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Russian President Vladimir Putin. Photo: @KremlinRussia/Twitter, October 21, 2020
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Nagorno-Karabakh: Armenian press evokes Soros’ funding

Russia, Armenia and Azerbaijan issued a joint statement on the cessation of hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh. The ceasefire came into force on Monday. Once again, the presence of George Soros has been a point of contention.

Published: November 11, 2020, 9:32 am

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    The pro-Western orientation of the government of Nikol Pashinyan, supported in its anti-Russian policy by the structures of the American billionaire George Soros, worked against the interests of Armenia, according to the Russian and Armenian press.

    After the announcement of the ceasefire Armenians stormed government buildings in Yerevan. Prime Minister Pashinyan, who had neglected the military, is likely to be removed from office after protesters damaged official buildings and called for the resignation Pashinyan. “Nikol has betrayed us,” they chanted.

    “The authorities must ban all activity of the Soros Foundation, and this ‘fifth column’ of Turkey must leave Armenia!” said Golos Armenii. The Yerevan newspaper evoked at length the pro-Turkish article of billionaire George Soros (main financier of the “color revolutions” in post-Soviet countries), published in the daily the Financial Times on March 4, 2020.

    Present in Armenia since 1997, Soros’ Open Society has supported and funded, to the tune of 48 million dollars in total, more than 200 Armenian associations and NGOs, and many citizens live from this funding, according to the Russian newspaper of Ekaterinburg Vetchernié Vedomosti.

    To fight the Covid-19 pandemic for example, Armenia, had to rely on the $ 600 000 offered by Soros.

    Armenia had to agree to the ceasefire after Azerbaijan gained control of the strategic town of Shushi. Azerbaijan, on the other hand, was forced to the negotiating table after its forces shot down a Russian Mi-24 military helicopter over Armenia, killing two crew members and injuring a third. Further such hostilities would have brought Russian forces into play.

    Gaïdz Minassian, professor at Sciences Po in Paris and a specialist in the Caucasus, deciphered the consequences of this total ceasefire agreement.

    “The Russians are the big winners because they managed to keep Turkey out of the diplomatic game. Moscow once again becomes the regional arbiter. Putin once again holds the keys to the final settlement. It was initially not certain, because they were first struck by the irruption of Turkey in this affair. They did not expect such Turkish interference in the southern Caucasus and such massive military support to the Azeris. They took a long time to assess the situation. They wanted to preserve two things: their relationship with Turkey, which is a partner in many areas, and their rather good relationship with Azerbaijan.

    “And then, with Putin, there was a desire to annoy the Armenian authorities. The Russian president did not appreciate the few signs of independence shown by the new Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan. The latter, for example, imprisoned former Armenian President Robert Kotcharian, who is close to Putin. As former Soviet republics like Belarus play bad boys, Putin is not unhappy to bring Pashinyan back in line.

    “Russia is back in the center. It’s a way of saying to the Armenians: ‘Look, if we hadn’t intervened, you would have lost everything’.”

    Some 2 000 Russian peacekeepers will be deployed in the region to guard the Lachin corridor which links the Karabakh capital, Stepanakert, to Armenia.

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    • LuciusAnnaeusSeneca

      Currently there are anti-Pashinyan demonstrations throughout Armenia. Russia wouldn’t shed many tears were Pashinyan gone. Nor would many Armenians, who are upset by the Pashinyan government’s alienation of Moscow and the upsurge of globalist influence in the country, which has done it few favors. A new Armenian government prepared to restore good relations with Moscow, and kick out the globalists (including Soros Foundation NGOs) might find it surprising how quickly things could get better.

      • Stev60

        The problem is that the ceasefire deal and attendant withdrawals leave Artsakh unviable, as I explain in detail elsewhere, Kalbajar and Lachin districts, and Shushi, all now lost, except for a narrow road-corridor through Lachin guaranteed only by the Russians, are vital to any viable Artsakh/Armenia+NK. The people are pulling out already en masse, and the Russian-occupied zone will become a wasteland where no Armenian in their right mind would see any future, and the lot will end up in Azeri hands in the end. Russia left it too late and gave too much away to the Turko-jihadis, on account of a feud with Pashinyan and his clique, but it’s Artsakh, an independent Republic, that pays the real price. It’s really shocking to see the beautiful buildings, churches and monasteries, that are being handed over to the Islamist hordes, yet this is land that was Armenian since 200BC at least. It also gives a huge boost of confidence and power to Aliyev and Erdogan, and reinforces their prized legacy of conquest and extermination of Christians, and genocide denial, while they dance exultantly over the corpses of thousands of Christians. It is thoroughly sickening, and whilst Russia tries to pin all blame on Pashinyan and Soros, it cannot escape its own considerable share, and the negative consequences thereof, if it lets this terrible ‘settlement’ stand, which it shows no sign of not doing, even if Pashinyan falls. After all, apart from coddling the richer Turks and Azeris, it clearly wants to create maximal dependence of both Armenia and Artsakh upon itself, but it has miscalculated, because what’s left of Artsakh/NK is a useless, indefensible, and soon to be empty rump, that it’s not worth Armenia’s while to stick with Russia on account of, and will instead practically force it to turn West instead, to seek some sort of prosperity on what land is left and still actually viable.

