Blinken Isn’t Taken Seriously By Azerbaijan. A Drone Strike Might Change That.

May 4 2023

By Michael Rubin

Last week, Secretary of State Antony Blinken hosted Azerbaijan and Armenia’s foreign ministers in Washington, DC, in an effort to win peace in Nagorno-Karabakh. As the diplomats prepared to sit down, Blinken called Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. According to the State Department’s readout, Blinken “expressed the United States’ deep concern that Azerbaijan’s establishment of a checkpoint on the Lachin corridor undermines efforts to establish confidence in the peace process, and emphasized the importance of reopening the Lachin corridor to commercial and private vehicles as soon as possible.”

I visited the area of the checkpoint the next day, looking down on it from a nearby mountain. Azerbaijan shows no intention of shutting it down, even though it would be easy to do so: it is a glorified tent that was erected in a few hours, and could be dismantled even quicker. Armenians rightly point out that repeated declarations of “deep concern” are meaningless; they can actually do harm if Aliyev concludes—as he apparently has done—that he faces no more than finger wagging and can ignore Blinken at will. Such attitudes makes peace less likely: Armenians recognize that Azerbaijani agreements are meaningless while Azerbaijanis see a lack of consequence as a reason to become even more aggressive.

Indeed, I traveled along the Armenia-Azerbaijan border close enough to see Azerbaijani forces and pick up Azerbaijani cell phone service. While the State Department waives—and will again this year—Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act in order to provide military assistance to Azerbaijan, I saw newly fortified Azerbaijani positions with advanced radar, missile launchers, and helicopter landing pads. Not far away, Azerbaijan is building airfields in areas with no civilian need. In essence, the U.S. government today finances an Azerbaijani military build-up aimed at eradicating the region’s oldest Christian community.

Perhaps it is time for Blinken to take a page from Ronald Reagan’s playbook in order to restore faith in American diplomacy and fortitude. In July 1987, Reagan reflagged Kuwaiti tankers to reinforce freedom of navigation in the Persian Gulf. After a US escort ship struck an Iranian mine the following April, Reagan decided to retaliate against an Iranian oil platform. As per procedure, the Navy first broadcast warnings to the Iranians to evacuate and gave them time to do so. When it became apparent that the Iranians instead sought to reinforce the platform, a battle ensued and Iran effectively lost its navy.

Azerbaijan is not Iran. If the U.S. were to leaflet the illegal checkpoint and demand Azeris abandon the post within ten minutes followed by a drone strike to eliminate the illegal checkpoint, it might be a shot of adrenalin to diplomacy and ironically facilitate efforts at peace. Aliyev continues to push until someone pushes back. Armenia has not. Russia cannot. Should the United States act, Blinken might find that, in an instant, the United States’ word in the South Caucasus would once again matter. 

Now a 1945 Contributing Editor, Dr. Michael Rubin is a Senior Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). Dr. Rubin is the author, coauthor, and coeditor of several books exploring diplomacy, Iranian history, Arab culture, Kurdish studies, and Shi’ite politics, including “Seven Pillars: What Really Causes Instability in the Middle East?” (AEI Press, 2019); “Kurdistan Rising” (AEI Press, 2016); “Dancing with the Devil: The Perils of Engaging Rogue Regimes” (Encounter Books, 2014); and “Eternal Iran: Continuity and Chaos” (Palgrave, 2005).

Armenia’s Pashinyan To Visit Moscow Next Week – Press Office

May 5 2023


Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on Thursday in Prague announced his plans to visit Moscow next week, the press office of the Armenian government said

YEREVAN (UrduPoint News / Sputnik – 05th May, 2023) Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan on Thursday in Prague announced his plans to visit Moscow next week, the press office of the Armenian government said.

Pashinyan is in Prague for a two-day official visit to the Czech Republic to meet with the country's top officials. The Armenian prime minister also attended the Prague Centre for Transatlantic Relations, a research center, where he announced his plans during the discussion on the topic of "Armenia's democracy in the troubled region: Security and stability needs.


"The prime minister has just announced that he will visit Moscow next week," the press office said.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Pashinyan discussed the situation in the conflict-torn Nagorno-Karabakh region during a phone conversation in late April. Then, the leaders confirmed the importance of strict compliance with the agreements of the leaders of Russia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan on Nagorno-Karabakh and agreed to continue contacts.

Mexico’s Senate recognizes the Armenian Genocide, another step toward never forgetting | Opinion

Yet another April 24 is upon us. As Fresno Bee readers and Fresno community members know, during this time Armenians and non-Armenians in Fresno and worldwide commemorate one of the massive human atrocities in recent memory: the Armenian Genocide.

This year marks the 108th anniversary after that dark day in Armenian history. It was when Armenian leaders and intellectuals in the Ottoman Turkish capital of Constantinople (now Istanbul) were rounded up, arrested and ultimately killed. Later, in different locations throughout the empire, the same result ensued. Few individuals were able to escape, and 1.5 million Armenians were lost to the first genocide of the 20th century.

The policy was brutally effective; by the end of World War I, it had resulted in the destruction of virtually every Armenian community outside Constantinople, and the elimination of the Armenian people from territory in what is now modern Turkey.

As calls for official recognition of the Armenian Genocide worldwide continue, in a brave, enlightened, and statesmanlike act, the Mexican Senate became one of the most recent governmental bodies to recognize this planned atrocity as what it really was. According to an article by Dr. Carlos Antaramian in Mirror Spectator, some members of Mexico’s Armenian community gathered at the “Armenian Clock” in Mexico City “to pay tribute to the martyrs of 1915, and also give thanks for the recognition by the Senate of Mexico of this genocide.” Antaramian has also done some interesting research finding key Armenians in Mexico as highlighted in another article in the Mirror Spectator.

Along with this important and long overdue step by Mexico’s Legislature, perhaps one of the biggest victories for Mexico’s Armenian community came several years ago when it teamed up with human rights activists in asking that the statue of former Azerbaijani president and authoritarian leader Heydar Aliyev be removed from a park in Mexico. Azerbaijan has been paying countries to place statues like these in high-traffic areas. Aliyev’s son and daughter-in-law now are the president and vice president of Azerbaijan, respectively, and are being accused of continuing the Ottoman Empire’s plan of ethnic cleansing of Armenians.

Mexico’s Armenian diaspora is small, particularly when compared to the Armenian communities in the United States, Canada or even Argentina, the Latin American nation that is today home to the largest Armenian diaspora community. According to Antamarian’s research, the earliest known record in Mexico, from 1632, recorded the arrival of an Armenian national by the name of Francisco Martín. In 1723, another Armenian, Pedro de Zarate, arrived to Mexico on a Spanish galleon from the Philippines to Acapulco. In 1897, Mexican President Porfirio Díaz planned a project to establish an agricultural community with Armenian settlers in the border state of Tamaulipas (in northern Mexico); the project, however, never materialized.

Soon after the Armenian genocide, Armenians began to immigrate to the Americas. From 1921-28, Mexico had a generally open immigration policy for most foreigners. During that time, close to 300 Armenians immigrated to Mexico. Once in Mexico, most of the Armenian community decided to head north to the United States. Due to its relatively small size (today it numbers close to 500), the Armenian community in Mexico never established a school or community center, which in turn did allow for the community to assimilate quickly into the larger Mexican population, contributing to the ethnic composition of Mexico today and to the vitality of Mexican academia, entrepreneurship, the arts and entertainment, and politics and diplomacy.

Armenians will never forget the atrocities committed by the Ottoman Empire against our people. With sustained efforts by Ankara and its allies in the region to deny that the genocide ever took place, and while too much time has passed for the world to bring the perpetrators of the Armenian genocide to justice, there is no passage of time that limits our recognition of the truth of the criminal acts perpetrated against Armenians.

Our memory for those lost and for the tragedy and horror of the genocide — and our remembrance — is our way of seeking justice, of seeking accountability; it is our way of shouting to the world, never again and never forget!

Arturo Sarukhan is the former Mexican ambassador to the United States and currently a strategic consultant and public speaker based in Washington, D.C. Sevag Tateosian is a Clovis business owner and host and producer of San Joaquin Spotlight on CMAC TV and TalkRadio 1550 KXEX. Both are the grandsons of genocide survivors. 

Washington needs a new approach on Nagorno-Karabakh


Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev’s words on Tuesday were chilling. Forget integration. Forget diplomacy. He demanded Armenia declare, "Karabakh is Azerbaijan," or face the consequences. "Either they [Armenians] should accept Azerbaijani citizenship or find another place of residence," he said.

This is a call to transfer a millennia-old population. It is no accident that his words come as Armenians prepare to commemorate their previous genocide. Ethnic Armenians, meanwhile, refuse to place their security under Aliyev, given Azerbaijan’s record of pogroms, ethnic incitement, cultural denial, and destruction of centuries-old Armenian heritage.

Censuses dating back to the 19th and early 20th centuries, and physical and anecdotal evidence before that, show Nagorno-Karabakh to be historically Armenian. A century ago, Joseph Stalin transferred the mountainous region to Azerbaijan, however, as he sought to gerrymander the Caucasus to ensure ethnic identity was subordinate to the political and economic interests of the nascent Soviet Union. While, under the Soviet constitution, Nagorno-Karabakh’s secession from Azerbaijan was legal and its referendum in favor of the move overwhelming, the United States and the international community continue to recognize Nagorno-Karabakh as belonging to Azerbaijan, even as they call for diplomacy to resolve the dispute.

Azerbaijan’s threats and Aliyev’s belittling of the Minsk Group diplomatic process undercut any legal basis for a State Department waiver to Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act. That legislation ties American assistance to Azerbaijan to its commitment to resolve conflicts diplomatically. Behind the scenes, Secretary of State Antony Blinken has defied the law, arguing that Azerbaijan is too strategically important. On this, he lives in the past.

Just as Turkey coasted on its reputation as a pro-Western asset while President Recep Tayyip Erdogan eviscerated the country from the inside, so too is the reality of Azerbaijan today at sharp dissonance to its reputation in Washington. Simply put, the U.S. owes Azerbaijan nothing, given its recent efforts to launder both Iranian and Russian oil. Like Turkey, it plays both sides of the Ukraine and Iran matters and treats Blinken and key senators and representatives as useful idiots. On one issue, however, Aliyev is correct. Diplomacy has not worked. The reason is simple: It takes two sincere partners. Aliyev shows insincerity.

It is time for a new approach: The State Department’s recognition of Stalin’s cynical border adjustments today disincentivizes diplomacy. If Blinken wants Aliyev to negotiate sincerely, the State Department should rescind its recognition of Azerbaijani sovereignty and declare the entirety of Nagorno-Karabakh to be absent of the sovereignty of either Azerbaijan or Armenia pending the outcome of negotiations.

To do so would encourage both sides to negotiate sincerely. It would also ease international efforts to broker talks by lifting the de facto veto Azerbaijan exercises on access by American and European diplomats to the besieged communities in Nagorno-Karabakh. It would also benefit the local population by enabling mine clearance specialists from U.S.- and U.K.-funded groups such as HALO Trust to clear fields, roads, and villages, activities that Aliyev currently impedes.

Diplomats might additionally accommodate local feelings via a referendum and enable local travel through the issuance of temporary travel papers, such as the United Nations once provided to Palestinian refugees. To ensure that Azerbaijan does not simply seek to conduct a military fait accompli, such revocation of recognition of Azerbaijan’s should coincide with the deployment of European, perhaps neutral Scandinavian, peacekeepers in the territory.

Aliyev has rejected the Minsk Group. For diplomacy to succeed, Blinken must bury Stalin’s legacy. It is time to negotiate Nagorno-Karabakh’s sovereignty based not on the whims of a Soviet dictator but on the democratic and cultural aspirations of its people.

Michael Rubin (@mrubin1971) is a contributor to the Washington Examiner's Beltway Confidential. He is a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.


Azerbaijani team arrives in Yerevan for European Weightlifting Championships 2023



 15:37, 13 April 2023

YEREVAN, APRIL 13, ARMENPRESS. The Azerbaijani delegation to the European Weightlifting Championships 2023 due on April 15-23 has already arrived in Yerevan. The delegation consists of 12 persons, Chief of Staff of the Prime Minister’s Office Arayik Harutyunyan said at a press conference.

Harutyunyan is the chairman of the steering committee tasked with organizing the event.

“We’ve communicated with the Azerbaijani team through correspondence, the security conditions for the athletes and the team have been clarified. The Azerbaijani delegation, with a total of 12 representatives, is already in Yerevan. I am sure that the tournament will have the sports component in its core, and not political. We will ensure the security of all athletes,” Harutyunyan said.

