Egyptian Chronicles: About Those Amazing Egyptian Armenians

Friday, April 24, 2015

About Those Amazing Egyptian Armenians

Armenia commemorates the 100th anniversary of  the Armenian genocide today  reminding the world with one of the worst war crimes and genocides committed against its people by Ottoman empire.

I will not go into endless and meaningless historical and political debate after 100 years about the genocide nor I will not comment on how suddenly Arab nationalists remember the Armenian genocide and ignore genocides committed against ethnic groups and minorities whether in Iraq or Sudan or any other part of the Arab world because they want to tease Turkey.

I know that the world won’t learn from what happened 100 years ago because genocides are still committed and people are forced to leave their homes, it is an ugly old human truth.

Today members of the Armenian community in Egypt commemorated the Armenian Genocide centennial at Egypt's Unknown Solider Memorial in Nasr City in a rally led by the scout boys and girls of  The Armenian community in Egypt.

By Kegham Karsian 
By Kegham Karsian
You can see the rest of photos from the event here at this photo album by Kegham Karsian. 


Allowing the memorial to be held at Egypt's Unknown Solider Memorial sends a message I think at least to the community and Armenia after the fact that Egypt's ambassador to Armenia did not participate in the official Commemoration in Yerevan.

There is no official reason on why the ambassador did not participate, but unofficial reasons say that the Egyptian regime was worried about the Egyptian workers in Turkey !!!!

This is a joke , seriously speaking considering the fact that Egyptian government kicked the Turkish ambassador himself and they care now for the Egyptian workers in Turkey !!!

Here is a video from Ahram Online showing the Commemoration of  the Armenian genocide at the Armenian Orthodox Patriarchate in Cairo on Thursday


I will rather speak today about those beautiful Egyptian Armenians whose grandparents and parents found a safe refuge in Egypt escaping the war and the genocide. I will speak briefly about the Egyptian Armenian community.

The Egyptian Armenian community has got a very long history in Egypt since the Middle ages and the rule of Mamluks. It is enough already that Queen or Sultana Shajar Al-Durr was said to be of Armenian origins according to some historical accounts.

In 19th century, the Egyptian Armenian community began to participate effectively in building the Modern Egypt we know now. We had several ministers in the 19th century from Armenian origin above them Nubar Pasha, Egypt’s first Prime minister.

After the Armenian genocide and its forced migration, Egypt received many of the refugees and survivors who found safe haven in this country.
The Near East Relief placed Armenian orphans in Egyptian Armenian
homes in Cairo and Alexandria "Amr Ali
Thousands of Armenians came and settled down in Egypt as new home and Egypt truly became their second or rather their substitute home. Since then Armenian community played a critical role in building that cosmopolitan nation we are speaking about its glory now.

I can not list all the names of famous Egyptian Armenians, but there are certain names in my mind I can not ignore. Above them Alexander Saroukan, the famous legendary cartoonist who created “Al-Masry Effendi” cartoon character to comment on Egypt’s political affairs.

Saroukan
I can not also forget Egypt’s most famous portrait photographer Van Leo, please visit his official Facebook page to see his work.
Van Leo and his family "Official Van Leo FB page 

And who can forget the Artian girls “ Fayrouz and Nelly” as well their cousin Ninochka aka Leblebla.
Fariouz , Nelly and Leblebla 
The legendary child actor  Fayrouz is sick according to actor Khaled El-Sawy.
After 1952 and the nationalization policies adopted later by Nasser’s administration, many Egyptian Armenians left Egypt to Europe and to the United States.
Nevertheless, there are still thousands of Egyptian Armenians living now in Egypt quietly.
Most Egyptians now do not know that the Armenian community still got two daily Armenian newspapers and an Armenian school still operating in Cairo since the 19th century.
Already I pass by Kalousidan School, Egypt’s oldest private school in Boulaq, Cairo every day on my way to work.
There are two daily Armenian newspapers published in Egypt: Housaper and Arev. Both newspapers are among the oldest private daily newspapers in Egypt.
When I mention all this, I can not keep myself from thinking how Egypt and Egyptians were open to everybody and how this made Egypt flourish when it comes socially and culturally. I just wonder if we can be that open once again.
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25 comments :

  1. Too bad Egyptian Armenians and all other ethnic groups, including those considered of non-Egyptian Arab origin, must fear the raging xenophobia and hatred of the ruling clique. Those who promote unbridled racism/murder/torture do not whatsoever care about past genocides or the victims of those genocides.

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    1. On the Contrary dear Orange , there is no fear for that because they are not considered foreign anymore but rather Egyptians like Egyptian-Arab origin. It is not all bad and black in Egypt.

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    2. It is good that some things are not affected by the tides of politics.

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  2. I would like to thank all Egyptians for welcoming my orphaned father and other Armenians who arrived from Turkey in 1915-1923 to make Egypt their new found home. Egypt gave them security, kindness and help and because of that I wish all Egyptians the best....Thank You!
    The Canadian/Egyptian/Armenian.

