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  • Editor's Introduction
  • Herb Hirsch

The Editors of Genocide Studies International welcome you to Volume 11, Issue 2. This issue is what we refer to as a "general issue'' meaning that there is no unified theme. In our general issues we attempt to present an array of the latest research in the area of genocide and human rights. This is in contrast to what we refer to as a "special issue'' which is devoted to a single topic.

Volume 11, Issue 2 presents research on subjects that have not been thoroughly examined in most genocide research. While some of these topics have received little or no coverage they are not only interesting, but also important and demonstrate the expanding possibilities for research in the area of genocide and human rights studies as we attempt to reach out to a broader audience.

The first article by Emily Hawley, "ISIS Crimes Against the Shia: The Islamic State's Genocide Against Shia Muslims,'' exposes a topic which has received little or no attention in the Western media. Hawley examines what she refers to as an "unrecognized genocide'' perpetrated by the Islamic State (ISIS) against Shia Muslims. She notes that ISIS crimes against the Yazidis received substantial attention in the west but the atrocities against the Shia have not generated the same amount of interest. In fact, one of the editors of GSI has been examining this phenomena and found that there has been an intense lobbying effort on behalf of Christian groups to attempt to get the United States to recognize ISIS genocide against Christian groups but no reciprocal effort on the part of the Shia.1 The author demonstrates that, as she notes, "ISIS's genocide against Shias is unambiguous; Shia Muslims plainly comprise a protected religious group, ISIS has been transparent in terms of its genocidal intent, and ISIS's systematic killing of Shias clearly constitutes genocidal conduct under the Genocide Convention.'' This is clearly a "forgotten'' genocide as the Western media and nations appear reluctant to give as much attention to atrocities against the Shia as they do to those committed against Christian groups.

The second article continues a theme of international politics and genocide as Alvarez and Besmel look at "Transitional Justice and the Legacy of Nuremberg: The Promise and Problems of Confronting Atrocity in Post-Conflict Societies.'' The authors "critically examine the ways in which Nuremberg shaped and influenced these responses to genocide and to our understanding of the nature of justice in post conflict societies.'' They attempt to try to understand what sort of legal strategies will be most beneficial to bring about reconciliation in post conflict societies.

From the first two articles we turn our attention to an array of topics. Daniel Ohanian examines "The Migration of Child and Women Survivors of the Armenian Genocide from the Eastern Mediterranean to Canada, 1923–1930.'' He notes that in 1918 around five hundred thousand Ottoman Armenians "found themselves displaced [End Page 157] or living in Muslim households across the Eastern Mediterranean and the South Caucasus.'' These refugees traveled to Canada as a result of a humanitarian relocation by which "110 boys and thirty-nine girls and women—all genocide refugees and most of them orphans,'' arrived in Canada. This article traces the relocation campaign and notes how, in spite Canadian immigration authorities efforts to keep out Asians, the impoverished, and the stateless, they were able to settle in Canada.

The next selection by Colin Tatz, "Seldom Asked, Seldom Answered: II(b) or not II(b)?'' probes more deeply into Article II(b) of the UN Genocide Convention and applies it to the case of the Australian Aboriginal experience. According to Tatz, Article II(b) generally recognizes physical killing and II(e) child removal, but in the Aboriginal case the more relevant part of the Convention is Article II(b) which takes a more long term perspective on "causing serious bodily or mental harm.'' This, Tatz argues, "has been the major process in destroying aboriginal life and culture since the start of the twentieth century.''

The final article by Sabrina Chang and Peter Suedfeld, "The Faithful do not Yield: Jehovah's Witnesses in Nazi Camps,'' looks at a relatively...


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