"Black Ribbon Day" and "Holodomor Rembrance Day" cont.

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a lonely worker
"Black Ribbon Day" and "Holodomor Rembrance Day" cont.

I know I'm going to regret posting this, but the re-invention of history for current political purposes needs to be addressed.

To ensure this stays grounded on the facts here's what Bob Rae's motion stated:

 

"Liberal Foreign Affairs Critic, the Hon. Bob Rae, passed a unanimous Resolution in Parliament today to commemorate the victims of Europe’s totalitarian regimes.

“Millions of Canadians of Eastern and Central European descent whose families have been directly affected by either Nazi or Communist crimes have made unique and significant, cultural, economic, social and other contributions to help build the Canada we know today,” said Mr. Rae.  “We must unequivocally condemn the crimes against humanity committed by totalitarian Nazi and Communist regimes and offer the victims of these crimes and their family members’ sympathy, understanding and recognition for their suffering.

“Every victim of any totalitarian regime has the same human dignity and deserves justice, remembrance and recognition by the Parliament and the government of Canada.”

 

http://www.liberal.ca/en/newsroom/media-releases/17005_liberal-mps-pass-...

 

On the surface who can refuse to endorse this. But please look at the words again: "the crimes against humanity committed by totalitarian Nazi and Communist regimes". 

Notice that its only the Nazis being condemned? What happened to all those other fascist dictators like: Mussolini (didn't we fight a war against him?), Franco (didn't over 700 Canadians die fighting him?), how many people did Salazar kill, the Greek junta? not to mention all the fascist puppet governments during WW2 (e.g. Romania, Bulgaria, etc.)?

In terms of European deaths; the bloodiest of all forms of government to embark on mass killing sprees have been monarchies (like Kings, Emporers and especially Kaisers).

But facsism and monarchies get a pass yet another system of government doesn't.

Their press release goes on and reads like something dreamed up by Joe McCarthy about the "terrorised" peoples of eastern Europe.

Now here's the part I'm regretting about posting; but it has to be said:

a lot of those "terrorised" peoples are actually wishing for a return to the days when they had pensions, job security, health care and lives.

die Linke is the second fastest growing party in all of Germany and has over 30% support in the former East.

Now this isn't to say that people want to return to the days of the Wall (however there still are 10%

of East Germans who do want it re-errected) but almost 60% of East Germans say that capitalism is no better. And a staggering 40% say there lives are worse under capitalism.

That's why if you noticed all of those 20th anniversary celebrations were full of western leaders, western musicians and Gorby thrown in for "balance". In other words much of it was done for our western consumption.

So here's the question: why now? Why are we now seeing an almost endless parade of 50's era red scare propaganda?

As capitalism itself is imploding and millions are starving and dying in capitalist colonies (10 million are starving in Kenya as you read this - the same amount as the Holodomor) we only hear about past communist terrors.

 

How come famine in the Ukraine is attributed to genocide by its Communist system but an equally large amount of farmers in almost any third world country who are forcibly re-oriented to cash crops by the World Bank and IMF which cause them to have no means for survival if the cash crop fails or the market collapses leading to starvation or suicide NOT caused by capitalism?

 

How come the crimes of capitalist totalitarian governments (Suharto in Indonesia executed over 1 million of its citizens) are NOT worth remembering????

How come we don't commenrate the communist victims of capitalism (thousands executed in Finland during their civil war). How come we don't hear about the thousands of lives German communists saved by launching their revolution which forced the Kaiser's hand for Armistace and his eventual overthrow? How come we never hear what happened to them (like Rosa Luxemburg)?

 

Why don't we ever hear about the MacKenzie-Papineau Batallion and their bravery of fighting fascism when our government was still appeasing them (in fact at the time MacKenzie King was calling Hitler a "nice fellow").

Most of all how come we never hear about what our corporations and elites did to support the Nazis in their rise to power and during the war?

http://www.historycooperative.org/journals/llt/51/pauwels.html

The reason is simple: the more capitalism collapses the more people will start asking really unpopular questions about their corporate elites. This is what's happening in Latin America and in the former East Germany where Marx's "Kapital" is suddenly in fashion.

