ANCA Responds to Obama’s Refusal to Recognize Genocide

President Obama with Turkish Prime Minister Recept Tayyip Erdogan

WASHINGTON–Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) Executive Director issued the following statement regarding President Obama’s April 24th “Armenian Remembrance Day” message, which once against stops short of properly characterizing the crime as “genocide.”

“Sadly, President Obama chose today not to lead, but rather to follow Ankara’s gag-rule on his Administration’s condemnation and commemoration of the Armenian Genocide. His public retreat, under Turkish pressure, comes despite his own pledges to acknowledge this crime and our government’s record, dating back more than half a century, of having recognized the Armenian Genocide as a clear case of genocide.”

“Our President’s complicity in Turkey’s denial of truth and its ongoing obstruction of justice will not derail our progress toward a truthful, fair, and comprehensive international resolution of Turkey’s still unpunished crime against the Armenian nation.”

The full text of President Obama’s statement is provided below.

Statement by the President on Armenian Remembrance Day

Today we commemorate the Meds Yeghern and honor those who perished in one of the worst atrocities of the 20th century. Ninety-eight years ago, 1.5 million Armenians were massacred or marched to their deaths in the final days of the Ottoman Empire. We pause to reflect on the lives extinguished and remember the unspeakable suffering that occurred. In so doing, we are joined by millions across the world and in the United States, where it is solemnly commemorated by our states, institutions, communities, and families. We also remind ourselves of our commitment to ensure that such dark chapters of history are not repeated.

I have consistently stated my own view of what occurred in 1915, and my view has not changed. A full, frank, and just acknowledgement of the facts is in all of our interests. Nations grow stronger by acknowledging and reckoning with painful elements of the past, thereby building a foundation for a more just and tolerant future. We appreciate this lesson in the United States, as we strive to reconcile some of the darkest moments in our own history. We recognize those courageous Armenians and Turks who have already taken this path, and encourage more to do so, with the backing of their governments, and mine.

The history and legacy of the Armenian people is marked by an indomitable spirit, and a great resiliency in the face of tremendous adversity and suffering. The United States is stronger for the contributions Armenian-Americans have made to our society, our culture, and our communities. In small measure we return that contribution by supporting the Armenian people as they work toward building a nation that would make their ancestors proud: one that cherishes democracy and respect for human liberty and dignity.

Today we stand with Armenians everywhere in recalling the horror of the Meds Yeghern, honoring the memory of those lost, and affirming our enduring commitment to the people of Armenia.


Discussion Policy

Comments are welcomed and encouraged. Though you are fully responsible for the content you post, comments that include profanity, personal attacks or other inappropriate material will not be permitted. Asbarez reserves the right to block users who violate any of our posting standards and policies.


  1. Zareh said:

    what do you expect from a President who has publicly declared his most admired foreign politician is Erdogan.
    Armenians who voted for this liar the second time are just stupid as hell.

    • Alex said:

      First of all Armenians are not STUPID AS HELL as you put it , just because they voted twice for President Obama.

      Do you think it would have been different with another president?

      As for President Obama’s refusal to use the word “Armenian Genocide” is very simple….”politics”. Take away the strategic position of Turkey and its ties with the US, the statement would have been different.

      At least he did mention “Medz Yeghern” which is the “Armenian Genocide” perpetrated by the Ottoman Turks.

      But once again do not call Armenians stupid, because you are one of us!!

    • Bob said:

      Could not agree with your more.. Instead of not endorsing anyone this last election, the ANCA should have urged all Armenians to punish those who broke their promises by voting them out.

    • edward said:

      My dear zareh i wish us The Armenians had instead of condamning a little of politic and put our selves in the shoes of the president ,whom we are accusing of not using the word GENOCIDE, the same president who approved $24.000000 aid for Armenia to be frank a president should do what is in the interest of his country or should do something that might be bad for his countries foreign affairs?please be patient 30 years ago american people did not know what an Armenian was or meant and today the president of the united states speaks to his nation about armenian MEDS YEGERN in stead of complaining we should stay more united remember the genocide enery day of the year not only April 24 and i promise the day will come that the United stats also officialy recognizes the Genocide

    • Garabed said:

