10/15 The Stiletto Blog: People Died And The Bush Administration Lied

THE DAILY BLADE: People Died And The Bush Administration Lied

This entry was posted on October 15, 2007 and is filed under The Daily Blade.

More than 60 years ago, Polish-Jewish scholar Ralph Lemkin coined the term "genocide" precisely to describe the scale and brutality of the systematic slaughter of 1.5 million Christian Armenians by the Ottoman Turks.

The assertions Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice and Defense Secretary Robert Gates made arguing against Congress passing HR 106/SR 106, which calls on our government to recognize the historical truth of the Armenian Genocide are outright lies: That loss of access to Turkish land and air supply routes will imperil coalition forces in Iraq, and that that Turkey is an indispensable ally. Unfortunately, these lies were enough to sway one co-sponsor of the bill, Jane Harman (D-CA), to withdraw her support.

The truth: Turkey is irresolute as an Iraq War ally and irrelevant as a NATO ally.

If Turkey makes good on its threats to deny the U.S. access to Incirlik Air Base – through which 70 percent of military cargo sent to Iraq is flown – and closes the Turkish-Iraq border to trucks that deliver 30 percent of the fuel used by the U.S. military, there is a Plan B. "Turkey has been a tremendous hub for us, and if we didn’t have it that would increase time lines and distances. But it would be a short-term impact," a senior military officer involved in logistical planning and operations tells The New York Times. Armored vehicles and other equipment flown to Iraq over Turkish airspace can also be rerouted, if necessary.

The day the Berlin Wall fell was the day Turkey ceased to matter as a NATO member. Here, highlights of a "Note to the Turkish government" Hugh Fitzgerald posted on Dhimmi Watch that are germane to the focus of this post:

The Cold War, or at least the First Cold War, is over. It is no longer 1950, or 1960. There is no longer a need for Turkey's help in confronting Russia, which, while it has reverted to unpleasantness and despotism, is not the menace it once was. And Turkey is not quite so important a place for listening-posts and other bases. …

Turkey has not fulfilled, as it seems to think, its duties to its American "ally." It did not permit the use of Incirlik airbase. Three rather than four divisions, therefore, had to take over Iraq. There was no invasion force from the north that might have made a difference in Anbar. …

Turkey is a member of NATO. The Turks apparently think they will remain in NATO no matter how outrageously they behave. But why should NATO continue to tolerate an Islamic country? What conceivable good can come of having privy to NATO circles a government like that now in power in Istanbul, given that the great threat to the other countries of NATO, and to the Western alliance, comes now from the forces of Jihad? …

It may be that Bush thinks that the large-scale murders of Christian Armenians by Muslim Turks began in 1915, when it began twenty years before, with no "wartime conditions" to blame … [Emphasis, The Stiletto’s.]

[T]he E.U. does not need Turkey, does not want Turkey. … NATO, and the Americans, do not need Turkey, a recalcitrant Turkey, a difficult Turkey, a Turkey that makes demands for the rewriting or the ignoring of history. … [T]he Turkish army will not be ordered to collaborate with Infidels against other Muslims - and it will not be, not by the current government - then what good is Turkey to NATO?

Fitzgerald’s piece also details what a back-stabbing "friend" Turkey has been to the U.S. and punctures Turkey’s denialist claims, parroted by our government – as well as by John Fund and Turkey’s other shills at The Wall Street Journal.

Here’s what’s really going on: Turkey is using HR 106 as a pretext to carry out its long-planned excursion into Northern Iraq to kill as many Kurds as possible – along with any ambitions they might have of joining their brethren on the Turkish side of the border to form an independent country. The real prize is the potentially huge untapped oil reserves now under the control of the Kurdish Regional Government.
The "insult" of passing the Armenian Genocide Resolution gives Turkey the cover it needs to further it’s geopolitical interests and to undermine the U.S. mission in Iraq once again – just as a "neutral" Turkey undermined the Allies in WWII by secretly supplying Hitler with chromite. (Another historical truth that Shimon Peres and Abe Foxman must deny along with the Armenian Genocide so that Israel can maintain its "friendship" with Turkey.)

Conservatives who argue that the Armenian Genocide happened, but it’s "inconvenient" to say so right now, should know better than anyone that doing the right thing is never "convenient." It’s convenient to steal a car, not to save up money to buy one; to rape a woman a man is sexually attracted to, not to woo and marry her; and to abort a baby, not to feed, clothe and raise him. But in each of these cases – as with passing the Armenian Genocide Resolution - the convenient thing is not the right thing.

On "Fox News Sunday," Steny Hoyer (D-MD) told Brit Hume that he supported the U.S. government’s official recognition of the Armenian Genocide for 25 years – and that there never seemed to be "a right time" as far as the Turks were concerned:

Hume: ... Just on the strength of the committee action, the Turks recalled their ambassador, which is a — you know, it's more than a mild form of protest about this. If it's that sensitive at this moment, why do it now?

Hoyer: OK, Brit. That's a good question. I've been in the Congress 26 years. I've been for this resolution for 25 years. I've talked to the Turkish ambassadors, Turkish government, Turkish parliamentarians, over a quarter of a century. Never once in that quarter of a century has anybody in the Turkish government said to me, "OK, this is the right time." In other words, there would be no right time. …

Hume: I mean, do you think it's an urgent issue, something that happened between Turks and Armenians in World War I?

Hoyer: Brit, do I think it's an urgent issue? I think the issue of genocide is a very urgent and present issue. It's happening in Darfur now. It happened in Bosnia not too long ago. And the world sat by and watched. Yes, I think it's an urgent issue.

Hume: Well, but nobody's arguing that it wasn't a mass killing or even a massacre.

