Deluded, Duped, Disingenuous Armenians

Editorial, 26 June 2014

A few days after April 24 of this year a U.S.-based Armenian newspaper ran the headline: “Ethnic Armenian Elected Chairman of Turkish-Armenian Chamber of Commerce and Industry” (TACCI). It’s difficult to believe that Armenians, who sometimes take inordinate pride in the success of other Armenians, were too ecstatic to learn that Aret Tashciyan was to lead the TACCI, the brainchild of the Turkish Union of Chambers of Commerce. One of Tashciyan’s marine insurance firm’s clients is Burak, the 34-year-old son of Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Erdogan Jr. has six ocean-going vessels. He must have been given a big piggy-bank when he was five.

Editorial, 26 June 2014

A few days after April 24 of this year a U.S.-based Armenian newspaper ran the headline: “Ethnic Armenian Elected Chairman of Turkish-Armenian Chamber of Commerce and Industry” (TACCI). It’s difficult to believe that Armenians, who sometimes take inordinate pride in the success of other Armenians, were too ecstatic to learn that Aret Tashciyan was to lead the TACCI, the brainchild of the Turkish Union of Chambers of Commerce. One of Tashciyan’s marine insurance firm’s clients is Burak, the 34-year-old son of Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Erdogan Jr. has six ocean-going vessels. He must have been given a big piggy-bank when he was five.

Mr. Tashciyan’s election destined to be another exhibit in the Turkish propaganda campaign to firm up Ankara’s claim that Armenians and Turkey are working together as they merrily ride into the sunset. Ankara would like to convince the US and the EU that Armenians and Turkey are patching up their differences in secret. Why in secret? Because these friendly Armenians are “afraid of Armenian extremists.”

As Armenians know, these secret rapprochements are part of Turkey’s delaying and obfuscating tactics. Whenever the heat is on (in this instance the Genocide centennial), Turkey blares progress is being made between its representatives and “prominent Diaspora Armenians”. Turkey’s fabulist Foreign Minister Ahmed Davutoglu, who takes back seat to no one when it comes to chutzpah, stated several months ago: “These [Armenians] are our people…These are people whose culture and language resemble ours….” It must come as news to Davutoglu, who has a PhD in political science and international relation, that although the Anglo-Saxons came from Germany, the two people fought two world wars in the past century.

This is how Ankara’s low-IQ cunning tries to insult Armenians: Armenians and Turks like dolma; Armenians and Turks like lahmajun; Armenians and Turks like shish kebab. Ergo, Armenians and Turks can become friends were it not for those pesky terrorist Tashnags. Perhaps Ankara should call its gimmick ‘‘the Dolma Imperative’.

A cultural apostle of Davutoglu is Prof. Artin H. Arslanian of New York’s Marist College. The good professor, sharing his deep thoughts with “Today’s Zaman” (June 3, 2012), said: “Turks remind us of ourselves. Our English accents are the same. We look alike. We have the same manners. We eat the same kind of food.” Is there a whiff of shish kebab in the air? Shouldn’t Arslanian be teaching genealogy?

The ivory tower denizen went on to expound: “Some people [including him?] are more rational, more open-minded, more willing to sit down and talk, and see commonalities among the Turkish and Armenian people.” Commonalities such as sarma, etc.?

“They [presumably rational people like Arslanian] look at this issue dispassionately… but such people are not in powerful position in the Armenian Diaspora,” added the professor. Hint, hint…fascist Tashnags are busy deciding Diaspora’s Turkey policies.

“My issue has been that some people [you know who] have used the genocide as a platform for the leadership and for their career…It is a job. That is the ‘genocide’ industry,” opined the professor from his ivied perch.

So it comes as no surprise that Arslanian’s inane statements have procured him in an invitation to the Turkish Historical Society shindig (June 13, 14) in Cambridge, England, along with the Genocide-denying rancid regiment of Edward Erickson, Justin McCarthy, Christopher Gunn, Gul Tokay, Hasan Kaylan, and one Hakan Yavuz. The latter suspiciously close to the Turkish Military Intelligence.

