FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

A Velvet Revolution Turns Bloody? Ten Dead in Toronto

Alek Minassian is of Armenian descent.  His murderous attack using a “white van” on the streets of Toronto took place on the same day that growing street protests in Yerevan, capital of Armenia, forced the long-reigning President and Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan, to resign his post; and the day before commemoration of the Armenian Genocide, still not recognized by the Turkish Government.

This complicates the claim of Prime Minister Trudeau that there is “nothing to suggest that there is a national security element to the situation”. Toronto City Mayor John Tory responded by saying that “we don’t expect such things to happen in Toronto”.  Of course, Hemingway famously mocked the placid politics of Toronto, where he did a short stint as a Toronto Star reporter, dismissing it as a “city of churches”.  But is Toronto, and Canada, really so secluded and blameless in international affairs?

With regard to events in Armenia, in fact, the Canadian government has been a very active supporter of the political protest movement aimed at unseating its socialist government, as it has also been in Venezuela, Ukraine, and Syria. The claim of Canada’s Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland has been that these governments are authoritarian tools of Russian plots against Western democracy, and “free markets”.

The same day that Minassian attacked, Freeland’s office had issued the following statement of support for the “Velvet Revolution” in Armenia:

“Canada recognizes the bravery of Armenians who have exercised their ‎freedom of expression over the past several days, in the face of threats of harsh punishment,” Adam Austen, spokesperson for Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland, said in a statement to Radio Canada International. “Their courage is to be applauded.”

It is to be noted here that Sargsyan was a senior member of the Communist Party during the Soviet era, and his government rules with the support of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF), a democratic socialist party, and received over 55% of the popular vote in the 2017 elections.  His government is perceived as Pro-Russian.

Of course, Nikol Pashinyan, leader of the “Civil Contract” Party is a neo-liberal politician campaigning for greater integration of Armenia with the EU.  He claims that the success of the protests mean that the current government should surrender power and call new elections.

This brings us to the question of whether the events of April 23rdin Toronto may have had a political connection. The timing of events makes it seem implausible that they are a mere coincidence.  The Canadian government has suffered blowback for its international adventures before, not the least of which is the banning of its Foreign Minister, Chrystia Freeland, from travel to Russia precisely in response to her meddling in political events along its borders.

More articles by:

January 15, 2019
Patrick Cockburn
Refugees Are in the English Channel Because of Western Interventions in the Middle East
Howard Lisnoff
The Faux Political System by the Numbers
Lawrence Davidson
Amos Oz and the Real Israel
John W. Whitehead
Beware the Emergency State
John Laforge
Loudmouths against Nuclear Lawlessness
Myles Hoenig
Labor in the Age of Trump
Jeff Cohen
Mainstream Media Bias on 2020 Democratic Race Already in High Gear
Dean Baker
Will Paying for Kidneys Reduce the Transplant Wait List?
George Ochenski
Trump’s Wall and the Montana Senate’s Theater of the Absurd
Binoy Kampmark
Dances of Disinformation: the Partisan Politics of the Integrity Initiative
Glenn Sacks
On the Picket Lines: Los Angeles Teachers Go On Strike for First Time in 30 Years
Jonah Raskin
Love in a Cold War Climate
Andrew Stewart
The Green New Deal Must be Centered on African American and Indigenous Workers to Differentiate Itself From the Democratic Party
January 14, 2019
Kenn Orphan
The Tears of Justin Trudeau
Julia Stein
California Needs a 10-Year Green New Deal
Dean Baker
Declining Birth Rates: Is the US in Danger of Running Out of People?
Robert Fisk
The US Media has Lost One of Its Sanest Voices on Military Matters
Vijay Prashad
5.5 Million Women Build Their Wall
Nicky Reid
Lessons From Rojava
Ted Rall
Here is the Progressive Agenda
Robert Koehler
A Green Future is One Without War
Gary Leupp
The Chickens Come Home to Roost….in Northern Syria
Glenn Sacks
LA Teachers’ Strike: “The Country Is Watching”
Sam Gordon
Who Are Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionists?
Weekend Edition
January 11, 2019
Friday - Sunday
Richard Moser
Neoliberalism: Free Market Fundamentalism or Corporate Power?
Paul Street
Bordering on Fascism: Scholars Reflect on Dangerous Times
Joseph Majerle III – Matthew Stevenson
Who or What Brought Down Dag Hammarskjöld?
Jeffrey St. Clair - Joshua Frank
How Tre Arrow Became America’s Most Wanted Environmental “Terrorist”
Andrew Levine
Dealbreakers: The Democrats, Trump and His Wall
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Que Syria, Syria
Dave Lindorff
A Potentially Tectonic Event Shakes up the Mumia Abu-Jamal Case
Nick Pemberton
There Are More Important Things Than The Truth
Brian Cloughley
How Trump’s Insults and Lies are Harming America
David Rosen
Sexual Predators in the Era of Trump
Tamara Pearson
Everything the Western Mainstream Media Outlets Get Wrong When Covering Poor Countries
Richard E. Rubenstein
Trump vs. the Anti-Trumps: It’s the System That Needs Changing Not Just the Personnel
Christopher Ketcham
A Walk in the Woods, Away from the Screens
Basav Sen
Democrats Failed Their First Big Test on Climate
Lauren Smith
Nicaragua – The Irony of the NICA Act Being Signed into Law by Trump
Joseph Natoli
Will Trumpism Outlive Trump?
Olivia Alperstein
The EPA Rule Change That Could Kill Thousands
Medea Benjamin – Alice Slater
The New Congress Needs to Create a Green Planet at Peace
Caoimhghin Ó Croidheáin
Cuba: Trump Turns the Vise
Ramzy Baroud
When Bolsonaro and Netanyahu Are ‘Brothers’: Why Brazil Should Shun the Israeli Model
Mitchell Zimmerman
Government by Extortion
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail