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Seven million died in the 'forgotten' holocaust
Toronto Sun ^ | 11/16/03 | ERIC MARGOLIS

Posted on 11/16/2003 10:05:24 AM PST by freedom44

Five years ago, I wrote about the unknown Holocaust in Ukraine. I was shocked to receive a flood of mail from young Americans and Canadians of Ukrainian descent telling me that until they read my column, they knew nothing of the 1932-33 genocide in which Josef Stalin's Soviet regime murdered seven million Ukrainians and sent two million more to concentration camps.

How, I wondered, could such historical amnesia afflict so many? For Jews and Armenians, the genocides their people suffered are vivid, living memories that influence their daily lives. Yet today, on the 70th anniversary of the destruction of a quarter of Ukraine's population, this titanic crime has almost vanished into history's black hole.

So has the extermination of the Don Cossacks by the communists in the 1920s, the Volga Germans in 1941 and mass executions and deportations to concentration camps of Lithuanians, Latvians, Estonians and Poles. At the end of World War II, Stalin's gulag held 5.5 million prisoners, 23% of them Ukrainians and 6% Baltic peoples.

Almost unknown is the genocide of two million of the USSR's Muslim peoples: Chechens, Ingush, Crimean Tatars, Tajiks, Bashkirs and Kazaks. The Chechen independence fighters who today are branded as "terrorists" by the U.S. and Russia are the grandchildren of survivors of Soviet concentration camps.

Add to this list of forgotten atrocities the murder in Eastern Europe from 1945-47 of at least two million ethnic Germans, mostly women and children, and the violent expulsion of 15 million more Germans, during which two million German girls and women were raped.

Among these monstrous crimes, Ukraine stands out as the worst in terms of numbers. Stalin declared war on his own people in 1932, sending Commissars V. Molotov and Lazar Kaganovitch and NKVD secret police chief Genrikh Yagoda to crush the resistance of Ukrainian farmers to forced collectivization.

Ukraine was sealed off. All food supplies and livestock were confiscated. NKVD death squads executed "anti-party elements." Furious that insufficient Ukrainians were being shot, Kaganovitch - virtually the Soviet Union's Adolf Eichmann - set a quota of 10,000 executions a week. Eighty percent of Ukrainian intellectuals were shot.

During the bitter winter of 1932-33, 25,000 Ukrainians per day were being shot or died of starvation and cold. Cannibalism became common. Ukraine, writes historian Robert Conquest, looked like a giant version of the future Bergen-Belsen death camp.

The mass murder of seven million Ukrainians, three million of them children, and deportation to the gulag of two million more (where most died) was hidden by Soviet propaganda. Pro-communist westerners, like The New York Times' Walter Duranty, British writers Sidney and Beatrice Webb and French Prime Minister Edouard Herriot, toured Ukraine, denied reports of genocide, and applauded what they called Soviet "agrarian reform." Those who spoke out against the genocide were branded "fascist agents."

The U.S., British, and Canadian governments, however, were well aware of the genocide, but closed their eyes, even blocking aid groups from going to Ukraine.

The only European leaders to raise a cry over Soviet industrialized murder were, ironically and for their own cynical and self-serving reasons, Hitler and Italian dictator Benito Mussolini.

Because Kaganovitch, Yagoda and some other senior Communist party and NKVD officials were Jewish, Hitler's absurd claim that communism was a Jewish plot to destroy Christian civilization became widely believed across a fearful Europe.

When war came, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt and British PM Winston Churchill allied themselves closely to Stalin, though they were well aware his regime had murdered at least 30 million people long before Hitler's extermination of Jews and gypsies began. Yet in the strange moral calculus of mass murder, only Germans were guilty.

Though Stalin murdered three times more people than Hitler, to Roosevelt he remained "Uncle Joe."

The British-U.S. alliance with Stalin made them his partners in crime. Roosevelt and Churchill helped preserve history's most murderous regime, to which they handed over half of Europe in 1945.

After the war, the left tried to cover up Soviet genocide. Jean-Paul Sartre denied the gulag even existed.

For the western Allies, Nazism was the only evil; they could not admit being allied to mass murderers. For the Soviets, promoting the Jewish Holocaust perpetuated anti-fascism and masked their own crimes.

The Jewish people, understandably, saw their Holocaust as a unique event. It was Israel's raison d'etre. Raising other genocides at that time would, they feared, diminish their own. This was only human nature.

While today, academia, the media and Hollywood rightly keep attention focused on the Jewish Holocaust, they mostly ignore Ukraine. We still hunt Nazi killers, but not communist killers. There are few photos of the Ukraine genocide or Stalin's gulag, and fewer living survivors. Dead men tell no tales.

Russia never prosecuted any of its mass murderers, as Germany did.

We know all about the crimes of Nazis Adolf Eichmann and Heinrich Himmler; about Babi Yar and Auschwitz.

But who remembers Soviet mass murderers Dzerzhinsky, Kaganovitch, Yagoda, Yezhov and Beria? Were it not for writer Alexander Solzhenitsyn, we might never know of Soviet death camps like Magadan, Kolyma and Vorkuta. Movie after movie appears about Nazi evil, while the evil of the Soviet era vanishes from view or dissolves into nostalgia.

The souls of Stalin's millions of victims still cry out for justice.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; Russia
KEYWORDS: anniversary; communism; genocide; history; josefstalin; russia; soviets; stalin; ukraine; ussr
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To: freedom44
41 posted on 11/16/2003 11:10:19 AM PST by MayDay72 (Communism kills. Free markets feed.)
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To: lavrenti
It is amazing how many young conservatives are unaware so spread the word here!Are you a red"diaper baby"?
42 posted on 11/16/2003 11:10:42 AM PST by MEG33
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To: freedom44
The genocide(s) in Stalin's Soviet Union were preceded by firearms prohibition. Armed humans would prefer to die fighting than starvining to death in a state-orchestrated famine.

