Resources about Holodomor

Was the Ukrainian Famine of 1932-1933 Genocide?

James E. Mace

Stanislav KULCHYTSKY Why did Stalin exterminate the Ukrainians?

Timothy Snyder. Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin. Basic Books, 2010, pp.50–51. ISBN 0-465-00239-0
Timothy Snyder Discusses “Bloodlands” at The Ukrainian Museum of Modern Art
Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin

Lemkin, Raphael (1953). “Soviet Genocide in the Ukraine”. Retrieved 22 July 2012. Raphael Lemkin Papers, The New York Public Library, Manuscripts and Archives Division, Astor, Lenox and Tilden Foundation, Raphael Lemkin ZL-273. Reel 3. Published in L.Y. Luciuk (ed), Holodomor: Reflections on the Great Famine of 1932–1933 in Soviet Ukraine (Kingston: The Kashtan Press, 2008).

Interfax-Ukraine (21 January 2010). “Sentence to Stalin, his comrades for organizing Holodomor takes effect in Ukraine”. Retrieved 21 July 2012.

Schoolchildren to study in detail about Holodomor and OUN-UPA

International Holodomor Remembrance Torch in Baltimore Commemorates Ukrainian Genocide

Law of Ukraine "On Holodomor 1932–1933 in Ukraine

Holodomor: The Unknown Ukrainian Tragedy (1932-1933)…(1932-1933

Andrew Gregorovich

Statement by the NSC Spokesman Mike Hammer on Ukraine’s Holodomor Remembrance Day

Statement by the Press Secretary on Ukrainian Holodomor Remembrance Day

Mass killings under Communist regimes

The Artificial Famine/Genocide
(Holodomor) in Ukraine

Ukrainian Genocide Famine Foundation - USA

The Great Famine of 1932-l933 in Ukraine: a presentation at Penn State University

Bihun, Yaro (7 December 2008). “Site of Ukrainian Genocide Memorial in D.C. is dedicated”. The Ukrainian Weekly 76 (49): 1, 8. Retrieved 22 July 2012.

Ontario MPP gets Ukrainian knighthood for bill honouring victims of famine". The Canadian Press. 20 November 2010. Retrieved 22 July 2012.

Stanislav KULCHYTSKY Why did Stalin exterminate the Ukrainians?

Alexander Motyl’s SWEET SNOW, a novel of the Ukrainian famine of 1933.


Yushchenko, Viktor (27 November 2007). “Holodomor”. The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 21 July 2012.

English-language documentary “Genocide Revealed”.
Awarded “Best Documentary”, “Best Historical Film”, “Best Direction”.


Listen to all 4 parts of this lecture on YouTube . ( As it was mentioned, THERE IS debate about the actual numbers of dead, ranging from six million to ten million, ( Though Andrea Graziosi tells a different number of victims -about 4 million.) But here there are interesting arguments regarding the famine as genocide against Ukrainian people.
The Holodomor and the Soviet Famines

Robert Conquest ‘‘The Harvest of Sorrow’’

Miron Dolot, Execution by Hunger: ‘’ The Hidden Holocaust ‘’

Quotations on the Famine/Genocide in Ukraine

Remembrance of Holodomor in Ukraine will help prevent such tragedy in future, says Obama

“Yulia Tymoshenko: our duty is to protect the memory of the Holodomor victims”. Tymoshenko’s official website. 27 November 2010. Retrieved 21 July 2012.

Thank you for keeping this event in the fore.

some more interesting resources :

The Stalin-Kaganovich Correspondence, 1931–36

Harvest of Despair Soviet Communism engineered Ukraine Famine

Holodomor 1932-33

Tragedy of the Soviet Countryside

The Ukrainian Famine of 1933: Man-made Catastrophe, Mass Murder, or Genocide?
Donald Rayfield

Stalinist rule in the Ukraine : a study of the decade of mass terror ; (1929-1939)
Hryhory Kostiuk

The Soviet Famine of 1932–1933 Reconsidered
Hiroaki Kuromiya

Roman Serbyn
The Ukrainian Famine of 1932-1933 as Genocide
in the Light of the UN Convention of 1948

The Specter of Genocide
Mass Murder in Historical Perspective

Was the Ukrainian Famine of 1932-1933 Genocide?