Hoyer: No, it was a genocide. And I understand some people are arguing that well, let historians look at it. Historians have looked at it. Nobel writers have looked at it. And there is a conclusion that, in fact, this was a conscious effort to eliminate a race of people.

Hume: … [D]o you think it's worth making this expression of this at this time, all these years later, at the expense of souring relations with a country who has helped us, is vital in the Mideast and in Iraq in particular?

Hoyer: Well, I think Turkey's help to us is vital. More vital is the United States' help to Turkey, Brit. Over the last half a century, the relationship between the United States and Turkey has far more advantage to Turkey than it has the United States. Are we both advantageous to one another? We are. [Emphasis, The Stiletto’s.]

It’s an added irony that some of the very same conservatives who decry the harassment of Christians in this country by the ACLU, the killings of Christians in Muslim countries and in communist China and the twin threats of Sharia-creep and Islamofascism are siding with Turkey against Armenians, who were victims of the first Muslim jihad against Christians in modern times.

As with the furor over the Danish cartoons and the flying Imams, Turkey’s hysterical reaction to a historical fact is yet another case of manufactured Muslim outrage.

Unlike some Christians who advocate worshipping Allah (hey, what’s the diff?), HR 106/SR 106 gives Christians a way to express our outrage over the centuries of dhimmitude that continue to this day in Turkey and throughout the Middle East; to express our outrage over the Ottoman Turks not only annihilating the Armenians but replicating their murderous MO to drive out and slaughter Christians in the Assyrian and Greek communities; and to express our outrage that the price two-timing Turkey is extracting for its toxic friendship is that Americans dirty our hands with the blood of Christian martyrs, instead of cleansing our souls by belatedly joining the 22 other civilized nations worldwide that have acknowledged the Armenian Genocide.

Alternative Media & The Armenian Genocide Resolution

The Stiletto is among bloggers across the political spectrum condemning the Bush Administration’s dissembling and denial of the Armenian Genocide to placate the petulant Turks.

Here’s a post from the "left of liberal" – but also wry, thoughtful and well-written - The Oread Daily (disclosure: OD has posted items from The Stiletto Blog, and we often exchange friendly correspondence on topics of mutual interest):

Bush, Rice And Company: Armenian Genocide Deniers

President Bush has urged Congress today to reject a resolution on the genocide of the Armenian people at the hands of the Turks in 1915. The resolution … calls on the President "to ensure that the foreign policy of the United States reflects appropriate understanding and sensitivity concerning issues related to human rights, ethnic cleansing, and genocide documented in the United States record relating to the Armenian Genocide and the consequences of the failure to realize a just resolution."

Bush, of course, who probably never even heard of the Armenian Genocide until recently, doesn't want the US to go on record about it because he fears offending Turkey and losing its support for his war in Iraq.

This is intolerable.

Aram Suren Hamparian, Executive Director, Armenian National Committee of America, says,

"The adoption of the Armenian genocide resolution would represent a meaningful step toward reclaiming our right - as Americans - to speak openly and honestly about the first genocide of the 20th Century, free from the gag-rule that Turkey has, for far too long, imposed on the discussion of this human rights issue by our elected officials.

Turkey has outlawed mention of the Armenian genocide, prosecuting its own citizens under Article 301 of its newly revised Turkish Penal Code for speaking openly on this topic. Among those taken to court have been Nobel Prize winner Orhan Pamuk and noted Armenian journalist Hrant Dink, who was assassinated this January outside the offices of his newspaper in downtown Istanbul.

Turkey, apparently not satisfied with stifling debate in its own country, is seeking - using threats, blackmail, and intimidation - to export it efforts to silence discussion of the Armenian genocide to the United States. As Americans, we should never outsource our nation's foreign policy - or our morality - to Turkey or any other nation."

A similar resolution to the one being debated today passed the committee by a 40-7 vote two years ago, but it never reached the full House floor. House Republican leader John Boehner, noting the critical military and strategic alliance with Turkey, said bringing the resolution to the floor would be "totally irresponsible."

"Let the historians decide what happened 90 years ago," Boehner said in a written statement.

They already have.

The Armenian Genocide is said to be the second-most studied case of genocide.

Genocide cannot be hidden. It cannot be denied. It cannot be erased from history for political expediency.

Bush and those doing his dirty work today in Congress should be ashamed.

Satirists have always been astute political analysts, and Jon Stewart is no exception. "The Daily Show" coverage of the controversy puts "legitimate" news sources, such as The Wall Street Journal – which apparently requires Armenian Genocide denial as a condition of employment (third item) – to shame when it comes to cutting through the BS, instead of merely republishing propaganda.

Here is a partial transcript of a video, "Unsolved Histories: Bush Defers To Turkey Regarding The Mass Killings Of Armenians In World War I," in which Stewart responds to President Bush’s statement that the resolution is "not the right response" to the "historic mass killings" of Armenians:

Stewart: What's the right response to historic mass killings? Historic mass flowers? A Hallmark card? ... For more on the Armenian Genocide Resolution, we go to [Senior Armeniologist] Aasif Mandvi.

Mandvi: Jon, I think the message here is clear: You help us here on the War on Terror, we’ll see what we can do on your past.

Stewart: So do countries go for this, Aasif?

Mandvi: Yeah, yeah they do. It’s not a bad deal, actually. When Spain joined the coalition, they were able to get their Inquisition downgraded to a "casual Q&A." And Lord knows, Britain has done enough to earn their "Boston Misunderstanding."

Stewart: Aasif, everybody appreciates the British contribution. It was the Boston Massacre.

Mandvi: Not as long as they have troops in Basra. ... Germany, not in the coalition. That's a shame. Could've turned the Holocaust into a "Halfacaust."

Source: http://thestilettoblog.com/2007/10/15/the-daily-blade-people-died-and-the-bush-administration-lied.aspx