“5 years ago, I came back home to Israel from Armenia for the first time. I came back with the question of a thirteen-year-old girl resonating in my head: ‘Dima jan, why doesn’t Israel recognize the Armenian Genocide?’
At home, I decided to go through photos. The question continued to resonate. I got to this photo of Arpine taken in Geghard. I realized that as long as I didn’t have an answer to the question, I couldn’t continue this story.
I wrote the answer. Published it. Five years have passed. The photos formed the “Eyes of Armenia”.
And the text, to my and my country’s shame, still has not lost a single gram of relevance. I will publish it again, and I will publish it again and again on official or personal occasions. And I will do this until I can write: ‘I am happy that I don’t need to say these words anymore.’
I am a Jew, and I recognize the Armenian Genocide.
In 1915, one nation massacred one and a half million Armenians. It massacred them simply because they were Armenians. The world shuddered, was horrified, but somehow, everything would calm down. The world has not recognized the Armenian Genocide. Thus, the world said: “It is acceptable.”
This was heard, and after some twenty years, another nation began to massacre the Jewish people. And they had more time and more powerful tools. They massacred people simply because they were Jews. As a result, six million Jews were killed. People of my nation. The world shuddered and said: “No.”
The world recognized the genocide of the Jews. The nation that had massacred the Jews went through the grave pain of repentance, was understood and forgiven, and would become great again.
The people who had massacred the Armenians did not repent, however. But this is a problem for the conscience of the people of this nation. This is their question.
But the fact that my nation that had survived the same nightmare as the Armenian people still has not recognized the Armenian Genocide – this is already a matter of my personal conscience. This is not just compassion. Not just understanding. This is a coincidence of pain at the genetic level.
And I don’t want and will not justify with any political and geopolitical games the fact that the Jewish people, my people, still have not recognized the horror and suffering of another nation through which they themselves had gone. This can’t be. It just can’t be that way.
And therefore, I, Dmitry Brickman, a Jew by mother and father, grandfather and grandmother, and great-grandfather and great-grandmother, say this simple phrase: ‘I am a Jew, and I recognize the Armenian Genocide.’ And I urge you – if you agree with this and if your conscience does not accept this – just put your like under this post.
I have never and nowhere asked anybody for anything publicly, but I am asking now – please copy the link to this simple vote to any websites, any social networks, anywhere. Copy and like. Because it can’t be otherwise. It simply cannot be.”