2007.08.28 -- LA Times: Letters to the Editor

History, tragedy and genocide

Re "Jewish group recognizes Armenian genocide," Aug. 23

I hope Anti-Defamation League National Director Abraham Foxman will reconsider Rabbi Hillel's summary of the Bible: "What is hateful to you, do not to your fellow man. That is the entire law; all the rest is commentary." There can be no adequate justification for such a blatant, calculated half-measure in response to any genocide. It is ironic and tragic that it was issued from the leader of one of the most prominentJewishgroups in the country. Today, he does not speak for me.

Gary Gross Huntington Beach

Foxman's refusal to back a congressional resolution acknowledging the Armenian genocide is understandable. To do so would diminish the events of World War II and demonstrate that this tragic incident is no more horrificthan that which has happened to others. The Chinese suffered their own genocide at the hands of the Japanese during World War II, yet there is little written about, let alone official recognition given for, this atrocity.

Although what happened in Europe was tragic, it is unfortunately just another footnote in history of human cruelty. The Irish, Cambodians, Africans, Native Americans, Chinese and Armenians have all experienced their own genocides. Only one group has demanded that its experience be given priority over all others.

John Zavesky Riverside

As the only Jewish organization solely dedicated to the issue of combating and preventing genocide worldwide, Jewish World Watch applauds the ADL for finally acknowledging the Armenian genocide as a genocide.

As a community with firsthand knowledge and experience of the ravages of genocide, we have a particular moral obligation to stand up and ask our government to recognize what we know as true: that 1.5 million Armenians were systematically slaughtered in a government-sponsored campaign of genocide against them. We urge the ADL to continue its leadership in the fight against hate by supporting the pending congressional resolution recognizing the Armenian genocide as such.

Rabbi Harold M. Schulweis Founder, Jewish World Watch Encino