Talk:Confiscation of Armenian properties in Turkey

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Intro - Claim about 143 properties[edit]

The following section of the intro/lead is not supported by any text in the body, so I have removed it, but store it here for other editors to ratify, rework, add to main body, summarise, Anglicise etc. I believe its removal has improved the impact of the intro for the lay reader, partly because I also find the English to be confusing but cannot fix it because I am not sure of the underlying meaning. The heavy referencing is also inappropriate for the introduction - It could be reinstated in the body of the article. Chienlit (talk) 17:38, 2 January 2013 (UTC)

* 143 of the confiscated properties have been appropriated to the ownership[clarification needed] of the Armenian foundation.[1][2]
Appropriated meaning returned. Proudbolsahye (talk) 18:23, 2 January 2013 (UTC)
  1. ^ Cite error: The named reference Bedrosyan1 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  2. ^ "Devlet tarafından yağmalanan Ermeni mallarının tam dökümü yayımlandı". Haberlink (in Turkish). 02-12-2012. Retrieved 27 December 2012.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
There wasnt an issue with the intro. If appropiate wasnt understandable then it shouldve been replaced with returned. Also the 22% must be returned to the article. Proudbolsahye (talk) 18:40, 2 January 2013 (UTC)
Hi. Unfortunately your assertion demonstrates that there was an issue. Please be aware that 'appropriate' and 'appropriated' have different meanings in English. Please also avoid putting significant content in the intro, it should be in a section of the body and summarised in the lead... which is what I have now done. Regards Chienlit (talk) 20:11, 2 January 2013 (UTC)

Contemporary analysis section[edit]

The section's new table—a textual version of the graphic—could use some explanation of terms, since some of the entries aren't clear, and indeed raise questions. Part of the issue is related to the use of "foundation" as a singular: when at least 53 foundations are under consideration, using the singular is confusing. I did some editing where I was sure of my ground, but more is needed.

The table uses the term "immovable asset": what exactly is this? In the context of the previous text, one would assume this to be properties: buildings and land. Is it, though? Are there other things? It seems clear that Chienlit added the summary at the bottom with the use of properties, since it's taken from text elsewhere in the article, but I'd like confirmation that this is a correct usage.

There's also the item "Non-existent parcels". Parcels of land don't just disappear. There can be competing parcel descriptions that cover the same land, parcels can be merged, subdivided, reassembled, etc. Presumably the municipality, treasury, or public property parcels—resubdivided or not—don't count here, even if the land is now part of a roadway. We need an explanation for this item.

The "Immovable assets returned to the foundation" line is a bit unclear: is this assets returned to the original foundation it was confiscated from, or to that foundation or a successor foundation of some sort? That the assets are back in Armenian hands does seem clear from the article.

I think the most puzzling item is "Immovable assets conveyed to the Director General of the foundation". The only foundations we've been talking about are Armenian ones, so if this is an Armenian foundation, which one is it, why conveyed to the Director General rather than the foundation itself, and why is this not added to the Armenian total? (I've been wondering what happened to properties that had been owned by Armenian foundations that are no longer active, but for which the Armenian community still wants returned; is there a special foundation set up to work on getting such confiscated properties back?) If this isn't an Armenian foundation at all, then the item needs to be reworded to make that clear.

There's also a lack of clarity in the article about the numbers and scope of them. If I'm reading the article correctly, there were an unspecified number of confiscations throughout Turkey starting in 1915 under the Ottomans, which continued under the Turkish Republic in the 1920s and 30s (and presumably the following decades), then over 1,400 confiscations of post-1936 property acquisitions as a result of the 1975 law. The 661 confiscations discussed by Hrant Dink are the Istanbul properties—I think; it might include outlying properties of Istanbul foundations—and include (based on the cemetery) confiscations starting from the early 20th century. The lead of the article should certainly have the numbers that apply to all of Turkey since the article is about Turkey as a whole. These should be given before the Istanbul-specific numbers. If there's a reliably sourced number available with the total number of confiscations in Turkey over the past near-century, it ought to be included. BlueMoonset (talk) 16:24, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

  • Wow, excellent analysis BlueM. You've described almost every confusion that I felt while editing the article and creating the table. And you've described a good series of upgrades to move the article forward. I agree on all your points about what should be included, but I fear that complete clarity may not be possible on such a subject.
- Yes - I simply copied the 1,328 text to give a linkling (an inkling of a link :) ) to the main lead.
- Please note - I took a guess that DG meant Director General, so it would be good for ProudB to confirm or correct that.
p.s. I also could not get to grips with f(F)oundation(s) until I saw the table, and you just beat me with the edit. I wonder if 'institution' will be a more appropriate term for some of them. Hopefully ProudB will also be able to clarify this.
Regards. Chienlit (talk) 17:45, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
I must say you have raised some good points. First off, these category names are from the Hrant Dink Foundation itself. Please see: Firstly, Immovable Assets is an internationally recognized term for "real estate". The term real estate isn't used internationally and I figured if I used the word property, it would have been more confusing because a car or a table can also be considered property. Immovable assets are "anything" fixated (immovable) on land such as gravestones, buildings, trees, and etc. But if you truly believe property or real estate are better terms, we can definitely use them. Second, non-existent parcels means assets that are destroyed or don't exist anymore. Kalfayan and Pangalti Armenian Cemetery are considered non-existent because no trace of the buildings or cemetery's original structure remain. However, if the term parcel confuses the reader, we can change that non-existent immovable asset. Anyways, DG of Foundations means Director General of Foundations (Vakif Genel Mudurlugu), which is a government organization that seizes confiscated assets and through a (often long) legal process and has them returned to the original owners. This is their official website: . However, I admit I made a spelling mistake on the graph and wrote DG of Foundation. A "s" needs to be added to foundation in order to clarify this. I guess I need to make a new graph. Sorry to confuse you guys :D ...and to your last point, the returning of Armenian confiscated assets is in its infancy and the Hrant Dink foundation is the main overseer of this operation. Its main focus is Istanbul, but in the future it will expand. The Sanasarian College is a start. Quite frankly, I don't know if there are sources to show every single Armenian asset confiscated in Turkey. After a Genocide and the Varlik Vergisi, that would be a massive task! I merely outlined what the Hrant Dink Foundation is working with and some other cases like the Incirlik Airbase. Also you asked what are immovable foundations returned to foundation? The properties returned are returned to the original foundation. Such as the Surp Prgic Foundation or the Sanasarian Foundation which continue to exist and are not successive foundations. But we can always rename the category "Returned to Original Ownership" if that may clarify it more. Thank you so much for raising these concerns. By the way, I hope you guys checked out the map and pressed the little + sign at the top left beneath the logo. You can see all properties in the Istanbul region that were confiscated. Proudbolsahye (talk) 21:21, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Confiscated Armenian properties in Turkey/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: 1ST7 (talk · contribs) 02:44, 3 September 2013 (UTC) I'll review this article. Initial comments will be posted soon. --1ST7 (talk) 02:44, 3 September 2013 (UTC)

