Recognize the Genocide that Happened—And the One Now Beginning

Share

Hits: 2889

The United States, Europe, and their partners must officially recognize the Mountainous Karabagh Republic within its constitutional frontiers.

Stepanakert, Mountainous Karabagh — I no longer know what to do on April 24—or where to go. This is the day Armenians across the globe commemorate the genocide in 1915 that destroyed the Armenian people and its homeland of thousands of years.

Those killing fields, the homes of my grandparents, are located in historic western Armenia—now eastern Turkey. But a century later, this very region has erupted in all-out war. Turkish forces are on the offensive again, this time, Armenians having been eliminated, against an empowered Kurdish majority. For an Armenian, it is a difficult place to travel to on April 24—to assert our memory amid the bombshells and havoc of another people’s national struggle.

In Washington earlier this April, I was taking several meetings with the Department of State and at other offices. As it is known, official Turkey still denies that genocide was ever committed. And it expects its “strategic partners,” such as the United States, not to call it by that name.

In the past week, respected national newspapers shamefully published Turkish ads denying the Armenian Genocide. Denialist billboards went up, too. And in his address this April, President Obama called the events of 1915 everything but “genocide.” You can see why Washington, too, is also a difficult place to be on April 24.

So I decided to return to Yerevan, Armenia, for April 24. To be clear this is modern-day Armenia—just a sliver of the great homeland which survived 1915, was absorbed into the Soviet Union, and eventually declared independence in 1991. This is Armenia, whose foreign minister I was and whose flag I raised at the United Nations. Here millions of Armenians and their guests—this year George Clooney, Charles Aznavour, and others—march up to the Eternal Flame of 1915 and lay flowers every April 24.

But even Yerevan, this year, was a difficult place to be on April 24. Because the minds of Armenians were elsewhere. They were drifting a couple hundred miles southeast—where, even as we commemorated the victims of the Armenian Genocide, the groundworks of a new genocide against us were being laid.

A lot has been written about Nagorno (Mountainous) Karabagh, or Artsakh; people have different opinions of it. But the simplest and most irrefutable narrative is this: For as long as we know, since the ancient Armenian kingdoms, Mountainous Karabagh has been an Armenian cultural cradle. Even when Josef Stalin and his Bolshevik entourage, in order to placate nationalist Turkey, unilaterally transferred these lands from Soviet Armenia and subjected them as an autonomous region to Soviet Azerbaijani rule in 1923, Mountainous Karabagh—unlike Nakhichevan to its west—managed to keep its majority Armenian population.

As the USSR collapsed and the people of Artsakh voted by lawful referendum to declare their own independence from Azerbaijan, Baku in turn unleashed all-out war—and lost. As sovereign Armenia’s foreign minister, I helped launch the peace process in Helsinki in March 1992.

Twenty years later, this April, Turkey-allied Azerbaijan launched its largest campaign of racist aggression since the Russian-brokered ceasefire that had been signed in 1994 among Azerbaijan, Mountainous Karabagh, and Armenia. For four days, Azerbaijan’s drones and helicopters bombed peaceful Christian Armenian civilians. Soldier and villager alike were taken captive and, ISIS-style, beheaded alive in such inhumanity that even transcends the definition of a war crime.

From Stepanakert, the capital of Mountainous Karabagh, I can now report the following. Azerbaijan’s belligerent conduct, a hell-bent design developed over the years to wipe out not only Karabagh but Armenia in toto, renders a negotiated settlement no longer possible, and it is imperatively time for the international community to take a stance in equivalent application of international law and, yes, in pursuit of guaranteeing strategic security interests.

The United States, Europe, and their partners to the east and south must officially recognize the Mountainous Karabagh Republic within its constitutional frontiers.  It is no less deserving of recognition, under the 1933 Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States, than Kosovo, East Timor, Eritrea, or South Sudan.

It gives no consolation that Azerbaijan is a blatant clan-based dictatorship or that official Ankara is in the throes of realizing xenophobic rhetoric domestically and in foreign affairs, but it would help along the way if the Republic of Armenia itself, naturally among the first to recognize, put its own democratic house in order, rooting out the corruption of its own authorities, systemic fraud and falsification, stolen elections and political prisoners.

This is a complicated issue indeed; let us not pretend otherwise. But on the verge of a new genocide this April, let us also not mince words and find pretext for inaction.

Armenians living peacefully in Mountainous Karabagh were murdered this April. They will be murdered again. Do you recognize a genocide when you see it?


Originally published on 2016-05-06

About the author: Raffi K. Hovannisian is independent Armenia’s first minister of foreign affairs, currently chairs the opposition Heritage Party and directs the Armenian Center for National and International Studies in Yerevan.

