Hundred Thousand Muslims Were Slaughtered
Mustafa Gül writes that 2,500 Muslims were slaughtered by 10,000 Armenians after Van fell to the enemy. This estimate which does not show any reference is quite conservative even if it only reflects those killed in the city center. Hulki Sarol, and Ergünöz Akçora who published valuable documents on the subject, are both in agreement that well above 10,000 Muslims were killed. Armenian sources that aim to keep the numbers they killed to a minimum also confirm that at least 10,000 Turks were killed. For example, the Armenian newspaper Gochnak, published in the USA reports on May 14, 1915 while announcing that Van is no longer an Ottoman city, and stating that all government buildings and army barracks are set on fire that “only 1,500 Turkish women and children remain in the city”, and we know these remaining 1,500 were also wiped out later by Armenian militia.
Ergünöz Akçora who wrote; “Turks living in Van were unbearably violated by Russians and Armenians. Thousands of them were thrown into Lake Van to drown.” He also states that “One million Muslims had to emigrate due to unbearable Armenian atrocities … 700,000 of these emigrees, died on the way due to harsh road conditions. This information is available at the report presented by British Ministry of Foreign Affairs to the High Commissioner.” Russians and Armenains who relied on the Russian forces attempted genocide of the Muslim inhabitants of the city center and vicinity of Van, such that; the number of Muslims killed on Agiro mountain in order to wipe out all settlers of Gevaş and Vastan exceeded 3,000. Those wiped out in Mahmudin and its district villages reached 2,000.”
In an attempt to conceal their murders Armenians were careful to wipe out witnesses as well, so around the Seyi Village, they literally cut to pieces 300 Jews who were passing through Hakkari as documented in the archives. Only between the villages Engil and Vastan, the number of Muslims murdered exceeded 10,000. Over 40,000 Muslim women, children and elderly were killed on the Şahotu Bridge by Russian soldiers either by being thrown into the water, or by being stabbed with daggers and knives. As mentioned in the archive documents “It can be concluded from the birth records of the Dersaadet (İstanbul), that 100,000 Muslims perished in Van and its vicinity.”
It is understood that even those who were escaping from the cities and villages were traced and murdered ferociously on the roads by Russian and Armenians. Four hundred people who were trying to cross by boats to West coast of Lake Van were gunned down or thrown back into the lake to drown around Adilcevaz and Erciş Villages where they had to take refuge due to stormy weather conditions.
Russians who collaborated in these murders cannot boast about this episode of their history.
Chief General Armed Forces of Russia wiped out 400,000 Turks from Ottoman Europe in order to clear land for Bulgaria during the 7 months following the 1877-1878 war and applied the same method to establish a puppet Armenian state during World War I.
This collaboration is so obvious that, the day following the occupation of Van, Russian Tsar and Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sazanoff, each published open declarations “to thank the Armenians for their aid”.
Russians assigned Aram Manukian (whose infamous atrocities as militia were mentioned in earlier chapters) as the mayor of Van and allowed him to select his officers among Armenians. This meant approving Manukian’s murders and providing a venue for new massacres. While Lake Van was filled with the blood of innocent victims, Manukian would be promoted The Minister of Internal Affairs of Armenia for his genocide efforts.
Lake Van, a Pool of Blood
In an effort to prove how justifiable, unavoidably self protectionist, conscientiously humanitarian the Ottoman decision to relocate the Armenians was, one must observe the loathsome, brutal, savage atrocities committed by Armenians against the Muslims prior to the decree as recorded in archive documents. Here we will give a very brief summary.
While the young Turkish men were defending their borders, their villages were burned down, underaged girls, young brides and mature women were brutally raped, mostly in front of crippled war veterans who were honourable men.
Sit Him on the Stake
Deputy of the Ottoman Government from Erzurum Karekin Pastirmacian and his bandits of 1200 men roamed around Muslim villages after the Russians violated their border with Turkey and assaulted women with rape, torture. Pregnant women’s bellies were cut open to remove their babies from their womb instantly killing both. Apart from killing the bride of Kaleş Ağa, from the Village of Kayak, his sons and other family members were killed by setting them on stake piles. In the Ağcaviran Village of Muş, Musa and Sadullah Beğ along with 10 of their friends were killed in the Kire District when their eyes were carved out.
Babies were Bayoneted
Armenian Militia threw away up in the air a newborn baby and butchered him by holding a sword right under him in the Kalafa Village belonging to Yomra sub-district of Trabzon. A lot of Muslims were ferociously murdered and their bodies were burned in the İpsil, Haçavra and Solday Villages of Maçka.
