Obama Calls For 19% Cut In Economic Aid To Armenia

Preident Barack Obama

Fiscal Year 2013 Budget Maintains Parity in Military Aid Appropriations between Armenia and Azerbaijan

WASHINGTON—President Obama has called for a sharp 19% reduction in economic aid to Armenia in the last budget request of his term, reported the Armenian National Committee of America.

The President has proposed $27,219,000 in Economic Support Fund (ESF) aid for Armenia in his Fiscal Year 2013 (FY13) budget, which is nearly $12,781,000, or 32%, less than the $40,000,000 approved by Congress for FY12. The President’s ESF figures for FY13, however, do not include $2,824,000 in International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement assistance and 2,500,000 in Global Health Programs (USAID), both categories that were formerly included under the ESF heading. Adding these two line items to the $27,219,000 ESF proposal, brings the economic aid total to Armenia to $32,543,000, which is a sharp 19% cut, measured from FY12 to FY13.

“We are saddened, but not surprised to see that President Obama has once again sought to cut economic aid to Armenia. His Administration has proposed reductions in assistance to Armenia – including this year’s sharp 19% cut – despite the devastating economic impact of dual Turkish and Azerbaijani blockades, and Yerevan’s broad support for U.S.-led missions in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Kosovo, and her cooperation on a broad-range of Washington-inspired regional initiatives – including the reckless Turkey-Armenia Protocols,” said ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian. “Sadly, President Obama has chosen to neither keep his commitment to maintain assistance to Armenia, nor taken any meaningful steps to honor his pledge to foster Armenia’s growth and development through expanded trade.”

Regarding military assistance, the Administration’s proposed budget does maintain parity in Foreign Military Finance (FMF) and International Military Education and Training (IMET) to Armenia and Azerbaijan, requesting $2.7 million in FMF and $600,000 for IMET for each country.

The Administration’s budget does not include any figures for aid to Nagorno Karabakh, although, over the past several years USAID has allocated $2,000,000 annually for this purpose. This level of Nagorno Karabakh funding is considerably less than the intent expressed by Congress over the course of many years, reflecting a pattern of under-spending that has left many developmental and confidence-building needs unmet.

The Obama Administration, in addition to consistently seeking reduced aid appropriations for Armenia, has not invited Armenia to submit a second Millennium Challenge Corporation proposal for poverty-reduction programs, nor has it taken any meaningful steps to promote bilateral economic relations, such as negotiations toward a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement, a Double Tax Treaty, or a Free Trade Agreement. During his campaign for the Presidency, Senator Barack Obama promised several times in writing to maintain aid and expand trade with Armenia.

The aid figures being proposed by the President for the Caucasus region are as follows.

Economic Support Fund:
Armenia: $27,219,000
Azerbaijan: $11,029,000
Georgia: $42,660,000

Foreign Military Financing:
Armenia: $2,700,000
Azerbaijan $2,700,000
Georgia $14,400,000

International Military Education and Training:
Armenia: $600,000
Azerbaijan $600,000
Georgia $1,800,000

International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement:
Armenia: $2,824,000
Azerbaijan: $1,226,000
Georgia: $4,000,000

Global Health Programs – USAID
Armenia $2,500,000
Azerbaijan: —
Georgia $4,000,000

Obama Administration Underscores Ties with Turkey’s

The President’s budget, which features language underscoring the importance that President Obama places on relations with Ankara, proposes $3.6 million in International Military Education and Training for Turkey. The text concerning Turkey reads as follows:

“Turkey continues to play an increasingly important role globally as an emerging power. Turkey is critical to success in the most important U.S. foreign policy priorities, including promoting stability and prosperity in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq; countering the threat of Iran; encouraging peaceful transition amongst the “Arab Spring” states; achieving a lasting peace in the Middle East; securing European energy diversity and independence; countering global terrorist threats; and advancing economic and trade objectives. The U.S. is working closely with Turkey to advance regional stability in the Eastern Mediterranean by promoting a settlement in Cyprus and encouraging improved relations with Israel; and in the Caucasus by attempting to normalize its relations with Armenia. The U.S. continues to support Turkey’s accession to the EU as an important anchor for Turkish reform and recently concluded an agreement for Turkey to host a U.S. missile defense radar. The U.S. encourages Turkey to make needed reforms, including advancing religious and press freedoms. Although Turkey’s democracy is maturing, challenges remain. Representative democratic institutions have become stronger but continue to face legal and political challenges, including in civilian-military relations. Resolution of the Cyprus conflict would benefit the communities themselves and remove a long source of friction between NATO Allies Greece and Turkey.”

