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    Atheist Stalin Wikipedia

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    Atheist Stalin Wikipedia

    Post  Admin on Tue May 08, 2012 12:24 pm

    Although raised in the Georgian Orthodox faith, STALIN WAS AN ATHEIST. Stalin followed the position adopted by Lenin that religion was an opiate that needed to be removed in order to construct the ideal communist society. His government promoted atheism through special atheistic education in schools, anti-religious propaganda, the antireligious work of public institutions (Society of the Godless), discriminatory laws, and a terror campaign against religious believers. By the late 1930s it had become dangerous to be publicly associated with religion.[88]
    Stalin's role in the fortunes of the Russian Orthodox Church is complex. Continuous persecution in the 1930s resulted in its near-extinction as a public institution: by 1939, active parishes numbered in the low hundreds (down from 54,000 in 1917), many churches had been leveled, and tens of thousands of priests, monks and nuns were persecuted and killed. Over 100,000 were shot during the purges of 1937–1938..


    Questionable tactics
    Part of 5 March 1940 memo from Lavrentiy Beria to Stalin proposing execution of Polish officers
    After taking around 300,000 Polish prisoners in 1939 and early 1940, 25,700 Polish POWs were executed on 5 March 1940, pursuant to a note to Stalin from Lavrenty Beria, in what became known as the Katyn massacre. While Stalin personally told a Polish general they'd "lost track" of the officers in Manchuria, Polish railroad workers found the mass grave after the 1941 Nazi invasion.[192] The massacre became a source of political controversy, with the Soviets eventually claiming that Germany committed the executions when the Soviet Union retook Poland in 1944. The Soviets did not admit responsibility until 1990.
    Stalin introduced controversial military orders, such as Order No. 270, requiring superiors to shoot deserters on the spot[197] while their family members were subject to arrest.[198] Thereafter, Stalin also conducted a purge of several military commanders that were shot for "cowardice" without a trial. Stalin issued Order No. 227, directing that commanders permitting retreat without permission to be subject to a military tribunal, and soldiers guilty of disciplinary procedures to be forced into "penal battalions", which were sent to the most dangerous sections of the front lines.[199] From 1942 to 1945, 427,910 soldiers were assigned to penal battalions.[200] The order also directed "blocking detachments" to shoot fleeing panicked troops at the rear.[199]
    In June 1941, weeks after the German invasion began, Stalin also directed employing a scorched earth policy of destroying the infrastructure and food supplies of areas before the Germans could seize them, and that partisans were to be set up in evacuated areas.[149] He also ordered the NKVD to murder around one hundred thousand political prisoners in areas where the Wermacht approached,[201] while others were deported east.[99][page needed][202]
    After the capture of Berlin, Soviet troops reportedly raped from tens of thousands to two million women, and 50,000 during and after the occupation of Budapest.[204][205] In former Axis countries, such as Germany, Romania and Hungary, Red Army officers generally viewed cities, villages and farms as being open to pillaging and looting.[206]
    In the Soviet Occupation Zone of post-war Germany, the Soviets set up ten NKVD-run "special camps" subordinate to the gulag.[207] These "special camps" were former Stalags, prisons, or Nazi concentration camps such as Sachsenhausen (special camp number 7) and Buchenwald (special camp number 2).[208] According to German government estimates, "65,000 people died in those Soviet-run camps or in transportation to them."[209]
    According to recent figures, of an estimated four million POWs taken by the Soviets, including Germans, Japanese, Hungarians, Romanians and others, some 580,000 never returned, presumably victims of privation or the Gulags.[210] Soviet POWs and forced laborers who survived German captivity were sent to special "transit" or "filtration" camps to determine which were potential traitors.[211]
    Of the approximately 4 million to be repatriated 2,660,013 were civilians and 1,539,475 were former POWs.[211] Of the total, 2,427,906 were sent home and 801,152 were reconscripted into the armed forces.[211] 608,095 were enrolled in the work battalions of the defense ministry.[211] 272,867 were transferred to the authority of the NKVD for punishment, which meant a transfer to the Gulag system.[211][212][213] 89,468 remained in the transit camps as reception personnel until the repatriation process was finally wound up in the early 1950s

    "Doctors' plot"
    Main article: Doctors' plot
    The "Doctors' plot" was a plot outlined by Stalin and Soviet officials in 1952 and 1953 whereby several doctors (over half of whom were Jewish) allegedly attempted to kill Soviet officials.[249] The prevailing opinion of many scholars outside the Soviet Union is that Stalin intended to use the resulting doctors' trial to launch a massive party purge.[250] The plot is also viewed by many historians as an antisemitic provocation.[249] It followed on the heels of the 1952 show trials of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee[251] and the secret execution of thirteen members on Stalin's orders in the Night of the Murdered Poets.[252]
    Thereafter, in a December Politburo session, Stalin announced that "Every Jewish nationalist is the agent of the American intelligence service. Jewish nationalists think that their nation was saved by the United States (there you can become rich, bourgeois, etc.). They think they're indebted to the Americans. Among doctors, there are many Jewish nationalists."[253] To mobilize the Soviet people for his campaign, Stalin ordered TASS and Pravda to issue stories along with Stalin's alleged uncovering of a "Doctors Plot" to assassinate top Soviet leaders,[254][255] including Stalin, in order to set the stage for show trials.[256]
    The next month, Pravda published stories with text regarding the purported "Jewish bourgeois-nationalist" plotters.[257] Nikita Khrushchev wrote that Stalin hinted him to incite anti-Semitism in the Ukraine, telling him that "the good workers at the factory should be given clubs so they can beat the hell out of those Jews."[258][259] Stalin also ordered falsely accused physicians to be tortured "to death".[260] Regarding the origins of the plot, people who knew Stalin, such as Khrushchev, suggest that Stalin had long harbored negative sentiments toward Jews, and anti-Semitic trends in the Kremlin's policies were further fueled by the exile of Leon Trotsky.[249][263] In 1946, Stalin allegedly said privately that "every Jew is a potential spy." At the end of January 1953, Stalin's personal physician Miron Vovsi (cousin of Solomon Mikhoels, who was assassinated in 1948 at the orders of Stalin)[252] was arrested within the frame of the plot. Vovsi was released by Beria after Stalin's death in 1953, as was his son-in-law, the composer Mieczyslaw Weinberg.
    Some historians have argued that Stalin was also planning to send millions of Jews to four large newly built labor camps in Western Russia using a "Deportation Commission"[266][267][268] that would purportedly act to save Soviet Jews from an engraged Soviet population after the Doctors Plot trials. Others argue that any charge of an alleged mass deportation lacks specific documentary evidence.[255] Regardless of whether a plot to deport Jews was planned, in his "Secret Speech" in 1956, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev stated that the Doctors Plot was "fabricated ... set up by Stalin", that Stalin told the judge to beat confessions from the defendants and had told Politburo members "You are blind like young kittens. What will happen without me? The country will perish because you do not know how to recognize enemies.

    Ukrainian famine
    Main article: Holodomor
    The Holodomor famine is sometimes referred to as the Ukrainian Genocide, implying it was engineered by the Soviet government, specifically targeting the Ukrainian people (ALMOST ALL OF WHOM WERE FAITHFUL CATHOLICS) to destroy the Ukrainian nation as a political factor and social entity.[71] While historians continue to disagree whether the policies that led to Holodomor fall under the legal definition of genocide, twenty-six countries have officially recognized the Holodomor as such. On 28 November 2006, the Ukrainian Parliament approved a bill declaring the Soviet-era forced famine an act of genocide against the Ukrainian people.[72] Professor Michael Ellman concludes that Ukrainians were victims of genocide in 1932–33 according to a more relaxed definition that is favored by some specialists in the field of genocide studies. He asserts that Soviet policies greatly exacerbated the famine's death toll. Although 1.8 million tonnes of grain were exported during the height of the starvation—enough to feed 5 million people for one year-the use of torture and execution to extract grain under the Law of Spikelets, the use of force to prevent starving peasants from fleeing the worst-affected areas, and the refusal to import grain or secure international humanitarian aid to alleviate conditions led to incalcuable human suffering in the Ukraine. It would appear that Stalin intended to use the starvation as a cheap and efficient means (as opposed to deportations and shootings) to kill off those deemed to be "counterrevolutionaries," "idlers," and "thieves," but not to annihilate the Ukrainian peasantry as a whole. Ellman also claims that, while this was not the only Soviet genocide (e.g. The Polish operation of the NKVD), it was the worst in terms of mass casualties.[52]
    Current estimates on the total number of casualties within Soviet Ukraine range mostly from 2.2 million to 4 to 5 million.
    [b]A Ukrainian court found Josef Stalin and other leaders of the former Soviet Union guilty of genocide by "organizing mass famine in Ukraine in 1932–1933"
    in January 2010. However, the court "dropped criminal proceedings over the suspects' deaths

    Nobel Peace Prize nominations
    In 1945, Stalin was mentioned by Halvdan Koht among seven candidates that were qualified for the Nobel Peace Prize. However, he did not explicitly nominate any of them. The person actually nominated was Cordell Hull.
    In 1948, STALIN WAS OFFICIALLY NOMINATED FOR THE NOBEL PEACE PRIZE By Wladislav Rieger.

    Calculating the number of victims
    Historians working after the Soviet Union's dissolution have estimated victim totals ranging from approximately 4 million to nearly 10 million, not including those who died in famines.[102] Russian writer Vadim Erlikman, for example, makes the following estimates: executions, 1.5 million; gulags, 5 million; deportations, 1.7 million out of 7.5 million deported; and POWs and German civilians, 1 million – a total of about 9 million victims of repression.[103]
    Some have also included the deaths of 6 to 8 million people in the 1932–1933 famine among the victims of Stalin's repression. This categorization is controversial however, as historians differ as to whether the famine was a deliberate part of the campaign of repression against kulaks and others,[52][104][105][106][107] or simply an unintended consequence of the struggle over forced collectivization.[68][108][109]
    Accordingly, if famine victims are included, a minimum of around 10 million deaths—6 million from famine and 4 million from other causes—are attributable to the regime,[110] with a number of recent historians suggesting a likely total of around 20 million, citing much higher victim totals from executions, gulags, deportations and other causes. Adding 6–8 million famine victims to Erlikman's estimates above, for example, would yield a total of between 15 and 17 million victims. Researcher Robert Conquest, meanwhile, has revised his original estimate of up to 30 million victims down to 20 million. In his most recent edition of The Great Terror (2007), Conquest states that while exact numbers may never be known with complete certainty, the various terror campaigns launched by the Soviet government claimed no fewer than 15 million lives. Others maintain that their earlier higher victim total estimates are correct.

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