Saturday, May 31, 2008

Nikol Pashinian

I've been away, but now I'm back. This article by Pashinian is simply called "Nikol Pashinian." He must have left it untitled. Comrade Hrand from the ARF plays a leading role.

Nikol Pashinian

The Third Republic's first narcotics baron Hrand Markarian had perhaps sampled the concoction called "Euphoria" [1] before his speech at the ARF's General Convention, or at least that is the impression he made on us with his speech made during the opening of the conference. But, of course, it cannot be ruled out that the euphoria was of a spontaneous, sui generis, origin, especially since it took place during a 6-hour period.

Comrade [2] Hrand has good reason for [experiencing] spontaneous euphoria. A considerable portion of his clientele has been relocated to the Presidential seating area, meaning his business is going to grow. But there are other reasons [for the euphoria], too: March 1st's blood bargain turned out well, and the Aghvan-Levon-Davit trio's gold-rich vein that is in his hands remained unharmed. Ever since the day that Robert Kocharian's backer Kuku carelessly harassed the ARF-member Poghos Poghosian, comrade Hrand knows full well how "unclaimed" corpses turn-up for sale. He is still a little jumpy today because the bargain is not yet complete. But what is it that comrade Hrand [himself] says? He says that the national movement is the expression of another conspiracy. What I have to say about this is that, all in all, it was a few months ago that a document bearing Serzh Sargsyan's signature was published in our paper, [a document] in which Serzh Sargsyan accuses comrade Hrand and his friends of having ties with foreign intelligence agencies [3]. But why stray from the matter: How many US citizens, Europeans, and foreigners in general are to be found in the bureau headed by comrade Hrand, or even in the GC [ARF General Convention], itself? What right do they have involving themselves in political activities in the Republic of Armenia, and whom do they represent? And why hasn't comrade Hrand noticed who it was that expressed his thanks to a leader of a foreign country "for the help that he evidenced during the pre-election and post-election periods"? [4]

Talking about foreign conspiracies is a necessary thing, though: otherwise, how can opening fire on one's own people be explained or be justified? Alas, they weren't one's own people, but foreign conspirators, and they, too, were armed with "kontry-kontry" missiles [5]; didn't Rob [6] say that there was an atomic bomb in Khachatur Sukyasian's pocket? What else does comrade Hrand say? The financial sources of the national movement seem suspicious to him. One can't blame him; he knows three sources available for [financing] political activity: narco-business, rackets, and international conspiracies. Given his mastery of the first two markets, he knows that the national movement is not being funded by them. The third "market" he knows, partially, meaning that for him there exist in that field of knowledge one or two lacunae; hence [for him], this means that the national movement is being funded by those very lacunae [i.e., sources he is ignorant of and that exist in the shadows for him].

For the sake of those who don't know, let me say that this is called logic: induction and deduction. There is no secret involved here. Why, what are brains for? What else does comrade Hrand say? Terrible spectacles of street warfare appear to him--simply terrifying. ARF-er Dro's body is veritably turning over in his grave; he cannot stand such sights. It is much more suited to his tastes when you simply enter someone's house with a few people and pop him right there, or wait for him in the vestibule [7]. Comrade Hrand is flabbergasted: why did Levon Ter-Petrossian name generals? Comrade Hrand doesn't like talking about generals. It is much more convenient to hit Vazgen, to throw it around Vano's neck (the failed national program of 1995). Of course, we don't have the subtle palate of comrade Hrand or his leadership. We simplemindedly say whatever comes into our minds, whereas some go about their business with a Perso-Azerbaijani slyness. And it is delightful to see these people who have appeared on the arena due to a change in circumstances scream about how indispensable it is that the "guilty criminals" be punished.

