Armenia’s Arthur Aleksanyan won gold of the Greco-Roman Wrestling World Championships becoming three-time world champion.
Aleksanyan, an Olympic champion, defeated Russia’s Musa Evloev 3-1.
At only 30 years old, Sebastian Kurz is angling not only to become chancellor of Austria, but also to give his country a more powerful stance on the world stage. To that end, he warned against any “meddling” from Turkey.
To call Sebastian Kurz ambitious would be an understatement akin to regarding a hurricane as a light drizzle. In 2013, he managed to become the youngest foreign minister in the world at the age of only 27. And earlier this year, he maneuvered to become chief of one of Austria’s strongest political parties, the conservative Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP).
The ÖVP, which rules in coalition with the left-leaning Social Democrats (SPÖ), promptly called snap elections – to be held a year early, in October 2017. But this time, Austrians who support Kurz will not be voting for the ÖVP but for the “List Sebastian Kurz,” a series of ÖVP-backed candidates led by the foreign minister.
Kurz is aiming not only to become the youngest chancellor in the history of the republic, but to steer his country toward a more conservative migration policy, stop radical Islamist terrorism, “break apart the old system” of politics and shift his nation into a more powerful position in Europe.
In this, as far as his personal profile is concerned, he has already achieved a degree of success. Indeed, he is internationally the most recognizable face in Austrian politics – much more so than Chancellor Christian Kern. There was Kurz, smiling and shaking hands with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani during the early stages of nuclear negotiations in 2014, and his statements in the headlines throughout much of 2015, calling for more effective border control along the EU’s external frontier during the migrant crisis.
Breaking the ‘old system’
In an interview with Germany’s weekly Welt am Sonntag on Sunday, Kurz outlined his vision for the future should he win the chancellor’s seat in October, including ending the “chaos” of NGOs getting involved in Europe’s migration wave and keeping Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan from “meddling” in European elections.
“I have the strength of will to break apart the old system,” he told the newspaper – starting with how the EU handles the millions of refugees fleeing conflict and poverty to European shores.
“Some NGOs presumably want to do something good [by intercepting illegal migrant boats in the Mediterranean],” said Kurz, “but in the end they don’t produce any good results, just chaos.”
To stop the chaos, Kurz wants to end “economic migration” to the EU, which he makes clear is different from those fleeing war and violence in countries like Syria, by working with the Libya government and closing the so-called “Balkan route” that migrants used to travel from Greece to western Europe. He swiftly deflected comments made by Berlin that Libya’s migrant centers were comparable to “concentration camps.”
Reacting to being called “hard-hearted,” by his interviewer, Kurz bristles at the accusation, insisting: “I want to stop illegal, uncontrolled migration. At the same time, I fully support providing aid to developing countries on the ground, as well as creating paths for legal immigration to Europe.”
‘We will not accept meddling of any kind’
The last point Kurz was at pains to make in the interview is that neither Germany nor Austria will tolerate any foreign meddling in their upcoming elections.
On Friday, Turkish President Erdogan issued a message to Germany’s considerable Turkish community not to vote for any of the country’s major parties during the country’s federal vote on September 24.
Amidst an escalating row over Turkey’s authoritarian crackdown on opposition voices in the media – which has led to several German nationals being jailed by Ankara – Erdogan said he was “calling on all his countrymen not to make the mistake” of voting for Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Later that day, Ankara’s outspoken Mayor Melih Gokcek called Germany’s Green party leader Cem Özdemir, himself the son of Turkish immigrants, a traitor and an “Armenian servant.”
Kurz had a clear warning for Erdogan: Keep out of our elections.
“If Erdogan or his ministers are planning anything similar for Austria’s upcoming vote, I want to make it absolutely clear that we will not accept meddling of any kind.”
“Turkey is an important neighbor, with whom, when it is necessary, we must cooperate,” he said, adding – thus eschewing any notion of EU membership for Ankara – “with respect to democracy and human rights.”
According to Armenpress, Armenian political scientist Hrant Mélik-Chahnazarian published on the site voskanapat.info a letter issued on 28 April 2016 by a senior Azerbaijani army official, General Nedjmedin Sadikov, to Zakir Hasanov, the defense minister of Azerbaijan in which he reported Azeri losses during the “4-day war” against the forces of the Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh).
