On 2 October 2011 a Symposium was held at the U.C. Berkeley co-sponsored by the Armenian Studies Program and the Organizing Committee of the Congress of Western Armenians.
Under the title “The presence of the past: Legal dimensions of Armenian-Turkish Relations“ scholars and specialists of international law from Paris, Geneva, Washington and Berkeley addressed in a most pragmatic, scientific and methodical way the treaties of Sèvres, Kars and Lausanne as well as the Turkish legislation concerning the public and private property of Armenians of the Ottoman Empire including the issue of the cultural heritage of this population.
11 July 2010
Team KeghartEditorial, 9 March 2010
Within a span of fewer than three years (Oct. 2007 to March 2007) two United States congressional foreign affairs committees have gone on public record recognizing the Genocide of the Armenians. Of the 50 states, 42 have acknowledged the Genocide. In recognizing the Genocide, President Ronald Reagan spelled out the sentiments of the average American while three recent presidents, during their election campaigns, promised to acknowledge the mass killings as Genocide.
Whether the latest decision of the U.S. foreign relations committee will be debated in the full house and a corresponding resolution passed remains a moot issue. As expected, the Turkish ambassador was called back and “all hell broke loose” in Turkey. The usual threats that the U.S may lose its NATO ally and hence compromise mutual interests abound in the Turkish media. Some have blamed Erdogan’s government for not doing enough to prevent the passage of the resolution. Others are threatening to topple Erdogan’s government in the next election. No wonder the voices against lifting the blockade and opening the border with Armenia have become more forceful. In all likelihood the Protocols will be shelved as their predecessor the Turkish Armenian Reconciliation Commission (TARC) was.
A few days ago Viken Attarian of Montreal, well known to the readers of Keghart as a free thinker, emailed the following observations, mostly about the Western Armenian National Congress to the Toronto-based 24April forum. As always, Attarian's words are well thought, measured and delivered. "Thread" in the text refers to the body of multiple emails sent by many participants of the forum while discussing the subject.
It is hard to resist commenting on this all-important topic [of WANCONGRESS]. I would certainly pay to have a published copy of this thread alone. A lot of grey matter has gone into it.
From my perspective, the big picture should include the following thoughts as well:
The following is an adaptation from the website of the International Organizing Committee
In the past two attempts were made to organize the Western Armenians by convening the First and Second Congresses in 1917 and 1919 in Yerevan. The last National Congress met In 1919/1920 in Paris in support of the negotiations leading to the Paris Peace Conference.