20 01 2007- I Am a Turkish Citizen, but I Am No Turk.'
Hrant Dink has certainly opened a can of worms with the statement he made in 2005, 'I Am a Turkish Citizen, but I Am No Turk.'
Hrant Dink is the editor of the Istanbul-based Armenian newspaper, AGOS (or "Akos"); this is the one where Taner Akcam had or has been permitted to write a regular column, working to poison the minds of Armenian Turks.
Hrant Dink seemed — from what little I know of him — to be somewhat "reasonable." For example, in this commentary on ARARAT (in the section under "More Criticism"), Dink came down hard on Director Atom Egoyan, for having made a film damaging to the Turco-Armenian relations. Further of my impressions were formed by his statements, as recorded by "A Diaspora Armenian Sizes Up an Armenian Turk" (halfway down this page.)
I fear Mr. Dink has become emboldened over the years, with the increasing power of "Armenian Genocide" forces... the tentacles of which are now threatening to reach Turkish society.
An article written by Tatoul Hakobian informs us Dink (whose name is spelled as "Dinq") was charged with "insulting the Turks" by the Urfa Public Prosecutor's Office; "If the charge brought against him is proved, he will be sentenced to 3 years of imprisonment."
Dink is quoted as having said, "I don't think this is a serious suit." I hope he's right. Not every nation has Freedom of Speech laws protected by the United States Constitution, but to be charged with making unpopular statements is not a policy that should be supported. It would be akin to being charged in countries like France and Switzerland for stating there was no Armenian "Genocide."
But let's focus on the statement itself.
Certainly Dink is making an accurate statement in claiming he is not a racial Turk, particularly if his family tree had avoided any co-mingling through the six or so centuries of co-existence. So he's off the hook if that's all he meant.
But people who live in Turkey are Turks. The nation is composed of many different ethnic varieties. For example, I recently learned there were four to five times as many Abkhazians in Turkey, after many had been ruthlessly driven away with other Muslim minorities (through Russia's 19th century "Death & Exile" campaign), as there are in the Abkhazia region in today's Georgia. Now, racially, these people from the Caucasus are not Turks.
Nor are the Laz, who have also been driven away. Nor Circassians, and all the many others. Among non-Muslims, the majority of Jews who still live in Turkey today can't be said to be of Turkic stock.
Yet whom among these people wouldn't call themselves "Turks"?
Especially if you've lived in Turkey, prospered in Turkey, and your forefathers have lived in Turkey... especially when there was no other nation that would provide refuge for your people, when they were expelled from other lands.
For example, I'm an American, but I don't have a drop of "Native American" blood in me. So I'm not "racially" (or "ethnically") an American. But I don't go off making a statement like, 'I Am an American Citizen, but I Am No American.'
(I guess the only time I would feel that way is if I were a spy. We've seen such scenes in espionage films... where the spy has a handful of passports from different nations, for the purposes of expediency.)
"Our Armenian compatriots are for the most part prosperous; they go to the best clubs and have their island summer houses ... You'd expect them to take the Turkish side against Europe. So why have they remained silent?" wrote Emin Colasan, right-wing columnist in the mass-circulating "Hürriyet" newspaper, whose logo includes the words "Turkey for the Turks".
TIME Europe, "Debating Genocide," Andrew Finkel, Jan.30, 2001
This is the kind of mentality that's peculiar among Armenians.
No matter where they live, the Dashnak-minded among them think of themselves as Armenians first, second, and last. The nations they happen to be living in happen only to be a convenience.
One of my statements (not always, but too often true) bears
repeating here: "Loyalty and Armenians. Like Oil and Water."
"In the February 13, 2004 issue of Agos, Mr. Dink, in describing the Armenian identity, made reference to 'poisoned blood spilled by the Turk,' contrasting it with 'clean blood in the noble Armenian vein.'"
Dr. Ferruh Demirmen, in a late-2005 letter to Elif Shafak
This attitude is nothing new. Tacitus, the Roman historian, reported in his Annalum Liber:
"The Armenians change their position relating to Rome and the Persian Empire, sometimes supporting one and sometimes the other ... they are a strange people"
After WWI, the Armenians in Georgia didn't even want to register as Georgian citizens in order to vote! (Yet, hypocritically, Armenia required citizenship from the Georgians among them, in order for them to vote.)
Of course! What nation exists on earth that does not require citizenship, before participating in an election process?
Aleksandr Sergeyevich Griboyedov, the Russian diplomat and playwright who organized the transmigration of Armenians from Iran, feared the penchant for Armenian disloyalty. As Russian minister to Iran in the early 19th century, he wrote in a letter to the Czar.
"Majesty, I would like to ask you not to allow the location of Armenians in the central Russian regions. Because they are such filthy and shameless clans, they would soon shout throughout the world and claim those lands as their 'ancient motherland'."
(Now he might have been a little harsh with his description of the Armenians, but through this and many other historical records we can ascertain the Russians never intended to help the Armenians and almost always used them as pawns. Armenian leaders' greed and fanaticism almost always permitted them to betray their Ottoman nation, and side with what William Saroyan himself said of the Russians: the real enemy of the Armenians.)
When Armenians betrayed their country and fought — as "belligerents de facto," in Boghos Nubar's words — against their Ottoman nation in WWI, did it matter whether their fighters originated from the Ottoman Empire, Russia, or even as far away as the United States? Absolutely not. Once they came together, they recognized only one nationality among themselves: they were Armenians, first, second and last.
It was this disloyalty that put the Armenians in the terrible position of needing to be relocated, just like what France and America had done with their Alsatian and Japanese populations (respectively) during WWII — with the exception that these people were not disloyal. And it is dishonesty that made the Armenians point to these events to a lazy-thinking and bigoted "Christian" Western world, labeling the events as a "genocide."
"Particularly lately, when the talks on Turkey's membership to EU
became more active, Dink is being invited to many conferences, including to those held in Europe. He is being cited in almost all the articles about the Armenian Genocide and the Turkish-Armenian relations published in the Western press," Hakobian's article tells us.