In this paper I will explain the tragedy of the Holodomor in which Soviet Russia killed millions of Ukrainians through famine as genocide. In Part II we look at communism as the root cause of the Holodomor and see that as long as the government of Russia was a communist one the Holodomor would still have occurred: maybe in a fashion different than the one found in our history, but never the less whether the means were guns or slogans the fact is that communism’s ultimate goal requires genocide tactics to be used. In Part III we look at seven of the eight stages that occur in genocide as theorized by Gregory H. Stanton (Stanton) are rearranged in an order that is both chronological and logical (keep in mind that many of the stages happen in parallel with other stages). And in Part IV we look at the reasons for the denial of the Holodomor the last stage of the Genocide. (Please review the Glossary before reading the report.)
II. Communism and the Events Leading to Genocide
Figure 1. (Left)Map of Europe in 1848 showing revolutions during Karl Marx’s time. (Right) Mar Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels (Hayes).
Under Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels
When Marx developed the idea of communism there are two properties of communism, that directly contributed to the Holodomor. The first is an anti- national aspect of communism which is summarized in this question and answer given at the First Congress of the Communist League in London in 1847: “Question: Will nationalities continue to exist under communism? Answer: The nationalities of the peoples who join together according to the principle of community, will be just as much compelled by this union to merge with one another and thereby supersede themselves as the various differences between estates and class disappear through the superseding of their base - private property.”(9,Hryshko)
This was described as the ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ by Lenin. It would have been in Karl Marx’s best interest to use their strength to lead the revolution rather than looking to the proletariat. The fusing and merging of nations to form a nation less state is replace by the fusing and merging of nations to form one stable and indivisible Russian state. the Poles and the Magyars. 2. 382. For that reason they are now counter .22. must become a power in the countryside” (Vol. peasants and proletariats would crush the bourgeoisie in the Russian empire) land acquired would be redistributed among the petty
. pg.the Germans. Lenin). To achieve political success in the Russian empire Lenin practiced a two faced policy remembering Engels words “in order to conquer the political power this party must first … become a power in the countryside” (Vol. When Marx and Engels write about peasants they feel it is the best interest of peasant nations to be under the control or revolutionary nations. Marx and Engels).” (14.pg. only three standardbearers of progress took an active part in history. This excerpt from Engels’ writings explains his thoughts: “Among all the large and small nations of Austria.peasant nature of communism is clear as countries with large peasant populations are labelled counter – revolutionary and are seen as inferior to revolutionary nations that had an ‘active’ part in history. and still retain their vitality.
B. Even among the Russians few of them would be proletariat.154. It is only much later in Engels writing that he said “in order to conquer the political power this party must first go from town to the country. communism’s goal of abolishing private property cannot be achieved as long as the peasant remained.” according to Lenin (vol. Hence they are now revolutionary. We see their successor Vladimir Lenin start where Marx and Engels left off. Hryshko) Here the anti. But in order for communism to achieve its goal of the liquidation of classes there must also be a liquidation of nationalities. We see here the twist that Lenin has put on Marxism. However.
Under Vladimir Lenin
In 1916 Vladimir Lenin took the application of communist theory to the Russian empire – the country Marx and Engels thought was least likely to adopt communism. His policy promised that after the “bourgeois-democratic” revolution (in which petty bourgeoisie. The second aspect of communism that makes it a genocidal policy is its antipeasant aspect. Vladimir Lenin wanted to create a centralized government in which the Russian proletariat was in charge.In this quote we see an indirect answer to the question which makes it sound as if the abolishment of nationalities is a good thing. All the other large and small nationalities and peoples are destined to perish before long in the revolutionary world storm.revolutionary.pg. Lenin had a humongous task on his hands as in the multinational Russian empire the majority of the population was non-Russian “no less than 57 percent. Marx and Engels). It is important to notice that the peasant is more populous and therefore has more political power than the proletariat. 382. 2.
