Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Erdogan Admits that Turkey is the ‘Continuation’ of the Ottoman Empire

For many decades, Turkish officials have outright denied the occurrence of the Armenian Genocide. In recent years, however, some Turks have made the excuse that today’s Turkish Republic is not responsible for the genocide, since it was committed by the Ottoman Empire—a defunct state.
An illustration published by a pro-Erdogan Turkish media outlet (A Haber) shows President Donald Trump receiving an “Ottoman slap” by President Erdogan. (Photo: A Haber)
With this pretext, the issue is no longer whether genocide was committed or not, but who is responsible for it. Those who use this justification, claim that the Republic of Turkey is neither the successor nor the continuation of the Ottoman Empire, but a new and separate state.
This argument has gradually grown weaker as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan began speaking and acting as an Ottoman Sultan.
Two weeks ago, the Turkish leader made matters worse for his country when he, according to the Times of London, asserted that “modern Turkey is a ‘continuation’ of the Ottoman Empire—a direct contradiction of [Mustafa Kemal] Ataturk’s ideology, which cast the Imperial era as backwards, stale, and to be discarded and forgotten rather than celebrated.”
By stating that Turkey is a “continuation” of the Ottoman Empire, Erdogan effectively concedes that today’s Turkey is responsible for the actions of the Ottoman Empire. In other words, the Republic of Turkey, which inherited the Ottoman Empire’s assets, also inherited its liabilities.
To confirm his allegiance to the Ottoman dynasty, Erdogan attended a ceremony earlier this month to mark the centenary of the death of Sultan Abdulhamid II, the “Red Sultan,” who has been rehabilitated by the current government. Erdogan conveniently ignored the fact that the Red Sultan had ordered the killing of 300,000 Armenians from 1894 to 1896—also known as the Hamidian massacres.
“The descendants of one of the last Ottoman sultans are to be given Turkish citizenship, ending almost a century of outcast and ostracism,” notes the Times’ article, which continues:
“Abdulhamid II ruled from 1876 to 1909, and was much maligned in Kemal Ataturk’s modern Turkish republic for his authoritarianism, anti-Westernism and clampdowns on the media. Yet, in the era of President Erdogan he has been rehabilitated. A television series, ‘Payitaht’, which depicts the life of Abdulhamid in glowing terms has been lauded by Mr. Erdogan as essential viewing for Turkish youths to find out about their country’s history… ‘We see Sultan Abdulhamid II as one of the most important, most visionary, most strategic-minded personalities who have put their stamps on the last 150 years of our state,’ Mr. Erdogan said. ‘We should stop seeing the Ottomans and the Republic as two eras that conflict with one another.’ Abdulhamid died in 1918 and at celebrations for the centenary this week, Turkish foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that he would personally oversee the granting of citizenships to the family.”
Arrogantly, Erdogan then warned that U.S. soldiers in Northern Syria would soon receive the “Ottoman slap,” according to Reuters. He was “referring to a half-legendary Turkish martial move that involves a potent open-palm hit, resulting in a one-hit knockout or even skull fractures and death.” An illustration published by a pro-Erdogan Turkish media outlet shows President Donald Trump receiving an “Ottoman slap” by President Erdogan. Furthermore, Reuters quoted Turkish Foreign Minister Cavusoglu stating that Washington was backing the YPG [Kurdish forces in Syria] because it shared the same “Marxist, communist, atheist” ideology.
Professor Alfred de Zayas, an international law expert, explained in an essay titled, “The Genocide against the Armenians 1915-1923 and the relevance of the 1948 Genocide Convention,” that a successor state is responsible for the crimes committed by its predecessor regime. Moreover, a state that is a continuation of a previous entity is even more responsible because there is no difference between the two, as admitted by Erdogan two weeks ago.
In addition, in his study Alfred de Zayas quoted Professor M. Cherif Bassiouni: “In international law, the doctrine of legal continuity and principles of State responsibility make a ‘successor Government’ liable in respect of claims arising from a former government’s violations.” De Zayas concluded that “the claims of the Armenians for their wrongfully confiscated properties did not disappear with the change from the Sultanate to the regime of Mustafa Kemal.”
Finally, Professor de Zayas affirmed that “the principle of responsibility of successor States has been held to apply even when the State and government that committed the wrongs were not that of the ‘successor State.’ This principle was formulated, inter alia, by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in the Lighthouse Arbitration case.”
President Erdogan, by affirming that today’s Republic of Turkey is the continuation of the Ottoman Empire, has inadvertently admitted that Turkey is responsible for the genocidal, territorial, and economic damages caused by the Ottoman Empire to the Armenian people. Erdogan’s confession should be presented as evidence when demands emanating from the Turkish Genocide of Armenians are submitted to the World Court.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute Director Hayk Demoyan to Discuss Modern Identity and Memory Politics at NAASR