      Anyone who voted for him the first time expecting that he would use the word genocide was foolish. The only one who would say the word genocide may have been Senator Dole. No one else would have, or will in the future. The military industrial complex will make sure of that. Providing for the common defense is preeminent in our constitution. This is why our politicians cave into threats from Ankara. Most likely with the situation in the middle east and the oil that is there, nothing will change unless the Republic of Turkey feels as if it is in it’s best interest to acknowledge it. Could the US pressure it? Sure. Think about 2 things: 1) Make Turkey feel good about saying yes to admitting genocide 2) We need to figure out what’s in it for them. The USA only reluctantly admitted genocide on its indigenous population. But it had already paid reparations to them (and continues to). Many African Americans want reparations (an argument could be made that they have already received that). Perhaps next Mexican Americans will want reparations (perhaps they have gotten that over the next year). Germany was perhaps unique in its admission of the holocaust. We need to figure out 1 & 2 by 2015. Even then, most likely someone would have to drop the call for reparations in return for admission. This for many many people would be an anaphora.

  2. An Armenian said:

    In the US, any matter related to Armenia, the Armenian Genocide, US foreign assistance, the indepencdence of the republic of Artsakh, the Armenian Genocide Insurance claims and so on, the Executive, the Judicial and usually the Legislative branches of the US government (other than the US Senators and Representatives from states with large Armenian populations) are run by the Turkish government. Therefore, we should not expect Obama to act any different than what the Turkish govenment dictates to him and the US State department. All the talk about democracy and Human rights becomes a joke.

  3. Puzant said:

    Well said Zareh, cursed be any Armenian who voted first, or second time for the puppet.

  4. Dr.Hermon Mihranian said:

    At present the USA President is not in the position to force the turkish government to recognize the Armenian Genocide, which I understand. We must give the USA President time to do so. Armenians in the USA must support the Obama administration in the best way.

  5. George Mardig said:

    Armenians can’t be hostage to Obama, David Cameron or who knows who, they should go world wide and grab the sympathy of all the people in the US and abroad 1 person at a time, imagine if from the 10 million Armenians 5 million informs about the Genocide 1 person a week, it means 52 NEW people will be informed about the Genocide = 260 million NEW people world wide and it cost NO money, every corner of the world the people will be informed, once in motion this snow ball, year after year NO body will be able to stop it, Turkey’s image and credibility will be damaged to the point of NO repair. Chinese proverb says the logest trip starts 1 step at a time.

  6. Gregory said:

    During his campaign, Mr. obama did not promise Armenian-Americans that he was going to pick up another language during his spare time and learn Armenian. He promised to honor his pledge to recognize the Armenian Genocide because of his “firmly held conviction that the Armenian Genocide is not an allegation, a personal opinion or point of view but rather a widely documented fact supported by an overwhelming body of historical evidence.”

    The Armenian term ‘medz yeghern’ means ‘great calamity’ in English. We as a community, and our misguided government officials in Armenia, must understand that the use of this term allows genocide deniers and their accomplices to evade use of the more LEGALY accurate English term GENOCIDE (or Tseghaspanutyun). The word genocide carries a distinct set of legal implications according to international law. Medz yeghern does not.

    Why do Armenian government officials repeatedly use this term? It is so counterproductive to our efforts. What is wrong with using Tseghaspanutyun? Is this really that hard for President Sarkisian and our republic’s officials to understand after 98 years of enduring denial?

  7. Vasken said:

    I would Re-Title the Picture as follows “A Cozy Moment of Two Unbecoming Politicians”

  8. Sylva-MD-Poetry said:

    Obama is now the slave of American politics…
    They will run him the way they like…
    All president did the same except Woodrow Wilson…
    To fight communism…Created Qaida
    Created Saddam Hussain…
    Created Khumayni…

  9. Kevork Parseghian said:

    menk mer vra huysernis tnenk hzoratsenenk hyrenike yev amur garchink nra abakayin vor garenank hamakhmpel hyutiune hyreniki yev spurki mech hamadegh mi pruntsk tarnank ayt jamanag mez hashvi garnen, mezi bedk che husahadetsnen nerkin tjvarutiunnere .aynbayman bedk a pokhvi ays abazkayin garavarutiune vor ashkhadum a ira yev odari shaheri hamar.ayt dsakhvads azki tshnaminere mer mechen Obaman ir yergri kaghakaganutian hamar a anum payts vay mez vor mer takavore manug a.