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Shelved Armenian Genocide Resolution

November 05, 2000

* Re "Washington Caved In to Turkey Over Armenia," by Johnathan Clarke, Commentary, Oct. 27:

The British government's position regarding the Armenian allegations [of genocide], as declared at the House of Lords on July 13, is as follows: "In the absence of unequivocal evidence to show that the Ottoman administration took a specific decision to eliminate the Armenians, British governments have not recognized the events of 1915-16 as genocide." The British attempt at the end of World War I to punish Ottoman officials on the charges of massacre ended with the dropping of all charges due to the lack of evidence.

History cannot be legislated and it is not the playground of shortsighted politicians whose only concern is to please their constituencies, even if it takes the distortion of another nation's past. Today, the time is over for digging out old enmities. Clarke has no moral or legitimate right to question, let alone to judge, Turkey's past.

AYKUT BERK

Ambassador-Consul General

Republic of Turkey, Los Angeles

*

It's about time someone like Clarke had the courage to openly point out the non-humanitarian interests of a nation that prides itself on humanitarian intervention. The game of politics is once again played (can we forget Lebanon, Cyprus, the Balkans?), and the losers are the Armenians, for their "insignificant" political, strategic and economic role to the Clinton administration. In this game, the Armenians are the pawns, but the U.S. is the one that has been dealt the checkmate, by Turkey. So who is the pawn now?

SILVA KATCHIGUIAN

Upland

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