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Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship Clears The 200 Mark

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  • Siamanto
    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
    Clears The 200 Mark

    Well Known Supporters of the Recognition React...

    Robert Fisk: Holocaust denial in the White House: The Turks say the Armenians died in a 'civil war', and Bush goes along with their lies

    The Independent/UK
    Published: 10 November 2007

    How are the mighty fallen! President George Bush, the crusader king who
    would draw the sword against the forces of Darkness and Evil, he who
    said there was only "them or us", who would carry on, he claimed, an
    eternal conflict against "world terror" on our behalf; he turns out,
    well, to be a wimp. A clutch of Turkish generals and a
    multimillion-dollar public relations campaign on behalf of Turkish
    Holocaust deniers have transformed the lion into a lamb. No, not even a
    lamb ` for this animal is, by its nature, a symbol of innocence ` but
    into a household mouse, a little diminutive creature which, seen from
    afar, can even be confused with a rat. Am I going too far? I think not.

    The "story so far" is familiar enough. In 1915, the Ottoman Turkish
    authorities carried out the systematic genocide of one and a half
    million Christian Armenians. There are photographs, diplomatic reports,
    original Ottoman documentation, the process of an entire post-First
    World War Ottoman trial, Winston Churchill and Lloyd George and a
    massive report by the British Foreign Office in 1915 and 1916 to prove
    that it is all true. Even movie film is now emerging ` real archive
    footage taken by Western military cameramen in the First World War ` to
    show that the first Holocaust of the 20th century, perpetrated in front
    of German officers who would later perfect its methods in their
    extermination of six million xxxs, was as real as its pitifully few
    Armenian survivors still claim.

    But the Turks won't let us say this. They have blackmailed the Western
    powers ` including our own British Government, and now even the US ` to
    kowtow to their shameless denials. These (and I weary that we must
    repeat them, because every news agency and government does just that
    through fear of Ankara's fury) include the canard that the Armenians
    died in a "civil war", that they were anyway collaborating with
    Turkey's Russian enemies, that fewer Armenians were killed than have
    been claimed, that as many Turkish Muslims were murdered as Armenians.

    And now President Bush and the United States Congress have gone along
    with these lies. There was, briefly, a historic moment for Bush to walk
    tall after the US House Foreign Relations Committee voted last month to
    condemn the mass slaughter of Armenians as an act of genocide. Ancient
    Armenian-American survivors gathered at a House panel to listen to the
    debate. But as soon as Turkey's fossilised generals started to threaten
    Bush, I knew he would give in.

    Listen, first, to General Yasar Buyukanit, chief of the Turkish armed
    forces, in an interview with the newspaper Milliyet. The passage of the
    House resolution, he whinged, was "sad and sorrowful" in view of the
    "strong links" Turkey maintained with its Nato partners. And if this
    resolution was passed by the full House of Representatives, then "our
    military relations with the US would never be as they were in the
    past... The US, in that respect, has shot itself in the foot".

    Now listen to Mr Bush as he snaps to attention before the Turkish
    general staff. "We all deeply regret the tragic suffering (sic) of the
    Armenian people... But this resolution is not the right response to
    these historic mass killings. Its passage would do great harm to our
    relations with a key ally in Nato and in the global war on terror." I
    loved the last bit about the "global war on terror". Nobody ` save for
    the xxxs of Europe ` has suffered "terror" more than the benighted
    Armenians of Turkey in 1915. But that Nato should matter more than the
    integrity of history ` that Nato might one day prove to be so important
    that the Bushes of this world may have to equivocate over the xxxish
    Holocaust to placate a militarily resurgent Germany ` beggars belief.

    Among those men who should hold their heads in shame are those who
    claim they are winning the war in Iraq. They include the increasingly
    disoriented General David Petraeus, US commander in Iraq, and the
    increasingly delusional US ambassador to Baghdad, Ryan Crocker, both of
    whom warned that full passage of the Armenian genocide bill would "harm
    the war effort in Iraq". And make no mistake, there are big bucks
    behind this disgusting piece of Holocaust denial.

    Former Representative Robert L Livingston, a Louisiana Republican, has
    already picked up $12m from the Turks for his company, the Livingston
    Group, for two previously successful attempts to pervert the cause of
    moral justice and smother genocide congressional resolutions. He
    personally escorted Turkish officials to Capitol Hill to threaten US
    congressmen. They got the point. If the resolution went ahead, Turkey
    would bar US access to the Incirlik airbase through which passed much
    of the 70 per cent of American air supplies to Iraq which transit

    In the real world, this is called blackmail ` which was why Bush was
    bound to cave in. Defence Secretary Robert Gates was even more
    pusillanimous ` although he obviously cared nothing for the details of
    history. Petraeus and Crocker, he said, "believe clearly that access to
    the airfields and to the roads and so on in Turkey would be very much
    put at risk if this resolution passes...".

    How terrible an irony did Gates utter. For it is these very "roads and
    so on" down which walked the hundreds of thousands of Armenians on
    their 1915 death marches. Many were forced aboard cattle trains which
    took them to their deaths. One of the railway lines on which they
    travelled ran due east of Adana ` a great collection point for the
    doomed Christians of western Armenia ` and the first station on the
    line was called Incirlik, the very same Incirlik which now houses the
    huge airbase that Mr Bush is so frightened of losing.

    Had the genocide that Bush refuses to acknowledge not taken place ` as
    the Turks claim ` the Americans would be asking the Armenians for
    permission to use Incirlik. There is still alive ` in Sussex if anyone
    cares to see her ` an ageing Armenian survivor from that region who
    recalls the Ottoman Turkish gendarmes setting fire to a pile of living
    Armenian babies on the road close to Adana. These are the same "roads
    and so on" that so concern the gutless Mr Gates.

    But fear not. If Turkey has frightened the boots off Bush, he's still
    ready to rattle the cage of the all-powerful Persians. People should be
    interested in preventing Iran from acquiring the knowledge to make
    nuclear weapons if they're "interested in preventing World War Three",
    Bush has warned us. What piffle. Bush can't even summon up the courage
    to tell the truth about World War One.

    Who would have thought that the leader of the Western world ` he who
    would protect us against "world terror" ` would turn out to be the
    David Irving of the White House?


    12.11.2007 13:39 GMT+04:00

    /PanARMENIAN.Net/ Turkey's Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan was in
    Washington to meet with President Bush to discuss mounting tensions
    between the Turks and Kurdish rebel factions in Northern Iraq.

    Also on the agenda was the Armenian Genocide resolution which passed
    in the House Foreign Affairs Committee last month. The Medill News
    Service spoke with two experts who have challenged Turkey's position on
    the Armenian question and asked them to respond to Erdogan's comments.

    Turkish scholar Taner Akcam, author of "A Shameful Act: The Armenian
    Genocide and the Question of Turkish Responsibility," is one of the
    first Turkish academics to acknowledge and discuss openly the killings
    of Armenians by the Ottoman Turkish government in 1915.

    Edward Alexander is a retired U.S. Foreign Service officer and author,
    born in New York to Armenian parents who fled Turkey.

    "The evidence is overwhelming and to many Armenians, it is utterly
    preposterous for anyone, especially the Turkish government, to deny
    what is historical truth.

    For my research, one of my sources was the German press. My other
    source was the cables that were sent to Ambassador Henry Morgenthau,
    the U.S. ambassador in Turkey at the time of the genocide. These
    are documents that cannot be refuted. In addition, I did research
    eye-witness reports in Merseburg, Germany," Alexander said.

    For his part, Mr Akcam said, "Our Prime Minister is wrong because
    we can prove the genocidal intent without any problems. One set of
    documentation are the trials in Istanbul between 1919 and 1921. These
    are the indictments, verdicts, hand-written testimonies and eye-witness
    accounts which were recorded during that time. There is a lot of
    evidence here showing the killing of the Armenians. The originals
    of these documents are not known. We assume that they have been
    destroyed after Turkish nationalists took over Istanbul. [Turkish
    officials] only trust the documents in prime ministerial archive
    today in Istanbul. I can show very easily, based on prime ministerial
    archives, the genocidal intent of Ottoman Turkey. I will publish a
    book in the Turkish language in 2008 where I am presenting more than
    500 documents from prime ministerial archives in Istanbul."

    Leave a comment:

  • Siamanto
    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
    Clears The 200 Mark

    2 of 2


    Oct 10 2007


    REGNUM: The necessity for concessions has recently been spoken of
    more and more often in the context of the Nagorno-Karabakh peace
    process. From the viewpoint of the Armenian Diaspora, what is the
    degree of concessions?

    Conflict can be settled through compromises - this is a fundamental
    principle. Another way of settling conflicts is a decisive victory
    over the enemy in military operations. The issue is settled either
    at the negotiating table or on the battlefield. We gained a victory
    on the battlefield, and cannot be defeated at the negotiating
    table. I do not think that there exists any threat of resumption of
    hostilities. Azerbaijan is not ready for war. If they were, they would
    resume military operations without asking anyone. If hostilities
    are resumed now, Azerbaijan may lose all the other territories,
    particularly Shahumyan. That is, if Azerbaijan unleashes a war now,
    it will lose more than it may gain. I disagree with the opinion that
    the Armenian side must not cede even an inch of land.

    Some territories surrounding Artsakh, which are of no strategic
    importance or historically Armenian lands, may be ceded. It is not
    up to us to decide which particular region, town or village may be
    ceded to the Azerbaijani side. Time will come, and representatives
    of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Artsakh, standing over a map, will draw
    a border. However, we must not just cede the territories to them,
    stating that this is our concession. In exchange, we must have them
    recognize Artsakh as an independent state or as part of Armenia. A
    relevant document must be signed, and an international peacekeeping
    force must be stationed in adjacent territories. That is, concessions
    are only possible in case of concessions on the part of Azerbaijan
    and observation of the aforementioned terms. I think it must be a
    comprehensive solution.

    REGNUM: Do you think that the Azerbaijani side will agree to such
    a solution?

    If they do not, we have nothing to propose to them. We gained a
    victory, and the Artsakh problem is resolved for us. We have nothing
    else to solve. We are quite satisfied with the present-day situation -
    Artsakh was liberated, full stop! It is in Azerbaijan's interest to
    propose something to us, and concessions on our part will be possible
    in exchange for that "something."

    REGNUM: At present, Northern Martakert, Shahumyan and Getashen -
    the last named is part of Nagorno-Karabakh - are under Azerbaijan's
    control. In your opinion, what is the solution to the problem of the
    regions in question?

    A solution to the problem of the territories may be based on the
    principle of territorial swap. If we cede part of some territories
    under Artsakh's control to Azerbaijan, the Azerbaijani side returns
    the aforementioned territories. Another way is the resumption of
    hostilities and return of the territories by force.

