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Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship Clears The 200 Mark

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  • #21
    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
    Clears The 200 Mark

    Last update - 14:41 06/10/2007

    Turkey, Bush work to block House resolution on Armenian genocide

    By The Associated Press

    Turkish and American officials have been pressing lawmakers to reject
    in a vote next week a measure that would declare the World War I-era
    killings of Armenians a genocide.

    On Friday, the issue reached the highest levels as U.S. President
    George W. Bush and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan talked
    by telephone about their opposition to the legislation, which is to go
    before the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee on
    Wednesday.

    Armenian supporters of the measure, who seem to have enough votes to
    get approval by both the committee and the full House, have also been
    mustering a grass-roots campaign among the large diaspora community in
    the United States to make sure that a successful committee vote leads
    to consideration by the full House.

    One interest group, the Armenian National Committee of America, has
    engaged about 100,000 supporters to call lawmakers about the issue,
    according to Executive Director Aram Hamparian.

    Similar measures have been debated in Congress for decades. But
    well-organized Armenian groups have repeatedly been thwarted by
    concerns about damaging relations with Turkey, an important NATO ally
    that has made its opposition clear.

    Lawmakers say that this time, the belief that the resolution has a
    chance to pass a vote by the full House has both Turkey and Armenian
    groups pulling all stops to influence the members of the committee.

    "The lobbying has been most intense that I have ever seen it," said
    the bill's sponsor, Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff.

    The dispute involves the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Armenians
    during the waning years of the Ottoman Empire. Armenian advocates,
    backed by many historians, contend the Armenians died in an organized
    genocide. The Turks say the Armenians were victims of widespread chaos
    and governmental breakdown as the 600-year-old empire collapsed in the
    years before Turkey was born in 1923.

    Though the largely symbolic measure would have no binding effect on
    U.S. foreign policy, it could nonetheless damage an already strained
    relationship with Turkey.

    After France voted last year to make denial of Armenian genocide a
    crime, the Turkish government ended military ties.

    Many in the U.S. fear that a public backlash in Turkey could lead to
    restrictions on crucial supply routes through Turkey to Iraq and
    Afghanistan and the closure of Incirlik, a strategic air base in
    Turkey used by the United States. Lawmakers have been hearing
    arguments from both sides about those concerns.

    The Turkish government has been holding back from public threats while
    making clear that there will be consequences if the resolution is
    passed.

    "There will be a backlash and no government can be indifferent to
    that," says the ambassador in Washington, Nabi Sensoy.

    But Armenian groups charge that behind the scenes, Turkey has been
    much more clear.

    "Turkey has been threatening every sort of doomsday scenario," says
    Hamparian. :We have been saying that Turkey would harm itself more
    than the United States, if it carries through with these threats."

    Turkey argues that the U.S. House of Representatives is the wrong
    institution to arbitrate a sensitive historical dispute. It has
    proposed that an international commission of experts examine Armenian
    and Turkish archives.

    In the meantime, the Turkish embassy has been in close contact with
    lawmakers and is using prominent U.S. lobbyists.

    "I have redoubled my efforts," says Sensoy. Turkish lawmakers have
    also been manning the phones to congressional offices.

    According to one congressional aide, Turkey's military chief, Gen.
    Yasar Buyukanit, has been calling lawmakers to argue that a vote will
    boost support for Islamists in Turkey. The aide spoke on condition of
    anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue.

    The Bush Administration has been telling lawmakers that the
    resolution, if passed, would harm U.S. security interests.

    Gordon Johndroe, a White House spokesman said Friday that Bush
    believes the Armenian episode ranks among the greatest tragedies of
    the 20th century, but the determination whether the events constitute
    a genocide should be a matter for historical inquiry, not legislation.

    White House staff have also spoken with aides to House Speaker Nancy
    Pelosi with hope that she will stop the measure from coming to a vote.

    "The Administration has reached out to the speaker's office and made
    our position clear,"he said. "We'll see what happens.

    Source: http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/909920.html
    What if I find someone else when looking for you? My soul shivers as the idea invades my mind.

    Comment


    • #22
      Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
      Clears The 200 Mark

      Turkey launches last ditch effort to prevent Armenian resolution in US

      The New Anatolian /Ankara

      08 October 2007

      While Turkey has intensified diplomatic and political efforts to
      dissuade the American Congress from passing an Armenian genocide bill
      Turkish leaders are telling their American counterparts that such a
      move will seriously hurt relations.