BELMONT, Mass.—Dr. Hayk Demoyan will give a talk entitled “Between Realism and Mythology: Modern Identity and Memory Politics of the Armenian World” on March 8, at 7:30 p.m. at the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR) Center (395 Concord Ave., Belmont, Mass. 02478).  The program is sponsored by the NAASR / Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation Lecture Series on Contemporary Armenian Issues and is open to the public.
Hayk Demoyan (Photo: Varmin)
Demoyan will analyze and discuss modern aspects of identity and memory politics in Post-Soviet Armenia and the Armenian Diaspora, taking particular note of the manipulation and instrumentalization of history and historical markers—old and new symbols, heroes, historical events, etc.,—as well as their reinterpretation and (mis)representation.
For a long time such questions were considered as taboo within the official rhetoric of both the Armenian state and some diasporan circles, which tended to downplay existing antagonistic and opposing attitudes and to assert a kind of Armenia-Artsakh-Diaspora triple unity.  In fact, in different diasporan circles there are contradictory views towards Armenia and its status as “Homeland.”  At the same time, the institutionalization of Artsakh as a separate political entity, contrary to the initial policies of unification and merging, as well as the development of parallel diasporas, create further challenges.
Demoyan is the Director of the Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute in Yerevan, Armenia, a position he has held since 2006, and in 2017-18 he is a Fulbright Visiting Scholar at the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University.
He is the author of 12 books, including The Armenian Genocide: Front Page Coverage in the World Media (2014, in Armenian, English, Russian, and French), Foreign Policy of Turkey and Karabagh Conflict (2013, in Russian), Armenian Sport and Gymnastics in the Ottoman Empire (2009, in Armenian), and Western Media Coverage of the Nagorno-Karabagh Conflict in 1988-1990 (2008, in English), as well as some 40 academic articles.
For more information about this program, contact NAASR at 617-489-1610 or hq@naasr.org.

Dutch Parliament to Reaffirm Recognition of the Armenian Genocide

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (A.W.)—The lower house of the Dutch Parliament (Tweede Kamer) will approve a motion, officially recognizing the Armenian Genocide.
The Tweede Kamer is the lower house of Dutch Parliament (Photo: Rijksoverheid)
A second motion that a Dutch Minister or the State Secretary should attend the official annual commemoration of the genocide in Armenia this April, will also approved, reported the NL Times.
The two motions were submitted by Joel Voordewind of the ChristenUnie and were supported by all four coalition parties.
“We can not deny history out of fear of sanctions. Our country houses the capital of international law after all, so we must not be afraid to do the right thing here too,” Voordewind said to Dutch daily Trouw earlier today.
In Dec. 2004, the Dutch Parliament unanimously adopted a resolution  calling on the Netherlands government to consistently bring up the Armenian Genocide in future negotiations dealing with Turkey’s accession to the European Union. The move came following extensive efforts by the Federation of Armenian Organizations in the Netherlands (FAON) and its April 24th Committee, both of which worked for years with Members of Parliament and representatives of their government in support of Armenian Genocide recognition.
The relationship between the Netherlands and Turkey has been tense as of late. The Netherlands recently refused Turkish ministers to campaign throughout the country for a referendum that extended Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s powers. A diplomatic feud erupted between the two countries last March and protests sparked after the Netherlands denied landing rights to Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu. The Dutch also barred the landing of Turkish Family and Social Policy Minister Fatma Betul Sayan Kaya, according to the Dutch Foreign Ministry.
President Erdogan had attempted to rally the estimated 4.6 million expatriate Turks living in western Europe to vote in the then forthcoming Turkish referendum.
International election observers sharply criticized Turkey’s historic referendum, which took place a little over a month later and passed by a narrow margin. According to official results, 51.4% voted in favor of the proposed constitutional changes, which secured Erdogan’s increasing grip on power.
Germany, Austria, and Switzerland also denied landing rights to the Turkish foreign ministry prior to the referendum, citing security concerns as well. At the time, Turkey also summoned their Dutch envoy back to Ankara.
“To protest this decision by the Dutch Government, the Charge d’Affaires of the Embassy of the Netherlands in Ankara was summoned to the Foreign Ministry,” read a statement by the Turkish foreign ministry. “We informed that we did not wish the Dutch Ambassador who is presently on leave outside of Turkey to return to his post for some time.”
Demonstrators gathered outside the Turkish consulate in Rotterdam on March 11, 2015 (Photo: Peter Dejong/AP)
On March 13, 2017—two days after the refusal by Dutch authorities—President Erdogan also accused the Netherlands of acting like a “banana republic” instead of a member of the EU and called on sanctions while speaking at a mass ceremony.
“I call on all the EU institutions and all the international organizations that pursue a mission to uphold democracy, human rights and rule of law to raise their voices and even impose sanctions on the Netherlands,” read a statement on the President’s website. Erdogan also accused the Dutch of Nazism at the International Goodness Awards on March 11 in Istanbul. The Dutch Prime Minister said that Erdogan’s comments about Nazism were “unacceptable” and demanded an apology.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

