Threatened Armenia Needs Diaspora Muscle Team Editorial, 18 October 2010

Continuous threats by Azerbaijan and preconditions by Turkey on resolving Artsakh’s status prior to engaging in talks with Armenia, contrary to what was spelled out in the infamous Protocols, prompt us to consider the possibility of an attack on Artsakh and Armenia by our two hostile and belligerent neighbours. Is such an invasion unthinkable? There have been many martial instances when the “unthinkable” has materialized. The present context of rivalries and overt provocations by Azerbaijan cannot be dismissed with simple theoretical assumptions that negate such an attack. Team Editorial, 18 October 2010

Continuous threats by Azerbaijan and preconditions by Turkey on resolving Artsakh’s status prior to engaging in talks with Armenia, contrary to what was spelled out in the infamous Protocols, prompt us to consider the possibility of an attack on Artsakh and Armenia by our two hostile and belligerent neighbours. Is such an invasion unthinkable? There have been many martial instances when the “unthinkable” has materialized. The present context of rivalries and overt provocations by Azerbaijan cannot be dismissed with simple theoretical assumptions that negate such an attack.

Reassurances by “friends” of Armenians, such as US Ambassador to Armenia Marie L. Yovanovitch, who recently stated that “such a thing would never happen,” must be treated with a grain of salt. Armenians have heard similar utterances throughout their long history, whether in Berlin, San Stefano, Sèvres or Lausanne.
Some point out the Russian factor and Armenia’s treaty with our “great protector” in the North. They claim that Moscow’s interests in Transcaucasia and in Turkey discourage Ankara and Baku from engaging in another attack on Armenia/Artsakh. There may be some truth in that observation, yet the geopolitical situation in the area is so complex and dynamic, and the interests of the various nations are so interwoven that almost anything is possible, including a tacit Russian-Turkish-Azeri alliance, reminiscent of the Kars Treaty in 1921. What’s stamp-sized Artsakh’s worth to Russia, compared, say, to halting Western expansion in the area with the backing of Turkey? Politics, after all, is the art of the impossible.

Need we be reminded of the not-so-distant promises, treaties and negotiations which have cost so dearly for Armenia and Armenians? It’s only through arms that we have been able to save our lives, lands and rights. Consider the defense of Van and Musa Dagh, the battles of Sardarapat, Karakilisa, Bash-Abaran and, two decades ago, the liberation of Artsakh.

That brings us to questions of Armenia’s military capabilities and readiness. The military might of Armenia is a puzzle and a mystery. As many Armenians, including readers, have pointed out, a country with two-and-a-half million population can’t have a sizeable army, despite mandatory conscription. It cannot match the Azeri military whose 2009 expenditures were close to US $2.5 billion. Azerbaijan has its own defense industry, manufacturing small arms, artillery systems, tanks, armor, aircraft bombs, pilotless vehicles, military planes and helicopters, according to Wikipedia.

It seems that no week passes without Baku threatening Armenia and Artsakh with war. It’s time Armenians of Armenia and Diaspora thought of improving the military capabilities of our motherland. Depending on traditional Armenian patriotism and high morale will result in disaster. Those were factors during Artsakh’s battles, but since then Azerbaijan has learned some important lessons, and its military has become stronger and more sophisticated, thanks to the input of international military suppliers and advisors.

The Armenian Diaspora should not wait for Yerevan to beckon for help in the eleventh hour. The worldwide Armenian community can initiate its own measures and demonstrate that its participation in the defense of Armenia is crucial. For a number of reasons, the authorities in Armenia may, at first, be reluctant to respond to such initiatives. They may feel challenged. They may not tolerate “outside” interference. This has been a characteristic of “independent” Armenia, starting with the First Republic. The unfortunate tradition has not changed irrespective of who has been in control.

Recent news of abuse and torture in the Armenian army are disturbing, to say the least. However, it should not deter Diaspora from setting up its own plan of conscription of young people. The need for such a plan is neither far-fetched nor unheard of. Several countries use the resources, including military, of their diasporas. Some also hire mercenaries. In time of war emergency nationals of many countries, who ethnically are not related to the country in need, have lent their support. The classic example is the Spanish Civil War in the ’30s. In more recent times Latin American nationals participated in the overthrow of Batista’s dictatorship in Cuba. Argentinean Che Guevara’s name, irrespective of the political colours he is painted with, still resonates with the young. Israel has always drawn fighters from “relatives” in the west, while Azerbaijan receives military and propaganda support from Turkey.

