Baku, Azerbaijan, Jun 25
“I visited a Muslim mosque constructed 800 years ago and the touched walls of Baku’s “Old City,” a walled fortress from which Azerbaijanis battled Persians and Russians for hundreds of years. Baku, Azerbaijan’s capital city, surrounds the historical fortress with hotels, office buildings and a totally modern city. Baku had been a world leader in oil production since the 1880s; without that oil, in World War II the Soviets could not have resisted the Germans in for months, maybe even weeks. In fact, Azerbaijan produced 80 percent of all the oil and gas used by the Soviet army throughout the entire war. In 1990-91, Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev plunged a dying Soviet Union into a black hole by sending Soviet soldiers to kill and wound hundreds of civilian men and women in Baku on one night in 1990; from that night emerged an independent Azerbaijan. To compound the chaos, Armenian invaders attacked Azerbaijan, claiming thousands of square miles of its territory. Armenians still occupy almost one-fifth of Azerbaijan in 2015. The U.N. Security Council has issued several resolutions condemning Armenia for its invasion of Azerbaijan, which Armenia ignores.
Azerbaijan is a vital energetic, proudly multicultural country built on ancient history, religious tolerance and secularism, hydrocarbons and an educated people bursting with energy, vision and optimism.
Besides the ubiquitous new construction, the most instant example of an energetic country is in being the site of the first-ever European Games — starting on June 12 — in which 6,000 athletes will compete in new facilities. Even Armenia will participate in the Games, despite a state of war existing between both countries interrupted by a 20-year-long cease-fire. Three-thousand officials will man the Games, as will 10,000 volunteers,” says the article.