The Armenian Weekly to Screen Award-Winning Joe Berlinger Documentary ‘Intent to Destroy’ on March 15

WATERTOWN, Mass. (A.W.)—The Armenian Weekly will be screening the feature documentary film “Intent To Destroy,” at the AMC Assembly Row theatre in Somerville, Mass., on March 15 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available here. Please note the tickets must be purchased online by Feb. 3. Tickets will not be sold at the door. 
The Armenian Weekly will be screening the feature documentary film “Intent To Destroy,” at the AMC Assembly Row theatre in Somerville, Mass., on March 15 at 7:30 p.m.
“Intent to Destroy” utilizes a novel approach to engaging with the topic of the Armenian Genocide, primarily because it intertwines three separate threads—the modern day production of “The Promise,” the history of the genocide, and the century of international repression.
Armenian Weekly Editor Rupen Janbazian says the decision to host a screening was motivated by the film’s powerful ability to “bring the plight of our people—as well as the wider issues of genocide and its denial—to the big screen.”
Berlinger has said of this unorthodox approach: “I have been long intrigued about why one of the first genocides of the 20th Century has been characterized by many as a matter of debate versus being settled as historical fact. Despite this personal interest, it nonetheless never seemed like a subject for me to pursue in a documentary because I consider myself a present-tense cinéma-vérite filmmaker who likes to capture events as they unfold as opposed to looking back at historical events. In addition, several other documentaries about the Armenian Genocide had already been made, so I wasn’t sure what I could add to the subject. But when I heard that a big-budget narrative film that was highlighting the Genocide as part of their story was going into production, I finally felt there was an interesting way to create a documentary about the subject that would add something new to the existing films out there.”
Berlinger’s artful weaving of this now century-old atrocity into a modern setting aligns with the mission of the Armenian Weekly newspaper, a longstanding publication of the Armenian Diaspora. Alongside its Armenian-language predecessor, Hairenik Weekly (founded in 1899), the Armenian Weekly is a testament to the residual scars of genocide on the Armenian nation. In its earliest years, the Hairenik Weekly even functioned as a notice board for Armenians searching for their loved ones lost during the atrocities.
Joe Berlinger (Photo: documentary.org)
The film premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 25, 2017, and has since won numerous awards.
“The film’s tagline is ‘A century of censorship and denial could not extinguish the truth,’ and we couldn’t agree more. We look forward to seeing our readers and supporters on March 15,” Janbazian added.
The editorial staff at the Armenian Weekly hopes that screening a film like this to the larger public will raise awareness on this issue. The AMC Assembly Row 12 is located at 395 Artisan Way, Somerville, Mass. Parking is available at Artisan West Garage (255 Artisan Way, Somerville Mass. 02145).
Tickets are $14.50 and can be purchased by clicking here. Tickets must be purchased online prior to the screening. No tickets will be sold at the door.
Visit the event’s Facebook page here.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Communities Across U.S. Mobilize to Screen ‘Intent to Destroy’ in Theaters

