Domestic Violence and the Preservation of ‘Family’ in Armenia

Special for the Armenian Weekly

By Sophia Moradian & Karine Vann

On Feb. 24, Hasmik Khachatryan, 27, stood in the courtroom of the Gegharkunik District in Gavar, Armenia, to testify against her husband, Sargis Hakobyan. She hoped that by doing so, he might be held accountable for the physical and psychological abuse he had unleashed for nearly a decade. Khachatryan is part of a growing statistic of women in Armenia who are speaking out about gender-based violence.

Former leader of the Progressive Socialist Party Robert Aharonyan
Former leader of the Progressive Socialist Party Robert Aharonyan

The case took an even more controversial turn on May 7, when the former leader of the Progressive Socialist Party, Robert Aharonyan, verbally and physically assaulted journalists and supporters following one of Khachatryan’s hearings. Video footage from the incident went viral and captured Aharonyan addressing a crowd of native and diasporan Armenians, as well as representatives of women’s rights organizations, in rather explicit language: “Get lost, go back to your country! Why have you come to interfere with Armenia? … The day will come [when] we will deport you, [and] close the border. I am a supporter of strong families… Don’t destroy the Armenian family with your European approaches.”

Commenting on the incident in an interview with Civil Net, Maro Matosian, a Diasporan repatriate and the founder of the Women’s Support Center in Yerevan, said, “Lately, a lot of marginalized small organizations [have been] able to change the mindset of people and spread out information that women organizations are trying to break up families in Armenia, that we do not support the ‘traditional fabric’ of an Armenian family, whatever that means.”

It is shocking that in certain contexts, the word “family” in Armenia has come to justify the violation of human rights. But in order to understand the attitudes of individuals like Aharonyan, which are so at odds with human rights movements of the 21st century, it seems that we must first ask, “What is the ‘traditional Armenian family’?”

How can we distinguish between the family as a social unit—so central to our psychological and emotional wellbeing—and the exploitation of the term as a driving force behind arguments from individuals like Aharonyan?

While recent events paint a bleak picture of women’s rights in Armenia, organizations such as the Women’s Resource Center,Women’s Support Center, Pink Armenia, Society Without Violence, For Family and Health, and the Coalition to Stop Violence against Women inspire hope. These organizations, many emerging as recently as earlier this year, have been critical in empowering Armenian women, like Khachatryan, to claim their right to nonviolence.

They also set an example for the emergence of other like-minded organizations. SheFighter, a self-defense training program designed to empower women and girls, was recently established by Nora Kayserian on March 8, International Women’s Day. Describing her program, Kayserian said, “Women who usually come out of self-defense classes, after a long period of time, feel more entitled to their body, more entitled to their rights. They have both a stronger body and a stronger mind, in terms of speaking up for themselves, making their voices heard, basically owning the fact that they are independent people, and they’re capable, and they have control of their lives and themselves.”

More and more women are becoming aware of their rights. And whereas before, domestic violence cases faded into anonymity, they are now seeing the light of day. Yet, it will take time for a patriarchal society

Activists hold a banner that reads, "End violence towards women," during a protest in Yerevan (Photo credit: Society Without Violence)
Activists hold a banner that reads, “End violence towards women,” during a protest in Yerevan (Photo credit: Society Without Violence)

like Armenia to come to terms with the “new values” that are so at odds with tradition.

The most recent hearing for the Khachatryan case took place on May 20. The verdict, however, was delayed because Hakobyan’s lawyer ordered another medical examination to verify the physical abuse. Hakobyan denies nearly all of the accounts of physical violence against Khachatryan, including claims that he put out his cigarettes on her body.

In spite of these obstacles, as global citizens we know that nothing is specific to Armenia. Gender equality, along with many other challenges facing Armenia today, are global issues.

Concluding her interview, Matosian ended on a note of optimism: “That’s the challenge and that’s the beauty of being in Armenia.” Armenia has the advantage of being a small country with a strong collective identity and a progressive and committed diasporan network. We should embrace Armenia’s unique circumstances as the ideal environment for change to take place in the future. Diasporan or not, it’s perhaps one thing we can all agree on.

Guest Contributor

Guest Contributor

Guest contributions to the Armenian Weekly are informative articles written and submitted by members of the community, which make up our community bulletin board.
Guest Contributor

Latest posts by Guest Contributor (see all)

78 Comments

  1. Good day!
    Dear friends, I heartily thank you
    very difficult and noble
    good work.
    People often lack positive, unfortunately aggression against women is a man as a factor in his debilizma and it should recognize those who abuse women.
    Any woman is a good, all violence is the ugliness of the soul.

  2. This makes me so happy to hear, having grown up in Armenia – in Gavar to be specific. I am so glad we are finally making some movement towards bettering the services available and educating women and families about these issues. The violence in Armenian families that I witnessed growing up is a huge reason why I got my degrees in Criminology and Psychology and I am glad to see that finally, after decades, something is happening, as little as it may be. Goes to show that there is light at the end of the tunnel, even if not widely accepted or understood at the moment

  3. I had thought only some Muslims defended violence against women. Let’s help every such woman and ask her brothers to defend them. Unbelievable.

    • Violence against women is a global issue. Always has been and it’s going to take a while to reduce it considerably.

      The first way to help is to talk openly about it within any society.

      How can anyone defend use of physical violence against women and against even against kids too.

  4. “Don’t destroy the Armenian family with your European approaches”

    Apparently, these “patriots” do not realize that the biggest threats to the Armenian family have been Russia and (in the past 20 years) poverty and lack of rule of law, both results of lack of democracy. Even before the independence, thousands of Armenian men left their families to work in Russia and find Russian mistresses/wives. The process has intensified recently, with Russia’s policy of emptying Armenia of Armenians. Poverty and injustice are driving Armenian men out of the country, leaving behind all-women villages. Not to mention that many Armenian women are running to Turkey and Dubai to work as prostitutes. Those families that cannot leave the country live in abject poverty, with Armenian mothers begging for food in the streets, and children unable to go to school.

    These are the real destroyers of the Armenian family, all caused by the government’s denial of democracy to its people. As I have said before, lack of democracy is turning Armenia into a society of beggars, prostitutes, and thieves. And these pro-Serzh (and pro-Russia) “geniuses” are blaming Diasporans and the Europe? Talk about digging your own grave.

    Lack of democracy is severely hurting Armenia in more than one way – national security, economy, and culture. The destruction of the Armenian family is one example.

    • Many Armenian women are running to Turkey to work as prostitutes? Are you really that desperate to invent these kinds of false, absurd statements? It’s just like saying that many of your female compatriots from Baku are running to Armenia to become prostitutes. Anyway, in regard to Dubai, it’s true that there is a group of Armenian women who work there as prostitutes; however, there are actually many more Turkbaijani prostitutes in Dubai than Armenian.

      Your previous statement, “those families that cannot leave the country, live in abject poverty, with Armenian mothers begging for food in the streets, and children unable to go to school,” is again false and ludicrous. The poverty rate of Armenia is 32.4 percent, which therefore means that 67.6 percent of the population does not live in poverty. As a result, even though Armenia’s poverty rate continues to remain very high, there are still over twice as many people in Armenia who don’t live in poverty as opposed to the ones who do live in poverty. As for the children, almost all of Armenia’s children go to school. That’s the reason why Armenia has a literacy rate of almost one hundred percent.

      In terms of Armenia being a society of beggars, prostitutes, and thieves, this is again another one of your false and ludicrous statements. Actually, when I recently visited Yerevan, I recall coming across a total of only three beggars on the streets, and two female prostitutes. As for the United States, every American big city I’ve been to, has always been filled with beggars and prostitutes. As for thieves, Armenia’s capital city of Yerevan, happens to actually have one of the lowest burglary rates of any big city in the world today.

    • On the subject of poverty, census figures released in September of 2013, confirm that record-high numbers of Americans are living in poverty. The latest data, reveal that one out of seven people in the USA, are currently living in poverty. As of 2012, 46.5 million people in the United States were living in poverty. This is actually the largest number it’s been in the 54 years that the Census has measured poverty. This is indeed rather shameful for a huge superpower country like the United States, which has an abundance of everything you can possibly imagine, but yet, it contains a population of 46.5 million people who live in poverty. This once again comes to show that America’s make-believe democracy is indeed a fake democracy. Anyway, make sure to check out these stats by the U.S. Census:
      http://www.nclej.org/poverty-in-the-us.php

    • Let’s educate our “Armenian” apologist again about statistics (using his own sources).

      U.S. poverty rate: 15 %
      Armenia poverty rate (official): 32.4 %

      http://www.nclej.org/poverty-in-the-us.php
      http://asbarez.com/116670/poverty-rate-in-armenia-nearly-doubles/

      Apparently, for pro-regime apologists, 32% poverty rate is a “good number.” That is why every Armenian who has a chance is fleeing the country. Nevermind that the rate is double of what the rate used to be just a few years ago:

      “The poverty rate in Armenia climbed 17.4% from 2008 to 32.4% in 2012, according to the Armenian National Statistical Service’s report” http://asbarez.com/116670/poverty-rate-in-armenia-nearly-doubles/

      And let’s not forget, it’s the official number by the Armenian government, which is known to lie. The real number is probably much higher.

      By the way, if the U.S. poverty rate is a “shame,” the fact that thousands of Armenians flee from Armenia to the U.S. only shows what a pathetic state Armenia is in.

      The fact that Armenian women work as prostitutes in Turkey and Dubai is no secret. Here some more education for our “Armenian” guest:

      “Women and girls from Armenia are subjected to sex trafficking in the United Arab Emirates and Turkey, and within the country.”

      http://www.refworld.org/docid/4fe30ce7c.html

    • Educate? How can you possibly attempt to educate anyone, when you’re not even capable of educating yourself? Anyway, it’s a pleasure to have you back in my classroom again.

      To begin with, I don’t support President Sargsyan and his crew. I’ve stated on numerous occasions that his oligarchy government is impeding the progress of Armenia, which as a result, has produced an enormously high poverty rate, unemployment rate, and massive emigration. What I would really like to see, is an Armenian government which is truly devoted to its people and works tirelessly to fulfill their needs.

      Your source, in regard to “women and girls from Armenia being subjected to sex trafficking in Turkey,” is not credible. It wasn’t published by the United Nations. It was published by the crooked, rogue U.S. State Department. This is the same exact organization which took absolutely no action against Turkey after it assisted the Al-Qaeda terrorists in its attack of the Kessab Armenians. This is also the same exact organization that intensely refuses to acknowledge the Armenian Genocide. Therefore, the U.S. State Department’s report about Armenia and its people, represents zero.

      In terms of Armenia’s poverty rate of 32.4 percent, I never stated it was a “good number” as you falsely claim. On the contrary, I think it’s an enormously high number. The poverty rate of the United States (15 percent), is also enormously high for a huge superpower country like it, which has an abundance of everything unlike Armenia. Fifteen percent, translates to 46.5 million people living in poverty in the United States. This shameful figure is 16.6 times larger than the entire population of Armenia (2.8 million). And let’s not forget that 46.5 million is the official number given by the U.S. government, which is known to frequently lie. The real number is probably way over fifty million. By the way, guess what the poverty rate of America’s biggest state (California) is? It’s 23.5 percent. That’s 8.5 percent higher than the national average. How shameful!