      On Sunday Parliament Speaker Koksal Toptan sent a letter to U.S. House
      Speaker Nancy Pelosi saying that "it might take decades to heal
      negative effects of the bill if it passes," Toptan's office said in a
      statement.

      Toptan - who is elected by the legislative body to chair parliamentary
      sessions - is considered neutral toward all political parties.

      The genocide bill declares the killings of Armenians between 1915 and
      1917 a genocide, though it would have no binding effect on the U.S.
      foreign policy. The U.S. House of Representatives' Foreign Affairs
      Committee is expected to consider the legislation late Wednesday.

      Toptan's letter said the passing of the bill would be declared by
      Armenians as a confirmation of their view of the historical dispute.

      "Then, it will be difficult to control the dynamics triggered by
      Turkish public reaction," it said.

      Toptan said Armenia did not respond positively to Turkish proposal to
      establish a commission of historians to examine Turkish and Armenian
      archives and to share their findings with the public.

      On Friday, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan told U.S. President
      George W. Bush that the measure would "harm the strategic partnership"
      between the two countries.

      Bush reassured Erdogan that he opposes efforts by US lawmakers to
      denounce the Ottoman Empire's killings of Armenians as genocide, the
      White House said.

      "The president reiterated his opposition to this resolution, the
      passage of which would be harmful to US relations with Turkey," said
      Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for Bush's National Security Council.

      He recalled that Bush has described the events of 1915 as a tragedy,
      but believes that determining whether it was genocide is up to
      historians, not lawmakers, Johndroe said in a statement.

      The House Foreign Affairs Committee is due to vote on the genocide
      measure Wednesday. A similar bill is pending in the US Senate, adding
      to pressure on the administration to recognize the Armenian deaths not
      just as "forced exile and murder" - Bush's words in 2004 - but as
      genocide. Congressional sources say the fact that the house committee
      is voting for the resolution means it has the blessing of Pelosi.

      Meanwhile, a Turkish parliamentary delegation comprised of top foreign
      policy experts will fly to Washington today to meet congressional
      members to dissuade them from voting for the resolution.

      "If the United States makes a historical error and adopts a resolution
      on the incidents of 1915 in the House of Representatives, this would
      be a problem and scandal of the U.S.," said Egemen Bagis, Deputy
      Chairman of the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party who will be
      in the delegation.

      Bagis told reporters that main opposition Republican People's Party
      (CHP) Istanbul deputy Sukru Elekdag and opposition Nationalist
      Movement Party (MHP) Istanbul deputy Gunduz Aktan and he will pay a
      visit to the United States to hold discussions with non-governmental
      organizations, senators, members of the House of Representatives, high
      level bureaucrats and academicians and try to explain to all that the
      adoption of a resolution on the incidents of 1915 would be a serious
      blow to Turkish-U.S. relations.

      "We will do everything possible to defeat the Armenian resolution
      which, if adopted, can hurt Turkish-U.S. relations and the national
      interests of the U.S.," Bagis said.

      Bagis, Elekdag and Aktan will be in the United States until October 11.

      Elekdag is a former Turkish ambassador in Washington and a former
      undersecretary of foreign affairs. Aktan is also from the foreign
      ministry who served as deputy undersecretary. He is a retired
      ambassador.

      Meanwhile, in a full-page advertisement in the Washington Post, the
      Turkish embassy to the US called the pending legislation "one-sided"
      and warned it would "affect relations between the United States and
      Turkey."

      A senior State Department official said US lawmakers risk provoking a
      severe backlash from Turkey.

      Applying the genocide label would harm US interests, including "our
      forces deployed in Iraq which rely on passage through Turkey,"
      Assistant Secretary of State Daniel Fried said.

      He said it was a historical fact that up to 1.5 million Armenians were
      killed or forced into exile from 1915 through the early 1920 -
      something recognized by Bush as well as former president Bill Clinton.

      "But it is true that the Turkish reaction would be extremely strong,"
      Fried told reporters.

      Armenians claim say more than 1.5 million Armenians were killed in a
      systematic genocide in the hands of the Ottomans during the World War
      I, before modern Turkey was born in 1923.

      Turkey says the death toll is inflated and that the deaths occurred at
      a time of civil unrest.

