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Garo Paylan Vows to Continue Fight for Achieving Recognition of Armenian Genocide

YEREVAN (Armenpress) — Only democratic Turkey can recognize the Armenian Genocide, Garo Paylan – Istanbul-Armenian lawmaker of the Turkish parliament, said during his speech at the 6th Armenia-Diaspora Pan-Armenian Forum in Yerevan on September 19.

“We have a wound which is still incurable, and we know that this wound will be healed only in this country – in Turkey, Anatolia. Only democratic Turkey can recognize the Armenian Genocide, only democratic Turkey can open the Armenian-Turkish border. If Turkey doesn’t become democratic, we can wait for decades. Do we have a right to transfer this issue to our future generation? No, we have no right. We know well, and for four generations we are fighting for the injustice faced by our grandfathers and fathers to have a fair solution”, he said.

Garo Paylan said a great crime took place in the Ottoman Empire 102 years ago, and now that crime also continues since when a crime remains unpunished new ones are following it. “I believe we will achieve justice one day when the Armenian Genocide is recognized and I will continue fighting for that”, Garo Paylan said.

Paylan said he together with his party members has fought for decades for establishing democracy in Turkey. “In reality, the fight for democracy is very difficult. And over the past two years we saw that nationalism wins easier. Erdogan also saw this, and unfortunately, he moved on this path”, he said.

Paylan stated that the new Constitution of Turkey, which switched the country to presidential system, in fact serves for implementation of the goals of one person. “I have said in the Turkish parliament that a great mistake took place. I was opposed. 104 years ago the same happened in the Ottoman Empire. Talaat and Enver Pashas brought new Constitution after the revolution, and those people who were against it had two options – to stay silent or fight. The Armenian Genocide started and within a decade 4 nations – Armenians, Greeks, Assyrians and Jews, were massacred. And now in the circumstances of Turkey’s new Constitution we can face the same catastrophe. Even today, unfortunately, we are facing it”, he said.

The lawmaker said the Republic of Turkey was found without facing the Armenian Genocide. According to Paylan, the state, which has not paid for its crimes 100 years later, will continue committing a crime.

Article source: http://massispost.com/2017/09/garo-paylan-vows-continue-fight-achieving-recognition-armenian-genocide/

Turkey Fails to Bar Scholars from Armenian Genocide Conference

BERLIN (Panarmenian.net) — Turkish authorities have attempted to prevent scholars based in Turkey from participating in a conference in Berlin titled “Past in the Present: European Approaches to the Armenian Genocide.”

The Workshop on Armenian-Turkish Scholarship (WATS) is a series of international academic workshops, founded at the University of Chicago and the University of Michigan in 2000 as the “first forum where Turkish, Armenian, and other scholars could create a community of Turkish, Kurdish, Armenian, and other scholars to conduct an informed debate” relating issues surrounding the fate of

Despite the efforts of Turkish nationalists who deny the established facts of history, the latest workshop, the tenth in the series, took place on 15-18 September at the European Academy Berlin, co-organized by the University of Michigan, USC Dornsife Institute of Armenian Studies, and Lepsiushaus Potsdam, under the auspices of Dr. Martina Mu¨nch, Minister for Science, Research, and Culture of the State of Brandenburg.

The conference has come under sustained attack by Turkish ultra-nationalist political circles in Turkey and Germany. Long-time deniers of the Armenian Genocide in the international arena declared that the conference will “serve imperialism and the interests of Kurdistan” and framed the Kurdish issue as forming “the second Israel,” clearly an anti-Semitic slur.

“We consider that a democratic society requires a free exchange of ideas, and such pressure on academics in Turkey has already had a chilling effect on university scholars, who have in the last decades help to build up a high level of academic professionalism and achievement,” said the Workshop for Armenian-Turkish Scholarship and the Lepsiushaus Potsdam in a statement.

“We demand as well that the Turkish state desist from interfering in intellectual exchange and expression outside of Turkey. There is no substitution for independent research and the presentation of research findings in academic settings and in scholarly meetings. These exchanges are fundamental to academic freedom. Such interference infringes on the democratic order in Turkey and in hosting countries.”

Article source: http://massispost.com/2017/09/turkey-fails-bar-scholars-armenian-genocide-conference/

Armenian Genocide Book Shortlisted for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize

DAYTON, OH – Dawn Anahid MacKeen’s book, The Hundred-Year Walk: An Armenian Odyssey, is a finalist for the prestigious Dayton Literary Peace Prize in nonfiction. She is one of twelve authors shortlisted in nonfiction and fiction for the award, which recognizes the power of literature to promote peace and reconciliation.

