Clinton Issues Lopsided Invitation to Discuss Protocols


BY ARA KHACHATOURIAN

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton invited Armenian-American organizational representatives to discuss the Armenia-Turkey protocols. Her invitation, however, focuses on the grouping of Armenian organizations that have supported the protocols, with the exception of the Armenian National Committee of America.

The invitation sent to the Armenian Assembly of America, the North America Dioceses, the AGBU, the Knights of Vartan and the ANCA is seen as a response to an ANCA-initiated letter by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid urging Clinton to give Armenian-Americans “an opportunity to share their views with you.”

Aside from the ANCA, all the groups invited to the meeting jointly signed a letter in support of the US-backed protocols.

In his letter Reid also emphasized Armenian-American concerns on the protocol-mandated formation of a commission to study the Armenian Genocide.

Missing from the list of invitees are the North American Prelacies of the Armenian Apostolic Church, the Armenian Relief Society, the Armenian Youth Federation, the Armenian Democratic League (Ramkavar party), the Social-Democratic Hunchakian Party and the countless other organizations that joined a cross-section of the community in opposing the protocols during mass demonstrations in New York and Los Angeles during the now infamous Diaspora tour by Armenia’s President Serzh Sarkisian.

In a letter to Secretary Clinton, ANCA chairman Ken Hachikian on Monday expressed “serious concern” saying the invitation to the meeting, scheduled for Feb. 9, “does not represent our traditional community leadership nor does it reflect the widely understood Armenian American opposition to the Turkey-Armenia Protocols.”

“As presently configured, the meeting you have proposed will not serve the vital and worthwhile aim of healthy discourse, and would, at this sensitive moment, in fact be counter-productive. The current arrangement, which, by all appearances, intentionally excludes so many of our traditional community and Church leaders on the basis of their views and values, would set an undemocratic and highly negative precedent,” added Hachikian in his letter.

“Our community’s traditional leadership group, as you may know, met with President Clinton in 1994 and has, collectively, signed a series of letters to the White House over the past two decades, including as recently as President Obama’s inauguration. The organizations that signed our community’s congratulatory letter to President Obama on his inauguration, in addition to the groups that you have invited to meet with you – namely the Armenian Assembly, ANCA, Eastern U.S. and Western U.S. Diocese of the Armenian Church, Armenian General Benevolent Union, and the Knights of Vartan – include: the Eastern U.S. and Western U.S. Prelacies of the Armenian Apostolic Church, Apostolic Exarchate for Armenian Catholics, Armenian Evangelical Union of North America, Armenian Missionary Association of America, Armenian Relief Society, Armenian Bar Association, Armenian International Women’s Association, Armenian Rights Council of America, Armenian Youth Federation, Hamazkayin Armenian Cultural & Education Association, Homenetmen Armenian General Athletic Union, Tekeyan Cultural Association, United Armenian Fund, and the U.S.-Armenia Public Affairs Committee,” continued ANCA.

“I respectfully call upon you to reconsider your initial arrangements for your first meeting with Armenian American leaders. An open, inclusive meeting – one that allows for the full expression of the Armenian American perspective – will, we are confident, serve all of our hopes and aspirations for lasting peace and justice in the region,” urged Hachikian.

In an August 20 letter to Clinton, the ANCA asked for a meeting with all community members to discuss what was then a “roadmap.”

“Thank you for your consideration of our views. We respectfully request an immediate personal meeting between you and the Armenian American community’s civic, religious, and charitable leaders so that we can address these matters in greater detail.”

Clinton’s and the State Department’s blatant disregard for popular voices of the community and their insistence to meet with a group whose majority has come out in support of the dangerous protocols, signals that the Obama Administration is unwilling to have a serious dialogue about this critical matter that will impact the future of Armenia and the Armenian Nation.

By ignoring the vast cross-section of the community, Clinton’s invitation appears to be a mere gesture to appease her long-time colleague Reid and, once again, tramples on the many Obama campaign promises for inclusion, dialogue and transparency.

