Akçam’s argument about war-time population engineering is worthy of serious consideration however, his insistence that these policies were already mapped out before the war remains problematic on a number of levels.
Here, he relies too much on hindsight and fails to establish any concrete link between these studies and subsequent implemented policies. He reads backwards from subsequent to earlier events. In addition, some of the studies (or inquiries) to which he refers were actually made during the war.
Therefore, it is questionable to interpret all of this data as evidence for the existence of a pre-war “plan” to homogenize Anatolia. According to Akçam, economic dimensions in particular held an important place in these population policies. In order to realize homogenization, the CUP-controlled Ottoman govement instructed local authorities to conduct inquiries and keep records on the property of non-Muslim minorities. In 1914, the govement sent telegrams to various provinces demanding detailed information on Greek assets and properties (p.
Akçam’s argument, however, is marred by inconsistency he subsequently notes that these inquiries were made parallel to the negotiations conducted for the proposed exchange of populations between Greece and the Ottoman Empire following the Balkan Wars (p. Indeed, in July 1914, the Ottoman and Greek delegations met in İzmir with the aim of negotiating the exchange of populations. The settlement of the property-and-assets claims was also part of the negotiations.
However, since the date of this inquiry is November 1915 (p. On the basis of his interpretation of settlement regulations, Akçam argues that the relocated Armenians were to be only between 5 and 10 percent of the total Muslim population in the areas designated for the settlement of the Armenian deportees (pp. To obtain a clearer picture of the implications of this regulation, Akçam attempts to determine the total number of Armenians subjected to relocation and also you’re searching for course vitae or analysis conventional document creating assistance irishessays writing service review each you’re searching for course load vitae or investigate old fashioned papers crafting assistance the total population of the Muslims living in settlement areas in “Syria and Iraq. ” Akçam estimates the total Muslim population in the areas designated for the settlement of Armenians to be 1,680,721.
Using the figure of 924,158 (provided by Turkish joualist Murat Bardakçı from Talat Pasha’s “Black Book” as a basis, and making several adjustments for the missing districts and provinces, Akçam estimates the total number of Armenians subjected to deportation at over one million (pp. He notes that even though the regulations envisaged the settlement of approximately 168,000 Armenians (10 percent of the Muslim population in the region), the number of Armenians deported was above one million. Akçam ends his discussion by asking, “How can more than one million Armenians be reduced to the 10 percent of a Muslim population numbering 1,680,721?” (p.
Akçam implies that the discrepancy can be explained by extermination, since he believes the existence of this regulation “by itself” is sufficient to demonstrate that “the policies adopted against the Armenians were aiming at their annihilation” (p. Others, however, dispute such an assertion, arguing that the relocated Armenians were not to exceed 10 percent of the local population only in the Muslim villages into which they would be settled, and not of the entire population of these provinces.