WATEROTWN–Mass.–The Armenian National Committee of America-ER has called for a meeting of Armenian-American community leaders with Ellis Island officials concerning the recent censorship of an exhibit documenting the Armenian Genocide.
News reports of this censorship appeared in a New York Times articleThursday and reported concerns of the organizer of the exhibit that graphic descriptions of the Genocide were removed.
Officials at the Ellis Island Immigration Museum–run by the National Parks Service–asked Margaret Tellalian Kyrkostas–organizer of the exhibit–to remove photographs of the Armenian Genocide considered "gruesome and gory."
"I want to present the facts as they happened," stated Tellalian Kyrkostas–in the New York Times article. The exhibit–"Armenia: Memories from My Home," opened this past weekend and will continue until February 1998.
"Unfortunately–the Armenian-American community is forced to needlessly revisit this very sensitive issue," stated Grace Kehetian Kulegian–Executive Director of the Armenian National Committee/ Eastern United States. "It is truly disappointing that some individuals find descriptions of the Armenian Genocide `gruesome and gory.’ The sad fact is Genocide is gruesome and gory. But–it is a reality. And–in order to prevent the tragedies of the past from reoccurring in the future–we must learn from them."
This case of censorship is similar to a 1991 incident–again at Ellis Island–when a photograph depicting the Armenian Genocide was removed as a result of the Turkish government’s attempt to manipulate United States government officials and the manner in which the US government portrayed the historical facts surrounding the Armenian Genocide and consequent immigration of Armenia’s to the United States.
Recently–in a highly publicized statement–more than 100 of America’s leading scholars and writers rejected attempts by the Turkish government to corrupt academic institutions by attempting to rewrite the history of the Armenian Genocide–and confirmed that the Armenian Genocide was perpetrated by design–by decree and by definition.
Armenia’s nationwide are urged to contact the National Parks Service as soon as possible and express their outrage and shock that photographs depicting the victims of the first Genocide of this Century were removed from the Ellis Island Museum.
For further information–please contact the ANCA-WR–104 N. Belmont–Suite 208–Glendale–CA 91206 or call (818) 500-1918.
Diane Dayson–Superintendent Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island Liberty Island New York–NY 10004 Tel: 212-363-7771 Fax: 212-363-8347.
For the complete text of the New York Times article please refer to Asbarez Features on our web site.