The Armenians Are Not Caucasians

The Armenians Are Not CaucasiansRecently, many Russians and Armenians of Russia call the Armenians the peoples of the Caucasus, but we should know that this is not entirely true. According to Wikipedia, Armenia is geographically located in the Caucasus, and this article will discuss the possible political arguments underlying this classification.

The republics of the North Caucasus are Russian republic-states (Dagestan, Chechnya, Ingushetia, Ossetia, Kabardino-Balkaria, Karachaevo-Cherkessia, Adygea). The Transcaucasia (or the Southern Caucasus) roughly corresponds to Armenia, Georgia, and Azerbaijan.

The territory of historical Armenia, one-tenth of which is now occupied by the Republic of Armenia, does not belong to the North Caucasus (associated with Russia) since it is located in the Armenian Highlands (this is a geographical term that has nothing to do with the Caucasus).

Armenians aren’t ethnically related to the people of the North Caucasus. They are much closer to the Greeks, Germans, European Russians, Iranians, and other ethnic groups. So what is the reason behind Armenia and Armenians being named a country and peoples of the Caucasus respectively?

With the coming of Russia to the Caucasus, only a small part of historical Armenia fell into its hands, and it did not make sense to single it out into a separate region. That’s why Armenia was included in a number of countries called the states of Caucasus by Russians for the sake of convenience. And until now by mistake and habit, Armenia is called the country of the Caucasus (again, maybe associated with Russia).

While actually, as we previously stated, Armenia is a part of the Caucasus (namely, the Transcaucasia), it might be more about the political causes behind such false “classification”. It might be done in an effort to associate Armenians and Armenia with Russians and Russia as the latter has significant political interests in Armenia.

The North Caucasus is entirely occupied by Russian republics, and maybe Russians are trying to say that Armenia is a part of their country, which is not true neither politically nor geographically. The Caucasus has been once controlled by the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union, and it is possible that they’d like to do that once again. The region of Transcaucasia has always been significant, being a place for collision of international trade and politics.

Foreign names and surnames of people and locations become identical to Russian ones after translation. For example, a pioneering German bodybuilder Eugen Sandow’s name is translated into Russian as Евгений Сандов (Yevgeny Sandov). Although his mother was indeed Russian, that doesn’t mean that names of people and generally everything should be altered as a result of translation. This is not the only case of such changes.

We do not know what the reasoning behind such actions is. It might be to ease the pronunciation of foreign names by making them similar to Russian ones or to “appropriate” the achievements of other nations for propaganda. Nevertheless, such actions might at least lead to confusion and make it more difficult to determine the origin of this or that name. We cannot tell if that is actually a part of Russian politics, but that is strange and suspicious in any case.


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