        The really sad thing, is that I already gave the essential outlines some days BEFORE the ceasefire, on Southfront, but it was clearly ignored or not understood, amidst endless gutter-attacks from pro-Russian trolls (in fact far worse than the Turkish ones overall). Now it’s almost certainly too late, forever. Armenia will never be in a position to reclaim the lost lands by any means likely to come within its grasp now, and it was the last hope of reclaiming any significant land from the Turks who have killed and robbed Armenians for a thousand years.

        • LuciusAnnaeusSeneca

          Never say never. But the first necesary step for the future is how a post-crisis Armenian government (and hopefully a post-Pashinyan one) gets along with Moscow. Whatever deal that is struck between the two will be critical for rebuilding Armenian military capability. A second necessary step is how Russia will de-fang Erdogan, and not only in the Caucasus. The wannabee sultan is becoming much too much a regional bother, and will have to be taken down a peg or two. Let’s see how Putin does that.

          • Stev60

            Wishful speculating. The hard reality is, that the Armenian position in and ‘legal’ claim to Artsakh is dead, once those key districts were handed over they way they were. Armenia can never retake them alone, and Russia is never gong to help it do so, as it would now break the very deals and relations with the Turko-Azeris that Putin and Lavrov have prioritized, and more. It is a total waste of time for any Westerner or Armenian to look to Russia as some savior, Putin’s Russia, like Stalin’s, just betrays anybody for perceived ‘advantage’, indeed, Stalin’s truly evil dispensation has now prevailed, and no one is going to reverse it now, short of a total joint power righteous revision of the entire region, which again won’t happen, because the crooks and cowards in power ongoingly are very far from the sort to ever do it, rather constantly plot and scheme for the next betrayal and backstab in exchange for Islamic favors and Mammon.

            Don’t waste time hoping for Putin (or anyone in real power) to ever do anything really good or right, it is a pipe-dream at best. If they were of the requisite caliber, it would never have come to this to begin with. And btw he had the very chance you speak of here, and opted instead for the Turk-appeasing ‘solution’.

            I don’t see any reason for Armenians to ever trust Russia again either, unless they are really really stupid. This was pure thug-politics, of the worst sort. ‘Look what can happen to that nice Republic of yours if you step out of line, you wouldn’t want it to happen to what’s left, which is now totally dependent on wonderful us’ – Grade-A Mafia extortion. The problem for the mafiosi is, that what’s left is not worth the bother.

            All could have been avoided if those idiots in Russia and the West had listened to me in time and acted along the lines I set out while there was still time. Along with so much else past and to come.

            • LuciusAnnaeusSeneca

              Not wishful thinking. That is a dangerous thing to engage in when dealing with power politics of the sort that is going on here. Erdogan and Aliyev saw an opportunity to exploit the rift between Armenia and Russia, and they did a good job of it. Pashinyan thought he could rid himself of Russian patronage by making himself a client instead of the globalists. That didn’t work out too well, as they were in neither the mood nor the position to do anything for him. Russia could have intervened a lot earlier had Pashinyan made the concessions that he eventually had to anyway, so his stubornness compounded his other errors.

              As for Putin, he is acting in Russia’s, and his, interests. He made a hard bargain with Pashinyan, who is now a political cripple and thoroughly discredited. There are a lot of Armenians who might not like the Russians, but at the end of the day, it was Russian intervention that ended this latest round. And Russia has regained a lot of its lost hegemony in the Transcaucasus. Maybe Putin might want more, but if so, he will wait for the right moment to make his move. It may not be very soon, as he will want the Armenians to sort out things, and get rid of Pashinyan. Let’s see what happens then.

            • Stev60

              As I said often enough recently, allowing the destruction of Artsakh (which NK is only a part of, and rump NK as now ‘guaranteed’ even less) was/is not a legitimate thing in itself, or to ‘get at’ Pashinyan. Russian ‘intervention’ could certainly have helped preserve a viable Artsakh as specified regardless of Pashinyan. Failure to do so has created a breach between Armenia and its supporters, and Russia. Real Russian ‘interests’ (not just as Putin envisages them) would have been even better served by acting as I outlined, both the Armenians (including in Artsakh) and the Azero-Turks could have been tolerably placated, and future ‘attempts’ at revision avoided. Artsakh is now dead and buried, NK is a crippled unviable rump, Armenia itself not just Pashinyan is seriously damaged, the Turkics are triumphant, and Russia looks like either a fool or a thug, or even both.

              The pro-Russian line is all about ‘get rid of Pashinyan’, but there is actually little reason to now, as there is nothing credibly to be gained thereby, it’s clear as day that Russia won’t act in a hostile manner against the Turkics now, and somehow retake by force (the only way) the lands in question for Artsakh, which Azerbaijan has now successfully reestablished full claim to and control of, backed by Turkey. ‘Possession is nine tenths of the law’, something lawyer Putin seems to have omitted to factor in to his ‘3D Chess’ calculations. Getting rid of Pashinyan now would just suit the Kremlin without delivering anything substantial to Armenia, from either Russia or the West.

              Waiting hopefully in vain for something to ‘happen’ now is of no interest, Aliyev and Erdogan have won, Artsakh and Armenia have lost, and that’s that.

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