Azerbaijan International

Summer 2003 (11.2)
Page 10

Readers' Forum
Rethinking Azeri-Ness

First of all, thanks for all you do to benefit our country. I'm a foreign exchange student from Azerbaijan, studying in high school in Arizona. I really enjoy reading your magazine. It makes me want to be a better person.

I've read so many articles that have touched me so deeply.

Living abroad, it's easy to judge and criticize everybody back home since we're not facing their problems. I think that you're doing a great job to inspire people to change their views and not be pessimistic-that's basically what has happened with me. You're not just providing people with fascinating articles; you're making a positive change in our lives.

One of my favorite articles was about Chingiz Mustafayev [TV cameraman who lost his life in the Karabakh War.

See "Eyewitness to the Century", Vol 7.3, Autumn 1999. Search at]. After reading it, I barely could think about anything else. A couple of weeks later in English class, we had a writing assignment and I wrote a poem about Chingiz.

I try to volunteer as often as I can, spending hours introducing Azerbaijani culture and lifestyle. I've done this in my English class and in a couple of classes at nearby Middle Schools. I'm trying to describe the beauty of our country and culture to Americans-since so many of them have never heard of the country where I came from. I've already convinced one of my American friends to come to visit our country in the summer for a couple of weeks.

During my second semester this year, I took a class called KPHS which is related to the T.V. station of our school.

Our main assignment involves making announcements for school, but I also try to use this opportunity to introduce people to our country. Sometimes I introduce our music and give brief information about our culture.

I'm learning to be much more active and politically conscious than ever before; everybody has to start somewhere and maybe this "some day" has come for me because I've been reading your magazine.

Fuad Babayev
Prescott, Colorado

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