As part of RFE/RL Armenian service director Harry Tamrazian’s “Sunday Analytical” show, I had the chance to visit Gyumri last week only to find that hundreds of families are stuck there in a permanent disaster zone with no hope for any kind of change. Continue reading
Nobody was spared. Everybody lost a dear one on December 7, 1988 in Gyumri… in Spritak… in Vanadzor… in the Earthquake zone.
I’ve come to regard the Quake as some sort of a turning point, dividing my life to pre- and post-earthquake lives. 20 years have passed since. I lived a whole different life in a different Gyumri – coming to view the Quake as a fact of life, as a part of my reality, a part of myself.
Today they’re spending 200 million Armenian drams ‘Marking the 20th anniversary’ of the tragedy. 200 million drams – to create great photo-opportunities for themselves and look as though they give a damn, and give medals to each other and to corrupt former-Soviet officials, who promised to rebuild the earthquake zone and never did it. Celebrating the 20th anniversary, as if there’s something to celebrate.
Watching all the fuss, all I want to do is shout: “Why don’t you all just shut up and let us quietly REMEMBER and think about our broken lives?!”