I put my name to join The FUTURE ARMENIAN initiative the minute I received the appeal to be part of this "new family".
I call this a family because I believe in the idea of coordinated coexistence like in a family, cooperation by all like in a family and most important of all, the plan and ideal that members of a family work for.
I was watching misters Afeyan's and Vardanyan's interview with Mr. Ghazarian on the Armenian TV and was very much impressed by the vision that the two gentlemen expressed as well as by the plan they had to go forward. Or rather, as Mr. Afeyan brilliantly explained, to come back from the future.
Now, as a diasporan, I see three main obstacles why the Armenian diaspora has not been organized to its optimal capacity over a century:
1. The Armenian "traditional parties."
2. Lack of confidence in diasporans for a collective, unified Armenian efforts.
3. Absence of an organization, non political in nature, not affiliated to "the traditional Armenian parties" and the multi headed Armenian church.
As my first point implies, I see the Armenian parties, specially the ARF as the main obstacle for the creation of a pan Armenian organization that can unite and exploit all our resources, scientific, financial, technical, social, diplomatic, etc. in the Armenian Diaspora.
My plea will be to create such an organization (as suggested and planned by the visionaries of The FUTURE ARMENIAN) and to reach out to each and every Armenian all over the world where everyone will be aware of what his part in planning or action will be.
The Armenian Diaspora has immense potentials and capabilities if and when organized.
Exercising possibilities. Aim is moving towards an environment where being healthy and exercising is normal while drinking/smoking/drugs are frowned upon. It is contrary to that now.
1. Build small outdoor sports grounds in every community. A minimum set like horizontal bars, parallel bars, and stepping platforms will work.
2. Those can be built for cheap from old materials. If people make the playgrounds by themselves, the value of the program will be higher
3. It can be started by videos in YouTube/Social networks showing how to build a playground, and popularizing calisthenics.
Vardan V., Armenia
Սյունիքում արևային էներգետիկան շատ թույլ է, չնայած ունի մեծ պոտենցիալ աշխարհագրական դիրքից ելնելով:
Հնարավո՞ր է արդյոք արևային էներգիայի համակարգերը տեղադրել լիզինգային մեթոդով շահառուի հետ կնքելով համապատասխան պայմանագիր։ Այս մեթոդով շահառուները ստիպված չեն լինի մեծ գումար ներդնելու արևային համակարգեր տեղադրելու համար, իսկ ավելացած էներգիան կարելի է վաճառել ՀԷՑ-ին։ Ներքին շուկայում կնվազի ՀԷԿ, ՋԷԿ և այլ էներգիա արտադրող կառույցներից պահանջարկը և զուգահեռաբար կավելանա արտահանման ծավալը, որը կարող ենք նաև փոխանակել Իրանի Իսլամիստական Հանրապետության հետ բնական գազով։
Արամ Գ․, Հայաստան
First of all, I salute this great work of analysis and reflection that you have carried out.
Here are my brief remarks:
Tourism. Indeed, the near absence of direct flights and at "comfortable" times is a real brake. Moreover, there is a lack of translated Armenian literature and tourist guides about Armenia in European bookstores. There is an obvious lack of general knowledge about Armenia (culture/art, architecture, music, cuisine...) and its history. It is necessary to publish books for potential tourists who are looking for original and authentic destinations.
Tourism that includes the discovery of Armenia's rich biogeography should be developed (in addition to ecotourism and cultural and religious tourism).
Agriculture: some serious questions to be asked. I will be very cautious with the proposal of intensification in the agricultural field (fertilizers, chemistry/phytosanitary and especially, the seed!). This orientation presents strong environmental and human health risks, as the European experience has shown. Armenia is not an agricultural country that can "feed the world", but it has undeniable assets because Armenia represents a "Hot-spot" of biodiversity and endemism. Thus, more than productivity, it is the promotion (and conservation!) of endemic and local species that should be put forward. Moreover, it would be necessary to think about "seed banks of crops and "wild" plant species" to be developed or to enrich the existing world collections. I see Armenia as a country where organic agricultural production would be largely dominant: these are modern "trends" that can bring a real added value to our agricultural or natural products without such a significant harm to the environment and health of intensive and technological agriculture. The world is in full restructuring and abandonment of intensive agricultural production: we must join this movement and preserve our small country.
" The use of advanced seeds and agricultural technology” - concretely, what are we referring to (not the "Monsanto" type approach, I hope)?
Focus on production of essential products (grains, fodder, pork) to achieve self-sufficiency and food security. Expansion of exports to target countries (Russia, Ukraine, UAE, Saudi Arabia), including fruits, tobacco and wine products.
Why focus on pig farming? One of the most problematic breeding from an ecological point of view! - Only "traditional" extensive breeding, in semi-freedom (like in Corsica or Spain: food by the big oak trees, etc.) could be suitable, in my opinion. Ex. sheep and goats in mountain pastures, etc.
