WikiLeaks Reveals Turkey’s Efforts to Derail Genocide Bill, Force Pro-Azeri Settlement on Karabakh

WASHINGTON—The public disclosure on Sunday by WikiLeaks of tens of thousands of U.S. diplomatic cables included many of special interest to Armenian Americans, most notably a “smoking gun” revelation that Turkey has aggressively used the Turkey-Armenia protocols, particularly the prospect of its ratification, to pressure American leaders against U.S. recognition of the Armenian Genocide and in favor of a pro-Azerbaijani settlement of the Nagorno-Karabagh conflict, reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).

“These files are a smoking-gun,” explained ANCA executive director Aram Hamparian. “They reveal the remarkable candor with which Ankara has, from day one, sought to pressure the United States to enforce it preconditions for the Turkey-Armenia protocols. It’s painfully clear from the words of Turkey’s own leaders that, rather than seeking peace, they instead sought to use the prospect of the ratification of these accords to block the Armenian Genocide recognition and to force a pro-Azerbaijani resolution of Nagorno-Karabagh.”

In a Feb. 25, 2010 confidential cable from the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, U.S. Ambassador to Turkey James Jeffery noted that Turkey had made it clear that its ratification of the Turkey-Armenia protocols was predicated on Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev’s approval.  Specifically, in describing a Feb. 18, 2010 meeting between U.S. Under Secretary of State William Burns and Turkish Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) Sinirlioglu, Jeffery writes: “Sinirlioglu appealed for ‘simultaneity’ between Armenian Protocols ratification and the Minsk Process. He emphasized ‘a strong reaction’ against the protocols among ruling party MPs had to be overcome before the government would hazard a ratification effort. He warned Congressional passage of an Armenian genocide resolution would ‘complicate’ his government’s domestic political calculations regarding ratification. He said if something acceptable to Azerbaijani President Aliyev can found, then ‘we can move’ the protocols forward.”

Read the complete cable here.

In a Jan. 20, 2010 confidential cable, Jeffery provided his analysis of Turkey’s foreign policy, citing concerns about Turkey’s “inability to bring to conclusion foreign policy initiatives,” specifically noting the Turkey-Armenia protocols and Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu’s “tendency to substitute rhetoric for long term investment of diplomatic, military, and assistance capital.”  Jeffery went on to note that “Turkey will have to stand and be counted on Iran, in the Security Council, with MD, and in implementation of UN or US sanctions.  This will have a profound effect on relations second only to the fate of the Armenian protocols over the next year.”

Read the complete cable here.

Aliyev: April 24 a ‘Sword of Damocles’ over Turkey-Azerbaijan-Armenia relations

In a confidential cable from the U.S. Embassy in Baku, senior diplomat Donald Lu reported on a meeting between U.S. Under Secretary of State Burns and President Aliyev, in which the Azerbaijani leader advocated the combining of the Turkey-Armenia protocols discussion and the Karabagh peace negotiations. He also urged the postponement of any protocols ratification until after April 24th, Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day, describing this date as a “Sword of Damocles” hanging over political initiatives in the region.  Lu wrote: “U/S Burns stressed that the U.S. believes that progress on the Turkey-Armenia protocols could create political space for Sargsian to be more flexible on NK. He continued that the reverse was also true, that a failure of the Turkey-Armenia process would almost certainly result in serious negative consequences for the NK process. Aliyev said that NK progress would require a minimum of five or six months. He suggested that the entire Turkey-Armenia protocol ratification process be delayed until after April 24. He said that the ‘Sword of Damocles’ of Armenian Remembrance Day is hanging unhelpfully not only over the Turkey-Armenia process, but also now the NK progress. ‘If there were no deadline, maybe we could see how to combine our efforts (to resolve NK).’”

According to the cable, Aliyev urged Burns to pressure Armenia to accept the most recently proposed OSCE Minsk group settlement regarding Karabagh, calling on the three co-chair countries to “send a strong message that the independence of NK is not under review,” and urging “consequences in terms of international isolation” if Armenia does not accept the measures.

Read the complete cable here.

