INTRODUCED BY   Assembly Members Poochigian, Kaloogian, Papan, and
   (Coauthors:  Assembly Members Ackerman, Aguiar, Alby, Alquist,
Aroner, Ashburn, Baca, Baldwin, Battin, Baugh, Bordonaro, Bowen,
Bowler, Brewer, Brown, Bustamante, Campbell, Cardenas, Cardoza,
Cedillo, Cunneen, Davis, Ducheny, Escutia, Figueroa, Firestone,
Floyd, Frusetta, Gallegos, Goldsmith, Granlund, Havice, Hertzberg,
Honda, House, Keeley, Knox, Kuehl, Kuykendall, Leach, Lempert,
Leonard, Machado, Margett, Martinez, Mazzoni, McClintock, Migden,
Miller, Morrissey, Morrow, Murray, Napolitano, Olberg, Oller, Ortiz,
Pacheco, Perata, Prenter, Pringle, Richter, Runner, Scott, Shelley,
Strom-Martin, Sweeney, Takasugi, Thompson, Thomson, Torlakson,
Villaraigosa, Vincent, Washington, Wayne, Woods, and Wright)
   (Coauthors:  Senators Ayala, Brulte, Burton, Costa, Dills, Greene,
Hayden, Haynes, Hughes, Johannessen, Johnson, Johnston, Karnette,
Kelley, Knight, Kopp, Leslie, Lewis, Lockyer, Maddy, McPherson,
Monteith, Mountjoy, O'Connell, Peace, Polanco, Rainey, Rosenthal,
Schiff, Sher, Solis, Thompson, Vasconcellos, and Wright)

                        APRIL 13, 1998

   Assembly Concurrent Resolution No. 138--Relative to Armenian
Genocide Remembrance Day.


   ACR 138, Poochigian.  Armenian genocide remembrance.
   This measure would designate April 24, 1998, as the "California
Day of Remembrance of the Armenian Genocide of 1915-23."

   WHEREAS, Armenians living in their 3,000 year historic homeland in
Asia Minor were subjected to severe persecution and brutal injustice
by the Turkish rulers of the Ottoman Empire before and after the
turn of the 20th century, including widespread acts of destruction
and murder during the period from 1894-1896 and again in 1909; and
   WHEREAS, The horrible experience of the Armenians at the hands of
their Turkish oppressors culminated with what is known by historians
as the First Genocide of the Twentieth Century, or the "Forgotten
Genocide"; and
   WHEREAS, The Armenian Genocide began with the murder of hundreds
of Armenian intellectuals, and political, religious, and business
leaders who were arrested and taken from their homes in
Constantinople before dawn on April 24, 1915; and
   WHEREAS, The Young Turk regime then in control of the empire
planned and executed the unspeakable atrocities committed against the
Armenians from 1915 through 1923, that included the torture,
starvation, and murder of 1,500,000 Armenians, death marches into the
Syrian desert, and the exile of more than 500,000 innocent people;
   WHEREAS, While there were some Turks who jeopardized their safety
in order to protect Armenians from the slaughter being perpetrated by
the Young Turk regime, the massacres of the Armenians constituted
one of the most atrocious violations of human rights in the history
of the world; and
   WHEREAS, The United States Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, Henry
Morgenthau, Sr., stated:  "Whatever crimes the most perverted
instincts of the human mind can devise, and whatever refinements of
persecutions and injustice the most debased imagination can conceive,
became the daily misfortunes of this devoted people.  I am confident
that the whole history of the human race contains no such horrible
episode as this.  The great massacres and persecutions of the past
seem almost insignificant when compared to the sufferings of the
Armenian race in 1915.  The killing of the Armenian people was
accompanied by the systematic destruction of churches, schools,
libraries, treasures of art and cultural monuments, in an attempt to
eliminate all traces of a noble civilization with a history of more
than three thousand years"; and
   WHEREAS, Contemporary newspapers like the New York Times commonly
carried headlines such as the following:  "Tales of Armenian Horrors
Confirmed," "Million Armenians Killed or in Exile," "Wholesale
Massacre of Armenians by Turks"; and
   WHEREAS, Adolph Hitler, in persuading his army commanders that the
merciless persecution and killing of Jews, Poles, and other peoples
would bring no retribution, declared, "Who, after all, speaks today
of the annihilation of the Armenians"; and
   WHEREAS, Unlike other peoples and governments that have admitted
the abuses and crimes of predecessor regimes, and despite the
overwhelming weight of evidence, the Republic of Turkey has denied
the occurrence of the crimes against humanity committed by the Young
Turk rulers, and those denials compound the grief of the few
remaining survivors of the atrocities and desecrate the memory of the
victims; and
   WHEREAS, There are concerted efforts to revise history through the
dissemination of propaganda suggesting that Armenians were
responsible for their fate in the period from 1915 through 1923 and
by funding of programs at American educational institutions for the
purpose of furthering the cause of such revisionism and to counter,
in the words of a Turkish official, "the Armenian view"; and
   WHEREAS, The accelerated level and scope of denial and
revisionism, coupled with the passage of time and the fact that very
few survivors remain who serve as reminders of indescribable
brutality and tormented lives, compel a sense of urgency in efforts
to solidify recognition of historical truth; and
   WHEREAS, By consistently remembering and forcefully condemning the
atrocities committed against the Armenians and honoring the
survivors, as well as other victims of similar heinous conduct, we
guard against repetition of such acts of genocide; and
   WHEREAS, California is home to the largest population of Armenians
in the United States, and those citizens have enriched our state
through leadership in the fields of academia, medicine, business,
agriculture, government, and the arts, and are proud and patriotic
practitioners of American citizenship; now, therefore, be it
   Resolved by the Assembly of the State of California, the Senate
thereof concurring, That the Legislature of the State of California
hereby designates April 24, 1998, as the "California Day of
Remembrance of the Armenian Genocide of 1915-23"; and be it further
   Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of
this resolution to the Governor and to Armenian churches and
commemorative organizations.