Near the end of the interview Arslanian made another brazen somersault in logic, which would have confused Descartes. “The issue of the Armenian Genocide is not our problem…it is Turkey’s problem. Let the Turks come to terms with their history,” said he. He probably gave an A+ to himself for the outrageous escape-artist routine. Arslanian concluded that a major lesson he had taken from the Genocide was to “be kind.” Now, isn’t that peachy, hunky-dory, and plain decent of the humanist professor? And shouldn’t Armenians learn from him and walk away from their rights and their 4,000-year-old homeland, and pray that in 2,999 a Turkish PM would admit that during an unnamed war long, long ago certain things went wrong (as they are apt to) and some insubordinate Ottoman sergeant, probably a Mountain Turk, inadvertently killed some Armenians.

Who are these Armenians who talk to Turkish agents in camera? How many are they? Who do you represent? What’s their agenda? What are their qualifications? Who gave them permission to talk on our behalf? What are they whispering to Ankara?

Vahan Kololian is a public-spirited Torontonian whose family has a long philanthropic history. Over the years he has tried to act as modem between his pal–the Turkish consul–and the Armenian community. He supported the notorious TARC and the protocols. His Mosaic Institute has hosted the Turkish Armenian Business Development Council, and on at least two occasions he has involved himself (on the Turkish consul’s behalf?) in the Kessab protests and the Toronto Alevi/Armenian campaign to stop the erection of a phony Turkish monument in a Brantford, Ontario cemetery. Mr. Kololian doesn’t represent anyone except himself, yet Turkey’s diplomats surely include him when they claim they are in contact with “prominent Diaspora Armenians”.

A point man between Ankara and the “prominent Diaspora Armenians” is one Kaan Soyak, co-chair, along with Arsen Ghazarian, of the Turkish Armenian Business Development Council. The TABDC is nothing if not modest. It describes itself as the “international leader in promoting improved Turkish/Armenian relations”. Its goal is peace through culture and trade. The culture part is a sop. The agenda driving TABDC is business. Peace not through justice, but peace through business. The TABDC aspires to subdue and subsume discussion of the Genocide through lucre. It’s the globalist, neo-con ideology of “better living through materialism”. Soyak and his ilk must be students of the General Motors CEO, who back in the early ‘50s, said: “What’s good for the General Motors is good for America.” Busy-body Soyak has said that he wants “the economic dimension of the ties [between Armenia and Turkey] come to the surface in shaping the relations between the two countries.” Evet,  Mr. Soyak, evet.

Armenia has little to sell Turkey. According to the most recent statistics, Armenia imports (indirectly) from Turkey goods worth $300 million and exports about $3 million of raw tobacco and leather. Open trade with Turkey would flood Armenia with cheap and subsidized Turkish consumer goods and ravage the little industry that exists in Armenia. Through investments, Turkey could de facto “own” Armenia. What Ottoman Turkey couldn’t achieve by killing 1.5 million Armenians, Turkey would do so through the sale of purple shampoo, Ulker biscuits, and dried apricots probably harvested from Armenian-owned orchards.

Journalist Garen Yegparian has nicknamed TADBC “TARC-lite”. He has written: “Those involved [in TADBC] are the type who can’t see beyond their commercial noses…” Yegparian called Armenians who meet Turkey’s representatives “Turmens”. Turmens are people who have ‘ian’ in their surname but are “frequently indistinguishable from the highest functionaries of the Turkish government,” explained Yegparian. Some Turmens attended a ‘closed-door dialogue’ at the recent Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation pow-wow at the University of California in Irvine.

Soyak is an avid student of “let’s first study what really happened until the cows come home” school: You have your history books; we have our history books. You have your historians; we have our historians…arguing ad infinitum until boredom sets in or the Armenian Diaspora assimilates and melts away.

