Azeri Propaganda in the UK
There were six finalists in the BBC2 Master Mind competition on Friday 12 May.
(for those outside the UK, this is a TV quiz show where competitors have to answer
2 minutes of very tough questions on a topic of their choice, followed by two and
a half minutes of very wide-ranging general knowledge questions)
The surprise was that one finalist chose as his selected topic “Azerbaijan from
1917 to the present”
(note the start date that excludes the true ancestral people in present day Iran).
Not such a shock when this person turned out to be a retired diplomat who had
the “honour” to be the UK ambassador to that country.
The final featured an interview of each finalist on their choice.
All the others had studio interview, or a location in the UK.
But, lo and behold, our ex-ambassador was interviewed in Baku.
Of course, that required an introduction to the country, including such tit-bits that
10% was occupied by Armenia (could not have the read the Azeri script well as
their norm is 20%, and that 1 million refugees were created giving the impression
there were all Azeris instead it started with Armenians fleeing the pogroms).
It did not work out all their way as one of the questions asked where ethnically
based killings took place (answer: Sumgait which he knew).
So how come the BBC that has to achieve eye-watering reductions in budget
funded this expensive trip? (or?)
A career diplomat will retire on a handsome pension: I’ve not got a clue but I would
think it will well be in excess of an annual £100,000.
So what sort of inducement would our retiree be tempted by to choose such a
(my guess is half a million sterling)
NON-ALIGNED MOVEMENT ADOPTS FINAL DOCUMENT ON NAGORNO
May 10 2012
The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) adopted a final document, which
reaffirms the importance of resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict
within Azerbaijan's territorial integrity at a ministerial in Egypt,
Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry spokesman Elman Abdullayev said at a
"The final document was adopted by the NAM Coordinating Bureau on
May 9," Abdullayev said.
He said one of the items of the document confirms that the
Nagorno-Karabakh conflict poses a threat to stability and security
in the region. The NAM member countries reaffirmed the importance
of the conflict resolution based on three internationally recognized
principles - through negotiations, respect for Azerbaijan's territorial
integrity and non-use of force," Abdullayev said.
According to Abdullayev, the fact that the Movement, which includes
120 countries, has adopted such a document proves that Azerbaijan
has a fair position on the Nagorno-Karabakh issue.
Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov is attending at the
ministerial of the NAM member countries in Sharm el-Sheikh (Egypt),
the ministry said.
Mammadyarov will address the ministerial and will hold a series of
bilateral meetings within the event.
Azerbaijan became a member of the Non-Aligned Movement in May 2011.
The Non-Aligned Movement is the second largest political international
organization for its members after the UN. It includes 118 states.
Another 20 countries have observer status.
The conflict between the two South Caucasus countries began in 1988
when Armenia made territorial claims against Azerbaijan. Armenian
armed forces have occupied 20 per cent of Azerbaijan since 1992,
including the Nagorno-Karabakh region and seven surrounding districts.
Azerbaijan and Armenia signed a ceasefire agreement in 1994. The
co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group - Russia, France and the U.S. -
are currently holding peace negotiations.
Armenia has not yet implemented the U.N. Security Council's four
resolutions on the liberation of the Nagorno-Karabakh and the
VIOLATION OF BASIC NORMS OF INTERNATIONAL LAW HAS
BECOME USUAL FOR AZERBAIJAN: FM OF ARMENIA
10 May, 2012
YEREVAN, MAY 10, ARMENPRESS: Armenian Foreign Minister Edward
Nalbandyan, who participates in the works of the meeting of foreign
ministers of Non-Aligned Movement in Sharm El-Sheikh, has delivered
a speech on May 10, Foreign Affairs Ministry press service told
In his address the minister said he is glad to return to Egypt,
where he has lived and worked for 14 years. Being an observer of
the Non-Aligned Movement, Armenia shares the organization's merits,
based on the goals and principles of the UN Charter.
Referring to the Nagorno Karabakh issue, Edward Nalbandyan said
Azerbaijan became a member of the movement only a year ago, and
already is attempting to mislead the member states of the organization,
taking them against the positions of international community.
