04, 2010

Remarks by President Serzh Sargsyan at the Washington Cathedral in tribute to President Woodrow Wilson

Fellow Armenians,

Today, all of us together visited the tomb and paid tribute to the President Woodrow Wilson of the U.S.A. – a person and a leader, who is and always will be remembered by our people as a true friend of Armenians. President Wilson was a great statesman, who has been honored by the generations of the ancient people, living thousands miles away from his homeland, and who still remember him although nearly a century has turned since then. For us – Armenians – Wilson is not only the one, who revived our dream of the lost homeland with solid ground but also the one who entrusted the world with a commandment that the powerful nations could and should prevent any recurrence of sufferings of a small nation. “Have you thought of the sufferings of Armenia? You poured out your money to help succor the Armenians after they suffered; now set your strength, so that they shall never suffer again.” With these words from his Boston address on February 26, 1919 President Wilson in fact appealed to the entire humanity: a message that reverberates into our days. More than 90 years ago, with his words “Now set your strength, so that they shall never suffer again,” the 28th President of the United States in fact articulated the demand for the international recognition of the Armenian Genocide since the prevention of the crime of genocide and of other such potential sufferings is indeed launched through recognition. Today, in we bow to the tomb of the President and report that ninety-five years later many countries, organizations and politicians, including those in his homeland, continue to act faithfully to that commandment of President Wilson. The Armenian people remember them all, name by name.

Fellow Armenians,

The Armenian-American community, especially in recent decades, has become one of the most ardent and consistent catalysts for the international recognition and condemnation of the Armenian Genocide, and I am confident that you will continue that endeavor and multiply your efforts towards that end. Nobody can stop the inevitable.

Before the Armenian-Turkish Protocols were signed, some had expressed concern that it would slow down or temporarily freeze out international steps aimed at the recognition of the Genocide. Time has proved that those concerns were groundless and will be groundless as long as we all are ready for more efforts and new struggles.

In recent months we have witnessed Turkey’s doomed attempts to drive a wedge between the Motherland and Diaspora and to create an impression that Armenia and Diaspora have two different opinions. Today, we together and once again rebuff those bizarre delusions. There is no divergence between opinions in the Motherland and the Diaspora; there is one united Armenian nation and it stands for its just cause.

Yes, we are ready and willing to have normal relations with all our neighbors, but will not abide by imposed settlement and diktat. This morning I met with the Prime Minister of Turkey. Our position has been obvious: Turkey cannot talk to Armenia and the Armenians around the globe in the language of preconditions. We will not tolerate it. We will not subject the veracity of the Genocide to scrutiny in any format or pretend to believe that Turkey can play any positive role in the process of negotiations on the Nagorno Karabakh conflict settlement. Any new political course might withstand new ordeals since we pass through uncharted waters. I have no doubt that Armenia will also stand that test with dignity.

Fellow Armenians,

Living abroad and united in your concern with the Armenian problems and protection of our interests you remain an unassailable power; you are also an important component of Armenia’s international credence. This is well-understood both by those who are our friends and those who are not. Through your posture and determination you prove that all those calculations that the Armenian nation can be eliminated by scattering it all over the world, were wrong. Every Armenian, regardless of the continent one lives in, will become a drop of water that wears away the stone. We’ve hit that road. The executioners of our nation left us with no other choice. We will flourish; we will wear away the stone of indifference, cynicism and duplicity. To that end we have enough patience, faith, and determination.


Let me conclude with the words of gratitude addressed to the country and the nation, which gave birth to such outstanding persons as Ambassador Morgenthau and President Wilson. The Armenian community of the United States is strong and can express itself. It is, undoubtedly, a virtue of yours, but what's more about it, it is a value of the American freedom. We are grateful to this great and powerful nation, which continues to play a significant role in the life of the Armenian nation.

God bless America, God bless Armenia and long live the Armenian nation.

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