By Harut Sassounian
Publisher, The California Courier
Not a week passes without another propagandist for Azerbaijan writing anti-Armenian disinformation against either Armenia or the Diaspora.
The latest such article was written by Andrew Korybko, an unknown individual described as an “American Moscow-based political analyst.” We don’t know what education or background qualifies him as an “analyst” on the Armenian Diaspora to make false accusations on the basis of the little he seems to know. One gets the impression that Korybko’s article is not simply the result of his ignorance, but a deliberate effort arranged by entities that are not difficult to guess!
Korybko’s article, published by the Center for Research on Globalization, Canada, is titled: “The US-Based Armenian Lobby is on a Mission to Provoke Azerbaijan and Russia.” Even from the title, it is obvious that the author is trying to incite a conflict between Russia and Armenians, whereas in reality, there is no such conflict. A note at the end of the article indicates that the article was “originally written for the ‘Moscow-Baku.ru’ online information portal,” which provides a clear evidence of who the author is trying to please!
In his first paragraph, Korybko attacks the Armenians of California for their extreme nationalism and working for the United States against the interests of Armenia. Of course, none of these statements is true! The author’s aim is to start a baseless controversy. Here is the first paragraph of Korybko’s faulty commentary:
“One of the most influential weapons that Armenia has in its foreign policy toolkit is its US-based diaspora lobby in California, which supports their homeland’s most nationalistic and firebrand policies. Instead of behaving as a responsible and pragmatic instrument of the Armenian government in what could have been a calculated policy to balance between Great Powers, it’s oftentimes the case that the roles are reversed and Yerevan is used as an instrument and tool of the US-based Armenian lobby in working against the country’s national interests in order to promote the US. All states aspire for their people to build robust and influential diaspora communities abroad, but the Armenian one is heavily politicized and regularly exerts negative influence on Yerevan in order to bring it under further American control.”
First of all, California Armenians neither try nor have the power to influence the policies of the Republic of Armenia. Secondly, anyone who has the slightest knowledge of Armenian-Americans knows that they are often quite critical of United States relations with Turkey, position on Nagorno-Karabagh (Artsakh), and Turkey’s undue influence on U.S. government leaders who refuse to use the term ‘Armenian Genocide.’ Therefore it is completely untrue that California Armenians blindly serve the interests of the United States.
Korybko then blames “the US-based diaspora” for taking a congressional delegation in mid-September, not only to Armenia, but “whisked off on a highly publicized visit to the occupied regions of Western Azerbaijan.” By describing the Republic of Artsakh as “the occupied regions of Western Azerbaijan,” Korybko makes amply clear whose interests he is serving! Strangely, the author goes on to describe the congressional visit, not only as a pro-American move, but “to Russia’s overall strategic detriment.” Thus, Korybko is accusing Armenian-Americans of undermining Russian interests in Armenia which is totally untrue because they have neither the wish nor the ability to undermine Russia! The author is simply showing who his second master is, in addition to Azerbaijan!
Korybko then resorts to an extreme exaggeration by fabricating the following untrue scenario about Armenian-Americans: “In fact, they want to do everything that they can to ruin the historic Russian-Armenian friendship in their feverish attempt to tear Yerevan away from Moscow and bring it under Washington’s proxy tutelage.”
To back up his fake claim, the author mentions that complaints by citizens of Armenia last month about a government official’s announcement to provide more support to Russian language programs “closely aligns with the position pushed forth by some elements of the US-based diaspora and their American-linked associates in Armenia.” The fact is that not a single person in the entire diaspora said one critical word about the Russian language. Korybko then resorts to another unwarranted exaggeration by claiming that the Armenian Education Ministry “felt pressured to cave in to their diaspora’s demands and reaffirm that Armenian is the only national language in the country…. Whether he intended or not, [Education Minister Levon] Mkrtchyan fell into the information warfare trap laid out for him by the cunning minds organizing the US-based diaspora’s political activities.” This is yet another pure invention by the author!
Exceeding all logical bounds, Korybko alleges that “the Armenian lobby in the US is very similar to the Gulenists in Turkey, in that they represent a shadowy power network with a concrete geopolitical agenda advanced through manipulative means, and both serve the interests of Washington against their homelands.” Korybko with a completely erroneous conclusion claims that “the US-based Armenian lobby is getting dangerously close to seizing full control over their homeland’s foreign policy.”
There are other falsifications in Korybko’s article too numerous to mention. Whoever commissioned this article must realize that such authors, by their ridiculous falsehoods, are causing more damage to the interests of their paymasters than the Armenian community in California!