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Bedouin Notable of Damascus 










Translated from the Original Arabic 







I AM a Bedouin, a son of one of the Heads of 
the tribe of El-Sulut, who dwell in El-Lejat, 
in the Hauran territory. Like other sons of triba4 
Chiefs, I entered the Tribal School at Constanti- 
nople, and subsequently the Royal College. On 
the completion of my education, I was attached to 
the staff of the Vali of Syria (or Damascus), on which 
I remained for a long while. I was then Kaimakam 
of Mamouret-el-Aziz (Kharpout), holding this post 
for three and a half years, after which I practised 
as a lawyer at Damascus, my partners being Shukri 
Bey El-Asli and Abdul-Wahhab Bey El-Inglizi. I 
next became a member of the General Assembly at 
that place, representing Hauran, and later a mem- 
ber of the Committee of that Assembly. On the 
outbreak of the war, I was ordered to resume my 
previous career, that is, the duties of Kaimakam, but 
I did not comply, as I found the practice of the law 
more advantageous in many ways and more 

I was denounced by an informer as being a 
delegate of a Society constituted in the Lebanon 
with the object of achieving the independence of the 
Arab people, under the protection of England and 
France, and of inciting the tribes against the 
Turkish Government. On receipt of this denuncia- 
tion, I was arrested by the Government, thrown into 
prison, and subsequently sent in chains, with a 



4 Foreword 

company of police and gendarmes, to Aaliya, where 
persons accused of political offences were tried> I 
was acquitted, but as the Government disregarded 
the decisions given in such cases, and was resolved 
on the removal and destruction of all enlightened 
Arabs whatever the circumstances might be it 
was thought necessary that I should be despatched 
to Erzeroum, and Jemal Pasha sent me thither with 
an officer and five of the regular troops. When I 
reached Diarbekir, Hasan Kaleh, at Erzeroum, 
was being pressed by the Russians ; and the Vali of 
Diarbekir was ordered to detain me at that place. 
After twenty-two -days' confinement in prison 
for no reason, I was released; I hired a 
house and remained at Diarbekir for six and 
a half months, seeing and hearing from the 
most reliable sources all that took place in 
regard to the Armenians, the majority of my 
informants being superior officers and officials, or 
Notables of Diarbekir and its dependencies, as 
well as others from Van. Bitlis, Mamouret-el-Aziz, 
Aleppo and Erzeroum. The people of Van had 
been in Diarbekir since the occupation of their terri- 
tory by the Russians, whilst the people and officials 
of Bitlis had recently emigrated thither. Many of 
the Erzeroum officers came to Diarbekir on military 
or private business, whilst Mamouret-el-Aziz was 
near by, and many people came to us from thence. 
As I had formerly been a Kaimakam in that Vilayet, 
I had a large acquaintance there and heard^all the 
news. More especially, the time which I passed in 
prison with the heads of the tribes in Diarbekir 
enabled me to study the movement in its smallest 

Martyred Armenia 5 

details. The war must needs come to an end after 
a while, and it will then be plain to readers of this 
book that all I have written is the truth, and that 
it contains only a small part of the atrocities com- 
mitted by the Turks against the hapless Armenian 

After passing this time at Diarbekir I fled, both 
to escape from captivity and from fear induced by 
what had befallen me from some of the fanatical 
Turks. After great sufferings, during which I was 
often exposed to death and slaughter, I reached 
Basra, and conceived the idea of publishing this 
book, as a service to the cause of truth and of a 
people oppressed by the Turks, and also, as I have 
stated at the close, to defend the faith of Islam 
against the charge of fanaticism which will be 
brought against it by Europeans. May God guide 
us in the right way. 

/ have written this -preface at Bombay, on the 
ist September, 1916. 



the Armenian race was, like other nations, 
not possessed of an autonomous government, 
until God bestowed upon them a man, named 
Haig, a bold leader, who united the Ar- 
menians and formed them into an indepen- 
dent state. This took place before the Christian 
era. The nation preserved their independence 
for a considerable time, reaching the highest 
point of their glory and prosperity under, their 
king Dikran, who constituted the city of 
Dikranokerta Diarbekir the capital of his 
Government. Armenia remained independent in 
the time of the Romans, extending her rule over a 
part of Asia Minor and Syria, and a portion of 
Persia, but, in consequence of the protection afforded 
by the Armenians to certain kings who were hostile 
to Rome, the Romans declared war against her, their 
troops entered her capital, and from that time 
Armenian independence was lost. The country 
remained tossing on the waves of despotism, now 
independent, now subjected to foreign rule, until 
its conquest by the Arabs and subsequently by the 
Ottoman power. 

the Armenians in Ottoman territory does not exceed 
1,900,000 souls. I have borrowed this figure from a 


8 Martyred Armenia 

book by a Turkish writer, who states that it is the 
official computation made by the Government pre- 
vious to the Balkan war ; he estimates the Armenians 
residing in Roumelia at 400,000, those in Ottoman 
Asia at 1,500,000. The Armenians in Russia and 
Persia are said not to exceed 3,000,000, thus bring- 
ing the total number of Armenians in the world to 
over four and a half millions. 

Vilayets inhabited by Armenians are Diarbekir, 
Van, Bitlis, Erzeroum, Mamouret-el-Aziz, Sivas, 
Adana, Aleppo, Trebizond, Broussa, and Constan- 
tinople. ,The numbers in Van, Bitlis, Adana, 
Diarbekir, Erzeroum, and Kharpout were greater 
than those in the other .Vilayets, but in all 
cases they were fewer than the Turks and Kurds, 
with the exception of Van and Bitlis, where they 
were equal or superior in number. In the province 
of Moush (Vilayet of Bitlis) they were more numer- 
ous than the Kurds; all industry and commerce in 
those parts was in Armenian hands; their agricul- 
ture was more prosperous; they were much more 
advanced than the Turks and Kurds in those 
Vilayets; and the large number of their schools, 
contrasted with the few schools of their alien fellow- 
countrymen, is a proof of their progress and of the 
decline of the other races. 

ARMENIAN SOCIETIES. The Armenians possess 
learned and political Societies, the most important 
of which are the " Tashnagtzian " and the " Hun- 
chak." The programme of these two Societies is 
to make every effort and adopt every means to 
attain that end from which no Armenian ever 

Martyred Armenia 9 

swerves, namely, administrative independence 
under the supervision of the Great Powers of 
Europe. I have enquired of many Armenians 
whom I have met, but I have not found one who 
said that he desired political independence, the 
reason being that in most of the Vilayets which they 
inhabit the Armenians are less numerous than the 
Kurds, and if they became independent the advan- 
tage to the Kurds would be greater than to them- 
selves. Hitherto, the Kurds have been in a very 
degraded state of ignorance ; disorder is supreme in 
their territory, and the cities are in ruins. The 
Armenians, therefore, prefer to remain under 
Turkish rule, on condition that the administration 
is carried on under the supervision of the Great 
European Powers, as they place no confidence in 
the promises of the Turks, who take back to-day 
what they bestowed yesterday. These two Societies 
thus earnestly labour for the propagation of this 
view amongst the Armenians, and for the attain- 
ment of their object by every means. I have been 
told by an Armenian officer that one of these 
Societies proposes to attain its end by means of 
internal revolts, but the policy of the second is to 
do so by peaceful means only. 

The above is a brief summary of the policy of 
these Societies. It is said, however, that the pro- 
gramme of one of them aims at Armenian political 

Any who desire further details as to Armenian his- 
tory or societies should refer to their historical books. 

record that the Kurds, fellow-countrymen of the 

io Martyred Armenia 

Armenians in the Vilayets inhabited by both peoples, 
rose in conflict with the latter, or that the Kurds 
plundered the property of the Armenians, or out- 
raged their women, until the year 1888, when they 
rose by order of the Turkish Government and 
slaughtered Armenians in Van, Kharpout, Erze- 
roum, and Moush. Again, in the time of Abdul- 
Hamid 1 1., in 1896, when the Armenians rose and en- 
tered the Ottoman Bank at Constantinople, with the 
object of frightening the Sultan and compelling 
him to proclaim the Constitution, he ordered a mas- 
sacre at Constantinople and in the Vilayets. But 
hitherto there has been no instance of the people of 
Turkey proceeding to the slaughter of Armenians 
on a general scale unless incited and constrained 
to do so by the Government. In the massacre of 
1896, 15,000 were killed in Constantinople itself, 
and 300,000 in the Vilayets.' 

Armenians were also killed in the Vilayet of 
Adana, some months after the proclamation of the 
Constitution, but this slaughter did not extend be- 
yond the two Vilayets of Adana and Aleppo, where 
the influence of Abdul-Hamid was paramount till 
the year 1909. I do not, however, find any detailed 
account of this massacre, or any information as to 
the numbers killed. 

The goods and cattle of the Armenians were 
plundered, and their houses wrecked, more espe- 
cially in the slaughter of 1896, but many of their 
countrymen* protected them and concealed them 
in their houses from the officials of the Govern- 

* Presumably, amongst the Turks and Kurds. TRANSLATOR. 