 

We sheep need it to be drummed into our head that capitalism is the only answer. The problem with this is that as they fight to save capitalism, people will take out their frustrations on easier targets: immigrants, the weak, women and poor, In other words the people will turn to fascism.

We see that already as the word socialist is purged from our language except to describe corporate bailouts - and only then in a negative way.

The danger we face in our future is a fascist one; not a Stalinist one.

Unless this issue is addressed and Canadians talk about the REAL issues instead of simplistic propaganda devices like public displays of stupidity then we are in for very hard times.

Oh and BTW, before someone calls me a Stalinist: I had Ukrainian family members killed by the Stalinists.

But my grandfather was also forced to report to a Canadian official every month and give a full account of his activities, where he worked, how much he got paid, any union activities, any political activities and if he attended church every Sunday. The only reason they did this was because he was too young (15) to be sent to a concentration camp (the real name) but old enough to be a Ukrainian which meant he also was a "commnist" in the eyes of our state. He was persecuted like this until the mid 1920's and never had an easy life after.

As I said, this hasn't been an easy post but we need to take a good long look at we're were going and how history is being manipulated for political purposes.

 

Fidel

a lonely worker wrote:
How come the crimes of capitalist totalitarian governments (Suharto in Indonesia executed over 1 million of its citizens) are NOT worth remembering????

I think for the same reason that the current trials to prosecute remaining members of the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia have been managed and controlled. The USA has used its influence in the UN to make sure that no one in the criminal US regime at the time and still living could be implicated or called to give testimony. The secret history of the doctor and the madman and Britsh is that they propped-up the biggest mass murderer since Adolf Hitler when the US, British and China etc supplied and supported Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge. And then the sobs supported the mass murdering Suharto regime.

What's happening now is the beginning of the end for capitalism. It is an event unparalleled in history since Columbian times with global economic influence shifting from a trans-Atlanitic one that we've known all our lives to one that is trans-Pacific. Asian countries were once the largest economies in world history, and they will be again. And it is evident today with countries like China and Russia cooperating with development projects across Siberia, the Koreas, and involving other Asian countries in those development projects. This period will be looked back upon in history as a time when centres of financial and economic power shifted from west to east.

Michael Byers made some interesting comments on Allan Gregg's TVO broadcast. He talked about the squabble over arctic resources, and how wrong it is for Canada to want to build military ships and send the army north to protect our sovereignty from Russian transgression. Peter mackay looks like a fool now for threatening the Russians with military action if they ever invade our air space again. It's known now that the Russian plane did not enter Canadian air space, and even the Americans said the Russians were perfectly legal about it at the time. It seems our lap poodles in Ottawa are not used to playing colder war games on Uncle Sam's behalf. Byers says we need civilian infrastructure expansion in the North not military. We don't want to go to war with anyone over Arctic sovereignty. What we need is international cooperation now more than at any time in recent history. Canada needs to stop embarrassing itself on the world stage and start contributing to solutions but not regressing into colder war nonsense in futhering some other country's militaristic interests for world domination.

saganisking

More of the  - Life under Stalin wasn't that bad comments - pathetic

Unionist

Yeah, "pathetic" all right. Why did the Allies get together against Hitler & Mussolini and Tojo at all?? We should have just sat back, let Hitler and Stalin go at each other, and then go wipe out the winner!

Or, better, we should have sold arms to both sides! Help them destroy each other and stimulate our economy as a side benefit!

Personally, I will continue to commemorate the heroic contribution of the Soviet Union and its people to the common struggle of saving the world from these Nazi and Fascist monsters.

Slumberjack

I had entertained the notion of entering the last Holodomor discussion; however, by the time the retching had subsided, the thread had mercifully been closed. Thread drift doesn't begin to describe the problematic commentary that was casually tossed about by posters who should have known better than to purposely obscure remembrance of this horrific tragedy by mistakenly placing it within the context of Nazi aggression against Poland, and the Great Patriotic War. The insult was further exacerbated with utterly insensitive and wholly unrelated armchair remarks against victims of Nazism and Stalinism, to do with impoverished Polish and Russian conscripts being described as cowardly in retreat, which in itself underscores an astonishing level of ignorance as to what actually occurred. The whole conflated trajectory of the last thread bore witness to insensitive ignorance being compounded through repetition. Let's strive towards a better outcome with part two.

Michelle

Amazing post, lonely worker - thanks for that.

RosaL

a lonely worker wrote:

I know I'm going to regret posting this, but the re-invention of history for current political purposes needs to be addressed.

....

As I said, this hasn't been an easy post but we need to take a good long look at we're were going and how history is being manipulated for political purposes.

 

"Amazing post", indeed. My thanks, too. 

The thread is already going downhill and I'll probably stay out of it. But this post said (comprehensively and clearly) what needs to be said. 

 

remind remind's picture

agree rosa and michelle.....thank you a lonely worker....it needed to be said

Unionist

By the way, Bob Rae's motion was adopted unanimously by the House. Lonely worker is right to feel trepidation, even here, about telling the truth as he did. The whole society has bought into the notion that socialism and fascism are equal evils. That's why it's inconceivable that any politician today would stand up and say, "Canada needs socialism". They purged the Waffle for that, and the McCarthyism continues unabated.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

I am moved, a lonely worker. Thank you.

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

If the Nuremburg Tribunals had been allowed to do their job completely, then those who funded and ensured the Nazi rise to power - the most reactionary quarters of German industrial and finance capital - would have also been in the dock and on trial for their lives. The countries of the "free" world opposed this idea that was put forward by ... the (nasty, communistic) representatives of the Stalin regime.

But the world knows the facts anyway. It takes a great effort to mislead people into confusing state crimes - at one order of magnitude - with the greatest crime of all, the crime of starting a global war - at levels of magnitude of criminality higher - but this continues to be done as noted in this thread. And now we have a new sort of capitalist criminality, in which the future of humanity is threatened yet again by a new set of environmental crises and a current crop of economic and financial crises.

This stuff that a lonely worker refers to is part of the huge effort to discredit any and all alternatives to the life-threatening system of (monopoly) capitalism that we live under. A great deal of capitalist survival hinges on convincing the population that there is no credible alternative. It is, therefore, the duty of the left to put forward these alternatives and expose the capitalist lies and half truths - the purpose of which is to discourage and demoralize alternatives - and in so doing play our part in saving the Planet.

Fidel

saganisking wrote:
More of the  - Life under Stalin wasn't that bad comments - pathetic

Ya Hitler and the Nazis should have won after industrialists and bankers worked so hard to prop-up Euro-Asian fascists in the 30's and '40's. We know.

Jacob Richter

A lonely (Ukrainian?) worker has lots of comradely "company" in this thread.  Seriously though, what I have to say on this topic has been said already.

a lonely worker

Jacob Richter wrote:

A lonely (Ukrainian?) worker has lots of comradely "company" in this thread.

 

Only half Ukranian (Bukovina actually).

 

When my father's side later emmigrated to Canada they faced none of the prejudice, persecution or hardships due to their Irish / British heritage. Not surprisingly many of them think that Canada is the greatest place in the world and that immigrants only know how to complain without realising the open doors given to them and the outright hostility those not from the British Isles face. 

 

In many ways, we the children of immigrants, are repeating the same pattern as every new generation has its scapegoats and "bad immigrants" without realising that most of our ancestors faced the same bigotry we now inflict on others.

 

Thanks for the kind comments.

Its not easy talking about an uncomfortable part of one's family's history and the idiotic impulse of some to shout down any discussion about communism or anti-capitalism.

As others such as Unionist, Fidel and N Beltov said; this new round of red baiting is intended to place any critiques or alternatives of capitalism into a corner where any discussion that doesn't fit the propaganda is quickly attacked.

