The Power of Love

A repost from the other blog. Very lightly edited here.

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Our great goal was the universal triumph of Communism, and for the sake of that goal anything was permissible — to lie, to cheat, to steal, to destroy hundreds of thousands and even millions of people….

This was how I had reasoned, and everyone like me, even when…I saw what “total collectivization” meant — how they “kulakized” and “dekulakized,” how they mercilessly stripped the peasants in the winter of 1932—3. I took part in this myself, scouring the countryside, searching for hidden grain…. With the others, I emptied out the old folks’ storage chests, stopping my ears to the children’s crying and the women’s wails. For I was convinced that I was accomplishing the great and necessary transformation of the countryside; that in the days to come the people who lived there would be better off for it….

In the terrible spring of 1933 I saw people dying from hunger. I saw women and children with distended bellies, turning blue, still breathing but with vacant, lifeless eyes…. I [did not] lose my faith. As before, I believed because I wanted to believe.

In 1933 Stalin issued another procurement levy, to be carried out in a Ukraine that was now on the verge of mass starvation, which began around March of that year. I shall spare the reader graphic descriptions of what happened now. But corpses were everywhere, and the stench of death weighed heavily in the air. Cases of insanity, even cannibalism, are well documented. Different peasant families reacted in different ways as they slowly starved to death:

In one hut there would be something like a war. Everyone would keep close watch over everyone else. People would take crumbs from each other. The wife turned against her husband and the husband against his wife. The mother hated the children. And in some other hut love would be inviolable to the very last. I knew one woman with four children. She would tell them fairy stories and legends so that they would forget their hunger. Her own tongue could hardly move, but she would take them into her arms even though she had hardly the strength to lift her arms when they were empty. Love lived on within her. And people noticed that where there was hate people died off more swiftly. Yet love, for that matter, saved no one. The whole village perished, one and all. No life remained in it.

From Terror Famine by Tom Woods

In general, love is indeed a healing, constructive force of blessing.

But there are those men and ideologies that treat love and compassion — and the God that send them — with the utmost contempt.

And sometimes, the wicked, the cruel, the vicious, the liars really do win.

At least in time and on earth.

True: Temporarily on earth, and ever-less-successfully on earth.

True: Not in heaven, nor in eternity.

Even so, even with these meaningful caveats, the core truth remains: on occasion, Satan’s people win, and God’s people lose.

Remember what happened to Jesus Himself, and to eleven of the twelve apostles.

(Also see my post The Good People Died First)

And yet: the future does not belong to the God-haters, nor to the Life-haters, nor to the Oppressors.
(Note the striking resemblance among them.)

The number of Ukrainian dead in the famine of 1932—33 has generally been given as five million. According to Conquest, other peasant catastrophes from 1930 through 1937, including enormous numbers of deportations of alleged “kulaks,” bring the grand total of deaths to a mind-numbing 14.5 million. And yet if even one percent of my students in a given year have even heard of these events, it is a small miracle.

I have referred here a number of times to Robert Conquest, an excellent historian of the Soviet Union. I urge anyone with an interest in these events to read his extraordinary book The Harvest of Sorrow. It reads like a novel — but the story it tells is all too real.

After all the charges over The Passion of the Christ, Peggy Noonan asked Mel Gibson point blank: “The Holocaust happened, right?”

A bemused Gibson, expressing surprise that anyone would need him to affirm the historicity of any historical event, said that of course it did. He added that the twentieth century had been replete with atrocities, none of which should be forgotten. He made particular mention of the Ukrainian terror-famine, in which five million people were deliberately starved to death by the regime of Joseph Stalin.

Naturally, such a reply only confirmed Gibson’s perversity in the minds of those who already disliked him. Anti-Defamation League President Abe Foxman professed shock and disgust at Gibson’s remarks. “He doesn’t begin to understand the difference between dying in a famine and people being cremated solely for what they are,” Foxman said. So that’s what happened in the Ukraine — people just somehow “died in a famine.”

From Terror Famine by Tom Woods

Old-school political skeptics/realists have a deep scorn for religious moralistic posturing. “Forever saying one thing when they are powerless, and doing something else when they finally have the power and control they thirst for.”

You might want to ask them about the Power of Love sometime.

Especially compared with the wonders the Love of Power can bring.

At least – unlike Our Progressive Betters – the old-school Cold Realists didn’t insult me with repulsive, endless blather about their moral superiority. So, one point for the efficient, pragmatic rationalist.

