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Karabakh War 2020: 40 Days
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Other things have occupied our attention, but Karabakh War II – currently by far the world’s most intense conflict – continues unabated.

Bad news for the Armenians. The Azeris have advanced to the edges of Sushi and the Corridor that connects Armenia to Stepanakert, the capital of its Artsakh enclave. Its capture will mean that the fall of Stepanakert becomes a matter of time.

Biden will actually probably be better for the Armenians, but by that point it will likely be too late. At the pace the Azeris have advanced, they should be able to capture Stepanakert and clean out the rest of Karabakh by the time he’s inaugurated.

The Turks are certainly smart to have utilized this window of opportunity represented by what is to be a contested US Presidential transition to the max. Putin would be stupid not to do likewise.

 
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Karabakh War 2020 
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  1. Please keep off topic posts to the current Open Thread.

    If you are new to my work, start here.

    Commenting rules. Please note that anonymous comments are not allowed.

  2. I don’t like these developments. The world is becoming a worse place.

    • Agree: Not Raul
    • Replies: @Max Payne
  3. Max Payne says:
    @reiner Tor

    You mean the world has become less boring. This is good. Things getting stirred up. There was too much decay. Too much stagnation. Here is hoping 2021 will get really heated. We are long overdue for a great global strife or major crisis (real crisis, not some bitch-nothing flu or puny rockets fired at some dindu-nuffin US base in jackfuckistan or whatever).

    What’s the point of making all these weapons if they’re just going to collect dust to be fired 50 years later in some low-intensity privatized counter-insurrection conflict.

    I hope 2020 is just the beginning of an ever expanding snowball that will culminate into an avalanche of events.

    Ah who am I kidding, the world is too gay to go balls deep in anything. Just the tip. Just the tip….

    As for Armenia, here is hoping their encirclement works. Would be totally ninja. PoWs would be a nice bargaining chip.

  4. The Armenians have been fending off the Azeri attacks for days, but I don’t know long it will last. I liked the last part of this article about Putin’s window of opportunity. The time to do something drastic is now since the world is distracted with a million different things.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  5. Dmitry says:

    Also did anyone else see how Azerbaijan stopped posting drone videos since more than a few days ago? i.e. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCp9m21a2rI1_0DItLvHcuCw/videos

    It’s perhaps because the weather is now fog and cloud, where drones do not operate? Alternatively, it could be a sign Azerbaijanis are becoming more intelligent eventually- that you shouldn’t show military secrets on YouTube and Twitter.

    In terms of Aliev’s brains – he has a diversified external policy, despite unpopularity of his dictatorship the West.

    Turkey and Israel continue to send planes with guided ammunition to Azerbaijan. There’s an indication of military supply planes also flying to Azerbaijan from the UK via Saudi Arabia. Meanwhile, Cuba are sending medics to help them with their growing coronavirus epidemic. Perhaps Alievs had some cigars for oil exchange with Castro.

    Cuba reinforces collaboration to fight against Covid-19 in Azerbaijan

    Havana, Nov 5 (Prensa Latina) Over a hundred Cuban healthcare professionals are traveling on Thursday to Azerbaijan to reinforce their collaboration in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic in that Caucasian nation.

    The medical brigade made up of 48 specialist doctors, 70 graduates in different branches, 60 of them in nursing, will join the Henry Reeve Medical Contingent that came to that country four months ago to treat Covid-19 cases.

    https://www.plenglish.com/index.php?o=rn&id=61541&SEO=cuba-reinforces-collaboration-to-fight-against-covid-19-in-azerbaijan

  6. Armanen says:

    The azerbaijani orcs have been saying they are about to take Shushi for weeks. How’s that working out? They got thrown back these past few days both from the area around Shushi and from the Lachin corridor. Lets stop with these geolocation maps put out by so called neutral 3rd party outlets.
    The azerbaijanis, turks and kikes have thrown everything but the kitchen sink over the last 40 days. What do they have to show for it? How much money and men has the regime in baku spent? What are the ties like between Tehran and Moscow, and baku? Just yesterday the head of the SVR commented on the presence of terrorists on azerbaijani soil. Lavrov gave an interview earlier this week mentioning the same thing. Iran has moved even more military equipment and solders to their northern border. And now rumors are spreading that the azerbaijani general staff is up in arms about the level of turkish involvement, to the point that some of its members have resigned. The borat looking dictator isn’t in the best spot currently.

  7. Dmitry says:
    @4Dchessmaster

    Shusha is a kind of mountain fortress – it should be very difficult for Azerbaijan to climb into it.

    But if they conquer Shusha, then they have apparently firecontrol on Stepanakert (the city in Karabakh where Armenia has mainly invested and developed). Stepanakert is on the neighbour mountain to Shusha, but it’s significantly lower, and you can fire artillery down on it from Shusha.

    On Google Map, there is no view of the Northern side of Shusha. But there are views on the Southern side of Shusha. From the South it is such a climb to reach Shusha. https://goo.gl/maps/JZybrkw9UtGQe7gY6 These are not important “cities” – more like small, poor, underpopulated villages, but with very difficult terrain.

  8. 128 says:

    Well you can say that Russia has sent way less materiel support to Armenia than what Turkey and Russia have sent to Azerbaijan.

  9. i predicted System Of A Down might re-form because of this, and lo and behold.

    just more useless third world muds. they make annoying music bashing America for years and talking about how much it sucks (never leaving of course), then as soon as their dump homeland is threatened, they’re talking about how great it is. 20,000 Armenians in LA suddenly care about borders and show up at a rally. System Of A Down inactive for over 10 years then suddenly they’re back, talking about how great a country is (not the one where they live).

    • Replies: @Yevardian
  10. Yevardian says:
    @prime noticer

    Personally I never cared for that band, although I generally dislike Metal or Metal-influenced rock anyway. Also it varies, in my country the diaspora is generally leaning conservative.

  11. Jacob005 says:

    System of a Down’s fanbase during their 2000s heyday were mostly white males, immortalized in Weird Al Yankovic’s “Angry White Boy Polka.”

    The lead singer, who was the most ideological and political, has lived outside the U.S. (New Zealand) for years.

    The drummer supports Trump.

    Their criticism of U.S. domestic and foreign policy is tame compared to what I read on Unz.

  12. oh wow. knock me over with a feather. Serj left America and moved all the way to..another anglosphere country. as if to prove the point, the video shows diaspora Armenians gathering to demonstrate…in any city that’s not a third world dump. exactly like all other third rate mud people do in London and Paris and LA.

    how come these shitbags never go back to where they’re from if it’s so great? hopefully SOAD all catch an Azeri artillery shell and we never have to hear from them again.

    i suspect though they’ll continue to have a long career talking about how much America sucks and how great Armenia is. Daron in particular. what a dickhead that guy is.

    talked to them on their tour bus in 1998 when i was working in radio, and before they were famous. what a bunch of creeps. maybe Glenn Danzig was more of a dickhead, but it’s close.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
  13. @prime noticer

    You seem like a bitter and resentful person, did your girlfriend hook up with Serj? I think that is why you are so angry, LMAO.

    • LOL: Not Raul
  14. Biden will actually probably be better for the Armenians, but by that point it will likely be too late.

    Why would Biden be better for Armenians?

    I still don’t get why many people keep claiming this.

    Why else would anything besides Turkey buying Russian S-400’s bother US Democrats?

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  15. Dmitry says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Powerful Democrat politicians in live in areas (like Los Angeles) where Armenian voters are living, and for this reason they could try to sanction Aliev. Armenian diaspora can only influence the politicians in those areas.

    Although it seems that (luckily for Aliev) Republicans will still control Senate after this election.

    Armenians are living in Glendale of Los Angeles and New York. Adam Schiff is representative of an area which include Glendale and is Chair of House Intelligence Committee.

    Eliot Engel (cool family name, but no relation to Engels) is Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

    He seems to speak like an idiot (which is scary considering his power). But he speaks in very anti-Turkey way and tries to connect it to Israel, during a conference in support of “Artsakh”.

    So these are the very powerful Democrat politicians in Congress.

    Congressional Democrats prepared a letter last month (if I recall 50 representatives signed it) where they asked Pompeo about sanctioning Aliev.

    • Thanks: TheTotallyAnonymous
    • Replies: @Yevardian
  16. Not Raul says:

    There seem to have been some serious developments in recent days.

    https://meduza.io/amp/en/feature/2020/11/07/the-battle-for-shusha

  17. Yevardian says:
    @Dmitry

    I said if before and I’ll say it again, there is no possible way to interpret a Turkish victory as any sort of boon to Russia. Allowing the only state in the region that still houses Russian bases to be beaten in a war of aggresion by a satellite of centuries-long regional rival, brilliant. Not to mention Russia will lose any sort of bargaining-chip in the area with this war’s end.
    But of course, since Pashinian was vaguely associated with some Soros-funded NGO, this cancels out everything (never mind Aliyev actually met him).

  18. @Yevardian

    I agree. While I’m not a fan of Pashinyan, the whole “muh Soros puppet” thing is overdone. He may in some way be linked to an NGO funded by Soros, but I have yet to see any strong evidence that he is a hardcore Russophobe funded by Westerners. In my opinion, he probably is just a delusional Pro-EU guy who had no idea what being a leader meant.

  19. Etcetera says:

    In practical terms, why isn’t Armenia able to mobilize its diaspora more effectively? The only Armenian I know is posting incessantly on Facebook, and it’s amazing to see her this bloodthirsty, but it all amounts to “Sign this petition” and “Pressure your local politican.”

    Presumably the Amenian diaspora has enough money to put the Azeri spending advantage in the dust, and although my sample size is 1, it seems like they feel strongly enough about this to put it on the line, but I don’t see any effort to like, buy drones and send them to Armenia. (or just send the money, as that would presumably be illegal)

    So what’s the stumbling block that I’m missing? Legal barriers? Lack of passion? Lack of infrastructure? Lack of money? Lack of ingenuity?

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  20. Dmitry says:
    @Yevardian

    Pashinian was vaguely associated with some Soros-funded NGO

    It seems very likely Russian leadership policy in this conflict would have been the same regardless if there was Pashinyan or Sargsyan as Prime Minister of Armenia.

    Pashinyan’s link to Soros has been used slightly in some media, and now as a kind of kremlinbot retrospective justification for not interfering in conflict (while liberal media in Russia wants an interference from Russia to support the Armenian side).

    I thought there was some possible circumstantial evidence of Pashinyan’s connection to Soros, when the mainly Soros funded NGO “Human Rights Watch”, was condemning Azerbaijan constantly last month. However, in the end of October HRW also criticized Armenia. So even HRW’s position is not much evidence of Pashinyan being some kind of Soros agent, as HRW moved to more neutral position in the end of October.

    Allowing the only state in the region that still houses Russian bases to be beaten in a war of aggresion by a satellite of centuries-long

    The responsibility for the defeat is primarily Armenia’s, not Russia’s.

    Armenia “won the war” against Azerbaijan in 1994. But Armenia “lost the peace” comprehensively between 1994-2020.

    Armenia’s greatest defeat against Azerbaijan has been in the demographic sphere (where it was already behind in the 1990s), and to this extent it is indeed partly the responsibility of Russian leadership for encouraging a mass emigration from Armenia to Russia.

    The terms “won the peace”, or “lost the peace” are from American 20th century discourse. There’s also a similar term from Israeli 20th century discourse: “war between wars”.

    It can be said Armenia won the war, but Azerbaijan won the “war between wars”.

    “War between wars” encompasses military, technology, economy, demographics and diplomacy.

    Aside from demographics, military technology and economy, Azerbaijan was more successful in the diplomatic sphere during the “war between wars” – this could be an example of how dictatorship can be more diplomatically nimble than democracy, despite the cost that his dictatorship is automatically being rejected by some Western politicians.

    When looking at the 1930s, a typical observation is how Hitler as a dictator was much more nimble and able to diplomatically outmanoeuvre the slow moving democracies. For Armenia’s situation, perhaps it would be better as a dictatorship. Even if it was just Kardashian family that was appointed as the hereditary dictatorship of Armenia, they would have been able to do more effective diplomacy.

    interpret a Turkish victory as any sort of boon to Russia

    Victories and defeats in both Russia and Turkey, depend on long term internal policy factors inside the countries (above all the economic and demographic), and not on external conflicts between small countries in Transcaucasia. The main reason Turkey has managed to regain influence in the region, is through its economic growth in the previous decades, which has matched the economic growth in Russia.

    The “freezing” of the Armenia/Azerbaijan conflict was successful for Russia’s military industrial complex to some extent, but – unfreezing it is not a national tragedy for Russia, or something that give any success for the Turkish people either.

    In Soviet times, Transcaucasia was internal policy. But history has moved fast, and this is now long lost regions.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  21. Dmitry says:
    @Etcetera

    Remittances are important for Armenia’s economy, and so is investment by diaspora in the country’s industries – but the diaspora charity money is less important. And numbers (even including remittances) can only important for GDP in small economies.

    Young Armenian workers, mass emigrate to Russia, and then many of them will spend most of their income in Russia, while Armenia only receives only a minority of this income through remittances.

    Charity donation money from Armenian diaspora to Armenia – is perhaps like giving some extra vitamins to country’s infrastructure or buildings.

    Armenians in wealthy countries like the USA, seem to donate. But this donation money from Americans, will not raise the income difference to stop the emigration.

    I was looking at YouTube a bit. It looks like Armenians in America build up some dollars.

    And they are buying things like a new school building in Stepanakert. So children in Stepanakert now had a nicer looking school building, than I had as a child.