    • “This shameful figure is 16.6 times larger than the entire population of Armenia (2.8 million)”

      You seem having trouble with differentiating percentages and numbers. No problem, glad to educate you some more. The U.S. population is 100+ times greater than Armenia’s population. So, having poverty figure 16.6 larger than Armenia means that Armenia’s poverty rate is much worse than America’s. In fact, it is over twice as much as America’s rate. If America’s figure is “shameful,” Armenia’s poverty figures are fatal.

      So you would prefer a document from the U.N. instead of the U.S.? You know that the U.S. recognized NKR as part of Azerbaijan, correct? Do you recognize that conclusion? And you are supposed to be “Armenian?”

    • Actually, calculating percentages and numbers comes very easy for me. It happens to be one of my favorite subjects in mathematics. Since you happen to be very poor in mathematics, I will again attempt to educate you on the fact that 46.5 million impoverished people in the United States, happens to be 16.6 times larger than the entire population of Armenia (2.8 million). You don’t believe me? Check it out on a calculator. Or did they not teach you how to use a calculator at Baku Community College?

      In terms of the comparison between Armenia and the U.S. poverty rate, it’s true that Armenia’s poverty rate (a shameful 32.4 percent) is slightly over two times higher; however, the U.S. is a huge superpower country as opposed to little tiny Armenia. In addition, the U.S. has an abundance of everything imaginable, as opposed to Armenia. There is absolutely no reason why the United States should have 46.5 million people living in poverty. This is indeed shameful! Anyway, I have some more education for you on America’s shameful poverty stats:
      http://www.thenation.com/article/176242/americas-shameful-poverty-stats

      In the article, make sure to read the part that says, “With the exception of Romania, no developed country has a higher percentage of kids in poverty than America.” Hey, that’s horribly shameful!

      In terms of documents, I never asked you to give me any particular document. All of your documents are false and meaningless.

      In regard to your statement about the U.S. recognizing NKR as part of Azerbaijan, the people of Artsakh don’t care the slightest about what the U.S. recognizes or doesn’t recognize. What matters is what the people of Artsakh feel.

      In your earlier comment, you made it seem like it’s a surprise to have a “Armenian” guest on here. For your own information, besides me, there are also many other “Armenian” guests on here. Were you actually expecting all of the guests to be Turkbaijani like yourself?

    • “the U.S. is a huge superpower country as opposed to little tiny Armenia.”

      That’s true. It’s good that you know at least one basic fact. Let me educate some more. The fact that the U.S. is so much larger than Armenian means that: 1) the poverty has much greater affect on Armenia (which is why you are in the U.S., and 2) that Armenia is far less able to survive its fatal 30+% poverty rate than the U.S. Armenians in Armenia would dream to have the poverty rate in the U.S.

      By the way, since you live in the U.S. and consider it a “shameful,” why do you live in the U.S. instead of Armenia? I know the answer (hypocrisy) but I wonder if you have an intelligent answer.

      I never said the U.S. recognized NKR as part of Azerbaijan. You seem having trouble not just with math but with reading. I wrote that the U.N. recognized NKR as part of Azerbaijan. In fact, the U.S. voted against that resolution. Since you earlier said that you prefer a U.N. report over a U.S. one, what does that make you, an Azeri, a pro-Azeri, or something else?

    • In addition to all of your other failures, you also fail to comprehend what you write in your posts. That’s what happens when you’re ignorant and lack education. In your earlier post from June 10th, you did not say, “the U.N. recognized NKR as part of Azerbaijan.” You wrote, “the U.S. recognized NKR as part of Azerbaijan.” Check it out for yourself. Anyway, in terms of the U.N., the people of Artsakh also do not care what it recognizes or doesn’t recognize. As I said before, what matters is what the people of Artsakh recognize. And if they claim to be independent, then they’re independent. That’s all there is to it.

      As I said earlier, I never asked you for a U.N. report or any other kind of report; you have a very bad tendency of inventing ridiculous stories. Are you really so desperate that now you’re going to try and imply that I’m a pro-Azeri? Well, in my posts, it’s perfectly clear what culture I come from. If you haven’t figured it out by now, then you must be extremely silly. But then again, being silly is something that comes natural for you. In regard to what culture you come from, that’s also very clear. As everyone can easily see, the vast majority of your posts are filled with vulgar, disgusting remarks against Armenian society, Armenian women, Armenia, and Artsakh. As a matter of fact, in regard to Artsakh, we all know how much intense hatred you have for it. This by itself, shows that you’re clearly a Turkbaijani.

      In terms of Armenia’s poverty rate of 32.4 percent, it’s enormous and shameful, but not fatal. It would be fatal if it were above fifty percent.

      For your own information, the reason why I’m in America has nothing to do with Armenia’s poverty rate. Actually, I’ve never lived in poverty before. Anyway, instead of foolishly attempting to determine the reason why other people are in America, you should instead try and determine the reason why you came here from Baku.

    • I posed a question to you (“why you live in the U.S. if you find it shameful”) and challenged you to provide an intelligent answer. As always, you failed to do so. As a generous person, I will give you another chance. If you believe the U.S. is a worse country than Armenia, why did you come to my country, the U.S.? There is a huge line of people (including Armenians) who appreciate the virtues of the greatest country on earth and cannot wait to join our family. Why do you not return to Armenia (your claimed homeland) and free up space for these men and women? Clearly, it would be the less hypocritical choice.

      You argued that the U.S. report on Armenia was not credible because it was not published by the U.N. Thus, you expressed preference for a U.N. report than a U.S. one. If you can’t read your own post, ask someone else for help. The U.N. has made a less favorable position on nkr than the U.S. (by expressly recognizing it as part of Azerbaijan). It’s a well known resolution, either google it or ask someone else to do it. Are you finally ready to admit that your argument is illogical and foolish? If, on the other hand, you are in favor of the U.N. position, are you ready to admit that you are either Turkish or Azerbaijani?

    • Why am I obligated to answer your question as to why I live in the U.S.? Do you have an intelligent answer to that question? You seem to be deeply interested in me?

      Anyway, I never said the U.S. is a worser country than Armenia. As usual, you’re just inventing false stories about everything and everyone.

      Why did I come to your country, the U.S? And exactly why does the U.S. happen to be more your country than my country? Actually, the U.S. is just as much my country as it is your country or anyone else who lives here.

      You were curious to know why I don’t return to my homeland of Armenia? Well, I actually return there on a yearly basis; and then, I return back to the United States. Hey, there’s nothing wrong with having two homes.

  5. Oh boy, oh boy: those ‘savage’ Armenian menfolk.
    Violent, misogynous, uncouth, oppressive, bossy,….. you know, Armenian men.
    If only our refined compatriots of the feminine gender would succeed in imparting some of thems highly advanced Western mores (“new values”) of sophisticated Western men they are so fond of – ooh la la – onto the Armenian male ‘savages’….then RoA would become a feminist paradise.

    Meanwhile in the real world, we have these inconvenient facts messing up our Armenian sisters’ utopia:

    { In 2010, in the United States there were 1,800 females murdered by men in single victim/single offender incidents. Among these incidents 94 percent of victims knew the offender, and more than 65 percent of female homicide victims were the wives or intimate partners of their killers}([Domestic Violence Is Murder] Wendy Pollack, HuffPost 11/09/2012)

    There was one domestic violence homicide in Armenia in 2010, Zaruhi Petrosyan. This sort of violence is (thankfully) so rare in Armenia that it made national and international news. And, yes it is still rare, even though even one murder is one too many: {“In July 2012, Anahit Babayan was beaten to death with a concrete slab and a wooden bar by her husband of 30 years.”}(Source: Nanore Barsoumian @AW).
    There was also one case of a suspicious suicide in a domestic case a couple of years ago, which may have been induced (sorry: do not recall her name).

    I follow the news from Armenia very closely: have not heard of any domestic violence related homicides having taken place in 2013, or 2014. (…if there were any, let me know: I’ll update my stats)

    Let us look at some facts then:

    RoA population: about 3 million
    USA population: about 300+ million.
    Adjusted for population, USA had 12X the domestic violence _homicide_ rate of RoA in 2010. (65% of 1,800)
    Let me repeat that: 12 times.
    There are more domestic violence related State and Federal laws in US than you can count.
    And the laws are very strict and are strictly enforced.
    Women’s shelters galore, resources…everything.
    How well have those “new values” worked in US, ladies ?

    Oh, and in that feminist paradise of Sweden, population 9 million:
    {…An estimated 16 women a year are killed by their husband or partner, and only a fraction of the cases involving assaults, rape, a breach of a restraining orders or ongoing abuse are prosecuted.} (New York Times, Lizette Alvarez, 2005).
    {The number of cases where partner violence has resulted in death has remained stable since the early 1990s. During the period 1990-2004, the average number of women (over the age of 15) dying from partner violence is 17 per year. Compared to the period of 1971-1980, this represents a decrease from a yearly average of 21 cases per year.} (Source: EUCPN (European Crime Prevention Network) http://www.eucpn.org)

    Sweden’s 16 DV murders per annum is 5X the rate of RoA, per capita.
    In other words, those refined, “new values”, sophisticated Nordic European men our Armenian feminists stay awake at night dreaming about, murder Shveedish women at a rate 5 times higher than those ‘savage’ patriarchal, old values, Caucasian Armenian men.
    Ooh la la.

    What about our Caucasian neighbor, the darling of the West, Georgia ?
    If only RoA had an Ivy League educated President like Saakashvili to influence wild Armenian men.
    {Latest data showed since the beginning of this year, 13 women died as a result of domestic violence. Some were murdered while others committed suicide after fighting with their husbands.} (Source: Agenda.ge, 28 May, 2014 – 19:15, Tbilisi,Georgia)

    Right: in 2014, so far, 13 Georgian women have lost their lives related to domestic violence.
    Thirteen women dead.
    In the 5 months of 2014.

    btw: it is interesting that the authors of this article conveniently ‘forgot’ to mention that Maro Matosian’s Women’s Resource Center “receives support from the Open Society Foundation-Armenia, a part of the Soros foundations network.” (Source: http://www.eurasianet.org)
    In other words, it is a Soros front organization.
    Anybody remember what Soros and his Neocon buddies do for fun in their spare time ?

    One final note:

    I have not added up the losses yet, but from memory, about 6-7 or so Armenian men have been KIA to date in 2014 defending RoA and NKR from invasion by Turkbaijani nomads. You protesting ladies in Yerevan may want to recall what those two legged beasts did to Armenian women and girls in Sumgait, Kirovabad, and Baku.
    It is very revealing that the same people protesting in Yerevan have never held any demonstrations in remembrance of Armenian _men_ killed in action. Of course not: in their feminist worldview men are expendable.
    Young Armenian men by the 1000s serve in cold, heat, dust, snow…and are KIA protecting their homeland, in supposed peacetime, while their feminist sisters protest in the safety & security of downtown Yerevan – against Armenian men.

