In his memories, Abdul Hamid referred to the rampant censorship during his administration. 

“Sometimes people sent to Europe bring with them harmful ideas to Turkey, try to show the advantage of European civilization. I cannot judge them for their bad lives, but I have a duty to prevent them from being passed on to others. 

Some of the young people sent to Europe, after learning about the French Revolution in France, incite the people to riot, considering it patriotism. Of course, I can’t afford it. And they, like the enemies of my country, call me “red sultan”. This is where the censorship worked, and I only prohibit the publication of materials with such content, and in the field of science, I even promote and thank you on behalf of the state.” 

In reality, however, it is an undeniable fact that the “bloody sultan” brutally persecuted the press. During his reign, many newspapers were closed and the few that were published were intended to glorify his personality, domestic and foreign policies. 

Schools were placed under strict control. The teaching of Armenian history and geography was banned throughout Constantinople, books on these subjects were confiscated and burned, and teachers and authors were punished as criminals.

 In his memoirs, Abdul Hamid referred to the fact that the Armenian issue was constantly circulating in European newspapers, where the public was directed against him and he was called the “red sultan”. And in the section called “Red Animal” (Kızıl HayvanBete Rouge) of the memoirs, he wrote that this was the first time the French philosopher and literary figure Pierre Kiar, who in 1893, coming to Constantinople, he sowed evil and division in Armenian schools. 

In 1893-1896 Kiar, who worked in Constantinople, was one of the few French contemporaries who had been in the Ottoman Empire at the beginning of the massacres of Armenians in Western Armenia. Here he was invited to work in one of the Armenian schools of Bera to teach French and Latin. The growth of Kiar’s interest in the fate of the Armenian people was greatly contributed by the events of 1894, began his friendly relationship and close cooperation with Arshak Chopanyan. 

Kiar taught in Armenian schools in Constantinople, as well as courses in philosophy and literature, he also taught courses on “getting rid of the Turkish yoke”. Abdul Hamid links the problems in Sassoun and Zeytun to Kiar’s name, accusing him of spreading anti-sultan and liberation propaganda among the Armenian people.

The target of Kiar’s speeches is the Armenian-hating image of Abdul Hamid II, whom he considers the organizer of the Armenian massacres and calls him “a great murderer”, “a red beast”, “an imperial bandit”, “a monstrous beast in human form”, “his bloody majesty”. Kiar, having enlisted in the struggle for the survival of the Armenian people, did not limit his activity to the publication of purely scientific works, but also conducted a prolific public speaking activity.