LOS ANGELES — Joe Berlinger’s documentary Intent to Destroy, a film-within-a film that centers on the Armenian Genocide was a critical favorite at last year’s Tribeca and Hot Docs film festivals. The film also won best documentary at the Arpa International Film Festival held last November. Intent to Destroy was shown theatrically with limited screenings in New York, Los Angeles, Boston and San Francisco.  Gathr Films is expanding the release with one-night-only event screenings through its crowd-sourced theatrical distribution platform Theatrical On Demand.
Produced by Survival Pictures (The Promise), RadicalMedia, and Third Eye Motion Picture Company in association with Bloom Project, Berlinger’s 13th feature-length documentary embeds history with the story of director Terry George’s exploration of the Genocide through his film The Promise. That includes the subsequent campaign launched by genocide deniers.
The film shines a light on the Armenian Genocide — whose witnesses and descendants are still fighting to be officially acknowledged as such by the international community including the United States: how it was carried out during World War I as the reign of the Ottoman Empire drew to a close, and how it laid the groundwork for the genocides that followed. Berlinger interviews historians, scholars, and high-profile filmmakers in his exploration of the tangled web of responsibility that has driven a century of denial by the Turkish government and its strategic allies.
Berlinger has won two Emmys and has been nominated in the feature doc category for an Oscar. His work includes Brother’s Keeper, the Paradise Lost trilogy, and Metallica: Some Kind of Monster.
Theatrical On Demand® allows individuals the opportunity to organize and promote screenings of Intent to Destroy in movie theaters across the country. With Theatrical On Demand®, you can bring this film to your local movie theater. You just pick the date, time, and theater where you want to host your screening. Gathr Films will set everything up for you at no cost. All you have to do is promote the film and get people to reserve tickets.
Theatrical On Demand® screenings can only happen if a minimum number of people reserve tickets before a screening expires. Movie Captains, who organize these screenings, have anywhere from 5 weeks to 4-months to promote the film in their city and get enough people to reserve tickets before the screening expires.
On every screening page, you’ll find an update that shows you the number of current reservations, the number of additional reservations needed to tip the screening, as well as how much time remains before that screening request expires. When enough people reserve tickets to a screening before time expires, the screening takes place. If the minimum number of reservations is not met, the screening does not take place and nobody is charged.
Anyone can Captain a movie screening, whether you’re an individual, an organization, or social club. Nonprofits can also add a feature that allows ticket purchasers to make an optional donation to their organization.
You can help bring Intent to Destroy to a theater near you by hosting your own screening and spreading the word. Intent to Destroy is an experience, and the full meaning and value of this film can only be experienced in a high-quality cinema with a big screen, great sound, and large audience. This film is dedicated to the estimated 1.5 million victims of the Armenian Genocide, and to all victims of mass slaughter around the world. May their suffering never be forgotten.
Organize a screening now or by emailing Haig Boyadjian at haigboyadjian@yahoo.com

