Convocation of an Armenian National Congress

By Attorney Vartkes Yeghiaian, USA Armenian Life Magazine, Los Angeles, 25 February 2010

USA Armenian Life Magazine’s Editor’s note: The below article is reprinted from Asbarez Weekly (now daily), issue no. 4806, volume LXIL, dated September 25, 1970. The article pertains the creation of a world representative body for the Armenians. It is written by Vartkes Yeghiayan, a well-known attorney and political thinker. Many of the avant-garde ideas expressed by Mr. Yeghiayan continue to be "food for thought."

"There is", a philosopher once said, "nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things."

By Attorney Vartkes Yeghiaian, USA Armenian Life Magazine, Los Angeles, 25 February 2010

USA Armenian Life Magazine’s Editor’s note: The below article is reprinted from Asbarez Weekly (now daily), issue no. 4806, volume LXIL, dated September 25, 1970. The article pertains the creation of a world representative body for the Armenians. It is written by Vartkes Yeghiayan, a well-known attorney and political thinker. Many of the avant-garde ideas expressed by Mr. Yeghiayan continue to be "food for thought."

"There is", a philosopher once said, "nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things."

 
I believe we find ourselves at a cross road where young Armenians with their enormous capacity for questioning, are questioning the values and attitudes they find around them.

Some of us find that it is folly to follow those who perpetuate the meaningless rivalries and suicidal feuds of the old.

Some of us find that in this fast pacing world, Armenian organizations resist change from their obsolete dogmas and outworn slogans.

Others find there are those who will cling to a present that is dying and will prefer the illusion of security to the excitement and danger that comes with even the most peaceful progress.

Political tragedy is a tool for the living to gain wisdom, not as a guide by which to live.

Sophocles said in his "Antigone," "all men take mistakes, but a good man yields when he knows his course is wrong, and repairs the evil. The only sin is pride."

Past error is no excuse for its own perpetuation.

When we look about us we discover that there is no particular social or political group among the Armenians which has both sufficient power to cause radical change or the frustration on a scale to want to bring about such a change.

It is my purpose in writing these series of articles to make certain suggestions as to the direction that Armenian political thought should endeavor to follow.

It is my hope that a few readers will find some of the ideas expressed fruit for thought and will encourage the genesis of other ideas.

Let it be noted that I make no claim to new discoveries – I shall try to reiterate ideas I have seen expressed over the years in Armenian newspapers from Montevideo to Beirut. I shall try to give added emphasis to two old ideas:

CONVOCATION OF AN ARMENIAN NATIONAL CONGRESS and FORMATION OF AN ARMENIAN GOVERNMENT IN EXILE.

Disunity among the Armenians is a social ill that grates on a nation’s conscience, raises painful visions of a stubborn ailment, and is curable only by radical political surgery. Oscar Wilde once said, "An idea that is not dangerous is not worthy of being called an idea."

The choice that will be presented to the Armenians is indeed a difficult one.

You will be asked to decide between the past and the present; between the present and the future; between emotional ties and logic; between entrenched national habits and new rules of management.

My generation, the CHOSEN GENERATION, is asking for an accounting. We are asking to subject official action to scrutiny in the resolution of grievances and disputes.

President Kennedy said, "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible, make violent revolution inevitable."

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