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  3. Famous Egyptian Armenians
    Yuhanna al-Armani, 18th century Coptic icon painter
    Garbis Aprikian, musician.
    Armand, photographer.
    Gohar Gasparyan, opera singer.
    Edmond Kiraz, cartoonist.
    Hagop Sandaldjian, musician and sculptor.
    Alexander Saroukhan, cartoonst / caricaturist.
    Feyrouz, Perouz Artin child actress in the 1950s and 1960s
    Nelly, Nelly Artin Kalfaian, actress, performer and entertainer.
    Lebleba, or Lubluba, real name Nonia Kupelian, Egyptian actress.
    Anoushka, a well-known Armenian Egyptian singer
    Atom Egoyan, Canadian filmmaker of Armenian Egyptian origin
    Raffi, Canadian Egyptian children's singer and songwriter of Armenian origin (Raffi Cavoukian)
    Georges Kazazian, musician / oudist (based in Egypt)
    Nubar Pasha, politician and the first Prime Minister of Egypt.
    Boghos Nubar, son of Nubar Pasha, politician and co-founder of the Armenian General Benevolent Union.
    Boghos Yousefian, Minister of Commerce and Minister of Foreign Affairs
    And many more.

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    1. Remember Bahiga Thomassian.??..who drew the biggest amount of SAMIR children s magazine from 1957-1959.. Her cartoons were UNIQUE and inspiring us the kids of that era ... it was folkloric, thanks to her drawings we knew what other peoples national dresses are..or what they do in ESKIMO/ MEXICO/CHINA/VENICE in Italy ..or what GONDOLE meant,even we heard that word in Great Mohamed Abdel Wahab s song,but some of us kids never knew what it was..until Dear Mrs.BAHIGA showed us on SAMIR /TAHTAH cover in a cartoon..she drew over 140 Samir covers//the biggest anount in SAMIR S history ... then in Lebanon she worked for Al ANWAR daily paper/ first ever political paper published cartoon strips for kids to enjoy reading it with their parents' ,followed /
      working for BISSAT EL REEH(Magic Carpet) and many other posters /books covers here & there..with her sister RITA Thomassian?? CLASSICAL IDEAS AND CHARACTERS...shame that we lost them for America..instead of awarding such GOD given talents ,we force them and others to join the brain drain,when we need such TALENTS desperately..the happiness they /SHE gave us was immeasurable,...A school in its own right,...... NEXT: late Mr, HAROON or HRANT a wheelchair bound genius who was crippled but still gave us BASEL
      & Scout friends in many adventures..those Artists were the GIANTS of Egypt s cultural scene in the 1940/50s..never to be Replaced..if only they knew how much we .. & especially I do cherish /respect treasure their efforts in difficult circumstances then/without any INTERNET in the rooms of DAR EL HILAL publishing house /some sadly passed away some still around , GOD bless them ALL wherever they may be NOW!! As long as their works are exposed their Memories will shine through/// with best wishes from :Is-Hak Barsoumian/London

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    2. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE COULD SOMEONE AT Egy.Chron. OR ANY FOLLOWER, GET US MORE DETAILS ABOUT ARMENIAN CARTOONISTS AT >>>DAR EL HILAL <<< IN 1950/60/70 S AND SHOW IT ON THIS BLOG?? AND COPIES OF THEIR GREAT WORKS??REALLY THAT WILL BE MARVELOUS & MUCH APPRECIATED ..BY ANY Egy.Chr. FOLLOWER / THANKS IN ADVANCE/REGARDS FROM LONDON:I.BARSOUMIAN

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  4. I, too, grew up in Heliopolis during the idyllic days of of the 1940's and 50's. I was surrounded by family and friends in a world I did not realize did not have long to last. My father was a physician so I was exposed to many facets of life. When I left Egypt, I left with a strong sense of identity and self. Maybe, for some of us, those were the good old days. Again, I join those who will always be grateful to the Egyptian people for welcoming the Armenian survivors of the Turkish genocide.

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  5. Hi!! My name is Is-Hak Barsoumian/born in Beirut/LEBANON on 02/02/1947 to an Armenian parent from cilicia or (kILIKIA) in today s Turkey?? Lebanon,like any other neighbouring country opened its arms widely to welcome the ARMENIAN refugees ,,We built straight away our Churches/Schools/businesses in a vast area given to us in BOURJ HAMMOUD district next to Beirut River by the French Authorities occupying most of the Middle East and African nations...but the locals welcomed us too,as they themselves were suffering such persecutions foreign occupiers, Turks/French /Brits??But Egypt s circumstances were a bit different, as there were WEALTHY tycoons of the Armenian origin there already. came in the days of OTTOMAN Turks in the 1800 s,they did integrate with the Local people such as the Arabs/Greeks/Jews & many others such as Europeans living there for Centuries?? We had Armenian PASHA-s (Lords) ruling in Egypt/Lebanon /Iraq..even in Turkey ,before 1915 GENOCIDE !!Armenians were holding HIGH ruling positions then..and even the Ottoman constitution was written/dictated by ARMENIAN intellectuals and politicians ??...So what i am saying is that Egyptian Armenians ,after 200 or more years in there bound to be considered 200% Egyptians, this goes with the saying >>>> ONE IS MORE CATHOLIC THAN THE POPE HIMSELF IN ROME!! GOD bless Egypt and all its multi-Colors/beliefs/classes population////Regards from Is-Hak Barsoumian in London/G.Britain

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  6. Sir /Madam at EGYPT.CHRONICLES/ in your Infamous Armenians in Egypt list i couldn t see names such as Ms.BAHIGA THOMASSIAN(KHALIL)/HAROON or HRANT /GARO They worked in DAR EL HILAL publication SAMIR children s weekly magazine in 1956-1961?? also Belly dancers such as HERMINEH/ CORIOGRAPHER ms.NELLY MAZLOUM Greek/Armenian??...Please add them to your list..GOD bless you ...... Also YOUSSUF effendi ..gave his name to Tangerine citrus fruit??