    The most impressive thing the American-Armenians bought looks like a new hospital. (But they built it in Stepanakert, when they should have built it in Armenia).

    Wealthy American-Armenians were also donating to upgrade the buildings in Shusha (which Azerbaijan has taken now).

    It reminds me of American Jews donating through charities for Israel into West Bank settlements. One difference though, is how underpopulated the region.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @Yevardian
  22. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry

    And also wealthy Armenian USA donors seem to tour their investments in Armenia as a kind of bourgeois travel experience. It reminds me of wealthy American Jews investing in Israel.

    But the real question for future of Armenia’s demographics, is whether these people actually plan to repatriate there, or just want to donate to it from distance, while Armenia depopulates.

    A bad decision, from 2:00 in their video, it seems like the American Armenians are donating in Nagorno Karabakh. They should have used a principle to only donate inside Armenia itself, – where it would be useful in the long term for Armenia – as the donation in Nagorno Karabakh is now going to be taken by Azerbaijan.

  23. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry

    In Soviet times, Transcaucasia was internal policy. But history has moved fast, and this is now long lost regions.

    Transcaucasia is still important, but (from the Russian state) as external policy, not internal policy – except in terms of the labour migration*.

    Purpose of external policy, not only, but primarily – relation with the country directly on the other side of your border. For this, maintaining a good relation to Aliev is an important priority (from a Russian state perspective), as Aliev determines other side of the border (from Dagestan).

    Public opinion in Azerbaijan is more pro-Turkey and critical of Russia (mainly for supporting Armenia), but the opinion of the rulers in Azerbaijan is still co-operative to Russia, and this is one of the more important borders of the country, including from the point of view of security..

    Russia’s relation to Armenia and Azerbaijan, relies on appearance of equally balancing two sides. Russia’s government can support Armenia, but not beyond the extent that would alienate the relation with Azerbaijan.

    After a number of years (and dictators have the advantage of time to “learn in the job”) Aliev must know of course that he has significant leverage on Russia, and that maintaining the good relation Azerbaijan is prioritized from the Russian side.

    Both Armenia and Azerbaijan are flooding labour into Russia (in absurd annual levels relative to their small populations).

  24. Why is everyone just assuming that Azerbaijan has already won?

    Intense fighting is underway over Shushi/Shusha right now.

    There’s also this as well.

    Why would Russia bother with this if it already thought that the outcome of this war is over?

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  25. @Yevardian

    Allowing the only state in the region that still houses Russian bases to be beaten in a war of aggresion by a satellite of centuries-long regional rival, brilliant.

    Problem is that Artsakh/Nagorno-Karabakh is De Jure Azerbaijan according to the world (even Armenia to this day), whether you like it or not.

    Anyway, Armenians presuming they’re entitled to protection and support from Russia simply because of their heritage and geopolitics is extremely obnoxious. At least a bit of gratefulness and loyalty would be in order especially because Armenia literally can’t exist without Russia’s military bases on its territory …

  26. Looks like RF military helicopter was just shot down?

    • Agree: Ano4
  27. Ano4 says:

    The Azeri have taken Susha and are advancing towards Stepanakert.

    And they have shot down a Russian military helicopter that was flying over the Armenian territory near the Armenian border with the Nakhitchevan region of Azerbaijan. The Azeri have presented their apologies and condolences to the families of the pilots and agreed to pay reparations. But given that the chopper was flying inside the Armenian airspace this means that Azeris have attacked inside Armenia proper.

    This crosses the red line established by Russia. It might allow Armenia to request Russian military assistance under ODKB chapter. It would mean a war with Azerbaijan and Turkey.

  28. Dmitry says:

    Here’s the final peace deal (it does not show Nakhchivan corridor, but that is also included).
    Result is:

    Great for: Azerbaijan – in a few weeks, they destroyed most of the Armenian forces and military equipment, and achieve all pre-war objectives. It is a checkmate.

    Good for: Armenia from the marginal perspective – Armenia’s army has been mostly destroyed and they were losing thousands of soldiers as a human drone target exercise. This will allow them to save their remaining soldiers and military equipment, while Armenian civilians will continue to live in Stepanakert, and they will be protected by the Russian army.

    Expensive for: Russian citizens – Russia is a generous soul, but this peacekeeping will cost a lot, and possibly result in deaths of soldiers. But at least the main geopolitical danger for Russia – which is of losing control of Azerbaijan, has been avoided. Armenia will be even more dependent on Russia now than it was before the conflict.

    Quite good for: Turkey. If the Nakhchivan corridor is viable, then they now have a short land route to Azerbaijan. In addition, they increase their influence in Azerbaijan.

    Bad for: internet users who were ” sofa military spectators” – as know no longer can watch new Azerbaijani drone videos every day which showed hundreds of soldiers being killed as you drink your coffee.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
  29. Max Payne says:

    And the war is now over. I guess Armenians last sweep/encircle fizzled out with modest to no gains. Ah well, it was entertaining for 25 minutes or so.

  30. @Dmitry

    It was such a bloody month and a half. While I’m relieved it is over, the deal is less than pleasant. There are no words to describe the anger the Armenians feel toward the world. It is now clear that “democracy, human rights, self determination” is simply a way of preventing Russia, China, and Iran from living free of Western harassment.

    • Agree: TheTotallyAnonymous
    • Replies: @Dmitry
  31. Dmitry says:

    Last of the drone videos from today and yesterday.

    “Double tap” on soldiers trying to rescue officers inside a military bunker.

    It was a war between the 21st century and the 20th century.

    Armenian forces were standing in First World War style trenches, with no defense against the air.

    And probably Azerbaijan was starting to use Turkish thermobaric warheads, as they began targetting personnel (so much Armenian equipment had been destroyed from the air in the first weeks of the war).

  32. Dmitry says:
    @4Dchessmaster

    While I’m relieved it is over, the deal is less than pleasant.

    It’s not impossible that the conflict will restart in future. Perhaps if the concept of this Russian protected Nakhchivan corridor is not viable? But overall, there should be less probability of the war re-starting, as Azerbaijan has achieved its objectives.

    Lachin corridor will be defended by Russia – but this is mainly a diplomatic tripwire, rather than real defense. The territory is militarily not possible to defend, as Azerbaijan has high ground above Stepanakert and will be given both sides around the Lachin corridor. But Aliev and Azerbaijan will continue try to avoid any conflict with Russia in the future.

    Meanwhile, Armenia manages to stop the daily loss of its soldiers and military equipment. Their civilians can still live in Stepanakert, which was the main city in which Armenia has invested.

  33. Ano4 says:

    Protesters in Yerevan are attacking the presidential palace. They want to bring the government of Pashinian down.

    • Replies: @Yevardian
  34. Yevardian says:
    @Ano4

    Well, he’s already trying to flee to Sochi now, what a leader.

    Anyway it seems there’s been Russian intervention (just breaking), apparently Armenia will be able to hold onto Stepanakert, its immediate area and a narrow corridor, probably best that can be hoped for. A dozen or so captured villages in the Artsakh region have already had their inhabitants expelled.
    Honestly I expected a worse outcome, given Armenia’s current leadership and the large disparity in numbers and external support between it and the Turks.

    • Replies: @Yevardian
  35. Yevardian says:
    @Yevardian

    Actually, that picture is a bit rosy, it looks close to capitulation, it’s hard to say, given the unrest happening in Yerevan right now, it looks the actual final peace-terms could be considerably worse. Although interestingly, it seems Azerbaijan is actually taking blame for starting the war, I wonder what Russia has on them here.

    Whether you can understand Armenian or not, all so far is a picture of general confusion and chaos.

  36. Yevardian says:

    Agdam and Khalbajar (two northern regions of Artsakh, the latter bordering Armenia proper confirmed to be lost in the upcoming treaty. There is also a ‘Return of Refugees’ provision to Karabakh which in practice will almost certainly be abused for demographic replacement, the implementation of which will apparently be under UN rather than Russian supervision.

    Armenia will be forced to allow all ‘goods and services’ (this at least, will be under direct Russian supervision, naturally the Turkish border concerns its own security) to flow between Azerbaijan proper and that of Nakhichevan (another Soviet-mandated theft), no mention of reciprocity for access to the Caspian sea.

    Anyway, its not the worst outcome. Azerbaijan tellingly still hasn’t released any casualty figures.

    We’ll see what happens to the cultural heritage of the lost territories, eg. Dadivank monastery in Khalbajar.

  37. @Yevardian

    Very sad for Armenia. However, one of the first rules in Thucydides, exemplified by the conflict between Athens and Milos, is that international law only applies to equals. If you cannot defend your sovereignty then you are compelled to find another party with sufficient self interest to come to your aid. This is difficult. I hope this is a strong warning to Greeks (including Greeks of Cyprus).

    The collapse of the various empires, Ottoman, Qajar, British, French etc and the transition of mass democracy and the politicisation of Islam over the last 100 years has not been kind to the commercial ethnic elites strung out in areas those empires. Of course, most of these ethnic groups have consolidated into nation-states of their own, but the process of consolidation and higher Muslim fertility (at least until recently) has been very painful. It is hard to see how rump Nagorno-Karabakh is defensible under the current peace plan – this will push Armenia even closer into the arms of Russia.

    Despite what naive and short-sighted Russian nationalists think, rest of the world with an understanding of the region will see this as a blow to Russian prestige. Although Turkey is weaker than what it believes, they have just increased their power projection at the expense of Russia. It kind of makes Russia’s Syrian campaign seem like a waste of resources and lives.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  38. Dmitry says:
    @Yevardian

    Armenia will be able to hold onto Stepanakert,

    With Russian soldiers, not Armenian. I believe that I have read that Armenia’s military forces will not be allowed there.

    It will be a Russian military protected area. Then there will be Lachin corridor through to Armenia, with Russian military holding this corridor. (While previously there are two corridors).

    Everything will be protected by Russia (the border service of the FSB).

    Azerbaijan tellingly still hasn’t released any casualty figures.

    Azerbaijan will have lost less than analysts had projected before the war for such a ground invasion – because of having an unpredicted level of air superiority. Previously, the war was described as if there would be an even aerial space.

    People predict 3:1 ratio loss ratio for the attacking side, and that it should be higher against positions fortified by Armenians for 25 years in the mountains. But air superiority, drones and guided weapons likely changed the old rules.

    When there was an ambush of 60 Azerbaijani soldiers in the beginning of October, we saw official military Armenian media was posting scenes of the dead bodies in the same area, for two weeks after it was first reported. The implication to me is that the ambush must have been an unusually successful event – otherwise why continue reposting photos and videos showing different angles from the same ambush for two weeks.

    • Agree: AltanBakshi
  39. Dmitry says:
    @Agathoklis

    this will push Armenia even closer into the arms of Russia.

    Russian nationalists think, rest of the world with an understanding of the region will see this as a blow to Russian prestige.

    Note there is some contradiction in your two quoted statements.

    As a result of the peace plan, Armenia is now depending even more on Russia than it was before the war. So this is an increase in power, at least in terms of Armenia.

    I would say it is Russian diplomatic success, except that it will be expensive and possibly dangerous to maintain the soldiers there. (Sometimes people could hope that Russia was a less generous soul).

    As for the use of the terminology Russian nationalist – accurate word for people who want a strong power projection is really “imperialist”, rather than “nationalist” (although Lenin has converted “imperialist” into a bit of an insult in the Russian discourse).

    Nationalism is more concerned with the titular nationality, rather than projecting power into other nationalities (the latter is more concern of imperialism – if we ignore the negative connotations Lenin added to the word).

    Turkey is weaker than what it believes, they have just increased their power projection at the expense of Russia

    Russia has increased power against Armenia, but Turkey has increased power against Azerbaijan.

    But if Russia has intervened in the conflict in an unequal way in favour of Armenia, then Russia would lose control of Azerbaijan, and Azerbaijan would have fallen to Turkey.

    Geopolitical outcome that seems to be contained in this peace plan, is better than had been expected for Russia.

    This peace plan is possible because while public opinion in Azerbaijan is more pro-Turkey and critical of Russia (because of support for Armenia) – the ruler of Azerbaijan still tied into Russia primarily.

    • Agree: Ano4
  40. There is no contradiction. Russian influence power projection was already present in Armenia and it would not lose entire control of Azerbaijan if Russia favoured Armenia as Azerbaijan shares a border with Russia. Russia now has facilitated the increase of Turkish power projection and allowed jihadis to operate a mere 150km from Dagestan. If Turkey manages to maintain is Islamist trajectory past Erdogan’s lifetime this will create problems for Russia. This should also be coupled with Russian inability to achieve their objectives in Belorussia. In the meantime, a new US administration has been elected which is unlikely to be so absent in these conflicts in the future.

    • Replies: @Ano4
    , @Dmitry
  41. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    I had a feeling for a moment that Russia stayed silent on this war because the Kremlin was sick of Pashinyan’s shit and was simply waiting for a chance to implement Madrid Principles/Lavrov’s plan with Russian peacekeepers. I shrugged it off but then it turned out my instinct was correct.

    Anyway, this is probably the best outcome possible for Armenians currently because it seems like morale rapidly and suddenly began to breakdown for them and national disunity came to the fore at levels almost as bad (maybe worse?) as that of Serbs in Krajina, Bosnia and FRY in 1995.

    This is still a win for Russia in terms of geopolitical power projection (not in terms of resources and effort to be spent) that compensates for Armenian incompetence and Turkish-Israeli-NATO support of Azerbaijan. It’s definitely clear now that Pashinyan refusing to integrate Armenia’s anti-air system with Russia’s is the ultimate reason why the position of Armenians has degraded to the state that it’s currently at.

  42. @Yevardian

    We’ll see what happens to the cultural heritage of the lost territories, eg. Dadivank monastery in Khalbajar.

    I wouldn’t get my hopes up if I were you. Although I’m sure you’re already aware of that because you know what happened in Nakhijevan and elsewhere.

    There’s also the example of hundreds of Serb churches destroyed and desecrated in Kosovo and Metohija. I guess this is what you deserve though because you believe Kosovo belongs to Albanians and that Serbs should be Yugoslavs.

    There’s also this as well:

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @Yevardian
    , @Ano4
  43. Dmitry says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Putin has checkmated everyone in this conflict, from the diplomatic perspective (although this will probably be economically costly). Russian external politics and diplomacy, has shown a strategic distinction.

    Turkey will be given a landroute to Azerbaijan, but this corridor from Nakhichevan is going to administered by – Border Service of the FSB.

    Armenian civilians will still be able to live in Stepanakert, but Armenian soldiers are kicked out of the region and replaced by Russian soldiers. So who is the monopoly of power in Stepankert now?

    Lachin corridor on which will depend the Armenian civilians in Stepanakert, will be controlled by – Border Service of the FSB.

    People complain about Azerbaijan turning to Turkey, and this is true in terms of public opinion. But Azerbaijan was lost (from Russian control perspective) in 1991.

    Possibly of controlling Azerbaijan has been lost for decades. But so long as the Aliev family is in power, the friendly relationship with Russia survives, and this was the main thing that was threatened in the conflict, if Russia had helped Armenia.

    This war, and Russia’s diplomatic maneuver, has managed to achieve both securing longer term domination over Armenia, while still seems to have maintained good relationship with Aliev, which we saw from his own words.

    Finally, increase in Turkey’s influence in Azerbaijan, threatens Iran, which will increase Iran’s dependence on Russia.

    It is a diplomatic victory for Russia, and Putin is deserving his salary.

    However, diplomatic victories can be pyrrhic, as they are not necessarily economically beneficial, or supporting the underlying basis of national power.

    Russia’s new position in Transcaucasia feels like it can an epitome of “white man’s burden”. Helicopter pilots were already killed, and will instantly forgotten. Ten cargo planes of Russian soldiers were sent yesterday and overnight to deploy in Nagorno Karabakh – likely to be a multi-billion dollar operation, and it is not clear if Azerbaijan and Armenia will pay for any of this.

  44. Yevardian says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Armenia doesn’t recognise Kosovo.

    I don’t know the context when that picture was taken, but it was probably after Gyumri massacre, where some (mentally ill?) Russian conscript went AWOL and killed a whole family there, emotional reactions are to be expected.

    • Replies: @Ano4
    , @TheTotallyAnonymous
  45. Ano4 says:
    @Agathoklis

    Greeks have a very biased view of Turkey. A little like Poles of Russia. Turkey has legitimate interests in the region. Jihadists operate right now in Russia proper, even outside of DICh. They get detected and killed. Azeri and Armenian diaspora in Russia must be treated on an equal level. There is no reason to favor any of them. If Armenians did not have their chimp out in 2018, things might have been different.

  46. Ano4 says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Re ancient Armenian heritage. Armenians in Karabakh turned the ruined Azeri mosques into pig farms and fed dead Azeri soldiers to the pigs. What goes around comes around.

  47. Ano4 says:
    @Yevardian

    The photo was taken in 2018 during the Armenian color revolution.

  48. @Ano4

    The dead Azeris should have been picked up by their leader, Aliyev. The Armenians offered them that opportunity, but the Azeris broke the ceasefire multiple times. There was a mosque in Shushi that was recently renovated, so stop lying. Your Turkophilia is showing.

    • Replies: @Ano4
  49. Ano4 says:
    @4Dchessmaster

    I don’t waste my time discussing politics with the “small, but proud nation” losers. You had Karabakh as long as you had Russian good will, your diaspora in Russia had a lot of clue and leverage. But given that you are “small but proud”, in 2018 you tried giving your hairy arses to globohomo. Enjoy the consequences. Azeris don’t indulge in these follies, they are rational, predictable and show no hubris.

    Turks are tough, but rational people. They only genocide “small but proud ” idiots. A mutually beneficial consensus might be worked out with Turks. Although my preference would be for Russia to extricate itself from Syria and the Caucasus entirely. Leave it to Iranians and Turks. They took care of that region for a thousand plus years and are entirely capable of managing the “small but proud ” goat herder tribes if the Caucasus mountains.

    These lands do not belong to Slavs.

  50. @Ano4

    Most of what you wrote was nonsense, so no comment on that. The Iranian Safavid Empire was responsible for this in the first place. Shah Abbas deported hundreds of thousands of Caucasians to Northern Iran and depleted the region of its Armenian and Georgian majorities, so I don’t understand why anyone would think that Iran could handle this.

    • Agree: AltanBakshi
    • Replies: @Ano4
  51. Ano4 says:
    @4Dchessmaster

    Shah Abbas deported hundreds of thousands of Caucasians to Northern Iran and depleted the region of its Armenian and Georgian majorities

    This is precisely why I wrote that they can handle it.

    • LOL: AltanBakshi
    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
  52. @Ano4

    Wow, you really are a ghoulish person, I think I’ll end this conversation with you now…

    • Thanks: Ano4
  53. @TheTotallyAnonymous

    “Armenia literally can’t exist without Russia’s military bases on its territory …”
    Maybe a hundred years ago this was true, but not anymore. Armenia, within it’s de jure borders does not need to depend on Russia for it’s geopolitical security. It is likely that there will be large international pressure on Azerbaijan and it’s allies should it overstep that line. Though the Armenians may suffer prior to any international resolution. Azerbaijan seems to be content with it’s current de jure borders anyway. Therefore there probably won’t be any Armenian-Azerbaijani wars following this one.

  54. @Rattus Norwegius

    I seriously doubt that. True, the “international community” may express “concern” about the situation, but it would probably end up being like Cyprus, an occupied and divided country. Any UN resolutions would be useless as long as the Turks would provide some kind of benefit to their allies. The last 44 days have totally changed my opinion regarding the UN.

  55. @Rattus Norwegius

    The international community will send thoughts and prayers. Many courageous conversations will ensue.

    • Agree: Blinky Bill
  56. @Yevardian

    Armenia doesn’t recognise Kosovo.

    That’s nice and appreciated.

    Although even this was mostly because of Sargsyan and Pashinyan could’ve changed this to suck up favor with “West”, especially if he went through with recognizing Artsakh.

    Still, I remember that you wrote last year on a Serbia thread “Kosovo belongs to the Albanians” and all your other bullshit about how Serbs should be cucked Yugoslavs.

    https://www.unz.com/akarlin/zrada-brewing-in-serbia/#comment-2768325

    Some people have a very different life philosophy from forgive and forget you know …

    I don’t know the context when that picture was taken

    The 2018 overthrow of Sargsyan had an explicit anti-Russian tone with it which I’m sure anyone that remotely looked at it remembers.

    Anyway, even though Pashinyan doesn’t seem to be tied with Soros, Armenia is rife with Liberal NGO’s that pursue an openly anti-Russian agenda. Armenians get far more from Russia than they’ve ever given it and Armenia literally can’t exist without Russia, so more gratefulness and loyalty instead of “muh sandwiched between Turkey and Azerbaijan 3 million population nation’s sovereignty” and “I hate Russia because it doesn’t pander to all our fancies” attitude.

  57. @Rattus Norwegius

    Maybe a hundred years ago this was true, but not anymore. Armenia, within it’s de jure borders does not need to depend on Russia for it’s geopolitical security.

    LOL

    Are you genuinely this retarded?

    Read a bit of history about the Caucuses instead of being a generic clueless Western liberal dumbass.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Armenian_Genocide

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_massacres_of_Armenians

    What do you think stops these things from happening again to Armenia and Armenians, even in their De Jure borders, besides the Russian military?

    Do you seriously believe Azeris and Turks will simply be fine with the existence of Armenia and Armenians in their De Jure borders without the Russian military there?

    This is really quite tragicomic, perhaps even darkly humorous you know …

  58. @Ano4

    Re ancient Armenian heritage. Armenians in Karabakh turned the ruined Azeri mosques into pig farms and fed dead Azeri soldiers to the pigs.

    Sounds excessively and unnecessarily cruel and overkill.

    I’d ask for a source/s but I guess that’s pointless beyond easy to cite English language things on these subject matters.

    Still, the facts are clear that Artsakh/Karabakh was owned, developed and built by Armenians for millennia before Turkic-Muslim invasions, let alone when Azeris existed as a nation in the 20th century. Besides shaping some opinions and perceptions, this unfortunately doesn’t matter much in influencing the status and ownership of the land for Armenians.

    What goes around comes around.

    Not necessarily.

    The world doesn’t really operate on this basis (e.g cucks exist, etc.).

    • Replies: @Ano4
  59. @Ano4

    I don’t waste my time discussing politics with the “small, but proud nation” losers.

    Maybe you should try it a bit and you might learn something?

    After all, Russia is in the state that it is right now because it got wrecked by “small, but proud nation losers” in 1917. Jews, Latvians, etc. …

    Also losing most of Ukraine to what counts as “small, but proud nation losers”. Maybe even Belarus.

    You had Karabakh as long as you had Russian good will

    True, although Armenians won the 1990’s war because of much more than just “Russian good will”.

    Turks are tough, but rational people. They only genocide “small but proud ” idiots.

    Is this why they burned down Moscow in 1571 together with Crimean Tatars?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fire_of_Moscow_(1571)

    Although my preference would be for Russia to extricate itself from Syria and the Caucasus entirely. Leave it to Iranians and Turks.

    Maybe Russia has some good reason/s to be apprehensive of Turks?

    After all, why would Russia be in Syria and the Caucuses if it wasn’t apprehensive of Turks, among other things?

    • Agree: AltanBakshi
    • Replies: @Ano4
    , @Dmitry
  60. Ano4 says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    I’d ask for a source/s

    These people deserve each other.

    No more Slav blood shed for these savages. No more Russian moneys spent there. Deport their diasporas back to their homeland. Bring Russian troops home. Let them sort it out themselves.

    • Disagree: AltanBakshi
  61. Ano4 says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Maybe you should try it a bit and you might learn something?

    I know enough to understand that Russia has problems to fix back home. That it is more important than geopolitics and national prestige. We’ve done enough to be part of the history for centuries to come. We should care of our business now. Empire building is a luxury we should no longer spend energies onto. If someone is not directly harming Russian people’s interests we should have no reason to interfere with them.

    If Turks have the feels for their Imperial past so be it. As long as they don’t target Russians then it is none of our business. If they do without any provocation on the Russian side, then obliterate them by all means necessary, including nukes.

    That would be different of the current Russian policies where Putin gets involved into conflicts with no end in sight, only to see Russian planes and helicopters shot and declaring idiotic countermeasures such as a boycott on Turkish tomatoes.

    And before you ask, all the Caucasus territories of RusFed which do not have a clear cut ethnic Russian population majority should be cut loose. That would be DICh. Their diasporas should be expunged from Russia and Russian minorities should be brought home from the Caucasus and Central Asia.

  62. @Ano4

    I know I said I would stop talking to you, but the video of the pig eating the soldier was proof of Azerbaijan’s careless attitude toward its soldiers. I already mentioned before how they refused to collect their soldiers and how local Armenian civilians and soldiers were complaining of a stench.

    • Replies: @Ano4
  63. Ano4 says:
    @4Dchessmaster

    Leaving bodies of the slain enemies on the battlefield to be eaten by animals is a clear sign of a dark age mentality.

    Filming it to put it online is tantamount to psychopathy.

    And I notice that you said nothing about the mosque turned into a pigpen.

    This is the level of the Caucasus tribesmen.

    Azeris are probably no better, although I still have to see an Amenian soldier corpse fed to the dogs or an Armenian church turned into housing for goats or sheep.

    Again, you deserve each other, get with it. Stop pretending that you are more civilized.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
  64. @Ano4

    I know enough to understand that Russia has problems to fix back home. That it is more important than geopolitics and national prestige. We’ve done enough to be part of the history for centuries to come. We should care of our business now. Empire building is a luxury we should no longer spend energies onto. If someone is not directly harming Russian people’s interests we should have no reason to interfere with them.

    If Russia would have same borders as Soviet Union, or had good natural borders like UK or USA, then Russia could leave the near abroad alone, and just concentrate on its own business. Now Russias borders are undefendable and porous. If Russias leaders were so stupid and would make such policy change, then Russia would surely lose its sovereignty on the longer run, it would be an immense victory for the Turkey and Nato. Central Asian countries would have no choice left than to become Chinas vassals or even worse fall under same process as Turkey, radicalization and Islamization would spread like a wildfire. Your line of thought is sadly not possible for Russia and has never been, for Russia is truly situated on the crossroads of the great Eurasian continent, it can only either fall and fragment into pieces or grow. It has no other choice, it has never had any other choice. Sweden could do so, Japan too, India also, which is defended by the mighty Himalaya and Hindukush, but not Russia…

    • Replies: @Ano4
  65. Ano4 says:
    @AltanBakshi

    Who and why would attack a country that is :

    1) Absolutely neutral and caring for its business only.

    2) Has an overwhelming ethnic majority of Slavs and only relatively small minorities of people who like Tatars, Kalmyk and Buryat are compatible with Slavs and have integrated into Russian society for hundreds of years already.

    3) Has modern cutting edge tech

    4) Will use it to obliterate anyone who interferes with its interests.

    Anyone crazy enough to start a war against such a country?

    • Replies: @AltanBakshi
  66. @Ano4

    I don’t waste my time discussing politics with the “small, but proud nation” losers.

