Yusuf Halacoglu

Dr. Yusuf Halacoglu is a world renowned Turkish professor of history and former president of the Turkish Historical Society. He is an expert on the Armenian Genocide allegations and Turkish-Ottoman history.

Yusuf Halacoglu was born in Adana, Turkey in 1949. In 1971 he graduated from the History Department in Istanbul University. He joined Istanbul University's Modern History staff in 1974. In 1978 he obtained his doctorate and became an associate professor by 1982, and a full professor by March of 1989.

Turkish Historical Society

Dr. Yusuf Halacoglu joined the Turkish Historical Society, and was appointed as Head of Ottoman Archives in the Directorate-General of State Archives and by 1990 he became its deputy director-general. Dr. Yusuf Halacoglu resigned that post to work at Marmara University in Istanbul in 1992. In 1993, he was appointed Director of the Turkish Historical Society.

As director of the Turkish Historical Society, Yusuf Halacoglu began to increase research on the 1915 events between Ottomans and Armenians. Numerous hate campaigns had begun to target Turks as perpetrators of genocide around the world run by Armenian organizations as well as increase in Armenian terrorism in 1980s targeting US, French, and Turkish citizens had begun in the United States. These campaigns prompted the Turkish government to work with the Turkish historical society to research the 1915 era of the Ottoman Empire and what had happened to the Armenian people.

It was always common knowledge in Turkey that the Armenians were relocated after numerous rebellions to aid the Allies in World War One. However, accusations of genocide were not well known until the 1980s.

Dr. Yusuf Halacoglu worked with others to catalog Ottoman archives that related to the treatment of Armenians. By early 1990, the Ottoman archives were opened to the public, though millions of archival documents still had to be cataloged, funding and manpower was a problem.

Yusuf Halacoglu's Position on the Armenian Genocide

Nonetheless today, thousands of historians interested in the Armenian Genocide allegations come to Istanbul every year to research the events. This is the reason why the Armenian Genocide thesis was so well accepted, because Ottoman archives were not available for research; today, the Armenian Genocide thesis is under heavy criticism and is not as widely accepted anymore as it was in the 1980s. Researchers and famous historians of Ottoman and Islamic studies have argued against the Armenian Genocide, such as world renowned historian Dr. Bernard Lewis and Dr. Yusuf Halacoglu.

Yusuf Halacoglu, had uncovered thousands of documents that questioned long-held beliefs that the Turks were cruel to the Armenian people. Uncovering archival material on Ottoman orders and reports, Yusuf Halacoglu wrote in his books that evidence was simply not there to support a genocide conclusion. In contrast, Yusuf Halacoglu writes in his book "The Story of 1915: What Happened to the Ottoman Armenians?":

Yusuf Halacoglu wrote:

Research shows that in 1915, the relocated Armenians and Greeks received 3 krs. (Ottoman currency) a day if they were adults and 60 paras (Ottoman currency) a day for food...Talat Pasha had instructed that Armenians' debts to the state should not be collected.

Yusuf Halacoglu explains that the government spent money on the Armenian relocations for providing the Armenian people with food, water, protection, and shelter and that they also spent significant time writing laws, regulations, and telegrams to ensure that the Armenians reached their destinations and were able to resettle in their designated relocation areas.

In addition, Yusuf Halacoglu provides proof that many Armenians during the same government were given permission to return to their homes and their property was returned to them.

Yusuf Halacoglu explains that the reason for the lower population is the significant Armenian migrations through Allied ships which had helped Armenian populations of the Ottoman Empire migrate to Russia, America, and France, where there are significant populations of Armenians today.

Yusuf Halacoglu wrote:

I always receive proposals from Dashnak (Armenian Revolutionary Federation) members who want to find out what really happened. If Armenians are sincere, it will be known soon.

Recent History

Dr. Yusuf Halacoglu released several books dealing with the Armenian Relocations of 1915 in Turkey. He has even released English books such as "The Story of 1915: What Happened to the Ottoman Armenians".

Yusuf Halacoglu was recently removed from Directorship of the Turkish Historical Society for reasons that were never clarified but may have been related to the erratic political movements by the AKP government during the summer of 2008. He had served in the Turkish Historical Society as Director for 15 years.

Yusuf Halacoglu has become an expert on the Armenian Genocide thesis and explains he is ready to debate anyone publicly at any moment regarding the issue.