“Democrats by essence and instinct” or the ones who suffer from political amnesia?
The election campaign period has its peculiarities, the most interesting of which is the political amnesia, and the affected people begin making speeches so selflessly that for a moment it seems that they have begun believing in what they say. This phenomenon could not even be touched upon, simply to enjoy listening to their election campaign speeches and pass by, however, the problem is that another phenomenon is typical of the people suffering from political amnesia: they are so fascinated by the role that one gets an impression that their hope is that there are some problems of memory with us, the ordinary mortals, and it is a reason for them to allow themselves to appear in the public with “angel wings”. This is not the case when people say that if you are criticizing the “opposition”, then you are implementing the order of the functionaries.
First, being an “opposition” is not determined only by making speeches, particularly, in the case of those who are affected by political amnesia, because just months and years ago they were authorities and had all the necessary levers to influence, to make decisions for solving such problems against which they “have risen to fight” today. February 25, the first conference of ORO Alliance was held. “It’s enough to live with the dreams about the future. Let’s now build our desired Armenia with joint efforts,” announced the alliance leader Seyran Ohanyan, suggesting going from village to village and from town to town with “it’s enough” motto and awaken a wave of optimism and hope in people. The leader of the “Heritage” party Raffi Hovhannisyan, who is fond of messages, video messages and letters, is again out of the country. He made a traditional video message, linked the ORO campaign with the birthday of General Andranik mentioning that the “victory is only in unity” and promised to return after his “meetings on business” and join the “unprecedented unity.”
Raffi Hovannisian is confident that they will “eventually win” on April 2. The banter reached the point that the ORO representatives dreaming about the democratic Armenia wished good health to the member of “Founding Parliament” Zhirayr Sefilyan by calling him a political prisoner while the same Zhirayr Sefilyan was imprisoned during the term in the office of today’s ORO representative, the same Vartan Oskanian, and not only Zhirayr Sefilyan …
Generally, the leader of “Unity” party, formerly RA Foreign Minister Vartan Oskanian’s ardent speech, certainly, is a separate topic for discussion, and the more Oskanian continues to doubt the Armenian society about having full or partial loss of memory, the more we should remind him of the “glorious” period of his own governance. First, let’s start with the fact that a kind of unique complex seems to be formed with Oskanian and some of the Diaspora Armenians: it is the presentation of the return to the homeland as heroism and sacrifice. “I right after the independence, and Raffi after the earthquake have left our comfortable life in the United States and have come to the homeland to take part in the state-building task,” says Oskanian. To “sell” the fact of returning to the homeland to the public as a proof of nobleness and flawless, to say the least, is not fair, especially if the insatiable thirst to continuously reach the power as a compensation for the return to the homeland dominates.
In the case of Oskanian, certainly, this aspiration ended in success. He was a functionary during the first and the second presidents’ tenure and is also responsible for the negative during the years of Kocharyan in power, although today, he has completely forgotten the noisy failures reported during his ten years in power. First, it is worth reminding Oskanian that Kocharyan’s suspicious “elected” both in 1998 and 2003 was also a ground for the then opposition members to argue that the country has reached the “brink of the abyss.” The ten years in tenure of Kocharyan and Oskanian proved that there is not much to be proud of, and the predictions of the then opposition members became true and even more. Kocharyan had a lack of legitimacy in both presidential elections but Oskanian was humbly and obediently working, moreover, he was turning a blind eye to Kocharyan’s numerous abuses against democracy.
In 1998-2008, there was no shortage of abuses against democracy in Armenia, human rights and freedoms, opposition members and the press (if Oskanian has forgotten the list, he can turn over the pages of the press for 1998-2008, and surely, he would “excavate” the names of numerous opposition members, representatives of the press and human rights activists), many senior officials were killed in Armenia in those years under mysterious circumstances, Poghos Poghossyan was shot dead in the center of Yerevan in the day time, October 27 occurred, and finally, the term of Kocharyan’s and Oskanian’s power ended on March 1. “We, the leaders of the alliance, are Democrats by essence and instinct and carriers of liberal values,” announced Oskanian recently.
To make the image of “democratic by essence and by instinct” Oskanian a whole, it’s worth observing his indisputable role on March 1, by refreshing some memorable episodes. Still prior to the presidential elections in 2008, in January, Oskanian, in a joint press conference with OSCE/ODIHR Director, Ambassador Christian Strohal, announced, “there are forces that would wish to destabilize Armenia.”
But after the presidential elections on February, Oskanian did not spare endeavors and efforts to conceal the March 1 bloodshed and distort what happened. Diplomats Armen Bayduryan (RA Deputy Foreign Minister), Ruben Shugaryan (RA Ambassador to Italy), Levon Khachatryan (RA Ambassador to Kazakhstan) and Razmik Khumaryan (RA Ambassador and Envoy to Ukraine) who acted in connections of presidential elections in 2008 during the tenure of “democratic by essence and instinct” Oskanian who called on to be committed to the principles of democracy were not only dismissed from their posts but also deprived of their diplomatic titles. Later, the statement of other six MFA officials was issued: Vladimir Karapetyan, Marta Ayvazyan, Varsenik Baghdasaryan, Arakel Semirjyan, Karine Afrikyan, and Ellen Peteyan, with which they expressed concern over the situation formed in the Republic fraught with internal and external undesirable challenges. The statement of the mentioned Foreign Ministry officials did not remain without aftereffect. “Democratic by essence and instinct” Oskanian fired them from work. Next comes the noteworthy topic of “Millennium Challenges” program. Today, Oskanian is proud, “We have become a beneficiary of the American “Millennium Challenges” infrastructure development program with a budget of USD 400 million.” Here too, Oskanian’s has a political amnesia as the decision on suspension of the “Millennium Challenges” program was made because of the mistakes allowed during Oskanian’s tenure. After the presidential elections in 2008 and the March 1 known events, former CEO of the “Millennium Challenges” Corporation John Danilovich sent a letter to the then President of Armenia Robert Kocharyan, which specifically reads, “Recent events could have negative effects on Armenia’s eligibility for MCC funding.” Today, the current government can be accused of inconsistency regarding the continuation of the program but to pretend to be forgetting that the motives for the suspension of the program were the flaws reported during Kocharyan’s and Oskanian’s tenure, to say the least, is not fair.