Inspired by the 1995 Dayton Peace Accords that ended the war in Bosnia, The Dayton Literary Peace Prize is the only international literary peace prize awarded in the United States. The Prize celebrates the power of literature to promote peace, justice, and global understanding. This year’s winners will be honored at a gala ceremony in Dayton on November 5th.

The other finalists include Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer Prize-winning The Underground Railroad, and J.D. Vance’s best-selling Hillbilly Elegy. “At a time of great uncertainty in the world, this year’s finalists reveal how we got to this point and offer powerful lessons on how we can heal, reconcile, and build a better world,” said Sharon Rab, co-chair of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize Foundation. “Now more than ever, we need to celebrate authors who dare to explore the impact of war, exile, racism, and economic inequality and, more importantly, endeavor to offer hope in these tumultuous times.”

The Hundred-Year Walk tells the courageous story of MacKeen’s grandfather, Stepan Miskjian, one of the few to survive the massacres in the Deir Zor region of present-day Syria. Miskjian left hundreds of pages detailing his survival, which MacKeen, an investigative journalist, used to reconstruct his life and death march. She then retraced his steps across Turkey and Syria. The book alternates between the two accounts. Miskjian believed he’d lived in order to tell the world about the atrocities. “Being a witness to that satanic pogrom, I vowed it as my duty to put to paper what I saw,” Miskjian wrote in his notebooks.

Both the New York Post and Outside declared the book a “must read.” It was also awarded best biography by the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and longlisted for the Chautauqua Prize. It’s beginning to be taught in universities and high schools. “I’m so honored that many students and readers are learning about the genocide for the first time through my grandfather’s story,” MacKeen said. “Education is the reason why I spent a decade on this book.”

Award organizers announced in July that Irish novelist, journalist, and essayist Colm Tóibín, whose fiction and nonfiction captures the impact of exile and political conflict on individual lives, will receive the 2017 Richard C. Holbrooke Distinguished Achievement Award, named in honor of the noted U.S. diplomat who helped negotiate the Dayton Peace Accords.

The full list of finalists can be found below and at www.daytonliterarypeaceprize.org.

Article source: http://massispost.com/2017/09/armenian-genocide-book-shortlisted-dayton-literary-peace-prize/

Chapman University Presents “Knowledge Without Action: The Case of Germany During the Armenian Genocide in the Ottoman Empire”

ORANGE, CA – Chapman University’s Rodgers Center for Holocaust Education will host a conversation on the Armenian Genocide with distinguished scholars and Chapman University Presidential Fellows Dr. Richard Hovannisian and Dr. David Crowe. Their conversation will focus on recent research on the Armenian Genocide, including the foreign office records of Germany, Turkey’s most important ally during World War I. These detailed reports of German diplomats, missionaries, and businessmen raise the crucial question of why knowledge alone is not sufficient to stop genocide. The event is part of the Center’s series “History, Memory, Justice.”

Dr. Richard Hovannisian is Professor Emeritus of History at UCLA and Adjunct Professor of History at USC. He has published more than 30 volumes on Armenian history and culture, including Looking Backward, Moving Forward: Confronting the Armenian Genocide.

Dr. David Crowe is Professor of History Emeritus at Elon University and the author of the definitive biography on Oskar Schindler, as well as numerous books on the history of genocide, including War Crimes, Genocide, and Justice: A Global History.

The conversation will be moderated by Dr. Jennifer Keene, Chair of the Department of History in Chapman University’s Wilkinson College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences and current President of the Society of Military History.

This event will take place September 26, at 7 p.m., at Chapman University’s Fish Interfaith Center – it is free and open to the public. Parking for events is available on campus in the Fred L. Barrera Parking Structure on Sycamore Street and the Lastinger Parking Structure on Walnut Avenue. Permits costing $2 for two hours and $3 for four hours may be purchased at each structure.
About Chapman University
A
s an academically distinguished center of learning, Chapman University attracts extraordinary students and faculty from around the globe. Its ten schools and colleges foster a vibrant intellectual community, and provide extensive opportunities for students to learn, grow and discover alongside remarkable faculty. The University is home to 8,500 students pursuing bachelor, master and doctoral degrees, and is alma mater to more than 40,000 alumni found throughout the United States and the world. Now celebrating its 156th year, Chapman is known for its distinguishing strengths in leadership and civic engagement, in the arts and entertainment disciplines, and in specialized sectors of technology and science. The University is comprised of its main campus in Orange, California, and the Rinker Health Science campus for graduate health science programs in Irvine, California.

www.chapman.edu.

