Award-winning playwright Eric Bogosian is out with a page-turning new thriller — and his breathless tale of four ordinary Americans out to avenge the Armenian genocide is all the more compelling because every word of it is true.
“I thought I knew something about the Armenian genocide. I grew up with grandparents who told me about it, but I never heard of this incredible act of revenge,” Bogosian, an Armenian-American writer and actor, said Monday on “The Steve Malzberg Show” on Newsmax TV.
His book, “Operation Nemesis: The Assassination Plot that Avenged the Armenian Genocide,” tells how a life insurance salesman, a newspaper editor, an engineering student, and a diplomat became one of the most effective assassination squads in history.
The group from Massachusetts joined together in 1921, named themselves “Nemesis” after the Greek goddess of retribution and pledged to avenge the deaths of almost one million victims of the Armenian Genocide.
All survivors of the massive Turkish killing operation in 1915, the assassins, with the help of operatives on three continents, killed six major Turkish leaders in Berlin, Constantinople, Tiflis [now known as Tbilisi], and Rome.
“They were hunting down Turks all over Europe in 1921 and 1922 … they recruited a number of men who knew how to handle weapons and they sent them all over Europe to track Turks,” Bogosian said.
“One by one they knocked out a good chunk of the Turkish leadership that was running the Ottoman Empire during the genocide.
“They [were leaders who] had already actually been convicted of war crimes and had been sentenced in absentia in Turkey right after the war…. They were war criminals who were basically on the run.”
Bogosian — who penned the Pulitzer Prize-nominated play “Talk Radio,” which he adapted into a movie and starred in, and appeared as Capt. Danny Ross on “Law & Order: Criminal Intent” — said Turkey still must come clean about its culpability.
“Every other major civilized country has admitted to their past misdeeds and Turkey, if it wants to join the family of nations, has to do this,” Bogosian said.
“Otherwise, they’re a second-class country forever.”
“Operation Nemesis: The Assassination Plot that Avenged the Armenian Genocide” — for which Bogosian drew upon years of research and newly uncovered evidence — is published by Little, Brown and Company.