Dedicated to the 100 million victims of communism worldwide.
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National Exhibit
National Exhibit
History
Ukraine Under Communism

Contrary to Stalin’s expectations, the collective farms did not work well. The Communist Party sent an army of their activists to the countryside, where they ravaged the villages trying to attain a fulfillment of grain quotas imposed by Moscow. The communist activists took all the edible produce they could find in the homes of the starving peasants causing thereby an accelerated starvation of millions.

In the course of implementing Stalin’s policy of genocide against the Ukrainian people, the communists accused the Ukrainians of being “Petliurites”, “nationalists”, “bourgeois-nationalists” and “counterrevolutionaries”. The exact number of victims of Stalin’s terrorism in Ukraine has not been established, but the estimate ranges from 5 million, to as high as 10 million –the exact numbers we most probably will never know. What is certain is that the genocide had a devastating spiritual as well as material impact upon the Ukrainian people. The famine reached such a disastrous point that two leading Ukrainian communists, Mykola Khvyliovyi and Mykola Skrypnyk, who championed the cause of Ukrainization, committed suicide in 1933 in protest against Stalin’s policy of dictatorship, centralization and Russification.

Their suicides illustrate the tragic situation of the Ukrainian people in the 1930’s. The Ukrainian villages were devastated, while the intellectuals, artists, writers, scholars – all those dedicated to Ukrainian culture and identity—were accused of being “counterrevolutionaries” or “bourgeois nationalists” and sent to forced labor camps or executed. Some scholars maintain that between 1937 and 1939 the communists executed some 500,000 people and that 3 to 12 million were sent to labor camps. By the end of the 1930’s Stalin had achieved his objective by eliminating on a massive scale both the intelligentsia and the peasantry as the basis of Ukrainian national identity. This mass murder was extended into 1941 when the NKVD murdered thousands of prisoners who were in jails in Western Ukraine.
World War II, which began as a result of the Molotov – Ribbentrop Agreement of August 23, 1939, created a new situation for the people of Ukraine. On September 1, 1939 Germany attacked Poland and on September 17th the Red Army also invaded Poland claiming to have done so in order to save the Ukrainians who lived under Polish rule. Thus Western Ukrainians came under communist domination as well.

The communists promised various positive policies that would improve the lives of the Ukrainian people – they even promised to introduce “Ukrainization”. Three months later the communists showed their true face. They began to impose various restrictions on the clergy of the Ukrainian Greek--Catholic Church. Similar measures were taken against the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Volhynia. From December 1939 to November 1940 they deported from Western Ukraine and Belarus 1.2 million people. Kremlin’s policy is well illustrated by a document which states that as of January 25,1940 the NKVD was to deport from six provinces 95,193 people. Similarly, in October 1947 the Soviets deported from seven provinces 77,791 people. The victims of this terrorism were unprepared to be sent in the middle of winter to Siberia and Kazakhstan. Many did not reach the destination.

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Ukraine
Location:  Eastern Europe
Capital:  Kyiv
Communist Rule:  1922-1991
Status:  Independence: 24.08.91
Victims of Communism:
unknown