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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: 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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To: BBell
I mean ,how do they justify it?I realize facts don't matter to a leftist.
61 posted on 11/16/2003 12:34:17 PM PST by MEG33
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To: MEG33
No, just a Texas boy from a poor family who was rather resentful of my poverty. Blamed just about everyone but my mother, who couldn't hold a job or raise a child.

Got wise, eventually.
62 posted on 11/16/2003 12:37:43 PM PST by lavrenti ("Tell your momma and your poppa, sometimes good guys don't wear white." The Standells)
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To: eggman
What most people don't realize about Churchill was that he led an "all-party" government. He had to deal with Labour.

Roosevelt has no excuse. His closest advisors, in the main, would have sold their mothers to Stalin.
63 posted on 11/16/2003 12:39:41 PM PST by lavrenti ("Tell your momma and your poppa, sometimes good guys don't wear white." The Standells)
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To: society-by-contract
I found this in the review you linked to:

In addition, the book is fascinating for its many insights into Communism's roots. You might be surprised to learn who these French authors consider to be the real father of Communism (hint: not Marx). And most readers would certainly be surprised to learn that Soviet leaders so greatly respected one Western saint that they erected a monument to him at the Kremlin.

I'm curious, who is this "real father of communism" that's mentioned here?

64 posted on 11/16/2003 12:40:50 PM PST by Yardstick
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To: lavrenti
Roosevelt had Eleanor.
65 posted on 11/16/2003 1:07:07 PM PST by MEG33
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To: Yardstick
I don't know, but Rousseau seems likely.
66 posted on 11/16/2003 1:11:07 PM PST by MEG33
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To: MEG33
Yep, Rousseau would be my first guess.
67 posted on 11/16/2003 1:24:11 PM PST by Yardstick
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To: MEG33
Harry Hopkins, too. I think he did the most mischief.
68 posted on 11/16/2003 1:51:10 PM PST by lavrenti ("Tell your momma and your poppa, sometimes good guys don't wear white." The Standells)
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To: lavrenti
He had a big influence on Roosevelt and is thought to be a spy by some,an unwitting tool by others of the Soviets..I also have wondered how on earth we could have survived a Henry Wallace presidency had Roosevelt died before the last election.Shudder!
69 posted on 11/16/2003 2:07:32 PM PST by MEG33
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To: MEG33
God looks after children, drunks and The United States of America.

I've a great story about Earl Browder few outside the old radical left know. It was told to me by an old Trotskyist at the event.

Max Schactman was a Trotskyist who later became sort of a muddled neo-liberal AFL-CIO guy (influenced some neo-cons, long story). When he was still a hard Marxist-Leninist Trotskyist he engaged in a public debate with Earl Browder, recently sacked by Stalin as leader of the CPUSA. Browder did his presentation.

Then it was Max's turn. Out came a teletype roll, which unrolled onto the floor at his feet. Behind the podium, Max began reading off the names of the "old Bolsheviks" and supporters of Trotsky murdered by the Soviets during the Purges.

At the end of his recitation, he turned his right hand and pointed at Browder.

Then spoke, "There for the luck of geography stands a dead man."

Enough said.
70 posted on 11/16/2003 2:14:32 PM PST by lavrenti ("Tell your momma and your poppa, sometimes good guys don't wear white." The Standells)
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To: Allan
bump
71 posted on 11/16/2003 2:16:53 PM PST by Allan
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To: Petronski
For any Freeper that doesn't own a copy

Buy it. Worth every penny

The Black Book of Communism: Crimes, Terror, Repression

72 posted on 11/16/2003 2:21:21 PM PST by Fzob (Why does this tag line keep showing up?)
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To: Fzob
I am reading the reviews of the Black Book..interesting.
73 posted on 11/16/2003 2:47:10 PM PST by MEG33
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To: lavrenti
You wrote:
"As a former communist I can say that it is an ideology predicated on murder.

It is based on class anger, avarice and jealousy. Combine the three emotions, give it philosophical basis and a gun and you get events such as the Ukranian slaughter.

I could go on, but this is at the core of this ideology."

What you say here is an affirmation of what Aleksander Solzhenitsin says every chance he gets, and he should know, having spent years in a gulag. I am now reading a book of his essays. He is dismayed that the West has it all wrong on communism. He cites the movie Reds as an example of how western cinema grossly misrepresents and glorifies these murderers. He points out that, at variance with received wisdom, there is no such thing as "good communism." He says western intellectuals who put their hopes in negotiations with communists are expecting a miracle. But that miracles never happen to people who are spiritually lost! I love that guy!
I've lived in the USSR, Poland and Red China and agree 100%.
Americans who know the truth really need to keep up the drumbeat. The mainstream press is trying to drown us out. We can't let that happen.


