Sarigyugh, Armenia (Photo: Varak Ghazarian)

Dear Armenia,

I am grateful. Every day I wake up and think how grateful I am to be living in Armenia. To be living in Armenia during a crucial time of Armenian history. To be living on the land where my ancestors have lived for thousands of years. To be living on a land full of centuries-old culture. To be able to learn the songs and dances that my predecessors sang and danced to. To be able to explore the land rich in holy mountains, endless valleys, dense forests, constantly flowing water, ancient churches and prehistoric ruins. To be able to speak and hear a nearly two-millennia-old language. To be able to affect change through my everyday life.

A profound sense of meaning entered my life due to the 2020 Artsakh War. I understood that I needed to be in my homeland. I understood that Armenia’s livelihood was severely threatened. After two years of struggle, I count my homeland as an everyday blessing. I was fighting against myself and everything around me. I have now found peace within myself and my current situation, even if Armenia’s situation has continued to get more and more grim. I view every day as an attempt to create a stronger and better Armenia through my everyday actions and perspectives. I hope to inspire a new generation that will help bring about positive change and a sense of belonging to their homeland.

In a world where patriotism is condemned and punished, here I stand as a “patriot” of Armenia. I do not believe that love for your country will necessarily breed nationalistic ideas and hatred toward other nations. I believe this patriotism within me stands for not just the development and survival of Armenia, but for upholding global democratic values. To be able to fight for democracy against dictatorial regimes and struggle for the betterment of human society. For peace to come for Armenia, the people must not continue to breed hatred for one another. Each side, starting with Turkey, must recognize its past mistakes and repent for the atrocities they have committed. Not only forgiveness, but also restitution for what was lost during such atrocities because a simple “sorry” does not undo such horrible wrongdoings. Only then will we be able to move forward in a positive light. The people on both sides must be rid of the hatred within their countries and breed a new generation of understanding and forgiveness that will bring about innovative solutions to the current conflict.

With Love,

A Concerned Armenian

Varak Ghazarian

Varak Ghazarian

Varak Ghazarian is an Armenian-American from Los Angeles who attended a Armenian school his entire life. Upon his graduation from UC Berkeley, he volunteered in Armenia for year with Birthright Armenia. He spent time in Artsakh for a month, where he mentored teenagers in border villages about fundamental topics of health. He currently lives in Armenia, which has opened up a door of imagination that was closed off elsewhere.
Varak Ghazarian

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  1. Ongoing Crucial times and moments of Armenian history. No let go. Constant turn overs, challenges and violent refusal of Armenian rights (all inclusive) and identity by the Azeri-Turkish indestructible alliance. Silence Armenians and take hold of the region -south Caucasus – progressively neutralizing historical and present-day Armenian civilisations. Personal assessments and feelings are great but hopeless in a situation that requires the application of international and international humanitarian law as well as the UN Covenants and other instruments guaranteeing Armenia/Artsakh’s total independence and self-governance. Joining Western democracies. Rule of the law States. Liberated from Russian Soviet rule and that of his supporters.

  2. I applaud you for the decision you’ve made, which has clearly been positively transformative both for you and for your nation.

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