Israel’s Foreign Minister used the term Armenian Genocide.

  • by Western Armenia, January 17, 2024 in Politics

Publisher of newspaper of "California Courier" Harut Sassounyan writes:

"Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz reminded the President Recep Tayyip Erdogan about  the genocide committed against Armenians when Turkish leader supported South Africa's complaint at the International Court of Justice (World Court) that Israel committed genocide against Palestinians in Gaza.

On January 12, 2024, Foreign Minister Katz wrote on his page in Twitter, "President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who committed genocide against Armenians , is now boasting, targeting Israel with baseless claims.

We remember Armenians and Kurds. Your story is speakable. We defend ourselves  against your barbarian allies, not destroy them.''

In the broader context of the Israel-Hamas conflict, Israel's reference to the Armenian Genocide to criticize Turkey raises a number of important questions.

 For decades having refused to recognize the genocide committed against  Armenians, Israel's foreign minister suddenly remembered the Armenian genocide when it suited his country's interests.

Here are my comments on his tweet: 1) The mention of the Armenian Genocide by the Foreign Minister of Israel cannot be considered an official recognition, which can only happen when the Israeli Parliament (Knesset) passes a resolution recognizing the genocide committed against the Armenians.

2) This is not the first time when an Israeli minister talks about the Armenian Genocide. Three other former Israeli ministers have made similar statements on recognition while serving in government.- Minister Education of Yossi Sarid announced on April 24, 2000: "I join you, members of the Armenian community, on your Memorial Day, when you celebrate the 85th anniversary of your genocide.

I am here with you as a human being, as a Jew, as an Israeli, and as the Minister of Education of the State of Israel."

-  On April 24, 2000 Minister of Justice Yossi Beilin announced , "What happened cannot be described as genocide. One and a half million people disappeared. It wasn't negligence, the action had been  deliberated beforehand. ." Earlier, in 1994, while holding the position of Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Beilin made a similar statement regarding the Armenian Genocide.

- In 1995, Yair Tsaban, Minister of Immigration Affairs, participated in the commemoration day ceremonies of the Armenian community in Israel and urged to recognize the Armenian Genocide. 3) However, the Knesset of Israel has tried several times in recent decades to adopt a resolution to  recognize  the Genocide committed against Armenian.   Each time, the Israeli government has blocked the resolution to please Turkey.

4) It is unacceptable that Israel uses the Genocide committed against Armenian as a bargaining chip in its problematic relations with Turkey. The State of Israel, as a nation that survived the Holocaust, should have been the first country, hopefully not the last, to recognize the Armenian Genocide.

5) The Israeli government's excuses on  denying the Armenian Genocide are equally unacceptable. When  Israel and Turkey are having good  relations , Israeli officials say: "We don't want to spoil our good relations with Turkey because of the Armenian Genocide." And when relations are bad, as now, Israel declares.

"We don't want to further worsen our relations with Turkey by recognizing the Armenian Genocide." Israel has tarnished its reputation in front of the international community as a Genocide denier.

On January 14, 2024, the newspaper  "Israel Hayom" published Nadav Shraga's article with the title of  "Recognize the Armenian Genocide Now". The author boldly wrote: "The Israeli government's refusal to recognize the Armenian Genocide is a clear case of moral bankruptcy."

Back in 1989, when Netanyahu was the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and still had not lost his moral profile, he said: "There are issues that are beyond politics and diplomacy. Genocides are one of the vivid examples of this category.