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Armenian National Institute Augments Armenian Genocide Instructional Materials on its Website

WASHINGTON, DC – The Armenian National Institute (ANI) has vastly augmented the instructional resources available through its website. Over 200 multimedia, digital, interactive, and published resources can now be viewed. The heavily-consulted Education section of the ANI website was reorganized to facilitate its use by teachers, students, and researchers, and to help each find relevant materials more easily. As an example, the Armenian Genocide Resource Guide now provides a brief description of 178 publications authored by scholars specializing in genocide and human rights studies, researchers specializing in aspects of Armenian history, and select accounts by survivors and witnesses whose testimony lends itself for use in the classroom.

To account for the growing body of literature on the subject, the bibliographic information in the Resource Guide was divided into 16 categories, including: America and the Armenian Genocide; Antecedent Atrocities; Armenian Genocide in Archives; Armenian Genocide Media Coverage; Armenian Genocide and the Holocaust; Cultural Destruction, Recovery of Memory; Eyewitness Accounts; Genocide Reference Works; Historical Context; Legacy and Trauma; and Survivor Accounts.

Of the 77 new publications entered in the Resource Guide, it is noteworthy that the subjects of ‘Cultural Destruction, Recovery of Memory’ and ‘Legacy and Trauma’ now register a considerable amount of recent literature exploring new approaches to understanding the lasting consequences of the Armenian Genocide.

For more introductory purposes, ‘Multimedia Resources’ lists a set of film productions, mostly documentaries, including more recently released ones that may be accessible online, such as ‘American Good Samaritans’ and ‘Map of Salvation.’ Some theater releases are listed as well, such as The Promise and Ararat, which are more appropriate for advanced classroom settings.

These audiovisual resources can be supplemented with a set of seven digital exhibits, all of which are freely downloadable and can be printed in various formats up to poster size. The ‘Iconic Images of the Armenian Genocide,’ a 21-panel exhibit that provides a succinct introduction to the Armenian Genocide, is also viewable online as a slide show. The exhibits include: Iconic Images of the Armenian Genocide; The First Deportation: The German Railway, the American Hospital, and the Armenian Genocide; The First Refuge and the Last Defense: The Armenian Church, Etchmiadzin, and the Armenian Genocide; Witness to the Armenian Genocide: Photographs by the Perpetrators’ German and Austro-Hungarian Allies; Survivors of the Armenian Genocide; American Relief in the First Republic of Armenia 1918-1920; and The United States Military in the First Republic of Armenia 1919-1920.

Each exhibit covers a different aspect of the Armenian Genocide with extensive documentation and contemporaneous imagery, much of which was recovered from U.S. archives, and highlight some facet of the American response to the Armenian Genocide. ‘American Relief in the First Republic of Armenia,’ which explores the role of the YMCA and Near East Relief volunteers who traveled from the United States all the way to Armenia during the war years, has been especially popular for use in instructional workshops and public presentations.

As part of the goal of enriching the resources available to educators, the interactive online Armenian Genocide Museum of America’s (AGMA) holdings have also been expanded with the installment of more galleries with relevant imagery. The interactive design of the presentation has encouraged visitors, especially students, to explore the subject at their own pace and level of interest. Since its launch in 2015 as a contribution to the centennial commemorations, the online museum has remained in steady and constant usage. It proved a valuable alternative and accessible resource when educational institutions suffered interruptions on account of COVID-19 restrictions.

Other instructional materials on the site include an extensive chronology of the Armenian Genocide, entries on the Armenian Genocide from the Encyclopedia of Genocide, sample archival documents, sample press coverage, remarks by key figures, including White House commemorative statements from President Ronald Reagan to President Joe Biden, international conventions relevant to human rights and genocide, photograph collections, an extensive inventory of affirmation records from around the world, and a large database of Armenian Genocide memorials in 45 countries.

