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GOP Criminal Flip-Flop: Was Denny Hastert Bribed By Turkish Agents?

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Why exactly did Denny Hastert flip-flop at the last moment, derailing a Congressional resolution designating as genocide the killings of Armenians between 1915 and 1923? He initially attributed it to a letter from Bill Clinton, but new FBI wiretaps show Turkish foreign agents mentioning Hastert’s name in the context of a bribe, right before the resolution was scheduled to pass.

Is Denny Hastert taking bribes from foreign officials and why is the Justice Department trying to squelch an investigation into the matter? What are they trying to hide? These new allegations, if allowed to surface, will make Tom Delay and Karl Rove look like Mother Teresa and Gandhi. Call it Genocide-Gate, Traitor-Gate, or Hastert-Gate, the American public and American law enforcement deserve to know and must take a close look at this unfolding scandal.

For many years, attempts had been made to get the House to pass the genocide resolution, but they never got anywhere until August 2000, when Hastert, as Speaker of the House, announced that he would give it his backing and see that it received a full House vote. Thanks to Hastert, the resolution, vehemently opposed by the Turks, passed. Then on October 19, minutes before the full House vote, Hastert suddenly and without explanation withdrew it.

Vanity Fair’s September edition, which has yet to hit national newsstands, has an article about Sibel Edmonds, an FBI translator who has been gagged by the Bush administration from revealing information about conversations she translated surrounding a seemingly major corruption scandal involving Turkish nationals and U.S. lawmakers.

The following are some brief excerpts from RAW STORY surrounding the allegations Edmonds has made—some of which the FBI has confirmed—about the specifics surrounding her case:

· According to those briefed on the case, Edmonds says she has heard classified wiretaps, which indicate Turkish nationals tried to bribe lawmakers in Chicago and Washington.

· Edmonds was fired from the FBI after trying to persuade her bosses to investigate a Turkish family, the Dickersons, she said was trying to trade on her status as an FBI operative. She suspected that the American Turkish Council, which the family tried to persuade her to join, was a front group for criminal activity.

· On top of the usual prohibition against disclosing classified information, the Bush administration has smothered her case beneath the all-encompassing blanket of the “state-secrets privilege”—a Draconian and rarely used legal weapon that allows the government, merely by asserting a risk to national security, to prevent the lawsuits

· Edmonds has filed contesting her treatment from being heard in court at all. According to the Department of Justice, to allow Edmonds her day in court, even at a closed hearing attended only by personnel with full security clearance, “could reasonably be expected to cause serious damage to the foreign policy and national security of the United States.”

Edmonds’ attorney, who works for the ACLU, says: “It also begs a question: Just what in the world is the government trying to hide?” One counterintelligence official familiar with Edmonds’s case has told Vanity Fair that the FBI opened an investigation into covert activity by Turkish nations and found evidence, mainly via wiretaps, of attempts to corrupt senior American politicians. One name apparently stood out—a man the Turkish callers often referred to by the nickname “Denny boy.” According to some of the wiretaps it was Denny Hastert. The FBI’s targets had arranged for thousands of dollars to be paid to Hastert’s campaign funds in small checks. Under Federal Election Commission rules, donations of less than $200 are not required to be itemized in public filings.

An examination of Hastert’s federal filings shows that the level of un-itemized payments his campaigns received over many years was very high. Between April 1996 and December 2002, un-itemized personal donations to the Hastert for Congress fund amounted to $483,000. In contrast, un-itemized contributions to the same period to the committee run on behalf of the House majority leader, Tom DeLay, Republican of Texas, were only $99,000. An analysis of the filings of four other senior Republicans shows that only one, Clay Shaw, of Florida declared a higher total of un-itemized donations than Hastert during the same period: $552,00.

Edmonds reportedly added that the recordings contained repeated references to Hastert’s flip-flop in the fall of 2000, “over an issue which remains of intense concern to the Turkish government—the continuing campaign to have Congress designate the killings of Armenians between 1915 and 1923 a genocide.” Hastert’s spokesman denied the allegations that he was bribed by a foreign agent, and said he knew nothing of the Turkish group.

Hastert’s defense is sounding a lot like some parallel Republican defenses to ongoing criminal investigations, namely Karl Rove, Tom DeLay, and Randy “Duke” Cunningham. They claim to have no involvement in the crime until it becomes obvious they are involved, and then they try to smear anyone willing to talk about it. This has become an ongoing pattern in the Republican administration and a danger to democracy. Only the justice system running its proper course can shed light on what crimes, if any, have been committed by Denny Hastert, and obstruction of the investigation should be roundly condemned by all.

Balletshooz

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  • alethinos59

    Shocking! Just, just SHOCKING!! How can this be! I thought ALL RIGHT WING REPUBLICANS were above reproach? I thought they ALL went to church on Sunday, prayed CONSTANTLY and lived lives of utmost spirituality??? This is what we’re are force-fed daily by right-wing talking heads! This is what we’re ASSURED of daily by our beloved PREACHERS from their pulpits – and we know THEY’RE never caught in acts of sin!

    How could any of these Republicans be caught breaking laws? Wait… Perhaps the fact that they are just FEDERAL laws and not God’s laws its ok – so long as it serves to further the ends of the Right? Is that how it works?

    Am I ranting? I hope so… My ranting gets raves you know…

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Who on earth would the Turks waste money to buy Hastert off on this issue? For that matter, what the hell does it matter if we pass a genocide amendment or not? Everyone knows the Turks committed genocide, but it was almost 100 years ago under a different government. What bloody difference does it make if we retroactively condemn it or not?

    I’ve seen some dumb posts, but this really takes the cake. I go with the ACLU lawyer who wondered what the government would have to hide – because there’s nothing worth hiding here. Why have a coverup for something that’s so insignificant. You mount coverups of major misbehavior like Iran-Contra or Watergate. You don’t have a full-scale government coverup for pointless supposition on a meaningless vote in congress.

    Dave

  • Rich

    Dave

    I’ve spent 25 years on this issue. The Turkish Government obviously does not see things your way. They spend millions of dollars annually to suppress official US recognition of the Armenian Genocide. In fact our US tax dollars go to Turkey in the form of subsudies to help keep the Turkish economy affloat some of which finds its way back to payoff lobbyists to suppress the genocide issue.

    You may feel different if your relatives were slaughtered. We just buried my grandmother on my wifes side a couple of weeks ago (a genocide survivor). She had nightmares till her last days from what she witnessed at the hands of the Turks.

    Read some books on the subject such as the “The Burning Tigris” by Peter Balakian.

    If a genocide was occuing now would you be concerned? Do some research on what is happening in Darfur.

    Not one person got killed in Watergate.

  • Nancy

    Dave, your utter amorality concerning little issues like lying, bribery, libel, smears, dirty tricks, theft, perjury, election fixing, and corruption in general – as long as it involves a republican, & specifically this administration & its pimps, thugs, & whores, are getting to me seriously. That you can even pretend to be a decent human being & a good citizen, and yet are willing to ignore, play ‘blind’ to, defend & even justify actions by the GOP and/or this administration which are not only unethical but outright criminal, is not only depressing, it’s horrific & revolting. I can see why you contemplate a possible career in politics: you have reached a nadir of responsibility, honesty, honor, & ethics, where you’d probably fit in very well with the rest of the scumbags pigging out at the public political trough. Your willingness to ignore basic facts, to twist, spin, or mock everything with what you consider clever plays on words, semantics, and any number of other games accords well with the disgusting behavior & attitudes of the political maggots currenly infesting every level of office. I would say you ought to be ashamed of yourself, but you obviously are immune to the concept & oblivious to what it means & why you should be so, or your own (non-existant) conscience would have advised you you’ve exceeded the limits of decency in excusing & defending these scum.

  • john

    Dave,

    So you dont think bribing the speaker of the house to deny the Armenian genocide by the turks is no big deal? this is a complete insult to all Armenians, not to mention that this is the kind of additude the ruling classes of this country count on to continue on their inumerable dirty deeds around the globe. This is exactly how empires have fallen in past, namely the complete and total moral corruption at all levels of society.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Rich, I fully understand the horrible nature of the Armenian genocide. I’m very familiar with the subject. I certainly don’t deny it happened. Everyone knows it happened. It couldn’t be more well known or publicly acknowledged.

    What I don’t understand is the economic aspect of it in the context of modern Turkey. I undestand that it’s a matter of national pride not to admit to the genocide, but I don’t see the functional harm done to Turkey today by a resolution in the US Congress condemning the genocide. No one who was responsible is alive today, the government is substantially different, and no one is going to lose their job or their US aid because of it. That being the case, spending enormous amounts of money to stop the resolution doesn’t make much sense. I’m not saying it isn’t going on, but it certainly isn’t logical.

    Dave

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Nancy, what the hell are you talking about? There’s no one on BC who is more opposed to “issues like lying, bribery, libel, smears, dirty tricks, theft, perjury, election fixing, and corruption in general” than I am. Certainly not people like you who are actively involved in the lying, libel smears and dirty tricks of the left, perhaps without even realizing that you’ve been subverted by the tactic of the ‘big lie’.

    Just because I don’t think that Bush is Hitler and that Rove is Satan and believe that their actions ought to be looked at logically rather than through a lense of irrational hatred, that doesn’t make me party to any lying and deception, despite your personal insults and attacks. I would rather understand what they do and why they do it and see their errors and misbehavior honestly rather than just condemn them from the word go regardless of evidence or logic.

    When did it become a crime to be dispassionate and to try to look at things fairly and honestly? What is wrong with your vision of the world that my efforts to pursue truth appear to you to be the exact opposite? Your view of reality has become so warped by the leftist hate machine that you don’t know truth from fiction or even up from down any longer. You’re essentially living in an artificial womb of complete paranoid fantasy which truth and reason can’t penetrate.

    I’m sorry that I’m ‘getting to you’, but clearly I’m not, because you still persist in perceiving with emotion rather than logic. If I was actually getting through to you I’d expect to see you starting to think about things, rather than continuing to react entirely based on illogical preconceptions.

    Dave

  • JR

    Dave Nalle: There’s no one on BC who is more opposed to “issues like lying, bribery, libel, smears, dirty tricks, theft, perjury, election fixing, and corruption in general” than I am.

    But you defended the Bush administration by writing in Comment 10, here:

    The administration ‘officially’ opposes stem cell research. That doesn’t mean that they actually do. As you may have noticed the administration says a lot of stuff which can’t be taken terribly seriously for largely political reasons.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    JR, that’s not a defense of the administration, it’s an observation bordering on an attack. You would prefer that I didn’t admit that the administration are a bunch of political weasels?

    Dave

  • JR

    Of course not. I just think that there might be people here who are more opposed to lying than you are, even to the point of being outraged at fairly typical political maneuvering.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Perhaps I draw the line differently. I’m strongly opposed to outright deception, but not so bothered by what I would call political posturing.