In this letter N. Sadikov writes that the losses of the Azerbaijani army between 2 and 6 April during the war against the Armenian forces on the frontier of Artsakh are 558 Azerbaijani soldiers killed and 1,293 wounded. Of these injured, 58 were in serious condition. It should be noted that on the Talish-Martakert front alone, Azeri losses were 98 soldiers. On the Armenian side the casualties were 102 soldiers and civilians.
Today President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan held a meeting to discuss the preparations for the forthcoming Sixth Armenia-Diaspora Forum and launching the Pan-Armenian Council, the press service of the President’s Office reports.
The Chairman of the Constitutional Court Gagik Harutyunyan, who inter alia has earlier been nominated to coordinate the works of the Organising Committee, reported on the main approaches regarding the formation and working mechanisms of the Pan-Armenian Council. These issues will be discussed in the frameworks of the Sixth Armenia-Diaspora Forum to be held in Yerevan on September 18-20.
Taking note of earlier discussions on the establishment of a new Pan-Armenian body in the past years, President Sargsyan commissioned to prepare drafts on the aims and objectives, membership criteria as well as draft agenda and rules of procedure of the first session of the new Council to be held in 2018 through discussions with all relevant parties, including Diaspora organisations and structures.
The decision to start preparations for launching the Pan-Armenian Council has unanimously been adopted on September 26, 2015 at the Sixth session of the State Commission on coordination of the events dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.
Sydney audiences will have a unique opportunity to see “Intent To Destroy” – the Armenian Genocide documentary filmed during the production of “The Promise” – as part of Hamazkaine Shant Chapter’s Armenian Film Festival, which begins this Friday, August 18, reports the Armenian National Committee of Australia.
The “Intent to Destroy” screening, which is being co-hosted by the Armenian National Committee of Australia (ANC-AU), will close the Armenian Film Festival on Sunday, August 27. All films are being screened at Event Cinemas in Top Ryde.
Filmed on the set of Armenian Genocide epic, “The Promise”, this documentary by Joe Berlinger looks at the difficulties experienced by the producers, cast and crew of the film starring Christian Bale, Oscar Isaac and Charlotte Le Bon.
Here is a summary of the film from the Human Rights Arts & Film Festival which premiered “Intent to Destroy” in Australia earlier this year:
“Legendary documentarian Berlinger’s (Metallica: Some Kind of Monster, Tony Robbins: I am Not Your Guru, Crude) thirteenth feature film, captures the cinematic and political challenges of producing a historically meaningful, big-budget film in an environment rife with political suppression.”
“In 2015, Academy Award-winning director Terry George (Hotel Rwanda) took on the challenge of making the first mainstream film about the 1915 Armenian Genocide that wiped out 1.5 million Armenians in The Promise (starring Oscar Isaac and Christian Bale). Berlinger’s film combines a mixture of exclusive behind-the- scenes footage, rare archival material and investigative interviews that capture the shocking and complex history of the Armenian Genocide, all while presenting the unfolding, real-time drama of bringing this long-ignored chapter of human cruelty to the big screen.”
The Armenian National Committee of America – Glendale on Thursday, August 17 received a letter from Caruso Affiliated Executive Vice President of Operations, Jackie Levy condemning “violence and atrocities of any form anywhere in the world, including the Armenian Genocide that has impacted the lives of Armenians in our community.” The letter also states that Caruso Affiliated will work with the producers of “Architects of Denial” and the City of Glendale in an effort to display the advertisement at the Americana at Brand, at no cost to the producers, Asbarez reports.
The ANCA Glendale welcomed this important albeit delayed response as the first step in addressing a larger issue of insensitivity toward the Armenian-American community and utter lack of outreach and understanding.
“We look forward to working with Americana at Brand and Caruso Affiliated to further address the community’s needs and develop a positive and constructive relationship moving forward,” ANCA said.
“We especially want to thank the grassroots in our community who rose to the occasion by making our collective concerns heard on a larger scale. This outcome shows that when the community is activated, decision makers will hear its voice.”