Authors

Discussion Policy

Comments are welcomed and encouraged. Though you are fully responsible for the content you post, comments that include profanity, personal attacks or other inappropriate material will not be permitted. Asbarez reserves the right to block users who violate any of our posting standards and policies.

44 Comments

  1. bigmoustache said:

    i hope armenians remember this the next time the US comes to us asking for something..but for some reason i doubt it. those protocols were agreed to by Sultan Serj Sarkisoglu without second consideration because it would legitimize his fraudulent election. if youll notice, once serj was on board, there was an end to calls of fraudulent elections from hilary clinton.
    my final reminder, America owes us! for 100 years! we dont owe anyone anything!

    • demir said:

      Armenians owe America for their help in Syria desert in world war 1 not vice versa.

  2. www.Voskanapat.info said:

    This must be a joke! They appropriate fully aware that the Sate blockades the actual spending. Only fat USAID cats HQ’ed in Tbilisi get their lavish lifestyles out of this.

    Abandon ALL this fictitious “aid” and let Armenians raise way more real funding for Armenia! We can do this when we get that we’ve been had for decades as taxpayers by our own government.

    As Armenian Americans we should pay a 1.915% tax every April 24 to support our local communities and Armenia, Artsakh and Javakh. If we relied on our own resources there would be no need to beg these disgusting servants of the Big Oil for handouts.

    • Avery said:

      I agree with Voskanapat:

      No need to be hostile to US, but it is time we told Obama Administration to take the pocket change and put it where the sun don’t shine.

      RoA allows USA to build the largest Embassy in the Caucasus in Yerevan.
      RoA remains cordial as US looks the other way while its two client states, Azerbaijan and Turkey, are working relentlessly to snuff out Armenia.
      RoA remains cordial to US while Azeri snipers kill Armenian troops manning LOC in Artsakh (one phone call from US to Aliyev and it would stop cold).
      RoA has more men in Afghanistan, per capita, than Azerbaijan or Turkey.
      (Georgia has more, but gets US$ Billions from US in assistance)

      Enough already.

      US throws a few dollars Armenia-way, and that gives her license to stick its nose in RoA’s internal affairs. US was the primary instigator of the infamous Protocols.They put a gun to RoA Gov’s head and told them to sign it. And Russia went along (for some mysterious reason).

      In Y2011 private remittance to Armenia was US$1.5 billion (mostly from Russian diaspora).
      You read that right: US$1.5 BILLION.
      We don’t need the lousy $XX million from Obama Administration.

  3. zareh said:

    Armenians should not vote for Obama. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

    • Parsik said:

      you have been fooled many times in the past and inevtably you will be fooled again, no question about it, because Armenians never learn anything from history!

      by the way it seems excessive lard from soul food you have been eating and vibes from listening to rap and soul music is getting deep into your brain, because you are already think and speak like Americans !

      nothing personal against you, I mean the whole commuinity in America talking big about Armenian votes in prearranged elections, and tell you statemen to keep their cheap hand out for themselves for needy and homeless in America, I wouldn’t call 30-40 million which is the price of good property in Beverly Hills an state sponnsered aid to another country no matter how small or big it is, pur American propeganda, that is all!

  4. M.S.K. said:

    In my opinion the Armenian millionaires and billionaires should stand up and say – President Obama transfer
    the 19% = approximately 13 million dollars to Turkey we the Diaspora’s wealthy people will donate to our fatherland. (I wish I was a billionaire)

    • ashot said:

      if they donate to armenia then who will buy there sons bentley dealerships in armenia and marry them to sirusho..or buy lions to fight with donkeys in cages

  5. derek said:

    If there were oil wells in Armenia we would have no problems. Not to be surprised.