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  7. My name IS-hak BarsoumIAN...Ii am a Lebanese Armenian /born in BEIRUT the year of 1947, and for some years a British citizen! I am very proud of these all...but most of all i am an ARMENIAN first and last,and automatically a Christian be it Catholic/Orthodox/Protestant or others, because our language & religion walk together hand in hand for 2000 years, as ARMENIA was the first nation on earth to adopt Christianity as its official religion ...that"s why my people suffer and still do to this day....some people think we lost 1.500.000 genocide victims because we refused to convert ourselves to ISLAM in Ottoman Turkey ...Wrong...the game of nations was much bigger than that intention,even such conversion would not have saved 10 out 0f every 100 killed Armenian innocents...Big nations of the time had a secret agenda...but using Religion was a trick to start the fire, I confirm , humbly ,but dignified by the fact that i read the HOLY KORAN A-Z and know verses by heart..it did not hurt at all, i am still an Armenian who respects others beliefs and thoughts. with added knowledge since i read it all page to page! waste of time some will say..on contrary ,i won more time in this life i assume, ,and the next too >>>i hope?! We all believe in ONE and only CREATOR...even Christ admitted that there is no marriages in the eternity,when asked about 7 brothers married consecutively same woman when each died in his turn...whom she belongs in the next life?? people asked Jesus ?so we too believe that GOD is spiritually HOLY Christ"s father... our meek mentality can not comprehend the Supernatural terms..apart from this dispute between both religions ,i never saw anything else PARTS...OR DIFFERENTIATES our beliefs...but still we suffer RELIGIOUS XENOPHOBIA....in human history Christians massacred Christians /Moslems slaughtered Moslems, in recent history remember IRELAND?? or Iraq/Iran war for 8 years in 1980s?? how short is our memory to forget all that...and even now days in the Middle East,,even if we were Moslems living in turkey but our ethnicity belonging was different this was going to happen ,i mean the Genocide of 1915..the whole thing is more than churches or mosques attendances,the CAKE was creamed in EUROPE and the birthday BOY in this party,Turkey ,given the sharp knife to cut IT,and blow the 4500 candles of Armenian civilization in that cake SLICE!!

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  8. 2 opportunities , i ,unfortunately, missed in my childhood days to befriend..or even say HELLO to this Great FILM/SONG star Mrs Nelly KALFAYAN ..or Just>>>> NELLY??<<< Once ,back in 1955 or 56? not sure which , when Mr.Artin Kalfayan & blessed family visited LEBANON then , and rent a room at PANSION Seet LATIFEH KAAKATI. at Patriarch HOIYEK street near Bab EDRISS shopping district /Beirut, for a couple of weeks to appear personally and promote their movie ASSAFIR EL GANNA(Birds of Paradise)..which her elder sister and once a child prodigy Mr.PERUZ Kalfayan _ late Madam GAMGOUM..or beter renowned as FAYROUZ/and sometimes YASMINE or DAHAB. because she was so good in her little orphan girls roles that people kept calling her those names after the film titles..sadly we lost her this year by Feb.2016.. 1955 i was 8 years old and at school...later i knew that my late mother was visitin TANT LATIFEH, pension owner & my mom s good friend... my late cousin EDWARD BARSOUMIAN ,was 17 year old teen and a gentleman, he was too handsome and a DON JUAN type , He became a good friend and helped her in shopping around, My second time was in 1959 ,when my Mom gave me money to book 2 place in CINEMA DIANA/ a basement theatre next to cinema Metropole/ next to Place des Canons/Beiruts city centre they were showing YASMINE movie ..and 3 sisters FAYROUZ/MERVET & NELLY suppose to appear in person on the stage doing some Acrobatic act show, as the whole family was a circus Acrobats act members in the 1940/50 s,,..when buying 2 tickets i heard and saw little cute Miss NELLY close to me having chat with the cinema personnel.. she was then,i guess , 9/10 years ?? i was too shy to say..Hello!! What a sad coincidence was this as Dearest FAYROUZ(Peruz) sadly passed away in FEB. my cousin beloved EDWARD OR Yetwart or EDDIE..his Don Juan name passed away MARCH 2016 at the age of79...GOD BLESS THEM, ALL !! May they rest in HEAVENLY peace..and grant Mrs.NELLY/ A long and prosperous LIFE. Our loses are ETERNITYs gain,all we need is patience and endurance...without them around us....their memories will go on in our minds /hearts & souls.. they are U..N..F..O..R..G..E..T..T..A..B..L..E / MORTALS.... Just not forgetting to mention Mr. Badre Eddin GAMGOUM whom gave Fayrouz 2 gorgeous children followed by grandchildren and most of all his true LOVE /Also GREAT GREAT Film director Mr. ANWAR WAGDI whom goes all the praises in making FAYROUZ a child star..never been repeated in Arab-Cinema s History since 1947 such phenomenon ,only exception her cousin LEBLEBAH..may GOD give her too ,a very long long life and career success ..made us Armenians wherever ..PROUD!!

