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Earthquake in Armenia

December 21, 1988

The earthquake in Armenia, by its sheer enormity, has brought out the best in all of us. Just as words cannot describe the suffering and devastation, so too we cannot describe the outpouring of care and concern. Men of all races, religions and nationalities have put aside all other considerations and come to the aid of Armenia.

All, that is, except one. Little noted among the horror and destruction stories was another episode that, at least for me, is even more horrifying than the earthquake. For unlike a natural disaster, this horror is man-made and therefore premeditated.

No sooner had the Soviet troops left Azerbaijan to help in the rescue efforts than Azerbaijanis started burning Armenian homes and terrorizing the Armenian population. Let's not forget that the troops were stationed there to protect Armenian lives and property after Azerbaijanis went on a murderous rampage a few months ago.

What manner of men are these to rub this kind of salt on this kind of wound?

For almost a year now, Armenians have been demanding the reunification of Karabakh to Armenia. Karabakh is an Armenian enclave under Azerbaijani jurisdiction. Do we need more proof that this must happen?

Karabakh must be returned to Armenia. If Armenian blood must be spilled, as it is now, then let it spill only on Armenian soil.

KRIKOR NACCACHIAN

Manhattan Beach

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