As an additional resource, the University of Toronto Press has announced the June 2022 release of the 5th edition of the market-leading textbook, Centuries of Genocide: Critical Essays and Eyewitness Accounts, edited by Dr. Samuel Totten, a leading educator in the field of genocide studies, now professor emeritus at the University of Arkansas. The publication was originally issued under the editorship of William Parsons, Israel Charny and Samuel Totten, and has been continuously in print since 1992. All editions contain a chapter on the Armenian Genocide authored by ANI Director Dr. Rouben Adalian. The chapter was updated with each new edition of the textbook. The 2022 edition now includes chapters on ‘The Genocide of California’s Yana Indians,’ ‘Genocide of the Herero and Nama in German South-West Africa, 1904–1907,’ ‘The Armenian Genocide,’ ‘Soviet Manmade Famine in Ukraine,’ ‘The Holocaust: Jews, Gypsies, and the Handicapped,’ ‘Genocide in Bangladesh,’ ‘Genocide in Cambodia,’ ‘The Genocide Perpetrated by the Government of Argentina (1976–1983),’ ‘Guatemala: Acts of Genocide, Scorched-earth Counterinsurgency War, and the Long Search for Justice,’ ‘The Anfal Operations in Iraqi Kurdistan,’ ‘The 1994 Genocide in Rwanda,’ ‘The Srebrenica Genocide,’ ‘The Darfur Genocide,’ ‘ISIS’ Genocide of the Yazidis,’ and ‘Genocidal Violence against the Rohingya.’

In 2021 the Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute (AGMI) in Yerevan issued the fourth edition of Remembering and Understanding the Armenian Genocide, an updated and expanded version of the original publication inclusive of reflections contemporaneous to the war on Artsakh in late 2020. The 70-page publication comprehensively addresses the consequences of the Armenian Genocide and is written in a style accessible to general audiences. AGMI has kept the essay in print for the past 30 years and makes it available to the public through its bookstore.

For more information on ANI, please see the preceding announcements, “Armenian National Institute Website Now Includes 795 Official Records Affirming Armenian Genocide;” “Armenian National Institute Posts Database on Media Coverage of President Biden’s Recognition of the Armenian Genocide and its Implications;” and “Armenian National Institute Website Now Includes 327 Armenian Genocide Memorials.”

Founded in 1997, the Armenian National Institute (ANI) is a 501(c)(3) educational charity based in Washington, DC, and is dedicated to the study, research, and affirmation of the Armenian Genocide. The ANI website can be consulted in English, Turkish, Spanish, and Arabic. ANI also maintains the online Armenian Genocide Museum of America (AGMA).

New Records Added to ANI Website, English and Turkish Language Sites Expanded

WASHINGTON, D.C. – With 7.5 million hits registered in 2017, the Armenian National Institute (ANI) websites in English and Turkish have obtained global reach as students, teachers, researchers, journalists, and public servants tap their substantial catalogue of critical records on the Armenian Genocide. In response to this encouraging trend and user feedback, ANI announced another expansion of its popular sites, adding new materials.

Sixty official documents on the Armenian Genocide, ranging from Denmark to Brazil, many of which were posted in their original language, are now all translated. The documents in this critically important section under the heading Resolutions, Laws, and Declarations are now available in their original languages, as well as in English and Turkish.

The Turkish language version of the ANI website has been growing continuously since it was launched in February 2017. More translations of key documents posted on the ANI website have been added with the goal of educating Turkish-speaking audiences about the Armenian Genocide in the face of the Turkish government’s standing policy of denying this history. The Turkish language site currently holds 72 documents, 8 encyclopedia entries, the Wegner photo collection, and FAQs, among other contents.

Well over 500 documents can now be accessed on the ANI website, including records from International Organizations, Religious Institutions, States and Provinces, Municipal Governments, Curriculum Mandates, and others. Over 200 U.S. state level resolutions and gubernatorial declarations are accessible.

A newly expanded section titled Official Reports now features reports on proposed Congressional resolutions approved by several committees, including the Committee on Foreign Affairs (previously called the Committee on International Relations), the Committee on the Judiciary, and the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe. These official reports of the United States Congress, such as Affirmation of the United States Record on the Armenian Genocide Resolution Report of 2000, and A Century of Denial: The Armenian Genocide and the Ongoing Quest for Justice of 2015, trace the progress of several resolutions introduced over the years to affirm the American historical record on the Armenian Genocide.

The release of the movie The Promise brought the Armenian Genocide to the attention of broader audiences. Writing in the Los Angeles Review of Books about the importance of films depicting this painful subject, Professor of History at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Dr. Michelle Tusan, compares The Promise to the 1919 film titled Ravished Armenia. Her article along with some other 250 interesting selections from the international press also can be accessed on the ANI website under the Press Coverage section where they are categorized for easy selection under several headings, such as Editorial, Feature Story, Film Review, Opinion, Reporting, and so forth.