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  9. They said in Arabic:Rubba soudfaten kheyron min alfi me3ad...Meaning
    ==(Sometimes co incidence is a blessing) this is very true in my life;;;as i told in my previous story about Mrs NELLY, met her in Cinema DIANA /Beirut/1960??
    Also i met ..>>>or they passed me by<<<<...which makes me regret more that i never had the courage to shake their hands..what a pity,,,,too late NOW!! for instance Late Great Egyptian film comedian Mr.ABDEL SALAM AL NABULSI ,he passed me by in Beshara el Khoury Avenue in Beirut ..wearing his Navy blue suit..always & like in his movies a smart/ Elegant Gentleman..we had eye contact ,but maybe the shock and my shyness prevented me saying Hello YOU Great star.. that I ADORE.. what a SHAME! This was in 1968 the year ,HE, sadly passed away after few months,,,,in 1975 during the Lebanese war ,i went to visit his grave at AL BASHOURA s vast cemetery..while bullets and bombs falling every which way..just to show how sorry i was not to say few words then..As he was living in Beirut HIS last years of his somehow short life duration..to this day i never got over it ,what is more sad that we could not locate his tomb stone to lay some FLOWERS...but HIS SWEET MEMORY AND THE SMILES HE GAVE US ALL WILL ALWAYS LIVE IN US,especially in my Heart & soul,,may HE always rest in Heavenly Peace!!........... Late 1960 s i was visiting my friend s photography studio which was called co incidently ,studio Al AHRAM to collect my photos ..suddenly we heard loud laughter outside the corridor, as we were inside AL AZARIYAH tower building..next to Theatro EL KBEER theatre /cinema.. the noise source was Late GREAT Dearest Madam SAMIA GAMAL. in her brown coloured suit.i mean trouser & jacket...as i have met her YESTERDAY..and she was coming down from lEBANESE Press Union, upstairs..after meeting the press..i guess.,, she said IZAYYAK YA VAHE.Vahe SEVIAN was my photographer friend s name..another opportunity MISSED .. or even an autograph for keeps... Oh my GOD!! SO ,,i advise all who read this humble Comment , listen to your hearts and not your minds or pride ,because there won t be a second opportunity























    ..grab the moment..do what your heart tells you and not your mind,you may not have a second chance to tell the ones you love /adore how much you care and respect them..as the song says IF>>>> TOMORROW NEVER COMES1!<<<<<And before it is too late to show your appreciation to this or that person.//// Regards from London/Is-hak Barsoumian












































    7 soul

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  10. Most Respectful ZEINOBIA..Thank you for allowing my humble Comments/views to appear on your blog Egy'CHRONICALS ..LATELY , I and SORRY FOR THE LONG ONES/ BUT I WOULD LIKE TO PUT THE READER IN THE WHOLE PICTURE?? Also forgive my >>>sometimes <<<< printing errors or spellings , I WILL DO MY BEST TO AVOID ANY in the future ,But i am sure your BLOG FOLLOWERS ARE KIND AND SMART ENOUGH ALSO FORGIVING,TO GUESS WHAT I MEAN/ or MENT..IN GENERAL...''' I WILL GIVE IT A REST FOR FEW DAYS ... TO SEE IF MY STORIES ARE NOT BORING ANYONE??...THANKS ALSO TO THE READER OF EACH NEW COMMENT I HAVE SENT!! AND SAID..O K??...GOD BLESS YOU & YOU ALL FOR YOUR VALUABLE TIME//from is-hak Barsoumian/London/Gr.Britain

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  11. Those Amazing Egyptian Armenians...much obliged to you E.Chronicles for bringing this subject for all to know..about our people whom survived for 4000 and more,being such a small size nation like prophet DAVID in land & population that is, but ,a GOLIATH in its culture and HEROES/Kings+Warriors for many,many centuries..thanks to whom WE still exist as a Nation/Tongue/People/ & an individual,as my humble self...and a CIVILISATION, even though we are dispersed here and there in this world,but one endearing phrase gathers us as ONE, THE saying>>>HI^GH YEM YESS, KATCH VARTANIN TORN YEM YES!! & that means I AM AN ARMENIAN AND A GREAT GREAT GRANDSON OF St.VARTAN !!Vartan MAMIKONIAN A GREAT warrior and a Martyr HERO also ordained as a SAINT in his own right, since many centuries ago!..As children I & my classmates used to complain/moan about our Heavy >>>HAYOTS BATMOUCHOUN<<< books,meaning = Armenian HISTORY books, because our history was RICH & too Ancient,and powerful..not because i am an Armenian saying so ,but the whole world history approves my verdict!..those books mostly written with sacrificed Armenian sacred blood...anxious for Independence/Freedom/Dignity/Human Rights...our land being like an olive branch holding Dove besieged by Wolves, even before we were the first nation that embraced Christianity as its nation s official religion 2000 years ago ..almost! NOW, what about THOSE AMAZING SYRIAN+LEBANESE ARMENIANS??..We are so grateful to all our Blad el Sham & the Lebanese sisters & brothers that embraced us in our dark moments since 1915 and after,like wonderful Egypt most generously...DID!..In Lebanon we enjoyed also that sincere WELCOME too,as we were given every available opportunity to continue our traditions/customs/beliefs/careers ..and education choices at schools/colleges /universities of Lebanon without prejudice or barriers, not imposed on us to prioritise the countries 2 languages spoken then Franco-Arabic, as the country was then a French colony ?? we were allowed to keep our Armenian tongue/identity without fear or harassment from anyone in authority,in a way a democracy in progress,but harmful in other ways...it made integration a bit..difficult even though most Armen.schools thought those 2 languages+English to follow,some in Armenian designated areas kept using Armenian ,and the surviving generation the Turkish as a dialect...in spite of all this we were proud to enrich this, kind & hospitable country with many GOD given talents ,I should mention in future Comment IN SHA A ALLAH /titled: Those Amazing LEBANESE ARMENIANS// for now ,, Regards from London/Is-hak Barsoumian.




































