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It's Always April 24th Here

Sara Anjargolian

I had the privilege of spending the eve of the Armenian Genocide centennial on the Nagorno- Karabakh (Artsakh) frontline with young soldiers who are completing their two-years of mandatory military service. Part of me wished to be in Yerevan's Republic Square, with the tens of thousands rocking out with Serj Tankian & System of a Down. Another part of me wished to be with my family in Los Angeles, preparing for the "March for Justice" which culminated in 160,000 people peacefully demonstrating on the streets of Hollywood. Yet I was here, in these cold and muddy trenches, with these boys, miles away from Yerevan and thousands of miles away from Los Angeles. Here, where there were no major preparations for April 24th, no pomp and circumstance, no signs,no speeches, no chants, no t-shirts or armbands. Here, where mostly it was quiet, and for that these boys were thankful. Here, where the question so many of us asked each other, "so what will you be doing for April 24th?" sounded strange, since these young men were doing exactly the same thing on April 23rd and April 25th as they will do today on May 9th. In this parallel reality, it seems the significance of the date is both lost and heightened ... simultaneously and in equal measure ... because the thing is, it's always April 24th here.

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