Are these Armenians who make individual contacts with Turkey’s agents dupes and well-meaning people who don’t realize they are playing into the hands of the Turkish strategy? Don’t they realize the Ankara conspiracy to derail all efforts vis-à-vis the Genocide, to scuttle Hye Tadd? Do they have personal agendas? Do they realize that today’s Turkey was created on wealth expropriated from Armenians, as historian Taner Akcam has written? Do they care that Turkey’s Cankaya Kosku presidential palace was confiscated from Ohannes Kasabian and the US Incirlik Base near Adana belongs to the Mahdessian, Bakalian and Haroutunian families? Don’t they comprehend Ankara’s divide and conquer policy? Don’t they understand that their secret meetings with the Turkish representatives are blown up a hundred fold by Ankara into something which damages our nation? Don’t they understand that an insidious Turkey is inserting itself into our communities as a stakeholder? Haven’t these Armenians heard Davutoglu’s claim that Diaspora Armenians are actually Turkey’s Diaspora? We belong to them! Who knew?

For starters, Armenians eager for business deals with Turkish businesses should ask their Turkish colleagues whether they know what happened to the 30,000 kilos of gold confiscated from Armenian individuals that the Ottoman government deposited, in 1916, at the Reichsbank in Berlin. But then again, why ruin a good business reception, a hearty meal with such an insensitive question?

Can these clueless business people tell us what have they achieved in the past two decades (the TADBC was founded in 1997) through their talks with Turkish agents? Rather than witnessing their promised positive influence on Ankara, we have watched Turkey’s hand in the invasion of Armenian Kessab. And it can’t be an accident that it’s the Armenian “Nor Keugh” which has been the target of recent attacks in Aleppo. As a number of Aleppo Armenian leaders have said what’s happening there is the continuation of the Genocide.

We have to talk with the Turks. However, the talks should be with Turks such as Ragip Zarakolu, Serkan Engin, Orhan Pamuk, Elif Shafak, Orhan Kemal Cengiz, Taner Akcam, Ayse Gunaysu, Ali Ertem, Selim Deringil, Engin Deniz Akarli, Halil Bertkay, Yavuz Baydar, Ugur Ungor… righteous Turks who acknowledge the Genocide. When the talk is with Turkish authorities, it should be conducted by organizations which represent us. Ottoman Turkey established a school for diplomats more than two-hundred years ago. Turkey’s representatives are old hands at diplomatic fancy footwork. They are savvy silver foxes. Our well-meaning amateurs are innocent lambs.

Armenians who enjoy basking in the attention of slick Turkish diplomats, in having meetings in camera, and in meals with Ankara agents should remember that they are breaking bread with people who broke our backs, made us exiles and deny doing so to this day.    

 

14 comments
  1. Naive Armenians and Turkish Diplomats

    In the end, the Turks will have naive Armenians such as Prof. Arslanian for dinner. I don't mean have them "over" for dinner. I mean eat them for dinner.

  2. Brilliant Editorial

    Brilliant editorial, Keghart. Thank you for leading the way among Armenian media outlets.

    Many today who claim to be "pioneers" who "boldly pursue new initiatives that may cause controversy within the Armenian community" in the realms of  "Turkish-Armenian Dialogue" are, as you say, knowingly or unknowingly participating in the Turkish narrative on Turkish terms. One of many things these folks don't mention is that they are receiving grant money from NATO-aligned NGOs and other entities to pursue their "Dolma Initiatives."

    What would truly be "bold" and "controversial" would be if some of these people pressed for reparations and restorative justice in the face of centuries of co-optation, rape, confiscation /theft, and sheer destruction. 

    A state apology or an acknowledgment will not satisfy us. What we want appears above. As for the concept that "the Armenian Genocide occurred in Turkey and must be resolved in Turkey," is that how the Holocaust was dealt with? No — outside powers applied their pressures upon Germany.