    9 ALL OF US ARE DEVOTED HEROES

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  12. Next/ Those Amazing LEBANESE Armenians / 1915 Lebanon was ,too, suffering the OTTOMAN tyranny be it Moslems/Christian/Druz ,all on the same scale, but still it stood firm to take us IN...most of the refugees were coming from SYRIA ,even though Syrian people were also very kind with them, but some other reasons caused such move,even in those years both were one country ,but France annexed mount Lebanon from Blad el SHAM or Syria by any other name,to give the Lebanese Maronite Christians in the mountains also the Druz sect.brothers plus the Majority Sunni MOSLEM , mostly living by the sea side villages..such as TYRE/SIDON//BEIRUT/TRIPOLY in the North,...their own enclave!The arrival of the Armenians..was not a big deal in such Cosmopolitan society..Even though they added over half a million to the Christians existing number?? they were given a vast land in North Beirut capital city to build their homes & settle side by side with the rest..As much as they linguisticaly stayed apart ,but played GREAT ROLE in that nation s culture for a century, nearly..Even though some left to U.S.A/Canada Europe/Australia...but many others stayed..put! IN my next COMMENT i will be delighted to Mention WHO WAS WHO.and many Armenians whom were much obliged and grateful to this small in size ,but a GIANT in its impact it had/has on the world s affairs,with a little help from good friends..Lebanese Armenians!!..to follow the above// Regards from :Is.B.//

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  13. _____Those(some of)The Amazing LEBANESE Armenians are /Late MR. PAUL GUIRAGOSSIAN,GREAT Painter,that Marvelled us all with his colours and canvas drawings///Mr.DIRAN,a Cartoonist similar to EGYPT based Late SAROUKHAN ,Diran was around in 1940/50 s with his political drawings for satyrical weekly AD DABBOUR(The WASP) his magical drawings were unique// Mr.MASSIS ARARATIAN (pronounced -DIAN)a famous AZTAK Armenian daily circa 1970 s, whom ran the Art dept. in American based PRESS Estb. in Beirut, now for 3 decades ,almost, in the U.S?!//The 2 ATTARIAN brothers KARNIG(aka Clement) & Late Mr.ALPHONSE (Aka Armen Tarian) both Authors/Poets/Journalists, as Mr. Karnig founded the Armenian edition of 2 newspapers IL^AL AMAM in Armenian HARATCH meaning Forward also AL NIDA-A or GANCH,meaning The CALL,Political weekly, i was fortunate enough that they were relatives of mine ,as Late Mr. KARNIG whom (Passed away late 1987 in BEIRUT) and a great B-In-Law too! i need to write a book not just a short Comment .//Madam et Monsieur GARBIS,a married Armenian couple that started the 1st Multi-dances* Academy in the Middle East,that graduated best Modern Dancers of that time 1940/60 s,Great Waltz/Rumba/Chacha/Tango you name it they thought ..IT ,in their 2nd floor mansion in ..BASTA Street they said to their pupils>> SHALL WE DANCE ??//Mr. HOVHANNESS PILIKIAN..whom British media renowned Him as the best intellectual that could interpreted W.Shakespeare s great works and knew how to explain them,in Beirut then, now for 4 decades in London.Late Mr.BERDJ FAZLIAN, sadly passed away March 2016 a multi talented STAGE genius that led Arab Lebanese Theatre & the Musical shows into a magical Wonderland working with Great singers such as FAIRUZ /RAHBANI Bros,/SABAH shows// and to end these few drops in the large Ocean of GOD granted Talents without Mentioning Mr.PIERRE DELEFER,A genius in stage cloth desining for great numbers of Top Stars and /Celebrities of those Good Old Days////Regards,IS-HAK Barsoumian/London.

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  14. Few More Great Names of generously CONTRIBUTED to the Lebanese society/ or a follow up to my previous humble Comments Titled>:/Those Amazing LEBANESE Armenians ??// In Beirut city ,Armenians were /ARE renowned in running responsible careers..such as Doctors/Nurses/Chemists-Pharmacists/Opticians/ Lawyers/Teachers/Professors/Bankers/Parliament Members/Publishers/Journalists/Lebanese Army Personnels/ Art-Painters /Architects/Engineers/Photographers/Actors/Hairdressers/ SUIT Taylors/ T.v.-cinema Directors/Impresarios/Jewelers,Goldsmiths/Wholesalers/Printers/Shoe-makers/Best Carpenters ever/Opera Singers/Pop Singers/Folklore Dancers as Teachers & Dancers/ Air Pilots/Church Leaders/ Assembly Pastors/Book binders/Zincographs/Printers/Electricians/Polit.Party Leaders/....Many many other professions that involve Thoughful Minds & inventing Hands ... you name it Armenians Done it..& Most professionally ,TOO! ..I am really PROUD of my People,and belonging to them ,even though, so far , i failed personally to make them Proud of me..but as long as there is the will there s still..Hope. i might?? .....NOW please Allow me here to mention Mr. HAGOP GUILOYAN..originally from Istanbul, a professional Goldsmith and Theatre Operatic crooner and actor too/mr.HAROUTYOUN KENTOUNI great TheatricalMr. actor-director/Mr.SETRAK DOERDILIAN,EXCELLENT Zincographer that involved in Making La Revue Du Liban..a great weekly magazine in french ,the pride of Lebanese Press in 1950/60/70 with Him and his team s hard work engraving zincs ready to print ,before OFFSET plates arrived 1970s to change printing/...Mr. DIKRAN AKISKALIAN Best man in Advertising world..his Dessina label brought much sales to all his clients in Lebanon & Abroad/....M.P. Mr.DIKRAN TOSBATIAN & his WIFE Mrs. SHANT were first French evening Newspaper publishers Le SOIR or (EVENING) daily ,also IKE or the(Dawn) daily in Armenia language//... Genius DECORIST Mr. HAGOP ASLANIAN whom arrived from Egypt s Cinema Studios to enrich the decors at Lebanese T.V. S Channel 7+9s Studios// To end this part i MUST remember/mention late Immortal T.V. -Film Director Mr. GARY GARABEDIAN,GREAT TALENTED sadly short Lived,as he passed away while saving others from an inferno during shooting his famous movie about Palestinian FEDAYEEN/HEROES>>>KOuLOuNA FEDAEEYOUN<<<or We Are All Sacrificial Heroes..a talent wasted UNFORTUNATELY -- Just like that-- may HE (Always R.I.P.)// Regards from London I.Barsoumian

