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Messages - Zvezda

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The Russian Revolution / Re: Brest-Litovsk
« on: July 23, 2010, 01:08:07 AM »
I have been reading The Fall Of the Dynasties by Edmond Taylor edited by John Gunther - published in 1953.
This is just rubbish. The conspiracy theory of a German hand in the Russian Revolution is bogus and has been discredited.

Professor I. Ratkovsky of Saint Petersburg/Leningrad University wrote in a recent university textbook:
The main channel for the transfer of “German Money” to the Bolsheviks of Petrograd was supposedly the export firm of Parvus, whose pro-German sympathies were well-known to the authorities. Nevertheless, the prosecutor of the Petrograd Trial Chamber, investigating the case against Lenin concerning German funding, could not find direct evidence of receipt by the Bolsheviks of any money by Parvus’ firm. In 1917 part of the “German money” reached the Bolsheviks from the Swiss Marxist Karl Moor, who was a “trusted agent” of the Germans (as became known only in 1950). Although the Bolsheviks at the meeting of the RSDLP of 24 September 1917 refused to take money from Moor after suspecting him of being linked to the German Government, by this time Moor managed to deliver to the Foreign Bureau of the Central Committee about 35 thousand dollars. To date, this information is the only rigorously documented evidence that the Bolsheviks took money from a German agent 1917. K. Moor at his request later was returned about 40 thousand dollars because of “economic hardship”

In reading about the Bolshevik Revolution one is struck by just how many non-Slavs played such a key role, from Jews, to Latvians to Georgians
What did you expect? Imperial Russia was a multinational country in which Russians formed only about 45 percent of the population. With Ukrainians and Byelorussians, they were about two-thirds of the population. Because Russian Social Democracy attracted supporters from virtually all of Russia's nationalities, it was inevitable for there to have been many non-Russians in the upper leadership, especially when Russians were only 45% of the population.

to Lenin of course who had a little of everything I suppose, but was Kalymck on his fathers side to Jewish and German and Swedish I believe on his mothers.
Lenin was unquestionably Russian by nationality. The kind of environment he was raised in with the sort of family he had was not anything other than Russian. Obviously, he did not belong to any non-Russian nationality from his native Volga region.

He was Russian by ancestry as well His father's side of the family was rather provincial, as they rose out of serfdom to become petit-bourgeois and intellectuals. His mother's side of the family were notable northern European settlers. Claims that one of his grandfathers may have been Jewish are very much disputed, as they are based on the speculation of Lenin's sister.

  Who would be considered the most "Russian" of the Bolsheviks from those days, Bukharin, or Lunacharsky?  I'm guessing that those two were actual slavic Russians.
There were tons of Russians by nationality among the Bolshevik leadership and Soviet government. Including Ukrainians, they were:

M. Kalinin, President
G. Chicherin, foreign minister
N. Krylenko, prominent army commissar and future justice minister
V. Nogin, chairman of Moscow Soviet
N. Podvoisky, chairman of the Petrograd Military Revolutionary Committee. Helped lead the uprising in Petrograd
V. Antonov-Ovseyenko, Member of the Petrograd Military Revolutionary Committee. Prominent army leader

In Moscow, the leading organizers of the city's uprising after victory in Petrograd were the aforementioned Nogin, M. Vladimirsky, A. Lomov, V. Yakovleva, P. Smidovich, and others.

Lesser known figures but with important authority were:
V. Zatonsky, Chairman of the Ukrainian Soviets
P. Kobozev, Chairman of Turkestan Soviets
A Beloborodov, Chairman of Urals Soviets
A. Krasnoshchekov - Chairman of Far Eastern Soviets
F. Podtelkov, Chairman of the Don Soviet Republic

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: August 09, 2009, 05:13:14 PM »
and the post-Soviet Russian Federation continues to produce nothing noteworthy (or for that matter valuable) but natural gas and oil.
Why do you keep on making these kind of sweeping generalizations about subjects you know little about? Soviet-era Russia produced products of excellent quality such as airplanes, ships, tractors, and motor vehicles. My experience with Soviet-era consumer goods such as a sewing machine have been generally positive. My mother's sewing machine is as old as I am and still works fine.

After all, he put Germans back to work
Any positive aspect of the German economy in the 1930s came largely at the expense of the liquidation of the hard-won gains of the working people. Real wages in the 1930s, for example, declined considerably.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: August 02, 2009, 03:25:07 PM »
Have you ever been late to work?
Russia established an eight-hour working day just a few days after the Petrograd Uprising, actually. By contrast, life for workers and peasants during the tsarist days was brutal and back-breaking; factory workers did 12+ hour shifts. There is no guarantee for such conditions in the United States, where many people have several jobs and work 70+ hours per week.

In the Stalin era
I don't know why you keep talking about the Stalin era, which is basically ancient history by now; my grandmother was a 10 year-old girl when the war started, for example. Concerning life in the 1970s, which is more relevant, it was quite laid-back, especially at the workplace.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: July 31, 2009, 11:42:57 PM »
Zvezda's increasingly nationalistic, even chauvinistic posts.
I have done none of that. I simply express the views that the Russian Revolution was a watershed for world history and brought unprecedented gains for the people of Russia who were suffering in the Dark Ages that was tsarism. The Soviet era was not some miserable period as western liberals would have us believe, but was a time in which people led meaningful and decent lives. Particularly in the post-war period, soviet power was the greatest thing Russia experienced. I don't appreciate it too much when outsiders denigrate my country's history, especially when they liken it to Nazi Germany.
Eduard Limonov. Dugin
I don't sympathize with either Limonov or Dugin, as I find their fascist ideology to be repugnant.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: July 31, 2009, 02:31:38 PM »
So you say that the reason that the Soviets denied their citizens the right to travel abroad. Is that why they had to build a wall around Berlin
That is false. For example, my mother visited Lebanon in 1972.

Anyone who argues that the massacre at Katyn by the Soviets was in some way justified
To call it a "massacre" is inaccurate, for it was carried out in accordance with the country's laws. The prisoners committed hostile acts in violation of the country's security and were therefore punished. It was excessive to have executed them, but the principle of punishing them was just. Instead of being executed, they should have been sent to work in mines. And it is undeniable that the execution of Polish officers was intimately related to the Polish aggression of 1920 and the subsequent occupation of Soviet lands.

neo-fascist or Red-Brown fascist-communists like Eduard Limonov
The term "fascist-communist" makes no sense. The ones closer to fascism on the political spectrum are actually the various factions of the liberal capitalists.

If your father drove a car in 1970, your family must be rich.
My grandfather was a cobbler and was relatively wealthy compared to workers. But owning a car was not rare. In the 1980s, there were 70 cars per 1000 people, meaning that about one-third of all families owned a car.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: July 31, 2009, 12:09:16 AM »
Zvezda, the book that you quote, above, The Voices of the Dead, actually says that researchers have already identified over 10,000 names of those executed despite official estimates of 6,329 - 6,783.  It also goes on to say in the next sentence, "Some suspect that as many as 50,000 - 150,000 are buried there."    The book you cite does not appear to offer a great deal of support for the lower numbers you favor...
I am not interested in the conclusions of the author or his interpretations of data. He doesn't make observations as to which estimate is correct, but cites various sources. There is no basis for these clearly inflated estimates of 200,000, but the figures are probably in the 6000 - 10,000 range.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: July 30, 2009, 05:48:36 PM »
Zvezda, I find it very interesting that you didn't dispute my main points: 1) that you are a "dyed-in-the wool Stalinist and Russian nationalist" and 2) an ethnic Russian living in a former Soviet republic and hankering after the so-called glorious days of the Soviet empire.
I don't understand why you continue to make things up about my background. I have roots in the former USSR, but I am not of Russian nationality and I live in America.

Which would certainly explain why you regard the Soviet period as a "golden age" when most knowledgeable people in this world recognize it was a historical digression, a mistake, indeed, a new Dark Ages, completely unnecessary, which put Russia and its subject peoples back a good century or more in terms of progress.
I don't understand how a dogmatic western liberal is qualified to make observations about live in the Soviet period and its effect on Russia's development. Talk to any middle-aged person from Russia, and they'll tell you that life in the Soviet period was far superior to the catastrophe the country's endured since 1990. The Soviet period, particularly the period from Brezhnev to Andropov, was the best time in the country's history.

Why does Russia to this day have no manufacturing base to speak of?
Because Russia's economy was destroyed by capitalists in the 1990s, led by the IMF and World Bank. Just in 1992, the country's economy plunged by about 50 percent.

Face it, your country produces almost nothing but oil and natural gas, natural resources that are a pure given, not something you have actually achieved by dint of technological prowess or entrepreneurial talent.
I don't know much about economics, but you are exaggerating in your evaluation of Russia's economy. Russian arms and aviation, for example, are just as good if not superior to what is in the West. My father drove a Volga Gaz when he was a young man in the 1970s, and it was an excellent car.

the brutal Soviet massacre of Polish officers and others at Katyn, suffices to refute your argument.
Polish prisoners were not entirely innocent and it would have been justified to punish them in some form, but it was excessive to have executed them. The killing of the Polish prisoners was analagous, if not more humane, to the aggression Poland unleashed against Russia and Ukraine in 1920.

We all know the Soviet secret police butchered their political prisoners held in Ukraine and the Baltic States as the German armies advanced.
Again, the people held in prisons were not entirely innocent and it was in the interest of the country to get rid of future Nazi collaborators than to let them flee and join the enemy's side.

The Communist movement is dead. Particularly in Russia, by the way.
Actually, the Communists in Russia are the most viable opposition in Russia.

Soviet era as the golden age of Russia, do you really think that the time of Stalin, gulags, KGB and so on was a golden age?...sincerely I don't see nothing of positive in all this.
The country experienced unprecedented economic, social, and cultural progress. The soviet system functioned for the interests of the people, not for the owners of capital and international monopolies. People sought and lived meaningful, productive lives in the interest of strengthening the country's development and their own standard of living. There was genuine democracy in the soviet era, as one cannot get fired from a job under socialism for criticizing management. You wouldn't see homeless people on the streets of Moscow as you do today or sleazy, filthy products of the West such as discotheques, night clubs, and McDonalds.

, here is what happened to Russia’s greatest writers during your so-called “golden age” of the Soviet empire:
Few of those authors you named produced works of artistic quality and inspirational content. As for genuinely great Russian writers, Gorky, Mayakovsky, Sholokhov, Tolstoy, Fadeyev, Ostrovsky, Fedin, Georgi Markov, Leonov, Bednyi, Serafimovich, just to name a few, achieved great critical success during the soviet era.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: July 29, 2009, 12:24:55 PM »
Communists wanted to wipe out other social classes 'in favour' of the proletariat.
This is not true. The policy of the Communist Party had always been to strengthen the alliance between the workers, peasants, and progressive sections of the intelligentsia. When the working-class fights against the ruling class, it seeks an alliance with many small and middle capitalist proprietors.

First: you are confusing the people of Russia with the Soviet government. In another thread you were confusing Russian culture with Soviet culture. I think this is the REAL slander to the people of Russia.
There's no such thing as Soviet culture or Soviet nationality. In the Soviet Union there were 15 countries and dozens of nationalities, each of which was profoundly influenced by cultural developments during soviet power. The Soviet era, the golden age of Russia, cannot possibly be isolated from the nation's history and culture.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: July 28, 2009, 11:17:32 AM »
the Nazis and Soviets were interchangeable in moral terms during this historical era.
That amounts to really offensive revisionism which slanders the people of Russia. Nothing equivalent to Auschwitz, Babi Yar, or the siege of Leningrad was perpetrated by Russia.
if there were a Holocaust revisionist here who was citing David Irving to the effect that 6 million Jews did not perish under Hitler

I have said nothing equivalent to the lies of how six million Jews were not systematically exterminated. For you to claim the contrary is outrageous.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Information from the Soviet View Point
« on: July 26, 2009, 04:49:27 PM »
Abuse of the musical talent of Russia by the Communists for their propaganda was exactly the reason why so many great Russian artists fled from the Soviet Union.
Would this include some of Russia's finest composers such as Shostakovich, Matvei Blanter, Isaac Dunaevsky, Anatoly Novikov, Solovyov-Sedoi, etc? Songs like "Katyusha", "Pesnya o Rodine", and others have become a firm part of Russian culture.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: July 26, 2009, 04:32:19 PM »
and in it it's written that about 200,000 people were executed
This book cites sources saying that the estimates of repressed people buried in Bykivnia ranges from 6,329 to 6,783. During the war, the German occupiers shot and buried at least 7000 in the region.

The review under the url shows that The Black Book is reliable.
The book is not taken seriously by the academic community. Its methodology and factual inaccuracies have been thoroughly exposed by scholars. Courtois in particular engages in dangerous historical revisionism for the purpose of blurring Vichy and Nazi crimes. For example, the war criminal Papon attempted to introduce the Black Book as evidence during his trial. The book falsifies history with its attribution of one million deaths to communists while ignoring the fact that the war was attributable to U.S. aggression, as these scholars points out.

Also read how Professor Mark Tauger totally discredits Werth's account of the 1933 famine.

I could just as easily point to the partisan movement against Kolchak in Siberia and Denikin in the south. Partisans in Siberia liberated vast regions from the White Guard even before the approach of the Red Army.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: July 25, 2009, 06:22:24 PM »
Under Stalin, about 200,000 people were executed there...200,000
The number of estimated bodies at Bykovinia is about 6000. During the war, no less than 7000 people were shot and buried by the German occupiers.

The Russian Revolution / Re: "How the Russian Revolution was won"
« on: July 25, 2009, 04:13:36 PM »
The Czechs were prisoners who should not be labeled as "aggressors".
The Czechs were a hostile foreign army that carried out a treachorous military offensive against Russia with the support of the Entente imperialists. The mutiny had long been planned and prepared by the Entente.

The Russian Revolution / Re: Communist crimes - Link to a Web Site
« on: July 25, 2009, 04:08:24 PM »
Around 20 million (citing The Black Book of Communism: Crimes, Terror, Repression by Stephane Courtois et al) to 35 million (citing A Century of Violence in Soviet Russia by Alexander Yakovlev) killed in all, from 1917 to 1991

The Black Book of Communism has been derided by the scholarly community for its factual inaccuracies and revisionist lies. Read how Mark Tauger discredits Werth's account of the 1933 famine, for example.

Citing Yakovlev as though he's an authority is bizarre, for he was not a historian, but was a washed-up politician whose policies brought about a catastrophe for Russia.

250,000 executed by the Cheka during the "Red Terror" and Russian civil war. (citing The Cheka: Lenin's Political Police by George Leggett) But it could be much higher (see my sig)
About 6000 were executed in the Red Terror in 1918, which does not begin to compare with the White Terror, which murdered some 40,000 people in the Don Region under Krasnov's gangs. Kolchak's hordes shot about 25,000 people just in the Ekaterinburg region.

Between 300,000 and 500,000 Cossacks killed or deported in 1919 and 1920 (known as "de-Cossackization"; not sure how many of these deaths overlap with the aforementioned Cheka executions - if at all). (citing The Black Book of Communism: Crimes, Terror, Repression by Stephane Courtois et al)
The Black Book of Communism, which I showed to be an unreliable source, does not provide explanations for these dubious statistics. Scholarly works on the subject of deportations show that only some 40,000 Cossacks from the Terek region were resettled in parts of Ukraine; their land was distributed to poor Cossacks and indigenous Caucasians.

Between 7.2 to 10.8 million deaths during dekulakization and collectivization - which caused a famine the regime used as a weapon against supposed "class enemies" (citing Stalin and His Hangmen: the Tyrant and Those Who Killed For Him by Donald Rayfield)
Rayfield, a professor of literature, is not a historian with competence to analyze an research Russian history. His semi-fictional book is not an academic work, but is geared largely aimed at a pop audience. Estimates on the death toll on the famine are about 4 to 5 million. As experts such as Mark Tauger show, the famine was by no means "used as a weapon", but was largely caused by natural disasters.

Over 1 million Polish citizens deported by November 1940; 30% of whom were dead by 1941 (citing Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar by Simon Sebag Montefiore) and 21,857 executed outright (i.e. Katyn) by the NKVD during the Nazi-Soviet pact (citing Autopsy for an Empire by Dimitri Volkogonov)
Scholarly works on the subject show that about 400,000 Poles were resettled in other parts of Russia in 1939-40. Almost all of them were released following the reconciliation between Russia and the London-based Polish regime in 1941. Citing Volkogonov  is inappropriate because he was not a professional historian, but was a member of some kind of military institute.

A total of 34,250 Latvians and around 60,000 Estonians and 75,000 Lithuanians murdered or deported during Nazi-Soviet pact (citing Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar by Simon Sebag Montefiore)
Those figures are too high, as scholarly work on the subject shows that about 10,000 just from Estonia were deported. Montefiore is not some kind of authority on the subject or Russian history in general.

An estimated 4.5 million (citing Gulag: A History by Anne Applebaum) to 12 million (citing How to Prevent Genocide: A Guide for Policymakers, Scholars, and the Concerned Citizen by John G. Heidenrich) deaths in the Gulag from 1918 to 1956. 

Applebaum is not a historian, but is a hack for liberal circles in Washington. Her commentary on Russian politics has been extensively ridiculed for its hypocrisy and innuendo. Research by scholars such as Zemskov showed that about a million people were killed in the labor camps in a span of twenty years. Most of these deaths occurred during the war.

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