    This is typically expressed by statements like the one recently made by Ted Kennedy where he says that he’s personally pro-life, but politically continues to support abortion 100%. That’s not a lie. He’s being absolutely truthful. But he’s also being a political weasel.

    The stem cell example you bring up with the administration is exactly the same thing. They say publicly that they’re against the destruction of the unborn, including through stem cell research. That’s the pubic position to satisfy their far-right constituents and it means that they aren’t going to be personally responsible for destroying fetuses. However, it doesn’t mean they’re actually going to stop any stem cell research. It means they pull funding from some stem cell research – as little as they can get away with – and do absolutely nothing to actually ban private research with stem cells. It’s the perfect moderate position, paying lip service to religious conservative causes, but not really blocking the progress of science.

    And the point is that it’s not a lie. It’s a position which satisfies the needs to two opposed constituencies and works out as a compromise. Representing it as a lie is simplistic and naive or self-serving, because not only does Bush never come out and say he’s going to stop all stem cell research, thereby lying since he is not going to do any such thing, but he makes it clear in most cases exactly how far he’s actually willing to go if you pay attention to the wording of his statements.

    This is the nature of politics, so judge the politicians by their actions first and their explanations and justifications – which are never quite outright lies – second. But if they do come right out and lie, then give them hell for it.

    Dave

  • MCH

    If you could buy Dave Nalle for what he is actually worth, and then sell him for what he THINKS he is worth, you’d never have to work again…

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    MCH, I can now say that if I had a dollar for every original statement you made on BC, I’d have a dollar. That’s progress for you.

    Dave

  • Nancy

    I’m fed up with excuses being made for which excuses are not possible. Classis case in point: Bolton stated – signed a statement, even – that in the past few years he has not been questioned, interviewed, or involved in any kind of investigation whatsoever. None. No exceptions. Ah, but it turns out he DID. He was questioned about the Plame affair. Oh – well, that’s different. That was an ‘error’. We’ll just change the statement a little & fix that little slip of the mind, shall we? Then on to the UN….

    No. It wasn’t an “error”. It was an outright, deliberate LIE. And IF by some far stretch of the imagination, it was a slip of the mind, it’s the kind of slip that lands most people in jail, in court, or at the least, in the unemployment line. But in the hands of the political spinmeisters, it’s nothing. Shrug it off. Sweep it under the rug & keep on going.

    Well, it IS something. It’s a lie. He falsely signed a statement swearing to something that was not true.

    Bolton is just an example, but it’s such a typical example of the political mind at work. What part of this do the goddamned politicians & their defenders not get? What part do they not understand? They treat oaths & sworn statements like dirt to be ground beneath their feet. They play fast & loose with facts, sneer at proof, & laugh as they twist innocence & honor into their debased versions of slander & libel. They consider it all to be a game. The outrage is the higher in government you go, the more egregious, blatant, & outrageous it gets. Those with the most responsibility & power are the same ones who behave most irresponsibly and grossly abuse that power, in word & deeds. Even when caught dead wrong, in flagrante, committing a crime, violating a rule, flouting a law, their lies caught on camera & in print, they DARE to put on poses of injured innocence or worse, actually have the gall to attack those who caught them at it! It’s nothing more than a game to them. They’re completely out of touch with the reality that this is a CRIME. It’s a LIE. It’s a violation of every norm & rule for living that every single society establishes. IT ISN’T A GAME. Truth is NOT a game; lying is NOT a game; slander, libel, dirty tricks, destroying lives & reputations for political points is NOT a game; stealing is NOT a game; twisting facts to gain political ends is NOT a game; talking out of both sides of your mouth is NOT a game; hypocrisy is NOT a game.
    It’s NOT ‘a position which satisfies the needs’ of anything; that’s more semantics & sneering political gobbledegook spin. Giving it another name, using abstract terminology to justify means that stink in order to achieve ends that are mired in corruption, works ONLY in the sense that most people don’t understand what happened, they just know something isn’t right, but all the name-changing, terminology-twisting, justification & spin in the world still doesn’t change the FACT that a LIE is A GODDAMN LIE. A lie is a lie is a lie. Cheating is cheating. Stealing is stealing. Period. Maybe I am emotional, but at least I still retain enough basic decency, honor, honesty, & sense of right & wrong untainted by ‘relativity’ to get emotional & pissed off & outraged. It’s a pity most of the rest of us don’t, or don’t care, or think it’s a game.

  • Nancy

    And it doesn’t matter which party we’re discussing. Kennedy ought to have had his fat butt parked in jail lo, these many years. Anyone with a sense of honesty, regardless of party, will admit that. Sandy Berger destroyed federal property & stole from the National Archives. He got his stack pass lifted for 3 years & had to pay a fine! Jesus H. Christ! He should be rotting somewhere in a federal pen in W. Va. for that. Stealing is stealing. It was NOT an ‘error’, a ‘mistake’, or any other bullshit excuse. It was a crime. Bolton signed a statement, and knew when he signed it that he was lying. He didn’t forget. Little things like being questioned in the Plame investigation just don’t slip your mind, no matter who you are; or if they do, you’re clearly too senile to continue working in a sensitive & important, powerful position. It was a lie. Not an error. A lie. The congressman from CA. has been caught with his hand in the til, taking bribes, living in houseboats bought for him, etc. He knows the rules. He didn’t forget. He didn’t misunderstand. He cheated. He lied. He stole. Same with DeLay and his nifty trip to Scotland for a little golf courtesy of various forbidden parties. He knew the rules. He did it anyway. And then he lied about it, and he’s still lying about it, and all his buddies in congress are rallying round excusing him for it and trying to make those who caught him at it out to be the villains. All their bluster & lies don’t change the facts: he lied; he cheated; he stole; he broke the law & the rules.