"All of you understand the propagating nature of today's
statement voiced by Azerbaijani FM, which does not need additional
interpretation," he said, adding it contradicts the logic, the spirit
and formulations of the negotiation process, which are reflected
in the statements adopted by OSCE Minsk Group co-chair countries -
Russia, France, US, in L'Aquila, Muskoka and Deauville.
These documents highlight 3 international principles - non-application
of force, self-determination right of peoples and territorial integrity
as key elements of Nagorno Karabakh settlement.
Unfortunately, the 382nd paragraph ignores the self-determination
right of peoples and does not use internationally accepted "Nagorno
Karabakh issue" wording, Edward Nalbandyan said.
"Similar approach does not only threaten the negotiation process
and the shaky situation in the conflict zone, but also the basic
principles of the countries of the Non-Aligned Movement. Beginning
from its foundation day the self-determination right of people has
been and remains one of the cornerstones of the organization.
The violation of fundamental norms of the international law and of
the gained agreements has become a usual thing for Azerbaijan. In that
regard it is not strange for anyone that Azerbaijan, appearing to be
a member of the Non-Aligned Movement, continues violating "Bandung
Principles", propagating "discrimination and national hatred, or
else how we can describe the Azerbaijani leadership's statements that
"Armenians are Azerbaijan's number one enemy," said Edward Nalbandyan.
Story from Lragir.am News:
Published: 11:00:11 - 12/05/2012
We have learned that some heads of communities in Ararat Marz may be
dismissed for the results of the elections. The RPA received few votes
there, and we have learned that the RPA representatives are conducting
`audit' in the region. They compare the obligations of community heads
and the money disbursed to them. Those who ensured fewer votes will
lose their position. Besides, they are asked to return the part of the
money which has not been `secured' with votes.
In particular, dismissal awaits the mayor of Ararat Abraham Babayan.
According to a source which is close to the RPA, he has received 80
million drams and he is suspected of pocketing the money and
facilitating PA's election.
The same is underway in other regions. Rumors on dismissal of
governors continue, particularly of the governor of Shirak Ashot
Giziryan, the governor of Ararat Edik Barseghyan and the governor of
Syunik Surik Khachatryan. The governor of Ararat Edik Barseghyan is
rumored to be replaced by the ex-chief of police Alik Sargsyan.
ARMENIAN INTEREST RATES STABLE IN APRIL AS INFLATION
CONTINUES TO EASE
by Venla Sipila
May 9, 2012
The Central Bank of Armenia (CBA) decided to leave its refinancing
rate unchanged at 8.0% in its April monetary policy meeting, Reuters
reports. The policy rate has now remained stable since September 2011.
The decision follows further moderation in inflation pressures.
Indeed, data from the Armenian National Statistical Service showed
that consumer prices grew by just 1.9% year-on-year (y/y) in April,
following a gain of 2.2% y/y in March and 3.0% y/y in February.
In marked contrast to last year, annual food-price growth in April
remained below the gains in other categories: food prices climbed by
1.1% y/y while prices of non-food goods rose by 4.3% y/y and service
tariffs increased by 1.5% y/y. Thus, after food-price inflation had
already in the past two months remained below growth of non-food
prices, in April it was also exceeded by service-price growth.
Month-on-month (m/m) comparison reveals deflation of 0.6%, caused by
m/m easing in food prices. Armenian consumer prices have increased by
2.1% since the beginning of the year, and by 3.0% y/y in JanuaryApril.
Inflation for the whole of 2011 averaged 7.7% (seeArmenia: 11 January
Significance:Armenian inflation has now retreated further below
the lower limit of the CBA's target range. The central bank seeks
to keep inflation at 4.0%, with a variation range of 1.5 percentage
points on either side. The clear easing of inflation pressures draws
from a weaker push from food prices. These still play a very large
role in the Armenian consumption basket, so changes have a marked
impact on overall consumer-price inflation. Moreover, as seen in m/m
developments, the impact from lower food prices goes beyond annual
inflation, which is also impacted by base effects from last year.