  3. Duped Armenians

    Re your comment about Davutoglu's pretense that the Turkish government and Armenians are holding talks, just today (June 27) I saw the following headline: "Davutoglu says Armenian-Turkish relations could enter 'new-era.'"

    Davutoglu comes up with his "new eras" every time he wants to mislead people who follow the Armenian/Turkish conflict. There will be many new eras between now and the end of 2015. 

  4. Armenian Reconciliationists

    The Armenian reconciliation crowd want to "start over" by forgetting history and regarding Turkey as benign. If you tell them that it is dangerous to forget history, they will tell you that the Turks are dangerous only if Armenians get them angry. That is, if Armenians make nice to the Turks, and don't cause them any problems, they will be nice to you back.That's the reasoning even if they won't say it publicly or don't know it themselves.

    1. Appeasement

      For centuries the Armenian subjects of the sultans pursued a stand of appeasement lest they further anger and raise the rage of the beast. It failed big time in 1915. 

      Having said this I do not advocate not engaging with the Turks. Eventually, both the Turks and us will have to sit face to face, but that should not be at the expense of ignoring or belittling what happened in 1915, morally and materially.

  5. Naive Armenians

    Sadly, we have a lot of naive Armenians and Armenian NGOs who get grants from Western sources and peddle this fake reconciliation rubbish. Armenians don't need such thrash. They should be all ignored and shamed.

  6. Duped Armenians

    Armenians got duped the moment King Drtad accepted Christianity as state religion. It has never worked for the small nation and has caused untold hardship and massacres. Imagine what our numbers and  borders would be today if we chose to be anything but? What fellow Christian country has extended a helping hand? Another sad point is that of our church leaders only two stick out as heroes: Khrimian Hyrig and Gomidas.

    To quote Raffi, instead of incense, gunpowder would have worked real miracles. Our land is covered by  ruined  churches. Had we invested in arms manufacturing, we would be rulers today and earned the respect of all our neighbors.

    "Sahman katchatz, zenen yuriantz". The boundaries of your borders is the extant of your sword.
     

    Sam

  7. Down Through History

    Down through history there have been not a few cases of treason among Armenians. Lack of national cohesion, coupled with monetary incentives certainly do lead some to act in their own perceived "best interest", often at the expense of others around. The best example of this phenomenon is the current Armenian governing bodies. It is an undeniable fact that the government is made up of people who care little for the welfare of their subjects. They are  there to line up their pockets, as much as, and as fast as possible. Even some high-ranking religious persons have proven themselves to be unethical (putting it gently), only too happy wheeling and dealing to get rich. HETQ has reported on several instances of Armenian officials enjoying meteoric acquisition of riches, while many in Armenia are barely surviving/existing. I believe many such Armenian money worshipping corrupt businessmen and officials would have no compunction to do money deals with Turks on Turkish terms. Let's not kid ourselves; "deluded", "duped", "disingenuous" are nothing but meaningless words to them.      

  8. Journalist? Economist or a Politician?

    Can you imagine your doctor giving you legal advice? Or do you see your plumber as an authority when you need to finance a new home? Same should be the case about   journalists. A journalist's duty is to "inform" the news not to "make" the news. Editors can "offer" opinion but should refrain from insulting others who do not share their opinion. Although op-ed economical realities work in poor nations once they open up. Worst yet, insulting all of those who do not share their opinion by freely adding adjectives in front of their names such as "naive", "deluded", 'duped". Insult should never be part of a well intended op-ed.

