President Trump Tightens Turkey’s Grip over White House Policy on the Armenian Genocide

White House Enforces Foreign Gag-Rule Even in Wake of Last Year’s Near-Unanimous Congressional Passage of Armenian Genocide Resolution

President Trump continued to enforce Turkey’s gag-rule on honest U.S. remembrance of the Armenian Genocide, with his annual April 24th statement failing to properly condemn this crime.

WASHINGTON, DC – In the wake of last year’s near-unanimous recognition of the Armenian Genocide by the House and Senate, President Donald Trump has chosen to close out his first term in office – isolated and alone – as the last remaining American enforcer of Ankara’s gag-rule against honest U.S. remembrance of this crime, a move sharply condemned by the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).

For four straight years, President Trump failed to properly condemn as ‘genocide’ the Ottoman Turkish government’s annihilation of millions of Armenians, Greeks, Assyrians, Chaldeans, Syriacs, Arameans, Maronites, and other Christians in his annual April 24th commemorative statement – despite having campaigned on a promise to stand up for persecuted Christians and other at-risk faith-based groups around the world.

“Armenian Genocide denial is a policy manufactured in Ankara, exported to America, and enforced in Washington by President Trump,” said Armenian National Committee of America ANCA Executive Director Aram Suren Hamparian. “Once again, President Trump copied and pasted the transparently euphemistic, patently offensive April 24th evasions issued by Barack Obama and his other predecessors – essentially isolating his Administration as the last major American co-conspirator in Turkey’s obstruction of justice for the Armenian Genocide.”

“Despite last year’s near-unanimous Congressional recognition of the Armenian Genocide, President Trump has, once again, granted Turkish President Erdogan – an openly anti-American dictator – a veto over honest U.S. remembrance of Turkey’s WWI-era genocide of millions of Armenians and other Christians,” continued Hamparian.

“Having promised an America First presidency, President Trump has pursued a Turkey First policy on the Armenian Genocide. Having pledged to protest the persecution of Christians abroad, he has enforced a foreign gag-rule against honest remembrance of this crime against millions of defenseless Christian martyrs. Having vowed to restore U.S. leadership, he has, instead, outsourced American human rights policy to a foreign dictator,” concluded Hamparian.

The President’s full statement is provided below.

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Statement by the President on Armenian Remembrance Day
Issued April 24, 2020

Today, we join the global community in memorializing the lives lost during the Meds Yeghern, one of the worst mass atrocities of the 20th century.  Beginning in 1915, 1 and a half million Armenians were deported, massacred, or marched to their deaths in the final years of the Ottoman Empire.  On this day of remembrance, we pay respect to those who suffered and lost their lives, while also renewing our commitment to fostering a more humane and peaceful world.

Every year on April 24, we reflect on the strong and enduring ties between the American and Armenian peoples.  We are proud of the founders of the American Committee for Armenian and Syrian Relief, a ground-breaking effort established in 1915 that provided crucial humanitarian support to Armenian refugees, and grateful for the thousands of Americans who contributed or volunteered to help Armenians expelled from their homes.

On this day, we bear witness to the strength and resiliency of the Armenian people in the face of tragedy.  We are fortunate that so many Armenians have brought their rich culture to our shores and contributed so much to our country, including decorated soldiers, celebrated entertainers, renowned architects, and successful businesspeople.

We welcome efforts by the Armenians and Turks to acknowledge and reckon with their painful history.  On this day, we believe it is our obligation to remember those who suffered and perished and reaffirm our commitment to protecting vulnerable religious and ethnic minorities around the world.

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ANCA

The Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) is the largest and most influential Armenian-American grassroots organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters and supporters throughout the United States and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCA actively advances the concerns of the Armenian American community on a broad range of issues. To learn more, visit www.anca.org.

13 Comments

  1. Just be realistic. There’s no US president ( except courageous Reagan) who would dare to face Turkey. As candidates, including now Biden, they all strongly promise to do so, then sheepishly backtrack ! Sheer realpolitik….

    • Zaven,you nailed it my friend. All have promised and disappointed us for years and years.

  2. What do we really care if this president or some country or Turkey itself acknowledges the Armenian Genocide? WEKNOW WHAT HAPPENED! Every year, we rightly so, present a banquet of Wisdom for the whole to gain understanding and a new heart- our families, grandchildren, relatives, friends show up and partake and leave healed and strengthened. IF others Like President Trump and Turkey refuse to eat- so be it.

  3. If we read between the lines of this annual farce, specifically, “Beginning in 1915, 1 and a half million Armenians were deported, massacred, or marched to their deaths in the final years of the Ottoman Empire,” it is loaded with intent of the perpetrator, which on such a big scale cannot be describe by anything BUT genocide. ‘Were deported,’ ‘were massacred,’ ‘were marched to their deaths’ all allude to someone else planning and carrying it out. No people will deport themselves voluntarily, nor get massacred, nor march to their deaths. As I’ve often said, it is time we cease getting so hung up on the term successive US presidents use to describe our tragedy and instead channel our energies into strengthening the fragment of land we still have. The dividends will be much higher in insuring the survival of our people.

    • rightly said. stop getting hung up on this nonsense, and work on empowering the armenian nation with economic prosperity and military prowess. Let us assume turkey recognises it today….so what ? we need the land….can you sit and live on the land?
      Stop squandering all efforts on backing this or that idiot and work on your nation nation..

    • You wrote the ideas that came to my mind as I read the President’s declaration. If it quack like a duck, walks like a duck, then…
      Thank you for your comment.

    • My father Vartan Tashjian was born in Marash,Turkey in 1893. In 1916, at age 23, he was recruited in the Ottoman Army and sent to Palestine to fight the British forces of General Alamby. In late 1918 at the end of WWI, at the defeat of Turkey, he immediately returns to Marash to rejoin his family including wife, 3 year old son, parents and 3 siblings. They were nowhere to be found. All massacured while he was serving in the Ottoman Army. Broken and dillusioned he returns to Jerusalem to start anew. I am his son from the second marriage. Need I say more? At 84 I still have nightmares ….. & a strong urge for revange. Would I forget the atrocities commited by Ottman Turky? NEVER! Would I forgive Ottoman Turkey? NEVER! The Armenian Genocide,at the hands of Ottoman Turks claimd the lives of 1.5 MILLION Armenian men, women & Children, (OVER 50% OF THE Armenian Population of Turkey). The only way I may TRY to Forgive & Forget the Turks is for the current Turkish
      Government to acknowledge & accept their CRIME of the Armenian Genocide. Anything less would be TOTAL disrespect to the MEMORY of OUR 1.5 MILLION INNOCENT VICTIMS.

      Sebouh Tashjian
      Former State Minister of Armenia

  4. Its about military contracts, and in Trumps case real estate in turkey. However, military alliances can change, so we must never become complacent as the truth will win out eventually, the congress passing the genocide was a big step, it’s importance should not be minimized.

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