Martyred Armenia n 

The Government consistently inflamed the 
Moslem Kurds and Turks against them, making 
use of the Faith of Islam as a means to attain their 
object in view of the ignorance of the Mohamme- 
dans as to the true, laws of their religion. 

"Inasmuch as the Armenians are committing acts 
opposed to the laws and taking advantage of all 
occasions to disturb the Government; as they have 
been found in possession of prohibited arms, bombs, 
and explosive materials, prepared with the object 
of internal revolt; as they have killed Moslems in 
Van, and have aided the Russian armies at a time 
when the Government is in a state of war with 
England, France, and Russia; and in the apprehen- 
sion that the Armenians may, as is their habit, lend 
themselves to seditious tumult and revolt; the 
Government have decreed that all the Armenians 
shall be collected and despatched to the Vilayets 
of Mosul, Syria, and Deir-el-Zur, their persons, 
goods and honour being safeguarded. The neces- 
sary orders have been given for ensuring their com- 
fort, and for their residence in those territories until 
the termination of the war." 

Such is the official declaration of the Ottoman 
Government in regard to the Armenians. But the 
secret resolution was that companies of militia 
should be formed to assist the gendarmes in the 
slaughter of the Armenians, that these should be 
killed to the last man, and that the work of murder 
and destruction should take place under the super- 
vision of trusty agents of the Unionists, who were 
known for their brutality. Reshid Bey was ap- 

12 Martyred Armenia 

pointed to the Vilayet of Diarbekir and invested 
with extensive powers, having at his disposal a gang 
of notorious murderers, such as Ahmed Bey El- 
Serzi, Rushdi Bey, Khalil Bey, and others of this 

The reason for this decision, as it was alleged, 
was that the Armenians residing in Europe and 
in Egypt had sent twenty of their devoted partisans 
to kill Talaat, Enver, and others of the Unionist 
leaders; the attempt had failed, as a certain 
Armenian, a traitor to his nation and a friend of 
Bedri Bey, the Chief of the Public Security at 
Constantinople (or according to others, Azmi Bey), 
divulged the matter and indicated the Armenian 
agents, who had arrived at Constantinople. The 
latter were arrested and executed, but secretly, in 
order that it might not be said that there were men 
attempting to kill the heads of the Unionist Society. 

Another alleged reason also was that certain 
Armenians, whom the Government had collected 
from the Vilayets of Aleppo and Adrianople and 
had sent off to complete their military service, fled, 
with their arms, to Zeitoun, where they assembled, 
to the number of sixty young men, and commenced 
to resist the Government and to attack wayfarers. 
The Government despatched a military force under 
Fakhry Pasha, who proceeded to the spot, destroyed 
a part of Zeitoun, and killed men, women and chil- 
dren, without encountering opposition on the part 
of the Armenians. He collected the men and 
women and sent them off with parties of troops, who 
killed many of the men, whilst as for the women, do 
not ask what was their fate. They were delivered 

Martyred Armenia 13 

over to the Ottoman soldiery; the children died 
of hunger and thirst; not a man or woman reached 
Syria except the halt and blind, who were unable to 
keep themselves alive; the young men were all 
slaughtered; and the good-looking women fell into 
the hands of the Turkish youths. 

Emigrants from Roumelia were conveyed to 
Zeitoun and established there, the name of that 
place being changed to " Reshadiya," so that no- 
thing should remain to remind the Turks of the 
Armenian name. During our journey from Hamah 
we saw many Armenian men and women, sitting 
under small tents which they had constructed from 
sheets, rugs, etc. Their condition was most pitiable, 
and how could it be otherwise? Many of these had 
been used to sit only on easy chairs [lit., rocking- 
chairs], amid luxurious furniture, in houses built in 
the best style, well arranged and splendidly fur- 
nished. I saw, as others saw also, many Armenian 
men and women in goods-wagons on the railway 
between Aleppo and Hamah, herded together in a 
way which moved compassion. 

After my arrival at Aleppo, and two days' stay 
there, we took the train to a place called Ser-Arab- 
Pounari. I was accompanied by five Armenians, 
closely guarded, and despatched to Diarbekir. We 
walked on our feet thence to Seruj, where we 
stopped at a khan [rest-house] filled with Ar- 
menian women and children, with a few sick 
men. These women were in a deplorable state, 
as they had done the journey from Erzeroum 
on foot, taking a long while to arrive at 
Seruj. ^ I talked with them in Turkish, and they 

14 Martyred Armenia 

told me that the gendarmes with them had brought 
them to places where there was no water, re- 
fusing to tell them where water was to be found 
until they had received money as the price. Some 
of them, who were pregnant, had given birth on the 
way, and had abandoned their infants in the un- 
inhabited wastes. Most of these women had left 
their children behind, either in despair, or owing to 
illness or weakness which made them unable to 
carry them, so they threw them on the ground ; 
some from natural affection could not do this and 
so perished in the desert, not parted from their 
infants. They told me that there were some among 
them who had not been used to walk for a single 
hour, having been brought up in luxury, with men 
to wait on them and women to attend them. These 
had fallen into the hands of the Kurds, who recog- 
nize no divine law, and who live on lofty mountains 
and in dense forests like beasts of prey; their honour 
was outraged and they died by brutal violence, many 
of them killing themselves rather than sacrifice 
their virtue to these ravening wolves. 

We then proceeded in carts from Seruj to 
El-Raha (Urfa). On the way I saw crowds going 
on foot, whom from a distance I took for troops 
marching to the field of battle. On approaching, 
I found they were Armenian women, walking bare- 
foot and weary, placed in ranks like the gendarmes 
who preceded and followed them. ^ Whenever one 
of them lagged behind, a gendarme would beat her 
with the butt of his rifle, throwing her on her face, 
till she rose terrified and rejoined her companions. 
But if one lagged from sickness, she was either 

Martyred Armenia 15 

abandoned, alone in the wilderness, without help or 
comfort, to be a prey to wild beasts, or a gendarme 
ended her life by a bullet. 

On arrival at Urfa, we learned that the Govern- 
ment had sent a force of gendarmes and police t 
the Armenian quarters of the town to collect thei 
arms, subsequently dealing with these people 
with others. As they were aware of what had hap 
pened to their kinsmen the khans at Urfa 
being full of women and children they did not 
give up their arms, but showed armed resistance, 
killing one man of the police and three gendarmes. 
The authorities of Urfa applied for a force from 
Aleppo, and by order of Jemal Pasha the execu- 
tioner of Syria Fakhry Pasha came with cannon. 
He turned the Armenian quarters into a waste place, 
killing the men and the children, and great numbers 
of the women, except such as yielded themselves to 
share the fate of their sisters expulsion on foot to 
Deir-el-Zur, after the Pasha and his officers had 
selected the prettiest amongst them. Disease was 
raging among them; they were outraged by the 
Turks and Kurds ; and hunger and thirst completed 
their extermination. 

After leaving Urfa, we again saw throngs of 
women, exhausted by fatigue and misery, dying of 
hunger and thirst, and we saw the bodies of the dead 
lying by the roadside. 

On our arrival at a place near a village called 
Kara Jevren, about six hours distant from Urfa, we 
stopped at a spring to breakfast and drink. I went 
a little apart, towards the source, and came upon a 
most appalling spectacle. A woman, partly un- 

16 Martyred Armenia 

clothed, was lying prone, her chemise disordered 
and red with blood, with four bullet-wounds in her 
breast. I could not restrain myself, but wept bit- 
terly. As I drew out a handkerchief to wipe away 
my tears, and looked round to see whether any of 
my companions had observed me, I saw a child 
not more than eight years old, lying on his face, his 
head cloven by an axe. This made my grief the 
more vehement, but my companions cut short my 
lamentations, for I heard the officer, Aarif Effendi, 
calling to the priest Isaac, and saying, " Come here 
at once," and I knew that he had seen something 
which had startled him. I went towards him, and 
what did I behold?^ Three children lying in the 
water, in terror of their lives from the Kurds, who 
had stripped them of their clothes and tortured them 
in various ways, their mother near by, moaning with 
pain and hunger. She told us her story, saying that 
she was from Erzeroum, and had been brought by 
the troops to this place with many other women 
after a journey of many days. After they had been 
plundered of money and clothing, and the prettiest 
women had been picked out and handed over to the 
Kurds, they reached this place, where Kurdish men 
and women collected and robbed them of all the 
clothes that remained on them. She herself had 
stayed here, as she was sick and her children 
would not leave her. The Kurds came upon 
them again and left them naked. The chil- 
dren had lain in the water in their terror, and 
she was at the point of death. The priest col- 
lected some articles of clothing and gave them to 
the woman and the children ; the officer sent a man 

Martyred Armenia 17 

to the post of gendarmes which was near by, and 
ordered the gendarme whom the man brought with 
him to send on the woman and children to Urfa, 
and to bury the bodies which were near the guard- 
house. The sick woman told me that the dead 
woman refused to yield herself to outrage, so they 
killed her and she died nobly, chaste and pure from 
defilement; to induce her to yield they killed her 
son beside her, but she was firm in her resolve and 
died heart-broken. 

