We, the Bad Armenians

“Are you even a good Armenian?” was one of the sharpest responses my previous article, “I Turned My Back on Armenia,” elicited. Other commentators took it upon themselves to be the gatekeepers of our nation and banish me forever from Armenia and Armenians. These reactions validated an undercurrent which I’ve always suspected flowed beneath the surface: that we Armenians must strip ourselves of any individual distinctions and submit ourselves to a set doctrine of who and what an Armenian is.

Since when was it decided that we must look, act, think, and talk like each other? Was there a cabinet decision by the government of the 1918 republic that formulated who can be considered a “good Armenian,” that those who do not fit the description should be branded as “bad Armenians” unworthy of taking part in our people’s cause and direction? Did we as a collective conclude that social and political diversity was not good, that novel ideas and unconventional approaches were too harmful? It seems for the vocal segment of our nation the traditional ideals became pillars to never be tempered with.

At the same time, there has been an expanding ocean of “silent Armenians” who have wanted to break out and make their different voices heard. At least, I heard from some of them in private messages following my article. And they were relieved that at last someone had spoken against the long-held, stubborn notions of our communities.

I was confused why members of this broad group had kept their opinions to themselves, had not challenged the traditional ideals that keep feeding the false/failed perceptions of who we are as Armenians and where we’re headed.

Certainly, it is no secret that our close-knit communities subconsciously peel away those who are viewed as being outside of the core—as not “good Armenians.” And, in time, these Armenians’ presence in the community dims (not to say that they themselves hold no fault in that break). But the pressure of what the community demands is, to many, unbearable and amateur, which leads to the distance between them and the community. As a result, s/he is made into something that is intrinsically void, empty, fiction, and insulting to any thinking person’s intelligence: a bad Armenian.

This clash is a natural outcome of the communities’ struggle against the unstoppable force of a prolonged existence in a diaspora. As time goes by, the smaller core becomes more resolute, more committed to its rigid identity, and cannot accommodate any reflection on what makes them and those who “strayed” a people of the same mountains.

But I have seen the beautiful encounters of these “remote Armenians,” and how their distance has helped our much-needed national contemplation. Surrounded in a warm environment made up of non-Armenians and different cultures, these Armenians can provide new perspective on how our nation is represented on the one hand, and how, on the other, our nation absorbs new ideas from others. Because for those whom still do not know, Armenians do not have all of the answers to all of the questions.

For the first time ever, I spent this New Year’s Eve away from my community. Cast away in the claustrophobic circus madness of rainy London, I feasted on lasagna and red wine with an unusual collection of posh English students who had either never heard of Armenians, had a very meek idea of we were, or had met one Armenian who had left a very bad impression. Through a bit of shourchbar (circle dance), folk music, and talk of the current geopolitical affairs of non-EU Eastern Europe, I managed to carve a new picture of Armenia in their minds: of green mountains, where people dance constantly and drink with quality. But I kept in mind that it was only because I stepped outside of our traditional community that I had the opportunity to spread our values, history, and current realities to others.

So, am I good Armenian? I’d choose to be a bad one any day, just so I can shed the absolutes engrained in our traditional communities, and grasp the world outside—where our nation of good and bad Armenians are called upon to be the toastmasters of any table or feast.

Shnorhavor Amanor.

Apo Sahagian

Apo Sahagian

Apo Sahagian is a Jerusalemite-Armenian musician and writer.
Apo Sahagian

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  1. I am a Nshan Palandjian Djemaran educated Armenian, the only Armenian/American to have graduated from Djemaran in the 60s. I speak, read and write Armenian yet in the opinion of some of my brethren I am not a true Armenian because my mother was Italian. That is an insult to my family and to my father Yetvart Tchapraste because in the end what is in your heart makes you who you are!

  2. My mother is full Armenian and my father is Irish. I was not taught armenian. My mom always said “you’re American, that’s it”
    As long as I can remember, that’s been a point of contention with m Armenian side, often blaming my dad when in reality, he would have very much liked me to know it.

    I’m tired of Armenians. Maybe it’s because I’ve had many bad experiences with them or maybe I’m just tired of hearing about them all the time. I’ve been to Armenia and honestly, it wasn’t beautiful. It wasn’t idealic. I don’t honestly know what people are talking about when they say that. Yerevan is filthy, chaotic and difficult. The country is better but still nothing ever runs smoothly. In my village, it took over 45 min of work to make a phone call. Wow :/

    I think people should just be and while acknowledge your background, remember that it does not define you. You are who you are.

    • Jenn:

      If you are tired of Armenians, why did you go out of your way to visit an Armenian web site, ArmenianWeekly, to inform us that you are tired of Armenians.

      {“Maybe it’s because I’ve had many bad experiences with them or maybe I’m just tired of hearing about them all the time.”}

      Yeah: spoken like someone whose mother is ‘full Armenian’. Sure she is.

  3. It all depends how you qualify the word Armenian. If you identify yourself as Armenian, then you are Armenian, even if you do not have even one drop of Armenian blood. If your four grandparents were Armenian, but you refuse to identify yourself as Armenian, then you are not Armenian.
    I think people are confused between identity and human behavior. If you care about Armenia and Armenian community, then you are a good human being who is Armenian, in short, people will call you “good Armenian”. If you do not care about Armenia, Armenian community, but call yourself Armenian, then you are a bad human being who is Armenian, in short, people will call you “bad Armenian”. With regard to Tchapraste, why bother what people think, why do you have to be slave to those who are judgmental, if you feel yourself Armenian, who am I to judge you otherwise. I think you should know better from your teacher Simon Vratsian. A friend of mine and a student of Simon Vratsian quoted him as follows:
    “Mr. Vratsian used to teach us “Kaghakatsiagan Gurtoutioun”, at Nishan Palandjian Jemaran, in Bairut , Lebanon , in the late 1950s.His definition was, “The person who feels is Armenian, is Armenian”.

    • I am Armenian by your standard, because my best friend is of 100% Armenian heritage, and she daily follows in Jesus’s steps, more than anyone else I have ever known. Pure of heart.

  4. I don’t agree with anyone who says “forget you are Armenian and just be. It doesn’t define you.”

    Being Armenian doesn’t define you, but I say I’m Armenian any chance I get. I am proud of my ancestors, out history, and so much more that our Armenian culture as blessed us with.