Unfortunately we're seeing this chilling effect happening in our politics where "left" governments like the NDP in Nova Scotia are mandating singing of the national anthem and NDP politicians across the country seem more interested in crime bills and tax cuts than in expanding our public services or appearing "too red". Hence their knee jerk reaction to fully endorse this slanted resolution.

It reminds me of the Social Democrats (SPD) in Germany who thought of themselves as the biggest anti-communists out there and their government brutally repressed Rosa Luxemburg, the Sparticus League and many others in the KPD. The elites just sat back and applauded as the "moderate left" did their purging. Once they were neutralised the elites found their true champions in the fascists who were only too happy to take out the SPD after they no longer served a purpose.

This also happened in the US were leftist voices were purged after WW2 resulting in a two party system of a neo-con and neo-lib party.

Unfortunately we are moving this way here.

We're also seeing it in our schools, where a friend's daughter in Grade 6 (Ontario) had to write a paper on the "Evils of Communism".

The only way to challenge this agenda is for those on the true left to take it head on and no longer sulk in the shadows which is why I decided to post about a very uncomfortable part of our family's past in the hopes that people will realise the agenda and what's at stake when we surrender history to the right wing.

Jacob Richter

She learned about "communism" that early?  Either it's a different school curriculum, or things are being shoved down at younger groups.

I wasn't introduced to Marx at all until Grade 9 (on the Industrial Revolution), much less "communism" until Grade 10.

a lonely worker

This was a few years ago at a public school just outside of Toronto. It was part of their curriculum and all had to write the essay. I'm not sure if other schools have done this (our kids didn't).

My friend who is a Local Union President thought there was nothing wrong with it; until we had a chat and he realised how it was indoctrinating kids.

He complained and was called a "Stalinist" by other parents. He became considerably radicalised after that experience.

 

Jacob Richter

On a very related note, I wasn't "formally" introduced to material on the Holocaust until Grade 11, but I learned about that way before then because of watching so many history shows.  The 1990s were a time when history shows and related channels were plentiful, and the material exceeded that covered in Social Studies, from civilizations to Ancient Warriors (TLC) to Great Castles of Europe (TLC) to stuff on WWII. [Yeah, The Learning Channel was that good back then.  Too bad it sold out for the "modernity" of home reno, cars and mechanics, and other shit.]

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

Well, if we're gonna talk about social partisanship ... all I can say is that I figured out, long ago, what side of the fence I'm on, come hell or high water, and nothing is gonna change that.

It would be nice to see some NDPers - even labour leaders or especially labour leaders - share my "biased" viewpoint but I'm not holding my breath. They just don't, by and large, look at things from a class point of view and stick with that. 

To me, that's the most important thing. That, and being a peacenik. The rest is details.

Fidel

N.Beltov wrote:
To me, that's the most important thing. That, and being a peacenik. The rest is details.

In the absence of a modern electoral system that would make broad leftwing alliance a real possibility, the NDP has to try to appeal to the widest range of voters. The democracy gap in our Northern Puerto Rico is a fairly significant detail.

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

The abysmal failure of NDP regimes in Canada to reflect the sort of social partisanship I'm talking about here is well known. It's hardly necessary to mention Dave Barrett's snap election, on the heels of ordering woodworkers back to work, or Bob Rae's atrocities against public sector workers, or Gary Doer's total failure, despite being the former President of MGEU, to pass anti-scab legislation in the dozen years or so that he was Premier.

I'm not sure I'm following your argument in any case. Doesn't electing an NDP regime solve all the political problems worth mentioning? (That was a joke.) And, after all, couldn't the "democracy gap" be addressed by a NDP government by, um, legislation by that same government?

The failure in regard to such simple and forthright social partisanship - despite the fact that many NDPers undoubtedly share my views on this - excludes a whole range of possibilities, forever, from the NDP horizon.

Finally, if, as you say, (and you may very well be right), that the formation of a "broad, leftwing alliance" is made impossible by the absence of a modern, electoral system then it is the duty of the NDP (if that is what the organization and its members truly support) to do whatever it takes, outside of parliamentary poltical activity, to bring that alliance about.

Instead, as you know, the NDP sabotages such efforts and preaches the nonsensical idea that I mentioned above: that the election of an NDP regime will solve all political problems worth mentioning. The NDP will never, if this approach continues, be the vehicle for fundamental change, nor the organization that sells this idea of social partisanship for working people in a broad way. 

Now don't get all grumpy with me. This shit is obvious, I think. Have a nice day, Fidel.

a lonely worker

Great post N Beltov.

 

In terms of democratising our politics, proportional representation is an obvious first step; yet in provinces with NDP government's its not even on the agenda. Even worse, when it was a referendum issue in BC it was top strategists in the NDP who were amongst the most vocal in killing it.

 

We need a new left in this country. One  that isn't going to hide in the corner and cower as soon as the red baiting starts.

Its the right, who should be on the defensive as their beloved capitalist system implodes. And that unfortunately includes the "law and order", faith based prisons, compulsary anthem singing, tax cutting, no striking worker protecting  NDP.

 

As you said in an earlier post; there's two sides to the question of capitalism and exploitation. Like you, I know which side I'm on.

intothetub

a lonely worker wrote:

In terms of European deaths; the bloodiest of all forms of government to embark on mass killing sprees have been monarchies (like Kings, Emporers and especially Kaisers).

********

How come famine in the Ukraine is attributed to genocide by its Communist system but an equally large amount of farmers in almost any third world country who are forcibly re-oriented to cash crops by the World Bank and IMF which cause them to have no means for survival if the cash crop fails or the market collapses leading to starvation or suicide NOT caused by capitalism?

I have trouble shedding too many tears about the HOlodomer. It seems that Stalin's Georgians were amply provoked over the years by the Ukrainians. Thank goodness my ancestors left that madhouse.

Fidel

a lonely worker wrote:
Its the right, who should be on the defensive as their beloved capitalist system implodes. And that unfortunately includes the "law and order", faith based prisons, compulsary anthem singing, tax cutting, no striking worker protecting  NDP.

And unless this new leftwing party wins federal power, they will, as provincial governments,  be forced to compete with other Canadian provinces in what has become a Darwinian race to the bottom since the glorious Mulroney and Chretien years.

Jacob Richter

Whoever said about gaining power at the provincial level?  The new left-wing party can strive to be a solid opposition on all levels (even not running some candidates when poised to win a less-than-constitutional-amendment-threshold majority).

Fidel

Jacob Richter wrote:

Whoever said about gaining power at the provincial level?  The new left-wing party can strive to be a solid opposition on all levels (even not running some candidates when poised to win a less-than-constitutional-amendment-threshold majority).

There are [url=http://www.elections.ca/content.asp?section=pol&document=index&dir=par&l... registered political parties in Canada[/url] Do we really believe that splitting the left-wing vote even more than it is now is going to make a positive difference?

If we follow the threads of electoral reform, what the left needs to do is to build coalitions and work toward advanced democracy in Canada. Otherwise, Bay Street and the rightwing Vancouver make-believe think tank will continue seizing power in Ottawa with the same two old line parties special interest groups on the right have managed to shove into power for the last ten decades in a row.

thanks

-the danger we face in our future is both fascist and stalinist- its a future where economic power is in the hands of a few who enforce their will with military.

-many armies retreating across Ukraine raped and burned and pillaged on their way.  those which historically defined as imperial, fascist, and soviet. 

-now the armies may be corporate armies, multi-national, transnational armies of those who control fossil fuels, infrastructure, banking, east and west,north and south.  they use military to control physical geography, people, money and law, but the funding which backs this process does not actually exist.  The 'funding' is an accounting game, played on an electronic financial casino of 0s and 1s, spinning the lives and work and suffering of the planet's inhabitants into nothingness, and into destruction.  that's not 'capitalism' as historically defined, i don't think.  when the word was coined there was no internet, no electronic finance.  after getting off the gold standard there were dollar pegs then floating currencies, there were bubbles and crashes and whimsical accounting but there was still some public record of leveraging - whether 9% or thirty%.  Now no one knows how much leveraging goes on.  There is no actual public data collection.   so go ahead- redefine capitalism to mean whatever you want it to mean now.  spend lots of time on it.  argue with intellectuals.  whine about loss of words.  meanwhile people at the grassroots won't have time to know the history or the redefinitions. 

- just describe what is going on, not catch words. if you have to use loaded political terms, define them in situ, each time.

 

bush is gone ha...

N. Beltov wrote:
Instead, as you know, the NDP sabotages such efforts and preaches the nonsensical idea that I mentioned above: that the election of an NDP regime will solve all political problems worth mentioning. The NDP will never, if this approach continues, be the vehicle for fundamental change, nor the organization that sells this idea of social partisanship for working people in a broad way.

Fidel wrote:
 And unless this new leftwing party wins federal power, they will, as provincial governments,  be forced to compete with other Canadian provinces in what has become a Darwinian race to the bottom since the glorious Mulroney and Chretien years.

 Isn't this what N. Beltov was pointing to? The idea that "just vote us in and your problems are solved." In this case: "vote us into Federal office" Okay then what? What will be the excuse then with a Federal NDP government? blame the American voters for not voting for the many left parties in the U.S. of A. ?  Saskatchewan never would have had Medicare if they had today's NDP attitude. I think a new political left party will go much farther than the NDP.  Especially if it keeps on mobilising on the streets and in daily lives to keep public opinion away from sellers of snake oil.   

Fidel wrote:
There are 19 registered political parties in Canada Do we really believe that splitting the left-wing vote even more than it is now is going to make a positive difference?

If we follow the threads of electoral reform, what the left needs to do is to build coalitions and work toward advanced democracy in Canada. Otherwise, Bay Street and the rightwing Vancouver make-believe think tank will continue seizing power in Ottawa with the same two old line parties special interest groups on the right have managed to shove into power for the last ten decades in a row.

This I agree with. But I'll add that any Anglo-chavinism, racism, will ruin any productive and meaningful work toward such a goal. it's what the CONS have been trying to do in planting seeds of wedge issues, hoping that the roots that take will split the CFS up like shoddy concrete.  And part of that is the idea the NDP is a senior partner in any grouping [and by senior partner, I mean not partner per se but a big guy with too much partisan influence].

I'm not a keen fan of Stalin, but the Communist Party of the Soviet Union came clean way back in 1956, in the secret speech.  Mistakes were made several times since, obviously since it fell.  The left is learning from these mistakes and sees how the right is the real threat of our times.  Meanwhile, years after the supposed "end of history" the increasingly right wing governments in Eastern Europe and now Canada want to keep making hay from it.  kudos to N. Beltov, and a loney worker for pointing out this ideological attack on the left.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Is it not possible to see Hitler as a supreme evil and STILL acknowledge that the avoidable famine in the Ukraine was not only immoral but a betrayal of the spirit of the Revolution?(I seem to recall that the slogan that brought the Bolsheviks to power was "Bread, Land and Peace",  And that the first line of the "Internationale" was "arise, ye prisoners of STARVATION").

The point of overthrowing the old order was to create a system in which you would never see the peasants and the workers starved in the name of purchasing weaponry.  That's something that the Left still fights against today, when today's governments lower themselves to it.

Yes, the Soviet Union was under siege.  No, it does not go without saying that the only way to save it was to suspend its humanity. What was done to the Ukraine was not the only option Stalin had. 

Its absurd to say that you can't recognize that and still accept that Nazi Germany was the prime threat to the world in the 1930's.

thanks

- there is nothing 'clean' about continuing to use secret police, gulags and other means of terror.

- it's not useful to argue about which mass murdering regime is 'worse'.

Unionist

thanks wrote:

- it's not useful to argue about which mass murdering regime is 'worse'.

I guess I have to repeat my [url=http://www.rabble.ca/babble/international-news-and-politics/black-ribbon... #3[/url].

Luckily, your viewpoint held no sway among the peoples that united to destroy Nazism and fascism.

 

Bacchus

"Yeah, "pathetic" all right. Why did the Allies get together against Hitler & Mussolini and Tojo at all?? We should have just sat back, let Hitler and Stalin go at each other, and then go wipe out the winner!"

 

Oddly enough that was Stalins stated aim with regards to Hitler and the Allies. He figured they would both weaken themselves totally for him to swoop in later. Hitler however, attacked first.

'

 

 

Fidel

A several part HNN documentary on WII said that Churchill and Roosevelt fully expected the Nazis to occupy the Kremlin six weeks after the start of barbarossa.

And they said that one of the reasons Churchill stated for not aligning with Stalin's Russia right away was that no western world leader believed Russia would make a good military ally against Hitler as Russia was thought to be still recovering from WW I and civil war from the previous decade. For slightly different reasons, I also think the west had little idea of just how prepared Russia was for western aggression against the revolution part II. I think it was supposed to be all over at Leningrad, Stalingrad, and with German Panzers parked a dozen miles or so outside the capital city. The inferior Russians were expected to be no match for Hitler's corporate sponsored military machine.

Unionist

Bacchus wrote:
Oddly enough that was Stalins stated aim with regards to Hitler and the Allies. He figured they would both weaken themselves totally for him to swoop in later. Hitler however, attacked first.

And that was likely the aim of the U.S. and the U.K. and France... Hitler, however, attacked the U.K. and France first. Because he didn't attack the U.S., they remained "neutral", making money while the war carried on. Even after Hitler invaded the Soviet Union, the U.S. had no intention of joining in - more money to be made on the sidelines.

Then, Pearl Harbour. The U.S. declared war on Japan - but not on Germany! Germany and Italy, by virtue of their Axis deal with Japan, actually [url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/december/11/newsid_3532... war on the U.S.[/url] on December 11, 1941! Had they not done so, the U.S. might well have contented itself with a Pacific "police action" to defend its island colonies.

In short - Stalin's and Roosevelt's and Churchill's aims aren't of much relevance. Their alliance was crucial to save the world from Hitlerite tyranny. And in that alliance, the Soviet Union and its people played the greatest role and made the greatest sacrifices in defeating Hitler - with or without Stalin.

 

Fidel

Stalin didn't believe Hitler would make the same mistake Germany made in WW I with waging war on two fronts. And it only  appeared that Hitler was waging a serious war to the west. Hitler eventually poured two-thirds of Nazi Germany's war machine into the heart of Russia. Annihilation of Soviet communism and lebensraum were first and foremost on his mind all along. And I think the west realized that with Russia and Asia under Hitler's control, they might never have defeated the Nazis. It would have led to global fascism, and certain capitains of western industry and finance were completely reassured of their future profitability through their secretive partnerships with the very fascist and corporate friendly Nazis. Their only concern after the Red Army turned tables on the Nazis at Leningrad and Stalingrad was to beat the Russians to Berlin and bomb the city centres of production in Germany so as to leave as little as possible for the advancing Russians. Western corporations were fully reimbursed for allied bombing of their factories in Germany, and much of IBM's valuable equipment was recovered and returned to them after the war.

RosaL

thanks wrote:

- it's not useful to argue about which mass murdering regime is 'worse'.

 

Surely the point of Holdomor remembrances and black ribbon days is that the Soviet Union was 'worse' than the mass murdering regime we live in. That, apparently, is 'useful'. 

The Soviet Union was under severe threat throughout its entire existence. I don't say that to excuse things that should never have been done but if we're talking about a regime being evil (and that's a comparative judgment, as the parliamentary discussion made clear) we have to bear that in mind and consider how the capitalist regimes we all know and love would behave under similar threat. (I think we can infer that from their behaviour when under much less serious threat.)