I did some minor copyediting; I hope you don't mind. Here's the review:

  1. Well-written
  2. Verifiable with no original research:
    • Paragraph 1 in "Confiscation during the Turkish Republic" needs a citation. So does the last sentence of the last paragraph in that section. DONE
  3. Broad in its coverage:
    • The "Contemporary analysis" section could be fleshed out more. DONE
  4. Neutral:
  5. Stable:
    • No edit wars, etc.
  6. Illustrated, if possible, by images:
    • All images look good.

I'll put the article on hold for a week to give you time to address these issues. Thanks for your work! --1ST7 (talk) 03:18, 3 September 2013 (UTC)

Everything looks good, so I'm passing the article. Congratulations, and thanks again for your work. --1ST7 (talk) 04:31, 8 September 2013 (UTC)

Close paraphrasing[edit]

The article currently contains multiple passages of copyright violation plagiarism and close paraphrasing. This can be a problem under both our copyright policies and our guideline on plagiarism. Some examples (note, these are only examples and are not the only instances or the only source copied from): The source Legislative Provisions of the Ottoman/Turkish Governments Regarding Minorities and Their Properties says:

"The net result of this 'protection' law was the channeling of property 'owned' by the Turkish state to Muslims through rigged auctions, which often excluded even Muslims of non-Turkish origin."

The article says:

"These auctions channeled the property unlawfully expropriated by the Turkish state to the general Muslim population through oftentimes 'rigged' auctions, which often excluded non-Muslims or non-Turkish Muslims."

or The source says:

"Any litigant claiming property or revenues derived from its sale or rental would have the state as defendants."

The article says:

"Any litigant claiming property of revenues derived from its sale or rental would have the state as defendants."

A complete rewrite is necessary to excise this material. AbstractIllusions (talk) 00:09, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