    REGNUM: Nevertheless, you rule out the possibility of resumption
    of hostilities in the immediate prospect. How long can this
    neither-peace-nor-war state last?

    I am not a prophet. However, I personally rule out the possibility
    of such developments in the next few years. But we must always be
    ready for an attack.

    REGNUM: What is your description of Armenia's present-day foreign
    policy - nationalistic, liberal?

    Once again I have to say what I have already said. I am not
    delighted with the political maturity of Armenians, both inside and
    outside Armenia. In general, I am not satisfied. I would not like to
    criticize Armenia's authorities, because they have the same problem
    as all Armenians. Armenia's policy in the international arena is not
    impressive. I can neither say that they committed major blunders nor
    can their work be called brilliant.

    REGNUM: As a specialist in the field of communication, what is your
    opinion of Armenian information policy? If we consider the presence of
    Azerbaijan, Turkey and Armenia in the sphere of information activities,
    what problems can you see?

    Our work in most fields lacks professionalism. Whatever field you
    ask about, I will have to repeat the same phrase. The work carried
    out in the information field is equal to zero.

    REGNUM: To what do you attribute this deficiency and how can it
    be improved?

    To improve in an area, one should first of all realize its value.

    Neither the Armenian people nor the authorities realize the value
    of the information field. For example, when Presidents Aliyev and
    Kocharyan agree on specific issues, and Aliyev then goes back on his
    word, it takes our authorities almost a year to reveal this fact.

    This information must be spread within 24 hours through all media
    outlets, PR-companies should be employed to flood Western newspapers
    with analytical articles, to show the world that we are a peaceful
    nation and ready for negotiations and concessions. And it is not us,
    but Azerbaijanis, who are the cause of war. We must clearly realize
    that information is power. It must be collected and used at the
    right moment.

    REGNUM: As seen from Armenia, the Diaspora seems to be strong,
    but disunited? We have a 3-million-strong community in Russia,
    rather strong communities in the US and Europe. However, they do not
    cooperate. In your opinion, is there a necessity for at least these
    communities to cooperate, or the currently applied method is right and
    no need for coordination of Armenian communities' activities exists?

    What is going on now is both wrong and a waste of energy. We are a
    small nation, and cannot afford to be disunited. We need centralization
    of forces, cooperation not only between the aforementioned three
    communities, but also among Armenian communities worldwide. I have
    some ideas of how to organize Armenians worldwide, but I would not
    like to go into the details at this time. The unification of Armenians
    around common national ideas is a goal that can be attained. Members of
    Armenian communities worldwide must set themselves tasks and determine
    the ways of accomplishing them.

    Armenians worldwide can elect their leaders by democratic principles,
    by means of a vote. No one in the Diaspora should declare himself to
    be a leader without the vote of the Armenian public. Thus, we will
    have an elected body in the Diaspora that will cooperate with the
    elected leaders of Armenia and Artsakh.

    REGNUM: You are also a representative of the Lincy Foundation. I
    would like to ask you a question. It is a hypothetical question, to
    be exact. In your opinion, in the context of the current situation,
    when Armenia's borderline villages are hardly populated, would not it
    be better to direct the Foundation's resources to the implementation of
    a repatriation program for Armenians, which is of paramount importance,
    rather than to the renovation of Armenia's roads, which is important
    as well?

    It is not up to me to decide where our Foundation's resources must
    be directed. In Armenia, I supervise the work carried out under the
    Foundation's programs. I am well acquainted with what is going on in
    Armenia, and if I had the authority, funds would have been directed
    to the resolution of some other problems. The process of allocating
    funds is as follows: Armenia's top-level authorities propose the
    direction and a schedule of necessary works. The Lincy Foundation
    considers the authorities' proposals under the following principle:
    "If we want to do anything good for Armenia, who is better informed
    of the country's needs - those living in far away Los Angeles or the
    ones that grew up in this land, who are governing the country and
    are responsible for their people's future?"

    Leave a comment:

  • Siamanto
    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
    Clears The 200 Mark

    1 of 2


    Oct 10 2007

    Harut Sassounian is a prominent public figure, author, publisher of
    The California Courier newspaper, President of the United Armenian
    Fund, Lincy Foundation Vice President.

    REGNUM: A number of the US-based Armenian organizations are currently
    advocating the recognition of the Armenian Genocide in Ottoman Turkey
    in 1915. At present, 226 US Congressmen are reportedly advocating
    the adoption of a resolution on the Armenian Genocide. What is your
    opinion of the prospects for the adoption of the resolution? What is
    the importance of the resolution, considering the fact that Armenian
    political circles have no clear idea of their further steps after
    the worldwide recognition of the Armenian Genocide?

    Regarding your question about the prospects for the adoption of the
    resolution by the US Congress, I can say that more than half of the
    435 Members of Congress have co-sponsored the resolution. This means
    that, if the resolution is submitted to a vote even tomorrow morning,
    it will be adopted without any problems. I think that around 350
    Congressmen will vote for the resolution and just a few will vote
    against it. The major problem is whether the leadership of the
    US Congress will submit the resolution to a vote or, under Bush
    administration pressure, the resolution will be shelved, which was
    the case in 2000, when Speaker Hastert withdrew the resolution at the
    last moment. Otherwise, it would have certainly been adopted. The
    question is whether the scandal similar to that in 2000 will recur
    or the resolution will be submitted to a vote. I think that this
    time the resolution will be submitted to a vote, and its adoption
    has almost a hundred-per-cent chance, as Speaker Nancy Pelosi has
    been making statements advocating the recognition of the Armenian
    Genocide for 20 years. Besides, when I contacted her last November,
    before she was elected Speaker, she stated that she had been advocating
    the recognition of the Armenian Genocide for many years and intended
    to do so in the next year as well. Thus, we have a promise made by
    Nancy Pelosi who has not changed her position for many years. Also,
    a majority in the US Congress favors the adoption of the resolution.

    The submission of the resolution to a vote was postponed because of
    the parliamentary and, later, presidential elections in Turkey. We
    did not want the Armenian side to be accused of aiding the radicals
    in the Turkish elections. Now we have nothing to wait for and the
    resolution will certainly be submitted to a vote.

    Of course, a tough struggle over the resolution has started. The
    Turkish Government is constantly blackmailing the United States,
    making statements on severing relations, putting obstacles for US
    troops in Iraq, and so on. The blackmail is actually senseless, as
    each statement like that damages the image of Turkey itself. Turkish
    commentators have recently pointed out that the time of threats have
    passed, and the blackmail damages Turkey itself. Alternative ways of
    admitting past events need to be found. We are now witnessing the
    formation of a favorable atmosphere both in the US Congress and in
    Turkey. However, the Turkish side still does not find the courage to
    admit this Crime Against Humanity, and the most likely reason is a
    psychological barrier - it is difficult to admit the fact that their
    forefathers committed such a barbaric act against another people.

    Turkish leaders realize that the Genocide is a fact, and their
    statements on the necessity for "studying and discussing" the issue
    are a political game. They do not need either historians or studies,
    they know the truth. However, Turkish authorities fear that the
    admission of the Armenian Genocide will cause a negative reaction
    by their public and radical forces. But for this fear, the Genocide
    would have been admitted long ago.

    The United Nations has recognized the Armenian Genocide. Over
    20 countries, the European Parliament, hundreds of specialists in
    genocide and Holocaust, historians and other scholars recognized the
    Armenian Genocide long ago. But, the most important thing is that
    the US Congress has already approved a similar resolution on the
    Armenian Genocide in 1975 and 1984. Moreover, in 1981, US President
    Ronald Reagan signed a Presidential Proclamation designating the
    events of 1915 as Genocide. Since the US President has admitted the
    fact of the Armenian Genocide by signing an official declaration and
    the US Congress has approved the aforementioned resolution twice,
    the adoption of the resolution for the third time is of little
    importance. The Armenian Genocide has already been recognized and
    the resolution will not add anything new.

    The only problem is that the Turkish side is fighting the resolution,
    claiming that it is the first resolution of this kind. If the Turkish
    side did not fight it, I would not care about whether the resolution
    would be adopted or not. However, since the Turkish side is waging a
    political struggle, and the resolution has been submitted, we cannot
    retreat. Otherwise, it will be viewed as the Armenian side's defeat.

    The real purpose of the resolution is not recognition of the Armenian
    Genocide, but a political struggle - the issue of which side has a
    larger political capital in Washington.

    So we must not give up the struggle and allow Turkey to gain victory by
    exerting pressure. We must struggle for the adoption of the resolution
    so that Turkey's political strength should be sapped once and for all.

    As regards your question about the potential benefit from the adoption
    of the resolution and further steps, the following can be said:
    the recognition of the Genocide is not the Armenians' demand.

    The Genocide did take place, and we know it. The Genocide was admitted
    as far back as 1915-1923, when it was actually taking place.

    When our forefathers were being killed, no one had any doubts about
    what was going on. The Turks, who organized the Genocide, were well
    aware of what they were doing. So the recognition of the Genocide is
    not a step to be viewed as a great achievement. No, the recognition
    is an actuality - for 92 years. The issue should be considered
    from quite a different angle, and the Armenian people must come to
    realize it. If the resolution is passed, and should Turkey admit the
    Armenian Genocide, Armenians who are not well-grounded in politics
    will think that they have achieved their cherished dream. No, the
    admission of the Armenian Genocide by Turkey is an issue of secondary
    importance for us. The following issue must be raised: a cruel crime
    was committed against the Armenian people. The whole nation was
    actually annihilated, our lands were seized and our 3,000-year-old
    culture was destroyed. This is not only a cruel crime, but also a
    great injustice. Therefore, our true demand is compensation for this
    injustice. The world must know about what happened, and we have to a
    great extent succeeded. The Turkish side is well aware that the step
    to follow the admission of the Armenian Genocide by Turkey will be a
    demand for compensation and return of the lands. This is the reason
    why Turkey will not admit the Armenian Genocide, thereby trying to
    force the Armenians to stop at this stage, so that we keep demanding
    the admission of the Genocide for hundreds of years and will be unable
    to go to the next step. I declare with all responsibility that it is
    not so, the admission of the Armenian Genocide is of no value.

    Our demands are: Turkey must compensate for the damages and return
    our lands. Our demands do not depend on the recognition of the
    Armenian Genocide before going on to the next steps. This is the
    reason that a symposium recently was held at the University of
    Southern California. Renowned specialists in international law were
    invited. They explained the rights the Armenian people have under
    international law, and to which courts Armenians could apply to
    settle this issue. Now specialists must study the lawyers' advice and
    decide which issue should be submitted to which court, as there is
    the International Court of Justice, European Court of Human Rights,
    US Federal Courts, etc. This is a most important issue. It must be
    studied with all seriousness, because, if we lose in court, Turkey
    will claim that Armenians have no legal demands.