    Must be nice being a feminist.

    • Are gun laws in Armenia as relaxes as they are in the US? What is the ethnic/religious (in non-PC terms, how many of them are Muslim?- and do these men qualify as coming from a “western” background) background of these men who kill their wives/girlfriends in the US? How many of them were of non-western (Turks, Persians, Arabs, etc.) background in Sweden?

      An absence of violence against women is not a sign of equality- and it’s certainly nothing to boast about.

    • Avery,

      You’re being too defensive about this. Domestic violence is an issue everywhere, including Armenia, and there simply is no excuse to try and belittle or excuse any of it in Armenia.

      Here’s an article on domestic abuse deaths in Armenia:

      http://asbarez.com/112290/women%E2%80%99s-group-details-domestic-violence-deaths-in-armenia/

      From the article:
      “The Armenian police declined to confirm or refute the death toll reported by the women’s rights group. A police spokesman told RFE/RL’s Armenian service (Azatutyun.am) that law-enforcement bodies do not count such incidents as a separate category in their homicide statistics. The official also argued that Armenia’s Criminal Code still does not clearly define domestic violence.
      And you keep bringing up the Armenian soldiers killed by Azeris on the border as if that somehow makes everything else not as worthy of persuit. ”

      In other words, Armenia does not keep track of death from domestic violence, so we don’t know how many women are actually killed each year because of DM! So your methodology of comparing Armenia to other countries is flawed.

      You’re naively or deliberately assuming that the reported deaths are all there is in Armenia. For every death, there is 100 fold violence being committed.

      You have shown a sexist side to yourself Avery. Our Armenian sisters are subjected to violence and even death by our Armenian brothers and I have not seen you condemn it. This is not a “feminist” issue! Is this what the Armenian boys on the front line are defending? An attitude where beating up a wife is acceptable?

      And no, all this does not mean all men are violent and bad. That is never the point of publicizing domestic violence.

      “It’s not as bad as other countries” is not good enough for Armenia and should never be!

    • “There was one domestic violence homicide in Armenia in 2010, Zaruhi Petrosyan. This sort of violence is (thankfully) so rare in Armenia that it made national and international news.”

      This is a naive assumption Avery. How do you know there were not more that went unreported? Such cases can easily be not reported.

    • I checked the web site of Society Without Violence NGO.
      It is hard to verify their information, and hard to verify the numbers without exhaustive vetting of their sources.
      Also, their definition of what constitutes DV is strange.
      For example, there is one case they list under Domestic Violence (purple square) where the son living with his mother stabbed her to death for some alcohol related argument. The Western definition of ‘domestic violence’ is based on _intimate_ partner violence, not someone living in the same house.
      Then they list several DV murders in 2014, but their own web site says ‘Unverified’.

      In any case, I accept that there were more DV murders than I originally posted for the years I listed.
      Nevertheless, even if I take their numbers at face value, the DV homicides in RoA are far less than Georgia, Sweden, and US.
      So my original argument stands: DV certainly exists in RoA, but is quite rare, compared to several benchmarks listed above, and all attempts to sensationalize it by various radical feminist foreign-funded RoA NGOs have nefarious purposes.

      And nobody from the feminist camp has been able to answer the question I posed previously: with all the laws in US severely and undeniably punishing DV, availability of women’s shelters, automatic issuance of Restraining Orders by Law Courts, and on, and on – why is it that none of it has made a dent in DV murders in US ?
      Why is it that there were about 1,200 DV murders of women in US in 2010 ?
      Weren’t all those DV laws and DV awareness in US supposed to put a stop to that ?

      As to your contention that there _may_ be more unreported DV in RoA: sure there can be.
      There can also be Unicorns in Armenia: can you prove it ?

    • “As to your contention that there _may_ be more unreported DV in RoA: sure there can be.
      There can also be Unicorns in Armenia: can you prove it ?”

      So you’re saying it’s impossible that there is undereporting going on? How do you know this? Your whole assertion so far has been that there have only been a few deaths from DV based on what you’ve read in the news. How do you know this is an accurate reflection of DV in Armenia?

      I’m supposed to take you you, a male, living in America more seriously than the voices of women in Armenia?

      All your posts have been an overreaction to reports of DV in Armenia. You’re taking this too personally as a male.

      Discussion of DV in Armenia, as an issue, is not a reflection of the men in Armenia (nor you) as a whole. It is not a feminazi condemnation of us menfolk.

      Avery:
      “Oh boy, oh boy: those ‘savage’ Armenian menfolk.
      Violent, misogynous, uncouth, oppressive, bossy,….. you know, Armenian men.
      If only our refined compatriots of the feminine gender would succeed in imparting some of thems highly advanced Western mores (“new values”) of sophisticated Western men they are so fond of – ooh la la – onto the Armenian male ‘savages’….then RoA would become a feminist paradise.”

      Seriously, this is such a childish, knee-jerk, over-reaction.

      Domestic Violence is not a feminist issue for feminists and by feminists. It’s an issue for an entire society as it affects families and neighborhoods. And again, discussion of DV is not a condemnation of men or men-hating.

  6. To begin with, I find domestic abuse deplorable. Only a weak minded man would convince himself that he needs to resort to violence to solve any issues he is having.

    That being said, I find western ideas of “feminism” and so-called “equality” equally vile and deplorable. Not because of the ideas themselves, but because of the politics and people behind it. “Feminism” in the western world, and feminism in the old world are two different animals. In the US for example, the so-called “feminists” are no longer driven by principles of equality, but simply by principles of male-hatred as well as damaging all that used to be traditional in America – and they’ve succeeded – and the results are not impressive. Now I don’t agree with what Aharonyan said about telling other Armenians to “go back to their countries” (he has no right) – but I do understand and agree to purge western-style “values” from Armenia. Armenia is too small to withstand such an assault and Armenian women do not need such “values”, in my opinion they are both strong and feminine when they need to be, and in our culture, our women are extremely crucial in propagating our cultural values and traditions.

    Avery made a good point about Soros. Just who is this George Soros character and why is he meddling in Armenia? If he “cares” about Armenia, he can donate money to Armenian organizations and charities and let them freely use the funds to help the Armenian culture, instead of setting up shop in a suspicious manner for so-called “social change” by “open society”… something about that feels sinister and stinks to high heaven.

    By my understanding this nosy Soros character laid his dirty paws on both Georgia and the Ukraine – and look how that turned out. Although Russia has been getting on my nerves lately, they are correct about the suspicious nature of the so-called NGOs. I bet the majority of those NGOs in Armenia are not there because they care about Armenians, but because they want to change Armenia in such a way so as to weaken Russian influence. They are all probably there as a research mechanism to see what Russia is up to and what to do to bring maximum harm to Russia should there be a conflict – and in such a scenario, Armenia would quickly become the sacrificial lamb. The money they are spending is, for them, just pocket change. They see it as an investment in the new Cold War.

    In essence, to me it looks like these “non governmental organizations” are actually very governmental – they are shills, and so is Soros. The “social change” they initiate is just a warm-up for the upcoming assault. These neocons couldn’t do it to Syria, and they can’t stomach that their back-up terrorist funding plan failed and now they are all caught with their pants down. And when it is emphasized that an organization is “non-governmental”, that in itself is suspicious, because that presents itself as the perfect opportunity for a nefarious government to implement its schemes on another country. Reminds me of the so-called “Free Syrian Army” – use reverse terminology to legitimize yourself.

    And on a final note, any world government or NGO acting on its behalf claiming to care about Armenia and Armenians – so why after almost 100 years we haven’t had the very simple and very basic right of getting the Armenian Genocide recognized? Because we don’t want to piss off ONE of America’s many stooges which happens to completely depend on the US for its security? I rest my case.

    • Hagop,

      Can you be more specific about what you mean by “western values”? I really don’t know what your beef is exactly because your terms are vague.

      “but simply by principles of male-hatred as well as damaging all that used to be traditional in America – and they’ve succeeded – and the results are not impressive.”

      What exactly are all these traditional American things that have been destroyed? It’s not clear to me what you’re talking about.

    • Well RA, below James actually touched on the subject so you could read that, but I think any Armenian who has grown up in America should relate to what I was saying. I’ll touch upon an introduction but will leave it at the introduction level, once upon a time in the US, mockery, insult and ridicule of America’s Christian faith would cause outrage and national condemnation, today the media has trained the sheeple of America that it is a “fun pastime”, of course no other religions get such a “benefit”. Not long ago, it was unheard of kids shooting up their school, today, what, it’s like a monthly event unless they are busy smoking pot. What used to be the speech of vulgar street walkers on television previously, is today the speech of “independent career women”. The “family unit” is fast going out of style. Do I need to go on and spell out all the sordid details? I could go on with all the details, but I won’t and I can attest that it is incompatible with what we accept culturally as Armenians and Armenian-Americans.

      Yes these are not necessarily what western society accepts, but based on its moral decay, they are at least byproducts. And I don’t see things getting better. And these values are also not necessarily part of small town America, as they are in cities. There is still a lot of decency in the US because the US is a very large place, but an evil force is lurking in America today, which has a grip on both its politics and society and thus controlling or trying to control its societal values and direction. Again I don’t need to go into all the details here, for risk of making my response to you unpublishable, so you should just interpret what I said according to what you understand.

    • Once upon a time there were Jim Crow laws and segregation in America. Once upon a time, the President of the United States had to call in the national guard to integrate a school. Once upon a time interracial marriages were illegal. Once upon a time a woman’s role in America was to learn how to be a good, obedient housewife. Once upon a time, and it still persists in remote regions of the South, prayer was mandatory in the public school’s of a country which claimed to have freedom of religion. And of course, once upon a time, a long time ago, we could own people in this great bastion of democracy of ours.

      Do I need to go on and spell out all the sordid details?

    • That’s cute RVDV, but you are changing the discussion at hand, which is “what are western values” in regards to us as Armenians who are trying to defend our culture from it. What do the negative aspects of America’s history have to do with it? The point I made was, how elements of western values USED to be compatible with our cultural norms, but they are not now because they changed for the worse. America had a dirty past? So? Which country didn’t?

      And religion is a poor point you made, as that is actually a highlight from the Armenian perspective as to how America went on a moral decline, because from our perspective, religion is not just religion, it is also part of the culture and heritage of a people. Although there are plenty of Atheist Armenians, where our culture is concerned, if we are not particularly religious Christians, then we are probably cultural ones, it has simply come to be part of the identity.

      And Under what law or moral code is it written that a country can’t have a religious affiliation while providing religious freedom to those that choose a different religion? The US used to be a Christian country. I don’t know what it is now, but I do know that it has no where near the morals it used to have, and you can bring up all the negative history you wish, it will not change that fact. And I’m willing to bet that the moral decline in the US can be at least partly attributed to the removal of prayer from its schools – a quality you deem “negative”, but that is not a surprise coming from a non-Christian. Although I could never understand with what logic or fortitude (or perhaps condescending selfishness) non-Christians flock to America which came about by its Christian heritage and charity, then proceed to demand that America can’t have a religion, or at least highlight the one that made it great and made possible the comfort they came for.