  6. Grish Begian said:

    Some priorities left for Mr.Obama, if he reelected for 2-nd term… to go Hagia Sofia and have ‘Friday Namaz” with Rajab and Matt, Davood and Ilham, and have a Turkish dance with Mr. Accordion in Dolmabaghcheh Palace!! May Allah give him strength and the power to be reelected again…US is not a “Christian Nation” anymore as he stated in Turkish Parliament in the last term…this term he should wear his old Indonesian style Muslim turban, secure his daughters headscarf before shaking hand with Mr. and Mrs. Gul!!

  7. Stepan said:

    It looks like Obama is trying to pay Georgia for her devastating losses after USA & NATO failed to provide any support to assist her when they casualy pushed and cajuled Georgia to attack its breakaway regions in 2008.

    It also seems Obama is punishing Armenia for sending Byrza back to his native Turkey to lick his wounds.

    Why do we even bother ??? If you get billions in aid like Israel & Pakistan its strategic, if you gets peanuts its begging.

    Come on Armenia, get smart and engage the diaspora like you should, then you will not have to look like beggers.

    As for our angry azeri neighbours, they are getting billions in oil revenue. Why do they even need to get assistance.

  8. Namik said:

    Armenia keeps being Russia’s satellite in Caucasus with its destabilising role in geopolitics. USA should have cut in all aid to Armenia which still occupies Azerbaijani territories relying on Russia’s political and military support.

  9. Grigor Markarian said:

    Thank You Obama,

    You can send the 19% cut money to Turkey, the author of the word Genocide, hand delivered to Turkey by double faced Hillary Clinton your famous Secretary of State.
    Armenians will not stop in their quest and demands for justice. Your money can not buy any ones friendship. Keep it.
    I will stop my comments here.

  10. Raffikian said:

    Everithing that shines is not Gold, before becoming President he was shining like Gold, promissing peace and prosperity to the world, the history repeats itself, Everithing that shines is not Gold.

  11. zohrab said:

    dont think that obama is doing us and armenia a favour2 million armenians are working and paying taxes to usa goverment so the help he is giving is peanuts

  12. Kira said:

    Armenian Americans should not be voting in the upcoming elections. Both parties are liars and have proven this fact so many times in the past. If anything give it to an independent to show both the dems and reps the power of the Armenian vote.

  13. namik said:

    Armenia keeps being Russia’s satellite in Caucasus with its destructive role in geopolitics so the USA shoud have cut in all aid to Armenia

    • Grish Begian said:

      You are dying for your oil man King Aliev corrupted AzerPYchani Sheikhdom!! Karabakh will never go back to your beloved temporary Kingdom!!

  14. AraK said:

    Usual Turkish boot licking and “realpolitik”. Actually the west doesn’t need Armenia except Iran and Russia for obvious reasons… If only corruption would be reduced then Armenia would be seen differently and her condition been improved.

    • namik said:

      You are right, Arak, when saying that only Iran and Russia need Armenia. Do you know why they need Armenia? They need it because they want to use Armenia to push with their imperial ambitions. Russia was the one who made Armenians in Iran an other territories to move gradually to Caucasus in order to use them in Russia’s colonialist politics against local Muslim and other population. You have tyo know this. Please see how Putin proves this in his speech in Armenia: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-1FK57LSik You Armenians should wake up and think of the real independence missing now for Armenian nation.

      • Parsik said:

        Namik you are so ungrateful and dumb about your own history, you are forgetting that it was same Russians, the last weakened and falling tzar and bolsheviks who gave you self-identity and drew the artificial borders of your russian made republic of so called Azerbaijan, before that you were just Caucausian Tatars with no administrative authority, and during that devious process in the vague hope of gaining more trust from Turkey they snapped big chunks of Armenian lands and gave to you for free!

      • Hay said:

        Cut the crap namik. 1. Caucasus and the surrounding areas are the birth-place of the Armenian nation. Tatars, lezgis, and the azeri-turks are all newcomers. The Armenians have lived on those territories for thousands of years—-before you came to the region.

        2. You are the last creature on the face of the earth who should pretend to care for the independence of Armenia.

  15. Stephen T. Dulgarian said:

    Shame on Pres. Obama for reducing 19% Aid to Armenia. Has he reduced aid to Turkey & Israel. We don’t see the reduced figures on those countries. His chance of winning re-election this coming year is very slim. He stands to lose 2 million Armenian votes, 5 million Greek votes, & 500,000 Assyrian votes, since he has not recognized the Genocide of those nations, not counting the millions of votes because of the poor economy he has put this country in.

