Taking Grassroots Activism to the Next Level

Archive for December, 2007

Turkey Attacks Iraq

December 17th, 2007 by

After blocking the US from opening a northern front on Iraq, amassing 100,000 troops along the Turkish-Iraqi border, and threatening to invade the Kurdish region of Iraq if a referendum on Kirkuk goes forward as planned, Turkey is now intensifying its cross-border attacks deep into the territory of Iraq.

On Sunday, the Turkish military ordered a three-hour aerial bombardment of ten villages in northern Iraq, which it claimed was aimed at bases of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). Several innocent civilians were killed by the strike and hundreds were forced to flee the region. Various homes, school buildings, and bridges were also destroyed in the Kurdish populated villages that were targeted.

The Iraqi parliament passed a resolution on Monday sharply condemning Turkey’s actions as a “cruel attack on Iraqi sovereignty.” The EU called on Turkey to “refrain from taking any military action that could undermine regional peace and stability.”

As can be seen, Turkey is moving forward with its sinister plan against the Kurds and proceeding to destabilize the calmest region of Iraq. With ‘allies’ like this, who needs enemies?

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Courting Repression

December 13th, 2007 by

The Hudson Institute, a conservative think tank known for its close ties to corporate America, held a conference on December 10, 2007, titled “The Azerbaijan-Turkey-U.S. Relationship and its Importance for Eurasia.” The event was held at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC and featured a line-up of high-ranking foreign policy officials and academics from all three of the mentioned states.

The age-old, pan-Turanic frustration with Armenia being an obstacle to closer Turkish and Azeri integration was regularly referred to throughout the conference. Speakers repeatedly portrayed Armenia as a hamper to trade links and regional projects aimed at integrating Turkey with Azerbaijan and the countries of Central Asia. Numerous speakers also spoke with disdain about the influence of the Armenian lobby in the United States, which they see as a chief nuisance to their designs.

The character of the speakers featured at the conference is perhaps most sharply exemplified by Professor S. Frederick Starr, Chairman of Johns Hopkins University’s Central Asia-Caucasus Institute (CACI). Starr was recently dubbed “The Professor of Repression” by Harper’s Magazine for his ideological services to Islam Karimov’s brutal government in Uzbekistan, among other indiscretions. He has also long been known for his affinity to the Turkish & Azeri governments and shameless denial of the Armenian Genocide. At the conference, Starr referred to Armenia and its diaspora as a “serious problem,” but he assured the audience that the “correlation of forces is changing” and that “history is on your [Turkey and Azerbaijan’s] side.”

For the likes of Starr and others who participated in this conference, there is no depth to which one cannot stoop in order to serve power and personal prestige. The truth, human rights, dignity—these are all matters with little-to-no relevance. How else could they serve as such devoted apologists of repression?

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The Push Continues

December 7th, 2007 by

Activists and constituents from throughout the western region of the United States traveled to Washington, DC this week to lobby Members of Congress in support of H.Res.106, the Armenian Genocide Resolution. Their efforts were part of the Armenian National Committe of America – Western Region’s (ANCA-WR) “Advocacy Week 106.”

Young and old alike came out from states such as Arizona, California, Texas, and Idaho to raise the awareness of Members of the House and Senate regarding the Armenian Genocide. They let it be known that, as concerned citizens, their efforts will not cease until the US officially reaffirms the Armenian Genocide and ends its complicity in Turkey’s disgraceful denial campaign.

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