Saturday, November 19, 2005

NYT's Shame

I've never understood the willingness to ignore the horror of communism as it massacred tens of millions over the years. Hitler is rightly listed as one of the great monsters in history but the fact is, Joseph Stalin murdered more people than Hitler ever imagined. And Mao runs a close second. For example, from 1932-1933, 7 to 10 million Ukrainian peasants were forcibly starved to death while they occupied the most fertile fields of Europe.

And all the while, the New York Time's man in Moscow, Walter Duranty, posted lie filled reports extolling the Soviet dream and denying the horror he knew to be true. Duranty was awarded a Pulitzer for his aiding in murder and the Times had another plaque to hang on the wall. Years after the facts have been revealed, the Times refuses to return the award.

And some people actually still proclaim the virtues of that murderous state and that lying newspaper.

Front Page Magazine has an interview with Volodymyr Kurylo, the President of the United Ukrainian American Organizations of Greater New York about this shameful situation. Here is a sample:

FP: Tell us about the Ukraine famine.

Kurylo: We should call it the Ukrainian Famine Genocide of 1932-1933.
Ukrainians have known it as the "Holodomor".  Stalin needed and wanted to
collectivize agriculture in the fledgling Soviet Union.  The USSR was a
third world country and Stalin needed to industrialize it.  He did so
rapidly & brutally.

Ukraine has been known as "the breadbasket of Europe" because of its rich
agricultural region and the crops it produced, primarily grains.  Wheat was
a valuable commodity to be traded for hard currency.  Stalin instituted a
policy of forced collectivization.  It was easier to seize more produce from
the independently-minded peasants if they were forced into large
state-controlled farms.

Towards the end of 1931, about 70 percent of Ukrainian peasants had been
coerced into joining the collectives.  During this period grain seizures
began to wipe out reserves which had been accumulated from previous
harvests.  Even though famine was breaking out, nothing was going to stop

The peasant-producers had to fulfill their obligations to the State before
they could receive their allotment.  Quotas were unreasonable and bands of
communist zealots, military units and NKVD secret police were sent in to
enforce the Stalins decrees.

Even seed grain was declared state property and withholding even a few
grains was considered a crime against the state punishable death by death.

Early in 1932, the Soviets continued to increase the grain procurement
quotas for Ukraine.  Stalin, Kaganovich, Molotove were well aware
that extraordinarily high grain quotas would result in grain shortages.
They didn't care that Ukrainian peasants would not be able to feed their

Villages that were emptied by the genocidal famine would be re-populated
with ethnic Russians thereby helping to solve the nationalities issue Stalin
was facing.  Stalin also implemented an internal passport system to restrict
peasants from traveling in search of food.  In fact, the peasants were the
last group to be issued passports decades after anyone else.

The toll was staggering: estimates range from 7 to 10 million dead.  At its
peak, the genocide was claiming 25,000 peasants a day.  We haven't touched
upon executions, internal exiling, forced-slave labor etc.

As those other really important guys always say, read the whole thing.

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