    REGNUM: There is an opinion that Armenian Diasporan organizations,
    while dealing with the issue of the Armenian Genocide, do not pay
    enough attention to the Nagorno-Karabakh problem. Do you agree with
    this viewpoint, and is it possible that the international community
    should recognize the Armenian Genocide, without saying anything about
    the necessity for compensations, and oblige the Armenian side to make
    certain concessions in the Nagorno-Karabakh issue instead?

    I disagree with the opinion that the Diaspora is ignoring the Artsakh
    problem (In our conversation, I would prefer using the historical name
    of Nagorno-Karabakh - Artsakh). I have heard such an opinion, but I
    can state with confidence that not only this point of view is wrong,
    but also the real situation is quite the opposite. Our people, neither
    in Armenia nor in the Diaspora, have political sophistication. This
    has been true throughout our history. Armenians have always had an
    advanced culture, we have many excellent musicians, a rich literary
    and architectural heritage, but, in contrast to Turkey, we have never
    had political maturity. And no wonder. Turks ruled an empire for 600
    years. We never had such an experience. We have always been under other
    nations' yoke. All that we do in the political arena, including on the
    issue of the Armenian Genocide, is unprofessional and insufficient. We
    speak of the Armenian Genocide everywhere, make statements and give the
    impression that we are making great efforts towards the settlement of
    this issue. However, these are mere words without any value. The same
    is true in the Artsakh problem. Everybody says: "We are for Artsakh.

    This is our historical land." But what is really being done for
    Artsakh? Yes, some young men went to war and sacrificed their lives
    for Artsakh's freedom, which is the most valuable thing they could
    do. But what are others doing? They are only talking. We are always
    only talking. So I do not agree that we do more in this area than in
    another, and this is the reality.

    As regards the possibility of the international recognition of
    the Armenian Genocide in exchange for certain concessions in the
    Nagorno-Karabakh issue, such an idea does not exist, it is senseless.

    I have said that the Genocide is a fact, and its recognition is not a
    concession, as we do not benefit anything from it. If anyone, guided
    by political games, denies this fact, then this is that person's
    problem. Moreover, we have reached a stage where the admission of
    the Armenian Genocide is more in Turkey's interests than that of
    Armenians. If Turkey should admit the Armenian Genocide even tomorrow,
    the Armenians, who are politically naive, would think that they have
    achieved their dream. That is, the Armenian side will just relax and
    stop trying to achieve its true goals, namely, the return of lands and
    compensation. The Armenian people must be mature enough to realize
    their true goals. In this context, if Turkey admits the Armenian
    Genocide, it will be the first to benefit. Although no official demand
    for the admission of the Armenian Genocide is made on Turkey in the
    context of the country's admission to the European Union, this issue
    is constantly raised and used as a lever for exerting pressure on
    Turkey. That is why, if a Turkish leader admits the Armenian Genocide
    today, the next day the entire world will praise him as liberal and
    progressive, for having admitted his forefathers' crimes. He will be
    awarded a Nobel Peace Prize and many other prizes. Moreover, even if
    Turkey fails to meet all requirements for the admission to the European
    Union, the positive reaction to its admission of the Armenian Genocide
    will be so great that a blind eye will be turned to other shortfalls,
    thereby facilitating the process of Turkey's entry into the EU. Thus,
    Turkey will benefit much, without losing anything. The principal error
    of both Armenians and Turks is that they think that, in case Turkey
    admits the Armenian Genocide, Armenians will demand their lands. In
    fact, the two issues have nothing in common. If, in conformity with
    international law, the Armenian people can demand their territories,
    it is not at all necessary to wait for Turkey to admit the Armenian
    Genocide for 90 or 900 years. Even if tomorrow we apply to court and
    demand our territories, no court will say: "no, you cannot demand
    territories until Turkey admits the Genocide." This is tantamount to
    refusing to convict a murderer until he admits his guilt.

    REGNUM: You often visit Armenia and, naturally, are acquainted with
    the situation. If you had to enumerate the priorities of the country's
    foreign policy, which issues would you first of all point out?

    If we establish certain problems as priorities, the first thing to
    note is, of course, Armenian-Azerbaijani relations, as the conflict
    over Artsakh is unresolved. The major problem is a state of war or
    rather a bloody ceasefire with Azerbaijan - shots can be heard on
    the Armenian-Azerbaijani border, both sides sustain losses.

    The second issue is the Armenian-Turkish relations - from the viewpoint
    of both the past and the current blockade of Armenia

    The third item is, I think, the Armenian-Georgian relations, which
    are not problematic in general, but we have a problem of the Javakhk
    Armenians - not a territorial issue. However, the problem is the
    observation of the rights of the Armenians residing there. Of course,
    some problems of human rights, social conditions, schools and churches
    must be resolved in the context of friendly relations with Georgia.

    Leave a comment:

  • Siamanto
    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
    Clears The 200 Mark

    Members of The Armenian Community React... (Part VII)

    The Washington Post Perpetuates a Destructive Myth
    By Khatchig Mouradian
    Nov. 2, 2007

    The Armenian Genocide Resolution (H.Res.106) has attracted enormous
    media attention since it was passed by the House International Affairs
    Committee on October 10. However, the content of many of the articles,
    columns and stories make one thing clear: Writers across the United
    States were ill-prepared to tackle the issue of the Armenian genocide,
    simply because they knew very little about it.

    One case in point is Richard Cohen's article in the Washington Post,
    titled "Turkey's War on the Truth" (Oct. 16, 2007). Cohen makes
    arguments based on false premises. After conceding--with
    condescension--that what happened to the Armenians in 1915 was "plenty
    bad," he concludes that it falls short of genocide "because not all
    Armenians...were...affected." Clearly, if we follow his train of
    thought, Cambodia, Rwanda, Darfur and several other cases should not
    be labeled as "genocide."

    Cohen's standards are clearly different from those of the UN
    Convention defining genocide, but Cohen doesn't just introduce his own
    novel definition of genocide, he also creates his own facts. He
    suggests that jurist Raphael Lemkin, the author of the Genocide
    Convention, coined the term "genocide" based solely on "what the Nazis
    were doing to the Jews." This is blatantly wrong. Although this
    factual error was pointed out by many--including myself--to the
    editors of the Washington Post, no correction was issued and, to this
    day, no letter to the editor on this issue has appeared in the paper.

    To set the record straight, the horrors of the Armenian genocide--and
    not only the Holocaust--played a central role in Lemkin's lifelong
    pursuit to find a name for the ultimate crime against humanity--the
    cleansing of a group--and to incorporate into international law the
    prevention of this crime and the punishment of its perpetrators.

    The destruction of the Armenians came to Lemkin's attention when, in
    1920, Soghomon Tehlirian--an Armenian whose entire family was killed
    during the genocide--assassinated Talaat Pasha, the mastermind behind
    the Armenian genocide, in Berlin. Lemkin read about Tehlirian's trial
    and, during a discussion with his professor at the University of Lvov,
    asked, "It is a crime for Tehlirian to kill a man, but it is not a
    crime for his oppressor to kill more than a million men?" His
    professor argued that states are sovereign and they can do what they
    want to their citizens. "Consider the case of a farmer who owns a
    flock of chickens. He kills them and this is his business. If you
    interfere, you are trespassing," his professor argued. Lemkin was
    proud of Tehlirian for defending "the moral order of mankind," but
    wanted international law--and not individuals--to punish the

    Lemkin, a Polish Jew who lost 49 relatives in the Holocaust, coined
    the term "genocide" in 1944 based on the planned extermination of the
    Armenians by the Ottoman Turks in 1915 and the Jews by the Nazis
    during World War II. He worked tirelessly to have the United Nations
    pass a law on the prevention and punishment of that crime. Finally, on
    Dec. 9, 1948, the UN General Assembly ratified the Genocide

    In a CBS program first broadcast in 1949, Lemkin said, "I became
    interested in genocide because it happened to the Armenians... So, you
    see, as a lawyer, I thought that a crime should not be punished by the
    victims, but should be punished by a court, by a national law."

    In an article in the Hairenik Weekly (later the Armenian Weekly)
    published on Jan. 1, 1959, he confirmed that the suffering of the
    Armenians had paved the way to the ratification of the Genocide

    "The sufferings of the Armenian men, women, and children thrown into
    the Euphrates River or massacred on the way to [the north Syrian
    desert of] Der-el-Zor have prepared the way for the adoption for the
    Genocide Convention by the United Nations. ... This is the reason why
    the Armenians of the entire world were specifically interested in the
    Genocide Convention. They filled the galleries of the drafting
    committee at the third General Assembly of the United Nations in Paris
    when the Genocide Convention was discussed."

    At the end of this article, Lemkin asserted, "One million Armenians
    died, but a law against the murder of peoples was written with the ink
    of their blood and the spirit of their sufferings."

    There are numerous similar references in Lemkin's private papers as
    well as in the press. In an age where information is readily
    accessible, columnists and editors have little excuse to make grave
    factual mistakes. When they do, they ought to correct themselves
    promptly--unless, of course, their aim is to perpetuate those


    Want to read more about the origins of the concept of genocide? Check
    out either of the following books:

    Steven L. Jacobs, "Raphael Lemkin and the Armenian Genocide," in
    Richard Hovannisian's Looking Backward, Moving Forward (Transaction
    Publishers, 2003), pp. 125-135.

    Samantha Power, A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide,
    (Basic Books, 2002).


    About Khatchig Mouradian
    Khatchig Mouradian is editor of the Armenian Weekly. From 2000 to 2007
    he was an editor of the Lebanese-Armenian Aztag Daily. His writing has
    been translated into more than 10 languages, and he has translated
    such works as Paulo Coelho's "The Alchemist" (Hamazkayin, 2004). He
    also contributes to a number of U.S. and European publications.

    Mouradian has presented papers on genocide and the media at
    conferences such as the 5th Workshop on Armenian-Turkish Scholarship,
    held at NYU in 2006.

    Friday, November 09, 2007

    Frank V. Zerunyan, Esq. [Chairman, Board of Governors of the Armenian
    Bar Association; Mayor Pro Tem, City of Rolling Hills Estates]:
    "The People's House of the United States of America must follow its
    tradition and uphold the truth above all else. The speaker of the
    House of Representatives must bring HR106 to a floor vote because
    the resolution is morally, intellectually, historically and legally
    consistent with our American values. We Americans must insist that
    our leaders promote truth, justice and the rule of law. We have a
    long tradition of accepting human dignity as an inalienable right
    and as the basis of our jurisprudence. No one could have described
    it better than Alexander Hamilton when he said "The sacred rights
    of mankind are not to be rummaged for, among the old parchments,
    or musty records. They are written, as with a sun beam in the whole
    volume of human nature, by the hand of divinity itself; and can never
    be erased or obstructed by mortal power."

