Art Stepanian, Toronto, Ontario, Feb 24, 2021
Of the thirty or so gutter-snipes who have made sort of a career spreading falsehoods about Armenians, Rachel Avraham of Israel stands out as the most outrageous, prolific, and …incompetent. Despite her self-description as media political analyst, Avraham is stranger to truth. She blithely describes herself as a journalist and a PR practitioner unaware that those disciplines are like chalk and cheese.
Avraham’s usual outlets are “The Jewish Press”, “Israel Hayom”, and “The Times of Israel.” The first bears the distinction of having had mass murderer Meir Kahane as editor. The second is owned by Likudnik billionaire Sheldon Adelson who died recently. The third is owned by American billionaire Seth Klarman.
For someone who has dedicated her career to promoting Israeli policies right or wrong, Avraham doesn’t know how to spell anti-Semitism. She can’t differentiate between ‘that’ and ‘who.’ She misspells the names of people she quotes. Tense agreement remains a challenge for the gutter-snipe who calls herself “the Voice of Baku”. Not trusting her writing, she pumps her copy with superlatives. Painfully aware of her tenuous hold on facts, she cribbed nine of her Feb. 16 article’s thirteen poison-pen paragraphs from fellow travellers. But then again, facts have the integrity of clay in Ms. Avraham’s hands. Take her latest vitriolic outpouring (“Vandalism of Holocaust Memorial in Armenia was ‘Utter Disgrace’ in The Jewish Press, Feb. 16, 2021) followed by its parse.
Recently, it was reported that the “To Live and Not Forget” Holocaust Memorial in Yerevan, Armenia was vandalized by local anti-Semites, who sprayed over the Hebrew inscriptions on the monument. The World Jewish Congress condemned the anti-semitic [sic] vandalism: “It is horrible to see that the Holocaust memorial in Yerevan, Armenia was vandalized with vile anti-semitic [sic] graffiti. The vandalism was condemned by the city’s mayor.
- Like the rest of her anti-Armenian coterie, Avraham is an incompetent journalist. Had she been a half-decent journalist, she would have found out what had been done to the Holocaust monument. Unlike Avraham and her fellow plotters, lecturer David Davidian (not a journalist) investigated the vandalism. In a letter to the Israeli Arutz Sheva media outlet, lecturer Davidian of American University of Armenia, wrote: “Nobody bothered to read what was written on the monument. What is written on the monument isn’t anything Nazi, anti-Holocaust, or even anything anti-Jewish; instead, it says Lora, Elbit, Harop, Sandcat, Hermes, and Orbiter. These items are Israeli weapons (and an Israeli arms manufacturer) sold to Azerbaijan that killed Armenians last fall. It is not an expression of anti-Semitism, but rather an expression of anger at Israel arms in the hands of Azerbaijanis that killed Armenians.” Arutz Sheva would not publish Davidian’s letter. The publication is closely linked to the Israeli settler movement.
- Avraham alleged the Holocaust monument was “…vandalized by local anti-Semites…” How does Avraham know that more than one person vandalized the monument?
- The day after Avraham’s article was published a man walked into a Yerevan police department and confessed. Avraham should have egg dripping from her bulbous cheeks, but don’t count on it: she would say it’s raining when she is spat at.
- Why “local anti-Semites”? Is Avraham worried someone might assume the vandalism was caused by a non-Armenian?
Rabbi Zamir Isayev also tweeted: “What a disgrace! A monument to the victims of the Holocaust was once again desecrated in Yerevan. How can the Armenians justify the desecration of a Holocaust memorial by the fact that Israel sold weapons to Azerbaijan? Does this give someone the right to desecrate the memorial?”
- Why is a rabid rabbi from Azerbaijan the “go-to-guy” on the controversy? Avraham’s unqualified source sabotaged her column by falsely alleging it was not the first time a Holocaust memorial had been desecrated in Armenia
- “How can the Armenians justify the desecration..?” Ten million Armenians are accused of justifying the crime.
