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August 02, 2007

Comments

Peter Porcupine

I am also of the opinion that the ADL attitude has to do with a desire to preserve the Holocaust as a unique happening for Jews, which also causes them to somewhat downgrade gypsies, cripples, Seventh Day Adventists, etc. in their Holocaust pronouncements.

The Armenian Genocide was genuine. So was the Cambodian genocide. So was the Rwandan genocide. China has had several, as have the Japanese. Extinction of The Other is an unfortunate human tendancy which needs to be severely criticized and exposed.

To fail to recognize the Armenian tragedy is both short sighted and wrong.

David Eisenthal

Peter,

I could not disagree with you more!

Mainstream opinion among Jews in this country is, if anything, more sensitive to claims of genocide and mass murder among other groups because of the experience of the Holocaust.

An example of this is the fact that Jewish organizations have taken a leading role in the effort to raise awareness on Darfur. If you go to http://savedarfur.org, you will see a number of Jewish organizations, including ADL, among the supporters (along with some Armenian and Islamic organizations, as well.)

I suspect that if you look carefully at a number of the synagogues around, you will also see banners saying "Save Darfur."

I'm not sure where the notion came from that Jews are trying to exceptionalize the Holocaust, but it simply does nto square with the facts.

Linda

David,

If what you say about mainstream Jewish opion is true, why are the groups (B'nai B'rith International, the Anti-Defamation League, the American Jewish Committee and the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA). lobbying against the resolution? Do they not represent mainstream opinion? Or does mainstream opinion hold that it's O.K. to use another group's genocide as a bargaining chip in support of srael?

I know at least one American Jew, a dear friend, who holds the view that the Holocaust is unique in history and to call any other group's tragedy a genocide detracts from the memory of the Holocaust and should be discouraged. This idea disturbed be so much that I sought out a book on the subject, "The Banality of Denial: Israel and the Armenian genocide" by Yair Auron. This book as least helped me to understand how someone raised in Israel, as she was, could think this way.

I'm curious to know what you think mainstream Israeli opinion is on the subject of other genocides and the Armenian genocide in particular.

David Eisenthal

I do not believe that the positions of organizations you mention on the Armenian Genocide resolution are representative of mainstream American Jewish opinion. I don't believe that the meetings between these organizations and Turkish officials that I mentioned in my original piece were highly publicized initially in the Jewish community. My sense is that there is now growing discussion within the Jewish community on the posture toward the resolution. Certainly, Turkey's relationship with Israel - and the United States - complicates matters. However, ignoring genocide - even if it is nearly 100 years in the past - is not something that most Jews do. (I would point out here that the sponsor of the Armenian Genocide resolution, Rep. Adam Schiff, is Jewish.)

I think that organizations such as ADL may well change their positions once a full public debate has occurred. I stand by my assertion that mainstream Jewish opinion in this country generally is quite sensitive to genocides and mass murders, no matter who the victims are.

Tamer

Your comment below is a very poor example of an objective "commentary". You take the Armenian position that it is "THE TURKISH" government that is afraid of a genocide term. This is completely false. There are 35 million Turks that have been harmed by Armenian militias that helped the Russians, just like the Armenian regiment that was under Hitler's control killing Jews.

It's not about pride or retributions, it's about a LIE and a FALSE depiction of events. This is the main reason why most Turks are against this action by Armenians. It is the Armenians that use this issue to keep their diaspora strong(hate breeds pride philosophy) and alive. It also, gives tiny Armenia a bargaining chip in world affairs as an emissary of colonialist Russia and the only Empire, the USA.

If the Armenians think the Turks are going to give in, they are wrong. All this hatemongering will open up wounds in Turks that have not discussed or teached about the Armenian treachery and killings on Turks. When explained on a wider scale and more mass graves, are opened, there will be a Turkish rage, far greater then the "stereo-type" of the Turkish government needing weapons or funding from the US. Only then will the Armenians will understand their miscalculations and the Jews will understand what it means to destroy Turkish friendship which saved millions of Jewish lies with nothing in return. The American Enterprise Inst and others have created enough problems in Turkiye's region and the one best thing aside from food, music, culture, history and etc. the Turks are known for is War.

War will be the result for the "Genocide Game", "Kurdish Card", and "Islamofascist" scheme...

YOUR COMMENT BELOW:
The likely reason for Turkey's effort to suppress recognition of the Armenian Genocide - apart from issues of national pride - is that Turkey wishes to avoid costly reparations, such as were paid by Germany following the Second World War to Holocaust survivors.

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