    "Never again" to Armenians, Jews, Cambodians, Rwandans, Darfurians
    is not just a slogan in the context of the human rights debate in
    the world; it is a call to meaningful action to eradicate genocide
    from the world.

    Experts and scholars confirm that each perpetrator has used previous
    crimes against humanity with impunity. Indeed Adolph Hitler himself
    in 1939, before the invasion of Poland, reminded his commanding
    officers in a passionate speech "who still talks now days of the
    extermination of the Armenians?" Denial is part of and a completion
    of this crime against humanity. Our values simply do not permit us
    to be co-conspirators to the commission of or to the completion of
    the crime of genocide.

    At stake today in Washington DC, of course, is the question of
    whether the United States House of Representatives should offend
    Turkey by voting on a resolution condemning the Armenian Genocide
    of 1915. All actors in this debate are playing the roles they have
    played for decades. Turkish generals and ministers are threatening
    our military ties, the closure of our bases, air space and logistics
    routes. Ironically however, even before any word of this resolution,
    those routes were already closed to our sons and daughters when our
    nation went to war to liberate Iraq. There is also a new threat by our
    own government; "radical Islam". Most if not all credible experts will
    agree that this threat is simply not credible as the Republic of Turkey
    will never chose this form of a regime over the great and overwhelming
    legacy of its founding father Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. Moreover, such
    a threat completely undermines contemporary Turkish identity.

    While the Republic of Turkey may react negatively in the short term
    (I think to their own detriment), recognition of the Armenian genocide
    is warranted for several reasons. First, the HR106 declares the truth;
    a truth that 23 other countries, 40 American States and countless
    Counties and Cities have already recognized. Second, no one discusses
    or even mentions our influence and the basis of our influence over
    the Republic of Turkey. The truth is that we brought Turkey into
    the NATO Alliance without which Turkey's security could not be
    guaranteed. We support Turkey's membership into the European Union;
    an economic "must" for the survival of Turkey into the 21st Century
    and beyond. We granted Turkey a most favored nation trading status
    resulting in more than $7 billion in annual trade and $2 billion in
    US investments in Turkey. Only Israel and Egypt outrank Turkey as
    recipients of US Foreign assistance. Third, it is inconceivable that
    even back in the days when the US prized West Germany as a buffer and
    deterrent against the Soviet Union, we Americans would have refrained
    from condemning The Shoah (the Holocaust) at Germany's behest.

    Finally and more importantly to this American of Armenian decent,
    it brings finality and closure, bringing back human dignity to
    humanity lost almost a century ago. I assume most of you know the
    eternal resting grounds of your great grand fathers and grand mothers;
    I don't. My ancestors formed the first Christian nation in the world
    (301 A.D.) only to become the invisible Christians in unmarked graves
    in the early stages of the 2oth Century.

    I am the great-grand son of a victim and the grand son of a survivor.

    Ironically, I live today as the direct result of the kindness of a
    Turkish gentleman (Effendi) who had the humanity to shelter my grand
    father. I applaud his humanity and encourage our leaders to follow
    in his footsteps."

    Opinions expressed in JURIST's Hotline are the sole responsibility
    of their authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of JURIST's
    editors, staff, or the University of Pittsburgh.

    Leave a comment:

  • Siamanto
    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
    Clears The 200 Mark

    Members of The Armenian Community React... (Part VI)

    By Carol Azizian, MI
    Oct 29 2007

    Once while giving her mother, Varsenig Gholdoian, a bath after she'd
    had a stroke, Rose Byder of Grand Blanc noticed something she hadn't
    seen before. It horrified her. "She had indentations or grooves on
    her back," Byder said. "It wasn't something a person would inflict on
    (herself)." Then she recalled the story that her mother, an Armenian,
    had told her about surviving a "death march" in 1915 in Turkey. "All
    the (Turkish) soldiers carried bayonets," said Byder, who's lived in
    Grand Blanc since 1972. "If you didn't move along, you were hit by
    a rifle butt."

    Some 1.5 million Armenians living in Turkey during the time of the
    Ottoman Empire were killed in 1915. Many scholars call the mass
    killings a "genocide." The term was defined by Raphael Lemkin,
    a Polish-Jewish jurist, in his 1944 book, "Axis Rule in Occupied
    Europe," as "the destruction of a nation or of an ethnic group."

    Earlier this month, a U.S. House committee voted to condemn the mass
    killings as genocide, "rebuffing an intense campaign by the White
    House and warnings from Turkey's government that the vote would
    gravely strain its relations with the United States," the New York
    Times reported. Last week, House sponsors of the resolution asked
    Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a strong supporter, to delay a vote on the
    measure because they feared it would fail. Support for the resolution
    deteriorated this month after Turkey recalled its U.S. ambassador in
    protest. Turks acknowledge that hundreds of thousands of Armenians
    died nearly a century ago, but contend the deaths resulted from
    the war that ended with the creation of modern Turkey in 1923, the
    Times said. The Armenian genocide has been officially recognized,
    through legislation or proclamation, by 40 states and also by a growing
    number of countries, including Canada, France, Italy, Sweden, Belgium,
    Argentina, Russia and Switzerland. Byder said she called U.S. Rep. Dale
    Kildee's office to request that he support the resolution. "I told
    his office that I felt it was about time Americans recognize the
    Armenian genocide," she said. "I mentioned that my mother was one
    of the few survivors of the death march." Gary Keoleian, a surgeon
    with the Michigan Eye Institute of Flint Township and an Armenian,
    said he is pleased "that the primary goal has been met - at least
    it's reached the national stage and it's in people's awareness and
    part of people's discussion. "The dialogue of the genocide is on
    people's minds." Keoleian said he grew up listening to tales of his
    great-grandparents' and grandparents' escapes from Turkey. One of
    his great-grandmothers lived on a farm in eastern Turkey. Turkish
    soldiers came to her house and executed her brothers and father,
    Keoleian said. "The Turks were doing a sweep of the towns to get rid
    of able-bodied Armenian males," he said. "She (his great-grandmother)
    high-tailed it out with her son - my grandfather - and they hid
    in the hay in the barn for a long period of time. She could hear
    the screams and the gunfire. "After nightfall, she made her way
    to a friend's house," he added. "They got to a port town, got on a
    boat and made their way to Marseilles, France." Byder's mother was
    the youngest of nine born in the village of Yalova, near Istanbul,
    Turkey. Gholdoian's father was a farmer and a businessman.

    "Her family was wealthy enough to hire people to do the farm
    labor," Byder said. "She (Gholdoian) was sent to boarding school in
    Constantinople (now Istanbul)." During the week of April 24, 1915,
    Gholdoian, then 15, decided to come home to visit her family. The
    timing was unfortunate. That same week, Turkish soldiers knocked on
    their door and gave the family 24 hours to vacate their home. "They
    could take only things they could carry," said Byder. "When my
    grandmother asked why, the soldiers said 'it's only a temporary
    leave.' That's been imprinted in my memory (ever since). No reason was
    given." Gholdoian and her family members were sent on a "death march"
    across Turkey that lasted for months. "She cried a lot, especially
    when she saw people she grew up with being killed," Byder said. "You
    had to keep moving because if you fell, you were left to die or
    they killed you." At 4-feet-9, her mother was a petite, but feisty
    woman, Byder said. "She had a high IQ. She also made sure she didn't
    antagonize the soldiers." Still, she was subjected to many beatings,
    Byder said. Along the way, some Turkish villagers gave the deported
    Armenians food and water, Byder said. Byder's great-grandmother died
    in her daughter's arms. "She (Gholdoian) was devastated because her
    mother was her closest friend." Her father had died two months before
    she was born and most of her brothers and sisters were married and
    living elsewhere. Once, Gholdoian was in such despair that she threw
    herself into a river, hoping to drown. A Kurdish person rescued her,
    Byder said. "My mother kept saying, 'What's my crime? What did I do to
    deserve this?' That was her litany." Gholdoian ended up in Aleppo (in
    present-day Syria) and worked as a "slave" for a Turkish family. She'd
    heard that British soldiers were in the city. One night, she and
    a friend snuck out of the house and persuaded a couple of soldiers
    to help free them. The soldiers later arranged her escape to Paris,
    where she temporarily stayed with an aunt, Byder said. Eventually,
    Gholdoian agreed to an arranged marriage with an American-Armenian
    man who was a foundry worker in Detroit. They were married in 1921
    and had three children.

    "My mother always said that it was important to learn English,"
    recalled Byder whose late husband, John, was a senior vice-president
    of Braun & Braun Insurance Agency. "She went to night school to learn
    English and become a citizen," Byder added. "She was proud that she
    could vote and felt we all should be grateful to live in America."

    Writer Carol Azizian's grandmother, great-aunts and great-uncle also
    survived the Armenian genocide.

    Roxanne Makasdjian

    San Francisco Chronicle, CA
    Nov 4 2007

    The Armenian genocide resolution pending in Congress (HR106) has
    prompted debate about whether it's the right time for the United
    States to officially recognize the systematic annihilation of the
    Armenian population in Turkey, perpetrated by the government of the
    Ottoman Empire in 1915. Against increasingly bold denials of history
    and unjustifiable intimidation by Turkey, now is the best time for
    our country to tell it like it is.

    A wave of disinformation has been disseminated by the Turkish and
    U.S. administrations since the resolution passed the House Committee on
    Foreign Affairs on Oct. 10. Turkey's threats have included cutting off
    the use of our air base, thus restricting our military shipments, and
    intervening in northern Iraq, destabilizing the only relatively quiet
    part of that country. The rationale for those threats is deceptive,
    the resolution being a convenient excuse to threaten to disrupt
    U.S. military actions in Iraq to advance Turkey's own interests.

    The fact is that we needn't become hostage to blackmail. In 2003,
    without an Armenian genocide resolution up for a vote, Turkey refused
    to allow us to use our base at Incirlik to invade Iraq. We carried
    out the invasion successfully anyway. The United States has numerous
    military bases in the area - in Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Jordan,
    Bulgaria, the United Arab Emirates and Afghanistan - from which we
    can operate.

    The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and the Turkish Daily News
    have all quoted U.S. officials saying that if Turkey cut off our base
    or supply lines, it would not greatly affect our military operations.