Leaders of the organizations that have been marginalized by this invitation should demand that their strong voices are also heard by the State Department and the meeting is not, by and large, a gathering of yes-men who traditionally have parroted the State Department’s agenda in the community.

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36 Comments

  1. Nairian said:

    I do agree with ANCA.  If the Obama administration is honest in their pursuit for open and out discussion surrounding the dire protocols, then they must include all Armenian organizations in the Diaspora and not only the ones that will yes them to death.  Otherwise it will not be a democratic and an honest discussion surrounding the protocols.

    • Razmig said:

      After how these State Dept. fools have played us for idiots after so many years I wouldn’t even give them the time of day if I were Ken or Aram of the ANCA. Clinton can meet with whomever she wants but I wouldn’t let her waste my precious time. We have serious work to do in Armenia. Clinton can eat cake for all I care.

  2. Kiazer Souze said:

    Frank says:
    January 11, 2010 at 5:13 pm
    Look at that face
    A typical Turkish pupet
    //////////////////////
    The only thing missing is a cigar in her mouth. I think, we should send her a box of Cuban cigars and a pack of Marlboro reds to president Obama. If she doesn’t want the cigars, she can give them to Bill. He will know what to do with them.

    Danny Tarkanian for US  Senate. He is an American hero that you can verify. He really was born in the USA.

  3. Samvel Jeshmaridian,PhD said:

    Putin’s team is more powerful than Obama’s administration. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are losing to the Kremlin drastically.

  4. Barkev Asadourian said:

    One more time the BLACK CLOUDS will cover our bright sky just
    like Oct. 10th, the blame goes to Armenia’s authorities the reason
    because they are DEAF beside as No. 1 TRAITOR for ARMENIAN’S JUSTICE CAUSE.
    Long Life to ARF
    Long Life  to  10 Millions ARMENIANS
    Long Life to  ANCA

  5. Nairi said:

    Unfortunately the above witch and Obama as well as the Russians and our Nalbandyan and Sarkisian together kept it under the rug for a while about the clauses in the protocols while they signed it.  Meanwhile Sarkisian lied not big, but huge time to all of us that there are no pre-conditions in the protocols.  What a disgraceful lier he is; giving away our Western Armenian lands, doing away with the Armenian Genocide and our rights for reparations; then now about Artsakh to be submitting to the Turks is not pre-conditions, then what is?  Traitor.  Our history will always remember as Sarkisian and Nalbandyan being traitors of Armenia.

  6. Roman said:

    It is foolish to belive that US should put Armenian couse in front of its own interests. But look how firm US stand on the side of Israel . Why you ask it is simple half of our lawmakers are jews.

  7. Hovo said:

    This is just another political game by Clinton to make Armenians fool.  we already have had test their games  since Obama wasn’t be a man of his words.

  8. Philip said:

    Now Clinton decides to discuss the protocols with diaspora leaders?? What about before the protocols were signed?? Did she see the protests opposing the protocols?? A weak attempt to try to show that she cares about the views of Armenian Americans and a disgrace that she chose majority of the parties that support the protocols and only one party that opposes it. Its a shame that American foreign policy, which endangers the work of the diaspora and Armenia itself (especially genocide recognition)  is being forced upon Armenia and on top of that it would strengthen the oligarchy which is hurting the people of the country. Armenia’s leaders are desperate, unpatriotic, and will do anything to make themselves richer and to look better in the international community. The people only matter to an extent, and the government fails to serve its people because it has selfish, personal interests that will only benefit the ones in power in the long run, again strengthening the oligarchs. The western powers (government) are not interested in the flourishing and the success of Armenia, nor are they intrested about the 1.5 million people that were murdered in the genocide. This statement is true, i.e., Obama promised to recognize the genocide in his campaign for presidency.  Once he was elected he stated that although his beliefs of the genocide have not changed  and “My interest remains the achievement of a full, frank and just acknowledgment of the facts.”, he did not use the word genocide, or mention that he recognizes the genocide. So Obama has made up his personal mind that it was genocide but his new position as president of the Unites States would not let him to recognize the Armenian genocide. It seems that as long as the U.S. and Turkey have relations the federal government will not recognize the Armenian genocide. Its been proven, a man whose personal belief that a genocide did occur and making a promise to a small minority in the country to recognize the genocide and after gaining their votes, was unable to fulfill his promise because of it probably would hurt relations with Turkey.
    We must ask ourselves does the American federal government want to recognize and seek justice for the 1.5 million people that were massacred
    during the genocide, or is foreign policy and diplomatic ties more important than recognition. At the end of the day
    we must ask ourselves that question because Obama’s unfulfilled promise shows how much Turkey has power over the U.S.
    Clinton needs to resign before anymore damage is done, but this issue is to small to cause any controversy nationally,
    but in the minds of Armenians that had family that died in the genocide, it is an outrage, a betrayal, and a two faced cowardly maneuver.
    Lets hope the constitutional court will rule that the protocols are unconstitutional and Clinton can put that in her pipe and smoke it!