    This rant isn’t about any particular politician or party. It’s about a sick, disgusting, foul state of mind & soul that turns a blind eye to corruption in all its forms, laughs & shrugs & spins it off & excuses it as something else less virulent & vile, and it’s this state of mind, this failure to look facts in the eye & name them for what they are that I object to. Enough is enough. If someone is caught doing wrong, for chrissake have the decency, no matter what party they belong to and you support, to admit it. Maybe you’re not supporting your party, but you’re doing something more vital: you’re supporting the truth.

  • Rich

    Dave,

    In its simplist form all people have human rights especially the ultimate violation of the human right to live. I think we are on the same page with this, at least I hope so.

    Wether it be someone standing next to you, in the next room, a block away, the next town, on the other side of the earth killing one person or in masse, is a violation of human rights.

    I would disagree the statment: “Everyone knows it happened. It couldn’t be more well known or publicly acknowledged”.

    For one the population of the perpetrarting government (Turkey) is not learning the truth of the Armenian Genocide. In effect prolonging the denial campaign. This is the most troubling.

    The denialist campaign is being fought tooth and nail in this country through media, school histiory books, academia, as well as outright political rehtoric. from state to state, and on the national level.

    Dave, you also asked/stated: “What I don’t understand is the economic aspect of it in the context of modern Turkey”.
    As I touched on before a few million dollars a year to suppress the truth through lobby groups and the other tools bought off to suppress, is our tax dollars funneled back from our subsadies to Turkey. Relatively speaking the money is not much from there point of view.

    They are a very nationalistic people it would show a sign of weakness I would imagine by acknowldging what they have done. But if they used there heads they would gain much more then loose, economically between Armenia and Turkey. Right now they want to be a member of the European Union and among other issues the Armennian Genocide denials (in part)is helping to hinder this process of inclusion into the union. No suprrise the US although not a member of the Union want them to join and is trying to influence the process for inclusion. Maybe so the US doesn’t have to share the economic burdon of Turkey’s failing economy.

    You may dissagree on this point but there is precident from similar crimes against humanity. Payback for the land taken, lives lost, busnesses and belongings taken, interest. I agree it sounds messy and convoluted to figure out something at that scale. But it has been done in similar circumstances.

    In short, obviously Turks dont want to go there, denying keeps them from this step of Armenians wanting lands back, money for loss, etc…

    I appreciate your willingness to ask the question why?

    I assume you realize this is not a partisan issue. We have an Armenian Congressional Caucus which includes both Reeps and Dems.

    I still suggest you read “The Burning Tigris” by Peter Balakian.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    >>In its simplist form all people have human rights especially the ultimate violation of the human right to live. I think we are on the same page with this, at least I hope so.< <

    Can't argue with you there.

    >>Wether it be someone standing next to you, in the next room, a block away, the next town, on the other side of the earth killing one person or in masse, is a violation of human rights.< <

    Yes, all true. But there is a difference when it happened 100 years ago and everyone who could be held responsible is dead. This is similar to African Americans looking for reparations for slavery or Islamic Jihadists who are out for revenge because of the Crusades in the 12th century.

    >>I would disagree the statment: “Everyone knows it happened. It couldn’t be more well known or publicly acknowledged”. < <

    If I'm not mistaken it's been condemned by many governments and the UN, plus I've personally seen two documentaries on the genocide, not to mention an episode of Young Indiana Jones.

    >>For one the population of the perpetrarting government (Turkey) is not learning the truth of the Armenian Genocide. In effect prolonging the denial campaign. This is the most troubling.< <

    Is it that they aren't learning the truth or that they're trying to ignore the truth? I'd go with the latter. But this is where I start to have trouble with the whole business, because they could just acknowledge it and deny any responsibility and move on. They're not the same government, they didn't commit the genocide, so all they're protecting is a vague sense of national pride. Hardly seems worth it, but then I'm not a Turk.

    >>The denialist campaign is being fought tooth and nail in this country through media, school histiory books, academia, as well as outright political rehtoric. from state to state, and on the national level. < <

    By this country you mean the US, right? I would guess that the only reason it's not in most textbooks is that the history of the period is so dominated by WW1 that there's not room for it. It's not an intentional denial. It was in my history text when I was teaching western civilization and I spent a little bit of time on it in class. But not a lot - about the same amount of time I spent on the Russo-Japanese War where far more people died. The idea that there's a deliberate denial in the US seems more than a bit paranoid.

    >>Dave, you also asked/stated: “What I don’t understand is the economic aspect of it in the context of modern Turkey”.
    As I touched on before a few million dollars a year to suppress the truth through lobby groups and the other tools bought off to suppress, is our tax dollars funneled back from our subsadies to Turkey. Relatively speaking the money is not much from there point of view.< <

    But what do they get for that money? What greater expense does it save them?

    >>They are a very nationalistic people it would show a sign of weakness I would imagine by acknowldging what they have done.< <

    You're still saying 'what thye have done'. They haven't done anything. The grandfathers of some of them did it, but not one person alive in Turkey today was involved.

    >> But if they used there heads they would gain much more then loose, economically between Armenia and Turkey. < <

    I agree on this. Turkey has some real problems with their relations with neighbors, including Greece, Armenia and especially the Kurds right now. They need to get over their unnecessarily hostile foreign policy.

