By Garen Yegparian Last Sunday I met Harout Sassounian at Ardashes Kassakhian’s kickoff for the Glendale City Clerk election campaign–where I had a fascinating conversation–as is usually the case–when chatting with Harout.
He told of a phone call from Kaan Soyak–who you’ll remember is the Turkish co-chair of tabdik (TABDC- Turkish-Armenian Business Development Council). The impetus for the call? To ask what I had against him–clearly having read my piece from a month ago. This should allay all doubts any Armenia’s might have had about how closely Turks monitor our media.
Of course–my first thought was–"Can this guy be so clueless?" Well–admitting that would be tantamount to admitting Armenia’s are genetically morons too (and Greeks–and Assyrians–and all other indigenous peoples of Asia Minor). This because most Turks are descended from abducted children of the local populations or those natives who were forcefully converted to Islam–and a few generations later–had become Turkified and Kurdified (thanks to the exclusionary policies of our–and probably other–churches).
We also have the centuries of deft and adept Turkish machination and diplomatic manipulation that has kept a Turkish state in existence as evidence of how clever our nation’s lost descendants are.
Then of course–there’s Soyak’s commentary in the February 3–2005 California Courier–"Creating an Environment for Change Through Turkish-Armenian Dialogue" in which he bravely refers to occupied Armenian territories as "our joint motherland." He observes government level "reluctance," Armenia and Turkey–to "official and unofficial" dialogue. He also mentions that "confidence and trust" are "currently absent." Bingo Kaan! You got it! Of course all along–he plays up the role of tabdik in developing these contacts–but hey–bragging’s a human trait!
Clearly–they’re not clueless. Quite the contrary–they’re very astute–cynical opportunists seeking any and every political edge to douse the fire of Genocide accountability that threatens to engulf them because of the years of pathetic denial.
Why should I have anything against anyone? As long as they act the part of decent human beings–clued in to what is and isn’t appropriate behavior and what it takes to overcome conflict. As long as Turks–or anyone–continue to not just deny–but refuse to accept responsibility for the 1.5 million victims of the first genocide of modern times–they do not qualify as decent.
So let’s spell it out for Kaan–and more importantly the ‘elected’ and military and media and academic leadership of Turkey–‘fess up–atone–and things’ll be so smooth as to arouse the greenest envy of the most extreme snowboarder cutting up an untouched Canadian slope after leaping out of a helicopter.