After the war, the Left tried to cover up Soviet genocide. Jean-Paul Sartre denied the gulag even existed. For the Allies, Nazism was the only evil; they could not admit being allied to mass murders. For the Soviets, promoting the Jewish Holocaust perpetuated anti-fascism and masked their own crimes.

The Jewish people saw their Holocaust as a unique event. It was Israel’s raison d’tre. Raising other genocides would, they feared, diminish their own.

While academia, media and Hollywood rightly keep attention on the Jewish Holocaust, they ignore Ukraine. We still hunt Nazi killers but not communist killers. There are few photos of the Ukraine genocide or Stalin’s gulag, and fewer living survivors. Dead men tell no tales.

Russia never prosecuted any of its mass murderers, as Germany did.

We know all about crimes of Nazis Adolf Eichmann and Heinrich Himmler; about Babi Yar and Auschwitz.

But who remembers Soviet mass murderers Dzerzhinsky, Kaganovitch, Yagoda, Yezhov, and Beria? Were it not for Alexander Solzhenitsyn, we might never know of Soviet death camps like Magadan, Kolyma, and Vorkuta. Movie after movie appears about Nazi evil, while the evil of the Soviet era vanishes from view or dissolves into nostalgia.

The souls of Stalin’s millions of victims still cry out for justice.

Stalin and the Ukrainian Genocide
By Eric S. Margolis

Quite a lot of Russians in powerful positions would like to complete what Stalin started.

Thing is, 2022 is not 1932.

Twenty-twenty-two isn’t even 2014, when Ukraine was a lot weaker, and a lot more pro-Russian, than it is today.

Roosevelt’s and Churchill’s alliance with Stalin, whom they knew to be a mass murderer and tyrant, in my view denies the Allies any claim to have been waging a “just” or “good war.” When the lingering clouds of wartime propaganda finally dissipate, future historians will likely look back on the western Allies as not much morally superior to Germany or the USSR, though certainly less murderous.

Communists and leftists everywhere joined in covering up Stalin’s crimes. For example, to the end of his life, Jean Paul Sartre kept insisting Stalin’s gulag was a fiction created by western propaganda. The official Communist Party line was that the deaths of millions of Ukrainians was simply an unfortunate natural disaster that also affected other parts of the USSR.

In North America, intense attention to the Jewish Holocaust tended to push all other national historic tragedies into the background or completely eclipse them. The fact that during the 1930’s, many senior officers of Stalin’s Cheka, or secret police, were Jewish, including Kaganovitch, led to ferocious reprisals against Ukraine’s Jews in the following decade. As a result, Ukrainians were permanently branded “anti-Semites”; their suffering received scant sympathy.

Soviet dissident Vladimir Bukovsky demanded a Nuremburg trial for all the Soviet crimes, but unfortunately this will never happen. Most of the criminals are dead. The Soviet Eichmann, Lazar Kaganovitch, died peacefully in Moscow in 1991; Molotov died in 1986. In fact, not a single Soviet official was ever indicted for the crime committed by the state from the 1920’s to 1953, though many Cheskisti were liquidated during Stalin’s purges.

Canada’s recognition of this historic crime is important for two reasons. First, Canada is one of the world’s most respected nations. Its acknowledgment of the Holdomor will be heard around the globe. Second, nostalgia for Stalin is on the rise in today’s Russia. His memory and politics are being rehabilitated. Russians must to be reminded of his crimes and reign of terror.

In “les abuses de la mémoire,” the Bulgarian-born French philosopher Tzvetan Todorov, who studied the Jewish Holocaust, wrote: “Life cannot withstand death, but memory is gaining in its struggle against nothingness.”

The Forgotten Genocide
by Eric Margolis 

As far as I know, Eric Margolis is not a Christian believer. Far from it.

But he has the right idea: we are witnesses to both the evil and the good that men do.

We are not to forget what we saw.

And someday, we will have to give an account of what we saw, and what we did, and what we failed to do.

Until then? I will note that the Power of Love isn’t only about feeding your people, and sacrificing for your people, but also stopping — even, if necessarily, killing — evil people who would harm, rape, rob, and kill the innocent.

Your innocent people, under your authority and your protection.

Yesterday was hard.

Today is better.

Even with the genuine and real pain and the loss of today, it’s leagues better than yesterday.

Perhaps the greatest problem with Traveller (a science-fiction game) is that it greatly under-estimates just how much better the Far Future will be compared to today. Looking to the past, rather than stretching to the future.

Hmmm….

Until then, three cheers for the increasing and strengthening Power of Love!


Extra Credit: When public justice cannot be secured, see “Covenantal Lawsuit“.

But when you publicly place a lawsuit before the King, be prepared for public findings and public consequences.

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