    • “What do the negative aspects of America’s history have to do with it?”….”And I’m willing to bet that the moral decline in the US can be at least partly attributed to the removal of prayer from its school..”

      Here’s what America’s negative aspects have to do with it; you talk about how America USED to be a good, moral place- and a significant portion of this had to do with America being more religious in the past. Christians always speak of charity and tolerance, so I have to bring up the past like I did with my previous post.

      Secondly, about moral decline being due to decline in prayer and religion, here’s a quote that sums up my feelings about religion and morality: “If the only thing keeping a person decent is the expectation of divine reward then, brother, that person is a piece of s***”

      “The point I made was, how elements of western values USED to be compatible with our cultural norms, but they are not now because they changed for the worse.”

      American values not being compatible with Armenian values CAN mean that American values have changed for the worse. It can also mean that American values changed because it was worse before, and that Armenian values should perhaps be the ones scrutinized.

      “And Under what law or moral code is it written that a country can’t have a religious affiliation while providing religious freedom to those that choose a different religion?”

      Forcing students to pray is not freedom of religion.

      See: West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette (1943)
      Engel v. Vitale (1962)
      Wallace v. Jaffree (1985)
      Lee v. Weisman (1992)
      Santa Fe Independent School District v. Doe (2000)

      All these cases point to the fact that America is, and always has been, a Christian dominated and no doubt influenced, but secular nation.

      As for the last part of your post- you again say Christianity MADE America great. Made- as in- “in the past Christianity was responsible for America being great.” I again refer you to my earlier post. America was a much more religious country in those times, so shouldn’t it have been better? Or do slavery, civil rights, women’s rights, etc., not matter as long as you can pray in school?

      And what I don’t understand is people who live in the US and do no nothing but constantly criticize it, claiming it’s in moral decline/ doomed/ not the place it once was. I often find these people excel at finding excuses for their home country but relentlessly berate this one. No one is forcing anyone to stay in this country against their will.

    • Well, I still don’t see what your objective here is because you are starting out with making convenient assumptions to fit in with your anti-Christian rhetoric. Being Christian does not mean that you have to have slaves (even if there was slavery in the Old Testament), or forbid women from voting. That is a cultural aspect, and a sign of the times. You’re trying to say what, as if there was slavery in America because the slave owners were Christians and it was because of their faith? Nonsense. In fact, let’s conveniently also ignore that in fact it may have been a Christian conviction that brought an end to slavery, right?

      For your quote: “If the only thing keeping a person decent is the expectation of divine reward then, brother, that person is a piece of s***”… well, it sounds interesting at first, but it reminds me of adolescents trying to be “logical”. The “decency” that exists in society, that is, if you can actually define it effectively, is nearly always based on a religious moral code, norm or behavior, which ultimately shapes a people culturally. Being decent is not a religion.

      “Forcing students to pray is not freedom of religion.”

      First, encouraging is not forcing. And also, I have never seen any evidence of anyone in the US “forcing students to pray or else”, including all the non-relevant cases you cited. All the complaints against school prayer have been by condescending, selfish, arrogant individuals or groups who simply hate the fact that the US has its roots in Christianity. This is similar to what is happening in Germany, where Turks are demanding to remove crucifixes from schools. Is anyone forcing them to stay there? This actually bothers me a lot, coming from a people with a country that committed Genocide to purge Christians from Christian lands, and now they are in other Christian countries, throwing their cheap shots.

      “America was a much more religious country in those times, so shouldn’t it have been better?”

      And who says it wasn’t better? You are confusing morals, social conditions, the times, technological advance etc and lumping it all up into one big blob to compare two time periods. That’s over-simplistic and doesn’t work that way.

      “No one is forcing anyone to stay in this country against their will.”

      Right, so why do non-Christians come here knowing that it is a country with a Christian heritage, and after a generation or two proceed to make all kinds of assaults on it and prevent its majority from engaging in their religious rights because they “are so special that the whole country needs to abandon its faith for them”? Granted, most of these self-serving assaults are by one group with a mission to destroy all things Christian, but it seems you are all too happy to join in, for whatever reason.

    • RVDV,

      Don’t you think it’s rather hypocritical on your part that you would criticize those particular posters who’ve been critical about some of the US-related issues? You yourself, have also been critical on a few occasions. As a matter of fact, on one particular occasion, you even went as far as saying that you would’ve been more privileged if you had been raised in Turkey, as opposed to the United States. Anyway, just because a person lives in the United States, means that he or she has no right to be critical of its many wrongs?

    • Having slaves was “..a cultural aspect, and a sign of the times”?

      Ok, fair enough- by no means were southern racist white people the representative of Christians in general, but when I made the claim that the pre-genocide Ottoman Empire treated its minorities no better or worse than other empires did (“Ottomans were simply people of their time”) I was criticized by many and accused of being an apologist for suggesting that. (Emphasis on PRE-genocide).

      As far as decency and religion: you think decency is based on religion, so does that mean there wouldn’t be decency without religion? Do people really Commandments from God to know that murder and stealing is wrong?

      “All the complaints against school prayer have been by condescending, selfish, arrogant individuals or groups who simply hate the fact that the US has its roots in Christianity”

      Selfish, arrogant, condescending? The first case on that list was about Jehovah’s Witnesses in 1941 refusing to pledge allegiance to the flag during school due to religious reasons. They were just trying to make a stupid political point right? Around the same time in Germany those very same Jehovah’s Witnesses could have escaped the wrath of the Nazis had they only signed a piece of paper renouncing their beliefs. But they didn’t. They died for their beliefs rather than bow down to the Nazis. Yeah man, those arrogant, selfish Jehovah’s Witnesses….

      As to the very last part: “roots in Christianity”- correct. But that does not mean Christian nation. America is a secular nation with separation of church and state. Public schools are the “state”. Numerous Supreme Court cases have confirmed this.

      As for Turks in Germany, I don’t know. Does Germany have the same level of separation of church and state as the US?

      “America was a much more religious country in those times, so shouldn’t it have been better?”
      “And who says it wasn’t better?”

      So…. I was talking about the segregation era.. So… Who says it wasn’t better? Everyone. Ever. Except apparently you. I mean yeah for white Christians like you, and non-Christian white people like me it probably wouldn’t have been much worse if at all, but our race wasn’t the one being discriminated against so “who says it wasn’t better” isn’t our call to make.

      Finally, where do you live? Is it LA? Cause I feel like that might be distorting your views on these things somewhat? Ive lived in the Deep South my whole life (Georgia) and I’ve been surrounded by devout Christians my whole life. I was usually one of maybe 2 or 3 non-Christian kids in all my classes growing up. Nearly every friend I ever had until college was a devout Evangelical Christian. I don’t have a non-Christian agenda, I just think there’s enough religion constantly surrounding me in Georgia. Ive been to LA and New York several times, its not the same as down south. I feel like you don’t live in the Bible belt and if you did your fears about the country essentially being challenged to “abandoning its faith” is a a massive overstatement and exaggeration.

    • Yerevanian: “As a matter of fact, on one particular occasion, you even went as far as saying that you would’ve been more privileged if you had been raised in Turkey, as opposed to the United States”

      True, I said that, but 100 times out of 100 I’d pick the US over Turkey, no matter the circumstances.

      It’s good to be critical of the country you live in, it shows that you care. But this Christian nation under threat thing is nonsense. Pretty much every religious group on Earth can be found in the US- which has provided an escape for persecuted people, just like it did for persecuted Christian groups coming from England in the 17th country. What has made a great country is not its Christian nature as Hagop D claims. It’s that no matter who you are, where you come from, whatever your creed is, whatever hardships you endured in life, you can come here and have a real shot at a life worth living. Maybe not the most prosperous life, but a dignified life. The day America stops being that is that day America is no longer a great nation. Religion has nothing to do with it- not that Christianity is under any real attack btw, just made up Republican/Fox news fearmongering.

    • [RVDV: “And what I don’t understand is people who live in the US and do no nothing but constantly criticize it, claiming it’s in moral decline/ doomed/ not the place it once was. I often find these people excel at finding excuses for their home country but relentlessly berate this one. No one is forcing anyone to stay in this country against their will.”]

      Excellent point, Onur.

    • RVDV,
      Yes I do not live in the bible belt as you, things are quite different in the west coast so that obviously gives us different perspectives.

      When you say “does that mean there wouldn’t be decency without religion?” I would say to that, I am not certain there would be, because I believe that Christianity has at least caused much of the decency of the world if not directly, then indirectly. Remember: if you consider yourself an Atheist, most of the things you have come to regard as the acceptable lifestyle probably has its roots in Christianity, except you may not be aware of it.

      And you mentioned Jehovah’s witnesses… let’s not get into that, because where I would have any say, they wouldn’t be classified as a religion, but a dangerous cult.

      When I say America used to be better, I am talking about the America with its former social values compared to today. I mean just compare what you see on TV today compared with previous generations. As an Armenian I can tell you that most of us are family oriented and hold that aspect in the highest regard, and by what I suspect, America used to be that way too, but that aspect of the culture is not the same any more.

      There may be separation of church and state in the US today, but it wasn’t always that way apparently, regardless of supreme court cases. For example, I seem to have read someplace, in many parts of the country, in their courtrooms, the bible was the source of the law and decided cases, that was well into the mid to late 19th century. Even today there are places with the ten commandments outside government buildings and courtrooms. The separation of church and state concept is not that simple.

      I also believe that today, the non-Christians of America (whomever they may be), using legal avenues, have corrupted, and misinterpreted this concept of ‘separation of church and state’ and that “the US is not a Christian nation”, and that “there is no Christianity in the constitution” (not true) – I do not doubt for a second that if the founding fathers of America had knowledge of what was to come, they would take steps of enforcing and reinforcing America’s Christian heritage. When they presented the idea of “religious freedom” that was within the context of the different forms of Christianity, and not for Budhism, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, etc. Today ‘Atheist former Christians’ and members of these religions, in most cases disguised as “Atheists”, have taken advantage of this, and their assault on America’s Christian heritage is actually working and paying off for them, to the detriment of America’s social well-being.

    • RVDV wrote: “Pre-genocide Ottoman Empire treated its minorities no better or worse than other empires did[…] (Emphasis on PRE-genocide).”

      How well did you research the topic? Have you ever taken a closer look into the miserable conditions in which the prevailing majority of the Ottoman Armenians lived? With what ethnic minorities and in what other empires do you compare the Ottoman Armenians? Do you realize that mass murders of the Armenians in 1894-96 during the rule of Abdul “The Damned” and in 1909 in Adana were, in fact, acts of PRE-genocide Ottoman mistreatment?

    • John: I’ve discussed that issue in depth with many posters here, including Hagop D and Avery, among others. We’ve beaten the issue to death. We’re just going to have to agree to disagree when it comes to that. And yes, I’ve done quite a bit of research on the topic.