    Firstly, it is obvious that editor is not well informed about how economic principals work when he makes comments like 'Turkey can de facto own Armenia" if boarders are opene.d. Rather than sharing statistical data, I will ask simple questions to rebuttal this baseless statement: Does the editor know how China's economic  miracle took place last 25 years? Did China have anything to sell to the world 25 years ago except its inexpensive labor force? Do the world economic powers own China today- after this poor nation back in 80's finally opened up its borders to the world and now represents world's second largest economy? Does the editor know anything about tariffs, duty(import taxes), import quotas,  foreign citizens investment limitations etc? Does he know that including USA -one of the world's most free nations to conduct business- almost all nations impose quotas in importing some goods to protect its local producers ? Such as textile products , glassware etc?  Does he know that in many countries as a foreign company if you want to open up a business, by law, you need to have a local partner? You can not even purchase land in most poor nations as a citizen of another country and/or face strict limitations.To make a long story short , in my humble opinion it is better most of the time not to comment  and make economic predictions, if you truly do not have grasp of the subject matter. Yes, this simple standard should apply to journalists, editors as well. Lets be clear here, I am neither advocating nor predicting all will be easy for Armenia if boarders open up one day, but what I am clearly stating is that, by implementing  smart, well studied laws many of the negative economic  impacts of the open boarder can easily be controlled and benefits for nations growth can be achived. Lets not forget Armenia has skilled labor which it can sell to many multi nationals who like to expend to the region and make their base in Armenia because of this reason. But can not consider Armenia with today's status quo, since there is no easy way to transport the goods "Made in Armenia" to the region let alone to the rest of the world!

    Secondly, it is ironic that editor fails to share with the reader a great service rendered by one of the men he criticizes because of this man's relationship with some Turkish individuals or diplomats. Mr. Editor, have you read the study or attended a lecture called "Depopulation crisis of Armenia"? Do you know about the findings of this study, conducted by independent researchers from several universities based in Armenia? Among many eye-opening findings, according to this research, Armenia is the only country of all the Soviet republics which witnessed a shrinkage in its population since independence. The depopulation of Armenia is more than 20%  since independence. In spite of this publicly known reality, are you still suggesting continuation of the "status quo"? I am sure you are as concerned with this sad reality as any caring Armenian individual should be. In any case, I find it unfair that just because you do not appreciate a relationship an individual has with some Turks you criticize them freely add adjectives in front of their names, but side-step all the public good they do to promote the cause (not only philanthropy), especially when you do just the opposite for others, in the same op-ed, and ignore those who attended the Anatolia Festival sponsored by the Gulen group in 2014 in Los Angeles.

    Last but not least, if we Armenians want to see the Armenian Cause defended at all expense and Armenia to flourish, we need to accept that, as Armenians, we have differences in our approach to accomplish the same goal. Above all, to assure success, we must respect and believe in each other's love and dedication to the same cause and stop calling others "naive, deluded, duped" just because they have a different approach than ours. After all, does anyone have any doubt what Hrant Dink accomplished while he was alive, and how much more has been accomplished since his passing by following his footsteps through his foundation? He certainly accomplished all that by talking to Turks rather than ignoring them, as is being advocated in this op-ed.

  9. False Prophets

    Your editorial is an accurate and astute reflection of a taboo in the Diaspora and in the homeland. This taboo is dangerous to our homeland's security and to Diaspora’s well-being. The taboo I am referring to is the silence about the secret work certain Armenians are doing with the government of Turkey. I commend your boldness and frank approach to this vital issue.

    Collaborating with the agents and representative of the Turkish government to undermine the interests of the Armenian nation is not a personal “opinion” issue to agree or disagree with. It is a matter of survival for our nation. For the last hundred years, our small nation has been under consistent threat of annihilation. We have survived because of our resilience and the will to live. It is not permissible for certain individuals, who do not represent anyone other than themselves, to jeopardize what we have achieved, admittedly with a heavy price.  

    Today our nation is facing another do-or-die battle. The Turco–Azeri alliance, with its petro-dollar resources and allies, is blockading our homeland. Turkey and Azerbaijan are not content with targeting our homeland; the Diaspora is their target, too. Today the Armenian Diaspora is subject of unprecedented attacks by the same forces. The targeting of our communities in Syria, Lebanon, and Iraq is not accidental. Thus the survival of our nation is not an issue of  “differences in our approach,” as the mysterious KYB wrote in this section. These gullible Armenians are doing a great disservice to our nation by collaborating with the Turkish government and its agenda of finishing what they couldn't in 1915.

