A Unique Denial: Israel’s foreign policy and the Armenian genocide

Eldad Ben Aharon


Abstract: this paper will focus on the Israeli engagement with the Armenian genocide, from the perspective of foreign policy. Since the early 1980’s Israel official stand point is not to recognize the Armenian genocide. The issue of recognition came to the surface in 1982 after Turkey put pressure on Israel to cancel a Holocaust and genocide conference that was scheduled for June 1982. This paper will show that Israel agreed to pressure the conference organizers to cancel the conference in order to secure Jewish life’s fleeing to the Turkish border from Iran and Syria. This paper will also explore for the first time, the involvement of sub state informal ambassadors such as the Jewish minority in Turkey, and the American pro-Israeli Jewish lobby in shaping Israel’s stance on the issue. This paper is based on declassified archival documents and oral interviews conducted with interviews with key Israeli stakeholders.