Armenian quote
The Armenian quote is a paragraph understood to have been included in a speech by Adolf Hitler
Adolf Hitler
Adolf Hitler was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party , commonly referred to as the Nazi Party). He was Chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945, and head of state from 1934 to 1945...

 to Wehrmacht
The Wehrmacht – from , to defend and , the might/power) were the unified armed forces of Nazi Germany from 1935 to 1945. It consisted of the Heer , the Kriegsmarine and the Luftwaffe .-Origin and use of the term:...

 commanders at his Obersalzberg
Berghof (Hitler)
The Berghof was Adolf Hitler's home in the Obersalzberg of the Bavarian Alps near Berchtesgaden, Bavaria, Germany. Other than the Wolfsschanze in East Prussia, Hitler spent more time at the Berghof than anywhere else during World War II. It was also one of the most widely known of Hitler's...

 home on August 22, 1939, a week before the German
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 invasion of Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

. Authenticity of the quote is disputed.

The key area of contention regarding the "Armenian quote" is a reference to the Armenian Genocide
Armenian Genocide
The Armenian Genocide—also known as the Armenian Holocaust, the Armenian Massacres and, by Armenians, as the Great Crime—refers to the deliberate and systematic destruction of the Armenian population of the Ottoman Empire during and just after World War I...

, an episode during World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

 in the Ottoman Empire
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

, during which an estimated one to one-and-a-half million ethnic Armenians
Armenian people or Armenians are a nation and ethnic group native to the Armenian Highland.The largest concentration is in Armenia having a nearly-homogeneous population with 97.9% or 3,145,354 being ethnic Armenian....

 were killed. The authenticity of the quote has become hotly contested between Turkish
Turkey , known officially as the Republic of Turkey , is a Eurasian country located in Western Asia and in East Thrace in Southeastern Europe...

 and Armenia
Armenia , officially the Republic of Armenia , is a landlocked mountainous country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia...

n political activists. The quote is now inscribed on one of the walls of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington, "the District", or simply D.C., is the capital of the United States. On July 16, 1790, the United States Congress approved the creation of a permanent national capital as permitted by the U.S. Constitution....

. In 2009 International Association of Genocide Scholars
International Association of Genocide Scholars
The International Association of Genocide Scholars is a global, interdisciplinary, non-partisan organization that seeks to further research and teaching about the nature, causes, and consequences of genocide, and advance policy studies on prevention of genocide. The Association, founded in 1994 by...

 used the quote in a letter to Barack Obama
Barack Obama
Barack Hussein Obama II is the 44th and current President of the United States. He is the first African American to hold the office. Obama previously served as a United States Senator from Illinois, from January 2005 until he resigned following his victory in the 2008 presidential election.Born in...

 related to the Armenian Genocide recognition. However, Nuremberg War Crimes Tribunal, examined the document containing the Armenian quote and rejected its use as evidence due to its doubtful origin.

Origin of the document

Three documents grouped in together during Nuremberg Trials which were containing Hitler's speech on 22 August 1939 (1014-PS, 789-PS, and L-3,) and only the document L-3 contained Armenian Quote of the Hitler's speech. Documents 1014-PS and 798-PS were captured by the United States forces inside the OKW headquarters
Oberkommando der Wehrmacht
The Oberkommando der Wehrmacht was part of the command structure of the armed forces of Nazi Germany during World War II.- Genesis :...

 but these documents did not contain the Armenian quote. On May 16, 1946, during the Nurnberg War Tribunals, a counsel for one of the defendants, Dr. Walter Siemers requested from the president of the trial to strike out the document 1014-PS which did not contain the Armenian quote, but his request was rejected by the president. Document L-3 is brought to the court by an American journalist, Louis P. Lochner
Louis P. Lochner
Ludwig Paul "Louis" Lochner was an American political activist, journalist, and author. During World War I, Lochner was a leading figure in the American and international anti-war movement. Later, Lochner served for many years as head the Berlin bureau of the Associated Press. He is best...

 and it is identified but after examination, it was rejected as an evidence during the trials due to its authenticity being under question.

According to Louis P. Lochner, while stationed in Berlin he received a copy of a speech by Hitler from his "informant", which he published (in English translation) in his book What About Germany? (New York: Dodd, Mead & Co., 1942) as being indicative of Hitler's desire to conquer the world. In 1945, Lochner handed over a transcript of the German document he had received to the prosecution at the Nuremberg trials
Nuremberg Trials
The Nuremberg Trials were a series of military tribunals, held by the victorious Allied forces of World War II, most notable for the prosecution of prominent members of the political, military, and economic leadership of the defeated Nazi Germany....

