Open Letter: Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović (Europa Nostra) & Felipe Criado-Boado (European Association of Archaeologists) Regarding Artsakh
Bothsideism and False-Balance are Devoid of Truth and Reckless
By Vic Gerami
Dear Ms. Quaedvlieg – Mihailović and Mr. Criado-Boado,
Thank you for your report, ‘Urgent call for a holistic protection of the integrity, authenticity, and diversity of the rich multicultural heritage in and around the area of Nagorno-Karabakh.’ While I welcome any coverage on Azerbaijan’s cultural genocide of Armenian antiquity, I must express my disappointment with some misstatements and half-truths.
Your statement paints a false balance about what has happened since September 27, 2020. With help from Turkey, Azerbaijan orchestrated a genocidal attack and ethnic cleansing against Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) Armenians. Likewise, it’s been Azerbaijan that has systematically worked to destroy millennia-old Armenian churches, monasteries, monuments, cemeteries, and other cultural heritage sites ever since.
Using bothsideism in your report is categorically false, does not help the cause, and in fact fuels Azerbaijan’s campaign of hate, violence, and disinformation against Armenians. It sends a dangerous message to President Aliyev that international organizations do not have the courage, moral fortitude, or respect for the truth to call a spade a spade.
I invite you to read this article from renowned Turkish journalist Uzay Bulut about the realities of Azerbaijan’s violence against anything Armenian. With Azerbaijan’s lobbyists worldwide, high-priced public relations firms, and caviar diplomacy, it’s been difficult to find unbiased and truthful information about the tragedy that continues to haunt Artsakh and the Armenian people.
The great writer Elie Wiesel said, “We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”
I hope that your future reports from the Europa Nostra and the European Association of Archaeologists reflect the true nature of the situation in Artsakh and that your organizations can help preserve the rich cultural wealth of the Armenian people.