In the afternoon we went on towards Kara 
Jevren, and one of the drivers pointed out to us 
some high mounds, surrounded by stones and rocks, 
saying that here Zohrab^ and Vartakis had been 
killed, they having been leading Notables among 
the Armenians, and their Deputies. 

ignorant of who and what was Zohrab, the Armenian 
Deputy for Constantinople, his name and repute 
being celebrated after the institution of the Cham- 
ber. He used to speak with learning and reflection, 
refuting objections by powerful arguments and con- 
vincing proofs. His speeches in the Chamber were 
mostly conclusive. He was learned in all subjects, 
but especially in the science of law 7 , as he was a 
graduate of universities and had practised at the 
Bar for many years. He was endowed with 
eloquence and great powers of exposition; he was 
courageous, not to be turned from his purpose or 
intimidated from pursuing his national aims. When 
the Unionists realised that they were deficient in 
knowledge, understanding nothing about polity or 
administration, and not aware of the meaning of 

i8 Martyred Armenia- 

liberty or constitutional government, they resolved 
to return to the system of their Tartar forefathers, 
the devastation of cities and the slaughter of inno- 
cent men, as it was in that direction that their powers 
lay. They sent Zohrab and his colleague Vartakis 
away from Constantinople, with orders that they 
should be killed on the way, and it was announced 
that they had been murdered by a band of brigands. 
They killed them in order that it might not be said 
that Armenians were more powerful, more learned, 
and more intelligent than Turks. Why should such 
bands murder none but Armenians ?. The falsity of 
the statement is obvious. 

Zohrab and Vartakis fell victims to their own 
courage and firmness of purpose; they were killed 
out of envy of their learning and their love for their 
own people, and for their tenacity in. pursuing their 
own path. They were killed by that villain, Ahmed 
El-Serzi, one of the sworn men of the Unionists, he 
who murdered Zeki Bey; his story in the Ottoman 
upheaval is well known, and how the Unionists 
saved him from his fitting punishment and even 
from prison. A Kurd told me that Vartakis was one 
of the boldest and most courageous men who ever 
lived ; he was chief of the Armenian bands in the 
time of Abdul-Hamid ; he was wounded in the foot 
by a cannon-ball whilst the Turkish troops were 
pursuing these bands, and was imprisoned either at 
Erzeroum or at Maaden, in the Vilayet of Diarbekir. 
The Sultan Abdul-Hamid, through his officials, 
charged him to modify his attitude and acknowledge 
that he had been in error, when he should be par- 
doned and appointed to any post he might choose. 

Martyred Armenia 19 

He rejected this offer, saying, " I will not sell my 
conscience for a post, or say that the Government of 
Abdul-Hamid is just, whilst I see its tyranny with 
my eyes and touch it with my hand." 

It is said that the Unionists ordered that all the 
Armenian Deputies should be put to death, and the 
greater number of them were thus dealt with. It is 
reported also that Dikran Ghilighian, the well-known 
writer, who was an adherent of the Committee of 
Union and Progress, was killed in return for his 
learning, capacity, and devotion to their cause. 
Such was the recompense of his services to the 

In the evening we arrived at Kara Jevren, and 
slept there till morning. At sunrise we went on 
towards Sivrek, and half-way on the road we saw 
a terrible spectacle. The corpses of the killed were 
lying in great numbers on both sides of the road ; 
here we saw a woman outstretched on the ground, 
her body half veiled by her long hair; there, 
women lying on their faces, the dried blood 
blackening their delicate forms; there again, the 
corpses of men, parched to the semblance of 
charcoal by the heat of the sun. As we 
approached Sivrek, the corpses became more numer- 
ous, the bodies of children being in a great majority. 
As we arrived at Sivrek and left our carts, we sa*.v 
one of the servants of the khan carrying a 
little infant with hair as yellow as gold, whom 
he threw behind the house. We asked him 
about it, and he said that there were three sick 
Armenian women in the house, who had lagged be- 
hind their companions, that one of them had given 

20 Martyred Armenia 

birth to this infant, but could not nourish it, owing 
to her illness. So it had died and been thrown out, 
as one might throw out a mouse. 

DEMAND FOR RANSOM. Whilst we were at 
Sivrek, Aarif Effendi told me after he had been at 
the Government offices that the. Commandant of 
Gendarmerie and the Chief of Police of that place 
had requested him to hand over to them the five 
Armenians who were with him, and that on his 
refusal they had insisted, saying that, if they were 
to reach Diarbekir in safety, they must pay a ransom 
of fifty liras for themselves. We went to the 
khan, where the officer summoned the priest Isaac 
and told him how matters stood. After speaking to 
his companions, the priest replied that they could 
pay only ten liras altogether, as they had no more 
in their possession. When convinced by his words, 
the officer took the ten liras and undertook to satisfy 
the others. 

This officer had a dispute with the Commandant 
of Gendarmerie at Aleppo, the latter desiring to 
take these five men on the grounds that they had 
been sent with a gendarme for delivery to his office. 
Ahmed Bey, the Chief of the Irregular band at 
Urfa, also desired to take them, but the officer 
refused to give them up to him he being a mem- 
ber of the Committee of Union and Progress and 
brought them in safety to Diarbekir. 

After passing the night at Sivrek we left early 
in the morning. As we approached Diarbekir the 
corpses became more numerous, and on our route 
we met companies of women going to Sivrek under 
guard of gendarmes, weary and wretched, the 

Martyred Armenia 21 

traces of tears and misery plain on their faces a 
plight to bring tears of blood 5.rom stones, and move 
the compassion of beasts of prey. 

What, in God's name, had these women done? 
Had they made war on the Turks, or killed even 
one of them ? What was the crime of these hapless 
creatures, whose sole offence was that they were 
Armenians, skilled in the management of their 
homes and the training of their children, with no 
thought beyond the comfort of their husbands and 
sons, and the fulfilment of their duties towards 

I ask you, O Moslems is this to be counted as 
a crime ? Think for a moment. What was the fault 
of these poor women ? Was it in their being superior 
to the Turkish women in every respect? Even 
assuming that their men had merited such treatment, 
is it right that these women should be dealt with in 
a manner from which wild beasts would recoil ? God 
has said in the Koran : " Do not load one with an- 
other's burthens," that is, Let not one be punished 
for another. 

What had these weak women done, and what 
had their infants done? Can the men of the 
Turkish Government bring forward even a feeble 
proof to justify their action and to convince the 
people of Islam, who hold that action for unlawful 
and reject it? No; they can find no word to say 
before a people whose usages are founded on jus- 
tice, and their laws on wisdom and reason. 

Is it right that these impostors, who pretend to 
be the supports of Islam and the Khilafat, the pro- 
tectors of the Moslems, should transgress the com- 

22 Martyred Armenia 

mand of God, transgress the Koran, the Traditions 
of the Prophet, and humanity? Truly, they have 
committed an act at which Islam is revolted, as 
well as all Moslems and all the peoples of the earth, 
be they Moslems, Christians, Jews, or idolaters. As 
God lives, it is a shameful deed, the like of which 
has not been done by any people counting them- 
selves as civilised. 

THE INFANT IN THE WASTE. After we had gone 
a considerable distance we saw a child of not more 
than four years old, with a fair complexion, blue 
eyes, and golden hair, with all the indications of 
luxury and pampering, standing in the sun, motion- 
less and speechless. The officer told the driver to 
stop the cart, got out alone, and questioned the 
child, who made no reply, and did not utter a word. 
The officer said : " If we take this child with us to 
Diarbekir, the authorities will take him from us, and 
he will share the fate of his people in being killed. 
It is best that we leave him. Perhaps God will move 
one of the Kurds to compassion, that he take him 
and bring him up." None of us could say anything 
to him; he entered the cart and we drove on, 
leaving the child as we found him, without speech, 
tears, or movement. Who knows of what rich man 
or Notable of the Armenians he was the son? He 
had hardly seen the light when he was orphaned by 
the slaughter of his parents and kinsmen. Those 
who should have carried him were weary of him 
for the women were unable to carry even them- 
selves so they had abandoned him in the waste, 
far from human habitation. Man, who shows kind- 
ness to beasts, and forms societies for their protec- 

Martyred Armenia 23 

tion, can be merciless to his own kind, more espe- 
cially to infants who can utter no complaint; he 
leaves them under the heat of the sun, thirsty and 
famishing, to be devoured by wild creatures. 

Leaving the boy, our hearts burning within us, 
and full of grief and anguish, we arrived before 
sunset at a khan some hours distant from 
Diarbekir. There we passed the night, and in the 
morning we went on amid the mangled forms of the 
slain. The same sight met our view on every side; 
a man lying, his breast pierced by a bullet ; a woman 
torn open by lead ; a child sleeping his last sleep 
beside his mother; a girl in the flower of her age, 
in a posture which told its own story. Such was our 
journey until we arrived at a canal, called Kara 
Pounar, near Diarbekir, and here we found a change 
in the method of murder and savagery. 

\Ye saw here bodies burned to ashes. God, from 
whom no secrets are hid, knows how many young 
men and fair girls, who should have led happy lives 
together, had been consumed by fire in this ill- 
omened place. 