During the First World War, the 4,124-member Légion arménienne, made up of Diaspora Armenians, fought on the side of the French and British armies against Ottoman Turkey. The all-volunteer regiment was comprised of Armenians who had even travelled from distant United States to fight the Turkish genocidiers. These brave and patriotic young men also fought because the Allies had promised to give autonomy to Cilician Armenia. At the Battle of Arara (Sept. 19, 1918) in northern Palestine, the Legion defeated a combined German-Turkish force to spur the final victorious campaign of the Allies in the Middle East.

The Nazi occupation in France led many Armenians to fight in the Resistance. Missak Manouchian, a young intellectual, a poet and a leader in the Resistance, was executed for his contribution to the liberation of France. He was posthumously awarded France’s highest honours. In the ’80s young Armenians, from the Diaspora, used unorthodox methods in several capitals of Europe and in Turkey to make the voice of their slain ancestors be heard; and some of these volunteers paid with their lives. During the Lebanese Civil War it was the young men and women who protected the Armenian neigbourhoods. Young diasporans in Artsakh participated in battles, some making the ultimate sacrifice. We have no reason to believe that the heroic tradition of Diaspora young people has faded. It needs rekindling; it needs a meaningful cause.

In time of need, the Diaspora has responded to the call of the motherland. It can and should again. During the Second World War, initiated by Etchmiadzin, it participated generously in raising funds to establish the Sasountsi Tavit tank battalion. Commanded by Marshal Hovhannes Bagramyan, it was among the first to enter liberated Berlin. Just as our Diaspora brothers and sisters supported Armenia in the Second World War, we can now participate in the defense of our motherland.

There is no end to how we can contribute to the defense of Armenia and Artsakh, provided we have the mindset to explore the possibilities and are willing to implement even the impossible. challenges all political parties to stop bickering about who does what and who has what portion of the farm. We’ve had enough of henhouse mentality (havnotsamedaynutyun). Protocols or not, we have more urgent issues at hand. Diaspora should tell, in no uncertain terms, to Azerbaijan and its allies that Armenia is not alone. Diaspora’s voice will be heard! It will always be ready and willing to serve the 4,300-year-old motherland.

If the homeless Armenian nation–ravaged by genocide and exile–could, in 1916, raise a regiment of close to 4,200 soldiers for the liberation of Cilician Armenia, a contemporary global and often prosperous Armenian Diaspora is capable of doing far more. There will always be fence-sitters who will say, "if," "but," "can’t be done,’ "it’s a pipedream." Let’s ignore the naysayers and consider the words of statesman Edmund Burke: "Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only little."

  1. Para Bellum

    This is a very important article. The threat of war is real, and we must not count on anyone’s help. What do we need to do to prepare for such scenario, even if hostilities renew around Artsakh, which I believe can be handled by us, what will happen if Turkey attacks Armenia?

    We have no way of resisting 1.2 million strong army. Will Russia get involved? We have a signed defence agreement and Russian soldiers are guarding the border with Turkey along with Armenians. Russian casualties will not let them go silent and indifferent to our fate.

    I guess now, we might have a better appreciation of a similar situation not too far from us, in the Middle East. Small country, surrounded by enemies who threaten war. Intifada N. 3. And they have no illusions, they will fight to the last man, if it comes to it. So shall we. But they have a deterrent power which we don’t. Yet there is much we can learn from them, how to mobilize our resources when the day comes, how to fight a bigger enemy, etc, etc.

    I wish there was some sort of dialogue between Armenia and Israel. Our situation is just way too similar.

    1. To “Ruben Malayan”
      Oh, your name sounds Armenian, but …..

      Are you serious? Aren’t you aware that Israel is prime supplier of arms to Azerbaijan?
      What do you have to fear? US, NATO and most of Europe supports Israel in war and in peace, and it lets expand at the expense of the Palestinians and Palestine.

      Please come clean and say that you are an Israeli and not an Armenian, and keep your musings to yourself about a dialogue.

