The amount of misinformation between Armenians and Azeris is terrifying. Azeris hate Armenians so much that they have no idea that most of Armenian dissidents and opposition members are nationalist and probably have hatred towards Azeris as much as more than current Armenian ruling party.
Moreover, I often see some diaspora Armenians or just human rights activists demanding freedom for some jailed activists in Azerbaijan on social media. Guys, 99% of you have no idea that Armenians were fighting with current Azerbaijani opposition (ruling regime back then) and most of opposition members still have hatred towards Armenians.
At some point we should stop and ask ourselves: what do we really want? (“We” here denotes the ones who want peace between two nations)
We want peace! And how can we achieve it? Learning about each other.
Honestly, how many of you diaspora Armenians care about democracy and human rights in Azerbaijan? Did you know that most of Azeri opposition members were fighting with Armenians in Karabakh back in early 90s? Did you know that most opposition members believe that wives/mothers of ruling party elite are crypto-Armenian? Did you know that we (mostly) see ourselves apart from Turks? Did you know that we don’t see any difference between you Western Armenians and your kindred in East Armenia? (And we don’t know anything about Armenians in Middle East) Did you know that most of Azeris have no single idea or any historical info about Armenians back in Ottoman empire or 1915 or Cilicia?
Honestly, I believe it’s because of your inner, secretly hidden nationalistic instincts. Don’t afraid to admit that you were so brainwashed that you came to hate us and thaught to accept us just a small branch of Turks.
I know, because I was brainwashed too. It’s called victim mentality. Few people survive that. Thus, I was forced to think myself as a victim in a war lost to Armenia. But in fact, I lost nothing. I had no relatives killed in Karabakh. I had no relatives from Karabakh. I was not born in Karabakh. Nobody in our family ever visited Karabakh. Sure they knew many Armenians in Baku, but it was only that. So, why I had to have revanchist idea that I had to “retake” Karabakh? It was never my land.
But fuck individualism and your personal opinion, right? Because we are at war and you are only valuable if you feel yourself a part of a wolf pack.
That’s why, I don’t really understand mindset of Armenians in other countries. How you, after generations feel still connected to the land you never visited, how can you care about people you never met and despite having an advantage of being born in a free, democratic and highly advanced country, still have this regressive (I guess it’s opposite of progressive) mentality?
Let’s take, Dan Bilzerian and Serj Tankian. Dan lives his life (amorally or morally, I don’t care) with guns, girls and tons of money. Serj writes music for his land, speaks for his people, an addict to his fatherland. Both spoke about genocide and both recognized it, but IMHO Dan has much freer soul.
I think, peace will come when we learn about each other and stop being a member of a herd. Let them tell us we are cowards or traitors or enemies. If we are pro-human rights, we should defend all humans regardless of their ethnicities. Let be a poor Armenian villager man or a teenager, anarchist Azerbaijani boy.
So, what we should do? Quick ideas:
- Try to talk with an Azeri/Armenian.
- Try to avoid topics like Karabakh or Genocide.
- Try to talk more about music.
- Try to talk about common words.
- Try to talk about your ancestors, where are you from.
- Try to talk about stereotypes in your nation (such as, we have a stereotype in Azerbaijan that Nakhchivanians shit tons of money – they are rich and have awful accent)
- Say how you feel about your country’s current ruling regime.
Now you are good to go. And don’t hesitate to use words like “I am sorry” or “No problem”.
We are youth, we can change the future, not the past.