Source: Foreign Policy Journal

Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection, Public Domain & Pinterest.

Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!

Donate to Support Us

We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations.

[wpedon id=”4696″ align=”left”]

READ MORE!
On the Centenary of the Greek Genocide
Hannibal Travis, "On The Centenary of The Greek Genocide", AHIF Policy Journal, American Hellenic Institute Foundation, Inc., Vol. 8, Spring 2017, pp. 14 Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection & Pinterest. Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement! Donate to Support Us We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations. [wpedon id="4696" align="left"]
READ MORE
Edward S. Herman: The Srebrenica Massacre was a Gigantic Political Fraud
Eleven Years ago: 11 July 1995, The Srebrenica MassacreFirst published by GR in February 2013.Renowned author Dr. Edward Herman spoke with John Robles of the Voice of Russia regarding the facts surrounding the Srebrenica Massacre, the pretext for the “humanitarian” invasion of the former Yugoslavia, and takes apart the “official” ; version that has always been promoted by the West. Dr. Herman reveals that there were in fact multiple massacres at Srebrenica, and that the killing of Bosnian-Muslim soldiers at Srebrenica (the West’s pretext) was in response to the killing of over 2,000 Serb civilians, mostly women and children, at ...
READ MORE
Prof. Vladislav B. Sotirović about the Situation in Ukraine
Professor Vladislav B. Sotirović, Ph.D. is a Senior Lecturer of: “Middle East Studies” at the Mykolas Romeris University, Vilnius, Lithuania; “Mediterranean Studies;” “Ethnicity, Multiculturalism and Globalisation;” “Balkan Nationalism and Ethnic Conflicts” and “Europeanisation: Process and Results.”Prof. Dr. Sotirović is a distinguished expert on the History of the Early Byzantine Empire, 330–846”, Comparative History of Central and South-Eastern Europe and Ottoman History, History of Lithuania and Ukraine. He is well known abroad for his influential books and popular lectures about Lithuania, the Russian Federation, the Balkans, and Baltic Nations, and Multiculturalism.Professor Sotirović has studied at the Central European Summer University, Budapest, ...
READ MORE
Will Russia Surrender?
The Russian government’s sincere and diligent effort to prevent chaos in Syria and additional massive refugee flow into Europe, all the while avoiding conflict with Washington and its vassals, has been brought to an end by Washington’s intentional attack on a known Syrian army position, thus wrecking the cease fire agreement that Russia sacrificed so much to achieve.The response to this fact by the Obama regime’s ambassador to the UN, Samantha Power, reveals that Washington will lie to the hilt in order to achieve its agenda of reducing Syria to the same chaos as Washington has reduced Iraq and Libya. ...
READ MORE
Memorial Day Ignores Millions of US Imperial Victims
The day commemorates lost lives of US servicemen and women sent to war for the wrong reasons – from the 18th century to today, notably America’s so-called War of Independence, its Civil War, WW I and II and all subsequent wars of choice.America’s only enemies in the past 70 years and throughout at least most of its history were and remain ones it invents.It could have been a model peaceful nation had it chosen a different path. Instead, its history reflects unbridled militarism, endless wars of choice, related violence and chaos, contempt for rule of law principles, along with unparalleled ...
READ MORE
Anglo-America: Regression and Reversion in the Modern World
What does it mean when the US and British financial systems launder hundreds of billions of dollars of illicit funds stolen by world leaders while their governments turn a ‘blind eye’, and yet the very same Anglo-American officials investigate, prosecute, fine and arrest officials from rival governments, rival banks and political leaders for corruption?What does it mean when the US government expands a world-wide network of nuclear missiles on bases stretching from Poland, Bulgaria, Romania, the Gulf States to Japan, surrounding Russia, Iran and China, while the very same US and NATO officials investigate and condemn rival defense officials from Russia, China ...
READ MORE
Croatian President Lauds Ustasha Nazis as the «Fourth Reich Lite» Rears its Ugly Head in Europe
Croatia's President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic with Croatian diaspora in Canada holding the flag of WWII Nazi-Ustashi Independent State of CroatiaCroatia’s president, the former deputy NATO secretary general for public diplomacy Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, decided to pay homage to Nazis of the Ustasha Nazi puppet regime of Croatia shot by Yugoslav partisans at the end of World War II. Grabar-Kitarovic’s tone deafness in choosing Victory in Europe week to honor dead Nazis shocked the Balkans and the rest of Europe.The Ustasha, along with their Slovenian and Serb loyalists to the Nazi puppet regime, were killed by the partisans under the command of anti-fascist ...
READ MORE
US Military and CIA Leaders may be Investigated for War Crimes