      1. As someone who is familiar

        As someone who is familiar with the small Armenian community in Occupied Palestine, I would say that Malayan is an unfamiliar name to me. If Malayan is Armenian, he must be from the former Soviet Union. These settlers in Occupied Palestine are often half-Jewish or married to Jews thus have priorities different from mainstream Armenians in Occupied Palestine and elsewhere.
        1. Your “former Soviet Union” is

          Your "former Soviet Union" is an independent Armenian Republic. And it’s my home, my land, my language and my culture. Before you insult me once again, be ware. Your words are repulsive, an Armenian who has any self-respect will not go down to that level. But you do, so let God be your judge.
  2. Threatened Armenia Needs Diaspora Muscle

    This is another excellent, "rare, proactive instead of reactive and thought provoking article.” We should all agree and act. Yes at first it may look impossible, but nothing is impossible as long as there is the will, understanding, commitment and aspiration to sacrifice and even become a martyr. For millennia we Armenians have been warriors, commanders, Kings, generals and marshals and served not only our country but others from Byzantine times (and probably earlier) to the second world war and liberation of Artzakh. And we can do it again.

    I fully agree with Noubar’s first paragraph, but disagree with the last. There are many Armenians that don’t know what has gone or is going around. Ruben may be one of those, but at least now he is reading and has responded, while thousands of others who are better informed and capable of making a positive impact are silent. I have a saying about us Armenians “Those who can don’t act and those who can’t try but fail”. Your criticism is too harsh. It doesn’t help the process, it hinders.

    Bedros H, Kojian, M.D.

  3. Threatened Armenia

    Comparing Israel to Artsakh is sheer ignorance of the facts. Israel was created on Palestinian land , while Artsakh was given to Azerbaijan , and now we have it back .

    Israel never recognized the Armenian Genocide and it supplies Azerbaijan with arms to be used against Armenia and Artsakh for another Genocide .

    Wake up Ruben Malayan .

    Vrejouhy, Calgary, Canada

  4. Unfortunate

    I don’t have to come clean, like you put it, I am an Israeli citizen and Armenian at the same time. Hard concept to grasp for someone so judgmental like yourself. But since you have more important things to preoccupy yourself with, namely dividing between Armenians from Armenia or Diaspora, I will not go down to mundane discussions on this topic.

    Who are you to call me a "settler" in the occupied Palestine? Do you at all know me? If you cannot read between the lines, that’s your problem. By the way, I am the one, who is going back to Armenia, my homeland, to help rebuild, teach, so spare me your preaching on where my alliances are. If you are such a patriot and so familiar with "small Armenian community in occupied Palestine", why don’t you come and help preserve it? Or go to Armenia and help there? You choose to get personal instead, and that’s fine but I will not go down that road.

    1. Anyone who settles in Israel

      Anyone who settles in Israel has to acknowledge that he or she is living on stolen land from Palestinians. No matter how one rationalizes settling on land conquered by foreigners, it cannot justify the killing, deportation and misery of countless legitimate owners of that land.

      It’s opportunism moving to Israel because it promises a better life. Most of the world–except ignorant/corrupt/Zionist-influenced Americans and some Western Europeans–consider Israel a colonial entity.

      1. Really?

        Oh, yes, and you are living on a legitimate land occupied for thousands of years by pure blood Canadians, right? …for you the very concept of Israel’s existence delegitimizes thousands good and honest people who don’t hate you because you are an Armenian and Christian. 

        The point of my reply was that Armenia and Artsakh have much to learn from Israel how to fight wars against bigger and better equipped enemy. And they proved it time and time again. But since they have no legitimacy in your eyes, what is there to learn, right?

  5. Threatened Armenians
    Ruben malayan,

    I will speak for myself. I am originally from Jerusalem, Palestine, from the Armenian Vank. Before Armenia’s independence my family moved to Canada. As for Israel and the Armenians of Jerusalem, I am sure you are aware of what Israel wants to do with our lands there. It’s in the news.

    What action are you taking as an Armenian and a citizen of Israel to protect our rights in Jerusalem? As for what I do for Armenia should be my private bussines; however since you don’t think that people care I will tell you that for the last ten years I have been going to Armenia and Atsakh with medical teams volunteering our services for several months at the time. I just returned to Canada .

    Vrejouhy, Calgary, Canada

    1. Everyone does what he can and

      Everyone does what he can and I commend you on what you have been doing for Armenia and Artsakh. If Armenians were not leaving Jerusalem the situation would not be as dire as it is now, you know that better than me. Now what is left is some pitiful amount of people.  Asbarez published an article on it in past few days.

      I do not justify what Israel is doing to Armenians and if you think Arabs are any better, think again. Armenians must look out for themselves and leaving Old City to seek better life anywhere else does not contribute anything to the preservation of Armenian heritage here. If Israel won’t take over, then Arabs or Greeks will. As soon as it’s empty of Armenians it will be out for grabs. And again, I don’t know you, and I don’t judge you. You do what you do and I am sure you have reasons for it.