    • Well, RVDV, then kindly keep in mind that both the Hamidian and Adana massacres of the Armenians took place in the PRE-genocide Ottoman Empire and hardly in other empires were there such nonrecurrent, concentrated acts of mass murder of a minority. This fact alone makes the Ottoman Empire worse than other empires.

  7. Here are a few observations this Armenian-American husband and father has made in one lifetime. There is no law in the U.S.A. that attempts to deal with the most deadly weapon of domestic violence: A nagging, unrelenting woman’s mouth. We have laws to prohibit inciting a riot, but no laws to prohibit inciting a domestic argument. From childhood, boys are taught to be leaders: To stand up to physical AND verbal attacks, and to defend themselves when attacked. These lessons are most often taught by the mother. “Be a man,” she said. When all else fails, and the attack continues unabated, boys are taught to physically defend themselves if necessary. Years later, if he finds himself married to that nagging, argumentative, hysterical woman, he has no effective defense to silence his tormenter other than what he was taught as a child. One can see illustrations of this on USA television and in Hollywood movies. True, unprovoked domestic violence is a rarity in the USA, but when it does occur, it is more common among certain ethnic groups than others, just as murder is much more common between men of that same ethnic group than between men of other ethnic groups. The root cause of these problems (worldwide) can often be found in the demise of the traditional family unit and its sociological structure. Armenian family units are widely known to be strong. Family units of certain other ethnic groups are weak or even non-existent. Emulating the social changes that have occurred in the USA will weaken the Armenian family just as it did the American family. The side effects are many, and mostly undesirable: Rising divorce, increased school dropout rates, more violent crime, and increased control of family matters by the state. Be very cautious meddling with traditional values that have proven their worth and effectiveness over hundreds of generations.

    • Congratulations James. This is the worst post by an Armenian I can recall. I hope it was meant to provoke only.

      You suggest that if a man determines he has been nagged, he may hit the woman. No law says this. In fact it is a potential felony. You say this nonetheless.

      Is nagging a negative comment repeated once per lifetime ? If a woman says anything deemed negative, may the man strike her in your version of an Armenian family?

      Suppose your daughter or sister married a lazy or indifferent man. Imagine she stood up for herself or her family and said something. Is she now inviting violence? Even if she is unfair, she cannot be hit or terrorized by some eshek heavy handed goon morally or legally.

      If our family unity depends on silence where love actually would promote respect, we are as bad as the worst “honor” killing barbarians.

      I reject your views 100 per cent. I hope they were intended to provoke condemnation. If you did this to my sister, hink yeghpayrner
      Would even the score.

  8. RVDV, you are right. in the US, the Government at least knew to show guidance, express publicly
    that things have to change, defending human rights (In this case: women rights) that surely is a step in the right direction. I have the impression that the Armenian top ministers do not see that as an urgent important issue.

    • Defending human rights? On the contrary, the United States is a huge hypocrite in regard to human rights. How can it possibly be a defender of human rights, when after all these years, it still refuses to acknowledge the genocide it committed against the original Americans (Native American Indians)? How can it possibly be a defender of human rights, when after all these years, it still refuses to pay reparations to the African-American people for abducting their ancestors, bringing them over here on ships to work as slaves, and depriving them of any kind of basic human rights for over three hundred years? How can it possibly be a defender of human rights, when it murders so many thousands of innocent civilians in each war it fights, such as the hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians it murdered in the Korean and Vietnam wars; or the 120,000 innocent civilians it murdered in the Iraq War; or the three hundred thousand plus innocent civilians it murdered in Japan during World War 2, in the firebombing of Tokyo, followed by the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki? And finally, how can it possibly be a defender of human rights, when after 99 years, it still hasn’t recognized the first modern genocide in world history?

  9. How condemning of Armenian culture. 4000 years of Armenian cultural development has yielded the ethic that spousal violence is a positive and a defining cultural trait. Should we be expanding effort to preserve this value set in the 21st Century?

    • Having lived in both Armenia and the United States, I must say that the brothers in Armenia treat their women so much better than the guys here in the United States.

      On the subject of spousal violence, this is actually something that is very common here in the United States. As a matter of fact, it’s becoming more and more common for women in this country to commit violence against their husbands. Therefore, it would be appropriate to say that spousal violence is a defining trait of American culture.

  10. {Hagop Can you be more specific about what you mean by “western values”?} (Random Armenian // June 5, 2014 at 1:44 pm )

    Some facts and figures to show the devastating results of “new values”.

    #1 sexualization and sexual objectivation of girls at progressively younger and younger age:
    -A 3-year-old contestant dressed as the prostitute (!) played by Julia Roberts. (2011)
    -Victoria’s Secret’s ‘sexy’ lingerie line being actively marketed to teens and tweens (a person who is between the ages of 10 to 12 years old).] (2013).

    #2. Dramatic increase in single motherhood, teenage motherhood, out of wedlock births (….see #3 for the consequences)
    -In 2011, 62 percent of women between ages 20 and 24 who had recently given birth were unmarried.
    -In 2011, nonmarital births to 15-19 year olds were 86%.
    -36% of births to 15-50 year olds were unmarried (2011).
    -Single parents have more than tripled as a share of American households since 1960 (as of 2013).
    -Children living in female headed families with no spouse present had a poverty rate of 47.6 percent, over 4 times the rate in married-couple families (2012).
    -In 1950 17% of African-American children lived with their mother, but not their father. In 2010, it was 50%.
    -In 1965 only 8% out of wedlock births in Black community.
    In 2010 41%. In 2013 72%.
    Note: between 1890 and 1950, Blacks had higher marriage rates than whites in US.

    #3 Violent Crime
    -Most of the men on the never-ending list of rampage killers in the Unites States came from homes where the parents were divorced or separated. A few of the latest tragedies:
    John Zawahiri, 23, killed five people in Santa Monica in 2013 near and on the campus of a state college. His parents had been separated for years.
    In December 2012, Adam Lanza, 20, killed his mother, six staff at a Connecticut primary school, and 20 school children before shooting himself. His parents were divorced. He was living with his mother.
    In 2014, Elliot Rodger, 22, murdered 6 young people in a rampage in Santa Barabara, CA, before committing suicide. His parents were divorced when Elliott was 7, and he never recovered.

    -African-Americans are about 12%-13% of the US population, but they make up 40% of the almost 2.1 million male inmates in jail or prison.
    Racist US judicial system certainly plays a role, but you have to have done something to get grabbed by the System.

    {The Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency reports that the most reliable indicator of violent crime in a community is the proportion of fatherless families. Fathers typically offer economic stability, a role model for boys, greater household security, and reduced stress for mothers. This is especially true for families with adolescent boys, the most crime-prone cohort. Children from single-parent families are more prone than children from two-parent families to use drugs, be gang members, be expelled from school, be committed to reform institutions, and become juvenile murderers. Single parenthood inevitably reduces the amount of time a child has in interaction with someone who is attentive to the child’s needs, including the provision of moral guidance and discipline.} (www.ncjrs.gov 1997)

    •70% of youths in state-operated institutions come from fatherless homes – 9 times the average. (U.S. Dept. of Justice, Sept. 1988)
    •85% of all youths in prison come from fatherless homes – 20 times the average. (Fulton Co. Georgia, Texas Dept. of Correction)
    •90% of homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes. [US D.H.H.S., Bureau of the Census]
    •71% of pregnant teenagers lack a father. [U.S. Department of Health and Human Services press release, Friday, March 26, 1999]
    •85% of children who exhibit behavioral disorders come from fatherless homes. [Center for Disease Control]
    •70% of juveniles in state operated institutions have no father. [US Department of Justice, Special Report, Sept. 1988]

    There is lots more, but I better stop here: it’s getting too depressing…

    Soooooo….how about thems “new values”, eh ?
    People in Armenia surely would be the ‘lucky beneficiaries’ of those “new values” , if Sorosistas had their way.

    Finally, about that ‘dreaded’ patriarchy that Armenia’s radical Sorosista feminists so despise and are working to destroy:
    Here is a quote for you ladies to chew on: “If civilization had been left in female hands we would still be living in grass huts.”
    You remember who said that, right ? A very famous, American, self-described ‘dissident’ (honest) bona fide feminist, Camille Paglia

    Ms. Paglia wrote an interesting article recently @WSJ in 2013: [Camille Paglia: A Feminist Defense of Masculine Virtues
    The cultural critic on why ignoring the biological differences between men and women risks undermining Western civilization.]
    Read it. You might then see the light as to why those supposedly ‘marginalized’ groups in RoA are countering Sorosista feminists’ destructive plans.

    • Avery,

      You left out how the not-so-great economy in Armenia is pushing many fathers to find a job in Russia and elsewhere, leaving the mother and kids at home, essentially a no a father at home situation. Some of these Armenian men actually take up a second wife in Russia. This is much more of a reality in Armenia, today, currently, right now, than the non-values you rattled off above.

      There are many villages and towns in Armenia where fathers are mostly absent because they are looking for work in Russia. And Russia is happily promoting bringing in workers from Armenia. You think this is not having an impact on Armenian society today? I have visited such towns and villages.

      Let me repeat: There are many fatherless families in Armenia today because of the economic situation and not because of “western values”. There are issues facing families in Armenia today even without what you consider “western values”.

      You tend to be silent on this issue Avery, and react mostly to infiltration of “western values”.

      Besides, I very much doubt that feminism is in favor of sexually objectifying preteens. It’s the opposite is it not? I’m no feminist so I’m guessing here.

      And as for fatherless families, is this because of head-strong feminist mothers or the father abandoning the family and bad fathering? You’re showing a correlation but not a cause. That’s sneaky.

      Two parents over a single parent most definitely has its advantages and the ideal setup, but it’s not necessarily because the mother pushed the father away.

      I will also add that there is cheating by husbands in Armenia, even without “western values”. I don’t know to what level but I witnessed this on a visit to Armenia.

  11. Some historical background presented below, should disabuse any ‘confused’ Sorosista radical feminists operating in RoA (and their supporters) of the notion that Armenians, of all people, need “new values” from somewhere or other to have a concept of gender equality.

    Ancient Armenian codes and legal regulations show that in many spheres men and women were considered equal members of Armenian society.
    The Code of Shahapivan (5th century BC) had a rule that gave the right to women to possess family property in case a husband deserted his wife without cause. It also gave the right to the wife to bring in a new husband into her home. (into _her_ home).

    Mxit’ar Gosh’s ‘The Book of Conviction (12th century)’, a collection of Armenian laws and regulations, specified that men and women had equal rights and were equally responsible for the welfare of the family. The book banned violence against women, prohibited forced marriages, and provided for equal sharing of property. Men and women were free in their own spheres of activities: men as family providers and protectors, women as household and family organizers as well as trasmitters of customs, traditions, moral values and national aspirations.

