International Women's Day 2008 & The State of Mourning

It seems strange to speak of International Women’s Day, while being in a state of mourning. It doesn’t feel like March 8th at all… 8 Armenian men, if we are to trust the official accounts of bloody events on March 1st, are gone. Their wives, mothers, sisters are mourning them right now…
I’d really wish today, that all our Armenian women could live in a free and secure country, in a country, where women could be in control of their own destiny, and not fear for their relatives, and have a chance of self realisation. …but I realise, that this is not possible, after March 1, riots, killings, state of emergency and the much worse developments, that I’m sure will follow soon. My dear Armenian women – sorry for sounding so pessimistic, but all I can wish for you today, is personal security and safety for the people immediately around you. There’s not much more one can wish and expect from this divided country now. My greetings and apologies…

Artur Papyan

Journalist, blogger, digital security and media consultant


  1. Now that the elections are over, prices for consumer goods have skyrocketed. The corrupt regime led by Serzh and the kleptocracy which rules Armenia contained its greed until after the polls. But now they can resume plundering and thieving. The mood of the nation is one of depression, with all able-bodied persons wondering how they can get out of Armenia because there is no future here under the mafia rule. It is, indeed, a sad day for the mothers, wives, and daughters of Hayastan.

  2. To be honest, I haven’t noticed any prices skyrocketing. Might be because I’ve been living on pizza from SAS for the past week, but anyway, I’ll check.
    Re. situation, this is a election period when tensions always get high but when both Ter-Petrossian and Sargsyan stoke them up to the extreme.
    I also have to admit that the state of emergency doesn’t affect my life at all. I rarely see soldiers. Was out at Bambir last night and got back at 3am with no trouble.
    My only problem, is that I can access RFE/RL and have to read it via other sites and I can’t watch YouTube videos.
    Otherwise, I spoke to some international organization people workign in the area of democracy by chance early yesterday evening, and one said he suspects a deal will be struck between Ter-Petrossian and Sargsyan.
    Also, nobody is expecting a strong presidency now, which might actually be good. The point about any crisis is that it’s whether we all cope with the challenges posed. If we don’t it becomes a disaster. If we do — and we do so with a level head — it becomes an opportunity to evolve.
    On that basis, unless the situation now gets stoked up to the next extreme, I’m hoping that we can now address all the problems identified by this situation. Wishful thinking, perhaps, but the situation seems less tense than a week ago. Of course, appearances can be deceptive, but let’s hope.

  3. CAN’T access RFE/RL

  4. Onnik,
    You sound like as fool. This is how you sum up the events of the past two weeks? By saying that your little world of pizza eating and Bambur hasn’t been effected? In the meantime know that average Armenians are being rounded up, harassed and driven underground for speaking out for their rights and liberties as citizens. Eight citizens were shot and killed and all you can speak about is that you can’t access RFE/Rl ???
    I always took you for a cowering quizzling of the status quo…Now I know I was right….

  5. Ramik – What do you expect from Onnik or anyone else for that matter? Should I be getting upset for people clamoring for “democracy” during a coup attempt? For clamoring to stop the revolution while various aspects of civil society are trodden upon? For people to stop wasting time on personal vendettas while Artsakh is reportedly attacked? Which is paramount?
    I think it is clear to all that we are living through difficult times, and those who are trying to analyze things soberly (instead of playing self-appointed lynch mob or Grand Judge of all Evil in Armenia) are trying to put things in perspective. I find Onnik’s post quite appropriate. Some hysteria-driven town criers are attempting to create a false picture of Armenia today. If the level of disinformation (from many sides) isn’t apparent to you, let me spell it out another way:
    We are in need of reliable information. And I don’t mean “the horror the horroe” that A1+ is shut down. Misleading people with evil intent is arguably worse than the one-sided official-party line, but I won’t get into semantics.
    And it is not clear, BTW, that people have been rounded up for “speaking out for their rights and liberties as citizens,” as you claim. There is an argument that some (many? all?) people who have been detained are on record as calling for armed struggle and a coup.
    This isn’t just some Poli-Sci 101 exercise in democracy and human rights. There are lots of layers and lots of fights going on simultaneously. Ram, you need not be so bull-headed in mocking others in this time of confusion, tension, and sadness.

