New York, NY, August 21, 2007 ? Abraham H. Foxman, National Director of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today issued the following statement:
In light of the heated controversy that has surrounded the Turkish-Armenian issue in recent weeks, and because of our concern for the unity of the Jewish community at a time of increased threats against the Jewish people, ADL has decided to revisit the tragedy that befell the Armenians.
We have never negated but have always described the painful events of 1915-1918 perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire against the Armenians as massacres and atrocities. On reflection, we have come to share the view of Henry Morgenthau, Sr. that the consequences of those actions were indeed tantamount to genocide. If the word genocide had existed then, they would have called it genocide.
I have consulted with my friend and mentor Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel and other respected historians who acknowledge this consensus. I hope that Turkey will understand that it is Turkey's friends who urge that nation to confront its past and work to reconcile with Armenians over this dark chapter in history.
Having said that, we continue to firmly believe that a Congressional resolution on such matters is a counterproductive diversion and will not foster reconciliation between Turks and Armenians and may put at risk the Turkish Jewish community and the important multilateral relationship between Turkey, Israel and the United States.
Note: The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.
See the statement in ADL's website: http://www.adl.org/PresRele/Mise_00/5114_00.htm