Thursday, January 05, 2006

Hope springs eternal

I thought I should share this. William Saroyan's words on the Armenian people are a must-read whenever I'm feeling down:

“I should like to see any power in this world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people whose wars have been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, whose literature is unread, whose music is unheard and whose prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy this race! Destroy Armenia! See if you can do it. Send them away from their homes into the desert. Let them have neither bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then, see if they will not live again, see if they will not sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.”

Somewhere in me, I can say the same of Lebanon.

18 comments:

JoseyWales said...

Good idea Hassan: reminding us of these very powerful words.

Raja said...

hassan, very touching. nice.

ghassan said...

It is extremly pressumptious of me to disgree with Mr.Saroyan, but disagree I must. Is he saying that a nation is a state of mind? And if so then for how long can it be kept alive?

Anonymous said...

ummmm, let's see:

The Greeks - 400 years

The Jews - 2000 years

The Kurds - since the beginning of time

Long enough for you?

Hani G. said...

Thanks Hassan. Very inspiring.

A noble people.

Michael J. Totten said...

All of a sudden I want to visit Armenia.

Anonymous said...

Nice words, but somewhat over- dramatic in comparing the Armenian holocaust to Lebanon?

Anonymous said...

I am not sure that many people would agree that the Kurdish example is a success story neither would many want the Zionist model. In this case one can regard the Greeks an exception rather than the rule:-):-)

Anonymous said...

I haven't heard of Saroyan before, thanks hassan for the great quotation.

Anonymous said...

you miss the point. just because you do not like israel and do not regard the kurds as a success is irrelevant. ghassan asked a simple question - how long can a people without a country keep alive their desire for a homeland? the reply indicates that this desire, regardless of its merit (which is entirely subjective), can remain alive for centuries. also, the examples quoted above are hardly comprehensive, so i don't think you can talks about exceptiosn to rules. you could add the armenians, the poles (at various points in history), the albanians, the assyrians, the sami, the basques, the chechens, the hmong, the tamils, the karen blah blah blah.
and that isn't even half: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_stateless_ethnic_groups if u care to see a more comprehensive list.

david said...

Thank you. I am here. I live in Saroyan's place, California. I heard him read this. I am half-armenian. I sing and pray, life's good. I am here.

It didn't work.

Anonymous said...

The blogsosphere is pretty quiet these days.

Come on people, you have a duty to entertain us.

Maya said...

Beautiful, thank you for sharing.

Anonymous said...

Anon of 1:51pm, for entertainment, please follow closely Michel Aon's frantic moves to the left, right, and left again in his unwavering effort to become our next president.

FGA

zwixo said...

Beautiful indeed, but honestly I think so low of our people that this fails to enchant me.

Anonymous said...

Anon 1:51..

I agree. I want my money back.

Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

Michael, Armenia is beautiful. You should go there. But don't expect to find a prosperous country. And there's little tourism, so it will be adventure for you.

Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

And I want my money back.