Holodomor: The Aftermath
What effect did the Holodomor have on the demographics of Ukraine? On Ukrainian language, culture, traditions and, especially, identity? What effect did the horrendous loss of life have on the survivors, be they children or adults? On their offspring? How did they cope?
How did the resettlement of non-Ukrainians in ravaged villages affect the dynamics in Ukraine today? Did collective farms ever prove themselves to be an effective organization for agricultural production? These and many other questions about Ukraine as a post-genocidal society remain to be researched.
Quotes and Observations
Results of Forced Collectivization
My friend overheard by chance her parents’ conversation. Father [sent to collectivize the farmers] explained that he called Molotov in Moscow and told him about that people had nothing to eat and asked for permission to open the granary and feed the people. Molotov answered: ‘I forbid. Half will croak, the other half will go into the kolkhoz.’ This is how collectivization was realized.
All Thought of Independence Killed
The famine was brought about in Ukraine in order to reduce the number of Ukrainians, resettle in their place people from other parts of the USSR, and in this way kill all thought of independence.
Russian colonization in Ukraine
The current disaster will bring about a preponderantly Russian colonization of Ukraine. It will transform its ethnographic character. In a future time, perhaps very soon, one will no longer be able to speak of a Ukraine, or a Ukrainian people, and thus even of a Ukrainian problem, because Ukraine will become a de facto Russian region.
“The late historian, James Mace, called Ukraine a post-genocidal society. He became a famine expert, first collecting material for Robert Conquest’s Harvest of Sorrow and later made Ukraine his adopted homeland. He believed that what Ukrainians call Holodomor maimed Ukraine to such an extent that it created a discontinuity in the normal development of the Ukrainian people to this day.
The orchestrated famine wiped out millions of nationally-conscious Ukrainians. The Soviet regime prevented families and individuals from processing both personal and national grief, as for more than 70 years, Ukraine could not address the trauma openly. The problems of today are rooted in the past atrocities and destruction of the spiritual, intellectual and cultural life of successive generations of Ukrainians since the 1930s.
Will acknowledgement by the world community of the Ukrainian genocide ease the effects of the trauma? The Holodomor is not only an event in Ukraine’s past — it is an event in its present and its future.”
Irena Chapula, Dec. 9, 2008
[Excerpt From Holodomor in Ukraine, The Genocidal Famine 1932-33: Teaching Materials for Teachers and Students – By Valentina Kuryliw]