  16. Hagop D said:

    Not much can be expected from this charlatan. Hopefully he is a one-term (fake) President. I’ll take a genocide denying President over a liar and backstabber.

  17. Christo said:

    Mr. Obama, what’s with this 19% cut, you should reduce the economic aid to armenia to a shiny penny, but then again in the eyes of the state department, I would say that’s even too much, you know we after all are the “starving Armenians”. Then again, maybe a penny you might be able to retrieve from the sewer, that would show us American Armenians how you, your administration and especially, your secretary of state’s true feelings.

  18. Basil said:

    I don’t care for any of the money sent to Armenia from the US, Not to sound ungrateful, but this isn’t 1920, if you are sending 30 million or so you could just as well spare everyone the act. What I care for however is this:

    Economic Support Fund: Azerbaijan: $11,029,000
    Foreign Military Financing: Azerbaijan $2,700,000
    International Military Education and Training: Azerbaijan $600,000
    International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement: Azerbaijan: $1,226,000

    This is weird, because I thought those Azeris are rich as shit nowadays, UAE-like – do you send support to Norway, Moncao, Luxemburg too? Also, whats the point of giving 2 opposing parties military financing and training? Also, why would you spend 2 times more on narcotics control in Armenia (pretty much no narcotics problems or trafficking), instead of spending all of it on Azerbaijan which is the main route of Heroin from Afghanistan/Iran to Russia and Europa via Georgia/Turkey/Albania? Also, why would they hide the hundreds of millions sent to Georgia as “exceptional aid” every year since 2008? So many unanswered questions.

    Also, please stop posting that Armenian-Americans shouldn’t vote for Obama, because quite frankly it doesn’t matter who you vote for, because if your vote would make a difference at all (lets assume that is the case), the new turd in town would smell just as bad as Mr. Hussein O.

  19. Ganbusters said:

    Rather than criticizing Obama, Armenians should demand to see where this money actually is spent.

  20. shahan said:

    Well all american armenians should not vote for this moron. Although we should say that the counterparts are not that better, but this idiot has surpassed all expectations!!!! He has been the biggest charlatan of all times!!! Oh yes remind me, why does Georgia require more Aid? or even Azerbaijan? Certainly boys, we should pull out of all missions abroad mainly Iraq and Afghanistan! these idiots are not worth it.
    What a shame!!!!

  21. hi said:

    Hamik..have you seen the size of american embesy in armenia with almost 50 different satellite dishes on the top of 2000 square meter (two story ) roof , and a huge lake behind it?that is some thing.
    as far as voting is concerned,I forgot about it long time ago.
    19% of cut should actually 190% of increase by obaamama ,because those two parallel pipelines (Gas & Oil) are constructed on 85% of armenian lands starting from baku,georgia,Adana.
    lastlly,There is no occupied territories at all.we armenians liberated 90% of our Artskh only.

  22. Manvel said:

    If Armenia had a legitamite, non corrupt, non oligarch, non election frauding Government. We would get a More Respect from major powers. We are getting exactly what we are worth based upon our Fraudulant government in Armenia…..

  23. Peter said:

    This is great news! Finally, I hope that we get a good SLAP in the face from this so that we as a Community FINALLY realize that NO-ONE will help us but ourselves. 40 million dollars from the USA makes them think they are entitled to control our democratic process. ARMENIA STANDS ON ITS OWN! ARMENIA ALL THE WAY!

  24. Hay said:

    I get an impression that U.S. is drawing a GREEN/MUSLIM line around Russia and China. The Muslims are back to power in Turkey, Egypt, Libya…etc. . U.S. looks for a way to bring Armenia under the Turkish influence. The protocols were entirely written by the turks, and Serzh was forced to sign them. Armenia will be left on the other side of the ‘green-line’, unless Serzh starts to fully cooperate with the U.S. .

  25. Harb said:

    Q:Why does the US give aid to Armenia or any other country?

    A: The aid serves to advance US strategic interests. In some cases, it is political, an affinity group has such influence in the US that it becomes a matter of domestic politics. Armenians seem to be strengthening their position as an affinity group with influence but clearly not as strong as needed to have a sufficient influence.