    True. Armenia was once great empire, and now it is small one goat country.

    And the same thing is true about Russia.
    150M people , nuclear weapons, space program and lots of empty frozen land does not make superpower or even great power in today’s world.
    Italy, Spain, France, England, Poland, Sweden and many other countries used to be great, but are not anymore and never will be, and Russia is in the same position.
    The sooner Russian “nationalists” get over any remaining imperial delusions, the better for Russia and for them.

    • Replies: @Ano4
    , @AltanBakshi
  67. Yevardian says:
    @Ano4

    Turks are tough, but rational people. They only genocide “small but proud ” idiots. A mutually beneficial consensus might be worked out with Turks.

    Or perhaps their rulers were just brutal and primitive savages? I mean, obviously Hungary must have been a CUCK to not genocide the Slovaks, Russia also should have just deported all the Baltics to starve in central asia etc. Turks are reaping what that sowed earlier with the Kurds now regardless.
    Leave your retarded teenage pseudo-Nietzschean worldview for places like 4chan, its hard to believe you’re 40 something.

    • Replies: @Ano4
  68. Ano4 says:
    @another anon

    Dimitri has written above about making a difference between nationalists and imperialists. I agree with him. Ethnic Russians have been used as Empire-building human resources on a gigantic scale: from the Elbe to the Tianshan and Alaska. Russians have done enough and have nothing to prove to anyone. Russia has an enormous territory that should be taken care of. It has a declining demography that should be taken care of and it has a corrupt oligarchic elite that should also be taken care of. Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, all the Central Asian Stans can take care of themselves. DICh is a problem that should be solved today to avoid future complications. That should be the focus of Russian nationalists. Let Empire Building task to idiotic nations that do not understand what living in twenty first century is all about (working towards ensuring the future, not killing each other for past grievances).

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
  69. @Ano4

    Azerbaijanis have been videotaped severing the ears of Armenian troops that were killed. Ramil Safarov, an Azerbaijani, was rewarded with a hero’s welcome after killing a man in his sleep in 2004. Karam Sloyan, a Yezidi Armenian, had his head severed by an Azerbaijani soldier in 2016, the perpetrator was awarded a medal by Aliyev.

    As far as the video, the Armenians were trying to prove that Azerbaijan did not care to collect its dead, since the international community kept asking for evidence.

    I am not going to pretend every Armenian is a saint, far from that, but we are on average much less prone to committing war crimes.

    • Replies: @Ano4
    , @Dmitry
  70. @Ano4

    1) Absolutely neutral and caring for its business only.

    Russia was quite absolutely neutral in the years 1991-2007, helped a a lot?

    3) Has modern cutting edge tech

    If Russia would be surrounded by every side by hostile foreign powers, it wouldnt matter what kind of weapons of mass destruction or technology Russia would have, its impossible to guard so vast frontiers, like the border with Kazakhstan, without having friendly neighbouring rulers, who are well integrated to the greater Russian civilizational and economical sphere. As an example if Central Asian countries would have hostile Turkey supported regimes leading them, how Russia could stop drug smuggling, or arm shipments to Jihadist cells in Russia? Something like USA-Mexico border security would be a piece of cake compared to that nightmare!

    4) Will use it to obliterate anyone who interferes with its interests.

    Pure fantasy scenario, if Russia or Soviet Union didnt obliterate those who interfered with their interests, why then your neutral and isolationist Russia would choose to do so?

    Anyone crazy enough to start a war against such a country?

    There are many different shades of peace and war, did Soviet Union lose because no one dared to start war against it(after WWII)?

    • Disagree: Ano4
  71. @Ano4

    Aliyev never intended to have the talks go anywhere. Armenia had floated the idea of returning the seven territories surrounding the Soviet-era NKAO. All he had to do was accept that and Armenia would have been happy enough. Instead, he spent decades filling his people with a psychotic level of murderous hate towards Armenians and stocking up on military weapons. Now the world thinks we refused to cooperate when in reality Aliyev could not accept that Artsakh was not his.

    Even Stalin did not believe that, which is why it was an autonomous republic rather than just a piece of land contiguous to the rest of Azerbaijan.

  72. @another anon

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/56/Collective_Security_Treaty_Organization_orthographic_projection.svg

    Cope Harder Ha! Russia has already its own sphere, with integrated economy and common defense. All Central Asian countries bordering China are already more or less in the Russian basket, for people in those countries are not stupid and know that Russia is the better choice for them in the longer run. Then you add Belarus, which although has irritating Lukashenko as leader, is still more or less a client state. SO Russia has at least 200 million under its direct or undirect rule. Its not much nowadays, but its enough to build an empire, or at least to survive till the USA implodes in the next 15-30 years.

    • Replies: @AltanBakshi
  73. Ano4 says:
    @Yevardian

    Or perhaps their rulers were just brutal and primitive savages?

    The Armenian Millet was among the most prosperous in the Ottoman Empire. Way more respected by the Ottoman than Slavs or Vlakhs.

    Certain elite Armenian families in the Ottoman Empire gained the trust of the Sultans and were able to achieve important positions in the Ottoman government and the Ottoman economy. Even though their numbers were small compared to the whole Ottoman Armenian population, this caused some resentment among Ottoman nationalists. The life of the rest of the common Armenians was a very difficult existence because they were treated as second class citizens. Those elite Armenians that did achieve great success were individuals such as Abraham Pasha who became the Ottoman minister of State. Another man by the name of Kapriel Noradounguian became secretary of State for Foreign Affairs of the Ottoman Empire. The Dadian family controlled the entire munitions industry in the Ottoman Empire. Calouste Gulbenkian became one of the main advisors of the National Bank of Turkey and the Turkish Petroleum Corporation, which later became the Iraqi Oil Corporation. Historian A.Tchamkerten writes”Armenian achievements in the Empire was not only in trade, however. They were involved in almost all economic sectors and held the highest levels of responsibility. In the 19th century, various Armenian families became the Sultan’s goldsmiths, Sultan’s architects and took over the currency reserves and the reserves of gold and silver, including customs duty. Sixteen of the eighteen most important bankers in the Ottoman Empire were Armenian”.(Calouste Sarkis Gulbenkian:The man and his work. Lisbon:Gulbenkian Foundation Press.2010

    And

    After Constantinople fell to the Ottoman Turks in 1453, the patriarchate came to care more directly for all the Orthodox living in the Ottoman Empire. Hovagim I was at the time the Metropolitan of Bursa. In 1461, Hovagim I was brought to Constantinople by Sultan Mehmed II and established as the Armenian Patriarch of Constantinople which the office was created solely with a political purpose. Sultan Mehmed II wanted Armenian-Greek separation. Constantinople become the real center of their ecclesiastical and national life. The Armenian patriarch and not the Catholicos of Etchmiadzin, was their most important national dignitary, as part of Mehmed’s wish. In the Sultan’s capital, lived the largest Armenian community in the world; and his civil-ecclesiastical authority made the Sultan practically the most powerful official among the Armenians at large. Before the Ottoman conquest in 1453 there were probably no Armenian churches in Constantinople. Since 1453, 55 new Armenian churches were built in Istanbul, some are from the 16th century.[1]

    Did you know that the Turks once promulgated the Armenian ownership of Saint Sepulcher?

    That how much they hated you people (sarcastic) and that is why you needed to backstab them as soon as they weakened (sarcastic).

    If it was not for your Dashnaks, you would still be living around the Lake Van…

    So keep your propaganda flowing Ara, O couldn’t care less…

  74. @AltanBakshi

    Same with the Mongolia, according to surveys about 90% of Mongolians have a favorable view regarding Russia, and both countries have close military relations, if I recall correctly their defense is more or less integrated. Even though its unofficial, in reality Mongolia continues to be a satellite of Russia like during the Soviet times. Russia has already good basis for establishing a great Eurasian land empire, when the next global crisis comes, or America has internal problems etc, Russia has a good chance to permanently integrate or annex such countries like Kazakhstan or Kyrgyzia.

    Ano4 Slavs are an excellent building material for an empire, that is the fate of the Russians, just like it has been the fate of the Chinese for over 2000 years. Virgin nationalism, Chad IMPERIALISM! Let Poles or Ukrainians be nationalists, let them fall into insignificance, but let Russians reach for the endless horizons! Just like the German philosopher poet and prophet Spengler told one hundred years ago, the Urphänomen of the Russian soul is the boundless and vast steppe and Russians will be the last Europeans who will give a birth to a new civilization, such spirit should not be constrained, nor trapped in a box, for it will lead only to stagnation and decay, just like what the Brezhnev and Gorbachev did, for the Russian soul will only bloom when it has a great animating spirit and idea behind it. Your dream of Russia, is nothing else than a death of Russia. Think about it, all the great moments of Russia were born from the struggle and growth, Russians are not bourgeois Anglos, whose wise men and literature sprung from the wealth and stability, their Benthams and Adam Smiths, no! After the great wars Russia had energy and virility, there was a spirit of vindication!

    “The conquests of the American are therefore gained with the ploughshare; those of the Russian by the sword.”

    -Alexis de Tocqueville

    • Replies: @Ano4
  75. Ano4 says:
    @4Dchessmaster

    Azerbaijanis have been videotaped severing the ears of Armenian troops that were killed. Ramil Safarov, an Azerbaijani, was rewarded with a hero’s welcome after killing a man in his sleep in 2004. Karam Sloyan, a Yezidi Armenian, had his head severed by an Azerbaijani soldier in 2016, the perpetrator was awarded a medal by Aliyev.

    You deserve each other.

  76. @Ano4

    There was no Slav or Vlakh millet in the Ottoman Empire, but the Roman millet, which included all Orthodox Christians, and that millet was completely led and dominated by the Greeks, who had much greater share and part of the administration in the Ottoman Empire, than Armenians ever had. Osmans turned against Armenians mainly because they were only large Christian minority left in the end, so they couldnt lash their anger as effectively against Serbs or Bulgars etc. Still at the same time Ottomans committed Greek and Assyrian genocides, which were as damaging for the remaining Assyrians and Greeks as Armenian genocide was for the Armenians.

    Yes Greeks had a paramount position among the minorities of the Ottoman Empire, they were used in administration of the Christian areas, as trusted merchants and even the rulers of the Wallachia and Moldovia were often Greeks appointed by the Sublime Porte. But it was understandable, Greeks had lots of business connections to Europe, and knowledge of Italian was more common among the Greeks so its not strange that Ottomans used the services of the Greeks, but after the Greeks got their own country, that all changed and Greeks lost their trusted position.

    Oh I almost forgot, in the last years of the Ottoman Empire Bulgarians got their own millet if I remember correctly, Ottomans didnt trust Greeks anymore so it was expedient to use any means to diminish their power. Things Ano4 are not so simple as you think. Armenians are good and Christian people, who have survived a lot, no matter the odds, and the Ottomans first broke the trust of Armenians by committing first Armenian genocide already in the 1890s, the so called Hamidian massacres, where the Anatolian turks and Kurds murdered hundreds of thousands of Armenians, no sane people would continue to be loyal to such country which has commited an act of genocide against them. So it was not Armenians who betrayed Ottomans, but Ottomans who betrayed Armenians, after that yes Armenians became revolutionary and rebellious, as any sane people would.

    • Agree: TheTotallyAnonymous
    • Thanks: Ano4
    • Replies: @Ano4
  77. Ano4 says:
    @AltanBakshi

    German philosopher poet and prophet Spengler told one hundred years ago, the Urphänomen of the Russian soul is the boundless and vast steppe and Russians will be the last Europeans who will give a birth to a new civilization, such spirit should not be constrained, nor trapped in a box, for it will lead only to stagnation and decay, just like what the Brezhnev and Gorbachev did, for the Russian soul will only bloom when it has a great animating spirit and idea behind it.

    Space!

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_cosmism

    Russians should use their resources to gain an infinite expanse beyond this planet. That would be a worthwhile achievement. Babysitting and peace keeping bloodthirsty tribes is too much of a nineteenth century thing.

    Let them eat each other, leave them all behind.

    “He said let’s go and waived his hand!”

    Он сказал поехали и махнул рукой!

    🙂

  78. @Ano4

    We were also invited to the Russian Empire for the same reason, prospered in the Safavid Empire, and were highly sought after in the Soviet Union. In Lebanon, we also have that reputation. I don’t understand what you are trying to prove, we were mostly peasants who got harassed and treated poorly in most of the Ottoman Empire, aside from a few big cities.

    The Dashnaks were only active beginning in the 1890’s, and records show Armenians complaining of mistreatment(bride kidnapping, rape, etc.) beginning with a series of letters in the 1830’s. If the Sultan was too much of a moron to listen, that was his problem. Besides, there was no revolt, the Turks were simply butthurt about their pathetic performance at Sarikamish, and Enver went insane despite always being described as incompetent by German Liman Von Sanders.

    Thus, the Great Turk Chimpout of 1915 began from there.

    • Replies: @Ano4
  79. Ano4 says:
    @AltanBakshi

    Well, you are clearly more knowledgeable about it. Perhaps I am wrong….

  80. Ano4 says:

    An interesting take on the current Karabakh situation from Ukraine:

  81. Ano4 says:
    @4Dchessmaster

    Well, I do not pretend that living under Turk or Iranian domination was something good or desirable for the Armenian people. However, for a very long time they have not been treated any worse than the other Millet.

    I remember reading Russian accounts published in the XIX century that show a clear and unambiguous support for the Armenian freedom. This support was similar in tone and intensity to the one demonstrated towards the Balkanic Slavs in their struggle for emancipation from Turkish domination.