    I would like to tell KYB to stop singing to us lullabies of the promised land of milk and honey once the Turkish government opens its border. Furthermore, it is naïve to think that  "implementing smart, well-studied laws many of the negative economic impacts of the open boarder can easily be controlled.” Turkish business/industry is the heaviest subsidized economy in the world. Many of Turkey's neighboring countries, which had the above KYB philosophy and trusted the Turkish government promise of economic salvation, have paid heavily for this misguided approach. Consider Syria, Iraq, and Lebanon whose economies were destroyed because they trusted in Turkish "promised land". The destruction took place way before the "Arab Spring". Our business compatriots in Aleppo, Syria, and the rest of the Syrian business elites attest to this blind trust in Turkey and its hollow promises.  

    It is obvious that these “visionary” Armenians are less informed and have less “grasp of the subject matter” about the “economic principals work” of the Turkish government and its business establishment's hidden agenda than the Keghart’s editor.

    In addition, what has the homeland depopulation got to do with the Turkish government's recognition of the Armenian Genocide, Turkey's repentance, and opening of its border with Armenia? Stop scaring us with the depopulation scarecrow. Instead of wasting their money on make-project for their friends in Armenia and to restate what everyone knows, I wish these “prophets” invested their money in job-creating projects in Armenia and provide our young people with employment opportunities so that they wouldn't leave it. Providing financial support for such “benevolent” projects to do “public good” doesn’t give them the right to circumvent the government of Armenia and Diaspora institutions and create a parallel track of diplomacy with the government of Turkey.

    It is the height of hypocrisy for these Armenian individuals to put themselves on the same pedestal with Hrant Dink. Dink was transparent and did not have a personal agenda. I wish these people had the same courage and honesty: to speak publicly about Turkish crimes against humanity and the Armenian people. Furthermore, Dink did not hold secret meetings with the Turkish government and its agents. Dink advocated reaching out to righteous Turks and working with them and the Turkish civil society to acknowledge what their predecessors have done to Armenians and doing so by sidestepping the Turkish government, its agencies, and hired guns.

    Since the failure of the Turkish Armenian Reconciliation Commission (TARC), our “enlightened thinkers” have pursued a misguided track and undermined our national interest. I would like to find out what are the achievements these individuals on behalf of the Armenian people since they began to hold covert meetings with Turkish government agents.  

    Who gave these individuals the right to roll the dice on the future and security of the Armenian nation? Who do they represent other than themselves and their friends? With whom do these people consult and coordinate their activities?

    Kudos to Keghart.com for exposing these charlatans. It is time for the Armenian nation to call a spade a spade and put an end to influence peddling.

    Gary  

    1. Supporting  the ‘Status Quo’

      Reply to Gary.

      Supporting the 'status quo', a 'do nothing approach', not being open, 'what else can be done?' is the biggest danger our nation faces. More than 20% population shrinkage since independence? Why? Economy, economy, economy. What is going to be done about it? What can Armenia do to reverse the course? It must open itself for business.

      Suggesting to talk to Turks does neither mean advocating secrecy nor does it mean speaking with Turkish government agents. That is certainly not being promoted. Therefore, dramatization and/or incorrect characterization of the opposite point of view demonstrate the weakness of ones argument.

      Please refrain from using adjectives about opposing points of view. The other side can easily return the compliment. Your argument only supports the oligarchs in Armenia because you do not support 'open markets' and do not like to see borders open up and new ARMENIAN-owned businesses flourish. If we care, and if we are not working/collaborating with the so-called Turkish agents, let's not become the tool of the 'divide and conquer' approach and attack fellow Armenians just because they think differently.