, where it was labeled L-3. Hence it is known as the L-3 document. The speech is also found in a footnote to notes about a speech Hitler held in Obersalzburg on 22 August 1939 that were published in the German Foreign Policy documents

When asked in the Nuremberg War Crimes Tribunal who his source was, Lochner said this was a German called "Herr Maasz" but gave vague information about him.

The Times
The Times
The Times is a British daily national newspaper, first published in London in 1785 under the title The Daily Universal Register . The Times and its sister paper The Sunday Times are published by Times Newspapers Limited, a subsidiary since 1981 of News International...

 of London quoted from Lochner's version in an unsigned article titled The War Route of the Nazi Germany on November 24, 1945. The article stated that it had been brought forward by the prosecutor on November 23, 1945, (i.e. the previous day), as evidence. However, according to the Akten zur deutschen auswärtigen Politik (ser. D, vol. 7, 1961), the document was not introduced as evidence before the International Military Tribunal and is not included in the official publication of the documents in evidence. Two other documents containing minutes of Hitler's Obersalzberg speech(es) had been found among the seized German documents and were introduced as evidence; neither, however, contains the Armenian quote

In Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression (colloquially also known as "the Red Set"), a collection of documents relating to the Nuremberg trials prepared by the prosecutorial team, the editors describe the relation between the documents concerned as follows:
During the World War I, Louis P. Lochner was a signatory of a manifesto which asked for use of propaganda for resolution of ethnic problems, including "...autonomy for Armenia under international guarantee and solution of various national questions in the Balkans and in Asiatic Turkey by international agreement." It is speculated that his political opinions expressed in this manifesto might have led his forgery of the Armenian quote.

German and English wording

The third paragraph of the L-3 document is as follows:
The above is a verbatim rendering of that paragraph, as included in a footnote in the Akten zur deutschen auswärtigen Politik (ser. D, vol. 7, 1961, p. 193).

In his book What about Germany?, Lochner offered the following English translation of the document then in his possession:
A variety of different wordings have been published since World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, mostly retaining linguistic accuracy nevertheless. The following tries to be closer to the original:

Contesting interpretations

A Turkish website solely built for denial of Armenian genocide says:
On the other side, Dr. Kevork B. Bardakjian, in a publication entitled Hitler and the Armenian Genocide, published by the Armenian-American Zoryan Institute for Contemporary Armenian Research and Documentation, argues that the L-3 document originates in the notes secretly taken by Wilhelm Canaris
Wilhelm Canaris
Wilhelm Franz Canaris was a German admiral, head of the Abwehr, the German military intelligence service, from 1935 to 1944 and member of the German Resistance.- Early life and World War I :...

 during the meeting of August 22, 1939:
Richard Albrecht, a legitimate scholar of comparative genocide research, published a book related to this issue in 2007 which contained the document of the original German version of the Armenian quote (the L-3 text) for the first time. The book is summarized as "When discussing, and applying, all relevant features scholarly accepted as leading principles of classifying documents as authentic, the author not only works out that the L-3-document as translated and brought in a few days later at August 25th, 1939, by the US-newspaper man Louis P. Lochner (1887-1975) from Associated Press, and first published in 1942, whenever compared with any other version of the Hitlerspeech – above all the Nuremberg-documents 798-PS, 1014 PS, and Raeder-27, as produced by a dubious witness after realising the L-3-version, too – this version must be regarded as the one which most likely sums up and expresses what Hitler said – for what Hitler really said in his notorious second speech was only written down simultaneously during his speech by one of his auditors: Wilhelm Canaris (1887-1945), at that time chief of the military secret service within the Third Reich".

According to Margaret L. Anderson
Margaret L. Anderson
Margaret Lavinia Anderson is a professor at University of California Berkeley and is teaching Europe since 1453; Central Europe from the late 18th century, especially modern Germany; World War I; Fascist Europe. She won a 2001 Berlin prize by the American Academy in Berlin, and was a 2008...

, professor of history at the University of California, Berkeley, "we have no reason to doubt the remark is genuine, both attack and defense obscure an obvious reality" that the Armenian Genocide has achieved "iconic status... as the apex of horrors imaginable in 1939," and that Hitler used it to persuade the German military that committing genocide excited a great deal of "talk" but no serious consequences for a nation that perpetrates genocide.

According to Stanford University historian Norman Naimark
Norman Naimark
Norman M. Naimark is an American historian, and author who specializes in modern Eastern European history, and genocide and ethnic cleansing in the region....

