BY HARUT SASSOUNIAN
For decades, Turkish pseudo-historians and propagandists have made bizarre claims about Turks being the ancestors of various ethnic groups around the world, including Native Americans, African-Americans, and the strangest of all — Melungeons — a little-known group of dark-skinned residents of Appalachia.
To counter Armenian political activities in Washington, the Turkish government regularly reaches out to anyone who could be co-opted with all-expense paid trips, special gifts, and other financial inducements, including funding studies and conferences on the alleged Turkish origin of Melungeons. Even though these one million Appalachians do not carry much political clout in Congress, Ankara is interested in claiming them to be of Turkish descent, hoping to strengthen its political and economic clout in the United States. [Read more…]