Serj Tankian: Tackling genocide must be priority

Serj Tankian
Serj Tankian (Image credit: Getty)

System Of A Down frontman Serj Tankian says a political solution must be found to eradicate genocide across the world.

He wrote the soundtrack to last year’s film 1915 - which commemorated the centennial anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.

And he says despite the lessons learned from World War Two, ethnic groups are still being wiped out – and it’s time world powers came together to eradicate mass slaughter.

He tells AltPress: “The perpetrators of the Armenian Genocide were the Ottoman Empire, whose descendants are the modern Turkish Republic. On top of our grandparents’ bones in the desert in Syria are the new bones of the Yazidis, Syrians and others being murdered by ISIS. It’s more than just irony – it’s fucking political reality.

“It’s basically saying we haven’t stopped genocide from occurring in the world. Irrespective of the Nuremberg Trials and everything we learned from World War Two, we’ve had Stalin, Cambodia, Rwanda, South Sudan, Indonesia – and it’s still happening now.”

Tankian says that genocide will continue for as long as profit takes precedence over people and adds: “Because there’s no agreement between China, Russia, the US or any powerful country in the world where if genocide is occurring, then all bets are off, whether they’re an ally or not. There is no multilateral action making genocide a priority. That’s why it’s still happening.”

As for future work for the singer, he reports he has various projects to mull over. “I’m looking at different options in scoring between video games and films,” he says. “I’m also writing some new rock songs. We’ll see where they go and what happens with them.”

The soundtrack to 1915 was released today (April 22) and is available via Tankian’s official website.

Scott Munro
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Scott has spent more than 30 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. After initially joining our news desk in the summer of 2014, he moved to the e-commerce team full-time in 2020. He maintains Louder’s buyer’s guides, scouts out the best deals for music fans and reviews headphones, speakers, books and more. He's written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog and has previous written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky. Scott grew up listening to rock and prog, cutting his teeth on bands such as Marillion and Magnum before his focus shifted to alternative and post-punk in the late 80s. His favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Ned's Atomic Dustbin and Drab Majesty, but he also still has a deep love of Rush.