SMYRNA SEPTEMBER 1922: The American Mission to Rescue Victims of the 20th Century's First Genocide
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SMYRNA SEPTEMBER 1922: The American Mission to Rescue Victims of the 20th Century's First Genocide

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by Lou Ureneck

In September 1922, the richest city of the Mediterranean was burned, and countless numbers of Christian refugees killed. The city was Smyrna, and the event was the final episode of the 20th Century’s first genocide — the slaughter of three million Armenians, Greeks and Assyrians of the Ottoman Empire.

The slaughter at Smyrna occurred as warships of the great powers stood by — the United States, Great Britain, France and Italy. The deaths of hundreds of thousands seemed inevitable until an American minister staged a bold rescue with the help of a courageous U.S.naval officer. Now, the forgotten story of one of the great humanitarian acts of history gets told.