Righteous Turkish Professor Condemns Turkey’s Denial of the Armenian Genocide

BY  HARUT SASSOUNIAN
On December 30, 2017, Cengiz Aktar, a prominent Turkish political scientist, journalist and writer, published a candid and compassionate article about the Armenian Genocide. Aktar’s article titled, “Confronting past violence with more violence,” is posted on Ahvalnews.com, an independent overseas website, beyond the reach of the Turkish government’s oppressive regime.
Prof. Aktar begins his article with a stern warning to Turkish denialists: “Unless we, as a society confront a massive crime in our past like the Armenian Genocide of 1915 and unless we commit due reparations to the descendants of innocent victims, impunity will haunt us, and even more evil will follow. This is a century-old ethical predicament with remarkably deep roots.” Aktar not only demands recognition of the Armenian Genocide, but more significantly, “reparations.”
Prof. Aktar believes that the denial of the Armenian Genocide by the Turkish government is at the root of all vile events that have occurred in Turkey since 1915: “Considering that Genocide is a substantially massive crime than any of the public, individual or collective infractions, or the incessant evils of today, if the public consciousness can stomach Genocide, it can easily stomach any lawlessness. And thus, evil begets evil. We as a society have constantly refused to bring up the events of 1915 due to the intensity of the transgressions that followed suit — directly correlated to the impunity of Genocide — as well as voluntary or forced dementia.”
Indeed, violence and injustice have become routine in Turkey due to the reluctance of dealing with the mass crimes of the Armenian Genocide: “…Collective dementia, collective violence, and collective depravity that were imposed after the transgressions of 1915 became our lifestyle. Now we have unlimited violence and depravity everywhere, inside our homes, barracks, workplaces, hospitals — in every arena, from politics to the media — against everything from humans, to animals, nature, cities, and culture. But lawlessness, impunity, injustice, and indifference are everywhere as well.”
Aktar describes the denial of the Armenian Genocide as an on-going ‘curse’ upon Turkey that has led to many of today’s evils in Turkish society: “Some kind of schizophrenia that immediately forces one to forget and try to make others forget the violence it just inflicted. This is a collective sickness that transgresses the delusions of banal everyday politics. However, the suppressed memories of the past violence keep themselves alive in the public sub-consciousness by creating more violence, testing the confines of our dementia. So much so that while trying to forget an evil, we beget a new one! Maybe this is the curse of a society that refuses to face voluntarily its past violence through involuntary confrontation with daily violence with all its sinister consequences.”
At the end of his graciously humanistic article, Aktar reposts another powerful article he had written just before 2015, on the Centennial of the Armenian Genocide, in Taraf newspaper which was deleted from the website by the Turkish authorities.
In his earlier article, Prof. Aktar also blamed all the evils occurring in Turkey today due to the curse inflicted upon Turkish society by the victims of the Armenian Genocide: “Who knows, all the evil haunting us, endless mass killings, and our inability to recover from afflictions may be due to a century-old curse and a century-old lie. What do you think? This is perhaps the malediction uttered by Armenians, children, civilian women and men alike who died moaning, and buried without a coffin. It may be the storms created in our souls by the still agonizing specters of all our ill-fated citizens including Greeks and Syriacs and later Alevis and Kurds. Perhaps, the massacres which have not been accounted for since 1915 and the charge which have remained unpaid are now being paid back in different venues by the grandchildren. The curses uttered in return for the lives taken, the lives stolen, the homes plundered, the churches destroyed, the schools confiscated, and the property extorted…. ‘May God make you pay for it for all your offspring to come’… Are we paying back the price of all the injustice done so far? Does repayment manifest itself in the form of an audacity of not being able to confront with our past sins or in the form of indecency that has become our habit due to our chronic indulgence in unfairness? It seems as if our society has been decaying for a century, with festering all around.”
When Turkish leaders accept the mass crimes committed by their ancestors and make amends for them, as Prof. Aktar suggests, that is when Armenia and Turkey can establish normal diplomatic relations and only then can they put the past behind them. May Allah bestow His blessings on this righteous Turk and his pursuit of Godly justice!

Monday, February 5, 2018

Remembering Arakel Sivaslian: From Accomplished U.S.-Educated Astronomer to Armenian Genocide Victim