We had expected not to find corpses of the 
killed near to the walls of Diarbekir, but we were 
mistaken, for we journeyed among the bodies until 
we entered the city gate As I was informed by 
some Europeans who returned from Armenia after 
the massacres, the Government ordered the burial 
of all the bodies from the roadside when the matter 
had become the subject of comment in European 

Ix PRISON. -On our arrival at Diarbekir the 
officer handed us over to the authorities and we were 

24 Martyred Armenia 

thrown into prison, where I remained for twenty- 
two days. During this time I obtained full informa- 
tion about the movement from one of the prisoners, 
who was a Moslem of Diarbekir, and who related 
to me what had happened to the Armenians there. 
I asked him what was the reason of the affair, why 
the Government had treated them in this way, and 
whether they had committed any act calling for their 
complete extermination. He said that, after the 
declaration of war, the Armenians, especially the 
younger men, had failed to comply with the orders 
of the Government, that most of them had evaded 
military service by flight, and had formed companies 
which they called " Roof Companies." These took 
money from the wealthy Armenians for the pur 
chase of arms, which they did not deliver to the 
authorities, but sent to their companies, until the 
leading Armenians and Notables assembled, went 
to the Government offices, and requested that these 
men should be punished as they were displeased at 
their proceedings. 

I asked whether the Armenians had killed any 
Government official, or any Turks or Kurds in Diar- 
bekir. He replied that they had killed no one, but 
that a few days after the arrival of the Vali, Reshid 
Bey, and the Commandant of Gendarmerie, Rushdi 
Bey, prohibited arms had been found in some 
Armenian houses, and also in the church. On the 
discovery of these arms, the Government summoned 
some of the principal Armenians and flung them 
into prison ; the spiritual authorities made repeated 
representations, asking for the release of these men, 
but the Government, far from complying with the 

Martyred Armenia 25 

request, imprisoned the ecclesiastics also, the num- 
ber of Notables thus imprisoned amounting to 
nearly seven hundred. One day the Commandant 
of Gendarmerie came and informed them that an 
Imperial Order had been issued for their banish- 
ment to Mosul, where they were to remain until the 
end of the war. They were rejoiced at this, pro- 
cured all they required in the way of money, 
clothes, and furniture, and embarked on the keleks 
(wooden rafts resting on inflated skins, used by the 
inhabitants of that region for travelling on the 
Euphrates and Tigris) to proceed to Mosul. After 
a while it was understood that they had all been 
drowned in the Tigris, and that none of them had 
reached Mosul. The authorities continued to send 
off and kill the Armenians, family by family, men, 
women and children, ^the first families sent from 
Diarbekir being those of Kazazian, Tirpanjian, 
Minassian, and Kechijian, who were the wealthiest 
families in the place. Among the 700 individuals 
was a bishop named as far as I recollect Roman- ' 
drias ; he was the Armenian Catholic Bishop, a 
venerable and learned old man of about eighty; 
they showed no respect to his white beard, but 
drowned him in the Tigris. 

Megerditch, the Bishop-delegate of Diarbekir, 
was also among the 700 imprisoned. When he saw 
what was happening to his people he could not 
endure the disgrace and shame of prison, so he 
poured petroleum over himself and set it on fire. 
A Moslem, who was imprisoned for having written 
a letter to this bishop three years before the^events, 
told me that he was a man of great courage and 

26 Martyred Armenia 

learning, devoted to his people, with no fear of 
death, but unable to submit to oppression and 

Some of the imprisoned Kurds attacked the 
Armenians in the gaol itself, and killed two or three 
of them out of greed for their money and clothing, 
but nothing was done to bring them to account. The 
Government left only a very small number of 
Armenians in Diarbekir, these being such as were 
skilled in making boots and similar articles for the 
army. Nineteen individuals had remained in the 
prison, where I saw and talked with them; these, 
according to the pretence of the authorities, were 
Armenian bravoes. 

The last family deported from Diarbekir was 
that of Dunjian, about November, 1915. This 
family was protected by certain Notables of the 
place, from desire for their money, or the beauty of 
some of their women. 

DIKRAN. This man was a member of the central 
committee of the Tashnagtzian Society in Diarbekir. 
An official of that place, who belonged to the Society 
of Union and Progress, told me that the authorities 
seized Dikran and demanded from him the names 
of his associates. He refused, and said that he 
could not give the names until the committee had 
met and decided whether or not it was proper to 
furnish this information to the Government. He 
was subjected to varieties of torture, such as putting 
his feet in irons till they swelled and he could not 
walk, plucking out his nails and eyelashes with a 
cruel instrument, etc., but he would not say a word, 
nor give the name of one of his associates. He was 

Martyred Armenia 27 

deported with the others and died nobly out of love 
for his nation, preferring death to the betrayal of 
the secrets of his brave people to the Government. 
AGHOB KAITANJIAN. Aghob Kaitanjian was one 
of the Armenians imprisoned on the charge of being 
bravoes of the Armenian Society in Diarbekir, and 
in whose possession explosive material had been 
found. I often talked to him, and I asked him to 
tell me his story. He said that one day, whilst he 
was sitting in his house, a police agent knocked at 
the door and told him that the Chief of Police 
wished to see him at his office. He went there, and 
some of the police asked him about the Armenian 
Society and its bravoes. He replied that he knew no- 
thing of either societies or bravoes. He was then bas- 
tinadoed and tortured in various ways for several 
days till he despaired of life, preferring death to 
a continuance of degradation. He had a knife 
with him, and when they aggravated the torture 
so that he could endure it no longer, he 
asked them to let him go to the latrine and 
on his return he would tell them all he knew 
about the Armenian matter. With the help of 
the police he went, and cut the arteries of his 
wrists* . . . with the object of committing suicide. 
The blood gushed out freely; he got to the 
door of the police-office and there fainted. They 
poured water on his face and he recovered con- 
sciousness; he was brought before the officer and 
the interrogatory was renewed.* .... The Chief 
of Police was confounded at this proceeding and 
M-nt him to the hospital until he was cured. I saw 

* Episodes in the original are here omitted. TRANSLATOR. 

28 Martyred Armenia 

the wounds on his hands, and they were completely 
healed. This was the story as he told it to me him- 
self. He desired me to publish it in an Armenian 
newspaper called Hayrenik (Fatherland), which 
appears in America, in order that it may be read by 
his brother Garabet, now in that country, who had 
been convinced that the Government would leave 
none of them alive. 

I associated freely with the young Armenians 
who were imprisoned, and we talked much of these 
acts, the like of which, as happening to a nation such 
as theirs, have never been heard of, nor recorded in 
the history of past ages. These youths were sent 
for trial by the court-martial at Kharpout, and I 
heard that they arrived there safely and asked per- 
mission to embrace the Moslem faith. This was 
to escape from contemptuous treatment by the 
Kurds, and not from the fear of death, as their con- 
version would not save them from the penalty if 
they were shown to deserve it. Before their de- 
parture they asked me what I had heard about them, 
and whether the authorities purposed to kill them 
on the way or not. After enquiring about this, and 
ascertaining that they would not be killed in this 
way, I informed them accordingly; they were re- 
joiced, saying that all they desired was to remain 
alive to see the results of the war. They said that 
the Armenians deserved the treatment which they 
had received, as they would never see the necessity 
for taking precautions against the Turks, believing 
that the constitutional Turkish Government would 
never proceed to .measures of this kind without valid 
reason. The Government has perpetrated these 

Martyred Armenia 29 

deeds although no official, Kurd, Turk, or Moslem, 
has been killed by an Armenian, and we know not 
what the weighty reasons may have been which 
impelled them to so unprecedented a measure. And 
if the Armenians should not be reproached with a 
negligence for which they have paid dearly, yet a 
people who do not take full precautions are liable 
to be taxed justly with blameworthy carelessness. 

time I visited the men who had been in my company 
during the journey, but after my release the director 
of the prison would not permit me to go to them. 
I used, therefore, to ask for one of them and talk 
with him outside the prison in which the Armenians 
were confined. After a while I enquired for them 
and was told that they had been sent to execution, 
like others before them, and at this I cried out in 
dismay. One day I saw a gendarme who had been 
imprisoned with us for a short time on the charge 
of having stolen articles from the effects of dead 
Armenians, and as he knew my companions I asked 
him about them. He said that he had killed the 
priest Isaac with his own hand, and that the gen- 
darmes had laid wagers in firing at his clerical head- 
dress. "I made the best shooting, hit the hat and 
knocked it off his head, finishing him with a second 
ball." My answer was silence. The man firmly 
believed that these murders were necessary, the 
Sultan having so ordered. 

THE SALE OF LETTERS. When the Govern- 
ment first commenced the deportation of the 700 
men, the officials were instructed to prepare letters, 
signed with the names of the former, and to send 

30 Martyred Armenia 

them to the families of the banished individuals in 
order to mislead them, as it was feared that the 
Armenians might take some action which would 
defeat the plan and divulge the secret to the other 
Armenians, thus rendering their extermination im- 
practicable. The unhappy families gave large sums 
to those who brought them letters from their Head. 
The Government appointed a Kurd, a noted 
brigand, as officer of the Militia, ordering him to 
slaughter the Armenians and deliver the letters at 
their destination. When the Government was 
secure as to the Armenians, a man was despatched 
to kill the Kurd, whose name was Aami Hassi, or 
Hassi Aami. 