    First Republic of Armenia (1918 – 1920) was one of the first states in the world (!) that gave women the right to vote and to be voted in public institutions. In the first National Assembly of RA eight percent of deputies were women.
    In 1920, the ambassador of Armenia in Japan was Diana Abgar, the first female ambassador in Orient (the first in the world being Rosika Schwimmer in Switzerland in 1918).

    And finally:

    [Azg: European values were present in Karabakh, 1,500 years ago
    YEREVAN. – Preaching European values in Armenia has become new-fashioned in recent years. But experience has shown that those preachers simply are not aware of the political and juridical heritage of their own people, Azg daily writes.
    By the initiative of King Vachagan Barepasht (“the Pious”) of Karabakh (Artsakh) and Utik, a Constitution was adopted 1,500 years ago, in the early 500s, whose rewritten version, which was prepared in 1288, is still kept at Armenian capital Yerevan’s Matenadaran (Armenian ancient manuscript museum). At the initial phase, the draft Constitution was sent to different dwelling areas, where meetings and discussions were held, the people gave their consent, and subsequently the King convened a large national congress, and only after which the Constitution was adopted through a referendum. At the same time, the congress was chaired by a rank-and-file soldier. These methods emerged in Europe 800-1,000 years later.
    The First Armenian Constitution is the most vivid example of the fact that, if the natural development of our (Armenian) statehood had not been interrupted by 600-700 years, perhaps we would have been the locomotive of those values which today are the foundations of western democracy.]( November 02, 2011 )(http://news.am/eng/reviews/2568.html)

  12. The “Armenians” and who oppose Western values need to realize that even in the absence of democracy in Armenia, even with the oppression of human rights, the Armenian family in Armenia is collapsing anyway. The WikiLeaks has an interesting report about two Armenian mother-prostitutes in Vanadzor fighting over a condom. The report can be easily found on the net. I never imagined that I would read about Armenian mothers fighting over a condom. According to the report, these women charged $5 from each customer. And by the way, while they were fighting, the man of the family (one of their brother) was sitting outside, unemployed like a bum. That is what I mean when I say Armenia’s society is turning into a society of prostitutes, bums, and thieves. If Armenians get all that anyway while opposing Western values and democracy, they might just as well accept democracy. At least it would improve the economy, and fewer Armenian mothers would have economic incentive to run to Turkey to work as prostitutes.

    • I don’t think your Wikileak prostitute stories add anything to the discussion. There are people of all races and nationalities involved in desperate and nefarious activities especially here in California. It proves nothing.
      Likewise, I haven’t heard anyone try to sell “Democracy” with more naive zeal since Bush ordered the B’2s over Baghdad. Only underlings in the State Dept talk like that (anymore).
      You want to hear some heartbreak, go talk to the Cherokee or Lakota Nations for a more balanced perspective.
      I’m starting to believe (like others) that you are some kind of agitprop agent. Your insults against Armenian women are not appreciated.

    • “I don’t think your Wikileak prostitute stories add anything to the discussion.”

      That’s correct, you don’t think. The point of the Wikileak story is that even in the absence of democracy in Armenia, and in the presence of the regime’s fierce opposition to Western influence, the Armenian family is collapsing anyway. Therefore, the threat to the Armenian family comes not from democracy or the Western values but poverty, corruption, and lack of rule of law.

      By the way, here is the wikileaks story. An interesting line from the text: “Aida [a local woman] estimated that 70 percent of women in Vanadzor are prostitutes.”
      http://www.wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/06YEREVAN1019_a.html

      By the way, this is the same city of Vanadzor where Robert Aharonyan, the female-hating activist from the AW article, comes from. The Eurasianet article has more details about the activist, including his announcement that “a man in Armenia ‘has a right to slap his wife,’” http://www.eurasianet.org/node/68412
      I guess all the female-hating and “protection of traditional family” have not saved his native city of Vanadzor from being a prostitution paradise.

      I am not insulting Armenian women. I am exposing the pro-regime shills who are destroying the Armenian culture by opposing democracy in Armenia. If you actually did some thinking, you would see it.

    • You’re absolutely correct in your thinking David! That particular Wikileak story, brought up and possibly written by that democracy-obsessed, neurotic Turkbaijani poster, is just another attempt by him/her to be vulgar and insulting against Armenian women, the Armenian family, and Armenia.

      That particular Wikileak story, has no credibility whatsoever. It happens to be a story published by the “Public Library of US Diplomacy,” which just like the U.S. State Department, frequently creates false reports. Instead of creating false, ludicrous reports about “seventy percent of Vanadzor’s women being prostitutes,” the Public Library of U.S. Diplomacy, along with the crooked, rogue U.S. State Department should instead focus its attention on America’s shameful poverty stats which are contributing to the rapid rise in prostitution paradises throughout the big cities of America, as well as the enormous collapse of American families.

      In regard to immoral, sleazy Western values, it is indeed a blessing that Armenia rejects all of that. It would be equally nice if Armenia were to also reject all of that Russian influence. However, as a result of its current situation, Armenia is dependent on Russia economically and militarily. Therefore, it has no choice but to accept Russia’s influence.

    • “That particular Wikileak story, has no credibility whatsoever.”

      Another irrational “point” by the “Armenian” poster. The Wikileaks story is quite reliable because it was intended to be confidential, made solely for the U.S. Embassy. It was not meant for the general public. By the way, if you are denying the reliability of any report made by the U.S. State Department, then you are denying the Armenian Genocide. After all, much of the proof of the Genocide comes from reports (especially confidential reports) from the U.S. State Department and other foreign ministries. Nice job playing right into the hands of the Turks. And these folks call themselves “Armenian?”

    • Once again, another irrational point by the Turkbaijani poster. Well, if your extremely unreliable and ludicrous Wikileaks story was not meant for the general public, then what’s the reason why we’re all able to view this particular story? As usual, your excuses are absurd.

      Denying the credibility of any report made by the crooked, rogue U.S. State Department, translates to denying the Armenian Genocide? That’s probably the most foolish and illogical remark you’ve made up to now. What does one have to do with the other? As a matter of fact, although the U.S. State Department happens to have an extensive amount of factual evidence on the Armenian Genocide, it still continues to deny this genocide. Once again, this shows what an extremely dishonest organization the State Department is. By persistently defending the crooked, rogue State Department as you’ve been doing, you’re playing right into the hands of the Turks. But then again, what else could one possibly expect from a Turkbaijani?

  13. As usual, the desperate, neurotic Turkbaijani poster from above has nothing better to do with his/her time other than to deliver ludicrous remarks about Armenian society, the Armenian family, and Armenian women. Instead of spending so much time doing all of the above, he/she should instead focus its attention on figuring out the reason why so many Turkbaijani mothers in Baku dream of running to Armenia to work as prostitutes.

    Anyway, the topic of prostitution is actually a very interesting topic. I’ve been noticing that prostitution is rapidly on the rise here in the United States. Six months out of the year I’m in Los Angeles; the other six months I’m in New York City. And I must say that everywhere I go in these two cities, I happen to always see prostitutes on the hunt for customers. They’re everywhere! You can find them on the street, the park, the supermarket, the gas station, the bar, the club, or even at Starbucks. I never imagined that prostitution could become so prevalent in a country like the United States. However, due to the lack of democracy in the United States, combined with its shameful poverty stats, the society of America has become infested with prostitutes along with bums and thieves.

    The other day, I happened to be at a park in Glendale, California, where I was sitting down at a table, eating my lunch. And then I noticed a pink volkswagon car in the parking lot, with the Azerbaijani flag attached to one of the windows. A rather sexy looking young lady got out of the car, and proceeded to walk over to a table occupied by elderly Armenian men. After a few moments, she proceeded to walk over to my table. When she approached me, I noticed that she had an interesting tattoo on her leg which read “democracy.” Anyway, she proceeded to ask me if I was interested in spending time with her at her hotel for a charge of five dollars. I politely rejected her offer; and then she got back in her car and drove away. Can you all imagine that? Even in Glendale, I ended up coming across a prostitute who turned out to be from an enemy culture.

  14. The Turkbaijanis and Turks – pretending to be ‘Armenians’ – regularly visiting ArmenianWeekly and posting Anti-Armenian drivel are too consumed with nomadic irrational hatred, latent envy of Armenian greatness, and the well documented nomadic inferiority complex, to do anything other than write incoherent, disjointed sentences, futilely attempting to cover up the filth and despair in their own nomadic sheepherder dumps by endlessly ragging on our beautiful Armenia and Artsakh, and our regal people.

    ….meanwhile in Turkbaijan, lucky Turkbaijani women live in complete safety and security and enjoy equal rights in all aspects of life in the Aliyev Gas Station. (…including living in shipping containers with their multiple children, while Sultan Aliyev builds grandiose steel & glass structures that sit half-empty, and the Sultan’s 3 children continue looting the Gas Station, and sending billions to Dubai).

    Samples of the wonderful life women enjoy in Turkbaijan ((#1..#5):

    #1. [Turkey expels Azerbaijani prostitutes en mass. As part of a special operation, Turkish police has arrested 83 prostitutes aged 25-45 from Azerbaijan, Moldova, Russia, Georgia and Ukraine. The “Azvision.az” site interviews some of them.
    One of the women told that she was forced to do prostitution in Turkey in order to feed her two minor children in Baku. “Please, do not publish my photos. My father and mother are respected people. They think that I’m working at a shop here,” says the woman.
    Another woman said that she wanted to return to Azerbaijan, but the unemployment and the poverty have made her to become a streetwalker. “I came to work here two years ago from one of the Azerbaijani regions,” told the prostitute.
    The stories of other Azerbaijani prostitutes are in the same spirit – poverty, unemployment and the need to feed the family. The price range of their services is 50-100 Turkish liras. Part of it goes into the pocket of the pimp, by the rest of the money they survive in brothels.
    According to the Turkish police more than 2 thousands of Azerbaijani prostitutes have been expelled from the country in recent years.] (panorama.am 23/12/2013)(information verified @az.azvision.az)

    #2 [Expert: Hundreds of Azerbaijani teenaged prostitutes ‘‘work’’ in Georgia.
    As a result of raids of Georgian law enforcement officers held a few days ago in the hotels and casinos hundreds of prostitutes from Azerbaijan have been revealed. According to the Azerbaijani portal “Minval”, the head of the Women’s Crisis Center Metanet Azizova told about it.
    “We received information according to which, raids and mass arrests were conducted a few days ago in hotels and casinos. Many Azerbaijani teenaged prostitutes have been detained. Currently, the law enforcement bodies of Georgia are checking whether they are victims of kidnapping or not,” said Azizova.
    …..being afraid of raids in Georgia, the prostitutes leave hastily for Turkey. “They are counted by hundreds and not even by tens. ….According to statistics, this year, among the sex industry victims in Georgian tourism market, most of the women are from Azerbaijan.
    “Though last year there were more women from Uzbekistan. But the worst thing is that the majority of the women living in Azerbaijan are juveniles.” The underage prostitutes arrive from Azerbaijan in Georgia as tourists.
    “According to the materials submitted by our Georgian colleagues, the Azerbaijani women are sold as slaves. They are put into a line and after the selection trading starts,” concluded Metanet Azizova.
    Most of the Azerbaijani women….are engaged in prostitution in the United Arab Emirates, Turkey and Iran…] (Panorama.am 12/11/2013)

    • Avery,

      The poverty which propels an Az woman into desperation and prostitution happens everywhere, and it calls to my mind the same sad stories we hear from America and Armenia.