    For the girl complaining about Armenia because it took her 40 minutes to make a phone call from a village– really? Is that the depth of how you form opinions on countries? A wiser person would understand that such a characteristic which you immediately call a flaw, with better perception, can be considered a remnant from our Armenian identity. We have always gone through difficult times because of hostile neighbors have always acted as tyrants seeking to conquer our nation.

    Many nations have come and disappeared, yet we still stand–defying all odds… AND YOU’RE COMPLAINING ABOUT HOW IT TOOK YOU 40 MINUTES TO MAKE A PHONE CALL FROM A VILLAGE? I’d rather not have such a weak person, unable to see past their immediate needs claiming to be Armenian, so go ahead, and just be without thinking much about your Armenian identity.

    Being Armenian is about give and take. Give to our constant struggle of keeping our identity alive and take, in return, the privilege of taking on the identity of a noble Armenian.

    Peace to all brothers and sisters.

    • I don’t know why it’s been said my mother isn’t full Armenian. Her mother and father are from Armenia so am I wrong in saying that makes her “full?” Is that not a good word? I don’t understand that point

      Yeah I did have problems with the phone call and I’m sorry but it’s 2014 (Well, in fairness it was 2009 then) but they need to catch up a little.

      Even Yerevan is terrible.

      Sorry if I offended anyone. It’s all just my opinion anyway so don’t get so upset.

  5. You conflate the need for diversity within the Armenian communities, which is of course good, with turning away from Armenia itself, which is not only bad, but impossible for someone who wants to protect her. Many unaligned and nonpartisan groups do good work for her and her long suffering people, who are our responsibility to protect and nourish. You cannot authentically or morally turn your back on your brother, even if you wrongly conclude his problems are of his own making.

    Being always faithful to Armenia will not deprive you of beguiling your English friends, and playing the Orientalist card for their entertainment.

    Avery was right that you muse from the safe and wealthy viewpoint of the Diaspora, while brave young soldiers bleed and die to keep our lands Armenian and to keep their families safe from Turks, Chechens and Azeris, who want to slit their throats. You are not a bad Armenian, but you are about to become a former Armenian. The Azeri’s read these comments, and will trumpet your low morale.

    • jda,

      Unless you are there at the front lines defending like the Armenian soldiers, you have no right to talk like that. That is a low and despicable way to argue.

      I don’t know where you live or whether you served in the Armenian army, but you’re using the Armenian soldiers to hit someone else over the head on an online discussion. That’s low.

    • Apo is a fellow Armenian. We are all connected to him and each other through history, ancestry and maybe even through distant family. His experiences may be similar or different from the rest of us, but it’s also just as relevant. It’s part of the Armenian experience of having a tiny homeland and living in a far-flung diaspora. And our different experience and feelings should be openly talked about without insults or denigrations.

      Telling them they’re bad Armenians only pushes them away even further. We all have something to contribute to Armenia and our local communities. Even from a distance. For example, what if this strayed Armenian is an accomplished individual such as an engineer, scientist, educator and so on. That individual can play an inspirational role to young Armenians.

      Even those who had an Armenian upbringing but strayed, still hold a connection, and this connection sometimes has a way of rekindling in a constructive and beneficial manner.

      The door should always be left open for Armenians to come back.

  6. There is no end to the “litmus tests” that can be applied to our Armenian identity, but, in the end, it’s worth asking: Where do they get us?

    At our best, we rise above the temptation to draw lines and instead welcome and embrace one another, celebrating all that brings us together, exploring our diverse experiences and common aspirations, honoring service and sacrifice, and raising our sights (and rolling up our shirt-sleeves) in pursuit of a better future. – Aram

  7. Schahan Tchapraste,
    Don’t worry there are plenty amongst us who do not distinguish between half Armenian and total or should I say both parents Armenian.Like someone wrote the main thing is to feel as An Armenian. just lately we discuss at length about others that are Islamized*rather turkified Armenians or the Hemshentsi Armenians.We should embrace them as our brethren and sisters as well…..
    take care….

  8. What is it to be Armenian, irish, Italian and so on…really there are certain core values that seem to be at the heart of any National identity but nothing is fixed and Armenian identity is as fluid as any other. What is important is to be open and explore. There is no absolute anything. experiments of this nature have only led to tragedy. Obviously language,landscape, literature and certain characteristics prevail…but honestly the idea of defining some one as a good or bad Armenian is not a mature or considered response. I became interested in Armenia because of the beauty of the landscape and the Armenians that I met in diaspora who were kind and intelligent There was a connection. Its such a wonderful thing when people open up to other cultures and try to explore difference. Armenians are like any other nation on this earth in this respect but the tragedy of exile has made their existence all the more complex and has challenged their very survival …

  9. Bad Armenian is the one, who wants to forget our way of life, our history, our civilization, our music, our wars, our food, our cries, our laughter, our hospitality, our hopeless and helpless population , when enemy raped our women , stole our pure blooded Armenian children, made them Islamized Turks, beheading defenseless men, burning our schools and churches and barns…yes there is more to say for this unfortunate nation or race…but we had enough, don’t we??it is time to change our attitude and make our beloved Armenia as powerful as we can, and there is no limitation…I don’t care if you are half and half or Eastern, Western or Russian, American, or European, Middle Eastern, or even have 1/64 Armenian blood …we are Armenians and we all deserved to have a powerful democratic, happy nation, where we can turn our face toward Mount Ararat and start a joyous, happy day, like Noah‘s holy children, start from beginning!!

  10. I don’t have a way of figuring out if Appo is a good Armenian or a bad Armenian… but it’s quite obvious that he is a narcissistic Armenian.

  11. Am I the only person here who has not suffered from so many bad experiences with Armenians or who has not met foreigners who complain about a very bad experience with the single Armenian they have ever met? Surely, we are not saints and we do have our share of crooks but give me a break.

    “Cast away in the claustrophobic circus madness of rainy London, I feasted on lasagna and red wine with an unusual collection of posh English students who had either never heard of Armenians, had a very meek idea of we were, or had met one Armenian who had left a very bad impression.”

    Apo, I am not sure who these “posh” English students were that you hung around with and what exactly their merits were (I guess, just being “posh”) but Armenians ARE on the map and, no, we are not universally known for creating very bad experiences for other people. In fact, the last English couple I met had a really good idea about Armenian, Armenians, was very well aware of our history, and had nothing to complain about.

    Then Jenn goes: “I’m tired of Armenians. Maybe it’s because I’ve had many bad experiences with them or maybe I’m just tired of hearing about them all the time.”