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  15. //THE NAME GAME/////(ASAMEENA)or>>Our Names<<<,.A lovely song sang by LEBANONs Pride and song ICON Mrs.FAIRUZ Haddad RAHBANI, every time i hear IT ,that reminds me of my lifetime DILEMMA?? AS in it she says >> HOW MUCH TROUBLE THEY (OUR PARENTS ) WENT THROUGH TO FIND US A SUITABLE NAME??in this case, <> Is-Hak<< or sometimes ISAAC/IZAK, my burden since half a century now,you may wonder why??There are many Great Men in HUMAN HISTORY that were CALLED..it,to mention few such as Sir ISAAC NEWTON/ISAAC ASSIMOV!!so why am i unhappy with IS-HAK?? I-ll tell you...At my birth i was baptized as S A H A G, a popular & smooth to the ear when sounded,sahag translated ment Easy running water fountain??AG in Armenian ment (Eye),romantically speaking, as tears come out of it,My dear folks(GOD bless them both) called me that to keep my Late Uncle SAHAG,(Moms brother he was)whoes early death shocked.. all, but i do not remember a thing as a toddler..or even before i was born, &to keep his memory..ALIVE!! Anyhow GOD bless his undying memory, but i don t think it mattered to HIM as much as to me ,that name, because in the Early 1960,when we wanted to claim our First Lebanese PASSPORTS, the Wise Guy The Clerk in the LEB.Home Office found my name in Arabic letters a bit>>ODD<< as in Lebanese Alphabet WRITTEN or PRONOUNCED ,we don t have a letter sounds as (G)like in GARY ,if we use (J) or the letter GHAIN(, it will sound & read as JARY meaning - my neighbor , or as GHARY,meaning >>> get jealous YOU GIRL<< ,the alternative is (K), but a person in Egypt ,for example will read it KARY??...GARY in Egypt is more convenient ,as they got (G)as in Gary,So writing my passport SAHAK..would mean (He, forgotten you?? and worst is the next CHOICE that i won t like to mention Here??so he decided himself to put and register me as IS-HAK,a trade mark that i can t get rid of for the last 50 years today!a burden and distress that it caused me TOO MUCH....when called -my name -by my Arab mates ,others thought i am a Jew,even though being a Jew is not a Sin,but i was treated a bit Different & not as another ARMENIAN guy will?? attitudes were noticeable and Harsh at some other times , especially while 1967/1973 wars were going on!!...and that name was...ODD for an Armenian...side effects were,hurtful.This caused a kind of prejudice to my Name & not me being an Armenian ofcourse,as Armenians are very Liked and respected in the Arab world..Generally,i am sure of it!! ...Now problem No 2 in the G.Britain,when i used to fill and also been registered at the Home Office it was written as ISHAK ,sounding as SH,like in SHip/SHort..so when asked what to put in my Brit.Passport..i decided a apostrophy. (,)or a (-)dash separating the (S) from the (H) (S-H)...Now, all you good parents old or new ,whenever you decide on a name for you offspring ,take into consideration the effects, not just of the name you choose ,but every letter in it Too and what it may sound/spell in other languages ,so that not to be A future EMBARRASSMENT for them & to them especially , your Sons & Daughters..in this small village we call it Earth!...YES even though i am 24 carat Armenian,and very proud of its People and Culture,but when it comes to the Arabic,,i really feel as my blood boils and get frustrated if a foreign person gives wrong names or interpretations to this or that Arabic matters discussed in any foreign Media /..but when I come to tell any Arab person just met ,followed with my name IS-HAK or even Isaac...his interest in the subject gets...50%..the whole thing is not a kind of PARANOIA,but a real Headache , As we say in Arabic ISS-AL EL MOGARREB WA LA TAS-AL EL HAKIM(AL Tabib)
    meaning>> ask the enduring it and not the -Doctor- about His or Her , pain or the ailment!!<<Regards from I S --- H A K Barsoumian /LONDON