Let me see what I can fix here. Proudbolsahye (talk) 00:14, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
Fixed. Removing tag. Proudbolsahye (talk) 07:02, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
Not Fixed. I think this needs to slow down a lot and be taken much more carefully. While I appreciate the quick efforts to deal with the problem of close paraphrasing (although some instances were not fixed at all), the edits do not appear to be A) actually solving the problem or B) improving the content of the article. Let's focus on the two sentences highlighted above to see these problems. The first sentence above was rewritten but remains close paraphrased. (note: and the entire paragraph is largely following the same argument in the paragraph from the source--repeating an argument step by step keeps the writing derivative of the source and may be considered plagaized or close paraphrased). The objective is to take an idea and rewrite it in your own words, not to reorder the words (or repeat every point of a paragraph) so that they use more synonyms for the words. So "net result" becomes "ultimately" and "channeling of property" becomes "property transferred." Two good ways out of this are to work from Notes not originals and to synthesize larger points. A rewritten point of this claim could be "Because non-Turkish individuals could not own property without permission of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the auctions did not include these individuals and were effectively 'rigged' to only give property to Turkish refugees being resettled." So a rewrite of the entire paragraph in original fashion would be necessary to solve the close paraphrasing issue. The second sentence above was rewritten to make it factually incorrect. The plagiarized sentence was changed to "Those who wanted to reclaim the property were obligated to have the state defend their interests." That is not what the source says: the source says that the state would be the defendant in any lawsuit--not that the state would defend the interests of Armenians who had their property stolen. Other sentences became unclear in the revisions. So, the effort is good: but the problem is not being solved and the content may be getting worse in the process. Quick band-aids are not going to address the problem (and once again I'm just using these examples to highlight the larger problems in the article--they are not the only issues). Rewrite entire paragraphs from notes--don't just change the wording of individual sentences; this should help improve the writing, avoid close paraphrasing, and keep them accurate. AbstractIllusions (talk) 02:03, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
I have practically rewritten the article with over a hundred or so edits. I am not here to play cat and mouse. If you truly want to help, you'll have to sort out the problematic sentences one by one or assist me in the process of copy-editing directly in the article itself. I'm the creator of this article, not its inventor. As for the examples you have raised, I will rephrase them to the best of my abilities, even though the changes to the mentioned sentences are appear well fixed for any third-party reader. Proudbolsahye (talk) 02:13, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
To reiterate: Rewriting a section or article does not mean rephrasing 100 sentences in that article, it involves a different practice. I'm trying to fix your long pattern of disruptive editing with chronic close paraphrasing and plagiarism (and keep my cool while doing so). If you want to become a better editor and remove the bad editing, here's someone who is tentatively willing to help you do so. If you want to give me attitude, then I will gladly simply attach the close paraphrasing tag to other articles you have close paraphrased and other activities to clean up these articles. (And please read my statement -- this edit does not make the statement factually accurate, which is what I specified as the problem, and shows the carelessness which has permeated many of the edits you've done). AbstractIllusions (talk) 02:41, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
Factual inaccuracies are another issue that I will handle on my own. You're more than welcome to help with that. As for the close paraphrasing issues, I have reorganized, combined sentences, reworded, and re-paraphrased the mentioned paragraph. Please point out other issues specifically and I'll edit them to the best of my abilities. Proudbolsahye (talk) 02:55, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
  • So I fixed a couple of paragraphs. As I have noted above: Rewriting is different from rephrasing. Rewriting means going back to sources and using your own notes to construct an original statement of facts. This practice needs to happen throughout the entire article. Let's work through an example. The source reads: "However, the revenues from the exploitation of Armenian properties were deposited to the account of the Turkish Ministry of Financial Affairs in the name of the proprietor or in the name of the village or city where the properties were located in the event that the property holder could not be found, and indeed owners were rarely found." The most recent version of the wikipedia article read: "Under the title of the asset owners, the revenue was allocated and deposited in the repository of the Ministry of Financial Affairs under the basis of returning the funds upon the demand of the owners themselves. However, with the deportation and the subsequent mass murder of the property holders, the owners were rarely found." (plagiarism is bolded--but the entire phrasing of the sentences is close paraphrased). I went back to the source read the entire paragraph and instead edited this provision as: "The property records and revenue generated from the sale or rent of confiscated property were all recorded and deposited with the Ministry of Financial Affairs to provide for the possible return of property to owners. In addition, the law provided provisions for those whose property had been confiscated to sue for return of the property (and payment for any damages which occurred). However, the law required property owners to sue and be present themselves (not allowing the power of attorney), an impossibility when property owners had been killed or deported." I capture the facts of the argument, but in an original manner, synthesizing the point with the larger points made in the source (and other sources). The revision is surely not perfect--but it is not derivative of the source. It takes time and careful attention, but certainly the topic deserves it. Here's a deal: Rewrite (not rephrase) the Confiscation as part of the Armenian Genocide section and I'll help direct you to other problems later. Also: Please pay special attention to offline and foreign language sources. There's trust being made about not close paraphrasing with those--and you want to be even more clear on those sections to avoid any close paraphrasing or plagiarism problems. AbstractIllusions (talk) 13:01, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
Thank you for the revision. Your suggestions are well taken. You're saying that I should rewrite the Confiscation of the Armenian Gencide section, but this is somethinf you rewrote already. Did you mean the Turkish republic part? Proudbolsahye (talk) 18:46, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
Okay, if you meant the first paragraph, I will gladly edit it. Proudbolsahye (talk) 19:01, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
