Obama Again Betrays Promise to Recognize Genocide

Obama again doesn't honor his pledge

WASHINGTON—President Barack Obama again betrayed his pledge to properly condemn and commemorate this crime against humanity, reported the Armenian National Committee of America.

Despite his repeated, detailed, and unambiguous pledges to recognize the Armenian Genocide, the President offered only euphemisms and evasive terminology to describe the murder of over 1.5 million men women and children – effectively keeping in place the gag rule imposed by the Turkish government on the open and honest discussion of this crime. In refusing, under foreign pressure from Turkey, to his honor his pledge, he again fell far short of his own view, as voiced during his campaign, that America deserves a President who uses the term “genocide” to convey the full factual, moral, legal, and contemporary political meaning of this crime against all humanity.

“President Obama’s disgraceful capitulation to Turkey’s threats, his complicity in Turkey’s denials, and his Administration’s active opposition to Congressional recognition of the Armenian Genocide represent the very opposite of the principled and honest change he promised to bring to our country’s response to this crime,” said ANCA Chairman Ken Hachikian.

“Instead of standing up for the truth, and standing by the extensive U.S. record on the Armenian Genocide, President Obama is today, under threat from an increasingly unfriendly foreign power, standing in the way of the broad-based American civil society consensus for a truthful and just resolution of this crime,” added Hachikian.

“For a President who ran for office on the platform of ‘change’ and ‘honesty’, his record on this score – including, notably, his deeply offensive reference today to ‘contested history,’ has been shameful. He has, in addition to betraying his own words and compromising America’s moral standing, gravely disappointed Armenians here in the United States, in Armenia, and around the world who had looked to him as an example of courage, conviction, and conscience,” continued Hachikian

As a Senator and later as a Presidential candidate, President Obama pledged repeatedly to recognize the Armenian Genocide, stating, “America deserves a leader who speaks truthfully about the Armenian Genocide and responds forcefully to all genocides. I intend to be that President.” View his record on the issue. 

Since then the President has, while asserting that his personal views of the events of 1915 have not changed, refused to officially recognize the Armenian Genocide, mobilized his Administration to block Congressional recognition of this crime, and deployed his Secretary of State and diplomatic corps to pressure Armenia into the Ankara-driven Turkey-Armenia Protocols.  The Administration has also failed to honor the President’s numerous commitments on a range of other Armenian issues, including Nagorno Karabakh, foreign aid, and bilateral trade.

President Obama’s complete statement is provided below.

Statement by the President on Armenian Remembrance Day

We solemnly remember the horrific events that took place ninety-six years ago, resulting in one of the worst atrocities of the 20th century.  In 1915, 1.5 million Armenians were massacred or marched to their death in the final days of the Ottoman Empire. I have consistently stated my own view of what occurred in 1915, and my view of that history has not changed.  A full, frank, and just acknowledgement of the facts is in all our interests.

Contested history destabilizes the present and stains the memory of those whose lives were taken, while reckoning with the past lays a sturdy foundation for a peaceful and prosperous shared future. History teaches us that our nations are stronger and our cause is more just when we appropriately recognize painful pasts and work to rebuild bridges of understanding toward a better tomorrow.  The United States knows this lesson well from the dark chapters in our own history.

I support the courageous steps taken by individuals in Armenia and Turkey to foster a dialogue that acknowledges their common history. As we commemorate the Meds Yeghern and pay tribute to the memories of those who perished, we also recommit ourselves to ensuring that devastating events like these are never repeated.  This is a contemporary cause that thousands of Armenian-Americans have made their own. The legacy of the Armenian people is one of resiliency, determination, and triumph over those who sought to destroy them.  The United States has deeply benefited from the significant contributions to our nation by Armenian Americans, many of whom are descended from the survivors of the Meds Yeghern.

Americans of Armenian descent have strengthened our society and our communities with their rich culture and traditions.  The spirit of the Armenian people in the face of this tragic history serves as an inspiration for all those who seek a more peaceful and just world. Our hearts and prayers are with Armenians everywhere as we recall the horrors of the Meds Yeghern, honor the memories of those who suffered, and pledge our friendship and deep respect for the people of Armenia.

