A historian at the University of California at Davis has become the latest target of Turkish-American groups that have criticized -- and in some cases made legal threats against -- researchers of the Armenian genocide that took place as the Ottoman Empire collapsed. He is refusing to back away from the statement that led to this conflict, and says that the university is backing him against what he and others see as an attack on academic freedom.
In this case, letters sent to various officials at Davis have asserted that Keith David Watenpaugh, an associate professor of religious studies, should apologize for a reply he wrote in the Davis alumni magazine to a letter about an article on his research. Watenpaugh's research is about how the Armenian genocide led to the first international humanitarian relief effort and changed the way many in the world viewed suffering from being inevitable to being something that should be prevented.
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