Despite Lenin’s efforts the “bourgeois-democratic” revolution of 1905 was unsuccessful. Lenin). should. In a foreshadowing of what was to come in the later famine. a representative of the relief committee of Fridtjof said “eight million souls were starving in the south of Ukraine. With the famine all resistance died with the peasants. and will support bourgeois-democratic movements in colonial countries only when they are genuinely revolutionary and when their exponents do not hinder our work of educating and organizing in a revolutionary spirit the peasantry and the masses will be exploited” (vol. However. Lenin immediately tried to subvert the Ukraine National republic and bring Ukraine under full soviet control. Lenin’s strategy for success was as follows: “It is beyond any doubt that any national movement can only be the bourgeois-democratic movement.bourgeoisie and individual nations (such as Ukraine) would be allowed to gain independence from Russia. it reaches 50%. After he was exiled Lenin strengthened and grew his party by making them seem pro-peasant. Even though Ukraine did not have enough to feed itself the Soviet government exported its crops and let no relief enter. a Famine and Lenin
As soon as the previous government had been overthrown Lenin became the head of the ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ in Russia and his position regarding Ukrainian statehood changed drastically. What ultimately crushed the peasant resistance was not the Bolsheviks but a famine that occurred from 1920-1922. This tactic led to the successful October revolution of 7 November 1917. since the overwhelming mass of the population of the backward countries consists of peasants who represent bourgeois-capitalist relationships […] we. Ten thousand people die in Zaporoje daily” (55. Lenin had no intention of keeping these promises as it was not communist policy. 31. which was caused by bad weather conditions but capitalized on by the Bolsheviks. 2. Although Lenin had eliminated the bourgeoisie rather swiftly it would take four small wars before Ukraine could successfully be pinned down as a colony of Russia. as communists. Though the ~3~
.5 million of them had absolutely nothing to eat… child mortality is tremendous.
C. Pictures of Vladimir Lenin and His successor Joseph Stalin from left to right.Hryshko). pg. 242-243.
Joseph Stalin. Although there had been differences between Ukrainians and Russians before the time of soviet
. After the recovery.
The Russian Revolution had eliminated the bourgeoisie.
III. After 1922 the Ukrainian Communist party betrayed Ukraine by letting the USSR take their plans too far. then they crushed them. To gain the power they needed. Each day Ukraine nationalism grew stronger under the NEP. sredniaks. Organization
We see the first stage of this genocide start with the October Revolution when the weak democracy of Russia and its colonies failed to keep the tsarist government in power. After 1924 Joseph Stalin incites Russian nationalism to an all time high. But this time around all of Ukraine would be targeted for killing. middle peasants. still remained strong after the NEP. however. the government openly and proactively used their hate propaganda to further their own interests. Unlike other genocides such as the Holocaust or Rwanda the government existed before the prejudices against the racial group (Ukrainians) was strong enough to empower it. The organization of the soviet empire did not oppose the peasant majority at first. From then on the genodcial government strengthens for many years until the end of the NEP. and bourgeoisie peasants respectively) (Hryshko 57). This kulak class of peasantry was indentified as a target of another class purge. and kulaks (poor peasants. the peasantry. A new class struggle was created by classifying the peasant population into four groups: the agricultural proletariat. From the October Revolution the communists hold little control over the people until 1922 when the Bolsheviks regain control of Ukraine. But the final enemy of the Soviets. To recover from these losses Lenin implemented the New Economic action Plan (NEP) which temporally gave peasants property.