Inflation outlook at the moment remains fairly benign, taking into
account the reasonably muted demand pressures. Risks naturally arise
from agricultural developments, as a weak harvest would push up food
prices again. On the other hand, inflation will be tempered due to the
very favourable deal reached with Russia over this year's gas import
prices, with no increases seen in 2012. Thus, inflation is likely
to remain well within target in the coming months. Consequently,
interest-rate cuts may follow in the near term.
GUNAYSU: THE REIGN OF LIES IN TURKEY
by Ayse Gunaysu
May 11, 2012
Organized denial means the reign of lies. The denialist, in order to
sustain denial, has to resolutely and incessantly lie. Otherwise it
can't go on. The truth, even bits of information that might hold the
slightest potential of undermining the lie, is the biggest and most
merciless enemy of denial. So the denialist, having created a whole
world of lies, must fight any manifestation of the truth tooth and
nail to survive.
A scene from the genocide commemoration in Istanbul on April 24, 2010.
(Photo: The Armenian Weekly) We in Turkey all live in this world of
lies, so much so that our textbooks, news agencies, official documents,
literature, and even surnames are likely telling us lies. Even our
parents may have told us lies about our family history. Our whole
identity may be a fabrication.
And we, the Muslim majority in this country, believe in lies. Some-a
great many-of us prefer to believe in lies just to be well-accommodated
to our environment; some-again a great many-just for peace of mind,
avoiding asking questions that would upset our inner balance and make
us feel guilty (i.e., the punishment of one's own self is worse than
that by others). And still some of us are paid to believe and make
other people believe in lies.
But lying is not just giving false information. Hiding the truth
is also a lie. So, some of us, even those who consider ourselves
almost totally immune to the official lies (including the writer of
these words), may well be the transporters of this type of lie-the
concealment of truth-thanks to the numbness we have inherited from
our dark past, the numbness that extinguishes our desire to search
'You will be back home soon'
Lies were central to the Armenian Genocide right from the start. On the
April 24, 1915 arrests in Istanbul, the Armenian intellectuals were
taken from their homes by policemen who were extremely polite and,
as Aram Andonian recounts in his book Exile, Trauma and Death: On the
Road to Chankiri with Komitas Vartabed (Gomidas Institute, 2010),
they were all told that it would not take more than five minutes,
that they would soon be back home, and that there was no need to worry.
Andonian understood why the policemen had behaved with such
refinement-to not alarm those who were yet to be arrested.
In other parts of the country, they lied to the people who were being
driven out of their villages and towns, assuring them that they could
come back and their property would be kept safe under government
custody until they returned.
The genocidal process unfolded for the coming months and years on
the basis of lies throughout each phase.
The denial of the evil-inconceivable, indescribable, and
irreversible-committed and its regeneration with lies corrupts the
entire system. Denial reproduces itself with lies.
The lie continued to be central in the foundation myths of the
Republic of Turkey. The notorious "war of liberation" of 1919-22 was
also built and sustained on deception. It was presented as a national
uprising for independence; yet, the declared war against the Allied
powers served to wipe out what remained of the non-Muslim communities
of Asia Minor after the Armenian Genocide and the Genocide of the
Assyrians and Greeks.
The Kemalist leadership lied to the Kurds, as well. They convinced
the Kurdish notables to take part in the military campaign as the only
way to stop the Armenians and Greeks from coming back and reclaiming
their confiscated property.
The resistance of the Kurds upon realizing and facing the truth was
violently suppressed each time, and generations of Turks were taught
that the barbaric Kurds-the traitors-had threatened the state, and
that the government had no chance but to bring not only "peace" and
"order" but also "civilization" to the region where "savagery" once
prevailed. This was the lie about the extermination of the Dersim
people in 1938.
Turks are the best of all nations!
An unprecedented series of lies was institutionalized by the new-born
state apparatus via pseudo-historians who were instructed to rewrite
the nation's history-in the form of the famous Turkish History
Thesis, whereby it was "proved" that everything good in the world had
originated from the Turkish nation, and its people were the best in
all categories: honesty, courage, innovation, cleverness, etc.
