AM | RU
USD
EUR
RUB

Genocide is the Right Word, Justice is the Ultimate Goal!

 

By Harut Sassounian, Publisher, The California Courier

Pres. Serzh Sargsyan’s comments generated much controversy last week when he reportedly stated at a campaign stop in Yerevan on Feb. 5 that ‘tseghasbanoutyoun’ (genocide) and ‘yeghern’ (atrocity) are synonymous. He asserted that Pres. Obama, without uttering the word ‘genocide,’ had said “everything.” The Armenian head of state was referring to Pres. Obama’s use of the term ‘MedsYeghern’ (Great Atrocity) rather than ‘Armenian Genocide’ in his annual April 24 commemorative statements.

The words Yeghern or Meds Yeghern were used by Armenians mostly before Raphael Lemkin coined the term genocide in 1943 to describe the organized mass killings of Armenians during the 1915-23 period. Before 1943, Armenians used various expressions to refer to those killings, such as ‘chart’ (massacre), meds vojir (great crime), ‘aghed’ (disaster), ‘deghahanoutyoun’ (deportation), and ‘aksor’ (exile). However, none of these words have the legal connotation of tseghasbanoutyoun or genocide under international law.

Since 1943, Armenians have spent much time and effort to convince the world that they were the victims of genocide and are now seeking justice from Turkey under international law. This is fundamental reason why Armenians demand genocide recognition, not massacres, atrocities or deportations!

The only reason Pres. Obama has used the term Meds Yeghern in his annual statements is to avoid the words Armenian Genocide, in acquiescence to Turkish pressures. If Meds Yeghern and genocide have the same meaning, why doesn’t Pres. Obama use the term genocide instead of MedsYeghern? After all, presidential candidate Obama did not promise Armenian-American voters that if elected he would recognize the Meds Yeghern; he pledged to recognize the Armenian Genocide.

Thus, all who allege that Meds Yeghern and genocide are synonymous are simply giving Pres. Obama a free pass and allowing him not to keep his solemn pledge. They are also undermining several decades of extensive lobbying efforts for the recognition of the Armenian Genocide!

Those who claim equivalence between Meds Yeghern and genocide do it not out of ignorance in Armenian terminology. They know full well that the two words don’t have the same meaning. Their real reason is to declare victory by making people believe that the President of the United States did after all acknowledge the validity of the Armenian Genocide.

There are a couple of fallacies in this approach. First, regardless of what Meds Yeghern means to Armenians, it is a meaningless term to all those who do not speak Armenian. Second, equating MedsYeghern and genocide in order to claim success on genocide recognition is a futile exercise. It is really unnecessary to twist the meaning of Pres. Obama’s words. The United States recognized the Armenian Genocide as far back as 1951, when the US government submitted an official document to the International Court of Justice (World Court), acknowledging the Jewish Holocaust and the Armenian Genocide as examples of genocide. Another US President, Ronald Reagan, issued a Presidential Proclamation on April 22, 1981, where he mentioned the Armenian Genocide. Moreover, the House of Representatives acknowledged the Armenian Genocide by adopting two resolutions in 1975 and 1984.

Consequently, there is no longer a pressing need to pursue further acknowledgment of the Armenian Genocide by passing repeated congressional resolutions or demanding that Pres. Obama utter the words Armenian Genocide. Nor is there a need to reinterpret Pres. Obama’s statements, claiming that by using the term Meds Yeghern he has automatically acknowledged the Armenian Genocide. The only reason Pres. Obama should recognize the Armenian Genocide is to be a man of his word!

It is imperative for Armenians and their supporters to concentrate their efforts on the eve of the Centennial of the Armenian Genocide not on gaining further recognition -- an already accomplished fact -- but on securing justice for the massive crimes committed against their ancestors a hundred years ago.

Rather than demanding that the United States or even Turkey acknowledge the Genocide, which would not result in any concrete benefit, Armenians should focus their energies on more meaningful steps such as filing lawsuits against the Turkish government in national and international courts.

Once Armenians regain their territories and properties from Turkey through legal action or as a result of unexpected geopolitical developments, the Turkish government can go on denying the Genocide as long as it wants!


News
Irates. Armenian “Ararat” defeats “Philip Morris” in court Impunity of Maragha massacre gave way to creation of atmosphere of permissiveness – Armenia’s Deputy FM U.S. Congressional leaders call on President Trump to properly commemorate Armenian Genocide FM Edward Nalbandian to visit Warsaw Artsakh Defense Army: Adversary breaks the ceasefire 50 times Remarks of the President of Armenia, Chairman of the Republican Party of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan at the RPA Council meeting The 11th International Festival of Puppet Theatres will launch on September 9 with the support of Coca-Cola Hellenic Armenia Company Festive mood and Coke from Coca-Cola Hellenic Armenia The newly appointed Ambassador of Georgia in Armenia Giorgi Saganelidze presented his credential to the President Coca-Cola Hellenic Armenia and Art Lunch employees have cleaned up Dalar river bank Flood-affected citizens in Artik got financial aid from ARMBUSINESSBANK "Yell Extreme Park" the piece of craziness in Armenia Coca-Cola Hellenic Armenia and USAID partner to address water stewardship in Ararat Valley President Serzh Sargsyan visited today the Embassy of France in Yerevan President Serzh Sargsyan met with the US Secretary of State John Kerry Coca-Cola Hellenic Armenia Company distributed soft drinks to the guests of “Vardavar” festival President Serzh Sargsyan received members of the Council of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Collective Security Treaty Organization Congratulatory message by president Serzh Sargsyan on the occasion of Constitution day French parliament unanimously adopted bill to criminalise the denial of Armenian Genocide 5 lucky winners of Coca-Cola EURO 2016 promo are off to France to watch Germany vs Italy quarter final President Serzh Sargsyan received tonight the OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier High-level Armenian-Czech negotiations took place at the Presidential Palace Coca-Cola Hellenic Armenia Company celebrates International Children’s day President Serzh Sargsyan participated at the session of the Supreme Council of the Eurasian Economic Union Buy a “Coca-Cola” soft drink; win a ticket for UEFA Euro 2016 Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company Armenia celebrates the 20th Anniversary Mardakert overcomes a bad dream "The Lavrov document" does not exist, and peacekeepers will be deployed only in the final stage of the conflict resolution: Igor Popov The RA President has discussed with the co-chairs the situation on the contact line after the Azerbaijani aggression James Warlick on human rights violations: We have seen the photos, we are deeply troubled President Serzh Sargsyan met with first President Levon Ter-Petrosyan to discuss Four Day War About 60 organisations call on US president to investigate into allegations of Azerbaijan’s collaboration with ISIS The #KarabakhNow | Against International Inactivity protest will take place at Republic Square International press compares the actions of Azerbaijan forces in Artsakh to the atrocities done by ISIS Parties to Karabakh conflict agree to cease fire for 5 hours Sargsyan to Medvedev: They diminished authority of EAEU The rival continues provocations Azerbaijan shells settlements of Armenia’s Tavush and Gegharkunik provinces NKR Defense Army destroyed an adversary drone Azerbaijan shells Ambulance vehicle in Nagorno Karabakh
Most popular
website by Sargssyan