      Public opinion polls show that the United States has become widely
      unpopular in Turkey because of opposition to U.S. policy in Iraq.

      After France voted last year to make denial of Armenian genocide a
      crime, the Turkish government ended military ties. A similar move with
      the United States could have repercussions on operations in Iraq and
      Afghanistan, which rely heavily on Turkish support.


      Source: http://www.thenewanatolian.com/tna-29145.html
      What if I find someone else when looking for you? My soul shivers as the idea invades my mind.

      Comment


      • #23
        Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
        Clears The 200 Mark

        TURKEY MAY CUT SUPPORT TO U.S. OVER ARMENIA BILL-MP

        Reuters
        Oct 8 2007

        ANKARA - Turkey may cut logistic support to U.S. troops in Iraq if
        the U.S. Congress backs a bill branding as genocide the 1915 massacres
        of Armenians by Ottoman Turks, a senior ruling AK Party lawmaker was
        quoted as saying on Monday.

        Congress's Foreign Affairs Committee is expected to approve on
        Wednesday a bill on the genocide issue and speaker Nancy Pelosi,
        a known supporter of the Armenian cause, could then decide to bring
        it to the House floor for a vote.

        Turkey, a NATO ally of Washington, strongly denies Armenian claims,
        backed by many Western historians and a number of foreign parliaments,
        that up to 1.5 million ethnic Armenians suffered genocide at Turkish
        hands during World War One.

        It says many Muslim Turks as well as Christian Armenians died in
        inter-ethnic conflict as the Ottoman Empire collapsed.

        'Don't accept this bill. If you do, we will be obliged to do many
        things we do not want to do,' the top-selling Hurriyet daily quoted
        AK Party deputy leader Egemen Bagis as saying.

        'For example, the Americans depend on Turkey for a large part of
        their logistical support in Iraq. We would be obliged to to cut this
        support,' he was quoted as saying.

        Bagis was speaking in a personal capacity, but Turkey's government
        has many times urged foreign countries, including the United States,
        not to pass such resolutions, saying historians, not politicians,
        should judge historic events.

        Last year, Turkey froze military and some commercial cooperation
        with France after the French National Assembly backed a bill that
        would make it a crime to deny the Armenian genocide, although the
        bill never became law.

        U.S. forces in both Iraq and Afghanistan get many of their supplies
        via the Incirlik military base in southern Turkey.

        Contacted by Reuters, Bagis declined to say what specific measures
        Turkey might take but said: 'This bill might please Armenian Americans
        for a few days but it would definitely have a long-lasting negative
        effect on the relationship between two strategic allies.'

        Bagis noted in his comments to Hurriyet that Turkish public opinion has
        already turned very anti-American due to the Iraq war and Washington's
        failure to crack down on Kurdish rebels who use northern Iraq as a
        base from which to attack Turkey.

        'If the bill passes, pressure from public opinion (to take action
        against U.S. interests) will be very strong,' he said.

        Bagis left for Washington with two other Turkish lawmakers on Monday
        to lobby Congress to drop the bill.

        Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan raised Turkey's concerns with
        U.S. President George W. Bush in a telephone conversation last
        Friday. The Bush administration is opposed to the bill but Congress
        is now dominated by its Democratic.


        http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20071008/...armenians_dc_1
        What if I find someone else when looking for you? My soul shivers as the idea invades my mind.

        Comment


        • #24
          Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
          Clears The 200 Mark

          Live Broadcast http://www.foreignaffairs.house.gov/

          Sorry for not posting the link earlier.
          What if I find someone else when looking for you? My soul shivers as the idea invades my mind.

          Comment


          • #25
            Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
            Clears The 200 Mark

            Tom Lantos, co-chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, gives his opening remark at the markup hearing. http://foreignaffairs.house.gov/pres...lay.asp?id=430

            October 10, 2007

            Verbatim, as delivered

            Opening Statement by Chairman Lantos at markup of
            H. Res. 106

            Today we are not considering whether the Armenian people were persecuted and died in huge numbers at the hands of Ottoman troops in the early 20th Century. There is unanimity in the Congress and across the country that these atrocities took place. If the resolution before us stated that fact alone, it would pass unanimously.

            The controversy lies in whether to make it United States policy at this moment in history to apply a single word – genocide – to encompass this enormous blot on human history.

            The United Nations Convention on Genocide defines the term as a number of actions, and I quote, “committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group.” These actions include killing or causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group, and deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction, in whole or in part.

