Our Analytics 25 may — 13:01

Azerbaijan with Moscow, and Yerevan overseas (Prompt comment)

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BY EYNULLA FATULLAYEV

A few hours ago, Russian special services, using pranking to "punish" Russia's enemies, with the lips of Vovan and Lexus mocked the new head of the government of Armenia, Nikol Pashinyan, and the head of the British Foreign Office, Boris Johnson. If the Briton on a bicycle has always been causing undisguised irritation in the Kremlin and the Lubyanka, intensified after a scandalous story with "Novichok," a pro-Western dissident with a backpack that conquered the Theater Square managed to confuse all the cards of Russian strategists in the country, persistently called Russia's outpost in the Caucasus.

In a matter of weeks, this very, as it turned out, cardboard outpost of Russia collapsed. It is enough to hurry up and down the background of the new Armenian ministers to understand the scale of the Lubyanka and the Kremlin failure in Yerevan. The new Armenian government consists of 30-year-old inveterate young pro-Western liberals. All ministers from Pashinyan's cabinet received education in the West, for a long time cooperated with Western political institutions.

The new government of Armenia

Of course, part of the Russian establishment is also to blame for this indirectly. What did Russia offer as an alternative to the Armenian society? Weapons and money. The weapons went to the war against Azerbaijan in Karabakh, where to this day young eighteen-year-old soldiers are dying. And money was plundered by the oligarchic factions of Sargsyan. Yes, and Russia also offered decorative military-political alliances to Armenia and totally unsupported models of Eurasian economic and customs integration. But there is the main factor that cemented the bonds of the Russian-Armenian union: a guarantee of the inviolability of the Caucasus Armenia in the face of Azerbaijan's military revenge and the historical retribution of Turkey. Only Russia provided this guarantee to Armenia. It turns out that now Pashinyan will seek this guarantee overseas.

It seemed to the so-called great-power circles in Russia that by this dilapidated policy of constant actualization of the notorious "Armenian issue" Moscow will manage to maintain a kind of parity control in the South Caucasus.

What happened in the end? The Kremlin has almost lost control over everything in Transcaucasia, as they like to call our region.

After the dismemberment of Georgia, Russia's influence was literally squeezed out of the political system of this country, which took an unambiguous and determined course towards European integration. The society rejects any politician calling for normalization of relations with a mighty northern neighbor. For Georgians, the lost territories are a deliberate donation of an appendix, and this will not stop them in their nationwide impulse to go to the West. Remained Armenia and Azerbaijan, where Russian military and political presence dominated in recent years.

In Armenia, as we have repeatedly commented, the Russian authorities have suffered a complete fiasco. It seems that some forces in Moscow deliberately misinformed the Kremlin and played up revolutionary moods. The memorandums and dispatches of the Russian Ambassador in Yerevan, Ivan Volynkin, full of optimism about the situation in Armenia, with the comments of the Lavrov department were laid on the table of the Russian president. Smolenskaya Square, relying on its employees in Yerevan, assured the president of the political trustworthiness of the new government. They say that there will be no problems with Pashinyan. And here you have problems. Pay attention to the Armenian ministers: zealous supporters of the rapid westernization of Armenia and European integration. What to say, if Pashinyan removes the pro-Russian creation from a strategic post in the person of the Chief of the General Staff, General Movses Hakobyan, and brings in the pro-American David Tonoyan, whom some Armenian media accused of having links with the CIA? Undoubtedly, from now on, an active process of extrusion of Russian influence and presence will begin.