The ANCA-Glendale will hold its scheduled press conference o on the green at the Americana at Brand to further discuss this issue of importance to our community.
By Uzay Bulut,
Cyprus is Turkish, after all. Turks can do whatever they want there. They can even celebrate dropping napalm on Greeks and slaughtering them.
On August 8, Muslim Turkish Cypriots and illegal settlers from Turkey celebrated the 53rd anniversary of Turkey’s napalm bombing of Greek Cypriot civilians in the Turkish-occupied enclave of Kokkina in Cyprus. Mustafa Akıncı, the president of the self-styled “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus” (TRNC), which is recognized only by Turkey, also participated in the celebrations.
In August 1964, Turkish warplanes dropped napalm bombs on Kokkina in the Tillyria peninsula, hitting residential areas and a hospital, and killing more than 50 people, including 19 civilians. Ten years later, in 1974, Turkey invaded Cyprus and has occupied almost 40 percent of the island ever since.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Greece issued a note of condemnation regarding the celebrations:
“We are dismayed to note the celebrations of the Turkish Cypriot leadership, including Mr. Akinci himself, of the 53rd anniversary of the use of chemical weapons and dropping of napalm bombs by the Turkish air force on the Tillyria peninsula. This was the first use of banned chemical weapons in the history of our planet.
“Today, when the whole planet bows to the victims of wars and such hostile acts, the holding of and participation in such celebrations is an affront to international law, to the memory of the fallen, and to the whole of humanity.”
The Republic of Cyprus declared independence in 1960. Afterwards, Turkey escalated its preparations to invade the island, which included but were not limited to establishing a bridgehead at Kokkina in 1964 and smuggling arms and fighters from Turkey into the area in order to strengthen Turkish positions there.
According to the High Commission of the Republic of Cyprus in London,
“When in August 1964 the [Cypriot] Government attempted to contain the Kokkina bridgehead, Turkey’s air force bombed the National Guard and neighboring Greek villages with napalm and threatened to invade. The other major purpose served by the enclaves was the political and physical separation of the two communities.”
Another preparation for the occupation by Turkey was its disguised violent attacks against Turkish Cypriots to further escalate inter-communal conflicts and alienate Turkish-speaking Cypriots from Greek Cypriots.
General Sabri Yirmibeşoğlu, a Turkish army officer, for example, said in televised comments in 2010 that Turkey burned a mosque during the Cyprus conflict “in order to foster civil resistance” against Greeks on the islandand that “The Turkish special warfare department has a rule to engage in acts of sabotage against respected values [of Turks] made to look as if they were carried out by the enemy.”
The deadly military assault against Kokkina in 1964 is celebrated by many Turkish Cypriots and settlers from Turkey as the “8 August Erenköy Resistance Day.” Turks now call Kokkina “Erenköy,” Turkish for “the village of the [Islamic] saints.”
In 2014, for example, the community leader of Kato Pyrgos, Costas Michaelides, condemnedthe formal Turkish celebrations in Kokkina, describing them as a “disgrace.” “The memories are alive because the victims, those who survived, are here. The crosses [on the graves] are here. However, many years pass, 50 or 150, we will see this in our daily lives, because they remind us of this cowardly attack against the unarmed people of Tylliria,” he said.
The Turkish narrative does not deny the smuggling of arms and fighters to Cyprus in 1964; the problem is Turks do not view these acts as illegal activities or crimes against the Republic of Cyprus. They see them as “heroism.”
During the celebrations on August 8, Mehmet Kadı, the mayor of Yeni Erenköy (Yialousa), said:
“53 days ago, today, in August 1964, the villagers, students and our mujahideen [jihadists] struggled together, fought for this land and did not allow the enemy to enter here.”
The enemy that Kadı referred to is the Republic of Cyprus and Greek Cypriots, the natives of the island who still comprised the majority in the northern part of Cyprus back then.
The Turkish Cypriot Minister of Economy and Energy, Sunat Atun, also issued a statementregarding “the Erenkoy resistance” and referred to it as “an act of heroism.”
“Turkish Cypriot people engaged in powerful and honorable resistance in the face of the inhumane attacks by the dual of the Rum [ethnic Greeks] and Greece. About 500 students from Anatolia and a group of Turkish Cypriots from Britain started landing in Cyprus to defend their homeland when attacks against Turkish Cypriots escalated in 1964.”
Mustafa Arıkan, the head of the Erenköy Mujahedeen [Jihadists] Association, also announced that during the commemoration, “for the first time, family members of 28 martyrs were given plaques.”
On July 20, 1974, Turkey mounted a bloody invasion of the island. The second Turkish offensive, codenamed Attila 2, took place between August 14-18. The invasion was accompanied by the mass murder of Greek Cypriot civilians, including women, and infants, unlawful arrests and torture of Greek Cypriots, and rapes of Greek Cypriot children and women, among other atrocities.
Zenon Rossides, the then-Cyprus representative to the United Nations, sent a letter on 6 December 1974 to the UN Secretary General, which said in part that Turkey “launched a full scale aggressive attack against Cyprus, a small non-aligned and virtually defenseless country, possessing no air force, no navy and no army except for a small national guard. Thus, Turkey’s overwhelming military machine embarked upon an armed attack including napalm bombing of open towns and villages, wreaking destruction, setting forests on fire and spreading indiscriminate death and human suffering to the civilian population of the island.”
The greatest consequence of the invasion was that Turkey changed the demographic structure of the northern part of the island, terrorizing around 200,000 indigenous Greek Cypriot majority population (more than one-third of the population) into fleeing to the southern part of the island. It is estimated that more than 100,000 Turkish settlers have been implanted in northern Cyprus since then. Lands and houses belonging to Greek Cypriots were then distributed to Turkish Cypriots and to Turks brought from Turkey to settle in those areas.
Turkish supremacists act so blatantly in Cyprus because they claim Cyprus is a Turkish island. Thus, bringing in Turkish fighters to Cyprus to kill Greek Cypriots, importing tens of thousands of settlers from Turkey, deploying around 40,000 Turkish soldiers there, forcibly changing the demographics of the island, seizing the homes and other property of Greek Cypriots, and wiping out the island’s historic Hellenic and Christian identity through the destruction of its cultural heritage are all legitimate acts according to the Turkish narrative.
Cyprus is Turkish, after
all. Turks can do whatever they want there. They can even celebrate dropping napalm on and slaughtering Greeks.
Employing Orwellian rhetoric, Turkey calls the military invasion of Cyprus “a peace operation.” In 1974, Kemalists and Islamists of all political parties supported the invasion of Cyprus. Moreover, Turkey does not recognize Cyprus as a Greek island or even as “a nation.”
According to the official website of the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, “Cyprus has never been a Greek Island. It is both useful and important to keep in mind that there has never been in Cyprus a ‘Cypriot nation’ due to the distinct national, religious and cultural characteristics of each ethnic people who, in addition, speak different languages.”
The Turkish ministry cannot be more wrong. Never until the Turkish invasion in 1974 did the northern part of the island have a Turkish majority. Both the north and south of the island were majority-Greek and majority-Christian until 1974. “Cyprus has been a part of the Greek world as far back as can be attested by recorded history,” writes the author Constantine Tzanos.
“After the collapse of the Byzantine Empire and the defeat of the Venetians, it fell to Ottoman rule from 1571 to 1878. In 1878 it was placed under British administration, was annexed by Britain in 1914, and in 1925 became a British colony.”
However, the Cyprus question has been one of the key aspects of the Turkish foreign policy for a very long time. Actually, Cyprus has never ceased to be a “national cause” for Turks ever since the Ottomans first invaded it in 1571. A Muslim sovereign is not allowed to relinquish land once it has been conquered. And they can even celebrate their war crimes and murders.
Showing no regard for the sufferings of Greek Cypriots, many Turkish Cypriots and their leaders – including Mustafa Akıncı – have celebrated the deadly assaults on their Greek neighbors. But a community leader who genuinely aims for a peaceful resolution and coexistence in Cyprus would condemn the use of napalm bombs on unarmed civilians and the destruction of that part of the island, and would commemorate the Greek Cypriot victims as well.
