We’re All Armenians

Aram Hamparian

BY ARAM HAMPARIAN

With or without an “ian” or “yan” at the end of our names.

Folks with 2 Armenian parents, or 1, or who are 1/4, 1/8, a 1/16, 1/32, or (like the late Princess Diana) 1/64 Armenian.

Kids who’ve been adopted into Armenian families, or husbands and wives who’ve married into our community.

Those in Armenia and from around our global diaspora.

First or 5th (or 15th) generation immigrants.

Armenian speakers or not.

Left, right, or center. Of all types, tastes, and varieties.

Those who serve and sacrifice, and those yet to fully find their place.

Of all faiths, or no faith. Christian (like so many of us) or Muslim (like our Hamshen brothers and sisters).

Part Kurdish, part Assyrian, part anything and everything: You’re 100 percent of every part of your heritage, including 100 percent Armenian!

Armenians by birth, by choice, by citizenship, by spirit, by partnership…or by accident.

We’re all Armenians.

We each—for reasons as myriad and sometimes as mysterious as the stars—bring something unique to the Armenian equation.

And so, it’s with arms open to the world and all its wonder and diversity, that we cherish our special place among the family of nations and treasure our ever-evolving contribution to the rich tapestry of human civilization.

We’re Armenians, and we stand together, as proud sons and daughters of our ancient tribe, in believing in and building a bright and brilliant future for ourselves and all of humanity.

Aram Hamparian
is the executive director of the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).

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32 Comments

  1. Haik Azad said:

    Aah,mr.Hamparian,we are all Armenians,but as mr.Orwel`s character would say:some are more Armenians than others and every Armenian thinks he is the most Armenian.And finally no Armenian is an island unto himself!!!

  2. edward Demian said:

    how many Hamshetzy Armenians have been resettled in Artsack?

  3. John Markarian said:

    Recent genetic research is showing that there are genetic differences between Russian-Armenians and Persian Armenians. Among Persian Armenians, J2 is the major genetic group known as a haplotype. On the other hand , Russian Armenians have a higher prevalence of R1A which suggests that they are genetically different most likely due to intermarriage with Russians, Azeris and other peoples of the former Soviet Union.Persian-Armenians exclusively married other Persian-Armenians and this prevented the introduction of non-Armenian genes into the bloodline of Persian-Armenians. Furthermore, Persian-Armenians lived in a Muslim country and this slight religious tension kept Persian-Armenians from intermixing. The lesson of the story is that intermarriage with non-Armenians has real dangers of producing a cultural and genetic destruction of the Armenian people.

      • edward Demian said:

        Silly weed ey? Armenians have married other Christian neighboring people if at all. That’s why, recent DNA studies sow that the Assyrians are genetically, identical to the Hayasa (Armenians). The Azery’s are nearly identical, and closer to the Armenians genetically than anyone else. Anatolian Turks are genetically 90% Armenian or more.
        -What now?
        -The conclusion is, that all these invaders were absorbed, by us genetically, but some of us were defeated by them culturally.
        -So what to do?
        -Propagandize the truth among the ignorant, but carry a large stock of Genetic marker sticks.
        -What?
        -They haven’t been invented yet.
        -What made you think of that?
        -The pregnancy test thing. Amazing thing.
        -I see….Hmmmmmm

    • Mikhail said:

      John, original Armenian blood is actually Blond and Blue eyed just like the greeks were before the turks came around the corner. We have been mixing a long time ago, its not the blood that keeps the culture its the culture and the teachings of our past keeps our Armenian Identity.

  4. Peter Megerdumian said:

    We do have to admit that Armenians living in different parts of the world adopted some of the cultural aspects of their adoptive homelands but have also been changed genetically by intermarriage with the native inhabitants of their adoptive homelands.. As an example, Russian-Armenians were heavily influenced by Soviet/Russian culture in both positive and negative ways. Within the former Soviet Union, Armenians who lived in Moscow and Leningrad had access to top universities and greater opportunities. Many top scientists in Russia were and still are Armenians who resided in Moscow or Leningrad such as Artem Mikoyan(inventor of the MIG airplanes), Mikhail Pogosyan (current head of the Sukoi design burreau building Russia’s first stealth fighter) Levon Mikhailovich Chailakhyan (biologist who cloned first mammal),Boris Artashesovich Babayan(father of the Soviet super computer). A sad tragedy that fell upon the Hayastansi Armenians was when parts of Armenia in the 1600’s was that the Yerevan region was occupied by the Iranians who created the (Yerevan)Erivan Khanate. The Armenian historian George A. Bournoutian. stated that 80 percent of the population of the Erivan khanate was Muslim (Persian, Azeri, and Kurdish) and 20 percent Armenian.(Eastern Armenia in the Last Decades of Persian Rule, 1807—1828 by International Journal of Middle East Studies, Vol. 16, No. 4. (Nov., 1984), pp. 566—567. ) Subsequently under Russian rule, the Muslims were Christianized and adopted Armenian last names and intermarried with Armenians..This would explain the recent genetic research by Dr.Tamara Sarkisian whose research team found significant genetic similarities between Azeris and Hayastansi Armenians (Testing hypotheses of language replacement in the Caucasus: evidence from the Y-chromosome.Human Genetics. 2003 Mar;112(3):255-61. Epub 2002 Dec 14.Nasidze I, Sarkisian T, Kerimov A, Stoneking M.
    Similarly, among the Lebanese-Armenians, they adopted many aspects of Lebanese culture and there were some occurrences of intermarriage between Lebanese-Armenians and Lebanese Marionite Christians.