Following these developments, Arye Gut, who heads the Azerbaijan House in Israel, noted that “fascism and neo-Nazism have long been the state ideology of Armenia,” adding that this was not the first time that the Holocaust Memorial in Yerevan was vandalized: “The popularization of fascism, antisemitism [sic] and neo-Nazis has become an integral part of Armenia’s state policy. What is even more outrageous is that the fascist ideology called ‘Nzhdehism’ is included in Armenia’s educational institutions’ curriculum and generations are brought up on these values.’”
- We reluctantly undertake the thankless task of once again exposing blowhard Gut. A full-time propagandist for Azerbaijan, Gut can finish Avraham’s sentences. To learn more about the liar’s mischief, see Hot Air from Israel (Keghart.org. Sept. 27, 2020).
Furthermore, he [Gut] emphasized that Armenia erected five years ago a monument in honor of the Nazi accomplice Garegin Nzhdeh: “A sovereign nation has the right to memorialize whoever they wish as their national heroes. However, we should not be silent whenever a Nazi who perpetrated crimes during the Holocaust becomes some nations [sic] revered hero. The Jewish people will never forget the acts of cruelty committed by the 20,000 Armenian legionnaires led by Nzhdeh during World War II.”
- This is rich coming from someone who tags herself the “Voice of Baku”. Some 20,000 Armenians (Red Army captives) were forced to join the German army or face execution. Meanwhile 70,000 to 75,000 Azeris formed the Azerbaijan Legion (Aserbaidschanische Legion).
- While there was one Armenian military leader [Karekin Nzhdeh] associated with Nazi Germany, Azeris had Abdurrahman Fatalibeyli, Magomed Nabi Oglu Israfilov, Mahmoud Amin Rasulzade (founding father of Azerbaijan Democratic Republic–1918-1920), Abbas Bey Atamalibekov, Waffen Commander Fuad Amirjan, Abdul Rahman Bati, and Mammed Rasul Zade. Because of their “valor” in battle the First Battalion of Azeris was decorated. Azeri soldiers (7 Komp/11) took part in the 1944 Warsaw massacres during the uprising in that city. More than 700 Azeri troops participated in the defense of Berlin in 1945.
- Abdurrahman Fatalibeyli was an associate of Hajj Amin el Husseini, the Mufti of Jerusalem who was Hitler’s guest. In 1948, Fatalibeyli went to Egypt as adviser to the Egyptian army fighting the Israelis. His birthday is celebrated with great pomp in Azerbaijan. In 2014 stamp was issued in his honor. There are four statues of him in Azerbaijan.
- Hitler, an admirer of Ataturk, was against the recruitment of Armenians because he didn’t trust them. Thus, most Armenians saw no action and were stationed in Holland and France. They also participated in the liberation of southern France.
- Nzhdeh believed Germany would win the war. He hoped if Armenian POWs fought alongside Germans, victorious Germany would grant Armenia independence. Because the government-controlled Turkish media alleged Armenians were Semites, like the Jews, thus candidates for genocide by Germans heading to the Azeri oil fields Nzhdeh believed a second genocide could be prevented if Armenian POWs supported Germany. His credo was defensive and not aggressive.
- There are 24 Armenians among Yad Vashem’s “Righteous Among Nations” honorees. Azeri? Zero.
- More than 600,000 Soviet Armenians took part in WWII. Some 300,000 didn’t return. In addition, 100,000 diaspora Armenians fought on the Allied side.
- One-hundred-and fifteen Armenian generals fought in WWII. These Armenian military officers reached the pinnacle of the Red Army: Hovhannes Baghramian, Hamazasp Babayan, Sergei Khudyakov, Sergei Aganov, and Admiral Hovhannes Isakov. Although Armenia was the smallest of the fifteen Soviet republics, Armenians ranked sixth-highest in the number of Soviet heroes.
- When Gut/Avraham falsely claim that Armenians killed 20,000 Jews during WWII, the two vile “journalists” can tell us how many Armenians Jews of the Ottoman Empire rescued during the Genocide of Armenians.
- When Gut and Avraham criticize Nzhdeh’s statue, would it be bad manners to remind them that thrice Israelis elected internationally-acknowledged terrorists (Yitzhak Shamir, Menahim Begin, and Ariel Sharon) prime ministers? What about Ehud Olmert and Benjamin Nethanyahu who have illegally accepted gifts while Ehud Barak (friend of Jeffrey Epstein) has been charged with bribery and money laundering.
“The purpose of the Armenian Legion, led by Nzhdeh, was to raid the homes and destroy the lives of Jews, as well as others ‘objectionable’ to the Nazi German army,” he added. “It was ‘thanks’ to the Armenian Legion that the towns of Simferopol, Yevpatoria, Alushta, Kerch, and Feodosia, as well as other areas of Western Crimea, were completely expunged of Jews. It is therefore required of us not to be indifferent to the way modern Armenia elevates past figures who [sic] were clearly fascist and anti-Semitic to the rank of national heroes.
- Avraham/Gut provide no evidence for the above.
“Perpetuating the memory of an Armenian fascist and anti-Semite is a shame and an insult to the memory of the Holocaust,” Gut added. “My grandfather lost all his family members to the Nazis in Ukraine. He survived only because he was away fighting against the Nazis with the Soviet Red Army. Due to this, he was not there to protect his family. For me personally, this vandalism causes unbearable mental anguish.”
- Some 300,000 Armenians died so that the Soviet Union—including Gut’s Ukraine–would survive.
Israel’s Ministry of Diaspora Affairs just published its 2020 Annual Report, which noted an alarming increase in anti-Semitism following the Second Karabakh War: “Official attacks accelerated into anti-religious attacks and claims that the Jewish people historically committed crimes against the Armenian people. The war in Karabakh led to extremist incidents, significant expressions of new anti-Semitism and disproportional attacks upon the State of Israel. Media reports that Israel provided weapons to Azerbaijan caused much anger among the Armenian population and there were demonstrations where participants chanted anti-Semitic slogans. Holocaust-era motifs were utilized. The Armenian Prime Minister accused Israel of supporting genocide.
- Israel is Azerbaijan’s number-one arms supplier. In 2016 Ilham Aliyev said that in the previous six years, he had purchased $4.85 billion worth of armaments from Israel. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute(SIRPI), a partial list of the arsenal included UAV loitering munitions (“kamikaze”), Aerostar UAVs, Hermes 450s, Herons, Orbiter-3s, Hermes, SkyStrikers, Sandcat, Elbit, ATMOS-2000, CARDOM, SUFA armed personnel vehicles, LYNX MRLs, EXTRA missiles, and LORA MRLs. We know how decisive Israeli drones were in helping Turkbeijan kill Armenians.
- During the war, Silk Air, owned by Aliyev’s daughter, made frequent flights to Israel to replenish Azerbaijan’s arsenal. They landed at a military airport in southern Israel to load up with weapons. Why is Avraham & Co. surprised that some Armenians– irate that Israel drones were hunting and killing Armenian fighters and dropping cluster bombs on Artsakh urban areas–accused Israel of supporting the genocide of Armenians? But since rancid Avraham & Co. sees everything through Israeli lenses, they have a moral blind spot for irksome detail.
Rabbi Israel Barouk wrote in “Khojaly: A Crime against Humanity”: One must note that a bigoted perception in Armenia not only leads to incidents like the above but also led to the Khojaly genocide in 1992. As a result of the barbaric atrocities that the Armenian armed forces perpetrated in Khojaly, 613 people were massacred, and 487 others were severely wounded…This is a crime against humanity.
