U.S. Leaders and Dignitaries

Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America:

Like the genocide of the Armenians before it, and the genocide of the Cambodians which followed it — and like too many other such persecutions of too many other peoples —the lessons of the Holocaust must never be forgotten.”April 22, 1981

 

Gerald Ford, President of the United States of America:

“Mr. Speaker, with mixed emotions we mark the 50th anniversary of the Turkish genocide of the Armenianpeople. In taking notice of the shocking events in 1915, we observe this anniversary with sorrow in recalling the massacres of Armenians and with pride in saluting those brave patriots who survived to fight on the side of freedom during World War I.”

 

Theodore Roosevelt, President of the United States of America:

. . . the Armenian massacre was the greatest crime of the war, and the failure to act against Turkey is to condone it . . . the failure to deal radically with the Turkish horror means that all talk of guaranteeing the future peace of the world is mischievous nonsense.” May 11, 1918

 

Henry Morgenthau, Ambassador Plenipotentiary to Turkey from 1913 to 1916:

When the Turkish authorities gave the orders for these deportations, they were merely giving the death warrant to a whole race; they understood this well, and, in their conversations with me they made no particular attempt to conceal the fact.

Whatever crimes the most perverted instincts of the human mind can devise, and whatever refinements of persecution and injustice the most debased imagination can conceive, became the daily misfortunes of this devoted people. I am confident that the whole history of the human race contains no such horrible episodes as this. The great massacres and persecutions of the past seem almost insignificant when compared with the suffering of the Armenian race in 1915.

 

Leslie A. Davis, U.S. Consul in Harput from 1914 to 1917:

A remarkable thing about the bodies that we saw was that nearly all of them were naked…There were gaping bayonet wounds on most of the bodies, usually in the abdomen or chest, sometimes in the throat. Few persons had been shot, as bullets were too precious. It was cheaper to kill with bayonets and knives. Another remarkable thing was that nearly all the women lay flat on their back and showed signs of barbarous mutilation by the bayonets of the gendarmes, these wounds having been inflicted in many cases probably after the women were dead…We estimated that in the course of our ride around the lake, and actuallywithin the space of twenty-four hours, we had seen the remains of not less than ten thousand Armenians who had been killed around lake Goeljuk.”

 


 

British Leaders and Dignitaries:

Winston S. Churchill, Prime Minister of Great Britain:

In 1915, the Turkish Government began and ruthlessly carried out the infamous general massacre and deportation of Armenians in Asia Minor.”

 

David Lloyd George, Prime Minister of Great Britain:

In the province of Armenia, Abdul Hamid and the Young Turks had deliberately set themselves to the simplification of the Armenian difficulty by exterminating and deporting the whole race, whom they regarded as infidels and traitors.”


 

German Leaders and Dignitaries:

Adolf Hitler, Chancellor of Germany from 1933 to1945:

Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?”1

1This statement first appeared in Lochner’sWhat about Germany?(New York: Dodd, Mead & Co., 1942) p. 1-4. The Nuremburg Trial later identified the document as Exhibit USA-28:

 

Hans Wangenheim, Ambassador of Imperial Germany to Turkey from 1912 to October 1915:

“…the manner in which the matter of relocation is being handled demonstrates that thegovernment is in fact pursuing the goal of annihilating the Armenian race in Turkey.”

Hohenlohe-Langenburg, Ambassador Extraordinary, Oct.-Nov 1915:

The systematic butchery of the uprooted and deported Armenians has assumed such a scope…it was not only tolerated but openly promoted by the government. It meant the extermination of the Armenians. Despite government assurances to the contrary, everything points to the goal of the destruction of the Armenian people.”

Paul Hindenburg, Field Marshall (From my Life, Leipzig, 1934, p.169):

Turkey initiated a policy of annihilation against the Armenians.”

Friedrich Kress Kressenstein, Major-General, Chief of Operations, Turkish General Headquarters:

The Turks have by no means relinquished their intention to exterminate the Armenians. They merely changed their tactics. Wherever possible, the Armenians are being aroused, and provoked in the hope of thereby securing a pretext for new assaults on them.”

 

George Mayer, Professor; Doctor; Colonel; Deputy Chief in the Department of Health of the Turkish Army:

The decision to expel women, children and old men, was the result of a hatred against the Armenians, and involved a wild objective on the part of the Turkish government to obliterate this race…the massive arrests of the men were carried out not only near the front but throughout the empire…and in the corridors of the Turkish Ministry of War one heard people tell with cynical grins the story of how all these thousands died natural deaths or how they were victims of accidents- as registered in official records…”

 

Colonel Stange, Commander of the 8th Regiment of the Turkish Army:

The Turks did have a plan [to destroy the Armenians] that was conceived long time ago. The deportation and destruction of the Armenians was decided upon by the Young Turk [Committee of Union and Progress] Committee in Constantinople.”

 


 

Austrian Leaders and Dignitaries:

Johann Markgraf Pallavicini, Austrian Ambassador to Turkey, 1906-1918:

“…The Armenian population which is being expelled from its homeland is not only being subjected to the greatest misery but also to a total extermination.” (June 27, 1915)

The manner in which the Armenians are being deported for resettlement purposes is tantamount to a death verdict for the affected people.”  (July 1, 1915)

The time will come when Turkey will have to account for this policy of extermination.” (August 13 1915)

 

Joseph Pomiankowski, Vice-Marshall, Military Plenipotentiary in Wartime Turkey:

In the course of the summer 1915 the Turkish government with inexorable consequence brought its bloody task of the extermination of an entire nation to an end…The gruesome destruction of the Armenian nation in Asia Minor by the Ittihadist government was an act which was barbaric and which to the highest degree outrages all human senses.”


 

Italian Leaders and Dignitaries:

Senior G. Gorrini, Italian Consul-General at Trabzon:

From the 24th June, the date of the publication of the infamous decree, until the 23rd of July, the date of my own departure from Trebizond, I no longer slept or ate; I was given over to nerves and nausea, so terrible was the torment of having to look on at the wholesale execution of these defenseless, innocent creatures [Armenians]. The city in a state of siege, guarded at every point by 15,000 troops in complete war equipment, by thousands of police agents, by bands of volunteers and by the members of the “Committee of Union and Progress;” the lamentations, the tears, the abandonment, the imprecations, the many suicides, the instantaneous deaths from sheer terror, the sudden unhinging of men’s reason, the conflagrations, the shooting of victims in the city, the ruthless searches through the houses and in the countryside; the hundreds of corpses found every day along the exile road; the young women converted by force to Islam or exiled like the rest; the children torn away from their families or from the Christian schools, and handed over by force to Moslem families, or else placed by hundreds on board ship in nothing but their shirts, and then capsized and drowned in the Black Sea and the River Deyirmen Deré – these are my last ineffaceable memories of Trebizond, memories which still, at a month’s distance, torment my soul and almost drive me frantic.”

Interview published in the 25 August 1915 issue of Il Messaggero.