- April 24, 2009 at 2:52 am #1905
Tomorrow 4/24 is the commemoration of the Armenian Genocide, a major event here in Pasadena. May all those who perished rest in peace, May the Angels lead them to heaven. May those who survived, and the families who never had the opportunity to know them be comforted, and may we one day be delivered from any such events.April 24, 2009 at 3:46 am #9326
When was the Armenian Genocide?April 24, 2009 at 5:07 am #9327
1915April 24, 2009 at 5:22 am #9328
thank you LA Robert
yes over 1.5 million armenians died in the genocide being raped killed and deported by the Ottomon turks. all because we were Christians.
here are some survivor stories:
He saw the men in his village of Khoolu rounded up and marched off; they would never return. Hidden in the home of a sympathetic Turkish neighbor, he saw Kurdish tribesmen descend on the Armenian women and children who remained behind in Khoolu. The Kurds who had guns used them; those without guns used their quick, scythelike knives. After a time, after the last cry was stilled, Khoolu lay silent.
Then came the waiting. Weeks passed before the government soldiers arrived. A Turkish soldier prodded Mesrop into a caravan of Armenian women and children, and he did not resist. Those in line, perhaps 500 in all, had survived the massacres in the surrounding villages. Mesrop noticed there was not a man among them.
For 15 days, the caravan of exiles snaked slowly across the desert. The march was long and hard, but Mesrop kept pace he did not dare fall behind in the killing heat, as some of the others had. The soldiers, too, frightened Mesrop. Each day they would carry young women from the caravan into the fields; after a time, Mesrop would hear gunfire and then see the soldiers returning, alone.
Now, as the caravan wound its way through the gates of Mardin, the familiar knot of hunger and fear twisted in the boy’s stomach. A soldier plucked him and a handful of other children from the line and led them from house to house.
At one door, a well-to-do Syrian family showed some interest in one of the boys. Soldier and family haggled, while Mesrop watched in silence. Finally, a deal was struck.
“I remember,” he says. “They gave one silver coin for me.”
It was a fall day in 1915. Mesrop Boyajian spent the next 10 years in slavery.
Now 80 and living quietly at Golden Pond, a retirement community in Rancho Cordova, Boyajian is one of 14 Sacramento-area residents who survived the massacres of his people.
The carnage during 1915-18 on the high plains of what is now eastern Turkey left between 600,000 and 1.5 million Armenians dead and more than half a million banished from the land of their ancestors.April 24, 2009 at 5:23 am #9330
The Genocide Education Project 5 iwitness Photo Activity
An Exhibit By The Genocide Project
Oral and Visual Documentation of Survivors of the Armenian Genocide
PHOTOGRAPHS BY ARA OSHAGAN AND LEVON PARIAN
The exhibit is also available online at http://www.teachgenocide.com/survivoraccounts
born 1906, Sepasdia (Sivas)
We walked for many days, occasionally running across
small lakes and rivers. After awhile we saw corpses on the
shores of these lakes. Then we began seeing them along
the path: twisted corpses, blackened by the sun and
bloated. Their stench was horrible. Vultures circled the
skies above us, waiting for their evening meal.
At one point, we came upon a small hole in the
ground. It was a little deeper than average height and 25-
30 people could easily fit in it. We lowered ourselves
down into it. There was no water in it but the bottom
was muddy. We began sucking on the mud. Some of the
women made teats with their shirts filled with mud and
suckled on them like children. We were there for about a
half hour. If we hadn’t been forced out, that would have
been our best grave.
Many days later we reached the Euphrates River and
despite the hundreds of bodies floating in it, we drank
from it like there was no tomorrow. We quenched our
thirst for the first time since our departure. They put us
on small boats and we crossed to the other side. From
there we walked all the way to Ras-ul-Ain.
Of a caravan of nearly 10,000 people, there were now
only some of us 300 left. My aunt, my sisters, my
brothers had all died or disappeared. Only my mother
and I were left. We decided to hide and take refuge with
some Arab nomads. My mother died there under their
tents. They did not treat me well they kept me hungry
and beat me often and they branded me as their own.April 24, 2009 at 5:25 am #9331
born 1902, Sepasdia (Sivas
There was a girl, a girl who I had befriended on the
road, earlier. Her name was Satenig. I remember her very
well. She was not too strong. I saw her again in that
basement. In the basement of the school where they had
thrown us. She was there. She had a little bit of money
and she gave it to me. “Don’t let them take me,” she said.
“Don’t let them take me.” They would come around
everyday and take whoever was dead or very weak. She
was not in good shape, she was very weak. I stood her up
and leaned on her. Held her up, so. They came. I was
holding her up, leaning her up against the wall. But they
saw her and took her; took her;April 24, 2009 at 5:27 am #9332
born 1908, Papert (Baiburt)
I do not remember how many days our decimated
caravan marched southward toward the Euphrates River.
Day by day the men contingent of the caravan got smaller
and smaller. Under pretext of not killing them if they
would hand over liras and gold coins, men would be
milked by the gendarmes of what little money they had.
Then they would be killed anyway.
Days wore on. We marched through mountain roads
and valleys. Those who could not keep up were put out
of their misery. Always bodies were found strewn by the
wayside. The caravan was getting smaller each day. At
one place, my little grandmother, like Jeremiah incarnate,
loudly cursed the Turkish government for their
inhumanity, pointing to us children she asked, “What is
the fault of children to be subjected to such suffering.” It
was too much for a gendarme to bear, he pulled out his
dagger and plunged it into my grandmother’s back. The
more he plunged his dagger, the more my beloved Nana
asked for heaven’s curses on him and his kind. Unable to
silence her with repeated dagger thrusts, the gendarme
mercifully pumped some bullets into her and ended her
life. First my uncle, now my grandmother were left
unmourned and unburied by the wayside.
We moved on.April 24, 2009 at 5:46 am #9333
As Catholics we are taught that each individual by virtue of being created by God, has a dignity that comes from what God originally intended when He creataed all things. God said, “it is good”. It is for this reason, knowing that not all would accept Him, that He became incarnate, suffered and died for us. It is also for that reason that He sends His graces as a free gift, so that in cooperating with His grace we may come to salvation.
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