Well I paraphrased, combined, rewrote, and repositioned sentences effectively rewriting the entire paragraph in the Confiscation of Armenian Genocide section as you suggested. I took main points of each source and positioned each sentence accordingly. Since you rewrote 3 paragraphs of the section already, I managed to edit the rest. I am looking forward to see other problematic sentences (if any) you may have encountered. Proudbolsahye (talk) 22:02, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Some excellent editing. I still think some of the editing needs to strive to be more originally stated--but let's move on to the "Assessments Section". Here are the problems as added. Sentence 1- Not all the information is in the source. Sentence 2 & 3- are close paraphrased (source: "The sum of the Armenian claims presented at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919, amounted to a significant ‘$3.7 billions, of which $2.18 billion was for various types of properties. Most of the total losses claimed were for Turkish Armenia" wikipedia: "The amount of material goods and belongings were assessed at $3.7 billion (today $50.67 billion), of which $2.18 billion was for properties alone) Also note how the losses included some in Russian Armenia--not just Turkey. Sentence 4, 5, & 6- very close paraphrased. Also probably best to retain "Ottoman government" for this period. Note: Second paragraph should be rewritten--not rephrased. Sentence 7- fine. Sentence 8- Awkwardly worded because the last clause is close paraphrased (source: "Both treaties had numerous provisions to return confiscated or seized Armenian-owned properties, lands and assets to their rightful owners, yet this also didn't materialize" wikipedia: "both contained clauses pertaining to the return and reimbursement of confiscated properties, assets, and lands of the Armenians.") Sentence 9 and 10- appear fine on close paraphrasing--but could use some rewording to note that the Sevres treaty would have been important had it ever taken effect. 6/10 sentences remain close paraphrased in current version. Remember: the key to fixing these problems is not to rephrase those sentences. It is to step back, look at the sources again, and develop an original way for you to say the facts. AbstractIllusions (talk) 13:05, 22 September 2013 (UTC)
I fixed to the best of my abilities. Please, next time add tags to the sentences you find problematic so we don't have to go back and forth anymore. Proudbolsahye (talk) 16:09, 22 September 2013 (UTC)
  • That could work, but WP:TC as far as I know, there is no inline tag for close paraphrasing (only for copyright violations--and if I were to use that tag, that's a more critical issue): probably because it is an important issue that requires effort beyond simply rewording a sentence. Note: The third paragraph of Assessments hasn't been fixed. AbstractIllusions (talk) 17:21, 22 September 2013 (UTC)
Can you please take a look at paragraph three yourself? I've rephrased and restructed the paragraph too many times now. As a single lonesome editor, I am running out of ideas for it. Proudbolsahye (talk) 18:40, 22 September 2013 (UTC)
Well can't say I didn't try. I paraphrased and restructured the paragraph to the best of my abilities while using the advice you gave me. I am just hoping you can touch it up a bit. I just want it to turn out looking great with a bit of your help here and of course a second opinion would be great. Anyhow, I am planning to send this over to the copy-editors guild and see if they can help with some copy-editing and other grammatical/spelling issues. Proudbolsahye (talk) 06:22, 23 September 2013 (UTC)
Cleaned up that section. Now onto the next section. I'm traveling right now and can't see some of the sources, so how about this. Give the 'under the Turkish government' section a significant rewrite to get them away from close paraphrasing and if I see a good effort, I'll come back around and clean up and do copy-editing. If you'll work on getting the wording away from the sources--I'll certainly be willing to copy edit and make them clear (this is far preferable than having me dig through sources you've already read and tell you they are paraphrased--that wastes both of our time). AbstractIllusions (talk) 01:14, 24 September 2013 (UTC)
  • I think my ability to contribute to improving the page is coming to an end for a brief period (or at least a hiatus of a week or two while I will be fully offline). Because of the hard work of Proudbolsahye, the article until Current Developments appears to be pretty clear. However, the close paraphrasing tag will be appropriate for a while because: 1. Close paraphrasing remains. Example: "However, it was prevented from occurring due to a warning from the National Security Committee of the Turkish Armed Forces dated 26 August 2005" is almost direct from the source. Or "The lawsuit demands $63 million and part of the income received from the lease of the airbase, which totals $100 million." 2. With the significant amount of non-English sourcing which has been largely untouched, I don't feel qualified to improve those sections to get them beyond the close paraphrasing. I still think a complete rewrite of the rest of the article from scratch would be best for close paraphrasing (and hopefully for improving the quality of sources). But because of the significance of the problem remaining in the article, I do not think it is responsible to remove the tag at this time and won't be able to reassess that opinion for a while. AbstractIllusions (talk) 01:27, 27 September 2013 (UTC)
  • I was happy to see that significant work was being done to rectify the close paraphrasing issues, because Good Articles are not supposed to have any close paraphrasing at all; as long as work was progressing, it seemed to me that a good article reassessment to resolve this issue was not necessary. However, Proudbolsahye has removed the close paraphrasing tag more than once so far, only for the removal to prove to be quite premature, so the most recent removal without any outside input is not an ideal situation. With AbstractIllusions unavailable, I'm going to consult with Nikkimaria on the best way forward; if she is able to look, and finds significant close paraphrasing, the template will definitely come back, and perhaps a reassessment will be necessary. The original GA review missed extensive close paraphrasing; the article was clearly not a Good Article by Wikipedia standards at the time it passed four weeks ago. BlueMoonset (talk) 20:55, 6 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Like AbstractIllusions, I can't evaluate the paraphrasing of non-English sources. However, I am seeing continued close paraphrasing from English sources: compare for example "Special registers...recorded the names of the owners and the types of goods and assets they owned while local governments provided assurances that the goods were to be sent to the locations where the Armenians were to be deported. Receipts of the goods and assets were then given to the deportees before their departure" with "special registers in which the names of the owners and the types of the goods that were confiscated were to be recorded in detail.23 Later on, the local government was supposed to send these belongings to the places where the population resettled. List receipts of the confiscated properties were given to the Armenians before their ‘departure'." On that basis I've restored the paraphrasing tag. Nikkimaria (talk) 21:21, 6 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Nikkimaria (talk · contribs), thanks for agreeing to review. I fixed the problematic sentence. Please let me know if you find anything else. If not, we'll have to proceed on removing the tag after coming to a mutual understanding. Proudbolsahye (talk) 06:30, 7 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Another example is "perishable goods and livestock of deportees were to be sold and the sum would be deposited under the name of the owners" vs "Perishable goods and animals were to be sold and the sums deposited in the name of the owners". At this point, I would suggest you assess each source for potential paraphrasing problems. Nikkimaria (talk) 15:37, 7 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Nikkimaria (talk · contribs), thank you. If there's anything else you see let me know. To make your job easier, there were two sections Abstract copy-edited with the special emphases of ridding close paraphrasing (here, here, and here). I'm looking through it but having trouble finding close paraphrased sentences. Proudbolsahye (talk) 20:02, 7 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Question for you: what steps have you taken to avoid close paraphrasing in translation, for the material with non-English sources? Nikkimaria (talk) 03:02, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