74 posted on 11/16/2003 2:50:01 PM PST by Jack00 (We CAN Fight! Here's How...)
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To: freedom44
bump
75 posted on 11/16/2003 3:02:31 PM PST by VOA
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To: Jack00
I just said on another thread about the left getting a pass."When did a movie expose the the murder,starvation,and concentration camps of communism?"
76 posted on 11/16/2003 3:09:37 PM PST by MEG33
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To: freedom44
Don't forget the Khmer Roughe killing fields in Cambodia.
77 posted on 11/16/2003 3:11:57 PM PST by gitmo (Stability cannot be purchased at the expense of liberty. -GWB)
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To: gitmo
We didn't.I named Pol Pot,the leader of Khmer Roughe.Statistically as a percentage of population,Pol Pot wins the worst murderer award.I left Ho Chi Minh out but someone else named him.
78 posted on 11/16/2003 3:17:50 PM PST by MEG33
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To: carlo3b
ping
79 posted on 11/16/2003 3:24:39 PM PST by christie
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Comment #80 Removed by Moderator

Comment #81 Removed by Moderator

To: caltrop
Yes, I do remember that film. I even have a copy of it on tape somewhere around here...
82 posted on 11/16/2003 3:52:59 PM PST by karen999
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To: freedom44
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.

It's interesting that a lot of Lefties defend the support that Leftists gave the Soviet Union in the 1930s because 'It seemed like only the Soviet Union was standing up to Hitler.' Well, Hitler became chancellor in part because the Germans were afraid of the Soviet Union. And the Soviet Union was slaughtering millions long before Hitler killed his first Jew.

Somewhere in this, we have to consider the possibility that Leftists bear some moral culpability for causing Hitler's rise to power.

83 posted on 11/16/2003 3:53:25 PM PST by JoeSchem
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To: Chad Fairbanks
I had a similar experience.

In college, I had my own copy of Mao's Little Red Book. The propaganda that I saw from Russia didn't look too inviting, but I thought it worked well for people who'd been under the Tzar. I remember writing a paper on why communism was great for China and capitalism a poor choice for India.

Then...I met some Chinese intellectuals who'd been ripped from their jobs and families and forced to go into the fields (I have a feeling they suffered a lot more than what they were willing to talk about). I met Cambodians whose whole families had been wiped out, Vietnamese who risked pirates at sea to get out. I watched as a Chinese man I was escorting for business stood teary eyed in front a Chinese opera exhibit at the Smithsonian. Chinese opera had been banned by the communists and this was the first chance he'd been able to hear it in years. I became friends with a Jewish Romanian immigre whose family had to flee due to their religion. She would come to me because, as a convert to Judaism, I knew more than she did, since under communism she could not learn about her religion. I had a Ukrainian client, whose family had been devastated by their holocaust.

I think that a lot of Americans who support communism do so because they think that things should be 'fair,' and that communism reaches that goal. However, if they ever met someone who lived under that system, they would be disabused of that notion in a hurry.
84 posted on 11/16/2003 4:06:36 PM PST by radiohead
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To: Olam Hazeh
Sir,you go too far.You seem to minimize the deaths of Ukrainians .
85 posted on 11/16/2003 4:06:40 PM PST by MEG33
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To: Chad Fairbanks; Petronski
Thanks for pointing out post 12, and Thank you for bringing this book up to our attention.
86 posted on 11/16/2003 4:36:46 PM PST by KineticKitty (We have enough youth. How about a fountain of SMART?)
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To: MEG33
Yes, he does.

In 1986, watching the effort to have "Harvest of Despair" broadcast, it was difficult to escape the conclusion that the deaths of some were deemed a whole lot less important that the deaths of others. Prior to that, I hadn't realized any particular group had a stake in being victims.

87 posted on 11/16/2003 4:39:43 PM PST by caltrop
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To: caltrop
I just looked up communism and anti semitism.Althought the communists promised Jews equality and the end of pogroms,they too eventually ended up in the same fix as the rest of the people.
88 posted on 11/16/2003 4:47:31 PM PST by MEG33
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To: caltrop
We are talking here about an event that killed twice as many people as the Holocaust you combine both starvations.

caltrop, don't get mad when you read this but I found someone on the net who disagrees with your film review. You should send them an e-mail of dispute. The Hoax of the Man-Made Ukraine Famine of 1932-33

89 posted on 11/16/2003 5:12:56 PM PST by Andy from Beaverton (I only vote Republican to stop the Democrats)
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Comment #90 Removed by Moderator

To: nuconvert
Ed Asner is a commie a-hole.

The attitude amongst many liberals is that the communists were, at worse, misguided but generally ok. This stupid attitude is itself criminal, because it completely overlooks the holocausts that communists have perpetrated the world over: in Vietnam, Eastern Europe, Russia, the Ukraine, etc.

