Smear Campaign Against Sinanyan Muddies Glendale Elections

Zareh Sinanyan is target of smear campaign

GLENDALE—An orchestrated smear campaign targeting the presumptive front-runner in the April 2 Glendale City Council race has muddied the elections and deviated the public discourse from issues facing the city to mudslinging and accusations.

Sinanyan’s opponents are alleging that he has authored online comments on various platforms such as YouTube. The comments attributed to Sinanyan were generally in response to violent, offensive and racist remarks against Armenians by people aggressively denying the Armenian Genocide.

Evidently, the attack campaign is being spearheaded by sitting City Councilmember Laura Friedman—herself a candidate in the elections—who during Tuesday’s City Council meeting made a motion to schedule discussion to strip Sinanyan of his seat on the Glendale Community Development Block Grant Board Advisory Committee. Friedman’s motion was seconded by fellow councilmember and candidate Ara Najarian. Mayor Frank Quintero voiced support for the discussion, which is slated to take place on March 12.

Sinanyan’s campaign manager, Elen Asatryan, told Asbarez that since the City Council has opted to address the issue during its session, Sinanyan would comment about it on Tuesday at the meeting.

Friedman admitted to the Glendale News Press on Wednesday that she had not done her own research, but rather was relying on a descriptive email about the comments sent to multiple community members.

Friedman did not return numerous calls to Asabrez.

The timing of the attack raises serious concerns, since Sinanyan has served on various commissions in the city for more than five years.

City Counciman Rafi Manoukian pointed out during Tuesday’s City Council meeting that the motion to discuss Sinanyan’s removal from the CDBG is taking place as the race is becoming more and more competitive.

“Let me remind everyone that it is campaign season and this particular gentleman is running for a council seat, as are two of my colleagues here. So it’s very odd, that especially during the election, things like this come up. I would prefer leaving it after the election to determine what this is all about,” said Manoukian during Tuesday’s City Council meeting.

“Election season’s here, I guess. It’s been here for a while, but here we go,” added Manoukian.

The smear campaign has resulted in several high-level officials pulling their support for Sinanyan, who is the top fundraiser in the race. Rep. Adam Schiff and Los Angeles City Councilmen Paul Krekorian and Eric Garcetti, a mayoral candidate, have withfrawn their endorsement for Sinanyan.

The March 12 City Council session promises to be interesting. The question remains as to when these candidates will stop mudslinging and resorting to underhanded tactics and actually begin addressing issues of importance to the residents of Glendale.


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  1. Hrant said:

    “Friedman did not return numerous calls to Asabrez’….”Friedman did not return numerous calls BY Asabrez

  2. Another Zareh said:

    Besides being nobody’s business what anyone has written as comments on free-speech websites, no one has the right to conclude anything on anyone without hard proof. Were you there watching Zareh type those comments? How do these desperate bottom feeders like Laura Friedman know that someone has not been posting using Zareh’s name, and also whether they had access to his accounts (if it was with his accounts), and he never knew about it, etc? My email accounts were hacked and taken over several times. Also, perhaps Zareh found out about these comments after it was “revealed” by someone anonymous, or perhaps those posts were all made by someone who was close to Zareh, or just wanted to harm his name. Judging a person supposedly by their “historical internet comments” is so absurd.

  3. Ara said:

    Is this an opinion piece? Because otherwise I do not see any evidence in the article that this was a smear campaign. Can we stick to the fact and not express an opinion until there is more evidence one way or another?

    • Peter said:

      There is no FACT, Ara. The mere mention of this garbarge, and it is garbage and the amount of media it has gotten from the Glendale News Press all the way to hosting a city council meeting about it points to this BEING a smear campaign. This is a desperate and disgusting move on the part of Laura Freidman and her cronies, ruining the political process while resorting to these types of tactics. Shame on her.

  4. Hunter Ellroy said:

    I am quite disappointed in the sloppy journalism reflected in this article by At the outset, you assert the existence of an “orchestrated smear campaign,” yet offer no evidence whatsoever. You then proceed to offer what appears to be exoneration for Sinanyan’s alleged comments by suggesting they were “generally in response to violent, offensive and racist remarks against Armenians.” So the reader is encouraged to believe that Sinayan didn’t make the comments, but — if he did — they are excused by the context. Is the Glendale voter to understand that violent, offensive and racist remarks by civic leaders are acceptable when directed against those who aren’t Armenian

  5. COHEN said:

    Well as a Jew I would be angry if someone denied the Holocaust the man is human with feelings !
    Good for you Sinanyan I like you even more now you have my vote in April!!!