VICKEN CHETERIAN

Vicken Cheterian

On February 10, six Turkish soldiers were killed as their positions came under artillery fire from the Syrian regime troops. Are we witnessing the risk of a major escalation in northern Syria? Will the Turkish army directly confront the advancing Syrian loyalist forces? And if so, are we facing the risk of a larger conflict between Ankara and Moscow?

In spite of tensions between Tehran and Washington, the frontal confrontation was excluded, adopting instead indirect competition and a game of influence. Then, why did Trump decide to change the rules of the game and ordered the assassination?

Only some days back, the Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan remembered again the words of Ayaz Mutalibov. While in Milan at the Armenian Church, during a meeting with the local Armenian community, he was confronted by an Azerbaijani blogger who accused the Armenian side of “genocide”.

The new protest movement in a radical break with the ideology and methods of struggle that emerged form the 2011 revolts: the protests are young and feminine, and are self-consciously non-violent.

In fact, Turkey is not the first country that flirts with jihadis. In the 1980’s three states - Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and USA - invested money, arms, and provided logistics to the first generation of salafi-jihadis, known as Arab Afghans, to use them against the Soviet army occupying Afghanistan.

The 2018 changes in Armenia did not produce any revolutionary discourse concerning the Karabakh conflict. In Yerevan as in Baku, political elites do not seem able to imagine how to resolve this conflict. I call Diaspora Armenians and Azerbaijanis living abroad to make a bold initiative and start a new dialogue, may be they could move a process that is central in determining the future of their homelands, yet remains paralyzed for nearly two decades.

The end result is not very different from other books written on the topic, since the days of Vahakn Dadrian, Richard Hovannisian, Taner Akçam, Stefan Ihrig, and of course the monumental work of Raymond Kévorkian, and many others.

The Armenian communities in those countries are largely orphan communities. They were communities that had lost their land, and large part of their material culture such as monasteries, schools, libraries, and archives. They were also orphan communities in a literary sense, as an important segment of those communities had arrived in Syria or Lebanon and orphans.

The Kurdish de facto authorities in northeast Syria organized from June 4-6 the “International Forum on ISIS” inviting some 200 international guests to Qamishli. More than the fate of the defeat Islamic State, it is the future of the Kurdish autonomy that is the real challenge.

Gorky, in Venice, is a unique exhibit. To have so many of his works, few of which survived the numerous disasters during his lifetime, is in itself an event.