and their defenders and apologists are as bad as Nazis’ defenders, but far more common. When you meet them, show them no respect. They’re evil, stupid, and dishonest wrote Insty a while back. Just recently I saw a book mentioned and found it at the library: Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin. Only about sixty pages in, and one of the things it's convinced me of is that Stalin and the communist True Believers were(some still are) even more evil than I would have believed. And I do not use that word lightly. This is part of what really got me, referring to the famine Stalin ordered in the Ukraine:
As Stalin interpreted the disaster of collectivization in the last weeks of 1932, he achieved new heights of ideological daring. The famine in Ukraine, whose existence he had admitted earlier, when it was far less severe, was now a "fairy tale", a slanderous rumor spread by enemies. Stalin had developed an interesting new theory: that resistance to socialism increases as its successes mount because its foes resist with greater desperation as they contemplate their final defeat. Thus any problem in the Soviet Union could be defined as an example of enemy action, and enemy action could be defined as evidence of progress.
Resistance to his policies in Soviet Ukraine, Stalin argued, was of a special sort, perhaps not visible to the imperceptive observer. Opposition was no longer open, for the enemies of socialism were now "quiet" and even "holy". The "kulaks of today," he said, were "gentle people, kind, almost saintly." People who appeared to be innocent were to be seen as guilty. A peasant slowly dying of hunger was, despite appearances, a saboteur working for the capitalis powers in their campaign to discredit the Soviet Union. Starvation was resistance, and resistance was a sign that the victory of socialism was just around the corner. These were not merely Stalin's musings in Moscow; this was the ideological line enforced by Molotov and Kaganovich as they traveled through regions of mass death in late 1932.
Stalin never personally witnessed the starvations that he so interpreted, but comrades in Soviet Ukraine did: they had somehow to reconcile his ideological line to the evidence of their senses. Forced to interpret distended bellies as political opposition, they produced the utterly tortured conclusion that the saboteurs hated socialism so much that they intentionally let their families die. Thus the wracked bodies of sons and daughter and fathers and mothers were nothing more than a façade behind which foes plotted the destruction of socialism. Even the starving themselves were sometimes presented as enemy propagandists with a conscious plan to undermine socialism. Young Ukrainian communists in the cities were taught that the starving were enemies of the people "who risked their lives to spoil our optimism."
Evil. There is no other word for this. Millions dead, God alone knows how many physically and/or mentally damaged for life. And we've still got fools who defend it. Make excuses for it.
This is going to be as hard to read as The Black Book of Communism.