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OCTOBER 26, 2013 THE ARMENIAN Mirror-Spectator $ 2.00 V o lume L X XX IV, NO. 15, Issue 4309 The First English Language Armenian Weekly in the United States Since…
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OCTOBER 26, 2013 THE ARMENIAN Mirror-Spectator $ 2.00 V o lume L X XX IV, NO. 15, Issue 4309 The First English Language Armenian Weekly in the United States Since 1932 SHANT PARSEGHIAN Uttering the Unutterable: Prose about Genocide By Muriel Mirak-Weissbach Special to the Mirror-Spectator Knights of Vartan Ararat Lodge Donates Computers to Armenian Sisters’ Academy LEXINGTON, Mass. — It has been a tradition for the Knights of Vartan Ararat Lodge to organize activities every year to raise funds for Armenian day schools here. This year, the lodge organized a Surf and Turf Night and raised funds for both St. Stephen’s Armenian Elementary School and the Armenian Sisters’ Academy (ASA). On Sunday, October 20, members of the lodge, with their Commander Jirair Demirdjian, visited the ASA and welcomed Sister Yevtoksia Keshishian, Mother Superior of the sisterhood, above, seated in black, who is visiting the US from the headquarters in Rome. Surrounded by all the sisters of the school, including Sister Emma Mousaian, director of the Philadelphia ASA, staff and members of the school board, Keshishian received from Demirdjian the donation of a dozen computers, which will replace the computers currently at the school. The computers are used for a variety of subjects, including learning the Armenian language. Keshishian thanked the Knights for their donation and promised that as long as the community is behind the school, the school will keep its doors open. A breakfast reception followed hosted by Najeeb Diarbekerly. Pan-Armenian Journalists’ Group Convenes, Awards Mirror-Spectator Annual Prize YEREVAN — On October 9, the sixth PanArmenian Journalists’ Coordinating Committee convened here, under the auspices of Diaspora Minister Hranush Hakobyan and the Armenian Journalists’ Union. Hakobyan thanked those assembled for raising the issues that Armenians in the diaspora face, and also help shed light on solutions to those issues. She also presented a report on the Diaspora Ministry’s five years of activities. The committee congratulated the Diaspora Ministry on its fifth anniversary. She said, in turn, “Without the diaspora, there would be no Diaspora Ministry. Without a diaspora, our programs would not be realized.” The group is co-chaired by the editor of Aztag newspaper in Lebanon, Shahan Kandaharian, and ADL Press Committee co-chairman, Hagop Vartivarian. Both spoke and praised the efforts of the Diaspora Ministry. In addition, Vartivarian thanked her for awarding the Armenian Mirror-Spectator with the newspaper of the year award, which the ministry hands out annually, in conjunction with the Armenian Journalists’ Union. “Thank you to the ministry and to Astghik Gevorkyan [of the Journalists’ Union], for recognizing our ADL publication in Massachusetts, which strives to bring news form Armenia to their brothers and sisters in the US, and also inform our fellow Armenians in the Homeland about the lives of American-Americans,” Vartivarian said. BERLIN — How can you express “the unspeakable” in writing? Is it at all possible? The unspeakable or indescribable, in this case, being the atrocities of mass murder, in the Armenian genocide of 1915, the suffering of the Greek victims of the massacres and deportations in 1922-3, the elimination of European Jews in the Holocaust. Those courageous few, whether survivors of the catastrophic events, or their offspring, or contemporary witnesses, who put down their recollections and reflections in writing, have given birth to a vast literature, the literature of memory, of genocide. Leading protagonists in this literary process gathered from October 11-13, under the auspices of the Evangelical Academy in Berlin. Co-sponsors of the conference were the Working Group for Recognition — Against Genocide, for International Understanding (AGA) and the German-Armenian Society, Frankfurt. Peter Balakian, who had travelled from the US to participate in the conference, noted that being there Schwanenwerder so near the Wannsee was “heavy;” after all, it was there at the conference bearing its name that the Nazi leadership met in January 1942 to map out the “final solution to the Jewish problem,” what was to go down in history as the Holocaust. In her opening welcome, Dr. Tessa Hofmann, founding member of the AGA and one of the first in Germany to spread knowledge of the Armenian Genocide, quoted Theodor W. Adorno’s famous 1951 remark, “To write poetry after Auschwitz is barbaric” and noted that long before that, in 1920, author Zapel Esayan from Constantinople had questioned whether or not one could express the indescribable in literature: “It is definitely possible to relate see UNUTTERABLE, page 7 Koutoujian Looks Back on Campaign, Hopes Community Activism Continues EU Maintains Interest in Armenian Cooperation YEREVAN (Armenpress) — The decision of Armenia to join the Russia-led Customs Union has brought a new dimension to cooperation negotiations with the European Union (EU), according to the head of the EU delegation in Armenia Traian Hristea. He made the comments on October 22 at the presentation of the European Integration Index 2013 for Eastern Partnership countries. Hristea noted that in this stage the relations with Armenia are important for the EU. “Certainly the decision of Armenia to join the Customs Union emerged corresponding consequences, which are directed to change the circles of our bilateral relations,” Hristea. He added that the resources provided by the European Union for the cooperation development should be reevaluated. “Today we need to review and study all the planned programs for Armenia. Especially those programs, which concern to the creation of the deep and comprehensive free trade zone,” Hristea said. Actor Vardan Petrosyan In Serious Accident YEREVAN (ArmeniaNow) — Actor Vardan Petrosyan was taken to the hospital and operated on after surviving a car accident late last week. According to the Ministry of Emergency Situations, the accident took place on the second kilometer of the Yeghvard-Yerevan highway. A report said rescuers helped take Petrosyan out of his BMW and also rescued the driver from other vehicle. Both were first transferred to the Yeghvard hospital and then to the Erebuni medical center in Yerevan. According to the preliminary report, Petrosyan’s condition was assessed as serious. Media reports later said that the actor had undergone a surgery and was at the Erebuni medical center’s intensive care unit and is said to have stabilized. Armenia National Team Coach Bids Farewell YEREVAN (Armenpress) — Armenia’s national soccer team’s coach and squad manager Vardan Minasyan announced this week he will not coach the national squad in the new qualification stage. “Today I met with FFA (Football Federation of Armenia) President Ruben Hayrapetyan, and we discussed several matters linked to the national team. I prefer another continuation to my [coaching] career. There are several offers, specifically from abroad, and I want to discuss them,” said Minasyan. “It is a great honor for every coach to be the manager of a national squad. I also would like to thank our football fans. I also would like to thank the media representatives. I have always been honest with them,” Minasyan added. INSIDE Museum DonorPage 10 By Alin K. Gregorian Mirror-Spectator Staff BOSTON — It was a primary campaign that was launched when Sen. John Kerry was named secretary of state by Present Barack Obama and then Rep. Edward Markey won the special election in June to become the state’s junior senator. On October 15, the intense campaign by seven Democrats and three Republicans seeking to win the special primary in their respective parties to replace Markey ended, and state Sen. Katherine Clark of Melrose NEWS IN BRIEF INDEX Sheriff Peter Koutoujian topped the Democratic side with 32 percent of the votes in the 24 cities and towns making up the Fifth Congressional District. In second place was Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian with 22 percent of the vote. He won Watertown and Waltham handily. see KOUTUOUJIAN, page 5 Arts and Living . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Armenia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Community News. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Editorial . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 International . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 2 S A T U R D A Y, O C T O B E R 2 6 , 2 0 1 3 T H E A R M E N I A N M I R R O R - S P E C TAT O R ARMENIA News From Armenia A r m e ni an J u st i c e M i ni s te r H o s ts C o E C o mm i s s ion er Y ER EVA N ( A r m en p re s s) — Ar me n ian M in is t e r o f Jus t i c e H r ay r Tov mas yan ho st ed Co mmi ss io n e r fo r H u m a n R i g h t s o f t h e C o u n ci l o f E u r o p e ( C o E ) N i l s M u i z n i e k s on O c t ob e r 2 1 . M u i z n i e k s a r r i v e d i n A r m e n i a i n o r d er t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n t h e H i g h L e v e l C on f e r e n c e o n C o m b a t i n g R a c i s m , X e n o p h ob i a a n d I n t o l e r a n c e i n E u r o p e o r g a n i z ed i n t h e f r a m e w o r k o f A r m e n i a ’ s p r e s i d e nc y a t t h e M i n i s t e r i a l C om m i t t e e o f t h e C o u n c i l o f E u r o p e on O c t o b e r 2 1 22. M uiz n ie ks aske d fo r a me e t in g wi t h To vmas yan t o g e t i n f o r m a t i o n o n t h e c u r re nt s i t u a t i o n o f t h e hu man r i g ht s p rot e c t io n in t he c o un t r y. Tov mas yan e xp l ain e d t he cu r re nt si tu at i o n o f t he hu man r i ght s i n A r me n ia, as we ll as t he re fo r ms m a d e i n t h e f i e l d , t o t h e g u e s t . “ T h e a m e n d m en t s i n a n y f i e l d a r e s u b j ec t t o f a i l u r e w i t h o u t t h e i m p l eme n t at io n of t he re fo r ms i n t he j udic i ar y, ” sai d Tov mas yan . T h i s wa s Mu i z n i e k s f i r st v i si t t o A r m e n i a . Postan jyan Bec ome s New L e a d e r o f Pa r l i a m e n t a r y Fact io n Y ER EVA N ( Ar me n iaNo w) — Zar uhi Po st anj yan has b e e n e l e c t e d n e w h e a d o f t h e o p po s i t i on H e r i t a g e f a c t i o n i n p a r l i a m e n t . T he c h a n g e c o m e s a f t e r R u b en H a k ob y a n a n n o u n c e d h i s d ec i s i o n t o r e s i g n a s f a c t i o n l e a d e r e a r l i e r t h i s w e ek . Ta lki ng t o me dia i n p a rl iame n t H ako by an sai d H e r i t a g e P a r t y l e a d e r R a f f i H o v a n n i s i a n ha d b e e n n o t i f i e d a b o u t h i s m ov e w e l l i n a d v a n c e . H e l e f t qu es t i o n s a b o u t r e a s o n s f o r h i s s t e p w i t h o u t co m m e n t a r y , o n l y s a y i n g t ha t h e h a d d e c i d e d t o s t e p d ow n a s f a c t i o n l e a d e r b e f o r e t h e r e c en t s c a n d a l aro un d Po s t an jy an in t he wake of her c on t rove r s ial qu es t i o n t o P r e s i d e n t S e r g e S a r g i s i a n a b o u t h i s g ambl in g hab it at t he PACE p le n ar y s e ss io n i n S t r a s b o u rg o n O c t o be r 2 . Un l ike a majo r i t y o f H e r it age me mb er s H ako by an t h e n w a s c r i t i c a l o f P o s t a n j y a n ’ s b e h a v i o r. R e p r e s e n t a t i v e s o f t h e r u l i n g p a r t y i n A r m en i a c a l l e d h e r s t a t e m e n t i n S t r a s b ou r g s l a n d e r o u s a n d t h e p a r l i a m e n t s p ea k e r t h r e a t e n ed t o e x p e l h e r f ro m t he A r me n ia n de le g at io n t o t he PAC E. Marse i l le Mayor He ads B u s i ne s s D e l e ga t i o n t o Yer evan Y ER EVA N ( H e t q) — Mayo r o f Mar s e il le J ean -C l aude G a u d i n a r r i v e d i n t h e c a p i t a l t hi s w e e k , h e a d i n g a b u s i n e s s d e l e g a t i o n s c h e d u l ed t o m e e t w i t h t h e Ar me n ia’s mi n ist er o f t he e c o n o my. The del e gat i o n had b e e n in v it ed b y Ye re van M ay o r T a r o