Download Armenia: Portraits of Survival and Hope by Donald E. Miller PDF

By Donald E. Miller

A awesome view of the way geopolitics impacts usual humans, this booklet records, in phrases and photographs, the lives of Armenians within the final 20 years. according to intimate interviews with 300 Armenians and that includes Jerry Berndt's fabulous images, it brings jointly firsthand testimony concerning the social, financial, and religious conditions of Armenians through the Eighties and Nineties, whilst the rustic confronted an earthquake, pogroms, and conflict. every now and then stunning and deeply emotional, Armenia: snap shots of Survival and desire is a narrative of utmost anguish and problem, a looking out examine the struggle for independence, and a really advanced portrait of the human spirit. A better half to the Millers' hugely acclaimed paintings Survivors: An Oral historical past of the Armenian Genocide, which documented the genocide of 1915, this ebook makes a speciality of 4 teams of individuals: survivors of the earthquakes that devastated northwestern Armenia in 1988; refugees from Azerbaijan who fled Baku and Sumgait due to pogroms opposed to them; girls, childrens, and infantrymen who have been tormented by the battle in Nagorno-Karabakh; and traditional voters who survived numerous winters with no warmth as a result blockade opposed to Armenia via Turkey and Azerbaijan. The Millers' narrative situates those money owed contextually and thematically, however the voices of people stay paramount. The Millers additionally describe their own studies in repeated examine journeys, inviting us to appear past the headlines and imagine past the conditions of our personal lives as they carry modern Armenia to existence.

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If one had tried to invent a more disastrous confluence of events, it would have been difficult. One of the worst natural disasters of contemporary history was followed by the blockade of a landlocked country—a country, moreover, that was experimenting with new democratic institutions as it struggled to convert from Soviet communism to free market capitalism. Furthermore, we cannot ignore the role politics played in the aftermath of this earthquake. Soviet isolation had kept engineers from following contemporary standards of earthquake construction.

M. From a political standpoint, perhaps it is not surprising that the Soviet military was rather passive in its response to the earthquake. However, it is a sad commentary on human nature that politics gets in the way of humanitarian responses. Obviously, the biblical story of the Good Samaritan seems to be more often taken to heart by individuals than by national leaders. Nevertheless, the outpouring of support from around the world—although notably not from Armenia’s closest neigh- 35 The 1988 Earthquake bors, Turkey and Azerbaijan—was incredible, motivated, in part, by awareness of the failure of the worldwide community to prevent the slaughter of over a million Armenians in 1915.

There were four of us fighting with a whole bunch of them. I was using whatever I could. They hit me with a bottle, and I hit them back with a knife, with jacks that I had. I even injured someone. During the confrontation he was knifed in the back, but the wound was relatively superficial. His son-in-law, however, was wounded more severely and died the next morning. Yes, it was a great loss to us. I wish I had died and he had lived. But I am thankful that I am alive to take care of the children now.

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