Article source: http://massispost.com/2017/09/chapman-university-presents-knowledge-without-action-case-germany-armenian-genocide-ottoman-empire/

Professor Taner Akçam Receives ‘Upstander’ Award from World Without Genocide

WORCESTER — Clark University history professor Taner Akcam will be honored with the 2018 Outstanding Upstander Award from the World Without Genocide organization for his work promoting justice and the rule of law. He will formally receive the award at the organization’s annual gala in May of 2018 in Minneapolis.

Akçam is one of the first Turkish intellectuals to acknowledge and openly discuss the Armenian Genocide, He holds the only endowed chair dedicated to research and teaching on this subject.

Akcam is an outspoken advocate of democracy and free expression since his student days at Middle East Technical University in Ankara, he is an internationally recognized human rights activist.

World Without Genocide works “to protect innocent people around the world; prevent genocide by combating racism and prejudice; advocate for the prosecution of perpetrators, and remember those whose lives and cultures have been destroyed by violence.”

Previous recipients of the World Without Genocide award include Eli Rosenbaum, Director of Human Rights Enforcement Strategy and Policy at the U.S. Department of Justice; Claudia Paz y Paz, former Attorney General of Guatemala; and Magistrate Judge Peggy Kuo, a former prosecutor at the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia.

Article source: http://massispost.com/2017/09/professor-taner-akcam-receives-upstander-award-world-without-genocide/

Screening of “They Shall Not Perish: The Story of Near East Relief” in Lexington

BELMONT, MA — On Friday, October 13, at 7:30 p.m., the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR) and the Near East Foundation (NEF) will present the Boston-area public premiere of the documentary film They Shall Not Perish: The Story of Near East Relief, at the Scottish Rite Masonic Museum (formerly National Heritage Museum), 33 Marrett Road, in Lexington, MA (at the intersection of Route 2A and Massachusetts Avenue). A post-film discussion will feature NEF Board Director and executive-producer of the film, Shant Mardirossian, with a panel of scholars. The program is free and open to the public and will be followed by a reception.

Produced by NEF Board Member Shant Mardirossian and award-winning director George Billard, the documentary They Shall Not Perish details the unprecedented humanitarian efforts of thousands of Americans who saved a generation of orphans and refugees during the collapse of the Ottoman Empire and in the aftermath of the crisis that came to be known as the Armenian Genocide. The film teaches us the amazing role ordinary citizens can play in responding to humanitarian crises.

Following the screening, Marc Mamigonian, NAASR Director of Academic Affairs, will moderate a panel discussion with Shant Mardirossian and scholars Dr. Taner Akçam, Kaloosdian-Mugar Professor of Armenian Genocide Studies at Clark University; Dr. Hayk Demoyan, Director of the Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute in Yerevan, Armenia; and Dr. Nora Nercessian, author of the study City of Orphans: Relief Workers, Commissars and the Builders of the New Armenia Alexandropol/Leninakan 1919-1931.

The one-hour documentary film features the stories of American diplomats, missionaries and relief workers who, as witnesses to the Armenian Genocide, responded to a call to action and mobilized the largest non-governmental international humanitarian movement undertaken by American citizens.

Narrated by six-time Emmy award nominated actor Victor Garber, the film is set against a mix of historical footage, archival photographs and utilizes contemporary interviews from leading academic experts such as Taner Akçam, Peter Balakian, Keith David Watenpaugh, and the late Martin Deranian. In addition, the letters of American officials, relief workers and orphans are brought to life through the voices of leading actors–Michael Aronov, Kathleen Chalfant, Dariush Kashani, Andrea Martin, Ron Rifkin, Tony Shalhoub and Kara Vedder–taking the audience on a journey from the depths of cruelty to the triumphs of survival.

Shant Mardirossian, inspired by his grandparents’ escape and survival during the genocide, says he produced this film “not just to remember those we lost in the genocide, but to shed light on an important chapter of American history when ordinary citizens stood together against a great injustice and saved the lives of 132,000 orphans.”

For additional information about this event, please contact NAASR at 617-489-1610 or hq@naasr.org.