    And, according to a recent article in Defense News, the Armenian
    genocide resolution wouldn't even "dent" U.S. arms sales to Turkey.

    Several years ago, when France passed a similar resolution, arms
    sales between France and Turkey were back to booming within months.

    Turkey's strategic interests are much more dependent on good
    relations with the United States than vice versa. If we tolerate
    Turkey's blackmail, we actually weaken our position in the strategic
    relationship and embolden others in the region to blackmail us.

    Turkey's threats against the Kurds in Iraq are also not new, nor a
    result of the pending resolution. Successive Turkish governments have
    had claims on the oil-rich, northern Iraqi region of Kirkuk and Mosul
    from as early as the 1930s. Turkish governments have also treated
    their 20 million Kurds worse than second-class citizens.

    Anti-Americanism has reached new heights in Turkey not because of
    the Armenian genocide resolution, but because of opposition to the
    U.S. intervention in Iraq and the consequent formation of a Kurdish
    autonomous government controlling the oil revenue in northern Iraq.

    As Graham Fuller, former vice chairman of the CIA's National
    Intelligence Council, wrote recently, "Turkish-American relations have
    been deteriorating for years, and the root explanation is simple and
    harsh: Washington's policies are broadly and fundamentally incompatible
    with Turkish foreign policy interests in multiple arenas."

    Despite all this, the United States has been enabling Turkey's denial
    of the genocide, damaging our reputation and giving a junior ally
    the upper hand in a relationship in which we should be leading. Last
    year, the U.S. government went as far as dismissing our ambassador to
    Armenia, John Evans, for discussing the Armenian genocide. President
    Bush and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice have recently gone
    further, referring to the Armenian genocide as an open historical
    question needing more study.

    This position contradicts the vast majority of historians and Holocaust
    and genocide studies that recognize this event as unambiguous genocide,
    as well as the abundant documentation in our own national archives,
    including the memoirs of the U.S. ambassador to Ottoman Turkey in
    1915, Henry Morgenthau, who wrote of witnessing the "extermination
    of a whole race."

    Turkey has even reached into our educational system by lobbying
    against inclusion of the Armenian genocide in our textbooks, and
    against local remembrances of the genocide, as was the case when
    Armenian Americans purchased San Francisco's Mount Davidson Cross in
    memory of their slain forefathers.

    In Turkey today, discussion of the Armenian genocide is a crime
    carrying as many as 10 years in prison. Scores of writers, professors
    and community leaders are being prosecuted under this law, legitimizing
    the undemocratic, nationalist fervor of the Turkish masses. In
    this context, the government's call for a commission of Turkish and
    Armenian historians to study the "events of 1915" is simply a way to
    bury the truth.

    Contrary to opponents' claims, House Resolution 106 does not condemn
    present-day Turkey for the crimes of its predecessor, nor does it
    demand that Turkey recognize the genocide. It simply reaffirms the
    historical record, a necessary affirmation when faced with massive
    denial. Congress has passed recent resolutions reaffirming the truth
    of the Holocaust as well as the genocides in Cambodia, Ukraine,
    Bosnia and Darfur.

    Most recently, we watched Bush and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi give the
    Congressional Gold Medal to the Dalai Lama, despite China's warnings
    that such action would be detrimental to U.S.-China relations. Giving
    in to similar warnings from Turkey would highlight the hypocrisy
    in that action and signal to the world that we have a clear double
    standard when it comes to human rights. The longer the United States
    helps Turkey's denial, the longer the denial will continue, and the
    longer we'll be hostage to it. Instead, we should help steer Turkey
    toward democracy, for its own sake - and ours.

    Roxanne Makasdjian is chair of the Bay Area Armenian National
    Committee. Contact us at [email protected].

    This article appeared on page E - 3 of the San Francisco Chronicle

    Leave a comment:

  • Siamanto
    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
    Clears The 200 Mark

    Members of The Armenian Community React... (Part V)

    Waco Tribune Herald, TX
    Oct 28 2007

    Turkey blackmails U.S. to ignore its sins
    Art Tonoyan, guest columnist

    Sunday, October 28, 2007

    Some 90 years ago the Ottoman Turkish government set out in the most
    thorough fashion to destroy its Christian minorities. But the brunt
    of the Turkish ire fell on Armenian Christians.

    Death came in many guises. As a result, some 1.5 million Armenian
    men, women and children were killed - nearly two-thirds of all
    Armenians in Turkey.

    You might ask why I care.

    By chance or providence, my grandparents managed to survive the

    Actually, considerable credit went to the combined relief efforts of
    American Protestant missionaries, philanthropists such as John D.
    Rockefeller and statesmen such as William Jennings Bryan.

    The U.S. Congress is debating a non-binding resolution recognizing
    that the Ottoman government's efforts to destroy Armenians indeed
    constituted a genocide. That's the position of the International
    Association of Genocide Scholars.

    This initiative, backed by self-evident facts, has brought shameless
    Turkish tantrums combined with political blackmail, and meddling into
    U.S. internal affairs.

    So doing, Turkey indirectly has threatened the lives of U.S. service
    personnel in Iraq.

    As the saying goes, `With friends like these . . .'

    The Bush administration has urged Congress not to follow through with
    the resolution.

    Who would have thought that the United States could be so bullied?

    The timing of the resolution? I would argue it is 90 years too late.
    But similar resolutions have come up year after year in Congress.
    Year after year the proposal is shot down for fear of offending the

    Always, say the opponents, the time is not right.

    Either it's the Cold War, or the first Gulf War, or this Gulf War or
    the war on terrorism.

    We're told that Turkey is a reliable ally ad infinitum. Reliable to a
    point. And why?

    Turkey has been on the receiving end of U.S. favors for the past 50
    or so years without much positive change in its cultural outlook.

    Regardless, this Turkish government, while allowing the shipment of
    supplies, refused to allow the staging of coalition troops in opening
    of the northern front into Iraq. Turkey did so in hopes of scoring
    political points with the European Union.

    This ended up costing time, U.S. lives and U.S. tax dollars.

    That's not all. Turkey's Islamist government has courted the
    Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, called the Israeli treatment of
    the Palestinians a `genocide' (a dose of inescapable irony) and has
    signed lucrative business deals with the regime of Iranian mullahs by
    effectively sidestepping U.S. calls to isolate Iran.

    But these facts are not the only ones that put Turkey's democratic
    credentials in doubt. The Turkish state spares no effort to silence,
    intimidate, imprison or even kill anybody who dares to challenge the
    official narrative on the Armenian genocide.

    Nobel laureate Orhan Pamuk was tried for `insulting Turkishness' when
    he mentioned it in a Swiss interview.

    Turkish-Armenian journalist Hrant Dink was murdered in front of his
    offices for an article he wrote about the genocide in his newspaper.

    Then his son was convicted for `insulting Turkishness' for reprinting
    his father's original article. He may well end up in a prison ward
    somewhere in Istanbul, if he doesn't end up with a bullet in his

    The symbolic resolution in question before Congress is a simple act
    of affirmation of history. It is not by any stretch of the
    imagination directed at the current Turkish government, although
    Turkey perceives it as such.

    Some 23 nations have passed similar resolutions in the past decade.

    The fault for the current debacle should not therefore be located in
    partisan politics, as the cynics at the Fox News and the likes of
    Rush Limbaugh would have us believe.

    It's in the fact that Turkey is yet to take an honest look at a past
    it tries so hard to deny. The tantrums it now throws are more worthy
    of my 2-year-old than a modern state aspiring to join the family of
    European nations.

    Art Tonoyan is a Ph.D. candidate at Baylor University's J.M. Dawson
    Institute of Church-State Studies.

    Aris Janigian
    Oct 26 2007

    In an interview published October 26, 2007, Ami Eden of the Jewish
    Telegraphic Agency asked Abraham Foxman whether he had been wrong
    to refuse to describe the WWI-era systematic murder of 1.5 million
    Armenians by Ottoman Turks--an event known to historians as the
    Armenian Genocide--as a "genocide." Foxman replied,

    "We said it is a massacre, an atrocity, we've said it for 40 years.

    The Armenians wanted us to say genocide. To me it was sufficient for
    us to say I'm not a historian we don't adjudicate all the issues...

    "I respect the Armenian community for wanting their memory, their pain,
    their suffering to be recognized globally in the most sensitive way
    or the most meaningful way. So we said it is an atrocity and it is
    massacre, but we just don't think that Congress should [describe it
    as a genocide]."

    The following news story was published fifteen years later.

    Foreign relations Committee calls WWII Killing of Jews "Genocide."

    September 24, 2022, Los Angeles, CA Aris Janigian-staff writer

    On Wednesday, September 23, The House Foreign Affairs Committee
    voted 27 to 21 to condemn as genocide the mass killings of Jews in
    Germany during World War II. New Germany reacted angrily, recalling
    its ambassador from Washington and threatening to withdraw its support
    for the continuing War on Terror.

    "America has crossed a line with this resolution," Foreign Minister
    Helmut Gottschalk said. "Petty domestic politics has trumped American
    national interests. The New German people can only take so much
    insult. We will see our next steps."

    It was a harsh rebuke from one of America's closest allies, and
    sent shock waves through the White House. The resolution comes at
    a time when the United States is actively drumming up support for
    the War on Terror, and two deputies in the State Department departed
    for Berlin immediately after the vote in an attempt to forestall a
    diplomatic disaster. At home, Secretary of State Candid Price called
    the resolutionStill Waiting for Recognition: For the few remaining
    survivors of the Jewish tragedy, this year's resolution may be the
    last chance "irresponsible."

    In a Rose Garden press conference President Hernandez acknowledged the
    Jewish tragedy, but sternly warned against the resolution. "This is
    not the right time or the right place for this kind of resolution,"
    Hernandez said.

    Jews, along with the large majority of historians outside New Germany,
    say that from 1939 to 1945 the German Nationalist Socialist Party
    carried out a systematic campaign to kill as many as six million
    Jews in Europe. They claim the killings amounted to "genocide,"
    a term that the New German government fiercely rejects.

    New Germany acknowledges that between 1 and 1.6 million Jews died
    during the war, but contends that a vast majority of those deaths
    occurred in the throes of war when disease and starvation was
    widespread. According to New Germany the intent to exterminate Jews
    is historically unfounded. "There was a context for these events.

    Many Germans died and suffered as well, far exceeding the number of
    Jews. These were the sad unintended consequences of war."

    Since the establishment of New Germany, the influential Jewish
    American lobby has sought acknowledgment of their ancestors'
    suffering. The authors of the resolution are from heavily Jewish
    districts in California and Florida and New York. They note that
    the United States must recognize the Jewish tragedy while the few
    remaining survivors are still alive.

    Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee Gregory Demerdjian,
    a descendent of survivors of the Armenian Genocide, said, "These
    events must be characterized for what they were: genocide. It is
    well documented in our own national archives that genocide of Jews
    occurred during the Second World War. This is merely an acknowledgment
    of America's own understanding of the events during that time. None
    of this should be construed to mean that New Germany is in the least
    responsible for these deaths." Demerjian said that he would soon
    introduce a resolution reinforcing America's strong and lasting
    relationship with the New Germany.

    The Jewish tragedy is a sensitive issue in New Germany. Under a
    progressive movement called "Identity Reformation," the New Germans
    have radically reconsidered what an older generation had taken for
    granted. Historians in New Germany argue that between the First and
    Second World War Germany was caught between JewishTaking Pride in
    Our Past: The New German government has insisted that the alleged
    genocide is simply not consistent with the nobility of German
    history industrialists and Jewish socialists intent on overthrowing
    the German state. "They wanted to destroy the country from within,"
    said New German Ambassador Norbert Sommer. "It was a difficult time.

    Everyone regrets the death of Jews, but wartime choices had to be
    made to save Germany's very existence."

    Today, New Germany rejects the verdicts of the Nuremberg Trials
    that found members of the Nazi party guilty of war crimes, pointing
    out that Germans admitted to those crimes under duress from the
    prosecuting Allies. "No document has ever been produced that shows
    that Hitler ordered the extermination of Jews," Sommer said. "Indeed,
    many attempts were made by Germans at the time to find a safe harbor
    for Jews, including some negotiations with Zionists in Europe. It is
    a total fallacy that there was anything resembling genocide."

    Members of the House committee who voted against the resolution
    characterized it as unwarranted "meddling" in a foreign state's
    accounting of its own past. Representative Stefan Kohler said, "Maybe
    it was a genocide, maybe it wasn't. None of us here are historians.

    This was 92 years ago. All I know is that passage of the bill would
    cause real-time harm to real people."

    Democratic Representative Richard Wechsler had stronger words: "You'd
    think with the War on Terror ongoing and all, the congress would find
    something better to do than rummage through the trash bin of history.

    What congress should be acknowledging is that when the rest of
    Europe has turned its back on America, New Germany has stood strong
    by our side."

    After WWII, America provided Old Germany with massive economic support
    under the Marshall plan. Old Germany remained a strong ally of the
    United States, and in 2112 it began an accelerated militarization
    program. Virtually one-third of New Germany's GDP is devoted to
    military expenditure.

    Since 2017, when President Harold Jones stepped up the War on Terror,
    America's relationship to the European Union has been severely
    strained. Germany is one of the only European countries with which
    the United States has strong diplomatic and military ties.

    Under penal code 3001, a number of writers have been prosecuted and
    convicted for "insulting Germanness" after using the term "genocide"
    or "holocaust " to refer to the Jewish tragedy. In 2020, New German
    dissidents attempted to organize an academic conference in order
    to revisit the events of 1939-45 from a "Jewish perspective." The
    conference was cancelled when then-Foreign-Minister Helmut Gottschalk
    called the organizers "traitors."

    Some Parliamentarians of the European Union, of which New Germany
    remains a nominal member, have argued that Germany should be censured
    for its view towards the Jewish tragedy. Other countries have decided
    to stay neutral, sharing the position of the United States that the
    events of that time should be left to historians to sort out.

    "Let bygones by bygones," said Roland Young, Secretary of Defense.

    "In a time of war, the United States has precious few allies. We
    respect history, but the life of our society depends upon our strategic
    position vis-a-vis our enemies today."

    Some Jews in New Germany say the house resolution would be
    counter-productive. Chief Rabbi of Munich Abraham Grynszpan said,
    "New Germany must come to terms with its own history. We resist
    pressure from foreign countries to set a timetable." Members of the
    Jewish community in America believe that German-Jews are defending
    their dwindling numbers inside Germany, and yet others believe that
    the existence of Israel is in peril should they speak out.

    New Germany has no diplomatic ties with Israel, and has repeatedly
    called on Israel to renounce its "genocide" claims. Its satellite
    state of New Lebanon has closed its borders with Israel.

    Last year, some diplomats perceived a softening in the New German
    stance when it called on Israel to establish a joint commission to
    study the wartime atrocities, but that perception has since been
    altered. In January of this year Herschel Mintz, the ethnic Jewish
    editor-in-chief of the New German daily Agon was murdered in the
    streets of Berlin for attention he drew to the Jewish tragedies. The
    accused murderer, a 17-year-old German, is currently on trial for
    the crime, but human rights groups believe that the New German Deep
    Police were accomplices to the murder, and prosecutors claim that
    evidence was been destroyed.

    In 2021, New German novelist Otwin Polk was awarded the Nobel Prize
    in Literature. In an explosive interview with an Italian newspaper,
    he said "In New Germany today, nobody but me speaks of the killing
    of over six million Jews." Today Polk lives in exile.

    Aris Janigian has written for The Los Angeles Times and Warsaw
    Gazetta. His novel BLOODVINE was a finalist for the William Saroyan
    International Writing Prize. He lives in Los Angeles.

    Leave a comment:

  • Siamanto
    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
    Clears The 200 Mark

    Members of The Armenian Community React... (Part IV)

    By Garin K. Hovannisian

    Los Angeles Times, CA
    Oct 25 2007

    The grandstanding in Congress cheapens the Armenian genocide, but the
    resolution exposes enmity with Turkey that the president cannot ignore.

    Old promises never die; they just fade away. So it is with the House's
    Armenian genocide resolution, the delicate dream of an underdog
    people who have, since their slaughter and dispossession in 1915,
    struggled to bring memory to power.

    When the resolution cleared the House Foreign Affairs Committee on
    Oct. 10, I was in L.A. -- the diaspora's nerve center -- and Armenian
    schools and churches were rumbling in anticipation. All that remained
    was for Speaker Nancy Pelosi to keep her promise to give the resolution
    a full House vote.

    Then, suddenly, the Washington machinery growled. Turkey recalled
    its ambassador to the U.S., while its lobbyists caught up with
    members of Congress. The political media -- from National Review
    to the Nation -- showcased a powerful set of hostilities toward
    the resolution. And within a few days, at least a dozen co-sponsors
    withdrew their support. "It's a good resolution but a horrible time
    to be considering it," said Rep. Mike Ross (D-Ark.).

    A horrible time because Turkey is a "key strategic ally," or, to
    exorcise the flattery, a crutch in America's democratic balancing act
    in the Near East. As it happens, Incirlik Air Base in southern Turkey
    serves as a transfer point for 70% of U.S. cargo headed for Iraq.

    Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates cited "our heavy dependence on
    the Turks" in his case against the resolution.

    Many other reasonable worries have been splashed around -- not all of
    them by the usual troublemakers. The Armenian patriarch in Istanbul
    opposed the resolution because he feared for the safety and standing
    of Armenians in Turkey. Even I, the great-grandson of Armenian genocide
    survivors, wrote against the resolution -- not because I don't believe
    there was a genocide but because the resolution's text and attendant
    political grandstanding cheapened the reality of that tragedy.

    The House has no business voting on the past. But the White House --
    the conductor of U.S. foreign policy -- has the obligation to face
    history honestly. If the absorbed historic narrative is wrong or
    politicized or incomplete -- like our understanding of Baathism and
    the Iraqi insurgency -- foreign policy falters.

    Unlikely though it sounds, the 92-year-old Armenian genocide is key
    to U.S. foreign policy. It unlocks a closet of skeletons -- but not
    that of the Young Turks of 1915, stuffed with 1.5 million Armenian
    skeletons. Instead, it opens the closet of today's Turkey, which puts
    its own Nobel laureate on trial for insulting "Turkishness"; which
    has become, according to a 2007 Pew survey, the most anti-American
    country in the world; where "Mein Kampf" hit the bestseller list in
    2005; which denies the Armenian genocide committed by a past fascist
    government probably because it retains some spiritual loyalty to it.

    It is no irony, then, that in denouncing the Armenian genocide
    resolution as a smear on its democratic name, Turkey is threatening
    extremely undemocratic behavior. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's
    recently issued plan of "six reprisals" includes a shutdown of Incirlik
    Air Base (a betrayal of the war on terrorism), a slow withdrawal from
    NATO (a betrayal of the West) and a revamped partnership with Iran
    (a betrayal of peace in the Near East). The flap over the resolution
    has revealed that Turkey's Western leanings are not based on steady
    principles but on friendships of convenience.

    Which is why I believe that the generally bad Armenian genocide
    resolution came at precisely the right time for the United States. It
    came at a time when our president could observe Turkey's fascistic
    convulsions and would be forced to choose between two historical
    narratives. Would he choose the denialist fiction that would keep
    afloat a rotting alliance and maybe his war? Or would he choose the
    bloody truth?

    At a news conference called just before the Foreign Affairs Committee
    debate two weeks ago, President Bush brushed off the truth. He urged
    Congress to stop the recognition, not because Congress trespassed
    into Bush's foreign policy jurisdiction but because it disrupted his
    agenda. In turn, our ally responded Monday by announcing that it would
    defy the pleas of the United States and cross Iraq's northern border
    to conduct military operations.

    This latest breach of friendship -- or, rather, revelation of enmity --
    affords the president yet another chance to recalibrate the national
    conscience and to reappear in the Rose Garden for two announcements:
    the first, a request that Congress withdraw its resolution; the second,
    a modest notice that the Armenian genocide of 1915 has not, in fact,
    faded away, but quietly has been absorbed by America's historical

    Garin K. Hovannisian is a graduate student at Columbia University's
    School of Journalism and blogs at

    By Dr. Nicole Vartanian

    Metro, NY
    Oct 25 2007

    Recently, the House Foreign Affairs Committee passed a non-binding
    resolution labeling as genocide the killing of 1.5 million Armenians
    by Turkish forces of the Ottoman Empire beginning in 1915. In
    response, the Republic of Turkey threatened to withdraw its support
    for U.S. efforts in the Iraq war, thereby inciting calls for the
    resolution to be blocked from a full House vote.

    The next day Jon Stewart and "The Daily Show" crack writers noted
    the apparent quid pro quo available for historical revisionism in
    exchange for participation in the war coalition. They hit their mark
    by conjecturing that if Germany would have joined the war on terror,
    the U.S. "could have turned the Holocaust into a 'Half-a-caust.'"

    Stewart distilled the debate's precise premise: If our politicians
    concede to Turkey's hyperbolic reactions toward our legislative
    process, we will be complicit in selling history.

    We even know what that price is. An article in last week's New York
    Times detailed the Turkish government's vast payouts to Washington
    lobbying firms - and the ex-Congressmen they employ - to fund genocide
    denial, including contributions to members of Congress.

