Armenia marked the 20th anniversary of the re-establishment of independence last year with an impressive military parade that showcased Armenia’s defense capabilities, as well as our nation’s Army—the guardians of our homeland.
That impressive parade instilled pride and confidence in every Armenian whether in Yerevan or Los Angeles and brought home the simple, yet intrinsic, message of the importance of having an independent homeland.
This year, we celebrate Armenia’s independence, always remembering that the Republic of Armenia is the natural continuation of the heroic stance of a generation that rose from the ashes of the Genocide and valiantly fought to liberate Armenia from centuries of imperial rule to create an independent republic in 1918.
The events of the past year have made it more evident that a strong nation is reliant on its citizens and in Armenia’s case the entire nation, many of whom are dispersed in different parts of the world.
The escalating and relentless attacks by Azerbaijan and the immediate response by our Armed Forces reminds us that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict requires us to be more steadfast in the pursuit of our national liberation struggle and not allow outside forces to shift the focus, on which our national security ultimately hinges.
The Syrian crisis has demonstrated that the Diaspora is not alone and can look to the homeland for comfort and solace in a time of absolute tragedy. It also has posed a unique challenge to Armenia of its role as the anchor—the homeland—to every Armenian around the world. Armenia has an opportunity to elevate its role as an independent state and lead—not follow—our nation to overcome this crisis and create a blueprint for the future.
We celebrate the 21st anniversary of the re-establishment of independence under the dark cloud of the Safarov incident, which has tested the patience of Armenians in Armenia and around the world, but also poses a challenge for Armenia in the international arena to assert itself as a state that can take ownership of its own destiny and set policies that advance the will of its people.
However, we, as a nation, are too resilient to allow an injustice like the Safarov incident to darken our celebration of a momentous time in modern Armenian history and must come together, in the name of our homeland, of our people and of the ultimate goal of a FREE, INDEDPENDENT and UNITED ARMENIA to mark this anniversary by pledging our continued commitment to HAI TAHD and its just resolution.
Happy Independence Day.