Article source: http://massispost.com/2017/09/screening-shall-not-perish-story-near-east-relief-lexington/

“Forbidden Journeys” at UCLA To Celebrate Legacy of J. Michael Hagopian

LOS ANGELES – In 1967, a group of Armenian-Americans organized by the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR) were among the first to travel to Historic Armenia to find traces of their roots the Turks had left behind. On Sunday, October 1, 2017, portions of J. Michael Hagopian’s documentary film of that landmark journey will be screened along with Ani Hovannisian-Kevorkian’s short documentary on the vanishing traces of Historic Armenia, shot nearly 50 years after Hagopian’s footage.

The October 1 program, “Forbidden Journeys,” will present segments of Hagopian’s 1967 film Historic Armenia and of Hovannisian-Kevorkian’s current documentary on the disappearing vestiges of Historic Armenia, followed by a panel that includes Marc A. Mamigonian, Director of Academic Affairs at NAASR, Dr. Carla Garapedian of the Armenian Film Foundation, Dr. Richard G. Hovannisian, Professor Emeritus of Modern Armenian and Near Eastern History at UCLA, and Hovannisian-Kevorkian. UCLA Professors S. Peter Cowe and Sebouh Aslanian will make opening and closing remarks.

“Forbidden Journeys” will be the first program in the J. Michael Hagopian Film Discovery Series jointly presented by the Armenian Film Foundation (AFF) and NAASR. It will focus on the pioneering legacy of J. Michael Hagopian – his impact as an advocate for Armenian Studies and as a filmmaker.

The 1967 trip was the first of NAASR’s “Armenian Heritage Tours.” The Armenian-Americans who set out on this journey were the earliest such group to travel to historic Western Armenia. For some, it was a trip back to the places of their birth. Among the travelers was Hagopian, NAASR’s first West Coast director and co-founder of the Armenian Film Foundation. Himself a native of Kharpert and a survivor of the Armenian Genocide, Hagopian shot film on this path-breaking trip, capturing in many cases for the first time post-Genocide images of the Western Armenian homeland. The film has not been screened for over three decades.

Fast forward to 2013 when Hovannisian-Kevorkian was traveling through Western Armenia and discovered a lone Scottish explorer/photographer who has spent 30 years quietly uncovering and documenting the vanishing traces of this lost world. Since then she has been filming with him, digging beneath the modern map, encountering stories and physical remnants and revealing the hidden map of Turkey’s forbidden past.

Co-sponsored by the Richard G. Hovannisian Chair in Modern Armenian History at UCLA, the Narekatsi Chair in Armenian Language and Literature at UCLA, and the Ararat-Eskijian Museum, the October 1 program will take place at 2:00 pm, at the James Bridges Theater, Melnitz Hall, UCLA. This program is free and open to the public. A reception will immediately follow the program. Parking is available in Lot 3, 215 Charles E. Young Drive North (at Hilgard Avenue). For more information about the program, contact NAASR at (617) 489-1610 or hq@naasr.org.

Article source: http://massispost.com/2017/08/forbidden-journeys-ucla-celebrate-legacy-j-michael-hagopian/

What Happened in 1915 in Ankara?

ISTANBUL — Simon Arakelyan, a Catholic Armenian from Ankara, tells the story of a terrifying 122-day journey during the Armenian Genocide.

An authentic and vivid account on Armenian Genocide, which was long-forgotten, finally came to light. In “Ankara Vukuati: Menfilik Hatiralarim” (The Ankara Incident: My Memoir of Exile), which is the chronology of a terrifying 122-day journey, Simon Arakelyan, a Catholic Armenian from Ankara, tells the story of his survival during the Armenian Genocide. The book, which was written in Turkish with Armenian alphabet, is published with Latin alphabet for the first time.

According to Arakelyan’s account, Catholic Armenians, who dreaded the day they will be murdered in the midst of the massacres of Orthodox Armenians, were eventually arrested in groups and sent on a death journey, during which they struggled with maltreatment, assaults, hunger and conditions of nature. The next destination after the first stop in Tarsus was deserts of Deir ez-Zor, where there was hardly any chance of survival. Thus, there was only one thing on Arakelyan’s mind: Escaping from the death march to Deir ez-Zor at all costs. Fortunately, he had a lucky break. Following his breathtaking escape, he published his memories full of anguish in 1921.

This memoir sheds light on several subjects at first hand: Sufferings of Catholic Armenians, who were not massacred or deported according to official history narrative; conditions of the deportation; confiscation of Armenian properties and Great Ankara Fire in 1917. However, this is not the only significance of the book. This text depicts the feelings of an average Armenian man in the Ottoman Empire in those days, how he made sense of what he went through and his self-contemplation in an explicit way.

