CHAPTER 26 THE REASONS OF AZERBAIJANI DEFEAT

On the most important reasons of Azerbaijani defeat in the Karabakhfront was the internat political instability. In general the chairman of Popular Front who later became the President of Azerbaijan, enjoyed a reputation of a person bringing about reconciliation between hostile parties. But as a man with little will-power, he wasn’t an influenctial politician. The hostility between the structures of forces was growing day by day. The Defence Minister R. Gaziev was extremely hostile to the Interior Minister I. Hamidov. The army served to these two masters and consequently the clashes were frequent even between the soldiers fighting in Karabagh. R. Gaziev was gaining fame after the victories in Martakert and Shahumian. The sociological polls evidenced that he enjoyed even more popularity than A. Elchibei himself, which aroused Hamidov’s and Elchibei’s envy and fear. Hamidov was looking forward to a chance to strike a blow to the Defence Minister, who had already turned to an idol for the Azerbaijani youth. Hamidov’s organizational gifts became of no importance. Analysing the situation Hamidov found out the weapon fight against R. Gaziev.

R. Gaziev had been the chairman of the Popular Front Shushi headquarters for a long time. Soon, probably not without Hamidov’s support, the newspapers of all the world published articles about Gaziev’s meetings with the Karabakharmy leaders. An Azerbaijani reporter, who wished to be unknown, said that he had had a telephone talk with the KarabakhDefence Minister Serge Sargsian in Moscow, during which the latter answering to the reporters question about Gaziev’s meeting about the Armenians had said that for the time being he couldn’t tell anything about those meetings. Nobody could say if such a talk had really taken place or Iskender had made it up himself, but the information was published in the press. During a meeting pointing at R. Gaziev, Hamidov declared; “This is the reason of our defeat, the traitor to the nation.” He suggested to bring a charge against the Defence Minister. Probably the rising of the Azerbaijani representative in Karabagh, commander-in-chief of Ist Corpus, the national hero Colonel Surat Huseinov was connected with the abovementioned event. Hamidov’s behaviour was extremely rude. He was the leader of the Azerbaijani branch of the “Grey Wolve’s” organization. Breaking into the printing houses of the newspapers “Azadlig” and “Istiglal”, he cursed everybody present, gave a good beating to the editor-in-chief Z. Alizade and others, then entering into the program of live broadcast cursed the members of the program, the State Secretary Panah Huseinov among them. After this event P. Husseinov immediately resigned. I. Hamidov followed him, but chose not to produce his application in the “Mejlis”.1 Accusing R. Gaziev for the last defeats, he ordered to arrest many of Gaziev’s adherents, trying to undermine his position. Surat Husseinov was his next victim.

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