SYRIAC COMMUNITIES. The slaughter was general 
throughout these communities, not a single Pro- 
testant remaining in Diarbekir. Eighty families of 
the Syriac community were exterminated, with a 
part of the Chaldeans, in Diarbekir, and in its de- 
pendencies none escaped save those in Madiat and 
Mardin. When latterly orders were given that only 
Armenians were to be killed, and that those belong- 
ing to other communities should not be touched, the 
Government held their hand from the destruction of 
the latter. 

THE SYRIACS. But the Syriacs in the province 
of Madiat were brave men, braver than all the 
other tribes in these regions. When they heard 
what had fallen upon their brethren at Diarbekir 
and the vicinity they assembled, fortified them- 
selves in three villages near Madiat, and made a 
heroic resistance, showing a courage beyond de- 

Martyred Armenia 31 

scription. The Government sent against them two 
companies of regulars, besides a company of gen- 
darmes which had been despatched thither pre- 
viously ; the Kurdish tribes assembled against them, 
but without result, and thus they protected their 
lives, honour, and possessions from the tyranny of 
this oppressive Government. An Imperial Iradeh 
was issued, granting them pardon, but they placed 
no reliance on it and did not surrender, for past 
experience had shown them that this is the most 
false Government on the face of the earth, taking 
back to-day what it gave yesterday, and punishing 
to-day with most cruel penalties him whom it had 
previously pardoned. 

CONVERSATION between a postal contractor from 
Bitlis and a friend of mine, as we were sitting at a 
cafe in Diarbekir : 

Contractor : I see many Armenians in Diarbekir. 
How comes it that they are still here ? 

My Friend : These are not Armenians, but 
Syriacs and Chaldeans. 

Contractor : The Government of Bitlis has not 
left a single Christian in that Vilayet, nor in the 
district of Moush. If a doctor told a sick man that 
the remedy for his disease was the heart of a Chris- 
tian he would not find one though he searched 
through the whole Vilayet. 

ON PAYMENT. The Armenians were confined in the 
main ward of the prison at Diarbekir, and from time 
to time I visited them. One day, on waking from 
sleep, I went to see them in their ward and found 
them collecting rice, flour and moneys. I asked 

32 Martyred Armenia 

them the reason of this, and they said : "What are 
we to do? If we do not collect a quantity every 
week and give it to the Kurds, they insult and beat 
us, so we give these things to some of them so that 
they may protect us from the outrages of their 
fellows." I exclaimed, " There is no power nor might 
but in God," and went back grieving over their lot. 

SLAUGHTER. This was a most shocking proceeding, 
appalling in its atrocity. One of the gendarmes in 
Diarbekir related to me how it was done. He said 
that, when orders were given for the removal and 
destruction of a family, an official went to the 
house, counted the members of the family, and de- 
livered them to the Commandant of Militia or one 
of the officers of Gendarmerie. Men were posted 
to keep guard over the house and its occupants 
during the night until 8' o'clock, thereby giving 
notice to the wretched family that they must prepare 
for death. The women shrieked and wailed, 
anguish and despair showed on the faces of all, 
and they died even before death came upon 
them.* .... After 8 o'clock waggons arrived and 
conveyed the families to a place near by, where 
they were killed by rifle fire, or massacred like sheep 
with knives, daggers, and axes. 

menians had been destroyed, all the furniture of 
their houses, their linen, effects, and implements of 
all kinds, as well as all the contents of their shops 

*A few sentences of immaterial description are here 
omitted. TRANSLATOR. 

Martyred Armenia 33 

and storehouses, were collected in the churches or 
other large buildings. The authorities appointed 
committees for the sale of these goods, which were 
disposed of at the lowest price, as might be the 
case with the effects of those who die a natural 
death, but with this difference, that the money 
realised went to the Treasury of the Turkish 
Government, instead of to the heirs of the deceased. 

You might see a carpet, worth thirty pounds, 
sold for five, a man's costume, worth four pounds, 
sold for two medjidies, and so on with the rest of 
the articles, this being especially the case with 
musical instruments, such as pianos, etc., which had 
no value at all. All money and valuables were col- 
lected by the Commandant of Gendarmerie and the 
Vali, Reshid Bey, the latter taking them with him 
when he went to Constantinople, and delivering 
them to Talaat Bey.* . . . 

The mind is confounded by the reflection that 
this people of Armenia, this brave race who 
astonished the world by their courage, resolution, 
progress and knowledge, who yesterday were the 
most powerful and most highly cultivated of the 
Ottoman peoples, have become merely a memory, 
as though they had never flourished. Their learned 
books are waste paper, used to wrap up cheese or 
dates, and I was told that one high official had 
bought thirty volumes of French literature for 50 
piastres. Their schools are closed, after being 
thronged with pupils. Such is the evil end of the 
Armenian race : let it be a warning to those peoples 

*Some remarks in this connection are omitted, TRANS- 

34 Martyred Armenia 

who are striving- for freedom, and let them under- 
stand that freedom is not to be achieved but by the 
shedding- of blood, and that words are the stock-in- 
trade of the weak alone. 

I observed that the crosses had been removed 
from the lofty steeples of the churches, which are 
used as storehouses and markets for the keeping 
and sale of the effects of the dead. 

various kinds. An officer told me that in the 
Vilayet of Bitlis the authorities collected the Ar- 
menians in barns full of, straw (or chaff), piling up 
straw in front of the door and setting it on fire, so 
that the Armenians inside perished in the smoke. 
He said that sometimes hundreds were put together 
in one barn. Other modes of killing were also em- 
ployed (at Bitlis). He told me, to my deep sorrow, 
how he had seen a girl hold her lover in her em- 
brace, and so enter the barn to meet her death with- 
out a tremor. 

At Moush, a part were killed in straw-barns, but 
the greater number by shooting or stabbing with 
knives, the Government hiring butchers, who re- 
ceived a Turkish pound each day as wages. A 
doctor, named Aziz Bey, told me that when he was 
at Marzifun, in the Vilayet of Sivas, he heard that 
a caravan of Armenians was being sent to execution. 
He went to the Kaimakam and said to him : " You 
know I am a doctor, and there is no difference 
between doctors and butchers, as doctors are mostly 
occupied in cutting up mankind. And as the duties 
of a Kaimakam at this time are also like our own- 
cutting up human bodies I beg you to let me see 

Martyred Armenia 35 

this surgical operation myself." Permission was 
given, and the doctor went. He found four 
butchers, each with a long knife; the gendarmes 
divided the Armenians into parties of ten, and sent 
them up to the butchers one by one. The butcher 
told the Armenian to stretch out his neck; he did 
so, and was slaughtered like a sheep. The doctor 
was amazed at their steadfastness in presence, of 
death, not saying a word, or showing any sign of 

The orendarmes used also to bind the women 


and children and throw them down from a very 
lofty eminence, so that they reached the ground 
shattered to pieces. This place is said to be be- 
tween Diarbekir and Mardin, and the bones of the 
slain are there in heaps to this day. 

Another informant told me that the Diarbekir 
authorities had killed the Armenians either by shoot- 
ing, by the butchers, or at times by putting numbers 
of them in wells and caves, which were blocked up 
so that they perished. Also they threw them into 
the Tigris and the Euphrates, and the bodies caused 
an epidemic of typhus fever. Two thousand 
Armenians were slaughtered at a place outside the 
walls of Diarbekir, between the Castle of Sultan 
Murad and the Tigris, and at not more than half an 
hour's distance from the city. 

TRIBES. There is no doubt that what is related 
as to the proceedings of the gendarmes and the 
Kurdish tribes actually took place. On receiving a 
caravan of Armenians the gendarmes searched them 
one by one, men and women, taking any money they 

36 Martyred Armenia 

might find, and stripping them of the better portions 
of their clothing. When they were satisfied that 
there remained no money, good clothes, or other 
things of value, they sold the Armenians in thou- 
sands to the Kurds, on the stipulation that none 
should be left alive. The price was in accordance 
with the number of the party; I was told by a 
reliable informant of cases where the price had 
varied between 2,000 and 200 liras. 

After purchasing the caravans, the Kurds 
stripped all the Armenians, men and women, of 
their clothes, so that they remained entirely naked. 
They then shot them down, every one, after which 
they cut open their stomachs to search for money 
amongst the entrails, also cutting up the clothing, 
boots, etc., with the same object. 

Such were the dealings of the official gen- 
darmerie and the Kurds with their fellow-creatures. 
The reason of the sale of the parties by the gen- 
darmes was to save themselves trouble, and to 
obtain delivery of further parties to plunder of their 

Woe to him who had teeth of gold, or gold- 
plated. The gendarmes and Kurds used to 
violently draw out his teeth before arriving at the 
place of execution, thus inflicting tortures before 
actual death. 