    >>Right now they want to be a member of the European Union and among other issues the Armennian Genocide denials (in part)is helping to hinder this process of inclusion into the union.< <

    You might not realize this, but there are people in the EU who are looking for any excuse - like the genocide to keep the Turks out. They can't afford any more countries which will suck up money and export workers in the EU. There are already countries who are members who have engaged in genocide, including just about everyone except the Scandinavian countries, and many of them much more recently. I don't see how the Armenian issue is a serious hindrance to membership.

    >>No suprrise the US although not a member of the Union want them to join and is trying to influence the process for inclusion. Maybe so the US doesn’t have to share the economic burdon of Turkey’s failing economy.< <

    Now there you have a point. If the US administration wants to further damage the failing EU, easing the process of letting Turkey in is a great way to do it.

    >>You may dissagree on this point but there is precident from similar crimes against humanity. Payback for the land taken, lives lost, busnesses and belongings taken, interest. I agree it sounds messy and convoluted to figure out something at that scale. But it has been done in similar circumstances. < <

    I know of only one instance, which is the limited reparations paid by Germany to death camp survivors. That only happened because they had standing as survivors and the immediate families of death camp victims. Claims made by descendents farther removed were not recognized.

    >>In short, obviously Turks dont want to go there, denying keeps them from this step of Armenians wanting lands back, money for loss, etc… < <

    Their denial shouldn't have any effect on proceedings in an international court, nor should the US acknowledging or not acknowledging the well documented historical events.

    >>I assume you realize this is not a partisan issue. We have an Armenian Congressional Caucus which includes both Reeps and Dems<<

    I don’t see any possibility of partisanship here, and I can’t imagine any sensible reason why congress shouldn’t condemn the genocide for the same reasons that I can’t see why the Turks are so defensive about it. It happened long enough ago that any action taken by our congress would be mostly symbolic. That being the case – and given all the much less meaningful symbolic resolutions they pass – i don’t see why a resolution can’t get passed with enough votes to override Hastert’s obstructionism.

    Dave

  • Rich

    >>In its simplist form all people have human rights especially the ultimate violation of the human right to live. I think we are on the same page with this, at least I hope so.< <

    Can't argue with you there.

    >>Wether it be someone standing next to you, in the next room, a block away, the next town, on the other side of the earth killing one person or in masse, is a violation of human rights.< <

    Yes, all true. But there is a difference when it happened 100 years ago and everyone who could be held responsible is dead. This is similar to African Americans looking for reparations for slavery or Islamic Jihadists who are out for revenge because of the Crusades in the 12th century.

    Reperations, as I said before, sounds like something covoluted and messy to figure out but it shouldn't hinder us from finding a final solution. As it stands denial by the perpetrators is where this issue MUST be resolved. The other issues you've mentioned that are similar are just that similar, but that is a stretch to say. Even if it is similar does not preclude us to find a solution. The US has it's seperate challenges of it's past and people are trying to find a way of resolution on that too. Again, because it has not happened does not mean it never will.

    And it was 80 years ago not 100 years.

    >>I would disagree the statment: “Everyone knows it happened. It couldn’t be more well known or publicly acknowledged”. < <

    If I'm not mistaken it's been condemned by many governments and the UN, plus I've personally seen two documentaries on the genocide, not to mention an episode of Young Indiana Jones.

    I would have to go back from you first quote that your trying to validate "Everyone knows it happened. It couldn't be more well known or publicly acknowledged".
    Now you said "many" thats changed from "everyone" If it was everyone you could ask 10 out of 10 people and they would at least remotely know this subject.
    I agree a good number of countries officially acknowledge the Genocide including the UN, but that does not bring closure to the issue. The perpetrating government needs to acknowledge and the respective parties should bring resolution to the issue.

    Out of heavy heavy lifting persistence and tenacity in these various countries and the UN did we strive for incremental steps and finally, official acknowledgement. It (acknowledgment) definatly DID NOT happen on it's own out of the angellic nature of the UN and various countries.

    Watching a documentary in itself does not bring an ultimate conclusion that this issue has been spoken on and we finally know what the truth is, although it is a welcome direction of this on going issue.

    >>For one the population of the perpetrarting government (Turkey) is not learning the truth of the Armenian Genocide. In effect prolonging the denial campaign. This is the most troubling.< <

    Is it that they aren't learning the truth or that they're trying to ignore the truth? I'd go with the latter. But this is where I start to have trouble with the whole business, because they could just acknowledge it and deny any responsibility and move on. They're not the same government, they didn't commit the genocide, so all they're protecting is a vague sense of national pride. Hardly seems worth it, but then I'm not a Turk.

    No, the people are largly ignorant, the general public, this point is clear. Lets remember that we are talking about Turkey. The masses are not learning the truth in schools, not on TV, not in the papers, and definatly not word of mouth or else they would face retribution by the government, this is no joke, they have laws of punishment on this subject although they claim openess. Trust me on this.

    The government on the otherhand has full access to its archives. It claims that its archives are open to scrutiny but professors I know have been harassed and threatened and given the run around while doing research on this issue.

    >>The denialist campaign is being fought tooth and nail in this country through media, school histiory books, academia, as well as outright political rehtoric. from state to state, and on the national level. < <

    By this country you mean the US, right? I would guess that the only reason it's not in most textbooks is that the history of the period is so dominated by WW1 that there's not room for it. It's not an intentional denial. It was in my history text when I was teaching western civilization and I spent a little bit of time on it in class. But not a lot - about the same amount of time I spent on the Russo-Japanese War where far more people died. The idea that there's a deliberate denial in the US seems more than a bit paranoid.

