Our great poet Paruir Sevak said it best: Armenians hold the power to “disperse the darkness” – խաւարը ցրել.
Hopeful hearts and bright spirits.
We care for each other. We give of ourselves. And we focus on the future.
We’re Armenians. That’s who we are. It’s what we do.
That’s why I’m asking you today for an end-of-year Christmas donation.
Whether you’re a longtime donor or a first-time giver, contribute the amount that’s right for you. It all adds up, and it all makes a difference.
Together, we truly do have the power to disperse the darkness.
We always have.
Like generations before us, Armenians today are stepping up, serving and sacrificing for those who will follow. For our youth and for generations yet unborn.
You know the stakes. Aliyev and Erdogan are out to destroy Arstakh and Armenia, and they’ve targeted us, the “Armenian Lobby,” as their #1 enemy. They want us on the defensive, but we know the best defense is an aggressive offense:
— Fighting for a just, international resolution of the Armenian Genocide
— Strengthening Armenia as a secure, prosperous and democratic homeland
— Affirming Artsakh’s inalienable right to security and self-determination
— Securing direct U.S. aid to Syrian Armenians, both in Syria and Armenia
Your contribution today will empower our work in all these areas, and more. I won’t review all you’ve made possible, but I did want to touch on a few highlights from the past year:
— The Vice President chose an ANCA-sponsored event to announce that U.S. aid will now be sent directly to Christians and other at-risk religious minorities in the Middle East via churches and charities (not just the UN). This shift, which we’ve long sought, will save lives and help sustain our community.
— With our support, Congressman David Valadao of Fresno secured renewed appropriations for Artsakh de-mining, and, for the first time ever, a U.S. Secretary of State officially publicly endorsed American assistance to Artsakh.
— In Congress, an Azerbaijan Sanctions Bill has been introduced and the U.S. Special Counsel is investigating Baku’s top lobbyist, the disgraced (and disgraceful) Tony Podesta (and also Turkish lobbyist Michael Flynn).
— Erdogan’s on the defensive in DC, reeling from our viral video of his bodyguards (all now indicted) beating American protesters on U.S. soil in May of this year. At our urging, Congress blocked an arms sale to Ankara over this outrage. We continue to press hard for the extradition of these perpetrators.
— Because of the great work of our ANCA regional offices and local chapters, Texas, Iowa and Indiana became the 46th, 47th and 48th states to recognize the Armenian Genocide. Only Alabama and Mississippi remain, and we’re working hard in both states.
— We held VIP screenings of The Promise (March) and Architects of Denial (October), arranging Capitol Hill meetings for Oscar-winning director Terry George, actor Dean Cain (Superman), and talk show host Montel Williams.
— We are making progress on a new Millennium Challenge grant for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math education in Armenia’s schools, non-stop LA to Yerevan flights, and a new U.S.-Armenia Tax Treaty to protect investors from the threat of double taxation.
— This year, tens of millions saw CNN broadcasts of ANCA video, read ANCA quotes in the New York Times, or learned about ANCA’s advocacy from the Associated Press, Washington Post and countless other major media outlets.
On all our issues we’re working with legislators of both parties, engaging directly (and very frankly) with the State Department and Administration, and leveraging our coalitions with Christians and other faith-based groups, human rights organizations, and allies across the American political spectrum.
And, of course, we’re investing in our youth, through our Leo Sarkisian Summer Internship, which had a record 17 participants this year, and the Hovig Apo Saghdejian Capital Gateway Program, which secures career-track policy, political, and media jobs for recent graduates. These young Armenians live rent-free at the Aramian House, our landmark eight-bedroom property in Washington.
All of this is possible, because of you, and friends like you across America.
You’ve helped build the ANCA into a world-class grassroots lobby, the envy of other ethnic groups and the sworn enemy of Aliyev and Erdogan.
Ankara and Baku built themselves a House of Cards, and we’re seeing the results, with scandals rocking their top lobbyists: Michael Flynn investigated, Dennis Hastert convicted, Tony Podesta disgraced, and Dick Gephardt fired.
They’re on their heels, but they’ll be back. And we need to be ready.
We don’t need to match their millions, dollar for dollar, but we do need your end-of-year Christmas gift.
As a small token of our thanks, we will send you an ANCA lapel pin, a great way for you to show off your Armenian American pride.
As always, contact me any time at email@example.com to share your thoughts, offer a friendly suggestion, or share some constructive criticism.
Please accept our warmest Christmas greetings.
Aram S. Hamparian
PS – To learn about all the ways you can contribute financially, including your tax-deductible and planned giving options, please visit www.anca.org/ways-to-give, or email us confidentially at firstname.lastname@example.org.