10 Facts You May Not Know About The Armenian Genocide

It’s the 100th anniversary of the massacres.

1. On April 24, 1915 roughly 200 Armenian leaders were executed by the Turkish army.

The early stages of the genocide are marked by the murders of Armenian male leaders.

2. Before the genocide, the Young Turks regime disarmed the entire Armenian population.

Every weapon was seized and those who failed to turn in a weapon were subject to penalties. The photo displays the Young Turks entering Istanbul.

3. The Young Turks aimed to “Turkify” Armenian children.

They kidnapped children, converted them to Islam and adopted them out to Turkish families. The photo shows an alleged Turkish official teasing Armenian children with food.

4. More than a million Armenians were subject to death marches across rocky terrain to the Syrian desert.

An estimated 75 percent of the Armenians on these marches died and many of the survivors were burned alive or thrown off cliffs.

5. There were roughly 2 million Armenians living in the Ottoman Empire before the genocide. By 1922, there were just 388,000 Armenians remaining.

6. As a result of the violence, there were more than 150,000 Armenian orphans roaming the streets,

Some were “Turkified” while others were killed or forced into slavery but most died of starvation or disease. The photo illustrates Armenian refugees in Syria.

7. Between 1915 and 1930, the Near East Relief charity administered more than $117,000,000 of assistance for refugee camps, healthcare, shelter, clothing and food.

The American charity was created to aid the victims of the genocide. They are also credited with helping 132,000 orphans throughout the region.

8. Turkey Has Not Formally Recognized the Genocide

Turkey’s Prime Minister recently offered his condolences over the massacre but condemned Pope Francis for calling the massacres the “first genocide of the 20th century”. An Armenian church canonized the victims as martyrs to which Erdogan responded: “Thirty million people died, and why are you highlighting the Armenian citizens? More than 4 million Muslims died during the war.” Due to political ties with Turkey, President Obama abstained from using the word genocide when commemorating the 100th anniversary of the massacres.

9. Grand Vizier Damad Ferid Pasha recognized the genocide by holding war crimes trials that condemned to death the major leaders responsible.

“It is far from my thought to cast a veil over these misdeeds, which are such as to make the conscience of mankind shudder with horror forever; still less will I endeavor to minimize the degree of guilt of the actors in the great drama. The aim which I have set myself is that of showing to the world with proofs in my hand, who are the truly responsible authors of these terrible crimes.” Damad Ferid Pasha (Ottoman Grand Vizier)

10. On August 10, 1920, the Allied Powers, the new leaders of Turkey and the Republic of Armenia signed the Treaty of Sevres.

The treaty recognized the independent state of Armenia which comprised a smaller portion of the former homeland. The Treaty of Lausanne was signed on July 24, 1923 after Turkey fought the terms of the previous treaty.

There are three Armenian museums in the U.S.

The Armenian Museum of America in Watertown, MA

Photographs of the lost city of Khodorchur, home to thousands of Catholic Armenians before 1915, is currently on display.

The Ararat Eskijian Museum in Los Angeles

There is a special exhibit that includes a dress worn by an orphan from the Adana massacre and a rug woven by Armenian children from the United Orphanage and Mission.

The Manoogian Museum in Detroit

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