    No, I'm not paranoid

    Not all history books in that period cover the Armenian Genocide. We passed legislation to where we practically mandate coverage of this subject in CA high schools. (I'm too lazy right now to write in the facts on this but trust me on this)

    >>Dave, you also asked/stated: “What I don’t understand is the economic aspect of it in the context of modern Turkey”.
    As I touched on before a few million dollars a year to suppress the truth through lobby groups and the other tools bought off to suppress, is our tax dollars funneled back from our subsadies to Turkey. Relatively speaking the money is not much from there point of view.< <

    But what do they get for that money? What greater expense does it save them?

    What do they get for the money? Thats just its not there money it our tax money. A few million dollars is no sweat off there back. This is not a business this is a governement. A few million dollars is nothing to them. Would you like it if people called you a bully thief and murderer? The Turks don't so they want to keep this subject under raps in Congress.

    >>They are a very nationalistic people it would show a sign of weakness I would imagine by acknowldging what they have done.< <

    You're still saying 'what thye have done'. They haven't done anything. The grandfathers of some of them did it, but not one person alive in Turkey today was involved.

    "They" being the government. The governent should not have clean hands on this subject because people are not alive to blame this on. This was a systematic and well thought out plan made and executed by the government. It can be debated that it was the Young Turk government and not the current government, but they deny that too. I would not blame the Turk on the street but the governemt for what it did.

    >> But if they used there heads they would gain much more then loose, economically between Armenia and Turkey. < <

    I agree on this. Turkey has some real problems with their relations with neighbors, including Greece, Armenia and especially the Kurds right now. They need to get over their unnecessarily hostile foreign policy.

    This is where everyone wins!

    >>Right now they want to be a member of the European Union and among other issues the Armennian Genocide denials (in part)is helping to hinder this process of inclusion into the union.< <

    You might not realize this, but there are people in the EU who are looking for any excuse - like the genocide to keep the Turks out. They can't afford any more countries which will suck up money and export workers in the EU. There are already countries who are members who have engaged in genocide, including just about everyone except the Scandinavian countries, and many of them much more recently. I don't see how the Armenian issue is a serious hindrance to membership.

    I agree on your points above thats why I wrote (in part). It is a barganing chip the counties are using against Turkey "a chip". On the other hand Cyprus issue is a bigger chip.

    >>No suprrise the US although not a member of the Union want them to join and is trying to influence the process for inclusion. Maybe so the US doesn’t have to share the economic burdon of Turkey’s failing economy.< <

    Now there you have a point. If the US administration wants to further damage the failing EU, easing the process of letting Turkey in is a great way to do it.

    This is falling on US partisanship to digress the EU is failing becasue the US propoganda machine is saying that it is failing. What about the years before the Iraq problem were they failing then or just lap dogs to the US as they are now. I dont buy all this about UN failure the US just needs someone to beat up and supposedly show how the US is going to clean things up once Bush gets Bolton to work. Thats my rant on the UN US relationship. I know your pretty set in your ways on this. lets agree to disagree. I know you'll send be some facts to justify how f..ed up the UN is. Save the typing time I've heard it before.

    >>You may dissagree on this point but there is precident from similar crimes against humanity. Payback for the land taken, lives lost, busnesses and belongings taken, interest. I agree it sounds messy and convoluted to figure out something at that scale. But it has been done in similar circumstances. < <

    I know of only one instance, which is the limited reparations paid by Germany to death camp survivors. That only happened because they had standing as survivors and the immediate families of death camp victims. Claims made by descendents farther removed were not recognized.

    There was also a settlement with Life INsurance Company for Armneian victims of Genocide. The insurance company held out till we passed legilation and took them to court to fess up and pay up.

    Living or dead the government should be held accountable. Otherwise governements will just do what Turkey and similar governments are doing killing people in masse this is insanity. Just becasue it happens does not mean it should continue in the future or now for that matter in Darfur.

    >>In short, obviously Turks dont want to go there, denying keeps them from this step of Armenians wanting lands back, money for loss, etc… < <

    Their denial shouldn't have any effect on proceedings in an international court, nor should the US acknowledging or not acknowledging the well documented historical events.

    Yes it shouldnt but why arent we in court? Politics my friend, politics. But again step by step we are moving in that direction.

    >>I assume you realize this is not a partisan issue. We have an Armenian Congressional Caucus which includes both Reeps and Dems<<

    I don’t see any possibility of partisanship here, and I can’t imagine any sensible reason why congress shouldn’t condemn the genocide for the same reasons that I can’t see why the Turks are so defensive about it. It happened long enough ago that any action taken by our congress would be mostly symbolic. That being the case – and given all the much less meaningful symbolic resolutions they pass – i don’t see why a resolution can’t get passed with enough votes to override Hastert’s obstructionism.

    The SPeaker of the House brings the resolutions to the floor, sits on it indefinatly. Our US politics has some major flaws but its a grand experiment and we are a part of it.

    “The Burning Tigris”

    –Rich

  • Rich

    Sorry, 90 years since the Armenian Genocide. Its getting late.

  • Nanul

    Why so many people hate the US? Mostly because of its dirty foreign politics and double standards. The Armenian Genocide recognition issue is a great playing card in the hands of the U.S. administration. Every time Turkey misbehaves, they play the Armenian genocide card. This happens over and over again. The most recent example is when the Turkish troops showed some intentions to enter Iraq. No, no, no… Turks, you don’t want the U.S. to recognize the Armenian genocide.