On November 3, the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) informed the court's Pre-Trial Chamber, "[T]here is a reasonable basis to believe that war crimes and crimes against humanity have been committed in connection with the armed conflict in Afghanistan."In what Amnesty International's Solomon Sacco called a "seminal moment for the ICC," Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda asked the court for authorization to commence an investigation that would focus on US military and CIA leaders, as well as Taliban and Afghan officials.Bensouda wrote in a November 14, 2016, report that her preliminary examination revealed "a reasonable basis to believe" ...
READ MORE
Operation Barbarossa: The 75th Anniversary of the Nazi Invasion of the Soviet Union
Seventy-five years ago Adolf Hitler launched the biggest and most destructive military campaign in history when three million German and allied troops invaded the Soviet Union along a 1,000-mile front.Operation Barbarossa – the codename for the German invasion of Russia - was no ordinary military campaign: it was an ideological and racist war, a war of destruction and extermination that aimed to kill Jews, enslave the Slavic peoples and destroy communism. The result was a war in which 25 million Soviet citizens died, including a million Jews, executed by the SS in 1941-1942 – an action which became the template ...
READ MORE
NATO’s War on Yugoslavia and the Expulsion of Serbs from Kosovo
In the period before the 1999 NATO attack on Yugoslavia, the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) waged a campaign to secede and establish an independent Kosovo dominated by Albanians and purged of every other ethnic group. In October 1998, KLA spokesman Bardhyl Mahmuti spelled the KLA’s vision: “We will never change our position. The independence of Kosovo is the only solution…We cannot live together [with Serbs]. That is excluded.” Once NATO’s war came to an end, the KLA set about driving out of Kosovo every non-Albanian and every pro-Yugoslav Albanian it could lay its hands on. The KLA left in its wake ...
READ MORE
Criticism of Israeli Policy is not Anti-Semitic
I was provoked to write this discussion of what is and what isn’t anti-Semitism by an article in Ha’aretz on the “controversy” created by the awarding of the 2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry to George P. Smith. According to the reporting, Smith is not only a brilliant scientist whose work has helped lead to the creation of new drugs that can treat cancer and a range of autoimmune diseases, he is also an outspoken supporter of Palestinian rights and a critic of Israeli policies. The Ha’aretz piece notes that Smith has long been “a target of pro-Israel groups” and is listed ...
READ MORE
U.S Military Bases Worldwide: 682 Military Bases in 63 Countries
The first panacea for a mismanaged nation is inflation of the currency; the second is war. Both bring a temporary prosperity; both bring a permanent ruin. But both are the refuge of political and economic opportunists — Ernest HemingwayMilitary spending is the second largest item in the US federal budget after Social Security. It has a habit of increasing significantly each year, and the proposed 2019 defense budget is $886 billion (roughly double what it was in 2003).US military spending exceeds the total of the next ten largest countries combined. Although the US government acknowledges 682 military bases in 63 countries, ...
READ MORE
The Biggest Threat to World Peace is NATO
On November 8th, Britain’s Daily Mail bannered “NATO tells Europe to prepare for ‘rapid deployment’:” and sub-headed “Defence chiefs say roads, bridges and rail links must be improved in case tanks and heavy vehicles need to be quickly mobilised” (to invade Russia, but the newspaper’s slant was instead that this must be done purely defensively: “In October, NATO accused Russia of misleading them, saying that Moscow had deliberately violated international rules of military drills”).The article continued:Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg called for the infrastructure update across Europe as NATO is set to overhaul its command structure for the first time since ...
READ MORE
Why The First Week of the Lithuanian Holocaust is Historically Unique. Whom to Honor on the 80th Anniversary?
For years now, Defending History has, on the first of January each year, named the newborn year in honor of Lithuanian Holocaust-era Rescuers, or Righteous of the Nations as they are also known (tsadíkey úmes ho-óylem in Yiddish). In 2020 — Antanas Zubrys and Dr. Matilda Zubrienė; in 2019 — Jonas Paulavičius; in 2018 — Malvina Šokelytė Valeikienė. That is a tradition we hope to resume next year. But 2021, the eightieth anniversary of 1941, calls for something more focused, not least when some governmental bodies have chosen, shockingly, to use the anniversary to glorify the perpetrators rather than commemorate the victims and honor those ...
READ MORE
Western Warmongers Killed 1.5 Million Muslims in “War On Terror”
