During the First World War, the Ottoman Turks systematically attempted to wipe out the large Armenian population in their territory. Around a million ethnic Armenians were murdered by starvation, exhaustion, or more direct methods. This tragedy is still denied by the Turkish government as of 2021, despite clear historical evidence.
In the early days of ah.com, a few members on the board held the “party line” of Turkey and aggressively denied that the genocide took place. Their vociferous denials, despite the heinous subject material, led to the phrase “Armenian Genocide” to be adopted as an “in-joke” by other board members. The term lost its power as a stark reminder of a brutal and evil act of history and was reduced to near meme status and used in flippant, disrespectful ways.
Since the early 2010s, however, this practice has stopped. Denial of the Armenian Genocide, as with the Holocaust, Holodomor, and other historical mass killings, will lead to an instant ban. The term’s usage has been restored to match the seriousness of the subject, and is never to be used in a “jokey” context.
This page remains as a testament that AH.com has not been a perfect community. It failed to live up to its own standards for years. We can only hope that we continue to improve as a website culture in the years to come.