Recently, at the Seventh Annual Scientific Conference of the Russian-Armenian (Slavonic) University in Yerevan, Senior Researcher at the Institute of Oriental Studies of the National Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Armenia, Lecturer at the Department of World History and Foreign Regional Studies at the Russian-Armenian (Slavonic) University, Candidate of Historical Sciences Mayilyan B.V. entered with a provocative "study" entitled "A Brief Sketch of the Exile of Armenians from Javakhk in 1918" (https://telegra.ph/Kratkij-ocherk-izgnaniya-armyan-iz-Dzhavahka-v-1918-godu-01-17?fbclid =IwAR2YUebNw0VH6swi-77OuAkhjiv6On8BANPQ3EzeTXwe-BffOnpdnG19AnM). Georgia and Georgians are naturally accused of this alleged "expulsion" of Armenians from Samtskhe-Javakheti.
In principle, this is not the first anti-Georgian provocative opus of a dubious "scientist-historian". The previous one was aimed at “substantiating” separatism in Abkhazia: “B.V. Mayilyan. On the issue of the territorial conflict on the Black Sea coast of the Caucasus (July 1918 - May 1920) // Historical space: Problems of the history of the CIS countries / edited by A. Chubaryan. M .: Nauka, 2013.S. 174-207. " In this "study" the Georgians were inserted by the "aggressors", they were denied the right to live on the primordial Georgian land of Abkhazia.
Now B.V. Mayilyan seems to be engaged in the "substantiation" of Armenian "Jvakhk" separatism and his provocative studies are willingly published by the separatist telegram channel "Javakhk".
The research begins with an obvious lie:
“With the collapse of the Russian Empire, interethnic relations in Transcaucasia were also viewed through the prism of dividing the territory of the region between its most numerous ethnic groups, which exacerbated the former Armenian-Georgian socio-economic antagonism, giving it the form of a political conflict. Under these conditions, a serious crisis arose in the relations between the political elites of both peoples. Georgian politicians began to consider almost all issues from the point of view of a territorial dispute. They assumed the solution of the Javakhk problem exclusively in favor of Georgia. The Armenian refugees from Javakhk, who left their homes due to the Turkish invasion, were forbidden by the Georgian authorities to leave the border high-mountain zone, where they lost about half of their original population due to hunger, cold, and epidemic diseases during the period from June to November 1918 ... Refugees were also banned from purchasing food in Georgia. Official Tiflis, showing imaginary care for them, came up with a proposal to resettle some of the Javakhk Armenians to the North Caucasus. The leaders of the "democratic republic" decided to take advantage of the opportunity and, using all methods available to them, tried to prevent the repatriation of as many Armenians as possible to Javakhk. Thus, they intended to create a serious obstacle to the accession of this region to Armenia .... "
Here Mayilyan B.V. does not mention a word that Akhalkalaki and Akhaltsikhe districts were ceded to the Ottoman Empire by Soviet Russia under the Brest Peace Treaty (and not as a result of the "Turkish invasion"). And the entire population of these territories, regardless of ethnicity, "by default" was considered Turkish subjects.
Most of the Armenians in Samtskhe-Javakheti did not become any refugees but remained in their villages and towns. Dashnak terrorists together with their families (not only from Samtskhe-Javakheti but also from the East of Turkey), whose hands were stained with the blood of the peaceful Muslim population (including Georgians - Laz and Adjarians), became “refugees”. It was this category of “refugees” that accumulated on the then border of Georgia. And the Georgian authorities perfectly understood what kind of "contingent" they were. Therefore, they did not burn with the desire to resettle terrorists and militants in their country.
After the end of the First World War, the authorities of the First Republic of Armenia, relying on the "Javakhks" Armenians, to declare their claims to these Georgian lands:
“One of the urgent priorities of the foreign policy of the Armenian government is the prompt return of refugees from Javakhk to their places of permanent residence, even before the final decision on the state ownership of this region. Official Tiflis, on the contrary, did not make any special efforts to ensure the safe return of refugees. Moreover, the Georgian authorities forbade refugees to cross a certain line, which they defined, which separated the high-mountainous parts of the Bakurian and Tsalka regions from the rest of Georgia. Tens of thousands of people gathered in the open air on these unsuitable mountain slopes, who, due to unbearable living conditions, were susceptible to infectious diseases. Famine and epidemics claimed, according to the most conservative estimates, about half of the total number of refugees. Subsequently, only no more than 40 thousand Javakhk Armenians were able to return to their homes."
