Armenian, Jewish Leaders Launch Grassroots Petition for Genocide Recognition

BOSTON—Armenian and Jewish community leaders here launched an online petition urging people to sign a letter to President Obama and the Congress that calls for the immediate passage of H. Res. 252, the Armenian Genocide Resolution pending in Congress, announced the Armenian National Committee of Massachusetts.

Joining the ANC of Mass. in the Coalition to Recognize the Armenian Genocide and  in launching the grassroots campaign are Armenian American Action Committee of Massachusetts, leaders of the state’s Armenian and Jewish communities, as well as Investors Against Genocide—a non-profit working to discourage investment in countries that have and are currently committing Genocide.

The dialogue group was initiated by Rabbi Howard L. Jaffe of Temple Isaiah, Lexington, Mass.  Rabbi Jaffe first advocated recognition of the Armenian Genocide in October 2007, when he told the New York Times that he must do what is “right and righteous.”  In 2008, he co-authored an article with Lexington resident Laura Boghosian that condemned the Anti-Defamation League’s lobbying for the Turkish government and called on the Jewish community to join in efforts to recognize the Armenian Genocide.  He also invited the local Armenian community to participate in a joint Genocide-Holocaust commemoration at the temple, inviting Dr. Richard Hovannisian to speak on the parallels between the Armenian Genocide and the Holocaust.

“This initiative is important because it demonstrates how on a grassroots level, in both the Jewish and Armenian communities, there is a demand for justice for the Armenian Genocide. It is vital that the powerful in Washington, whether they are in the State Department or in lobbying organizations, realize that they will be called to task when they sacrifice principle and historical truth for political expediency,” said Laura Boghosian, ANC of Massachusetts member and co-chair of the petition drive.

The Armenian-American community in Massachusetts has been engaged in healthy dialogue with its Jewish counterparts since the 2007 rift between the local Anti-Defamation League branch broke with the organization’s national leader, Abraham Foxman, by recognizing the Genocide. This campaign was a result of grassroots activism by Mass. Armenian community members to distance towns and cities affiliated with the ADL’s “No Place for Hate” program. The impetus of the latter campaign was the ADL’s continued support of Turkey and Turkish lobby and its blatant denial of the Armenian Genocide.

Sign the petition: www.change.org/recognizearmeniangenocide

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12 Comments

  1. Frank said:

     Rabbi Howard L. Jaffe 
    This is a  gesture that will not be forgotten.
    In this big world of ours I see that there is plenty of room for Israel and Armenia to exist as a country, despite all those who are trying to destroy us

  2. Kiazer Souze said:

    I do believe that a good relationship with the Jewish community is necessary.

  3. Aram said:

    This is an excellent initiative. As two nations sharing the most terrible history of Genocide and Annihilation, we need to work hand in hand to search for Justice, Recognition and Reparation.

  4. immortal Souls of western Armenia risen said:

    there are many Jewish Americans that suffer because of the Armenian Genocide denial in the US and Israel and do all they can to support the recognition in both countries. they are extremely aware and sensitive because they are very well read and informed about the connection of the two. It’s so natural for the two people to understand each other.

  5. Nairian said:

    Rabbi Howard L. Jaffe, may God bless you and may God bless to both our Armenian and our Jewish Martyrs’ souls in heaven for always!!!

  6. Berj said:

    The support of the Jewish leaders is not needed.  All is asked is that Jewish leaders stop actively blocking recognition of the Armenian genocide.  Just stop being complicit with genocidal Turkey.  Perhaps Jewish organizations should clean up their house from genocide deniers such as Abraham Foxman, and sleuth of others Armenian holocaust deniers.  (Why now?  – is it because of recent Turkish politics towards the State of Israel?)
    Rabbi Hillel said it best: “If I am not for myself, then who will be for me? And if I am only for myself, then what am I? And if not now, when?”

  7. Pingback: Armenian, Jewish Leaders Launch Grassroots Petition for Genocide … | armenia News Station

  8. Berj said:

    I have never seen so many Armenians being fooled by just one disingenuous  gesture.
    Jewish organization such as the AJC and the ADL have been and continue to be a firm blocker in the US Congress preventing the official recognition of the Armenian genocide.

  9. Lusik said:

    The support of Jewish leaders is needed, and must be recognized and highly appreciated, in my opinion. There are so many reasons – understandable and not, for these people to stay on guard and be prudent.
    I wish Armenians could learn from Jewish many simple human skills, for instance, of supporting their identity and union.
    I am proud to be an Armenian. And, I will be happy to learn that Jewish communities everywhere found good reasons to stand for the Armenian cause. But I am a realist. Do you know old joke about an optimist, a pessimist and a realist?

  10. Norin Radd said:

    Berj pretty much hit the nail on the head. The best support that can be provided by Jewish groups/leaders is first and foremost to not consistently interfere and block Armenian efforts for proper recognition of the Armenian Genocide.

    Rabbi Howard L. Jaffe’s efforts are definitely a step in the right direction and it is unfortunate that hypocritical leaders like Abe Foxman and groups like the ADL have taken morally bankrupt stances with their continual underhanded opposition for the appropriate recognition of the AG while sanctimoniously constantly harping about “the suffering of Jews” during the Holocaust.

    Sadly, human suffering due to Genocide is not unique nor does it come with a copyright tag that is incorrectly brandished by various Jewish leaders and organizations. The fact that these same Jewish groups and leaders constantly harp about Jewish suffering during the Holocaust while simultaneously blocking efforts for proper recognition of another ethnic group’s Genocide experience which predated their own is sheer hypocrisy.

    More importantly, with each sniveling attempt of blocking Armenian efforts, those Jews and Jewish groups involved in such efforts are defacing the memory of their own people’s suffering and losing moral credibility in the face of growing global criticism.

    Rabbi Howard L. Jaffe, we appreciate your support and efforts, but unfortunately, you’re preaching to the choir with this gesture for us, instead send the web address for this Coalition’s web page to that slimeball Abe Foxman, his ADL cronies, and those in other Jewish organizations that are living embodiments of hypocrisy and moral abominations.

  11. David said:

    Lets welcome our jewish friends and show them some good food and hospitality. This could blossom into a beautiful relationship. Direct your contempt towards both the Clintons, Bush and a wavering Obama if he sells us out too. They all promised to pass this resolution when they were after our votes. On the otherhand, I don’t see any reason why the both of us couldn’t be friends with the Turks .No one alive in Turkey had anything to do with it after 100 years (except the deniers). Who better to resolve a genocide issue then the jews and who better to deal with palestinians and difficult arabs then armenians? We just try to treat everyone equally. You say “never again”, we say; “again and again”.-shalom and thanks for your support!

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