From ‘Revolution’ to War With Dr. Vahram Ter-Matevosyan | Ep 164 - Sep 12, 2022 [EP164]

Posted on Monday, Sep 12, 2022 | Series: COG

From ‘revolution’ to war: deciphering Armenia’s populist foreign policy-making process Conversation with Dr. Vahram Ter-Matevosyan

Armenian News Network/Groong - September 12, 2022

Recently two AUA professors (Prof. Hovhannes Nikoghosyan and Prof. Vahram Ter-Matevosyan) published a paper in Taylor and Francis Online (TANDF) that analyzes the foreign policy decision making (FPDM) process of the Nikol Pashinyan administration, titled: “From ‘revolution’ to war: deciphering Armenia’s populist foreign policy-making process”. In this episode, we talk to one of the authors of the paper, Prof. Ter-Matevosyan.


  • Opening (00:00:00)

  • Introduction (00:02:22) - We discuss how the idea for the paper arose and the process through which the two scholars went through to conduct their research.

  • TURKEY (00:22:51) - One specific aspect of the war, that played a significant role in the outcome, was Turkey’s involvement. In our opinion, just by sharing with Azerbaijan accurate NATO signals and satellite intelligence in the form of targets to destroy is more than enough to consider its role as decisive. Turkey went beyond that of course. Thus, paying attention and estimating Turkey’s willingness to intervene on behalf of Azerbaijan would be critical for Armenia’s leadership. We of course have seen different members of the Pashinyan team assure the press and public, even weeks before the war, that Turkey would not dare intervene.

    • Have you looked at this aspect of Armenia’s foreign policy?
    • What did Pashinyan’s team do (or perhaps didn’t do) in this area to accurately assess the risk of intervention from Turkey and to put mitigations to counter this risk?
    • Was there any specific contact with Turkey in the run-up to Sep 2020?
    • How critical were Pashinyan’s and Armen Sarkissian’s statements on the 100th anniversary of Treaty of Sevres?
  • RUSSIA ( 00:37:18) - Many, especially those in the pro-Pashinyan camp today, blame Russia for throwing Armenia under the bus for better relations with Turkey.

    • What was the conduct of Pashinyan’s foreign policy with Russia like, preceding and during the war?
    • Are the claims that Russia deceived its ally Armenia correct?
    • Did Russia in recent years ever send a signal to Armenia that it would help defend Artsakh?
  • AZERBAIJAN (00:46:56) - Many of the analysts we talk to state that it was pretty much obvious that Aliyev was gearing up for war starting from 2011 when he effectively rejected the peace deal being considered at the time. It is apparent that Azerbaijan also bid its time, preparing militarily but also tactically selecting a suitable period in time. In 2020, the world was preoccupied with Covid and in the US it was election season, as well as a period of near isolationism from foreign involvements in the Trump administration.

    • Despite the external factors, was there anything that Armenia did bilaterally with Azerbaijan that could have delayed the war or helped change its outcome?
    • What was the outcome of the infamous Dushanbe elevator meeting?


  • Hovik Manucharyan TW/@HovikYerevan
  • Asbed Bedrossian TW/@qubriq


  • Prof. Vahram Ter-Matevosyan, an associate Professor and Chair of the Political Science and International Affairs Program at AUA. His research interests focus on Turkish politics, Kemalism, Political Islam & Security in the South Caucasus.

Episode 164 | Recorded: Sunday, September 11, 2022

Show Notes

Show Notes


Vahram Ter-Matevosyan

Vahram Ter-Matevosyan

Prof. Vahram Ter-Matevosyan is an associate Professor and Chair of the Political Science and International Affairs Program at AUA. His research interests focus on Turkish politics, Kemalism, Political Islam & Security in the South Caucasus


Hovik Manucharyan

Hovik Manucharyan

Hovik Manucharyan is an information security engineer who moved from Seattle to Armenia in 2022. He co-founded the ANN/Groong podcast in 2020 and has been a contributor to Groong News since the late 1990s.

Disclaimer: The views expressed by Hovik Manucharyan on the ANN/Groong podcast are his own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of his employer or any other organization.

Asbed Bedrossian

Asbed Bedrossian

Asbed is founder of the Armenian News Network Groong and co-founder of the ANN/Groong podcast.

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