After 105 Years, 1st Anniversary since the House & Senate Defied Trump and Recognized the Armenian Genocide
DENIAL IS THE LAST ACT OF A GENOCIDE
By Vic Gerami
Imagine if you came home to find that your neighbor whom you trusted had broken into your house, raped your wife and children, killed them, taken over your assets and belongings, claimed your house as his own, only to deny he did anything when the authorities arrived.
Imagine if he managed to possess your house and lock you out, blaming you for what happened and claim that he owned it all along. Imagine if he continued his assault by continuing to deny his crime and launched a campaign to re-write history, distorting the facts of the massacre. Imagine if the world knew exactly what he did but he had a gag-order on the United States, blackmailing it to never recognize it properly. Imagine the pain, sorrow and PTSD you would endure for the rest of your life.
“We cannot pick and choose which crimes against humanity are convenient to speak about, We cannot cloak our support for human rights in euphemisms. We cannot be cowed into silence by a foreign power.”
Congressman Adam Schiff
THIS is the ARMENIAN GENOCIDE, and THIS is why Armenians scattered throughout the world continue to be haunted by the ghosts of their ancestors. The Turkish government attempted to exterminate its Christian Armenian subjects in a premeditated, brutal and systematic fashion, killing 1.5 million out of 2 million innocent people living in their own ancestral land between 1915 and 1923.
Every President since Ronald Reagan in 1981 has sought to placate Turkey through the use of euphemisms and refused to utter the word Genocide. The Armenian Genocide is recognized by 49 US states and more than a dozen NATO allies. In fact, it is illegal in Switzerland and France to deny the Armenian Genocide.
“Genocide must not be denied. It must be acknowledged for what it is—a scourge on humanity. Official recognition of the Armenian Genocide would represent a courageous new chapter in American foreign policy. With the bold leadership of the current Administration, it is time for the US to take a stand against Turkish genocide denial.”
Congressman Gus Bilirakis
On October 29, 2019, the House of Representatives voted 405 by 11 to finally recognize the Armenian Genocide. Following the house’s passing of the resolution, the Senate voted unanimously to recognize the Armenian Genocide in defiance of Trump. The legislation underscored an unyielding stream of bipartisan rage at Turkey.
Congressman Adam Schiff (D-CA) was instrumental in leading the House effort along with Gus Bilirakis (R-FL). Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) spearheaded the Senate measure (S.Res.150). The Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA), led by the tireless work of its executive director, Aram Hamparian led the way.
“History is watching and it will not look kindly on those who object to recognizing genocide. In recent speeches before the Senate, I have laid out the case for why we must move forward on this resolution. The simple threshold question for this body comes to this – do we recognize a clear case of genocide when it happens? Or do we let a country like Turkey determine our own views, determine our own sense of history, determine our own moral obligation, and to determine the public record?”
Senator Bob Menendez
On April 24, 2020 Armenians worldwide commemorate the 105th anniversary of the Genocide that claimed the lives of 1.5 million people. On this day in 1915 hundreds of Armenian intellectuals were rounded up, arrested and later executed.
The massacres were perpetrated in different regions of the Ottoman Empire by the Young Turks Government which was in power at the time.
“We must never be silenced in response to atrocities. Over 100 years ago, the world was silent as the Armenian people suffered and were murdered, and many people today are still unaware of what happened. We have a moral duty to acknowledge what happened to 1.5 million innocent souls. It’s the right thing to do.”
Senator Ted Cruz
When WWI erupted, the Young Turks government, hoping to save the remains of the weakened Ottoman Empire, adopted a policy of Pan Turkism – the establishment of a mega Turkish empire comprising of all Turkic-speaking peoples of the Caucasus and Central Asia extending to China, intending also to Turkify all ethnic minorities of the empire.
The Armenian population became the main obstacle to the realization of this policy. Although the decision on the deportation of all Armenians from Western Armenia (Eastern Anatolia) was adopted in late 1911, the Young Turks used WWI as a suitable opportunity for its implementation.
“The president just ran out of Republican senators. He put the first three guys in a difficult spot because they didn’t want to do it. Now it’s time of the president to defy Erdoğan’s gag rule.”
The first international reaction to the violence resulted in a joint statement by France, Russia and Great Britain, in May 1915, where the Turkish atrocities directed against the Armenian people was defined as “new crime against humanity and civilization” agreeing that the Turkish government must be punished for committing such crimes.
We shall know on Friday if President Trump once again succumbs to Turkey’s pressure and bullying and denies the Armenian Genocide.
“I should like to see any power of the world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people, whose wars have all been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, literature is unread, music is unheard, and prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy Armenia . See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.”