      I am not going to tell you what I am doing for my nation, because it’s not relevant, words are irrelevant, only actions. So before anyone calls me a "settler in occupied Palestine" mind you- a very insulting thing to say to me, should first look in the mirror.

      1. Parev Rupen
        Parev Rupen

        I think it is time for us Armenians to welcome anyone who is by birth  Armenian in the Armenian Family, no matter what is his religion or residence. Let’s leave Arab Israeli or other int’l conflicts alone. Help Armenia as an Armenian.
  6. Diaspora Muscle

    A good editorial it is. However, if a reader has not read in the Armenian press about the Diaspora participation in the karabagh conflict, he or she may be under the impression that there has not been assistance rendered and the editorial is advocating one.

    Instead or along the example of the volunteers in WWI, among them my maternal grandfather’s brother, Nshan Chelebian from Kessab and America, the editorial in my view should have dwelt and elaborated on the examples of Diaspora assistance rendered.

    The following examples of Diaspora participation in the Karabagh conflict come to my mind. Monte Melkonian from Fresno became a commander of Karabagh forces. He was buried with full state honors in Yeraplour in Yerevan. When asked what did he envision for Armenia, he replied “just and without corruption”. His brother’s book – My Brother’s Road – makes a very interesting reading. Jirair Sefilian from Lebanon is another example. During the early phases of the Karabagh conflict and the presidency of first president the young, flamboyant and idealist Arthur Mkrditchian, fund raisings were done in Diaspora. There is a very interesting site about karabagh conflict in Wikipedia; I will attach the link to this commentary. The following is reported at that site: “The Armenian Diaspora managed to donate a significant amount of money to be sent to Armenia”. I am sure there are many and many more examples.

    There has been collaboration between Diaspora and Armenia regarding the self-preservations of Armenia and Karabagh. Whether the collaboration has been well structured, sufficient, ongoing and collaborative Diaspora wide is what I believe the editorial should have emphasized.

  7. War is not only probable, but inevitable

    Unfortunately I do not see any way that the diplomatic channels are going to defuse this conflict.  Azerbaijan’s population is not ready to accept any form of compromise because of Aliev’s jingoistic policies over the last several years. The people of Armenia and Artsakh, on the other hand, will never accept Azerbaijani rule, which will inevitably lead to civil war in Artsakh.  Furthermore, Azerbaijan is getting stronger militarily as the Armenian Army is losing morale due to corruption and mismanagement.  Even if there were to be a movement for regime change in Azerbaijan, Aliev would start a war just to hold on to his wealth and power.  

    Armenia should work on its military alliances, Army and economy because I believe that war in Artsakh is inevitable in the long run.

    1. Recent Military Events

      Just because of recent events in the Armenian military one should not think the Azeri military is stronger than Armenia’s. The enemy has a long way to go. Also remember that most of the soldiers in the Azeri military are fighting to protect the little Sultan of Baku, whereas Armenia’s troops have their backs against the wall. Attitude is 90% of the battle, and we are far more committed to our cause than the Azerbaijani foe.
      1. I Hope You Are Right
         I hope you are right, but until when can we continue using that argument. Azerbaijan has been getting more and more sophisticated military might every year. At some point the balance will change to our detriment if it hasn’t already.  

        1. The enemy gets much of their
          The enemy gets much of their equipment from the west and israel.  These cost more than their Russian counter parts, but are often not much better.  They also have been buying things which are primarily for traditional wars fought on large planes, not small and mountainious plots of land such as in Artsakh.  Armenia gets modern Russian weapons at reduced prices and often for free.  There is a lot of things our military has but we never hear about it for obvious nationalu security reasons.  On the other hand, the azeri’s like to brag about their budget and toys, as with dogs, it is often the dog that does not bark which is the one to watch out for.

  8. There is only one weapon that

    There is only one weapon that will even the playing field with Armenia’s belligerent neighbors and so called friendly allies. Armenia must speak from strength.  Azerbaijan is getting bolder with every passing day. Not only is Karabakh the prize, but the streets of Yerevan offer no safety. So what is Armenia’s deterrent ? More speeches? Baku must be made to understand the vulnerability of Uzeyir Hajibeyov.
  9. Miliary Training for Diasporans?

    Let’s get down to brass tacks. Who is going to train us in the diaspora so that we who wish to go fight there are equipped to be an asset to Armenia? Where are we going to be trained? Who is going to start recruiting? 