Stalin misunderstood, my a$$. Stalin was nothing more than a political, bloody, paranoid thug who killed millions of his own people. He was much more evil than Hitler. The PC crowd can stuff thier heads in the sand and lie about him all they want. I'm not buying.


91 posted on 11/16/2003 5:21:51 PM PST by Levante
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To: Andy from Beaverton
Ah..a review by the Progressive Labor Party..Hmmm Description:(their own)A Stalinist Party,a revolutionary communist party in the US.
92 posted on 11/16/2003 5:27:52 PM PST by MEG33
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To: caltrop
My #92
93 posted on 11/16/2003 5:29:05 PM PST by MEG33
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To: Andy from Beaverton
I checked it out. Thanks for steering me to it but I spent plenty of time arguing with Progressive Labor types, and other assorted screwballs, when I was active in NY politics so I think I'll pass up this opportunity to have another go at them.

The most amazing thing to me about the film was the very serious effort to make sure it wasn't shown. While a portion of it was undoubtedly an attempt to shield the Communists from criticism, it was clearly more than that in that there was a vocal constituency which argued that only Hitler's extermination of the Jews was ever worthy of discussion. This, presumably, is more of the same sort of nonsense as Elie Wiesel saying that the term "holocaust" can only be used to refer to the Jews who perished in WWII concentration camps.

94 posted on 11/16/2003 5:32:48 PM PST by caltrop
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To: Jack00
Solzhenitsin's idea that there is no such thing of "good communism" played itself out while witnessing the Nicaraugan Revolution and the Salvadoran civil war from a safe distance. Every knuckleheaded left-wing Catholic and touchy-feely Protestant and Jewish clergymen seemed to think this was "love in action." Which makes sense, considering the leadership of both juntas/rebel entities included priests and Catholic laypeople enamoured by "Liberation Theology."

Didn't make a difference. Ask anyone who ever opposed the Sandinstas and the Salvadoran FDR/FMLN.

Mowed down by thugs with rosaries wrapped around the pistol grips of their AK-47s. Solzhenitsin was right.
95 posted on 11/16/2003 5:59:13 PM PST by lavrenti ("Tell your momma and your poppa, sometimes good guys don't wear white." The Standells)
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To: Levante
Glad you got that out.
Don't think anyone here will argue with you.
(unless Ed Asner just dropped by)
96 posted on 11/16/2003 6:00:07 PM PST by nuconvert
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To: MEG33
The PLP had more FBI agents at attendence of their meetings than actual members.

Most of these little groups number no more than several hundred. Unfortuantly many of them started getting involved in Democrat Party politics in 1988, led by those enabling clowns from DSA (Democratic Socialists of America).

I was there for that. Now the cat is out of the bag, folks.

When people complain about the radical trend within that party, well, it all started with the Jackson campaign and the decision of several Marxist-Leninist groups to glom on. Several became delegates to the Atlanta convention.

Now, some of y'all know that when one becomes a delegate to a major party convention, it opens some career doors.

Draw you own conclusions. I figured things out while being involved in a group that refused to along with the others.
97 posted on 11/16/2003 6:05:17 PM PST by lavrenti ("Tell your momma and your poppa, sometimes good guys don't wear white." The Standells)
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To: lavrenti
Are you familiar with the World Workers Party and ANSWER International?
98 posted on 11/16/2003 6:10:11 PM PST by MEG33
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To: JoeSchem
Somewhere in this, we have to consider the possibility that Leftists bear some moral culpability for causing Hitler's rise to power.

Indeed. Hitler was quite to the left by American definitions of the term.

Hitler is often referred to as 'right wing'. Historically, 'right wing' in early twentieth century European politics meant he was a 'right wing' socialist. A 'right wing' socialist according to Lenin was one who wanted socialism but didn't want violent revolution to achieve it (see: Lenin and Right Wing). Right wing socialists were also interested in national socialist parties, rather than socialist parties owing allegence to international socialist or communist organizations that Lenin espoused.

The mainstream media conveniently leave out the socialist part when calling Hitler 'right wing'. Nazi principles are basically socialist (see points 11, 13, 17, 23, and 25 of Hitler's 25 Points).

A 'right wing' European socialist does not equate to a 'right wing' American politician. If anything, the Nazi party was closest in ideology to the left wing of the Democrat Party, some of whom are nothing but socialists.

99 posted on 11/16/2003 6:10:55 PM PST by rustbucket
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To: Olam Hazeh
One man's awful pain does not diminish the awful pain of another.Both deserve our efforts to diminish the pain and see that it doesn't reoccur.
100 posted on 11/16/2003 6:13:05 PM PST by MEG33
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