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Kırsal Bölgeler ve Ermeni Faaliyetleri

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Kırsal Bölgeler ve Ermeni Faaliyetleri

Mesajgönderen TurkmenCopur » 30 Nis 2011, 15:45


Villages naturally did not escape the Armenians. Captain Refik in Erzincan commented, "All the villages from Trabzon up to Erzincan are piles of debris." Perhaps this is an exaggeration, but it is indicative of the state of Muslim villages once the Armenian forces had passed. Christian villages had generally not been touched, which corresponds with evidence from American sources.

The worst destruction was among the villages on the Armenian line of retreat from Erzincan to Erzurum and from Trabzon to Erzurum; in the latter area, Greek guerrilla bands were also responsible for some of these events. According to Ottoman military reports, in the Erzincan region, Armenian guerrillas burnt 20 houses before they fled Yenilköy and murdered 35 people at Askale. Armenians escaping on the road from Hinis to Köprüköy killed any Muslims they encountered in the villages along the road. Food supplies were destroyed and four hundred Muslims were reported dead in the town and the surrounding villages of Mamahatun (Tercan). On their retreat, Armenian gangs swept quickly into Muslim villages they passed and killed whomever they could find. For example, the village of Tazegül was burned, by one gang and 30 villagers killed; the same thing occurred at Öreni in the same district. The Ottoman Interior Ministry also reported 36 Muslims murdered in Yusufeli, 150 in Ispir, and 85 in Köprüköy. In Badicivan, 200 were killed and 385 wounded.

The situation in the villages to the north of Erzincan was much the same as that in the east. These villages had suffered greatly from Armenian bands during the Russian occupation and suffered even more during the Armenian retreat. Not only were villages destroyed and villagers killed, but the livelihood of the survivors was destroyed as well. Their fruit trees, which would have taken many years to mature, were cut down.

In the regions through which the Armenian soldiers and guerrillas passed, very few Muslim villages survived intact. The villagers either escaped to the mountains or were slain. A reporter for Austrian newspapers who was on the scene, Dr. Stephan Eshnanie, reported that "All the villages from Trabzon to Erzincan and from Erzincan to Erzurum are destroyed. Corpses of Turks brutally and cruelly slain are everywhere. I am now in Erzurum, and what I see is terrible. Almost the whole city is destroyed. The smell of the corpses still fills the air. . . ."

Muslim refugees choked the roads on which they were often attacked and killed, the women abducted and goods seized. A list of Muslim villages destroyed by Armenians in the last months of World War I would be long, as would be the list of the massacred. Whole regions, especially areas along the lines of march of retreating Armenian soldiers, were destroyed. Villages were burnt and dynamited, their populations slaughtered. The methods of extermination differed. For example, Armenians killed 50 Muslims of the Erkinis village north of Erzurum. The rural town of Hasankale was burned to the ground, and those who could not flee were killed. In villages such as Sarlipazar, Akkilise, and İnesil, near Erzincan, Armenians slowly murdered the population over a long period. In others, such as Kukurtlu, where 300 were reportedly massacred, Armenians rode into town and massacred the Muslim inhabitants in one day.

As the Ottoman soldiers recaptured eastern Anatolia from the Armenians they encountered fearsome sights. They reported what they saw in detailed reports. For example: "The Armenians took approximately 50 Muslims from the Erkinis village north of Erzurum and killed them. . . . In the villages of Hasankale and vicinity the Muslims were murdered with bullets, axes, and knives. Maidens were abominably used, some taken away by the Armenians. . . ." After the Armenian retreat, much of eastern Anatolia was a graveyard.

Kitap: Death and Exile: The Ethnic Cleansing of Ottoman Muslims, 1821-1922
Yazar: Justin McCarthy
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Kayıt: 29 Eki 2010, 17:26

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