    After all, many of us want to defend the fatherland, and are not the "armchair patriots" we are sometimes called simply because we live in the diaspora.

    As most of us are not dual citizens of a diasporan country and Armenia, do we have the official right to fight in Armenia’s or Artsakh’s military, do we? If not, how do we circumvent that? 

    These are practical question that need immediate answers.

    1. John, Artsakh Needs You!
      Dear John,

      I think VTiger from Hong Kong has provided some answers to your questions, and I agree with him. Artsakh is an ideal place for military training. Some of our young people visit Artsakh regularly every year. I am sure that there will be  volunteers to get basic military training that can be expanded in time of need.

      Once the idea crystallizes, a joint staff (Artsakh/Diaspora) is established and funding is secured the idea may be circulated to our young people. There are individuals who have had military training in various countries, whether in the Middle East, the west, Turkey and in the ranks of Kurdish freedom fighters. The most capable of them can be recruited as professionals to set up the Diaspora wing of the command.
      All of above are within reach provided our financial elite guarantees that the funds will be there.

      Whatever is said will be meaningless unless we firmly believe in the premise that

      Artsakh needs you!

      My young adult daughter, son and I are ready to take the road.

  10. Women and men – the willing step forward

    The threat from Azerbaijan is serious and Armenia/Artsakh need to see our well publicized active support.

    I suggest, we cut the chit-chat AND

    Start enrolling names of men and women, young or old, who are willing to take part in a future conflict between Azerbaaijan and Armenia/Artsakh.  As I have  suggested before,  list of serious individuals could be  collected  with  a
    trusted custodian. 

    Joining past present Azatamatiks, I hereby step forward and enroll my name as a participant in battle agaisnt Azerbaijan to defend  Armenia/Artsakh.

    Thomas Siraki, TORONTO, Canada.

    Let us see the next name….

  11. The United Nations General

    The United Nations General Assembly
    Sept 23, 2010

    "After 60 years in the community of nations, Israel’s existence must not be a subject for debate. It should be clear to all that efforts to chip away at Israel’s legitimacy will only be met by the unshakeable opposition of the United States.”

    President Barack Obama.

    Does the United States think that Armenia is less threatened?

  12. If war starts, NKR Defense Army will not fight on its territory

    "If war starts, NKR Defense Army will not fight on its territory – it will fight wherever it is convenient and interesting for it"

    October 13, 2010 – NKR Defense Minister, Lieutenant General Movses Hakobyan said that currently the NKR Defense Army (DA) is in a state of war. Martial law is preserved on the contact line, as hostilities take place there, though at a smaller scale compared to the beginning of 90-s, Hakobyan said during a meeting with participants of the 5th Pan-Armenian Forum of Journalists and Mass Media in Stepanakert. According to him, the current situation is described in military manuals as a positional warfare.
    Speaking about the NKR DA structure, he said that it is rather peculiar. “There is a similar army only in Israel and Artsakh. We continue strengthening our might, being not satisfied with the truce concluded in 1994, as it does not guarantee non-resumption of hostilities by one of the states. Today, there is a serious problem, as Azerbaijan rejects direct negotiations with Karabakh. One can say that there are not negotiations, as Artsakh does not participate in them,” a Pan-ARMENIAN.Net reporter quoted Hakobyan as saying.
    The Minister noted that if Azerbaijan thinks even for a moment that it can resolve the conflict through force, it will immediately unleash a war, irrespective of bans of the international community. “And we conceive it. The NKR DA controls the situation, which causes concern, but is not catastrophic,” said Hakobyan.
    Speaking about the Azerbaijani Army, Movses Hakobyan noted that Azerbaijan started building it several years ago, but it is impossible to establish a normal army within such period. As for the number and material status, he noted that a big army and great number of equipment on small territories are not convenient always, adding that the NKR army’s material status is better.
    “If a war starts, we will not fight on our territory, we will fight wherever it is convenient and interesting for the NKR DA,” stressed Hakobyan. He added that military units’ morale is very high. “Not a diversion will be left unpunished, we try to dictate conditions on the frontline. As for accidents in the army, they always happen. But we are resolute to improve the situation, while positive things considerably prevail negatives ones in the army,” concluded Hakobyan.
    1. Helping Armenia and Artsakh

      Coming to the help of Armenia and Artsakh means helping ourselves. Without them, there’s no Armenian nation or there will be no such a nation within a couple of generations.