  9. ermeni said:

    can anca/arf now stop supporting the democrats please????  have ya’ got the message yet?  they don’t support the armenian cause!

  10. Samuel said:

    I think invitation of ANCA by Mis Clinton for discussion armenian & turkish protocol will be a good oportunity to better uderstand her policy in relation towarrd Armenia. 2 primary questions must be requested from her to answer. Is she recognizing armenian Genoside or she is waiting co-mmission to decide?
    As secretary State, she & president Barak Obama promised to recognize Armenian Genoside.
    Second- the protocol says Armenia has no teritorial claim against Turky, this is before execution of president Woodrow Wilsons Armenias teritorial award mandate. If this means no condition for both side, from her wiev point or both parts of term cotain the same meaning, then it will be apreciated exchange them unconituionaly & include them in the protocol, first Armenias teritorial award, be executed, then Armenia declares no teritorial clame against Turkey. And you know all of these explained, essential ingredients of subjects missing on that protocol. Also Mis Clinton policy in regard to this protocol is in contradiction with president Woodrow s Armenias teritorial award.
              
      
            

  11. gharakhanian said:

    thank you Ken, we have a voice in you, to keep demanding and confronting and calling it like it is, they want clarity we will give it to them directly concisely with lots of measure. God Bless you!! but God already has, so then thanks for being there for us all.

  12. Henrik Dumanian said:

    (Clinton can just be getting back at the ANCA-folk for not endorsing her, you know how she is).
     
    The ANCA should boycott the meeting.  Play opposition.

  13. KRIKOR said:

    totaly agree and understand with ANCA and ARF, but I beleive it would be much better if they participate in this meeting, ARF, Armenia and Armeninas would benfit more than not attending it, at the end of the day we must know and understand that we can’t stop and appose the world’s supper powers, Armenia today is a victum of big game going on in the region and we dont have the abilties and resaurces to stop such big economical war between the supper powers in our area, the best what we can do is to come out of this game with minimum costs and damges, like the old saying knee when the storm blow and come back when it’s stop. realism is the key      

  14. John Karasarkissian said:

    What else you expect from  Clinton and the US government in general. They care for US interests only. Who are the Armenians. As i said before, Armenia has nothing to offer in return, for the US to care about Armenia’s  interests

    • KRIKOR said:

      YES JOHN YOU GOT IT, realisticly and as a matter of fact on the ground we don’t have anything to offer, and we don’t have the abilities and resources to change, stop or oppose it,  and that’s why we need to work around this situation weather we like it or not with minimum lose and maximum gain.  

  15. Barkev Asadourian said:

    Did she study her lesson from Armenian History?
    otherwise she can’t solve the Armenian problems or
    have her to have an  Adviser from ARF before meeting.

