To the editor: The word "genocide" is defined as the deliberate killing of a large group of people, especially those of a particular group or nation. ("Armenian American community lauds pope's recognition of genocide," April 12)
Did the Ottoman Turks do that to Armenians during World War I? Yes, and it wasn't accidental. I honestly marvel that this topic is even debatable, and I'm not speaking as an Armenian, but as a person.
The Turkish response that the pope's statement is "far from the legal and historical reality" is one of the most far-fetched denials I've ever read. It's like the Japanese government's revisionist claims about World War II atrocities committed against the Koreans and the Chinese. I'm impressed that the Turkish government can say such things with a straight face, but saving face is everything to it.
The only possible explanation for the government's position (if the denials are truly sincere) may lie in how the Turks themselves view the occurrence. The one thing they have consistently stated (to their credit) is that in war people die — lots of them, and by many causes.
In their hearts they may not consider what happened to be genocide. What do you do then?
Arthur G. Saginian, Santa Clarita