Here the author forgot to mention that if the "Javakhk" Armenians did not return to their homes (and how many of them were "Javakhk", and how many of the aforementioned Dashnak fighters from Eastern Turkey still need to be clarified), then they do not necessarily die of hunger and cold. Most of them, as soon as the opportunity arose (especially after the establishment of Soviet power in Georgia) settled in other regions, in Georgian cities - primarily Tbilisi, Batumi, and also Abkhazia. And there is no evidence of the “extinction of refugees” except for the unfounded statements of B.V. Mayilyan. However, he stubbornly insists on the idea that the Georgian authorities allegedly sought to carry out ethnic cleansing:
“The entire second half of 1918. the leaders of Georgia did not give up the idea of seeing Javakhk within the borders of their own state. But at the same time, they did not want to recognize the Armenian refugees from this region as their citizens. The Armenian side began to develop a strong impression that the ultimate goal of the Georgian government was the desire to completely cleanse Javakhk from its Armenian population. The solution to this problem was an agreement with Turkey, to which, although control over Javakhk passed, but even in the short term, it could no longer be considered by the interested parties as a permanent factor. In Constantinople (Istanbul), it was planned to convene an international conference with the participation of Germany, its allies, and representatives of the Caucasian republics, to whose competence it was also supposed to transfer the right to revise the Batumi Treaty. Until the beginning of November 1918, a Georgian delegation was in the capital of Ottoman Turkey, which made no secret of its firm intention to return a number of disputed regions, including Javakhk, under Georgian control.
The Georgian government formed a special commission in June 1918 to determine the borders between its country and the neighboring Caucasian republics. Representatives of Armenia and Azerbaijan were also invited to its meeting. At the very first discussion, the chairman of the commission I. Tsereteli said that Javakhk, Tavush, Lori-Tashir, and Pambak should be fully included in Georgia. In this regard, representatives of the Armenian National Council (A. Khatisyan, Kh. Karchikian, and others) replied that in this ultimatum proposal of the Georgian side they see only a plan for the partition of Armenia between Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Turkey.
In September 1918. the Georgian government rejected the mediation of the Armenian National Council of Georgia, which offered to place refugees from Javakhk in the Armenian villages of the country. The Georgian press began to constantly exaggerate the idea that "if our government allows refugees to leave their concentration camps and settle in the villages, then Georgia today or tomorrow will turn into Armenia." In October 1918. I. Kachukhashvili, Chief of the Chancellery of the Government of Georgia, suggested deporting the Javakhk Armenians to the North Caucasus, but strongly objected to the counter-proposal to move them to Lori-Tashir. This area was also considered then by the Georgian side as controversial and the numerical increase in the Armenian element there was not in the hands of the official Tiflis.
This attitude towards their centuries-old neighbors was caused by the aggravation of the anti-Armenian syndrome, which for some time now suffered from the most conservative part of the Georgian noble intelligentsia. Relations between the two peoples became hostages of the former strictly socio-economic antagonism between the Georgian nobility and the Armenian bourgeoisie, which had been growing since the second half of the 19th century. The latter had a fairly strong position in Tiflis, a significant part of the population of which was still Armenian at that time. Georgian fundamental traditionalists made xenophobia and the vicious idea of expelling most of the non-Kartvelian population from the country as a guarantee of the successful construction of their national state. [North Caucasian] mountaineers and once and for all put an end to the Armenian [resettlement] policy, in the most merciless way we will cleanse our capital from the Armenians who have built a nest here and the Armenian colonists who are on the territory of Georgia, drive them towards Lake Sevan. " For the most part, the Armenians of Javakhk are known to be descendants of those who settled there only with the establishment of Russian hegemony in the Transcaucasus. Today, some contemporary Georgian authors (Sh. Vadachkoria, G. Markhulia), unfortunately, continue to regard them as a legacy of Russian colonialism on Georgian soil. The consequence of this subjective attitude, at one time, was the desire to get rid of the Javakhk Armenians by any, even inhumane, ways.
Although the refugees managed to remove some of their own livestock from Javakhk, its herds were subjected to constant raids by Turkish and Ossetian bandits. Separate cases were recorded when the Georgian police also participated in the robberies. In order to save at least a part of their wealth, the refugees sought to sell these cattle in Tiflis and other cities of Georgia as soon as possible. However, the Georgian authorities forbade the refugees to trade in the markets themselves, and the livestock was bought up by speculators practically for nothing. Moreover, the administration did not allow refugees to buy grain or flour in rural areas of Georgia using the funds they received. The result of this prejudice was a massive famine that affected thousands of Javakhk Armenians. The Armenian-language press of Georgia tried to give an objective assessment of what is happening. On the pages of the newspaper "Ashkhatavor", the thought was heard that the Georgian government, apparently, seeks to resolve the territorial dispute with Armenia in Javakhk in such a way that "not a single refugee will survive" ...
In general, they already want to accuse Georgia and Georgians of the "genocide of the Armenians of Javakhk". So far, the word "genocide" has not been spoken directly. But, judging by the tonality, this will not belong in the new "studies".
It is interesting that Mayilyan B.V. casually mentions the "Ossetian robber bands", which carried out raids on the "Javakhks" Armenians. As it is not particularly linked with the myth of "eternal friendship and brotherhood of Ossetians and Armenians." So there were Ossetian bands! And if they "reached out" to the "Javakhk" Armenians, one can imagine how the Georgian and peaceful Ossetian population living nearby suffered from them!