            Henry Morgenthau, the U.S. Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire at the time of the atrocities, wrote -- and I am quoting -- “I am confident that the whole history of the human race contains no such horrible episode as this. The great massacres and persecutions of the past seem almost insignificant when compared with the sufferings of the Armenian race in 1915.”

            The leadership of the United States has been in universal agreement in condemning the atrocities but has been divided about using the term “genocide.”

            On one occasion, President Ronald Reagan referred to, I quote, “the genocide of the Armenians.”

            But subsequent Presidents -- George Herbert Walker Bush, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, have refrained from using the word out of deference to Turkish sentiments on the matter.

            In recognizing this tragedy, some in Congress have seen common themes with the debate our committee held earlier this year on a resolution about another historic injustice – the tens of thousands of so-called “Comfort Women” forced into sexual slavery by Imperial Japan. The current Japanese government went to great length to attempt to prevent debate on that matter, and dire predictions were made that passage of such a resolution would harm U.S.-Japan relations. Those dire consequences never materialized.

            A key feature distinguishing today’s debate from the one on the “Comfort Women” resolution is that U.S. troops are currently engaged in wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Our troops depend on a major Turkish airbase for access to the fighting fronts, and it serves as a critical part of the supply lines to those fronts. A growing majority in Congress, and I am among them, strongly oppose continued U.S. troop involvement in the civil war in Iraq, but none of us wants to see those supply lines threatened or abruptly cut.

            All eight living former secretaries of state recently cautioned Congress on this matter. And I quote, “It is our view,” write former Secretaries Albright, Baker, Christopher, Eagleburger, Haig, Kissinger, Powell and Shultz, “that passage of this resolution … could endanger our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and damage efforts to promote reconciliation between Armenia and Turkey.”

            Three former secretaries of defense – Carlucci, Cohen and Perry – this week advised Congress that passage of this resolution, and I quote again, “would have a direct, detrimental effect on the operational capabilities, safety and well being of our armed forces in Iraq and in Afghanistan.”

            Members of this committee have a sobering choice to make. We have to weigh the desire to express our solidarity with the Armenian people and to condemn this historic nightmare through the use of the word “genocide” against the risk that it could cause young men and women in the uniform of the United States armed services to pay an even heavier price than they are currently paying. This is a vote of conscience, and the Committee will work its will.
            Between childhood, boyhood,
            adolescence
            & manhood (maturity) there
            should be sharp lines drawn w/
            Tests, deaths, feats, rites
            stories, songs & judgements

            - Morrison, Jim. Wilderness, vol. 1, p. 22

            Comment


            • #26
              Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution CosponsorshipClears The 200 Mark

              Originally posted by freakyfreaky View Post
              Tom Lantos,....the use of the word “genocide” against the risk that it could cause young men and women in the uniform of the United States armed services to pay an even heavier price than they are currently paying.
              Constantly promoting Israel's interest by alienating 200 million Arabs and 1.5 billion Muslims ready to blow-up the US cause of the unbalanced one sided policy in regards Israel is acceptable on the other hand in the view of this two face HYPOCRITE.

              Comment


              • #27
                Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
                Clears The 200 Mark

                US Congressional Committee Approves Armenian Genocide Resolution
                Washington
                10 October 2007

                Robinson report (mp3) - Download 984k audio clip
                Listen to Robinson report (mp3) audio clip

                The House of Representatives foreign affairs committee has approved a non-binding resolution calling the massacre of Armenians nearly a century ago a genocide. The vote was 27 to 21. VOA's Dan Robinson reports from Capitol Hill, President Bush and senior officials in his administration strongly oppose the measure, saying it will damage relations with Turkey and set back U.S. efforts in Iraq and elsewhere in the region.

                Members of Congress were subjected to two public relations campaigns, one financed by the Turkish government, the other by Armenian-American and other groups supporting the measure.

                Turkey has long insisted that Armenians killed during World War I and the years immediately following perished because of clashes stemming from the breakup of the Ottoman Empire rather than from a genocide campaign.

                In full page statements published in major U.S. newspapers, the Turkish government characterized the resolution, which would be non-binding if Congress were to pass it, as a biased interpretation of tragedies involving Armenians in the early 20th century.

                Armenian-American groups asserted that the resolution would be an important gesture by the U.S. Congress to recognize what they call the fact of the Armenian genocide.