    Russian Empire has fought Turks during centuries, has done all its possible, and only was stopped in its drive towards “putting the Cross back on the Hagia Sophia ” by the October revolution. USSR has also done its possible to keep the Turks out of Caucasus and keep the Islamism and ethnic irredentism there under control.

    Today the Caucasus nations outside DICh are independent. They should find a way to live together. Georgia and Azerbaijan are not Russian allies. Armenians have massively supported a color revolution in 2018 asking for Russian influence to be sidelined by a pro-Western orientation. Strangely enough, among the nations present in the Caucasians, Iranians are probably far better aligned with Russian interests than even Armenians are, nevermind Azeris or Georgians who have clearly opted out from the sphere of direct Russian influence.

    If Caucasus nations are for any reason unable to live on amicable terms in their own neighborhood, I frankly do not think that Russia should insist on keeping them safe from their ethnic conflicts. Let them sort it out, let the strongest prevail and organize and balance the region.

    Then Russia might simply find the best possible compromise with the victorious side.

    Other than that: as the Russian saying goes: Сами, всё сами (Do it all yourselves).

  82. @Ano4

    As far as empires go, most Armenians, including myself, would say that the Russian Empire was by far the best for us. Alexander Griboyedov, a highly respected figure in history, is credited with having Armenians and Georgians return to repopulate ancestral lands that we were forcibly removed from by the Safavids centuries earlier. The Russians also allowed Armenians to organize themselves into the state we have today during both Tsarist and Soviet times. The borders were drawn up, Yerevan was developed, and peopled anchored themselves to a fixed place with some autonomy for the first time in millennia.

    Armenians are by far much less Russophobic on average than Georgians or Azerbaijanis. We mostly have a good view of them as an ethnic group and state despite some rough times. Most Armenians who complain about “Russian colonialism and occupation” are people who don’t know the history nor understand the nature and the difference between Tsarist imperialism and French/British/Spanish colonialism. These idpol obsessed Armenians are desperate to fit in with the “oppressed” crowd at any cost.

    • Thanks: Ano4
    • Replies: @Ano4
  83. Dmitry says:
    @4Dchessmaster

    we are on average much less prone to committing war crimes.

    According to what evidence are Armenians less likely to commit war crimes? The hatred is not less on their side than on the other side, while the development and cultural level of the two nationalities was similar until the 2000s (when the oil boom hit Azerbaijan).

    I am no expert on the region, but I saw evidence of small scale war crimes from both sides in the last month, including videos of cutting of dead bodies and cutting of ears.

    Attacks which killed the largest number of civilians during this war, were Armenian missile attacks into Azerbaijan’s cities: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barda_ballistic_missile_attacks

    Now the war is ending, Azerbaijan is being more merciful to defeated Armenian civilians, than Armenia was in 1994 when they were the winners, as Azerbaijan is agreeing to have Armenian civilians to live in Stepanakert under Russian protection, while Armenia had pushed out and killed opposing civilians in the previous conflict.

    Considering this is the Caucasus, and given Azerbaijan’s military superiority, the situation for civilians is much better than I had expected – protection is now being given to the Armenian civilian population despite Armenia’s military defeat in the conflict. Another example of avoiding civilians, is how Azerbaijan’s ballistic missiles – purchased from Belarus and Israel – were not fired on Armenian cities during the conflict, even though they could have targeted any city in Armenia.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  84. Dmitry says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    apprehensive of Turks?

    Russia’s and Turkey’s economies are quite mutually dependent, and this belies cultural and rhetorical conflict between the powers – and we saw this tested already with Erdogan’s behaviour in 2016, when he was begging and humiliating himself for Russia to forgive him for all year, and asking to please send the Russian tourists back to Turkey.

    Remember, Turkey is a only a Regional Power (albeit noisy and almost drunkenly aggressive one), while Russia is a Great Power (which is still the second in the world, ahead militarily, although not economically, than UK and France) – and Turkey’s leadership clearly understand their junior partner status in the relationship with Russia, even if their public opinion does not.

    Erdogan was even recently kicked out of the F-35 program in which they invested many billions of dollars, because he wanted to buy Russian instead of American SAMs. This resulted in sanctions in Washington DC, that have been blocked by Trump. If I was Turkish, I would more scared about how Erdogan was causing a deterioration of relations with America, than his relation with Russia (where he has already been tested by a year of apologizing and begging in 2016).

    After all, why would Russia be in Syria and the Caucuses if it wasn’t apprehensive of Turks, among other things?

    An important thing to preserve, and which could have been endangered in last month, was Azerbaijan-Russia relationship.

    Azerbaijan is lost from Russia, in terms of being a controlled territory. That’s happened in the 1990s in a violent way, and it won’t be reversed. But Azerbaijan is one of the more friendly postsoviet countries for Russians, surprisingly, and partly because of the leadership’s decisions.

    Among Azerbaijani public, Turkey is now more fashionable there than Russia, and public opinion in Azerbaijan has been turning away from Russia. This turn against Russia seems to have accelerated especially in the last month. But it’s primarily because of Russia’s support for Armenia. Now Azerbaijan has achieved its main objectives against Armenia – I don’t think it is fantastical to expect the street opinion in Azerbaijan will become more favourable to Russia again.

    In terms of Russians living in Azerbaijan, it’s not described a threatened situation like in Latvia or Kazakhstan. Azerbaijan’s government promotes the idea of multinationalism and the Russian minority reportedly live well there.

  85. Ano4 says:
    @4Dchessmaster

    You see, I have a very tough time trying to understand how could any of Caucasus Christians be Russophobic. All of these ethnic groups (I would also extend this to the few surviving Zoroastrian and Yazidi) have probably had a better existence under the Tsar and of course the Soviets than they would have had under Muslim domination. This is specifically true of the Georgians and Armenians who have been accepted among respectively Aristocracy and military or intellectual and economic elites.

    In USSR the Caucasian populations have even been favored compared to some Russian Slav coming from some deep provincial Russian small town. There was some kind of positive action destined to help promoting minorities. Yet, the overall attitude among the Caucasus people, which I have personally witnessed growing up in Moscow, was that it is “a given to them” and they “owe nothing” to Russians whatsoever. A kind of superiority complex really, and it was already quite noticeable in Soviet times.

    [MORE]

    Then, in the nineties I watched incredulously a French TV program where a Georgian nationalist explained to his French interlocutors that Russians invaded Georgia in the XIX century and deprived it of its statehood and that Terek Cossacks (the ones pushing back against the Vainakh during 200 years) were brutal and vulgar barbarians who took Georgian lands. The guy was dead serious about all this. And of course he didn’t say that Stalin and Beria were Georgian. Meanwhile in Moscow the ethnic diasporas from Caucasus were causing a real criminal mayhem and privatizing some of the juiciest morsels of the local economy. The highest ranked criminals in Russian mafia being mainly from Caucasus.

    That was absolutely disgraceful.

    This is why I and a lot of ethnic Russians don’t want to have anything in common with the Caucasus ethnic groups anymore. We would have greatly preferred not having them on our soil and not being linked with them in any manner. That was perhaps different for the Armenians prior to 2018, but since the Armenian revolution it has been also extended to include them. Now Russians have not really that much more sympathy for Armenians than they have towards Azeris.

    We want to stay out of your troubles. But we keep being dragged in by the government for geopolitical reasons. But geopolitics will not fix roads, build infrastructure and renovate schools and hospitals in the Russian deep province (glubinka). Geopolitics will not help young ethnic Russian families, of which nearly 60% are poor. It will not enhance Russian demographics. It will not allow to regain the lost technological edge. It will not increase scientific prowess…

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
  86. Dmitry says:
    @Agathoklis

    jihadis to operate a mere 150km from Dagestan.

    ISIS jihadists are inside Russian cities, which is a result of immigration policy, not external policy. Some Azeri immigrants in Russia are becoming Islamic terrorists, after radicalizing in Russia itself.

    As for jihadists in this conflict. I doubt that ISIS jihadists, would fight for Shia Azeris against Armenians. (Sunni and Shia are having a kind of “Thirty Years’ War” between each other).

    Azerbaijan has possibly used Syrian mercenaries, via Turkey. These mercenaries would be motivated by money, rather than religion.

    They would be using Syrian mercenaries because they can pay them a higher salary than they could receive in Syria.

    Turkey manages to maintain is Islamist trajectory

    Azerbaijan connects culturally to Turkey through their Turkish language, rather than through religion – Turkey is Sunni, and Azerbaijan is secularized Shia country. Their cultural connection is on the secular-nationalist plane – like a Turkish version of panslavism.

    There is a problem of Islamicization of Azeris, but it seems to happen more to Azeri immigrants in Russia. In Azerbaijan, there is a dictatorship that promotes multi-religion and secularism.

    In terms of ideology distinction between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Armenia has the benefit of being democracy, while Azerbaijan is dictatorship. There’s no reason to look at Azerbaijan’s dictatorship through rosy glasses, or claim the criticisms of Azerbaijan are some kind of Soros conspiracy.

    Religiously, Azerbaijan’s government usually supports multi-ethnic, multi-religious groups, with local Russian cities, and protected status for native language. For example, the Molokans live in Azerbaijan, and educate their children in Russian language (which is not possible in Ukraine and Latvia).

    Armenian claims about Azerbaijani’s “jihadism” against Russia, if they would win the conflict, required quite a strong imagination.

    One of the things that can be congratulated for Azerbaijan is that they preserve and promote ethnic minorities, and religious minorities like Molokans.

    Part of Aliev’s vision, has been to include ethnic minorities like Russians, Lezgins, Molokans, Mountain Jews, etc.

    For example, they renovate this grandiose Palace of Culture for a Molokan village of Ivanovka, in Azerbaijan. Aliev family likes to promote the minority nationalities and religions.

    Azerbaijan’s propaganda promotes a lot this idea that they are a multicultural “diversity is our strength” country, while they portray Armenia as being a monocultural ethnostate (although Armenia also protect a small Yazidi population – so it’s not quite accurate) .

    • Replies: @Ano4
  87. Ano4 says:
    @Dmitry

    The Molokane settlers that have been expelled from Russia in the mid- nineteenth century, have been also sent to Armenian territory. Of some twenty villages that they have founded in Armenian lands, only two remain.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  88. Dmitry says:
    @Ano4

    Yes it can be read that almost all Molokans of Armenia, have emigrated to Russia. There has been almost 90% decrease in their population since the 1990s in Armenia. This will be mainly due to economic reasons (I have not read that Armenia is persecuting them). All the ethnic minorities are running away en masse from Armenia, and so the country becomes more ethnically pure every day. But then so are Armenians themselves emigrating to Russia – it’s not evidence of persecution of minorities; but rather the relative attraction of Russia.

    As for Azerbaijan, I would also congratulate (aside from at least tolerable situation for local minorities) that Azerbaijan’s leaders are significantly promoting to keep Russian language alive as a second language.

    • Replies: @4Dchessmaster
  89. @Ano4

    These people deserve each other.

    Maybe.

    Burying the corpses and demolishing the Mosque without any symbolism would’ve been fairer and less cruel.

    No more Slav blood shed for these savages. No more Russian moneys spent there.

    Too late.

    You just got the complete opposite, for better or worse.

    • Agree: Ano4
  90. @Ano4

    And before you ask, all the Caucasus territories of RusFed which do not have a clear cut ethnic Russian population majority should be cut loose. That would be DICh.

    So here we come back to the Caucuses again, and especially Chechnya …

    Care to remember why Russia fought 3 wars in Chechnya again?

    I get that Russians have Caucuses and Chechnya fatigue and PTSD, somewhat similar to West Europeans and Anglo Americans with the Balkans (I think Caucuses are much worse for Russia imo), although I don’t think you’ve understood that dealing with the problems of Chechnya and Caucuses, as much and as far away from Russia as possible, is the best solution to a painful problem with no perfect solutions.

    I honestly think Russian nationalists would do well to be more concerned about the wellbeing of remaining ethnic Russians in the North Caucuses …

    Also, a curious side question, don’t you hope and desire for the return of ethnic Russians to their rightful lands on the west and north sides of the Terek river that they were driven out of during the 1990’s?

    • Replies: @Ano4
  91. @Dmitry

    I wouldn’t judge Armenians harshly for any wrongdoings because they know all too well that they will receive absolutely no quarter and mercy from Azeris and Turks regardless of what they actually do (so they have no incentive to behave with high standards, and arguably could behave much, much worse). This will become absolutely clear (if it isn’t already) as Armenians have to abandon much of Artsakh now.

    It’s clear that Armenians are always provoked into such things and reacting to Azeris and Turks doing it to them and using numerous dirty tricks (e.g Azerbaijan deliberately positions its artillery near its civilians, etc.).

    It’s also a bit rich and actually very hypocritical for outsiders to lecture Armenians about their war crimes than they could even begin to realize given their own records …

    • Agree: AltanBakshi
  92. @Ano4

    I understand that. I have never been to Russia, so I cannot speak on what Armenians are like there. However, I have seen many Armenians from the Arab world and North America and there are also gangs there. We do have our problems with corruption in the republic itself, so I get where you are coming from.

    As far as mafia goes, is it true that the Chechen and Georgian mafias are bigger than the Armenian ones?

    • Replies: @Ano4
  93. @Dmitry

    Thanks for pointing out that Armenia does not persecute minorities. This is widely claimed by other people who support any of Armenia’s opponents. There were Georgians, Russians, Assyrians, Jews etc. who left Armenia after the collapse of the USSR, but, as you noted, is a result of the terrible economic situation rather than prejudice amongst Armenians. There have been Ukrainians who have been coming to Armenia to work in its growing IT sector as of late.