    Jenn, and may I ask what kind of bad experiences you are talking about? Have Armenians systematically stolen from you, blackmailed you, hurt you physically, betrayed you? Perhaps, your relatives from your mother’s side have criticized you for not speaking Armenian?

    I don’t know about you but the Armenians I know and socialize with are mostly very decent and honest people and I am proud to be associated with them.

    We are not saints and we do have our share of crooks but the Armenians I know and socialize with are mostly honest and decent people

    • Thank you for asking Gina and I’m happy to answer. It started as a child when id see my Armenian family call my Irish father names for not being Armenian and criticizing me for not speaking/writing Armenian. That alone puts a bad taste in your mouth. There was a specific word they’d call him but I don’t know how to spell it. Maybe you know it?

      As an adult, my family has eased up a bit on him and myself. So that I appreciate that. But specifically now I’m dealing with some Armenians who are stealing money from my Armenian grandfather (92 years old) and turning him against us with lies. So much so that I am now flying out to LA next week to try and talk some sense into him. I’m the only one who has a chance. It’s a long story but this has been in the works for years and has finally come to a head the last few months. They are vile, greedy, evil people and I’m tired of it.

      Those are my basic examples. Hopefully it’s somewhat of an answer for you. But again, thanks for asking and not jumping down my throat for having an opinion.

  12. I am old enough to remember the split between the Turkish and Russian Armenians. I was born here in the United States however my father came from Intep and survived the genocide and my mother also was born here, her mother also came from Intep, but immigrated here during the genocide of 1890. Having said that, I believe there are no bad Armenians, just Armenians who for one reason or another lost their roots, which is easy to do, when you leave enter the modern world. It was easier for me to keep the culture when my parents and uncles and aunts were alive and we were a close knit family of relatives and friends who lived close to each other As they died one by one, and my siblings and I found to our amazement that when the happens the circle is dissolved and we were on our own, without the benefit of the culture. I have since tried to reclaim this and pass it on to my children, but it will never be the same. All we can do is keep the heritage alive with the food, history, language and the culture, poetry, music and the like.

  13. I’m not a “born Armenian”, but instead, I was born a “WASP”… Nevertheless, I married an Armenian, and our three “half-breed” children and I consider ourselves to be Armenians, since we have learned about the history (going back thousands of years), we are active for Armenian causes (such as Genocide Awareness and Recognition) and we love to eat good Armenian meals, which we have learned to prepare, and to enjoy all kinds of Armenian music… In fact, my son and daughters-in-law have embraced Armenian culture and all my grandchildren proudly carry Armenian First Names… In stead of crying when an Armenian marries “outside” the community, everyone should rejoice. Instead of losing an Armenian, the community has gained many more who can continue to live and respect the traditions and values of the Armenian people. Our world is now multi-cultural, and if the Armenians are to survive in the 21st century, we need to become open to others as well!

  14. I appreciate Virginia’s reminder to us to cherish the non-Armenians who join our ranks. Many non-Armo spouses that I have known bring a wonderful lightness and freshness to the table, because they are not laden down with the residual sadness and grief we carry from the genocide. For some, their willingness to love one of us is also an opportunity for healing the wound that comes from feeling discarded by the world.

    Armenians have been strewn around the globe and intermarriage and assimilation are inevitable. Preserving the culture and traditions outside of the homeland is a noble cause which I support, but it becomes a static entity by the very nature of preservation which is the antithesis of change. It doesn’t surprise me that some among us reject the imposition of traditions that feel empty or lack personal meaningfulness the farther and longer we are away from the homeland. This doesn’t make them a ‘bad Armenian’, just a person exercising their God-given individuality. The place for vibrant expression and growth of Armenian culture is in Armenia, where the culture is a living, organic, and ever-evolving entity. If we are committed to promoting Armenian culture we should support cultural efforts in Armenia realizing that all diasporan life is on an inevitable path toward eventual assimilation at worst, and at best, a bastardized approximation of the real thing expressed in varying hyphenated forms: Syrian-Armenian, Lebanese-Armenian, American Armenian, Persian-Armenian, Turkish-Armenian, Brazilian Armenian, Russian-Armenian, etc.,

    So put on a pot of keshkeg or herissa and feed your Armenian soul, then send a check to support your favorite Armenian charity. Long live Armenia and the Armenian language. Without these the culture will surely slip away.

  15. If a boy shoots his mother from a 10 meter distance and does not miss, we would call him a good shot but not a good son. We have to define what good and bad means in each concept, as well as what means good to you might mean bad to me, it is a matter of opinion. Having said all this I can understand that it is essential for us to go out their and make others aware of our existence, and who we Armenians are, because after all we can not go it alone.

  16. To Random,

    I interpret these columns as being written by a man who wants to ignore what he used to cherish and will cherish again. Armenia’s position is perilous, her borders are under threat, as are her women, as are her soldiers, killed for sport. I must remind him that more is at risk than the esteem of some English students. The lives of our people are at risk. I do a few things to help, but I am not an 18 year old. Even if I did nothing at all, I have every right to shame a man who wants to be reminded of who he needs to be. Or maybe he can emulate Michael Arlen’s father, who tried to be a darling of English society 90 years ago, and lost his soul.

    • These columns appear to be very self-reflective as an Armenian individual and on the Armenian community itself. And I see no problem with what he’s doing. Seriously, why is he submitting articles about being Armenian to an Armenian media? He still feels a connection with the Armenian community and it means something to him.

      In a way he has become an ambassador of the Armenian nation through encounters in odar lands and as a consequence good PR. Engaging the rest of the world is a good thing as I think odars will see Apo as a good Armenian.

      jda, I would encourage you to shame corrupt Armenians in Armenia as well, as they are hurting the country while the sons of Armenia are facing enemies at the borders. I suppose I can play this game too.

  17. The leadership is well beyond shame. Unlike Apo they do not seek our permission here either to approve any straw man arguments or to renounce their ancestry. Apo write this piece I think so that we would beg him not to defect into nothing.

  18. To Jda
    Quite a parallel you have drawn between this man RVDV and Tigran Kouyoumdjian*Michael Arlen-*THE GREEN HAT author.When i was a student in Lomndon a few people*English mentioned him to me,no not for his being of Armneian Origin-could not know that,anyhow, having adopted the name Arlen Michael..but for his work-talent.
    This is not an isolated case there are other such….but what can we do,pray tell me.If the Secretary of the ,most powerful Navy of the world*USA, namely Paul Ignatus-ian,drops the ian,resuming the English sounding one etc.,etc., etc.,
    But have in view that the JEWS…..having totally converted 5namewise to german,?Russian ,English and what other such names…however maintaining their JEWISHNESS-thanks to their perseverance in their FAITH…perhaps..well..
    Let’s think of what can be derived from such conversions…
    THAT/S WHAT COUNTS!!!!!!we ought to make profit by doing such things and that not only for the person involved but the NATION!!

