By Prof. Z. S. Andrew Demirdjian, Monarch Beach CA, January 2024
Never give up on a dream just because of the time
it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.
Unlike congenital pessimists who see only the eclipse of the future, we should not seal the fate of Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) as “lost” or a “closed case” as another Armenian homeland gone with the wind.
Even for a ray of hope, we have kept working for over a century to obtain justice for our “Turkish Occupied-Western Armenia” to use the phrase coined by Appo Jabarian. By the same token, we should also never give up the quest for the return of Artsakh to its indigenous people.
For Western Armenia, we have wasted too much time before we began to champion for the rights of Armenians’ occupied homeland. Let us embark on a mission toward the return of the natives of Artsakh to their ancestral homeland. Otherwise, we would end up losing the opportunity to act promptly before Artsakh becomes a tragic footnote as another “lost Armenian territory”.
We all ought to declare in unison: “Long live The Republic of Artsakh!” Dreaming the impossible dream afoot is better than despairing in a lounge.
Ideas have changed the world; ideas can also help Armenians get justice in the face of Azerbaijan’s inhumane tactics to subjugate Artsakh through a cruel military surprise assault on September 19 and 20, 2023. All we need is unity and determination to find ways and means to strengthen the Armenian air forces with modern weapons for self-defense.
Firstly, we must prepare for the campaign. One way to do this is to popularize what has happened to Artsakh. By “popularizing” it is meant to make the crime of Azerbaijan known and understood by ordinary people and international diplomats.
Once we convince the international community of Artsakh’s right to exist, then we embark on the uphill battle of regaining the centuries-old Armenian enclave.
To coordinate our collective efforts, we should decide on a model like the one listed below [Flowchart 1: The Ethnic-Cleansing Genocide (ECG) of Artsakh…], or any other available format and present it to the rest of the world to convincingly understand the tragedy inflicted by the cruelty of Azerbaijan on the beleaguered Armenian natives of Artsakh.
For the sake of consistency, Armenians around the world should adhere to the same narrative about the recent tragedy of Artsakh perpetrated by genocidal Azerbaijan.
According to conventional wisdom, we should not judge a book by its cover. It is likewise suggested that we should not judge the merit of an article from the journal in which it has been published.
A case in point is the theory presented in the article entitled The Capturing of Artsakh: Implications of Ethnic Cleansing and Genocide (Keghart, November 3, 2023) and in the USA Armenian Life Magazine, November 10, 2023). The reason behind the preference to have published this article in Keghart.org and the USA Armenian Life Magazine is to reach as many Armenian and non-Armenian readers as possible across the board.
I could have attempted to have this article, with some modifications, published in a scholarly Armenian journal, but only a few college or university professors would have read it.
Publishing it in the popular USA Armenian Life Magazine and Keghart.org online Website, therefore, should not militate against the concept presented in the article nor should the simplicity of presenting the concept should detract from its importance.
The law of parsimony is practiced in theory to make the concept easily and readily understandable. I could have cited all the relevant genocide Articles from the Genocide Convention Treaty but chose not to complicate the narrative. A picture is worth a thousand words is true in this instance.
Naturally, I have to persuade you, the reader, first as a compatriot to see the merit and the use of the model to make you adopt it in your efforts to champion for Artsakh to exist.
Being defensive aside, if the author of the above-cited article were Jewish, this Ethnic-Cleansing Genocide (ECG) model would have gone into textbooks in no time. For example, Abraham Maslow wrote articles (1943, 1954) about the Hierarchy of Needs. His model or theory became part of the psychology of consumer behavior instantly because it was promoted by the Jewish scholars even though the model was proposed earlier by a German scholar who was not given credit for his idea and his article has been removed from the Web (i.e., a lovely case of academic plagiarism).
Another example of making a concept popular by Jewish scholars is the notion of the fertile crescent.
