Are Russia's allies allowed to make heroes of Nazis?
The Russian expert community greeted the unveiling of the monument to the Nazi criminal Garegin Nzhdeh in Yerevan with silence. The act of glorification of the leader of the Armenische Legion, which killed Soviet citizens in Crimea during the Great Patriotic War, was officially carried out in the presence of President Serzh Sargsyan on Saturday – today is already Tuesday, but the Russian information space remains silent about it.
TV channels stay silent, pages of newspapers and websites are empty. Just type 'Nzhdeh' in any news aggregators and you will see a discussion of similar figures of 'the national hero' and the monument to Peter the Great in the Armenian media and a number of condemning materials in the Azerbaijani media. Vestnik Kavkaza was the only Russian news agency to highlight this anti-Russian demarche.
But it wasn't easy to prepare even the only material on the subject: the vast majority of the experts that VK asked today and yesterday for an assessment of the glorification of the Nazi war criminal in Armenia refused to comment on it. The majority, as it turned out, did not know who Nzhdeh was, though each of them dedicated more than one hour of his work to the closest 'criminal relative' of the Armenian separatist – the Ukrainian nationalist Stepan Bandera. Both acted against the Soviet Union in the difficult years of the Great Patriotic War, both were traitors and were condemned as traitors, but everyone knows Bandera, and only a few have heard of Nzhdeh.
Stepan Bandera and Garegin Nzhdeh – the closest 'criminal relatives'
It was already a problem, because the shallow historical knowledge, based on short-term political expediency about the key period of our common history that unites the post-Soviet space today, not only allows nationalists to freely feel themselves in those countries, which today are not in the focus of the Russian geopolitics, but also discredit all this 'patriotic establishment', which actually does not know anything either about the Great Victory, about which it speaks, nor the traitors that prevented the Great Victory, which it supposedly condemns every day.
In 1948, the Soviet Union sentenced Garegin Nzhdeh to a 25-year prison term.
Of course, not all experts in the community are like that. There are those who know about Garegin Nzhdeh's crimes, but some of them refused to comment on the scandalous fact, referring to either the lack of information about it (apparently, they do not believe us – and how to believe, if there's not a single word about it in other Russian media), or to a reluctance to talk about the problems of Armenian-Russian relations as a whole. When anti-Russian sentiment is getting stronger in Armenia every day, when Russia is losing the republic as a strategic ally in the Caucasus – no wonder Serzh Sargsyan, who just celebrated May 9th, personally unveiled the monument to the Nazi war criminal – the experts pretend that it's not their business. Apparently, their business is to follow market conditions, which today includes Ukraine and Turkey, but not Armenia.
The silence of the media can still be explained by the same factor that clearly manifested itself in the Russian information space after April's battles for Karabakh – the powerful influence of the Armenian Diaspora, which shapes the pro-Yerevan vision. Then it was expressed in a heavy information fire against Azerbaijan, which was declared to be a Turkish agent in the Caucasus, and now it is expressed in the suppression of information on Yerevan's openly anti-Russian behavior. Of course, the diaspora doesn't need a wave of discontent among the population, it doesn't need to be responsible for the decisions of Serzh Sargsyan and his 'party of war'. But it also cannot condemn it, as it could be a strong political move, hence there's a silence in the air.
But how to explain the silence of the professional whippers of Russia's enemies? Russia's enemy was glorified in the allied country, here and now. This is an even more monstrous event than the regular SS march in the Baltic States or any manifestations of anti-Russian hysteria in Ukraine – our official strategic ally made a move against Russia and a union with Russia not only in the present but also in the past. It is impossible to be silent in this situation.
Vestnik Kavkaza urges all Russian patriots to condemn the unveiling of the monument to the Nazi war criminal, separatist and traitor, Garegin Nzhdeh, in Yerevan. We also thank those experts who had the courage to comment on this attack against Russia.
Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan at the opening of the monument to Garegin Nzhdeh in Yerevan.