43 posted on 11/16/2003 11:12:25 AM PST by society-by-contract
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To: freedom44
Worthwhile site to know, to throw in the face of Leftist.
44 posted on 11/16/2003 11:15:04 AM PST by FreedomPoster (this space intentionally blank)
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To: Essie
Why history has overlooked it, I do not know.

"History" has overlooked it because historians and journalists tend to be socialists or communists. They protect their own.

45 posted on 11/16/2003 11:15:04 AM PST by ArrogantBustard
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To: Petronski
Everyone, each one of us, should buy and read this book, so that there should never be any doubt:

Below is a good review of The Black Book of Communism:

46 posted on 11/16/2003 11:15:49 AM PST by society-by-contract
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To: caltrop
The VHS is available on I just ordered one. Thanks for the info.
47 posted on 11/16/2003 11:18:13 AM PST by mollynme (cogito, ergo freepum)
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To: lavrenti
I understand that both Churchill and Roosevelt had to work to build consensus within the government and with the people before taking action. That's one advantage that dictatorships will always have over republican governments. Consensus is not required for action when one party holds all the cards.

Sometimes we must negotiate with evil to survive. Where our leaders in government and the media failed was in making the people aware of the evil we were bargaining with at the time. The communists were indeed deeply rooted in the media and the government at high levels. The fact that this story is so "new" shows the hold that they still have.

48 posted on 11/16/2003 11:22:50 AM PST by eggman (Social Insecurity - Who will provide for the government when the government provides for all of us?)
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To: mollynme
Glad to know it's still available. I taped it at the time but haven't looked at it in a number of years and, once I do, may need to order another copy.
49 posted on 11/16/2003 11:26:07 AM PST by caltrop
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To: MEG33
I've heard of that book, but never read it.

However, as a kid, I had a socialist uncle who defected to Cuba, and he sent me constant streams of propaganda, communist texts, books on Marxism/Leninism, and various left-wing guerilla warfare manuals - It was pretty fascinating for a young kid to read this stuff. I learned to read russian a little in order to digest some of the stuff that wasn't in english LOL

Then, researching on my own, I began looking closer at history, and I was able to see clearly that not only was Communism evil, but was able to see how amazing they were at manipulation of the masses - it scared me, in fact...

I became, much to the disappointment of my uncle, a fervent anti-communist, and it was really his fault - the "too-good-to-be-true" stuff he was sending me made me look closer, and that is what did it - looking closer.
50 posted on 11/16/2003 11:31:12 AM PST by Chad Fairbanks (I would be considered quite a catch in some circles... Crop Circles...)
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To: Chad Fairbanks
The NYT Herbert Matthews was Castro's Duranty.He called him an agrarian reformer.I think your experience with the literature of the utopian Communists gives you a better perspective on how they work.
51 posted on 11/16/2003 11:36:42 AM PST by MEG33
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To: MEG33
"Agrarian Reformer" - much like Pol Pot, eh? ;0)
52 posted on 11/16/2003 11:38:42 AM PST by Chad Fairbanks (I would be considered quite a catch in some circles... Crop Circles...)
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To: Chad Fairbanks
They are simply trying to give power to the people!(The ones left after mass murder,starvation,executions,and mass imprisonment).Did I forget slave labor and reeducation programs?
53 posted on 11/16/2003 11:45:00 AM PST by MEG33
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To: freedom44
Robert Conquest wrote about the collectivization famine, and calculated that each LETTER in his book was 20 lives lost. His book is 411 pages long.
54 posted on 11/16/2003 11:45:36 AM PST by Tijeras_Slim (SSDD - Same S#it Different Democrat)
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To: MEG33
Maybe we should infiltrate some leftist protests sometime and have signs that read "POWER TO THE (SURVIVING) PEOPLE!" heh heh heh
55 posted on 11/16/2003 11:49:36 AM PST by Chad Fairbanks (I would be considered quite a catch in some circles... Crop Circles...)
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To: freedom44
I worked with a young woman in her mid-20's who told me her grandparents were from Ukraine. I told her I bet they had some stories to tell, but she didn't know what I meant. She knew nothing of the starving of the Ukraine. I guess it's just something they didn't want to talk about, and it wasn't passed on.

I knew that my own great grandparents came here during the potato famine in Ireland, which was a starving-out on a smaller scale. But that's all I knew, my grandparents didn't talk about it. Looking back, I wish they had talked a lot more. Maybe it was just too painful for them?

56 posted on 11/16/2003 11:51:16 AM PST by FlyVet
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To: FreedomPoster
informative link - thanks
57 posted on 11/16/2003 11:57:05 AM PST by Puddleglum
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To: freedom44
But you know Augustus Pinochet and Francisco Franco are much worse. I mean they are the embodiment of pure evil in all left leaning households throughout the world
58 posted on 11/16/2003 12:05:14 PM PST by BBell
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To: BBell
Much worse how?Number killed,imprisoned,starved?
59 posted on 11/16/2003 12:09:55 PM PST by MEG33
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To: MEG33
Would you know sarcasm if it hit you in the face? Oh, and I forgot to mention that evil Joe McCarthy guy. Talk about pure evil. He had the nerve to actually insinuate that commies are bad and trying to take over. It sends chills down my spine just thinking about it.
60 posted on 11/16/2003 12:32:39 PM PST by BBell
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