Saturday, December 16, 2006

Kocharian visits the border. (older blog that was deleted)

Kocharian_visits_the_border, originally uploaded by nazarian.

So I came across an article about the Armenian President's visit to the army barracks of the border forces.

In the picture he has the same facial expression and mannerism that I remember seeing some 15 years ago. In 1990, when we were still part of the Soviet Union, the conflict in Karabagh was heating up. The Azeris were a much more powerful force than us and had firearms at their disposal. The Soviet army was on their side as well. Well, you don't want to face the barbaric Azeris and the Russians with sticks and stones that we had at the time. Right until 1993 the Azeris were a couple of steps ahead of the Armenians in terms of armaments. When we stated getting our hands on some automatic weapons, they were already using heavy arms and armored transport. By 1994, most of the arms the Armenian forces used were captured from the Azeris.

So the solution in 1990 was to manufacture our own weaponry, and a few people in our town started making some rifles. These were bolt-action rifles but were better than anything used before. Plus, they used the 7.62 mm cartridge from AK-47.

When a couple of prototypes were made, Kocharian came over to have a look and see whether they could be used by the self-defense groups in Karabagh. At the time he was the coordinator of the yerkrapah (self-defense) forces in Karabagh.

He looked exactly as he looks in this picture while he was inspecting the rifle. My guess is that he likes guns (probably a little more than the majority of men in the world).

BTW, the use of these rifles were extremely limited as they became obsolete very quickly and AK rifles were inherited from the Soviet Army.

UPDATE: The Armenia Blog has an update on the rifle in question. It's a Serbian made Zastava M93.


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