden.”
The Armenian Garden and the Genocide memorial plaque are quarter century old. They were placed here in April of 1982.
On Saturday, April 21, 2007, members of the Armenian community planted more flowers in the Armenian Garden where a commemoration took place on Sunday, April 22, 2007.
Guess what? The Armenian Genocide never happened, reports Turkey’s ultranationalist Sabah newspaper
on April 24 – the day the Armenian Genocide is commemorated.
Guess why? A Swedish commander in Turkey wrote on April 23, 1917, “as an eye witness, I object to genocide claims.”
In case you did not catch the unintended sarcasm… the term “genocide” was first used in 1944 by Raphael Lemkin.
Somebody call The Onion and tell them they have lost to Sabah.
90 years old letter of a witness from the first hand: “genocide did not happen”
The letter written by a Swedish commander witnessing the events in 1915 and published at a newspaper on 23 April 1917 has been revealed: I never saw Turks doing genocide. It is my responsibility to object to these claims. Emigration was a military compulsion for Turks.”
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