  16. manooshag said:

    Hye, obviously, the U.S. State Department, headed by Clinton, thinks we Armenians citizens of the USA  are ill prepared mentally hence  invites a handful of pro Protocol Armenians to meet. 
    Unbelieveable!  Clinton only invited just one anti-Protocol Armenian group, the ANCA, the opposition – who have spoken against the Protocols – yet carry the voices of Armenians of Armenia and all the Armenians the world over who  aspire to be free of the Turk tyranny which is still being expressed via the Protocols – to favor a bully Turkey!
    How low our USA leaderships  have sunk.  I believe  patriotic Americans who have avoided serving our nation since  politically, our governments have sunk lower, each administraton, morally.  This, deliberate omission – in the republic of the Untied States of America?  Manooshag

  17. David Boyajian said:

    Nothing good can come out of the meeting with Clinton, although I am sure some of  (the weaker members of) the Armenian American delegation are looking forward to having their pictures taken with her.

    Clinton she claim (ie. lie) that the US has not pressured Armenia to sign the protocols – that this was an Armenian initiative. 
    She will claim that the US is  only interested in “stability” in the Caucasus and that she hopes that the protocols will be a “new beginning” for Armenia and Turkey.
     She will say privately that the genocide is not up for debate, and that she has n0t changed her own stance on the genocide (what that stance is she will not say) and that neither has Obama. This will please the weaker members of the Armenian delegation (I don’t need to spell out who those are, do I?).
    Clinton will say that since the US, Europe, and Russia all favor the protocols, they (the protocols) must be a good thing.
    As for Turkey’s precondition of a Karabagh peace agreement, Clinton will say that the US does not approve of this pre-condition and has told Turkey that.  Clinton will also say that since 1993 the  US has urged Turkey to open the border.   (THAT is, in fact, a lie.  The US was Ok with the closed border because it felt that it put pressure on Armenia to come to an agreement on the Karabagh conflict AND because the US was using Georgia as a transit route into and out of the Caucasus and did not, until the 2008 war between Russia and Turkey,  feel it needed Armenia.)
    I don’t quite understand (actually, I do) why the pro-protocol members of the Armenian American delegation even want to meet with Clinton.  I don’t think they really disagree with her all that much OR with the protocols.  Why not just skip to the photo opportunity and leave it at that?

  18. Gayane said:

    Well Said David and others..

    It is just saddening that to this day, we have high ranked officials with degrees and PHds in our government body who have the brain of a donkey… Actually the donkeys have a better understand what it means to serve its owner/the keeper than our officials.. Our govt officials tqats unen on their people who keep them in their cozy and comfortable hell holes in the devil’s house (govt)…They don’t realize that if you push and poke and hit the donkey long enough, it will kick the CRAP out of you and knock your on your face.. People will rise and will fight.. However, they have not been pushed to the extreme yet.. I just hope it does not come to that point..

    Ms Clinton and Obama (whom I could not stand from the beginning and that is why I did not vote in the election evening) have their own agenda.. As some of you said, Armenia is pennyless and has nothing to offer and that is exactly why we are alone.. However, they know we that we are reactive group of people and not proactive people..and hence, why they push and push as much as they want.. knowing we won’t do anything.. we are too civilized, too nice, too polite, too shy, too soft.. we won’t cause chaos.. EVEN when our country is going out of our hands.. We have to learn how to demand.. we have the right to demand..
    ANCA has the right to demand recall and re-invitation of this meeting by demanding Clinton to invite EVERYONE.. However, knowing the two faced monkeys in the US govt won’t budge from their decision unless we burry them with our complaints and letters and faxes and e-mails.. I am ready to send my e-mail to Clinton.. to give her piece of my mind.. are you?

    David, maybe we can go there and be part of the photo opportunity..you strangling a leader from the ARmenian organization who supported this, and I strangling Clinton.. it would be a priceless photo..

    G

  19. Grish Begian said:

    A political move by Mrs. Clinton for her unjustified approach toward Armenian Nation…

  20. Vazken said:

    Every one is born into a nation; as I am an Armenian and I like to live in Freedom, without letting  illegitimates to dictate my life’ even my own countrie’s president or ObamaClinton: it’s like you have one shot in the “Luger” in this life. I do not want to go down without a fight! a good fight!