Thanks, Nikkimaria (talk · contribs). Okay, I want to initially mention that the table was redone by user Chienlit a long time ago. See here. There was a massive amount of copyedits by him/her, if you click "newer 50" from the given link, you'll see. Other general copyedits were done by Shrigley and Bluemoonset, who both especially edited the contemporary analyses section and the rest of the article. I mention this because these two sections, the table and the contemporary analyses section, both use the bulk of the foreign language sources. The information I provided was not only paraphrased from the foreign languages section, but heavily copyedited by the mentioned users. As for me, there was practically no way that I can directly translate anything from those sources anyways. All the information from the foreign languages sources were used to summarize just small points in the article and table. For example, "when was it confiscated?" and "what's its status?" type of things. Any content from foreign language sources have been tightened significantly. You may notice that the smaller sentences in the article all point to foreign language sources. Also, linguistics also plays a major role. Turkish is an interesting language which makes it impossible to directly translate anything. One word in the Turkish language can mean an entire sentence or even an entire paragraph in English. It's impossible to Google translate from Turkish into English. Anyhow, I hope that the hard work I put in can also be supplemented with a little bit of good faith. Hope that addresses your concerns. Thank you once again. Proudbolsahye (talk) 03:23, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

Okay. There are a number of sources I don't have access to, but among the ones I do, I don't see any further overly close paraphrasing. BlueMoonset, do you feel that's enough, or should I go track down a few of the offline sources for spotchecking? Nikkimaria (talk) 05:03, 10 October 2013 (UTC)
Nikkimaria, which offline sources? I can perhaps help you out. Proudbolsahye (talk) 05:14, 10 October 2013 (UTC)
Nikkimaria, while I'm happy to hear that you think the close paraphrasing has been dealt with in sources you can access, it might be worth checking maybe one or two other sources if feasible, just to be sure issues don't extend to them since this is labeled a Good Article. The problems uncovered have been significant so far. Chienlit did a great number of edits back when this article was under consideration for DYK, but I only did two, neither of which should be considered true copyedits—one was only ref consolidation and the other was mostly table formatting. Shrigley's sole edit was a copyedit, but not a comprehensive one by any stretch of the imagination. I'll leave it to your best judgment: you're the close paraphrasing guru here, and offline sources can be a pain. Thanks again for taking this on. BlueMoonset (talk) 03:33, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
I've checked a few journal articles and two books, and I'm not seeing anything close enough to present a concern with those sources. Nikkimaria (talk) 04:37, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for review. I forgot to mention that AbstractIllusions had access to much of the offline sources as well. Much of his copyedits were specifically made to get rid of close paraphrasing from the offline sources. As for the article, I will remove the tag if there are no objections. Thanks once again. Proudbolsahye (talk) 09:57, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Glad to see the issue didn't go dead while I was inattentive. Some issues: 1. Assuming good faith. 2. Does not mean assuming good practices. 3. The onus at this point should not be on us to show that close paraphrasing remains, it should be on the editor to show that it does not still exist. (Not in all instances, but certainly at this point where a dozen close paraphrasing incidents have been excised since it was first asserted that the problem was "fixed". 4. I believe the tag should remain until we are willing to believe that Turkish is the one language that can't be directly translated into English and close paraphrased (which is silly). 5. In addition, the practice is continuing on other pages, showing that efforts to actually demonstrate better editing practices have not been headed. 6. Another good article review is absolutely appropriate since much of the article has been rewritten (and some really iffy claims and sources have been added since the last review). If Nikkimaria or BlueMoonset disagree with me on points #4 and #6, I will consider that sage advise. AbstractIllusions (talk) 04:40, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
AbstractIllusions (talk · contribs), the Turkish source has recently been translated into English in its 2013 publication of the 2012 declaration here. This may prove useful for those that want to compare and contrast any paraphrase issues. This source is used throughout the article as a "Turkish language" source. Since the English translation has been newly released, I suggest that this source be used as a basis of comparing and contrasting my use of Turkish sources. Proudbolsahye (talk) 04:55, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
So the response to me asking for due diligence is "Hey read a 500+ page PDF and check my translation, so that you know it isn't derivative work like most of the other content I've added to the page"? Nope. AbstractIllusions (talk) 05:27, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
Haha, no I would never want you to do that. I never said that you should either. I'm just trying to help you out here. If you want to verify my translations from Turkish to English, using that source is a great start. When the declaration was first released in 2012, it was only in Turkish. I was compelled to do my own translations as a result of this. And so, as I have mentioned earlier, I used that source to add only small points and factoids to the table. The source itself describes the confiscation process of each property in its utmost detail. I was forced to leave out a lot of information from the source so to confine the content into the table. These additions were then heavily copy-edited by Chienlit with touch ups from other users. These users don't even know Turkish (so I assume). Anyhow, I have already replaced many sources including this and another such as Baghdjian's from its foreign language derivatives to its newly translated publications into English for the convenience of the reader. If necessary, I can continue this trend with other foreign language sources as well. Proudbolsahye (talk) 18:01, 21 October 2013 (UTC)


The sources used to make claims about Turkish families being complicit beneficiaries in the Armenian genocide do not support those claims. Collect (talk) 20:02, 8 June 2014 (UTC)

Sabanci in the lead[edit]

Collect (talk · contribs) You're going against the consensus reached at the talk page of Sabanci family article. There's nothing wrong with inlcuding Keithbob's proposal, which was accepted and approved by 5 users against your 1 oppose vote, in this article. There's no reason why one segment of information should be used in one article but opposed in another. In fact, it's practically copied and pasted from the article itself. So I suggest a proper dialogue commence here so we can solve this issue once and for all. Étienne Dolet (talk) 00:08, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

Actually, your use of two specific families with living members is where the problem is - the solution on Sabanci was to only allow a statement about the property acquisition being incidental at most to any genocide - whereas the edit you wish to make makes a clear implication that the genocide was the basis of family wealth - which was disallowed at the other article. Cheers. Collect (talk) 01:12, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Yes, I've amended it with this edit to reflect exactly what the Sabanci family article states. Now is your concern the use of the word Sabanci family? Say for example if the sentence were to remove the Sabanci family article altogether and just have: "The fortune of many of today's Turkish elites and entrepreneurs grew due to reduced business competition as a result of the Armenian Genocide." Is that something you're willing to accept? Étienne Dolet (talk) 01:16, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
No. It is an attempt to link wealth with complicity in a crime - and, as such, is violative of WP:BLP and WP:NPOV. I suggest you leave the GA status alone, as your edits will absolutely result in it being revoked. You are now seemingly opposed to three editors here, which means any attempt at getting a consensus for your bold edits is rather doomed ab initio. Collect (talk) 01:24, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
How is it a violation of BLP when I'm willing to remove the name "Sabanci family" altogether? Drmies (talk · contribs) and BlueMoonset (talk · contribs) haven't really expressed their opposition. I'm willing to listen to their reasoning if they are indeed opposed. Yet, I'm open to discussion. So again, what's wrong with adding, "The fortune of many of today's Turkish elites and entrepreneurs grew due to reduced business competition as a result of the Armenian Genocide."? It does get rid of your concerns, does it not? Étienne Dolet (talk) 01:32, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
(edit conflict)I don't agree that this is an attempt to link wealth with complicity to a crime. I think that as long as RS are used, the sad facts of the aftermath of the Armenian Genocide also include those who profited from the confiscated properties. That is encyclopedic information and should be included in the article in some fashion. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 01:41, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