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    1. A Real FEDAYIN and A Genuine MARTYR....That*s how HE will,and should always be remembered..since his death 46 years ago , none but our pride ,Late GREAT Lebanese T.V. & 5/6 films Director Martyr of his profession ,Mr.GARY GARABEDIAN from:1959=1970(Televizion LOUBNAN>>Channels 7-9,s leading director... His sudden departure came ,to all his audiences, as a TERRIBLE SHOCK!.. An,originally Iraqi ARMENIAN/with robust/experiance background in studio directing in Baghdad..And as a pioneer in 1959 with 1st T.V. Station began transmission then,One of His great successes was with every Saturday night family gathering COMEDY Show....ABU SALIM EL TAB-BL and his team FAHMAN/AMEEN/SHOUKRY-SHKR-ALLAH/& Greek accent character KHAWAGA COSTI PAPADO....>?? & many others too! on Black/White T.V. set screens...in those years!~,,Its success was Phenomenon which encouraged Mr.GARABEDIAN..to Direct a film for the Silver Screen titled as>>ABU SALIM FI AFRICA>>...or(A.Salim In Africa)in 1964..also another Good work>>GARO<< or the movie,//GARO//or an Armenian name of a ROBIN HOOD a street wise Guy gangster,and real character too that terrified the Armenian quarters circa 1950/60s A wise guy such as young>>GODFATHER<> AL OUYOUN AL SAHERA >>or,The Sleepless EYES>>(in 1962)..And by 1969,& as the Palestinian cause was getting heated up with new era & with the birth of Al-FATEH military Org. Established by The Late leader-of it-, The UNFORGETTABLE ABU AMMAR or Mr. Yasser ARAFAT/father of all the FEDAYINS Then & Always & with the help from the Egyptian authorities!!...Inspired by the events of those years ..Mr. GARY Garabedian wanted to direct a movie about those heroes!!...but unfortunately HE failed to accomplish it, due to an inferno/blaze where sadly enough ,he died while saving others lives to safety from the bellowing smoke,& aftermath a big blast(possibly a Sabotage).. as supposedly fire-works to be used for special-effects were altered by real ammunition, and as ,the scene required , was in a cellar-night club-full of Israeli soldiers(acted by EXTRAS), supposed to be raided/ambushed by>the sacrificing fighters<>> in Arabic called- INNA FIDA-EY-YOUN-or the brave FEDAYINS?..The whole place was on A Big fireball & for hours and over>> 20 Actors + Extras died ,mostly suffocated by the thick black smoke and also due to stampede that went on,.. on a very narrow staircase that led upwards ,to open air??..also Mr Garabedian*s Camera man & a Good person i knew well, who worked at- Studio BAALBECK>>in Sin-El-Fil)Beirut! The thing is that HE (R.I.P) invited and asked me to attend and sit on the bar in that location ,as my renowned Timidity & Shyness saved my life,as i apologised politely..maybe my FATE?? prevented me to attend it...still my heart weeps every time i remember that Saturday evening,and when on Sunday i purchased AL ANWAR newspaper with its large headline***A CARNAGE in HAZIMIYEH**,where this paper s offices were & still are too (DAR ES SAYYAD)few yards away from that night club in Hazimiyeh Town,near Beirut..rumors told about 2 foreign individuals.. left/disappeared minutes before this SAD event occured...Still, the film was a success on the screens ,and completed by another Crew??...We the Armenians used to have our own FEDA-YINS in 1914/5 s in Turkey, So those 2 Great ARMENIAN MARTYRS Mr.GARY+ Mr.SARKIS or SAKO as i used to call HIM++ and-Alk the other Martyrs-too, OFCOURSE,....& after many Decades also Miles away.. Sacrificed their lives for some thing they whole-heartedly believed>>in<< ,we pray that GOD has accepted their devotions and good intentions and rewarded them with HIS ETERNAL + DEVINE PEACE!! and WE on our behalf should always commemorate their memories////GOD bless ALL!! from:Is-Hak Barsoumian/London

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  16. Most Respectful and Dear Zeinobia, Once again i send you my sincere best wishes & many thanks to you for accepting my MODEST COMMENTS on your Great>>>EGY.Chronicles?! Believe me my dear that i have toooo>>> much Respect for your Blog,that*s why everything i mentioned or will ,in the future , in my over 15 previous Comments on different issues ,I never exaggerated ,or wrote fictions..or ad-ups..everything i said was/is The TRUTH as once i, my humble self witnessed it ,GOD be my witness..i hate time wasting, be it Mine..Yours or Dear/Respectful EGY.Chronicles Respectful followers..apart from printing errors,now & then..or linguistic mistakes ...everything else ..Is GENUINE..i promise you all, that*s why i feel at home every time i dictate a Comment ..i really feel at HOME my dears! I am not motivated or biased by this or that,Yes i DO write L..O..N..G>>>>>>> Comments with much details in them just to put any reader ,of them,feel,He or She gets it RIGHT, such events/memoirs??so that they know exactly what i mean or am saying, some intriguing? some trivial FACTS?!.....Thank you very VERY MUCH>>indeed,and GOD bless ALL/....... Best wishes from:London/G.Britain..yours truly IS-HAK BARSOUMIAN

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  17. Respectful Zeinobia... In my Comment, concerning The FEDA-YINS subject (above),??.....The full name of my good friend that died in 1969 during shooting the film KOUL-LOUNA FEDA-E-YOUN ,or>> WE ARE ALL FEDA-YINS s<< Movie Cameraman that i called SAKO ,was The Beloved/Unforgettable & HIS Profession s-MARTYR Mr.SARKIS GOGANIAN,his last movie as a cameraman & as i recall correctly, was FUNDUK AL AHLAM or HOTEL OF DREAMS, acted by late singer/actress ,lovely>>SABAH (AL SABBOUHA or Shams EL Shmouss) with DUREID LAHAM in 1968 as i remember??A film directed by late/Great Lebanese films director Mr.ALBERT NAJEEB(or NAGUIB)!! From BARSOUMIAN/London