Sadly, Turkish Cypriots’ celebrations of the brutal warfare against Greek Cypriot civilians have discredited all of their erstwhile statements that they support a peaceful resolution of the conflict in the island and justice for all its inhabitants.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Armenian Assembly of America (Assembly) celebrated the 40th year of its program, which provides opportunities for the next generation of Armenian Americans to participate in public service internships in Washington. The Terjenian-Thomas Assembly Internship Program, founded in 1977, was the first internship program offered by an Armenian organization in America. For eight weeks each summer, the program gives college students of Armenian descent an opportunity to gain exposure to the policy-making process in our nation’s capital. Over 1,000 students have completed internships through the Assembly.
The Terjenian-Thomas Assembly class of 2017 interns included Lara Avsharian from California, Shant Bekarian from New Jersey, Taylor Boole from North Carolina, Milena Davtyan from Utah, Samantha Dore from Washington, Emily Hagopian from New Jersey, Mateos Hayes from Tennessee, Nicholas Jundanian from Maryland, David Madey from California, Lidia Nalbandyan from Utah, Hugh Rabjohns from Illinois, Axel Sarkissian from California, Alain Tamazian from California, and Sasha Tavitian from Washington. This summer’s internship program was led by Intern Coordinator Robert Arzoumanian, an alumnus from the 2016 program.
“I was honored to have the opportunity to return to Washington, D.C. as this year’s Terjenian-Thomas Assembly Intern Coordinator. It was great to see students from all around the country working together to help the Armenian American community. The Assembly interns were all incredibly intelligent and their passion for their work was contagious. It was a pleasure to work with them and I hope they use the knowledge and experience they gained this summer to continue improving their communities,” Arzoumanian said.
Through the Assembly’s Lecture Series, participants met with Members of Congress, including House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Representative Ed Royce (R-CA), Armenian Caucus Co-Chairs Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) and Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA), House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Ranking Member and Armenian Caucus Vice Co-Chair Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI), and Rep. Jim Costa (D-CA). As part of the Capitol Ideas, the interns sat down with U.S. Department of Homeland Security Program Manager Noris Balabanian, Artsakh Representative to the U.S. Robert Avetisyan, and Armenian Church of America Eastern Diocesan Legate Archbishop Vicken Aykazian. Additionally, they discussed future careers with many Assembly intern alumni, including U.S. Embassy in Armenia Political and Economic Deputy Chief Ruben Harutunian, Nahigian Strategies President Keith Nahigian, and Department of Justice Senior Counsel for National Security and Assembly Board Member Aram Gavoor.
“Congresswoman Speier is one of two Armenian American Representatives in the United States Congress, and I hold her in high regard. She proves her dedication to her work everyday, and I am fortunate to have interned in her office. I looked forward to work everyday. It was an incredible experience to hear her story, along with other professionals I met who work in the U.S. Government from meetings organized by the Armenian Assembly,” stated David Madey, a student at the University of California Davis who interned with Rep. Speier. “I believe the Congressional internship position is perhaps one of the most invaluable experiences to have for someone my age, and I am incredibly grateful to have had this one-of-a-kind opportunity,” he added.
They had the opportunity to learn more about their cultural heritage and the Armenian Genocide in conversations and lectures with Armenian National Institute (ANI) Director Dr. Rouben Adalian and Library of Congress Armenian and Georgian Specialist Dr. Levon Avdoyan. The students explored Washington with special tours of Capitol Hill, U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and the World Bank, where they saw the Armenian art exhibit which features paintings and sculptures from the Balian Art Collection on loan to the Bank since 2007. The Terjenian-Thomas Assembly interns were also graciously hosted by Mrs. Rita Balian, a long-time Assembly Trustee, whose late husband Mr. Vartkess Balian served on the Assembly’s Board of Directors during its early pivotal years.
“It was a great experience being involved with the Armenian Assembly of America Internship Program this summer. We learned a great deal about our Armenian heritage as well as the factors that influence Armenian American relations,” said Taylor Boole, a student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill who interned with Rep. George Holding (R-NC).
