Lord Jeffery Smallpox Blankets and the TARC report

By Ani Shahinian

Anyone who has read their high school history knows that during the French and Indian War–Lord Jeffery Amherst distributed smallpox-infected blankets to local Indians.

The Indians–not knowing the implications of accepting this "gift," may have very well thanked Amherst for these blankets–unaware of the terrible suffering and widespread death they would cause amongst a population defenseless against this new disease. With the benefit of hindsight–however–we can all see Amherst’s gift for what it was–a deliberate attempt–in his own words–to "extirpate this execrable race." Very simply–Amherst–using the pretense of providing warmth to the Indians–actually sought their destruction.

Today–we face an analogous situation.

In the same "generous" spirit as Lord Jeffery–the Turkish Armenian Reconciliation Commission (TARC) has given its "gift" to the Armenian nation. They have produced a study–whose authors strangely remain anonymous–that confirms the obvious fact that the Armenia’s were victims of genocide. But before you wrap yourself up in this blanket–consider the consequences. Just like the smallpox hidden in the Amherst’s gift–TARC has infected its offering with its own brand of poison–in the form of the conclusion that the Armenia’s don’t have any right to justice under the Genocide Convention. Nothing could be more damaging to the Armenian Cause.

Sadly–we still have modern day Lord Jeffery types–now in the form of TARC–and they are still peddling poison in the brightly colored packages. Thankfully–we have the common sense to not accept such "gifts" at face value. Except for a small handful of nave Armenia’s–we know our history well enough to protect our interests–to safeguard our rights–and to turn away the wolves–even when they come in sheep’s clothing.


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