  19. No idea why the gentleman wrote his first column.
    But the second column is clearly a reaction to the massive criticism he received from the posters: he didn’t expect it, was stung by it, so is attempting to put the blame on the posters who object to his convoluted reasoning.
    His second column confirms the kind of person he really is, for which he previously received the criticism.

    {“I feasted on lasagna and red wine with an unusual collection of posh English students who had either never heard of Armenians, had a very meek idea of we were, or had met one Armenian who had left a very bad impression. “}: that sentence says it all, doesn’t it ?

    Oh, wow: he feasted on lasagna with some ‘posh’ English students.
    How very impressive.
    And apparently those ‘posh’ English students had a very meek idea of (who) we (Armenians) were.


    During the NKR war those ‘posh’ English and other ‘posh’ Europeans stood by, twiddling their thumbs, while Armenians of Artsakh were fighting for their very survival.
    By the summer of 1992, Azerbaijan had occupied about 50% of NKR: not a single ‘posh’ European lifted a finger to stop the killing and ethnic cleansing of indigenous Armenians from their historic lands.
    Not a single non-Armenian lifted a finger to stop the siege of Stepanakert, when Azerbaijanis had completely surrounded it and were indiscriminately bombarding Armenian civilians – including women and children – daily. For months. 1000s were killed, maimed, crippled, wounded during the criminal siege. Many phsysically and psychologically scarred fro life.
    The people that rushed to the bloody war to save their brothers and sisters of Artsakh from extermination were Armenians from RoA, Armenians from Russia, Armenians from Syria, Armenians from Lebanon, Armenians from USA, Armenians from Europe, Armenians from…..everywhere.
    Armenians, Armenian, Armenians.

    And we are supposed to give a hoot what some ‘posh’ English think about Armenians ?
    Were the ‘posh’ English students eating lasagna and drinking red wine when the two radical Muslim fanatics were butchering and beheading Fusilier Lee Rigby in broad daylight on a London street ?
    That scene was repeated hundreds of times during 1988-1994: except the victims were defenseless Armenians.

    All the ‘posh’ English students in the world are not worth a single Diaspora Armenian who left a safe and comfortable life and went to Artsakh knowing full well what awaited them. Not lasagna, nor red wine for sure.
    Many guerilla units fighting in the forests ate nothing but field greens for days while hitting and evading the enemy.
    Men survived on one can of meat for days. While fighting a brutal war.
    Thousands of men and women fought for years, with little food, little ammunition, few medical supplies.
    Soldiers bled to death from simple wounds, because there was no way to evacuate them to a medical facility.
    And the gentleman is considered ‘great’, because he turned his back on Armenia, and is partying with ‘posh’ English students ?

    {“ just so I can shed the absolutes engrained in our traditional communities, “}

    You go ahead and shed the absolutes, friend.

    There are fortunately lots of men and women amongst Armenians with traditional Armenian absolutes engrained in their core.
    Men and women who have no absolutes were debating and discussing how to reason with the savage AzeriTatarTurk invaders in their air conditioned conference rooms, sipping fine wine, while the ones with traditional Armenian absolutes took up arms and actually stopped them: fighting in muck, in heat, in cold, in freezing snow with no warm clothing.

    One of the posters in this thread considers Mr. Sahagian not just “good”, but a ‘great’ Armenian.
    I don’t know whether to laugh at the absurdity of that statement, or to cry at the tragedy of that statement: someone who turned his back on Armenia is considered a ‘great’ Armenian ?

    Don’t know about others, but this is one Armenian young man who is a GREAT Armenian:

    [Killed Armenian soldier had returned from Russia to offer his military duty]
    {Armenian military serviceman Gor Ghazaryan, 19, who was killed at the posts, had returned to Armenia from Russia to offer his military duty to the Motherland. } (February 21, 2013)

    “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his country”.

    • Avery,

      Don’t you think you are being a little too harsh on Apo? Of course, our real heroes and the greats were in the frontlines during the war but many of us weren’t. Apo was, probably, too young at that time to go to war. I understand your frustration but he did not call himself great. Someone else did. He seems to be a bit confused for the moment but he will find himself eventually.

  20. Great article by Apo, and those who support him. As I have said before, the Armenian nation is a voluntary organization. Any one of us can leave it, reenter it, and do whatever the hell he chooses with his membership. And he or she can spit at the nation and leave whenever he wants. Anything that any one of us does for the nation is a favor, not an obligation. Those who try to impose some absurd obligations on “how to be real Armenian” only engage in useless exercise, as no one can impose any such rules on us Armenians. Bravo, Apo, and my fellow great Armenians.

    • Very good Vahan, maybe turks too can define for Armenians what it means to be Armenian…lol

  21. To jda
    or any other here who think people like Michael Arlen or the other I referred to above….that changing to a foreign,non-Armenian personality-name is something GREAT!!!
    George Deukmejian(twice Governor of Calif) never denied his Armenity!!! one other that I got to know while I was in london studying in the 1946-on…was CALOUST SARKIS GUBENKIAN´S famous son NUBAR Gulbenkian.Man was he eccentric or just over-emphasized Armenian.First his description,Tall-unlike his fathjer- with a Bishops bear..a monocle on his eye,plus he dressed almost always in tails(FRACK) and with a fresh Orchid in his lapel…when leaving the famous Lonodn Ritz(where he lived in a suite)..in his ROLLS ROYCE…but wait .I cut it out of Telegraph newspaper ..he had ordered the Brits to make the outside of the car appear like a huge U.S. Limo, chauffer´s compartment as a convertible…then again git a load of this–
    It was in LIFE magazine later…in the 1948/9 issues (10 entire pages with photos.One when he goes hunting!!! again in in tails.A Brit Asks him on FOX hunting(tradionally British),why so…
    Nubar answers,YOU CAN EXPECT ANYTHING WHEN YOU ARE OUT WITH AN ARMENIAN!!!!IN SHORT HE HAD MADE THE BRITS to appear as being ¨bent over¨when (in American now) dough talks…..
    Also one time it was in the British press again.He invites Turkish belly dancer(not arab mind you) to come and dance in a night spot,just to pleae his ego…or TO SHOW THE TURKS ,WHAT HE HAD DONE TO THE BRITS.Not that I approve or am proud ot what he did.His father certainly did real good Benevolence work to us armenians..but this guy also wanted to show the Brits the MASTERS…then of the India and other such that an Armenian does not bend over if he is LOADED!!!!read this,or translate it as comparing said acts of NUBAR to a freedom fighter Armenian…not ion dough/money but WEAPON good weapons…with that any such freedom fighter armenian can stand up to G.D-.Turoc Azeris and challenge them.So did N U B AR,I changed mind he DID W E L L in showing the Brits who we are when well armed(w/dough)
    best hasgcoghin

  22. Jenn, I usually think the comments on these articles are to ridiculous to bother commenting amongst, but I am now making my first comment because I can very much relate to your family background.