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43 Comments

  1. George Casen said:

    When he states “contested history” he is referring to the fact that Turkey contests what is history. This clearly emanates from the Los Angeles Times article by Tim Rutten, who stated that Turkey should face its past so that she can move on. He is trying to get Turkey to do what is in her best interests, move beyond the Genocide by following Germany’s example !

  2. Jennifer said:

    Though he did not say genocide, this is my fav statement on april 24th from any president minus the bs about turkey and armenia getting along whole we know turkey jails people for talking about genocide.

  3. Vars said:

    As an intellectual, Mr. Obama can’t seem to find the proper word describing the Armenian Meds Yeghern, GENOCIDE. I suppose during his years of study, Mr. Obama somehow missed the chapter in history where Rafael Lemkin, referencing the Jewish Holocaust during the second world war, coined the term “GENOCIDE”, specifically citing the “Armenian Massacres” earlier in the century. You have a very large vocabulary Mr. Obama, add GENOCIDE to it!

  4. Zareh Sahakian said:

    A very polite, and politically safe commemoration message from the US president. In spite of the missing crucial word I still would not be proud if I were a Turk.

    Two days ago the giant American company Sikorski Aircraft signed a deal with Turkey for the sale of attack helicopters worth $ 3.5 billion. Now you know why the president “hasn’t changed” what he believes in but cannot say it out loud.

    By the way Mitchell Hadad of Sikorsky Aircraft is on the Board of directors of American Turkish Council.

    • Lusik said:

      Turkey builds alliance with Iran and Azerbaijan. It is not completely unlikely, that these attack helicopters will be used in the war for establishing Turkey hegemony in Caucasus.

  5. Fernando Chavira said:

    Dear Armenians what did you expect? Barack Obama has betrayed not only his promised to recognize the Armenian Genocide he has gone back on many of his promises proposed during his 2008 campaign. I voted for him and his “Hope for Change”, but this time around I’ll be campaigning for his impeachment. Millions of us are seeing the lie that this administration is all about. His deceptive Orwellian speaking abilities serve to mesmerize the population while the banks, corporations and the pentagon get away with highway robbery. Remember he won the Nobel Peace prize and yet he military strikes Libya without informing congress. This is a violation of the United States Constitution and not a word from major news media. As a Latino I’m appalled and shocked as he says one thing and does the other. Where is the citizenship he promise for the undocumented living and working in this country for decades. The Immigration, Customs and Enforcement agency deports hundreds of thousand yearly is this not a form of genocide? We are forced to go back to our home origins and face an uncertain future. Without work are families face starvation and you could call it genocide as being force to walk into the desert. Yes, my Armenian friends it is time to wake-up and impeach this tool of the oligarchs and the elite whom appointed him to his presidential post. There will never be an Armenian “Genocide” recognition as long as we support this two party system. It is time to wake-up!

  6. Pingback: Obama refuses to recognize Genocide - US Message Board - Political Discussion Forum

  7. Diana said:

    Armenians should try voting for someone else in 2012 . . . it’s the only message he understands.

    • manooshag said:

      Hye, let’s choose an Armenian (agree on one person) to be written in on Election Day. Imagine,
      ther voters, too, will choose to vote for the Armenian write-in candidate… rather than the ill chosen politicos that the Demorcrats and Republicans foist upon us.

  8. sebouh nazarian of australia said:

    2-1 you foolish US Armenians will fall for it again……..I am ashamed to have fellow morons like you as fellow Armenians

  9. Arhtur Minassian said:

    What else did you expect from the Commander In Lies! Go ahead and keep supporting the Democracts and keep getting kicked in the mouth and come back for more,YOU FOOLS!!!! Time to review the political endorsement policiess of ANCA!

    • manooshag said:

      Artur, Democrat Obama pledged to be president who’d recognize Turk Genocides of Armenians
      Artur, Republican McCain was not interested supporting the Genocide issue…
      Who did you vote for? Who will you vote next??

      • HebardHigh said:

        Manooshag, you are a geniuses my friend. You rather vote for a person that you know would lie to you, than a person who honestly told you in advance that the U.S. Government would not do anything for Armenian Genocide because Turkey is more important for U.S. Government. Armenians love to vote for a liar, and then start complaining about it.

  10. Arhtur Minassian said:

    Go ahead and moderate all you want! I still want to find out the reason and the thinking of the ANCA brain trust for endorsing this LIER IN CHIEF!

