by Henry Morgenthau, Peter Balakian (Editor) with a foreword by Robert Jay Lifton, an introduction by Roger W. Smith, and an epilogue by Henry Morgenthau III
Grade Level: Eleventh Grade to Adult
Originally published in 1918, Ambassador Morgenthau’s Story is one of the most insightful and compelling accounts of what became a recurring horror during the 20th century: ethnic cleansing and genocide.
While he served as the U.S. ambassador to the Ottoman Empire under Woodrow Wilson from 1913 to 1916, Henry Morgenthau witnessed the rise of a new nationalism in Turkey, one that declared “Turkey for the Turks.” He grew alarmed as he received reports from missionaries and consuls in the interior of Turkey that described deportation and massacre of the Armenians. The ambassador beseeched the U.S. government to intervene, but it refrained, leaving Morgenthau without official leverage. His recourse was to appeal personally to the consciences of Ottoman rulers and their German allies; when that failed, he drew international media attention to the genocide and spearheaded private relief efforts.