There is a looming threat of war
A new war between Azerbaijan and Armenia is imminent. A conflict in the northeast of Armenia—an attack on Karabakh while Armenia is busy with this border—will have bloody consequences for both sides.
A new war between Azerbaijan and Armenia is just around the corner. Azerbaijan is massing troops on the borders with Armenia and Karabakh, and it is making propaganda in the international arena.
The Aliyev regime plans to start a war with Armenia before the year ends, using the same tactics as before and with Russia's help.
Remember that September-October has the highest clashes on the borders between the two countries.
This week, the Aliyev regime attempted to enter Stepanakert with soldiers and NGOs through the Akna (Aghdam) road with the Russian Red Cross. They have failed so far, but this does not mean it will not happen.
Aliyev has been planning these days for a long time. From the beginning, he knew that with lobbying and money, he could ignore international protocols and agreements.
Which international treaty on Armenians has Aliyev ever adhered to, let alone the one imposed by Russia?
Azerbaijan's gas deals with Europe, hosting the World Rabbinical Congress, and regular phone calls with Vladimir Putin make it a more influential player in the South Caucasus.
I hope we are wrong, but war is inevitable if Aliyev follows his previous tactical sequence. On the one hand, a conflict in the northeast of Armenia, while Armenia is preoccupied with this border and an attack on Karabakh, will have a bloody outcome for both sides.
Iran's statement that it will intervene "if there is an attack on international borders" balances this equation. Since Karabakh is not an internationally recognized border, Iran could remain silent in the event of an attack on northern Armenia.
While all this is happening, Pashinyan is turning to the West, saying that Russia cannot meet Armenia's demands in the defense industry. The joint US-Armenia exercise indicates this. It would be wrong to conclude that the US is behind Armenia because a small group from a US state is conducting military training that is not very active.
After all, in which country has the US ever helped and achieved anything? Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Ukraine... Let's think again about what it has done for the Iraqis, Afghans, Syrians, and Ukrainians.
In this equation, Armenia seems to play to lose. I hope I am wrong.
Western countries have recently increased their diplomatic presence in Armenia and even sent international observers. However, at every opportunity, they declare: "In the event of a conflict, this time to ensure a localized and rapid flow of information and a timely response..."
TURKEY INSTEAD OF RUSSIA
Armenian Prime Minister Pashinyan contacted Erdogan during the week. This meeting led to different interpretations of Armenian public opinion. Those who have argued for some time that "if Russia does not stand behind Armenia, the problem with Azerbaijan should be solved through Turkey" think that Pashinyan is looking for a solution in Erdogan. Several journalists asked me questions in this direction in their interviews.
I wish these predictions could be accurate, but I do not think the Erdogan regime and the current Turkey can contribute to any peace in the South Caucasus.
Turkey has always clarified that it will stand by Azerbaijan. The brother-brother roles that were so much talked about in the meetings between Aliyev and Erdogan have changed a bit.
This Turkishness and who is more Turkish and which language is more Turkish may have even become controversial.
This is normal. This is part of the definition of nationalism being reshaped, and coalitions are being formed in Turkey.
According to 2021 data, Azerbaijan's investment in Turkey is 19.8 billion dollars. Turkey's is 14 billion. Most of Azerbaijan's investments are in the eastern region. You know, the one neglected by the Erdogan government.
Sinan Ogan, who many see as evidence of the Aliyev regime's interference in the Turkish presidential elections, won the most votes in Igdir.
Aliyev himself said that the Karabakh war was something he had been planning since his youth.
UNDER OCCUPATION'S GAME
Aliyev has been preparing for this war for a long time. In 2012, the play "Under Occupation," written by young people from Baku University, was released as a war play set in Shushi. It was an excellent tool for brainwashing young people 10–14 years old. Those who acted in the play are now soldiers.
Aliyev fully supported the game. The game quickly spread among the youth. Based on capturing fortresses with the Armenian flag and killing Armenian soldiers, the game ends with the message, "Shusha has been cleared of Armenian separatists."
AND NOW WHAT?
Armenia is facing a difficult period. In the event of a war, it may have to adapt to the new balances that will be established. Russia may force Armenia to join a union state like Belarus. Armenia cannot escape its geographical reality. It will have to deal with Turkey on one side and Azerbaijan on the other, and it will try to build its prosperity away from the constant encroachment of these two states.
Aliyev has not stopped so far; I don't think he will stop now. The transfer of Karabakh to Azerbaijan through a military offensive and the mutual loss of lives are just numbers for the leaders of the South Caucasus.
Aris Nalci started working with Hrant Dink and his friends at Agos in 1998. He worked as a news director, editor, and editor-in-chief. He presented programs at İMC television and was a news director. In the same period, he edited and presented Gamurç - The Bridge, the first program about minorities in Turkey. He continues the program on ARTI TV. He has worked on minority rights for many non-governmental organizations and prepared exhibitions and reports. He is one of the editors of 1965 and the translator of Paramazlar, published by Evrensel and Kor Publications.