  11. Shant Melkonian said:

    Very disappointing and frustrating!

    Turns out Obama’s Circle and cronies are identical to Bush’s and Clinton’s before that and so on! By that I mean his advisors; the same Zionists that are so powerful in this country that they manage, conduct, tutor, handle and dictate all administrations alike… The ADL, AIPAC, all the so called ‘think tanks’ shape and mold American politics and especially foreign policies. They always side with the Turks impeding the advancement of all Armenian issues and interests! And so it goes on; regardless of who the tenant of the White House is, Jews and Israel always have the advantage and will benefit. Whereas Armenians and Armenia will always suffer and be stepped all over…

    Even the few Jews (Schiff, Sherman, etc…) who on the surface, seem to be fighting with vigor to advance our issues, are probably advised by the same organizations I mentioned above. Aaaaaaaah, THE BIG PICTURE… Which has been painted a long time ago! The bottom line to them all is to hold on to their seats term after term after term, in order to continue contributing towards a stronger Israel and pushing forward it’s causes. And they get re-elected by getting our ‘naïve’ Armenian votes… How? By Just showing the hard work they do for us in Congress, or in so called ‘Town Hall’ gimmicks… But if anything materialized or advances as far as a major full floor vote, the same Turkey-ally-Zionist-organizations will use their vast influence and see to it that nothing in favor of Armenians will ever pass.

    We the Armenians have to have larger representation in Congress, that is if we are serious about accomplishing our goals, rather than relying on the Jews to ‘pretend’ to do our work and keep getting our votes, stay in power and in reality, keep pushing Jewish agendas forcefully down the throats of the oblivious American people. Less than 2% of the population of the USA are Jews, but in Congress the percentage rises to 12-15%.

    In order to succeed, our kids have to take interest in politics.

  12. Gregory Basmadjian said:

    The President’s denial to recognise the Genocide at this stage is yet another wake-up call to all of us! The truth be told…only we Armenians can acknowledge the reality of the situation, and strive to work together and make our homeland strong, politically and economically.

  13. Van said:

    I think we should stop using the word Meds Yeghern altogether and officially adopt Dzeghasbanoutiun – the only word that is correct anyways. Then if he likes Obama can say Dzeghasbanoutiun. We Armenians use words like Djart (massacre), Meds Yeghern etc. but we should police ourselves and make sure we use Dzeghasbanoutiun! As for Obama betraying us, I suggest it is the Armenians who have betrayed our 1.5 million dead by not taking the Genocide seriously enough. How much money goes into our cause I ask? Stop funding our corrupt churches, spending millions towards maintaining our church divisions and towards maintaining community centres for each political affiliations. Stop blaming others for our own folly.

  14. Satenik said:

    Besides the Turkish gag rule, looking at his photo ,it’s highly likely that he had a Turkish father. He is the most treacherous being that has occupied the White House! Shame on Obama, the most spineless president in the history of the USA. Does anyone take him seriously in anyway now? He has become the laughing stock of the world!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. turkish said:

    even the president does not believe your big so-called genocide lie!

  16. Krikor said:

    My wish that those words were written on thin papers; so they could be useful!Come 2012 WE will remember WHO NOT to vote for!

  17. arziv said:

    Everytime I see a photo of ths Obama, it reminds me of a crypto genocidist turk. Maybe he is a re incarnation of Davit Bey. We place our trust and hopes on duplicitous , perfidious , and professional fraudsters characters like obama. A word, a word, that someone, behind the scenes , powerful , for political reasons , is prohibiting its utterance.

  18. Sassoun said:

    Why dont we as a community come out and say out LOUD we are not supporting his re-election! it is high time that we stand on our own feet and say enough of this bull s**T.

    • manooshag said:

      Sassoun, let’s all, together, select one Armenian person, to vote for in the 2012 elections.
      Perhaps others, seeing Obama’s shortcomings, will join us.

  19. Mego said:

    ANCA, needs to start an action alert to send webmail to pres.Sarkissian,and his goverenment, so we can express our opinion toward the protocols.