    • Minas said:

      And yet the Russians still take advantage of Armenia and Armenians.

    • Ալեքսան Նալբանդյան said:

      Peter, there IS NO muslim origin people in Yerevan, because modern population of Armenia has Western Armenian origin, there are many Tiflis Armenians live in Yerevan. muslim population have migrated into azer-n. In 1900 Yerevan’s population was 30,000, but after Armenian Genocide and creating of soviet Armenia our capital’s population has increased by 1 mln inhabitants.
      Haystantsinery are clear Armenians.

    • edward Demian said:

      The Romanians and the Armenians are like two rabbits in spring. There are many intermarriages between the two.

  5. Harut said:

    Bravo brother Aram this is what i wanted to read and hear you said it my brother yes indeed amen to that.

  6. Nancy Agabian said:

    This statement would have meant a lot more if you had included the words “LGBT” or “queer” or “gay” at a time when this is the minority in Armenia most under attack — dangerously so — and by Artsvik Minasyan, an ARF MP. Queer Armenians have been organizing since the late 90s in the U.S. and Europe and more recently in Armenia. We contribute to Armenian culture in enormous ways, and we’re a part of the Armenian community — 10% of it.

  7. arziv said:

    It seems we never stop nourishing ourselves with myths and wishful dreams, like Princess Diana having 1/64 of Armenian blood ? Where did they conjure up this ” discovery” ? What has the Princess, or had, to say when she was confronted with this solemn revelation ? Did perhaps an Armenian gardner had an amorous affair with one her great great aunts ? Has Agassi been asked if he feels Armenian ? By Aram’s logic Steffi Graf is also Armenian ? It is very nice, everybody and all of us are Armenians, the issue is not to confound the people who don’t feel and don;t give a hoot about Armenians as Armenians. I

    • Vatche said:

      I vote for Inclusiveness. Exclusiveness has us on the defensive.

  8. Դրօ said:

    I don’t believe in any of this feel-good, politically correct, mumbo-jumbo because it does not reflect reality. But it seems that this article appeals to the Armenians living in the West because this is what they’ve been brainwashed into believing by the ruling elite. This is the only language they understand. So… I guess I approve of this article.

  9. John Minassian said:

    I absolutely agree with John and Peter. Sergei Lavrov, the foreign minister of Russia is half Armenian but he considers himself to be Russian and is 100% loyal to Russia. What makes a person an Armenian is recognizing yourself as an Armenian. I have a cousin who married a Chinese American woman and the children look Chinese . They only associate with other Chinese from the wife’s family and they may have an Armenian father and an Armenian last name but I doubt that they will consider themselves Armenian. Intermarriage with non-Armenians is indeed the greatest threat to the Armenians and is a form of cultural genocide. Chinese are good people and I have nothing against them but it is good to be friends with them but not to marry them. The worst thing are Hayastansi woman who marry Turks and have half-Turk children. It is natural that they will consider themselves Turks and become Muslims because in the muslim tradition, it is the father’s religion that determines the childrens religion. Jews are the only people that are able to intermarry but maintain their jewishness because their religion and ethnicity is one in the same.

  10. Jda said:

    Princess Diana’s Armenian great etc. Grandmother has been identified. I don’t think she had any statement or affection for this ancestor’s lineage,, but so what?

    Agassi’s Armenian father is well known. He was an Olympic boxer for Iran. I don’t thing Agassi has done much about his ancestry or for his father’s people, but he still has time.

    The point of the article is important. None of us should question the authenticity of any other. We are too few in number to exclude any one who loves us, our culture is too beautiful to deny it to anyone who appreciates it. I always rejoice anytime I meet an Armenian. I pity anyone who does not.

