Armenian National Committee of America
1711 N Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036
Tel. (202) 775-1918 * Fax. (202) 775-5648 * Email.firstname.lastname@example.org
For Immediate Release ~ 2007-07-18
Contact: Elizabeth S. Chouldjian ~ Tel: (202) 775-1918 / (703) 585-8254 cell
ANCA VIDEO SETS RECORD STRAIGHT ON BOB LIVINGSTON'S GENOCIDE DENIAL
Offers Point-by-Point Challenge to Turkish Lobbyist's Diatribe against the Armenian Genocide Resolution
WASHINGTON, DC - The Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) distributed an on-line video, today, countering an eight minute anti-genocide diatribe, released by Turkey's multi-million dollar lobbyist Bob Livingston, in a patently desperate effort to block Congressional adoption of the Armenian Genocide Resolution (H.Res.106 / S.Res.106).
Livingston's denial piece was posted on the Capitol Hill Broadcasting Network website, with links forwarded to Members of Congress and their staffs urging them to watch the video and work against Armenian Genocide legislation. Less than twelve hours after Bob Livingston's genocide denial video was posted, the ANCA issued a point by point video rebuttal, which was distributed widely to Congressional offices and policy makers throughout Washington, DC. The ANCA video is featured above.
Also in response to the Livingston attack, Armenian Genocide Resolution lead advocates, Representatives Adam Schiff (D-CA), George Radanovich (R-CA), Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Joe Knollenberg (R-MI) cosigned a July 18th letter to Congressional colleagues discrediting Livingston's denialist claims. The Congressional letter noted that:
"For the past seven years Mr. Livingston has been a paid lobbyist for Turkey, which has spent millions of dollars denying what the world knows to be true – that in the first decades of the last century a horrible genocide was committed against the Armenian people. The factual evidence supporting the Armenian Genocide is vast, and no effort to deny these facts – no matter the source of the denial – will ever change history."
The letter went on to urge House members to join over 220 of their colleagues in cosponsoring H.Res.106. Similar appeals have been made in two recent floor speeches by Congressional Armenian Caucus Co-Chair Frank Pallone (D-NJ). The ANCA will be hosting its second national Congressional Call-In Day on July 23rd to secure increased House support for the swift passage of the Armenian Genocide resolution.
"The New Republic" Exposes Washington's Morals for Money Foreign Agent Racket
Earlier this week, The New Republic, a major national magazine, ran a feature-length, stinging exposé on the efforts of Turkish government lobbyists to defeat the Armenian Genocide Resolution. The article, written by Michael Crowley, provides a behind the scenes glimpse into the multi-million dollar genocide denial industry, spotlighting former House Minority leader Dick Gephardt and Bob Livingston as the lead beneficiaries of Turkey's anti- genocide campaign.
"It's one thing to flip-flop on, say, tax cuts or asbestos reform. But, when it comes to genocide, you would hope for high principle to carry the day," explains Crowley. "In Washington, however, the Armenian genocide industry is in full bloom. And Dick Gephardt's shilling isn't even the half of it."
Crowley describes a shadowy world of foreign agents, ready to purvey the Turkish government's lies for hefty fees, often on the condition of anonymity.
"A few weeks ago, I called the Turkish Embassy to request an interview. A couple of days later, I heard back - not from the embassy, but from an American p.r. consultant employed by the Turks,” explains Crowley. “He suggested we meet the next day at a Starbucks. I found him in a corner behind a glowing white iBook. He had long slicked- back hair, a seersucker suit, and a blinking Bluetooth earpiece, and looked ready for a power lunch with the sharky agent Ari Gold from ‘Entourage.’ He informed me our conversation would be off the record, before launching his well-honed argument against the genocide resolution."
Crowley's description of Livingston is no more flattering. "But the kingpin of Turkish advocacy is Bob Livingston, whose lobbying firm, the Livingston Group, has hauled in roughly $13 million in Turkish lucre since 2000. Livingston, best remembered for his comically brief stint as House Speaker-elect at the height of the Clinton impeachment debacle (before he tearfully admitted his own extramarital affair and resigned from Congress in disgrace), has lobbied on a range of issues dear to Turkey's heart. But it's his tireless fight against the genocide resolution that makes him a hero in Ankara."
The text of the Schiff-Radanovich-Pallone-Knollenberg "Dear Colleague" letter is provided below.
Text of Schiff-Radanovich-Pallone-Knollenberg “Dear Colleague” letter
The Armenian Genocide:
Facts vs. Fees
July 18, 2007
Yesterday, you may have received an e-mail from our former colleague, Bob Livingston, regarding the Armenian Genocide. In the email and the embedded video attached to it, Livingston seeks to cast doubt on the facts of the first genocide of the Twentieth Century.
Livingston claims that there is a question among historians as to whether the genocide was, in fact, genocide. The truth is that there is near unanimity among historians and genocide experts that the murder of 1.5 million Armenians from 1915-23 was genocide.
Livingston claims that the mass murders that took place were “localized” and took place in the confusion of World War I and that they were not directed by the central government of the Ottoman Empire. The truth is that the Armenian Genocide was orchestrated at the highest levels of the Young Turk government and that several of the central perpetrators were tried by the Turkish Government after World War I. As documented in thousands of pages in our National Archives, American diplomats and American journalists were well aware of what was happening while it was ongoing. America’s Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, Henry Morgenthau, reported on the massacres in great detail. Morgenthau was appalled at what he would later call the sadistic orgies of rape, torture and murder. “When the Turkish authorities gave the orders for these deportations, they were merely giving the death warrant to a whole race; they understood this well, and . . . made no particular attempt to conceal the fact.”
For the past seven years Mr. Livingston has been a paid lobbyist for Turkey, which has spent millions of dollars denying what the world knows to be true – that in the first decades of the last century a horrible genocide was committed against the Armenian people. The factual evidence supporting the Armenian Genocide is vast, and no effort to deny these facts – no matter the source of the denial – will ever change history. Attached to this email is an article from the current issue of The New Republic detailing the lengths to which Turkey will go to deny the undeniable. Also attached is an article from The New York Review of Books on the history of the genocide by noted Israeli historian Michael Oren. In his article, Oren notes:
"In contrast to Germany, which has publicly and often obsessively accepted culpability for the Holocaust, paid restitution to its victims, and released documents attesting to its guilt, the Republic of Turkey has never admitted its part in the mass murder of Armenians, much less compensated the survivors. Rather than encourage research on its past butchery, the Turkish government has promoted publications that exonerate it from any wrongdoing and portray the Armenians as traitors to the state who allied themselves with Russia and executed thousands of Turks."
We urge you to read the articles as you consider Livingston’s claims.
H. Res. 106 has been cosponsored by more than 220 of our colleagues and we are continuing to add additional cosponsors. We urge you to stand up for the truth and honor the memory of the dead by adding your name to the list of cosponsors. For more information, or to cosponsor, please contact Tim Bergreen in Mr. Schiff’s office or Chris Herndon in Mr. Radanovich’s office.