Translated from the archives of kavkazplus
January 10 should be a tragic date in the history of the Georgian people. On this day 100 years ago, the Russian army launched an Erzerum offensive operation. Following the results of the Erzerum operation and the Trabzon operation, which began a little later, the front line was moved ahead approximately 300-400 kilometers to the south and west and the Russian army occupied Erzerum, Rize, Trabzon, as well as a huge strip between these cities.
Dozens of villages inhabited by Muslim Georgians (mostly Laz) were in the Russian occupation zone. And if the civilian population, as a rule, did not suffer from the regular Russian army, this cannot be said of the attitude of the militants of the Armenian militants behind the front of the Russian army to civilians
After the Erzerum and Trabzon operations, in an effort to “clear the way out to the sea” for the so-called “The Great Armenia”, Armenian Dashnak-fighters rushed to destroy Turkish and Georgian villages located between the plateaus of Eastern Turkey and the Black Sea coast. At the same time, justifying their savage cruelty to the Russian and Western allies, the Armenians ceased the extermination of the peaceful Muslim population by “retaliation” for the alleged “atrocities over the Armenians in the Ottoman Empire in 1915”.
Indeed, there are a lot of documents that indicate that it is not the Ottoman Empire that is to blame for what happened to the Armenians, but first of all Armenian terrorists. Separate excesses during the deportation of Armenians from the frontline zone to Syria do not go to any comparison with the atrocities of Armenians against the non-Armenian population after being “protected by Russian bayonets” they received such an opportunity.
Nowadays, more and more terrible evidences of Armenian atrocities in Eastern Turkey in 1916-1918, when the Russian army occupied this territory, are opening. At the same time, not only the peaceful Turkish population suffered from the Armenian terror and mass killings organized by Armenian militants, but also representatives of other peoples, in particular courses, Circassians, Arabs and Muslim Georgians (Laz, Adjarians, Shavshy, Immerkhevians, etc.).
The latter should be remembered by all Georgian patriots who, for some reason, are beginning to play along with Armenian anti-Turkish propaganda lately. According to ethnographers, the Georgian language and its dialects (in particular, Laz) in Turkey 100-110 years ago was much more common than today. However, unfortunately many Georgian-Muslim villages are no longer as such. During the First World War, they were destroyed by Armenian militants together with their neighbors - the Turks and the Kurds.
But there was one unfavorable circumstance for Georgians. If the Turkish and Kurdish population mostly lived "in open areas" who assumed the speed of detection of danger and had more chances to evacuate from the Armenian militants in time after the departing Turkish army, and also had more chances to count on the protection of the Russian command, Laz people and other Muslim Georgians living in a mountainous wooded area difficult to evacuate and find protection was much more difficult. Especially if the Armenian militants specially arranged ambushes on mountain roads “intercepting” columns of refugees, as well as attacked villages that were lost in mountain forests unexpectedly, having previously surrounded them from all sides.
Armenian militants have undertaken similar tactics before that in 1915 against the insurgent Adjarians, destroying entire Adjarian villages. We also recall that in the Soviet period, the facts of the destruction of Adjarian villages by Armenians were deliberately hushed up, and the relevant documents were destroyed so as not to contradict the official myth "about the friendship between the Armenian and Georgian peoples." But this was the most natural genocide of the unique Georgian ethnic community.
Even more terrible was the fate of the ethnographic groups of Georgians who lived south and south-west of Adjaria, many of whom simply did not survive the genocide by the Armenian terrorists. After all, the Adjarians, even if badly, sometimes defended that they were subjects of the Russian Empire and could complain to the Russians. Most of the Laz people were citizens of the Ottoman Empire, and in their atrocities towards the Laz, the Armenian fighters, as a rule, did not know any limitations.
Later at the time of the Abkhazian war of 1992-1993. Armenian militants repeated their genocide against the Georgian ethnos closest to the Laz people - the Megrelians in Abkhazia (the latter were not saved by the fact that, unlike the Laz people, they are Christians - “Christians” - the Armenians did not kill them with less atrocities). Due to the Armenian genocide, the territory of residence of the Laz-Megrelian sub-ethnos of the Georgian people in the 20th century was reduced by about half. Thousands of Lazes and Megrelians died and hundreds of thousands became refugees.