MENIANS. A Kurd told me that the authorities of 
Kharpout handed over to one of the Kurdish Aghas 
in that Vilayet, in three batches, more than 50,000 
Armenians from Erzeroum, Trebizond, Sivas, and 
Constantinople, with orders to kill them and to 

Martyred Armenia 37 

divide with themselves the property which he might 
take from them. He killed them all and took from 
them their money and other belongings. He hired 
600 mules for the women, to convey them to Urfa, 
at the rate of three liras a head. After receiving the 
price, he collected mules belonging to his tribe, 
mounted the women on them, and brought them to 
a place between Malatiya and Urfa, where he killed 
them in the most barbarous way, taking all their 
money, clothes, and valuables. 

DEATH. * . . . . 

said above that the Armenian women were sent off 
in batches under guard of gendarmes. Whenever 
they passed by a village the inhabitants would come 
and choose any they desired, taking them away and 
giving a small sum to the gendarmes. At one place 
a Kurd of over 60 picked out a beautiful girl of 16. 
She 'refused to have anything to do with him, but 
said she was ready to embrace Islam and marry 
a youth of her own age. This the Kurds would not 
allow, but gave her the choice between death and 
the Sheikh ; she still refused, and was killed. 

BARSOUM AGHA. Whilst I was Kaimakam of the 
district of Kiakhta, in the Vilayet of Kharpout, I 
was acquainted with an Armenian Notable of that 
place, named Barsoum Agha. He was a worthy 
and courageous man, dealing well with Kurds, 
Turks, and Armenians, without distinction; he also 
showed much kindness to officials who were dis- 

*I refrain from particulars. The gendarmes and Kurds are 
stated tc have been the perpetrators of these acts. TRANSLATOR. 

38 Martyred Armenia 

missed from their posts in the district. All the 
Kurdish Aghas thereabouts kept close watch over 
him, hating" him because he was their rival in the 
supremacy of the place. When, after my banish- 
ment, I arrived at SivreV and heard what had be- 
fallen the Armenians, I enquired about him and his 
family. 1 was told that when the Government dis- 
posed of the Ai menians of Kiakhta he was sum- 
moned and ordered to produce the records of 
moneys owing to him (Kurds and Armenians in that 
district owed him a sum of 10,000 liras); he replied 
that he had torn up the records and released his 
debtors from their obligations. He was taken away 
with the other Armenianspand on arrival at the 
Euphrates he asked permission to drown himself. 
This was granted, and he endeavoured to do so, but 
failed, as he could not master himself. So he said 
to the gendarmes, "Life is dear and I cannot kill 
myself, so do as you have been ordered," where- 
upon one of them shot him and then killed the 
rest of the family. 

who had come to Diarbekir as a schoolmaster, told 
me that the Government had informed the Armenians 
of Broussa that their deportation had been decided, 
and that they were to leave for Mosul, Syria, or El- 
Deir three days after receiving the order. After 
selling what they could, they hired carts and car- 
riages for the transport of their goods and them- 
selves and started as they thought for their des- 
tination. . On their arrival at a very rugged and 
barren place, far distant from any^villages, the 
drivers, in conformity with their instructions, broke 

Martyred Armenia 39 

up the conveyances and left the people in the waste, 
returning in the night to plunder them. Many died 
there of hunger and terror; a great part were killed 
on the road; and only a few reached Syria or El- 

An Arab of El-Jezira, who accompanied me on my 
flight from Diarbekir, told me that he had gone with 
a Sheikh of his tribe, men and camels, to buy grain 
from the sons of Ibrahim Pasha El-Mellili. On 
their way they saw 17 children, the eldest not more 
than 13 years old, dying of hunger and thirst. The 
Arab said : " We had with us a small water-skin and 
a little food. When the Sheikh saw them he wept 
with pity, and gave thei\' food and water with his 
own hands; but what good could this small supply 
do to them ? We reflected that if we took them with 
us to the Pasha, they would be killed, as the Kurds 
were killing all Armenians by order of the authori- 
ties ; and our Arabs were at five days' distance from 
the place. So we had no choice but to leave them 
to the mercy of God, and on our return, a week 
later, we found them all dead." 

were talking of the courage and good qualities of 
the Armenians, and the Governor of the place, 
who was with us, told us a singular story. He 
said: "According to orders, I collected all the 
remaining Armenians, consisting of 17 women and 
some children, amongst whom was a child of 3 years 
old, diseased, who had never been able to walk. 
When the butchers began slaughtering the women 
and the turn of the child's mother came, he rose up 

40 Martyred Armenia 

on his feet and ran for a space, then falling down. 
We were astonished at this, and at his understand- 
ing that his mother was to be killed. A gendarme 
went and took hold of him, and laid him dead on his 
dead mother." He also said that he had seen one 
of these women eating a piece of bread as she went 
up to the butcher, another smoking a cigarette, and 
that it was as though they cared nothing for death. 

one of the officials charged with the extermination 
of the Armenians, told me, in company with others, 
the following story: "I was proceeding with a 
party, and when we had arrived outside the walls of 
Diarbekir and were ^beginning to shoot down the 
Armenians, a Kurd came up to me, kissed my hand, 
and begged me to give him a girl of about ten years 
old. I stopped the firing and sent a gendarme to 
bring the girl to me. When she came I pointed out 
a spot to her and said, ' Sit there. I have given you 
to this man, and you will be saved from death. 5 
After a while, I saw that she had thrown herself 
amongst the dead Armenians, so I ordered the gen- 
darmes to cease firing and bring her up. I said to 
her, ' I have had pity on you and brought you out 
from among the others to spare your life. Why do 
you throw yourself with them? Go with this man 
and he will bring you up like a daughter.' She said : 
' I am the daughter of an Armenian ; my parents and 
kinsfolk are killed among these; I will have no 
others in their place, and I do not wish to live any 
longer without them.' Then she cried and 
lamented ; I tried hard to persuade her, but she 
would not listen, so I let her go her way. She left 

Martyred Armenia 41 

me joyfully, put herself between her father and 
mother, who were at the last gasp, and she was 
killed there." And he added: "If such was the 
behaviour of the children, what was that of their 

formant from Deir-el-Zur told me that one of the 
officials of that place had bought from the gen- 
darmes three girls for a quarter of a medjidie dollar 
each. Another man told me that he had bought a 
very beautiful girl for one lira, and I heard that 
among the tribes Armenian women were sold like 
pieces of old furniture, at low prices, varying from 
one to ten liras, or from one to five sheep.* . . . 


On the arrival of a batch of Armenians at Deir-el- 
Zur from Ras-el-Ain, the Mutesarrif desired to 
choose a servant-girl from amongst the women. His 
eye fell on a handsome girl, and he went up to her, 
but on his approach she turned white and was about 
to fall. Pie told her not to be afraid, and ordered 
his servant to take her to his house. On returning 
thither he asked the reason for her terror of him, 
and she told him that she and her mother had been 
sent from Ras-el-Ain in charge of a Circassian gen- 
darme, many other Armenian women being with 
them. On the way, the gendarme called her mother, 
and told her to give him her money, or he would kill 
her; she said she had none, so he tortured her till she 
gave him six liras. f . . . He said to her: "You 
liar ! You [Armenians] never cease Ijing. You 

*An unimportant anecdote omitted. TRANSLATOR. 
t Unfit for reproduction. TRANSLATOR. 

42 Martyred Armenia 

have seen what has befallen, and will befall, 
all Armenians, but you will not take warning, 
so I shall make you an example to all who see you." 
Then he cut off her hands with his dagger, one after 
the other, then both her feet, all in sight of her 
daughter, whom he then took aside and violated, 
whilst her mother, in a dying state, witnessed the 
act. ' ' And when I saw you approach me, I remem- 
bered my mother's fate and dreaded you, thinking 
that you would treat me as the gendarme treated my 
mother and myself, before each other's eyes."" . . . 
had collected all those of military age and dispersed 
them amongst the battalions to perform their army 
service. When the Government determined on the 
deportation and destruction of the Armenians as 
stated in their official declaration orders were given 
for the formation of separate battalions of Ar- 
menians, to be employed on roads and municipal 
works. The battalions were formed and sent to the 
roads and other kinds of hard labour. They were 
employed in this manner for eight months, when the 
severity of winter set in. The Government, being 
then unable to make further use of them, despatched 
them to Diarbekir. Before their arrival, the officers 
telegraphed that the Armenian troops were on their 
way, and the authorities sent gendarmes, well fur- 
nished with cartridges, to meet the poor wretches. 
The gendarmes received them with rifle-fire, and 
840 men perished in this manner, shot close to the 
city of Diarbekir. 

Unimportant anecdote omitted. TRANSLATOR. 

Martyred Armenia 43 


man who showed the greatest capacity for exter- 
minating Armenians was Reshid Bey, the Vali of 
Diarbekir. I have already stated how many were 
killed in his Vilayet. When news of his re- 
moval arrived, the remaining Armenians and the 
Christians generally rejoiced, and shortly after 
the report was current some Armenians, who had 
hidden themselves, came out from their conceal- 
ment and walked about the city. The Vali, 
who was anxious to keep his removal secret and 
to inspire terror, began deporting Armenians 
with still greater energy, and those who had 
come out returned to their hiding-places. One 
of the principal men of Diarbekir stated that 
one Armenian had paid fifty Turkish pounds to an 
inhabitant for shelter in his house during the night 
before the Vali's departure, and another told me 
that a man had received an offer of three pounds 
for each night until the same event, but had refused 
from fear of the authorities. 