    I have an Armenian father, and an Italian mother. Ever since I was a child both of my parent’s families have had a lot of hatred towards each other over race. I actually haven’t seen my extended family since I was 6, and I have no desire to see them now. Even many years later, both of my parents would blame one another for all the dysfunction their families created. Growing up around that, I had begun to hate my background and took no interest in it for awhile.

    Around the time I was becoming an adult I had started to take more interest in my ethnic background. I was really interested in the people and history involved in it, that I came to realize how stupid it was for me to generalize all of that by my stupid family, or individuals in general. Race is much more bigger than that. If there are specific people causing you to hate Armenians, you don’t have the right idea of what Armenians are.

    If you have parents that only consider themselves Americans, you should probably take 0% of them as an image of their ethnicity. They have been completely assimilated and there is nothing left of them Armenian. This is the case with almost all Armenians in California. Most of them have no sense of culture and think they are Mexicans, and easily assimilate into a thug and trashy lifestyle. They are not Armenians, just the scum of a multi-cultural society. Would you expect any of the Irish Americans from Boston or Italian Americans from New York to be like citizens of Ireland and Italy? I would hope not. No cultural identity exists in the cultural wasteland of the United States and it would be foolish to create one from it.

    About Armenia itself, 2009 was the year the economy crashed. It was probably the worst year to live in Armenia since the Genocide. I don’t think you would have the same experience if you went back. No one is happy with the current situation in Armenia, but at the same time, they should all ask themselves: What are you doing about it? The answer for almost everyone would be nothing. I’m not telling you to do anything, but just consider that whenever you criticize the country. There are people who had to live with 40 minute phone calls for much longer than a day and who are currently living within the whole mess and they still pridefully call themselves Armenians. Are you blaming them for your family? Look at the Ukraine, their government is even more screwed up than the Armenian one, and yet they don’t get the impression that these small number of idiots now can represent thousands of years of a culture. I’m not expecting you to become a patriot. I’m not even expecting you to become an Armenian. Ethnicities can only die out after they’ve mixed. But I hope that after reading all of this, you won’t become self-loathing.

    • Another well thought out response I appreciate. I liked you’re compareson of my view of Armenia to people looking at an antique picture. That was probably the most spot on you could be. I think that’s exactly it.

      The thing with my Armenian grandparents is this. My mothers mom died shortly after child birth leaving my grandfather a single dad in the late 1940’s/1950’s. His solution (which I admire) was to give my mom to my aunt in California for the first 5 years of her life so he could establish himself in the US, save money, start a company, and my aunt could do what ladies do best. Raise and care for a baby. She did a great job. At 5, he came back for her and he’s took over. At that point, he was so happy to be in America and be American, he was happy to see my mom assimilate. And trust me, she thrived here. As a first generation American, she was as close to the all American girl as you can get. So then of course that was instilled in me. I don’t consider it a failure. America may be very young in the grand scheme of things, but boy do I love it. I always tell people when asked that I am Armenian. But it’s not, and probably never will be, how I self identity. I’m sorry I’m a bad Armenian. I am proud to be a good American though.

      Again, great comment. It did give me a good reflection.

    • Jenn,

      People, in general, love the countries they were born and grew up in. I hope you don’t think you are unique. You love USA and you hate Armenia. We get it. OK? I really don’t understand the point of repeating it.

      I also don’t get why you had to come to an Armenian forum and declare to our face (or behind our backs) that you were tired of Armenians. It was rude and immature, and I, personally, did not appreciate it at all. You really grew up in America? I can’t imagine telling anyone that I am tired of their race and that I have had so many bad experiences with them. You would immediately be accountable for it. Would you behave the same way with non-Armenians or you would show more respect?

      It is also immature to generalize your impression of your extended family. Despite all the stories that you are telling about them, at the ripe age of yours, you should know better than that.

      And, honestly, you don’t come across as a globe-trotter, even though you are saying that you are. You simply do not exude the level of sophistication that comes from having had diverse experiences. And one does not have to be well-traveled to be able to appreciate history, culture, and simple joys that a country has to offer. I am sorry to tell you but my children, a lot younger than you, know better than you do. They love the USA and appreciate the comfortable life they live but o boy do they also love Armenia! So what if the two places are so different? That’s the whole point.

      I am not going to engage in persuading you that Armenia is beautiful (it’s been done by many) and that it is not at all as backwards as you describe. If you find it unappealing, so be it. It’s just your opinion. But I will bring a random non-Armenian American traveler’s summary of her trip to Armenia. Just ask yourself why it is that you were unable to find any of the things that she so easily did.

      “Golden apricots dripping juice down my chin. Fields of wildflowers rich in bees and butterflies. Ancient monasteries at breathtaking locations. A holiday festival that involves everyone getting soaking wet. Dancing in the bus aisles. The most insanely perfect salad I’ve ever had. Lacy stone cross carvings, some even carved into the mountain walls. One of the most beautiful public squares I’ve ever seen, especially at night when its fountain dances in colors and music. A gorgeous inland sea, albeit fresh water. History soaked in every stone, from the very ancient stone observatory to the almost-just-yesterday conflict in the southeast.

      I spent twelve days in Armenia, and it really wasn’t long enough.”

    • Frank,

      You take the cake for the silliest post ever on AW except for those from the chorus of Turkish Genocide enthusiasts.

      You speak against generalizations and then say that Armenians in California are almost all trashy low lives, which you deem to be Mexicans. You say they do not know Armenian culture, but I doubt from your little family bio you speak Armenian, take your children to an Armenian Church, or know where Cilicia is. So, you can’t think straight, don’t know anything, and are a racist to boot. Usually idiots stay quiet.

