75th anniversary of Holodomor marked

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Ghislaine

remind wrote:

They, the UCC, or the so called  "Ukrainian diaspora" according to Leigh, want activists on the left, for some reason, to give them validity of action, or of alleged actions against them. However, they apparently are a single vision, single focus entity, with it seems no regard for the plight of exploited others around the world. As such, I would ask why they would want, let alone expect, left activisits acknowlegement of anything other than a stated realization that there were human rights abuses which happened to them.

Moreover, it would appear they sold their block vote to the Harper Cons  for 5.4 million dollars.

___________________________________________________________ "watching the tide roll away"

 

Can an organization not have one focus? There are plenty of orgs that focus on one particular human rights issue? If every org had to focus on every issue, I doubt they would accomplish very much.

LeighT

folks, the precise reason that large members of the Ukrainian diaspora have supportesd conservative governments is because there has been a reactionary knee-jerk response from soviet-era revisionists.

this polarization of politics is one of the reasons i'm spending so much time here going on about these issues.  I don't think it needs to be polarized, and the end result COULD be a substantial shift in politics in this country, but certainly not if activists of the left continue with soviet-era revisionism, or align themselves with current Russian oligarchs.  

look, there are tens of thousands of de-classified documents which have been released now after the 75-year ban on archival opening.  Stalin targetted specific regions of Ukraine which had large numbers of ethnic Ukrainians, of course also with smaller numbers of other races, and most notably those regions which still had active resistance movements seeking regain Ukraine's independence.  These regions were visited not simply with famine, but with militarized slaughter, rape, and torture on a vast scale.   

Most people know the soviet version of the story very well, in fact after decades of complete silence and repression of other voices, it's frankly all i've heard in activist circles.  Many Canadians of Ukrainian descent have been extremely active in fighting causes of the left, which is why the continued opposition to recognizing an obscene injustice to Ukrainians is such a slap in the face.  It's enought to turn die-hard activists into right-wingers.  which is exactly what has happened in the past, and will continue if leftists don't open their eyes.

 

 

 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

LeighT wrote:

folks, the precise reason that large members of the Ukrainian diaspora have supportesd conservative governments is because there has been a reactionary knee-jerk response from soviet-era revisionists....

Most people know the soviet version of the story very well, in fact after decades of complete silence and repression of other voices, it's frankly all i've heard in activist circles. Many Canadians of Ukrainian descent have been extremely active in fighting causes of the left, which is why the continued opposition to recognizing an obscene injustice to Ukrainians is such a slap in the face. It's enought to turn die-hard activists into right-wingers. which is exactly what has happened in the past, and will continue if leftists don't open their eyes.

This is nonsense.

The reason that large numbers of the Ukrainian diaspora have supported conservative governments is the same reason that large numbers of the Hungarian, Czech, Polish, and other eastern european diasporas have supported conservative governments: they are refugees from Stalinism (and their descendants) who have swallowed the capitalist kool-aid as an antidote to the life they escaped back home.

Canadians of Ukrainian descent who have been extremely active in fighting causes of the left are almost entirely descendants of the first wave of Ukrainian immigration, which provided the early Canadian Communist Party with a large portion of its membership. Of course, they were imbued with the corrupt ideology of Stalinism, and many of them eventually turned away from the CP when Stalin's crimes were officially acknowledged, but very few of them actually went over to the right wing - and certainly not over the issue of the famine.

Most people do NOT know the soviet version of the Ukraine famine - even among "activist circles". I don't know what activist circles you have been moving in, Leigh, but they certainly aren't the same ones I have been in for the last forty years.

Love and best wishes, etc.

LeighT

Dear M. Spector, your paternalism is barely concealed, having just reduced diverse peoples, with extremely diverse political perspectives based on profound experience, to koolaid-sippers.

my comment that activist are pushed to become 'right-wingers' is perhaps overstated, but when 'the left' gives them no space in the sense of a position of support on the issue of the Holodomor, they become less politically active in the left.  same result.

i am quite aware of the different waves of immigration.  Does this mean we ignore the lived experience of the vast numbers of refugees and displaced persons who suffered the Holodomor and Stalin's terror and came over after?  that leftists try to cling to - what, i'm not really sure what your goals are- Communist Party resurgence? Would these political goals take precedence over human rights?

