Monday, April 25, 2022

Holodomor: Murder by Starvation

Holodomor: 

Murder by Starvation and the New Stalinism

From history.com/news/ukrainian-famine-stalin

The following information is primarily from history.com with additional text by Shinto Shrines of Japan.

"At the height of the 1932-33 Ukrainian famine under Joseph Stalin, starving people roamed the countryside, desperate for anything to eat. The Ukrainian famine—known as the Holodomor, a combination of the Ukrainian words for “starvation” and “to inflict death”—by one estimate claimed the lives of 3.9 million people, about 13 percent of the population. And, unlike other famines in history caused by blight or drought, this was caused when a dictator wanted both to replace Ukraine’s small farms with state-run collectives and punish independence-minded Ukrainians who posed a threat to his totalitarian authority."

"In 1929, as part of his plan to rapidly create a totally communist economy, Stalin had imposed collectivization, which replaced individually owned and operated farms with big state-run collectives. Ukraine’s small, mostly subsistence farmers resisted giving up their land and livelihoods. In response, the Soviet regime derided the resisters as kulaks—well-to-do peasants, who in Soviet ideology were considered enemies of the state. Soviet officials drove these peasants off their farms by force and Stalin’s secret police further made plans to deport 50,000 Ukrainian farm families to Siberia, historian Anne Applebaum writes in her 2017 book:

Stalin appears to have been motivated by the goal of transforming the Ukrainian nation into his idea of a modern, proletarian, socialist nation, even if this entailed the physical destruction of broad sections of its population.”

"Collectivization in Ukraine didn’t go very well. By the fall of 1932—around the time that Stalin’s wife, Nadezhda Alliluyeva, who reportedly objected to his collectivization policy, committed suicide—it became apparent that Ukraine’s grain harvest was going to miss Soviet planners’ target by 60 percent. There still might have been enough food for Ukrainian peasants to get by, but Stalin then ordered what little they had be confiscated as punishment for not meeting quotas."

"As the famine worsened, many tried to flee in search of places with more food. Some died by the roadside, while others were thwarted by the secret police and the regime’s system of internal passports. By the summer of 1933, some of the collective farms had only a third of their households left, and prisons and labor camps were jammed to capacity. With hardly anyone left to raise crops, Stalin’s regime resettled Russian peasants from other parts of the Soviet Union in Ukraine to cope with the labor shortage."

"Ultimately, although Stalin’s policies resulted in the deaths of millions, failed to crush Ukrainian aspirations for autonomy, and in the long run, may actually have backfired. “Famine often achieves a socio-economic or military purpose, such as transferring land possession or clearing an area of population, since most flee rather than die,” famine historian de Waal says. “But politically and ideologically it is more often counterproductive for its perpetrators. As in the case of Ukraine it generated so much hatred and resentment that it solidified Ukrainian nationalism.”"

"Eventually, when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, Ukraine finally became an independent nation—and the Holodomor remains a painful part of Ukrainians’ common identity."

As with this and other Russian atrocities before and after WWII, the death of millions is never an obstacle to Russian mega monsters like Stalin and his loving admirer Putin. But likewise, the senseless tragedy will never prop up a dying regime that offers nothing but totalitarianism and grief. Today, Ukranians who have not fled to the West or been killed, are being packed off to far flung regions of Russia to be "reeducated" as good little Russian robots. Another Russian "present".

Of course, as I've said elsewhere, this will all come crashing down on Russian heads as well. As this article from the Telegraph explains,

"The Kremlin has started planting Soviet-style political commissars into Russian government ministries and state-owned companies to report back to the president's office on the "emotional state and mood" of staff.

"In a plan that harks back to the paranoia of Josef Stalin's Soviet Union in the 1930s, these "political officers" will also push Vladimir Putin's political agenda and ensure official support for his war in Ukraine stays on track."

"In another sign of the ways in which the official narrative is starting to leak into different parts of Russian society, textbook publishers have reportedly been told to delete any references to Ukraine. Kremlin officials have increasingly said that they want to wipe Ukraine off the map."

“You can mention how we saved Kyiv, but it is no longer possible to talk about any independence of Ukraine as a country,"

In a future article, I will highlight an important fact of history of which readers may or may not be aware: the Nazi's (which Putin ostensibly hates so much) learned most of their dirty skills from the Russians.

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