India-Armenia partnership civilizational, will turn into strategic partnership soon: envoy

India –

09:58 pm | Updated 10:07 pm IST – NEW DELHI


Stating that the increasing political cooperation between Armenia and India must be “institutionalised in a long-term cooperation” between the two countries, Armenian envoy in India Youri Babakhanian said, adding that some day they will turn this into a strategic partnership and that day is close.

“We have very long historical ties. I call this civilizational partnership… Some day we will turn this into a strategic partnership and I think that day is close. We share common interests and we have no contradictions. This must be institutionalised in a long-term cooperation between the two countries,” he said in response to a question from  The Hindu while speaking at a seminar organised by India Central Asia Foundation on April 13.

He cited certain reasons for the increasing political cooperation between India and Armenia. “We have very long historical ties. I call this civilizational partnership. There is very good sentiment in political and people-to-people contacts,” Mr. Babakhanian said.

Speaking on the situation between Azerbaijan and Armenia in the aftermath of the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh war, the envoy said that “installing defensive infrastructure across more than 500 km of new border lines with Azerbaijan is a top priority in order to deter any further incursions by Baku”. 

Armenia recently signed a major defence deal with India for procurement of Pinaka multi-rocket launch systems and their ammunition, among others, in a deal worth around ₹2,500 crore. In the backdrop of the expanding defence cooperation, Armenia will soon have a Defence Attaché (DA) at its embassy here, it has been learnt. At present neither country has a dedicated DA in the other country. For India, its DA in Russia is also tasked to cover Armenia.

Speaking at the seminar on the situation in the South Caucasus, comprising Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia, the envoy said that the U.S. and Europe certainly remain important actors in the region but their influence is declining. “Armenia felt abandoned by the West and Russia as the Trump administration’s half-hearted efforts to broker a ceasefire came late. The West now struggles to find a role for the Minsk Group,” he said while noting that Western support, financing and expertise are needed to support post-conflict stabilisation, reconciliation and governance projects.

He further stated that this does not mean that the Biden Administration will ignore the region, especially since it is a meeting place of some of the West’s biggest competitors — China, Iran and Russia — and most challenging partners — Israel, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia.

He stated that Turkey with its military assistance to Azerbaijan positioned itself to become the most powerful regional player after Russia, making it Russia’s main geopolitical challenger for influence in the South Caucasus. In this regard, talking of the Iran factor, Mr. Babakhanian said, “Israeli arms shipments and access to advanced weaponry for Azerbaijan was also a game changer in the war.” Israel supplies more than 60% of the Azerbaijan military’s arms, he added.

New Azerbaijani provocations can’t be ruled out, warns Deputy Defense Minister




YEREVAN, APRIL 12, ARMENPRESS. New Azerbaijani provocations can’t be ruled out, Deputy Minister of Defense Arman Sargsyan said on Wednesday, a day after an Azeri attack left four Armenian troops dead and 6 wounded.

“As of this moment the situation is calm,” Sargsyan told reporters.

Asked whether or not the Azeri military is likely to resort to new provocations, Sargsyan said: “Of course it’s impossible to rule out anything, but at this moment, please note the information provided by the Defense Ministry.”

Obstacles to the reintegration of Karabakh Armenians into Azerbaijan

April 7 2023


 Cavid Veliev

On March 27, the Office of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan proposed once again to hold a meeting in Baku in the first week of April for the purpose of reintegration of the representatives of the Armenian public of Karabakh Economic Region (KER) as well as to discuss the implementation of infrastructure projects in Karabakh. In the last two years after the Second Karabakh war, the Republic of Azerbaijan has spoken about the intention to reintegrate Karabakh’s Armenian, however, the first official meeting between the parties was held in the headquarter of Russian peacekeeping forces in Khojaly in Karabakh on March 1 2023. After the first meeting, the Azerbaijan President’s Office issued another invitation on March 13 for the Karabakh Armenians to visit Baku but left unanswered.

Azerbaijan announced earlier in 2021 that the process of Karabakh Armenian reintegration is internal matter. However, within the international negotiations some discussion held such as on 27 September in Washington between assistant to the President of Azerbaijan Hikmet Hajiyev and Secretary of the Security Council of Armenia Armen Grigoryan. According to the document leaked to the press later Azerbaijan will nominate a representative to work with a similar representative designated by the Armenian ethnic community in Karabakh to conduct discussions and the process will not prejudice to Azerbaijan’s sovereignty.