  94. How much chances there are that the latest agreement will be actually executed as it is without furher use of military force by all sides?

    Armenians may not leave those territories they have not lost yet if the RF “peacekeepers” got the orders to back them covertly as Armenians were hoping all the time for such intervention, just sooner as it really happened.

    But guess we will see quickly if that’s the case of current agreement being not naked capitulation, but just camouflaged ceasefire after succesful AZ offensive.

    In any case, without much doubt AZ will get to keep holding the land they already managed to capture though.

  95. Ano4 says:
    @4Dchessmaster

    The Armenians in Russia are more of a very strong lobby than an organized crime syndicate, there are indeed talks of corruption around this lobby. The Georgians are strongly represented among the Russian mafia bosses, the ones that are called Vory v zakone (Thieves in law). The Georgian diaspora lobby itself has lost its prominence since the acrimonious separation between Georgia and Russia and the 2008 war.

    An interesting group are the Yazidi Kurds, who despite being a tiny minority have provided several outstanding Vory, the most epic among them being Ded Hassan (Grandpa Hassan: Aslan Usoyan):

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aslan_Usoyan

    And Shakro molodoy (Shakro the younger: Zakharyi Kalashov):

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zakhariy_Kalashov

    The Chechen mafia is a class of its own. It was not integrated into the Russian Vory system, but was organized along clear ethnic lines. It fought a turf war with all the other organized crime groups in the 90ies and was known for an absolute ruthlessness even by Russian mafia standards. Chechen mafia was extremely violent and was directly linked with the Chechen militant movement. It was progressively integrated among the other criminal groups and I also suspect that it integrated with Kadyrov’s networks of influence.

    Paul Khlebnikov has written an excellent book around an interview he was given by a prominent member of the Chechen mafia, who was also a Sufi mureed in the Qadiriyyah Tarikat (the influential Qadiria Sufi sect to which the Kadyrov family belongs) and a rebel field commander during the Chechen wars.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/business/2005/06/17/chechen-rebel-had-journalist-killed-russia-says/94fb36f3-b1f1-4a31-b78c-57e57ff06c84/

    Khlebnikov was later killed, either because he presented an unflattering account of his interlocutor or more plausibly because his next book was written about Boris Berezovsky.

    My personal impression, formed in my last visits to Russia in 2014, 2016 and 2018 is that the organized crime has become less flamboyant, less visible, more rational and more integrated into the economy and politics. There is a kind of strange coexistence among the Siloviki (Russian security services) and the Vory. This situation was absolutely unthinkable of in the Soviet era. Many DICh youngsters choose a career path to become Siloviki. It is all natural for them because of their strong warrior ethos, perhaps some among them also belong to organized crime families.

    All in all, it was worse in the 90ies and it has left a lot of resentment among the ethnic Russian majority.

  96. Ano4 says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Care to remember why Russia fought 3 wars in Chechnya again?

    One could argue that DICh has never been completely pacified.

    Hundreds of thousands of Russians died there for Kadyrov having himself enthroned as a Satrap in Chechnya in the end.

    Historically Russians have fought in Caucasus for several reasons:

    1) Pushing back Turkish influence

    2) Providing assistance and protection to the Caucasus Christian ethnic groups

    3) Conquering and colonizing the fertile agricultural terrain.

    4) Movement towards Persia and the Caspian sea (part of the GreatGame).

    Terek Cossacks were indeed instrumental in keeping the Vainakh in check for a couple of centuries. But they were weakened by the Communist terror against them during the Civil War and the subsequent collectivization and urbanization during the Soviet regime. They have become no match for the Vainakh who have kept their tribal warrior culture. The Cossacks were incapable of deploying a similar level of ultraviolence in the 90ies. So they have basically been wiped out from Chechnya and Ingushetia.

    The situation in the Cossack stanitzas at the time was terrible: mass killings, kidnappings, rapes (including rapes of children), torture etc. The Cossacks haven’t been able to withstand this, these lands are most probably lost to them. The Vainakh took them back.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  97. @Ano4

    One could argue that DICh has never been completely pacified.

    Hundreds of thousands of Russians died there for Kadyrov having himself enthroned as a Satrap in Chechnya in the end.

    Don’t say …

    Historically Russians have fought in Caucasus for several reasons:

    1) Pushing back Turkish influence

    2) Providing assistance and protection to the Caucasus Christian ethnic groups

    3) Conquering and colonizing the fertile agricultural terrain.

    4) Movement towards Persia and the Caspian sea (part of the GreatGame).

    Although point 3 is obviously obsolete right now, all the others are correct and relevant to some degree. Still, you’ve missed an even bigger and more important issue regarding the Chechnya Wars of the 1990’s.

    It’s actually a bit weird and bizarre to me that you don’t seem to realize that Russia’s territorial integrity, relevance as a great power and even basic national sovereignty was (maybe still is?) at stake there. For instance, having Tatarstan refuse to answer the Russian military roll call for soldiers and military assets to fight in Chechnya was a very bad sign that seems to have been completely forgotten now.

    Also all the “western” media demonization of Russia in the conflict and even contemplations by the US State Department and other high level officials of military engagement and even nuclear war over Chechnya.

    It seems like it’s much more awkward and uncomfortable for Russians to publicly reflect and discuss the Chechnya wars than it is for Serbs to do so over the wars of Yugoslavia’s breakup. It’s understandable because of bad memories, personal experiences and also a degree of taboo by the Kremlin of “peaceful co-existence” and multiculturalism with Muslims.

    They have become no match for the Vainakh who have kept their tribal warrior culture. The Cossacks were incapable of deploying a similar level of ultraviolence in the 90ies. So they have basically been wiped out from Chechnya and Ingushetia.

    Don’t say …

    The situation in the Cossack stanitzas at the time was terrible: mass killings, kidnappings, rapes (including rapes of children), torture etc. The Cossacks haven’t been able to withstand this, these lands are most probably lost to them. The Vainakh took them back.

    So you’re happy to just forgive and forget about all of this?

    Maybe you consider that the Cossacks were in fact ancient Ukrainian non-Russians or anti-Russians and the champions of ancient Ukrainian nationhood against Russian Imperial oppressions and etc?

    As for the part about the Vainakh taking lands back, are you sure that land really rightfully belongs to them?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terek_Cossacks

    I emphasized north and west of the Terek river for a reason. In my opinion Cossaks/Russians have the right to consider that land truly theirs and that it belongs to them, not to Chechens or any other North Caucuses people.

    • Replies: @Ano4
  98. Ano4 says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Well, for better or worse Russians are not Balkanoids. They are a more Nordic lineage of Slavs, hence they have a less belligerent and vengeful character than Serbs or Croats. Even less than Ukrainians. Although they have spent the greater part of their history fighting, Russians have bo taste for incessant wars. Especially ones that cannot be won except through an outright genocide and population replacement. Therefore the DICh situation cannot be solved through military methods.

    Something should be done about it though, and the majority of Russians I personally know would prefer simply cutting DICh loose and expunging the criminalized DICh diaspora from Russia proper.

    The history of the Cossacks is a complex one, the modern Ukrainian mythology of all Cossacks being some proto-Ukrainian warrior caste is of course an oversimplification. There were Cossacks active in Siberia, on the Volga etc. The Terek Cossacks have mainly come from Kuban where they settled after the dissolution of the Sietch.

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  99. @Ano4

    Russians have no taste for incessant wars. Especially ones that cannot be won except through an outright genocide and population replacement. Therefore the DICh situation cannot be solved through military methods.

    Israel (its treatment of Palestinians, not the Holocaust) and many other examples throughout the world and history prove otherwise, but that’s an understandable attitude.

    Something should be done about it though

    My idea would be something similar to the status quo although Russians/Cossacks have the right to return to North and West of the Terek river while everything else can be just left as it is, although ideally subtle methods to decrease Chechen birth rates and Islamic aggression are found.

    I suspect the first part of my proposal would require some limited degree of military force and intimidation, perhaps one day when Russians/Cossacks behave in an Israel-settler like style with high birthrates to return to their stolen lands on their side of the Terek river.

    I think there are some similarities between the situation of Chechnya and Kosovo and Metohija (KIM), although the two obviously have noteworthy differences. Who knows, maybe it’s possible Serbia decides to adopt a more cucked approach to KIM similar to Russia’s with Chechnya/North Caucuses partly because of pressure/influence from Russia (and other countries in the world) in the future when geopolitical circumstances allow (it’s increasingly heading more and more in this direction).

    • Replies: @Ano4
  100. Ano4 says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    The difference between North Caucasus and Kosovo is that Kosovo is central to Serb culture, history and identity whereas the Caucasus is for the majority of Russians just a conquered land.

    The majority of Russians have no attachment towards Caucasus, just like the majority of the French had no attachment to Algérie française. The comparison between Russian Caucasus and France’s colonial Maghreb is actually quite adequate. Both were conquered at nearly the same period, had been strongly influenced by the Turkish presence (except Morocco), both were slaver havens used to capture and trade White slaves etc. The French left go of Maghreb, perhaps Russians will have to give up on Caucasus. I only hope that if and when that happens, Russians would cut immigration from the Caucasus into Russia proper, unlike the French did who kept the door open to the Maghrebian influx.

    And Russians are used to living with Muslims, everyone in Russia has met Tatars, Bashkirs or DICh people. Among Russian Muslims only the DICh people are problematic. And even among the DICh ethnic groups only a minority are problematic because of religious beliefs. The main problem with them is that they are violent savages, while other Russian Muslims are not.

    Unlike Balkanic people, Russians do not obsess with religious differences.

    • Replies: @Yevardian
  101. Yevardian says:
    @Ano4

    I also always thought would be better for all involved for Russia to simply leave places like Chechyna-Ingushetia and Dagestan to their own devices (its absurd these totally alien places chafe under Russia whilst places like Belarus and Ukraine became independent), but unfortunately I don’t think Russia has a choice to abandon them, as they’d almost certainly become radical Islamists friendly to Saudi at best and failed states at worst.

  102. Yevardian says:
    @Dmitry

    It reminds me of American Jews donating through charities for Israel into West Bank settlements. One difference though, is how underpopulated the region.

    Your comparison is absurd.

  103. Yevardian says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    Anyway, Armenians presuming they’re entitled to protection and support from Russia simply because of their heritage and geopolitics is extremely obnoxious. At least a bit of gratefulness and loyalty would be in order especially because Armenia literally can’t exist without Russia’s military bases on its territory …

    In fairness, that’s a bit hollow coming from a Serb. It’s a long time ago, but I recall the second King of Serbia turned his back on Russia after the catastrophic failure of the early Serbian peasant-army to beat the Turks with Russian help, so he then turned to Russia’s arch-rival Austria as his patron, before he was (literally) torn limb-from-limb and replaced with the other competing dynasty. Then you have Serbia stabbing Bulgaria in the back after the 1st Balkan War..
    Although admittedly unlike many Armenians, practically all Serbs seem to feel a great affection and attachment to Russia (Russians conversely seem a bit embarrassed by the association) whilst we have a slightly warped sense of self-importance, common to entrenched commercial diasporas in general. To be honest the entire country (it’s frankly too small, hated, resource-poor and poorly situated to be viable) would realistically be better off as an autonomous region of the Russian Federation, but I don’t think either Armenians or Russians could accept that..

    • Replies: @TheTotallyAnonymous
  104. @Yevardian

    In fairness, that’s a bit hollow coming from a Serb.

    How come?

    Serbs are in a considerably opposite/inverse geopolitical position to Armenians. Many, but not all Serbs (unfortunately there is a small and very loud minority that are explicitly both anti-Russia and anti-Serb, who literally consider themselves as anything but Serbs at all) would envy having anything near the open degree of Russian protection, patronage and support that Armenia has had (it would be bad for Russia to make serious commitments to Serbia though, even for Serbia arguably), until Pashinyan came to power.

    It’s a long time ago, but I recall the second King of Serbia turned his back on Russia after the catastrophic failure of the early Serbian peasant-army to beat the Turks with Russian help, so he then turned to Russia’s arch-rival Austria as his patron, before he was (literally) torn limb-from-limb and replaced with the other competing dynasty.

    Someone didn’t properly read their history of 19th century Serbia/Balkans clearly (to be fair, English language information is a bit scarce and there is a lot of manipulation/distortion of 20th century and other past history).

    You’re mixing up at least 3 different events, if not more.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serbian%E2%80%93Turkish_Wars_(1876%E2%80%931878)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mikhail_Chernyayev

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milan_I_of_Serbia

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treaty_of_San_Stefano

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treaty_of_Berlin_(1878)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/May_Coup_(Serbia)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_I_of_Serbia

    The simplest summary is that a Russian “adventurer” (military officer) Mikhail Chernyayev encouraged Serbia and Prince Milan Obrenovic to go to war against the Ottoman Empire in 1876 (Milan ultimately did this because of overwhelming domestic popular pressure that he tried and failed to resist) . Chernyayev even tried to crown Milan Obrenovic as King at this time (to declare fully Serbia’s independence), although Milan rejected this because he thought it was premature, wisely in hindsight.

    This turned out to be premature and hasty because the war against the Ottomans went badly for Serbia. The European powers offered and pressured for a one month truce between Serbia and the Ottomans, which was accepted, but then the Ottomans resumed their offensive after the truce and Russia pressured the Ottomans to sign a white peace with threats of war (which it would later realize because of how the Ottoman Empire treated Bulgarians in 1878). Serbia fought and won alongside the Russian Army in the 2nd 1878 war against the Ottoman Empire among other nations, although Serbia’s military and territorial gains were revised and reduced by the Western Powers.