For lack of a better term, the American historian James Henry Breasted coined and popularized “fertile crescent” in his book titled Ancient Times: A History of the Early World (1935). Breasted wrote “The earliest home of the desert, a fertile crescent having the mountains on one side and the desert on the other…” as being a cultivable region, the potential for growing crops in that region since the bountiful Euphrates River cuts through the desert.
As you know, any desert is potentially fertile provided you add water to it. The author has never once mentioned that the fertile crescent was the cradle of civilization, but now the fertile crescent is to be written in capital letters to represent a fake reality.
In fact, Breasted was an Egyptologist and firmly believed that Egypt, not Mesopotamia, was the cradle of civilization.
However, the idea was readily adopted by Jewish scholars and incorporated Israel (i.e., Palestine) in the horseshoe-like region starting from Sumer, moving up to Babylon and Assyria, and then turning westward toward coastal Syria, and finally down to Lebanon and Israel. The last stretch of Lebanon and Israel was added by Jewish writers to include Israel in the “Fertile Crescent” and called it the “Cradle of Civilization”.
Perhaps, the intended consequence was to exclude Armenia from the map of Mesopotamia to be able to include Israel in the prestigious Cradle of Civilization. Now, if you were to pick any book on history, the Jewish authors include the Fertile Crescent model in chapter one with a colorful map, which shows Israel at the left end of the crescent.
Is the distortion of the “Fertile Crescent” as being the Cradle of Civilization an academic fraud, misinformation, or disinformation to change history to include Israel into the elite cadre of the nations included in the cradle of civilization? Yes, in fact, the whole history of the Jews coming out of Ur (Sumer) as the major city of the cradle of civilization is folklore since the Jews were sheepherders in the Arabian Desert.
About 95 percent of the textbooks in the US are written by Jewish authors. In the US, Jews have a number of NGOs that promote the books written by their people –as a community service. They work to get college professors to adopt Jewish textbooks. We have a lot to learn from them even though we hate the Israeli government’s guts for materially assisting Azerbaijan to overcome the Armenian defense forces during the Second Artsakh War in 2020.
It is amazing how Jewish writers rally to promote the idea(s) of one of them. In comparison, Armenians are prone to nitpick the ideas of one of them instead of joining forces to have it universally adopted for the sheer interest of the Armenian nation. In some instances, blind or selfish individualism hurts the progress of the nation.
The foregoing two examples were presented to show that any idea embraced by the majority would strengthen one’s national status. A theory, such as the ECG model, would not reach its intended readers and audience to persuade them of the Azerbaijani cruel treatment of the people of Artsakh and the support needed to establish the right of Artsakh to exist if it does not have the unselfish support of the Armenian people.
Before we demand the return of Artsakh, there is a great need to educate the public to convince and even persuade them of the wrongful capture of Artsakh and the expulsion of its indigenous population due to the fear of war, violence, and persecution of the much-expected cruelty of Azerbaijan. Who would stay home when bombs are falling on their heads? Naturally, the entire population of Artsakh fled their homeland.
In retrospect, we began late for the international recognition of the Armenian Genocide for the survivors were shell-shocked and dispersed around the world. We should not forget that back then there were no international organizations to resort for the adjudication of the Ottoman Empire’s barbaric acts of crime against the Armenians in their homeland highlands.
Before using any force to regain Artsakh, the public and international organizations of justice should declare the wrongful exodus of the Artsakh Armenians as an Ethnic-Cleansing Genocide as is explained in the flowchart listed below.
The Ethnic Cleansing Genocide (ECG) of Artsakh:
The Input Variables Required for Ethnic Cleansing
Are The Same or Analogous to Variables as the Input for Genocide
*Note: Since both Ethnic Cleansing and Genocide share the same or analogous input variables (i.e., crimes, inflictions) as well as the results (output factors) they are the same or parallel crimes against humanity. In other words, what Azerbaijan did during the starvation siege of December 12, 2023, and after the surprise assault on Artsakh to capture Stepanakert on September 19 and 20, 2023 by shelling it indiscriminately and killing people is “Ethnic Cleansing Genocide” or simply GENOCIDE of 2023. The exodus took place in the aftermath of the surprise blitzkrieg. The intent was to kill and terrorize the people into fleeing their homeland. The act is a crime no matter how many Armenians were killed. The heinous inhumane atrocities of Azerbaijan should be ruled by the UN as Artsakh’s Ethnic Cleansing Genocide. As a result, the crime is punishable under the Genocide Convention Treaty.