Understanding the Causes and Consequences of the Famine-Genocide of 1932-1933 in Ukraine: The Significance of Newly Discovered Archival Documents

Making Sense of Suffering : Holocaust and Holodomor in Ukrainian Historical Culture
Author/s Johan Dietsch

R.W. Davies & Stephen Wheatcroft, The Years of Hunger: Soviet Agriculture 1Q31- London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004). See also the discussions in Europe-Asia Studies: 1 Ellman, “Tbe Role of Leadership Perceptions and of Intent in the Soviet Famine of 1934” (57:6, 2005), 823-841; R.W. Davies & Stephen Wheatcroft, “Stalin and the Famine of 1932-1933: A Reply to Ellman” (58:4, 2006), 625-633; Michael Ellman, and the Soviet Famine of 1932-1934 Revisited" (59:4, 2007), 663-693

In Ukraine, recent years have brought the opening of a number of archives, including the Branch State Archives of the Security Service of Ukraine (HDA SBU). In 2006, a collection of primary materials which had been denied to re-searchers for all those years were declassified. Thus, the employees of the Soviet security services have unwillingly turned out to be the period’s chroniclers, with the documents prepared by them serving as witness to the contemporary situation in the Ukrainian countryside, transmitting the orders issued by the authorities and their own efforts at implementation, giving accounts of the growing social unrest, administering repression aimed at pacifying said unrest and undertaking efforts to prevent the “leakage” of true information regarding the nature and scope of the famine. Some of those documents have been published in a collection of primary sources by the employees of the SSU12.
Among all the primary sources, two other publications merit noting. 33-й: голод. Народна книга-меморіал (Kiev 1991)
The documents regarding the famine that have not been published in Ukraine should also be mentioned. A particularly important publication is that of the documents of the British Foreign Office commemorating the 55th anniversary of the great tragedy: The Foreign Office and the Famine. British Documents on Ukraine and the Great Famine of 1932-1933 (Kingston-New York 1988). The same year marked the release of primary sources from the German Foreign Ministry, collected under the title Der ukrainische Hunger-Holocaust. Stalins Verschwiegener Völkenmord 1932/1933 an 7 Milionen ukrainischen Bauern im Spiegel geheimgehaltener Akten des deutschen Auswärtigen Amtes (Sonnenbühl 1988). In the year following that anniversary, an Italian scholar, professor Andrea Graziosi, published reports by the Italian diplomats who served in Soviet Ukraine at that time.
The Polish literature on the subject is much less voluminous than the Ukrainian, even though publications on such issues as collectivization in the Ukrainian SSR were already available before WWII. Polish researchers would also have the opportunity to take up the subject only after 1989. The issues of collectivization and the famine resulting in its aftermath have been explored primarily by Robert Kusnierz and Czeslaw Rajca . A short article on that very subject has been published by a renowned scholar of Polish-Ukrainian relations, Ryszard Torzecki, in the “Warszawskie Zeszyty Ukrainoznawcze.” As for the Polish minority in the Ukrainian SSR during the famine, two publications of primary sources are available: Glöd i represje wobec ludnosci polskiej na Ukrainie 1932-1947. Relacje (Lublin 2005), and Polacyna Ukrainie (part 1: 1917-1939, v. 1-5, Przemysl 1998- -2005).

Here’s another interesting quotes and expressions, but some of those quotes I just wrote not seeing the authors names.

“At this point the question of Ukraine is the most important. The situation in Ukraine is very bad. If we don’t take steps now to improve the situation, we may lose Ukraine. The objective should be to transform Ukraine , in the shortest period of time, into a real fortress of the U.S.S.R.”

Stalin’s letter to Lazar Kaganovich, Sept. 11, 1932

“Nowhere else did repressions, purges, suppressions, and all other kinds of bureaucratic hooliganism in general acquire such horrifying scope as in Ukraine, in the struggle against powerful forces concealed in the Ukrainian masses that desired more freedom and independence.”