P.S. It seems that the Prime Minister Tigran Sargsyan has chosen for himself the role of a clown. If you pay attention, you'll notice that all of his speeches are composed of 14 ideas. The speeches differ [only] in their orderings and sequencings of these ideas. If he mentions one idea first in this speech, then it becomes idea number 8 in the next speech, idea number 8 becomes number thirteen, and so on. As an ardent supporter of a prosperous [new] era, I want to call Mr. Sargsyan's attention to yet another idea, and I hope that it merits becoming idea number 15 in his idea list. The idea is the following: "And in particular in any case it is apparent that." Clearly, this idea would have embellished the program of the coalition's leadership.

1. I'm guessing he's referring to the recreational drug called "Ecstacy" in the US.
2. ARF-ers often call one another "friend," or comrade. Pashinian is playing off of this.
3. Here and elsewhere, Pashinian uses the phrase "special services," but I've decided to use the phrase more commonly used in American English "intelligence agencies" because, based on his descriptions in his writings of what the "special services" do, it is pretty obvious that they perform functions that are similar to intelligence agencies like the FBI and CIA (back before the Pentagon started taking them over, anyway), although I'm not sure whether "special services" doesn't combine the domestic and foreign specializations that the FBI and CIA are very territorial about.
4. I'm pretty sure that would be Kocharian thanking Putin. Pashinian wrote an article about it not long ago.
5. Meaning Inter-continental ballistic missiles (ICBMs). I think Pashinian is making fun of Kocharian's Russian/Gharabagh accent and illiteracy when it comes to speaking in Armenian, something Kocharian, by his own admission, is not very good at. I've paralleled in English what Pashinian does in Armenian, which is to render the word "country" with a Russian accent. Kocharian, apparently, at some point, called ICBM's "country-country" missiles, and he did so with a Russian bumpkin's accent, "kontry-kontry."
6. "Rob" is Kocharian's nickname, one he doesn't like, judging by the fact that his bodyguards once beat a man to death for calling him "Private Rob." The man's name was Poghos Poghosian, he was a Georgian citizen, and he was beaten to death on September 25th, 2001, at "Aragast" coffee house. See here.
7. "Podyetz" in Russian.


tzitzernak said...

Calling a co-ARF-er "Unger" is the accepted official nomenclature, from what I understand. In the AYF camps in the US and I think also in Canada, it is how the campers are told to refer to their counselors, "Unger so-and-so." This has always fascinated me given that the term has roots in the Soviet mentality, yet the AYF camps taught the desire to be free of Soviet rule. They did not, however, teach the role of the ARF in how Armenia became Sovietized, which would at least be a piece in the puzzle.

Armen Filadelfiatsi said...

The tradition of calling one another "comrade" or "@nker" is an old one. It goes back to when Armenians, Russians, Turks, and Persians were fighting for constitutions: rule of law, versus rule of man, starting with and inspired by the revolutions in Europe between the mid and late 19th century.

Times changed after the late 1800s and early 1900s.

The ARF and the Soviet "comrades" started to split after the May 28th "independence." This split went through all of the changes that assailed the world in the 20s and 30s, between the two world wars, until it became official, so to speak, with the beginning of the cold war. And that is when the ARF started to deal with the nascent CIA, as a matter of fact.

That's two centuries of history in two paragraphs, but I think the point is clear: the ARF started to deal with the CIA after WWII, for cold war reasons.

Armen Filadelfiatsi said...

To make the first point above more explicit, I should point out that that the ARF's use of the word "comrade" reflects its ideological relations to communism before the Soviets became what they became under Stalin.

Shiva said...

Ideological relations to communism? Does that include religion? Because it is common knowledge that the ARF basically controls the Holy See of Cilicia in Antelias (Lebanon) and its prelacies in the United States, Canada, and elsewhere.

This book, based on a true event, might be of interest:

Armen Filadelfiatsi said...

It's common knowledge that they cooperate; they have the same ostensible goal, the preservation and progress of the "flock." But whether the ARF controls the Greater House of Kilikia, I don't know.

In any case, the title, "Catholicos of All Armenians" is borne by the Catholicos of Echmiatzin, not that of Kilikia.

Thanks for the link to the book, by the way. It sounds like a good read. I'm reproducing it here because the full link gets cut-off in your post: