Samantha Power Apologizes for Obama Administration’s Failure to Recognize Genocide

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U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power (Photo: AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power (Photo: AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)

Pulitzer Prize-winning author and the former US ambassador to the UN, Samantha Power, took to social media Monday to apologize for not properly acknowledging the Armenian Genocide during her tenure in President Barack Obama’s administration.

“I am very sorry that, during our time in office, we in the Obama administration did not recognize the #Armenian Genocide,” Power said in a series of tweets on Monday.

“Almost every Armenian-American family was touched in some way by the genocide. Ongoing Turkish denial makes the genocide an open wound…,” added Power who became the first high-ranking member of the Obama administration to apologize for the president’s failure to honor his campaign pledge.

“Thinking of Armenians everywhere on Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day. 102 years ago, Ottoman authorities began a slaughter that wd kill 1.5 m,” continued Power.

Samantha Power took to Twitter on Monday to apologize for not properly acknowledging the Armenian Genocide during her tenure in the Obama administration

Samantha Power took to Twitter on Monday to apologize for not properly acknowledging the Armenian Genocide during her tenure in the Obama administration

In 2003, Power won a Pulitzer Prize for her well-reviewed and much publicized book, “A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide,” which underscored the denial of the Armenian Genocide as a precursor for other such atrocities in history.

She joined the Obama campaign in 2008 and a week before the election released a video directed at the Armenian-American community urging them to vote for Obama given his numerous promises to recognize the Genocide once elected president.

Of course, Obama reversed course and he didn’t honor his campaign pledge.

Many thought that Power would use her perch at the United States’ Ambassador to the UN to set the record straight. She faced criticism throughout the Obama years for her own public silence on the issue.

However, at an event in December honoring Holocaust survivor and Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel, Power hailed the human rights activist and said that “Genocide against the Armenians” was one of the reasons that injustices continue to this day. This comment was seen as a possible change in the Obama administration’s position on the matter during its final days.

However, when pressed, Power’s spokespeople were quick to point out that her remarks at the Wiesel event did not represent a change in Obama’s policy.

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14 Comments

  1. Zorik said:

    we Armenians are used to it. anyone who gets elected to the Whit house or fills a government office position, they totally forget their promises to the Armenian community.

  2. State of Emergency said:

    It’s easy to say it before and after holding office. The real test is saying it while in office. The invisible American administration will never let it happen as long as Turkey is one unified country.

  3. hye said:

    Should’ve could’ve would’ve
    Who stopped him from recognizing, wasn’t he the president

  4. Antranik said:

    Samantha Power probably is looking for another job and she has to be in the news.I have lost faith in her long time ago.I think in the eyes of the Armenian’s she has lost credibility.

  5. Anton A said:

    Samantha, my dear, you wrote a book called “A Problem From Hell”, I read it, nice job, thank you. Then, fate put you in position of Power as your surname appropriately indicates, but you squandered your calling; you could have had a slip of the tongue by mentioning, God forbid, the G-word at the eleventh hour. Yes, it would have been “undiplomatic” and even illegal, but you would have been righteous and right. You see, with Truth, there is no hiding in the sun — it is the sun. Ambassador John Marshall Evans uttered the guttural truth while in office, it cost him his job, but not his character. So you lose a job, but you would have been an upright human being without any moral hiccups. Please go away, Ms. Powers, and leave our shattered lives alone, so we may pick the broken pieces of ourselves with dignity and honor. Thank you.

  6. Vartan Ter-Ghevondian said:

    My family also lost so much in the Genocide. I was also upset about the Obama Administrations position coming short of the mark. However I understand that it is the job of the U.N. Ambassado to express the administrations policy and not her own. Outside of office Samantha Powers has always been consistent on own intellectual interpretation of the Armenian Genocide. Hopefully with the help of some of the makers of “The Promise,” there will be a new chair at UCLA for Genocide Studies, I believe she stand as one of the most promising candidates for that position*. Lets forgive Samantha because she confessed and lets regroup and build our stone wall against denial. Momentum, Momentum, Momentum. NOTE: *Qualified that all of the Armenian, Turkish and other International academics who call it what it is now, are also candidates for the possession.

  7. Marjorie Egarian said:

    Samantha Powers was a great UN Ambassado and I have no doubt, would have recognized the Armenian Genocide if it were left up to her. Her apology is honest and meaningful. I will always be disappointed in the Obama Administration’s failure to keep his promise and acknowledge the Genocide-it is clearly the honorable and right thing to do and so long overdue. More than 25 countries have officially acknowledged the Genocide and Armenians will continue to press for our country to join them.

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