Under the category – “It seemed to be a good deal at the time”, LA Laker star Kobe Bryant is taking heat from the Armenian community over his endorsement deal for Turkish Airways. A short history lesson on why Armenians don’t like Turks later in the post.
This is significant (to Kobe’s deal) because LA is home to the largest Armenian community in the United States.
Betcha Reggie Bush won’t make this mistake.
The business deal looked fairly straightforward. Last week, American basketball star Kobe Bryant agreed to become the new celebrity face of Turkish Airlines, a growing international carrier.
Though he has admitted to never having visited Turkey, the Los Angeles Lakers guard said in a news release that “Turkey is a country rich in natural beauty and thousands of years of cultural history, and I’m proud to partner with Turkish Airlines to bring that majesty to people around the world.”
Within days, however, Bryant’s decision was being denounced by Armenian groups in North America and in Los Angeles, which is the hometown not only of the Lakers, but also of the largest ethnic Armenian community outside of Armenia.
“Turkish Deal Will Make Kobe the Face of Oppression and Injustice” and “Kobe Bryant’s Direct Flight to Inhumanity,” announced the website of the Armenian Youth Federation.
Armenian diaspora groups in North America have launched a media and Internet campaign urging Bryant to drop his Turkish Airlines deal…
Here is a bit of that history…