Even though their chief named Molla Hasan had surrendered with a white flag, the 57 residents (27 males, 12 women, and 18 children) of the Mirgehi Village from the Mahmudin sub-district of Van were strangled to death by the Armenian Militia who took away the girls with them.
Broiled on Skewers
A child from the village of Çarıksız was impaled on a spit and broiled like a leg of lamb. Four Turks’ dead bodies were found with their hands tied and their genitals stuck in their mouths between the Ahurik and Avzerik villages. In the village of Kavlit, a 7-year-old girl named Fatma and a 9-year-old Gülfaz were raped by their front and back numerous times. A 70-year-old man named Alo from the same village was killed with his jawbones broken by a dagger and his genitals inserted in his mouth.
While a woman named Zeliha in the Village of Ustuci was baking bread in the oven, they threw her six-month-old son into the fire. When Zeliha resisted, the bandits pushed one of her legs into the fire as well. (This woman survived and lived for years after this event.) Many children were also collected from the same village and burned on bonfires.
Burned Inside Haystacks
All the Muslim men of the Kotur sub-district of Van were filled into a haystack and set on fire. The women were gathered at another location and were raped. They raped and killed the town chief’s son as well as his daughter, Gülbeyaz.
Raped in Front of Their Dad
Another family victimized by Armenian atrocities was that of an accountant named Hasan Efendi from Van’s Halilağa district. He was terrorized along with his wife, daughter and his brother Hüseyin Efendi who was a teacher. A retired accountant named Beşir Efendi’s daughters Hayriye and Şadiye were raped in front of their mom, dad and their uncle Hayri Efendi.
We also learn from the Van Commander’s report that the same district’s 90-year-old religious leader imam İsa Efendi, 70-year-old retired teacher Rasif Efendi and Hayretiye Mosque’s imam Hacı Derviş Efendi were forced to ride around the town on donkeys for a few days. Later, their beards and moustache were cut off and human feces were smeared on their faces. Later, they were killed by being torn apart in piecemeal.
They killed retired teacher Rasif Efendi’s 60-year-old wife by inserting a wooden log inside her vagina. Armenians who forcibly entered into Hacı Yakup Ağa’s house tore apart people who were hiding inside. They were: wife of Çilingiroğlu Süleyman Ağa from the Halilağa district, retired accountant blind Halil Efendi, an accounting inscriber named Sıtkı Efendi and his wife, Hacı Efendi’s young wife and his five children (two boys and three girls). Later, Armenians killed 200 Muslim women and children.
They tore apart the children
Armenians tore into pieces with a dagger, the seven children of Seher after tearing her children away from her hands in the Mehmet Bey district of Van. Seher was Sadullah’s daughter and Cemal’s wife.
Blind Hamza’s son Abbas’ wife and their three daughters were torn into pieces. Halil Çavuş’s wife Ayşe, her sister, 80-year-old Hacı Abdullah Efendi and his wife were terribly beaten and killed by smashing their heads with stones. They urinated on the face of Mülazim Abdurrahman Efendi of Şabane district, later beat him up terribly and then killed him.
Guardian Ali from Emin Paşa district, his wife, his daughter in law, his two cousins, and military official Bayram’s 7-year-old son; Seyyit Çavuş’ son Mustafa’s wife, her two children and Hacı Kaya’s son İbrahim Çavuş’s young wife were strangled to death. Ayşe, wife of Kasım from Camii Kebir District was forced to witness her two son’s strangling before she was also strangled to death.
In the Tebriz Kapısı district, 17 family members of Salih who was doing his military duty at the frontline were killed by tearing into pieces. The victims included Salih’s wife, 4 children aged 5 to 15, his brother, sister and their families. Only from the Selim Bey district, over 300 Muslims were killed by being slaughtered.
Burned in Hospitals
Şeyhane Village’s 300 residents who were on their way to Van were rerouted to Zive Village by armed gunmen and killed en-masse. Forty-five people of Meydan Village and one fourth the total population of Timez, Ercik and Havasor villages were killed. From the Molla Kasım Village, 70 year old Fevzi Ağa’s head was placed on his wife’s lap and cut off there. His daughter in law Hayriye was killed. Seventy people were killed from this village. Two of the brides named Fatma and Zahide from this village threw themselves from the bridge into Mermitçay river to escape their captors who were forcibly taking them to Van. Similarly, 17 young girls from the Bağdaşan and Karaağaç villages were taken towards Russia. Eighty patients who could not find transportation from Van Hospital were burned alive.
