I have joined many of you in prayer for peace and good will among nations. And, obviously, our prayers have yet to be answered.
I have sat at the dinner tables of the Soviet mother who lost all three sons fighting the Nazi invader, and watched my neighbor place the Gold Star in her front-room window, signifying that her son had died in the battle.
In my lifetime alone the conflict between nations has never ceased – World War II, Korean, Viet Nam, The Cold War, the Iraq and Afghanistan Invasions to name a few – the battlefields that have claimed millions of young men and women, and still mankind remains right on course in its insane attempt to commit suicide.
We choose to build rockets with atomic warheads, nuclear submarines, multi-million dollar aircraft carriers and drones, yet fail to provide our people with medical care, food, and clothing. We MUST defend our homeland but our troops are stationed in lands and cities whose names we can’t pronounce or find on our maps.
As Trygve Lie, the First Secretary General of the United Nations once noted…Wars occur because people prepare for conflict, rather than for peace.
If the word is more powerful than the sword, why then have we turned our backs on our knowledge to solve our political difference? Must we continue to be governed on the false and insane premise that might makes right.
For more years that most care to say, the United States has been fighting an “invisible” force of terrorists, known as ISIL, whose top officers consist of the deposed Iraq dictator. Their ranks are made up of the uprooted, disenfranchised, and the disillusioned whose leaders corrupt the teachings of the Prophet Mohammed and the Koran. They spread their venomous teachings of hate and terror in hopes of creating a caliphate whose barbaric foundation would be to enslave all who do not believe in their monstrous views.
As if there isn’t enough pain and suffering today on earth, the world may again be plunged into another world conflict as the fragile cease-fire between Nagorno-Karabakh and its neighboring Azerbaijan has been violated. Even during the truce there have been killings. Rockets fired. Men and women killed.
Nagorno-Karabakh, an enclave of the Republic of Armenia, was part of ancient and historic Armenia that became a part of Azerbaijan shortly after the Bolshevik Revolution, thanks to the generosity of the then Commissar of Nationalities, Joseph Stalin.
Armenia, which in 301 converted to Christianity making it the first nation to accept Christianity as a national religion, had no say in the decision and, the Nogorno Karabakh Armenians were governed by the Sunni Azeri’s until the collapse of the Soviet Empire.
Upon the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Christian Armenians of Karabakh had no desire to live under the heel of the Sunnis and fought for their freedom, which they won. The 192,000 Christian Armenians who composed approximately 75 percent of the population of the region dreamed of reuniting with Mother Armenia.
With 60,000 million Turks in the West and 16 million Sunni Azeris to the East, Armenia is sandwiched between two historic enemies. It is no secret that the Russian Federation and its president, Vladimir Putin would side with the Christian Armenians. They have a mutual defense pact.
But Turkey is a longtime member of NATO, and the Turks, who slaughtered 1.5 million Armenians in 1915, would not hesitate to finish their bloodletting.
Add the countries who signed the Minsk Declaration, a mutual defense pact which includes 11 former members of the Soviet Union, plus the Russian military onto the battlefield…you have the makings of another world war. And that, I believe, is why Putin has dispatched his Prime Minister, Dmitry Medvedev, to the Armenian capital, Yerevan, to talk with Armenia’s head of state, Serzh Sargsian.
And you thought the 20th was a violent century!
Tom Mooradian was one of 151 Americans who traveled to Soviet Armenia to repatriate during the 1940’s. Thought to be a spy by the KGB, Tom miraculously survived 13 years behind the Iron Curtain winning the hearts of the Soviets through his basketball prowess. Filled with political drama, romance, and intrigue, Tom’s autobiography, The Repatriate reads like a novel, and will have you guessing how Tom managed to return to America alive.
The Second Edition is now available on Kindle and in Paperback!