Needless to say, Turkish President Recept Tayyip Erdoğan is offended by the Holy Father’s statements about the Armenian, Assyrian and Greek genocide which victimized large numbers of Armenian, Assyrian and Greek Christians for being Christian. For those who are not aware, this occurred in 1915 (2015 marks the 100th anniversary), when Turkey was the heart of the Ottoman Empire whose state religion was Sunni Islam and claimed to be the caliphate, a style of monarchy in which the caliph (Arabic for “successor”) acts as the successor of Muhammad much as the Pope is the successor of Saint Peter. The Sunnis, apart from the Shiites, believe that any pious Muslim man can become the caliph.
Over a million Armenian, Assyrian and Greek Christians were murdered in this genocide because they refused to convert to Islam and refused to pay the jizyah tax. Scholars have repeatedly proven this and the pictures prove it. Soon later Mustafa Kemal Atatürk became the first President of Turkey and reformed the Ottoman Empire into a democracy. He himself, who grew up Muslim, became a critic of Islam.
Turkey’s current flag is closely based off the Ottoman flag
Turkey today is supposed to be a republic which grants freedom of religion, which it does, but only 6% of Turks in a poll expressed favorable views of Christians. Acts of violence against Christians are not so rare in Turkey as in the case of Luigi Padovese, Apostolic Vicar of Anatolia, or in the case of Fr. Andrea Santoro. Turkey is predominantly Muslim and many Turks take pride in that; the modern Turkish flag is heavily based on the latest Ottoman flag which also has a red background and white crescent moon and star, only the crescent moon is thicker in the Ottoman flag. Turkey’s flag thus contains the Islamic symbols of the crescent moon and star.
Liberal MSNBC pundit Cenk Uygur, former The Young Turks host (named for the Young Turks who were directly responsible for the Armenian, Assyrian and Greek genocide), openly has denied this genocide ever existed repeatedly in various articles and sessions. Cenk is known for attacking Christianity and never failing to address those Christians he despises by their religion, but when it comes to Muslims, even in regards to ISIS, he never addresses them by their religion. His anti-Christian and pro-Islamic bias should be obvious seen from what he says about both groups, and weirdly he is an Agnostic who no longer claims to be Muslim.