Leon Trotsky

“On the battlefield men die quickly, they fight back, they are sustained by fellowship and a sense of duty.” In Soviet Ukraine, people were “dying in solitude by slow degrees, dying hideously …trapped and left to starve, each in his own home, by a political decision made in a far-away capital around conference tables … The most terrifying sights were the little children with skeleton limbs dangling from balloon-like abdomens. Starvation had wiped every trace of youth from their faces, turning them into tortured gargoyles… Everywhere we found men and women lying prone, their faces and bellies bloated, their eyes utterly expressionless.”

Victor Kravchenko

"Farmers present by themselves the basic force of the national movement. Without farmers there can be no strong national movement. This is what we mean when we say that the nationalist question, is actually, the farmers’ question.”

Joseph Stalin

“The Terror-Famine of 1932-33 was a dual-purpose by product of collectivization, designed to suppress Ukrainian nationalism and the most important concentration of prosperous peasants at one throw.”

Norman Davies, Europe: A History, Oxford

Sir Winston Churchill to Joseph Stalin:

“…Have the stresses of war been as bad to you personally as carrying through the policy of Collective Farms?”


“ - Oh no, The Collective Farm policy was a terrible struggle… Ten million (he said holding up his hands). It was fearful. Four years it lasted. It was absolutely necessary.”

“Ukrainians are an ethos, with their profound religiosity, individualism, tradition of private property, and devotion to their plots of land, were not suited to the construction of communism, and this fact was noted by the high-ranking Soviet officials.”

V. Ovsiienko
(human rights activist in Kharkiv)

“The intrusion of history is not just theoretical. It is also the legacy of being an accomplice or a victim, or just an onlooker. In each case, history entails the uncomfortable presence of earlier unresolved roles.”

Charles S. Maier

"Walter Duranty helped to turn the monster Stalin into a world figure and a hero of the leftistWestern intelligentsia by defending the bloodbath of the Soviet Union from its critics in the now famous: “You can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs.”
Lance Morrow - journalist

“This was the first instance of a peacetime genocide in history. It took the extraordinary form of an artificial famine deliberately created by the ruling powers. The savage combination of words for the designation of a crime - an artificial deliberately planned famine - is still incredible to many people throughout the world, but indicates the uniqueness of the tragedy of 1933, which is unparalleled for a time of peace, in the number of victims it claimed.”

Wasyl Hryshko

“Ukrainian nationalism is our chief danger.”

Soviet writer, Kossier Izvestiia, December 2, 1933

“I remain convinced that for Stalin to have complete centralized power in his hands, he found it necessary to physically destroy the second-largest Soviet republic, meaning the annihilation of the Ukrainian peasantry, Ukrainian intelligentsia, Ukrainian language, and history as understood by the people; to do away with Ukraine and things Ukrainian as such. The calculation was very simple, very primitive: no people, therefore, no separate country, and thus no problem. Such a policy is Genocide in the classic sense of the word.”

James Mace Holodomor Scholar (USA)

"The Stalinist totalitarian regime tried hard to ensure that everyone kept silent about the Holodomor, even people who had survived it, as well as their children and grandchildren; so that no one knew about this genocide abroad, and if they found out about it, they would keep silent.”

“Under the direct leadership and directions of the Central Committee pf the Communist Party and personally of comrade Stalin, we smashed the Ukrainian nationalist counterrevolution.”

Pavel Postyshev, 1933

“Death solves all problems. No man, no problem.”

Joseph Stalin

“Huge events like the Ukraine famine of 1933, involving the deaths of millions of people, have actually escaped the attention of the majority of English russophiles.”

George Orwell

The testimony of the witnesser of how the peasants, who make up 80% of the population enjoy the “freedom and equality” from the Soviet Bolsheviks.
In order to forcefully keep the peasants in the villages, they have introdused the passport system in the cities, while the inhabitants of the countryside not received passports at all, thus absolutely preventing them from leaving the countryside, to search of work or to purchase bread. They must die of starvation at home. That is how they wish to force the peasants to work the fields and give all the fruits of that work to the state. That is how the peasants, who make up 80% of the population enjoy the “freedom and equality” from the government. People are forced to work, having no (not benefiting from) civil rights. It can be compared to the situation before the revolution when the Jews were not allowed to live in the cities. This is how the peasants are treated presently in the USSR. A peasant - kolgosp member, receives the pay of 35-38 kopeks for a trudoden, while a spool of sewing thread costs 1 rb. and 1.50, or a pound of bread costs 3 rubles,thus making it impossible for the peasants to buy it in the market or make a profit.

Presently, there are great number of cases, when for stealing kolgosp bread, starving peasants are sentenced to be shot or to serve 6 to 10 years in labor camps in Siberia. The families of those poor peasants remain in the claws of hunger and death. No one pays any attention to them since nobody can provide even for iimself. The crops in kolgosps are down to a minimum level: 15-20 poods for every hectare. Such crops do not fulfill the “needs of the state” (since the needs of the state also include grain exports abroad).

the testimony of the witnesser
…the decree “forbade any private grain or bread trade; this made it impossible for peasants to buy bread.” Petitioner has asserted tbe existence of a blockade of the Ukrainian-Russian border for the purpose of preventing the entry of food into Ukraine. The evidence establishes that there was indeed a secret order to this effect, by AA. Andreyev, Commissar of Transport, to the railway officials. “Train tickets were sold only to those who had written permission to travel”. Those without travel permits were travelling “unlawfully” …

…’‘It also appears that it was in Ukraine that collectivization provoked the fiercest resistance. This could be explained by the objective resources which only Ukraine had at its disposal. However, it seems tkat more fundamentally the Ukrainians have always manifested great individuality, a fact which explains, in essence, their natural resistance to any form of collectivization. It should be noted here that Ukraine never knew the semi- collective (collectivist) formula of the “obshchina” which were practiced in Russia under tke Czarist regime.’’

Victor Yushchenko about Holodomor:
‘‘Seventy-five years ago the Ukrainian people fell victim to a crime of unimaginable horror. Usually referred to in the West as tke Great Famine or the Terror Famine, it is known to Ukrainians as tke Holodomor. It was a state- organized program of mass starvation that in 1932-1933 killed an estimated seven to ten million Ukrainians, including up to a third of the nation’s children.’’

And here is how the “Virus of Bolshevism” dealt with prosperous peasants who were called ‘‘kulaks’’.
The first category was composed of kulaks who, reputedly active counterrevolutionaries, should arrested immediately and imprisoned or, more frequently, shot without any form of trial.
The kulaks of the second category were to be subject to deportation to Siberia or the Arctic regions, after confiscation of their property.
The less prosperous and least influential kulaks formed the third category. Reputedly, they were, normally, simply expelled from collective farms, after partial confiscation of property and dispersed within the province, where they would be asked either to tend the rest land or to carry out menial jobs.
The criteria for distribution among the categories were particularly that type, which reinforced the arbitrariness of the authorities. Tke kulaks who escaped death were deprived of practically all their rights. Access to schools was denied to their children; tkey were largely refused the benefits of state services. No recourse was offered to them against the treatment, however contrary to the law, to which they were subject.

…Ukraine was known for its fiery nationalism and its dominant peasant class. In such circumstances, collectivization meant crushing the peasantry, “traditional cradle of Ukrainian nationalism”…

''The Japanese consul in Odesa, who made an extensive journey throughout various regions of tke USSR in June 1932, wrote:

  • "Ukrainian peasants, compared to the peasants in other republics, create a pitiful impression with their ragged clothing, emaciated bodies, and requests for alms. Even in large train stations, farmers and their wives and children stretch out their hands for alms and beg for bread.’’

…"I do believe that Communist Party organs and organs sympathetic to the Communist. Party were, a large degree, controlled by agents of the Soviet Union in this period. There’s a great deal of evidence to that effect. Another sort: somewhat sympathetic press organs, they seem to have been more easily manipulatable either because of those who determined editorial policy or wrote for such journals, or because the Soviets were able to influence what correspondents in Moscow could publish…