      I recognize you posted this not to shame these women, but to remind our enemies that they have the same problems all humanity has.

      However, we are Christian, and we should have compassion for these women, no matter their ethnicity. We also need to do a better job of caring for our own.I know I could give and do more than I do.

    • So because Azeri women face these issues, that mean Armenia by default does not have any issues? If there is a problem in your country, which there appears to be (whether its serious or just a minor problem being magnified), it needs to be dealt with. Stop with this self-victimization strategy to make it seem like outside forces are targeting Armenia because they’re jealous of your greatness.

      There are women rights issues/domestic abuse/honor killings in Turkey . And it needs to end. It has no place in the 21st century. We should be more civilized than stooping to domestic abuse. We NEED to be more civilized in that regard. We HAVE to be better than this. Period. End of story. You don’t see me blaming and attacking the US, Europe, pointing out the issues of other countries, or suggesting that our various enemy nations fabricated a lie to make us look bad.

      If your so proud of Armenia’s greatness, why bury your head in the sand and in stead of accepting the contemporary issues facing Armenian society which prevent it from being even greater?

    • Dammit, why can’t I be as eloquent and calm as Onur (RVDV). Must be the Armenian emotions.

      Great response, Mr. Yıldırım.

  15. #3 [Azeri Trafficking Victims Face Social Rejection:
    Esmira fell prey to human traffickers after she confronted a group who had lured one of her sisters.
    Her sister had been tricked into an unregistered marriage with one of the traffickers, who had abandoned her when she became pregnant.
    “When [my sister] returned, she was afraid to say what had happened to her. I found those who deceived her, but became their prey as well,” said Esmira.
    She told IWPR that when she tackled the traffickers over the treatment of her sister, they forced her to go to Turkey. Her third sister also fell into the hands of traffickers and is still missing, she said.
    In Turkey, Esmira was forced to work as a prostitute with other abducted girls and was tortured. She still remembers everything, even though three years have passed.
    “They push for what they want. If you do not obey, they torture you by beating you. They force you to do humiliating things. They didn’t pay us anything for the work we did,” she said.

    Increasing numbers of women in the country are falling prey to human traffickers.
    According to the Azerbaijan Migration Centre, at least 23 victims were identified in the first quarter of this year – two and a half times more than in the same period last year.] (10 Oct 2008 IWPR)

    #4 [Eighty-three women were murdered at home last year (2013), and 98 others committed suicide in cases linked to domestic violence. Both figures represented a sharp increase on those for 2012, when 72 murders and 67 suicides were recorded.
    According to Mehriban Zeynalova, head of the Clean World group which helps the victims of abuse over the last year, the headline figures are alarming.] (14 Feb 2014 IWPR)

    #5 [80% of suicides in Azerbaijan is due to social problems. Suicide is not the solution, they must be solved by fighting for their rights, this was a leitmotif hearings on the issue of suicide , organized by the National Council of Democratic Forces (NCDF) on February 12. Since the beginning of the year in Azerbaijan were recorded 36 suicides.
    According to statistics, in 2008 there were 138 suicides committed; in 2009 – 165, in 2010 – 289, in 2011 – 414 , in 2012 – 482. In 2013 , there were 920 suicide attempts , but accurate information about the deceased there, although it is about 500 people.
    According to experts, every year 80-90 children commit suicide.] (2014 February 12 contact.az/

  16. Note how the “Armenian” posters (pro-regime shills) resort to a desperate knee-jerk attempt to shift attention away from issues concerning us, Armenians, to irrelevant copy-pastes about prostitution in … Azerbaijan? As if Azerbaijan has any relevance to domestic violence and women’s trafficking in Armenia? Are these “Armenians” suggesting that we should compete with Azeris as to who has more prostitutes? And they call themselves “Armenians”?

    This sort of desperate behavior is typical of defenders of dictatorships. When faced with criticism, point to irrelevant problems elsewhere. The Soviets were notorious for doing that, and the Americans had good name for it: “whataboutism.”

    No matter how many Azeri prostitutes are in Turkey, it does not lower the number of Armenian victims of trafficking or domestic violence. And by the way, some of these Armenian victims are 11 or 12 years old, sent (knowingly!) to Turkey by their parents. Again, courtesy of the quite informative wikileaks report:
    “They told us that girls as young as 11 and 12 have started walking the streets. … A police officer told us that parents send their daughters to Turkey fully understanding the cost at which remittances will be sent home.”
    http://www.wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/06YEREVAN1019_a.html

    Sure, good job for “protecting” the Armenian values, “president” Serge and company.

    By the way, as I have stated before, the Azeris can afford to be undemocratic, with all the social ills it causes. We can’t. They have oil, they can sell oil to have a military budget much higher than Armenia. All Armenia has is its human resource. Lack of democracy wastes that only resource. With the right form of democracy, Armenia will be able to utilize that vital resource to its fullest.

  17. A lot of people here are having a hard time dealing with or even acknowledging social issues in Armenia because they see this as an attack, an intent to hurt or defame, and a contradiction of their image of Armenia and Armenian-ness. If there are issues or problems hurting our brothers and sisters in Armenia, pointing them out is not an attack on Armenia, but a desire to shine a light on it so the issues can be addressed.

    The fact that those attacking their perception of “western values” because it would harm Armenia, are completely ignoring the real issues happening right now even without these “western values”. The migration from Armenia and many families where the fathers are away in Russia and elsewhere is having an impact, but there is no acknowledgement from these individuals on this because of their personal ideologies and priorities.

    We are human like everyone else and we have the same human issues such as corruption and domestic violence. The fact that it may be less or more than other countries does not change the fact that we have fellow Armenians in tough and painful situations. Ignoring it and pretending like it’s not an issue prolongs the issues and keeps on hurting our brothers and sisters.

    Like most of us here, I don’t have solutions for these problems nor in a position to help, but openly discussing issues helps change minds and attitudes which can eventually lead to addressing the issues.

    • Random Armenian,

      I agree that if there are issues or problems hurting our brothers and sisters in Armenia, then these issues/problems should therefore be addressed such as the enormous poverty rate, unemployment rate, migration out of Armenia, and corruption within the government. And, I also agree that ignoring and pretending that these problems don’t exist, will only increase the size of these problems. That’s why it’s important to frequently discuss these problems and compare notes with each other. However, what’s not appreciated is when these Turkbaijani guests, as well as other guests, raid the Armenian Weekly site by spraying vulgar, disgusting comments about Armenian society, Armenian women, Armenia, and Artsakh. Up to now, you’ve been totally passive about all this.

      In regard to “western values,” you seem to be deeply critical of those particular posters who disapprove of it. I actually happen to be one of those posters who strongly disapproves of these “western values,” with its extreme materialism, promiscuous sexual lifestyle, filthy indecent movies, mind-corrupting video games, and its beer-drinking society. These immoral, sleazy “western values” are harmful to the Armenian people, both in the diaspora and in the homeland. If the Armenian culture is to move forward and flourish, it can not afford to attach itself to the sleazy, immoral values of western society. However, having said all that, don’t think that I’m a fanatic of Russia’s values. On the contrary, I dislike Russia’s values just as much as “western” values. And coming to think about it, I don’t really see much of a difference between the two. The only differences are that Russia’s values are a bit more crooked and certainly more thuggish.

      Anyway, in regard to values, the Armenian people should reject both Western and Russian values. Instead, the Armenian people should live according to their own noble “Armenian” values. Hey, the Armenian culture by itself, is actually older than the American, French, British, and Russian cultures stacked on top of one another.

      Everyday is truly a beautiful day to be Armenian, and there is absolutely no reason why an Armenian should be anything less than an Armenian.

    • Time to educate our Turkish guest again.
      “I actually happen to be one of those posters who strongly disapproves of these “western values,” with its extreme materialism, promiscuous sexual lifestyle, filthy indecent movies, mind-corrupting video games, and its beer-drinking society”
      If you believe these are the western values, it reflects extreme ignorance. But again, we are used to debunking your quite foolish posts. Western values are liberty, rule of law, reason, and enlightenment, among many others, which you are benefiting from by living in the United States. What you described are not Western values but problems that are present not just in Western democracies, but in authoritarian states such as Russia and Armenia.

      By the way, if you despise Western values so much, why do you live in the midst of it in my country, the great U.S. of A? Again, I know the answer (hypocrisy), but I want to know if you can admit it.

    • “Everyday is truly a beautiful day to be Armenian, and there is absolutely no reason why an Armenian should be anything less than an Armenian.”

      The best way to be Armenian is to live in Armenia and contribute to its success. The vast majority of the posters here, including myself have not been doing this.

      As for “western values”, I always have to ask what they mean by it since it’s vague and subjective. To me western values have always meant the positive values such as a representative government, independent justice system, equality before the law and so on. High values not easy to stick to, that the west fails to meet many times.

      ” extreme materialism, promiscuous sexual lifestyle, filthy indecent movies, mind-corrupting video games, and its beer-drinking society.”

      These strike me as the old fashioned, conservative and out of touch views. Materialism is everywhere, not just the west. “filthy indecent movies,” not sure which movies you had in mind. “mind-corrupting video games”, there is no relation between video games and bad behavior. “beer-drinking society”, there’s beer drinking, and than there are frat houses and people getting drunk to just get drunk. The latter sucks.

      You left out drug addiction. This is a horrible disease on society. Video games pale in comparison.

      As for being silent about the topics such as human trafficking in Armenia, I’m not convinced that it’s made up. Your anecdotal evidence by visiting Yerevan is not enough to discount that there is human trafficking going on. I don’t know at what level, but with 30+% people in poverty, people will do desperate things and are vulnerable to be tricked into prostitution overseas.

      Saying that this exists is a slander on Armenians and Armenia. Not doing something about it however would be a large stain on Armenia.

      Btw, that wikileaks cable regararding prostitution in Vanadzor is signed by Evans. That’s ambassador Evans who called the Armenian genocide as genocide and was dismissed because of it. He strikes me as a credible source and I don’t see why he would lie to his bosses in the US state department in a confidential cable.

      As for the 70% comment in the cable, even the helpers from the women’s groups laughed at it. So no 70% of women in Vanadzor are not prostitutes.

      It’s ridiculous that a bunch of men living in the US are arguing that women’s help groups in Armenia, dealing with poverty related issues in Armenia are somehow wrong.

    • “The best way to be Armenian is to live in Armenia and contribute to its success. The vast majority of the posters here, including myself have not been doing this.” Why are you so hard on yourself? Actually, the vast majority of Armenians in the diaspora don’t have the opportunity to live in Armenia on a full-time basis. As a matter of fact, there are many Armenians in the diaspora who don’t even have the opportunity to live in Armenia on a part-time basis. Nevertheless, Armenians in the diaspora are still very capable of contributing to Armenia; and truly speaking, the Armenian diaspora has contributed an enormous amount of assistance to Armenia. But anyway, the truly best way for Armenia to grow and prosper, would still be for it to have as many Armenians as possible living on its soil.