  6. Video evidence of shooting towards protesters by Armenia special police units
    Today Armenian opposition distributed a video evidence (below) confirming their previous claims, as well as some eyewitnesses, that special police units shot towards protesters during 1 March events, in contrary to official information on shooting in the air only or no shooting at all.
    to the owner of the blog: please publish this video on your blog!
    thank you

  7. To AH,
    You sound like some fool as well. Thousands of people, with conviction, said enough!!!
    For ten days tens of thousands of marchers walked passed helmeted police with truncheons – WITHOUT INCIDENT !!!Yes, this was a Lesson in Democracy and a wake up call to you and others who don’t want to see the facts infolding before their eyes. Public protest is the most basic of avenues for a segment of society to express their discontent and anger with the regime that rides roughshod over every aspect of their lives. There is no such thing as a partially manipulated or rigged election. It’s either fraudulent or not!!! Yes there is eveidence that ordinary citizens are being harassed and intimidated for merely participating in the demonstrations. No wonder that the Deputy Police Chiefs are “inviting” protestors to turn themselves in….You and others seem to justify this crack-down on the freedom of the press, assembly and peaceful dissent by pointing fingers to an alleged “coup d’etat”. Please enlighten me how this was supposed to take place….with the handful of revolvers and grenades conveniently found at Freedom Square on the morning of March 1st???? People were shot dead and all you and others like you can do is call for impartiality. If that’s the case go petition the govt to lift the ban on the media!!!!Otherwise keep you vacuous attempts at justifying all this to yourself.

  8. Ramik – I am happy to petition the government to lift the media ban. All I said is, if this is about elections, then there are processes. Fight in the courts. Courts are rotten? Then lose and fight again. This is how civic change takes place.
    I do not see evidence of this strategy on the part of LTP. I see a call to arms (figuratively, then literally). I see disgruntled masses whooped in into a frenzy, a call to fight, a call for police to violate their state obligation to serve, and a disinformation campaign bent on preying on emotions of people to transform their peaceful demonstration into a coup.
    Your WITHOUT INCIDENT comment above is a tribute both to the authorities and protesters alike (though, like I said, there were repeated calls to escalate the fight by Pashinyan et al, during the Armenian Bandstand taking place during the Opera disco-days).

  9. “Civic change takes place by petitioning corrupt courts….???”
    What fairyland are you living in????

  10. Ramik,
    Losing is always frustrating axchi jan.I am proud of the Armenian police and the Special units of the Armenian Army that they were swift, quick and direct in their actions. As far as I am concerned I see no difference between a Turk and one of those Levon’s thugs. Harrassed? Put in jail? What do they think after all that violence they would continue on partying at Opera Square and dance to the tunes of a psychotic Armenian Hitler?
    I will not rest until Levon is put in jail. The damage he has done to Armenia and Karabagh in the last 20 years is immense. Him landing in jail would be the biggest event in modern Armenian history since Talaat’s assasination by Tehlirian. This is a matter of honor for any Hayrenaser Armenian.

  11. Hey Hayrenaser,
    Take your psychofrenic rhetoric and get lost!!!!

  12. Ramik, and you are the one who’s trying to establish a “democratic” country with Levon?
    Please admit it: You have lost the party is over and Armenia will be better much much much better without Levon and his mafia amongst us. Alik Arzumanian was arrested : another down , 9 to go from my list

  13. Sorry Hayrenasut,
    The battle is never over…not when your kind is still mouthing such crap!!!

  14. Ramik
    trust me… it’s finished…6 more to be arrested.

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