…The press dispatches going out from Moscow were subject to censorship, but the Moscow policy, naturally, was to convert the correspondents themselves to public relations people for the Soviet Union, when that was possible. A major success along this line was achieved in the case of the New York Times correspondent, Mr. Walter Duranty. Mr. A.J. Klieforth, of the U.S. Embassy in Berlin, in his memorandum of June 4, 1931, reported a conversation he had, in the course of which:
“… Duranty pointed out that, in agreement with the New York Times and the Soviet authorities,’ his official dispatches always reflect the official opinion of the Soviet regime and not his own.” (exhibit P-48, p 174)

‘‘It is more than likely that the Soviet authorities in Ukraine and elsewhere strove to overcome a “petit bourgeois” nationalism that in the long term threatened the stability of the Soviet Union. Such a goal is easily understandable in principle. The risk of separatism did exist in the Ukraine, considering the success of the policy of “Ukrainization” in areas where national feeling was traditionally very strong. This trend probably explains the extent of Moscow’s intervention, if not its methods, from 1930 onwards.’’

‘‘The city of Vinnitsa might well be called the Ukrainian Dachau. In 91 graves there lie the bodies of 9,432 victims of Soviet tyranny, shot by the NKVD in about 1937 or 1938. Among the gravestones or real cemeteries , in woods, with awful irony, under a dance floor, the bodies lay from 1937 until their discovery by the Germans in 1943. Many o f the victims had been reported by the Soviets as exiled to Siberia.’’

…In 1920, 1926, and again in 1930-33, teachers, writers, artists, thinkers, political leaders were liquidated, imprisoned or deported. According to the Ukrainian Quarterly of Autumn 1948, 51,713 intellectuals were sent to Siberia in 1931 along. At least 114 major poets, writers and artists, the most prominent cultural leaders of the nation, have met the same fate. It is conservatively estimated that at least 75% of the Ukrainian intellectuals and professional men in Western Ukraine, Carpatho-Ukraine and Bukovina have been brutally exterminated by the Russians (ibid., Summer 1949)…

''Many of us have by now read the depressing stories of mass starvation that have consequently been numbed by the statistical data on the numbers of dead—all in “peacetime”—whose estimates range from four million towards of ten million. ‘’

The famine was certainly man-made in the sense that its immediate origin lies in human behavior - first and foremost, the grain procurements - and not, for example, in climatic conditions or in natural catastrophes, i.e.

…The disaster might be interpreted as a series of tragic coincidences, but the Petitioner, backed by many witnesses and experts, goes much further. In fact, the applicant reproaches the Soviet authorities with having in essence, orchestrated the famine to ensure the proper implementation of their policies, even at the cost of indescribable sufferings. It is the Petitioner’s contention that collectivization, dekulakization and denationalization expressed in different ways the unequivocal determination of the Soviet authorities to destroy the Ukrainian nation and that - in the last resort - the famine was the final, particularly abominable, instrument of policy execution…

‘‘Most of the accused, from whom false confessions had been extracted, were former members of the parties in power at the time of Petlura’s nationalist government and were condemned to heavy prison sentences. Purges were carried out in university circles and in the Academy of Sciences and, under the pretext of an anti-Soviet conspiracy, many intellectuals ended up in prison or were forced to go into exile.’’

…Like many other peoples throughout the world, Ukrainians have had their bare of tragedy and suffering, most particularly in the twentieth century…

‘‘As the disturbances spread, the authorities called in the army to guard the stocks and the soldiers, usually Russian or at least not Ukrainians, did not hesitate to use their arms to safeguard the procurements. By virtue of the decree of August 7, 1932, on the safe guard of socialist property, provision was made for very heavy penalties, including death and the confiscation о f all possessions, against those who tried to get hold о f the grain or other food belonging to the state.’’

…’'I recall the great indignation with which a well-informed and renowned Ukrainian poet told me personally about mass deaths and suffering from hunger of the swollen children. He was an ardent supporter of the Soviet government, but nevertheless, in strong words he accused the Soviet clique of Stalinist leadership of having “organized the famine”. He told me that in the future, the history will forgive them for many mistakes and sins against living people, perhaps it will forgive them even the anti-humanitarian methods of dekulakization, and deportations, and firing squadrons - but it will never forgive them and should not forgive them the deaths and suffering of the masses of children, tormented by famine…

…Dr. Conquest asserted "there were arrests for saying that the famine "had taken place… ’

…Collectivization" meant that a villager was no longer the owner of his own land, didn’t have control of his own crops, “dekulakization” meant that a great number of villagers - between 1.6 an d 1.8 of the population - around 25 million families, deported to the Arctic…

…Scrutinizing the documentary evidence of Stalin’s intentions to commit genocide against Ukrainians, Hiroaki Kuromiya recently argued that it is not possible to “conclude that Stalin intended to kill millions of people through famine. Nor did he propagate the famine-terror’. On the contrary he did it. It is likely, however, that Stalin originally intended to use the famine on a limited scale as political terror.”

‘‘Stalin used famine as a cheap alternative to deportation.’’

‘‘The Great Ukrainian Famine of 1932-1934 was far more brutal than the last great famine in Europe, which occurred in Finland in 1868. And the most astonishing is that such a famine resulted from deliberate human action, not from climatic hazard.’’

‘‘Tо facilitate the collectivization of peasantry in Ukraine, Stalin decided to split the Ukrainian society and eliminate its elites. In the fall of 1929 OGPU arrested 700 intellectuals accused of connections with the movement for the Liberation of Ukraine" (Spilka Vyzvolennia Ukrainy - SVU), in March-April 1930 put 45 of its fictitious members on trial for spiracy against the Soviet state. Among their crimes was setting up cells for the peasantry with the aim of separating Ukraine from tke USSR. Tke purpose of what was the first major Soviet show trial was to terrorize the Ukraiman intelligentsia, prevent them from taking up the cause of the peasants, and provide leadership on the national level. Other trials followed, first against Ukrainian nationalist elements, and by the time of the Great Famine, against disenchanted Ukrainians in party and administrative positions. At the same time, the regime deprived the villages of their natural leaders. The fall of 1929 witnessed the first phase of dekulakization, or the removal of “rich peasants” (Russian —kulaks; Ukrainian — kurkul ). Some of the confiscated kulak property went to the special cadres made up of city workers (the "25-thousanders’) and rural indigents who helped with the confiscation, the rest was turned over to the collective farms. The dispossessed farmers were then driven out of their villages, exiled to Russia’s northlands or resettled on poor land, in remote regions of Ukraine. A second wave of dekulakization took place a year later. In this way Ukraine lost hundreds of thousands of its best farmers, many of whom died in transit or as a result of the harsh conditions prevailing in their places of resettlement. Those who survived formed a valuable work force and their children provided new citizens for the Russian republic’’

…Peasant unrest in Ukraine had national overtones. The GPU picked up fliers with such inscriptions as ''Time to rise against Moscow’s yoke" and “Petlura told us the time to wake up, time to rise.”

…Stalin wrote, “Ukrainian affairs have hit rock bottom. Tilings are had with regard to the Party …] bad with the Soviets …] bad with tke GPU.” The 500,000 strong Communist Party of Ukraine was full of rotten elements, infiltrated with “conscious and unconscious Petlura adherents”. Stalin cautions: "as soon as things get worse, these elements will waste no time opening front inside (and outside) the Party, against the Party. ’ And he warned: 'Unless we begin to straighten out the situation we may lose Ukraine. "

Nikita Khrushchev, “was fond of saying that every Ukrainian is potentially a nationalist.”

''A criminal law was adopted to force peasants to sell their reserves to the state. Those who refused to sell grain or other agriculturalal products at low prices were charged with speculation, sentenced to prison and their property was confiscated."

‘‘In strict Marxist logic, nationality is meaningless because the proletariat on whom the construction of a perfect society rests is by definition stateless. Consequently, Lenin considered nationalism as the sign of conservative “petit bourgeois” capitalism which must be destroyed, even though it might he temporarily used to advantage to topple the regimes in power and install Bolshevik power.’’

‘‘It is more than likely that the Soviet authorities in Ukraine and elsewhere strove to overcome a “petit bourgeois” nationalism that in the long term threatened the stability of tke Soviet Union. Such a goal is easily understandable in principle. The risk of separatism did exist in the Ukraine, considering the success of the policy of “Ukrainization” in areas where national feeling was traditionally very strong.’’

‘‘Most of the accused, from whom false confessions had been extracted, were former members of the parties in power at the time of Petlura’s nationalist government and were condemned to heavy prison sentences. Purges were carried out in university circles and in the Academy of Sciences and, under the pretext of an anti-Soviet conspiracy, many intellectuals ended up in prison or were forced to go into exile.’’

Soviet authorities used the famine voluntarily, when it happened, to crown their new policy of denationalization.

great words : ‘’ ‘‘A world that indulges historical amnesia or falsification is condemned repeat its worst mistakes.’’

Of course, the famine led some Ukrainians to flee the disaster zone, to Russia and Belarus, but most of these refugees had to return to Ukraine quickly since their illegal migration status (linked to tрe passport requirement imposed in 1932) prevented them from living and working outside Ukraine.

In December 1932 farmers were ordered to surrender all grain reserves for next year’s wing, the authorities being afraid that the starving people would eat the seeds. On 1 January 1933, Stalin addressed the Ukrainian farmers with instructions to surrender all hidden grain and threatened them with punishment if they did not comply. As almost all of the collective farms were in arrears, the implementation of this order took the form of a house-to-house search for "hidden grain.’ Party activists seized everything they found and left the farmers to starve.

Those who survived knew that the famine of 1932-1933 in Soviet Ukraine was a deliberate, politically engineered catastrophe whose victims numbered in the many millions yet few dared even whisper about this devastation of their nation to others in the generations following. It was not until the late 1980s as the Soviet empire stumbled into the dustbin of history and an independent, internationally recognized Ukraine re-emerged in Europe that restored freedom allowed for the truth to be set free. Until then those who had endured the horror now known as the Hololomor remained trapped in the very place where it could not be spoken of.

‘‘Holocaust or Holodomor?’’
''Ukrainians have sometimes spoken of the “Holodomor” as the Ukrainian holocaust. With all due respect to those who have chosen to do so, I must point out the pitfalls of such a usage of the term. Tke word “holocaust” is isually traced to Wycliffe’s translation of the Bible as a burnt offering to the Lord, and indeed it is an English word from the ancient Greek words “kolos” (whole) and “caustos” (to burn). In reference to Hitler’s destruction of the Jews, it came to be used as a not quite exact translation of the Hebrew word “Shoah” (complete and utter destruction), yet evocative of what Hitler tried to do to with a people traditionally considered themselves to be chosen by God, the Jews, to destroy tbem entirely as a people, including burning them in ovens specially désigned for that purpose. It is not a generic term for a certain kind of crime against any given group but a specific word for a specific event and as such has entered many languages. Almost until the end of the Soviet Union, Ukrainians in the West used such terms as the Great Famine or the man-made Famine in Ukraine. Only when the veil of silence began to gradually lift , did it become clear that the word “holodomor” become the label that stuck in people’s memory in the place where it happened. Tke word itself is interesting, “holod” (hunger or famine) and “mor” (mass death as in a plague, like chumats’kyi mor, tke Black Death).
For this reason, to speak of the Ukrainian Holocaust makes about as much sense as speaking of the Jewish Holodomor. It is a unique term that has arisen from the depths of a victimized nation itself. As the unique tragedy faced by Ukrainians in the USSR becomes more a part of the consciousness of the larger world, the use of the word that Ukrainians in Ukraine have chosen will inevitably enter the other languages as well.
As is the case with any culture of which we are not a part, those who are not part of the Ukrainian nation that has lived through the Soviet period, a nation that has been skaped or distorted by precisely that experience, cannot tell them how to understand themselves any more than we can tell them how to overcome all the obstacles that their past has burdened them with. Ukrainians in Ukraine will make tkeir own Ukrainian history. ‘’

I’ll have to come back to this thread. Post #5 had me in tears so that I couldn’t finish reading it.

But I will say that Good Friday this year, I made “grass cake” with my boys. I explained it’s going to be a new tradition with us. I’m grateful every day for the food we have, and ask the souls of the victims of rye Holodomor to pray for us.

Ukrainian Genocide Famine Foundation - USA

Books on the Holodomor in Ukraine 1932-33

Thanks for keeping up with this thread, Athanasiy!

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