The unveiling of the Assyrian Genocide Monument in Australia was one of the best tributes that our people have ever dedicated to all our ancestors who fell victims to some of the worst atrocities that humanities has seen in the last 100 years. Despite facing challenge after challenge, obstacle after obstacle, the people behind this historical monument stood their ground and defied all the odds to finish this holy work. Our fallen men, women and children deserve this dedication to their sacrifices and much more.
But this monument may say more about our people today than the people it is dedicated to.
What it says, is that our people today, despite being over one century and many generations removed from those tragic events at the turn of the last century, are as connected to the memory as they can ever be. Our enemies would think that we may forgive, forget and move on. While we are good-hearted people, who can forgive, but we don’t forget. Never!
It has been the subject of much debate and discussion lately: that some of our new generation don’t care about their nation, its history and all the tragedies it has faced. But this monument and all the work that has been gone into making it a reality, says a lot and gives us hope that today’s generation is a caring and hard-working one. Throughout, and leading up to the unveiling of this monument, I read and heard firsthand about about all the passionate young Assyrian youth who were very vocal and active in protesting, and lobbying the local community to make this a reality.
My hats off to the Assyrians of Sydney and Australia in general. They have achieved something that no one other Assyrian community elsewhere has been able to: building the first public, and officially-recognized monument to celebrate and remind everyone about the sacrifices that our people made.
Let us hope that this historical event will give our people a big momentum push to do more for their nation and keep going. Sometimes it takes something as giant as this, to wake us up and resume our work for our nation, people, history and future.