  20. Fred said:

    I think we should change our tune. We should stop deviding our efforts on this lost cause of hearing one word from presidents. Is that one word realy important enough to hang the dignity of our 1.5 million dead on. NO no no no. We should be taking the case of the Genocide to Hague. We need all out diasporan organisations to join forces with an Armenian Government group for genocide and prepare a Hague case for the Wastern Armenian provinces who suffered the Genocide and lost 80% of their population. The time as come to get off this carousel of The word Genocide and get serious about this cause that should interest all humanity. We should not allow politics of money to demean the memory of our dead. We should not put ammunition in the hands of Presidents like Obama to play politics with something which is so so so above politics.

  21. Tigran said:

    I guess until we do a million men march to washington they won’t pay attention. let’s work on organizing million men march in 2015.

  22. Hrant K. said:

    To the turkish I say : listen to Orhan Pamuk, the 35000 turkish intellectuals, who have signed an apology

    letter to their Armenian ” brothers and sissters”, the grandson of Jemal Pasha, who has visited

    Dzidzernagapert, why the turkish Ergenekon Fascists couldn’t tolerate Hrant Dink speaking out the truth,

    and finally his doubt about our President’s disbelief of our so-called Genocde lie, let him check his

    hometown State’s (Hawaii) Recognition a year ago of the Armenian Genocide!

  23. Lusik said:

    More important than our president not behaving like a man, is that we don’t make our lessons from his failures. Should not we – a betrayed society of Armenian Americans, have grown stronger from year to year as our president shows that he has other commitments to fulfill? The next question is rhetoric one: “Whose failure is more damaging, more dangerous to the Armenian cause?” The answer is our failure to be today stronger than year ago.

    Presidents come and go. People stay. Sometimes I think, that obama is puzzled by how much importance we – Armenians, give to his promise! Instead of expecting him be an honest stateman, we better build our intellectual muscles for raising claims of retribution to the international courts. The era of recognition is over, because the new era is on the horizon!

    The chapter on recognition of the Armenian genocide is complete! So many civilized countries of great democratic traditions have raised their voice in affirming their standing. A multitude of highly respected individuals and religious, cultural, professional societies and organizations have expressed with clarity their qualification of the 1915 massacres in Ottoman Turkey as the Armenian genocide. By keeping asking more countries to recognize the Armenian genocide, we get trapped on the same page, we diminish the spirit and the value of recognitions already achieved. We slow the dynamics of the process. We lose momentum, which should vehicle us to the final stage – legal formulation of the Armenian Genocide, so that in any history textbook of any country it will be named so.

    When the International court will deliver the verdict, politicians will stop manipulating the genocides. This is a God will for erasing from human society the practice of genocides. Louis Pasteur has invented vaccination to fight infectious diseases. To me, finalization of the Armenian genocide by International courts has the same place for the health of future human society. It seems that on the Armenian nation God has put the heavy load of delivering his will.

  24. Garo said:

    Any Armenian who votes for him in 2012 should be called “Mets Tavajan”. To translate to Mr. O, :We mean “BIG
    TRAITOR”

  25. Hrant K. said:

    Dear President Obama,

    The guff you have made with Ms. Nancy Pelossi, on her last days of her efforts to put Congressional

    Res.252 on house flour, by forbidding her to exert into action the very cause her late father believed in, as

    well as herself , has made you gain a lot of enemies, who are now in dispair from your empty promises

    and campagn rethoric of CHANGE, HOPE and YES WE CAN slogans! What you have not “uttered” on

    April the 23rd, the despair and hopelessness you cause to our Hispanic brothers with your immigration

    policies, will definitely backfire on your next presidential campagn. It’s never too late, you can still pay

    a visit to the Montebello Genocide Memorial Park, and place a few flowers to the memory of 1.5 Million

    innocent martyrs, and make their souls rest in peace. With that you’ll also make the few remaining

    Genocide survivors cling to your humanitarian aspirations! They deserve better! By not doing so Mr

    President, you are victimizing the Criminals and treating the justice seekers in a very unfair manner!

    I believe that there

    is still some room in the heart of the strongest man on the planet for conscience, away from tainted love

    for materializm. The United States is founded on principles of freedom of speach and worship. You can

    become our Modern Abe Lincoln with your courage and enter the Golden Pages of history once again as

    you did, when got elected as the first African American President! So YES YOU CAN, MAKE US

    PROUD and SAY the “GENOCIDE” WORD out LOUD to the CROUD!!!!!!! (7)

  26. Eric said:

    Has Sarkisian mustered up enough courage yet to call obama and give him an ear full about his use of weasel words this year????? Or is the RA planning on staying silent again like stupid slaves?