Edited and transcribed by Murat Cankara, this work also includes the transliteration of the original text for those who’d like to read Arakelyan’s own words written in a sophisticated Ottoman Turkish.

Simon Arakelyan
We know very little about Simon Arakelyan. He was born and raised in Ankara. In 1922, he immigrated to France, acquired French citizenship in 1939 and passed away same year. He was a Regie officer, married and had a daughter. His mother tongue was probably Turkish and his French, Ottoman Turkish and Armenian were pretty good. After the Armistice of 1918 (Mudros), he testified in the investigation on massacres of Armenians in Ankara. Ankara Vukuati is his first and only work.

Article source: http://massispost.com/2017/08/happened-1915-ankara/

AGBU Spearheads The Promise to Educate Movement to Foster Armenian Genocide Education

NEW YORK — On August 14, the Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU), in partnership with Survival Pictures, the production company behind The Promise, and major Armenian organizations in North America, launched The Promise to Educate campaign to raise funds for the advancement of Armenian Genocide education across the United States.

Expanding on the social impact mission of The Promise and recognizing the gaps in genocide education in the U.S., AGBU and its partners have initiated a campaign to send copies of the film and relevant curriculum resources to public educational institutions across the country. While human rights issues and related history are included in the social studies curricula of the vast majority of public schools, the Armenian Genocide goes largely ignored. Currently, the Armenian Genocide is not a required subject in history courses in most schools and lack of awareness and teaching materials leaves it on the sidelines.

“The primary goal of the filmmakers of The Promise was not only to bring our history to light, but to encourage a dialogue among middle school and high school students and their teachers,” said AGBU Central Board Member Ani Manoukian. “The AGBU Alternative Education Department works to provide a diverse range of resources on various topics of Armenian language, history and culture for classrooms. The distribution of The Promise DVDs, along with tailored study materials, provides access to trustworthy information about the Armenian Genocide, challenging the powerful forces of denial.”

Donations will allow AGBU to supply Keep The Promise Educational Packages to American public middle and high schools, higher educational institutions and libraries. Each package includes a copy of The Promise DVD, a letter from filmmaker Terry George, a tailored The Promise Study Guide and a reference of Armenian Genocide curriculum resources and contacts. The package is developed in cooperation with well-known genocide education organizations, such as the Armenian National Institute (ANI), The Genocide Education Project and the Zoryan Institute.

Article source: http://massispost.com/2017/08/agbu-spearheads-promise-educate-movement-foster-armenian-genocide-education/

New IAGS President Henry Theriault to Speak at NAASR on Genocide Studies Agenda

BELMONT, MA — Join Dr. Henry Theriault, recently elected as President of the International Association of Genocide Studies (IAGS), in conversation with NAASR’s Academic Director Marc Mamigonian, on the state of genocide studies today and the place of Armenian Genocide studies within the field as a whole. The event, entitled “Setting the Agenda: Genocide Studies Today and the Place of the Armenian Genocide,” will take place on Thursday, October 21, 2017, at the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR) Center, 395 Concord Ave., Belmont, MA 02478. The program is presented as the first of the 2017-2018 NAASR / Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation Lecture Series on Contemporary Armenian Issues.

Dr. Theriault has served as founding co-editor of the peer-reviewed journal Genocide Studies International, chaired the Armenian Genocide Reparations Study Group and was lead author of its 2015 final report, and his autobiographical narrative, “Out of the Shadow of War and Genocide,” was included in Advancing Genocide Studies: Personal Accounts and Insights from Scholars in the Field (2015), edited by Samuel Totten. After 19 years on the faculty in the Philosophy Department at Worcester State, in 2017 he became Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs.

As a scholar who has been a leading voice among of genocide studies over the past decade and more, and now as President of the IAGS, a position to which he was elected in June 2017, Theriault is among those setting the agenda for genocide studies. In his inaugural address, he stated that “genocide studies has been at the forefront of recent human rights advances. … Demagogues attack the sensibilities genocide studies engenders. Our work is a crucial challenge to their propaganda. IAGS must strive against this marginalization while innovatively expanding the field, especially creating space for emerging scholars particularly vulnerable to this backlash.”

For more information about this program, contact NAASR at 617-489-1610 or hq@naasr.org.

Article source: http://massispost.com/2017/08/new-iags-president-henry-theriault-speak-naasr-genocide-studies-agenda/

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'Genocide Monument'

Using the unrecognized Genocides of the past as a reason to keep vigilance on all current ones around the world. The iPhone app is now available free on the Apple App Store. The Android and Blackberry versions of 'Genocide Monument' are currently being funded for production.