I’m the most optimistic person I’ve met in this world. And yet, when the lavish fireworks broke into Yerevan’s arrogant night sky on New Year’s Eve, my heart squeezed with sorrow.
The Armenian authorities are spending 20 milion AMD ($50,000 US) to celebrate the coming of a year, which in president Serzh Sarkissian’s words will see Armenia become a full member of the Customs Union.
“Armenia is creating a new reality which will make her more protected and more competitive,” Serzh Sarkissian went on to say defending his sudden decision to turn away from the world’s biggest market and Armenia’s largest trade partners and side with the group of countries with some of the world’s most corrupt and autocratic regimes.
Sadly though, most people I talked to in the past few days are embracing the accession into the Russia-led Customs Union as the only salvation this country has. And they find amazing justifications too: “no more problems migrating to Russia”, “bringing more Russian troops to Armenia”, “no more rising of the prices for natural gas” and a personal favorite of mine: “Putin will show these bloody oligarchs how to behave, because he cares more about the people in Armenia than our current rulers do!” Yep, that’s a favorite one, except that I have a problem with every one of those perceived benefits.
We have got to stop migration from Armenia, not encourage it by forging ties with Russia. Our brothers (and even my very own sister) are creating worth for the Russian Empire instead of staying home and developing our land.
More Russian troops? When we already have enough of them to invade Yerevan and other key cities in a matter of two hours if Putin decides he doesn’t like what the Armenian authorities are doing!
Not rising the gas prices? But this is also depriving Armenia of any rights to negotiate better gas deals with Iran!
I’ve been too unhappy with the developments in the country to blog for much of the past year. But looking at the pompous fireworks of the New Year makes me want to shut it down for good. Because this is a blog about the democratic, economic and human development of Armenia and I see none coming in the coming year.
I guess I should just sit back, relax and enjoy the firkin fireworks!