Under the light of historical and critical revaluations


Ararat M. Hakobyan

Key words – ARF Dashnaktsutyun, congress, elimination, A. Bakunts, Soviet Armenia, stenographic protocol, Armenian Communist Party, social origin, A. Mravyan, decision, resolution, 2nd International.

After the Sovietization of Armenia, ARF Dashnaktsutyun became the main target of the Communist Party on the way of the establishment of a one-party regime in Armenia. To this end, on behalf of the government party bodies a convention was prepared and conducted by the “former members of the ARF Dashnaktsutyun” in Armenia on November 24, 1923 to discuss the elimination of the Armenian organizations and members of the ARF Dashnaktsutyun. Critical study of the convention’s materials shows that, although the ordinary members of ARF Dashnaktsutyn announced the rejection of their membership in the ARF under the fear of losing their jobs, and under state duress, but some of them did not make a statement, and some even remained faithful to the ideology of ARF Dashnaktsutyun. Despite the fact that the reports and speeches were read following a pre-planned scenario, in consequence of which it was decided to eliminate the organizations of ARF in Armenia, a letter-application was addressed to the 2nd International Bureau, but even then, the groups and the organizations of ARF Dashnaktsutyun continued their underground activities in Soviet Armenia. We can say that the so-called “self-destruction convention of the ARF Dashnaktsutyun” did not reached its goal completely.

According to the data of Joint State Political Administration of the Soviet Union on January 1, 1930, there were 70 ARF groups with 538 members in the USSR, which consisted of 6 organizations and had a control center. Facts also show that the allied groups and individuals were operating in Armenia until the end of sovietization in the second half of the 1930s. In the end, due to the repressive policies of the communist government, ARF Dashnaktsutyun was forced to exile. The center of gravity of the party moved to the diaspora. Despite this, the party was still in the spiritual connection with the homeland until the collapse of the USSR, and after the destruction of communist totalitarianism, ARF Dashnaktsutyun returned home. In August 1990, the party was fully present in Armenia and played an important role in the liberation of Artsakh and in the creation of the modern independent Republic of Armenia.

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