n M a r g a r y a n . G a u d i n w a s a c c o m p a n i e d b y B e r n a r d H a t e m i a n , p r es i d e n t of t h e F r en ch Ar me n ian C ha mbe r o f C o mme rc e an d In dust r y, V i ce P r es i d e n t D i d i e r P a r a k i a n , d e p u t y M a r s ei l l e m a y or a n d G a r o H ov s e p i a n , m a y o r o f t h e 7 t h s e c t o r o f M a r s e i l l e. T h e F r e n c h d e l e g a t i o n w a s s c he d u l e d t o m e e t w i t h A r me n i an D e pu t y P r i m e M i n i s t e r A r a Pe t r o s y a n , M i n i s t e r o f D i a s p o r a H r a n o u s h H ako b yan an d lo c al bu si n es s le ade r s. This is t he o n l y o f f i c i a l vi s i t o f J e a n C l a u d e G a u d i n a b ro a d t h i s ye ar. N K R P r e s i d e nt H o st s Ar me ni a n C u l t u r e M i ni st e r Y ER EVA N ( Ar me n p re ss ) — Pre si den t o f N ago r n o Ka r ab ag h B ako S ahak yan me t w i t h A r me n i an M in is t e r o f Cul t ure H as mik Pog ho sy an o n Oc to b e r 2 2 . A n u m b e r o f i s s u e s r e l a t e d t o t h e co o p e r a t i o n b e t w e e n t h e t w o A r m e n i a n s t a t e s i n t h e s ph e r e o f c u l t u r e w e r e d i s c u s s e d d u r i n g t h e m e et i n g . NK R Mi ni st e r o f C ult ure an d You t h A f f air s N a r i n e A g h a b a l y a n a t t e n d ed t h e m e e t i n g . Shift:Tech Brings Armenia to Forefront of World IT Industry YEREVAN (Huffington Post) — ONEArmenia and its latest venture, the Shift:Tech initiative bring tectonic change to Armenia, one project at a time. Ad executive and entrepreneur Patrick Sarkissian founded ONEArmenia in 2012 in order to take advantage of that country’s remarkable brain-power and cultural strength and to help to save a young generation of Armenians from the corruption and negativity prevalent in all post-Soviet Republics. Armenians, who have been around for some 3,000 years, embrace their past and the many great entrepreneurs and artists that they have produced over the centuries. But the collapse of the USSR, a war with Azerbaijian, a frightening earthquake and blockade by Turkey have left many in Armenia morose. Emigration has surpassed one million (out of four mil- Armenia’s PM Sends Letter of Condolence To Dmitry Medvedev YEREVAN (Armenpress) — Prime Minister of Armenia Tigran Sargisian sent a letter of condolence to the Prime Minister of Russia Dmitry Medvedev on a terrorist act, which took place in Volgograd and claimed the lives of seven people. A copy of the letter was given to the press, in which he expressed his condolences personally and on behalf of the government, on the terrorist act which resulted in the deaths of several persons in Volgograd on October 21. “We condemn any expression of terrorism and convey our support to the Government of the Russian Federation and the Russian people. Please, convey our words of support and consolation to the families of the victims and wish a speedy recovery to all those injured at that inhuman and violent action,” he said in the letter. The suicide blast that devastated a bus in Volgograd was meant to take place in Moscow, according to a source in the Russian Investigative Committee. The investigation also revealed that the bomber had conspirators in the capital. According to the source, the investigation shows that Naida Asiyalova — the 30-year-old native of Dagestan who is believed to be the alleged terrorist — conspired with her partner, Dmitry Sokolov, and two others to carry out a terrorist attack in the Russian capital. Two of the conspirators, Ruslan Kazanbiyev and Kurban Omarov, both 25, had already arrived in Moscow and were waiting for Asiyalova, Russia Times’ source said. Both men are wanted in Russia for carrying out a twin terrorist bombing in Dagestan in May 2012, in which 14 people were killed. Sokolov was also expected by the terrorists to arrive in Moscow, the source added. However, she reportedly detonated her device in Volgograd, killing herself and six others, and injuring more than 30. Police have reportedly put Kazanbiyev, Omarov, and