An Arab of the Akidat told me that he was going 
along the bank of the Euphrates when he saw some 

* Unimportant. The writer describes the inhabitants of 
Diarbekir, on the arrival of a party, as hastening to select 
women. Two doctors pick out twenty of them to serve as 
hospital attendants. TRANSLATOR. 

t An official relates how he wanted to choose a servant 
from a boatload of victims, who said they were willing to come 
as servants, but as nothing else. He took one, and on coming 
home one night drunk he tried to offer her violence ; she reproved 
him in suitable terms and he conducted himself well thence- 
forward . TRANSLATOR . 

44 Martyred Armenia 

of the town rabble stripping two women of their 
clothes. He expostulated and told them to restore 
the clothes, but they paid no attention. The women 
begged for mercy, and finding it unavailing they 
threw themselves into the river, preferring death to 
dishonour. He told me also of another woman who 
had a suckling child, and begged food from the 
passers-by, who were in too great fear of the autho- 
rities to help her. On the third day of starvation, 
finding no relief, she left the baby in the market of 
El-Deir and drowned herself in the Euphrates. In 
this way do they show high qualities, honour, and 
courage such as many men do not possess. 

enter a house in Diarbekir without finding from one 
to five Armenian maid-servants, even the humblest 
shopkeepers having one, who probably in the life- 
time of her parents would not have condescended to 
speak a word to the master whom she now has to 
serve in order to save her life. It is stated that the 
number of such women and girls in the city is ovei 
5,000, mostly from Erzeroum, Kharpout and other 

of Diarbekir, who was in prison with me, told me 
that a number of Armenian men and women were 
delivered to him for slaughter, he, being a soldier. 
He said : "Whilst we were on the way, I saw an 
Armenian girl whom I knew, and who wac, very 
beautiful. I called her by name, and said ' Come, I 
will save you, and you shall marry a young man 
of your country, a Turk or a Kurd.' She refused, 
and said : ' If you wish to do me a kindness I will 

Martyred Armenia 45 

ask one thing which you may do for me.' I told her 
I would do whatever she wished, and she said : ' I 
have a brother, younger than myself, here amongst 
these people. I pray you to kill him before you kill 
me, so that in dying I may not be anxious in mind 
about him.' She pointed him out and I called him. 
When he came, she said to him, ' My brother, fare- 
wrll. I kiss you for the last time, but we shall meet, 
if it be God's will, in the next world, and He will 
soon avenge us for what we have suffered.' They 
kissed each other, and the boy delivered himself to 
me. I must needs obey my orders, so I struck him 
one blow with an axe, split his skull, and he fell 
dead. Then she said : j I thank you with all my 
heart, and shall ask you one more favour ' ; she put 
her hands over her eyes and said : ' Strike as you 
struck my brother, one blow, and do not torture me.' 
So I struck one blow and killed her, and to this day 
I grieve over her beauty and youth, and her wonder- 
ful courage." 

PHOTOGRAPHS OF ARMENIANS lying in the road, 
dressed in turbans, for despatch to Constantinople. 
-The Turkish Government thought that European 
nations might get to hear of the destruction of the 
Armenians and publish the news abroad so a$ to 
excite prejudice against the Turks. So after the 
gendarmes had killed a number of Armenian men, 
they put on them turbans and brought Kurdish 
women to weep and lament over them, saying that 
the Armenians had killed their men. O They also 
brought a 'photographer to photograph the bodies 
and the weeping women, so that at a future time 
they might be able to convince Europe that it was 

46 Martyred Armenia 

the Armenians who had attacked the Kurds and 
killed them, that the Kurdish tribes had risen 
against them in revenge, and that the Turkish 
Government had had no part in the matter. But the 
secret of these proceedings was not hidden from 
men of intelligence, and after all this had been done, 
the truth became known and was spread abroad in 

When the Government undertook the extermination 
of the 'Armenians some of the women went to the 
Mufti and the Kadi, and declared their desire to 
embrace the Mohammedan faith. These authorities 
accepted their conversion~and they were married to 
men of Diarbekir, either Turks or Kurds. 

After a while, the Government began to collect 
these women, so the Mufti and the Kadi went to 
the Vali and said that the women in question were 
no longer Armenians, having become Mussulmans, 
and that by the Sacred Law the killing of Mussul- 
man women was not permissible. The Vali re- 
plied : "These women are vipers, who will bite us 
in time to come ; do not oppose the Government in 
this matter, for politics have no religion, and the 
Government know what they are about." The 
Mufti and the Kadi went back as they had come, 
and the women were sent to death. After the re- 
moval of the Vali in consequence, as it was said, 
of abuses in connection with the sale of effects left 
in Armenian houses and shops orders arrived that 
the conversion of any who desired to enter Islam 
should be accepted, be they men or women. Many 
of the Armenians who remained, of both sexes, has- 

Martyred Armenia 47 

tened to embrace the Faith in the hope of saving 
their lives, but after a time they were despatched 
likewise and their Islamism did not save them. 

the talk fell on the Armenians I used to blame the 
Turks for their proceedings, but one day when we 
were discussing the question, an official of Diarbekir, 
who was one of the fanatical Young Turk National- 
ists, said : ' The Turks are not to blame in this 
matter, for the Germans were the first to apply 
this treatment to the Poles, who were under their 
rule. And the Germans have compelled the Turks 
to take this course, saying that if they did not kill 
the Armenians there would be no alliance with them, 
and thus Turkey had no choice." 

This is what the Turk said, word for word. And 
it was confirmed by what I heard from a Turk who 
was imprisoned with me at Aaliya, on the charge 
of con^sponding with Abdul-Kerim el-Khalil. He 
said that when passing through Damascus he had 
visited the German Vice-Consul there, who had 
told him confidentially that Oppenheim had come 
on a special mission, which was to incite Jemal 
Pasha to persecute the Arabs, with a view to causing 
hatred between the two races, by which the Germans 
might profit in future if differences arose between 
them and the Turks. This was a short time pre- 
vious to the execution of Abdul-Kerim. 

the Government at Diarbekir gave orders to the 
officials to kill the Armenians, a native of Baghdad 
was Kaimakam of El-Beshiri, in that Vilayet, and 
an Albanian was Kaimakam of Lijeh. These two 

48 Martyred Armenia 

telegraphed to the Vilayet that their consciences 
would not permit them to do such work, and that 
they resigned their posts. Their resignations were 
accepted, but they were both secretly assassinated. 
I investigated this matter carefully, and ascertained 
that the name of the Baghdad Arab was Sabat Bey 
El-Sueidi, but I could not learn that of the 
Albanian, which I much regret, as they performed 
a noble act for which they should be commemorated 
in history. . . .* 

THE SULTAN'S ORDER. Whilst I was in prison, 
a Turkish Commissioner of Police used to come to 
see a friend of his, who was also imprisoned. One 
day when I and this friend were together, the Com- 
missioner came, and, in the course of conversation 
about the Armenians and their fate, he described to 
us how he had slaughtered them, and how a number 
had taken refuge in a cave outside the city, and he 
had brought them out and killed two of them him- 
self. His friend said to him: "Have you no fear 
of God? Whence have you the right to take life 
in defiance of God's law?" He replied: "It was 
the Sultan's order; the Sultan's order is the order 
of God, and its fulfilment is a duty." 

* The writer here describes how a Turkish judge (kadi), to 
whom the office of Kaimakam was entrusted after the murder of 
Sabat Bey, boasted in conversation that he had killed four 
Armenians with his own hand. " They were brave men," he 
said, " having no fear of death." TRANSLATOR. 

t The author tells the story of an Armenian of Diarbekir who 
gave information to the police against his own people, disclosing 
their hiding-places. He saw him walking about the streets with 
an insolent demeanour, giving himself the airs of a person of 
great importance. He considers that such a traitor to his nation 
deserves the worst form of death. TRANSLATOR. 

Martyred Armenia 49 

August, 1915, I was visited in prison by one of my 
Diarbekir colleagues, who was an intimate friend 
of one of those charged with the conduct of the 
Armenian massacres. We spoke of the Armenian 
question, and he told me that, in Diarbekir alone, 
570,000 had been destroyed, these being people 
from other Vilayets as well as those belonging to 
Diarbekir itself. 

If to this we add those killed in the following 
months, amounting to about 50,000; and those in 
the Vilayets of Bitlis and Van and the province of 
Moush, approximately 230,000; and those who 
perished in Erzeroum, Kharpout, Sivas, Stamboul, 
Trebizond, Adana, Broussa, Urfa, Zeitoun, and 
Aintab estimated at upwards of 350,000 we 
arrive at a total of Armenians killed, or dead from 
disease, hunger, or thirst, of 1,200,000. 

There remain 300,000 Armenians in the Vilayet 
of Aleppo, in Syria, and Deir-el-Zur (those de- 
ported thither), and in America and Egypt and else- 
where ; and 400,000 in Roumelian territory, held by 
the Balkan States, thus making a grand total of 
i ,900,000. 

