Celebrities

Celebs From Kardashian to Kirkland Stand With Artsakh

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Kim Kardashian, Sean Penn, Cher, Michael B. Johnson, Diddy, Mel Gibson, Serj Tankian, Lawrence Zarian, Sally Kirkland, and Congressman Adam Schiff among celebrities drawing attention to Artsakh

 

In an effort to educate the American public about the humanitarian crisis happening in Artsakh (Nagorno-Karabakh) and Armenia at the hands of Azerbaijan and Turkey, USATV and The Blunt Post [Editor’s Note: Writer Vic Gerami, an Armenian-American, is editor/publisher of The Blunt Post] have launched the PSA campaign “I Stand With Artsakh and Armenia.”

Entertainers including Kim Kardashian, Sean Penn, Cher, Michael B. Johnson and others are helping to draw attention to the attacks on Artsakh, also known as Nagorno Karabakh, an integral part of historic Armenia.

In 1921, to consolidate power, Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin forcibly placed Artsakh under Soviet Azerbaijani rule. An arbitrary decision placed a millennia-old autonomous Christian territory into a largely hostile Muslim regional government entity.

During the Soviet regime, Artsakh repeatedly appealed to the Central Government in Moscow to restore justice and reunite the region with Armenia. After years of tireless struggle, Moscow granted autonomous status to the region. The Nagorno Karabakh Autonomous Oblast (Region) was created on a part of historical Artsakh. However, this new formation was deliberately separated from Armenia by a slim corridor.

The population of Nagorno Karabakh declared its independence from the Russian Empire in 1991. Azerbaijan, with its Muslim majority population, responded by declaring war against the Christian Armenians. After a bloody and destructive conflict resulting in 30,000 deaths, a cease-fire agreement was signed in 1994.

Year after year, however, serious and deadly violations by Azerbaijan increased in frequency until the April 2016 escalation into a major confrontation involving large-scale attacks by Azeri forces along the entire border of Azerbaijan with Artsakh and Armenia.

On Sept. 27, 2020, Azerbaijan unleashed a genocidal war on Artsakh with help from its close ally, Turkey. Confirmed reports indicate that the two countries had been preparing for this attack for about a year. Azerbaijan, an oil rich country, purchased weapons from various countries and hired ISIS, Syrian, Libyan, and Pakistani jihadist mercenaries and brought them to attack the Armenians of Artsakh.

About 90,000 Artsakh residents, nearly 60 percent of the population, have fled the bombings.

Genocide Watch’s “GENOCIDE EMERGENCY: Azerbaijan in Artsakh” report states: “Due to its denial of past genocide against Armenians, its official use of hate speech, and the current targeting of civilians in Artsakh, Genocide Watch considers Azerbaijan to be at Stage 9: Extermination and Stage 10: Denial.”

The report concluded that Azerbaijani military offensives, using “laser guided drones supplied by Turkey and Israel,” against Artsakh civilians are “war crimes under the Geneva Conventions.”

The U.S. Department of State announced on Oct. 25 the third attempted ceasefire in the Artsakh war. The first two ceasefires were violated by Azerbaijan and Turkey within minutes of going into effect. The new ceasefire announcement was made after the foreign ministers of Armenia and Azerbaijan flew to Washington, D.C. and separately met with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Oct. 23.

Actor Michael B Jordan shared on his Twitter account, “NO MORE GENOCIDE! Thinking of my Armenian friends and people in conflict everywhere and using this app to see what the media won’t show.” Michael B Jordan

At launch, Kim Kardashian, Serj Tankian (System of a Down), multiple Grammy-winner Paulina Aguirre, Yasmine Al Massri (Quantico), Ed Begley Jr., Andrea Martin, and fashion expert and West Hollywood resident Lawrence Zarian have lent their support to the campaign, with more high-profile figures slated to join, including the honorable Congressman Adam Schiff. You can watch the 1st of a series here.

Cher tweeted, “I’ve Heard About ‘Blood Thirsty TURKS Who Tortured & Murdered Almost 2Million Armenians SINCE I WAS 11. ALSO HEARD IT IN ARMENIA. TURK SOLDIERS ARE STILL BLOOD THIRSTY.”

The campaign launched on the website and social media channels of USATV, The Blunt Post, Pop News Edition, YouTube, and many other platforms.

Sean Penn tweeted, “As too many of us sit on our butts, Armenians are being slaughtered by Trump pal Erdogan with weapons WE provided. THIS is NOT America! Biden for America’s new birth.”

Diddy posted a picture on his Instagram that simply stated, “ARMENIA IS UNDER ATTACK.”

Mel Gibson lent his support with this video

Famed high-profile attorney Mark Geragos tweeted, “Turkey’s Hateful Neo-Ottoman Campaign Against the Armenians – Turkey’s and Azerbaijan’s violent claims on Artsakh are unsubstantiated: Artsakh is one of the provinces of historical Armenia and has retained an Armenian majority throughout the centuries.”

Congressman Adam Schiff, whose district includes West Hollywood, joined the PSA campaign with this video.

To make a tax-deductible donation for humanitarian aid to Artsakh, visit ArmeniaFund.org

See journalist Vic Gerami’s interview with Steve Sievers in Bionic Buzz about the situation in Artsakh.

Vic Gerami is a noted journalist, a columnist and the host and producer of the prime-time radio show, “The Blunt Post with Vic” on Independent Radio KPFK 90.7 FM (Pacifica Network). The program covers breaking and headline news, politics, and current events. Guests on the show have included Congressmembers Adam Schiff, Jackie Speier, Tony Cardenas, Maxine Waters, Judy Chu, Jim Costa, Norma Torres, Grace Napolitano, Raul Ruiz, Barbara Lee and Linda Sanchez, as well as former presidential candidate Marianne Williamson. Gerami began in the media industry at Frontiers Magazine, followed by positions at LA Weekly and Voice Media Group. Gerami was twice selected as a finalist in the Los Angeles Press Club’s National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards “Columnist of the Year” category in 2017 and 2019, His celebrity Q&A column, ‘10 Questions with Vic‘ is internationally syndicated, and featured interviews with Melissa Etheridge, Paula Abdul, Dan Reynolds (Imagine Dragons), Kathy Griffin, Matthew Modine, Laverne Cox, and Marianne Williamson. In July 2020, Gerami was announced as a finalist in 7 categories for the Los Angeles Press Club’s 62nd Annual Southern California Journalism Awards.

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