      You do not know the Armenian or Mexican people of California. Did you know that the Mexicans count among their numbers the highest percentage of winners of the Navy Cross and the Congressional Medal of Honor? Did you know that in the past two weeks an Armenian American from California, a Marine, was awarded the Navy Cross posthumously? That in California Armenians and Mexicans have overcome bitter racism,, – just like yours – to build stable families and lives, and rise in the world?

      Have you ever been to California, or did you rely on some television shows that portrayed a few Armenian gangsters? The media has done that to Italians for 100 years.

      Go ahead and hate your own family, but do not insult Armenians, who have set a fine example of decency and accomplishment in this state. Hell, one was even Governor. Two presently serve in Congress too.

  23. I appreciate the thoughtful comment. I really do. I don’t consider myself self loathing. I very much like who I am. Not in a prideful way. I just think I have a lot of good qualities and often get a kick out of myself.

    I know it sounds self absorbed and shallow to even mention a 40 min phone call. Trust me, I’m a world traveler and not always in beautiful hotels and posh surroundings. I can handle a bit of adversity. That incident happened on a bad day and truly was the straw that broke the camels back. Without actually telling you about the whole day leading up to that incident, it does sound shallow. I assure you, there was more to it.

    I’m 35 years old now, and still have minimal interest in Armenia and Armenians. I, of course would never say EVERY single person is terrible. No one on any culture is all bad or all good. People are a mixed bag. Mostly I think my disdain stems from the bad taste that was put in my mouth over the treatment of my father. However, unlike what you described about your folks, it just brought mine fully together. They are still married today and so fully and utterly in love. I wanted that in my marriage, not just marry because someone was Armenian. (I married a German ;)

    If the opportunity ever came up to go back to Armenia, and it actually may fairly soon, I promise I will go back and not view it with the same glasses I did before. I’ll go into it with an open mind and an open heart. That’s the best I can do :)

    • I am Armenian and my sister married an Irish a few years ago.I have to admit that when my sister first made it clear that she wants to marry him, the overall reaction was negative. It was really hard, especially for my father to accept it, but by time my brother-in-law showed us how an “Irish” can be more “Armenian” than most Armenians are. You don’t have to be born an Armenian to feel that spirit, to embrace that culture and to enjoy those family gatherings. Being Armenian is not about visiting Armenia or even being proud of the country, as it has little to offer. When my “Irish” brother-in-law first learned of my family’s objection to their marriage, he put all of us to shame by suggesting that he was planning to adopt my sisters last name only to show us how much he loves her. His knowledge of Armenian history, his devotion to the Armenian church and the respect he has for our traditions totally changed my perception of the word “Armenian.” I feel sorry that your mother’s Armenian relatives have left such a bad image of anything Armenian in your life, but you need to understand that being a small nation of mostly genocide survivors, Armenians have no choice but to pass the language, the traditions and the heritage to the next generation. Failing to do so will only prove that the Turkish criminals have succeeded in eradicating this culture.

  24. I consider myself to be an educated person, and I cannot comprehend what this article is about. What is the thesis? What is the point? What is it arguing?

    “Did we as a collective conclude that social and political diversity was not good …” — of course it is not good, you don’t divide, it makes us weaker. Unity is strength, and for centuries enemies have been trying to divide us to make us weaker. They have succeeded to some degree. We don’t need some adolescent spreading a foolish idea that being socially and politically diverse is good.

    Also good job hanging out with non-Armenians and talking about the Armenian culture over lasanga. Maybe you will be nominated for a Mashtots Medal.

  25. Jenn,

    I read your remarks and I felt like I had to reply to some of the remarks you made about us. As an individual, I think you portray an image of someone who is easy going, laid back and level headed but as an Armenian your remarks are disturbing.

    To begin with, we Armenians use a special terminology to describe the predicament some of our fellow Armenians find themselves in. We call it “White Genocide” and you seem to be a victim of it. Among the mainstream Armenians, this term is used to describe the Armenians who, other than their physical makeup and their surnames, have fallen victim to total assimilation and to the extent that they can no longer be identified as mainstream Armenians and often times not of their own faults. I believe there were reasons beyond your control and don’t necessarily, based on what you wrote, put the blame on you for your lack of interest in the Armenian affairs. I also think your passive and negative attitude toward the Armenians stems from your upbringing. I think the seed of indifference was planted in you at a very young age by your own Armenian mother when she said you are an American and that’s it. It is not my intention to be offensive in any shape or form but I am merely stating facts based on my understanding and experience having familiarized myself with other Armenians in your situation. As they say, apple does not fall too far from the tree, meaning you are the product of your family upbringing and since only your mother is Armenian in your immediate family therefore she is the one responsible for shaping up your attitude toward her own people. There has to be a reason why your mother said what she said to you because her statement is rather unusual. For example, if your grandparents failed to instill a sense of Armenian pride in your mother then that sense of indifference was passed on to you. This happens a lot among the American born Armenians.

    This type of indifference toward your own people of course does not happen overnight and it is the result of a long process. Each case is different, even unique, but they all have many things in common. It also depends on the type of community in which you lived and were raised and what generation Armenian you are in the United States. Given the right atmosphere, none of these things should necessarily matter but the fact is that many older generation Armenians came to the United States around and after the Armenian Genocide and naturally survival was the only thing in their minds at the time. They were strangers to the land, did not speak English and like many other nationalities they were discriminated against. Even people on your father’s side, who today have a lot of political influence in the States, were subject of discrimination early on. There are many other reasons as well, including socio-economic and political. In spite of all these and many other factors, I still firmly believe no matter where you are planted and for how long, you will remain who you are at the core as an Armenian and would want to propagate your race if you are properly raised according to your traditions and if deep down, with your heart and soul, you feel a sense of belonging to your own people.

    A sense of responsibility and love towards your people, and maternal or paternal homeland, should be instinctive and unconditional like the love between a parent and child. You described Armenia as not beautiful and not idealic and I think that is because your view and understanding of Armenia was an artificial one. Your statement reminded me of two people looking at an antique painting. One is amazed by it and drawn to it and can’t turn away from it, and the other has no clue what it is and walks away from it. You can’t compare Armenia to the United States. One is an ancient gem and the other is a 238 year-old invention with very little culture and nothing else other than well-constructed highways, shopping malls and the provision for all comforts of life. I think we need to rise above all that artificial stuff and look at things at much greater depth. To me Armenia, whatever condition it is in, it is still an ancient open air museum.