    The Treaty of San Stefano disappointed many in Serbia because of limited territorial gains and Russia choosing to support Bulgaria much more than Serbia (this is actually very ungrateful because Serbia couldn’t have became an independent and internationally recognized country without Russia). Some to this day still try to peddle this as an anti-Russian myth for Serbs, although San Stefano wouldn’t have been that bad because there were still limited territorial gains for Serbia, just different to those at the Berlin Congress, which made minor pro-Serb adjustments regarding Serbia’s borders with Bulgaria, but to the detriment of Serb borders elsewhere.

    Still, Russia’s geopolitical priorities at the time were to achieve access through the Dardanelles or “Turkish Strait” to the Mediterranean, or reach the Mediterranean through Bulgaria/Serbia/Montenegro. In hindsight they clearly got outplayed and blocked in this by the “West”. Russia also arguably “sold” or “abandoned” Serbia to Austria-Hungary at this time because it indirectly approved Austria-Hungary’s occupation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and simply let the Habsburgs continue to pressure and coerce Serbia using the advantage of their much better geopolitical position to dominate the Balkans. Milan Obrenovic didn’t really have much choice in his geopolitical position and was apparently personally disillusioned with Russia after San Stefano and Berlin, so his reign is in hindsight mostly known for his somewhat repressive anti-Russian dictatorship and failed attack on Bulgaria in 1885 (significantly goaded by the Habsburgs)

    The 1903 coup happened to Milan’s son, Aleksander Obrenovic, years after Milan died and because his son appeared to be retarded and cucked (although this was somewhat a deliberate exaggeration). With hindsight, Serbia’s disastrous 20th century, current problems and future problems to come, all stem from bad decisions and events in the 1903-1918 time period that are mostly (1903 coup and forming the Kingdom of Yugoslavia), but not entirely (notably the nonsense about Serbia starting WW1), the fault of Serbs themselves.

    My attitude to Russia (and a reasonable one for small nations dependent on or leveraged by Russia to have imo) is somewhat described by a good quote from Serb diplomat Jovan Ristic to a crowd of Serbs that felt angry and disillusioned with Russia in 1878, to calm anti-Russian sentiment, he stated (and it worked):

    “It’s hard for us with the Russians, but it would be much worse without them.”

    I guess for Armenians the quote could go along the lines of:

    “It’s hard for us with the Russians, but we literally can’t exist without them.”

    Then you have Serbia stabbing Bulgaria in the back after the 1st Balkan War..

    Yet another misreading.

    When you formed your opinions about the Balkans, did you read something like Misha Glenny, or even worse, Tim Judah, Noel Malcolm, Marko Atilla Hoare and etc?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treaty_of_Sofia

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Balkan_War

    The part missed in-between is that it was Bulgaria which first dishonored the mutual agreement with Serbia by refusing to come to Serbia’s aid when Austria-Hungary and other Western powers sent an ultimatum to Serbia to vacate and create the fake country of Albania, so the Serbian Army had to leave and back down. This basically ruined the pre-war partition of Ottoman territories in the Balkans planned between Serbia and Bulgaria. After this, even though in hindsight it appears unnecessarily intransigent and costly, why should Serbia have continued to stick to its agreement on ceding most of Vardar Macedonia to Bulgaria when it first broke its part of the pre-war agreements?

    As for how the 2nd Balkan War started, it’s painfully obvious that Bulgaria started it by attacking Serbia and then Greece, with the rest being history.

    So it should be clear that it was Bulgaria which back-stabbed Serbia, not the other way around.

    Although admittedly unlike many Armenians, practically all Serbs seem to feel a great affection and attachment to Russia (Russians conversely seem a bit embarrassed by the association)

    True, although I wouldn’t overstate the practical (not LARPing) pro-Russian orientation of Serbs because for much of the 20th century there has been no Russian influence whatsoever (Western dominated instead) and it’s currently rather limited (despite a somewhat decent revival underway). There’s also a lot of pressure on Serbs to distance themselves from, and even go completely against Russia to the maximum (both past and current), but as is clear now with the Armenian example, that’s literally suicide and self-harm without any seriously credible or positive Western geopolitical alternative (which doesn’t exist simply because they hate Russia and anything even remotely pro-Russia so intensely and pathologically, among other unhealthy pathologies of the current “West”).

    whilst we have a slightly warped sense of self-importance, common to entrenched commercial diasporas in general.

    Don’t say.

    In all honesty, before all this happened, I liked and admired Armenians a lot and thought that Armenia was an example to look up to and that it was very cool Armenians managed to win the 1st Artsakh War with their own skill and competence to keep lands that are rightfully theirs, despite formal international legalities. Now it’s clear that Armenians are far more lame and pathetic than I thought, and a good lesson in what to avoid, or mistakes not to make …

    To be honest the entire country (it’s frankly too small, hated, resource-poor and poorly situated to be viable) would realistically be better off as an autonomous region of the Russian Federation, but I don’t think either Armenians or Russians could accept that..

    Well something closer to that in practice, but not in De Jure status would be ideal then.

    I don’t really understand Armenia’s internal politics, but it seems like Pashinyan horribly screwed Armenians over in the past few years by scorning and trying to distance from Russia with a pro-Western sovereignty LARP in a country that literally can’t exist without Russian military bases. As I’ve previously stated, Pashinyan refusing to integrate Armenia’s anti-air system with Russia’s has been decisively disastrous with hindsight.

    Apparently all the 1st Artsakh War veterans (political and military) are just “corrupt oligarchs” according to some, but those guys did their national duty very well and clearly wouldn’t have so horribly mismanaged Armenia’s relationship with Russia like Pashinyan has. Apparently Robert Kocharyan and Levon-Ter Petrosyan personally just begged Putin for this arrangement instead of an absolute disaster occurring.

    • Thanks: Yevardian, AltanBakshi
    • Replies: @Yevardian
    , @Yevardian
  105. Yevardian says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    When you formed your opinions about the Balkans, did you read something like Misha Glenny, or even worse, Tim Judah, Noel Malcolm, Marko Atilla Hoare and etc?

    Yes, many years ago I read two books by Misha Glenny (who I found quite fair-minded, though I knew almost nothing on the topic beforehand) on Serbia/TheBalkans, and another one by Tim Judah (who’s nowhere near the writer I found Glenny, but pre-Ottoman Serbian history is hard to find). I suppose Chomsky and Robert Fisk too, on the Yugoslav wars anyway. Haven’t heard of the other writers.
    Anyway, I remember the main historical events, but obviously, over the years the order of them has become garbled or compressed.

    What would you recommend for Serbian history in English, or Russian, if you know it?

    As for how the 2nd Balkan War started, it’s painfully obvious that Bulgaria started it by attacking Serbia and then Greece, with the rest being history.

    Well you probably know better, but I as I recall, the accounts I read stated that Serbia and Greece were very unhappy with the impressive scale of Bulgarian gains after the 1st Balkan War, despite the fact they bore most of the fighting, and the two countries argued for ‘parity’ which Bulgaria refused, and was dogpiled upon by Serbia, Greece, Romania and Turkey simultaneously.
    Anyway, that Serbian-Bulgarian feud seems to have been started by Serbia in act of rank opportunism, the so-called ‘Stroll to Sofia’, but again, my understanding is hazy.

  106. Yevardian says:
    @TheTotallyAnonymous

    I don’t really understand Armenia’s internal politics, but it seems like Pashinyan horribly screwed Armenians over in the past few years by scorning and trying to distance from Russia with a pro-Western sovereignty LARP in a country that literally can’t exist without Russian military bases.

    Pashinian came into power because the previously long-serving leader Serzh Sargsyan lied to the public about not seeking another term in office, and then did, barely bothering to hide blatant fraud. His government was not particularly unlike Putin’s, he was competent, and not extravagantly corrupt himself, but tolerated practically any kind of trash in his cabinet as long as they were loyal. Of course, this is par for the course in Central Asia, but Armenia has a long tradition of civil society and you can’t simply get away with such shenanigans forever like over there.

    Anyway, so many people in Armenia have relatives in the Western diaspora (far larger than the country’s population itself), with gullible young people especially comparing their living standards with them, they naturally drew stupid unrealistic and conclusions, which was seized upon people like Pashinian, who might be principled in their own manner but essentially serve as useful idiots.

    Actually Pashinian was a figure very similar to Navalny himself, lampooning people for corruption in internet media and consummately engaged in self-promotion at all times. Obviously, local issues like corruption, petty criminality and nepotism have to take a back-seat to realpolitik when national survival is at stake.

    • Agree: TheTotallyAnonymous
  107. @Yevardian

    Yes, many years ago I read two books by Misha Glenny (who I found quite fair-minded, though I knew almost nothing on the topic beforehand) on Serbia/TheBalkans, and another one by Tim Judah (who’s nowhere near the writer I found Glenny, but pre-Ottoman Serbian history is hard to find). I suppose Chomsky and Robert Fisk too, on the Yugoslav wars anyway. Haven’t heard of the other writers.

    I could tell and had a feeling lol.

    There is a very large amount of English language authors that hate Serbs simply because of who and what they are, with powerful propaganda influence that write with many extremely and incredibly biased anti-Serb narratives (they’re quite predictable, tiresome and annoying) that push personal biases, prejudices, and even present-day anti-Serb political agendas (e.g “Srebrenica Genocide” is almost “Khojaly Genocide” tier, but pushed by Western powers, anti-Serbs and Muslims instead of just Azerbaijan and its fans) by “interpreting history”, both in the ancient and more recent past.

    Anyway, I remember the main historical events, but obviously, over the years the order of them has become garbled or compressed.

    Understandable.

    What would you recommend for Serbian history in English, or Russian, if you know it?

    Most of the best things are in Serbian obviously (especially Cyrillic). As for Russian, I only know of a few Soviet Academic tracts (that are of varying quality and relevance) and brief comments by certain pre-Soviet Russians, but no concrete books or anything truly detailed, comprehensive, and good quality (there is a Russian language news/opinion portal Balkanist.ru that you can search and read whenever you feel like for Russian opinions and current news about the Balkans).

    There are a few decent English language works, but with the Balkans (like the Caucuses) one should be careful to pay attention to objective facts and what they imply by extension, because there is a large amount of dishonesty, coping, emotional bias and even deliberate present-day political agenda pushing in such writings by pretty much nearly everyone interested (both locals and outsiders) who writes about the Balkans, to varying degrees.

    If you’re a pathological Austria-Hungary/Habsburg Empire lover like AP (which is what I dislike much more about AP than him simply being Ukrainian) that absolutely hates Serbs, then this book will trigger the living hell out of you and you might want to skip this one.

    This book is good besides the early and ending parts about early Medieval Age Serbs plus Croats and the 1990’s war. It’s a bit cucked (the Serb author “acknowledges” Croats are a “real” and “legitimate” nation) and copey (he doesn’t go in-depth into inter-Serb disgraces, disunity, and morale collapse in the 1991-1995 war) with these parts, but otherwise it’s pretty good with everything else.

    https://archive.org/stream/historyofservias00rankrich#page/n3/mode/2up

    If you’re fanatically Islamic/pro-Muslim or a fan of the Ottoman Empire, then you’ll definitely want to skip this one.

    This is probably one of the few books written by a western leftist/liberal/socialist that doesn’t screech hysterically against Serbs because they merely exist. In fact, it’s actually a defense of Serbs and explanation of the US Judeo-Liberal Empire’s agenda in the Balkans and its implications for the wider world, so it might be a bit flawed in being a bit too pro-Serb and getting a few minor facts wrong due to the complexity of the issue.

    Von Ranke and Zametica’s works are the better two imo for their objectivity, comprehensiveness, and sheer length plus academic value. The other two are good, but somewhat more controversial obviously, due to focusing much more on the 1990’s, WW2 or early/ancient Balkan history (currently the most controversial parts of Balkans history imo). These 4 books are the ones I could come up with from the top of my head, although even they don’t capture the complete history, with the Balkans (Churchill’s “The Balkans produce more history than they can consume” quote is somewhat true) again somewhat similar to the Caucasus. You can read more (even if it’s simply Wikipedia with its obvious limited reliability), research yourself, or ask/state anything else (maybe in a future open thread, not to clutter this one?).

    Well you probably know better, but I as I recall, the accounts I read stated that Serbia and Greece were very unhappy with the impressive scale of Bulgarian gains after the 1st Balkan War, despite the fact they bore most of the fighting, and the two countries argued for ‘parity’ which Bulgaria refused, and was dogpiled upon by Serbia, Greece, Romania and Turkey simultaneously.

    Your recollections are pretty bad lol, no offense.

    Although it’s true that Bulgaria did most of the heavy lifting in military-technical terms during the 1st Balkan War and that it got dogpiled upon in the 2nd Balkan War after its initial attack on Serbia, and then Greece failed, it was Bulgaria that was unhappy with the impressive scale of Serb, and especially Greek, territorial gains in the 1st Balkan War, hence why it started the 2nd Balkan War.

    • Thanks: AltanBakshi
  108. @Yevardian

    Anyway, that Serbian-Bulgarian feud seems to have been started by Serbia in act of rank opportunism, the so-called ‘Stroll to Sofia’, but again, my understanding is hazy.

    This now sounds like you’ve read or have some sort of pro-Bulgarian opinions (understandable for Armenians because I’m aware of the vague Andranik Ozanian, Garegin Nzhdeh and other connections) lol.

    Serbs and Bulgarians are arguably ancient enemies and one of, if not the first, nation that Serbs warred with in their history since the early Medieval Ages (like 7th century AD when both nations existence is first recorded so maybe the same is true for them). Both sides have shifted between being friend’s vs enemies across more than a 1 and a half millennium (it’s arguably a bit like Armenians and Georgians). There has always pretty much been some sort of latent tension, with outbursts of open hostility, although some situational friendship and alliance at times against mutual threats (e.g Ottoman Empire).