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  18. EVERY CHILD REGARDS His or Her 1st day at school gates,as if they are getting separated from their parent-s- for good??by this>>>MONSTER<>our SCHOOL!!<<...From 1953-1959, and from my 1st year in the KinderGarten to>>>the 3rd Secondary class..at ARMENIAN EVANGELICAL HIGH SCHOOL/Rue MEXIQUE/at SANA-YEHH district of Beirut next to the GIANT HAIGAZIAN UNIVERSITY ,Which was and certainly considered one of the best educational centres in Lebanon and neighbouring countries ,also renowned of its best diciplinarian methods..and mutual respect POLICY between the teachers & the mixed male/female pupils,,even among the student of different,(school s<< other grade class mates themselves..too!! VERY RARELY we endured six of the best(s),or beatings by the ruler,or sometimes clipping round our ears ,if we behaved badly or distracted attention in the classrooms.....Teachers i will always cherish their memories are
    ORYORT in Armenian ment MISS-es such as VARTOUHI SARKISSIAN/JEANETT KOUYOUMJIAN.. Oryort ALICE??, & BARON-s-meaning Mr.AZIZIAN/KASOUNI/ Baron k.KEVERIAN /Baron BULGHURIAN and our best Principals or THE-NORREN-s-/Baron KHERLOPIAN/DJIZMEDJIAN..with extreme respect i raise my hat ,also Bow my head for them ALL and the ones i failed to mention here, my sincere apologies..sorry ,but their images vaguely engraved in my memory to this moment!!Also all my class/school mates,whom were good childhood friends,as my class had usually 23 sometimes 25 students?..i still remember the good ones such as Miss./or by now Mrs.? SONA AFFARIAN/BERJOUHI & sister MELINEH BARSOUMIAN-s/SHOGHIG APELIAN/VICTORIA SARAFFIAN/SYLVIA MAZMANIAN/VEHANOUSH TEKYAN/ARPINEH DARAKJIAN/and male mates such as ARA KALFAYAN/THOMAS DOEKMEKJIAN/GIRAYER & sister RITA SHNOROKIAN-s/SEBOUH ATCHBAHIAN/VAHE KEBABJIAN/ARMENAK MARKARIAN/GARO AYALTOUNIAN/ZAVEN MOURADIAN/SIMON & his sister SHAKEH DAKESSIAN-s/HAROUT KHERLOPIAN/ Brothers VAHE & ANTRANIK YEDALIAN-s/GARO TANYELIAN/HAROUT AYVAZIAN...and all the rest..like VAROUJAN KONYALYAN..whom was a bit bully type??..i wonder whatever happened to them all;;after almost 6 decades since we studied/played/celebrated holidays + birthday parties/Christmases... seems to me that all these were a dream i woke up from.The same FATE that brought us together...dispersed us too..WHY?? a question we all will take with us to our final destination without getting a satisfying answer to it...today whenever i see school kids passing by,shouting/screaming/argueing/pulling hairs/...i see a repeat to all the things we done it then...and we never had the opportunities to meet again and say to one another...>>>I AM SORRY!!trivial/small guilty feelings that accumulates year after year if we fail to say it at the time, and hurt some of us until THIS DAY, so if any of them still alive and kicking and reading this or even vaguely remembers me i say ,for any wrongs i did then/SORRY..I AM TERRIBLY SORRY..MY(CLASSES OF 1953-1959)>>DEAREST/ GOOD/UNFORGETTABLE SCHOOL MATES-!!! ..GOD bless ALL from:Is-Hak or SAHAG BARSOUMIAN/London /G.Britain

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    1. BOURJ HAMMOUD/BEIRUT/.....Bourj or Bourg,as in Bourg el CAHIRA ,or the infamous-Cairo Tower-but HAMMOUD Tower in North Lebanon was once a 2-3 Storey building ,considered as a giant among the dwarfs around,in other words highest property in that district a century or more ago,as the place was vast and nearly... empty, until the arrival of the Armenian genocide survivors of 1915??..Where the Turk/Ottomans were handing over their authority to the FRENCH incoming Imperial Rulers whom designated it for Armen.refugees to settle in Lebanon and erect their TENTS and turn it into a camp..or build huts using wood and thin tin metal layers as ROOFS?!... but its border reached AL MOUDAW-WAR..AL KARANTINA..AL DORA..ANTELIASS town,where stands, for over 7 decades the GREAT ARMENIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH,by the shores of the Mediterranean sea...also an industrial area /many ,many academies/colleges/schools/hospitals..football clubs...newspapers thrived and the whole place became a Mini-Armenia...even the street names all of Armenian origin also cinema theatres such as KNAR/SEVAN/KERMANIG/ARAX,,,,The smell of Armenian cooking and especially the BASTERMA/or our especiality sliced Beef meet with hot chilly spices garlic & dried under a very hot sun heath or a lookalike of English BACON ??, but eaten ..cold or as a MEZZE /appetizer!!..... Very cramped & Crowded roads/streets...where Armenian language or even Arabic in Armenian accent heard... traffic signs shops fronts all in Armenian followed with English or Arabic... fortunately or unfortunately, i am not sure which to decide,i didn^t grow up there?? but visited it most frequently & almost on Sundays to meet my relations with my Late Father<<his sister,
      or(my late/beloved Aunt and her family)lived there almost for 3 decades...very cosmopolitan atmosphere... 2-3 decades ago even Turkish spoken by(old Generation) and songs of Turkish famous/late singer ZEKI MURAN/heard...but due to the NEW Generation campaigners, all that became..scarce??...last time i^ve been there was in 1974 ,,nearly 42 long years,my relatives + friends all emigrated to The U.S...Me in the U.K. since 1979..as if every Armenian is born with DIASPORA engraved on his or her forehead,and a pass-port in his/her hand... This is our FATE for many many centuries now..we should get used to it by now,even though it is against our WILL!!....GOD BLESS ALL/From Is-Hak BARSOUMIAN/London-U.K





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