Ladies and Gentlemen,
Two weeks ago I got a tough question from my ten years old son. Watching the usual news intermezzo in the middle of his “Baby time” he asked me: “Why those kids shiver, Dad? Do we have heating in our classroom back to school?” The four past winters in the frosty classroom taught empathy the kid. But even forty years of my life in a controversial world failed to reasonably answer the kid. Should I explain him technical aspects of the gas transit? He simply won’t understand! Should I teach him what the real politics means? He is too young for the cynicism! Should I speak about misbehavior and sanctions, about sticks and carrots? I have still years and years to educate him and we have a life ahead to live together! Should I tell him that the power is not necessarily exercised for fairness but for the power? He thinks that the good is in truth, not in power, and we still have values to share. I could only promise to him that he will not get to a frosty classroom back to school after Christmas.
Tags: Armenia, europe, PACE
Today, when PACE is just one minute before making a critical decision for the European future for Armenia, I have the same question to ask to the members of this high forum. To those who shape, formalize and represent the values and honor of the Free Europe. “Why should the European future of Armenian kids suffer, my lords and my ladies? Do we have a European hope back home?” I am sure that the four hundred years of European Renaissance will guide you to give the right answer.
Armenia and Armenians were the hostages of the Asian despotism for over four thousand years, Nevertheless, from one generation to other our mothers and fathers carried and passed to their children and grandchildren the values of their parents and grandparents: the values of Freedom and Empathy. The ways of the nations are different. Some took the Freedom of others whilst protecting their own freedom. Armenian’s have rarely fought their Freedom and quite frequently lost the battles. But Armenians never lost the Hope. Otherwise, Armenia would have not been the Free Neighbor of the Free Europe in the 21st century.
The Value of Freedom led us to Independence over fourteen years ago. The Value of Freedom led the Free People of the Free Nation to expose their desires forty weeks ago. The Value of Empathy led hundreds of thousands of us to the street to express our concern about the situation at that time. Another dramatic battle for Freedom took the lives of ten Armenian people. It is the time for the Value of Empathy to guide Armenians these difficult days, as it did for many times for centuries and millennia, and we will find our way to the Freedom and to the Family of Nations in the Free Europe. It was the Hope of our parents. It is our Choice. It is the Future of our children.
My two sons watch European TV in fourteen European languages. Nothing will change this! They made their choice. Unless the European broadcasters decide to ban TV channels for Armenian kids. Our young people surf the Internet. Unless European server hosting providers decide to ban the access of Armenian bloggers to their servers. Our soldiers imperil their lives for peace and security in Iraq protecting the values of the Free World every day. Every day we fight our battle for Freedom in Armenia protecting and promoting the values of the Freedom and Empathy. The Values of the Free Europe.
It is rather easy to move having a roadmap or at least a lighthouse of the EU membership. It is rather difficult to move without a clear vision of ever getting there. We and our neighbours have never been exposed the future of becoming a fully fledged member of the European Union. It is much more difficult to get ahead when misguiding voices whisper around. The current developments summoned such voices calling for alternative vision. All in vain. Armenian people carried the Values of Freedom and Empathy for ages. They have preached these values well before they became European. Those are Armenian values as well. We share those Values and this is the truth. No Armenian government and no European institution can change this reality. Unless Europeans decide to change their values one day…
I have a strong belief that the Council of Europe is not merely an institution with membership rules and regulations. I am sure that the Council of Europe is not a mere instrument of promoting, protecting and enforcing the European Standards of Human Rights and Freedoms. I have the feeling that the Council of Europe is the doorway to the Values of Europe and should be open not to the governments only but also to the people who strive for those values. The sanctions against the governments in the past have always proved to work against the people, against the Free People first of all…
The battle for the values that we call now European is not over. Even in Europe… I believe that many Armenian people are not necessarily interested in every technical detail and interpretation. I also believe that most Armenians do not accept cynicism as a good faith. I am sure that we have decades ahead to learn from each other and we have centuries to live together. I trust in God in Truth and I have faith in our common Values. I only urge PACE, the High Court of Values: please abstain from voting against our Hope.
I believe that two months from now you will enjoy your answer… and your vote!