The Turks Do Protest Too Much, Methinks


I should start by thanking the Turks, Shakespeare, and Samuel Johnson (the English author and lexicographer) for providing me the topic, title, and important quote (below) respectively, for this week’s piece.

I was actually in a minor quandary as to what I’d write about. But Yusuf Babanli, Member of the Board of Directors of Azerbaijani American Council and Co-founder of U.S. Azeris Network, came through for me with his piece “US Ambassadors Appointed to Represent US Interests, Not the Interests of Armenian Diaspora” responding to, or more accurate, attacking, parts of my “Off to a Bad Start” from two weeks ago.

I suspect the “esteemed” Mr. Babanli was put up to writing this piece by his AAC colleague, Javid Huseynov, its Director General, who was named in “…Bad Start”. Otherwise, how else do we explain the sudden response to my critiques of Turkey and Azerbaijan when almost none has occurred before? I suspect Huseynov Googled his name, saw my comments, and wishing to avoid the unsavory business of defending himself, got someone else to attack. All conjecture, I know, but still, typical human behavior.

On to the hit piece… Truly, it is proof of Johnson’s “The last refuge of a scoundrel is patriotism”. Babanli wraps the American flag about him (I’m tempted to write, “to cover his shame”), protesting my criticism of Obama’s recess appointments of Bryza and Riccardione as ambassadors (to Turkey and Azerbaijan, respectively) because that should be and is based on the “national interests of the U.S.” not of the “Republic of Armenia or Armenian Diaspora”. Really? What a revelation that is! Wow, thanks Yusuf, we didn’t know that! And what “national interests” are represented by these two moral sellouts? Genocide denial? Demonstrating that conflicts of interest are acceptable? That human rights are irrelevant? That persecution and murder of your own people is acceptable? That oil profiteering trumps all else? Are these the national interests of the U.S.? Not according to my elementary school and later teachers! Later in the piece, Babanli’s “patriotism” leads him to tie his arguments to my run for city council two years ago, go figure!

My observation that other Turkic peoples do not share the same hatred of Armenians as those living in Azerbaijan and Turkey leads Babanli to argue that the:

Central Asian states refrained from explicitly condemning Armenia on many issues is because they don’t have a common border with it. Otherwise, a piece of each of those states would have been claimed by Armenia. Eastern Turkey, western Azerbaijan and southern Georgia are good examples of irredentist claims by Armenian nationalists.

How’s that for ridiculous? Why does condemning Armenia require having a border with it? About the irredenta, why is it wrong to demand the return of stolen property, regardless who the thief is, Turkey through centuries of misrule, or Azerbaijan and Georgia thanks to Stalin’s divide-and-conquer rules?

Perhaps the best example of Babanli’s level of comprehension is his claim that I called Orange County a “plague of locusts”, completely missing my bit of word-play and jab at the negative, hateful, and anti-Armenian nature of much of Turkish activity in the U.S. Here’s the original sentence that I’d written: “Orange County serves as a locus (maybe I should say a plague of locusts) of Turkish activity…” (emphasis added now).

Finally, Mr. Babanli coyly pretends to not understand the context in which my article is written—the Armenian media in the U.S. So he twists my reference to “our enemies” into something nonsensical. Please, let me clarify, the enemies of Armenia and Armenians are those who blockade the country, massacre Armenians living within their borders, delay and avoid bringing to full justice the murderers of Hrant Dink, destroy precious historical treasures such as khachkars of Julfa by the hundreds, spend millions of dollars for anti-Armenian propaganda worldwide, constantly make bellicose pronouncements heralding the coming of war against the two Armenian Republics, and the list goes on. Plus, all this occurred just during the last two decades. I wonder, do Turkey and Azerbaijan match the description? That, Mr. Babanli, is who the “enemies” I refer to are!

Babanli even rises to defend two-faced, hypocritical Kobe Bryant and his blood-money deal with Turkish Airlines, much like Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan defended Sudan’s genocide-accused president Omar al-Bashir, claiming “It’s not possible for a Muslim to commit genocide.”

Twice, Babanli refers to the medical fraud scam that emerged a few months ago which included a number of Armenians among those hauled off to jail. Why do a bunch of crooks enter the discussion? Clearly, it’s a diversionary tactic.

All this suggests that those who are in the U.S. and engaged in anti-Armenian activity are feeling the heat. Our commentary is to true to avoid, so it must be somehow undercut. How? What better way to discredit anything than the time tested ad hominem attack. So, I became the chosen one as a target, this time. Who’s next? Also, this smear job might well have been done at the request of the State Department/Administration or foreign embassies seeking to provide it cover for the misguided appointments. Plus, Azerbaijan, Turkey, and the U.S. probably fear further Wikileaks revelations, another item I’s mentioned in my piece.

Stay tuned. No doubt more such debauched, unfounded, and farcical attacks are likely to follow.


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  1. William T said:

    You can depend on the Turks! They will “alway” do what they have to do to smear, discredit and silence the opposition, regardless of what the truth is. The Young Turks comitted genocide against 1.5 million Armenians in living in Turkey, from 1915-1921. And yet, they are still trying to cover-up the truth from the American public. Shameless!

  2. namik said:

    Along with many obviously racist remarks GAREN YEGPARIAN takes the liberty of not hiding territorial claims to Turkey, Gerogia and Azerbaijan again. Good to see how this racist unmasks himself questioing “why is it wrong to demand the return of stolen property, regardless who the thief is, Turkey through centuries of misrule, or Azerbaijan and Georgia thanks to Stalin’s divide-and-conquer rules?” Unfortunately, many in the world still do not know thanks to Stalin’s divide-and-conquer rules Armenia was granted for Irevan to become their capital city whereas it was mostly populated by Azerbaijanis till the early years of 20th century. Who has stolen property of others? Historic documents clearly speak for the fact that the thief is the one who cries rather noisily.

    • Zareh said:

      namik, are you in a hot tub? because you are emitting a lot of hot air. Tell you what, first let the Azeris settle their identity crisis, this new concept of being Azeris is getting to their heads. I guess being called Turco-Tatar herds and nomads, for the good part of the last 800 years, does not sound good to you anymore?

      Both sides of Ararat, namik, both sides!

      • Namik said:

        I would suggest, Zereh, not to wipe away from history the fact that Azerbaijanis (regardless of how you call them or how they used to be called in history) had lived in the place which is now Armenia, in total the names of some 2000 towns and villages that formerly bore Azerbaijani names have been changed during the Soviet period. A number of historical, cultural, religious monuments and pieces of arts have been removed from the occupied Azerbaijani territories by Armenian armed forces. The Museum of History of Kalbajar region with its unique collection of ancient coins, gold and silver wares, rare and expensive stones, carpets and other handicraft wares, the Museums of History in Shusha region, the unique Bread Museum of Agdam region, the Stone Monuments Museum of Zangelan region, as well as many others were plundered and destroyed. 500 historical, architectural and more than 100 archeological monuments, 22 museums, 9 historical palaces, 44 temples, 10 mosques, 4 art galleries have been left in the occupied territories of Azerbaijan and heavily damaged. Hundreds of ancient mausoleums and fortresses have been destroyed. In Shusha region the 18th century Govhar-Aga mosque has been heavily damaged, other mosques in the occupied regions have been destroyed and burnt down.

        No amount of falsifications, allegations, and demonstrations can alter the reality on the ground Armenia, in violation of the UN Security Council resolutions 822, 853, 874, 884 of 1993, continues to occupy the Azerbaijani territories. The Armenian authorities must end the morally bankrupt strategy of aggression and falsification. As far as Armenian communities abroad are concerned, their moral obligation is to pave the way for the peaceful co-existence and interaction of Azerbaijani and Armenian peoples which for centuries lived side by side.

        • Gaghant Baba said:

          Bunch of non-sense. It never ceases to amaze me how the only thing you Turks and Azeris have to go by is your own “hstory”, which compared to the Armenian history is minor and irrelevant.

          The “nationality” of Azerbaiajna is less than 100 years old. Armenians have been the original people from the caspian to the black to the mediterranean seas for the past 3,000 years.

          Invading other people’s lands and conducting massacres and living on them does not mean that those are you lands, nor does it establish that you have a culture to speak of.

          Kemalist Turks are delusional, and you so called “Azeris” are even worse when it comes to accepting truth.

          • Namik said:

            Now you seem to extend your territorial claims from the Caspian to the Black to the Mediterranean Seas. Bravo, Gaghant! Your appetite comes with eating so to speak. None could disclose ill racist ambitions better than you. Congratulations!

  3. Frank said:

    To see Turks constantly bring up the “Medical Fraud scam” is just laughable.

    One simply should Google ” Turkish Drug Gangs of Europe” and see how Turkish and Albanian drug gangs terrorize Europe and destroy communities with the drugs they bring in and control every aspect of the deadly and illegal trade.