Lies continued to be the essence of the system in Turkey, a tool
of repression used in every period of Republican history. It would
take volumes of books to mention them all. To give but one example:
It was a lie that Ataturk's home was bombed in Salonika, a lie that
led to the burning alive of Greek priests, the rape of hundreds of
women, lynching incidents, and the desecration of sacred Christian
places during the two-day pogrom in Istanbul on Sept. 6-7, 1955-a
replica of the Kristallnacht-which drove thousands of non-Muslims,
mostly Greeks, from their homeland.
Lies never ceased through the military coups and the pseudo-democracies
in between. Just like the lie that the mosque in Marash was bombed by
the "communists"; this was followed by mass attacks at the homes and
workplaces of Alevis. During the pogrom that lasted two days without
any effective intervention by the police or the military, around 150
Alevis, including children, were butchered by fascist crowds in 1978
under a "democratic," "civilian" government.
'We kill for your good'
The military coup of 1980 and the period that followed-the reign of
terror-was from top to bottom the embodiment of a lie. The military
had taken over power for the good of the nation. Executions, people
dying through torture, prisons full of people, these were all for
the good of the Turkish people.
The 1990's were also dominated by lies. It was never admitted that
thousands of Kurdish villages were burnt and razed to the ground,
causing the forced dislocation of millions of Kurds.
Only after 20 years are bits of truth being revealed about the deaths
of a number of high-ranking officials who served in the hot spots
of the war against the armed Kurdish movement. These officers were
said to have committed suicide, but legal cases were opened by their
families and the deaths have undergone an in-depth investigation, with
more lies brought to light-in the form of false official documents
drawn up by military units, manipulated witness accounts, names of
witnesses who were on duty elsewhere at the time of the incidents, etc.
But the biggest lie unveiled that covers the others like a huge
invisible dome is the lie that the "Turkish people" did not commit
a genocide against the Armenians and other Christian people of this
land, because it is the foundation on which all other lies were built.
Preparations for 2015
The intensity of the lies is increasing nowadays as Turkey ferociously
prepares for the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, and for
Armenian organizations across the world commemorating the tragedy.
The Turkish state has not, for the time being, directly or officially
taken the stage, but is employing "civil society" behind-closed-doors
to organize campaigns against the "Armenian lies."
The recent and now-famous Khojaly rally on Feb. 26 was the most
visible one, the first massive public appearance of a new national
mobilization campaign against the Armenians. Although the sponsorship
by both the Turkish and Azerbaijani state was obvious, it was still
presented as a civil initiative.
Universities are leading this "civil" campaign. During recent months,
"scholarly" denialist performances were staged at Suleyman Demirel
University in Isparta, Dumlupinar University in Kutahya, Afyon Kocatepe
University, and Erzurum Ataturk University. This denialist campaign
has even adopted the strategy of infiltrating the social structure
by making use of popular culture, an extremely powerful medium for
gaining control over the mind of the man on the street.
TV drama series about 'Armenian lies'
The majority of Turks, it seems, is addicted to TV series-unending
productions about love, hatred, deadly plots, defeat, and victory.
They are in the center of the daily lives of the most crowded stratum
in Turkey, the middle class. Now, a TV series on "Armenian issue" is
being prepared. On the internet, a description of the show maintains
that it will not be disseminating hatred and hostility between Armenian
and Turkish people, that instead it will tell the "truth."
But-surprise!-the "consultants" engaged for the new drama series,
from academia, are all renowned denialists who are taking part in
university conferences about the "Armenian atrocities" in Khojaly;
who are writing denialist books; who are acting as spokespersons of
the official state thesis. What's more, the producer has long sat
on the executive bodies of the ruling AK Party and is a member of
the city council of one of the most densely populated districts of
Istanbul representing her party. Lies about Armenian history will,
through popular culture, be much more easily and convincingly injected
into people's than through scientific and academic studies.
What about the 'pro-Armenians'?