 

 

 

remind remind's picture

And there we have it, Leigh suggesting the left in Canada is looking for a resurgence in the Communist Party. Amazing really, and it makes me believe that little time has been spent by Leigh with activists on the left. Whether that is the case or not is unknown, but I suggest that she stop broadbrushing, again, the left in Canada.

Moreover, this comment "activists of the left continue with soviet-era revisionism, or align themselves with current Russian oligarchs." is beyond my comprehension. I have been an activist for my entire life and I have never once heard any of whom I associated with even discuss Russia and/or the Ukraine famine, In fact, it was not until I came to babble, 4 years ago, where I saw any discussion at all of it, and even then it was/is a small contingent, speaking more generally of Russia. Though admittedly, I do not follow those threads closely, if at all.

And IMV, if Ukrainian activists find more common ground in the world with the CON servatives, because some on the left see it is as crimes against humanity, and not Genocide, (though of course some may also believe it was) then I would suggest there is no current possibility for any common ground with much of the left activists that I know anyway. As I stated above it would seem then, to me at least, that Ukrainian activists pretty much have 1 sole focus, furthering the position of the Ukraine, and/or fostering Ukrainian nationalism.

My beloved next door neighbours for many years were Hungarian  diaspora, who experienced the same grave human rights tragedy, under the Soviets, that was found in the Ukraine, and they had to flee for their lives and leave everything behind too. However, there was no way in hell anyone in that family would have supported the Conservatives/Liberals, as they fully recognized a potential for a fascist state under those auspices. They were against both fascism and communism, full stop.

So again I ask, what is it that you want the activists on the left to help you with Leigh? As our approval, or disapproval, of whether or not the famine was genocide should actually mean very little in the scheme of things, unless one is working towards an agenda.

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"watching the tide roll away"

LeighT

remind- I was responding in that last post to M.Spector's comment, in which he appeared to be lamenting the fact that the Communist Party of Canada was reduced in membership because of the facts about Stalin's behaviour.  

I know there is diversity on the left on this issue, Jack Layton and many New Democrats supported a bill that passed in Parliament last spring which commemorated the Holodomor as an act of genocide.   This was good.

I'm just curious why it's so difficult for some babblers to get their heads around the idea, and it's not the first time I've encountered leftists in Canada who are staunchly aligned with Russia come hell or high water.  If you or any others can shed some light on these dynamics, please do.

thanks,

Leigh

 

 

remind remind's picture

LeighT wrote:
remind- I was responding in that last post to M.Spector's comment, in which he appeared to be lamenting the fact that the Communist Party of Canada was reduced in membership because of the facts about Stalin's behaviour. 
Huh? Not that I am standing up for mspector or anything, as I am not, but to me mspectors words said nothing of the sort.

 

Quote:
I know there is diversity on the left on this issue, Jack Layton and many New Democrats supported a bill that passed in Parliament last spring which commemorated the Holodomor as an act of genocide.   This was good.
Point?

Quote:
I'm just curious why it's so difficult for some babblers to get their heads around the idea, and it's not the first time I've encountered leftists in Canada who are staunchly aligned with Russia come hell or high water.  If you or any others can shed some light on these dynamics, please do.
Give me a freakin break! There may be1 or 2 posters here who are aligned with "communist" thought, but to call leftists staunchly aligned with Russia come hell or high water is false dichotomy, and I see it as an attempt to create a conceptual framework that is not a reality.

Again I ask what your purpose is?

 

 


___________________________________________________________
"watching the tide roll away"

LeighT

In fact if any babblers can provide examples of socialist groups in Canada other than the NDP who have made public statements commemorating the Holodomor, and have taken a position different from Russia's on the issue, please post them. thanks, Leigh.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

LeighT wrote:
I was responding in that last post to M.Spector's comment, in which he appeared to be lamenting the fact that the Communist Party of Canada was reduced in membership because of the facts about Stalin's behaviour.
I wasn't "lamenting" it. I merely referred to it.

I would have been happy if the CP had disappeared completely (which in fact it almost has).

The Holodomor-recognition campaign is part of a larger anti-communist campaign, promoted by right-wing ideologues. One doesn't have to accept the official Soviet position (whatever that is - and where do you find it, anyway?) in order to understand that this is being used as a club to bash the left and to equate socialism with fascism.

If the NDP has jumped on the bandwagon, it's completely in keeping with their tradition of rabid anti-communism and their political perspective of reforming capitalism rather than replacing it. It wouldn't be the first time the NDP's foreign policy gave aid and comfort to right-wing movements (e.g. siding with Israel against Palestinians).

Trying to blackmail the left into supporting the campaign ("left-wing Ukrainian-Canadians will vote Conservative if you don't") is unlikely to succeed as a strategy.

Michelle

Leigh, it's a convention at babble to not sign your posts.  We know who you are - your name as at the left of each post you make.  And as this is an ongoing conversation, there's no need to do salutations like a letter.

Thanks!  And also, welcome to babble. :)

LeighT

ok Michelle, appreciate the note, guess I'm just trying to sign off on this conversation because it's been going on too long for me!

M. Spector- the initial post on this thread by WinnipegGirl noted commemoration of the Holodomor genocide.  The first comment on the thread flipped the genocide commemoration into a political issue.  This unfortunately has been the kind of process for most of the 75 years since the Holodomor.  If anything, I can understand why those who experienced it moved away from leftist circles, and as I've had some similar experiences myself, am suggesting that the left would probably find it useful not to continue the practice.  no strategies and agendas, just probably tired of the dynamic.  I'm glad the NDP moved to recognize the Holodomor. 

 

remind remind's picture

LeighT wrote:
In fact if any babblers can provide examples of socialist groups in Canada other than the NDP who have made public statements commemorating the Holodomor, and have taken a position different from Russia's on the issue, please post them. thanks, Leigh.
 
Is there any other real socialist group in Canada, other than the NDP?Tongue out

Have to say I agree with mspector, in respect to what your apparent purpose is Leigh. As you will not answer direct questions and continually broadbrush erroneously. Moreover, it would seem to me, that there is an attempt going on to divide the left over this issue. When in fact everyone has a right to their personal opinions.

Also, I would ask what the Ukranian Canadian Congresses position is on the issues of the plight of  First Nations in Canada? As Ukrainian Canadians have deeply benefitted from the exploitation and land theft of First Nations peoples across Canada. Yet they want money from the Canadian government for redress of wrong doings? Are they prepared to to give billions of dollars, and perhaps in some cases their land, in redress to FN peoples, and as acknowledgement that they live on stolen land? Are they prepared to support the reality that genocide was committed against FN's here in Canada?

 

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"watching the tide roll away"

remind remind's picture

LeighT wrote:
If anything, I can understand why those who experienced it moved away from leftist circles, and as I've had some similar experiences myself, am suggesting that the left would probably find it useful not to continue the practice.  no strategies and agendas, just probably tired of the dynamic.  I'm glad the NDP moved to recognize the Holodomor.
Alex seconded the motion, as such the NDP did not just move to recognize it, they were part and parcel of it being brought forward for adoption. Moreover, Peggy Nash worked closely with  Canadian Ukrainians in respect to CHRP, and trying to force Harper to acknowlege previous transgressions by the Canadian government. So I am seriously not sure why you, and apparently other Ukrainian Canadians, are so disparaging of activists on the left, and moved as a block vote to support a Harper government. And are now currently trying to be dismissive of left activists.

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"watching the tide roll away"

LeighT

remind,there are many many Ukrainian Canadians who have been actively involved in solidarity struggles with Indigenous peoples here, around many issues including genocide, land theft, water issues, residential schools, racism, self-determination, and probably because they've experienced it themselves elsewhere, under different occupiers.  Ukrainian Canadians have been interned here during the first world war, penned up in barbed wire cages, women and children included, because of the political fears of Canadians.   whether the particular groups you're asking about includes people who work on First Nations issues, I don't know.  

Fidel

LeighT wrote:
  I don't think it needs to be polarized, and the end result COULD be a substantial shift in politics in this country, but certainly not if activists of the left continue with soviet-era revisionism, or align themselves with current Russian oligarchs.  . .

 These regions were visited not simply with famine, but with militarized slaughter, rape, and torture on a vast scale.   

Most people know the soviet version of the story very well, in fact after decades of complete silence and repression of other voices, it's frankly all i've heard in activist circles.

And some number of the diaspora post-WWII weren't ordinary anticommunists. Some of them freely chose to collaborate with the Nazis over and above what was necessary to survive. Thousands came from the Baltic countries and Ukraine as well as Germany. Most of the war criminals lived out the rest of their lives under protection of Canadian, British and U.S. law and collected international pensions living under their real names.

But this thread is supposed to be about commemorating an unnecessary and unfortunate famine not scoring our favourite political points with selective history.

 

LeighT

The whole Nazi story sickens me.  Of course there may be bad apples in any bunch, and war criminals of any kind should be prosecuted.   But this approach has been used to ignore the Holodomor in the past.  Obviously both the Holocaust and Holodomor should be commemorated and justice served.  Do Canadians know that Ukrainian nationals were massacred by Hitler, ending up in mass graves, and an entire generation taken from Western Ukraine as children and youth to work in Nazi slave camps, where many died or were later sent back to Stalin after the war?

yeah, lots of fun for people under fascism and communism.

 

 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

LeighT wrote:

Ukrainian Canadians have been interned here during the first world war, penned up in barbed wire cages, women and children included, because of the political fears of Canadians.

Ukrainian Canadian organizations are sharply divided along political lines. The ones on the right talk about the internment of Ukrainians during WW I (which was atrocious) but never about the internment of Ukrainians in WW II. [url=This">http://www.infoukes.com/history/internment/][u]This website,[/url] for example, doesn't even acknowledge it.

I started a thread on the "old" babble about the internment of Canadian communists in WW II but it has not been preserved and may possibly be lost forever. The majority of the communists imprisoned under the War Measures Act at Kananaskis, Alta. were Ukrainians, including [url=http://www.socialisthistory.com/Docs/CPC/WW2/IWC13.htm]"the leaders of the Ukrainian labour-farmer organizations and the editors of "The People's Gazette" and "Farmer's Life".[/url] Like their WW I counterparts, they were interned because of the political fears of Canadians, but they are forgotten (quite intentionally) by the right-wing of the Ukrainian Canadian diaspora.

My point of course is that each side has their own history to tell. Berating leftists because they don't sign on to the "history agenda" of the right wing is pointless.

LeighT

M.Spector, Luciuk chronicles some of the WW2 internments. 

LeighT

Fidel, who do you think was in charge in Ukraine during the Holocaust? 

Fidel

LeighT wrote:

The whole Nazi story sickens me.  Of course there may be bad apples in any bunch, and war criminals of any kind should be prosecuted.   But this approach has been used to ignore the Holodomor in the past.  Obviously both the Holocaust and Holodomor should be commemorated and justice served.  Do Canadians know that Ukrainian nationals were massacred by Hitler, ending up in mass graves, and an entire generation taken from Western Ukraine as children and youth to work in Nazi slave camps, where many died or were later sent back to Stalin after the war?

yeah, lots of fun for people under fascism and communism.

Ukraine and Russia were the first countries where mass exterminations occurred. Estimates after the war said anywhere from 5 to 7  million Ukrainians were missing and unaccounted for, and somewhere around a million of them ethnic Jews.  Some were force marched to slave labour camps and never seen again. Many more were shot to death and buried in mass graves by right-wing death squads.  Does either the UCC or Ed Stelmach commemorate that more recent atrocity?

remind remind's picture

 Leigh, I am fully aware of the internment of close to 5000 Ukrainians from 1914-1920, did I just not mention Peggy Nash's work on CHRP, for Ukrainian Canadians, and Harper's refual to committ to anything?!

And Iwould ask how you feel about Kostash"s work All of Baba’s Children (and her subsequent one All of Baba's Great Grandchildren from 2000) Bloodlines and The Next Canada. In Search of Our Future Nation?

Because it seems to me what you are expressing is deeply divergent from the principles and thinking that Kostash, as a Ukrainian feminist  illuminates. Hence my FN's questioning. But perhaps I am seeing "otherness" or the attempted creation of it, where none exists in any great/significant strength anymore. Though I understand as Kostash put it "there’s no getting around the psychological insecurity of a community that has
periodically lived under a cloud in Canada as ‘enemy aliens’."
However, it is my perception, perhaps a wrong one, is that this former ideology of "enemy aliens" has not been current for a long time. 

In fact, these other words of hers, blew me away, when I first read them and indeed continually still do:

 “In spite of the deep cultural wounds, the shocking
dispersal of historical materials, the failing languages and the traumatized
body of the Indian, First Nations can still imagine the Euro-Canadians, among
others, as collaborators in a kind of cultural ‘bilingualism’, that, in a series
of translation back and forth between cultures, will be transformative of all
our relationships to the homeplace.

For all of us who have rooted our memory and point of origin
in offshore cultures or fantasies of self-generated New World identity, the
invitation to consider ourselves citizens of an ancient ‘island’ is provocative.
Especially when the message is passed on by those who have here since time
immemorial.

It is, in fact, the ‘sneak-up dance’ of the ones for whom it
is the only motherland.”

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"watching the tide roll away"

Fidel

LeighT wrote:
Fidel, who do you think was in charge in Ukraine during the Holocaust? 

Sure thing, and by December '41, Nazi Army group centre were oggling spires of the Kremlin through binocculars. Churchill and Roosevelt fully expected them to occupy the Kremlin in about six weeks' time. Many Red Army soldiers were killed in Ukraine before the Nazis parked about a dozen miles from Moscow. Tens of millions would be slaughtered.

Cueball Cueball's picture

Actually it was November and it was elements of Hoepner's 4th Panzer Group, (which was not an SS "Nazi" unit) that alledgedly saw the Kremlin spires, after pushing back Rokossovsky's 16th Army and crossing the Moscow Volga Canal. Hoepner was also not much of a Nazi and was indeed shot after the 1944 April plot to kill Hitler.

The validity of the claim that the Kremlin was in sight, is debatable, and indeed people have tried to look for this spot where you can see the Kremlin Spires from 35 km away, and are hard pressed to show that it is possible. Light bouncing of the snow and into a lens of a pair of binoculars?

Your conjecture that Roosevelt and Churchill were expecting the imminent fall of the Russia capital, is likely correct. Most people were of this belief in fact, including Stalin and the NKVD who were busily shooting the political prisoners who they were unable to transport east.

Fidel

German Planning

Quote:

By early December, the lead German Panzer Groups stood less than 30 kilometers (19 mi) from the Kremlin, and Wehrmacht officers were able to see some of Moscow's buildings with binoculars; but the Axis forces were unable to make further advances. On December 5, 1941, fresh Soviet Siberian troops, prepared for winter warfare, attacked the German forces in front of Moscow;

The Germans were short of heavy artillery, experienced supply problems*, and were already beginning to run low on the precious juice, thanks to the likes of Draza Mihailovich and his guerilla fighters in the Balkans.

Cueball Cueball's picture

You mean the anti-communist, pro-British, Serbian army officer and leader of the anti-communist Chetnik movement who was arrested by Comrade Tito? That Mihailovich?

In anycase the Yugoslav partisans and Chetniks did not disrupt supply to the Wermacht in Russia, you are deeply confused. That is very far away from the German supply line to Russia, which ran through Poland, not the Balkans. 

The problem for the Germans was that the invasion of Yugoslavia, in order to back up Mussolini's floundering campaign in Greece, meant that the German army had to march all the way down to the Agean, kick the British out, and then march all the way back to the start line on the Russian border. If anything it was Mussolini who caused the delay.

Fidel

Well I'm glad I mentioned it. And yes they did disrupt German supply lines through the Balkans long enough to delay barbarossa by an estimated five weeks. That, and the battle for Kiev, delayed Hitler's plan  for laying siege to Moscow. Perhaps this is why both you and der fuhrer misunderestimated exactly which month lead Wehrmacht Panzers would arrive 30 kliks outside Moscow and awaiting further orders and supplies. The Germans had to maintain several divisions in Yugoslavia in response. The Germans and Croatian Ustashi went on killing frenzy in Yugoslavia as a result. He saved Russia

Cueball Cueball's picture

No. As your links states, the Yugoslav army collapsed almost immeditaly.

The reason Germany invaded Yugoslavia, was to help Mussolini in his invasion of Greece, which he did not even bother telling Hitler about, saying: "he always hands me fait accompli's, so I will give him one." The Greek army gave strong resistance to the Italians invading from Albania (invaded by Italy in march 1938) and because the British quickly intervened on the Greek side, the Italians were unable to handle the issue on their own. The Germans demanded that Yugoslavia allow the Wermacht access to Yugoslavia, in what the Yugoslavs understood to be a de facto occupation, and balked after intitially agreeing.

The British inspired a coup, and Germany invaded. They swept aside the Yugoslavian army, and then crushed the Greeks and British in a matter of weeks. The issue was basically how fast the Germans could drive through the Balkans. No serious partisan or Chetnik activity occurred in Yugoslavia, until the they had sufficiently organized themselves, and this occurred around the same time as Germany invaded Russia in June.

If anyone "saved Russia" it was the Greeks, and Mussolini's hubris. 

It is true that the Germans had to maintain several divisions in Yugoslavia, but this was only really necessary as the war drew on.

Cueball Cueball's picture

Fidel wrote:
Cueball wrote:

No. As your links states, the Yugoslav army collapsed almost immeditaly.

Yes, and according to a Time Magazine article of 1942, Montenegrin partisans later accused Mihailovich and at least one of his underlings of cooperating with axis forces. Strange.

Here is an interesting link, from Field Marshall Weichs, on the relations between the Wermacht and the Chetniks who "saved Russia".

Quote:
1.As a result of the long negotiations that the “OB Südost” and “Sonderbevollmächtigten des Auswärtigen Amtes” had with the commanders of chetnik groups,the agreement has been made,which provides local cease-fire and occasional joint action against Communism.2.Prerequiste for this agreement was,and for eventual future agreements will be that the Chetniks:
a) will refrain from all combat- and sabotage acts against Germans,their allies,friendly domestic forces and Muslims;
b) will stand under German command in joint actions against the communists;
c) will severe all connections with the countries in war with Germany and will deliver all present liason staffs of those countries;
d) will co-operate in the joint propaganda against the communists;

 

3.All officers are to be informed of the following:
a) Up untill now the co-operation with the chetniks was forbidden because of Draza Mihailovic´s unalterable insistance to fight the Germans and their allies; up until now,he hasn´t apostized such a stand;
b) Declaration of some chetnik commanders that they would fight the Communism jointly with the German Wehrmacht complied with the general evaluation of the enemy position in the South-east: USSR-sponsored communist bands are the biggest danger. That’s why the offers made by chetniks had to be re-evaluated;
c) Newly loyal attitude of the some chetnik groups should not be taken as a general attiude: sabotage and attacks are still perpetuated by the chetnik bands;
d) The troops are still forbidden to negotiate with the chetniks. Arbitrary acts can only jeopardise already initiated conntacts made by the highest military and political posts. Such actions can only bring serious disadvantages in the whole South-east;
e) Local chetnik commanders who offer co-operation,are to be taken to the nearest SD or Abwehr post;
f) Propaganda against the chetniks is to cease; the results of the current developents will decide if it is to be re-introduced.

sign. Frhr. von Weichs Generalfeldmarschall

German-Chetnik relations and Serbian Nazi connection and collaboration