      Diaspora organizations, excluding the Church, should start recruiting for volunteers to fight for the defense of our motherland.

      Recruitment should start with a "marketing" campaign to convince everyone that we are going through an existential period, that Armenia and Artskah need fighters, in addition to funds and drugs and medical supplies.

      The Diaspora, following consultations with the authorities in the motherland, should recruit, transport, and help pay the salaries of the volunteers. The local authorities in Armenia and Artsakh would provide the training.

      Since a war with the Azeris would require the participation of Armenians of all ages and abilities, the middle-aged doctor, dentist, nurse, truck driver, cook, baby-sitter, etc. should all consider joining the volunteer army.

      1. Count me in

        Count me in.  Medical teams of all levels , please join me in making this commitment.


        1. Living Up to a Name

          Should we command you or acknowledge you for living up to your name ? Your name –  Vrejouhy – tells volumes about your parents who baptized you so. Well done.


  13. Artsakh Should be Defended at al Costs
    I nearing 60, together with my two sons are ready to join the diaspora Artsakh defence force.

    • It is time for such a sacred action to be taken. We are far too late already.
    • Individual evaluation & training should be done in Artsakh.
    • Funding for this cause should be raised by the diaspora & it should be controlled by joint diaspora/Artsakh committee.

    Artsakhtsis have given us back our pride.

    Vay yegadz e ayn orvan vor ap me hogh gorsentsenenk
    mer sourp Artsakhen.
  14. Helping Armenia
    I love the entusiasm I see among the commentators to help  Armenia and Artsakh. We are all soldiers at heart, to give our life for our cause. Without a fight we are lambs.
    Unfortunately, we would be called terrorists and be banned from Canada if we join a military organisation to fight agains another nation. Maybe we would be jailed.

    The only way I see is move to Artsakh, if not permenantly, for six months at a time. That would give us the time to integrate. I, for one, am planning to spend every summer in Stepanakerd. I will see how it goes. I have many friends in the army. I promise to keep in touch.

  15. Quite simple

    I have read carefully  what  the editorial conveys and all the comments thereafter, reaching repulsive, insulting and bemeaning levels. When for several times over I have written here  with reference to Formacion Social(Social Formation) that we lack. No one has commented  on  it.

    This can be arrived at by forming Professional Colleagues Associations when we meet each other, get to know each other better. Through these Associations (15 fields) we elect our Boards in all Armenian-dense townships.

    Editor: For details please contact Mr. Gaytzag Palandjian at
    [email protected]


  16. Diaspora Army
    According to the Israeli Debka website of this week, "Every year about 2,800 determined young men and women choose to leave the comfort of their homes and families to travel to Israel, enlist in the Israeli Defense Forces, become proud soldiers, and make Israel their home.

    "They come from all over the world, from the US., Canada, Argentina, Russia, France, Ethiopia, Hungary, Brazil Azerbaijan, Mexico, and many other countries."

    Since 1973 October War, there has been no serious threat of invasion to Israel. If we took those 2,800 recruits and multiplied them by 27 years, we get 75,600 soldiers. The actual number is even higher, I have been told… and Israel has 200 or so nuclear bombs, in addition to chemical and biological bombs plus the military support of the United States.

    The 5.5 million Diaspora Armenians should be able to raise a volunteer army of 5,000. 

  17. In Israel, it is the

    In Israel, it is the government that enforces patriotism. Not an NGO! I’m sick and tired of these organizations claiming to have won the war over Artsakh single handedly. During the darkest hours of Armenia’s independence, it was the citizens of Armenia that emptied what little they had from their provisions and along with any extra clothing delivered them to the front. A plan of action for the country must be formulated. And never forget that without Russia’s change of heart, there would be no Karabagh.
    It’s now 20 years since independence and still the government hasn’t taken control of the situation. Israel within its first 20 years had defeated Egypt, Jordan and Syria in the 67 war. Time is not on our side. If Armenia doesn’t wake up soon, it will die in its sleep.  
  18. The best way and the cheapest

    The best way and the cheapest way to get any kind of military training is to join and serve in the military of the countries you live in.  You never know when you will be called upon to serve.  I have been preaching this idea for several decades.  Unfortunately, Armenian parents always discourage their children from joining the military because it is too dangerous and they encourage them to become doctors and lawyers instead (no offense to Dr. Aprahamian) because there is more money in those professions.

