LOS ANGELES–Lakers guard Kobe Bryant begun appearing this week in Turkish Airlines (THY) commercials as the national carrier’s “global brand ambassador,” despite overwhelming opposition to the deal from an Armenian-American community outraged with Bryant for representing a country guilty of genocide and human rights violations.
“I just want to say how proud I am to be Global Ambassador for Turkish Airlines,” Bryant said in his first televised THY commercial. “All of us here in LA are excited because we get an opportunity to now enjoy the beauty and rich cultural history of Turkey.”
The TV-spot is the first of many in a two-year deal that will involve Bryant starring in promotional commercials and films that will be aired on international television channels and in movie theaters in more than 80 countries next year to promote direct flights from Los Angeles to Istanbul via Turkish Airlines.
The commercials with Bryant will be shown globally, but the focus of the campaign will be on the US market and in the Far East and Middle East, where the player has a large global fan-base. Bryant also posted a video of the first commercial on his Facebook page.
Kobe’s decision to endorse Turkish Airlines has caused an uproar within the Armenian-American community in the United States and especially within Southern California, which boasts the largest population of Armenians outside of Armenia, ranging between 600,000 to 750,000.
“Bryant’s silence on the issue continually fuels the Armenian communities discontent,” said Caspar Jivalagian of the Armenian Youth Federation. “His decision to launch the campaign while knowing he has so many upset fans goes to show once again that he has chosen money over morality.”
Armenians are angered that Bryant would sign a contract with a country that not only denies that the Ottoman Turkish government committed genocide against 1.5 million Armenians in 1915, but also actively works to defend modern day perpetrators of the crime.
The AYF has urged Kobe Bryant to stay true to his loyal fan base and rescind his contract with Turkish Airlines, to put out an official statement affirming his commitment to ending human rights abuses, and voicing his support for House Resolution 252, calling on the United States Congress to properly recognize the Armenian Genocide.
Background on the developing story here.
I wish Armavia would do the same.
Armavia should acquire Mr. Taner Akcam, as their global ambassador. I’m just sayin’.
Pari Luys Ahmet,
You name it! Armenians should follow Turkish role model in the New Western World. Not only Armavia should sponsor Öcalan & Co. but Armenian Air Forces – not necessarily Armavia should enslave Turkish orphan girls and turn them into fighting bulls, ehm, birds. The same was done to “so-called Sabiha Gökçen”, an Armenian girl kidnapped by his blessedly excellence Atatuerk for his pleasure. ==> This is the outcome when Pashas meet Armenian slave girls: Sabiha Gökçen Airport ==> http://www.sgairport.com/havaalani/eng/start.asp
Well, and how is Armavia going to pay the bill for Kobe? – Armavia gets enough cash from the sell-out of expropriated Armenian Sanasaryan school in Erzurum (so-called Turkish museum), from sales of presidential palaces in formerly catholic inhabited Ankara, from sales of Incirlik Disneyland.
Kobe is a global jack*** — learn to speak man — how “pri” I am??? It’s unfortunate so many people admire this guy, what has he done that’s worth admiring? The bright spot in all this is at least we’re getting to spread the word about the genocide and using this against Turkey. By the way, this commercial seems to be a real reflection on Turkey – cheap, unprofessional, a joke, and hedamnatz just like them!
hahaha, the last ”song” is so dumb, lol!
He looks like a ex-felon pitching for a telemarketer for a widget no one wants or needs. I wonder what all these pin heads who own laker jersey’s with Kobe’s name on it going to do with them.
I agree to disagree on this one with the AYF…
I monitored and replied to many ignorant and venomous statements left by the readers of different articles on this issue. I think that the AYF’s mistake was/ is to expect that hamburger minded , celebrity crazed public out there is going to give hoot or care for a human rights issue like the Armenian genocide, that really didn’t even affected them. Most of this people don’t know their real biological fathers name, or their own history for that matter and their shallow awareness and morality is widely shaped by Hollywood and all the corporate brain washing by the media…
The AYF and all the activists are right in their position that celebrities and so called leaders have to champion human rights cases, so- on so- forth, but I think they fell victim to their naiveté on this. What we know and believe in our hearths and minds to be a just cause, what we debate amongst ourselves changes color and shape in the context of the American popular culture and reality in general.
