This video says about itself:
24 December 2015
In 1915 a million people were brought through what is now Turkey and walked to their deaths near Deir-al-Zour in modern Syria. One hundred years on, only a handful of survivors remain to tell the stories of the Armenian genocide, which they witnessed.
A hundred years after the Armenian genocide, filmmaker Diana Markosian found two survivors who witnessed deportation, death, and denial of the events of 1915. Together they journeyed back to the past.
I was never interested in pursuing work on the Armenian genocide. When I started this project, it was still just a vague historical narrative. I knew that, in 1915, the Ottomans initiated a policy of deportation and mass murder to destroy their Armenian population. And that, by the First World War’s end, more than a million people were eliminated from what is now modern-day Turkey. But I had no idea of the personal toll the genocide exacted on my own family, or the sense of connection I would slowly come to feel through making this piece.
I am Armenian, but I was born in Moscow and raised in America. For most of my life, I struggled with my Armenian identity, partly because of the history one inherits. It is something I understood but never fully embraced. Then a year ago, I happened to be in Armenia when a foundation approached me, requesting help in finding the remaining genocide survivors. I pursued voter registrations online to see who was born before 1915, and then traveled cross-country to find them. That’s how I met Movses and Yepraksia — who lived past their hundredth year.
When I met them, they shared with me memories of their early homes. Movses was born in the village of Kebusie in Musa Dagh Mountain not far from the Syrian border. Yepraksia lived in a small village near Kars on the Armenian border. They hadn’t seen their home since escaping a century ago. I wanted in some way reunite each of the survivors with their homeland. I decided to travel back to Turkey to re-trace their last memories.
When I told the survivors I would be visiting their native land, each one asked me to fulfill a wish. Movses, from Musa Dagh, drew a map of his village, and asked me to find his church and leave his portrait on the footsteps of what are now ruins. He hadn’t seen his home in 98 years. In his village, I found everything he had described to me: the sheep, the fruit he remembered eating, and the sea. I even found the ruins of what was once his church. Yepraksia, from a small village in Kars, asked me to help her find her older brother who she separated from after 1915.
Once I returned to Armenia, I created billboard-sized images of the survivors’ homelands as a way of bridging the past and present. All these years later, upon delivering the image, the survivors grabbed on, as if by holding the image close they would be taken back to a place they called home many years ago. This is a story of home — everything they had, everything they lost. And what they have found again.
Translated from Dutch NOS TV:
The German government will dissociate itself from the recognition of the Armenian genocide by the German Bundestag parliament, writes news website Spiegel Online. The government spokesman is expected to announce this later this morning.
Distancing themselves from the Bundestag resolution is a political gesture by the German government to the Turkish government. Thereby they pave the way for German parliamentarians to visit German soldiers on the Turkish Incirlik airbase.
Germany, Seeking Airbase Access in Turkey, Steps Back From Armenian Genocide Recognition: here.
The German government also probably think denying the Armenian genocide will make things easier for the European Union-Turkey deal, deporting refugees from Europe to Turkey (from where they may be deported to war zones in Syria or Iraq).
Update: Germany’s parliamentary vote declaring the 1915 massacre of Armenians by Ottoman forces a genocide is not legally binding, Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier on Friday, a move that may signal at attempt to mend frayed ties with Turkey: here. And here. And here.
From DPA news agency today:
The expected move by the government has already generated criticism from within Merkel‘s grand coalition, which joins her Christian Democratic Union (CDU), its Bavarian sister party CSU and the Social Democratic Party (SPD).
“Though I am not a lawmaker in the German Bundestag, I stand by this decision as a member of the German government – no one in the government should waver on this,” Family Minister Manuela Schwesig from the SPD told the N24 broadcaster on Friday.
What more can we expect? If some neonazi billionaire would offer the German government lots of money for the military, would they then be prepared to deny Adolf Hitler’s mass murders of Jews, Roma, Slavs, etc. etc.?
Update; translated from Dutch NOS TV today: