BY RACHEL MELIKIAN

Coronavirus vs. Narek, Komitas & Artsakh:
If we Armenians care about Artsakh to fight against Coronavirus (COVID-19), we must fortify Artsakh properly both its borders and our 150,000 compatriots living within the border – and provide it with basic necessary provisions. We must all totally commit to this financially – by way of small and large donations.

By showing a modicum of financial sacrifice during the centennial countdown of the Armenian Genocide, we could help Artsakh remain largely immune from the global pandemic killer virus, as well as immune from the threat fo the enemy’s incessant border attacks. Our financial commitment to Artsakh is more than essential. Some scientists predict that 60 to 70 percent of the world population will be infected by the Coronavirus, and that 45 million people will die as a result. Now is the time to simultaneously shield and lift Artsakh.

If a de facto country like Artsakh, whose independence has not yet been recognized globally, can stay strong, Armenians – this time in Artsakh – can save humanity once more. I emphasize “once more” because Armenia was the savior of humanity throughout the course of history from the Great Flood to the Tower of Babel, and into our present time.

And this precipitates a clarion call to wealthy Armenians worldwide to grant at least 10-14 points of $1.5 million (USD) to the Artsakh Republic (Nagorno Karabakh, NKR), in order to serve Armenians as the Steward would do. We know from the parable, which our Lord Jesus Christ told us, that if the Steward did not act immediately he would have lost everything permanently without any recourse. Likewise, if we do not act immediately we could lose a lot. Artsakh is at stake from both the perspective of the pandemic and that of geopolitics.

The 5 of the 14 points of the $1.5 million grant are as follows:
To the Artsakh army, in order to defend our borders from the attacks of the enemy, and also form the novel Coronavirus global pandemic. This calls for a $10 donation per each individual living in Artsakh.

To families, in order for them to store food and supplies at home. This is only $10 worth of food for each Armenian living in Artsakh.

\To hospitals, in order to prevent the entry and spread of COVID-19. This is only $10 per each person living in Artsakh to fight the Coronavirus, and prevent its penetration inside Artsakh’s borders. Moreover, this is also to help mothers in Artsakh safe and healthy childbirths. This grant should also be used to provide milk money to each newborn child for 15 months at the minimum.

A note is worth mentioning here: if we cared about Artsakh, not a single incidence of Coronavirus would have happened there to date. One incidence could multiply dramatically, like a rabbit giving brith. If we had made proper financial sacrifices during the Holy Great Lent, this would have been avoided. Let us remember that Sunday, April 12, 2020, was Resurrection Sunday – Easter. Instead of resurrecting Artsakh, we are now reacting to cases of Coronavirus there.

To the Armenian church, in order to be able to assist and offer relief during this unprecedented world lockdown. Historically, the Armenian church has provided shelter, food, and all kinds of relief including medical assistance during tragedies, crises, and hard times, and continues to do so. The Armenian church can take this world lockdown opportunity to teach Krapar (classical Armenian) and Medenakrutiun (writing manuscripts), the History of the Armenian church. It could also teach the history of our mythological past, in addition to form a choir to sing the liturgical songs of Komitas and to read the prayers and lamentations of St. Gregory of Narek. Researchers have substantiated that the music of Komitas and the prayers of St. Gregory of Narek not only can cure illnesses but surely have the power to fight against the Coronavirus. With this grant, the Armenian church can also pay all of its teachers to help them survive during this global economic shutdown.

To Armenian families in Artsakh, in order to help them plan on having new babies to enlarge the family size. The defense of Artsakh is not solely based on what the negotiations of the OSCE Minsk group will dictate. The defense of Artsakh depends primarily on its substantial population numbers. Quantity matters. This will be Artsakh’s ultimate defense. Each new child must receive milk money for at least five years. Wealthy Armenians could allocate more funds every year to such a program aimed at enlarging families.

(To be continued….. with the other points of $1.5 million for Artsakh to stay strong).

Rachel Melikian, Former GCC Woman of the Year

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