The Ottoman Armenian Tragedy is a Genuine Historic Controversy
Norman Stone
Feroz Ahmad
Arend Jan Boekestijn
Brendon J. Cannon
Mary Schaeffer Conroy
Youssef Courbage
Paul Dumont
Bertil Duner
Gwynne Dyer
Edward J. Erickson
Philippe Fargues
Michael M. Gunter
Paul Henze
Eberhard Jäckel
Firuz Kazemzadeh
Yitzchak Kerem
William L. Langer
Bernard Lewis
Guenter Lewy
Heath W. Lowry
Andrew Mango
Robert Mantran
Justin McCarthy
Michael E. Meeker
Hikmet Ozdemir
Stephen Pope
Michael Radu
Jeremy Salt
Stanford Shaw
Norman Stone
Hew Strachan
Elizabeth-Anne Wheal
Brian G. Williams
Gilles Veinstein
Malcolm Yapp
Thierry Zarcone
Robert F. Zeidner

Professor of Modern History and the Director of the Center for Russian Studies, Bilkent University.

Following his First Class Honours degree in History from Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge University, Norman Stone undertook extensive research in Austrian archives while living in Austria and Hungary (1962-1965). He was offered a research fellowship by Gonville and Caius College where he later became an Assistant Lecturer (1967) and Lecturer (1973) in the Faculty of History, specializing in Russian history. In 1984 he was appointed Professor of Modern History at Oxford University. Norman Stone joined Bilkent University in 1995 and currently teaches the history of Central-Eastern Europe. He wrote a regular column for the Sunday Times between 1987 and 1992, and made extensive contributions to the media as a book reviewer and a BBC commentator on current affairs in Europe and Russia. During the same period he served as Margaret Thatcher’s foreign policy advisor on Europe. Trustee of the Margaret Thatcher Foundation (1992 to present) and member of several professional societies, Professor Stone is currently working on a book about the Soviet takeover of Eastern Europe.

major publications

  • The Eastern Front, 1914-1917 (Charles Scribner, 1975)
  • Europe Transformed, 1878-1919 (Harvard University Press, 1983 - awarded the Fontana History of Europe Prize)
  • Czechoslovakia: Crossroads and Crises, 1918-88 (Palgrave Macmillan, 1989)
  • Hitler, the Final Report (Harper Collins, 1995)
  • World War One: A Short History (Penguin Books, 2007)

Source: Stone, N. (2007). What has this genocide to do with Congress? The Spectator, London.

"The latest row concerns the adoption of a resolution by the House of Representatives branding the Armenian massacres of 1915 as genocide. What on earth causes Congress to bring up this subject now, almost a century down the line, and relating to an Ottoman empire that has long ceased to exist? And why on earth should these public bodies lecture historians as to what they should be saying? One basic cause seems to be simple enough: money.

Ever since 1878 the Armenians had become more and more restive and the nationalists started to make the running -- even murdering prominent Armenians who dissented and who said (as did the Patriarch in 1890) that it would all end in disaster. In the spring of 1915, just as the Russian army (with an Armenian division in tow) came over the border, there was a revolt, encouraged by the Russians and the Armenians who lived under the Tsar.

Many prominent Armenians in Turkey also encouraged or organised rebellions because, with the British about to land at Gallipoli and the French training an Armenian legion on Cyprus, they expected the Turks to collapse. In the eastern city of Van the Muslim quarter was smashed, and many inhabitants were killed. The Ottoman government then decreed that Armenians -- with many exceptions -- should be deported out of areas where they could damage the defences, or sabotage the telegraph lines and railways. The deportees were sent to northern Syria, but on the way they were sometimes attacked by wild tribes, in some cases with the connivance of officials.

In 1916 -- and this surely tells against 'genocide' -- the Ottomans tried 1,300 of these men and even executed a governor. About half a million Armenians arrived in the south-east and a very great number then died of the disease and starvation that were so prevalent at the time. Muslims also died in droves. In addition, the figure given for overall losses by the Armenian representative at the Paris peace treaties was 700,000 -- not 1.5 million as has been widely claimed.

Genocide? First of all, much depends on your definition. If we take the classic version, then there are serious difficulties. The British occupied Istanbul for four years and had a run of the archives. The law officers could not find evidence to convict the hundred or so Turks whom they had arrested."

Home | Introduction | Scholars | Falsehoods | Photo Gallery | Media Archive | Links | Suggestions