    The military training you would receive, not only prepares you to defend your country but also it teaches you leadership, discipline, organization, public speaking etc.  I would encourage and challenge all Armenian American youth to join the US military and particulary the USAF.

  19. I Agree

    I agree with the message of this article. However, I strongly disagree that Russia would sell out Armenia.

    Moscow is planning to build a railway to Iran through Armenia, and China may participate in its construction. The ultimate goal here is to turn Armenia into a major rail hub connecting east to west.

    Again, much to the dismay of Tbilisi, Ankara, Baku, Brussels and Washington, we see Moscow pushing Armenia onto center stage in regional politics. I have a feeling that our "opposition" obsessed people, namely those who enjoy nothing but disseminating poisonous stories about their republic, will find something catastrophic about this development as well…

    Within the world of superpower politics, within the world of career officials who are responsible for the care of hundreds of millions of nationals and the protection of trillions of dollars of wealth and resources, absolutely nothing is left to chance. Political policies are carefully formulated and meticulously mulled over many years in advance by major powers. Government controlled news media reveals merely a fraction of what actually transpires within the inner chambers of places like the White House or the Kremlin. Therefore, when I see a major political/economic entity like the Russian Federation investing hundreds of millions of dollars in Armenia’s national infrastructure and hear Russian official talk about the building of a new railway in Armenia, as well as the building of an oil refinery plant and a new nuclear power plant, I begin to suspect that serious regional projects are being worked on by the Kremlin and Armenia is playing a major role in it.

    Step-by-step, Moscow is attempting to help its ally Armenia become a transportation hub in the Caucasus. The push to bring Yerevan and Ankara together in the aftermath of the Russian-Georgian war in 2008 was at least in part because of Moscow’s desire to project its political and economic power in the region via its most reliable foothold in the region, Armenia. The strategically significant railway project has been getting more news coverage recently. Work has already been started in Armenia and Iran.

    1. Dear LG,Thank you
      Dear LG,
      Thank you for the information about the Russian train tracks to Iran. Can you tell me the northern starting point of the railway?

      I am glad to hear that Russia has plans for such a railway, but remember plans change, wars errupt. Remember the istanbul to Baghdad Railway? It wasn’t completed until 1940 and by then there was no German or Ottoman Empire, and Iraq had become an Arab country.

      1. Hayorti: I believe the

        I believe the railway will run from Sevan to Meghri and then in Iran from the border to the Persian Gulf.  However, should a friendly government come to power in Tiflis, friendly to Russia, then I suspect the railway will be connected with Russia.  Thus it would be a true North-South railway.
  20. Some comments: truly a teen-ager sounding platform

    Whereas a few such as LG´s stand out as to the point and rather factual, if his reference to intended railway through Armenian territory connecting with Iran to south and North to Russia  is realized, some sound like teen-agers’  platform.

    As to Ruben Malayan being a real Armenian, or half  so, what does it matter. Just take whatever  he writes as his comments and be satisfied  that  he is not against anything Armenian or against Armenia. After all we have had many such who actually went and stayed in RA/Artsakh to the detriment of our adversaries, also fought there.

    Needless to say "start enrollment"…and such like dispositions  addressed to the editorial board or whoever they think will be the "taker"  of these voluntary anouncements is tantamount to Don Quijotesque utterances. Firstly, how can an editorial board take upon itself  such a "recruiting"? Secondly,  when there is no planned-prepared strategy plus of indeed funding behind  it, a mere handful such imaginary untrained "fighters" could really be taken seriously. Are you kidding? Or are there some who think that  such a "mobilization"  started  by an editorial  on the internet can take shape?

    Come come, please think a bit more seriously and at the very least  discuss about the necessity of putting our Diaspora house  in order. Which has heads (some self appointed), some by support  of friends and /or very minor fundings (copied from the  much  larger Western-Hemispheric countries´mode), but as yet No head!!

    I suggest  to those who are really eager to go give a hand to our brethren in RA/Artsakh contact directly the present-though also imperfect Ministry of Diaspora – and  declare  their voluntirism in answer to latter´s "Ari Tun" regularly repeated calls and join the teen-agers  who do so already for the past 15-16  years even without said calls .