, it is not certain if the Armenian quote is authentic or not. However he goes on to say "There is no question that Hitler and the Nazi leadership were well aware of the Armenian genocide and its relatively innocuous effect on international affairs during the Great War and after."

According to Arnold Reisman an independent scholar, the originality of the Armenian quote can not be confirmed and it may be a contrived statement.

Heath Lowry, Professor of Ottoman and Modern Turkish Studies from Princeton University challenged the authenticity of the Armenian quote and its source, the L-3 document. His conclusions are criticised by genocide scholars Roger W. Smith (founding member of IAGS
IAGS may refer to:* International Association of Genocide Scholars - an association against genocides.* Institute for the Analysis of Global Security - an American organization analysing energy security issues....

) , Eric Markusen
Eric Markusen
Eric Markusen was Professor of Sociology and Social Work at Southwest Minnesota State University in Marshall, Minnesota, USA, and Research Director of the Danish Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies in Copenhagen...

, Robert Jay Lifton
Robert Jay Lifton
Robert Jay Lifton is an American psychiatrist and author, chiefly known for his studies of the psychological causes and effects of war and political violence and for his theory of thought reform...

 "Lowry's own work contains many questionable assertions and conclusions. He denies that Hitler ever uttered the widely quoted remark: "Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?" And in his recent book, The Story Behind Ambassador Morgenthau's Story, he asserts that Morgenthau's account of the genocide is nothing but "crude half-truths and outright falsehoods .. . from cover to cover." His conclusions do not in fact follow from his analysis or the evidence he can marshal"

According to German historian Winfried Baumgart, among the documents of Hitler's speech on 22 August 1938, 1014-PS is the one that contains the original notes taken that day by Wilhelm Canaris
Wilhelm Canaris
Wilhelm Franz Canaris was a German admiral, head of the Abwehr, the German military intelligence service, from 1935 to 1944 and member of the German Resistance.- Early life and World War I :...

, the head of military intelligence. Therefore, in order to Baumgart, 1014-PS, which does not contain the Armenian quote, is superior to the other documents of Hitler's speech including L-3 which is the only source of the Armenian quote. According to Christopher Browning
Christopher Browning
Christopher Robert Browning is an American historian of the Holocaust.-Education:Browning received his bachelor's degree from Oberlin College in 1968 and his doctorate from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1975. He taught at Pacific Lutheran University from 1974 to 1999, eventually becoming...

, American historian of the Holocaust, L-3 document, which contains the Armenian quote, is an "apocalyptic" version of Hitler's speech that day which was purposefully leaked to the British in order to gain their support to Poland.

See also

  • Armenian Genocide
    Armenian Genocide
    The Armenian Genocide—also known as the Armenian Holocaust, the Armenian Massacres and, by Armenians, as the Great Crime—refers to the deliberate and systematic destruction of the Armenian population of the Ottoman Empire during and just after World War I...

  • Occupation of Poland (1939-1945)
  • Expulsion of Poles by Germany
    Expulsion of Poles by Germany
    The Expulsion of Poles by Germany was a prolonged anti-Polish campaign of ethnic cleansing by violent and terror-inspiring means lasting nearly a century. It began with the concept of Pan-Germanism developed in early 19th century and continued in the racial policy of Nazi Germany asserting the...

  • Anti-Armenianism
    Armenophobia is the fear, dislike of, hatred or aversion to the Armenians, Republic of Armenia and the Armenian culture, which can range in expression from individual hatred to institutionalized persecution...

External links

  • The U.S. Congress and Adolf Hitler on the Armenians - Heath W. Lowry
    Heath W. Lowry
    Heath Ward Lowry is the Ataturk Professor of Ottoman and Modern Turkish Studies at Princeton University. He has written several books on the history of the Ottoman Empire and Modern Turkey.-Background:...

    , Institute of Turkish Studies
    Institute of Turkish Studies
    The Institute of Turkish Studies is a foundation based in the United States with the avowed objective of advancing Turkish studies at colleges and universities in the USA....

  • Nuremberg Trials, 26 November 1945 session
  • 2008 scholarly article by Richard Albrecht (in German): "'Wer redet heute noch von der Vernichtung der Armenier?' Adolf Hitlers Geheimrede am 22. August 1939: Das historische L-3-Dokument," in: Zeitschrift für Genozidforschung 9:1 (2008)(Zeitschrift des Instituts für Diaspora- und Genozidforschung an der Ruhr-Universität Bochum), pp. 93–131.
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