Surprise in Karabakh Settlement Process: Armenia's Transition to Military Diplomacy

    • Comments - 14 October 2017, 18:43
Member of Parliament Koryun Nahapetyan, the head of Defense Committee, commenting on the upcoming Sargsyan-Aliyev meeting, said he cannot point to anything positive because Azerbaijan will hardly revise its belligerent policy. However, Koryun Nahapetyan said there may always be a surprise. Ostensibly, a surprise is a revision of Azerbaijan’s policy.

Of course, this will not happen, and not because Azerbaijan has no wish. Simply there is no opportunity for this and the reasons are several. Azerbaijan’s policy will not be revised, and there is no such objective, in fact. The objective is to restrain Azerbaijan’s policy, deprive Azerbaijan of opportunities for expression of its belligerence.

This is the current objective and priority of the negotiations on Artsakh, which is reflected in the statements of the mediators, particularly the U.S. and French representatives, as well as in non-formal signals from Armenia, including Shavarsh Kocharyan’s point on a moratorium on sale of weapons to the sides of the conflict at the UN SC, adopting sanctions against the countries which will supply weapons to Azerbaijan or Armenia.

The process of restraining Azerbaijan’s belligerent policy has already started, particularly by way of use of modern equipment at the Armenian front line, which has significantly limited Azerbaijan’s attacks. Through the failure of the April war the Armenian armed forces have tangibly limited Azerbaijan’s moves. Currently the objective should be set for the Armenian diplomacy to limit Azerbaijan, including military diplomacy.

In other words, it is time Armenia moved on to “military diplomacy”. Of course, this “military diplomacy” should not mean the same as Azerbaijan’s. Azerbaijan’s diplomacy was based on blackmail and provocation. Armenia’s “military diplomacy” should be based on the strategic concept of regional security.

In fact, for the past two weeks the Armenian armed forces have been busy with this, and what the Armenian army did during the April war was nothing but protection of the regional and international security system along with protecting Armenia and Artsakh.

Now it is the right time for diplomatic wording for this mission at the level of an Armenian national policy. The problem is that only Armenia has the right to military diplomacy in the Caucasian region. Restraining and pushing back the Azerbaijani aggression against regional and international security further expansion of which would simply turn the Caucasus to an erupting volcano under the nose of the Euro-Atlantic pole, has deprived Azerbaijan of the right to war and obtained the right to military diplomacy.

This right is not identical to military aggression. This right is associated with full reflection of strategic goals and functions in the Armenian state political, diplomatic strategy and their international conceptual development.

In this sense, the so-called last surprise of the Karabakh process was the counteraction of the Armenian armed forces for Azerbaijan, as well as Russia, the main sponsor for the preparation of the Azerbaijani aggression, which expected that Armenia would not be able to resist the Azerbaijani machine alone and would turn to Russia, and Moscow would then achieve its strategic goal – military presence in the Karabakh area.

After the April war the military-political logic of the Karabakh negotiations should not be a surprise for Armenia, Armenia does not have such a need. The only thing left to do is to develop the mindset that has formed in the result of the surprise of the Armenian armed forces and the following international developments.

This supposes Armenia’s transition to military diplomacy the right to which Yerevan earlier two decades ago and reasserted last April.

With the Vienna agenda and the recent focus on it the international community has recognized the right of Armenia to military diplomacy because it is a component of the Caucasus and the Euro-Atlantic security and the right to peace. Peace is impossible without the military diplomacy of Armenia. The issue of peace in the Caucasus has no alternative in the visible future.