    If you don’t condemn such crimes against humanity, they tend to repeat. It is a well documented fact that Hitler himself justified his mass killings by saying: “Who now remembers about the Armenian genocide?”

    It’s ridiculous to see how major U.S. newspapers are not allowed to use the “G” word when it comes to Armenian Genocide.

    The American government has a lot to learn from France, Switzerland, Canada, etc who recognized the Armenian killings as GENOCIDE.

  • Nanul

    Rich, what about Darfur? Is it late too?

  • Rich

    Nanul,

    I dissagree on two of your points. The Turks saddly hold the upperhand on the genocide issue. With the US air bases in Turkey one of them being in Incernick. Strategically it is one of the biggest air bases the US has in the region. Turkey was very important durring the cold war era. They still are important but a lot of other countires are welcoming the US in there country. The silver lineing is that more Countries opened up there airports to fight the “war on terror” leaving the US not as dependent on Turkey but yet the status quo is still there with Incernik being the biggest US air base.

    The base is leased out annually and the Turkish government makes it clear that the lease renewal will be a problem if the genocide resoultion is passed in congress.

    Also when the US needed the Turks the most when we were preparing to invade from the north into Iraq the Turks did not let our soldiers pass through there Country! Our ships needed to literally turn around and go back! I dont recall The genocide issue was not a playing card as you mentioned.

    Also the major newspapers such as the New York Times did recognized the Armenian Genocide for what it is, a genocide. But this was after years of hounding and meetings with the paper. Our scholors needed to also meet with the NYTimes staff/editors to help make this happen.

    The Armenian Genocide is pretty much excepted in mainstream papers.

    Your on point with Hitler’s quote and the US needing to learn about the other countries.

    Before France acknowledged the Armenian Genocide Turkey threatened to cut off economic ties or at least a number of multi-million dollar contracts. But they are doing business today. Turkey has more to loose economically then any Westernized Country.

    I think our US military/State Dept. is calling the shots in Congress with Turkey being a strategic military partner/allie.

    Now that we have the “war on Terror” the issue (I think) is taking a back seat in US politics.

    I’m not sure if I remember the US using the Armenian Genocide to hold back the Turks from going into northern Iraq. If so it was an issue that was on the bottom of the list to twist there arms to hold back.

    Is there a reference to this that you have Nanul?

    –Rich

  • Rich

    Nanul

    I’m working on Darfur at least the organization I work with.

    –Rich

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    >>Why so many people hate the US? Mostly because of its dirty foreign politics and double standards. The Armenian Genocide recognition issue is a great playing card in the hands of the U.S. administration. Every time Turkey misbehaves, they play the Armenian genocide card. This happens over and over again. The most recent example is when the Turkish troops showed some intentions to enter Iraq. No, no, no… Turks, you don’t want the U.S. to recognize the Armenian genocide. <<

    So your argument is that not recognizing the Armenian genocide is a good thing, because we can use its leberage to stop the possible Kurdish genocide which would ensue if the Turks invaded Iraq. I have to say that makes a certain amount of sense, and does put America’s choice not to recognize the Armenian genocide in a positive light.

    Dave

  • shpilk

    Cases of wrongdoing, such as Whitewater, Travelgate and the questionable deaths of Vince Foster and Ron Brown are good goalposts to use when considering what is wrong and what is right.

    Right Dave?

  • Rich

    >>Cases of wrongdoing, such as Whitewater, Travelgate and the questionable deaths of Vince Foster and Ron Brown are good goalposts to use when considering what is wrong and what is right.

    Shpilk,

    Where does this fall into our discussion? Is it a spill over from another weblog?

    If anything this discussion is an alleged “Hastertgate”, it falls on the heals of “Rovegate”. I’m curious where this Federal investigation will lead us.

    I hope truth prevails. After all isn’t that what we want for a viabrant democracy? transparency

    –Rich

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    What are you talking about, Shpilk? I mean aside from some events that happened in the Clinton administration and are largely irrelevant today?

    Dave

  • Nanul

    Dave Nelle,
    You miss my point. The U.S. admin manipulates with the issue. The U.S. admin. doesn’t care if Turks start committing a Kurdish genocide today unless it is in Iraq (since this would be a bad PR for them) the way they hardly care about what’s going on in Darfur. The best way to prevent another genocide is to recognize and condemn the ones that have already happened or stop the ones that are happening now.

  • Nanul

    >>I’m not sure if I remember the US >>using the Armenian Genocide to hold >>back the Turks from going into >>northern Iraq. If so it was an issue >>that was on the bottom of the list to >>twist there arms to hold back.
    >>Is there a reference to this that you >>have Nanul?

    I agree with you Rich. Armenian Genocide is one of the many cards that the US admin has. Sorry, I don’t remember where I read it, but it wasn’t in mainstream media, however it was a quite legitimate source.

  • Rich

    Nanul,

    I was dissagreeing with you.

    The Armenian Genocide is hardly used as a bargaining chip agianst the Turks by the US.

    Re-read my post.