Sokolov on a federal wanted list, and will distribute the terrorist suspects’ photos among all police stations and checkpoints in Russia. A three-day mourning period for the victims of the terrorist attack has been declared in Volgograd province. Volgograd authorities have also been put on high terror alert for the next 15 days. lion) persons. Corruption is rampant. “Enough looking backwards!” might be an apt motto for Sarkissian and his colleagues at ONEArmenia. In a remarkably short period of time, Sarkissian has brought together likeminded entrepreneurs and cultural workers including hospitality entrepreneur James Tufenkian who produces gorgeous oriental carpets and has opened a chain of top-rated hotels across the country. The idea behind ONEArmenia is to use crowd-sourcing and crowd-funding — modern fundraising tools — in order to raise money for much-needed projects in the humanitarian, environmental and tech fields. Each project donation is completely vetted to produce zero percent corruption — a most attractive feature to potential investors, young and old. Of the organization’s many projects, its Shift:Culture has been particularly enticing. The project received submissions from all over the globe, both within Armeniua and from its far-flung diaspora. The winner, the Epsidon Theater Group, took an old Armenian story by the great writer Nar-Dos called “He and I” and transformed it into a vibrant, contemporary rock opera. The project was so successful and the enthusiasm for it so great that Sarkissian then launched ONEArmenia’s current undertaking SHIFT: Tech. As the “shift” in both titles suggest, the idea is to shift traditional ways of thinking both in and outside Armenia about the Republic and the possibilities it affords. “Armenia is a country with 99% literacy and 36 percent unemployment,” Sarkissian explained: “I wanted to bring attention to Armenia’s highly successful IT sector which has already produced hundreds of millions of exits (export dollars).” Shift: Tech is an open call to develop a mobile app in Armenia for the world market. Armenia is already considered a high-tech hub for the former CIS countries and the Caucasus. In fact the world’s premiere, full-featured mobile photo editor, Picsart, Inc., for example, was founded there and already has more than 77 million users. It was developed and produced in one of the many small offices which now dot the country’s capital Yerevan, which are reminiscent of Silicon Valley’s early days when people put together giants like Apple inside small crowded garages and the like. Armenia’s booming IT sector, considered to be virtually corruption-free, accounts for no less than 20 percent of the country’s annual GDP. Not surprisingly, start-ups are popping up all over the country. Said David Bequette, OneArmenia’s in-country director: “Armenia’s potential is not up for debate...it doesn’t need to look any farther than the Internet for an environment where the talents of its young engineers, programmers, designers and software developers can truly take flight.” SHIFT: Tech’s winning entry will be voted on by a peer review committee that includes some industry powerhouses, including Alexis Ohanian, cofounder of Reddit and Hipmunk, Matthew Brimer, co-founder of General Assembly and Yoav Kutner, the CoFounder of Magento and Oro CRM. “SHIFT: Tech offers enough support for the winning team of developers to focus their time and efforts exclusively on an app idea and make it a reality by building a functioning, viable product for a big global marketplace”, said Nigel Sharp, founder of LionSharp Solutions — a leading creative technology start-up: “Awareness of the technology possibilities will improve and hopefully inspire more people to utilize Armenia’s impressive engineering and mobile development capabilities.” The first place winner will be given the opportunity to work with Social Objects, a leading mobile app development start-up in Yerevan, in order to turn their abstract idea into a unique and impor
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