    I personally am totally against assimilation if it means giving up your own and taking up a whole new identity. People who do such things are those who feel totally disconnected from their own people for one reason or another. If all your pieces, for a lack of better word, are firmly in place, you will feel complete and will stick with your own people and won’t try to reinvent yourself. But if assimilation means being an active and productive member of your newly-adopted society, while firmly maintaining and holding on to your own, then I am all for it and encourage it. It is like being bilingual. Speaking Armenian fluently takes nothing away from speaking English fluently. It enriches you. In fact, I strongly believe wherever we happen to be living we must master their language and traditions but not and never at the cost of losing our own. When we lose our own we lose a sense of belonging and become indifferent and eventually die out.

  26. Isn’t it rather amusing how that Turkbaijani poster attempts to define the Armenian nation, and then states, “any one of us can leave it, reenter it, and do whatever the hell he chooses with his membership.” Exactly how is it possible for a person who has persistently insulted the Armenian nation from top to bottom, to suddenly become a member of the Armenian nation?

  27. I had a wonderful teacher in first to fifth grade.she used to tell us about our armenian heritage through Ara the Beutiful to Dork Ankegh.Sassuntsi David to Antranig.Her name was Zarouhi Manguni.She was a surviver.I ended in Scandinavia.Never saw a book about or in armenian for 42 years, never a headline,or a comment.There was no one I could speak to in my mother tongue.I used to recite Silva Gabudigians Words -U des vortis,ur el lines,ais lusni dag ur el knas, te moret ankam medkitst hanes,KO MAYR LEZOUN CHE MORANAS.Silva, and Oriort Manguni made me,kept me an ARMENIAN.A proud one.

  28. This dialogue, comments, criticisms are painful, condescending,patronizing and certainly unproductive.
    We are all Armenians, and none of us has the right or morale authority to classify an Armenian a “bad armenian”.
    In the diaspora, especially in the US, much depends on where you live and grow up. Moreover the size of the family plays a critical role.
    Due to professional careers, or business and economical circumstances, many of us have had to relocate to areas where Armenian communities are not well established and there is little activity.
    The Armenian communities in areas such as Southern California and Mass
    Boston area, have large Armenian communities where it is practically much easier to get involved and continue to be immersed in the Armenian culure and spirit. However, there are also areas, cities where you can count the Armenians on your fingures. I know it personally from experience, becasue I have lived in such areas. In such areas it is extremely difficult to maintain toatl immersion.
    Times have changed. The pressures on the young generation today is vastly different than what it was only a few years ago. Because of the circumstances they are in and faced with, no one is entitled to criticise them or alienate them. Who are we to do that or be judges?
    Every Armenian, regardless of how much Armenian blood has in its veins, even if it is one drop, is an Armenian that should be loved, nourished and respected for who he/she is. Please stop considering yourself a more worthy Armenian than any other.
    Vart Adjemian

  29. There’s something which doesn’t make any sense here. If a person who happens to be of Armenian descent, does not identify as being Armenian, then what’s the point in telling people that he or she is Armenian? After all, by making the decision to not identify as being Armenian, he or she has chosen to disconnect themself from the Armenian culture. Therefore, he or she would constitute the definition of being a non-Armenian, as opposed to being a bad Armenian.

  30. On the subject of antique paintings, I received a very nice gift over the Christmas holidays. It was an antique painting of Etchmiadzin Cathedral, surrounded by red, blue, and orange flowers. I absolutely adore that painting. I made sure to put it on the wall of my bedroom, on the opposite side of my bed, so that when I wake up in the morning, it ends up being the very first thing I see.

    • That sounds nice. I have a huge oil painting of snow-peaked Mount Ararat with Armenian women working in the fields and shepherds herding their sheep in the green valley. Every day when I look at it I am reminded of its majestic beauty, the simple and quaint life around it and its captivity. It is a source of admiration, energy and purpose for the road ahead until it is freed and returned home where it belongs.

  31. This article and its associated comments is a good place where the Turks can get an idea of how Armenians are doing in the assimilation department in the US – and I am pretty sure they are reading with glee. More Armenians marrying outside their race and more assimilated Armenians = weaker or no demand for justice = Turkey will eventually complete the Genocide it perpetrated without recourse.

  32. Humbug!!!!Armenians will persevere and stay Armenian.No matter ,EVEN if some change their names and pretend to be Russian Federation citizen or any other such.Moreover,Turks know more about this KLHASIAT of us(raison détre) reason of being.Next year we shall see a NEW REPATRIATION TO ARMENIA/ARTSAKH,if some hard…….give in and let the PCA´s Professional colleagues assoc. members grow and support A NATIONAL INVESTMENT TRUST FUND(foundation).We shall not give in a few weaklings may go their way..BTW how come when you enter in establishments such as banks you see the jewish CANDELABRA,(sorry don´t know the name of this)and the public does not protest..that it should be a US Flag there not the CANDELABRA….
    indeed I cherish Freedom and the US is the land of the free,no doubt about that.But it DOES ALLOW that its people keep contact with the ¨old country¨
    like the Italians etc.,so we Armenians can be both a good American and strive hard to keep to Armenity ,as well as cherish the land of our ancestors A R M E N I A and endevarour to make the whole world accept and recognize the Genocide perpetrated upon us by Genocide state.The same procedure that the Jews followed…also receiving blood money from nazi Germany´s heir present Democratic Germany.Yeah say armenity (like community) comunidad Armenidad, not Armenianness(wrong) or anything else..

  33. To Maris,
    Your few words above says it all….bravo!!! keep it up also please tell us about the Deocratic (Socialism)if I may say so imn Sweden or Norway, or the other two countries that form part of Scandinavia….I admire these and had many hopes Armenia ,after communist regime would have adopted the Scandinavian way of rule/life not the wild free market economy…..You can help educate us re how the Goverment wroks there.
    Thanks for your pains beforehand

  34. I am the daughter of an irish armenian mother and a german armenian father, whose fathers escaped from urfa in the hamidian massacres and the genocide. I have known amazing armenians as well as some real jerks. I was taught armenian history from early childhood, but i was also taught that no race, religion, or nationality has a monopoly on evil. I am an american, but i am also a proud armenian ( irish and german sides were multi generational american). Can this be possible? Since it is possible to love borh mother and father, it is equally possible to love motherland and fatherland. Don’t let the armenians who insulted your father form your view of armenians. Add your voice to the openmindedness and embrace of educated armenians.

  35. “Yerevan is filthy, chaotic and difficult.”
    “I’m tired of Armenians. “
    “I’ve been to Armenia and honestly, it wasn’t beautiful. It wasn’t idealic” (idyllic)

    Written by a person who claims her mother is ‘full Armenian’.