From the Katırcı street of Van, Peynirci Recep’s son Mahmut’s 4 sons along with his wife, and Lieutenant Hüsnü Efendi’s 12 year old daughter were taken forcibly. The girl was raped repeatedly even though she was shot in the head.
Nailed by his Hands
Second Lieutenant Şükrü Efendi’s 80 year old uncle Tayyar of Van was nailed to his door by his hands. His nose and ears were cut off and later his chin was also cut off before he was eventually killed.
Stake was drawn through his Mouth
During the Gevaş uprising, the mayor sent Van representatives Munip Bey and Vremian of the Ottoman parliament to Gevaş for prevention of bloodshed. While they were in the government house, they saw an out of control oxen cart approaching them. Upon getting close to the cart they saw the terribly mutilated body of the Gevaş Müftü. Armenians had drawn a stake large enough to be an axe handle inside this 70-year-old man’s mouth. They had nailed his tongue on this wood after cutting it off. In order to fit his body into the small box behind the oxcart, they had cut off his legs and placed his shoes and head turban in his lap. Before putting his corpse on the oxcart and probably before killing him, they had burned his beard and his hands.
Toviroğlu Misak’s bandits in January 1915, killed all the Muslim population of the Karameşe Village of Muş and raped the women. In addition, they also killed 12 people from the Molla Baba and Heşkervan Villages, everyone from the Ertiçek, Ağdad, Vartitipi, Semerşeyh villages, and most people of the Frenk, Bulanık, Honk, Küt, Norgagag, Komla, Kamran, Semtros, Alvezerek, and Kötanan villages. All the inhabitants of the Kazanan village were gathered and burned alive.
Ottoman parliamentarian Karekin Pastırmacian’s bandits killed almost all the villagers of Yeramış and Ağcaviran. In Malazgirt 53 villages were burned and razed; in the vicinity of Lize, the wounded Turkish soldiers returning home were put to the sword by this same parliamentarian’s bandits.
Berber İlyas’s son Şevket and his two wives from Malazgirt’s Beksam village were forced to watch raping of their daughters. When they requested their child to be returned to them, they were killed atrociously by Kelekçi Simon, Kalekasabalı Mardivagik of Dolabaş village and Sirop of Kürek village.
The Sheikh whose Head was Skinned
The commencement court member of Malazgirt’s Adaköyü Hüseyin Bey and Administration member Şamil Bey were killed savagely by their Armenian servant. The Armenians who entered major general İbrahim Paşa’s brother Ahmet Bey’s house ordered his wife to serve them drinks after removing her clothes. When she refused, they raped her oldest daughter. Also, strangled by Armenians were the notable citizens of Muş, Hacı Murat, Reşit, Günaylı Hacı Mehmet, Cafer, Temir, Abdullah, Yusuf, Mehmet Han, and Nadir Han. They threw all the residents of 15 villages belonging to Cündi Ağa of Cibran Tribe with heavy weights tied to their feet and horse shoes nailed on their feet into the Gülnihal lake of Murat River. Armenians burned the Muslims who were emigrating through Mukilli road after filling them inside the Şeyhelkarip dervish lodge. They skinned a religious man named Şeyh Abdullah Gaffar.
Forced to Eat their Broiled Children
All atrocities endured by Turks as documented above were collected from Government archives’ Ottoman documents as referenced in Mehmet Hocaoğlu’s research. The truth of these events is not doubted by any historian. Mehmet Hocaoglu referred to the evidence from archives in his publishing of 1973-1974. The same events were later mentioned in the book published by Government Archives in 2001.
It is deemed necessary to mention the authenticity of these “unbelievable” torture methods as they are described in detail. Similar stories that human beings like us find hard to believe have been published from time to time in the Military History Document Magazine of Military Historic and Strategic Research Department (ATASE).