    Anyhow, I had suggsted to said entity in my writs  to them that some of those youngsters could also be subjected to cadet-military trainings alongside  the newly recruited  conscripts  in Fatherland and undergo a month´s or so excercises with them. So far it  has not happened. But the system there is so that they do get the message but realize and act upon it "a la Armenien" i.e., after a slight change to it or a make over so that the author´s "suggestion" will not be attributed to him/her but  to theirs…

    1. One wonders

      One wonders where from Mr. Palandjian gets the idea that the editorial is engaged in "enrollment", and like a self-appointed leader he provides advice left and right, mostly repeating himself ad nauseam.
  21. Noubar, check it out

    The Words "start enrolling" is by Siraki on the 17th and obviously not addressed to me but the entity – in this case – the editorial board that posted the above subject matter. And please refrain calling me "like a self appointed leader, providing advice…"

    I never advise, but suggest. Take it or leave it. Make a note of that, not even to kin, let alone to Arshagavan Armenians.

  22. Interesting to see

    Reading these posts, I see that Armenians are in panic. And they should be. Not for nothing, Azeris have been spending billions on military. The plan is to retake our land. Ok, let’s admit that Nagorni Karabak itself is a disputed territory. Ok, let’s say both sides have legitimate claims. But I am not talking about these territories, but about the surrounding regions currently under Armenian occupation. Azeris have every right to take these back, and they will. And please don’t start talking about how you are extraordinarily brave, etc. etc., and that you will kick our —s like you did in 1990s. Back then, things were very different. Azeris were very poorly organized, the Soviet Union was in ruins, there was no law and order. Thanks to being better organized, you won last time. Now, Azeri military is much stronger. Now you and we are BOTH organized. But we have one major advantage: our military budget is larger than the entire budget of Armenia. This will count for something.

    No matter how brave, you cannot stop tanks and planes with flesh. See what happened in Afganistan and Iraq. Weaponry matters. And we have more of it than you. True, Russia is your friend, and that is the only thing that is saving you. But Russia, like all allies, can be bought. And it appears from the recent oil deals that this might have been accomplished to some extent. And US needs Azerbaijan for flights to Afganistan. And Israel needs Azerbaijan for Iran. So, everything is in our favor. So we must take back what is rightly ours. As for Khankendi and etc, that we can negotiate later. The first thing is to take back the surrounding lands. And we will. So continue to be in panic. Volunteer all you want. At the end of the day basic math will win.

    1. Azeri is blowing dust into our eyes

      Firstly, who said, "Armenians  panic". Quite the contrary, our president only a few days ago responded to Mr. Aliev ‘s incessant  war rhetorics, making it clear that if war breaks out, "it will be deadly and for good for Azerbaijan".
      So why does Mr. Aliev put it off?

      Secondly, if Aliev wished to do so, would have done so already.Wants to do it without any pre aviso, pre-empting. Then that also can be confronted, no problem .However, Azeri makes mention of surrounding areas of NK, which Armenians consider  as buffer zone. May  not  be traded  with Shahumian and occupied by Azeris. Shahumian could be speculated to exchange  with say Jabrail or Fizouli.

      Thirdly, something I herewith remind my compatriots and to you Azeri, is the issue  of Nakhijevan, land of my ancestors….this has to be returnred to Armenia, one way or another.

      As to Western Armenian usurped lands, we can settle  that a bit later.
      I believe  our international attorneys are eyeing  claim  for "Blood Money" in the first place.

      Hope above  meets with your queries and you may be satisfied.

    2. Panicking?

      This issue has been debated and been a point of interest by Armenians for over 50 years, that is about half the time that Azerbaijan has existed as a nation. If you consider this panicking, that stems from your ignorance I am afraid.

      As to what you can do with equipment that you buy, the examples are abound in history where your theory is absolutely false. The best and most recent one is the US & Vietnam, where the power difference between the two states you can not compare to the level of difference, even if one exists between Armenia & Azerbaijan.

      Basic math has nothing to do with politics. If it did, things would be a lot different in this world. In politics 1+1 can equal 7. Look around you, how can one man Aliev, have so much wealth. Do the math.

      A few missiles that any individual can buy will bring the Azeri oil industry and hence your financial advantage to a halt in a NY minute. By the way, how is the 14 year old son of your leader managing the multi million Dollar Dubai properties that he bought. Any new investments by him recently?

    3. To Azeri

      Azeri person (or should I call you "Albanian-Iberian"-"Atropani,"- pseudo-Iranian- "Median,"- Mongol, Seljuk Turk…?), if you are certain you can beat the Armenians, what the hell are you waiting for after all these years, the building your feckless army, the endless negotiations? And pray tell why are you telling your enemy that you can beat him? Just do it; don’t fantacize pubicly.

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