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View Diary: Again: What Are the Holocaust's REAL Origins? (155 comments)

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  •  So? (0+ / 0-)

    Who cares?  I mean, seriously, does it make it more significant if we say it was ten years instead of five?

    I mean, I'm not trying to be a douche - I believe that historical details matter, and yes, Stalin doesn't have absolute authority in 1922 when Lenin has his stroke.  But it still strikes me as a meaninglessly small measure of time to discuss the treatment of Jews in pre-war Europe.

    The urge to save humanity is almost always a false face for the urge to rule it. ~ H.L. Mencken

    by Jay Elias on Tue Sep 29, 2009 at 09:38:06 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Well (0+ / 0-)

      if you're going to link Soviet anti-Semitism to Stalin's reign, it would seem wise to be accurate about the time frame.

      •  But I wasn't (0+ / 0-)

        I was saying that the brief period in Russian history when the Soviet government didn't actively make Jewish lives miserable is so brief as to simply be an aberration which was quickly corrected.

        The urge to save humanity is almost always a false face for the urge to rule it. ~ H.L. Mencken

        by Jay Elias on Wed Sep 30, 2009 at 07:42:54 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Aberration? (0+ / 0-)

          Whatever one's final verdict on the Soviet experiment one thing that is indisputable is that at its inception it opposed anti-Semitism. Indeed, opposition to anti-Semitism was a principle of the Russian Social Democratic movement generally and the Bolshevik Party in particular in the decades prior to the Russian Revolution. Hence the prominence of Jews in its leadership, Lev Davidovitch Trotsky being only the most notable of these.

          Likewise it is indisputable that the Soviet regime degenerated into anti-Semitism. Even so, its own legacy of opposition to anti-Jewish bigotry produced contradictions. Even under Stalin the regime never openly espoused formal anti-Semitism, more often cloaking its actions in an entirely different rhetorical garb. This stands in stark contrast to the blatant Jew hatred espoused by reactionaries in Europe at the time, not to mention the previous institutionalization of such hatred under Tsarism. Possibly the clearest example of this contradictory stance is the early support for the State of Israel, occurring as it did while Stalin was at the Zenith of his power and while domestic campaigns against "rootless cosmopolitans" were in full swing.

          All this argues for a more complex view of Soviet anti-Semitism than simply writing off its early opposition to such as an aberration. Consider, the legacy of opposition to anti Jewish bigotry was still potent enough following the death of Stalin to produce such ringing condemnations as the powerful Babi Yar by official Soviet Poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko.

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