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arabaliozian 20.08.2008 16:49

Sunday, August 17, 2008
A friend tells me, one of our partisan academics was heard stating recently that consensus and solidarity should not be seen as key ingredients in our collective existence. The only way to explain such an assertion is by quoting an Armenian saying that predates Freud, Jung, and Adler: “There are 49 kinds of insanity.” Make it 50.
No one can be as transparent as he who is not in the habit of questioning his motives. And when such a one is analyzed, he feels as naked and vulnerable as an earthworm after a rainfall.
Only readers who know little or nothing about Armenian literature, and the little they know is filtered through anthologies and textbooks subsidized by political or religious institutions accuse me of harboring anti-Armenian sentiments.
One way to define a commissar is to say that he knows better what you should write and how you should write it though he has himself published not a single line.
Memo to those who verbally abuse one another on the Internet:
Ask yourself the following question and for once in your life try to be honest: What weight does the word of a coward have when delivered anonymously and from a safe distance?
Monday, August 18, 2008
Had Charents known someday he would be betrayed by his fellow Armenians and die an early and harrowing death in a Yerevan jail, would he have written “Yes im anoush Hayastani” (To my sweet Armenian)?
Was his patriotism based on deception and false assumptions?
What about the patriotism of our speechifiers, sermonizers, and partisan propagandists?
To what extent our own patriotism is based on misinformation?
If we knew all there is to know about our leaders, their motives, and sentiments, would we still be patriots or, like so many of our compatriots, we would choose to be born again as human beings and hit the road leading to assimilation?
Why is it that both Siamanto and Totovents found life in America so unbearable that they returned to Istanbul and Yerevan respectively only to be slaughtered like sheep?
Why is it that when warned not to return to Istanbul by his German fiancée, Roupen Sevag told her, in effect, she didn't know what she was saying and that deep down Turks were wonderful folk, only to go back to Istanbul and share the fate of Siamanto, Zohrab, Zartarian, Daniel Varoujan, among many others?
What about Zabel Yessayan, one of our most sophisticated, Sorbonne-educated writers? Why is it that she chose to ignore Zarian's clear warnings, establish herself in Yerevan only to disappear in the Gulag shortly thereafter?
If you say Marxism deceived some of the greatest intellectuals of the West, among them Arthur Koestler, Ignazio Silone, Antonio Gramsci, André Gide, Sartre, and Merleau-Ponty, the question we must ask then is: What about Ottomanism? How many intellectuals of the West were taken in by Talaat's Ottomanism?
Also to be noted: not all our intellectuals were taken in by Kremlin's Stalinism parading as Marxism. Zarian and Bakounts saw clearly its aberrations and dangers, but their warnings fell on deaf ears.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
There are many ways to violate someone's fundamental human right of free speech,
from a bullet in the neck and the Gulag to censorship and a steady barrage of insults. In the case of insults: if you fall silent as a result of them, they win. If you continue to exercise your right of free speech, they lose.
Free speech allows fascists to expose themselves as fascists. That's one of the many beauties of democracy. Free speech allows even a garbage-mouth inbred moron with a negative IQ to parade as a genius (self-assessed of course) and to bray like a jackass pretending all the while to be Pavarotti singing “Nessun dorma.” Have I said this before? Probably. What else can I say to a fascist except that he is a fascist and that his days are numbered as surely as those of his predecessors.
For a long time I couldn't understand why Germans had embraced Nazism, Italians fascism, and Soviets (including my fellow Armenians) Stalinism. How could ordinary law-abiding, decent citizens, I would ask myself, allow themselves to be taken in by the belief system of thugs, sadists, and cold-blooded-murderers? I have my answer today. There is a killer in all of us. The post-World War II French slogan “Nous sommes tous des assassins” (We are all assassins) could also be rephrased as “We are all fascists.” Only in a society ruled by laws, rather than men, that is to say, only in a democracy, our inner killer or fascist is exposed and checked. Which is why I say “God bless America!” As for Armenia and Armenians: may all our fascists (of which we have more than our share even in America), I say, “May they all go to the Devil!”
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Writing for Armenians is a waste of time, I am told.
I agree. But I don't write for Armenians.
Neither do I write about them.
I write for human beings some of whom happen to be Armenian.
I write about intolerance and violations of human rights.
I write about ignorance parading as knowledge.
I write about slaves whose ambition in life is to enslave.
I write about propaganda and its dupes.
I write about victims who victimize.
I write about the death of a thousand cuts that until the 999th it's called survival.
I write about power and its abuse.
I write about speechifiers and sermonizers who speak in the name of God and do the Devil's work.
I write about readers who have been so thoroughly moronized by propaganda that they believe honesty and objectivity to be unpatriotic.
In short, I write about things that transcend racial, national, tribal, and partisan barriers.

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