Just days before the commemoration of the Pontian Greek genocide, a Turkish-language newspaper from Western Thrace in Greece’s northeast and on the Turkish border, effectively denied that a genocide against Pontic Greeks occurred.
Birlik Gazetesi published an article on Sunday with the headline So-Called “Genocide” Support From Xanthi Municipality.
By inverting comas with genocide and calling it so-called, the article’s author, Ilhan Tahsin, is effectively denying it ever occurred.
The last sentence of the article says “this year, the Municipality of Xanthi supports the commemorative events by hanging a giant cloth panel in front of the Municipality building in memory of the 100th anniversary of the so-called Pontic ‘Genocide’.”
In the publication’s about section, Birlik Gazetesi say they “advocate that any truth and any event should not be pushed aside,” they engage in “neutral journalism” and “convey only the truth.”
By effectively denying the genocide of the Pontic Greeks they are attempting to direct their readers to a conclusion because if they truly “mediate” the news, as they claim, they would only report that a banner in commemoration of the massacred Pontic Greeks was unveiled in Xanthi without putting doubt that a genocide had occurred.
In December 2007, the International Association of Genocide Scholars said in a resolution that “the Ottoman campaign against Christian minorities of the Empire between 1914 and 1923 constituted a genocide against Armenians, Assyrians, and Pontian and Anatolian Greeks.”
The effort to create a “Turkey for the Turks” saw the extermination of about 3 million Christians, in which about 1 million were Greeks and over 350,000 of them Pontian Greek.
Any objective reporting by Tahsin would acknowledge this academic consensus that the Turks exterminated millions of Christians in Eastern Thrace and Asia Minor, rather than plant doubt that such a thing ever occurred.
For international audiences, the knowledge of the Greek Genocide will become even more known with the upcoming release of Lethal Nationalism: Genocide of the Greeks 1913-1923.