In 2016 the ANI website and its associated online museum, Armenian Genocide Museum of America (AGMA), became fully accessible on mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones. The AGMA online museum is an interactive site depicting the entire story of the Armenian Genocide through expandable galleries, along with dynamic narratives featuring survivors and historical imagery. The online museum was launched on April 24, 2015.

Lastly, due to the popularity of the ANI digital exhibits and their particular usefulness as teaching tools, the digital exhibit “Iconic Images of the Armenian Genocide” can now be viewed as an online slide show. Using historic photographs, the exhibit traces the deportation, annihilation, expropriation, and expulsion policies of the Young Turk regime and concludes with images of successful rescue efforts conducted by organizations such as the Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU), and the American humanitarian organization expressly created to address the plight of the survivors, Near East Relief (NER).

Founded in 1997, the Armenian National Institute (ANI) is a 501(c)(3) educational charity based in Washington, D.C., and is dedicated to the study, research, and affirmation of the Armenian Genocide.

Armenian Assembly of America Holds Annual Members Meeting in South Florida

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Earlier this year, the Armenian Assembly of America (Assembly) held its annual members meeting in Boca Raton, Florida. Organized by the Assembly’s South Florida Regional Council (SFRC) Chair Arsine Kaloustian and Assembly Board of Trustees Member and Life Trustee Lu Ann Ohanian, the annual members weekend in March included a three-day program of meetings, receptions, and events.

The success of the Assembly’s annual members weekend was ensured thanks to the generosity of Gold Sponsors Carolyn Mugar, Joyce Stein, Lu Ann & Bruce Ohanian, and Peter Vosbikian; Silver Sponsors Michael Haratunian and Annie Totah; Bronze Sponsors Marta Batmasian, James Kalustian, and Harry & Edna Keleshian; and Donors Ara Jabrayan, Ed Shooshanian, Hagop & Arlys Koushakjian, and Nevart Talanian.

The weekend kicked off with a “Pints and Professionals” reception at Tap 42 restaurant, organized by Florida Chair Arsine Kaloustian. Over 100 guests from Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties gathered in downtown Boca Raton to enjoy complimentary cocktails and appetizers in a business casual atmosphere throughout the evening.

Guests at the Armenian Assembly of America "Pints and Professionals" Reception.

Guests at the Armenian Assembly of America “Pints and Professionals” Reception.

“The Assembly is looking towards the future with fresh ideas and out-of-the-box thinking to build up new membership as well as engage the active member base we already have. The three events we hosted in Florida reflected that aim. Our networking event, ‘Pints and Professionals,’ was particularly successful. Over 100 young Armenian professionals in attendance were anxious to learn more about the Assembly and excited for other upcoming events,” Kaloustian said. “The South Florida Regional Council plans to continue this renewed energy and encouraging momentum for the duration of 2016,” she added.

On Saturday morning, Assembly members and friends gathered at the Boca Raton Marriott for the Members and Board of Trustees meeting. The meeting featured reports from Board of Trustees Co-Chairmen Van Krikorian and Anthony Barsamian, Board President Carolyn Mugar, and other board members and staff. Members also approved the Assembly’s annual budget and amended by-laws. The Board of Trustees meeting will hereafter convene every two years, rather than annually, to review the organization’s budget, endowment fund, and audit reports.

The Assembly’s current Board of Trustees include Anthony Barsamian, Co-Chairman; Van Krikorian, Co-Chairman; Hirair Hovnanian, Chairman Emeritus; Carolyn Mugar, President; Robert A. Kaloosdian, Vice Chairman and Counselor; Edele Hovnanian, Vice President; Bianka Kadian-Dodov, Treasurer; Oscar Tatosian, Secretary; Lisa Kalustian, Assistant Secretary; Aram Gavoor; Alex Karapetian; Raffi Kassarjian; Lu Ann Ohanian; Toros Sahakian; Joyce Stein; Annie Totah; and Talin Yacoubian. Mark Momjian will continue to serve as Solicitor.

