The Great Famine-Genocide in Soviet Ukraine (Holodomor)

Publication dedicated to the memory of millions of victims of the Holodomor

Natalia Dziubenko-Mace, Compiler
Olexiy Kopytko, in Charge of Publication
Olena Yuznovska, Cover Design
International Foundation "Ukraine 3000"
Viktor Yushchenko, Head of the Supervisory Council
Kyiv, Ukraine 2003, ISBN 966-594-466-5


The holodomor of 1932-33 is one of the most terrifying pages in the history of the Ukrainian people. In this period, during a mere 17 months, millions of hearts stopped beating. Practically no family avoided the terrible misery, the loss of relatives because of starvation. In the spring of 1933, across the country 17 people were dying every minute, one thousand every hour, and almost 25 thousand every day.

Remembering about holodomor, we are obliged not to let the genocide repeat itself in the future, we must not allow the anti-people power, no matter what it is called, to be able to destroy people's lives.

Front Cover of the Brochure
(Click on images to enlarge them)

The 70th anniversary of holodomor takes place in the year of 2003. Today, when the truth about the famine becomes accessible, we must understand that the objective assessment of those terrible events cannot be directed only to the past, it has to be directed to the future. Studying the 70 year old events it is highly important to remember that the main reason this all is being done is to unite people in all of Ukraine around a common historical memory.

The International Foundation 'Ukraine-3000' considers one of its priority fields of work to deliver the truth about the Holodomor as a terrible crime against people to the citizens of Ukraine. To do this the program "Lessons of History: Holodomor 1932-33" was established by the foundation.

It is our belief that all the events that will be taking place in the context of the anniversary must be aimed to commemorate the victims of Holodomor, helping those people who survived it, and overcoming its consequences, first of all on the level of national self-conscience.

I call upon all who are not indifferent to Ukraine's future, to join this noble endeavor.


With respect,

Victor Yushchenko
Head of the Supervisory Council of the
International Foundation 'Ukraine-3000'

Back Cover of the Brochure

In this work there are documents, facts, Holodomor witnesses testimonies and other materials which persuasively demonstrate that this tragedy was the result of deliberate policy of Stalin's regime aimed against the Ukrainian people. In particular in this work there have been analyzed the basic causes of the Holodomor, the chronology of events of 1932-33, the reaction of the Soviet government and the international community to the situation in Ukraine, Kuban and the northern Caucuses, and also there are given the major conclusions regarding the consequences of the Holodomor.

The purpose of this work: to attract the public attention to this horrifying page of Ukrainian history and to involve people into commemorating the memory of those died during the Holodomor.

The main idea of this work: such tragedy should never happen again in any form.

The publication is meant for everybody who is not indifferent to the history, to the present time and to the future of Ukraine.

This publication is prepared based on the research and with participation of:

    V. K. Borysenko, doctor of historical sciences, Taras Shevchenko Kyiv National University, department of ethnology and local lore
    N. Y. Dziubenko-Mace, member of the Writers Union of Ukraine
    V. I. Marochka, doctor of historical sciences, Institute of History of Ukraine, Center of Genocide and Holodomor Research
    J. Mace, professor of history, National University 'Kyiv-Mohyla Academy,' department of political sciences
    V. M. Piskun, candidate of doctor of historical sciences, Taras Shevchenko Kyiv National University, Center of Ukrainian Studies
    V. I. Sergiychuk, doctor of historical sciences, Taras Shevchenko Kyiv National University, Center of Ukrainian Studies
    U. I. Shapoval, Institute of Political and Enthnonational Research of the National Academy of Science of Ukraine, Center of Historical Political Science


    To the reader/page 4 [by Viktor Yushchenko]
    Foreword/page 5
    What is holodomor?/page 8
    The chronicle of Holodomor events/page 13
    The voice of history: the famine witnesses testimony/page 24
    "Torgsins": the golden price of life of Ukrainian peasants/page 33
    Holodomor and cannibalism: the curse of year 1933/page 36
    How the world was moving towards the recognition of Holodomor of years 1932-33 the act of genocide against Ukrainian nation/page 37
    "The Candle in the Window?" instead of conclusion/page 46

In the design of the cover, the picture of the memorial sign the victims the holodomor years 1932-33 was used. (Kyiv, Mykhailivska Square; artist V. Perevalsky; architect M. Kysly.)

