Armenian Ambassador, with Jews to fight indifference

Ghazaryan and Gattegna present book on 20th century genocides

15 October, 10:22

    Armin Wegner (da Wikipedia) Armin Wegner (da Wikipedia)

    (ANSA) - ROME, OCTOBER 15 - "Our responsibility as Armenians and Jews who survived genocides is to fill the void left by indifference" said Sargis Ghazaryan, Armenian Ambassador to Italy together with Renzo Gattegna, President of the Union of Jewish Communities in Italy (UCEI) at the presentation of Gabriele Nissim 's book "Letter to Hitler".

    The book, published by Mondadori, is dedicated to the German writer and dissident Armin Wegner, who was among the first to denounce the Armenian genocide and foresee the imminent tragedy of Nazism and the Shoah. "Unfortunately - stressed the diplomat - crimes against humanity are not relegated to history books but are still very much part of current events".

    Ghazaryan denounced historical revisionism and in particular, in the Armenian case, revisionism by the State, the refusal by successive Turkish governments, even in modern times, "to come to terms with their history" despite requests by part of Turkish society itself.

    This year, the one-hundredth anniversary of the Armenian genocide was celebrated with Jews: "a very important fact" remarked the ambassador. It is no accident, he recalled that in August 1939, while embarking on the invasion of Poland, Hitler called on his generals to be cruel and ferocious against Jews and at one point exclaimed: "who after all rembers the annihilation of Armenians?".

    The president of UCEI Gattegna described Wegner as a German intellectual who tried to save his country's honour and spare it from an "abyss of barbarism". Wegner even wrote two letters, one to Hitler in 1933, and one to Mussolini, in 1936, to stop their tragic drift. It was useless and he was himself deported to a Nazi concentration camp to which he miraculously managed to survive.

    He did not halt the Shoah which holds - said Gattegna - "the sad record" among all perpetrated genocides "for its dimensions, duration, and scientific organisation" but there is a story to be learnt from Wegner's personality and trajectory, from his lonely stand against the genocides of the twentieh century: "never again against anyone" said Gattegna.

    Wegner was proclaimed a Righteous among Nations both by Israel in 1967 and by Armenia in 1996.

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