Ruben Vardanyan, Russian oligarkh of Armenian origin, who was exported to Karabakh from Russia before the Washington meeting, settled in Karabakh to sabotage the process of dialogue. The Azerbaijani side declared that it was ready to hold a dialogue with the indiginous representatives who have the right to represent the Armenian residents, and declined to receive outsiders. On Azerbaijan’s insistence after five monthes Ruben Vardanyan, has been removed from his duties by local Armenians. Shortly after that Azerbaijan appointed a special reptesentative – Ramin Mammadov, Member of Parliament, to meet with the Armenians public of  KER, and on March 1, a meeting was held in Khojaly between the parties.

Official Baku, however, want to have direct talk without a mediator in negotiations with the Karabakh Armenians, whom it considers its own citizens. For this reason, the Presidential Administration invited the Karabakh Armenians to Baku two times for the continuation of the next talks. But Karabakh separatists declared that they are ready to meet only with the mediation of the command of the Russian Peacekeeping Contingent. The insistent of the separatists to have the mediation of the Russian peacekeepers stems from influence from Moscow – to control the situation in Karabakh, and the whole process. During his meeting with Ararat Mirzoyan in Moscow, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov gave the example of Donbas and Kosovo models for the Armenians of Karabakh. Moscow wanted the Karabakh issue to be excluded from the peace agreement to be signed between Armenia and Azerbaijan. In short, Moscow favors the preservation of the status quo in the region.

Besides, Moscow tries to solidify the continued presence of illegal Armenian armed forces in the KER in violation of the terms of the 10 November 2020 Tripartite Declaration and facilitates or connives the transportation of weapons and military personnel from Armenia to KER. On 5 March two Azerbaijani soldiers killed by illegal Armenian gunmen while the Azerbaijan Army Units attempted to stop and inspect the vehicle of the Armenian military formations transporting illegal military supplies thorugh Khankendi-Khalfali-Turshsu dirt road. After that, the Ministry of Defense of Azerbaijan announced several times that Armenians were using dirt roads for illegal purposes. These statements were actually a call to the international community to react the illegal use of this road. After the Azerbaijan`s MOD statements Russian peacekeeping forces started to accompany illegal Armenian formation to use dirt roads for military purposes. On 11 March the presented video footages by Azerbaijani MOD clearly demonstrated that the movement of military vehicles of the Armenian armed forces units and illegal Armenian armed detachments along the above-mentioned route was accompanied by a BTR-82A fighting vehicle belonging to the Russian peacekeeping contingent. At the same times military aircraft belonging to Iran made a non-stop flight along the Azerbaijan-Iran state border at a distance of 3-5 km from the state border, and in some cases over the state border.

Furthermore, ignoring the warnings of the Ministry of Defense of Azerbaijan, the Russian peacekeeping forces started to accompany the Armenian armed forces for the expansion of dirt roads – Azerbaijan defense ministry released a related video on March 24. Although the Armenian side claimed that these roads were used for humanitarian purposes the video footage circulated clearly revealed that the vehicles here were military ones. With this development, the Azerbaijani side voiced again the opinion about the necessity to put a checkpoint on the Lachin road. While there is such a checkpoint at the entrance from the Armenian side, the absence of such a checkpoint from Azerbaijan makes situation non-transparent. It shlould be noted further that the installation of checkpoints at the border is inherent rights of the states, according to international law.

As a result, on March 25, the Azerbaijani army was deployed at some heights, preventing the use of dirt roads for military purposes by Armenian illegal military forces. But in parallel, all roads are open to meet the humanitarian needs of Karabakh Armenians.

To summarize, despite the efforts to reach peace agreement after the Second Karabakh War and calls for the launch of the Karabakh Armenians reintegration process, as per the agreement reached in Washington on September 27 2022, the transportation of weapons from Armenia to the KER and the misuse of the roads leading to Karabakh, in violation of the Tripartite Declaration of 10 November 2020, increases the military tension in the region.

Narine Yapundjian Named Glendale Unified Teacher of the Year

Narine Yapundjian

GLENDALE—Balboa Elementary School sixth grade teacher Narine Yapundjian has been selected as Glendale Unified School District’s 2023 Teacher of the Year. Yapundjian will represent the District at this year’s Los Angeles County Teacher of the Year competition.