Cankaya and Incirlik[edit]

I also invite you to explain why you think the photographs of Incirlik and Cankaya Kosku are a "big stretch". Étienne Dolet (talk) 00:09, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Drmies (talk · contribs) Of course, I'm always willing to discuss. I've opened a section here at the talk page just for that. The photographs aren't new to the article. It's been there for more than a year now. They were actually there when it was passed a GA. With that in mind, I don't think we'd be harming a GA quality article. Also, there's only one editor that's presumably opposed to having those pictures. The other reverts are for a different discussion. Étienne Dolet (talk) 00:51, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
They appear to be used as typical such properties - and as far as I can tell, they were chosen to make "points" about Ataturk, and the US which is not borne out by reliable sources. Cheers. Collect (talk) 01:10, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Collect, these are notable pieces of land and property. They're buildings that are easily recognizable and hence significant in that regard. Just because Ataturk bought a piece of property that once belonged to a deported Armenian doesn't mean it shouldn't be mentioned. It wasn't even confiscated by himself and the caption makes that clear. And why should I poke at the US? That land was confiscated long before the Americans arrived there. Please, let's stop with the badfaith assumptions here. At any rate, I see no harm in displaying photographs of how these properties are being used today. Especially when their use is significant. As for your second point, I don't understand why HuffingtonPost is considered unreliable. Despite that, there's much more sources that can easily attest to the confiscation including ([1][2][3][4]) Étienne Dolet (talk) 01:45, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
The article made GA with a size of 50K. Since then you single handedly added about 28K, or an increase in size of more than 50%. And all with a single POV. There is an eensy possibility that the article will lose GA status, and your edits if you persist will pretty much make the GA status ephemeral. Perhaps you should delve into something other than the Armenian Genocide? Where such major additions are made by a single editor, that editor would be well-advised to note the positions of others. Cheers. Collect (talk) 02:03, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Why are you changing the subject? You've just made an assumption, have you not? Expansions don't necessarily equate to POV. For my part, I've worked long and hard with several users to have this article improved and meticulously inspected. This article was and still is a mere reflection of what 114 sources say about a notable event in Turkish and Armenian history. Also, this article went through several major changes under user Chienlit ([5]) and AbstractIllusions. Both editors had reviewed it several times and have rewritten entire sections on their own. Other general copyedits were done by Shrigley and Bluemoonset, who both edited the contemporary analyses section and other parts of the article.
Again, you haven't stated why you think the photographs of Cankaya Kosku and Incirlik shouldn't be displayed. Those pictures were in this article for over a year now. At any rate, I believe a RfC is justified regarding that issue. Étienne Dolet (talk) 02:20, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
Perhaps a caption that clarifies these points might help resolve this situation. The land where Incirlik Air Base lies on did indeed belong to Armenians. But it is now leased over by the Turkish government to the United States military. Something to that effect.--Marshal Bagramyan (talk) 18:40, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

RfC: Reinsertion of photographs[edit]

Consensus is for keeping the images, though further discussion may be needed regarding the length and content of their caption. Sam Walton (talk) 17:47, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

The land on which the US Incirlik Air Base (left) is built was owned by Armenians and confiscated by the Ottoman government during the Armenian Genocide. The Çankaya Köşkü Presidential Palace in 1935 (right), the official residence of the President of Turkey, was originally the Kasabian Estate and belonged to an Armenian named Ohannes Kasabian, an escapee of the Armenian Genocide. The property was confiscated by the Bulgurluzâde family and later purchased by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder and the first president of modern Turkey. It was then converted into the presidential residence in 1921.

Should the pictures on the right along with their captions be reinstated as part of the top right portion article?

The photographs were there when the article became a GA more than a year ago (see: here). They were recently removed. To avoid any further edit-warring, I am opening up a RFC to bring about discussion. Feel free to suggest any kind of changes for the captions.

Sources for Incirlik include: (Huffington Post, LA Times, Eurasianet, PRNewswire, Armenian Mirror-Spectator).

Sources for Çankaya Köşkü include: (Hurriyet's Soner Yalcin, Fairchild Ruggles, International Center for Human Development, Ungor)

Étienne Dolet (talk) 04:04, 4 November 2014 (UTC)


Keep the photographs. They are captioned responsibly and objectively and supported by ample references. They are entirely consistent with the encyclopedia's standard. Diranakir (talk) 16:56, 5 November 2014 (UTC)

Keep For reasons elucidated above.--Marshal Bagramyan (talk) 22:58, 7 November 2014 (UTC)

Keep about the pictures, as per above. Anyway, I have a problem about a part of a caption. A family, as any private citizen, can hardly "confiscate" anything. I think that one should understand the legal framework (if any) in that case. Alex2006 (talk) 09:25, 19 November 2014 (UTC)

Keep as long as the photographs are justified by article content. BUT, since images should be there to support the content of the article and not appear to be standalone mini articles, I don't think long captions that are not supported by article content are justifiable. Tiptoethrutheminefield (talk) 21:46, 20 November 2014 (UTC)