I hope that the AYF will consider this reality out there and will spare wasting energy on this sort of campaign in the future. Guys, with all do respect, please come out of your shells and study well all the possible consequences and after affects of any new action before you enthusiastically will start it and waste your good capital on a adventures propositions
Whats Kardashian done thats so admiring – yet you criminals losers are using her as a mouth piece now.
Do you guys really think that a country hosting Russian Military basses in their soil has no economic value,transferring weapons to terrorists to kill US soldiers, steals billion dollar from American tax payers, consul general selling fake documents to criminal Armenians to obtain US visa will be favored by US iver a Turkey, and l bet you never post this to your site, as always ine sided paper one sided views, this is the extent of your reporting
I see you’ve been reading up on the news Marcus. I shouldn’t bother with you, but your misinformation must be countered. Armenia did not transfer weapons to terrorists. Armenians troops, however small, are fighting terrorism in Iraq and Afghanistan. Armenia (allegedly) sold some weapons to Iran, which in turn might have somehow ended up in the hands of a few insurgents. Lets not forget that the US is the biggest arms dealer there is. 80% of the weapons being used against American troops right now were at one point or another supplied to those same terrorists by the good ol’ USA.
As for stealing billions, it was nowhere close to that number, let’s not exaggerate. Now Bernie Maddof and the like did and continue to steal billions, are they Armenian? A few bad apples do not constitute the entire people, who, by the way, are US tax payers themselves.
One sided!? Look who’s talking, all the reports you just cited were 1-sided reports. Regarding weapons that killed US soldiers – it’s a very long stretch to say Armenians sold weapons with the intent to kill US soldiers – that’s what the WSJ (in their poor journalism) implied in their article. If you read the facts there was 1 incident in this entire war where 1, I repeat 1, US soldier was killed with a weapon that Armenia sold to Iran who then got it to terrorists. That’s not equivalent to say Armenians sold weapons to terrorists. Weapons sales are a form of trade just like any other product. Unfortunately, Armenia has been illegally blockaded by Turkey and Azerbaidjan and only has Georgia and Iran as neighbors it can easily trade with. Maybe if the world was more open in working with Armenia, they wouldn’t have to rely on their BUSINESS transactions with Iran.
Regarding the Medicare fraud, what the news reports conveniently left out was that only half the people in that sting were Armenian, the other half were other ethnicities. Also, they reported that Armenians stole over $100 million – complete falsification – they BILLED for over $100 million, but that group (not just the Armenians) actually received a total of $35 million. It’s a very different picture when you read the facts – these news reports clearly were inaccurate and misleading against Armenians – how did you put it? ONE SIDED. I don’t condone this theft, but the media shouldn’t make it out as if the Armenians are the only ones, there have been bigger Medicare fraud schemes that took place before and after this incident – committed by non-Armenians, even Americans, so let’s not get carried away and make all of Armenians a scapegoat.
So what there are Russian bases in Armenia? I’m sure Armenia would welcome US bases. Unfortunately, Armenia needs those bases there to thwart genocidal attacks from Turkey.
Get your facts straight Marcus before you post uneducated comments!
You don’t have to have a lot of brains in the USA to be famous and admired. In fact, you don’t have to have ANY brains at all :-). All you need is a) a tight asshole, b) able to speak like a juvenile (slang), c) be a sports player, or a singer. No one cares about intellectuals in America. Ask an average American if they’ve heard the name: Noam Chomsky, and will look at you completely stupefied :-).
funny you should write that about Chomsky. When I woke up this morning, for some reason I thought of Howard Zinn and how sad I was that he had passed. My next thought was Howard Zinn is dead, long live Noam Chomsky. I feel fortunate to have heard him lecture back in my undergrad days.
As for Kobe…it’s kind of fitting to have a rapist represent a nation of rapists.
You print Marcus’ nonsense, but you censor me. Why because I said traitorous Armenians should go to hell? they should.
And finally, any Armenian who continues to support the Lakers should rot in hell too.
I don’t understand why all of you are upset. It is a rapist representing a rapist and pedophiliac country of sodomizers. Oh BTW, Turkish preference is for little boys as is the tradition of Bacha Bazi.
