DID ARMENIAN CASUALTIES AMOUNT TO 1.5 MILLION?
Armenian propagandists claim
that as many as 1,5 million Armenians died as the result of
so-called "genocide". Like the rest of their claims,
this also is imaginary, with the number claimed being increased
over years. At first, immediately following the war the Armenians
claimed that as many as 600,000 had been killed. Later they
raised it to 800,000 and now they talk about 1,5 million and
tomorrow they may talk even about three million. The 1918
edition of Encyclopedia Britannica said that 600,000 Armenians
had been killed; in its 1968 edition this was raised to 1,5
How many Armenians did die?
It is impossible to determine the number exactly, since no
complete death records were kept during those years. The only
basis on which even an estimate can be made is the actual
Armenian population in the Ottoman Empire at the time. Even
here figures vary widely, with the Armenians claiming far
more than other sources:
Claimed Armenian Population
1.British Annual Register
1917 1.056.000 (1)
historian Kevork Aslan
(In “Armenia and Armenians”,
Aslan states the Armenian population in Anatolia 920.000,
in Clicia (Adana, Sis, Maras) 180.000, in the other Ottoman
territories 700.000, total 1.800.000)
4.German Priest Johannes
Lepsius 1.600.000 (4)
6.The French Yellow Book
7.The Armenian historian
Basmajian 2.280.000 (7)
8.Patriarch Nerses Varjabedyan
Official Ottoman census statistics are as follows:
The Ottoman Directory of Statistics
was founded in 1892. The first director of the branch was
Nuri Bey. Between 1892-1897 a Jewish Ottoman, Fethi Franco
was appointed for the duty. From 1897 until 1903, an Armenian
director was in charge, called Migirdic Shabanyan. Later,
Mr. Robert an American was appointed (1903-1908). Between,
1908-1914 Mehmet Behic was the general director. (9)
As it is seen, in a very chaotic
period when the Ottoman government was facing with the Armenian
Issue on the international arena, the Ottoman Statistics were
under the control of foreigners. At this point, the Ottoman
statistics should be considered as the most objective documents
about the Armenian population living in Ottoman territories.
* Ottoman census statistics
for 1893 1.001.465
* Ottoman census statistics
for 1906 1.120.748
* Ottoman census statistics
for 1914 1.221.850 (10)
An evaluation of the three
sources clarifies that, during the First World War, the Armenian
population in the Ottoman territories was approximately 1.250.000.
The Armenian population subjected
to relocation was 438.758 and 382.148 of these safely reached
their new destinations. (11) The number of casualties had
occurred as follows: 500 people on the road between Erzurum
and Erzincan; 2000 in Meskene, between Urfa and Aleppo and
2000 others on the outskirts of Mardin were massacred in attacks
launched by bandits or nomadic Arabs. Another 5000 people
were killed in attacks on convoys passing through Dersim.
(12) It was understood from these documents that many people
had also fallen victim to hunger while on the road. (13) Apart
from these, some 25-30 thousand people had lost their lives
when struck by fatal diseases such as typhoid and dysentery.
(14) In all, an estimated 40 thousand casualties had been
registered during relocation.
The remaining 10-16 thousand
people were made at stay in provinces they had reached, when
the implementation of relocation was brought to an end. For
instance, on April 26, 1916, orders were given to provide
the return to and the settlement in the province of Konya
of those Armenians setting out form the province to new destinations.
(15) On the other hand, many other Armenians are believed
to have fled to either Russia or to Western countries, including
the Unites States.
As a matter of fact, according
to the pertinent documents, 50.000 of the Armenian soldiers
serving in the Ottoman Army joined the Russian forces, and
some other 50.000 Armenian soldiers went to America to be
trained in the US Army to fight against the Turkish Army.
In fact, the letter of an Armenian called Murad Muradyan-
who was an advocate in Elazig later immigrated to America
— shows such information. (16) In the concerned letter, Muradyan
mentions that some Armenians were escaped to Russia and America
and later 50.000 of those trained soldiers went to Caucassia.
As it can be understood from all the concerned documents,
many of Armenian subjects of the Ottoman State were scattered
through various countries especially to U.S.A. and Russia,
before and during the war. For example, Artin Hotomyan who
was a tradesman in America sent a letter to the Chieftain
of Security on January 19, 1915 and stated that thousands
of Armenians migrated to U.S.A. and they were facing with
hunger and hardships. (17)
Halacoglu, Prof. Dr. Yusuf-; Ermeni Tehcirine Dair
Gercekler (1915), TTK Press, Ankara 2001.
1) British Annual
Record for 1917
2) Uras, Esat, Tarihte
Ermeniler ve Ermeni Meselesi, Istanbul, 1987
3) Aslan, Kevork,
Ermenistan ve Ermeniler, Istanbul, 1914.
4) Uras, Esat, a.g.e.
5) Uras, Esat, a.g.e.
6) 1893-1897 Ermeni
Iºleri, Paris, 1897 Uras, Esat, a.g.e.
7) Uras, Esat, a.g.e.
8) Uras, Esat, a.g.e.
9) Mazici, Nursen,
Belgelerle Uluslar arasi Rekabette Ermeni Sorunu, Istanbul
10) see Karpat, Kemal,
H. Ottoman Population 1830-1914 Demographic and Social
Characteristic, The University Of Winsconcin Press, 1985
11) Some figures can be
12) Coded telegraphs from
governors of Trabzon, Erzurum, Sivas, Diyarbakir, Elazig,
Bitlis Maras, Canik, June 26, 1915 (code, number. 54-A/112).
Telegraphs from governors of Eregli and Musul (June, 8 1915
coded telegraph sent to Konya province, code, numberr.57/337;
Zor province February 3, 1916, code, number.60/219).
13) code, number.57/110.
14) see DH. EUM. 2. branch,
numberr.68/81; see. code., number. 57/51.
15) code, number. 63/119.
16) DH. EUM. 2. ªube, nr.2F/14.
17) Bkz. DH. EUM. 2. ªube,