I reread “The Resistance Network” by my dear friend Khatchig Mouradian as soon as the book arrived from Amazon. Luckily, I preordered it. As of this writing, it is still “temporarily out of stock.” Why? Because it is THAT good. It is necessary reading even more so now than ever before. This is not another book on the Armenian Genocide. This labor of love that I was fortunate enough to witness the creation of throughout the years of our friendship and travels to Western Armenia and beyond is a touchstone not only for Genocide studies, but also should be recommended reading in the Inspirational genre.
In what is probably the darkest and saddest winter in Los Angeles as the novel coronavirus rages like a tsunami across the Southland, the nation and the world, Khatchig’s book is an incredibly timely and necessary reminder of the most basic, perennial and unbreakable capacity of human beings – when pushed through the worst stages of hell, inferno and purgatory – to find among such atrocity and horror the will to resist in the face of the inevitable trauma and loss borne of man’s heinous inhumanity to man.
As we all do our best within our toolboxes to endure, survive and bid farewell to loved ones we lost in this brave new glowing world of social media in the era of the pandemic, “The Resistance Network” is a paean and a fully committed act of scholarship seeded in the human wherewithal for resistance in the face of the inevitable horrors perpetrated by the Ottoman Empire against the Armenians. In rereading the book, I found myself constantly nodding or looking up for a few minutes as the tales of these unsung heroes and lost souls braided together in the tapestry of the layered and focused narratives. After finishing the last pages and looking back on the stacks of legacies and tales encapsulated in the beautiful binding, the book is a testament to what the power of scholarship can do when it is ingrained with clear and precise prose. The book has that rare capacity to trigger multitudes of little bright epiphanies within the darkness of the era inside the mind’s eye of the reader.
There is no shortage of horror and pain that the Armenian people have tragically endured again in the wake of the heinous and cowardly war started by Azerbaijan and Turkey on September 27, 2020. Yet again, the Armenian nation was outnumbered fighting two Goliaths and the silence of the international community. And yet again, the past came to sadly remind us that above all, resistance and endurance remain intrinsic to the essence of what it means to be an Armenian.
I have never thought of any book on the history of the Armenian Genocide as inspiring. All of them have been illuminating and sobering to the core…except this one. Khatchig, in his passionate and clear-eyed commitment to his decades long study and heavy lifting, has taken the blue flame of the pain of the Genocide and churned it into an offering of hope and a sincere reminder to all who resist today and who will no doubt resist tomorrow. We need this book for our souls now more than ever. I hope that Khatchig’s scholarly torch will illuminate and inspire you when you read this masterful book.