January 19, 2012 |
On Monday, the French Senate is scheduled to debate and possibly vote on a bill that would criminalize denial of the Armenian genocide of 1915, along with any other events recognized as genocide in French law. The bill has passed the lower house of Parliament. The Senate should reject it, in the name of free speech, the freedom of historical inquiry and Article 11 of France's pathbreaking 1789 Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen ("The free communication of ideas and opinions is one of the most precious rights.…")
December 25, 2011 |
REPORTING FROM JERUSALEM -- Israeli lawmakers plan to discuss the possibility of setting a day to commemorate the Armenian genocide of 1915-18. But the initiative is causing tension ahead of the discussion, scheduled for Monday, because of concerns over the reaction by Turkey, which denies a genocide took place. Until now, similar commemoration proposals have been referred to parliamentary committees that meet behind closed doors. This will be the first time the subject will be discussed at a committee whose meetings are public.
December 24, 2011
Should people have the right to deny historical fact? The Times' editorial board thinks so, writing on Dec. 21 that a proposed law in France to criminalize denial of the Armenian genocide would be a "monstrous violation of free speech. " Reader Janet Gross of Los Angeles took issue with the editorial board's view that genocide denial is an opinion worthy of free-speech protection: "The right to the opinion that the Armenian genocide in 1915 perpetrated by the Turks never happened should be protected?
December 22, 2011 |
Despite threats by Turkey and vocal opposition at home, French lawmakers approved a bill Thursday making it illegal to publicly deny that the Armenian genocide occurred. In retaliation, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan recalled his country's ambassador and said bilateral visits would be suspended and joint military operations with France canceled, Agence France-Presse news service reported. Earlier Thursday, thousands of people waving Turkish flags protested the impending vote outside the National Assembly in Paris.
December 21, 2011
The killing of more than a million Armenians by Ottoman Turks in 1915 was an act of genocide. The Holocaust was a fact. Yet Americans are free to deny the reality of either — or make outlandish assertions of all kinds — without facing punishment by the state. Residents of France will be denied that privilege if its parliament adopts a wrong-headed bill to criminalize denial of the Armenian genocide. On Thursday the lower house of France's parliament will debate a bill that would punish those who deny the genocide with a year in prison and a $58,000 fine.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 20, 2011 |
About 30 protesters called on the Getty Museum to return seven ornate pages taken from a sacred medieval Armenian book considered to be a national treasure. The protesters gathered outside the gates of the museum Saturday, holding signs that read "Shame on Getty" and "Our history is not for sale. " Armenian church officials are trying to secure the pages, which they say were illegally obtained by the museum nearly two decades ago. The La Crescenta-based Western Prelacy of the Armenian Apostolic Church of America filed a $105-million lawsuit against the J. Paul Getty Trust in June 2010 alleging that the museum illegally bought seven pages ripped from the Zeyt'un Gospels, a sacred manuscript that dates back to the year 1256.
November 13, 2011
The medieval illuminated manuscript known as the Zeyt'un Gospels was rumored to hold supernatural powers that would protect the Armenian people. Whether or not that's the case, the manuscript itself has eluded destruction. Created by the Armenian illuminator T'oros Roslin in 1256 for Constantine I, the head of the Armenian Orthodox Church's Holy See of the Great House of Cilicia, the book passed through unknown numbers of hands, survived the Armenian genocide and ended up in a museum of ancient manuscripts in Yerevan.
November 4, 2011 |
The J. Paul Getty Trust failed Thursday to derail a lawsuit by the Armenian Orthodox Church that accuses the museum of harboring stolen illuminated medieval manuscripts — 755-year-old works that are masterpieces and, to the church, spiritually and historically sacred. After a brief hearing, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Abraham Khan denied the Getty's motion to dismiss the claim. The museum's attorneys argued that the deadline for filing the suit had passed decades ago under the statute of limitations.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 30, 2011 |
A planned parade by an Ottoman military marching band in Hollywood has been canceled because of objections by Armenian groups who said the event was an affront to victims of the 1915-1918 Armenian genocide. The genocide claimed the lives of about 1.2 million Armenians under the Ottoman Empire, which became the modern-day republic of Turkey. The Turkish government disputes that a genocide took place. The permit for the parade, scheduled for next Monday on Hollywood Boulevard, was pulled Wednesday, an official at the Los Angeles Police Commission said.
September 23, 2011 |
Thirteen years ago, when Ruben Mkrtchyan told his wife and four children that they were going to move from Glendale to a high desert valley in the middle of nowhere to grow the world's tastiest melons, they thought he had lost his mind. "My mom and I looked at each other and said, 'What is he talking about?' " recalls his daughter Tatevik. "When we went up there, the land was completely empty, just Joshua trees and scrub. " But Mkrtchyan had a vision of fields and orchards blooming in the wilderness, one that he has realized to a remarkable extent.