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AHI Sends Letter To President Bush Refuting Erroneous Statements By 36 Representatives Regarding Turkey
December 5 , 2001 No. 60/01 (202) 785-8430

AHI Sends Letter To President Bush Refuting Erroneous Statements By 36 Representatives Regarding Turkey

On November 21, 2001, American Hellenic Institute (AHI) founder Gene Rossides sent a letter to President Bush rebutting erroneous statements regarding Turkey that appeared in a joint letter to the President signed by 36 Representatives on November 9, 2001. As stated in AHI's letter, the November 9 letter "contained false and misleading statements given to those Representatives by Turkey's military and political officials and Turkey's U.S. foreign agents."

AHI's letter responded primarily to erroneous assertions regarding Turkey's reliability as a U.S. ally, the mistreatment of Turkey's Kurdish minority, and a request for debt forgiveness, trade concessions, or multilateral aid made by the 36 Representatives. The AHI letter also paid specific attention to highlighting Turkey's"international terrorism" against Cyprus:

"For 27 years, Turkey has violated the will of the U.S., the UN and the EU by refusing to end its illegal occupation of 37.3 percent of Cyprus.Turkey's occupation costs the Turkish government an estimated $1 billion annually. We can no longer encourage this situation [in Cyprus] by acting as both a political and economic crutch to Turkey when her alternative is to undertake more exacting and meaningful governmental reform.Turkey's aggression against Cyprus in 1974 with the illegal use of U.S. arms including airplanes, bombs and tanks was international terrorism. Turkish pilots flying American planes dropped American made bombs, including napalm bombs, which terrorized and killed innocent Greek Cypriot civilians in Nicosia, Kyrenia and elsewhere."

Rossides strongly urged the President to consider the pitfalls behind additional economic support without preconditions for meaningful economic and political reforms in Turkey, and the need for a just settlement of the Cyprus problem in accordance with UN resolutions.

On November 28, 2001 AHI also sent copies of its letter to President Bush along with a cover letter to each of the 36 Representatives who had signed the November 9 letter regarding Turkey. In the cover letter, the Representatives were urged to consider withdrawing their November 9 letter in view of its factual inaccuracies. The 36 Representatives who received the letter include:
  • Rep. Thomas Barrett (D, WI - 5th Dist.)
  • Rep. Doug Bereuter (R, NE - 1st Dist.)
  • Rep. Henry Bonilla (R, TX - 23rd Dist.)
  • Rep. Dan Burton (R, IN - 6th Dist.)
  • Rep. Bob Clement (D, TN - 5th Dist.)
  • Rep. Robert E. Cramer (D, AL - 5 Dist.)
  • Norman D. Dicks (D, WA - 6th Dist.)
  • Eni F. H. Faleomavaega (D, AS - 1st Dist.)
  • Paul E. Gillmor (R, OH - 5th Dist.)
  • Kay Granger (R, TX - 12th Dist.)
  • Gil Gutknecht (R, MN - 1st Dist.)
  • Alcee L. Hastings (D, FL - 23rd Dist.)
  • David L. Hobson (R, OH - 7th Dist.)
  • Amo Houghton (R, NY - 31st Dist.)
  • William J. Jefferson (D, LA - 2nd Dist.)
  • Brian D. Kerns (R, IN - 7th Dist.)
  • Jack Kingston (R, GA - 1st Dist.)
  • Tom Lantos (D, CA - 12th Dist.)
  • Jerry Lewis (R, CA - 40th Dist.)
  • James P. Moran (D, VA - 8th Dist.)
  • Solomon P. Ortiz (D, TX - 27th Dist.)
  • Michael G. Oxley (R, OH - 4th Dist.)
  • Todd Russell Platts (R, PA - 19th Dist.)
  • Dana Rohrabacher (R, CA - 45th Dist.)
  • Janice D. Schakowsky (D, IL - 9th Dist.)
  • Pete Sessions (R, TX - 5th Dist.)
  • Ike Skelton (D, MO - 4th Dist.)
  • Nick Smith (R, MI - 7th Dist.)
  • Cliff Stearns (R, FL - 6th Dist.)
  • Jim Turner (D, TX - 2nd Dist.)
  • David Vitter (R, LA - 1st Dist.)
  • Henry A. Waxman (D, CA - 29th Dist.)
  • Curt Weldon (R, PA - 7th Dist.)
  • Robert Wexler (D, FL - 19th Dist.)
  • Ed Whitfield (R, KY - 1st Dist.)
  • Heather Wilson (R, NM - 1st Dist.)

AHI's November 21 letter to President Bush (click here to view) and a copy of the cover letter to the 36 representatives (click here to view) are attached. The letters will also appear on AHI's Web site at press release #62. For additional information or to request a hard copy of the letters, please contact Chrysoula Economopoulos at (202) 785-8430, and visit our Web site at