Keep Perhaps the most salient examples of confiscated Armenian property around. Athenean (talk) 04:06, 4 December 2014 (UTC)

Oppose as ill-formed RfC making argumentation. Noting that the captions are clearly worded in a POV manner, and make claims which may be inapt. I have edited the captions to reduce the blatant problem. Collect (talk) 13:25, 4 December 2014 (UTC)


The RfC is ill-formed and intrinsically argumentative, which makes the basic problem - the blatant non-compliance of the article with WP:NPOV. The article has been increased in size by well over 50% by a single editor since it was given "Good Article" status. What might have been acceptable in a shorter article easily becomes UNDUE when it is increased and POV strengthened by such an extent. The captions appear more designed to address the "point" that the US was complicit in stealing property, and that Ataturk stole Armenian property - an interesting, albeit controversial, series of claims. Wikipedia articles are not here to "right great wrongs" but to present material of interest to readers in a neutral and dispassionate manner. This article might no longer fit that requirement, and re-inserting material which is quite clearly from a specific POV may be contrary to the basic tenets of the project. Collect (talk) 13:07, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

The caption makes it clear that Ataturk didn't confiscate the property. He merely purchased and converted it into a presidential palace. Perhaps I can make it more clear that he purchased it from the Bulgurluzâde family, who occupied and thus expropriated it from the Kassabian family. As for Incirlik, I would never insinuate that America confiscated property or that the United States government is complicit in matters of genocide. The caption doesn't make such a claim. Neither does it blame the US in any way for the property being in the hands of the Ottoman government. The caption says confiscated by the Ottoman government: I don't think it gets more clear than that. The airbase was built in 1951 and just because it happens to be used by Americans today doesn't mean it should be excluded from this article. If you have a better idea for a caption, propose one. Maybe there's parts of these references that I'm not seeing here. Like I said, the photographs above were there when the article became a GA more than a year ago (see: here). So matters concerning the photographs and whether they were part of the expansion after the GA nomination does not apply here. As for allegations of this RfC being argumentative or ill-formed, can you please point out what part of this RfC is ill-formed or argumentative? I mean, it's a pretty simple RfC. There's only four sentences. I've even said, "Feel free to suggest any kind of changes for the captions." You also claim that this article is POV, what exactly makes this article POV? Just because something is more likely to be POV doesn't mean it actually is. Besides, there's not one sentence in this article that isn't sourced. Many of these sources are peer-reviewed and are found in top academic journals. In fact, there are almost no sources written, published, or researched by Armenians. Not that such things matter, but it removes any inkling of thought that they might contain bias. As you may have seen, most of these sources are written by Turks who are citizens of Turkey. This article does nothing but reflect those sources. If you find some of these sentences out of line with what the sources say, feel free to let me know. I've always been willing to work with users to solve such issues and thereby further improve this article. As you may have seen, entire sections of this article were rewritten by various third-party users ([6][7][8][9][10]). Anyways, I feel we are digressing. I prefer that topics of discussion concerning the article as a whole should be opened under its own exclusive section. From thereon, such matters can be solved in a more thorough and constructive matter. Étienne Dolet (talk) 20:21, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

I think we should refer to Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Captions, and WP:NEU; while the two properties fall within the scope of the subject of this article, the presentation of both appear not to meet the MOS. Also, why those two properties out of the multitude of properties confiscated? If there is objection to the use of images, I think a consensus building process as to two other property images might be in order.--RightCowLeftCoast (talk) 19:31, 8 November 2014 (UTC)

One of the more obvious reasons why these photographs should be used is because they're in PD. In the collection of PD photographs, I know of no other confiscated property as significant and recognizable as these. Secondly, as I have just briefly touched up on, these two properties are significant and recognizable. Their history is also widely known in the academic field both in and outside of Turkey. Even modern scholars and journalist don't refer to it as the Cankaya Kosku anymore and instead call it the Kasabyan Estate (see this article, which was written just before the recent presidential elections: Who's going to be running the Kasabyan estate?). As for its presentation, the captions are directly aligned with what the sources say. Some of these sources, like Ungor, are offline. If you'd like, I can present to you what the sources say and you can see for yourself. You could also propose a revised caption as well. Étienne Dolet (talk) 20:05, 8 November 2014 (UTC)
It would helpful if RightCowLeftCoast specified which of the 15 or so paragraphs in the Captioning article best expresses his problem with the captioning and also where the captioning departs from neutrality in terms of the MOS. Then we will have something to discuss. Using terminology like "I think we should refer to" and "both appear not to meet" will not do. Also, it seems that he objects to the two pictures due to their intrinsic nature rather than their captioning. He can correct me if I am wrong. Why object to just these two out of the multitude that he is aware of? Diranakir (talk) 17:50, 9 November 2014 (UTC)
Alessandro57 (talk · contribs) Your point is well taken regarding the captions. I think a suitable compromise can be the following:

The Çankaya Köşkü Presidential Palace in 1935 (right), the official residence of the President of Turkey, was originally the Kasabian Estate and belonged to an Armenian named Ohannes Kasabian, an escapee of the Armenian Genocide. The property was then occupied by the Bulgurluzâde family and later sold to Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder and the first president of modern Turkey. It was then converted into the presidential residence in 1921.

I think that can firmly show that the title of the property transferred hands which is good enough in this case. The caption is already long enough, so writing about the property being dispossessed may make it much too long. There are sources that support this particular wording as well. An example includes:
Page 84 of Ungor's Confiscation and Destruction: The Young Turk Seizure of Armenian Property [11]:

The house had been occupied by the noted Bulgurluzâde family after the Kasabians had been dispossessed and deported. Mustafa Kemal liked the house and bought it from Bulgurluzâde Tevfik Efendi for 4,500 Turkish lira.