Concerns over Armenia-Iran relations

A cable citing the text of a letter from U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Negroponte to the Armenian government expressed concern about the reported sale of weapons to Iran, stating, “Notwithstanding the close relationship between our countries, neither the Administration nor the U.S. Congress can overlook this case.”  The letter went on to note that there would be consideration “whether there is a basis for the imposition of U.S. sanctions.”

“What this cable, and all that has transpired since it was written in 2008, shows is that the U.S. government, having reviewed all the relevant facts, concluded that Yerevan did not merit sanctions—on assistance, on exports, or, for that matter, in any other area,” commented Hamparian.

Read the complete cable here.

Additional resources

A complete list of WikiLeaks cables related to Armenia, released to date, can be viewed here.

A complete list of WikiLeaks cables relating to Turkey, released to date, can be viewed here.

A complete list of WikiLeaks cables related to Azerbaijan, released to date, can be viewed here.


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  1. Gary said:

    According to CNN, Turkey is becoming more anti-Western. This will cause the West and eventually the US to recognize the genocide. It is just a matter of time.
    This is what CNN said (through wikileaks):
    “Those who lamented that Israel’s interception of the Turkish blockade-runner Mevi Marmara would alienate Turkey as a key U.S. ally: The U.S. government itself has for years regarded the Turkish government as trending on its own impetus toward anti-Western Islamist radicalism.”

  2. Garegin Manasarian said:

    Never-never trust any kind of turkic politician………………..Do not sit with those people around the table until they come-up with needed package.

  3. robig said:

    Turkey has aggressively used the Turkey-Armenia protocols, particularly the prospect of its ratification, to pressure American leaders against U.S. recognition of the Armenian Genocide.
    Gee, that’s news to me. (sarcasm)

  4. Pingback: » US Embassy Downplays Leaked Bush-Era Threat to Sanction Armenia

  5. Vahé said:

    I feel like all of us Armos aren’t too surprised at what has actually happened behind the scenes. It seems we can guess pretty well, and we are a fairly well-educated bunch, are we not? But still, this provides proof for our suspicions all along. Like the article says, it’s a smoking gun. We already knew who shot whom. Another remarkable aspect of the cables is the extent that the Turks really are attempting to make their presence well-known throughout Asia and Europe, and that they use their close US ties to their advantage. No surprises there either. But tell that to someone who doesn’t know Turkey as well as we do, and they aren’t likely to believe you it seems….

    I also think it’s funny how much stock they put in this potential EU membership when many of the Europeans quite obviously hate their guts. The Turks don’t seem to care. They just want to stick their noses in.

  6. Sako N. said:

    Most US diplomatic cables are not really frank, I think, because ambassadors know they can be made public sometime. They are really no more frank than an article in the NY Times. What we need are records of CONVERSATIONS, and those are practically impossible to get.

    Revelations, for example, that the Saudis want the US to attack Iran are not new and not surprising. Neither is the news that Saudis support Al Qadae.
    Still, it is all worth it to see how politicians lie.
    I don’t think that the US has the guts to stand up to Turkey. US diplomats are generally cowards and yes-men, like Ambassador Yovanovitch.

  7. aram said:

    Year 2010 but still the turks have the same mentality when Jengiz khan massacred the people of Baghdad, after that the same massacre on Armenian , Pontus, Laz, Greek, Cherkez, Kurds…etc today they do the same but in a diplomatic way ! Sorry but I cant trust turks left, liberals, religious all are the same

  8. Sasountsi Davit said:

    Let’s make a deal Turkey! Give us our lands back you usurped during the massacres and we’ll give you some pakhlava! That’s the closest to a fair deal that you are entitled to!

  9. Kevork10 said:

    I wonder if the Wiki leaks have anything about Armenian – Arab relations.

    I am very concerned about how Arab states and Iran view Armenians now that these countries are getting friendlier with Turkey. If you ask me, the Arab states and Iran are pathetic to look to their former Ottoman Turkish master as a model or big brother. Turkey has even taken the initiative away from its neighbors on the Palestinian issue. Pathetic.