The above self-explanatory flowchart would facilitate the act of making a crime known and understood by ordinary people. If we do not act promptly, the cause of Artsakh would become foggy in the minds of people. Getting the attention of the international community is already a mammoth task. The problem is made more difficult by the distraction of the present Ukraine War and the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Contrary to the notion that repetition is boring, please do not avoid it in your persuasive communication. Repetition is the key to trapping someone’s mind to perceive certain problems or issues in the way you want them to form a perspective. So, do not hesitate to repeat the ECG model in whole in part in your attempt to persuade the reader or the audience to adopt your point of view.
If you were to reason with someone, you would try to persuade the person that what you suggest is sensible. Reasoning is the process of thinking in an orderly fashion, drawing conclusions from facts. After all, scientific thought is based on reasoning. Flowchart 1 will help you achieve that end.
For example, if a “denialist” argues that no genocide was committed because no one was deliberately killed in Artsakh on account of the people had left their homes on their own volition, he or she should be inoculated against that criticism by stating that to constitute an act as genocide, it does not have to involve “killing the members of a group,” there are other criteria by the Genocide Convention to make an act genocide, such as —
A. “Causing serious bodily or mental harm,” which was caused by the surprise attack on September 19 and 20, 2023, agonizing the people by raining bombs on their heads and killing 200 and injuring 400 of them.
B. “Deliberately inflicting conditions of life calculated to bring about the group’s physical destruction in whole or in part,” which was caused by Azerbaijan’s siege of starvation by blockading the Berdzor (Lachin) Corridor beginning on December 12, 2022, and ending on September 19, 2023 with a blitzkrieg on Stapanakert, the Capital city of Artsakh.
Rationality requires us to be sensible, objective, and logical. The reasoning behind Flowchart 1 is to be organized, objective, and convincing to persuade the international community of the fact that Azerbaijan has committed an ECG.
It should be incumbent on every Armenian to use some collectively adopted strategy to make the ethnic cleansing of Artsakh by Azerbaijan known to the rest of the world, which is usually apathetic and ignorant of what is happening to the people of Artsakh whose only fault is to live in freedom and independence of Azerbaijan’s oppressive yoke.
In sum, the logical conclusion would be that Azerbaijan should be found guilty of ECG and provide restitution, retribution, and the return of the Artsakh indigenous people to their homeland of thousand years by recognizing the sovereignty of the Republic of Artsakh even if force would be required.
In this picture refugees from rural areas are fleeing the Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) region by riding in the back of a truck to reach the border village of Kornidzor, Armenia, on September 26, 2023. Do these people look happy and comfortable going on a picnic in an adjacent land, or do they look distressed enough to flee their homes, farms, and homeland to avoid the well-documented atrocities of Azerbaijan in the form of pogroms, massacres, and beheading Armenians in cold blood, reminding one of a pack of hyenas eating their prey while still alive? Each and every face in the truck, young and old, is shouting their distress to the world that they have been wronged by being forcibly displaced by Azerbaijan and by the stone silence of the so-called righteous international community. The ECG model substantiates the wanton cruelty of Azerbaijan inflicted on the peace-loving people of Artsakh, making the September 26 exodus a sad and cruel day, a day to remember as the nadir in the history of Artsakh.
Prof. Z. S. Andrew Demirdjian of Monarch Beach, California. In addition to his active academic pursuits, he has devoted his time since high school to researching ideas on how to advance Armenia. For example, among his published works, he has two books on Armenian unity and hundreds of articles. Since just July 2019, over 105 articles have been published on Armenian affairs. To access Prof. Demirdjian’s previous articles open the search engine of the website and type his full name.