Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will officially recognize the Armenian Genocide only if he thinks it fits his purposes, Zev Chafets writes in an article published by Bloomberg.
The comments come after the issue of Armenian genocide recognition was brought back to Knesset agenda amid a new row between Israel and Turkey.
Last week Turkey recalled its ambassadors to America and Israel. That decision came in response to Israeli forces killing 60 Palestinian protesters attempting to cross the Gaza border. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called Israeli actions a “genocide” on Turkish TV; Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shot back on twitter: “I suggest that he not preach morality to us.”
According to the author, “Erdogan’s attack has opened an unanticipated window of opportunity, both in Washington and Jerusalem to break a decades-long refusal to join historians and many governments in recognizing a real genocide that Turkey continues to deny – that against Armenian Christians.”
Erdogan’s outburst and the harassment of the Israeli ambassador on his way home from Ankara, have lit fires in Jerusalem. Two members of Knesset, the ruling Likud Party’s Amir Ohana and Itzik Shmuly from the opposition Zionist Unity Party have introduced legislation to end Israel’s embarrassing silence on the Armenian issue.
Still, the author believes, nothing will change without Netanyahu’s say-so. No legislation can pass without his consent, no new diplomatic policy can be adopted either, as he is also Israel’s foreign minister.