“I believe the perception caused by civilian casualties is one of the most dangerous enemies we face.” – U.S. General Stanley A. McCrystal in his inaugural speech as ISAF Commander in June 2009. The dust had hardly settled on Russian airstrikes on ISIS positions in Syria before Western media reports claimed that ‘civilians’ had been killed “including women and children”. Leaving aside the dubious nature of these allegations – the first of which was made before Russian airstrikes had even begun, according to Putin – Western propaganda outlets and the politicians they serve are in no position to point the finger at Russia ...
READ MORE
Demonizing Russian Media
One of the West’s top points in condemning Vladimir Putin’s “regime” since 2007 has been his alleged suppression of democratic institutions, including an assault on media freedom and imposition of government-directed propaganda. This week, the accusation was repeated in a resolution of the European Parliament calling for stronger counter-measures in defense of European values against “information warfare” from Moscow.The charges — that Russian media are only an instrument of state propaganda directed at the domestic population to keep Russian citizens in line and at foreign audiences to sow dissent among Russia’s neighbors and within the European Union — are taken ...
READ MORE
Jomo Kenyatta on Africa and Europe
Jomo Kenyatta (c. 1891 – 22 August 1978) was a Kenyan politician and the first President of Kenya. Kenyatta was the leader of Kenya from independence in 1963 to his death in 1978, serving first as Prime Minister (1963–64) and then as President (1964–78). He is considered the founding father of the Kenyan nation. Kenyatta was a well-educated intellectual who authored several books, and is remembered as a Pan-Africanist. He is also the father of Kenya's fourth and current President, Uhuru Kenyatta (Source: Wikipedia)Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection, Public Domain & Pinterest.Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!Donate ...
READ MORE
Washington is Ramping Up Military Confrontation With Russia and China
On November 26 the New York Times asserted that “Russia’s seizure [on November 25] of three Ukrainian naval vessels was the first overt armed conflict between the two since 2014, when Russian forces occupied Crimea.” There was no armed conflict in Crimea and not a drop of blood was spilled. There was no “occupation” because, under treaty, over 20,000 Russian troops were stationed there. Crimea’s citizens have always been Russian-speaking, Russian-cultured and in general pro-Russia. Following the US-sponsored rebellion in Ukraine that went the way the US intended it to go, there was the awkward matter of Crimea which had been part of Russia until, as noted ...
READ MORE
Zagreb, Independent State of Croatia, 1941
The consumption of history seems to be more widespread than ever: from general-interest history magazines and historical dramas and documentaries to historical fiction, popular history seems, well, unprecedentedly popular. The evolution of the TV historian reflects this trend: where once real working historians who had written serious books hosted television programmes, these days they are as likely to be photogenic media presenters with minimal, if any, actual history qualifications. The attraction of history and being a historian are not hard to work out. In the public imagination, historians are usually considered to be intelligent, objective people, if a little eccentric, who tell ...
READ MORE
Documentary Movies about Kosovo-Metochia
What you can see here, as the example: Serbian shrine Bogorodica Ljeviška (Virgin Mary of Ljevishka) is a cathedral church in the city of Prizren in the western part of Kosovo & Metohija region. The city was a capital of medieval Serbia. This church is built by Serbian king Milutin between 1307-1309. This church belongs to one of four masterpieces of Serbian sacral architecture in the Middle Ages in Kosovo & Metohija that was a central part of Serbian medieval state. The video is in the Serbian language.Rachak Village in Kosovo 1999- Lies and the truth from Vladislav B. Sotirovic ...
READ MORE
On the Centenary of the Greek Genocide
Edward S. Herman: The Srebrenica Massacre was a Gigantic Political Fraud
Prof. Vladislav B. Sotirović about the Situation in Ukraine
Will Russia Surrender?
Memorial Day Ignores Millions of US Imperial Victims
Anglo-America: Regression and Reversion in the Modern World
Croatian President Lauds Ustasha Nazis as the «Fourth Reich Lite» Rears its Ugly Head in Europe
US Military and CIA Leaders may be Investigated for War Crimes
Operation Barbarossa: The 75th Anniversary of the Nazi Invasion of the Soviet Union
NATO’s War on Yugoslavia and the Expulsion of Serbs from Kosovo
Criticism of Israeli Policy is not Anti-Semitic
U.S Military Bases Worldwide: 682 Military Bases in 63 Countries
The Biggest Threat to World Peace is NATO
Why The First Week of the Lithuanian Holocaust is Historically Unique. Whom to Honor on the 80th Anniversary?
Western Warmongers Killed 1.5 Million Muslims in “War On Terror”
Demonizing Russian Media
Jomo Kenyatta on Africa and Europe
Washington is Ramping Up Military Confrontation With Russia and China
How Holocaust Revisionists Remake History as Nationalist Sham
Documentary Movies about Kosovo-Metochia
FOLLOW US ON OUR SOCIAL PLATFORMS
Share