Kardashian as the secret weapon of the Armenians

U.S. Democratic Representative Jackie Speier called Kim Kardashian a “secret weapon” for Armenians.

APA / AFP / Karen Minasyn

 

Kardashian as the “secret weapon” of the Armenians

The US House of Representatives overwhelmingly classified the massacres of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire during the First World War as genocide. Turkey reacted angrily. The supporters of the resolution, however, had a prominent supporter: Kim Kardashian West, who Democrats even call the “secret weapon” of the Armenians.

October 30, 2019 (orf.at, Austria) – The vote was clear: The resolution was adopted by 405 votes to eleven on Tuesday (local time). It is the first time that the US Congress has described the massacres of 1915-1917 as genocide. The Democratic Chairperson of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, welcomed the adoption. It is about remembering one of the worst atrocities of the 20th century: “The systematic murder of 1.5 million Armenian men, women and children by the Ottoman Empire”.

While the Turkish government reacted angrily to the adopted resolution, parliamentarians in Armenia spoke of a “very important step”. Officially, the state in the Caucasus has no lobbyists in Washington, reported the magazine “AI Monitor”, citing the US lobby register. For that, Yerevan could rely on Kardashian West. The 39-year-old has been campaigning for the cause of the Armenians for years, but has intensified their activities in recent months, as “AI Monitor” reported.

US Democrat Pelosi: The resolution continues to weigh on the tense relationship between Ankara and Washington.

 

Good line to Trump’s son-in-law

Kardashian West is known as a businesswoman, model and reality TV star. In the spring, she announced that she would become a lawyer. She is currently undergoing training and will take the bar exam in 2022. Kardashian West told the fashion magazine “Vogue” in April that her commitment to reforms in the US penal system gave her the impetus.

Already in 2018, during a visit to the White House, Kardashian West had advocated the release of a 63-year-old woman who had been imprisoned for more than two decades for a non-violent drug offence. After the meeting, the White House published a photo showing Kardashian West alongside a grinning US President Donald Trump in the Oval Office. This year, Kardashian West campaigned for the release of ASAP Rocky, a rapper imprisoned in Sweden.

During her commitment to the criminal law reform, the star may have established a good connection to Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner. In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, she talked about a text messaging with Kushner. The topic was the genocide of the Armenians and the political reaction of the USA. Kushner was Trump’s campaign adviser, and is now the White House’s special envoy to the Middle East. According to the “AI Monitor”, she had also promoted her cause in personal talks with Republican and Democratic members of Congress. Democratic congressional representative, Jackie Speier, even called Kardashian West the “secret weapon” of the Armenians.

In the footsteps of the father

With her commitment to the Armenians, the 39-year-old follows in the footsteps of her father. Star lawyer Robert Kardashian, who died in 2003, was born as the child of Armenian immigrants. Throughout his life, the lawyer, who represented OJ Simpson among others, worked to ensure that the Armenian massacre be classified as genocide.

In October, Kardashian West traveled to Armenia. The official reason was a transfer of the production of her clothing line Skims. The garments are currently being manufactured in Turkey – which has sparked severe criticism over their commitment to Armenia. She also had her four children baptized in Armenia.

In Yerevan, Kardashian West was received by Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Paschinjan. The two had discussed “the process of international recognition and condemnation of Armenian genocide,” the head of the government’s office said after the meeting.

Turkey criticizes “meaningless political move”

Meanwhile, Turkey, which rejects the term genocide, has been furious with the adoption of the resolution. The Turkish Foreign Ministry spoke of a “meaningless political move” aimed at the “Armenian lobby and anti-Turkey groups”. The decision of the House of Representatives endangers relations between Turkey and the USA in times of great dangers for international and regional security.

Kim Kardashian West (left), her sister Kourtney Kardashian and their children visiting the Armenian Genocide Memorial in Yerevan.

“This step has absolutely no value and we do not recognize it anyway,” said Turkish President Recep Tyyip Erdogan. “Nevertheless, we regret that this slander against our country was adopted in a country’s parliament. What kind of attitude is that?” Erdogan also stressed that genocide is strictly forbidden in the Islamic faith. “Those who present expulsion as genocide are looking for a culprit,” he said. He considers the resolution “the greatest insult to our people”. This is a step taken “solely for domestic political reasons,” he said.

Ankara ordered the US Ambassador to Turkey on Wednesday. US diplomat David Satterfield has been summoned to the Turkish Foreign Ministry for a “resolution that lacks any historical or legal basis,” ministry officials said. A further reason for the measure was also the US sanctions imposed against Ankara after the Turkish military offensive in northern Syria. The US Armenia resolution is likely to further worsen the relationship between Ankara and Washington, which was strained after the Turkish invasion of Northern Syria.

Also classified as genocide in Austria

France was the first major European country to officially classify the massacres of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire as genocide in 2001. Austria did so in 2015, after which Turkey temporarily withdrew its ambassador from Vienna. Germany then followed in 2016, which triggered a serious diplomatic crisis with Turkey.

Description of source: German-language news from the Austrian public service broadcaster ORF. Country of origin: Austria

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