A letter by Turkey’s ambassador to London challenged The Times newspaper for its one-sided view of the Armenian deaths in Ottoman Turkey in 1915, and for also presenting as “fact” those aspects of the issue long-discredited as propaganda.
The Times made the claims in an editorial piece titled ‘Genocide Denial’, which appeared in the paper on 3 June following Germany’s symbolic ‘genocide’ resolution passed the day before.
In his letter to the paper’s editor John Witherow, published in its entirety on 4 June, Ambassador Abdurrahman Bilgiç criticised The Times for “disregarding contested historical claims”, stating that genocide “can only be assessed by a competent court, not by random decisions by Parliaments”.
The Turkish ambassador’s letter highlighted the fact that documents which the paper cites as evidence, submitted by historian Aram Andonian as attributable to Talat Pasha, were in fact forged. Ambassador Bilgiç said the documents had formed part of a concerted effort by Henry Morgenthau, the American Ambassador in Istanbul during the First World War, and his two Armenian secretaries, which included Andonian, to encourage the USA to join the war effort against the Turks.
Morgenthau’s “efforts to ‘make the Turk the worst being on earth’ was protested even by the Associated Press correspondent in Istanbul, as shown by distinguished American historian Heath Lowry,” said the Turkish ambassador.