Turkish PR Agent’s Father and Grandparents are Armenians

Harut Sassounian
Harut Sassounian

Harut Sassounian

“I have never considered myself Armenian all my life,” Turkish PR agent Ronn Torossian says.

BY HARUT SASSOUNIAN

Last week I wrote a column about Ronn Torossian, President of 5W Public Relations firm in New York City, who had signed a contract for $60,000 to do PR work for the Republic of Turkey in the United States.

I wrote that I did not know if Torossian was an ethnic Armenian or simply had an Armenian last name, since some Jews and Iranians also have Armenian last names. Before writing the previous column I had attempted to contact him and had left two voice mail messages at his office. But, he did not return my phone calls.

After writing that column, I received several emails and phone calls from Mr. Torossian. However, he requested that our phone conversations be off the record. I also received many emails and phone calls from Armenians around the world who knew the Torossian family.

I also noticed that several readers had posted comments under my column in various websites, insisting that Mr. Torossian was not an Armenian, but simply Jewish or Iranian who carried an Armenian last name. These commentators were basing their presumptions on the fact that all of the articles about Mr. Torossian on the internet referred to him as being Jewish and mentioned his extensive record of activism and involvement in Jewish causes and organizations.

However, I was informed by a Canadian Armenian, a former resident of Jerusalem, that he grew up in that city with Ronn’s father, Harout Torossian, who now lives in New York City. Ronn’s grandfather was Voskan Torossian and the grandmother was Mariam.

Voskan and his family lived in the Convent of Jerusalem’s Armenian Patriarchate. Voskan worked as a handyman at the Patriarchate. Ronn’s father attended Saints Tarkmanchats Armenian School in the Convent. Both Ronn’s father and grandfather were members of Homenetmen (Armenian General Athletic Union and Scouts). Voskan was also a devoted member of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation.

Since Ronn’s father was married to a Jewish woman, Ronn is considered by the Jewish community to be Jewish. He was raised as a Jew and considers himself to be Jewish and not Armenian. From Ronn’s family friends and his father’s former classmates I have learned a lot more about his relatives and their personal lives, but to protect Ronn’s privacy I decided not to divulge any more details. I only mentioned his father and grandparents to prove that he is partly of Armenian heritage, and not Iranian or fully Jewish.

Interestingly, in one of the emails Ronn Torossian sent me after my first article, he stated: “I am Jewish. I am American born and raised in a Jewish home, and proudly educate my children in Jewish day schools. I do not and never have considered myself to be Armenian. You are conducting a comical, ridiculous and destructive ugly litmus test.” He asked that the rest of his email be considered off the record.

I answered Torossian in an email: “Thank you for finally contacting me. I wish you had responded to the two phone messages I left for you in the past month. I respect that you feel Jewish. That is your choice and decision. However, being Jewish does not exonerate you from the unacceptability of doing PR for a country that denies Genocide whether you are Jewish, Armenian or any other nationality. Being of both Jewish and Armenian ethnic ancestry makes you a descendant of survivors of both the Holocaust and the Armenian Genocide which places the double burden on you to be especially sensitive to Genocide deniers. Just because you are making money spinning for Genocide deniers does not justify your professional activities. As I pointed out in my column, you yourself have criticized those who do PR for dictators. Yet you are paid to do PR for the dictator Erdogan. If you don’t consider Erdogan to be a dictator, then you are one of the few individuals in the world who thinks so!”

Ronn Torossian replied to my email: “Criticize me all you wish. Please don’t raise my family or your perceptions of my ethnicity. I have never considered myself Armenian all my life.”

I must inform Ronn Torossian that over the years I have written dozens of columns criticizing all those who have been hired by the Turkish government for the purposes of lobbying or public relations, regardless of their nationality. It is unacceptable to represent Turkey for money, a country that is run by a dictator, violates the human rights of its citizens, and denies the Armenian Genocide.

Ironically, back in June 2010, before Torossian signed a PR contract with Turkey, he had organized an anti-Turkish protest in Manhattan after the Israeli military attacked a Turkish humanitarian flotilla. Torossian was quoted as stating: “what these so called peace activists on the Turkish vessel pulled off was nothing short of a cleverly devised anti-Semitic lynching.”