    Guided by these tallies, we could prepare invoices for other
    governments seeking a means of obfuscating their past transgressions.

    In the face of this denial, 22 countries and 40 U.S. states have
    officially recognized the Armenian Genocide. Still, some people
    question the "relevance" of acknowledging the event as genocide
    92 years later. To illustrate the significance, I would ask us to
    fast forward 24 years and imagine if Jews were still fighting for
    acknowledgement of the Holocaust.

    Then, imagine the Republic of Germany funneling millions of dollars
    into Washington to propagate this denial, imperiling access to U.S.

    bases and threatening diplomatic relations. And please further imagine
    our administration begging Congress not to set the historical record
    straight. That is a world in which I most certainly would not want
    to live.

    However, this is the worldview we would endorse if we concede to those
    who wish to prevent recognition of the Armenian Genocide. At stake are
    both the sanctity of history and the sovereignty of our democracy -
    two sacred principles whose value should exceed any offers made by
    the highest bidder.

    Dr. Vartanian is on the board of the Genocide Education Project,
    a not-for-profit organization supporting the teaching of genocide
    in schools.

    Glendale News Press, CA
    Oct 27 2007

    FROM THE MARGINS: Recognition is the right thing to do


    A couple of weeks ago City Council members put their differences
    aside and voted unanimously to pass a symbolic resolution to urge the
    U.S. House of Representatives to pass a bill to recognize the
    Armenian Genocide.

    Gloomy Gus may argue that with a large segment of the residents
    tracing their roots to the Armenian highlands, the act was an
    expedient move to avoid political isolation. I briefly chatted with a
    couple of council members; I got a different vibe.

    Council members genuinely believed this was the right thing to do.

    Why? Let's look beyond historic evidence to understand this
    well-timed gesture. Living in a city with so many of the descendants
    of the survivors of the genocide, it has become second nature for
    some to realize this is the right thing to do.

    Council members understood how much this meant to many of the

    Yet, I am often asked why can't Armenians just move on. After all,
    it's argued, Poles and Jews have suffered in Europe and have `gotten
    over it.' African-Americans are dealing with the tragic chapters of
    their history. History has not dealt a much better hand to the Native
    Americans. The Irish have certainly recovered from the Potato Famine.
    And Darfur still bleeds today.

    The assumption is that every one of these groups is now healed and
    has recovered. I don't think that's the case.

    Genocide has left a scar on the Armenian people. If Turkey does not
    give acknowledgment, the offspring of the genocide generation will
    not heal. If the scars do not heal, it is difficult to look to the
    future. There seems to be no escape from this paradox but
    acknowledgment. advertisement

    Why is it important for Turkey to admit, I am asked.

    The obvious answer is: It's the right thing to do.

    Fortunately, Turkey can't just say `it wasn't us' and get away with
    it. Actually it can say, it wasn't modern Turkey, it was the
    Ottomans, but we're sorry. But by working so hard to deny the
    genocide, Turkey has become the inheritor and an accomplice to the

    Denial is not an easy task. For the denial to make mathematical
    sense, Turkey has to argue that not too many Armenians actually
    existed before the 1915. The disappearance of 1.5 million people is
    not easy to cover up.

    To put things into perspective, exterminating 1.5 million people is
    the equivalent to filling the Rose Bowl to seating capacity with men,
    women and children, murdering everyone, getting rid of the corpses,
    and repeating it 16 1/2 times.

    Let's take a minute to have that sink in.

    How do you deny such a crime? One could argue they all left the
    stadium willingly. But then the question is, where are they now? One
    could also argue that all the 1.5 million willingly converted to

    `Modern' Turkey's approach is to deny the existence of the Armenians
    on those lands. To do this, Turkey needs to toy with history to show
    that the Armenian civilization was not a major presence before World
    War I. And to do this, monuments and churches need to be
    re-categorized and history books need to be revised.

    The denial of the genocide is a denial of the existence of a

    It may be a tough task for Turks to come to terms with their history,
    but they also need to move forward and heal. The time will come when
    the Turkish state has to put its denial policies aside and live with
    the consequences of the crime.

    This issue is not going away. Unless of course, Turkey executes yet
    another scheme to eliminate what's left of the Armenian civilization
    to the east. As long as the world has not unanimously condemned the
    first genocide of the 20th century, given the right opportunity and
    Turkey's history of aggression in Cyprus, such a possibility
    shouldn't be discounted.

    It would have been the right thing for the U.S. House of
    Representatives to pass the resolution reaffirming the Armenian
    Genocide. Despite Turkey's threats to turn its back on America, it
    would not dare refuse our tax dollars. Besides, where is Turkey going
    to go - into the bed of radical Islam or into the arms of the newly
    refurbished Russian empire?

    City Council members had the right spirit. Thank you, council
    members, for acknowledging the pain of my grandparents. Thank you for
    reaffirming that their sufferings were real.

    Sometimes, even in politics, doing the right thing is the right

     PATRICK AZADIAN is a writer and the creative director of a
    local marketing and graphic design studio living in Glendale. He may
    be reached at [email protected]

    Leave a comment:

  • Siamanto
    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
    Clears The 200 Mark

    2 of 2
    Members of The Armenian Community React... (Part III)

    by Onnik Krikorian

    Global Voices Online, MA
    Oct 22 2007
    Apart from Raffi Kojian at and myself, few Armenian
    bloggers chose to participate in what can be considered an
    invitation to discuss and debate. In general, the Armenian and Turkish
    blogospheres remained polarized and isolated from each other although
    both Talk Turkey and Blogian were notable exceptions. Hopefully,
    as the resolution continues to be discussed in American political
    circles, there will be more examples of Armenian and Turkish bloggers
    communicating with each other on the matter.

    Certainly, and even though the fate of House Resolution 106 remains
    uncertain, Global Voices will continue to keep readers up to date
    on the latest developments. Until then, the latest posts from the
    blogosphere represent the two main views in circulation - that the
    Armenian Genocide happened and it should be recognized, or that it
    happened, but the resolution in the United States is not the way to
    right what most consider to be a historical wrong.

    While I understand the need to maintain good relations with an Islamic
    democracy, NATO member, and strategic ally, we cannot play along with
    Turkey's policy of whitewashing history and suppressing dissent. The
    United States cannot be a moral leader in the world if we only stand
    up for human rights issues when economic and strategic interests
    aren't at stake.As the bill's sponsor, Rep. Adam Schiff (CA-29) asks:

    "How can we take effective action against the genocide in Darfur if
    we lack the will to condemn genocide whenever and wherever it occurs?"

    Georgetown University College Democrats

    Is there an example of more extreme, hypocritical arrogance than
    the U.S. Congress, and other politicians, as well as newspapers
    columnists and human activists attempting to have a resolution passed
    acknowledging the Armenian genocide by Turkey?


    The fact that the U.S. Congress wants to pass a resolution regarding
    the genocide that Turkey has committed, but has not said anything
    about the genocides the United States is responsible for, shows that
    passing these type of resolution is completely meaningless.

    Getting Truth

    Two days ago, I lauded George Bush for having the courage to meet
    publicly with the Dalai Lama. Today I am embarassed to note that the
    American Congress has succumbed to the pressure exerted upon it by
    the Bush White House by refusing to recognize the Armenian Genocide.



    We are not talking here about a compromise on a tax treaty, a
    trade-off on a bill to support pork producers if someone supports
    your wheat farmers. We are talking about the killing of 1.5 million
    people. Recognizing genocide for what it is will not bring the dead
    back. But it will do justice to their memory and let others know that
    there will be no negotiating or compromising on the issue. Shame on
    Bush and shame on the US Congress.

    University of Alabama Faculty of Law

    There seems little historical doubt that the Armenian massacre
    was indeed genocide. The eye-witness accounts of the time are
    overwhelming, and Ottoman government documents talking openly about
    eliminating the Armenians as a people group are plentiful from the
    period 1915-1917. But with the U.S. dependent on the friendship of
    Turkey to support a difficult war in Iraq, it seems at the very least
    an ill-timed notion to rub Turkey's face in the judgment of history.

    True, all Armenians and American-Armenians will feel affirmed
    by official American national recognition of the injustice they
    suffered. But isn't it more important that the Turks themselves should
    finally come to acknowledge the truth of what happened to the Armenians
    92 years ago? That may yet take decades to come to pass.

    Assuredly, it won't be hastened by this week's Congressional
    resolution. And what if resupplying American troops in Iraq is
    seriously compromised by a Turkish curtailment of U.S. base usage
    in Turkey? To rephrase Congressman Lantos' well-stated dilemma: "Is
    the gratification of wounded Armenian sensibility worth the possibly
    serious risk that could ensure to American forces in wartime?" [...]


    The Armenian Observer also carries a summary of what Armenian bloggers
    in the Republic as well as the Diaspora wrote on the resolution,
    and there is full coverage on the Oneworld Multimedia blog. For now,
    the story looks set to continue.

    Leave a comment:

  • Siamanto
    Re: Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship
    Clears The 200 Mark

    1 of 2
    Members of The Armenian Community React... (Part III)

    by Onnik Krikorian

    Global Voices Online, MA
    Oct 22 2007

    It's not often that Armenia makes international headlines across the
    globe, but when it does it's usually because of one issue that remains
    fiercely debated until this day - the massacre and deportation of
    as many as 1.5 million Armenians from Ottoman Turkey in 1915-17. 22
    countries recognize the events that occurred towards the end of World
    War I as genocide, a charge that the modern-day Republic of Turkey
    refuses to accept even though the term was devised by Raphael Lemkin
    in 1943 with the Armenian and Jewish experience in mind.

    Most scholars also recognize the Armenian Genocide as such, but
    for the large and influential Armenian Diaspora, recognition by
    the United States is considered to be the main objective of its
    continuing international campaign. It's no wonder then, that when
    a U.S. Congressional House Committee on Foreign Affairs passed a
    resolution to recognize the Armenian Genocide by 27 votes to 20
    on 10 October, not only did the news make international headlines,
    but it also defined conversation in much of the blogosphere.

    Writing on's Life in Armenia immediately after the
    resolution was passed, Yerevan-based American-Armenian, Raffi
    Kojian, noted the prominence of the story as a leading item in the
    international media.

    What was very interesting for me this morning, was reading all
    the news articles, and there was definitely no shortage of them. I
    opened Google News to search for "Armenian Genocide" to see if it
    passed, but instead was greeted with "Armenian Genocide Resolution
    Passes Committee" as the top headline, with 650 stories already on
    the topic. That's big news! The coverage and points being raised
    were quite varied, from the sickening editorial in the Washington
    Post to widespread calls for doing the right thing. Lantos, head of
    the committee, summarized the vote beforehand as choosing between
    acknowledging a genocide, and appeasing Turkey for military reasons.