An alumna of Glendale Unified schools herself, Yapundjian has served the Glendale Unified community as an educator for more than a decade. In addition to being an exceptional teacher, she has demonstrated influence beyond the classroom as a mentor teacher and student advisor.

“Mrs. Yapundjian is known for her positive attitude and her tireless dedication to her students and our entire Balboa Elementary School community,” said Glendale Unified Board of Education President Nayiri Nahabedian. “Her deep love and commitment to her students truly shines.”

“Mrs. Yapundjian creates a student-centered classroom environment where every child actively engages in learning,” said Glendale Unified Superintendent Dr. Vivian Ekchian. “Every day, she goes above and beyond to foster a culture of care and find meaningful ways to connect with every child in her classroom.”

“Mrs. Yapundjian has proven herself to be an incredible teacher with a clear vision and mission for educating all children and for making a positive difference in the lives of our kids,” said Balboa Elementary Principal Dr. Sona Arakelian. “She deserves all of the praise and recognition for her dedicated service to our school and our entire Glendale Unified community.”

Each year, Glendale Unified selects an outstanding educator to advance to the Los Angeles County Teacher of the Year competition. Nominees are submitted by administrators and educators from across the district. Selections typically alternate between teachers at the elementary and secondary levels. Glendale Unified is proud to celebrate all of their 2023 Teacher of the Year finalists.   

Narine Yapundjian with the Teacher of the Year Committee

Glendale Unified Teacher of the Year Finalists:

  • Matthieu Hamo, Glenoaks Elementary School. Hamo has served Glendale Unified for 22 years as a teacher and teacher specialist. He is an exemplary educator who has dedicated himself to the academic success and social emotional wellbeing of every child. Hamo is a believer in professional development. He constantly strives to grow as a teacher and serve as a mentor for his fellow educators.
  • Rebecca Lopez, Columbus Elementary School. Lopez has been teaching at Columbus Elementary for 26 years. She is an exceptional educator known for creating an environment of love and care mixed with respect and firm expectations. Lopez emphasizes independence and resilience by setting goals with her students and working with them to regularly address their progress.
  • Celeste Maeshiro, Lincoln Elementary School. Maeshiro has dedicated more than 20 years to the Glendale Unified community serving the communit’s highest need students as a special education teacher at Lincoln and Valley View Elementary Schools. She empowers the district’s most vulnerable students with the skills they need to succeed in a safe learning environment where they are challenged to take risks and make mistakes. Maeshiro is highly regarded by students, staff, and families alike.
  • Kelly Schroeder, Mountain Avenue Elementary School. This is Schroeder’s 30th year teaching at Mountain Avenue Elementary, the same school that she and her children attended. In addition to teaching at all upper grade levels, she has served as the assistant to the principal for over 15 years and has been the Mountain Avenue PBIS coach since the school adopted the program in 2016. Schroeder utilizes essential teaching strategies to make learning fun and engaging for every child. Students are always enthusiastic as they enter her classroom.

Local high school teacher leads Armenian Genocide oral history project

High school students interviewing a member of the Armenian community

BELMONT, Mass. — Dozens of local high school students from the Greater Boston area participated in an Armenian Genocide remembrance oral history project at First Armenian Church on January 28. Forty-five high school students, most of whom were not Armenian, interviewed over 60 Armenians of all ages, from different churches and different parts of the Armenian community. 

The purpose of these interviews was to collect oral histories concerning not only the Armenian Genocide, but the way in which history is passed on from generation to generation. 

Community members were asked to bring photographs from their family archives

This event was organized by Jenny Staysniak, a history teacher from Lincoln Sudbury High School. She is also on the Teacher Advisory Board of Facing History and Ourselves.

Staysniak is passionate about teaching her students about the Armenian Genocide. She feels young people today have a remarkable capacity to be upstanders in the face of injustice. It is through these types of educational experiences that students can be part of the story, not just the audience. 

Forty-five high school students from the Greater Boston area participate in an Armenian Genocide oral history project

The student interviewers are now working on writing their reflections from these interviews. Staysniak and other teachers involved in the project will help compile, edit and form a narrative that will be incorporated into a larger resource guide for potential publication. The resource guide comes at an incredibly pertinent moment in history, when states like Massachusetts are passing legislation ensuring students learn about genocide within the classroom.

Interviews were conducted at First Armenian Church, Belmont, Mass.