In COMPACT Magazine today, I write about the ethnic cleansing of Armenian Christians now underway in Karabakh. Largely, what’s happening is the result of great powers looking the other way. Here’s an excerpt:
In fact, the ethnic cleansing of Karabakh probably serves many interests. For the Russians, it’s a way of pressuring Armenia to overthrow its pro-Western government. For the United States and Europe, it ends an embarrassing moral quandary and allows them to continue to curry favor with Azerbaijan and Turkey. Just as Moscow tries to pull Ankara to its side, Washington wants very much to keep Ankara in the NATO tent.
And for Turkey and Azerbaijan, it’s another victory in a plan to eliminate the Armenian Christian presence in the South Caucasus and create a pan-Turkic empire stretching from Istanbul to Central Asia, a dream that goes back to the time of the First Armenian Genocide a century ago, during which the Ottoman Empire killed up to 1.5 million Armenians in mass deportations. In fact, Baku already claims Armenia proper as “Western Azerbaijan”—a country that has never existed—and both it and Turkey insist on a sovereign corridor across Armenia to link Azerbaijan and Nakhichevan. Erdogan promises to “fulfill the mission of our grandfathers in the Caucasus.” Will the United States stop him? Will Russia?