    Defend your bloody history you imbeciles!

    Why is Sarkisian and his administration so content with doing the absolute bare minimum of anything meaningful, IF THAT, to help our cause?

    • sebouh nazarian of australia said:

      Because they are not Armenians in the true sense….they are Soviet materialist scum

  27. Hrant K. said:

    To the turkish coward, who refrained from mentioning his name I say: Had you been today in

    Switzerland along with your Foreign Minister and Prime Minister Erdogan, the Swiss penal law would have

    placed you 3 behind bars and forced you to pay thousands of Sws.Francs for being sceptic about the true

    fact of the Armenian Genocide. WE hope, that France, Great Britain, China, Russia and the

    U.S.goverments will follow suit and be as civilized as the noble Swiss people and government, and as

    lately an Argentinian court has ruled in favor of the Armenian Genocide!!!!!!! (7)

  28. Fred said:

    Dear Obama I would like to take this oportunity to convey my condolences of the great accident of 9/11. I believe it is neccesary for US to talk to the pilots to make sure such a tragic accident does not happen again. But least I had the decency of not making this statement on 9/11 when your people are moarning the dead.

  29. Alex Postallian said:

    My hats off to the politicians,business leaders,stoogies,who have the FOR SALE signs on the backs;who have supported turkey( a sewer)with their yellow stain (nom de plume)who has lyiingly denied the GENOCIDE of a country,,one fifteeth its size.Known as turkomongolia.

  30. Z said:

    Obama didn’t recognize the Genocide. He lied, punish him! Make sure he’s not reelected.

  31. arx said:

    As an Armenian whose Grandma and the Grandpa were the survivor, I would never and ever ask anybody to recognize the “Genocide”. Never. You do not have any respect to our martyrs. You are hurting their souls.They know and we too, what had happened to them. We do not need to ask or beg anybody to accept an use the “G” word. We have a great deal of self pity which is a normal outcome of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. We, the survivors have to deal with this and go ahead. We need to think in a different way. Don’t blame this or that president. No one is going to hurt Turkey, because in politics there is only national benefit, not the morality. We are acting like a child who wants his big brother take care of his problems. We need to start a new era and change our mentality. We need to grow.

    • sebouh nazarian of australia said:

      I have had this opinion for years and years…but was labelled a tavagun by my community leaders…how great to see another Armenian has some common sense and insight…God Bless you Arax….but it is a shame community leaders are corrupt and concentrate on feathering their own nests rather than helping their people….any one who wants to reply, please leave your true full name as I have

    • Fredrick Anjo said:

      Well done Arax & Sebouh. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. All we have to do is to get more and more people to join us and we can finally turn the tide from feeling sorry for ourselves to feeling good and proud about ourselves. We need to channel all our efforts to make our country prosperous, advanced and great. I don’t care what people think of 1915. I care about how people will respect and fear Armenia of 2015.

  32. Dave said:

    Congrats to our President, US Navy Seals, and the CIA.

    We have Genocide victims on both sides of our family. Our origins are Kharput (Kharpert) in Western Armenia.

    However we are first and foremost Americans now. I expect the President of the United States to act for the best interests of the US. We need access to Incirlik airbase in Turkey. We need the efficient transport of troops and supplies that Incirlik supports. My son recently came back temporarily from Afghanistan and spent an overnight at Incirlik. It was a plane ferrying back wounded some of whom needed assistance that was available at Incirlik before continuing on.

    So enough of the histrionics and feigned surprise that US national interests and the safety of our troops trumps a campaign promise. He never should have made the commitment-it was obviously at cross-currents to US strategic needs in the middle east. Having made the statement to use the word Genocide he was left with two choices.

    Keep his commitment and adversely impact US strategic and military needs or contradict himself. He made the right choice.

  33. arx said:

    Thanks Sebouh and Frederick. I hope a lot of people will start to think from a different angle. We can’t go years and years telling the same things without any gain. It means that something is wrong with us. We need other strategies. By the way, accusation of not saying the right word reminded me our big poet Baruyr Sevag’s saying. ” People will lie if you ask unnecessary question”. I think this will explain why all the presidents are lying.

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