Skip to comments.Kyiv disappointed by Medvedev's position on Stalin-era famine
Posted on 11/23/2008 7:14:21 AM PST by Grzegorz 246
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev`s statement on the Stalin-era famine provoked disappointment in Ukraine, the country`s ambassador to Russia said on Tuesday, RIA Novosti reported.
In a letter to Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko released by the Kremlin on Friday, the Russian president accused Kyiv of using the Stalin-era famine, known as the Holodomor, to drive a wedge between Ukraine and Russia, and urged efforts to forge a common position on the tragedy.
In the letter, Medvedev said Ukraine`s attempts to declare the Holodomor an act of genocide by the Soviet authorities meant he could not attend commemoration events in Kyiv.
"Of course, disappointment is felt in Kyiv," Ambassador Konstyantyn Hryshchenko told the Ekho Moskvy radio station.
Eight heads of state, including the presidents of the Baltic States, Poland and Georgia, are expected to attend an international forum and commemoration events on the 75th anniversary of the Holodomor, which are taking place in the country`s capital until Saturday. Some 40 foreign delegations are also expected to attend.
"Ukrainian politicians of different levels have repeatedly and consistently stated that they [events to mark the anniversary of the famine] are not about any responsibility or link with the modern Russia," Hryshchenko said. "It is about revealing historical facts and the responsibility of the Stalin regime."
The ambassador added that Ukraine would continue to raise the issue in international organizations.
Ukraine has been seeking international recognition for the Stalin-era famine as an act of genocide by the Soviet authorities following a similar move by Ukraine`s Supreme Rada in late 2006. The United Nations General Committee refused last month to include the famine on its agenda, supporting Russia`s recommendation to exclude the Holodomor from the UN session.
"We would like to draw attention to the greatest tragedy of the 20th century," the ambassador said. "Indeed, before Ukraine had raised the issue, no one spoke about it seriously, either in Russia or any other post-Soviet state."
Andriy Honcharuk, a deputy head of the Ukrainian presidential staff, also expressed regrets about Russia`s refusal to participate in the events.
"We regret that our eastern neighbors, our partner Russia, will not take part in the events, but I think that time and history will judge this situation," Honcharuk told a briefing in Kyiv.
How telling that RUSSIA’s leaders identify themselves with Stalin and the Soviet Union... instead of saying, well, that Russia was a victim of Soviet Communism itself.
Once again, the descendants of Stalin can not bear to see the truth of his work brought out into the light.
This should be an annual event. So Russia can be shown to the world as not merely anti-democratic but insanely unforgiving of any attack put upon Uncle Joe.
At least Germany does not celebrate Hitler. But the KGB is not so readily open to condemnation for the acts of its henchmen.
Exactly. The Empire of the Rus was founded in Kiev/Kyiv. I don’t see a future with separate Russian and Ukrainian states - unless the Russians continue to insist upon it which is what they seem to be doing. The ignorant thugs who now run Russia seem committed to a world in turmoil and a Russia bound for self destruction (again).
McCain was, and is, right on one thing. He said when he looks in Putin’s eyes he sees KGB. And anyone who thinks Putin hasn’t surrounded himself with like minded souls is delusional.
"Holodomor"? Let me eat some humble pie here, and admit I have no clue -- what does the word mean? Yes, I've heard the basic facts of a Stalin imposed "famine" on Ukraine, somehow ignored or covered up by the Western press, where millions died, in what years, 1928?
Seems curious though, that Russians might want a "common position on the tragedy." How about the facts of history?
No doubt Obama has this book, and adores it.
Holodomor is the Ukranian word (holod, hunger, and mor, plague) for the imposed famine in 1932/33.
It was a very powerful first chapter. I think the book was about the boy after he grows up and goes to work for the Soviet state in the 50s. I was going to order the book but never did. That was a couple years ago. I was looking for that book on Amazon, and could not find it. Does anyone remember that book's title or the author? Hopefully, someone on this thread remembers it.
After the Bolshevik Revolution most farms in the Ukraine remained in private hands. In the fall of 1932 the NKVD and Red Army came in and confiscated the harvest, leaving farmers with nothing to eat and no money to buy food. Between two and a half and three and a half million people, mostly children, many if not most Jews, starved to death or died of diseases associated with famine. The Soviets then moved to “save” the people of the Ukraine from the inefficiencies of bourgeois capitalist agricultural practices by collectivizing their farms and deporting large numbers of those who resisted collectivization to more fertile areas, like Siberia.
That’s the history. The The Soviet Union and the Communist Internationale denied it and western reporters with communists leanings either wrote articles denying the claims of survivors who escaped the famine or just kept it out of the western press.
One good source is “Let History Judge: The Origins and Consequences of Stalinism” by Roy Medvedev. Medvedev was a Georgian Marxist historian who wrote in the Soviet Union during the “Glasnost” era. (Presumably no relation to the current Russian President.) He’s not the most accessible writer and his translator is pretty inept but there are a lot of interesting tables in the appendices.
A joke being told when I was a young man was of an old sick Russian, hearing a knock on the door, asks "Who is there?",the answer comes back "Death is here, I have come for you,", replies the old man "Thank God, I thought it was the KGB!". More truth in that old joke than one can imagine.
Yeah, some of the "other ingredients" were sawdust of various types.
Check this out on Amazon.com. Note the list price, used are a bit cheaper!
There is the gold standard by Robert Conquest and his book is “Harvest of Sorrow Soviet Collectivization and the Terror-Famine”
In November 2005, Conquest was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Yea, definitely a book to check out from your local leftist library.
Just ordered it.
I’ve heard of Conquest for years and have seen this work sited numerous times but have never been able to find a copy in any library or book store in this area. Since the Soviet Union fell apart before the age of the internet really took off, I guess I just never thought to check Amazon.
The novel you are looking for is “Child 44” by Tom Rob Smith. It is exceptional for a first book, and if you never knew of the horrors imposed by Stalin before, you will have a good hint of them after you read it.
Thank you very much.
You will find that Conquest is very meticulous in going through the issue of the Soviet made famine.
His earlier work is considered a classic, “The Great Terror.”
Both of his books should be required reading in schools/universities but then the educators would be afraid that this would cause undue criticism of communism.
They can’t have that.