    In the last 200 years in meta-historical terms one could argue it’s the fault of Serbs in the 19th century, but it’s very clearly the fault of Bulgarians in the 20th century.

    The first relevant relations in modern times between Serbs and Bulgarians are when the Principality of Serbia which had an autonomous status in the Ottoman Empire (from 1817 and then de facto confirmed in 1833) hosted some Bulgarian rebels and worked with them for a joint war against the Ottoman Empire. In 1867 Prince Mihailo Obrenovic tried to take advantage of the Ottomans being busy with a Greek revolt in Crete to achieve independence for Serbia (he signed a bunch of pan-Christian-Balkan treaties for a coalition against the Ottomans), but Western great powers and Russia intervened to “calm” the situation. Clashes in Serbia never went beyond Serb soldiers/police fighting with the Turkish military garrison (and Turkish soldiers attacking Serbs in return) in Belgrade. The most infamous incident from all of this is how at a water tap in Belgrade (Чукур Чесма) a Turkish soldier bayonetted or slammed a Serb boy under 10 years of age against bricks/metal (different accounts) to death simply because he was too impatient to let the Serb boy finish gathering water from the tap (this is a famous/infamous symbol of the price Serbia paid price for its independence from the Ottoman Emprie). It is how the escalation and tension began in 1867. This is ultimately how Serbia became De facto independent (but still De jure subject) from the Ottoman Empire because the Turks backed down due to trouble with a Greek revolt in Crete and European plus Russian pressure. The Ottoman Empire basically left with its military garrison and local exploitative elite Muslim population from the Principality of Serbia while symbolically handing the keys to the Belgrade Kalamegdan fortress to Serbs and symbolically saving a bit of face by having the Ottoman flag fly together with the Serbian one at the Kalamegdan fortress. A key condition for the Principality of Serbia achieving de facto independence was to expel Bulgarian rebels and revolutionaries (who actually fought with Serbs during the 1867 clashes) from the Principality of Serbia to satisfy the Ottomans. So Serbs basically cucked Bulgarians to a degree for the sake of de facto independence.

    In 1885 King Milan Obrenovic attacked Bulgaria when it achieved national unification with Southern Rumelia/whatever (close to modern day South Bulgaria) partly because of personal political reasons (a recently failed and violently put down peasant nationalist-radical revolt against him in 1883 causing him to want to distract the Serb population), Serb ambitions on “West Bulgaria”, but mostly because literally all the Great Powers opposed Bulgarian national unification and goaded him to this, most especially Austria-Hungary (whose policy was to fiercely oppose any strong and united nation in the Balkans, because it felt mortally threatened by that). This war was unpopular with the majority of Serb soldiers and the attack failed because King Milan had to lie to Serb soldiers that they were going to fight the Ottomans together with Bulgarians to even get the Serbian Army to cross the Bulgarian border (Pretty much the whole Bulgarian Army was on the Ottoman border because they expected a major effort at reconquest by the Ottomans). The attack was also poorly planned in military-technical terms by Radmoir Putnik as the Serbian Army had very thin strategic reserves (literally no more than a few thousand Serb soldiers between Belgrade and the Bulgarian border), according to the famous and legendary Serb military leader Zivojin Misic (he later wanted to sack and burn Sofia at the end of WW1 as retribution for Bulgarian crimes against Serbs during WW1, but the Entente blocked Serbs from doing this in 1918). Mass desertion and demoralisation ensued in the Serb ranks, especially after the defeat at the decisive Battle of Slivnitsa and the Bulgarian Army pushed for a military offensive into Serbia which succeeded in capturing a noteworthy Serb town of Pirot. Austria-Hungary “saved” Serbia because it threatened Bulgaria with war if it didn’t accept a white peace, but did this not because it liked Serbia, instead because it disliked the thought of a large and powerful Bulgaria on its southern border (whether it would be Bulgaria, Serbia or any other large and powerful Balkan country principally did not matter).

    Serbs felt a strong and genuine fellow Orthodox-Slav brotherhood sentiment with Bulgarians, which became famous at the time because Serb soldiers treated Bulgarian POW’s extremely humanely, which the Red Cross even commented something along the lines of “one should be as humane as Serbia was in 1885” from this war. Bulgarians also apparently somewhat felt similar sentiments because they built a monument in Vidin immediately after the war, commemorating Serb soldiers despite them trying to capture the town in the war. With hindsight, this war was arguably the most unnecessary and stupid war in all of Serbian history. What’s important is that it seems to have broken any sort of genuine sentiments of trust, friendship and brotherhood between Serbs and Bulgarians that would have serious implications for the 20th century. It also arguably contributed to Bulgaria going down an anti-Russian geopolitical course (although Bulgaria already seemed to be going down that road with the German Knyaz Aleksander I) and Russophobia taking serious root in present-day Bulgaria because Russia sided with Serbia, and Bulgaria was partly vulnerable because its higher level military-political leadership was literally Russian Army officers and officials who simply went back to Russia when Serbia attacked because Russia opposed Bulgarian national unification (after falsely exciting Bulgarian hopes with San Stefano in 1878 which it intended as a maximum Russian negotiating position to be revised by Western powers which most Bulgarians, like many easily excitable Balkan people, clearly misunderstood).

    Between 1885 and the 1st Balkan War there was a proxy struggle between Serbia, Bulgaria, and Greece over Macedonia (both Vardar and Agean Macedonia, so present-day North Macedonia and Greek Macedonia) among each other and the Ottoman Empire. Armed bands (“Committees”), revolutionary organizations and other influence/power projection (schools, intellectuals, academics etc) means were deployed in the “Struggle for Macedonia”. Bulgarians and Greeks were first to the game and their armed bands fought each other while Serbs joined in much later (Serbs and Greeks never fought each other). Serbia was particularly active after 1903 because the Obrenovic dynasty’s geopolitical cautiousness was replaced by Freemasons, hardcore nationalists, and Wild-West warrior types. This is how Chetniks came about in an institutionalized form (they existed in the 1878 war, but much more informally) and it’s little known, but the first song and defining first battle/fight of the Chetnik movement was in 1903 against Bulgarian IMRO over Drenovo hill in current-day North Macedonia. Bulgarians behaved cruelly towards Serbs in Macedonia as they founded an organization in Thessaloniki literally named “Society Against Serbs” (you can imagine what this “society’s” purpose was), infamously imprisoned (a famous Serb Chetnik leader, Jovan Babunski, was imprisoned for 20 years and tortured by Bulgarians but still remained a Serb despite being offered a way out to be a Bulgarian and fight for them) and tortured Serbs (there are infamous cases of Serb schoolchildren fleeing from Bulgarian school teachers trying to brainwash them to be Bulgarians) in Macedonia to Bulgarians, sacked and burned Serb villages and killed many Serbs.

    Despite all this, Serbia and Bulgaria got together to fight the Ottoman Empire in the 1st Balkan War (patching over differences and making some mutual agreement on important issues) with Serbia even helping Bulgaria to capture Adrianople/Edirne with its artillery and soldiers while Bulgaria did not send any of its soldiers to Vardar Macedonia (so they already dishonoured pre-war agreements with Serbs during the 1st Balkan War) where Serbs had to fight and win against the Ottomans themselves. The 2nd Balkan War started by Bulgaria making a surprise night attack against a Serb military camp in Vardar Macedonia where they tried to kill Serbs sleeping who still thought they were allies with Bulgarians. Serbs repelled the initial onslaught and fought heroically at the Battle of Bregalnica and then made limited offensive gains by which time Bulgaria got dogpiled on by everyone else.

    In WW1 the Entente offered to Serbia to cede most of Vardar Macedonia to Bulgaria in order to get it to join the Entente. This proved to be a bad decision with hindsight for Serbia because it ended up getting overwhelmed by German, Austro-Hungarian and Bulgarian military forces in 1915 and having to undergo a disastrous retreat to Greece across Kosovo and Albanian mountains in the winter (thousands of Serbs died from winter, disease, malnutrition and Albanian tribes raiding the retreating Serb column). At the time, refusing to cede most of Vardar Macedonia to Bulgaria in exchange for an alliance was understandable because a lot of blood, effort and sacrifice had been spent to get it and Vardar Macedonia is a vital strategic corridor for Serbia to Greece’s friendly coastline. What remains infamous with Bulgarians from WW1 are all the Bulgarian crimes against Serbs in this time period:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bulgarian_occupation_of_Serbia_(World_War_I)#War_crimes

    In WW2 Bulgaria teamed with the Axis powers, partly because of German pressure but also a desire for more land. Bulgarian crimes against Serbs in this time period are also quite infamous. A Swiss author and forensic Archibald Reiss wrote a lengthy tract about the crimes of Central Powers against Serbs in WW1 and Serbs put his heart in an urn in Kajmakcalan (site of a victorious and glorious Serb battle against Bulgaria and Central Powers in WW1) in Vardar Macedonia. In WW2 Bulgarians went so far as to write a report negating his record of Bulgarian crimes against Serbs in WW1 and destroyed and desecrated the memorial because of their butthurt.

    As for Bulgarian crimes against in WW2, it unfortunately seems like I can only find Serbian language links for Bulgarian crimes against Serbs during WW2 that I’ll skip on citing because this is long enough already …

    The great irony and tragicomedy is that post-WW2, the Croat-Slovene Communist Tito decided to create and engineer a new nation of “autochthonous” Slav Macedonians to use against Greece. This ironically means that both Serbs and Bulgarians lost out over Vardar Macedonia despite putting in serious effort, although this is clearly more disastrous for Serbs in hindsight.

    In the 1990’s there were some Bulgarian volunteers on the Serb side in Bosnia and Kosovo. Despite this, in 1999 Bulgaria hosted NATO air forces in its country from which they bombed Serbia although because NATO air forces so saturated Serbia, that they accidentally missed (or did they?) by a bit and bombed and killed some Bulgarian civilians in Sofia. There is also the tragic case of a Bulgarian peacekeeper in Kosovo in 1999 who literally got to beaten to death by an Albanian mob because he naively spoke a phrase in Serbian in 1999 in the middle of Pristina while the ethnic cleansing of Serbs by Albanians was well underway.

    Ultimately, Serbs mostly remember only all the Bulgarian crimes against Serbs with Bulgarians being especially hated even to this day in current south and east Serbia proper because there are some living memories of their crimes against Serbs here. Bulgarians only remember and are still bitter about losing Macedonia that they claim Serbs “stole” from them, even though Serbs have also ended up losing Vardar Macedonia thanks to the Communist Croat Tito.

    As you can see, Serb-Bulgarian relations which are of little relevance to current-day geopolitics (besides Russian influence and Bulgaria allowing Russian military and gas supply to Serbia despite being a NATO member) in the Balkans have a very large amount of history and complexity behind them (not to mention all the other Balkan issues). I obviously got a bit carried away here (thought about stopping 2/3rds of the way in, but decided I may as well just go all the way with an effort post on this) but since you seem genuinely interested, I hope it will be worthwhile.

    • Thanks: AltanBakshi, Yevardian
  109. @Ano4

    Russian Empire has fought Turks during centuries, has done all its possible, and only was stopped in its drive towards “putting the Cross back on the Hagia Sophia ” by the October revolution. USSR has also done its possible to keep the Turks out of Caucasus and keep the Islamism and ethnic irredentism there under control.

    Actually we should thank Britain that Russians could not return Hagia Sophia to Christianity already in 1850s or 70s, and biggest thanks belong to Benjamin Disraeli. The original Neocon. That man did his best and gave his everything so that Russia would crumble.

    Ano4 you are stuck eternally in the 90s. Dich people, especially Dagestanis are well integrated to modern Russia, that time when ethnic Russians did live in fear of Mountain bandits and Mafioso is gone. Yes many Russians laugh and joke about Chechens, especially about Kadyrov and dont like that he has his own little Islamic fiefdom inside Russia, but its not like there is much Chechen terrorism left. Also I hate when you always put Dagestan on same category as Chechnya, they give very little problems to Russia, and they actually prefer the Russian rule and know that they could not be independent, for there are too many tribes and small ethnic groups in Dagestan. Last winter I had quite good dentist in St Peterburg, who was Dargin or Lezgin, I am always confuced about the Dagestani nationalities, he was completely secular and good guy. Also few years ago I got drunk in a bar with some Avars, also from Dagestan, seemed to be normal fellows in my opinion.

    Ano4 petty nationalism is not suitable for Russians, many forget that as Chinese have integrated and assimilated numerous peoples all their history, so Russians have also done, all the Chuds, Veps, Karelians, Izhorians, Meryas, Muromas, Permians have been assimilated to the Great Russian nation. All Russians of the Northern Russia, Urals and Volga Region have their origin in the local Finnic and Turkic peoples, mixed with some Slavic blood. Those nations who are still ongoing the process of ethnogenesis – are still young and vital. As I have wrote before, Russia is just under a temporary setback.

    • Replies: @Ano4
  110. Ano4 says:
    @AltanBakshi

    As I have wrote before, Russia is just under a temporary setback.

    I sincerely hope that you are right and I am wrong. I like being wrong when my pessimism is proven excessive.

    Speaking of the 90ies, we had a saying then: pessimism is just a matter of well informed realism. Perhaps I just have never got over these memorable times (I still listen to Viktor Tsoï, but I no longer drink Azeri “Portwein” or smoke Belomor Kanal, so I am not that hopeless).

    [MORE]

    🙂

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