Category Archives: History

October 8, 2017

Rule by Starvation

About 3.9 million people, or 13% of Ukraine’s population, died as Stalin pursued collectivization. Anna Reid reviews ‘Red Famine’ by Anne Applebaum.

In March 1932, Communist Party officials in Ukraine’s Odessa province heard rumors of hunger in outlying villages and sent a medical team to investigate. The doctors found empty cottages, corpses lying in the lanes, and the surviving inhabitants gnawing on carrion, boiled bones and horsehide. Local apparatchiks, the horrified medics reported, were doing their best “not to notice the incidence of starvation, and . . . not to speak about it.”

The dead were early victims of the “Holodomor”—literally translated as “hunger-extermination”—an artificial famine inflicted on the Ukrainian peasantry by Stalin in the years 1932-34. The best estimate of the death toll is 3.9 million, or 13% of Ukraine’s population. Up to an additional 2.5 million died in famines elsewhere in the Soviet Union at the same time.

Denied by the Soviet authorities almost until communism’s fall, the Holodomor was first documented by the British historian Robert Conquest in his ground-breaking 1986 book, “The Harvest of Sorrow.” Compiling census data and émigré memoirs and interviews, he demonstrated both the scale of the famine and the fact that it was not the result of drought or economic upheaval but of food confiscation, deliberately and violently enforced. Since then, a mass of new evidence has become available, on which Anne Applebaum draws—with generous acknowledgments to Ukrainian historians—for “Red Famine,” a lucid, judicious and powerful book.


Complete text linked here.

October 6, 2017

Historical Record Shows Christopher Columbus Actually Was A Great Man

Leftist lies vs. reality.

Nothing so typifies the American Left’s present wave of statue-toppling, anti-historical hysteria as its war against Christopher Columbus. If you haven’t kept track, here are a handful of the latest attacks on, to borrow the title of Samuel Eliot Morison’s excellent Columbus biography, the Admiral of the Ocean Sea:

Twenty-five year old Darlene Gonzales was arrested on September 22 for vandalizing a statue of Columbus in San Jose, California. The word “murderer” was spray-painted on a statue in Binghamton, New York in September. In Minneapolis, a petition is circulating to replace a Columbus statue at the state capitol with one of the artist formerly known as Prince. In Yonkers, a Columbus statue was beheaded. New York City mayor Bill de Blasio responded to vandalism of the famous Central Park Columbus statue by creating a commission to determine which historical monuments ought to be removed. In Los Angeles, Seattle, Albuquerque, Denver, Phoenix, Santa Fe, and Ann Arbor, among other cities, Columbus Day has been renamed “Indigenous Peoples Day.” The Wikipedia page for the great explorer has been locked because left-wing revisionists have tried to make the man appear so controversial.

October 4, 2017

On the Road to Calamity: Solzhenitsyn’s The Red Wheel: March 1917

Solzhenitysn’s multi-volume The Red Wheel attempts to answer the question: why did the Russian Revolution occur? Solzhenitsyn’s art allows readers to grasp one of the pivotal episodes in history.

One hundred years ago, a catastrophic event took place in the grand city of St. Petersburg. A revolution overthrew the Tsarist government of Russia. Out of the chaos that ensued, the most vicious and ideologically extreme splinter group gained ascendency. When the Bolsheviks violently solidified control throughout the vast Russian Empire, it so frightened people in other parts of Europe that they ceded power to vociferous anti-communist political parties—fascists and Nazis. In turn, those movements led the world into the worst war in history. The end of the World War II did not bring peace, but instead led to a long Cold War in which the United States and the Soviet Union spent uncountable fortunes to defeat each other’s way of life.