In the brochure photographs from the Collection of Kyiv City Organization of All-Ukrainian Society Memorial named after V. Stus, from the collection of Central State Cinema and Audio Archives of Ukraine names after H.S. Pshenychy Pshenychny and also the materials of the website of the State Committee of Archives of Ukraine were used.


EDITORS NOTE: There are eleven photographs shown in this brochure. Several of the photographs shown in this publication have been documented years ago to have not been taken in Ukraine during 1932-33. Photographs one, seven, eight, and possibly eleven, where taken in the Volga River region of Russia, Soviet Union during the tragic Soviet Union famine of 1921-23.

Photo 1. "The mass burial site of the Holodomor victims in the vicinity of Kharkiv," page 8.

[Editor: This photograph is not correctly identified in the brochure. The photo has been documented to be of a cemetery in the Volga River region, Russia, Soviet Union, and was taken in the early 1920's. The photograph was not taken in the Kharkiv region of Ukraine in 1932-33 during the 1921-23 Soviet famine.]

Photo 2. "Activitists from the village of Udachne, Donetsk Region with the confiscated heads of wheat near the village council, 1933," page 14.

Photo 3. "The land which used to feed half Europe could not bury all the victims of famine," page 16.

[Editor: There are some who do not believe this photograph was taken in Ukraine in 1932-33. There is some indications this photo was one of those taken in the Volga River region of Russia, Soviet Union in 1932-33. Strong, reliable, provable documentation that it was actually taken in Ukraine has not been found.]

Photo 4. "The dekurkulized family near their house, 1930's twentieth century," page 18.

Photo 5. "Departure of train with grain from Dnipropetrovsk, 1932," page 20.

Photo 6. "Departure of grain from the collective farm Chervony Step to the grain procurement station, Kyiv Region, 1932." page 22.

Photo 7. "Little witnesses of the tragedy," page 25. [Editor: The photograph shows nine young children sitting on a bench. The brochure implies the photo was taken in Ukraine. This photograph was not taken in Ukraine in 1932-33. The photograph has been documented to have been taken in the Volga River region of Russia, Soviet Union, in the early 1920's during the 1921-23 Soviet famine.]

Photo 8. "The harvest of sorrow, page 27." [Editor: This photograph shows a dead, frozen body being loaded onto a wagon by two men with another man standing in front of the wagon on the left side. The brochure implies that this photograph was taken in Ukraine during 1932-33. This photograph has been documented to have been taken in the Volga River region of Russia, Soviet Union, in the early 1920's during the 1921-23 Soviet famine.]

Photo 9. "Children are gathering frozen potatoes on the collective farm field in the village of Udachne, Donetsk Region, 1933," page 30.

[Editor: It is not clear to us that the frozen potatoes gathered here were actually given to victims of the famine. Groups of people this large were not normally allowed to gather and collect food for famine victims. This photograph looks more like an activity that was approved, organized, and implemented by a collective farm and all the potatoes would then have been under the control of the farm authorities.]

Photo 10. The USSR did not admit famine but continuously searched for the "enemies." Document shown in the photo says: Away with the kurkuls' servants, take the bread to the state. To finish the grain procurement till Friday, January 27 in time for the session of the district party committee and RKK. page 38.

Photo 11. "The child of the Holodomor," page 42, photograph shows a lady and a young, naked child.

[Editor: This photograph has been the subject of much controversy since it first appeared in several Hearst newspapers in the United States in the mid-1930's. The are many who do not believe this photograph was taken in Ukraine in 1932-33. The only evidence that is was in that the Hearst newspapers said it was taken in Ukraine. Many of the photographs shown in the Hearst newspaper articles that were stated to be taken in Ukraine have been proven to have been taken in the Volga River region of Russia ten years earlier during the Soviet famine of 1921-23.

Some Ukrainian publications say this is a sister and brother but it is difficult to understand this when looking at the major differences between the two persons in the photograph in terms of their health, clothing, etc.]

The material from the brochure was researched, translated from the original Ukrainian in English, edited and posted by the  Information Service (ARTUIS). It can be used with only with full credit to the  Information Service (ARTUIS).