Wednesday 18 October 2017 Last Update: 11:16 AM

“Genocide” Recognition: Once Again, Armenian Spin Machine at Work

Published: 03-06-2017


By Ferruh Demirmen, Ph.D.

Is distorting facts and misinforming the public in the genes of the Armenian media?

Read MoreThe question is valid; for once again, the Armenian media just recently distorted the record on the alleged Armenian “genocide.” It was the Armenian spin machine at work – which we witnessed so openly in the wake of the ECHR’s October 15, 2015 decision on the Switzerland-Perinçek case: http://www.turkishny.com/english-news/5-english-news/195837-armenian-spin-machine-peddling-a-humiliating-defeat-as-victory

The Resolution

The Armenian spin machine sprung into action again after the recent ruling of the Danish Parliament on the 1915 events in Ottoman Anatolia. A motion on these events, introduced by Nikolaj Villumsen and Rasmus Nordqvist, was adopted by the Danish Parliament on January 26, 2017 with 89 votes in favor, 9 against, and 11 abstentions.

The resolution did not use the label “Armenian genocide.” It affirmed the Parliament’s earlier decision of May 19, 2015, that the best road to reconciliation concerning the tragic events that took place in the period “1915-1923” is through an open dialogue based on free and uncensored research of history. It was regretted that the Turkish law prohibits the use of the word “genocide.”

The Danish Parliament’s position was consistent with the European Court of Human Right’s (ECHR) October 15, 2015 ruling, which, in cognizance of the 1948 UN Convention on Genocide, affirmed that parliaments (and governments) are not venues to rule on the crime of genocide. The motion was also in line with Turkey’s position that it favors the establishment of a Joint Historical Commission to debate the 1915 events.

The resolution, however, was wrong on two accounts: “prohibition,” and events taking place in “1915-1923.” Turkish law does not prohibit the use of the word “genocide;” the controversy is freely discussed in the country, and the disputed events took place in 1915 – certainly not extending to 1923.

Perverting Journalism

What made the Danish Parliament’s resolution unusual and eye-catching was not so much its content, as the fact that it exposed the Armenian media’s duplicity in reporting the truth. Despite the fact the resolution made no mention of “Armenian genocide,” the Armenian media, to a very large extent, was abuzz with assertions of “genocide” recognition in the headlines. Journalistic honesty was put aside, and a deceptive modus operandi sprung into action.

Here is a sampling of the headlines in Armenian news outlets on January 26, 2017 (Internet links shortened):

Panorama.am: “Danish Parliament adopts Armenian Genocide Bill”

Armedia.am: “Danish Parliament Adopted Armenian Genocide Bill”

Armradio.am: “Denmark’s Parliament adopts Armenian Genocide Resolution”

Reddit/r/armenia: “Denmark’s Parliament Adopts Armenian Genocide Resolution”

Uaposition/arminfo: “Parliament of Denmark adopts a resolution on Armenian Genocide”

MassisPost: “Danish Parliament adopts Armenian Genocide Resolution”

lragir.am: “Denmark's Parliament Voted for Resolution on Genocide.”

One Armenian news outlet, “Armenian Weekly,” hinted at the truth, but shed doubt on the validity of the resolution: “Danish Parliament Passes Questionable Bill Regarding Armenian Genocide” (emphasis added).

The Fresno–based “Azberez,” referencing “Armenian Weekly,” removed the “questionable” attribution and headlined: “Danish Parliament Adopts Armenian Genocide Bill.” The “questionable” attribution was considered unnecessary “detail” that could wrongly draw attention to the truth.

ANCA, in its website, followed suit and declared: “Danish Parliament Adopts Armenian Genocide Bill.”

Aim to Mislead

All this reporting, the headlines in particular, had one purpose: To deceive the unsuspecting or casual reader to make him or her believe that the Danish Parliament had recognized Armenian “genocide.” That this was not the case, and that the Danish Parliament had not passed judgment on genocide recognition, was either hinted or revealed in the body of the news text itself. One had to read the “small print” to glimpse the truth, as it were. But it was the headlines that attracted attention.

Surely a good propaganda tactic to deceive the ordinary public while pretending to be an impartial journalist.

But surely also a mark of dishonesty and perversion in journalism. In a broader context, it is a manifestation of the Armenian media’s proclivity to distort the truth as it relates to “genocide” allegations. It is part of a deliberate spin machine that we have witnessed before.

It is ironic that the deceived public also includes ordinary Armenians that feel no close bond to the genocide dispute.

One sign that the Armenian spin machine had achieved immediate “success” is reflected in the reporting of Wikipedia. The website, which is supposed to give factual information, referencing “Armenian Weekly” as the source, stated that the Danish Parliament had adopted Armenian genocide resolution. It also noted, quoting its source, that the events had taken place “during 1915-1923.”

A double whammy when it comes to misinformation!

As far as we know, the Los Angeles-based “California Courier,” the flagship media outlet of the Armenian lobby, did not report on the Danish resolution. The publisher Harut Sassounian evidently found the news not to its liking and considered it not newsworthy.

A Rare Exception

But not all is lost. In the midst of all these unashamed efforts to mislead the public, we found one exception that outshined. It was like finding a glitter of light in a vast darkness. In its January 26, 2017 edition the Yerevan-based “News.am” stated in plain language, both in the headline and the short text that followed, that the Danish Parliament had not used the phrase “Armenian Genocide.” It also noted, correctly, that the disputed events took place in 1915.

Why couldn’t the other Armenian media outlets report the Danish resolution similarly? To use the current political lexicon, why do these outlets feel the need to report “alternative facts’?

The Diaspora will probably chastise “News-am” for being “too honest.”