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Armenian Propaganda Campaign Alive and Well in Jerusalem

23 September 2003

By S. Alfassa for the Assembly of Turkish American Associations

I have just returned to the United States after spending a few months in Israel. As many people know, the Old City of Jerusalem has been subdivided into defacto ethnic divisions. There is the Jewish Quarter, the Christian Quarter, the very large Muslim Quarter, and the small Armenian Quarter. The Armenian quarter is small, but it's auspicious location allows for it to be used as a island of propaganda as the tourists walk right through their area on the famous descent to the Western Wall plaza.

The walls we see around the Old City were built by Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent in the sixteenth century, roughly following the course of the walls built by the Romans in the 2nd century. To enter the Old City there are several gate, including the Jaffa Gate and the Zion's Gate. The Jaffa Gate lets you into a mixed Arab and Armenian area, and the Zion's Gate lets you into the Armenian quarter proper. These two gates, especially the latter, is a primary entrance for tourists arriving in the Old City. Tour buses holding tourists from nations across the globe park outside the Zion's gate, then walk their groups up the hill, through the gate Suleiman constructed to defend the city, then walk these tourists into the arms of the Armenian propagandists.

Zion's gate (Bab Nabi Daud) was built for Sultan Suleiman in 1540 so that he may visit the Tomb of Kind David which is nearby outside the city walls. On the stone walls which make up the gate, as well as on the walls throughout the Armenian quarter are large white posters, entitled 'Map of the Armenian Genocide.' They are more than an eyesore, they are revisionist history at its finest. Measuring almost a meter long, and ¾ of a meter high printed in black and red, these ubiquitous posters usually gather large crowds which stand reading their misinformation. On both sides of the map (which contains cities colored with blood-red circles) are photos of dead bodies. After tourists see these signs, which would catch anyone's attention, they then go to the store owners, the locals, who then get to reinforce their version of what happened during the war years of 1915-1923.

The Armenians and their church in Jerusalem act as if they were saints during the war, equating their plight to the Jews during the Holocaust. What they don't tell you is that witnesses saw truck loads of arms and ammunition taken out of their churches in 1915. I quote the respected Turkish-born Albert Amateau. A descendant of Jews who were expelled from Spain in 1492 and settled in the Ottoman Empire, his grandfather later rose to hold the post of Hahambashi of Palestine. Before he died at the age of 106, Amateau documented his personal observations in his: "Sworn Statement of Albert J. Amateau on the allegations that Armenians suffered "genocide" by the government of the Ottoman Empire:

"If 1.5 million Armenian lost their lives during that war, they died as soldiers, fighting a war of their own choosing against the Ottoman Empire which had treated them decently and benignly. They were the duped victims of the Russians, of the Allies, and of their own Armenian leaders."

These placards proclaiming "Map of the Armenian Genocide" have been posted for many years now, and they are replaced when they fade or occasionly are torn. Though the posting of these signs in the Old City are illegal, they are put on with a sticky substance which does not allow for their complete removal. The police and the city of Jerusalem do not enforce their own sign ordinances in regards to these illegal postings, and thus a new generation of people are getting a daily dose of dishonesty and revisionism.

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Note: Albert Amateau's complete statement is located at http://www.sephardicstudies.org/aa3.html

 


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