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15 Comments

  1. Mike Sarian said:

    I don’t know what went wrong with this guy. Both his father and grandfather were Armenians and members of ARF!!!
    He does not even admit he is Armenian and says he is Jewish and he never considered himself an Armenian. I blame his father Harout for not raising his son as Armenian. His mother Mariam, who is a Jewish woman, was able to raise him as Jewish and deny his own Armenian identity.
    I should give a lot of credit to Mariam! for make him deny his own fathers ethnic identity.
    Regardless his own ethnic background he is for $60,000 is prostituting himself to Turkish interests. What a great deal for Turkey to be able buy PR that cheap.
    This is guy is arrogant and will not listen to any logic or appeal and even denies his own fathers heritage. He will take money from anyone without any regard to anything.
    Shame on him for even having last name which is Armenian and a family whose members are patriotic Armenians

    • Tavit said:

      Good work Mark. Ronn Torossian is prostituting himself to Turkish interests and only Jews would do something like that. In Washington DC we have a lots of Jewish so called PR’s.

  2. Dinosaurian said:

    Why doesn’t he have any remorse or connection to his teletives? Maybe he is behaving like this ,because he is really Armenian and he is infiltrating the Turkish Government to become Erogans predecessor!

  3. Rick said:

    Wow,

    I am quite surprised, he is obviously brainwashed. And shame on Torrosian’s father…

  4. Sylva Portoian said:

    Thank you for your clear, honest article Mr. Sassounian.
    Jews consider that if their mothers are Jewish, they are Jewish.
    I agree with him … His mother brought him Jewish… And she is the betrayer to the Armenians.
    My little information about genetics, I like to say,
    Ronn’s X chromosome is Jewish from his Jewish mother,
    but his Y chromosome is Armenian, he should know that!!!
    Still, I like to say something about his face judging that he never has kind, gifted Armenian eyes…
    His eyes refuse to speak hearty Armenian.

  5. Alice Momjian Ravary said:

    Most importantly, he is not just Jewish but he is a Zionist! I wouldn’t blame the church but rather his father who left the teachings of his child’s heritage to his wife instead of teaching him about his own ancestry as well, specially that he was protected and worked at Jerusalem’s Armenian patriarchy…
    What kind of devout ARF member was he, really, when at the first opportunity he lost his soul to a Jew?!
    True ARF members always aim for the recognition and restitution of the Armenian Genocide by the Turks and for a free and prosperous Armenia!
    Clearly this fish stinks from its head!

  6. Vanoush said:

    Mr Torossian shame on you I am disappointed and disgusted you betrayed your grantparents . You have washed your hands with your unsissters blood . Not only that you ignorring Armenian Genocide. That $ 60.0000 is blood go and leave with yourself. Shame on you .

  7. serop said:

    Ignore the fool, he is an arrogant individual drunk on Jewish money success, he has sold his Armenian identity to succeed in the world and the easiest way was to embrace his Mothers religion
    To succeed in PR especially in USA then the best advantage to have is to be Jewish, and he is milking it
    But he will regret it one day, this is shameful, its equal to spitting on your Fathers name and your Heritage

  8. Jack Kalpakian said:

    It seems that the gentleman does not want his relatives to know about what he does for a living. As far as his religious and identity choices go, they are strictly his business. No need to shame anyone, especially his parents. Some people, especially those with socialization in individualistic liberal cultures, grow up to resent the ethnicity and its sense of solidarity and chose to either assimilate into mainstream culture or change identities into something else entirely. No problem, Armenian people are better off without him and people like him in the community.

  9. Petra's said:

    Leave him alone. He does not feel Armenian, he should change his Armenian ending name to torosowitz. That will be a fitting tribute to his Jewishness. Leave him alone and forget about him. He is an odar.

  10. Mario Yazidjian said:

    Ron Torossian;
    I feel sorry for you ;.you do not recognice the Armenian Genocide of at least 1.5 million Armenian Saints
    Do you accept that the jewish Holocost is true ?
    May GOD have mercy on you
    Please wake up and see the truth

  11. Shahe Mazbanian said:

    His poor grandfather worked for the Church and he disrespects our heritage by not only denying it. But doing PR work for Turkey. He has the right too like he mentioned. But we have the right to criticize him. Great work Mr Harout. This is reporting to the next level.

  12. GB said:

    I wonder smart man like Mr. Torossian never changed his last name to proper Jewish name! All I can see he is desperate to collect blood money, for his fake last name from Turkey. Corrupt Mr. Erdoghan office will call him “righteous Armenian man”! Shame on him!

  13. Zev Garber said:

    Article is responsible. Disappointment is understandable. However, whims of anti-Jewish/Zionist/Semitism mar collective effort.

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