Friday, November 05, 2004

I got a response to my letter to the MFA in regards to the Iraq deployment. I’m guessing that this is one of those cut and paste responses, since my name should have been “Mr. Manoogian” and not “Manoogian”. I sent a response to make sure that Vartan O. better understands the importance of why we should NOT send troops and hope that the MFA are in fact reading and understanding each letter which they stated in their e-mail are “useful and valuable.” Keeping that in mind, I wrote them some more “useful and valuable” information so they could make the right decision of opposing the deployment.


Date: Thu, 4 Nov 2004 16:58:32 +0400
From: “MFA”
Subject: RE: Iraq
To: "Ara Manoogian"

Dear Manoogian,

Thank you for taking the time to write about your concerns regarding the issue of Armenians being sent to Iraq. It is indeed a complicated issue and your thoughts are useful and valuable.

Thank you.

Office of the Minister


Date: Thu, 4 Nov 2004 23:57:27 -0800 (PST)
From:"Ara Manoogian"
Subject: RE: Iraq
To: “MFA”

Dear Ministry of Foreign Affairs,

Thank you for writing back to me to confirm you have received my message.

You state in your message “It is indeed a complicated issue”. Mr. Foreign Minster, I can’t disagree with you more. If you read my original message (copy attached), you would see that there is nothing complicated about this issue. The whole thing is very simple: Increasingly numerous and effective Iraqi resistance fighters have retaliated against ethnic groups (including Turks and Kurds) that they view as having collaborated with the occupiers. If we send even one person to represent Armenia (even--or especially--in the name of "humanitarian assistance"), then Armenians will also be viewed as collaborators. As a result, even Armenians who have been living in Iraq for decades will be in danger of death.

In the past, Armenian leaders have made mistakes that have caused the loss of Armenian lives. From September 16 to 18, 1918, for example, thousands of Armenians in Baku fell victim to massacres that could have been prevented if Armenian leaders had taken a different approach. (I would be happy to provide you with a copy of Shahan Natalie’s book “The Turks and Us,” which describes this case.) The terrible cost of past mistakes will count for nothing if we refuse to learn from them.

I once again ask that the MFA take a public stance opposing the deployment of any troops to Iraq. The Armenian nation has nothing to gain from it--and much to lose.


Ara Manoogian
Artsakh, Martuni

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