Bowing to pressure from both inside and outside of the Jewish community Abe Foxman, National Director of the Anti-Defamation League and self proclaimed Special adviser to BOB has done the right thing and announced that from now on he will call the Turkish genocide of the Armenian community that took place eighty years ago, a genocide. Yes good old Abe is getting with the program.
The Armenian Genocide (Armenian: (“Hayoc’ c’ejaspanut’iwn”), Turkish: Ermeni Soykırımı) — also known as the Armenian Holocaust, Great Calamity (“Mec Ejer’n” ) or the Armenian Massacre of hundreds of thousands to over 1.5 million Armenians during the government of the Young Turks from 1915 to 1917Ottoman Empire. — was the forcible deportation and massacring in the It is widely acknowledged to have been one of the first modern, systematic genocides, as many Western sources point to the sheer scale of the death toll as evidence for a systematic, organized plan to eliminate the Armenians. The event is also said to be the second-most studied case of genocide. To date twenty-one countries have officially recognized it as genocide. The government of the Republic of Turkey rejects the characterization of the events as genocide. (Source Wikopedia)
“any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such: killing members of the group; causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life, calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; [and] forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.”
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This incident is a symptom of a MUCH larger problem–Abe Foxman. As head of the ADL he sees himself as the Head of the Jewish Community and feels that he MUST speak out on every issue whether it pertains to the ADL or not. The Jewish community is not homogeneous and Abe should keep his mouth shut on issues such as the Armenian Massacre, or Abortion or US Immigration policy or even the JNF Land Bill ( See The JNF Land is JEWISH–Its time to shift Donations from the ADL to the JNF). When the ADL sticks to its charter it does a wonderful job, but when they allow their director to go off on a tangent, they usually get embarrassed and as does the entire community. Maybe its time to give Abe a nice package and sent him out to pasture.
For the First Time, ADL Calls Armenian Slaughter ‘Genocide’ BY SETH GITELL – Special to the Sun The national director of the Anti-Defamation League, Abraham Foxman, is for the first time publicly referring to the murder of Armenians at the hands of the Ottoman Empire during World War I as a “genocide.” Mr. Foxman’s decision, released in a press statement yesterday morning, follows a week of turmoil emanating from the Massachusetts city of Watertown — home to America’s third largest community of Armenian Americans — as well as the Armenian Library and Museum of America. Watertown’s city council voted last week to rescind its participation in an ADL tolerance program, “No Place for Hate,” over the group’s reluctance to use the term. Later in the week, the ADL’s regional director for New England, Andrew Tarsy, and the regional board broke with the national organization over the issue. Mr. Tarsy, a popular and highly regarded leader, was subsequently fired. “We have never negated but have always described the painful events of 1915–1918 perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire against the Armenians as massacres and atrocities,” Mr. Foxman’s statement said. “On reflection, we have come to share the view of Henry Morgenthau Sr. that the consequences of those actions were indeed tantamount to genocide. If the word genocide had existed then, they would have called it genocide.” In announcing his decision, Mr. Foxman said conversations with a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Elie Wiesel, and other scholars had influenced his decision to embrace the “consensus.” “I hope that Turkey will understand that it is Turkey’s friends who urge that nation to confront its past and work to reconcile with Armenians over this dark chapter in history,” he added, referring to the current Turkish government’s policy of protesting other countries’ formal acknowledgment of the mass killings. Speaking to The New York Sun, Mr. Foxman said the flap had confronted the group with “competing moral concerns,” and invoked Rabbi Hillel’s famous aphorism, “If I am not for myself, who will be? If I am only for myself, what am I?” “With the Jewish community under attack throughout the world and not a lot of friends, the first imperative has to be Rabbi Hillel,” Mr. Foxman said. “You have to address the first part before you can consider the second.” The relationship of groups such as the ADL and the organized Jewish community with Turkey, a secular nation with a largely Muslim population, is a sensitive one. In discussing Congress’s “Armenian Genocide Resolution,” House Resolution 106, the ADL cited concerns over the Jewish community in Turkey, the country’s status as an American ally, and its relationship with Israel: “We continue to firmly believe that a congressional resolution on such matters is a counterproductive diversion and will not foster reconciliation between Turks and Armenians, and may put at risk the Turkish Jewish community and the important multilateral relationship between Turkey, Israel, and the United States.” Previously, the ADL had said it took “no position” on the action. Steve Grossman, a former president of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and a leader in Boston’s Jewish community, praised Mr. Foxman’s decision. “As somebody who has not hesitated to criticize Abe Foxman and the national ADL for their failure to secure the moral high ground on the issue of the Armenian genocide, I give Abe Foxman a lot of credit for his willingness to change his position,” Mr. Grossman said. “It is a distinguished leader indeed who can change a long-held position and acknowledge that this position is no longer legitimate or tenable.” Boston’s Jewish Community Relations Council also came out in support of the move. “We applaud the statement released today by Abraham Foxman changing the position of the National ADL in response to the concerns expressed by the NE Regional Office about recognition of the Armenian Genocide perpetrated from 1915–1918 by the Ottoman Empire,” the group said in a statement. Mr. Grossman also called for Mr. Foxman to give Mr. Tarsy his job back. “I hope they can see it in their hearts and in their best interests to reinstate Andy Tarsy as the New England regional director of the ADL.” Mr. Foxman called Mr. Tarsy’s termination “a management decision.”