YEREVAN (Panorama.am) — “The German Parliament’s recognition of the Armenian Genocide is a wonderful and memorable step forward, in its own right and as a communiqué to other democratic countries – such as my two countries, Israel and the United States that have cowardly avoided recognition. The German recognition certainly is a strong moral signal to other governments”, – said renowned Jewish scholar of Genocide studies Israel Charny in an interview with Nvard Chalikyan commenting on the Armenian Genocide resolution adopted by the German Bundestag on 02 June 2016.
Dr. Charny emphasized that the decision by Germany is all the more powerful given the fact that it contains “a degree of honest revelation of Germany’s own role in the Armenian Genocide”.
“For years now, scholars have been assembling slowly but surely the information about Germany as a facilitator, enabler, and in some respect even a direct participant in the genocide, and this self-disclosure by Germany itself establishes permanently the factual correctness of Germany’s complicity”, – noted the scholar.
Referring to the fact that there is a consensus in the international scholarly community on that the events of 1915 constitute Genocide, Dr. Charny added, “And as for the comic Turkish refrain that ‘scientists and historians need to reach a conclusion’, let them know that the conclusion has been reached resoundingly”.
Given the huge Turkish population in Germany today Dr. Charny considers it “both honorable and brave on the part of the Parliament to break the taboo that Turkey has succeeded to some extent in imposing on many parts of the world”.
Recognizing the Armenian Genocide as such justifies paying some price in a loss of relationships with Turkey, said Dr. Charny, who has long been advocating for the recognition of the Armenian Genocide by Israel. At the same time he thinks that the resolution will not impact the relations between Germany and Turkey and notes with irony that “it will not be that long at all before Turkey orders its next supply of German beer”.
Criticizing Turkey’s current regime and its policies on the minorities, Israel Charny said, “it is dictatorial Erdogan these days who is more and more cut off from the rest of the world and lost in the web of his own suppression of freedom and injustice to so many Turkish writers, policemen and others – not to speak of his dangerous ethnocentrism towards non-Turkish people such as the Kurds”.
Dr. Israel W. Charny is the Director of the Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide in Jerusalem; he is the author of many books on the Armenian Genocide and Holocaust; his forthcoming book is titled The Genocide Contagion: How We Commit and Confront Holocaust and Genocide – a book for learning about ourselves.
Interview by Nvard Chalikyan