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      Armenians Should Teach Time Magazine a Lesson

Armenians Should Teach Time Magazine a Lesson   30/06/2005

Armenians Should Teach Time Magazine a Lesson

By Harut Sassounian
Publisher, The California Courier

Armenians in the United States and Europe should launch a coordinated
campaign to ensure that Time magazine would never again allow itself to be
used as a tool for the dissemination of Turkish lies on the Armenian
Genocide.

The Ankara Chamber of Commerce had paid around $1 million to place four
full-page ads and a DVD in the June 6 issue of the European edition of Time
magazine which has a circulation of around 500,000 copies.

The ad pages contain pictures of Greek and Armenian historical sites in
Turkey. The DVD insert, which comes in a blank white wrapper and does not
carry the mandatory “advertising supplement” disclosure, contains a couple
of short ads on tourism and a 70-minute segment that includes dozens of
distortions and vicious lies about the Armenian Genocide.

It is very obvious that the real intent of the Ankara Chamber of Commerce,
and most probably that of the Turkish government hiding behind it, was not
so much to promote tourism in Turkey, but to denigrate the Armenian
Genocide.

This DVD, more aptly called a piece of hate mail, starts with the following
pompous declaration: “The most comprehensive documentary serial ever made on
the Armenian Question in the history of [the] Turkish Republic.”

An indication of the extent that the Turks have gone to distort the facts of
the Armenian Genocide is that they have prepared this DVD in seven
languages: English, French, Turkish, German, Spanish, Arabic and Russian.
The Turks claim to have conducted research in the archives of 11 countries,
including Armenia. It is noteworthy that while the Turkish Prime Minister
keeps repeatedly saying that Armenia must open its archives, Turkish
filmmakers are inadvertently proving him wrong by stating that they have
access to the Armenian archives!

There are so many lies in this DVD that one does not know where to start.
One would need to write an entire book to expose all of the distortions in
this 70-minute DVD.

The DVD accuses Armenians of committing genocide against the Turks;
collaborating with the Nazis; and distorting documents, while the filmmakers
themselves blatantly distort just about every fact. The DVD blames the Kurds
for the Armenian killings, while claiming that Armenians were not killed. It
misidentifies not only historical sites, but also well-known places, such as
calling the Glendale City College, “University of Glendale,” and the Turkish
Embassy in Paris, “the Turkish Consulate.” It calls Amb. Henry Morgenthau’s
documented reports on the Armenian Genocide, “hearsay.” It cunningly
describes as a “published letter” the paid ad against the Armenian Genocide
by some U.S. “scholars” who had received grants from the Institute of
Turkish Studies which was funded by the Turkish government. It falsifies the
interview of Kemal Ataturk published in the August 1, 1926 issue of the Los
Angeles Examiner in which he admits that the Young Turks massacred millions
of Christians in the Ottoman Empire. It identifies Albert Amateau, a Jew, as
an Armenian who allegedly denies the Armenian Genocide. It wrongly
identifies an unknown interviewee as Prof. Radick Martirosyan, the Rector of
the Yerevan State University. It distorts the words of French
parliamentarian Francois Rochebloine who said after viewing the DVD: “My
words in there are taken out of context. I did not recognize myself in the
way I was presented.” It will not be surprising if the other interviews in
the DVD are also distorted.

Adding insult to injury, the narrator claims that Armenian “women and
children were to be carried by carriages” during the deportations. It
shamelessly states that “food was distributed, shelter was provided and
field hospitals which were established by the [Ottoman] soldiers served on
the way. Measures were taken for security. The Ottoman state was allocating
allowances for those moving despite the dire financial situation of the
state. The state orders were that those who were subject to the relocation
law would be provided with housing immediately at their destinations. In
addition, if necessary, those people would also be provided with food from
the ration of the Ottoman soldiers at war, they would be served hot meals
and meat.”

It is appalling that Time magazine would accept such a pack of lies as paid
advertising and then have the gall to say that it is not responsible for its
content. We are not talking here about depriving the Turks of their right to
express their opinion. Rather, we are dealing with a clear case of false
advertising, hate mail (a hate crime), and fraud (representing outright lies
as facts).

Time’s executives either knowingly accepted this fraudulent DVD and turned a
blind eye to its contents for the sake of pocketing the $1 million ad
revenue or they were negligent in verifying its contents. In either case
they have an obligation to set the record straight and make amends. They
should either do this voluntarily or would be compelled to do so by a court
of law.

The Armenian community should ask Time magazine to:

1) Publish an apology for disseminating this fraudulent DVD;
2) Issue a formal memo to all its divisions around the world not to accept
this DVD as an insert (the Ankara Chamber of Commerce has announced its
intention to place the same DVD in Time’s Asian and Pacific editions);
3) Issue a written warning to all its advertising executives not to accept
any more ads from Turkish entities that deny the Armenian Genocide (just as
they would not run an ad that denies the Jewish Holocaust and glorifies
Hitler; the New York Times recently rejected an ad from Turkish
organizations denying the Armenian Genocide);
4) Destroy the extra 116,000 copies of this DVD that are still in Time’s
possession;
5) Agree to insert and disseminate free of charge a DVD prepared by a
reputable research institute on the Armenian Genocide;
6) Donate the payment it received from the Turkish Chamber of Commerce for
this ad to an Armenian charity.

Should Time reject the above demands, Armenians should then:

1) Cancel their subscriptions and ads; and urge their friends and business
colleagues to do likewise;
2) File lawsuits in several European countries (France, Switzerland,
Belgium, Holland and Germany) where genocide denial or making statements of
racial hatred is against the law;
3) Issue a public appeal for funds to pay for the legal costs of these
lawsuits.

The most important issue is that Armenians should not remain silent in the
face of such an offensive ad. If they ignore it, they would then be
encouraging the Turks to place similar offensive ads not only in other
editions of Time, but also in magazines around the world. It is somewhat
fortunate that the Turks chose to run this ad in the European edition of
Time. Since several European countries have laws banning such hate mail, it
makes it easy for Armenians to take legal action. Armenians should take
advantage of this unique opportunity and make an example of Time magazine!


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