In addition to UC Davis and UNC Chapel Hill, Assembly interns arrived from Stanford University, University of California Los Angeles, University of Southern California, California Polytechnic State University, University of Tennessee at Knoxville, The College of New Jersey, Emerson College, University of Washington, Wake Forest University, Texas Christian University, Brigham Young University, and Salt Lake Community College.
From its earliest phases and over the past four decades, the Armenian Assembly Summer Internship Program has been celebrated and strongly supported by the Armenian community with major gifts from the Richard Tufenkian Memorial Fund, the John Hanessian Scholarship Fund, the Armen Astarjian Scholarship Fund, the Ohanian Memorial Fund, Ann Hintlian, Ann Nahigian, James and Connie Melikian, the Knights of Vartan, the Estate of Haig J. Boyadjian, and the Estate of George Judge Karabedian (George Kay), as well as generous contributions in memory of former Assembly Board Members Dr. Lionel Galstaun, Peter Kezirian, and John O’Connor. In 2003, the Armenian Assembly’s Summer Internship Program was renamed in honor of Aram and Florence Terjenian and Annie Thomas after the announcement of their pace-setting $1 million donation to the program.
Established in 1972, the Armenian Assembly of America is the largest Washington-based nationwide organization promoting public understanding and awareness of Armenian issues. The Assembly is a non-partisan, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt membership organization.
Photo Caption 1: Terjenian-Thomas Assembly Interns and Armenian National Institute (ANI) Director Dr. Rouben Adalian with Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI), who visited Armenia in 1991 and observed the referendum for independence from the Soviet Union
Photo Caption 2 (L-R): Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL), Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Rep. George Holding (R-NC), Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE), and Rep. Jim Costa (D-CA)
Photo Caption 3 (L-R): Armenian Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Frank Pallone (D-NJ), Armenian Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA), and House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Ranking Member and Armenian Caucus Vice Co-Chair Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA)
Yossi Melman reports in Maariv that the Israeli drone manufacturer, Aeronautics, sought a contract to sell military drones to Azerbaijan. Though the Orbiter 1K drone the Azeris contemplated buying had been tested in battle, in order to seal the deal, they demanded to see the drone attack an Armenian army position. The government even planned to broadcast video of the attack on national TV. But there was a wrinkle in the plan. The drone operators who were to orchestrate the flight and attack refused to carry it out.
Aeronautics executives, desperate to seal the lucrative deal, pressured the pilots, warning them they would torpedo an important commercial sale. But the drone operators remained firm in their refusal. The executives were forced to arm, fly and conduct the entire mission themselves. Though they attempted to attack the Armenians, the flight failed and no one was injured. Though not for lack of trying.
One of the two pilots who refused to carry out orders quit the company and the second is in the process of leaving.
Melman says that a complaint has been filed with the Israeli defense ministry (he doesn’t say by whom) because the export license granted to the company explicitly prohibits Israeli personnel taking part in any military action between hostile parties. In other words, Israel just sells them the weapons to kill each other. It doesn’t do the killing directly. This way it can keep accusations of military intervention at arm’s length. The ministry doesn’t permit either direct or indirect intervention of this kind. Though of course selling the parties these weapons is a form of intervention.
This is a delicate matter both for the Israeli arms exporter and for the defense ministry since Azerbaijan is a critical Israeli ally in the region. At a joint press conference, the country’s president boasted that he’d bought $5-billion worth of Israeli weapons to fuel his ongoing war with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh. An even more important element in the relationship for the Israelis is that Azerbaijan is perfectly situated geographically for spying on its neighbor, Iran. Israel spies are active inside the country, as are Iranian spies. The country has also leased an air base to the Israeli military to serve as a refueling station for Israeli aircraft should they attack Iran. Israel also carries out clandestine spying missions inside Iran using Israeli drones based in Azerbaijan.
As my recent piece published at Middle East Eye shows, Israel does intervene directly in the wars of client states. In this case it was on behalf of Libyan strongman, Gen. Khalifa Haftar. In the Azerbaijan case, the intervention was perhaps not sanctioned directly (and therefore problematic) by the defense ministry. But the fact that Aeronautics senior executives were willing to do it in order to seal the deal shows that rules and regulations were made to be broken as far as Israeli arms exports are concerned.