By Edmond Y. Azadian
Throughout its turbulent history, Armenia almost always has found itself in between a rock and a hard place and has naturally opted for the lesser evil.
Thus was the choice in the early 19th century, when Armenia,along with certain other peoples in the Caucasus, switched its rulers.
Indeed, by the Turkmanchay Treaty of 1828, the Khanate of Yerevan was ceded by the defeated Persians to the victorious Russians. This historic event was even celebrated during the Soviet era, because the Soviets, although they hated the czars, cherished the latters’ conquests.
Armenians had vied for the Russian rule even before that period and they had actively lobbied and worked, especially in the 17th century, through leaders like Nerses Ashtaraketsy and Israel Ori.
When the Caucasus was annexed to the Russian Empire, it was a political dream that came true, although some Russian statesmen preferred to have Armenia under their rule “without Armenians.”