B. bedniaks. In fact the Bolsheviks two-faced campaign used peasants to overthrow the government by encouraging the hope of independence from Russia. Also in this time period Russia builds its army and secret police. The First Seven Stages of Genocide
A. This class would be the target of the new attack. On the other hand.Ukrainians suffered significant losses so did the soviet government whose economic system was about to collapse. only realizing their error in judgement too late. Lenin died before this was achieved and was replaced by the right wing leader of the communist party. It was unknown to the peasants at the time that this would only be a temporary measure. Lenin divided the peasantry in a similar fashion as the last class system with the Kulaks as the most bourgeoisie. In Ukraine the puppet communist party is set up. There was every bit as much growth in Russian nationalism which was being spread through native Russians who were told by Russian propaganda of the differences between Ukrainians and Russians.
language and traditions were similar between the two groups. Figure 3 shows the two most prominent symbols of Ukraine which would have been the targeted. When it came to the polarization of Ukrainians from Russians only two things needed to be done.the center of power for the Soviet Union. made up of two horizontal and one diagonal bar crossing a vertical pole
D. In Rwanda the differences between the groups were minimal and it could be argued that if it were not for the extremist Hutu government tensions might have subsided as the Belgians did earlier. If we compare the Rwandan genocide and this one we can see similarities in the classification stage.
Although Russians and Ukrainians were mixed throughout Ukraine. Instead Ukraine symbols were destroyed to ruin Ukrainian nationalism.occupation the differences were not numerous as cultures. These actions were exactly the same as the actions of the soviet government. foods. Instead of setting aside differences they heightened them. (Left) The “Tryzub” or Trident is as central a cultural symbol for Ukrainians as the Star of David is for Jews or the Fleur-de-lys is for Francophones. Unlike the Holocaust the citizens of Ukraine did not to have symbols of their Ukrainian-ness put on them. (Right) The Orthodox cross. Although you could not tell the difference between the Ukrainians and Russians before. The first was the massacre of prominent Ukrainian figures and Kulaks who. The true classification of the Ukrainians during the soviet regime lay in the increasing growth in nationalism. there were only a small number of Ukrainians in Russia . However. the genocide occurred. effectively stopping all contact with the outside world. The second action is one of the simplest actions the soviets had to do seal the borders of Ukraine. Although soviet Russia had effectively sealed the borders using military force during 1932-1933 to keep the Ukrainians in and the world out trains still went through the countryside to the proletariat cities that were mostly populated with
. rising nationalism now told you the difference. It is important to note that if this action had not been taken by the Bolsheviks these groups would have let the world know the nature of Soviet policy before the genocide occurred.
Of all the steps that occur in genocide this stage was the lest prominent in the Holodomor as symbolization was not instituted by the government. if not shot or tortured were sent to Serbia to do slave labour.
C. of course. This happened because of the classification the government encouraged and supported.
Figure 3. Politicide and deportation of the Kulaks and sealing Ukraine’s borders. religions.
Even if you did stay quiet the party activists had a terrible time distinguishing those who were or were not Kulaks. In a way very similar to the Jews and Armenians the Ukrainians transported to these labour camps faced the same fate on the rails. which if not filled are punishable by death. After the mass deportations.S. collectivization meant action forced from above quoted by Stalin as ‘utilizing. 1932 had passed (refer to Appendix B for a quotation from the blockade resolution). of course. death and hunger were rampant on these cars.S. they said.Russians. Despite the conditions it was better than staying in Ukraine since if you were in the foremost group you were killed instantly. manifested into strong dislike of Ukrainians so that when it came to the extermination stage party activists were easily convinced that it was moral to destroy and so they did not hesitate to destroy and murder Ukrainians. The collectivism used by the soviet government can be easily described as the forced sharing of the means of production in order to give impossible grain quotas to fill.
F. During these train rides starving Ukrainians would crawl to the train tracks begging for food.
Preparation for the extermination stage started when “the term ‘cooperation’ was replaced by ‘collectivization’ behind which there was the idea of integration of agriculture into a single socialist economy. They hid this grain for themselves. With this single act Ukraine’s access to the
. Soon that practice was stopped as trains were forced to close their windows further isolating the world from the famine. Unlike the Holocaust and the Armenian genocide the Ukrainians existed in one central location and not spaced throughout the entire U.