We could promote/export cheeses, dairy products (matsoun type, etc.) in Russia and elsewhere; our canning factories (vegetables, fruits) are famous...
Eventually, "local" spirits.
Reclamation of fallow lands to expand land use by encouraging consolidation to increase production
Attention should be paid to soil depletion (a big problem in the world) and in Europe at present, while Armenia does not have large cultivable areas (except for the Ararat valley).
It is necessary to think about the establishment of the units of treatment - valorization of manure / dung / organic waste in general. Currently, there are organic fertilizers production units (humic and fulvic acids, etc.) which are not very energy consuming and should be installed near the farms/sources of raw materials.
Use of high technologies in agriculture: yes (e.g. use of satellite data for crop management), but taking into account the climatic, geological and edaphic specificities of Armenia - a whole applied science to develop!
In a general way, I noticed serious problems of waste disposal and garbage cans in Armenia (no sorting nor recycling/valorization of waste)...
The energy question is not addressed in the summary, although it is a key question for all the economic and social branches and a sine qua non condition for the independence of the country. What about "renewable" resources (solar, geothermal, hydro...)?
About the management of water resources - France seems to me to be a good example with its watershed approach, applying the "polluter-pays" principle, the mutualization of fees to safeguard the environment... Water is declared a non-alienable national asset.
Education / Teaching: languages - in addition to English, Russian could make a comeback so that Russian specialists can contribute their knowledge. Today, only the generation of the 60-70s still speaks Russian + the diaspora in Russia.
I am not sure that the public education in the USA (except for the big schools and universities) is an example to be taken! Serious problems are well known in the schools (kindergarten, primary, secondary, high school) in the USA. Good examples are Finland and Korea.
Health: Armenia can develop a network of health care centers (in particularly suitable places: mountains, thermal waters, as in Switzerland) or personal services for foreign retirees (especially of Armenian origin).
Industry/ technology: Transition from low-cost outsourcing to specialized value-added services to increase productivity and protect the economy from the growth of multinational corporations
Yes and yes again! Armenia was once known by the production of high value-added goods. It would be necessary to find the fields where specialization and high qualification of workers can be an asset and compete with China and India (electronics, IT...). Moreover, this field will allow the development of partnerships with foreign countries. Quality and originality (at the cutting edge of technology) are the key words for Armenia (like Japan).
I hope that my questions and my personal feeling can help to better formulate the directions to be developed in Armenia.
Maia A., France
We need to clarify whether the Armenian issue is a political or moral issue.
The problem in the Diaspora is that it is not a systematic, functioning structure. It is not a model. People are united in religious or political groups, but there should be a model that unites everyone regardless of those circumstances.
It may be right for other nations not to think so much about national problems and live their own lives, but this does not work for us, because we are still under the threat of genocide.
The 15 goals you have established should have instead been only 3:
1. Take care of what you have left.
2. Always set realistic, achievable goals.
3. Stop pursuing fairy tales.
If we ever, by some miracle, come to the point as a nation where we finally are driven by the motivation to develop and take care of what we have rather than cry and dream about a vast Wilsonian Armenia from sea to sea, that is when we will be deserving of having our own independent state.
The most patriotic thing to do and to comprehend for us, Armenians, is that we should solely focus on building upon the internationally recognized tiny piece of land we have left and stop talking/daydreaming all the time about Shushi, Kars, Van, Mush, etc., and focus on Ijevan, Goris, Meghri, Gyumri, etc.
The only thing that could make you, as a political movement, different from the rest of the so-called political parties in Armenia, is if you would emphasize the need to be realists and to finally learn from our own damn history.
Կարելի է հեռավար կերպով հայոց լեզվի դասընթացներ կազմակերպել։ Կենտրոնը լինի Երևանը, որտեղից դասեր կանցկացվեն տարբեր երկրներ համար։ Տարիներ անց արդյունքները տեսանելի կլինեն, լեզվին զուգահեռ մշակույթը ևս կփոխանցվի։
We must create a mechanism by which the peoples who experienced Genocide can receive compensation for the losses they suffered.
Being Armenian is not only a wish, but also a duty.
I suggest that we as community come up with strategy initiatives, and give opportunity for the signatories to join the initiatives they can add value the most. During one of the calls with Ruben Vardanyan, he was mentioning the importance of having focus areas, which have the most potential to grow and develop in Armenia. I completely agree with his thinking and believe that The FUTURE ARMENIAN can start with a few focus industries, such as Tech, Education, Agritech, etc. Later, each industry will have separate initiatives which people can actively contribute to. This will not only help set actionable goals, but also will improve the sense of community. The signatories will get to know each other, work together, and hopefully even more people around the world will become signatories, as they will be able to come and contribute with something they are passionate about.