      No one is suggesting trusting 'odars' in any form or shape when the borders open up one day. What happened to the Syrian and Lebanese economies, after open trade with Turkey, is a different matter: they are Muslim counties and may have had a different approach in the name of 'Muslim brotherhood'. Weaker economies can't benefit when integrating/working with much larger economies. It absolutely contradicts the realities of today's China, as well as the economic realities of many Eastern European states post the dismantling of the Soviet Union. No one is advocating blind trust. If and when borders open, well-researched economic policies/laws must be implemented to defend Armenia's economy.

      That said, two things should be kept in mind:

      1. Closed borders are not stopping Turkish merchandise from entering Armenia. Armenia's markets are full of Turkish goods (via Georgia and Iran). That is, despite the closed borders, we are letting businessmen in these two countries profit, rather than the Armenian businessmen.

      2. 'Open border' does not necessarily mean ONLY trading with the Turks, but instead opening up trade routes to the rest of world as well. An open border will enable Armenia to conduct business with the rest of the world. It will facilitate the flow of goods in and out of Armenia. It will help 'Made in Armenia' products to flow into world markets.
       

      Finally, it is vivid in my mind how critical of Hrant Dink this "unhypocrite crowd" was a decade ago when Dink was advocating talking rather than screaming at each other. Dink advocated talking to all Turks to find a way out for "our trauma and their paranoia". Dink was for "open borders". This is well documented. Let's try to be factual when we are quoting others to defend our position.

      1. KYB Letter to Gary

        To KYB,

        It would take too much space to address the many inaccuracies in your letter. For that reason, I will bring up only one point. 

        The editorial mentioned that Mr. Davutoglu and the Turkish foreign affairs people have frequently cited that they are in secret talks with Diaspora Armenians and that these Ankara statements are intended to lull Europeans and the Americans that progress is being made in Armenian/Turkish relations. This is Ankara's strategy to avoid pressure from Western countries, said the editorial. It would be useful to read what you and others, who secretly talk to Turkish representatives, say to the allegation. In other words, you're being depicted as patsies (at best) and as traitors (at worst) for your clandestine association with Ankara. I would have thought the accusation would have been the first one you would have addressed, rather than wander in incoherent manner about Eastern Europe, Arab countries, China….

        P.S.
        Gary said you've achieved nothing through your secret talks. I believe that observation is another topic you should have addressed.

        1.  One Point Clear

          Let's make one point clear and agree upon: I am in no shape or form advocating secret talks [with Turkey]. I am neither interested nor qualify to be invited to such talks. But talking to Turks–rather than refusing to talk–I am all for it, regardless how liberal or conservative their views may be.

          Therefore, stop senseless and baseless accusations and instead reply to ideas, if you can. Is it "My way or you are a bad person" the only approach you know? If that is the case, that ends this conversation. To persuade, to convince and to succeed, we first need to be able to engage in a conversation of ideas among ourselves, rather than indulge in calling and baseless accusations.

          Let me give you little taste of your medicine: How can you prove that you are not a Davutoglu crony, trying to create divisions and tensions among Armenians with your baseless accusations towards anyone who disagrees with you? Nothing serves better the Davutoglu doctrine than divisions among the Armenian Diaspora. Turks have always managed "divide and conquer" in dealing with Armenians.

          I am glad your side stopped discussing economic principles, since it is very difficult to argue against open borders and open marketplace while fully benefiting from the same freedom in your own life.

          To Keghart editors: It is ironic that it takes you two days to post my reply to Gary, while a third party's answer is posted along with my reply?

          Editors' reply: Keghart editors don't check comments 24/7. Weekends, holidays, and vacations also impact comment posting times.

  10. Alternative to Reconciliation

    An alternative to jumping on the reconciliation bandwagon simply because it purportedly holds a promise of "progress" is to consider doing those things that really empower the Armenian people of the Diaspora. That includes strengthening our Diasporan communities to survive and resist assimilation by teaching the endangered Western Armenian language and culture to our children. To do this, we must direct our finances to build Armenian-run institutions so that those who have benefited from an Armenian education can (with competitive salaries) teach our new generations in an Armenian environment.

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