Our Pontiac memory

N. Lygeros

Translated from the Greek by Evi Charitidou

For a contemporary Greek, a Pontian is not a victim of genocide, but just a hero of stupid jokes essentially and historically coming from Turkey. No real mentions to the Hellenism of Pontus are there in Greek school books, as it has correctly been pointed out by A. Pavlidis. Our children are not aware of the Pontiac laments’ beauty. They are not aware of acritic songs; because no one teaches them the historic given. Moreover, experts on Pontus able to occupy seats in Greek Universities are rare. For, strategy of silence takes real action. In other words, we on our own reinforce the genocide of memory. For an average Greek the Pontians are not refugees in full capacity of the term. However, he does not wonder who is not a refugee or descendant of one in Greece. This simplification of the Pontiac question, allows many to eradicate it from our national issues. Now there is a very positive framework for the genocide question shaped by the problem of the Cyprus Republic recognition; but no one evaluates it efficiently for the Pontiac question. Especially in France but also throughout the European Union, the Armenians dynamically claim their rights and recognition of the genocide as a sine qua non condition. This is a creative and cooperative paradigm. Genocides of the Armenians and Pontians are historically related and recognizing the one reinforces recognizing the other. However, they have to function together in pair since the same objective is shared. We have to be united in present and future through our past. The dynamic claiming is necessary particularly in this critical period for the European Union, which inspects the elements of Turkey. Who will claim our existence and our history, unless we do it? If we forget our own memory and turn it into a joke, which human rights court will come and assist our struggle? There can be no struggle without memory and education. The Pontiac element is not a generated case of the Greek history. The mention to the Empire of Trabzon suffices to prove this. Whoever is aware of this, can fight; but, what about the others? The Greeks must be aware of their history, if they truly want modern Hellenism to exist. The Pontians still continue chanting our history; but who listens to their songs? Many of us have forgotten laments, hymns and genocide. However, only few and the stones remember. Their resistance should be strengthened by the European standards, since the Greek ones are not enough, to aid our motherland a posteriori again. Pontus has not forgotten us. We on our part should not forget it, because it is a part of our history. If we forget it, we will forget our existence, too.

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