Armen S. Asryan
Key words – Aram Manukyan, individuality, unshakable will, nation, power, Armenia, political figure, republic, prudence, decisiveness, responsibility, consistency.
In the histories of many nations, including that of Armenia, individuals appeared periodically and had significant impact on the development of the history, becoming the driving force of it. In the newest history of Armenia that very person was Aram Manukyan (Sargis Hovhannisyan 1879-1919), the biggest national and political figure of 20th century, who is remembered as the founder of the First Republic of Armenia. This statement fist of all refers to his activities in 1918, a fatal period for the nation of Armenia. Aram Manukyan, in fact, was the sole executive of Yerevan province, which occupied a considerable territory of Eastern Armenia. At the end of 1917, after the fall of Russian empire, Transcaucasia and Eastern Armenia were separated from Russian empire and were left alone against Turkey, giving the latter an opportunity to bring about its pan-Turkish objectives. One of the objectives was the occupation of Transcaucasia. Undoubtedly, it would include the genocide of the Armenians of Eastern Armenia as well. The urgent creation of powerful government and armed forces became a necessity. The fact that it was Aram who was entrusted with the leadership of Yerevan province in that critical period distinguishes him from other political figures of the time.
Aram, who can be characterized as a person of great endurance, unshakable will, decisiveness, consistency, prudence and strategic thinking, was able to get together skillful military leaders, political and social figures and organize new governmental bodies. With their help, he also created efficient military formations, suppressed Тatars’ mutiny and anti-state activities, resolved many other vital problems during short period of time. In May, which was a fatal month, he played an important role in the organization of triumphant battles of Sardarabad and Aparan, which made the reshaping of the independence possible. Holding several offices in the government, Aram by all means contributed to the strengthening of the republic. Hence, he can be viewed as the founder of the First Republic of Armenia and a driving force of the history.