- Once again, Avraham’s go-to-guy is a rabbi with an agenda. The good rabbi relishes “atrocities” with the adjective “barbaric” in case we failed to grasp the immensity of the alleged Armenia crime.
- Most of 1991 and early 1992, the Azeri OMON (Special Purpose Militia Department) stationed at Khojali had systematically shelled civilian targets. The Azeris had blockaded the nearby airport thus Armenians were facing starvation. With loudspeakers, for ten days, the Armenians informed Khojali civilians to leave because of imminent Armenian attack. The Armenians said they had dedicated a corridor for the safe passage of the evacuees. When the Armenians attacked those civilians who attempted to flee via the corridor were shot by the OMON to discourage their flight.
- Immediately after the attack, the Azeris reported their casualties as 100. A week later, it became 1,234 (the village population was 2,000 to 2,500). Soon after, the battle was designated genocide by Azeris. Azeris also alleged their casualties had been mutilated.
- In 1992, Azeri journalists Ilya Balakhanov and Vugar Khaliov presented to Moscow’s Memorial Human Rights Centre a video they had shot from a helicopter. It showed civilian casualties did not exceed 60. Armenian forces reported 11 Azeri civilian deaths. According to Armenians, mutilation of bodies took place near Aghdam (seven miles away) on territory controlled by the Azeris.
- Azeri photographer Chingiz Mustafaev photographed the Azeri dead immediately after the fight and two days later. His latter photos show the position of the casualties had been changed and their injuries had become more brutal. During both assignments, the territory was in Azeri hands. President Ayaz Mutalibov advised Mustafaev not to talk about Khojali.””You will be killed,” he cautioned. Soon after, Mustafaev was killed. His death remains a mystery.
- Czech journalist Dana Mazalova said she hadn’t seen any trace of barbarity on the Azeri corpses.
- Azeri human rights activist Arif Yunusof wrote in Zocalo Azerbaijani newspaper (July 1992): “The town and its citizens were deliberately sacrificed to the political goal.” He was referring to the enemies of Mutalibov who wanted to topple the president and ordered the killing of their citizens to portray Mutalibov as incompetent. Tamerlane Karaev, chairman of the Supreme Soviet of the Azerbaijan, echoed Yunusof in Mukhavilat (April 28, 1992).
- Vagif Guseynov, former minister of national security, said shortly before his arrest that the Baku pogroms of Armenians and the events in Khojali were perpetrated by the same people.
- Mutalibov said he didn’t believe Armenians had committed what was alleged.
- Canadian historian Patrick Wilson Gore said the operation “carried out at late night hours” made it “absolutely difficult for Armenian forces to distinguish armed troops from unarmed civilians to avoid mishaps.”
President Serzh Sargsyan told British journalist Thomas de Wall [sic] 29 years ago: “Before Khojaly, the Azerbaijanis thought that they were joking with us. They thought that the Armenians were a people who could not raise their hands against the civilian population. We needed to put a stop to that. And that’s what happened.”
- Since the First Artsakh War, Thomas de Waal (Gut and Avraham misspell the name), has written scores of articles which have unfailingly sided with Azerbaijan. The outlet which publishes his articles refuses to publish comments critical of de Waal.
Religious tolerance, pluralism, and multiculturalism is [sic] official state policy in Azerbaijan.
- Freedom House has reported Lezgin, Talysh, Tat, Avar, and Kurd minorities encounter discrimination in housing, education, and employment. Valery Tishkov, the Russian expert on the nationalist issue in the former Soviet republics, says Azerbaijan is one of the biggest assimilators among the former Soviet republics.
- In 1926, Azeris made up 62.1 percent of Azerbaijan while minorities were 37.9 percent. In 2009, the Azeris were 91.1 percent. How were the minorities reduced to 8.4 percent if there was no anti-minority harassment and assimilation policy?
- During the First Artsakh War, Azerbaijan used minorities as human shield. Minority families, being poor, couldn’t afford to bribe bureaucrats to remove their sons from the draft lists.
- It must have been that same Azeri tolerance which reduced Artsakh Armenians to third-class citizens.
- It must have been the same Azeri tolerance which destroyed 89 Armenian churches and cathedrals, 5,840 khachkars and 22,000 tombstones in Nakhichevan. A Holocaust monument is painted by one person and the Armenian nation becomes Hitler. Just as the death of Azeri civilians during a night battle became Khojali GENOCIDE.
“Modern Armenia’s policy is a ticking time bomb: Young people who grow up on such ideology will continue to live according to fascism’s creed. Armenia’s state policy displays extreme disrespect for the millions of people who died fighting fascism in World War II… Today, Israel hardly needs partners or allies like Armenia.”
- Every word here, including “is”, “a”, “to” and “or” are lies by Rachel and her pal gutter-snipe Gut.
Rachel, you are entitled to your twisted opinions, but not to your “facts”.
This is truly a fine article.
It is very disappointing that so many Jewish and Israeli writers are anti-Armenian.
Israel has Jews and Israelis work on Azerbaiian’s behalf and, therefore, they write against Armenia and Armenians.
This is similar to Jewish American organizations such as the AJC, AIPAC, and ADL working on Turkey’s behalf to deny the Armenian genocide and defeat Armenian genocide resolutions.
These organizations and people are unprincipled.
Thank you, Art Stepanian, for this expert demolition.
Great article. Let Israel recognize Armenian Genocide first, before spewing such lies about Armenians. But will they? Their interest always lies with Turkey. Furthermore, they have their eyes on Artsakh as well, besides having dreams of reaching leadership in Azerbaijan.
Remark: Mutilation of bodies is undoubtedly an Azeri signature. Armenians never do such horrendous acts. They even treated the Azeri wounded POWs during the last war.
Armenian people have the right to be angry. My grandfather was killed in the Second World War and my mother grew orphan and, yes, I do have a claim against Israel and its government for generously helping Azerbaijan in Artsakh war. Jewish people have suffered too like we Armenians and they have no moral right to play dirty politics against us by trusting and promoting mediocre PR folks sponsored by Baku dictatorship.
Art, you are a realist, a man of honor and integrity. I thank you. You told the truth. All Armenians know this but no one has ever eloquently brought it to light. We Armenians know and understand how and why Israel behaves this way. However, the problem is that other nations don’t. Therefore, I commend you for bringing up this issue and hopefully other nations can clearly see and discover the truth about Israel’s objectives and policies toward others and thus take specific measures when dealing with them.
For all out there, and specifically directed to Israel, I would like to propose the following: “What did Armenia do to Israel that made Israel bomb and kill thousands of Armenians with drones and cluster bombs?” That’s all.
It’s the same Zionist dirty anti-Armenian old game. They organized the Armenian Genocide through the Young Turks (whose leaders were Zionist Jews with Turkish names) and the massacres of Armenians by the Musavats in what is now known as Azerbaijan (artificially created in 1918). The same dirty game continues by today’s Turkey and Azerbaijan through Pan-Turkic and Pan-Turanic policies. The original ideologues of Pan-Turanism were Zionist Jews under cover of Turkish names. They will falsify everything using anti-Armenian lies to cover their dirty deals and will not recognize the Armenian Genocide, because they are its organizers.
There is a problem within the Armenian so called leaderships. They don’t want to accept this known truth and still act in old flawed ways of hundred years ago which led to the Armenian Genocide and loss of a large part of Armenia in the west. The same happened now in the eastern part of Armenia. Unfortunately there isn’t the least sign of change in the Armenian mentality.
In the “Gutter-snipe” article mention is made that Thomas de Waal had said Serge Sargsyan had admitted to him responsibility for the Khojali “massacre”. Journalist and analyst Tatoul Hagopian has said Sargsyan was quoted out of context by de Waal who has been pro-Azeri from day one.