Conversations about Zoravar Andranik

  • by Western Armenia, February 23, 2024 in History

The 159th birthday of Andranik Ozanyan, the son of Western Armenia, is coming soon. Western Armenia TV presents a series of stories from the life of the legendary military leader.

They say, that Andranik slapped some of outstanding  generals  among them were Trukhin and Abatsiev, Ruben, Shirvanzade, Baghramyan, Mikoyan. Many of them with gratitude  remember the slap of Zoravar, as well as Baghramyan who received the slap in March 1918, in Khorasan village near Sarikamish.

Why Zoravar Andranik Slapped the Outstanding Generals 

Zoravar Andranik slapped General Trukhin, the commander of IV Army Corps, in 1915. in July.

After the order was received to leave Van-Vaspurakan (allegedly due to the attack of the superior forces of the enemy), the commander of the 1st Volunteer Squad, Zoravar Andranik, immediately was addressed by a  telegram to the Chief of Staff of the Caucasian Front, General Yudenich, that he could defend Van with his volunteers and the local population. only to provide themselves with ammunition and mountain artillery.

Yudenich gave his consent, but Trukhin hid his telegram.

Captain Arshak Shahkhatun (an eminent Armenian actor, who later in 1928 shot a film dedicated to Zoravar in Paris) alerted about it.

Andranik's slap followed. The disastrous retreat of the population of Vaspurakan (about 100,000) began, on July 31 it snowed in the mountains of Vaspurakan, and a large number of children died.

About 500 children were saved by the Russian Kazaks each of which  brought out a child under their yoke,  contrary to the order of Lieutenant-General Abastsyev, who carried out the retreat of the Russian army and ordered  "no support for the population."

This general who hated Armenians  also got his answer.

Even  more, Andranik threw Yudenich's telegram at Abasiyev's feet, cursing the general's shoulder pads and shoulder straps.

This was already more. Were not  the support of the Russian Kazak and the Kazak General Bicherakhov, Zoravar would definitely face a military tribunal. There were Armenian volunteers in Bicherakhov's detachment, headed by Keru (Arshak Javafyan).

In front of everyone, the soldier beat Captain Devoyan, the deputy chief of intelligence of the IV Army Corps, who had given exaggerated information about the superior forces of the enemy (as it happened, in July 1915, during the Alashkert operation, 33 battalions in Abdul Kerim Pasha's troops were not fully staffed).

1968 Yerevan, State University

The meeting of Marshal of the USSR Hovhannes Baghramyan with students and professors.

To the question  whether the marshal had ever met  general Andranik Zoravar  he told as follows.

... in 1918 in March, our detachment stopped for a short rest near the village of Khorasan in Sarighamish.

Soldier Andranik was retreating from Erzrum with more than 15,000 emigrants. I was called out early in the morning. ... The soldier looked at me with a frown and slapped me.

- Kornet Vano, my hope are your thirty soldiers... but I was informed that some of them refuse to fight. This is our motherland, and doesn't  matters who is the leader ... Motherland will always live by the life of dedicated fighters... Go and get your squadron ready....

Unfortunately, in 1918  in the spring you could hear everywhere "let the boys of the owners, it's enough that we fought".

Zoravar Andranik.s  slap made me a marshal. Under no circumstances should one be angry at  the motherland...

After all, in 1941, a large number of exiled Soviet generals returned to fight against fascism, such as Marshal Konev…

 And why especially this part was left out of the marshal's memoirs... that's another question...

1917 Tiflis.

The cafe in the Sololak district was bustling when Zoravar Andranik and his bodyguard, the famous Armenian writer Vahan Totovents, entered (those days Totovents and Andranik were editing Hayastan magazine).Everyone was respectfully silent

The old friend of the soldier, Rostom Zoryan, came forward and greeted him.

The old friend of the General , Rostom Zoryan, came forward and greeted him.

But at that moment, Shirvanzade's voice, was heard from the next table.

- Huh, General Andranik, did you liberate  Western Armenia?

Andranik's hard slap was heard and Shirvanzade was on the floor.

"Excuse, Zoravar he is drunk," famous actor Hovhannes Abelyan (Shirvanzade's aunt's son) addressed Andranik and took the writer Shirvanzade out with his strong arms.