Thursday, June 05, 2008

Nader Shah Is the Savior and King of Persia not “Azerbaijan”

Nader Shah Is the Savior and King of Persia not “Azerbaijan”

Figure 28

Nader Shah (1688-1747)

The Safavid Shah Sultan Hussein (R. 1694-1722) plunged the country into chaos because of his incompetence. The people gave him the nickname of mullah because of his religious zeal. Shiite excesses were introduced and non-Muslims were persecuted. This weakened the mighty Safavid Empire to the extent that in 1719 Mahmood (Mahmoud, Mahmud) Afghan, the Safavid vassal of Afghanistan revolted and invaded Isfahan, killed Shah Sultan Hussein in 1722, pillaged and ransacked the land which also affected the Armenians of New Jugha.

Vulnerable, the country was attacked from all sides: the Ottomans invaded from the west, Russians from the north while central Iran was being plundered by the Afghans. In such desperate circumstances, a true savior emerged from the northwestern region of Iran. Nader khan of Turkmen (Turcoman) origin and son of a peasant came to the rescue of his homeland Iran and miraculously liberated the country, repelling the multiple enemies and forcing them out of Iran. It’s worth mentioning that the Armenian Meliks (kings) of Karabakh (Artsakh) helped Nader in ridding Iran of the Ottomans once and for all, for which service they received Nader’s praise who reaffirmed their autonomy and recognized their rule of Artsakh.

By 1735 the country was free of enemy occupation and Nader declared himself king in 1736. He started to expand his empire and invaded Kandahar, Kabul, the Mughal Empire of India and massacred a large number of people for which he is cursed to this day by Indians. Despite his despotic behavior, he was a religiously tolerant person and tried unsuccessfully to reconcile the Shiites and Sunnis. His actions caused his own generals to plot against him and they killed him in his sleep in 1747.

Nader Shah Afshar rescued his country from the verge of perishing and if it were not for him, Iran would not have existed today. Calling him king of “Azerbaijan” is totally nonsensical given the fact he fought the Ottomans vehemently and made maintaining the territorial integrity of Persia the work of his life.


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