    –Rich

  • http://www.diablog.us Dave Nalle

    >>The U.S. admin. doesn’t care if Turks start committing a Kurdish genocide today unless it is in Iraq (since this would be a bad PR for them) the way they hardly care about what’s going on in Darfur. <<

    I think you give them far too little credit here. No one wants to see Kurds or the people in Darfur or anyone else massacred or abused, especially not the Bush administration. But they have to set priorities for the nation, not just for their own consciences. Since the UN and the EU have a stated responsibility in Darfur and the US has a responsibility in Iraq, that’s where they’ve chosen to direct their attentions. The US can’t do everything for everyone all at the same time. It’s not realistic to expect more.

    Dave

  • Rich

    >>I think you give them far too little credit here. No one wants to see Kurds or the people in Darfur or anyone else massacred or abused, especially not the Bush administration. But they have to set priorities for the nation, not just for their own consciences. Since the UN and the EU have a stated responsibility in Darfur and the US has a responsibility in Iraq, that’s where they’ve chosen to direct their attentions. The US can’t do everything for everyone all at the same time. It’s not realistic to expect more.

    Dave,

    For decades, yes decades before Iraq was not on the radar screen. The Kurds were abused, killed off, you name it

    When the Armenian genocide was happening the Kurds killed off Armenians as well as the Turks. We told the Kurds, your next, they didn’t listen now they are being persecuted in Turkey.

    The Kurds stab eachother in the back.

    The US is a part of the UN. When the UN makes public statements against genocide in Darfur, I am sure the US is included in the UN’s concern.

    No one is asking the US to do everything for everyone, but since when is the US unable to multitask? Diplomacy goes a long way before troops on the ground in Darfur. Maybe the situation can be resolved by more diplomacy or arm twisting.

    Lets get Bolton to work on Darfur, since he has that reputation of heavy handedness.

  • http://www.aramanoogian.blogspot.com Ara Manoogian

    I guess I’m coming into this discussion a little bit late, thus only skimmed over the comments.

    I just wanted to touch on the economic damage that Turkey could have if the Armenian genocide is accepted by the international community as the fact it is.

    It’s plain and simple. Genocide has no statue of limitations and restitution to be paid to the victims and their decedents would come from those who posses the spoils of this genocide, namely the present day Turkish government and it’s people.

    I for one am ready to reclaim my inheritance that was taken from my family by the Turkish people during the genocide. I’m sure there are tens of thousands like me out there who are in this same position to make a claim.

  • Nancy

    Restitution for genocide is never gonna happen – for anyone. Why? Because every single modern nation/government on earth currently was built on & profited from genocide of one episode or another. To admit restitution of one genocidal incident would be to admit them all, and where would that leave world governments? The powers that currently be will commit more genocide before they allow that to happen.

  • http://www.aramanoogian.blogspot.com Ara Manoogian

    Germany is still paying to the Jews and the Turks will pay to the Armenians one day. You can mark my words on this one.

  • Nancy

    I do hope to see justice done. Ref: the Germans paying the Jews, I thought they gave a selected few survivors a lump sum payment & that was it. Otherwise, even people that could prove ownership of stolen monies, art, etc. have had to fight in court to get it back, if they got it at all.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    >>Lets get Bolton to work on Darfur, since he has that reputation of heavy handedness.<<

    One of the reasons I thnk Bolton was appointed is that he may be one of the few diplomats undiplomatic enough to walk onto the floor of the UN and tell the Europeans that they screwed up Darfur in the first place and that they now have the obligation to fix it.

    Dave

  • Nancy

    Actually, I think siccing Bolton onto the food-for-oil & Darfur messes may be a good idea. He’s a nutcase, but maybe if he chases a few of them around the UN building a couple of times, they’ll pay attention.

  • billy

    the problem with bolton is it is all an act and he is going to be laughed out of the un. the hand grenade on his desk hides the fact that he is a cowardly chickenhawk, who opresses his subordinates and kisses up to his bosses. if i saw bolton coming id laugh in his face. he only plays a tough guy in front of republican hearings.

  • Nancy

    Yeah, he’s a classic bully, which is why Smirk likes him so much: two nasty cuts of the same bolt of greasy cloth. Still, it would be funny if Bolton did chase a few of these mini-me sovereign state idiots around their offices.

  • Nancy

    I do wish he’d either shave or prune a little that ridiculous Wally Walrus moustache…or does he maintain it in imitation of his hero, Joe Stalin?

  • billy

    it would be funny, but i dont think bolton really has any gonads when faced with a real adversary. he sounds tough on hannity and rush, but that is just acting.

  • Rich

    >>Restitution for genocide is never gonna happen – for anyone. Why? Because every single modern nation/government on earth currently was built on & profited from genocide of one episode or another. To admit restitution of one genocidal incident would be to admit them all, and where would that leave world governments? The powers that currently be will commit more genocide before they allow that to happen.

    Hi Nancy,

    I’m with Ara’s comments on this one. The word “never” is too absolute especially when we have precident on specific cases of a perpetrator governemts paying back for inhumanity.

    The International community counting many of the Western Countrys are acknowledging the Genocide as genocide. THese are incremental steps toward the perpetrator government Turkey fessing up.

    Its relatively recent that these governments have acknowledged Turkey’s worng doing. It doesnt matter if it was almost a century ago. There is no statue of limitations on murder.

    >>One of the reasons I thnk Bolton was appointed is that he may be one of the few diplomats undiplomatic enough to walk onto the floor of the UN and tell the Europeans that they screwed up Darfur in the first place and that they now have the obligation to fix it.

    I was kidding about Bolton. Since when did Bolton do something for the sake of humanity? I’m very curious to know.

    Yes Bolton is just the man to chase those in the UN down the hallways and pound on doors. Idol threats will work even better.

    Will someone pass me the coolaid?