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An "LA Times" piece earlier this week suggested that the Obama administration is wavering on a pledged presidential declaration on the Armenian genocide because of worries of losing Turkey's help and support in the Middle East.

The apparent primacy of realpolitik has not gone down well in parts of the blogosphere.

Here's Matt Welch for "Reason":

The sun rises in the east, spring follows winter, and a new American president is backing away from his campaign pledge to refer to the Ottoman-era Turkish genocide of Armenians as a "genocide," because the White House is "fearful of alienating Turkey when U.S. officials badly want its help."

And Alex Massie for "The Spectator":

All Presidential candidates decry the Armenian genocide on the campaign trail and the successful ones always welsh on calling it that once they are in power. George W Bush was no exception. Realpolitik you say? Just the usual campaign stuff you have to say? Well, perhaps. But if politicians want to be taken seriously perhaps they should cease being quite so cynical.

A resolution was introduced into Congress on March 17, and Turkey has already warned the United States that it might damage relations.

With Obama visiting Turkey in early April and Armenian Americans pushing for a presidential declaration on April 24, the annual remembrance day, interesting times are ahead.

(Hat tip: Andrew Sullivan)

-- Luke Allnutt

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Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at

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