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No plans for House to vote on Armenian genocide resolution, aide says

Updated 5:00 p.m.
by Mary Beth Sheridan
The Obama administration has reached agreement with congressional leaders not to schedule a House vote on a resolution labeling the World War I-era massacre of Armenians as "genocide," a U.S. official said Friday.

The non-binding resolution, which narrowly passed the House Foreign Affairs Commitee a day earlier, prompted a furious reaction from NATO ally Turkey, which recalled its ambassador from Washington.

Turkey is critical to U.S. security interests because of its support for war efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan. It also will have a key vote at the United Nations if the Security Council considers sanctions against Iran.

Turkish officials said Friday the resolution could also torpedo an agreement to normalize their country's relations with Armenia, which was mediated by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. That accord has not yet been ratified by either side.

Clinton called Rep. Howard Berman (D-Calif.), chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, on the eve of the vote to express concern about its ramifications, officials said.

"We believe congressional leaders understand the severe impact any further action would have on normalization between Turkey and Armenia. We believe that this will not come to the floor," a senior administration official said Friday, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss the sensitive issue.

The issue was awkward for the administration since, in their previous work as senators, President Obama, Vice President Biden and Clinton had all called on President George W. Bush to declare the mass killings as a genocide.

Turkey acknowledges that large numbers of Armenians were killed during and immediately after World War I. But its officials and some historians say the deaths were the result of forced relocations and fighting at the end of the Ottoman Empire, not a campaign of genocide.

By Mary Beth Sheridan  |  March 5, 2010; 2:19 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency , Capitol Briefing  
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Comments

Posted by: onemoreexpat | March 9, 2010 1:36 AM | Report abuse

It's not about how important Turkey is or justifying genocide or attempts because some other country did before; it is only about historical facts. Ottoman's were attacked from inside by their own citizens, among them are Armenians so as a means to solve the matter Ottoman Turks had to relocate them to safe areas. Remember World War 2 era when Japanese people were evacuated from the US.
Also blood was never spilled only in one side,it is was "a fight" started by betrayal of Armenians against Ottoman Empire. Read some unbiased history text.

Posted by: vintagelead | March 7, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Tell Turkey how important they are to the world, then, tell them and the world the truth. Almost 100 years ago, they hunted down the Armenians, gathered them and sent them to starve in the heat of the desert. It was genocide. Call it what is was. Many other nations have stepped up in the past 20 years and declared it genocide, our politicians should show backbone. You cannot re-write history, the Ottoman Turks did what they did. It was documented. Turning our heads away will not help anyone. We, as a Nation and leader will lose respect if are not truthful.

Posted by: JBfromFL | March 6, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

When will Congress pass a resolution claiming that the European invasion of the Americas was premeditated genocide? That was the worst act of genocide in all of history, and it wasn't just 'five hundred years ago', it lasted until the 19th century, right around the time the Turks decided to 'purify' their land holdings of all non-Turks. Why is Congress passing this resolution but they can't pass any resolution that helps Americans?!

Posted by: chorpophone | March 6, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Errata:

The preface to the post from scrivener50, below, refers to a similar posting on Politico.com, not Washingtonpost.com.

Posted by: scrivener50 | March 5, 2010 11:36 PM | Report abuse

This comment appeared earlier today (Friday) on this blog (at least as viewed on the author's computer), then disappeared. He is re-posting. Who is censoring political speech on Politico.com?

URGENT TO TEAM OBAMA, CONGRESS: How about stopping the AMERICAN GENOCIDE?

SECRET HOMELAND-LED PROGRAM SILENTLY TORTURES, IMPAIRS, 'SLOW KILLS' AMERICANS WITH NATIONWIDE CELL TOWER MICROWAVE/LASER WEAPON SYSTEM: VETERAN JOURNALIST

• Secret Bush-Cheney legacy multi-agency federal-local program uses cell tower/GPS satellite microwave/laser electromagnetic precision "directed energy" RF radiation attack system to silently torture, impair, subjugate "targeted" citizens -- and oversees local police-protected "community watch" vigilante harassment, vandalism, and financial sabotage campaigns.

• Why so many cell towers saturate the American landscape -- urban and rural.

• Weapon system patents reveal silent, powerful attack system in YOUR backyard.

• American human rights atrocities, ideological purge, under the cover of national security.

See: poynter.org/subject.asp?id=2 ("articles" list)

OR: nowpublic.com/world/u-s-silently-tortures-americans-cell-tower-microwaves OR: http://NowPublic.com/scrivener RE: "U.S. Silently..." and "GESTAPO USA"

Posted by: scrivener50 | March 5, 2010 11:33 PM | Report abuse

I suppose USA resolution lays on the fact that genocide perpetrators protect each other.

Posted by: jesuschavira | March 5, 2010 8:29 PM | Report abuse

One wonders what would happen if Germany suddenly decided that the Nazi Holocaust was not a genocide. Would Chancellor Merkel get away with it? Would Obama lobby that Germany should be allowed to get away with such an obscenity? Perhaps it's worth remembering that in 1939, Hitler asked his generals – before setting off into Poland to murder the millions of Jews in eastern Europe – a simple question: "Who now remembers the Armenians?" Well, Hitler got the answer he would have wanted from Obama this week.

Posted by: markboyadjian | March 5, 2010 7:55 PM | Report abuse

The USA should mind it's own buiness.

It was the USA who slaughtered the American Indians and placed them in Reservations! We also has slaves who
were, as people, treated worse than animals.

We do not belong voting on other nation's
criminal slaughtering of members of their nation and neighboring nations. We are also slaughtering people in Iraq, Afganistan, Pakistan, etc. in an attempt to steal their resources.

Israel is creating genocide towards the Palestinians that are held behind concrete prison walls. This is modern times and the USA sent in the weapons for the slaughter of the people of Gaza (well documented in the United Nation's report calling Israel guilty of War Crimes)!

Let's not vote on other countries when we should be embarrassed by our own human right record.

Posted by: deborahzaki | March 5, 2010 7:12 PM | Report abuse


Well it will all depend on whether or not Turkey goes back to being an obedient servant of Israel:


"In years past Ankara had looked to Israel, and Jewish groups in Washington, to fight the resolution that came up almost every year. The passage of the resolution in the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee has triggered a crisis in Turkish-US ties.

....
Due to the special relationship and close alliance between Israel and Turkey, which has showed signs of breaking down lately, Israel has avoided recognizing the Armenian genocide at all costs, and the government has in the past thwarted all attempts to promote such an official recognition."

http://www.jpost.com/International/Article.aspx?id=170307

Posted by: dogsbestfriend | March 5, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

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