Aleksandr Solzhenitysn’s multi-volume The Red Wheel attempts to answer an important question: How did all these horrible events come to pass? When Solzhenitsyn began writing the story in the 1930s, it was not to be a tale of tragedy, but one of triumph. The work was intended to show how Solzhenitsyn’s boyhood hero Lenin founded a society based on equality, freedom, and brotherhood. The tenor of the book changed when the psychotic Stalin succeeded Lenin and began to systematically enslave and brutalize the Soviet Union in an effort to establish Marx’s vision of a perfect society. Solzhenitsyn was swept up in the whirlwind of terror, spending years in forced labor camps under the most inhuman conditions.


Complete text linked here.

October 2, 2017

Mars missions ‘should be all-female’ to avoid sex and fighting in space, NASA report says

Sharman told an audience at the Excel centre that NASA concluded that an all-female crew would be better as women were ‘more collaborative’ and men would squabble over who was ‘the leader’.

A secret report created by NASA has suggested that any Mars mission should be single-sex – and ideally all-female.

The secret report was revealed today by British astronaut, Helen Sharman, who said it was filed some years ago.

Sharman claims that the report suggests the Mars mission should be single-sex, as it’s liable to last a year and a half – and that all-female crews work better as a team.

Ms Sharman said: ‘I did hear some years ago that there was a report.

‘Nasa has never released it, but it was done to see exactly the kind of crew makeup was necessary for the reason we have already alluded to.


Complete text linked here.

The U.S. Government Turned Away Thousands of Jewish Refugees, Fearing That They Were Nazi Spies

In a long tradition of “persecuting the refugee,” the State Department and FDR claimed that Jewish immigrants could threaten national security.

In the summer of 1942, the SS Drottningholm set sail carrying hundreds of desperate Jewish refugees, en route to New York City from Sweden. Among them was Herbert Karl Friedrich Bahr, a 28-year-old from Germany, who was also seeking entry to the United States. When he arrived, he told the same story as his fellow passengers: As a victim of persecution, he wanted asylum from Nazi violence.

But during a meticulous interview process that involved five separate government agencies, Bahr’s story began to unravel. Days later, the FBI accused Bahr of being a Nazi spy. They said the Gestapo had given him $7,000 to steal American industrial secrets—and that he’d posed as a refugee in order to sneak into the country unnoticed. His case was rushed to trial, and the prosecution called for the death penalty.

What Bahr didn’t know, or perhaps didn’t mind, was that his story would be used as an excuse to deny visas to thousands of Jews fleeing the horrors of the Nazi regime.

World War II prompted the largest displacement of human beings the world has ever seen—although today’s refugee crisis is starting to approach its unprecedented scale. But even with millions of European Jews displaced from their homes, the United States had a poor track record offering asylum. Most notoriously, in June 1939, the German ocean liner St. Louis and its 937 passengers, almost all Jewish, were turned away from the port of Miami, forcing the ship to return to Europe; more than a quarter died in the Holocaust.


Complete text linked here.

September 29, 2017

The forgotten Holocaust: How Stalin starved four million to death in a grotesque Marxist experiment – which many in Russia STILL deny

Four million Ukrainians were starved to death by Stalin across 1932 and 1933. Some left-leaning figures past and present have sympathised with his regime. But a new book by Anne Applebaum leaves no doubt about his responsibility.

One day in the summer of 1933, in a village in Ukraine, then part of the Soviet Union, a little boy woke on top of the family stove. He was starving — not just hungry but genuinely starving.

‘Dad, I want to eat! Dad!’ he cried. But the house was cold and from his father there came no answer.

The boy went over to his father, who was apparently still asleep. There was ‘foam under his nose’, he remembered. ‘I touched his head. Cold.’

A little later, a cart arrived laden with bodies ‘lying like sheaves’. Two men came into the house, lifted his father’s body into a sack and threw it onto the cart. Then they were gone.

The boy left home after that. He wandered the empty fields, sleeping in stables, scrabbling for grains, ‘swollen and ragged’. But somehow he survived. Some four million of his fellow Ukrainians were not so lucky.

The famine that struck Ukraine in late 1932 and 1933 was one of the most lethal catastrophes in European history.

