July 17, 2001 -- Vol.6, no.1
This article refers to:
Professor Bernard Lewis
Dear Professor Lewis:
I have read with great interest your personal submission to the I7th Court at the Palace of Justice in Pairs dated 21 October, 1994.
You emphasize that you as an historian have a right, indeed an obligation to change your views over the years, based on new research evidence.
I am asking you to convey to me a specific list of the researches which, according to your remarks, have accumulated over the years as evidence that is contrary to your original observations as an historian in your book, The Emergence of Modern Turkey in 1961, in which you described "the terrible holocaust" of one-and-a-half million Armenians.
I am aware of many studies that have appeared in recent years confirming more and more the Armenian Genocide, such as Professor Vahakn Dadrian's work on the Turkish court-martial of the Turkish leaders who were responsible for the genocide; also Professor Dadrian's work on documentation of the Armenian Genocide in Turkish sources, and in German and Austrian sources; a variety of publications reporting statements by American Consuls throughout Turkey describing the ongoing Armenian Genocide; and the recent sterling compilation by Dr. Rouben Adalian of the vast microfiche file of voluminous American government records from that period, these too including the original consular reports previously referred to -- in addition to Ambassador Morgenthau's widely known reports.
I am accustomed to professional and scientific controversy and I believe deeply in the legitimacy of dissension and intellectual conflict, and agree that these must be based on the record of verifiable research processes which are conducted and published according to the demanding standards of scholarship. It is in this spirit that I am making the above request to you that you send me, as soon as possible, a compilation of researches on which you base your statement to the court that the evidence about the massacres of the Armenians has changed over the years in the direction of disproving any organized plan and operational program of extermination.
I would like to add a brief comment about your statement to the court about Raphael Lemkin, and how he coined the term "genocide" with reference to the "systematic elimination of a mass of a race or a nation" in response to the crimes of World War II. It will be significant to you that in Lemkin's unpublished writings, vast sections of which I have studied at the Archives at the New York Public Library, and much of which I also have on microfiche, Raphael Lemkin himself refers explicitly, and with deep feeling, to the genocidal murder of the Armenian people.
This article refers to: