HON. CURT WELDON OF PENNSYLVANIA
IN THE U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
Extensions of Remarks
Thursday, November 14, 2002
Mr. WELDON of Pennsylvania. Mr. Speaker, this Saturday,
Ukrainians around the world will honor the millions that died in the
man-made famine created by Josef Stalin's Soviet government.
In 1932-33, citizens of Ukraine , the northern Caucasus and the
lower Volga River regions died as a result of Stalin's implementation
of forced collectivization. The heaviest losses occurred in Ukraine,
where an estimated 7 to 10 million people perished.
This artificial famine was instituted to break the spirit of the
Ukrainian farmer and force them into collectivization. Stalin
was determined to crush Ukrainian nationalism and to do so required
an ethnic cleansing of the most horrific nature.
The task took the form of a man-made famine where the quota
for grain from Ukraine was brutally increased. The extraordinarily
high quota resulted in a severe grain shortage, effectively starving
the Ukrainian people.
Additionally, the peasants were threatened if they did not perform
the work expected of them and the Soviet government issued a decree
stating that anyone found hiding food products or produced materials
would be shot.
The end result was a demoralized and depleted Ukrainian ethnic
population. Stalin covered up this genocide so effectively that little
was known of this horrific event.
However, the Ukrainian Government has exposed Stalin's atrocities
by issuing a decree stating that the fourth Saturday of November is
designated as the national memorial day for the millions of victims of the
1932-33 famine. This day of observance reminds us that freedom does
not come easy.
I join those in mourning and aid their cause in expanding the world's
acknowledgment of this horrific event in Ukraine's history. Furthermore,
I support the Ukrainian community's action to erect a monument to the
victims of the 1932-33 Ukrainian Famine-Genocide in Washington, D.C.
This monument will serve as a reminder of the sacrifices the Ukrainian
people endured for their freedom and the knowledge of this horrible crime
will spread and stimulate the fight for freedom all over the world.
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