In order to show that Turks were deliberately wiped out according to plan in their home country with violent methods, in other words victimized by genocide, we wish to present two documents:
Armenian Murders at Mergehu Village
|Names of those who were killed||Methods of Annihilation|
|Abdi’s son Hacı İbrahim||Shooting and drawing the sword|
|Hacı İbrahimis son Abdi||Shooting and drawing the sword|
|Abdi’s son Reşo||Beating and cutting|
|Ömer’s son Sado||Beating and cutting|
|Reşo’s son Oso||Beating and cutting|
|Canko’s son Kulu||Passing the sword through his eye|
|Canko’s son Musu||Passing the sword through his eye|
|Molla Hamit’s son Emin||Passing the sword through his eye|
|Hamit’s son Molla Abdullah||Passing the sword through his eye|
|Hacı’s son İbo||Passing the sword through his eye|
|Hacı’s son Sado||Passing the sword through his eye|
|Canko’s son Abdullah||Cutting|
|Ahmet’s son İbo||Splitting his abdomen|
|İbo’s son İsmail||Burning alive|
|Özü’s son Musto||Shooting with gun|
|Seyyo’s son Mahmut||Cutting|
|Bırro’s son Koçak||Shooting with gun|
|Hüsnü’s son Musto||Shooting with gun|
|Alo’s son Uso||Shooting with gun|
|Peri’s son Maksut||Shooting with gun|
|Peri’s son Hacı||Shooting with gun|
|Hasanali’s son Mahmut||Passing the sword|
|Hasanali’s son İbo||Passing the sword|
|Abdullah’s son Mazgi||Splitting his abdomen|
|Hasan’s son Suliş||Shooting with gun|
|Mustafa’s son Mahmo||Knifed|
|Hasan’s son Murat||Knifed|
|Avsı’s son Uso||Eyes gauged with sword|
|Mehmet’s son Lesko||Wedged with dagger|
|Kasım’s son Abdullah||Shooting with gun|
|Shepherd Adullah||Shooting with gun|
|Mümin’s son Seymo||Shooting with gun|
|Reso’s son Muammer||Shooting with gun|
|Merzi’s son Paşo||Shooting with gun|
|Bitor’s son Gülü||Shooting with gun|
|Yusuf’s son Murat||Shooting and drawing the sword|
|Hacı İbrahim’s son Cedo||Shooting and drawing the sword|
|Fakı Mehmet||Shooting and drawing the sword|
|Abdulcebbar’s son Sülo||Shooting and drawing the sword|
|Women Killed From the Same Village|
|Hacı İbrahim’s wife, Kaşı’s daughter Huso||Shooting with gun|
|Aduz’s wife, Fatı’s daughter İso||Shooting with gun|
|Reşo’s wife, Zerreşan’s daughter Amat||Passing the sword|
|Iyso’s daughter Güllü||Cutting her breast|
|İbo’s wife, Sülü’s daughter Sülnü||Splitting her abdomen and throwing her child into the stone oven|
|İbo’s daughter Fatma||Cutting and throwing into the stone oven|
|Fidan Hatun||Burning in the stone oven|
|Musto’s wife, Hacı Han’s daughter Gülfiraz||Cutting|
|Halil’s wife, Mehmet’s daughter Rahime||Shooting with gun|
|Molla Süleyman’s wife, Hacı Kerim’s daughter Binefs||Burning in the stone oven|
|Derviş’s wife, Biro’s daughter Ruşi||Burning in the stone oven|
|Sivno’s wife, Ali’s daughter Mahiye||Cutting|
|Ahmet’s wife, Hacı’s daughter Hatı||Cutting|
|Meho’s daughter Hacer||Shooting and drawing the sword|
Four women from the same village were killed by rape, five people – three of them women were wounded savagely.
In another document signed by Kaymakam Mehmet and dated March 15, 1915, it is recorded that Hacı Molla Sait of Kavlit Village was forced to strangle his daughter and every time he refused one of his organs was cut off and he was thus killed. Also documented in the same record are in the Şerefhane Village, Cündi Ağa’s servant Ahmo and her son were killed by being thrown into the burning stone oven; in Bilecik Village Mehmet Abdi’s wife, Ayşe was first wounded by stabbing in three spots and then killed by cutting her arms. An even worse Armenian atrocity mentioned in the same document names a woman named Fato from Yaman Bordo village who was burned with her son in a stone oven. Another atrocity which sends chills through one’s spine is recorded in Perkal village. After burning their two sons by throwing them into the stone oven, Armenians wanted to force-feed the mother and father with their children’s burned flesh. When they refused, the parents were killed and the grandmother Nezo Hatun lost her mind watching this scene.
It should be noted that these massacres were committed by the bandits under the guidance of Ottoman parliamentarians Pastırmacian and Papazian. Talat Pasha mentions in his memoirs that these striking realities were learned later.