                President Bush received a letter from Turkey's president Abdullah Gul warning of harm to bilateral relations if the resolution moves forward in Congress, a view shared by a number of former U.S. secretaries of state and others who appealed to Congress.

                Mr. Bush used a White House statement to say that while Americans deeply regret the tragic suffering of the Armenian people, a resolution is not the way to address the issue.

                "This resolution is not the right response to these historic mass killings, and its passage would do great harm to our relations with a key ally in NATO, and the global war on terror," he said.

                Speaking outside the White House, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice echoed the comments, while Defense Secretary Robert Gates reflected concerns of U.S. military commanders about a potential backlash by Turkey affecting military supply lines.

                "Passage of this resolution at this time would indeed be very problematic for everything that we are trying to do in the Middle East because we are very dependent on a good Turkish strategic ally to help with our efforts" said Rice.

                "They believe clearly that access to airfield and to the roads and so on in Turkey would be very much put at risk if this resolution passes and the Turks react as strongly as we believe they will," Gates said.

                Foreign affairs panel chairman Tom Lantos, a California Democrat, said lawmakers were faced with a difficult choice in what he called a vote of conscience.

                "We have to weigh the desire to express our solidarity with the Armenian people and to condemn this historic nightmare through the use of the word genocide against the risk that it could cause young men and women in the uniform of the U.S. armed services to pay an even heavier price than they are now paying," he said.

                Republicans Dan Burton and Chris Smith, took opposite views of the issue.

                "The strongest ally in the area, and has been for over 50 years, is Turkey, and I just don't understand why we are going to cut our nose off and shoot ourselves in the foot at a time when we need this ally," Burton said.

                The issue behind the resolution today is whether any government that denies a genocide, whether or not Congress has a responsibility to insist that our government at the very least acknowledges it. I believe that we do," said Smith.

                There were also divisions among Democrats, such as California's Brad Sherman, and Florida's Robert Wexler.

                "We cannot provide genocide-denial as one of the perks of friendship with the United States," Sherman said.

                "It is clear that America can ill afford to lose the support of an ally as important as Turkey at this critical juncture," said Wexler.

                Armenian genocide resolutions have been approved by the Foreign Affairs Committee in the past, but failed to make it to the full House and never passed through Congress as a whole.

                The current measure has strong support from Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who with House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer met Wednesday with Turkey's Ambassador to the United States.

                The Democratic leaders sought to assure him that the United States remains a strong ally of the Turkey and that the government in Ankara should not view the resolution as a reflection of the Turkish government or people. Congressman Lantos, meanwhile, says he will introduce a resolution next week on U.S.-Turkish friendship.

                Democratic leaders intend to bring the Armenian genocide measure to the House floor next month, while a similar measure is pending in the Senate.



                http://voanews.com/english/2007-10-10-voa50.cfm
                Last edited by Siamanto; 10-10-2007, 04:42 PM.
                What if I find someone else when looking for you? My soul shivers as the idea invades my mind.

                Comment


                • #28
                  Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
                  Clears The 200 Mark

                  Congressional Panel OKs Armenian Measure

                  By DESMOND BUTLER – 2 hours ago

                  WASHINGTON (AP) — A U.S. congressional panel defied President Bush on Wednesday and approved a measure that he said would damage U.S. goals in the Middle East.

                  The measure that would recognize the World War I-era killings of Armenians as a genocide had been strongly opposed by Turkey, a key NATO ally that has supported U.S. efforts in Iraq.

                  The House Foreign Affairs Committee's 27-21 vote now sends the measure to the House floor — unless the Democratic leadership reverses course and heeds Bush's warnings.

                  At issue is the killing of up to 1.5 million Armenians by Ottoman Turks around the time of World War I. Turkey denies that the deaths constituted genocide, says the toll has been inflated and insists that those killed were victims of civil war and unrest.

                  Bush and other senior officials had made a last-minute push to persuade lawmakers on the Foreign Affairs Committee to reject the measure.

                  "Its passage would do great harm to our relations with a key ally in NATO and in the global war on terror," Bush said hours before the vote.

                  The Foreign Affairs Committee's Chairman, Rep. Tom Lantos, D-Calif., warned of the potential fallout if the proposal passed. Lantos, a Hungarian-born survivor of the Holocaust, supported a similar resolution two years ago.