    The following articles were written by an American woman of Norwegian ancestry who has not one drop of Armenian blood in her, to the best of her knowledge.
    I cannot speak for others: but I will take one Kristi Rendahl with not a drop of Armenian blood in her in exchange for 10,000 Jane Does – whose mothers and/or fathers are ‘full Armenian’ and who are tired of Armenians.



    Beautiful paste from non-Armenian American traveler.

    Two links below: one from a non-Armenian woman from New Zealand.
    The other a Youtube from a Diaspora Armenian now living and doing business in Armenia.
    Note what the gentleman says starting about timestamp 15:00.
    For those who do not speak Armenian, I will roughly translate what he said:

    “The list is long of things that exist outside and do not exist here (Armenia)”
    “There is security here: not outside (of Armenia)”
    “My (teenage) children can wander about on Sayat Nova till midnight, or anywhere”
    “I am confident there will be no problems”
    “If problems do come up, the local neighbors will take ownership (of the problem)”
    “Because the children are Armenian children”.
    “I am 100% certain”.
    “In America, you can forget about it”.
    “There are neighborhoods in San Francisco..etc where you do not want to end up by mistake”.
    “Then we joke about Yerevan having such neighborhoods: there are no such neighborhoods”.

    There is your “filthy” Yerevan.

    Note: that is exactly how it was when I grew up in Yerevan many, many years ago. No parent was ever concerned that a child would be harmed if left alone to play outside.
    Nobody would even think of harming a child. Nobody.


    Վահե Կոշգերյան

    “Չեմ կարող կոչ անել բոլորին վերադառնալ, միայն կարող եմ ասել, որ այստեղ ես հանգիստ եմ, ապահով, ուրախ”

    Another link:
    {“I loved this place so much that I moved here.”}

    I guess she doesn’t have the ‘handicap’ of a “full Armenian” mother or a “full Armenian” father.

    • It’s not a “claim” it’s a fact she is full Armenian. I don’t understand why that’s disputed.thats weird to me.

  36. I’m troubled by what I’m reading, in the article and in the comments. There is so much pain in our history, yet we throw venom and accusations at each other. Why? What is the purpose? I’m a Baku Armenian: I’ve experienced all kinds of accusations, glances, comments and assumptions – I still do. None of them came from people that were introspective or kept Armenia, its history and its future close to heart and in mind. Some of them had no clear concept of what they were talking about either. So, instead of taking it to heart, I lived my life the way that would make my great grandparents proud of me, instead of some ignorant person clearly preoccupied with his/her own contribution to the Armenian legacy. Conversations like these only distract from what’s really important.

    • Very well said, Anna.
      And bravo, Apo, for your very well written article. Keep writing as we need many-many more Armenians who are excellent writers and speakers, who think globally, and at the same time are Armenians in their hearts and souls. Read Aram Hamparian’s 2012 “mission statement” on being Armenian–it is simply awesome! He’s provided the link in the comments to your article under Big tent. Thank you Armenian Weekly for bringing Apo’s voice to your readers.

  37. In all this, engagement in things Armenian, however defined, is what matters. The very fact that everyone posting here, including the original article’s author, is one such form of engagement. It’s what defines Armenianness, at least in the Diaspora, and ought to be encouraged.

    The Kurds have a saying “he is a Kurd who says I am a Kurd”– we would do well to emulate that spirit.

    And, here’s an example related to me by Hourig Papazian-Sahagian from her time spent in Lebanon that is very similar in its essence to what’s being discussed here. While there, Hourig had a conversation with (I’ve forgotten which) one of of leading lights of the first Armenian Republic. She complained of all the Turkish-speaking Cilicians she encountered. His response? “Aghcheegs, nrank el Hye en” (my girl, they too are Armenian).

    I think that says it all.

  38. I would like to add some words of English famous poet George Gordon Lord Byron, who studied Armenian language:
    “If the scriptures are rightly understood it was in Armenia that paradise placed. But whatever may have been their destiny and it has been bitter whatever it may be in future, their country must ever be one of the most interesting on the globe. Armenian is the language to speak with God.”

  39. Jenn,

    You embarrass me as an American for judging Armenia by the American conveniences you find lacking. In the 50’s, there was a book called The Ugly American that portrayed oblivious Americans who lacked respect for the foreign country they worked in. Don’t be one.

    It is hard to believe you have an Armenian American mother because Armenians are always proud and dutiful to a nation nearly murdered into extinction. I’ve met only one who didn’t care- that’s how much all Armenians care. Join us.

  40. What luxuries we must enjoy that we can afford to consider who is Armenian enough. How proud our ancestors would be that our real problems have all been vanquished, allowing us to devote energies to such trivia.

    It only proves, sadly, that every one of us shows the true colors of a real Armenian.

  41. What a strange conversation! I couldn’t even imagine that there are people who dare to talk about being good/bad armenians knowing practically nothing about Armenia. I want you all to understand, you can’t be representatives of a nation and it’s culture if you weren’t brought up there, if you don’t know how native people think.

  42. I read so many comments about being bad Armenian or good Armenian, I love that I am Armenian, I live in China and I love to tell foreigners around me that I am Armenian, and most of them look at me with eyes like they have no idea what Armenia is, where is it situated, this is the part that I like the most, I start telling about us, about who I am BUT I am really sad to see all the judgments on this website, goor Armenian, Bad Armenian ,……who cares, just be who you are, I have never heard from my foreign friends that they were called for example bad Italian or good Italian, they are just who they are. We need to stop behaving like that and put different tags on each other!!!

  43. Something no one talks about, but knows. Before the genocide most Armenians had lighter skin, lighter eyes, and lighter hair. Because of the genocide, due to rape there was a mixing of genes, they eventually became darker. These are just a few sentences from a much greater amount of information. If there is a way we can compare what Armenians looked like before the genocide and after the genocide. Though, I also believe when the genes mixed it was not only appearance that changed but everything including that which is within. Therefore, Armenians in Armenia are not even Armenian anymore.

  44. There are no good or bad Armenians. If one does not identify as an Armenian, let them be. They are just not Armenians – done and gone. And yes, it is 2022 and we, Armenians, are being targeted. So, if you don’t think you are an Armenian, make sure to change your name so that you are not killed because somebody else thinks you are. And to those who say Armenians in Armenia are not even Armenian, take a good look in the mirror and enjoy your lattes in the security of your far-away countries and let us be.

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