If an ally is an enemy

Although since September 2017, Russian special services have been beating the alarm, warning of the secret separate negotiations of Sargsyan's son-in-law, Ambassador to the Vatican Mikael Minasyan with representatives of the West. It is likely that Sargsyan, who sharply changed his foreign policy orientation, suddenly talking about consistency with natural laws of the choice of the Armenian people in favor of the West, somehow played up the script of the "revolutionary development of the situation" under the guarantee of inviolability of his offshore accounts and capital in the West. For two years now, contrary to the discontent of the patriotic forces of Russia, a campaign was launched in Armenia to glorify Nzhdeh, popularizing the idea of European integration. And Armenia's active cooperation with NATO has become a total nonsense. Sargsyan knew that the Kremlin did not like this. But he persistently continued to strengthen and expand military-political cooperation with the West against the interests of Russia.

In the West, Sargsyan was welcomed as one of their own

After all, Armenia was officially part of the military alliance of the pro-Russian countries, the CSTO (Collective Security Treaty Organization). Didn't the Russian military intelligence establishment ask the obvious question: how can Russia's military ally in the context of a new global confrontation begin to integrate with the de facto hostile military bloc?

Or take a story with the most important vote for Russia in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe on sanctions. In 2015, in PACE, Armenia voted to impose sanctions against its ally. But this did not have a sobering effect on Russia. Apparently, up to the end they did not believe in the very possibility of betrayal. After all, the construction of the power of the Karabakh warlords led by Kocharyan and Sargsyan is one of the successful projects of Russian special services in the CIS. Who would have thought that Sargsyan, bound by all his military achievements to the Russian military corps, would break away and begin his own game.

In Armenia, since the time of Sargsyan, there has been a systemic transformation of the political regime. "Electromaidan", "Sasna Tsrer", the transition to a parliamentary form of government, a broad representation of the pro-Western opposition in the parliament, close cooperation with Soros and other influential American institutions... All these qualitative changes in the political system created the prerequisites for a complete change of formation. Again, very suspiciously, Sargsyan and his political team made bold decisions to liberalize the system, which several years ago had an open repressive-terrorist nature. Was this a conscious and consolidated decision of the entire Armenian elite, worried by the weakening of Russia's geopolitical role in the world and in the region is a very big question.

But let's remember one of the most important episodes of the April war in 2016. Where did Sargsyan rush after the lightning-fast and successful offensive of the Azerbaijani Army? To the house of Levon Ter-Petrosyan! And from that day they agreed on a continuous dialogue. Sargsyan often appealed to the first president for advice. Who is Pashinyan? He openly calls Levon Ter-Petrosyan his spiritual and political mentor. Who immediately after the beginning of the revolution in Yerevan rushed to the house of Ter-Petrosyan? Head of the separatist regime in Karabakh Bako Sahakyan. They held many hours of talks, after which Pashinyan directly stated that the revolutionary changes will not affect the occupation regime in Karabakh. And now we remind the readers that the first president, deposed in 1997, Ter-Petrosyan actually openly accused Russia of organizing a coup d'état in Armenia. Ter-Petrosyan also managed to change his obligations to Russia in time, having entered into a political alliance with the West. And Kocharyan, Sargsyan and then-shot in the Armenian parliament, the then Defence Minister Vazgen Sargsyan acted entirely on instructions from Moscow... And now, Serzh Sargsyan - once the defence minister in the government of Levon Ter-Petrosyan - is entering a new global game. Sargsyan, like Ter-Petrosyan in 1997, has something to lose. At stake are the looted billions on accounts in Western banks.

The whole Armenian elite was formed in the forge of Ter-Petrosyan

It turns out that, paradoxically, Azerbaijan alone remains Russia's only ally in the South Caucasus. Only the political leadership of Azerbaijan openly supports Russia and has chosen a strategic course to create allied relations.

Russia has no one left, except Azerbaijan

The most interesting thing in the Transcaucasia begins right now. Mysterious are the ways of the Lord: who would have thought a few years ago that the newly-appointed ally of Russia in the region, Azerbaijan, will be resisted by the pro-American regime of the liberal Pashinyan under the protectorate of the spiritual leader of the nation Ter-Petrosyan. By and large, a new countdown of history begins... The main events are yet to come!

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