                  "We have to weigh the desire to express our solidarity with the Armenian people ... against the risk that it could cause young men and women in the uniform of the United States armed services to pay an even heavier price than they are currently paying," Lantos said.

                  Turkey raised the possibility of impeding logistical and other U.S. military traffic now using Turkish airspace.

                  Earlier, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Robert Gates conveyed their concerns.

                  Passing the measure "at this time would be very problematic for everything we are trying to do in the Middle East," Rice told reporters at the White House.

                  The vote comes at a tense time in the region. Turkey's government is seeking parliamentary approval for a military operation to chase separatist Kurdish rebels who operate from bases in northern Iraq. The move, opposed by the U.S., could open a new front in the most stable part of Iraq.

                  "I have been trying to warn the (U.S.) lawmakers not to make a historic mistake," said Egemen Bagis, a close foreign policy adviser to Turkey's prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

                  Yet with the House's first order of business Wednesday, Speaker Nancy Pelosi made clear that Turkey's position was a hard sell. She introduced the Supreme Patriarch of all Armenians, Karekin II, to deliver the morning prayer — a daily ritual intended to be apolitical.

                  "With the solemn burden of history, we remember the victims of the genocide of the Armenians," Karekin said in the House. "Give peace and justice on their descendants."

                  Gates said 70 percent of U.S. air cargo headed for Iraq goes through Turkey, as does about one-third of the fuel used by the U.S. military in Iraq.

                  "Access to airfields and to the roads and so on in Turkey would very much be put at risk if this resolution passes and Turkey reacts as strongly as we believe they will," Gates said. He also said that 95 percent of new vehicles designed to better protect against mine attacks are being flown through Turkey to get to Iraq.

                  Lawmakers from both parties who supported the proposal said the moral implications outweighed security concerns and friendship with Turkey.

                  "The sad truth is that the modern government of Turkey refuses to come to terms with this genocide," said Rep. Chris Smith, R.-N.J. "For Armenians everywhere, the Turkish government's denial is a slap in the face."

                  The vote comes at a tense time in the region. Turkey's government is seeking parliamentary approval for a military operation to chase separatist Kurdish rebels who operate from bases in northern Iraq. The move, opposed by the U.S., could open a new front in the most stable part of Iraq.

                  "I have been trying to warn the (U.S.) lawmakers not to make a historic mistake," said Egemen Bagis, a close foreign policy adviser to Turkey's prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

                  Yet with the House's first order of business Wednesday, Speaker Nancy Pelosi made clear that Turkey's position was a hard sell. She introduced the Supreme Patriarch of all Armenians, Karekin II, to deliver the morning prayer — a daily ritual intended to be apolitical.

                  "With the solemn burden of history, we remember the victims of the genocide of the Armenians," Karekin said in the House. "Give peace and justice on their descendants."

                  Pelosi spokesman Nadeam Elshami said the timing of Karekin's visit was a coincidence. Rep. Joe Knollenberg, a Republican, had requested the leader deliver a morning prayer earlier this year. The House chaplain arranged the visit based on Karekin's schedule and was not aware of the committee's plans, Elshami said.

                  The U.S. Embassy in Ankara warned U.S. citizens in Turkey about "demonstrations and other manifestations of anti-Americanism" if the bill moved ahead. Protests were reported Wednesday outside the embassy and the U.S. Consulate in Istanbul.

                  Pelosi and the second-ranking Democrat in the House, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, met Wednesday with Turkish Ambassador Nabi Sensoy but emerged from the meeting unswayed. Hoyer told reporters he expects a floor vote on the measure before the House adjourns for the year.

                  Hoyer said he hoped that Turkey would realize it is not a condemnation of its current government but rather of "another government, at another time."

                  Associated Press writer Anne Flaherty contributed to this report.
                  On the Net:

                  * House Foreign Affairs Committee: http://foreignaffairs.house.gov


                  http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5h...Xm1DAD8S6KF600
                  What if I find someone else when looking for you? My soul shivers as the idea invades my mind.

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                  • #29
                    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
                    Clears The 200 Mark

                    House panel OKs Armenia resolution
                    Bush warns ‘genocide’ measure could harm relations with Turkey

                    The Associated Press
                    Updated: 5:58 p.m. ET Oct 10, 2007

                    WASHINGTON - A U.S. congressional panel defied President Bush on Wednesday and approved a measure that he said would damage U.S. goals in the Middle East.

