Norman Naimark's Genocides Analysis

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Norman Naimark argues in Stalin’s Genocides that the dekulakization, the Holodomor, attacks on enemy nationalities, and the purges of 1937-38 purges should all be classified as the “crime of crimes”: genocide. Currently the four events are simply viewed as massacres or mass killings of a gargantuan scale. He goes further to assert that it was Stalin alone who facilitated and enabled these genocides to occur. By reclassifying them as genocide, Naimark hopes that Stalin’s crimes will finally get the recognition and proper classification that they deserve. The text focuses on these four key examples to prove this point, however, Naimark also insists that the four cases should be seen collectively as one interrelated genocide under the reign of …show more content…
This possibly one of the more convincing examples of genocide personally, as it clearly targeted a national group. The Soviet government killed millions of Ukrainian peasants by denying them aid, the ability to seek food elsewhere, and refused to relax restrictions until the damage was done. One key troubling point in this chapter was when Naimark admits that “there is not a lot of evidence that Stalin himself ordered the Ukrainian killer famine” as this hurts Naimarks key thesis that Stalin was the enabling agent for these genocides. I can believe however, that there can be no doubt that his policies and purposeful inaction were complicit scale of death and suffering during the …show more content…
Admittedly I knew the premise of the Great Purge before reading Naimark’s work, so I was slightly confused as to how the deaths of a wide spectrum of people from the top of government office to the lowest peasant accused of “Trotskyism” could be considered a genocide. Naimark makes a credible argument that it could be considered a political holocaust because of the sheer scale of the killings. Not only did Stalin wantonly kill those he perceived as a potential threat, he also killed their spouses and families. The total death toll reached over 700,000 people. These people were grouped by Stalin as being political opponents, thus satisfying Naimark’s definition of a

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