WASHINGTON–The Armenian National Committee of America, in a letter to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, has outlined the Armenian American community’s concerns regarding the Bush Administration’s seven-year record of largely counterproductive, frequently unfriendly, and, at times, antagonistic policies toward Armenia and the Armenian American community.
The April 4 letter, signed by ANCA Chairman Ken Hachikian, listed 13 areas in which the President and his Administration fell short of both their own commitmen’s and our nation’s basic human rights standards, retreated from America’s historic commitment to Armenia, and strained – through a series of ill-advised policies and often hostile actions – the enduring ties that have long bound together the American and Armenian peoples. The following points are covered in significant detail in the 6-page letter, the full text of which is provided below:
1. The President’s broken campaign pledge to recognize the Armenian Genocide
2. Opposition to the Congressional Genocide Resolution
3. The Evans firing and the Hoagland nominations
4. The waiver of Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act
5. Reduction in aid to Armenia
6. Abandonment of the military aid parity agreement
7. Mistaken listing of Armenia as a terrorist country
8. Lack of U.S.-Armenia Presidential visitations
9. Failure to confront the desecration of the Djulfa cemetery
10. Failure to maintain a balanced policy on Nagorno Karabakh
11. Taxpayer financing of the Baku-Ceyhan bypass of Armenia
12. Failure to effectively pressure Turkey and Azerbaijan to end their blockades
13. Neglect of relations with the Armenian American community
Over the course of the past seven years, the ANCA has repeatedly requested, to no avail, the opportunity to meet with the President and his Secretary of State to discuss these and other issues of concern to Armenian Americans. This most recent ANCA letter, once again, asks for such a meeting, inviting the Secretary of State to visit with the collective leadership of the Armenian American community to discuss U.S. foreign policy toward Armenia and the surrounding region over the remaining months of the Bush Administration.