    The US should perceive that Armenia represents an opportunity to advance our nations’ interests. However, Armenia lacks natural resources and lacks strategic geo-political advantage. It is a sham democracy where corruption is the reality and the rule of law is a dream. Armenia lacks influence in world forums that the US might use to its advantage. I recognize that Armenia has sent 40 soldiers to Afghanistan. If that is the sum of what the US gets for its aid-then these are the most expensive soldiers in the world.

    The argument that Armenia intrinsically deserves aid from American taxpayers goes nowhere. Armenia needs to make the case that America is served by giving aid to Armenia. Not just Armenia, there is a whole cast of countries that get some level of aid that should be sliced or eliminated.

    President Obama needs to be challenging all foreign aid–zeroing it out and then building a case why it serves this country to send finite resources to another country. Armenia needs to demonstrate how the US benefits from giving money to Armenia and why that finite resource is better allocated to Armenia than some other country.

    • Parsik said:

      Harb, I am affraid that only thing lacking here is the dept in your geo-political vision, which is very common for Americans who look at the rest of the world through barrel of their big gun, that is why you can’t adopt yourself with the new era in the rise and you think it is still 1945 when your geo-vision really worked for your interests, and that is why you are having constantly major political setbacks throughout the world since then.

      I wouldn’t comment about Armenian lobby in US because they have obviously some weight, but more I want to remind you about Armenia itself, throughout Middle East history Armenia has been center of attention for big powers and every Euroasian empire there has ever existed, just ckeck the official archives of Achemenians and Parthians and Romans up to recently Russian and Ottoman empires, numerous major wars has been fought on Armenian land by foreigners for the control of the region, if that is not for geo-political reasons what else it is, because as you noticed rightfully Armenia has always been lacking natural resources, as much as for lacking real democracy that is common in post-soviet era, but hypocriticly you don’t mention anything about Georgia your stratigic ally which you give houndred of million dollars in aids, which in my book is more corupt and anti-democratic, and the shamest part of your antagonistic comment about Armenia is that her lacking influence in world forum, that is again typical shallow American world view, for your information as Mr. Velayati(former Iranian foreign minister) rightly observed and said once in private that some how for some known and unknown reasons Armenia’s problems and issues no matter how small tend to get magnified and amplituded in the world politics and forum, if thease are true and are the case, then how you describe so much weight in influence for so little country?

    • Fred said:

      Dear Harb
      I think We as Armenians should remove the 200 billion dollars of our money from the US stocks and economy and invest it in Armenia. Then the actual importance of Armania will become too aparent to the bulshit state of America.

      • Harb said:

        Parsik, I had Georgia as well as Turkey and a large number of other countries in mind when I wrote above “Not just Armenia, there is a whole cast of countries that get some level of aid that should be sliced or eliminated.President Obama needs to be challenging all foreign aid–zeroing it out and then building a case why it serves this country to send finite resources to another country. Armenia needs to demonstrate how the US benefits from giving money to Armenia and why that finite resource is better allocated to Armenia than some other country.”

        Parsik, you are right Armenia has often been prominent and important in the history of the Asia Minor and the Middle East. Armenia of today is much different in size and population and influence from the Armenia of yore. It’s survival is closely aligned to its major patron-Russia. Again, if Armenia wants aid from the US it needs to show how that plays to the US’s interests. My world view will never be as expansive or thoughtful as I would want. I would encourage you to move beyond Mr. Velayati as you develop your sense of global perspective.

        Whining is not the most effective way to secure aid for Armenia. Thoughtful development of how aid advances the interests of the aid giver might prove to be more effective.

        Fred, where did you get the number of 200 billion? If you want to invest your money in Armenia-do it. I’m sure it will be welcome.

  26. Baron's said:

    Obama who….? the man cannot and will no keep his word…..yet he’s running the most powerful nation on earth…no wonder America is in trouble…..

  27. bigmoustache said:

    harb you make a very good point. i just think that after failing to acknowledge the genocide, failing to secure a guarantee from the US that artsakh will be safe (our failure), and even going along with a stupid protocols to please america, they owe us!
    yes i understande serjouglu went with the protocols so hiliary clinton and the US govt would accept him as a friend, thereby legitimizing his fraudulent election.
    but what im saying, armenians are in no position to give the US anything anymore.

*

Top