The Russians defend themselves by arguing that they were merely trying to slaughter an economic class of people, not an ethnicity. I understand why, as a technical matter, this might be a defense against the charge of "genocide" which, after all, is about killing a type of people. From the article:Historians agree that the 1932-33 famine was engineered by Soviet authorities under dictator Josef Stalin to force peasants to give up their private plots of land and join collective farms.
Ukraine, with its rich farmlands, suffered the most. Authorities confiscated grain from village after village and prohibited residents from leaving, effectively condemning them to starvation.
Some are convinced the famine targeted Ukrainians as an ethnic group. Others argue authorities set out to eradicate private landowners as a social class and say the Soviet Union sought to pay for its rapid industrialization with grain exports at the expense of starving millions of its own people.
"There is no historical proof that the famine was organized along ethnic lines. Its victims were million of citizens of the Soviet Union, representing different peoples and nationalities living largely in agricultural areas of the country," the Russian State Duma resolution said.
Now, part of what fascinates me is why anyone would think murdering people because of their economic status is somehow any less evil than murdering people because of their ethnicity. I know what many of the whys are, and I think they reveal something profound about how different people see the world. In America and the West generally, vast numbers of leftist intellectuals forgave Stalin, Mao and others for murdering people who stood in the way of Progress — and historians continue to do so today. Indeed, "modernization" was one of the great excuses and rationalizations for murder, theft and, yes, genocide in the 20th century and, I fear, people will be going back to this intellectual well for a good long time.
One last point: If you are a Marxist you generally consider race, ethnicity and nationality to be mere epiphenomena, absurd and archaic categories of the Old Order, right? And, you believe that class is an enduring category of humanity, more "real" than mere ethnicity, right? So by your own definitions, isn't slaughtering a whole class of people a form of genocide or attempted genocide?
To fathom the "logic" of the marxists/socialist/communists/leftists, we will have to revisit the heirarchy of the socialist victimhood chain:
...we have established that the culture (except for Western culture, which is uniquely evil and oppressive) is very high up on the food chain, and can eat and kill with impunity. Is there any group that trumps the culture?
Again, there are hints of how socialist logic deals with this. The needs of the nation will trump a protected/victim culture for the same reason that being an independent woman, black or gay person loses their victim status: they act independently of the socialist gestalt (i.e., they refuse to stay in their pre-determined place in the food chain and dare to be different).
Thus, Saddam the socialist Ba'athist could rightly gas the Kurds and no one payed much attention to it. Even genocide is acceptable to the socialist logician, who must always take into account the following factors: 1) which group is larger (oppressed nations or religions > cultures > sub-cultures > small groups, e.g., "Democrats", > individuals, e.g., blacks, women, and gays; 2) When there is a conflict among groups at the same level of the chain, then precedence is given to the "purer" victim--i.e., those who know their place in the chain, are willing to remain victims for all eternity, and take no actions to stop being victims.
Another example is the Palestinians' as a group (considered an oppressed nation for reasons that elude me) have such a high victimization quotient, they can freely and "justly" oppress or kill any members of their own society that are not considered "good" Palestinians, as well as anyone outside their society with impunity (i.e., Israelis). Because the Israelis have such a low quotient, they are not even permitted to kill in self-defense. The same dynamic occurs when Muslim extremists (the extremely oppressed variety of Muslim) kill other Muslims (just ordinary oppressed Muslims) ; or when they kill Christians; or when they kill just about anyone in their usual indiscriminant manner. But Americans who take extraordinary precautions in war as in peace not to kill innocent people are damned to hell when they attack even the extremist Muslims who repeatedly try to kill them and state their intent at regular intervals.
Islamic fanatics can behead and mutilate non-combatant men and women at will. Americans are prohibited from humiliating Islamic fanatics or even frightening the poor dears (it is called "torture") ; Moderate Islamics can prohibit Westerners living in Islamic societies from owning a Bible; and punish them severely if they do; but Americans are not permitted to show any disrespect, let alone spit on a Koran even in America.
Clearly, if you are NOT one of the designated victimized or oppressed cultures, nations, or groups, then you and your non-victim-designated members are at the bottom of the socialist food chain and anything bad that is done to you by those above you in the food chain must be your own damn fault. This includes those who are Western, American/Israeli, Caucasian, Republican, conservatives, Rich, Capitalist, Christian, male, heterosexual and so on down the chain.
Thus, you can clearly see the intellectual origins of the many slogans that epitomize modern-day socialists:
IMPERIALIST AMERICA IS HUMANITIES NUMBER ONE ENEMY
DEATH THE THE WORLD'S NUMBER 1 TERRORIST: BUSH & HIS SHEEP
KILL TERRORISTS: BOMB BUSH IN HIS F****ING HOUSE
WE ARE ALL PALESTINIANS
IMPEACH THE GRINGOS
CONDI: I'M FIGHTING FOR WHITEY
BEHEAD THOSE WHO INSULT ISLAM
I LOVE NY EVEN MORE WITHOUT THE WORLD TRADE CENTER
NAZI KIKES OUT OF LEBANON
FUCK MIDDLE AMERICA
SMASH THE JEWISH STATE
And so on, ad infinitum, in the wonderfully peaceful and loving socialist manner we came to know so well in the last century.
Clearly, when all of humanity is at stake; when the socialist utopia is at-hand; lines must be drawn and the masses must be kept in their appropriate places in order to achieve social justice, peace, and universal brotherhood.
What does a little genocide matter when you're out to build a utopia?
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