The above is what I was able to learn as to the 
statistics of the slaughtered Armenians, and I would 
quote an extract from El-Mo kattam, dealing with 
this subject : 

'The Basle correspondent of the Temps 
states that, according to official reports received 
from Aleppo in the beginning of 1916, there were 
492,000 deported Armenians in the districts of 
Mosul, Diarbekir, Aleppo, Damascus, and Deir-el- 

50 Martyred Armenia 

Zur. The Turkish Minister of the Interior, Talaat 
Bey, estimates the number of Heportees at 800,000, 
and states that 300,000 of these have been removed 
or have died in the last few months. 

''Another calculation gives the number of de- 
ported Armenians as 1,200,000 souls, and states that 
at least 500,000 have been killed or have died in 
banishment" (El-Mokattam, May 3Oth, 1916). 

approached Diarbekir, I passed through many Arab 
tribes, with whom I saw a number of Armenians, 
men and women, who were being well treated, 
although the Government had let the tribes know 
that the killing of Armenians was a bounden duty. 
I did not hear of a single instance of an Armenian 
being murdered or outraged by a tribesman, but I 
heard that some Arabs, passing by a well into which 
men and women had been thrown, drew them out 
when at the last extremity, took them with them, 
and tended them till they were recovered. 

WOMAN. . . . . 

- The narrative concludes with the relation of an instance of 
courageous charity on the part of a Baghdad soldier to an 
Armenian woman begging in the streets of Diarbekir. TRANS- 


IF the Turkish Government were asked the 
reasons for which the Armenian men, women, 
and children were killed, and their honour and 
property placed at any man's mercy, they would 
reply that this people have murdered Moslems in 
the Vilayet of Van, and that there have been found 
in their possession prohibited arms, explosive 
bombs, and indications of steps towards the forma- 
tion of an Armenian State, such as flags and the 
like, all pointing to the fact that this race has not 
turned from its evil ways, but on the first oppor- 
tunity will kill the Moslems, rise in revolt, and 
invoke the help of Russia, the enemy of Turkey, 
against its rulers. That is what the Turkish 
Government would say. I have followed the matter 
from its source. I have enquired from inhabitants 
and officials of Van, who were in Diarbekir, whether 
any Moslem had been killed by Armenians in the 
town of Van, or in the districts of the Vilayet. They 
answered in the negative, saying that the Govern- 
ment had ordered the population to quit the town 
before the arrival of the Russians and before any- 
one was killed; but that the Armenians had been 
summoned to give up their arms and had not done 
so, dreading an attack by the Kurds, and dreading 
the Government also; the Government had further 
demanded that the principal Notables and lea'ding 
men should be given up to them as hostages, but the 
Armenians had not complied. 


52 Conclusion 

All this took place during the approach of the 
Russians towards the city of Van. As to the ad- 
jacent districts, the authorities collected the 
Armenians and drove them into the interior, where 
they were all slaughtered, no Government official or 
private man, Turk or Kurd, having been killed. 

As regards Diarbekir, you have read the whole 
story in this book, and no insignificant event took 
place there, let alone murders or breaches of the 
peace, which could lead the Turkish Government 
to deal with the Armenians in this atrocious manner. 

At Constantinople, we hear of no murder or 
other unlawful act committed by the Armenians, 
except the unauthenticated story about the twenty 
bravoes, to which I have already referred. 

They have not done the least wrong in the 
Vilayets of Kharpout, Trebizond, Sivas, Adana, or 
Bitlis, nor in the province of Moush. 

I have related the episode at Zeitoun, which was 
unimportant, and that at Urfa, where they acted 
in self-defence, seeing what had befallen their 
people, and preferring death to surrender. 

As to their preparations, the flags, bombs, and 
the like, even assuming there to be some truth in 
the statement, it does not justify the annihilation of 
the whole people, men and women; old men and 
children, in a way which revolts all humanity and 
more especially Islam and the whole body of Mos- 
lems, as those unacquainted with the true facts 
might impute these deeds to Mohammedan 

To such as assert this it will suffice to point out 
the murders and oppressive acts committed by the 

Martyred Armenia 53 

Young Turks against Islam in Syria and Mesopo- 
tamia. In Syria they have hanged the leading men 
of enlightenment, without fault on their part, such 
as Shukri Bey El-Asli, Abdul-Wahhab Bey El- 
Inglizi, Selim Bey El-Jezairi, Emir Omar El-Hus- 
seini, Abdul-Ghani El-Arisi, Shefik Bey El- 
Moweyyad, Rushdi Bey El-Shamaa, Abdul-Hamid 
El-/ahrawi, Abdul-Kerim El-Khalil, Emir Aarif 
El-Shehahi, Sheikh Ahmed Hasan Tabara, and 
more than thirty leading men of this class. 

I have published this pamphlet in order to refute 
beforehand inventions and slanders against the 
faith of Islam and against Moslems generally, and 
I affirm that what the Armenians have suffered is to 
be attributed to the Committee of Union and Pro- 
gress, who deal with the empire as they please; it 
has been due to their nationalist fanaticism and their 
jealousy of the Armenians, and to these alone; the 
Faith of Islam is guiltless of their deeds. 

From the foregoing we know that the Armenians 
have committed no acts justifying the Turks in in- 
flicting on them this horrible retribution, unpre- 
cedented even in the dark ages. What, then, was 
the reason which impelled the Turkish Government 
to kill off a whole people, of whom they used to say 
that they were their brothers in patriotism, the prin- 
cipal factor in bringing about the downfall of the 
despotic rule of Abdul-Hamid and the introduction 
of the Constitution, loyal to the Empire, and fight- 
ing side by side with the Turks in the Balkan war? 
The Turks sanctioned and approved the institution 
of Armenian political societies, which they did not 
do in the case of other nationalities. 

54 Conclusion 

What is the reason of this sudden change of 
attitude ? 

It is that, previous to the proclamation of the 
Constitution, the Unionists hated despotic rule; they 
preached equality, and inspired the people with 
hatred of the despotism of Abdul-Hamid. But as 
soon as they had themselves seized the reins of 
authority, and tasted the sweets of power, they 
found that despotism was the best means to confirm 
themselves in ease and prosperity, and to limit to 
the Turks alone the rule over the Ottoman peoples. 
On considering these peoples, they found that the 
Armenian race was the only one which would resent 
their despotism, and fight against it as they pre- 
viously fought against Abdul-Hamid. They per- 
ceived also that the Armenians excelled all the other 
races in arts and industries, that they were more ad- 
vanced in learning and societies, and that after a 
while the greater part of the officers of the army 
would be Armenians. They were confounded at 
this, and dreaded what might ensue, for they knew 
their own weakness and that they could not rival the 
Armenians in the way of learning and progress. 
Annihilation seemed to them to be the sole means 
of deliverance ; they found their opportunity in a 
time of war, and they proceeded to this atrocious 
deed, which they carried out with every circumstance 
of brutality a deed which is contrary to the law of 
Islam, as is shown by many precepts and historical 
instances.* , 

* Fa iz El-Ghusein here gives a list of citations from the 
Koran, the Traditions, and from Moslem history in support 
of this view. TRANSLATOR. 

Martyred Armenia 55 

In view of this, how can the Turkish Govern- 
ment be justified at the present time in killing off an 
entire people, who have always paid their dues of 
i very kind to the Ottoman State, and have never 
rebelled against it? Even if we suppose the Ar- 
menian men to have been deserving of death, what 
was the offence of the women and children? And 
what will be the punishment of those who killed 
them wrongfully and consumed the innocent with 
lire ? 

I am of opinion that the Mohammedan peoples 
are now under the necessity of defending them- 
selves, for unless Europeans are made acquainted 
with the true facts they will regard this deed as a 
black stain on the history of Islam, which ages will 
not efface. 

From the Verses, Traditions, and historical in- 
stances, it is abundantly clear that the action of the 
Turkish Government has been in complete contra- 
diction to the principles of the Faith of Islam; a 
Government which professes to be the protector of 
Islam, and claims to hold the Khildfat, cannot act 
in opposition to Moslem law; and a Government 
which does so act is not an Islamic Government, and 
has no rightful pretension to be such. 

It is incumbent on the Moslems to declare them- 
selves guiltless of such a Government, and not to 
render obedience to those who trample under foot 
the Verses of the Koran and the Traditions of the 
Prophet, and shed the innocent blood of women, 
old men and infants, who have done no wrong. 
Otherwise they make themselves accomplices in 
this crime, which stands unequalled in history. 

56 Conclusion 

In conclusion, I would address myself to the 
Powers of Europe, and say that it is they them- 
selves who have encouraged the Turkish Govern- 
ment to this deed, for they were aware of the evil 
administration of that Government, and its barbar- 
ous proceedings on many occasions in the past, but 
did not check it. 

Completed at Bombay on the yd September, 


Printed in Great Britain by Hayman, Christy <V Lilly, Ltd.. 
113-117, Farringdon l-:oatl, London, B.C. i. 

ii iniii ii INI nil 

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