What was worse, Hitler’s Germany or Stalin’s USSR?

Nazis killed you for who you are—eugenics. Soviets killed you for what you did—kulaks that were violent were killed, the rest were moved. I don’t think there can be anything more evil than killing someone for them being “inferior.” That is the objectification of a human being, which is how the Final Solution could be justified—they could be exterminated because they weren’t human anyway. The Nazis also did horrible human experiments on adults and children, inflicting terrible pain and suffering. The plan after conquering the USSR was to kill all communists and Jews and enslave the Slavs after killing half of them. In the USSR the purges were not as represented by the likes of Cold War propagandists like Conquest and Appleabaum.

The Great Purges

It has been shown that the purges were more complicated than one might imagine. Russia had always been under great pressure from attack on all sides. Within a few years Russia had seen the Tsar overthrown, a bloody civil war sponsored by 18 imperialist nations, conspiracies within his own party as discovered earlier in an undercover sting called “Operation Trust.” 37 volumes of conspiracies and treachery were discovered. The intelligence services would arrest people and then torture them until they admitted they knew something, believing that something had to be happening given the threats from outside the country, particularly the Nazis and Japan. People would say anything to make the torture stop. This led to more arrests and tortures. Members of the party, the factory workers, and everyone in the society believed there were conspiracies afoot. Stalin was terrified of the revolution being toppled. He also knew that Germany planned on invading for certain by 1939 and the country was not ready. Production shortfalls led to the belief by members of the party that there was intentional sabotage. This led to the estimation that based on intelligence (faulty) that it was “for certain” there were a certain number of traitors. This led to quotas. The individual members of the party at the lower levels began to increase their numbers to give the impression of loyalty so they wouldn’t be blamed. The entire thing became its own system of feedback loops. As documents have not been released it is not known how many conspiracies there were, or how they could know. This is not the first time this has happened in history.

During the Red Scare in America a sense of great fear and paranoia overcame the American public. Each accusation led to more, and the paroxysm of fear overcame the bourgeoisie in America. It reached critical mass, ruining the lives of many before people took a step back and stopped it. This also happened with the ramp up to the Iraq war after 911. America was terrified after the attack. It felt powerless. It was reported that Dick Cheney almost had a nervous breakdown. The response was to pressure the intelligence services to find out who caused 911 and to root out the terrorists. This led to expectations. The intelligence services began to see conspiracies where they did not exist. Anything that could remotely be seen as negative was. There became a genuine belief that Saddam Hussein had WMDs. This led to a mass hysteria in the U.S. It was rumored that Saddam was developing biological weapons that would be released to terrorists. The U.S. invaded Iraq. It would be found there were no WMDs. The U.S. also started the “War on Terror,” which saw conspiracies where they did not exist. Torture began to be used to get information, but this information was unreliable. It led to false accusations which led to more arrests. Then drone attacks, indefinite detention, and black op cites. The large scale surveillance program began. Likewise, the Salem Witch Trials took on a similar tenor. Mass accusations, paranoia, murders, and more repression. Feedback loops of torture, accusations, more torture followed. But somehow they never seemed able to get to the root of the problem. Enemies were everywhere and nowhere. People were tortured with the expectation that they would say something incriminating. Protestations of innocence were regarded as lies. But then the torture led to them getting whatever they wanted to hear because torture is an unreliable way to get information as people will say anything to make the torture stop.

Released documents show no disparities in Stalin’s agreement to the repressions and his own personal thoughts. They confirmed he believed they were real. There was no indication that they repressions were done for cynical, self serving purposes. Stalin knew that purging the military would make the country more weak, but he feared conspiracies more. The conventional wisdom was that people were working with Trotsky, who was collaborating with Germany and Japan to overthrow the Soviet Union. After the civil war there were a number of Tsarists, fascists, and others who had indeed has some conspiracies. But the extent of this is unknown. And it wasn’t just Stalin that expressed these fears. The fears went all the way down to the factory worker level.

Source: The Great Fear: Stalin’s Terror of the 1930s, by James Harris

The Holomodor

Famines happened relatively frequently in Russia. Inefficient farming techniques, drought, and an increased birthrate contributed. Also the urbanization of the population decreased the number of farmers.

From Wikipedia: Pre-1900 droughts and famines

“In the 17th century, Russia experienced the famine of 1601–1603, believed to be its worst as it may have killed 2 million people (1/3 of the population). Major famines include the Great Famine of 1315–17, which affected much of Europe including part of Russia as well as the Baltic states.

The Nikonian chronicle, written between 1127 and 1303, recorded no less than eleven famine years during that period.

One of the most serious crises before 1900 was the famine of 1891–92, which killed between 375,000 and 500,000 people, mainly due to famine-related diseases. Causes included a large Autumn drought resulting in crop failures. Attempts by the government to alleviate the situation generally failed which may have contributed to a lack of faith in the Czarist regime and later political instability.

List of post-1900 droughts and famines

Starving woman, c. 1921

Three children who are dead from starvation, 1921

Starving children in 1922

The Golubev and Dronin report gives the following table of the major droughts in Russia between 1900 and 2000.