Although Ungor states that this is a 'famous example of confiscated Armenian property', it may be wiser to just use the word 'occupied' since that may prevent any further misunderstandings. Let me know what you think. Étienne Dolet (talk) 20:22, 19 November 2014 (UTC)

Collect: You can hardly be expected to be taken seriously as a defender of NPOV when you use ill-defined and confrontational terminology like: "poorly worded bits, ill formed RFC, intrinsically argumentative, blatant non-compliance". What exactly are "the poorly worded bits"? Prove what you say. Simply gutting Dolet's caption of its historic sense is not a constructive act. Diranakir (talk) 18:20, 5 December 2014 (UTC)

Read the Talk Page Guidelines - you will find that attacking editors is not exactly what the talk page is for. The captions were poorly worded, and a tad POV-ish, which I had thought was clear. And WP:AGF would help a bit as well. Shnorhavor Amanor yev Surb Tznund Collect (talk) 21:54, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
Collect: What you thought was clear is simply not, that is the problem. Why don't you specifically cite the bits that you find poorly worded and a tad POV-ish so that other editors know what you are talking about and can meaningfully assess it? Otherwise all we are left with are quite pejorative characterizations of another editor's work. And do you really believe that leaving confiscation and genocide out of the caption is an act of neutrality? Peace on earth to men of goodwill. . . Diranakir (talk) 00:48, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Implicit accusations that living persons were complicit in the Armenian Genocide are "contentious claims" and captions for photos are not a great place to make contentious claims in the best of circumstances. And again STOP ATTACKING EDITORS. Shouting intentional here - read the Five Pillars again. Cheers. Collect (talk) 13:33, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Hmmm, so telling other editors that they should "delve into something other than the Armenian Genocide" is not a personal attack? Étienne Dolet (talk) 20:01, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
My comment was about making a ginormous increase in article size without increasing article quality. When one editor is responsible for over 95% of the entire article, there is a slim chance that the article would benefit from pruning. Compare Joseph Widney (34K size, readability 54) now with [12] (size 195K) before pruning. Length != quality. Cheers. Collect (talk) 20:10, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Telling a user to "delve into something other than the Armenian Genocide" has nothing to do with that. I have a particular interest in topics concerning the Armenian Genocide. Others users might have an interest in wines, Ford Mustangs or cloths. I kindly ask you to not tell me where and how I should edit on Wikipedia. Thanks, Étienne Dolet (talk) 20:16, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Mentioning the Armenian Genocide is important for context. These confiscations did not appear out of the blue. There is also no compelling argument in trying to hide this information from our readers, unless one is bent on minimizing mention of the Armenian Genocide throughout wikipedia. Athenean (talk) 20:17, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
A dozen mentions - maybe. But this article is well above that in terms of iteration of "genocide" which looks more like a sledgehammer approach than one of NPOV editing. How many times would you find "too many"? Cheers. Collect (talk) 20:22, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
A dozen? That seems highly arbitrary. The subject of this article is inextricably connected to the genocide. Athenean (talk) 20:41, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
How many times should we shout "Genocide" at the reader, then? Fifty times? A hundred? And can you reconcile this with WP:NPOV in any way? Collect (talk) 20:44, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
By my count, the genocide is mentioned 15 times, so no need for the hyperbole. But that is not the point. The confiscation of properties was part and parcel of the genocide. Genocide isn't just killing the people, it's total annihilation of an ethnic group. As such, things like property confiscation and destruction of cemetaries are very much part of a genocide. Why do you think the Nazis confiscated all thos Jewish-owned artworks? The way I see it, it would be a violation of NPOV to not mention the genocide. We would be doing a disservice to our readers. Athenean (talk) 20:59, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.


Armenians dig out their Ottoman land deeds: [13] — Preceding unsigned comment added by Tiptoethrutheminefield (talkcontribs) 22:01, 20 November 2014

Incirlik Air Base[edit]

Appears to have well over 3000 acres. The Armenian confiscation lawsuit is about 122 acres, an exceedingly minor fraction. [14] Collect (talk) 13:44, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

A minor fraction perhaps (speaking just of the lawsuit), but not an exceedingly minor fact. Diranakir (talk) 00:28, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

This article requires expansion[edit]

This article lacks info about the confiscation of Armenian properties during Hamidian massacres and Adana massacre. Also the reason why the Committee of Union and Progress confiscated Armenian properties is not mentioned in the article. Wikipedians should utilize Confiscation and destruction: The Young Turk Seizure of Armenian Property to expand the article, since the book details the reason.--RekishiEJ (talk) 12:39, 12 May 2015 (UTC) 10:45, 8 October 2015 (UTC) fixed a spelling mistake

RekishiEJ The problem with the Hamidian massacres and Adana massacre ordeal is that it really isn't discussed in the Confiscation and destruction: The Young Turk Seizure of Armenian Property book, it's only briefly mentioned. So I suppose a temporary solution is to remove the whole Hamidian massacres and Adana massacre bit in the article until we find sources that can provide us with more detail on that. Étienne Dolet (talk) 17:01, 5 October 2015 (UTC)
The reason is explicitly mentioned in the article, being it the exile and genocide of the Armenians from the Ottoman Empire and the subsequent abandonment of property that resulted. As for the other massacres, they have a secondary role in the article so I suggest someone find sources for that. --92slim (talk) 08:11, 6 October 2015 (UTC)
Well, I meant that the reason that the Young Turks confiscated "abandoned" Armenian properties in the Ottoman Empire was whether economic nationalism or the aspiration to make ordinaty ethnic Turks embrace the Armenian Genocide.--RekishiEJ (talk) 10:45, 8 October 2015 (UTC)

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