                    The measure that would recognize the World War I-era killings of Armenians as a genocide had been strongly opposed by Turkey, a key NATO ally that has supported U.S. efforts in Iraq.

                    The House Foreign Affairs Committee’s 27-21 vote now sends the measure to the House floor — unless the Democratic leadership reverses course and heeds Bush’s warnings.

                    At issue is the killing of up to 1.5 million Armenians by Ottoman Turks around the time of World War I. Turkey denies that the deaths constituted genocide, says the toll has been inflated and insists that those killed were victims of civil war and unrest.

                    Bush and other senior officials had made a last-minute push to persuade lawmakers on the Foreign Affairs Committee to reject the measure.

                    Bush warns of strained relations with key ally
                    “Its passage would do great harm to our relations with a key ally in NATO and in the global war on terror,” Bush said hours before the vote.

                    The Foreign Affairs Committee’s Chairman, Rep. Tom Lantos, D-Calif., warned of the potential fallout if the proposal passed. Lantos, a Hungarian-born survivor of the Holocaust, supported a similar resolution two years ago.

                    “We have to weigh the desire to express our solidarity with the Armenian people ... against the risk that it could cause young men and women in the uniform of the United States armed services to pay an even heavier price than they are currently paying,” Lantos said.

                    Turkey raised the possibility of impeding logistical and other U.S. military traffic now using Turkish airspace.

                    Earlier, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Robert Gates conveyed their concerns.

                    Passing the measure “at this time would be very problematic for everything we are trying to do in the Middle East,” Rice told reporters at the White House.

                    The vote comes at a tense time in the region. Turkey’s government is seeking parliamentary approval for a military operation to chase separatist Kurdish rebels who operate from bases in northern Iraq. The move, opposed by the U.S., could open a new front in the most stable part of Iraq.

                    “I have been trying to warn the (U.S.) lawmakers not to make a historic mistake,” said Egemen Bagis, a close foreign policy adviser to Turkey’s prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

                    Patriarch of Armenians makes appearance
                    Yet with the House’s first order of business Wednesday, Speaker Nancy Pelosi made clear that Turkey’s position was a hard sell. She introduced the Supreme Patriarch of all Armenians, Karekin II, to deliver the morning prayer — a daily ritual intended to be apolitical.

                    “With the solemn burden of history, we remember the victims of the genocide of the Armenians,” Karekin said in the House. “Give peace and justice on their descendants.”

                    Gates said 70 percent of U.S. air cargo headed for Iraq goes through Turkey, as does about one-third of the fuel used by the U.S. military in Iraq.

                    “Access to airfields and to the roads and so on in Turkey would very much be put at risk if this resolution passes and Turkey reacts as strongly as we believe they will,” Gates said. He also said that 95 percent of new vehicles designed to better protect against mine attacks are being flown through Turkey to get to Iraq.

                    ‘Denial is a slap in the face’
                    Lawmakers from both parties who supported the proposal said the moral implications outweighed security concerns and friendship with Turkey.

                    “The sad truth is that the modern government of Turkey refuses to come to terms with this genocide,” said Rep. Chris Smith, R.-N.J. “For Armenians everywhere, the Turkish government’s denial is a slap in the face.”

                    Pelosi spokesman Nadeam Elshami said the timing of Karekin’s visit was a coincidence. Rep. Joe Knollenberg, a Republican, had requested the leader deliver a morning prayer earlier this year. The House chaplain arranged the visit based on Karekin’s schedule and was not aware of the committee’s plans, Elshami said.

                    The U.S. Embassy in Ankara warned U.S. citizens in Turkey about “demonstrations and other manifestations of anti-Americanism” if the bill moved ahead. Protests were reported Wednesday outside the embassy and the U.S. Consulate in Istanbul.

                    Pelosi and the second-ranking Democrat in the House, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, met Wednesday with Turkish Ambassador Nabi Sensoy but emerged from the meeting unswayed. Hoyer told reporters he expects a floor vote on the measure before the House adjourns for the year.

                    Hoyer said he hoped that Turkey would realize it is not a condemnation of its current government but rather of “another government, at another time.”

                    © 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

                    URL: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21221278/
                    What if I find someone else when looking for you? My soul shivers as the idea invades my mind.

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                    • #30
                      Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
                      Clears The 200 Mark

                      What does this mean??? Has it been recognized???? Somebody answers.

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