  • Central: 1920, 1924, 1936, 1946, 1972, 1979, 1981, 1984.
  • Southern: 1901, 1906, 1921, 1939, 1948, 1951, 1957, 1975, 1995.
  • Eastern: 1911, 1931, 1963, 1965, 1991.”

The American Midwest had already adopted modern farming techniques by the time of the Holomodor. The Soviet Union was still using antiquated methods.

There also was a population increase prior to the famine.

Source: Stop Spreading Nazi Propaganda: on Holodomor

“This is Stalin urging the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Ukraine to take appropriate measures to prevent a crop failure.

The Political Bureau believes that shortage of seed grain in Ukraine is many times worse than what was described in comrade Kosior’s telegram; therefore, the Political Bureau recommends the Central Committee of the Communist party of Ukraine to take all measures within its reach to prevent the threat of failing to sow [field crops] in Ukraine.
 Signed: Secretary of the Central Committee – J. STALIN

From the Archive of the President of the Russian Federation. Fond 3, Record Series 40, File 80, Page 58.

Excerpt from the protocol number of the meeting of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist party (Bolsheviks) “Regarding Measures to Prevent Failure to Sow in Ukraine, March 16th, 1932.

This is the response of Anna Louise Strong, an American journalist famous for reporting on the Soviet Union, to a question about the supposed genocide.

QUESTION: Is it true that during 1932-33 several million people were allowed to starve to death in the Ukraine and North Caucasus because they were politically hostile to the Soviets?

ANSWER: Not true. I visited several places in those regions during that period. There was a serious grain shortage in the 1932 harvest due chiefly to inefficiencies of the organizational period of the new large-scale mechanized farming among peasants unaccustomed to machines. To this was added sabotage by dispossessed kulaks, the leaving of the farms by 11 million workers who went to new industries, the cumulative effect of the world crisis in depressing the value of Soviet farm exports, and a drought in five basic grain regions in 1931.

The harvest of 1932 was better than that of 1931 but was not all gathered; on account of overoptimistic promises from rural districts, Moscow discovered the actual situation only in December when a considerable amount of grain was under snow.

Strong, Anna Louise. Searching Out the Soviets. New Republic: August 7, 1935, p. 356

Here is Strong again on the harvest of 1933.

The conquest of bread was achieved that summer, a victory snatched from a great disaster. The 1933 harvest surpassed that of 1930, which till then had held the record. This time, the new record was made not by a burst of half-organized enthusiasm, but by growing efficiency and permanent organization … This nationwide cooperation beat the 1934 drought, securing a total crop for the USSR equal to the all-time high of 1933.

Strong, Anna Louise. The Stalin Era. New York: Mainstream, 1956, p. 44-45

This is what a study of the Russian Archives led to.

Recent evidence has indicated that part of the cause of the famine was an exceptionally low harvest in 1932, much lower than incorrect Soviet methods of calculation had suggested. The documents included here or published elsewhere do not yet support the claim that the famine was deliberately produced by confiscating the harvest, or that it was directed especially against the peasants of the Ukraine.

Koenker and Bachman, Eds. Revelations from the Russian Archives. Washington: Library of Congress, 1997, p. 401″

The lie of it being deliberate was created by the Nazis to invoke Ukrainian nationalism ahead of a German invasion of the region. The Nazis were masters at propaganda. The American newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst was a Nazi sympathizer. He ran with the story.

“By 1932, Hearst was publishing articles by Adolf Hitler, whom Hearst admired for keeping Germany out of, as Hitler put it in a Hearst paper, “the beckoning arms of Bolshevism.” Hitler instead promoted a transcendent idea of nationalism—putting Germany first—and, by organizing devoted nationalist followers to threaten and beat up leftists, Hitler would soon destroy class-based politics in his country. Increasingly, Hearst wanted to see something similar happen in the United States.”

Source: How ‘America First’ Got Its Nationalistic Edge

Hitler’s Aide Affirms Hearst Praised Nazis – Jewish Telegraphic Agency

The Holodomor Hoax: Joseph Stalin’s Crime That Never Took Place

A fake news Holomodor story

Further reading, along with documentation showing Stalin ordered relief measures: Alexander Finnegan’s answer to What is the history of famines and starvation in Russia 1850-present day?

Death Tolls

Nazis were responsible for the Holocaust, which killed around 15 million people, plus it started WWII, which killed tens of millions. All together we are looking at 80+ million killed because of the Nazis. The Nazis were just getting started. They planned on conquering the remainder of Europe and exterminating all Jews and communists, the disabled, the mentally retarded, Romanis, etc. Half of the Slavs were to be slaughtered and the remainder turned into slaves.

The Soviet Union’s death toll was a fraction of this. Since the Holomodor was not intentional, that should not be counted. The Purges were responsible for 777,000 deaths. About 1 million died in the gulag. But many of these died from undernutrition. The Soviet Union imposed rationing on the population because of the war and if this were not done many would have starved. Sick people and the elderly were the first to perish under a system of rationing. This was the case in the rest of the Soviet Union, too. This number also includes people who died from illness in the gulag. There were epidemics of diseases that wiped out people too. The gulags were not extermination camps. When they were closed in 1953 people went home. The death toll at the gulag was 6%.

This paper discusses the death toll with references. death toll 2.pdf

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