Saturday, May 2, 2015

Benny Ziffer's Holocaust Denial: "What Are These Armenians Whining About?"

On April 30, Haaretz published an article by Benny Ziffer titled NOT RECOGNIZING THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE IS A TRIUMPH FOR COMMON SENSE.  In the mind of Mr. Ziffer, what happened to the Armenians is mere post-modern hooey dreamed up by self-important non-victims.  What was especially interesting was the following line:
[W]hat’s known as the Armenian holocaust…did not receive supreme, official recognition as genocide from U.S. President Barack Obama…This mortal blow sustained by the Armenians...has wide implications beyond this specific historical case. It’s a signal to other nations, too, that postmodernism has gone out of fashion, and with it all the widespread inanities that can describe every tragic event in history as a “Shoah.” More specifically, I mean what’s known as the Nakba, which in my view is also no more than a salient product of postmodernism.
I've previously written on the film SCREAMERS, a documentary about activism around the Armenian genocide and live in a state with a significant Armenian population, so memorials have been popping up around the community.  It was hoped by many that this was the year that the Medz Yeghern would be given official notice and recognition akin to that of the Nazi holocaust.  It would seem like there is no such luck, so the act of memorial will remain an effort upheld by Armenian heritage groups and Orthodox Churches.  What I think is interesting about Ziffer's quote is that last line about the Nakba, it underlines the tit-for-tat game Turkey and Israel are playing here: if Israel recognizes the Armenian genocide, Turkey will recognize the Nakba and give some sort of support for the Palestinians.

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