|Image from United States Holocaust Memorial Museum|
101st Anniversary of The Armenian Genocide
April 24, 2016 marked the 101st anniversary of the beginning of The Armenian Genocide. AHEPA is disappointed President Barack Obama did not fulfill his presidential campaign pledge and recognize the systematic killing of 1.5 Armenians by Ottoman Turks as Genocide (see 2016 Statement on Armenian Remembrance Day).
“We join with the Armenian American community in remembrance of those individuals that perished during the Armenian Genocide, and we also remember the slaughter of all Christian minorities during that time period, including Pontian and Anatolian Greeks,” Supreme President John W. Galanis said. “May their memories be eternal.”
In addition, AHEPA urges Congress to pass H.Res.154, the Armenian Genocide Truth and Justice Resolution. Introduced by U.S. Rep. Robert Dold (R-IL), H.Res.154 has 66 co-sponsors and strong bipartisan support.
H.Res.154 contains a Whereas Clause that states the Republic of Turkey has increased its pressure on those in Turkish civil society “seeking justice for this systematic campaign of destruction of millions of Armenians, Greeks, Assyrians, Pontians, Syriacs, and other Christians upon their biblical-era homelands.”
AHEPA Mourns Passing of Former MLB Pitcher Pappas
AHEPA mourns the passing of former Major League Baseball All-Star Pitcher Milt Pappas, who died April 19, 2016. He was 76. Pappas was a member of the AHEPA Hellenic Athletic Hall of Fame Inaugural Class of 1975 along with Alex Karras, Jim Londos, and Harry Agganis.
Pappas won 209 games, had an ERA of 3.40, and 43 shutouts during his 17-year career. He also hit 20 career home runs. The highlight of his career was a no-hitter (a near perfect game) pitched on September 2, 1972 for the Chicago Cubs.
Deadline Extended | AHEPA Journey to Greece Program
AHEPA and Webster University
are teaming-up once again to offer college students the opportunity to study abroad in Athens, Greece this summer and earn college credit through the AHEPA Journey to Greece
program. Journey to Greece, a program which has been a fixture in the community for decades, will be held June 23 to July 23, 2016. The deadline to apply for the 2016 session has been extended to April 30
AHEPA Attends State Department Briefing on Cyprus, Greece
Executive Director Basil Mossaidis represented AHEPA at a State Department briefing on recent U.S. engagement on Cyprus and Greece given by Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Southern Europe and Eastern Mediterranean Affairs Amanda Sloat, April 26, 2016, at the State Department. Several leaders of Hellenic American organizations were represented.
Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Sloat accompanied Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland on a visit to Cyprus last week where they met with President of the Republic of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades, and other Republic of Cyprus government officials, and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci. Assistant Secretary Nuland and Deputy Assistant Secretary Sloat also have recently visited Greece.
Hellenic Caucus Membership at 136. Help It Grow.
ACTION ITEM | Help Us Grow the Hellenic Caucus!
Congress has returned to Washington to commence the Second Session of the 114th Congress. AHEPA asks that you help us to grow the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Issues to newer heights. The Hellenic Caucus has been an active, bipartisan group in Congress since its founding in 1995. It is co-chaired by U.S. Reps. Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) and Carolyn Maloney (D-NY).
Membership in the Hellenic Caucus stands at 136.
Save the Date! | 2016 AHEPA Family Capitol Hill Day
Wednesday, May 25
Capitol Hill Day Kick-off Reception
8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.
Cannon House Office Building – Room 340
Meetings with Your Legislators
and their Staffs Will Follow
Educate Your Legislators about
Help Build the Hellenic Caucus
Walk the Halls of Congress with Fellow Advocates from
Make Plans to Attend Today!
NEW! Get an advance peek at the spring winter issue of The Ahepan! Share it with family and friends by forwarding this electronic version.
Read about how AHEPA and Congress came together in appreciation for a World War II hero, recap AHEPA’s participation on a Leadership Mission to Israel, Cyprus and Greece in January, and catch a preview of the 94th Supreme Convention to be held this summer in Las Vegas. Also, check out the latest on how AHEPA chapters give back to the community.
Click on the magazine icon to read it today!