      “To me, western values have always meant the positive values such as a representative government, independent justice system, and equality before the law.” Well, in the United States which happens to be the land of “western values,” you certainly don’t have a government which represents its people. The United States happens to be a country led by a small dominant class comprised of powerful members who exert total control over the general population; in other words, it’s an oligarchy. Furthermore, the policies of the United States are formed by special interest groups as opposed to politicians properly representing the general population. As a result, you neither have justice nor equality in the United States. Did you not bother to read the Washington Times article posted by Avery in one of his comments from the article, “Syria: Makloube and the Election”?

      Materialism is everywhere, not just the west.” Yes, that’s true. You can find many examples of this throughout the world. However, materialism is everywhere because of the West. After all, one of the biggest influences for young people happens to be music and movies. As a result, when you have young people in places like Japan, India, Egypt, South Africa, Brazil, or even Armenia who listen to many of these filthy, indecent western music songs and watch many of these filthy, indecent western movies which glorify materialism, promiscuous sex, beer-drinking, and drug use, a rather large number of them end up becoming influenced by that harmful garbage.

      In regard to those mind-corrupting video games, there actually is a relation between video games and mind-corruption. I’ve actually seen for myself how spending so much time playing those silly video games, corrupts young people’s minds. I’ve seen this on numerous occasions.

      In regard to drug addiction, yes it is a horrible disease on society. It’s most certainly a horrible disease on American society, caused by its sleazy, immoral “western values.”

      On the subject of human trafficking in Armenia, it’s true that there have been young Armenian women who worked as prostitutes in Dubai, as I wrote in one of my earlier posts. However, you must agree that the remark made by that neurotic Turkbaijani guest in regard to “Armenian women running to Turkey to work as prostitutes” is ridiculous. Well, it’s at least good that you agree that his/her remark about “seventy percent of Vanadzor’s women being prostitutes” is absolute nonsense.

      “BTW, that wikileaks cable regarding prostitution in Vanadzor is signed by Ambassador Evans. Actually, nowhere does it say “Ambassador.” In addition, it doesn’t even say his first name. It could be any “Evans.” And even if it happened to be the “Evans” who you think it is, does not imply that he’s a credible source just because he recognized the Armenian Genocide. One has nothing to do with the other.

      When you say it’s ridiculous that a bunch of men living in the U.S. are arguing that “dealing with poverty-related issues in Armenia is somehow wrong,” I never stated that it was wrong. On the contrary, I stated that this problem should be addressed and discussed about.

    • Yerevanian,

      Amb Evans was still in charge of the US embassy when that diplomatic cable was sent. It makes sense that it is him who signed the cable.

      In the cable he describes the people from the embassy meeting with prostitutes and groups working to better the lives of the prostitutes. He’s reporting what they saw first-hand and heard from the people in Vanadzor. This strikes me as a real situation in that region and something to be upset about and not to be dismissed because you don’t like it.

      That cable is not a smear campaign on Armenia, but a first step in trying to help a bad situation in the country.

      I’m sorry but this is a glimpse into the harsh reality in the Vanadzor area.

    • “I’m sorry but this is a glimpse into the harsh reality in the Vanadzor area.” Well, whether he signed that cable or not, Ambassador Evans had never even been to Vanadzor. That particular cable report was based on information gathered by the U.S. embassy. That’s just not good enough for me. That’s just like the Armenian embassy delivering a report about prostitution in Dallas, Texas. That would indeed be ridiculous! Anyway, I’ve actually been to the city of Vanadzor; and frankly speaking, I don’t recall coming across any prostitutes over there. Just like in all places of the world, there probably are some women who work as prostitutes in that particular small city; however, from what I saw, it was nowhere close to being a harsh reality.

      As a matter of fact, on the subject of harsh reality, that’s exactly what prostitution has become here in the United States. Not only is prostitution a harsh reality in this country, but it’s also a part of American culture.

    • Yerevanian,

      If you go to that wikileaks page click on the tab titled “Raw content”, you’ll see that the cable “Classified By: Amb. John M. Evans for reasons 1.4 (b, d)”

      Also, if you read the cable you’ll see that the US embassy people went and talked directly to the prostitutes, the NGO organizations and the police in and around Vanadzor. They went there and sought out these people to get more info on the situation there regarding trafficking. Further, in the cable you’ll read:

      “Next, we visited the “domik” village on the outskirts of Vanadzor that many prostitutes call home”

      They talked directly to the people and basically gathered information from the source. And you want me to dismiss this cable because you visited Vanadzor and did not notice any prostitutes? It’s safe to assume that you actually did not seek out prostitutes and the NGOs to talk to them about the situation in the Vanadzor region.

    • Yes, I actually did not seek out prostitutes and NGOs to talk to them about the situation in Vanadzor. Since I had the opportunity to go to Vanadzor, there was absolutely no need for me to seek anyone out. I saw what I saw, and as I said earlier, I did not come across any prostitutes over there. On the other hand, that also doesn’t mean that prostitutes don’t exist in Vanadzor. Like all places in this world, I’m sure there actually are some prostitutes over there; however, from what I saw, it certainly is nowhere close to being like the prostitution center of the United States.

      For your own information, I did actually read that meaningless cable report and understood it even better than you. However, as I stated earlier, that particular report was delivered by the U.S. embassy, which is in no way a credible source in regard to prostitution in Armenia. That’s just like the Armenian embassy delivering a report about prostitution inside the United States. Again, that would not be a credible source. If a person who lives outside of Armenia wishes to do research about prostitution inside that country, then he or she should read literature from Armenian sources inside Armenia, as opposed to reading silly wikileak cable reports from the U.S. embassy or any other source outside Armenia.

      And frankly speaking, I really don’t care whether you dismiss that silly cable report or hang it on the wall of your home with a pretty little frame around it. The latter, would actually make perfect sense for you to do since you’re so eager to attach a negative label to issues relating to Armenia and Armenians.

    • Yerevanian,

      Your passive eyewitness experience of the prostitution situation in the Vanadzor region cannot compare with that of the experiences reported by the women of the NGOs working in Vanadzor.

      You’re really trying too hard to not accept the situation. You just don’t want to accept that this is happening in Armenia. And accepting the situation is the first step for any nation to improve itself.

      And the fact there is prostitution in the US does not make it less painful to hear what’s happening to these Armenian women.

    • I’m really trying too hard to not accept the situation? And which situation would you like me to accept? The prostitution situation in Vanadzor is harsh where seventy percent of the women happen to be prostitutes? No, I don’t accept that. The Vanadzor I saw, was nowhere close to fitting that description. And for your own information, that cable report was not delivered by the NGOs working in Armenia. It was delivered by the U.S. embassy, which as I stated earlier, is not a credible source in reporting about prostitution in Armenia. Instead of attempting to falsely depict the women of Vanadzor as being prostitutes, the U.S. embassy should instead focus its attention on its own country where such an enormously high percentage of young women in the United States, of all shapes and sizes, are well-schooled in that profession.

      Why are you trying to imply that I don’t accept that prostitution exists in Armenia? On the contrary, I do know that it exists in Armenia; however, what’s your point in all of this? Prostitution happens to exist in all countries of the world. Did you actually think it existed only in Armenia?

    • “The prostitution situation in Vanadzor is harsh where seventy percent of the women happen to be prostitutes?”

      That’s not the situation. Not even the NGOs are saying that, but the NGOs are saying there were about 200 prostitutes registered with them.

      Here’s the quote:
      “And there are a lot of willing women in Vanadzor.
      Hope and Help’s Satik Grigoryan told us the NGO has
      registered more than 200 prostitutes. Aida estimated that 70
      percent of women in Vanadzor are prostitutes, drawing laughs
      from the Hope and Help employees. While her figure was
      inflated, the statement outlined how pervasive prostitution
      is in Vanadzor.”

      According to the Armenian women in the NGOs, trying to help the prostitutes one way or another are reporting (at least back in 2006) that there were at least 200 prostitutes in the Vanadzor area. We are supposed to dismiss this because you only saw a few when you were there? That is the real situation that’s was reported and you’re pretending that doesn’t exist, because you don’t want to believe it’s true.

      “Instead of attempting to falsely depict the women of Vanadzor as being prostitutes, the U.S. embassy should instead focus its attention on its own country where such an enormously high percentage of young women in the United States, of all shapes and sizes, are well-schooled in that profession.”

      You don’t know if the embassy cable is false or made up. Again, you did not seek out to understand the real situation in Vanadzor so you can’t know if the report is accurate or not.

      The focus of the US embassy in Armenia is about US-Armenia relations and US foreign policy. Prostitution and other problems back in the US is beyond the scope of the mission of the US embassy. You’re grasping at straws here.

    • “The focus of the U.S. embassy is about U.S.-Armenia relations and U.S. foreign policy.” Well, this U.S. foreign policy also happens to be a foreign policy which is full of corruption and frequently invents false stories about other countries.

      You claim that the NGO’s are saying that prostitution is pervasive in Vanadzor. However, this is what the U.S. embassy claims was stated by those NGO’S. You still haven’t been able to comprehend that this cable report was not made out by those NGO’s. It was made out by the U.S. embassy. If the Armenian embassy made out the same exact report about prostitution in the United States, would you actually find it credible?

      “We are supposed to dismiss this because you only saw a few (prostitutes) when you were there? As I stated earlier, I really don’t care whether you dismiss that cable report or preserve it as a souvenir. I myself know for a fact that this cable report is totally false and inaccurate. I’ve been to Vanadzor; I’ve walked around in Vanadzor both during the day and night; I’ve seen the people of Vanadzor; and I also happen to have relatives who live in Vanadzor. You’re in no position to question what I’ve seen in Vanadzor. And if you don’t want to believe what I saw in Vanadzor, then that’s perfectly fine. After all, what you believe or don’t believe means absolutely nothing to me.

  18. Jda wrote:
    “I recognize you posted this not to shame these women, but to remind our enemies that they have the same problems all humanity has.”

    Good point, I think that was the meaning of Avery’s post, which RVDV should also take note of. Guess who it was who brought in the off-topic discussion of prostitutes and condoms, and what was the meaning or value of that here? It was nothing more than to throw cheap shots, with his excuse being: “I am not insulting Armenian women. I am exposing the pro-regime shills who are destroying the Armenian culture by opposing democracy in Armenia” – quite funny by one who contradicts himself constantly and has no clue about what he’s talking about… the “democratic” US is probably the prostitution capital of the world.

    Vahagniyev’s post is not to point out problems in Armenia, but to present them with glee to satisfy his underlying hatred of Armenia.

    Another hot one is: Armenia needs “democracy” but “the Azeris can afford to be undemocratic”. This coming from one calling Artsakh terrorists and occupiers, and claiming “Armenians massacred Azeris”.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*