E. They were conspirators who held grain supplies preventing the soviets from achieving quotas. Disease.2 million (Hryshko 72).R. The first act of terror was to deport Ukrainians who refused the collectivization to Serbia to be dekulakized. Moreover. Sympathetic riders had initially throw bread out of the windows. Even if you were not part of the Kulaks or a leader of the people you could be mistaken for one! In this time period even speaking a single word of Ukrainian was enough to get you shot. While the Jews and Armenians were fairly integrated and spread throughout their native lands Ukrainians were easily trapped as their only hope to combat the Russians was eliminated in wars over the sovereignty of Ukraine. Instead the Russian government called the exercising of any nationalism or sovereignty “Bourgeoisie counter revolutionary” and as such the actions were considered hostile to soviets. This. which lead to the end of the Kulak class once and for all the collectivization farms could not fulfill the impossibly high grain quotas the Official Blockade Resolution of December 6. Many died along the way but the total amount transported was 1. overcoming and ousting the peasantry’s capitalist elements’ ” (Hryshko 64). and had strong capitalist character in their blood.
Unlike the Rwandan genocide the government of Russia does not go so far as to say that it’s own people are cockroaches or tall trees. Instead of being labelled as insects or vermin the Ukrainians were considered class enemies.
Compared to the other methods of genocide this was far cheaper as even though Hitler stole property from the Jews. are a good speaker. Wouldn’t it be better for you to leave [your post] and join the writers’ union? Then you can write fables and fools will read them.
IV. it seems that you are a good storyteller. you’ve made up such a fable about famine. More grain was confiscated every day. “We have been told you.
Stalin used his power to create a man-made hunger on a scale that would have made Hitler blush. but it won’t work. thinking to frighten us.000 every hour.”(87)
. Because the government had set such high quotas all of Ukraine was punished severely for acts they could not possibly stop. In a twist of tragic irony the only government who questioned Stalin was the Nazis( Hryshko102). During the time of the genocide the west turned a blind eye by the fact that Russia had flooded the market with wheat taken from the Ukrainians. Stalin made a profit and gained property for the state. The morality rate was 18.
G. Comrade Terekhov. In its most severe stage 25. Clearly the Bolsheviks were more keen to attack Ukrainians. Though it was the first peace time genocide in history (107) the killing continued long into the last months of 1933 when Stalin finally sent in the grain that he had wrought from the harvest of despair. As punishment for their disobedience and not filling the grain quotas Stalin began extracting what grain Ukraine had until one of the largest producers of food became the hungriest. Denial
Despite the overwhelming evidence that the Holomondor was genocide there is much resistance to accepting it (Refer to Appendix C).3% Ukraine compared to with only 70% in Russia (Hryshko 79). 17 every minute.8 percent five times larger than the mortality during the great famine in India (1918-1919) and twice the number of dead in World War One (Hryshko 101). But one should always remember that Moscow does not believe in tears for when a leader of the Ukrainian communist party went to tell Stalin about the famine he replied. The most powerful stage of the Holodomor genocide is denial as the total number of Ukrainian victims was ten million (Hryshko 108).outside world and their fate was sealed. by Russian soldiers despite the cries of the innocent. 1.
The Final Stage of Genocide. How can one not notice ten million people dying? For those who deny the genocide they say that both Russians and Ukrainians were targeted equally by the soviet union however the percentage of farms collectivised was 91.000 people died every day.
Appendix A: Glossary
Proletariat: One whose only means of living is obtained by selling their skills. Peasant: One of two classes of the poor that will be discussed in this report.