  21. Kiazer Souze said:

    The best remedy to Clinton’s arrogance is to make sure Harry Ried loses his senate seat come November. I am an independant, but, I am going to donate $50.00 dollars or more to Danny Tarkanian’s election. These prostitute politicians who have been promising for their baghshish need to be severly punished in the political sense. That means Harry Ried needs to go.

    And, to my Rebublican and Masonic friends (such as the Knights of Vartan), your actions are being watched and the Armenian poeple will never forget the traitors amongst us.

  22. Kiazer Souze said:

    If the oligarch stooges will not make the territorial claims, then the Western Armenian nation should. These nuckleheads just traded 2 + trillion dollars in property value for 50 million dollars from the United States and some gouging loans with choking interest rates designed to be permanently indebted to US banks and their prostitute politicians.

    Smart. Really smart. Even highschool kids know better.

  23. Pingback: Clinton Issues Lopsided Invitation to Discuss Protocols | Asbarez … | armeniatoday

  24. James Kizirian said:

    I think it is a ploy just as they (Obama and his administration) did last year to excuse themselves (to have a face)  from using  the word Genocide as we approach to April 24.

  25. james kizirian said:

    One more point about Clinton’s approach: Her aim is to pit one Armenian group against another Armenian group, thus creating discord among Armenians and later on blame the Armenians themselves  and use that as an excuse for not keeping their promise of recognizing the Armenian Genocide.
    Her approach is divide and conquer. A devilish approach to say the least.  Shame on her.

  26. manooshag said:

    Hye, whilst reading the above, and recognizing Hilary as what she/he have been to the fledgling Armenian nation – politicians, without morals.  As for Obama, he was for change – and I hoped he’d be the American leader who would step up and end the cycle of Genocides.  For, if the Turks, Ottomans and leaderships 1890s into 2010, had first been brought to face justice in the
    Genocide of the Armenian nation – just think – all the millions in all the Genocides which followed in the 20th century and now, into the 21st century shall not have been.  Millions and millions of humans, slaughtered, raped, kidnapped, and more… Obama’s promise rang true to me – a leader of compassion who understood the cruelties to humans as practiced by the Turks.
    He shall have initiated the END OF THE CYCLE OF GENOCIDES…  I imagined him as being entered in our history books,  and world-wide, a leader who stood up against the Genocides committed against unarmed innocents… 
    No Genocides – since despots shall  know – Genocides not tolerated  – GENOCIDE ARE  DENIED (not by perpetrators) but by the leadership of the greatest democracy the world has known, a leader of the United States of America…
    Sadly, Obama the politician, his own aides, missed the boat.  Obama shall have made a
    difference across this planet – no Genocides – end slaughtering  of  innocents – Darfur, even continues into 2010 – unbelievable!

    Thinking further, I do believe that the same proProtocolists in USA of today were also the proCommunitsts in Haiastan and in the USA during the USSR years.  When the rest of us were seeking and looking to the day Haiastan shall be a free and democratic nation – these were the peoples who dishonestly praised the ‘condition’ of the Armenians there.  Imagine, visiting Armenia and they’d return to their own homes here, and spouting that all is well for the Armenians in the USSR – probably the communists in office…  Joke at the time:  When an Armenian wrote to family outside of the USSR/Armenia one had to be careful since all the outgoing mails were ‘corrected’ by the authorities (blacked out by  the Armenian communists in office).  One letter came to a family and they let us know how it truly was in Haiastan:  ‘Our uncle, Ohannes, would be very pleased to be visitng with us in Armenia now’.. uncle Ohannes had been dead for several years!  Truths will out.
    So it goes, proProtocols, still in oppositon for the fledgling republic of  Armenia… one wonders,
    WHY?  Are these pockets being filled as well, even the Apostolic Church of Armenia??
    These are undebatable… sadly, but then at least we know who these peoples are – and WHY!
    Manooshag.

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