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Samantha Power to Armenians: “I am very sorry”

By Taniel Koushakjian
FLArmenians Political Editor

Yesterday, Samantha Power became the first Obama administration official to apologize to Armenian Americans for not recognizing the Armenian Genocide.

“I am very sorry that, during our time in office, we in the Obama administration did not recognize the #Armenian Genocide,” Power posted on Twitter.

In a series a tweets on April 24th, Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day, Power also discussed “Turkish denial” and expressed empathy for the “slaughter that wd kill 1.5 m.”

Samantha Power served on President Obama’s National Security Council from 2009-2013, and as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations from 2013-2017.

She is the author of the Pulitzer Prize winning book A Problem From Hell: America and the Age of Genocide, which focused on the U.S. response to 20th century genocides, including Armenia in 1915.

While the emphatic expression may be welcome to some, many Armenian Americans share the feeling of betrayal by Power, and President Obama, given the multiple statements and meetings they held with community members during the 2008 campaign.

“This is more insulting 2 our ppl than 8yrs of ignoring our requests.U sacrificed ur own conscience on the altar of geopolitical correctness,” FLArmenians Editor Arsine Kaloustian replied on Twitter.

The Obama administration’s moral laryngitis on the Armenian Genocide was compounded in 2015, the centennial anniversary, when Power and Vice President Joe Biden attended the international commemoration at the Washington National Cathedral.

WASHINGTON, DC – MAY 07: President of Armenia, Serzh Sargsyan, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, and U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power attend the Armenian Genocide Centennial (NCAGC) Ecumenical Service at Washington National Cathedral on May 7, 2015 in Washington DC. (Photo by Kris Connor/Getty Images for NCAGC)

Power’s re-acknowledgement of the Armenian Genocide came moments after President Trump’s first statement on Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day was released yesterday morning.

President Trump’s statement on Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day echoed President Obama’s use of the phrase “Meds Yeghern,” and invoked language similar to President George W. Bush.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer was asked about President Trump’s omission of the word genocide during the daily press briefing. “The statement that was put out is consistent with the statements that have been put out for at least several of the past administrations,” Spicer said.

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Posted on April 25, 2017, in Armenian Genocide, General Update, News, Politics and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Shant Ghazarian

    her twitter account is suspended

    Thanks in advance Shant Ghazarian

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  2. Sophia Kugeares

    It is very important that ALL Armenians understand that the matter of endorsing the Armenian Genocide or not, is NOT in the power of the President of the United States. If you want to lay blame for the repeated and consistent refusal to acknowledge the Genocide find out who is running the Foreign Policy of this country, and they query every senator or representative on their decision. You will find ambiguity and double talk. even from the most trustworthy individuals. Dr. Power believes intensely in the facts of the Genocide. There is no question about that. President Obama asserted his support when he was Senator. However, when he became President, he was “gagged” by powers such as the Turkish and Israeli lobbies. The latter do not speak for all Israelis nor for the majority of Jewish Americans. There is great division. But look to the power structure in Israel to determine what the American president is permitted to say or not say! The Turkish lobby has a strangle hold on Foreign and Military policy; and considerable sway in the CIA.
    How many Armenian Senators or Representatives, or advisors do you know of in Federal or State governments; or in journalism or own publishing companies, or radio stations or TV stations? If WE don’t get out in the mainstream we won’t be able to move to a position of power where we can assert our ideas about the Genocide or any other Armenian issue. We have our writers, movie makers, and a handful of non-Armenian advocates to thank for the small presence We have in mainstream culture. Therein lies the problem. Ask any average Armenian how many books on Armenia are in their household, or to name three Armenian writers, composers, historians, clergy; or famous Armenians. WE don’t know our own history and culture as well as we should and could. We can do better. And when we do the rest of the world will know and care.
    We owe a huge debt of gratitude to Terry George and ensemble for making the movie, The Promise. Sure is was Krikorian’s money, but the genius and the courage (don’t forget the entire case and crew were under enormous secrecy before, during and after making the film; due to the obvious dangers if Turkish deniers found out about it. Be assured that I am taking as much blame as anyone. I do my small part by teaching the Armenian genocide in my college Humanities course and have raise serious awareness on the part of a few of my students who are now interested in pursuing Genocide Studies. God Bless us all, and may we move forward as sisters and brothers in support of Armenia and Armenians everywhere. Thank you.

  3. Sophia Kugeares

    “Moral laryingitis”? Until every Armenian stands up and personally does one action to raise awareness about the Armenian genocide outside the confines of their own homes and lives and minds, and increase our own awareness of the Genocide and our own culture we are remiss when pointing our fingers at others. WE need to defend our OWN identity. If and when we allow our personal political leanings to insinuate themselves into our Armenian patriotism, we are more or less doomed to the fate we have endured for a decades. WE need to educate ourselves, prepare ourselves and speak our minds.

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