During the meeting, the Assembly thanked Michael and Marie Haratunian, who became life trustees after years of dedication with the Assembly. Former Chairman of the Board Michael Haratunian participated in the Airlie House conferences that established the Armenian Assembly of America in 1972 and served as a member of the Board of Directors for many years. He also participated in the Assembly’s Mission Trips to Armenia in 1993, 1994, and 1997.

“The Armenian Assembly, the Armenian American community, and Armenians around the world are grateful to Michael and Marie Haratunian for their hard work over the years, preparing a new generation of leaders,” Assembly Board of Trustees Co-Chairs Anthony Barsamian and Van Krikorian said. “The value they place on the Assembly’s core philosophy to approach important issues in Washington in a professional and on a non-partisan basis yielded a remarkable record of success, promoted four decades of interns, and helped Armenians everywhere.”

Krikorian and Barsamian also recognized several Assembly members and other prominent Armenian American leaders who passed away over the last year, honoring them with a moment of silence. Assembly members spoke in memory of the departed: Harry Keleshian; Gregory Adamian; George Kay; Hirant Candan; George Yacoubian, Sr.; former Washington Post Editor Ben Bagdikian; and former U.S. Ambassador to Armenia Harry Gilmore. While speaking about Ambassador Gilmore, the Armenia Tree Project (ATP) shared about the tree planting on October 14 at the Memorial Park in Parakar Village, west of Yerevan, which was done in his honor.

Assembly Mtg2

Armenian Assembly of America Board of Trustees Co-Chairmen Van Krikorian and Anthony Barsamian, President Carolyn Mugar, Board Member Aram Gavoor, and Armenia Tree Project Deputy Director Jason Sohigian.

During the meeting, the Board of Trustees reviewed the Armenian Genocide centennial anniversary year and presented updates on Assembly activities from around the world, including Vatican City, Los Angeles, New York City, Boston, Chicago, Yerevan, and more. The Assembly members reviewed the events in 2015 and additions to the Assembly’s staff, with new positions filled in California, Washington, D.C., and Armenia.

Krikorian spoke about the new, young leadership and the updated by-laws, aimed at charting the Assembly’s path toward a successful future. The board announced the now-mobile friendly Armenian Genocide Museum of America (AGMA) website as an example, and showcased the virtual museum. AGMA is now easily accessible on mobile and tablet devices.

Reflecting on the situation on the front line of the Nagorno Karabakh Republic, prior to the four-day war, Krikorian displayed the Assembly-created Artsakh Cease-Fire Map, depicting violations by Azerbaijan on the Line of Contact. As feared, Azerbaijani aggression reached new heights in the weeks following the Assembly’s Annual Trustees Meeting, further endangering the region for Armenians in Nagorno Karabakh, as well as refugees being forced to escape persecution in Syria and Iraq.

Barsamian discussed recent meetings he had with various officials, including President Serzh Sargsyan in Armenia as well as OSCE Minsk Group U.S. Ambassador James Warlick in Washington, D.C. He mentioned exciting new projects in store for Armenia, including the Smithsonian Armenia spotlight on the National Mall Discovery Center to be opened in 2018, where the Armenia Tree Project plans to play a significant role.

Assembly President Carolyn Mugar presented on the Assembly and ATP’s tree planting projects. She focused on last April’s commemoration dedicated to the memory of U.S. Ambassador Henry Morgenthau in Armenia, where ten members of the extended Morgenthau family, including eight great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren of Ambassador Morgenthau, participated in several ATP events.

On Saturday evening, Assembly members and friends gathered for a reception where guests discussed the new energy and planned initiatives of the Assembly. Attendees enjoyed the rest of the night dancing with live music provided by Dick Barsamian (Oud), John Arzigian (Accordion), and Mike Gregian (Dumbeg).

The Assembly’s Annual Members Meeting weekend concluded on Sunday with a book presentation at St. David’s Church where renowned Armenian American photojournalist Scout Tufankjian presented her book There is Only the Earth: Images from the Armenian Diaspora Project. Released in April 2015, the publication culminates six years dedicated to documenting Armenian communities in over 20 countries. Tufankjian is best known for her photography during the Barack Obama campaigns and her work in the Middle East reporting on the Egyptian Revolution.

Established in 1972, the Armenian Assembly of America is the largest Washington-based nationwide organization promoting public understanding and awareness of Armenian issues. The Assembly is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt membership organization.

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