|Photo by Suren Manvelyan.
Once this nightmare is over, although it's not clear how it will play out, there will be plenty of time to evaluate what transpired and why. We'll need to understand that the war taking place on our borders is also one we should have fought harder to overcome within our own borders, but let's leave that for later.
But now, right now, if there was EVER a time for a concerted effort, it is NOW. If there was ever a time for a call to arms, pens, words, advocacy, messages, hope, faith, love and peace it is now. If there was ever a time to put aside differences and come together like the mountains of this small plot of paradise lost but found again, it is now.
Whether we're on the frontiers of Nagorno Karabakh, in the different corners of Armenia or in countries much stronger than our own, or other tucked away places, we can summon the forces of history and memory and narrative that have defined us, that have propelled us forward in spite of the winds of hate and oppression and the sword to write our story the way it should be written.
Although we have been ripped apart, we can use this as a powerful weapon. The boys on the borders will do their job if they know they have a strong, resilient and committed nation behind them. They can endure sleeplessness, hunger, cold, fear, anger and bullets if they know that every single one of us is doing something in the service of the safety and security of both our republics.
While they hold the gun, pick up your pen, write to your elected officials, to news organizations, get the message out to the world. Illustrate that an oil-rich country whose leader sucks the blood of his own people to add to his growing personal coffers, who stifles freedom of speech and thought, who imprisons human rights activists and journalists, who spews anti-Armenian hate, who refuses to negotiate from a place of integrity is not a trustworthy partner. Show the world how Turkey has vowed to support Azerbaijan till the end. Remind them of our history and tell them our story. Our story through the millennia. Our story of struggle and survival and for our right to have our place on this fragile planet.
So while our husbands and sons prepare to go to the front, you go to your governments, your friends in high places, use your contacts, use social media, use the power of your collective voice and stand next to us, shoulder to shoulder. The imperative has never been greater, the danger has never been as imminent.
You cannot extract blood from soil for it is like water and will fill each crevice and tunnel its way into the depths of the earth and remain there for eternity. The blood of our men and women run deep into this dark earth, it is what anchors us, helps us make sense, helps our roots grow deeper and stronger.
In this darkness that is engulfing us right now, we can find the brilliant light.