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'Armenian Anguish'

May 19, 1986

I want to compliment The Times for its editorial (May 8), "Armenian Anguish."

You are correct that the purpose of the congressional resolution--which I co-authored--to designate April 24 as Armenian Martyrs' Day is simply to memorialize the victims of Armenian genocide.

As a California senator, I felt a special responsibility to help Armenians reminds our country and the world of what happened to their families.

The massacre in the Armenian homeland had a special impact on California. Countless Armenian refugees fleeing from terror settled in California, particularly in the San Joaquin Valley where the weather and the vineyards were much like their birthplace. To the matrix of California's ethnic richness, they contributed a vital culture and philosophy toward life, which Bill Saroyan captured so elegantly in his stories of an Armenian boy growing up in Fresno.

That The Times is a truly great California newspaper is more than amply demonstrated by the grace and eloquence of your affirmation that your earlier position was wrong.

ALAN CRANSTON

U.S. Senator

from California

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