I mentioned, in the beginning, those of us "...who consider ourselves
almost totally immune to the official lies." In the Feb. 27 issue
of the daily Radikal, considered the only "leftish" newspaper in
the mainstream press, an article by Onur Caymaz, a progressive,
democratic-minded writer, appeared. Caymaz in his piece wholeheartedly
condemned the hate speech used in the Khojaly rally in Taksim. So
much so that his heading was, "We are all bastards!" in answer to
the banner at the rally, which read, "You are all Armenians, you are
After expressing his disgust over such Armenian hatred (quite
impressively, I should confess), he provided an example to assure
readers that he was not siding with any one atrocity over another, no
matter who did it. For this purpose he quoted from a "book" said to be
titled Revival of Our Souls by Zori Balayan, "who personally took part
in the Khojaly massacre," and depicted the torture he committed against
a 13-year-old "Turkish" boy in Khojaly. The quotation is quite long,
with Balayan describing with obvious pleasure and self-satisfaction
the details of how he skinned the abdomen and limbs of the boy, whose
mother's "cut off breast" was tucked into his mouth to stop him from
screaming with pain. The quotation goes on, with Balayan explaining how
he was "a medical doctor and a humanist by profession" but still was
not shaken to see the boy die of bleeding in seven minutes; instead,
he experienced a "revival of is soul" for "avenging one hundredth of
what Turks had done" to his ancestors.
Even if one didn't know that there was no such book by Zori Balayan,
it should be quite obvious, from the language used in depicting the
torture, that the quotation was wholly made up. What was shocking is
that the quotation was repeated not by a Turkish ultra-nationalist,
an Armenian hater, but from a person who sincerely denounces racism
and discrimination. A couple of days after the publication of this
article, Caymaz wrote in his personal blog that he was wrong, that it
was evident that Zori Balayan had not written such a book, and that
the quotation was false. He said he had heard about the book from an
Azeri physician in a panel discussion on TV. Caymaz apparently didn't
have even the slightest inclination that a member of a warring party
might lie. But where did he find that quotation? I searched it myself,
and found that it appeared only on ultra-nationalist Turkish websites.
Even this did not give him a clue. And the Radikal newspaper's
editorial staff didn't find the outrageously cruel quotation doubtful
either. Lies, thus, easily found their way into the "progressive"
media and their audience.
Lies for all of us
I also said in the beginning, "including the writer of these words,"
when talking about being the transporter of that specific type of lie,
i.e. hiding the truth. It was only a few months ago that I came across
the story of ASALA member Levon Ekmekjian, who was executed by hanging
in 1983 in Ankara under the military rule, on charges of being one of
the perpetrators of the "Esenboga massacre" in Ankara in 1982. We, the
members or sympathizers of Turkish socialist-revolutionary parties and
groups of that time, some of us in prison, some in hiding in Turkey,
some political refugees in foreign countries, took for granted the
military rule's account of the Esenboga attack. Even if there were
individuals who were exceptions, they have never been vocal. The
absolute silence about Ekmekjian in the memoirs of "revolutionaries"
and books compiling the stories of persons executed under the military
regime of the 1980's clearly indicate how we avoided questioning the
official account about ASALA's Esenboga attack, and how we simply
ignored the case of Ekmekjian.
A crack in the most fortified stronghold
But life incorporates in itself such dynamism, and therefore is
always exposed to such unexpected surprises, that no plan to hide
the truth can perfectly serve its purpose forever, as long as there
is the human element involved.
Nowadays in the social media articles are being circulated about
Levon Ekmekjian-his photographs, memoirs of his comrades-and quite
a number of Turkish and Kurdish people are eagerly exchanging the
newly absorbed information between them. This is especially important
as the Armenian Secret Army for the Liberation of Armenia is perhaps
the only single topic that is still absolutely untouchable among all
other topics related to the Armenian Question in Turkey, even by the
socialist movements, and remains an invaluable tool of manipulation
by the denialist apparatus.
With the Khojaly rally in Istanbul, the official lies about the
Karabagh conflict have also become vulnerable as people, at least
those who want to know the truth, gain more and more access to the
Armenian side's account of events.
Yes, organized denial means the reign of lies. But even the most
fortified stronghold of lies is doomed to collapse no matter how long
it takes for a crack to branch out and spread through, undermining
the whole structure. It only needs the human mind to question, refuse
to be convinced, need more to learn, and tell others. And Turkey is
no exception to this general rule.