June 10, 2008 - 21:02 AMT PanARMENIAN.Net
- There is no evidence that the Armenians of Nagorno Karabakh committed "genocide" against Meskhetian Turks of Khojaly, Canadian military historian Patrick Wilson Gore said during the launch of his latest book "Tis Some Poor Fellow's Skull: Post-Soviet Warfare in the Southern Caucasus" at the embassy of the Republic of Armenia in Ottawa, independent French journalist Jean Eckian told PanARMENIAN.Net
Gore stated that Stalin's annexation of Nagorno Karabakh to Azerbaijan was due to his "paranoia" of Armenians and a secret deal between him and Ataturk, the Turkish dictator.
The Canadian expert stated that for 70 years Armenians of Nagorno Karabakh were treated as second-class citizens under Azeri rule. The treatment of Armenians by Azeris was a classic case of ethnic cleansing. After the Sumgait and Baku massacres of Armenians in the early 1990s, the Armenians were forced to fight to defend their families and their lives.
In regard to the Khojaly incident, Gore said "Azeri troops ran faster than the Meskhetian Turk civilians they had been using as human shields". Upon their retreat to Agdam, civilians of Khojaly were fired upon by the Azeri OMON garrison of Agdam, mistaking them for Armenian forces. He said that a day before the start of Khojaly battle, the Azeri forces executed 32 Armenian prisoners of war.
Regarding the ongoing Azeri government threats of resumption of war to take Nagorno Karabakh, Gore said that "peace is for the benefit of both sides". It is true that the Azeri government is getting emboldened with its new-found oil wealth, but the Aliyev government has to "consider that their oil and gas pipelines run 30 km north of Nagorno Karabakh, and Azeris have invested heavily in their Baku facilities." Gore questioned whether Azeris want to jeopardize their vital pipelines and "risk their money sources."
The author of the 139-page book is a Canadian specialist in military history and theory. He studied at Oxford, and subsequently graduated from the National Defense College at Kingston, one of NATO's senior command colleges. Much of his career has focused on strategic intelligence. This is his eleventh book. He used to be paratrooper and marine commando.