. The first difference is that peasants are farmers. The largest a most counter-revolutionary group would be the peasant class. They are looked on positively by communism. Their prosperity was a result not of owning the means of production but of their ability and hard work as other groups were given similar land and did not fair as well. For clarification’s sake they also do not have capital or a means of production. Their living depends on a combination of proletariat and bourgeoisie actions. Revolutionary: a term for countries or groups who in Karl Marx’s mind support the industrialization of the world or area they occupy. Because they own their means of production they are self employed. This class shares many characteristics with the petty bourgeoisie except for a few factors. Because of this they are not full Bourgeoisie. Bourgeoisie: These are the people who own the means of production. so their means of production varies in effectiveness based on factors that they cannot control or change easily such as weather and the price of their commodity. Kulaks: a group of peasants who after the October revolution of 7 November 1917 were able to obtain wealth because of the new economic action plan gave them private property under soviet law. Lumpenproletariat: the permanently and chronically unemployed. They are looked on negatively by communism. have skills which can be bought by the bourgeoisie. Therefore they are not the poor but rather the middle class as they have the means to acquire an education. This class of people do not own the means of production but. The definitions here are the ones that will be used through out the report. Because they can buy the services of the proletariat they do not have to work to make the goods or contribute to the services. Petty Bourgeoisie: These are people who can afford to buy some labour and own their means of production. Counter-revolutionary: a term for countries or groups who in Karl Marx’s mind do not support the industrialization of the world or area they occupy.Please read the flowing terms to avoid confusion as they can be misinterpreted based on your understanding of communism. Second because they usually cannot succeed in producing a large profit they cannot (effectively) buy skills and labour from the proletariat. Because of this they own the profits that come from the selling of goods and services that are made using the means of production. Truly these are the poorest of the poor.
. The Bolsheviks came to power in Russia during the October Revolution phase of the Russian Revolution of 1917. In this report Bolshevik and soviet are used interchangeably.
Appendix B: Official Blockade Resolution of December 6. They ultimately became the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. and founded the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic which would later in 1922 become the head of the Soviet Union.Bolshevik: Originally was a faction of the Marxist Russian Social Democratic Labour Party which split apart from the Menshevik faction at the Second Party Congress in 1903.
eliminating all hostile elements. 2. eliminating from them all the hostile elements that took part in the wrecking of grain procurements.“In connection with the shameful wrecking of the grain-procurement plan. To do the same in collective farms. 4. which was organized by counterrevolutionary elements with the participation of some Communists and with a passive or indifferent attitude by Party organizations in some raions [provinces]. To halt delivery of consumer goods to these raions and to halt all state and cooperative trade. To change the personnel of the local administrative and economic leadership.”(Hryshko 84)
Appendix C: Extra Maps
. 3. the Council of People’s Commissars and the [Central Committee of the Communist Party of Ukraine] have decided to place these raions on the blacklist and to apply to them the following repressive measures: 1. To halt all credits for these raions and to withdraw all the credits that have already been issued to them. for which purpose state and cooperative shops in these raions will be closed and existing goods will be removed. 5. To ban the trade in consumer goods that collective farms and individual enterprises have been conducting until now.
(Top) A Maps of Ukraine black circle shows the capital Kiev.
Appendix D: Denunciation of Communism
. (Bottom) a map of the countries that acknowledge the genocide (Spagnoli).Figure 4.
the new revolution we are struggling for” (Lenin Vol. In a quote from Lenin we see how ineffective communism is: “We’ve promised no harmony. New classes are created from the petty bourgeoisie and the cycle continues. Thereby effectively all aspects of this genocidal policy are denounced. Using the example of Soviet Russia we see that the elimination of the bourgeoisie is ineffective in stopping the class struggle. 217-218).Some may say that despite its genocidal nature that communism may have some worth. 31. Even if the bourgeoisie were totally eliminated communism cannot provide equality to the lumpenproletariat who remain disadvantaged and communism provides no solution for this class inequality. Also econimicaly communism is a crash course into disaster as seen by the use of the NEP by Lenin as they have taken out the only known system that makes people work hard without much incentive religion. no equalitarianism or ‘socialization’ following the victory of the present peasant uprising. on the contrary. pg. To write this report and not expose the great flaws of communism would leave this point open to interpretation. we “promise” a new struggle for inequality. Now we can clearly see that communism provides no benefit to it’s precipitants and cannot achieve it’s own goals.
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