Summer 2016 Deadline: May 13, 2016
Greek American News Digest
Greece, EU/IMF lenders resume talks over bailout reformsReuters (Apr. 25) Greece resumed talks with its creditors in Athens on Monday over reforms it must make to conclude a drawn-out review of its bailout progress and unlock more than 5 billion euros ($5.63 billion) of financial aid. The reforms under discussion include changes to pensions and taxes, plus additional measures that Athens would have to put in place for use in case it misses the budget targets set out in a multi-billion euro bailout it signed up to in August. Those ‘contingent measures’ would kick in only if the regular measures are not enough to generate a primary budget surplus of 3.5 percent of GDP by 2018. read more Migrants seek new routes into Balkans after formal borders sealed Reuters (Apr. 24) After weeks stranded at a closed border in northern Greece, migrants and refugees are seeking out new, irregular routes to get into Macedonia, clambering through forests and over hills under the cover of darkness. As dusk fell on Saturday evening, a Reuters witness saw a group of up to 70 people crossing into Macedonia from Greece, at a point where there is no razor wire fence between the two countries. They darted in and out of a forest, hiding from authorities. It was roughly a 20 km (12 mile), or four hour walk from Idomeni, a sprawling tent city hosting thousands of refugees and migrants stranded by a cascade of border shutdowns throughout the Balkans in February. read more
Rio 2016: Olympic Flame Lit in Greek Ruins at Olympia
NBC News (Apr. 21) The countdown to the Rio 2016 Games formally began Thursday morning with the ceremonial lighting of the Olympic torch in southern Greece. The torch will travel through Greece before reaching Brazil on May 3. Some 12,000 people will carry the flame on its journey to the Maracana Stadium for the Opening Ceremony on August 5. Here are 16 things to know about the famous flame. read more
Syrian Refugee to Carry the Olympic Flame in Athens ABC News (Apr. 25) In his native Syria, Ibrahim Al-Hussein often swam in the Euphrates River. He would climb to the top of the Deir ez-Zor suspension bridge, jump and dive into the water. In 2011, the civil war in Syria started. Al-Hussein’s neighborhood was shelled and the bridge was destroyed. Al-Hussein lost part of his right leg. On Tuesday, the 27-year-old athlete will carry the Olympic Flame in Athens as part of the torch relay for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro. “I am carrying the flame for myself but also for Syrians, for refugees everywhere, for Greece, for sports, for my swimming and basketball teams,” he said. read more
Commentary || Cyprus solution hangs in the balanceEkathimerini (Apr. 24) Many in Nicosia, Athens, Brussels and Washington are confident – and some concerned – that the Cyprus issue may be resolved by the end of the year. In the US, especially, top officials are eager for this to happen by the end of 2016, as every US government likes to wrap up as many international affairs as possible before their term ends so as to boost its legacy. US Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State John Kerry are the key players pushing for a solution in this case. read more
The botanist who recorded Greek flora Ekathimerini
(Apr. 23) John Sibthorp was only 24 when he was appointed Sherardian Professor of Botany at the University of Oxford at the end of the 18th century. An ambitious scientist who wished to leave his mark in the field of botany, Sibthorp decided to travel to Greece in order to study Europe’s “last unexplored plants.” With a copy of “De Materia Medica,” a encyclopedia and pharmacopoeia penned by ancient Greek doctor Pedanius Dioscorides, as his guide, Sibthorp recorded about 2,500 Greek medical plants, of which 700 had never before been classified. read more
Jerusalem Dig Uncovers Ancient Greek Citadel National Geographic
(Apr. 22) Israeli archaeologists have uncovered the remnants of an impressive fort built more than two thousand years ago by Greeks in the center of old Jerusalem. The ruins are the first solid evidence of an era in which Hellenistic culture held sway in this ancient city. The citadel, until now known only from texts, was at the heart of a bloody rebellion that eventually led to the expulsion of the Greeks, an event still celebrated by Jews at Hanukkah. But the excavation in the shadow of the Temple Mount, called Haram esh-Sharif by Muslims, is stirring controversy in this politically charged land. “We now have massive evidence that this is part of the fortress called the Acra,” said Doron Ben-Ami, an archaeologist with the Israeli Antiquities Authority who is leading the effort. read more
Giannis Antetokounmpo Makes Nike Ad Debut NBA
(Apr. 22) This week Giannis Antetokounmpo makes his Nike Greece ad debut in a new ‘Just Do It’ spot highlighting athletes preparing for the Road to Rio and the 2016 Summer Olympics and Paralympics. The video includes the abandoned beach volleyball venue and aquatic center from the Athens Olympic 2004 and is voiced over in Greek saying: We will not be defined by circumstance. We will not be undone by what is broken. We are more than our surroundings. We are the makers of our fate. read more