By Edmond Y. Azadian
In four years’ time, 2015, the world Armenian community will mark the first centennial of the Armenian Genocide. Although mass preparations are not in sight yet, the landmark is in the minds and hearts of every Armenian.
Those who had advocated the “wisdom” of the forgive-and-forget policy (believing that the murder of 1.5 million souls was trivial) have come to realize that during the last 100 years, not only the Genocide was not forgotten, but efforts to bring universal acceptance to that monumental tragedy have intensified, the mission and the message having transcended from one generation to the other.
The survivors of the Genocide, after piecing their lives together, organized themselves to meet the challenges of denial. After murdering a nation and taking over its ancestral homeland, the Turks have directed the denial campaign into many realms: academia, the media, politics and culture. Fortunately, Armenians have been able to meet the challenges successfully, by producing many academic volumes, by confronting the Turks in the media and politics, with relatively scarce resources. Yet much remains to be done.
The Genocide centennial will mark a watershed, and efforts and organized work need to be intensified to do justice to the Genocide victims.
It took almost an entire century to make a crack in the wall of silence in Turkey. Today many historians, writers, journalists and politicians in Turkey have taken up the cause of the Armenian Genocide, bringing the message to the Turkish masses, which have been fed with all kinds of distortions in history. Ironically, the Kurds, who were active participants and accomplices in executing the Genocide, have become the most vocal group in Turkey supporting the Genocide recognition, because they also fell victim to the Turkish rulers’ genocidal policies.