Genocide in the Middle East: The Ottoman Empire, Iraq, and Sudan

Hannibal Travis

Florida International University College of Law

April 30, 2010


With an epic historical sweep, “Genocide in the Middle East: The Ottoman Empire, Iraq, and Sudan,” reveals how the struggles by nations and empires to establish their regional supremacy resulted in the destruction of families and human groups. This book presents a new theory of the meaning and scope of the U.N. Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide of 1948, based on the drafting history, the case law of international criminal tribunals, and practice of the states parties to the convention since the 1950s. It then paints an expansive portrait of genocide against populations on all six inhabitable continents, with a special focus on the greater Middle East and North Africa since the nineteenth century. In the Ottoman Empire, the Interior Minister issued orders describing the Armenian, Assyrian, and Greek subjects of the empire as saboteurs allied to Russia who needed to be deported from their homes, and led efforts to massacre entire cities, carry out systematic rapes, and impose famine and disease on the surviving remnants. Similarly, in 1980s Iraq the Revolutionary Command Council of the Ba’ath party issued orders that served as the basis of convictions for genocide and other crimes in the Iraqi High Tribunal. These orders declared that areas serving as a base of operations for Kurdish and pro-Iranian insurgents should be rendered devoid of all life. Finally, in the Darfur region of Sudan, as in southern Sudan before it, the President and Interior Minister issued orders to the army and allied militia to kill and drive out entire communities in regions seeking independence, autonomy, or simply political equality. This book also provides cause for hope, explaining how former dictators have been tried and convicted of genocide and crimes against humanity, and how their victims have won independence and compensation for their losses after the fact in places like Armenia, Israel, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, northern Iraq, East Timor, and southern Sudan.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 26

Keywords: Genocide, Treaties, United Nations, Iraq, Sudan, Ottoman Empire, Armenians, Assyrians, Greeks, Kurds, Turkey, Persecution, Extermination, World War I, Cold War, Reparations

JEL Classification: K33

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Date posted: April 17, 2011  

Suggested Citation

Travis, Hannibal, Genocide in the Middle East: The Ottoman Empire, Iraq, and Sudan (April 30, 2010). GENOCIDE IN THE MIDDLE EAST: THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE, IRAQ, AND SUDAN, Carolina Academic Press, 2010. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1809090

Contact Information

Hannibal Travis (Contact Author)
Florida International University College of Law ( email )
11200 SW 8th St.
RDB Hall 1097
Miami, FL 33199
United States

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