Special to the Armenian Weekly
The facts are starkly simple. On Aug. 10, 1915, Arakel Sivaslian, a resident of Marsovan (today’s Merzifon, in Turkey), was offered a choice: Make a nominal acceptance of Islam and take the job of city engineer, or be deported to Aleppo. He refused to deny his Christianity. He and his wife then put a few possessions in an ox cart. Mrs. Sivaslian sat on top while Mr. Sivaslian walked beside her. They were led under guard with other Armenians south toward Sivas. Not far from the city, the men were separated from the women, and with their hands tied behind their backs they were marched off and killed. Mrs. Sivaslian and the other women and girls were driven onward. She was never heard from again.
Arakel Sivaslian, accomplished astronomer to genocide victim (Graphic: Wendy Elliott)
But rather than dwell on the sad, horrible facts of his death, it is far better to honor the wonderful gift of his life. Arakel G. Sivaslian was a well-loved father and husband, a well-respected teacher and friend, and an accomplished mathematician and astronomer. He was born in the 1860s in a small village in the interior of Turkey. His village was within the field of the missionaries of Talas, who ran schools and supported independent Christian churches.
It was evident from the start that Sivaslian was a bright student. With his family’s permission, he went to Marsovan to the Boys’ Boarding School  run by the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions. He showed a particular aptitude for arithmetic, algebra, and geometry, and quickly excelled at them. One of the missionaries agreed to tutor him in advanced mathematics. He soon excelled at that, too. After graduation, he was asked to remain at the school as a math tutor. In 1886, when the American Board established Anatolia College, he became one of its first instructors.
Now that Sivaslian had a job, he decided to marry and start a family. Not surprisingly, his bride was a graduate of the mission’s Girls’ School. Life was good for the Sivaslians, but there was a hunger in him. He wanted more. He wanted to explore, to learn. In 1890, he was offered a special opportunity to do just that. In April, Rev. Dr. Herrick, president of Anatolia College, visited Carleton College in Northfield, Minn. His purpose was to recruit teachers from the Congregational college for the mission in Turkey. Henry K. Wingate, ’87 accepted the call. Thus began a close association between Anatolia and Carleton. There is no doubt Dr. Herrick’s positive recommendation—both for Carleton and for Sivaslian—changed Sivaslian’s future. The stars quickly aligned for Sivaslian to temporarily leave his wife and children in Marsovan while he began his studies in October in Northfield.
Arakel Sivaslian (sitting, L) as a graduate student with astronomy professor Herbert Couper Wilson (standing, R), mathematics astronomy instructor Charlotte Willard (sitting, R), and a fellow student DeLisle Stewart (standing, L), ca. 1890 (Photo courtesy of the Carleton Voice)
“The first time I ever saw him was on the campus when someone pointed him out as the newly arrived ‘Turk,’” said Dana K. Getchell, ’99 affectionately. The two men did not become close until Getchell went to Anatolia College as a tutor in 1899, and returned there as a missionary in 1903. “Upon my arrival in Marsovan, Mr. Sivaslian’s face was the only familiar one, and it did not take the slight acquaintance formed at college, long to develop into a deep, abiding friendship.” For almost two years Sivaslian studied advanced mathematics and astronomy at Carleton under the guidance of Charlotte R. Willard, who later joined the Marsovan mission. He graduated with a B.Sc. in 1892. His work was so impressive that he was immediately accepted into the graduate astronomy program. In 1893 he defended his thesis, “The Definitive Determination of the Orbit of Comet 1892 III (Holmes Nov. 6),” and was awarded the first Ph.D. ever granted by Carleton.
Though Dr. Sivaslian was anxious to return home to his family and teaching position, he was delayed until 1894 because it was not safe to travel as a consequence of the political upheaval and Hamidian massacres in the Marsovan region. He was not idle during this sojourn. He managed to raise enough money to buy a large telescope and send it to Anatolia College. Upon his return he continued teaching and was made a full professor. Others, like Getchell, were often drawn to his quiet retiring nature, his earnestness and commitment to his students, his charming home, and his strong Christian influence among his fellow Armenians.
Given all this, in 1910 the College administration felt he deserved a furlough from July 1911 to Sept. 1912 to travel and work in observatories in the United States. He would go with full pay and an additional stipend, and this time would be accompanied by his wife and daughter. His two other children were old enough to be on their own. It was a successful tour. He was reacquainted with former colleagues, raised money to build an observatory at Anatolia College, and learned and explored to his heart’s content. After his return, he continued in his strong, quiet way to education a new set of students on the wonders of the universe.
In 1912 Sivaslian wrote an article for the Carleton alumni magazine, titled “Turkey: It’s [sic] Present and Future.” “What is my hope for the future?” he asked. “There is dissatisfaction everywhere. Armenians, Greeks, Albanians, Bulgarians, Arabs, and Kurds are all dissatisfied with the rule of the Young Turks. Even the Turks who are benefited most are against the party. When the people are not in sympathy with the government, the government cannot be strong. There cannot be progress when one party is suspicious of the other party. The Young Turks feel this and try to gain the confidence of the people by such means which give the contrary result. This cannot go on indefinitely. The country will either share the fate of Persia and Morocco, or this mad rush of the ruling party toward destruction will be stopped.” His opinion was that it would be stopped. As we know, he was wrong.
By 1915 his three children had immigrated to the U.S. and urged their parents to do the same. They refused. “The last letter I received from father was dated Aug. 4,” said H. A. Sivaslian, one of his sons. The letter reached him in Akron, Ohio, in the middle of Sept. 1915. “According to reliable sources, all was over long before that time.”
“Professor Sivaslian often led the prayer meetings preceding those last days,” said Rev. Theodore A. Elmer. “He exhorted the company to continue loyalty to their Christian faith.” When he left on his final journey, there was an “affectionate parting” with Dr. George White, president of Anatolia College, Elmer, Getchell, Willard, the rest of his colleagues, and his beloved students.
Arakel Sivaslian’s life was shorter than it should have been, but it was a life well lived.