Thursday, 28 May 2020

E Editorial

Big Stir over Russian Bread

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Last Sunday, infront of the Russian embassy in Yerevan and Consultae in Gyumri, a huge queue lined up for the Russian presidential election. People were brought to polling stations by free transportation from different cities. Unusual commotion prevailed. The media even recorded a couple who came to the polls directly from the place of the wedding, and the bride was wearing a traditional white dress, with a happy smile on her face.

The number of people who waited for voting that day was indeed unprecedented in the history of elections in Armenia. Many had to wait an hour, or even one and a half to vote. Most of the people in front of the embassy in Yerevan, of course, were Armenians who had Russian citizenship or had recently acquired it. As it's known, the new law adopted in the Russian Federation provides for the simplification of citizenship for Russian-speaking individuals whose "relatives and ancestors lived on the territory of Russia, the Russian Empire or the USSR within the existing state border of the Russian Federation." Now those who want to obtain citizenship within three months, must renounce the citizenship of their own or another country.

Thousands of Armenians have already taken advantage of this opportunity to relish the passport of a citizen of the Republic of Armenia with a Russian passport, since it's connected with the opportunity to earn their living, to arrange their life and to ensure the safety of their families. This, after all, is a reliable guarantee for stable work and wages in Russia and hopes for higher pensions or benefits in the future. Some, based on border incidents, simply do not want to send their sons to the "flames" and prefer the option of peaceful service in the Russian army. In short, Russia seems to have found the key to overcoming its demographic growth at the expense of the former Soviet republics. Including, by the price of already "little by little" emptying Armenia, to be exact, our most sensitive system - the weakening of national security.

Apparently, the time for creating a state on a note of patriotism has passed, people began to think more pragmatically. And the fault of this state is that its citizens look beyond its borders, in particular, because of the current government, governed by clans, which uses all the levers and resources of state administration for the personal well-being of themselves and their relatives. This is one of the logical consequences of such a policy, which manifested itself in Yerevan during the presidential elections in Russia. True, the government has done everything to provide the necessary number of votes for the respective candidate, but people, in turn, were willing to endure all deprivations, spending their time to fulfill their civic duty. The citizenship of a powerful state, and especially the fear of losing the acquired things, obliged many. Especially in the case of peoples who have not yet overcome the slavery syndrome. On that day, even the wedding couple showed the world that the choice of Vladimir Putin is above everything, even personal happiness.

The Armenian Center for National and International Studies

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Yerevan, Armenia


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