Armenians in Karabakh

* The headline on your article "David and Goliath in Caucasus" (April 21) epitomizes the faulty premise of the article, namely that 120,000 feisty Armenians in the tiny enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh have successfully taken on the rich country of 7 million Azerbaijanis.

Karabakh Armenians are no more capable of carrying out this war of aggression by themselves than are the Bosnian Serbs capable of carrying out their war of aggression in Bosnia. In both cases, it is the motherland that provides all the war material and wherewithal to prosecute their wars of aggression. The Karabakh Armenians love to claim that all their material was captured from Azerbaijan forces.

Karabakh Armenians do not have the capacity to produce helicopters, tanks, armored personnel carriers, rocket launchers, etc. Probably 90% of it comes from Armenia itself, and some of that comes from Russian military units stationed in Armenia.

But the worse fiction perpetuated by your article and the Armenian American lobby is that Armenian soldiers are not involved in the fighting. I refer you to the April 16 article in the New York Times:

"The Armenian Government has long considered that the only Armenian citizens fighting in Karabakh have been volunteers like Mr. Gevorkian and that no Government troops have fought there. But the Martyrs Cemetery tells a different story."

The article then reports on the burial of an Armenian soldier and quotes his commanding officer as saying "six more of his soldiers were killed in the battle." He then reports "All of them, Mr. Yeghoian (the commanding officer) said, were members of the Armenian Government's Internal Forces, a special military branch of the Ministry of Internal Affairs."

The truth of the matter is that this is not a fight between Karabakh Armenians and Azerbaijan. It is a fight between the Republic of Armenia and the Republic of Azerbaijan. Otherwise, it would have been impossible for Armenian forces to conduct a war of aggression that has resulted in the occupation of 25% of Azerbaijan, created 1 million Azerbaijani refugees and caused the deaths of more than 18,000 Azeris and the looting and burning of dozens of Azeri villages and towns.

HAFIZ MIR JALAL PASHAYEV

Azerbaijan Ambassador

Washington

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