LOS ANGELES—Organizers of the Ottoman Military Marching Band parade, scheduled for Monday in Hollywood have abruptly cancelled their special events permit, according to the relevant unit at the Los Angeles Police Department.
The Pacifica Institute, the parade organizers, bills itself as an organization established by Turkish-Americans aimed at establishing cross-cultural awareness. However, the group is nothing but a brazen front for the notorious Gulen movement, which is at the center of controversy and an FBI investigation into its charter school establishment throughout the country. The Pacifica Institute is also the organizer of the Anatolian Festival, which is slated for next weekend at Irvine Meadows.
Armenian National Committee of America-Western Region, its local Los Angeles chapter, the Armenian Youth Federation and community leaders have been working diligently to address the abrupt cancellation and the community’s anger toward the organizers of this egregious event.
In an announcement issued on Tuesday The ANCA-WR questioned “the irresponsible decision by the City of Los Angeles to grant a permit to a group who claims descent from the notoriously murderous corps of the Ottoman Army known as the janissaries. The nature and planned performance of the band are not only insulting but wholly unacceptable to the Armenian American community.”
“Just over one mile from the borders of Little Armenia, in Los Angeles, the adoptive home of hundreds of thousands of Armenian Americans – including many whose families were gravely affected by the Armenian Genocide – the Ottoman Military Marching Band will play the anthems of a military credited with exterminating 1.5 million Armenian people and hundreds of thousands of other minorities within the Ottoman Empire. It is a chilling parallel: the Band will again march through the streets of an Armenian neighborhood, recreating the horrific scene of the Ottoman military parading through Armenian towns and villages 100 years ago, before they methodically and brutally murdered the Armenian populace in the first genocide of the 20th century,” said the ANCA-WR.
“The parade’s planning and execution, in a heavily Armenian-populated community, leaves no question that the Ottoman Military Marching Band is brazenly taunting the Armenian American community in a blatant example of hate speech. Despite this flagrant attempt at incitement, we call upon the Armenian American community of Los Angeles to oppose this painful and egregious provocation peacefully,” continued the ANCA-WR statement.
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