In the West, it is nowhere near as well-known as it should be.

In Ukraine itself, however, the Holodmor — literally, ‘hunger extermination’ — is often seen as the equivalent of the Holocaust, a gigantic, man-made operation to murder millions of people.


Complete text linked here.

September 27, 2017

Ancient mystery of how the Egyptians built the Great Pyramid of Giza may be solved (Video)

The boats were held together by thick, twisted ropes, some of which have survived and were found in good condition.

Archaeologists believe they have solved one of history’s most puzzling questions — how the ancient Egyptians transported over 170,000 tons of limestone to build the Great Pyramid at Giza.

New findings at the site on the outskirts of Cairo have revealed purpose-built boats were used to transport the huge stones.

The findings shed new light on how King Khufu’s tomb, built over 4,000 years ago in about 2550 B.C., was built Archaeologists have long known that some rock had been extracted eight miles from Giza in a place called Tura, while granite was quarried from over 500 miles away.

The way in which these materials were transported, however, has long been a source of disagreement among academics.

A group of archaeologists working at the Giza pyramid complex, an archaeological site, have unearthed an ancient papyrus scroll, remains of a boat and a network of waterways at the site of the pyramid, providing new evidence that points to how the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World was built.


Complete text and video linked here.

September 22, 2017

The Intellectual Refugees of the Russian Revolution

Vladimir Lenin banished over 160 intellectuals on the “Philosophers’ Ships” in 1922. Free thought of any kind could not be tolerated by Lenin’s new regime.

Semyon and Tatyana Frank stood at the rails of the steamer Haken, holding hands and watching the dark waves of the Baltic, the scene illuminated only by the starry sky. They were departing Russia, never to return. They had been banished.

In June 1922, with the Civil War largely resolved, Vladimir Lenin finally felt safe in beginning to dispose of “threatening” intellectuals. Some were socialists, but not Bolsheviks; a few were survivors of the political right; others were simply religious. But free thought of any kind could not be tolerated by the new regime. Lenin himself devoted considerable time to selecting those who were too influential to shoot, but too dangerous to allow to remain. He feared executing them largely because such an action might alienate Communist sympathizers in the West. So, in conjunction with the Cheka, he decided to exile them for life. The Haken and its fellow “Philosophers’ Ships” carried away over 160 intellectuals. In some respects, theirs was a fortunate fate: according to the most conservative estimate of official Soviet sources, the Soviet secret police shot more than 12,000 political prisoners in 1922 alone.


Complete text linked here.

September 21, 2017

Victor Davis Hanson – How a Border War in Europe Led to WWII (Video)

Victor Davis Hanson, the Wayne and Marcia Buske Distinguished Fellow in History at Hillsdale College, is also a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and a professor of classics emeritus at California State University, Fresno. Dr. Hanson earned his B.A. at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and his Ph.D. in classics from Stanford University. In 2007, he was awarded the National Humanities Medal, and in 2008, he received the Bradley Prize.

The WWII Invasion Russia Forgets And Poland Mourns (Video)

Under a recently passed law, Russia’s supreme court convicted a blogger last year for claiming that the Soviet Union invaded Poland, setting a legal precedent for jailing anyone who does so.

Poland marked a date over the weekend it considers instrumental in the stamping out of its independence after World War II at the hands of its neighbor, Russia. The weekend anniversary marks the surprise Soviet assault into Poland, which had come under attack by Germany only weeks before.

However, despite Moscow’s own annual and bombastic World War II commemorations, most Russians today do not know or believe it happened.

President Andrzej Duda lead a wreath-laying ceremony in Warsaw on Sunday, dedicated to the thousands of Poles, killed by the Soviet assault from the east, only weeks after the Nazi army attacked Poland from the west.

In a now infamous secret pact, Berlin and Moscow had agreed to split their mutual neighbor without declaring war on one another—a relationship that lasted almost two years, until German troops took the Soviet Union by surprise, attacking east.


Complete text and video linked here.