Thesis

Igniting Memory and Forcing Acceptance: The Armenian Genocide of 1915

The Armenian Genocide of 1915 is an ongoing scandalous issue for many political reasons regarding the Turkish government. While it has received recognition from 28 countries and 45 out of 50 of the United States, there is continued denial from the Turkish government, which prevents countries such as the United States from accepting it as Genocide. 1.5 million Armenians were brutally tortured, raped and killed in 1915. Rather than ending these systematic massacres, political entities either refuse to accept genocide or they turn a blind eye towards other nations presumably allowing these recurrent traumas to occur, as there are eight known genocides of the twentieth and twenty first centuries, including the Armenian Genocide. The annihilation of the Armenians served as inspiration for Adolf Hitler in constructing the Holocaust, which was then followed by four others in China in 1945, Cambodia in 1975, Rwanda in 1994 and most recently, in Darfur in 2003. By refusing respect for life and humanity, these atrocities continue throughout the world in countless massacres and genocides. The historical resistance and denial of the Genocide is the driving force and reason why marching, protesting and joining rallies is a necessity. The truth of these actions continues to be spread, as more people are made aware of the unforgivable actions. In this paper I argue that while silent protests serve a powerful purpose, being vocal in protests is crucial in forcing the Turkish government to take responsibility for the actions of their ancestors and allow the Armenians to properly mourn our ancestors and land as juxtaposition to the attempted silencing of our nation.

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