    Basically, do the right thing, or give in to the questionable
    arm-twisting of a supposed ally - though he did not put it in those
    undiplomatic terms.

    Although such resolutions are not new in the United States, with
    past experience showing that national security concerns and foreign
    policy objectives eventually prevent such acknowledgment from passing
    into law, reaction from Diasporan bloggers was ecstatic. Writing on's Life in the Armenian Diaspora, Lori wrote an entry in
    pretty much the same vein.

    I'll never forget this day! How monumental is this? Sitting in
    California unable to watch the House Foreign Affairs Committee meeting
    I had my father calling me from Armenia to provide periodic updates
    since he was able to watch the session live. I can't even begin
    to express how I'm feeling right now, I'm happy, proud, relieved,
    ecstatic, encouraged, hopeful.....Finally, our efforts weren't in
    vain. Finally, a president didn't succeed in shooting this resolution
    down. I must say that as a Clinton supporter I was disappointed in him,
    but I expected it from Bush and it feels SO GOOD seeing his efforts
    to stop this resolution from passing fail. I want to find the 27
    members of the committee who voted and shake their hands. I want to
    thank them for not buying into the threats Turkey made and for not
    allowing themselves or their ethics to be bought by the Turkish lobby,
    for not bending over and being Turkey's puppets.

    Reaction in the Turkish blogosphere, however, was obviously very
    different. Even 92 years after what most people do consider to be
    Genocide, the Republic of Turkey as well as everyday Turks deny that
    the event took place. Moreover, they blame the Armenian Diaspora
    rather than the modern-day Republic of Armenia for attempts to have
    the Genocide recognized in the United States. As the Turkish government
    responded to the passing of the resolution by threatening to withdraw
    logistical support for American troops in Iraq, Erkan's Field Diary
    was one of the first Turkish blogs to react to the news.

    27 members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee who are the
    representatives of American citizens are meddling into a past they
    have no f***** idea, acting as peons of a genocide industry... Well
    done dudes, this shows very well that a Democrats-controlled Congress
    is even worse for Turkey. I hope you can do any good for your own
    people after making Middle East even messier with your anti-Turkish

    Yet, given that the resolution first and foremost concerned Armenia
    and Turkey, two countries which share an albeit closed border and
    which have not established diplomatic ties primarily because of the
    international campaign for Genocide recognition, the bulk of posts
    on this subject primarily came from American and English bloggers. To
    begin with, this was because prior to the vote by the House Committee,
    U.S. President George W. Bush attempted to intervene to prevent
    its passage.

    The blogosphere was set alight by critical posts from American
    citizens protesting that fact. 1 Boring Old Man was particularly angry,
    pointing out that Bush is hardly the most appropriate person to offer
    his opinion on "crimes against humanity."

    I doubt that Mr. Bush knows where Armenia is unless someone briefed
    him recently, or knows anything about the Turks and the Ottoman
    Empire, or knows who Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was or of his place in
    Turkish history, or has read anything [even Wikipedia] about the
    Armenian/Turkish struggles, or cares much about any of these things.

    All he knows is that it is not polically expedient for our country to
    acknowledge the Armenian mass killing as a genocide because it will
    infuriate the Turks who are NATO Allies. His deepest understanding
    is to do the politically expedient thing.


    He's no person to be entering the debate about the Armenian Genocide.

    First, he doesn't know anything about it. Second, the issue is way
    too close to home for him to be objective. He cites his "War on
    Terror." What he doesn't mention is his own Terrorism...

    Winter Patriot agreed.

    [...] As far as I can tell, it boils down to a question of language.

    We're not supposed to call a historical crime against humanity by
    its rightful name because that would put a crimp in the current
    crime against humanity, which we are also not supposed to call by
    its rightful name.

    Two days later, the conversation changed as the White House continued
    to apply pressure to prevent the resolution from being put to the
    U.S. Congress for a full vote in November. With Turkey continuing to
    make threats to prevent U.S. troops in Iraq from being supplied via
    its territory, and with the Turkish Ambassador being "temporarily
    withdrawn, "opponents of the resolution started to accuse U.S.

    Congressional Speaker Nancy Pelosi of supporting House Resolution
    106 in an attempt to scupper the war effort. Blogs such as The Hill's
    Pundits Blog took the same line in cyberspace.

    Speaker Nancy Pelosi has picked the worst time to play politics when
    it comes to Iraq, Turkey and Armenia.


    We are now in a real war with terrorists. We have more than 100,000
    troops in Iraq. We have the Turks threatening to invade Kurdistan,
    just as Joe Biden talks about creating Kurdistan out of the ashes
    of Iraq. We have a more Islamic-leaning Turkish government. We are a
    fighting a global war on terror, where we need the help of the Turks
    more than ever.

    And Nancy Pelosi has decided to bring the same resolution to the floor,
    threatening our national security by playing politics.


    This is a bad time to play politics, Madame Speaker, especially on
    this issue, follow the lead of your predecessor. Choose American
    national security over domestic politics.

    The Simi Valley Sophist went further and effectively accused Pelosi
    of treason.

    Despite the Turkish threat, Pelosi is pushing forward with the
    resolution. What is Pelosi's political imperative? It surely is not
    Armenian votes. And, it surely is not a fear of additional American
    service personnel deaths.


    Now, you go ahead and tell me that Pelosi cares about the welfare of
    our troops. And, you go ahead and tell me that Pelosi actually cares
    about the memories of Armenians. I'll submit to you that Pelosi has
    simply found another mechanism to throw a monkey wrench into the Iraqi
    war effort. I'm sorry, but I don't find that patriotic. I hark back
    to the Vietnam War era traitor, Jane Fonda.

    This Ain't Hell... concurred.

    [...] Historians will remember that the Democrat "leadership"
    (using the term loosely) are a traitorous bunch of double-dealing,
    back-stabbing punk-ass sissies who can't summon the fortitude to stand
    up to a few squeakywheels on the internet. That'll be their legacy.

    Faced with such an outcry domestically, perhaps it was no wonder that
    many of the same Congressional Representatives that supported the
    resolution started to back away from HR 106. Interestingly, though,
    few of those bloggers which opposed the resolution actually denied
    that the Armenian Genocide took place. Instead, once again, national
    security and foreign policy objectives took precedence over what most
    Armenians consider to be the quest for "historical justice." Cribs
    and Ranting was one of them.

    It was a grand and appropriate gesture, befitting statesmen, by the US
    House of Representatives to officially dub the massacre of Armenians
    by the Ottoman Turks as "genocide". The US need not have made the
    first move on this, but it did it in line with its assumed role as
    a global leader, as a beacon of freedom to the rest of the world.

    Unfortunately, reality hit the House representatives, real hard. It
    is not the truth that prevails, even if it is a genocide. Usually it
    are the hard, cynical ground realities that win.


    Worried about antagonizing Turkish leaders, House members from both
    parties have begun to withdraw their support from a resolution backed
    by the Democratic leadership that would condemn as genocide the mass
    killings of Armenians nearly a century ago, reports The New York Times.


    Turkey has promised to turn over documents and support a conference to
    determine whether there was a genocide of Armenians. That conference
    would take years to convene, and maybe years to arrive at any
    conclusion. But it may now provide the House of Representatives a
    fig-leaf of an excuse to get out of the embarrassment their idealism
    got them into.

    Deja vu - the same happened in 2000 when another resolution recognizing
    the Armenian Genocide was about to be put to a full Congressional
    vote. It wasn't long before Armenian bloggers such as ArtMika at
    Unzipped started to write more on developments which to be honest,
    shouldn't really have come as much surprise to anyone.

    It seems that Bush + Turkey & co 'succeded' again. A number of
    House members panicky withdrew their support as co-sponsors of the
    resolution. To get majority seems unlikely now, and House Speaker Nancy
    Pelosi may be forced to shelve or postpone it. I felt kind of disgust
    when read the news (below, via iararat). They used us or got used
    and then threw away... as usual. Pure 'moral dimension' in politics.


    ABC News' George Stephanopoulos reports: "According to Congressional
    and Bush administration sources, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is
    now unlikely to bring a resolution which would label the deaths of
    Armenians in a conflict more than 90 years ago as "genocide".

    Yet, while history looked set to repeat itself with another resolution
    about to be blocked because of concerns about the war in Iraq and
    U.S.-Turkish relations, some interesting precedents did occur in the
    blogosphere. Firstly, and as was the case with the murder earlier
    this year of ethnic Armenian journalist and editor Hrant Dink in
    Istanbul, the Armenian blogosphere was defined more by numerous posts
    from non-Armenians.

    Truly, the conversation was global and the media also sought to solicit
    opinions from bloggers and internet users. One of those was Inside
    Higher Ed which ran an interesting article on the role of academia
    in the debate over the Armenian Genocide. The online article allowed
    commenting in the same way as a standard blog post.

    More significantly, perhaps, and although Armenian and Turkish
    bloggers avoided discussing HR 106 together online, some Turks
    attempted to reach out to ethnic Armenians via their blogs. One of
    those was Turkish writer, Mustafa Akyol, at The White Path.

    A few days ago a new friend of mine who happens to be an American
    Armenian played some beautiful songs for me that come from the
    deepest roots of her ethnic tradition. While I enjoyed the numinous
    rhythms of that magnetic Armenian music, I realized how similar they
    were to the tunes of the Turkish classical music that I have grown
    up hearing. "Despite all the political warfare," I said to myself,
    "alas, look how similar we are." I actually have a similar feeling
    when I drive along the magnificent mosques and palaces of Istanbul,
    some of which were built by Armenian architects - men in fez who
    devoutly worshiped Christ and proudly served the Sultan.

    Well, we were the children of the same empire, weren't we? We actually
    lived side by side as good neighbors for centuries until the modern
    virus called "nationalism" descended upon us. And then hell broke


    Convey your message calmly, in other words, and it will be heard. But
    don't try to impose it onto us. We are not a nation of monsters,
    but we do have a stubborn side. When foreigners start to dictate our
    history to us, we tend to revert back to our grandmothers' stories.

    And if we will start listening to your narrative, that will not be
    because we are pushed into a corner by the politics of a powerful
    lobby, but because our hearts are touched by the memoirs of a terrible

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  • TomServo
    Re: So-called Armenian Genocide Resolution Cosponsorship

    Originally posted by Kanki View Post
    Why don't you show real population government documents about identity of innocent armenians!
    why don't you show their names and family trees? or how do you know "1,5 milions"???

    Leave a comment: