Just facts about Holodomor 1932-1933


The Holodomor (derived from морити голодом, “to kill by starvation”) was a famine in Soviet Ukraine in 1932 and 1933 that killed millions of Ukrainians. It is also known as the Terror-Famine and Famine-Genocide in Ukraine, and sometimes referred to as the Great Famine or the Ukrainian Genocide of 1932–33.

The goal of the Holodomor was a conscious repressive and coercive policy of the communist government of the USSR aimed at the destruction of the Ukrainian nation, the destruction of independent farming as a foundation of the Ukrainian nation,

Most historians expressed the view that Stalin used famine of 1932-33 as a “killer of the Ukrainian national movement”, because the Holodomor was preceded by 5,000 peasant revolts.

Geography of famine

The Holodomor was on the territory of central and southern regions of modern Ukraine, as well as in Moldova (which at that time was a part of USSR), Kuban and other regions where many ethnic Ukrainians lived at that time.

About 81% of those killed were Ukrainians, 4.5% Russians, 1.4% Jewish and 1.1% were Poles. The victims also included many Belarusians, Bulgarians, and Hungarians. Soviet authorities hid these facts and forbade foreign journalists to move around the territories of genocide.

Due to Holodomor were killed more than 3.5 million Ukrainians. Overall, the estimated number of casualties in USSR were around 7-10 million.

Genocide as a tool for the destruction of Ukrainians

In 1978, the word “Holodomor” first appeared in the printed publications of Ukrainian immigrants in Canada and United States. At the same time, in USSR it was only allowed to say about “certain problems with the products”, the word “Hunger” was forbidden to use, and those who tried to cover the facts of the genocide were imprisoned or shot.

During the Holodomor, the Soviet authorities carried out a series of fines on peasants who allegedly did not implement plans of grain collection and confiscated any other food. Punishment for breaking the law – execution with confiscation of property, or 10 years in prison, without amnesty right. The punitive document was called the “Five Law of Ears” because it covered every peasant who collected several ears of wheat at the collective farm without permission, which was already considered as theft of state property. This “law” was in effect until 1947, and its peak was in 1932-33.

There was such a thing as the “Black Board” where the residents of the village were recorded as malicious violators who did not fulfill the plan of harvesting. The debtors who were included in these lists were subject to various penalties, which then developed into direct repression against entire labor collectives. It was a sentence for every inhabitant of the village. Referring to the many stories of Holodomor witnesses, there have been reports of cannibalism among peasants. Desperate villagers ate the bodies of their dead or neighborhood children.

To honour those who perished in the Holodomor, monuments have been dedicated and public events held annually in Ukraine and worldwide. This year on November 23, Ukraine commemorates Holodomor Remembrance Day to honour the Victims of the Famine of 1932-1933, a genocide of the Ukrainian people committed by the totalitarian communist regime of the USSR. Remembrance events will be held all over Ukraine and in many countries around the world. A national flag will be lowered in Ukraine and entertainment activities restricted. At 4:00 pm in every home and institution, Ukrainians light candles and join a nation-wide moment of silence.

We call on the whole civilized world community to join this action. Light a candle in memory of innocent victims, post photos of your candles on your social media pages with a hashtag: #holodomor_remember.


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