We will deliberately leave out a detailed analysis of Yerevan’s motives. Clearly, they are beginning to realize that against the backdrop of the Ukrainian war, Russia will not be able to give Armenia the same level of military support as before, and they are eager to play the role of an outpost for Russia’s adversaries, i.e., Western countries.
On the other hand, the behavior of Western politicians in the post-Soviet space in general and with regard to Armenia in particular is best described by the old Azerbaijani proverb about the bull and the butcher, where the bull, looking at the butcher, thinks about life, and the butcher, looking at the bull, thinks about fat.
Western politicians, especially the “pink ponies” whose goal-setting never extends beyond the next press conference, are pursuing their own agenda in the post-Soviet space. Only yesterday, they were ignoring Moscow’s actions in the newly independent states. Today, when the demands of public opinion have changed against the backdrop of the Ukrainian war, the usual modus operandi had to be overhauled.
The peoples of many countries—Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova—really saw in Western politicians of different generations potential defenders and intercessors. But Western politicians are simply trying to surround Russia with a chain of conflicts along the perimeter, but by no means to resolve these conflicts, keeping them simmering.
In other words, to do exactly what was going on in Karabakh from the moment of ceasefire in 1994 until the Patriotic 44-day war. And the Ukrainian tragedy is an example of how many lives new independent states will lose for the sake of someone’s political ambitions and geopolitical appetites. Especially if we ask ourselves how events would have unfolded if Ukraine had received all of today’s weapons shipments before February 2022. And if after 2014 the West had not started incomprehensible games of “Minsk agreements”, “Normandy format”, “Steinmeier formula”, etc. And today, in the most critical phase of the war, they are already starting to talk about cutting aid. This is their “support”. It is possible that Georgia and Moldova are next in line, as they will surely be ordered to open a “second front” against Russia—and it is not at all certain that they will be given the promised and expected support.
Armenia is all the more in the field of vision of Western politicians, as they are obviously trying to play on its grudges against Russia. Even the “pink ponies” must see that Armenia needs new patrons to support its revanchist plans. But nobody here is thinking that far ahead. They are focused on the “minimum goal” of spectacularly taking away from Russia its once favorite outpost. And they are following a scenario reminiscent of the Ukrainian one: France dumped on Armenia armored vehicles that Kyiv had rejected because of their poor quality.
But the point is that for a small, weak, extremely Russia-dependent Armenia with its already defeated army, which cannot even theoretically be revived by such miniscule deliveries of outdated weapons, it would be suicidal to participate in such games.
Simply because no amount of Western flirtation cancels out the real balance of power.