Information about Ossetian robber bands makes us take a fresh look at the myth of the alleged “genocide of Ossetians” by the authorities of independent Georgia in 1918-1920, now propagated by the Tskhinvali separatist regime. the Armenians were also disturbed. And this fight against banal banditry (along with the fight against the Bolshevik revolts, in which the Ossetians participated ") was called" genocide ".
Further Mayilyan B.V. writes the following:
“... At the end of October 1918, the Ottoman government finally admitted its final defeat in the World War. Under the terms of the Mudross truce with the Entente countries, the Turks were obliged to liberate the territories they occupied in the Caucasus. Turkish diplomats (Ottoman representative in Tiflis Abdul Kerim and others) began a very subtle intrigue, the main purpose of which was the desire to provoke a clash between Georgia and Armenia. At the end of November 1918, Turkish representatives in Tiflis and Yerevan simultaneously assured the Georgian and Armenian authorities that Javakhk would be transferred to their control, and not to its neighbors. Consequently, the issue of the ownership of Javakhk and the return of its Armenian population to the place of permanent residence was firmly on the agenda. A preliminary agreement was reached on this first between the head of the Armenian delegation in Istanbul A. Aharonyan and the Ottoman government, and then with the Turkish command located in Alexandropol (Gyumri). Official Tiflis, however, falsely referring to the Turkish side, refused to give final permission for the repatriation of the Javakhk Armenians. Although in the snow-capped mountains of Bakuriana in November 1918, up to 500 refugees were killed every day, it became clear that the Georgian side did not want to rush to resolve this burning issue. General A. Makashvili (B. Makayev), whose detachment was instructed to enter Javakhk, personally appeared in Bakuriani and issued an ultimatum to the refugees. Before officially allowing the repatriation, this high-ranking Georgian military demanded from the Javakhk and demanded the Armenians to give him a written confirmation of their recognition of Georgian citizenship. In Tiflis, apparently, they hoped to present this in such an unseemly way acquired to the British military mission that arrived in Georgia as some proof of their "indisputable" right to Javakhk. As for the Javakhk Armenians, the "big politics" has already made them hostages of the tragic situation, and people on the brink of complete extinction should not further test their fate ... "
Let us remind that at the beginning of his research B.V Mayilyan accused the Georgian authorities of not wanting to recognize the Armenian refugees from Javakhk as their citizens. " And here he writes on the contrary, that the Georgian authorities wanted to see the Armenians in Samtskhe-Jvakheti as their citizens and even demanded written consent. In attempts to denigrate Georgia Mayilyan B.V. contradicting itself.
The main thing is important: there was no question of any expulsion of Armenians from Georgian lands in 1918. However, the Armenian nationalists already then, apparently, included Samtskhe-Javakheti into their “great Armenia” and therefore the Armenians, drugged by the nationalist propaganda “Javakhk” Armenians did not want to become a Georgian citizen.
Did the Georgian authorities act "cruelly" if they demanded that Armenians accept Georgian citizenship? For comparison, the Georgians of the Gali region of Abkhazia would like to have separatist citizenship and separatist passports, without which they have absolutely no rights. But the Armenian nationalists not only expelled the majority of Georgians from Abkhazia but also insisted on depriving the Georgians of the Gali region of their separatist passports, depriving them of elementary human rights.
B.V Mailyan also touches upon the topic of the Georgian-Armenian war at the end of 1918, or rather the aggression of Armenia against Georgia:
“A number of Georgian historians (M. Vachnadze, V. Guruli, G. Markhulia, and others) are trying to place all responsibility for the subsequent Georgian-Armenian war on official Yerevan and the ARF Dashnaktsutyun party. They, however, forget about the deep syndrome that struck the Armenian political circles, who witnessed the mass extinction of the Armenians of Javakhk. The tragedy of the Javakhk Armenians that befell them in 1918 left an indelible imprint on the minds of their contemporaries, who were also convinced that some Georgian leaders from the "government of a democratic republic" were involved in this. It flared up suddenly between neighboring countries in December 1918. the armed conflict was only the tip of the iceberg in an atmosphere of mutual distrust, which became unprecedentedly hostile precisely after the mass death of the Javakhk Armenians. This important circumstance is diligently and hypocritically hushed up by the above-mentioned Georgian authors, at the same time spreading unfounded fabrications about some aggressive intentions of the government of O. Kachaznuni in relation to their country, which has already become commonplace in their publications. "
In general, the "impressionable" Armenian nationalists were so impressed by the mythical "extinction of the Armenians of Javakhk", as well as by the no less mythical "genocide of the Armenians of the Ottoman Empire" that they decided to attack their neighbors! Those. the aggression of Armenia by such "research" is fully justified!
The emergence of such "studies" justifying separatism and Armenia's claims to Georgian lands cannot but be alarming. Moreover, the Armenian nationalists did not abandon the idea of a "Great Armenia" fix. And after the de-occupation of Azerbaijani Karabakh, they clearly have plans to “compensate” at the expense of the lands of other neighbors.