Jews willing executioniers in Stalin's handsjan peczkis|Sunday, March 19, 2017
LEADING SOVIET JEWISH COMMUNISTS: NEITHER SUBSERVIENT TO, NOR DOMINANT TOWARDS, LEADING SOVIET NON-JEWISH COMMUNISTS Jewish involvement in the Communist elite of the USSR can be seen as a variation on an ancient theme in Jewish culture rather than a new one sprung from the special circumstances of the Bolshevik Revolution. Rather than being the willing agents of exploitative non-Jewish elites who were clearly separated from both the Jews and the people they ruled, Jews became an entrenched part of an exploitative and oppressive elite in which group boundaries were blurred. (p. 68).
MacDonald, Kevin. 2005. Stalin’s Willing Executioners: Jews as a Hostile Elite in the USSR. OCCIDENTAL QUARTERLY 5(3)65-100. This article, a review of Yuri Slezkine’s THE JEWISH CENTURY, is currently available as .pdf online (March 2017). The following [except the introduced titles in CAPS] are direct quotes:
JEWISH COMMUNISTS WERE CERTAINLY STILL JEWS —ethnic networking by any other name. (p. 77). The reality is that Jewish identity always becomes more salient when Jews feel threatened or feel that their interests as Jews are at stake, but Jewish identity becomes submerged when Jewish interests coincide with other interests and identities...The relative submergence of Jewish identity within the Jewish milieu in elite circles of the Soviet Union during the 1920s and 1930s is a poor indicator of whether or not these people identiﬁed as Jews or would do so when in later years Jewish and Soviet identities began to diverge, when National Socialism reemphasized Jewish identity, or when Israel emerged as a beacon for Jewish identity and loyalty. (p. 78). Certainly Jewish radicals often rejected their fathers’ religion and their way of life, but all the evidence points to their identifying in different ways as Jews, not losing their Jewish identity to become de-ethnicized moral crusaders against capitalism. (p. 79). THE EXPANDING JEWISH ROLE IN SOVIET COMMUNISM Despite the important role of Jews among the Bolsheviks, most Jews were not Bolsheviks before the revolution. However, Jews were prominent among the Bolsheviks, and once the revolution was under way, the vast majority of Russian Jews became sympathizers and active participants. Jews were particularly visible in the cities and as leaders in the army and in the revolutionary councils and committees. (pp. 83-84). Slezkine’s argument that Jews were critically involved in destroying traditional Russian institutions, liquidating Russian nationalists, murdering the tsar and his family, dispossessing and murdering the kulaks, and destroying the Orthodox Church has been made by many other writers over the years… (p. 93). The Gulag was headed by ethnic Jews from its beginning in 1930 until the end of 1938, a period that encompasses the worst excesses of the Great Terror. They were, in Slezkine’s words, “Stalin’s willing executioners” (p. 103). LIMITED DE-JUDAIZATION OF THE USSR: SOVIET ANTI-SEMITISM EXAGGERATED? Jews were able to maintain themselves as an elite until the end of the Soviet regime in 1991…On the whole, Jews were underrepresented as victims of the Great Terror. And although the Jewish percentage of the political elite did decline after the purges of the late 1930s and the promotion of former peasants and working class Russians, this did not affect Jewish predominance as a professional, cultural, and managerial elite. (p. 89). The campaign against the Jews began only after the apogee of mass murder and deportations in the USSR, and was much less lethal than those mounted against a long list of other ethnic groups, whose typical fate was deportation under the most brutal of circumstances (Cossacks, Chechens, Crimean Tatars, Volga Germans, Moldavians, Kalmyks, Karachai, Balkars, Ingush, Greeks, Bulgars, Crimean Armenians, Meskhetian Turks, Kurds, and Khemshins). (p. 89). SO NOW THE JEWISH COMMUNISTS’ OX IS GORED. THE WHINING BEGINS A Jewish woman writes that after her husband was arrested, her maid told her, “You are crying now, but you did not mind when my father was being dekulakized, martyred for no reason at all, and my whole family thrown out in the street” (p. 311). (p. 90, this article). The Russians were taking back their country, and it wasn’t long before Jews became leaders of the dissident movement and began to seek to emigrate in droves to the United States, Western Europe, and Israel. (p. 90). Jewish dissidents whose parents had run the Gulags, the deportations, and the state-sponsored famines, now led the “urgent call for social justice” (p. 342). (p. 91, this article). ORIGINS AND IMPLICATIONS OF HOLOCAUST SUPREMACISM In fact, however, the creation and maintenance of the culture of the Holocaust and the special moral claims of Jews and Israel are the result of Jewish ethnic activism. These claims have a speciﬁc historical trajectory, they are fueled by speciﬁc key events, and they are sustained by speciﬁc forces.21 For example, the Holocaust was not emphasized as a cultural icon until the late 1960s and early 1970s, when images of the Holocaust were deployed on a large scale in popular culture by Jewish activists speciﬁcally to rally support for Israel in the context of its wars of 1967 and 1973. (pp. 71-72). The critical Jewish role in Communism has been sanitized, while Jewish victimization by the Nazis has achieved the status of a moral touchstone and is a prime weapon in the push for massive non-European immigration, multiculturalism, and advancing other Jewish causes. (p. 95). MIDDLEMAN-MINORITY MODEL INADEQUATE. “JEALOUSY OF JEWISH SUCCESS” REFUTED Both the Jews and the Overseas Chinese are highly intelligent and entrepreneurial, but the Overseas Chinese have not formed a hostile cultural elite in Southeast Asian countries, where they have chieﬂy settled, and have not been concentrated in media ownership or in the construction of culture. We do not read of Chinese cultural movements disseminated in the major universities and media outlets that subject the traditional culture of Southeast Asians and anti-Chinese sentiment to radical critique, or of Chinese organizations campaigning for the removal of native cultural and religious symbols from public places. (p. 67).
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