  11. Peter Megerdumian said:

    The Hayastansi Armenian soldiers are really courageous, tough and the best Armenian soldiers in history. If Armenian soldiers were this tough in the past, we might of kept our nation free but I think that we have always been better merchants, artisans and intellectuals rather than good fighters. I think that Hayastansi soldiers are the best in history because they have more Russian and Turkish genes in their bloodline because of the intermixing during the Erivan Khanate. Genetic mixing can have positive results because the most toughest , aggressive and bravest soldiers win wars. We have to be proud of their accomplishments in liberating Nagorno-Karabagh.I am sure that they will be able to beat off any Azeri aggression especially if they keep upgrading their equiptment.

    • Alex Postallian said:

      I beg to differ with you on the turkish connection—-In WW1 turkey was part of the Axis(Germany/Austria),they were soundly beaten on two fronts by an equal force,they faultered and got on their knees,joined the Allies.Never will intimidate an equal adversary,unless their twenty times smaller or unarmed.Again they were trained by German Officers,who had problems because of their stupidity and poor personal habits,rebellious nature.So turkey was given the name OLD YELLOW STAIN, the sick man of Europe….

    • Ալեքսան Նալբանդյան said:

      I am hayastantsi, Peter. All of us are classic Armenians, because our ancestors are from Trapezund, Sasoon, Moush, Zeythun, Bayazet and other Western Armenian cities and provinces. small Eastern Armenian population in Russian Empire and modern Armenia population are different things. After repatriation of 1947 – 1960 in Armenia live Armenians from worldwide. We don’t have Russian or turkish blood, because only small part of our people has ancestors from Erivan khanate. This small part is not muslim people descendants, because mixed marriages with muslims were prohibited in Eastern Armenian community.

      • Peter Megerdumian said:

        I do agree with you that there multiple waves of Armenian immigration into Hayastan which does impact genetics. One thing that I do have to say is that the Armenian Power gang members do look absolutely like Turks to me and their ancestors probably were Turks.

  12. Peter Megerdumian said:

    I should clarify that Hayastansi Armenians are the best soldiers in Armenian military history. It really is amazing how they were able to beat the Azeris eventhough they had more men, better military equiptment and they even hired American, Russian and Afghan mercinaries but were still defeated. This is quite an accomplishement and bravo to them. It was the Armenian smartness along with toughness that led us to victory.

  13. Shahe said:

    Armenian culture is defined by the language. Language read, spoken and understood in Armenian maintains the link between past and present. It is a way of life, it is the Armenian way of life. Aberrations in this culture can truly become integrated into the Armenian culture over generations. Diluted Armenians at present have to prove over generations that they are going back to their roots, namely from 1/64 to 1/32 and so on.

  14. Armen said:

    Diasporans of Orthodox Christian nations in E. Europe are very similar: nostalgic, emotional, assimilated, co-opted by church leaders (who control the communities under the “defunct” Ottoman millet system), disconnected from reality/happenings in the homeland, and blindly supportive of corrupt/inept homeland leaders who harm their pan-national interests in many ways.

    Don’t give up on them.
    Engage them.
    Connect them to the homeland.
    Learn from them.
    Improve them.
    Inspire them!

  15. John Markarian said:

    United We stand, divided we fall. That is absolutely true. Mr.Hamparian is correct. We need to keep our Armenian identities.I hope that Armenians from different communities can be more united . I think that the greatest divide is between Hayastansi Armenians and non-Hayastansi Armenians and we need to bridge the divide. One thing that has shocked me is that some Hayastansi’s consider Persian-Armenians as being Persian and this is incredibly dumb.The Armenian government should protect Armenian investors from abroad and encourage investment.

  16. John Markarian said:

    Armenians need to help other Armenians irregardless of where they come from. I have heard backstabbing between Armenians at workplaces and this is sad. We need to learn how to be united from the Jews. They have a supernetwork that helps each other. Each synagogue serves as a jobhunting network. The synagogue gives interest-free loans to members and helps them during difficult times . They also take 10% of the salary of each synagogue member. Jews help each other in many ways and this is their secret to success and power. I am not saying that we can replicate what the jews are doing but we can learn the positive things that they do .

  17. Peter Megerdumian said:

    There are some Hayastansi individuals who do have Turk-like features such as the Armenian Power Gang or the Armenian actors that play mafiosi on Armenian TV.. If you look at the LAPD most wanted website, there are only two Armenians on there and this Armenian Power gangster looks just like Turk. Similarly, the Armenian Power gang members arrested in 2011 also look like Turks so they may indeed have Turkish genes. Similarly Dodi Gago (Gagik Kolyai Tsarukyan) has Russian Slavic features. He has a big round bowling ball shaped head and a big boned body very similar to other Russian men. He probably has Russian blood and that explains his close ties to Moscow.He looks incredibly similar to the Russian-Jewish oligarch Boris Berezovsky. There are many pure Armenians in Hayastan also but there are Turkish and Russian genetic influences especially on some segments of the population.

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