    I thought Greece was pathetic to cozy up to Turkey and to look to Turkey to help solve its economic problems. I don’t know which of the above countries is the most pathetic when compared to Turkey. Is there no one in the region who can stand up to Turkey? Think about it. This wreck, this genocidal murderous nation of Turkey is stronger than any country in the region.
    The Arab world cannot even begin to compare with Turkey, except in terms of oil and gas, and where has that gotten them except for a bunch of fancy palaces, BMW’s, and fake palm trees? Russia is supplying Turkey with sufficient cheap gas to fuel its economy. Has Russia lost its mind? I think so. And don’t tell me that Turkey is dependent on Russia. That is baloney. Georgia kicks Russia in the face and Russia still supplies it with gas.
    I think we Armenians may be in a sort of denial. We looked to the Arab countries and Iran for help but increasingly we are getting booted out, or the Arabs are getting closer to Turkey and pushing us aside.
    The Turks are even making inroads into the Balkans. Serbia is totally pathetic. Has even tough Serbia lost its pride and succumbed to its former slave master?

  10. Jay said:

    I tend to agree with Kevork on the issue of Turkey being strong than any country in the region with the exception of the Russian Fedration.I would like to elaborate on this subject lil’ further. Turkey’s population in the mid ’20s was approximately 14 million people, their number to the present day has quadrupled to roughly 77 million, the World Bank expects Turkey’s population to reach 91 million by 2025, Turk Census Bureau officials project the population to exceed 150 millon mark by 2050, that’s 40 years from today. My question to the Armenian Diaspopra leadership and the politicians in Armenia is,” Are you guys paying attention to these ‘LOTTO’ numbers? Can you imagine 150 million pair of ‘ Eyeballs’ staring at Armenia’s front door and ready to ‘Move in’ with only 3 miliion Armenians at hand to defend the land?

    • Shane Jacubian said:

      It is not the millions that count-look at the Jews and the Arabs…You need intelligence and technology-In other words brains that I doubt the Turks possess.

  11. Artin Avedissian said:

    To Jay. It’s not a matter of population growth. Small countries do survive through clever diplomacy and strong relations with major superpowers. Armenia is following these rules. Enemy ‘Eyeballs’ may then freeze!

    Therefore, I don’t think Armenia’s very existance will be in danger at any time!

  12. Monastras said:

    Artin is right.Armenia’s existance will not be in danger in the future but if the turkey’s population ever reach 150 M . Obviously, there will be a big hole people leaking from turkey to armenia then armenia will have armoturk nation which is very good to close the old book

  13. Stale from Norway said:

    Modern wars will be decided by brains not manpower. Turkey primarily posess the latter. The Turks were a primitive nomadic people when they arrived in Anatolia 1000 years ago. The Turks are no longer a nomadic people, but they have somehow managed to maintain their primitivity. It is kind of a national emblem.
    Since the Sovjet Union no longer exists and the cold war is over, I do frankly not understand why Turkey is still a member of NATO. The sooner the other members of NATO kick Turkey out, the better.

  14. Monastras said:

    Because turkey is the share holder of Nato. I think that the only way for the other members to kick turkey out is that they all leave NATO and set up a new union and then not accept turkey’s application. If it comes to that I think turkey wouldn’t give a flying shit as it doesn’t need to be member of any kind of military cooperation anyway

    • manooshag said:

      Monastras, brilliant, a Turkey all by itself in a NATO, brilliant! Turkey never was worthy to be with the civilized nations of NATO… the USA accomplished this hoping, I guess, that the Turks would join the civilized nations of the world. TURKEY, IMPOSSIBLE, NOT TO HAPPEN FOR THE NEXT 10 GENERATIONS… their Ottman mentality continues… their Genocides too, at which Turks excell – are ongoing/unending. E-ven today destroying the Woodrow Wilson memorial site which is in the capitol city of the USA – Washington DC! Turks deem Wilson’s
      memorial unsuitable for the likes of the Turk – and are spending large sums of monies to destroy
      Wilson’s memorial (too, the Smithsonian) as an IN YOUR FACE AMERICA from a Turkey.

    • manooshag said:

      Hye Monastras, brilliant.. a NATO for a Turkey – alone…
      AND as you said, a new union of the civilized nations
      seeking like-minded civilized members who want to
      come together to advance our our world, our civilization…
      Nations which abhor Genocides, seeking to end the
      cycle of Genocides… Great!