So you caught Kobe lying about his concern about Genocide in Darfur. Get over it, this will not be the last you hear of Kobe. You will hear about Kobe when the Jihadist pilots associated with Ergenkon and Al Qaeda plunge the first Turkish airplane into the sea with the Burka wearing crews. Can you imagine the stench of those people?
Who cares? This jerk is no good with or without the deal. By the way, the word fan should be substituted by SUCKER as far as I am concerned.
Show me the money…..why is Kobe different than anyone else? Every man has a price, even our politicians and our governments.
is that the commercial? from Kobe talking, to that stupid song in the end. it’s very unprofessional. embarassing for both.
Hi marcus. Apparently your posting did not get dropped like you assumed. Billions of dollars? Really? Billions? Where’s your evidence?
Yes Kobe, get to know the lovely rich cultural history of Turkey! Yes it is very rich… Genocide and all…
I think this is the real version of the ad….
let Kobe Bryant be prouder of Turkey and ” Turkish Airlines” . This is the same Turkey whose President invited criminal president of Sudan to Turkey in a time as Sudan’s President was wanted by the international court for committing genocide! People like Bryant might be good basketball players but money as gift from a criminal country like Turkey makes often out of people idiots and finally a tool in the hand of criminal governments … therefore no surprise when Kobe Bryant has no sense for human rights and so on
Kobe, so you chose to join the ‘winners’… those who commit Genocides to win/steal that which they choose, wherever, whenever, WHOMEVER.. who “get away with murders and worse” before all the world. (FYI, Sudan and muslim Turkey are allies… and both are perpetrators of Genocides.. unending).
Kobe, now it is evident that when you (about 2 years ago) addressed your own bretheren (your own kind) victims of the Sudanese Genocide of the Darfurians, you lied to the Darfurians!!
Obviously, for now that you have won all the monies the turkeys offered, for you to ‘enjoy’ (?) Today, all victims of the Genocide of the Darfur nation – those slaughtered, those violated, and the survivors with all the vile memories of the horrors of loss of their families, their lands/home, must wonder – Kobe, why?
Kobe, you may be a great basketball player… but now the turkeys have ‘used’ you… Why? because your dared to speak out against the Sudanese Genocide…. and then a turkey used their monies, turk M.O.
Kobe, did you lie to the Darfurians when you spoke out against the horrors of their Sudanese Genocide?
Kobe is a good choice by Turkey. They have a lot in common. Turkey, too, is a rapist.
He is following in the footsteps of Obama,Biden,Clinton,Pelosi,and others in selling their morality to the highest bidder.
Who needs such rotten eggs around.
Gee, many of you are so overtly jealous and envious that you’re reverting back to your typical game…defamation!! But hey, go for it! The more that you all do that, the more ammunition you keep giving us to one day produce en mass to the peoples of the world, to reinforce what many of them already know about dashnaks.
I dunno what’s all this commotion about Kobe landing a contract with Turk BOKHDAN Hava Yolari Airlines? I see nothing wrong with it. I just would not fly Turk BOKHDAN hava yolari. Now,how simple is that? Obviously,when you’re flyin’ a BOKHDAN Airlines, you’d know darn well that ,the service and the food’s gonna be BOKHDAN. Just listen to their commercial song. BOKHDAN. : )
Good job , having porn star kardashian as a Representative of Armenian genocide great job ,,,,,Kobe doesn’t even know wear turkey was before some so called Armenians starting to bitch about it
I don’t give a RATS ASS if Kim Kardashian is a prostitute, porn star or your BOSS. Kim, is our SISTER and proud of her . Now, go take a hike.PUNK.
Yes Jay, sdhe is our sister and I am proud she is taking a stand for our people
my fellow armenasers…
i am so proud of all of you, the love you have for your armeniansness is so overwhelming, i am so overcome with emotions…
ketsteq…bolor@d, hay azgi ter u tirakanner@
shnorhavor nor tari, yev soorb tznund
Booooooooooooooo` Kobe even can’t say it from the hard his talking like someone forced to do so SHAME on you kobe BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
Who cheats on hes wife he can cheat on hes fans . shame on you kobe I’m not gone right your name with capital latter to disrespect you like you did to us . we stood by you when you whee in bad days but you sold us for few more Dollars